To Jews first, but also to Germans—and everyone else!
God wasn’t playing favorites when He inspired the Apostle Paul to declare that the gospel is God’s power of salvation “to the Jew first and also to the Greek” (Romans 1:16). It seems God always intended for the Jewish people to bring His good news to all nations.
Only a minority of Jewish people recognized Jesus as Messiah when He first came, but they quickly made him known across all kinds of geographical and cultural borders. Jewish people who know Yeshua (Jesus) are still crossing all kinds of borders with the gospel today. Thanks for helping us do that!
Most recently, Jews for Jesus held a two-week witnessing campaign in Berlin that ended on August 12. The team’s “Peacemaker” theme showed how badly we need God’s peace, offered through Jesus, in order to have peace with one another. Watch their Peacemaker video here.
Several team members were approached by people who had met Jews for Jesus during previous campaigns. Look for those stories in the snapshots below.
Paula Perry reports, “While I was handing out our gospel postcards, an elderly man named Richard asked me whether I was afraid to wear a Jews for Jesus T-shirt in public. I explained that I wasn’t because Jesus protects me, and we got into conversation. Richard told me how he had survived the Holocaust as a child. He also mentioned that he’d met one of us on the street a few years back. Richard believed that Jesus was the Messiah but had never asked God for forgiveness and new life through Him. As we spoke about this on the street, Richard was ready to pray for just that. After we prayed, I asked him who he would tell; he replied that he would tell his wife and that he was her only caregiver. I praise the Lord for His goodness!”
Also from Paula, “Two young Israeli women, Ronit and Yael, were visiting from Haifa. I asked them about Yeshua, and Ronit said that she had no idea about any religion. Yael remained quiet. I shared the gospel with them and asked if they would be open-minded enough to receive some follow-up material. They gave me their contact details and then asked to take a photo with me. Please pray they will be drawn to the truth of Yeshua.”
Magda Hrab reports: “I felt someone tap on my shoulder and, as I turned, a lady said to me excitedly, ‘You’re Jews for Jesus? I have to tell you a story. Two years ago my marriage was broken, I thought beyond repair. My husband and I went out to dinner one night and on the way home we met some people from Jews for Jesus. They shared the gospel with us and something changed in my heart. I walked away a different person. A better person. Our marriage survived and now it’s better than ever. I haven’t seen Jews for Jesus since then, so I was so excited to share this story with you!’”
Also from Magda, “At the Brandenburg Gate I met five young people from England. They had various opinions about Jesus, and as I started to present the gospel, three of them walked away. However, the two that stayed gladly received the gospel and prayed to begin a new life with Jesus. Please pray for Sara and Julia and their new walk with Jesus.”
Christine Marek reports, “What a rewarding and full day! Each group was sent out with a colorful board that read, ‘Do you know the Peacemaker?’ We passed out the ‘Peacemaker’ postcards and also invited people to write their thoughts about peace on sticky notes, which we then posted to our board. I had numerous conversations about the Prince of Peace, including one with Melina (a Muslim woman), Eli (a Jewish man), and Anya and Hendrick (both German). All seemed open, but only Melina gave her contact info.
“Another day, a man named Julio walked past, only to return and ask if I was Jewish. I told him I wasn’t, then asked if he was Jewish. He said, ‘No, but I want to be Jewish!’ We both laughed. I shared the gospel, and he agreed with it, point by point. Then he asked, ‘So . . . now what do I do?’ Soon he prayed to begin a new life with God through faith in Jesus. God had prepared Julio’s heart to have a divine encounter with Him!”
Janie-sue Wertheim reports, “By the end of one day our campaign leader Aaron Lewin quipped, ‘I’m surprised that there are still any Israelis left in Israel. It sounds like you met most of them in Alexanderplatz!’ Well, we had prayed that the Lord would give us Israeli contacts, and He sure did! One Israeli Jew, Oded, asked me, ‘So will you be happy when the Beit HaMikdash (the Temple) is rebuilt?’ That allowed me to share with him scriptures from Isaiah 53 and what Yeshua did when He died for our sins, once for all. Oded accepted a Gospel of John in Hebrew from [teammate] Angel and some of our Hebrew literature, along with our Israel team’s web address.”
Gerry Kafilaj reports, “While at the Brandenburg Gate, I had the great blessing of sharing the gospel with Mario, who is from Mexico. He clearly understood the gospel, and he was almost ready to pray with me to receive Jesus as his Savior, but at the last minute his friends came and took him away. Mario gave his contact information to me before he left. Please keep him in your prayers.”
Ellen Suess reports, “I spoke with a young Arab man at Alexanderplatz who had already received new life in Jesus. But, as he lives in the countryside, he has no fellowship with other Arab believers. As we talked, I remembered an Arabic church in Berlin I had heard about a year before, and now I realized that I still had their contact information. It turns out their church service had just started just ten minutes earlier, so I Googled directions and off that young man went to the train station to attend the service! Angel Burke, also had a good conversation with a group of Arab men.
“Janie-sue was talking with a woman from Portugal who also speaks German. Since I speak German, Janie-sue called me over. This lady told me that she came from a Crypto-Jewish family (a family that had kept their Jewish identity a secret because of persecution). After I presented to her the good news of the Jewish Messiah Yeshua, she was ready to repeat the prayer of salvation after me, and she was very joyous afterwards.
“When she gave us her contact information, I realized she lives in a town in Switzerland where I had lived briefly many years ago. I had prayed back then for the Jewish community there to find salvation in Jesus. God has finally answered my prayer, all these years later! A couple of years ago I got in touch with two Jewish believers there, and now I can connect this lady with them. Hallelujah! What a long-term plan our sovereign God and Father has for us!”
Scheffee Taylor reports, “During a sortie outside the zoo, I gave a postcard to a young woman who straightaway replied that she wanted nothing to do with religion. She was in the process of leaving Islam and pulled a book out of her bag that talked about a Christian lady who had been kidnapped by Muslims. I’d heard about the case, and told her that this lady was my sister in Jesus. I shared the gospel with her and offered her the chance to receive Jesus. She agreed and when I offered to pray with her she wanted to pray in Hebrew! It turned out that her husband is Jewish and from Israel. After praying with me, she asked for a Bible, so I gave her a New Testament in Hebrew. She gave her full contact for follow-up! Please pray for her protection!”
Norma Jean Hackett says, “Yes, we are reaching the world—literally—just as Jesus said: ‘Go ye into all the world.’ I have talked with people from Pakistan, Oman, Iraq, Syria, Israel (Jewish and Arab alike), Argentina, Colombia, Venezuela and more. Each has now heard about the need for a living relationship with Jesus. Now we pray for fruit to come from all the seeds that we have sown.”
Wow! God was so faithful to answer prayer. We were privileged to see:
- Thirty-six people begin a new life with God through faith in Jesus. Two of the new believers are Jewish.
- Eighty-five Jews and 374 Gentiles give us their contact information so they can learn more about Jesus.
- One hundred seventy-six believers, mostly Gentiles, willing to know more about Jews for Jesus. That’s a big deal because German Christians are (wrongly) taught that it’s unnecessary and even unkind to tell Jewish people about Jesus.
- God’s grace—so many times when it looked as though there’d be a cloudburst, God held back the rain so we could stay out and talk to people about Him.
Click photos below to enlarge.