Ever since I was a small child growing up in a Jewish home in Bethesda, MD, I remember having a hunger inside to really know the truth about Jesus Christ. My family was more “culturally” Jewish than religious. We went to synagogue on the High Holidays. My parents did send me to school in the synagogue, and I was confirmed (not Bat Mitzvah’d) at the age of sixteen.
While growing up my parents allowed me to occasionally go with friends to Vacation Bible School and Pioneer Girl events at their churches. I remember helping neighbors decorate their Christmas trees, and I remember a feeling of sadness that we did not have this in our home. My father used to say to us: “Jesus was a good man, and if the world would live by His teachings it would be a wonderful place – but, He wasn’t who He said He was.”
This confused me throughout the years because it was a contradiction in terms. A good man….but he wasn’t who He said He was? That meant that he was a good man, but a liar? This is what sent me on my quest to find out the truth about this “man” who completely changed history.
In synagogue, during class, I would raise my hand, and when called on, I would ask, “Who is Jesus?” The teacher would be more than a little annoyed at me. She would say, “Shhh…we don’t talk about Him! We are Jewish!” I remember getting my first Bible in the synagogue at confirmation. Obviously, it was only the Old Testament. I would read it at night in bed…I didn’t understand it, but somehow it made me feel warm and happy just holding it.
I grew-up, got married and had children. I kept having this gnawing feeling inside that I wasn’t “right” with God, and that I really didn’t know how to raise my kids the right way. I wanted to be a godly woman – I didn’t know exactly what that meant, but I did want to be a really good mom. I decided that the Catholic Church was where I needed to go to find God. A VERY old priest who began Catholic instruction with me, did not remember me week to week! He would say, “Have we met?” I think that he was a bit senile.
I just wasn’t feeling that I was going to have my questions answered in the Catholic Church, so I quit going.
A couple of years later there was a tragedy in my family; a woman I was very close to committed suicide. I lived in a high rise apartment building when this happened. In the hallway, a couple came up to me and introduced themselves. They told me they had heard what happened and how sorry they were. They said that they would like to help us during the funeral. They wanted to make food for us and also offered to watch the kids during the funeral. I didn’t know this, but they were Christians.
After the funeral, I was so upset with God. I remember walking up and down many flights of stairs—yelling at God….asking Him how He could let this happen. The Christian couple were making us dinner and planned to bring it over. I was crying so much, and really didn’t want company, so I decided to knock at their door to get the meal. When I went in, I began to cry like a child.
Everything came pouring out of my heart. John (the husband), sat me down. He began to tell me about Jesus. He told me about His love for me. He told me about salvation. It was miraculous, because everything was so clear! I told him I wanted Jesus to live in my heart. I told him that I was ready to repent of my sins and follow Jesus as my Lord and my Savior. John led me in prayer that night to my glorious Messiah Yeshua!
I had searched for God for many years… He came to me that night—a night that stands alone in my memory—forever. My rebirth date was January 2, 1983.
I had never really appreciated being a Jew until I met Yeshua on that incredible night. I lost most of my family when they found out about my believing in Jesus. But the Lord allowed me to lead my dad to Him on the night of his death. I have another article about that amazing night, and also a miracle in my mom’s life as well. I will post that piece another time.
Praise Yeshua! He knew that my heart hungered to know Him. His faithfulness is beyond our comprehension. I cannot imagine life without Him!
The Gift From God to Assure Me That Yeshua IS the Messiah of Israel
Originally written in 2015, I bring this article out every few years. And I pray that some of my people might happen upon it, and believe in their hearts that Yeshua was and IS the long awaited Messiah of the Whole world.
If you have Jewish friends who are searching for truth, perhaps this article would open their eyes!
This story makes my heart leap inside my chest whenever I tell it. Being Jewish, it was miraculous enough that the Lord opened my eyes to Jesus, and helped me see Him with my heart. But what transpired a couple of weeks later was truly a gift from Him.
After the glorious night of my salvation all I wanted to do was read my Bible. I honestly forgot to eat meals sometimes because I was so absorbed in His Word. I wanted to please Him in every way. Almost instantly I knew that He wanted me to stop doing certain things. I had an aversion to off-color TV shows and movies. Soap operas were gone forever, and I had been addicted to them for years.
I saw the world differently. It was like He gave me new vision, like I was seeing people through His eyes. I wanted to stop every person I saw and ask them, “Do you know Jesus?” I was even able to discern people who loved Him. It was a certain look in their eyes. When I would finally ask if they knew Him, the answer was almost always, “Yes” and if not, it gave me an open door to tell them about Yeshua and His love for them.
My Jewish parents and siblings were not so thrilled. Well, perhaps that’s an understatement. They thought I was completely meshugana (crazy in Yiddish). But I quietly treasured in my heart that I knew the truth, and I prayed that my family would one day know it as well.
A week before my water baptism, I spoke to a lady at a Messianic congregation in Maryland – Beth Messiah. I was very excited to know other Jews who knew the truth about Messiah Yeshua. She was as excited as I was. She asked me if I had looked at Isaiah 53. I had not, but I told her that I would look after our conversation. She told me that she would mail to me literature about Beth Messiah.
Isaiah 53. OY! How did I miss that for so many years? It was an accurate description of Yeshua being led to Calvary to be slaughtered for the sins of the world. I read it over and over. I could not believe that such a picture of the Crucifixion was in my Old Testament that entire time.
I wanted to obey Him in all things. My friend told me about baptism, and how He wanted us all to be baptized after we were born-again. I told her that I wanted to be baptized—the sooner the better. Then the day of my baptism came.
As I came up from the water, I uttered some words which I did not understand. I felt that God wanted me to remember these words so I kept repeating them quietly to myself. The next day I received an envelope from Beth Messiah. There was a cover page which told about the congregation. I saw the first words which I had said “H’brit Chadashah” on this page.
My heart was beating so fast. Beside the words was the translation: “The New Testament.” I realized that I had spoken Hebrew! I was not Bat Mitzvah’d -only confirmed in my synagogue, so I did not learn Hebrew.”Then I saw the next word I had said “Yeshua” which means Jesus.
But the last word I had said was not there. It was “mannah” and I had to know what it meant. I called the home of my rabbi. His wife answered. I told her who I was and that I found a word and thought it was Hebrew. I told her it was “mannah.” She said, “Of course that is Hebrew. It is manna, the bread from heaven.”
Well, I almost passed out. I had said in Hebrew: “The New Testament of Jesus is the bread from heaven!” What a glorious gift to receive from Him; a confirmation that what I believed was TRUE, and given to me in Hebrew.
I told a Baptist minister this story. He told me that in 38 years of hearing “tongues” stories, mine was the first one he believed. He said that it was done in accordance with Scripture. He told me that he would never forget it.
All things are to glorify God and edify the Body of Christ!