November 12 was a special day for Congregation Shavei Tzion (Those Returning to Zion). After three years of prayer, this day was like a wedding day. God gave us a scroll of the Torah (first five books of the Bible), a special love gift from Paul Wilbur and hand-selected by Rene Bloch ... our beloved brothers from the United States. It was a day of celebration. We had 40 visitors from Russia, pastors and bishops who work with Ebenezer, the ministry that helps Jewish people make aliyah.
The dedication of our new Torah scroll became a message for the whole Body of Messiah, a phenomenon in Israel with Messianic believers---the "natural branch" being grafted in again (Romans 11:23, 24). We were renewed in the totality of our inheritance, to be Jews with full faith in Yeshua's mercy together with the word of God ... Torah. For the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob called us from Mt. Sinai to live as Jews, as Israel, to testify of His grace forever.
God dramatically changed the order of our meeting. We simply entered a sustained time of praise and celebration. The Jewish immigrants of our congregation who came out of the Former Soviet Union, were joined by prominent Russian church leaders, and everyone began to dance spontaneously with the Torah in the freedom of the Spirit. It was a powerful proclamation, the herald of a profound change. By celebrating with us the arrival of the Torah scroll as a symbol of our Jewish identity as Yeshua's followers in Israel, the church from Russia recognized that this is valuable.
Historically, the Russian Church has not welcomed the Jewish roots of the New Testament. But these leaders were caught up in what is happening in Israel---that God is rebuilding His Messianic body. In spite of growing awareness, the importance of Jewish heritage and tradition for Messianic Jews are still not understood by many church leaders in the world. But this day was a breakthrough. At least seven pastors and bishops gave us words of exhortation and prophetic words to encourage us in our development as a prophetic people.
We believe that more and more Jewish congregations in Israel will want to incorporate the scroll of God's word and to worship Yeshua HaMashiach through our Jewish heritage. Much of the Israeli population still cannot see Messianic Jews as true Jews. But I believe that by proclaiming God's word weekly from the Torah scroll we will see hearts change. It is very important for Messianic Jews to be unashamed of the Gospel of Yeshua the Messiah and in the declaration of our Jewishness. Only this joint statement can bring us the right development. Only then can we can influence Israel and the Church in the right way. This day, November 12, on which many representatives from the Russian Free Church stood with us and danced with us to dedicate a new Torah scroll, was symbolic, deep and prophetic. Only God could bring this to pass.
So we want to thank our brothers Paul Wilbur and Rene Bloch and invite you to believe with us for the release of God's Spirit in our congregations.
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