Joel of Jerusalem Oct/Nov 1975
I am writing from the army, and I am feeling good. I have given thirty-four New Testaments in Hebrew and Russian to those whom I have promised before, I gave them out quietly—one by one—so as not to make any more trouble. They all thanked me very much. Others say, “Joel, some friend you are, you didn’t give me one!” But I promised them one; “As soon as I am free for one day, I will buy more from the Old City of Jerusalem.” I was very glad to do it, and even more so when I saw them in the evening, after duty, sitting on the sand and reading the Books which I brought. They began to read from Romans and Hebrews.
Everything was good the first hour, but afterward when more soldiers came, they asked, “Who gave you the Books?” The answer was very easy, “Joel gave them to us.” One came to me and said, “It looks to me like you want to make a church here in the camp,” I replied, “That is not bad if they will know the truth about the Lord. Isn’t it better for them to take this than ‘dirty’ literature? By this their eyes will be opened, and of course after a time their hearts.” He then answered, “But you will make them Gentiles, and afterward they will be lost, They will not even want to see the Torah anymore.”
“First of all,” I said, “the Lord says that if you will not believe the Old Testament, you will not believe on Him, You say they will be Gentiles. No, they can be good Jewish people and believe on the Lord as their Saviour, and accept what He did for them.”
He said, “What did Jesus give us? Only troubles! Moses gave us the Land, and he brought us from Egypt. He was a great prophet, and all the world knows him,”’ I told him, “Indeed, Moses was a great servant of God, and God loved him very much, but by him you cannot be saved, He cannot give salvation from sin and everlasting life. You can only receive this by believing on the Lord. It is written in Ezekiel 16:4, ‘.. . the soul that sinneth, it shall die’. But through Jesus Christ we can receive salvation from our sin, We should all be ready for the Lord’s return.”
His reply was, “He will not come because He is dead, and whoever is dead is finished forever.”
I reminded him, “Moses is dead; David is dead; Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are dead; and they were all prophets. Why do you all come to the graves and pray to the dead bodies? Can they save you from the grave? Never! But the Lord died, and after 3 days arose from the dead.”
“Don’t tell my friends,”’ he said, “but can you give me the Book which you gave to them?”
I promised to give him one. Do pray that God will open his heart.