Joel of Jerusalem Oct/Nov 1971
There are many immigrants from Russia now arriving. One does not know what the future will be.
Last Sunday I went to the Wailing Wall where I met quite a number of Jews including immigrants. Many of them cried for joy for being at last in Israel and also in sorrow because their loved ones have to remain in Russia.
Some of them wrote little notes with all kinds of requests to the various Jewish saints. Some prayed loudly and in Hebrew “when will salvation come and the righteous Messiah our king arrive?”
I went up to one and said “Do you know that the Messiah already came?” He asked me “What do you mean He came?” I said “Yes, only we did not recognize Him and refused to acknowledge Him.” Finally he understood that I meant Jesus. I told him how I came to know Him. He said “I never heard about it in Russia.” I told him that there were quite a number of Jews here and in other countries who believe in the Jewish Messiah. He asked, “Do you want us to forsake our faith in Judaism?” “No,” I answered, “we do not want to separate the Jews from their faith. On the contrary, we want them to become true believers in God and in the Messiah whom He sent.”
Another Jew approached me and asked “Do you speak Yiddish?” I said “Of course I do.” Then he shook hands with me. I asked him “I heard you pray in Hebrew. Did you understand what you were praying?” He said “No, but it is the custom to pray in Hebrew just like the Catholics pray in Latin.” I told him that we have been praying for the Jews of Russia to be able to come to Israel for many years, and we thank God that some of them have been able to join our Jewish brethren.
I said, “Now you are in a democratic country, but still we are not free altogether. He said to me “What do you mean? What do you mean? If it is politics you want to talk to me, I would rather not.” I said “No, I am not talking about politics. I am talking about spiritual freedom. We still walk in spiritual darkness.” At this he called over his friend, another elderly man of about 70, who asked me what I had in mind. I read to him Isaiah 29:10-15 “For the Lord hath poured out upon you the spirit of deep sleep, and hath closed your eyes: the prophets and your rulers, the seers hath he covered.” etc.
They looked at each other and did not know what to say. I said “I am praying that the Lord may open the spiritual eyes of our people to understand His Word and to follow in the footsteps of the prophets and their Messiah.” We shook hands and the men said they hoped to see me again and talk about it some more.