Joel of Jerusalem Oct/Nov 1979
Here in Israel believers experience much discrimination. We are reminded of what the Lord endured and when He said, “Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.”
My children do very well in school. Two of them were chosen, because of their scholastic achievements, as part of a group traveling to Europe. Their teacher promised them they would be able to go, and told them to prepare for the trip. He asked if I was able and willing to pay 50 percent, and because they did so well, I was happy to do this for them. My children were thrilled at this wonderful opportunity. Everyday when I returned from work they would greet me with great joy. But today when I returned home I noticed that something was wrong. They were very unhappy.
“What has happened?” I asked them. “Father, we received some bad news at school today. We were told we could not go to Europe because the school has received a special notice from the Ministry of Education saying we have to stay home.” I knew this was discrimination, but for me this was not a surprise. I received this news very calmly; although I was sorry for my children because they had been so excited about going. Also, I had paid for the trip. I said to my children, “Maybe this is God’s will. Be strong in spirit and pray. The Lord will make you happy.”
I went to the school today to find out where is the so-called “justice for all”. I went to the office and spoke to the director. He received me but with great suspicion. “Before you tell me, I know why you have come,” he said. “I like your children. They are very good students and are well behaved. I can only tell you that it all depended on ‘luck’. This time they cannot go, and I am sorry.” “Don’t tell me you are sorry,” I said. “I can only tell you that my children had a chance, but you do not know divine justice, and you won’t until you know the Lord. Then all this discrimination will change. What has been done against my children is all because people have no faith. Without faith man can do nothing. One hundred times a day a man can break a promise, a contract, a trust, or a peace treaty. His vows mean nothing. This is your problem.
Where is your conscience? I know why you did this . . . you know that we have put our trust in the Lord. Your ‘justice’ is full of hypocrisy.” “No,” he said, “we are very objective.” “Is this a display of your objectiveness?” I asked. “The Lord Jesus suffered a great deal and was even killed, and He forgave them. Do you think that because I am a believer that I will not forgive you? He asked with surprise, “You are a believer?” “Yes,” I said, “but let us not play as children. You knew about me. I am positive that because I am a believer you have done this to my children. I want you to know that we are not ashamed of our faith in the Lord. No trouble which you can cause will take us from Him. Also my children are proud to suffer for His name. They are also good citizens and will serve in the army of this country. My daughter has just gone into the Israeli army. She will take with her the love of her Saviour. You can be sure that forever we will be believers in the Lord. Even when great troubles came our way, we remained in Israel, our country.”.
After I finished speaking he asked, “What can I do for you?” “For me, nothing,” I replied. “What you can do is for yourself, for your children and for the pupils in your school. As the director, you can follow the truth which is in the Lord. Don’t be a hypocrite and let your mind change like the wind. Be strong in faith, and the Lord will show you what to do, how to give education to the children and equality of rights with no discrimination.”
He said to me, “I am ashamed. I promise you that what is past belongs to the past. It will not happen again in the future.”
He was interested in knowing how I came to the Lord. I was delighted to give him my testimony. No one had ever before told this man about the Lord. This was, for me, more important than all the trips to Europe.