Category Archives: Russian Israelis

Win & Disciple a New Generation of Believers in Israel

I recently returned from Israel, and what I saw was immensely encouraging! It is incredible how much Israel’s Messianic community has grown and changed since my first trip to the land back in 1976!

There are many more Israeli believers now than there were five or even three decades ago. Since then, so much has changed amidst the growing body of believers in the Holy Land!

For so long, most of those who came to faith in Israel were older immigrants from the former Soviet Union. However, many of today’s Messianic leaders in Israel are younger and grew up within the Messianic Israeli community. Many of them are also the grandchildren of those Russian-speaking immigrants in the post-Perestroika era.

Many of these young Messianic leaders’ kids have followed a similar path to that of their parents and grandparents. They had godly parents, were raised attending solid Messianic congregations from childhood, served in the Israeli military, traveled the world, studied at universities, entered the workplace, and now serve in their local congregations. Many of these men and women have also married and are now raising children of their own.

Partnering with and equipping these dynamic young leaders is my passion and priority. As a result, we introduced Living Waters almost a decade ago—an annual three-day mentoring retreat in Israel for the whole family. This discipleship effort allows young Israeli believers to meet one another and develop friendships for the future, as this generation will lead the Messianic community in Israel during the twenty-first century. It is an incredible privilege for Your Mission to the Jewish People to invest in this next generation and beyond (as we also disciple their children)!

Living Waters has fostered alliances among these young leaders, their congregations, and their ministries, resulting in even greater efforts to reach Israelis for Jesus. These alliances allow for deeper fellowship and for the participants to learn more about each other’s skills and gifts. Through teaching, worship, prayer, and many great discussions, we are advancing the general Bible knowledge of these young adults and addressing practical training issues, including leadership, counseling, and biblical ethics.

We have excellent Bible teachers training the Living Waters community. There are also some professors, business people, and others who know what it is like to stand for Jesus amid a challenging and sometimes hostile environment. Over the years, Living Waters has helped create a sense of unity in the Messianic body in Israel and has also offered the participants meaningful fellowship with believers throughout this small country.

This past June, Zhava and I were delighted to speak at Living Waters 2022. It was an honor to encourage these young leaders, but their passion for serving the Lord wherever He places them also profoundly inspired us. Here is what some of the participants had to say about their time at the retreat last month:

“Thank you so much for your work and love! I think there was a lot of honesty at the conference, and that is something that was important for me to experience and hear from young believers.”

“It is encouraging to see so many young people living out their faith, especially in this country.”

“Living in Israel is so hard and often exhausting, especially as believers. Having a ministry that just feeds into and loves on you for an entire weekend is such a blessing and an encouragement. I also really love the opportunity to meet so many other believers at a similar stage of life from around the country that we otherwise would not easily get to meet or know (particularly for us, being from the North).”

“We both felt so refreshed, encouraged, and more determined to do God’s work here in Jerusalem.”

We are in the midst of a second-generation Messianic Jewish movement within Israel and doing all we can to invest in their discipleship training for the Lord. We believe that what they learn through the teaching, personal conversations, and one another will serve them well as leaders in the growing Israeli Messianic movement as they bring the good news of the Messiah to fellow Israelis.

We believe that, along with Living Waters, many of our other activities at our center in greater Tel Aviv, such as our monthly Sabbath dinners, our weekly Bible classes, and outreach concerts, all contribute to serving this growing younger group of believing families and to equipping them to tell their own generation about the Lord.

God is at work in Israel, the Middle East, and the world. The passion and energy of this generation of Israeli believers are powerful evidence of God’s faithfulness. Now is an exciting time to be involved in Jewish ministry, especially in Israel!

I look forward to seeing how God will work through today’s Israeli Messianic community. Those in our Living Waters program, I have no doubt, will play an influential role.

What can you do to help us win and disciple a new generation of younger Israelis?

Your prayers are essential as the enemy of our souls is also doing all he can to stop this movement. We often have anti-missionaries trying to disrupt our activities in the greater Tel Aviv area. However, we are hoping to see some future “apostle Pauls” among them as the Lord reverses the hostility of the ultra-Orthodox and others who come against the good news and opens their hearts to receive the gospel message. We have already seen some openness among those who oppose us.

Thank you so much for caring! I am so hopeful for the future! I am already looking toward what God will do among this now-growing third generation (post-1948) of kids. They will grow up loving the Lord, speaking perfect Hebrew, and following the path blazed by their parents, who also attended Israeli schools, served in the army, and walked faithfully with their Messiah.

Many blessings, and may the Lord prepare our hearts for the great coming day that the apostle wrote about in Romans 11:25–26, when “all Israel will be saved”—through Yeshua the Messiah, of course.

I feel like we are on our way!

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Filed under evangelism, Israel, Jewish Christian Dialogue, Jews and Christians, Judaism, Messianic Jewish, Russian Israelis, Uncategorized

Global Conference on Russian Jewish Church Planting

MitchGlaser_Portrait copyShalom!

I have exciting news:

Our fourth global conference on Russian Jewish church planting will take place on September 14-17, 2016.

Let me explain why this conference in Warsaw is perfect for honoring the past and affirming the bright future we have because of Jesus!

  • Before the Holocaust, Poland was home to the largest Jewish community in Europe.
  • Poland today still values its rich Jewish history.
  • Chosen People Ministries was at work in Warsaw before the Holocaust and touched the lives of many Jewish people for the Lord.

We expect more than 100 Russian Jewish believers to attend. These dedicated people who are leading or planting congregations in the former Soviet Union, the United States, Canada and of course, in Israel!

Over the last 25 years, thousands of Russian Jewish people have come to know Jesus as their Messiah and Lord!

Because of 70 years of atheistic communism in the USSR, Russian Jewish people often have a strong cultural and ethnic identity as Jews, but know little about God, the scriptures, or the Messiah.

Today we find that Russian Jews are hungry to know more about the Lord.

Since the fall of the USSR, 1.5 million+ Russian Jews returned to Israel — and most believers in Israel would say that 60% of the Messianic Jews within Israel speak Russian as their mother tongue!

Your Mission to the Jewish People is a vital part of this movement: evangelizing, discipling, planting congregations and raising up leaders among the Israeli-Russian Jewish believers.

In fact, the director of our Israel work is a Ukrainian Jewish believer who found Jesus in Israel!

Israel has provided wonderful opportunities and a new start for Jewish people who have come to the Holy Land from areas of the world where they were persecuted. And many Russian-speaking Jewish people bless Israel with their advanced degrees, expertise in the arts, technology, medicine and many other skills.

Other Russian Jewish people are elderly and in desperate financial straits, relying on welfare as many are too old to work and unable to learn Hebrew with adequate proficiency to continue their professions.

With your help, we’re providing food, clothing, enrichment programs and so much more. Many of those we reach are Holocaust survivors. Our being there for them opens their hearts to Yeshua.

War-Torn Ukraine
We are also working intensively in various areas of Ukraine and in Moscow where we have begun two Chosen People Ministries’ Messianic congregations. Just this summer:

  • We sponsored 14 services at Purim and Passover, attended by about 500-600 people.
  • At the same time, we visited 179 Jewish families to distribute food.
  • We launched three new “Fellowship groups” in 3 different cities: Kherson, Belaya Tzerkov, and Sevastopol.
  • We funded humanitarian aid for disabled people, widows, elderly and needy Jewish people.
  • 16 Jewish people became believers and began to attend to local Messianic congregations.
  • And one new congregation in Chernigov was started.

The Future Is Bright for Russian Jewish Evangelism
As you can see, the Lord is doing a great work today among Jewish people! And your support makes all this, and more, possible.

The Russian Jewish Leadership Conference in Warsaw will greatly enhance our vision and work.

Yours in Messiah,

Dr. Mitch Glaser
President

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Filed under Church Planting, Conference, Israel, Messianic Jewish, Russian Israelis