family issues

A Seder I’ll Always Remember
Author: Rob Wertheim

I was excited to be heading to the West Coast to visit my older brother Steve. My dad had returned to New York with the good news that Steve had found a place with a nice Jewish landlady who would “keep an eye on him.”

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a letter to my sister

A Letter to My Sister
Author: anonymous

A Jewish believer in Jesus pens a heartfelt letter to his sister, who is a lesbian.

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A Bridge over the Chasm
Author: James Tour

A famous Jewish chemist made the most important discovery of his life when he opened up the New Testament.

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Movie Review: Wish I Was Here
Author: Elizabeth Troolines

Movie Review: Wish I Was Here, directed by Zach Braff, 2014

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L’Dor v’dor: From Generation to Generation

My mother taught me to love the Jewish people; she always reminded me that the Jews are God’s chosen. That is why I love Jews for Jesus and support what you guys are doing.” We hear this over and over from friends who speak, often with a note of wistful recollection, of a loved one […]

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A Seder To Remember
Author: Rob Wertheim

I was excited to be on the West Coast and to see my older brother Steve. Dad had been there earlier when Steve found an apartment, and had returned to New York with the good news that my brother had found a place with a nice Jewish landlady who would “keep an eye on him.” […]

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Marcia, Jesus was a Jew; he came for the Jewish people. He came for you.
Author: Allison S.

Those words were spoken to my mother by my friend’s mother when I was nine years old, and while they made a distinct impression on me, it wasn’t until sixteen years later that I considered them in a personal way. I grew up in an upper middle-class, Conservative Jewish home in the suburbs of Kansas. […]

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From Generation to Generation: A Jewish Family Finds Their Way Home

My name is Steven Peter Wertheim. I was born August 3, 1951 in the Bronx, New York—but our family actually lived in the upper west side of Manhattan, where it seemed like everyone was either Jewish or Catholic. Regular fights broke out between us neighborhood kids. As things heated up, invariably one of them” would […]

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What’s a Nice Jewish Boy Like You…?
Author: Stephen Katz

Stephen Katz is currently chief of station of our Jews for Jesus-D.C. branch, having moved to the Washington area two years ago. But for many years he and his family lived in San Francisco, and from that base Stephen wrote the lead articles for Mishpochah Message” and “Havurah.” The Katzes’ journey to find a place […]

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My Father’s Secret, My Story

A Jewish woman stumbles across a biblical discovery her father made before he passed on.

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Between Two Fathers

Between Two Fathers by Charles Barg, M.D. (Purple Pomegranate Productions, 2002) 180 pages, A father is always doing one or the other — giving life to his son or removing it — there are no in-betweens.” Dr. Charles Barg, Between Two Fathers Everyone in town looked up to Louis Barg. He presided over the boards […]

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I Am a Jewish Believer, from Ethiopia

Oh, you really are Jewish! But you are a little dark,” the young woman said. I was wearing a Jews for Jesus T-shirt and distributing broadsides while speaking to a woman on the streets of New York. I answered, “I’m from Ethiopia.” And she replied, “Now I understand, yes, I know there are Jews in […]

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Did Jesus teach his disciples to hate their parents?
Author: Rich Robinson

Some claim that Jesus taught his followers to hate their mother and father. If true, that would obviously make Jesus an immoral and unethical teacher, since one of the Ten Commandments is to honor one’s parents. “Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you,” the Torah says in Exodus 20:12.

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Raising Children in Two Worlds
Author: Stephen Katz

Mommy, does Grandma believe in Yeshua? “No, sweetheart, she doesn’t.” “But why not? She’s Jewish, isn’t she?!” All four of our children have initiated conversations much like the one above with my wife or me, and some of you who are parents have told me of similar interactions in your homes. Some messianic kids have […]

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From the Desert to the Living Water: The Odyssey of a Tunisian Jew

A secular, Tunisian Jew becomes convinced of the messiahship of Jesus.

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Never Give Up
Author: Stephen Katz

I looked out into the congregation and there he was—the man who could have been my father’s double! I tried not to stare at him as I finished my presentation but the resemblance was startling. Strangely, that same week, I saw two more look-alikes” for my unbelieving dad as I continued my speaking tour in […]

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With Family, Gently Knock

As Jewish believers, many of us resonate with the words of Yeshua found in Mark 6:4, A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house.” Those who grew up with Yeshua could not accept His wisdom because they only saw Him as “that carpenter,” […]

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Something Keeps Me Wanting to Hear

I asked David*, an unsaved Jewish man we’ve befriended through our Skokie office, to meet with me. David’s sister Susan* is a believer. I told him that this issue of Havurah was about encouraging Jewish believers to keep sharing their faith with their families and that I wanted to ask him how Susan’s beliefs had […]

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The Color of Water: A Black Man’s Tribute to His White Mother
Author: Susan Perlman

The Color of Water by James McBride, Riverhead Books, Berkeley Publishing Company, New York, 1996, 291pp. Paperback $12.00. One afternoon, on the way home from church, I asked her if God was black or white. A deep sigh, ‘Oh boy, God’s not black. He’s not white. He’s a spirit.’ ‘Does he like black or white […]

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Our Mothers Told Us

Our mothers were right. No matter how we tried to fool them when we were little (trying to raise a temperature by placing a thermometer next to the radiator, drawing on chicken pox with ballpoint pens, developing sudden” stomach aches on the day of an exam), our mothers were always there at the door to […]

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An Age-Old Challenge

Growing old is no joy, but Pearl Weinberg hadn’t realized how awful it could be until the death of her beloved Jacob. Two years had passed, but she often forgot Jacob was gone and set the table for two or bought herring (which she had never liked!) because it was a favorite of his. It […]

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Frieda Zuckerman’s Christmas

I was born in New York City, which you would know from my accent if I were speaking to you, but since this is on paper, you’ll just have to take my word for it. I won’t say how old I am, but I will tell you that I grew up during the Great Depression. […]

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It Runs in the Family
Author: Ruth Rosen

Harry, come to bed. Harry, she doesn’t want to talk about it.” My grandmother was such a good natured woman; I think that was the first time in my 11 years I had ever seen her the slightest bit annoyed. My grandfather never raised an eyebrow. He continued our conversation as though we hadn’t been […]

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Betrayed!
Author: Lyn Bond

Betrayed! by Stan Telchin. Chosen Books of the Zondervan Corp. Grand Rapids, Michigan 49506. $7.95, 139 pages, paperbound. (Also available in cassette). Purchase this online as a book or audio cassette. Betrayed! is a book that should have been written decades ago. Stan Telchin’s response to his daughter’s announcement of her belief in Jesus is […]

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I Escaped From Hitler Twice: The Fred Wertheim Story

When a Jew comes to believe in Jesus, it not only affects his life but the lives of those closest to him—his family. This was certainly the case when Steve Wertheim, the son of a Jewish immigrant, came to believe in Jesus. Steve’s father, Fred, was born in Germany in 1925. The son of a […]

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Excerpt from When Being Jewish Was a Crime

The following is an excerpt from Rachmiel Frydland’s autobiography, When Being Jewish Was A Crime. The time is 1938 in pre-war Poland. Mr. Frydland, a yeshiva student, has come to believe in Jesus. Inevitably, the time has come to tell his parents: When I was in the yeshiva, I rarely wrote home, but now I […]

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