My name is Rebekah. I am a Messianic believer and attend a Messianic congregation in California. I am also a graduating senior at 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 lifts the veil from a person’s heart, especially a Jewish heart. The Jewish heart can be so deeply rooted in the Law that they become spiritually blind and their hearts veiled.
The second passage is Romans 2, which explains that every person will be judged according to their 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. The Jewish people deserve to know who their Messiah is just as much as the Gentiles do.
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), kept Kosher, and that instead of going to church I preferred to spend my Saturday at a synagogue. When they would ask 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.
I will soon graduate from PBU and am looking at a dream opportunity to work with Chosen People Ministries in Brooklyn, New York. My vision for ministry is to work with the recovering drug-addicts in the Russian Jewish community among other things. 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 come to attend a biblical university, and by giving me opportunities to visit Israel (during my second trip, God gave me more clarity on which community of Jewish people to reach). 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!