The 22nd annual meeting of the Lausanne Consultation for Jewish Evangelism (LCJE) took place in San Francisco from Monday, March 7 through Wednesday, March 9. The LCJE is a networking organization comprised of individuals representing various ministries who want to see Jewish people reached for Messiah Jesus. These ministries range from missions agencies to various denominations, from Southern Baptists to Lutherans, and of course, Messianic congregations. About 65 people attended this year’s conference.
Mark Bailey, president of Dallas Theological Seminary, brought stimulating and inspirational lessons from God’s Word. Panel discussions and open–mic sessions helped the group to hash out some challenges facing Jewish evangelism, including the Jacob vs Jacob” article that David Brickner wrote about in last month’s Real Time, as well as the quotes from John Hagee that he mentioned in this month’s lead article. Some of the younger leaders spoke to us about reaching “post-moderns.” Jews for Jesus founder Moishe Rosen gave an address on “The Way Forward for Jewish Evangelism.” Sparks flew in a discussion over Stan Telchin’s controversial book, “Some Messianic Jews Say, ‘Messianic Judaism is not Christianity,'” as well as over Derek Lehman’s controversial book, “Paul Didn’t Eat Pork: Reappraising Paul the Pharisee.” On the last night, singer/songwriter/storyteller Sally Klein O’Connor (a Jewish believer whose music ministry is called “Improbable People”) gave a wonderful concert. Thanks to LCJE coordinator Theresa Newell for working so hard to make it all happen.
The LCJE brings together people from a wide variety of backgrounds and experiences. Much of the benefit of the conference is in sitting together at meals or between sessions–remembering how much we care for one another, even those with whom we have disagreements. After all, we do agree that Jesus is the Messiah of Israel, and that Jewish people need to know Him.
Since the conference took place at a hotel in San Francisco, Jews for Jesus was able to offer some hospitality, giving a tour of our facilities and a bagel breakfast (what else?) on the first morning of the conference.
Pray for all of us to continue praying and working together, that we might indeed agree on essentials to the glory of God and be gracious to one another in the non-essential areas.