How to Witness to a Jew
Glenn Goodwin

 

The Jewish people believe in the same God as we do; yet they cannot accept that Jesus is, indeed, the Messiah. They may be able to accept Him as a rabbi, or teacher, but not as the Son of God, not as Saviour, and certainly not as their long-awaited Messiah. Yet a Jewish man or woman needs salvation. It is just that they are not willing to accept the fact that Jesus Christ is the only way. It does little good to quote New Testament scriptures to a Jewish person, for their Bible is limited to the Old Testament. In witnessing for Jesus, you had better confine yourself to the Old Testament, referring only to New Testament fulfillment of Old Testament promises.

If a Jewish man or woman accepts Jesus as saviour, it will be because they see Him as the One foretold in the prophets, the One who fulfilled the law, and the One who can fulfill the covenants of promise. Prophecy There are many Old Testament prophecies that Jesus fulfilled. Some of these pertain to a suffering Messiah, but the Jewish people apply that to their nation - which has suffered throughout the Diaspora. But other of the prophecies could only apply of a man; they are not of a nature that could be fulfilled by a nation. It was prophesied that a virgin shall conceive and bear a son. Isaiah 7:14. The nation cannot be the fulfillment of that prophecy. That child was to be born in Bethlehem. Micah 5:2. That was not a prophecy of King David, he had ruled and died by the time Micah wrote his book.

But there are virtually no Jews in Bethlehem today. How can the ruler of their people be born there? But Jesus was. There are numerous prophecies of a suffering Messiah. A Jewish person will tell you that they pertain to the nation, to the Jewish people who have suffered through a 2000-year Diaspora. For example, they believe that Isaiah the 53rd chapter pertains to the suffering people. Perhaps, under the duality of the scriptures, a case can be made for that. Israel has suffered. But consider whether there is a literal fulfillment in the life of Jesus. How could a nation be wounded for our transgressions? How could a people be bruised for our iniquities? Does God lay the iniquity of us all on a people? These verses pertain to transferred sins - from the guilty to the Innocent. Other prophecies clearly pertain to the Messiah, and show Him suffering. Yet Jewish belief expects a reigning Messiah who will usher in a golden age of peace, not a man who suffered. They cannot see that there are two advents: that the Messiah suffered and died as a sacrificial Lamb to take away sins, but will come back again to rule and establish His kingdom. The ninth chapter of Daniel speaks of a time-frame of 70 weeks.

But the Messiah is to be cut off. See Daniel 9:26. Only a suffering Messiah, who would have His hands and feet pierced and His garments parted by lot, Psalms 22:16-18, can be cut off. Yeshua (Jesus) fulfilled these and many more prophecies. He must be the One whom the prophets foretold. No Sacrifice The Torah mandates a priesthood, and tabernacle or temple worship. There must be an atonement for sins. Sin is the transgression of the law of God. Any persons who had "done somewhat against and of the commandments of the Lord" was guilty of sin; and in order to be free from sin, he must bring an offering, that in seeing the innocent victim die for his sins, he might be free from the stain of sin. The sin-offering had to be brought into the court of the sanctuary. Leviticus 4:1-35. The sinner, with his hands upon the head of the sacrificial lamb, confessed over it all his sins, and then slew the lamb with his own hands. Leviticus 4:29; Numbers 5:7. The priest would take the blood into the Holy place and sprinkle it before the Lord, and then pour that blood out at the base of the brazen altar. Leviticus 4:7,18,25,30. The body of the animal was then burned, outside the camp. Leviticus 6:30. On the holiest day of the year, Yom Kippur or the Day of Atonement, the High Priest entered into the Holy of Holies to make atonement for the people. The ritual was complicated, but it is sufficient to say that if the High Priest did not take innocent blood in to sprinkle on the Mercy Seat, or if God did not accept the offering, there was no reconciliation for the children of Israel for that year. There has not been a peace-offering, nor a High Priest performing the atonement ritual since 70 A.D.

If Jesus Christ is not who He says He is, then every Jew is lost in their sins with no way to reconcile with God. But if Jesus is the Lamb of God, then there is still a sin-offering. If He is the Apostle and High Priest of our faith, then He made atonement, not in the Holy of Holies, but in Heaven itself. Tell your Jewish friends that you have confessed your sins over the Lamb, the sin-offering. Tell them that you have a living High Priest, after the order of Melchizedek, who ever lives to make intercession for His people. They have no access to a comparable experience unless they seek it through Yeshua. Reconciliation and forgiveness from sins comes from the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot. I Peter 1:19. The Davidic Covenant Jewish people know that the Lord made an everlasting covenant with David. King David's seed will rule perpetually. No one can be king over the Jews, unless he is an offspring of David. II Samuel 7:12-16. Yet all Jewish genealogy tables were destroyed by the Romans in 70 A.D. No one can claim to be a descendent of David. Anyone who does, is subject to legitimate challenge over his lack of proof. But there is one person who can prove His genealogy: Jesus Christ. His family tree is recorded in Matthew and Luke. He is a son of David. If He is alive, and He is, He is the only living person who can prove His right to rule. Followers of Judiasm worship the same God that we serve. They understand that there is a Messiah. The Holy Scriptures even reveal that God has a son. In one verse about the God they serve, the question is asked, "What is his name, and what is his son’s name, if thou canst tell?" Proverbs 30:4. God has a Son, Yeshua ha Messiah. He not only came to fulfill prophecy about suffering and death, He will come again to fulfill every expectation of the Jews.

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