Pictured above: Our Paris branch leader (wearing “JFJ” cap) took part in a peaceful march against anti-Semitism following the 2015 bombing of a local kosher deli.
You have an enormous opportunity to respond to a crisis with the love of God! Did you know that the current pandemic is the latest weapon in an age-old evil levelled at Jewish people? Shocking, but true: “The coronavirus crisis is stirring anti-Semitism around the world, fueled by centuries-old lies that Jews are spreading infection.”1 It seems the virus is yet another weapon in the arsenal of anti-Semites. And there is, as the American Jewish Committee reported, “a disturbing lack of awareness among the general public about the severity of anti-Semitism in the United States.”2
What is the source of this irrational hatred? God has staked His very reputation on the perpetuity of the Jewish people. No wonder Satan has targeted the Jewish people from the beginning in his twisted desire to make God a liar! Together we stand against Satan’s efforts to thwart God’s plan for His chosen people.
God calls His children to be active, not passive, to be courageous, and to exercise faith instead of fear. The Scripture urges us, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good” (Romans 12:21).
How You Can “Overcome Evil with Good” in the Fight Against Anti-Semitism
True overcomers always begin with prayer—the most powerful tool in the believer’s arsenal. When you pray for the Jewish people, you are taking up a cause that is very close to God’s heart. The Lord told the Jewish people, “He who touches you touches the apple of [My] eye” (Zechariah 2:8). God will bless you for interceding (Genesis 12:3).
Second, we can overcome evil with strong words and acts of affirmation and encouragement. Jewish leaders, friends, and colleagues need to know that you, as a Christian, can be counted on to stand against anti-Semitism now and in the days to come. Take time to say or write kind words of support and build relationships that demonstrate loving concern. In doing so, I believe you will help Jewish people see the love of Jesus in tangible ways.
You can also be assured that your partnership with Jews for Jesus supports the stand against hatred and oppression of Jewish people.
Jews for Jesus’ Part in the Fight Against Anti-Semitism
We have always stood against anti-Semitism. Back in the ’70s, bearing signs and wearing buttons that said “Free Soviet Jewry,” we marched with the Jewish community in San Francisco to protest the oppression of Jewish people in the Soviet Union.
Our passion for defending our Jewish people hasn’t ceased. Back in February 2019, I mentioned a conference that we helped organize in Paris, in which evangelical Christians met with local Jewish leaders to discuss anti-Semitism. In a climate where many Jewish people don’t know if it is safe for them to remain in Paris, we have built incredible trust and have had opportunities to share the love of Jesus.
In fact, our Paris branch had the opportunity to handle the security at a synagogue’s High Holiday services, which opened the door to even more opportunities to partner with the congregation and to answer questions about why we believe in Jesus. Not only has our Paris branch had major roles in their holiday celebrations in 2019 and 2020, but we were able to livestream a major portion of our own 2020 Rosh Hashanah service from their synagogue.
Thank You for Taking a Stand
We could not do what we do without you, and we hope that we have encouraged you to look for opportunities to speak against anti-Semitism and to speak for God’s love for Jewish people.
This month, Jewish people around the world will celebrate the festival of Purim, recounting God’s deliverance of the Jewish people as recorded in the book of Esther. (Find out more about that here.) I’m reminded of Mordechai’s words to that great heroine:
For if you keep silent at this time, relief and deliverance will rise for the Jews from another place.... And who knows whether you have not come to the kingdom for such a time as this? (Esther 4:14)
These are difficult days, but take heart; God is the great overcomer, and no evil can prevail against Him. In the face of growing evil, may God’s children respond positively, robustly, and lovingly, not being overcome with evil, but overcoming evil with good. May He strengthen you as you partner with us in His redemptive plans for the Jewish people!
1. Reuters report.
Post Script: Reaching Jewish People During the Holiday of Purim
At sundown on Thursday, February 25, Jews around the world will celebrate the festival of Purim, recounting God’s deliverance of the Jewish people from the plot of Haman to destroy them as recorded in the book of Esther. It’s a time for children to participate in pageants and plays, complete with costumes. Acknowledging this holiday is a great way to show that you stand with Jewish people against the age-old evil of anti-Semitism.
The common Jewish practice of Mishloach Manot, sending gifts to one another at Purim, is a very thoughtful and practical way for Christians to express love and support for Jewish friends and neighbors. You can easily go online, type in “Purim gifts” and have a Purim basket sent to a Jewish friend near you. Such a gesture may even lead to a conversation about God’s love in Messiah!