My name is Rebekah. I am a Messianic believer and attend a Messianic congregation (a local body of worship in which Jewish and Gentile believers celebrate their faith in Jesus in a Jewish way) in California. I am also recently graduated from Philadelphia Biblical University (PBU) in Pennsylvania. When people ask me if I am Jewish, I usually tell them that the important thing to know is that I have a Jewish heart, and that my heart, mind, and soul are on fire for the Jewish people to come to salvation through knowing Yeshua (Jesus) as their Messiah.
There are two passages Adonai (God) has put on my heart concerning this passion for the Jewish people. The first is 2 Corinthians 3:12-18, where Paul says that Adonai’s Word can lift the spiritual veil from a person’s heart, especially a Jewish heart. The Jewish heart can be so deeply rooted in the Law, culture and tradition that they become spiritually blind and their hearts are veiled.
The second passage is Romans 2, which explains that every person will be judged according to his or her actions and deeds. For me, to think that Jewish people can spend eternity without God if they don’t accept Yeshua simply breaks my heart.
For four years, I have been at PBU studying the Bible. I have gone through the one-year Institute of Jewish Studies (IJS) program and have continued studying the Bible in PBU’s regular program during the last three years. I have studied Biblical doctrine, church history, general religion, and philosophy. Today, because of my education, I am stronger than ever in my belief that Adonai has not given up on the Jewish people and that He still has a special and beautiful plan for both Israel and the church.
Starting as a freshman at PBU was difficult because other Christians did not understand why I was Messianic (a lifestyle of believing in Jesus and celebrating Jewish culture, tradition, and religious aspects), why I kept kosher, and why I preferred to spend my Saturday at a Messianic congregation instead of going to church. When they asked me why I was Messianic, I would respond by saying that Adonai has given me a calling to share the Gospel, and a love for a people who have been hated and persecuted, yet still hold their beliefs very seriously.
As those around me became better acquainted with my ideas and ways of thinking, they came to understand that I was just as much a believer in Yeshua as they were, but that I simply had a unique calling. Overall, my studies at PBU have grown my own personal faith along with my knowledge of the Bible, which helps me continue to share Yeshua and His love.
Now that I have graduated from PBU, I have a dream opportunity to work with Chosen People Ministries in Brooklyn, NY. My vision is to work with the recovering drug addicts in the Russian Jewish community, among other ministries. I have not always known God’s plan for me or why this desire and passion consumes me. Yet the Lord has confirmed this calling by bringing certain individuals into my life, making it possible for me to attend a Biblical university, and by giving me opportunities to visit Israel (during my second trip, God gave me more clarity on my specific ministry to Jewish people). So, I can say that God has called me to the Jewish people, and more specifically the Russian Jewish community. My goal is to love them, share Yeshua’s love, and tell them about their Messiah. Yeshua is faithful to those who are faithful and stand strong for Him!