Phew! I’m a bit out of breath. The whirl and swirl of activity in Jews for Jesus can be, well, breathtaking! It has been a privilege for me to serve with this mission since 1977. I am happy to be a part of the new things that God is doing with Jews for Jesus. I am deeply aware of my inadequacy for the awesome responsibility of being the new Executive Director. Yet I am every bit as aware of God’s adequacy, His abiding presence and promise to equip me for the task that is now entrusted to me.
The Lord has not called me to fill Moishe’s shoes. (Moishe wears size 16. I wear size 9.) Seriously, there is only one Moishe—don’t expect to see another like him! He has been my supervisor, my mentor, and he will continue to be my trusted advisor. I was not chosen to replace Moishe Rosen. I have been selected to lead this team of courageous, creative men and women who want to tell the world about Jesus. They are willing to do the work, even in the face of opposition.
Over the past 24 years, Jews for Jesus has grown to be the largest Jewish mission in the world. Moishe established principles, policies and procedures that have stood us in good stead. He feels that he has taken this ministry as far as he can and that now is the time for younger, more energetic leadership. Even in his decision to step down, Moishe continues to mentor the leadership of Jews for Jesus, demonstrating foresight and grace in his choices and sensitivity to God’s leading.
Jews for Jesus was never the Moishe Rosen Evangelistic Organization, nor will Jews for Jesus ever become the David Brickner Evangelistic Organization. We know who we are—and our greatest asset is no one person, other than the person of Jesus. As long as we are for Him, as long as our purpose is to lift up His name and raise His image, He’s going to bless us. I know that I can rely on the Lord. I am confident that the team of people with whom I serve will hold up my arms” in the days ahead. I hope I can also count on your prayers and support.
I feel in one sense that God has been preparing me for this opportunity all of my life—yet I have much to learn. I know this much: Jewish evangelism is important to God. I find that most comforting because as I survey the monumental task ahead, I know that God takes a direct interest in our success.
We Jews for Jesus are poised to leap ahead to a whole new chapter of ministry. Our commitment is growing. We feel a surge of fresh energy, mounting creativity. I want to invite you to pray with us and to join us in leaping into this adventure.
I believe that when it comes to Jewish evangelism, the best music has yet to be recorded, the best books have yet to be written, the best literature has yet to be developed and the best methods of outreach have yet to be discovered. We have always striven to be on the cutting edge of evangelism, and that will not change. We will redouble our efforts to be understood, if not appreciated, by the Jewish community. We will harness the latest developments in technology to effectively communicate the gospel. We’ve only just begun exploring the avenues of internet, media, video, infomercial and commercial television. (Well, we have unlimited imagination even if we have limited resources!) We will develop new evangelistic and discipleship materials that are more appropriate for Jewish people. All of these are only tools to help us reach our goal: direct and personal encounters with Jewish people who need the Lord Jesus.
If you are new to Jews for Jesus, you are joining us at a very exciting time. I hope you will “hang in” and consider us your gospel link with unreached Jewish people all over the world. For those of you who have been our friends and supporters for years, be assured that what you have known and loved about Jews for Jesus will remain the same: count on us to speak to as many unsaved Jewish people about Jesus as we possibly can. In fact, as you read this, I am in the midst of our Jews for Jesus Summer Witnessing Campaign in New York City. I was scheduled to lead this intensive outreach before I was elected Executive Director, and I decided I would not delegate that responsibility. Leading this Campaign is an opportunity to keep my focus where it belongs—on the multitudes of those who need Yeshua.
I wish I could take you with me out onto the streets of New York and down into the subways to see the faces of the countless thousands passing by into a Christless eternity. I know that you would share the burden that our staff and volunteers feel for those who so desperately need to hear the good news. We anticipate handing out over one million gospel tracts, and several thousand people will want to hear more.
Here in New York and throughout the world, the task is enormous, my new responsibilities are overwhelming—and the opportunities are exhilarating! So you understand, dear friends and supporters, why I may be a bit out of breath.
Yet I know that God, who breathed life into Adam and breathed His Spirit into His holy Word, will continue to empower us for those things He has called us to do. I do not know if the race will be a short sprint to the finish line or long distance marathon, but at this pivotal juncture in our Jews for Jesus ministry, I intend to run with endurance the race that is set before me. I will have the staff of Jews for Jesus running at my side, and I know that the grandstands are filled with heavenly onlookers cheering us forward. Come and help us set the pace!