Ron Cantor

This month, Ron Cantor is writing in my place. Ron was on the pastoral staff of Beth Messiah during my years as senior pastor in the 90s and has been part of Tikkun and Tikkun related ministries for many years. He has served in Odessa, Ukraine, Budapest Hungary, and now as a Tikkun emissary in Tel Aviv. He has a great passion to bring our people to the knowledge of Yeshua. Daniel C. Juster, Director

Who are the most hated people on earth? The Christians? The Jews? White Anglo Saxon men? The truth is that the most hated people on the face of the earth are the Messianic Jews! We are hated by just about every group out there, from the Klan to Iran. Why? Just think about it:

So one can imagine why a Messianic Jew might be happier blending into the larger Christian world, than boldly identifying himself as a Jewish believer. Some Messianics go the other way, distancing themselves from the Church world - sometimes even denying Yeshua in the end - because of the pressures from both Jewish and Christian communities.

What does God expect from Messianic Jews?

It seems that the Lord places a high value on Jewish identity and on living a Jewish life. (Living a Jewish life doesn't mean that we are obligated to keep extra-biblical traditions, although many Messianic Jews do find value in some of them.) Take Moses for instance. He was the one chosen by God to redeem Israel. He flees Egypt, marries a nice gentile girl from Midian and about forty years later heads back to Egypt with his wife and two sons.

One the way, the Bible says that God tried to kill Moses - which does seem a little strange since Moses was supposed to rescue the Jews from Pharaoh "At a lodging place on the way, the LORD met [Moses] and was about to kill him." Ex. 4:24 Why was God so angry? The issue appears to be Moses' unwillingness to embrace this foundational expression of his Jewish identity. The next two verses tell us what kept God from killing Him: "But Zipporah took a flint knife, cut off her son's foreskin and touched [Moses'] feet with it. 'Surely you are a bridegroom of blood to me,' she said. So the LORD let him alone. (At that time she said 'bridegroom of blood,' referring to circumcision.)" Exod 4:25-26

By circumcising her sons she appeased the Lord's anger. God was raising up a people, a distinct people who would carry a mark in the their flesh identifying them as the People of God. Moses, who spent his first forty years as an Egyptian prince and the next as a shepherd, never took the time to circumcise his boys. God expected His leader to embrace the Abrahamic Covenant. His refusal to, whether by rebellion or ignorance, nearly cost him his life - not to mention, it would have caused the Israelites to remain as slaves until God raised up another redeemer.

Then there is Esau. The scriptures say in Malachi that God loved Jacob, but hated Esau (Mal. 1:2-36). The Bible says that God is Love (1Jn. 4:8,16) and yet, God was able to hate Esau. What did Esau do that was so despicable? He sold his birthright. "He said to Jacob, 'Quick, let me have some of that red stew! I'm famished!' ... Jacob replied, 'First sell me your birthright.' 'Look, I am about to die,' Esau said. 'What good is the birthright to me?' But Jacob said, 'Swear to me first.' So he swore an oath to him, selling his birthright to Jacob." Gen 25:30-33

Esau was in line to be the father of the Israelites and yet sold that honor for food. How did God feel about that? "See that no one is sexually immoral, or is godless like Esau, who for a single meal sold his inheritance rights as the oldest son. Afterward, as you know, when he wanted to inherit this blessing, he was rejected. He could bring about no change of mind, though he sought the blessing with tears." Heb 12:16-17

God equated despising his Hebraic identity with godlessness and adultery. If you read what the prophets have to say about the descendents of Esau, it is nothing but judgment and destruction (Jer. 49:8, 10; Obadiah 1:6, 8, 18-19). It seems clear that God is serious about Jewish identity.

A Strange Dream

I struggled with this for many years. I resisted my Jewishness. In fact, when I had an offer to join one of the most well-known ministries in America I begged God to let me. In the end I was going to tell the leader of the ministry, "If it were up to me I would be with you, but God has called me to Jewish ministry. Uhg!"

That night at about 4 AM I had a dream. I was sitting in a café with a very pretty blonde-haired woman. There was intense desire between us; it even seemed pure. Finally I showed her my wedding ring and told her I really wanted to be with her but I was married. Instantly I awoke. Yuk, I thought. I love my wife. I asked God to wash me.

Ron Cantor is an emissary of Tikkun International serving with his wife and three children in Tel Aviv, Israel. You can visit Ron's website at: www.cantorlink.com or contact him at: rcmmi@msn.com

Later that day the Lord spoke to me that the dream was from Him. "You have lusted after non-Jewish ministry with an adulterous spirit. I don't want you to embrace Jewish ministry because I am making you. I want you to love Jewish ministry as you love your wife."

That was a turning point in my life and ministry. I now live in Israel with my wife and children and embraced the calling to reach my people with joy.

The Calling

Israel is still called (Rom 11:1, 11, 29). The Bible promises an end-time revival amongst the Jews (Rom. 11:26; Hosea 3:4-5). If all the Jewish believers assimilate there will be no identifiable Jewish witness on earth. God forbid! It is imperative that Jewish believers embrace their calling as Jews. Yes, it may mean being misunderstood by family and friends, both Christian and Jewish. It may be uncomfortable at times. But it also means joining, in the words of Dan Juster, "the saved remnant of Israel." Their ever growing presence on earth is like a magnet pulling Yeshua back.

By Ron Cantor


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Comments:
12:20 07Nov06 Denis Hollands -
I am glad that Ron has found a place of ministry in the Messianic community.

12:57 07Nov06 Jim Rouse -
Courageous article, thank you for giving us Gentiles some insight into your life as a Jew and Christian. Our destiny (Israel & Church) will soon culminate in the beautiful marriage feast! God bless you all. Psalm 45 10-17

14:10 07Nov06 David Niles Jr -
Ron, Shalom to you in Jesus our Messiah. I agree with a lot of what you said in your article. Jewish Christians/Messianic Jews have a distinct calling in the Body of Christ, to be a light to non-believing Jews about Y'shua. May The God of Israel Bless you and your family in ministry.

14:52 07Nov06 Dan Benzvi -
According to you hundreds of thousand of Gentiles, not to mention every Muslim over the age of thirteen are "people of God" since they too have the "mark in their flesh."

15:37 07Nov06 Candy Garcia -
I agree with this article except true believers in YESHUA, who are not MESSIANIC Jews yet truly love the Messianic Jews, as well as regular Jews and the rest of the dying world are hated as well. I have been going to Calvary Chapel but lately for the past three or four months I have been going to Temple Aron HaKodesh and am taking Bar/Bat Mitzvah classes there to learn more of the Jewish Ways and Worship because GOD has put a special love in my heart for the Jewish people and for Israel. I was in Israel this past March and beginning of April and fell in love with it. I wanted to stay but had to come back because of my job. I hope to one day soon go back to Israel and live there. I was born Gentile but now am a member of the MESSIANIC Congregation I just mentioned. I used to go there a long time ago and now I am back. Like Ruth, I embrace THE TRUE GOD of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob and The TRUE MESSIAH, YESHUA HAMASHIAC. I know there are those who hate the MESSIANIC Jews but there are those of us who do love all of you and pray for you and the different MESSIANIC Jewish Ministries. GOD has been opening up the doors in a few Christian congregations that truly seek HIM and I have seen it with my own eyes as I have been praying for GOD to open their eyes and to embrace the Jewish people more, especially the MESSIANIC Jews. Be encouraged we are out there and we do keep all of you in prayer. May GOD truly Bless and Keep all of you who are MESSIANIC Jews and continue to use all of you mightily as HE is. It is exciting to know that GOD is moving.

15:49 07Nov06 Sandra Pooley -
It takes real committment to be a Messianic Jew that lives his Jewish identity in obedience to Almighty G-d's commandments. One can certainly understand your desire to assimilate. But praise, HaShem, that HE sent you a dream, you heeded it, and now bear witness to the seriousness of HIS call on your life. Thank you for sharing your witness. "Blesed are you when they reproach and persecute you, and falsely say every wicked word against you, for My sake. Rejoice and be glad, because your reward in the heavens is great. For in this way they persecuted the prophets who were before you." Mattithyahu 5:11,12 (From The Scriptures Translation).

16:42 07Nov06 Margaret Preston -
Thank you Ron for being obedient and honest!! I had a dream last night ... I was sitting at a table with a young man whom I knew was Jewish, I kept saying to him (very animatedly) "You can make Alyiah, I can't but you can!" I kept repeating it over and over, he didn't move... then I awoke.

17:47 07Nov06 James L. Moore -
Please keep up the good work,I enjoyed reading your article.

18:27 07Nov06 Grethe Kennedy -
I am excited to read about a Jewish brother who also loves the Messiah. It is like reading about a celebrity only one I really respect! I love the Jews ... Even the way Israel wages war! We learn so much from the O.T.: God's wrath and His mercy, His discipline and His compassion. I am proud to call you my brother. God bless you, your family and your ministry.

10:12 08Nov06 anonymous -
Isaiah 18 (the whole but specifically verse 7) and Isaiah 66 also refers to this end ingathering. (As in relation to the only other country to exist which has accepted the Jewish population as a part of its whole.)

11:07 08Nov06 Dave Zamudio -
The issues of Jeroboam's sin that the prophets were called to speak against are deeply rooted in the church. It has put on the robes of the ministers of baal to officiate at the altar of God and until those robes are removed they will be a wall of partition that cause strife and confusion. You can't mix true worship and idolatry.

15:50 08Nov06 Jerusalem Clareburt -
Shalom, I am a Jew and I keep Judaism in Yeshua. I feel sad when I hear that Messianic Jews become like Gentiles in their hearts, some turn away from the true gospel of Yeshua and what he taught and see their faith as a new religion that they walk only as New Testament Jews. They call their faith Christianity and no longer feel a respect to Torah, but see it as putting them into bondage again. As a Jew, Yeshua never taught a new religion,neither did Paul teach in Galatians to do away with the law - Torah. Yes, salvation alone comes through Yeshua it is in grace. My point is that the nation of Israel can't accept Christianity, because the Jews won't leave their only GOD ... we must teach that we follow Judaism in Yeshua, then we can bring the LOST SHEEP OF THE HOUSE OF ISRAEL TO SALVATION IN YESHUA. Keep teaching crooked doctrines from the mouths of church men and you will keep Israel away from Yeshua. Please read and pray and think deeply about the entire word of YHVH. There is a waking up to the first century gospel, the true gospel of Yeshua and the HOLY SPIRIT is now bringing to light what satan has tryed to stop. ELOHIM WILL HAVE HIS WAY.

21:01 11Nov06 Patricia C Graef -
Wow, makes me stop and think, what am I protraying to God with my life choices? My desire is to be a blessing and testimony to God in my life. Your article makes me stop to think "is this me?" or "am I really YOURS GOD?" Gives me something to seek God for earnestly as time is so short.

11:04 14Nov06 Eileen Monkman -
Thank you so much for your article. I have been a Christian for 11 years and right from the very beginning I wanted to know everything from Genesis to Revelation. I understood that everything tied in together. I wanted to visit Israel and learn Hebrew and the feasts and traditions. It was easy to hear teaching regarding how the Old Testament ties in with the New, but very few talked about Israel and the feasts and traditions. After 11 years I have finally found a pastor that whole-heartedly embraces Israel and everything with that. My wandering feet have finally come to rest on solid ground. Thank you for submitting to the will of God that you may be instrumental to us who want to know and be taught of our Jewish roots of Christianity. I appreciate what I am able to learn from my pastor but there is something even more special to hear and learn from a Messanic Jew. May the Lord continue to uplift your voice and ministry and also the other Messanic Ministries out there - we need you! My dream to visit Israel came true in May of 06 and I have plans to visit again this winter or coming spring.

12:53 19Nov06 Daniel Ward, Sr. -
As a Circumcised Messianic Gentile, let me say that I love the Jews and there are many, many believers in Yeshua who also have the same growing love for you that Yeshua did, for His love is growing in us! In God's heart, you are actually the most blessed of all people on the face of the earth! I truly believe there is a wind of the Holy Spirit that is blowing upon the people of God all across the earth, turning the heart of Messianic Gentiles into a deep and full love for Israel. How much more Messianic Jews! I have the greatest love, respect, and honor for my elder brothers in Christ, the Messianic Jews. Of course, I am not taken back by the fact that our ancient foe also knows well of your choice position before the Awesome Throne of God.

16:19 29Nov06 Nora -
Why would you identify yourselves as the most hated people on earth when you are loved by God and our Messiah Yeshua loves you so much he died for you? I am a descendant of a people who were enslaved for over 400 years by people who called themselves Christians. Even though as a black person I am still persecuted in the USA by them I cannot let their hate for me and my children define me because I know Christ. I can only see them from God's perspective of saved or unsaved and pray for their salvation. In regards to the people who call themselves Christians but hate their neighbors and brothers I know God sees their hearts and knows who his true followers are. People who hate Messianic Jews should be pitied because they are deceived and lost. In America there are many people both white and black who go to church every Sunday but hate people who do their best to use Bible as a guide for their life 24/7. I live in the so called Bible Belt of the USA where churches will have over 20,000 attendants on Sunday, but if your family does not celebrate Halloween you are considered weird. As a black person my white neighbors who go to church are very comfortable shunning my family. Unfortunately this is how it is and has been on this side of Heaven. Our hope is in Christ and God's promises. God bless you!

07:42 03Dec06 anonymous -
I am a 'gentile' believer in Yeshua but when someone asks my 'denomination' I tell them I am Messianic. Yeshua has directly called me to walk as His people Israel have walked in regards to Torah, and it only makes sense since Yeshua's gentile people are grafted in to Israel. Many of the customs I do not embrace, some I do. The same can be said of the 'Christian' customs - many I do not embrace, some I do. I seek Elohim's Truth, not man's editions. I know the battle, it faces me too. But there is a Remnant, both out of the Jewish people and out of the gentile peoples, whom I believe will be brought into One body. After all, there is one Bride. I believe the Scriptures are very clear about how Elohim has asked us to walk through life, if we are His. And if we love Him, how can it be a hard thing to do? I have found only blessing following each decision to walk more in accord with the Scriptures and less in accord with man's interpretations. Yeshua did say, very clearly, 'I have NOT come to do away with the Law or the Prophets.'

10:05 09Dec06 Lisa -
I love how you explained the error of Esau's choice to let go of his birthright. I never quite had that perspective, that by giving it up, he fell out of line to be the father of Israel. Very good article.

15:42 14Dec06 David R -
I enjoyed reading Ron's article on Messianic Jews and see it as the flipside to an article in an earlier Tikkun newsletter addressing the issue of Gentile Christians wishing to identify with the messianic Jewish faith to varying degrees. I started taking a Jewish Roots of Christianity course this past summer, and am often reminded in reading the weekly drash, and by our instructor, reading articles here, reading Our Father Abraham that since I am a member of G-d's family He wants me to go by the rules of the family and beware that sin hurts, separates, is antithetical to life, and with G-d's help is best left alone! I often refer to Ezekiel chapter 18 to get my heart and self in order as it were and Leviticus 20-26 which tells me I belong to God. Regretably much of Protestant Christianity seems oblivious, disinterested, and numb or deaf to the idea that many of us believers have been joined to the root, we were the wild crowd initially and God in His mercy brought us into union with Him. The apathy to me is stifling. That may well be a reason why some of us want to be a part of and/or identify with the Messianic Jewish faith though like the Bible declares, there is neither Jew nor Greek, bond or free, but all believers are in Christ Yeshua.

18:40 14Mar08 Vivian Kovene -
I am very inspired when I see any man on fire for the Lord, and to see a Messianic (or born-again) Jew is just below the awesomeness of God in inspiration to me!!! To God be the glory - thank you Father for Ron Cantor.

13:32 20Jun09 C. Conley -
Tears flowed as I read this article. I thank the LORD for Ron's GOD given dream, faithfulness, and courage. I'm looking forward to hearing him in Atlanta at Beth Adonai.

18:35 04Apr11 Betsaida Cohen -
WOW!!! is the only thing I can say. I had the priviledge of meeting Ron at a conference at my mothers church. when I shared with him that my husband is Israeli he immediately showed interest in wanting to meet my husband. The next day he was able to meet my husband and share with him his testimony, that evening he ministered over my life and my husbands and my husband accepted the Lord. Ron showed my husband the love and acceptance of God, the passion he has for the people of God and my husband was literally left speechless. My husband expressed nothing but complete interest in wanting to learn more about the word of God and Yeshua. i knew that some day soon my husband was going to get saved, I did not however think it was going to be this soon. He was so receptive to hearing and receiving the word from someone that shares his culture and Jewish belief as well. It was amazing. God is amazing. My husband and I now share the same heart and that is to also reach the Israeli people. His family is first.


Also in this issue of the newsletter:

Moshe Morrison: Andrey
Marty Shoub: Lift Up Your Eyes
Asher Intrater: Yom Kippur & Pnina's Pies
Shmuel Belay: A Breath of Life at New Age Festival