Last But Not Least Apr/May 1976
Joel Of Jerusalem
“HOW CAN WE BELIEVE IN GOD?”
Now we are near the Holiday, but we can feel that the people are tense and extremely nervous. This is partly due to the economic situation. When I try to speak with them, many say there is no longer a God in the world because He sees and allows the nation, which He has chosen, to fall down. “How can we believe in God?” they ask.
One man asked me, “What do you think, Joel?”
I said to him, “What you say is not true. God has chosen us and brought us to this Promised Land. We shall live and not die. If God wants us to die, He can certainly do that. In October 1973, when the Arab Army attacked us, the Israeli population was in a very demoralized condition. Why did God spare us, and why are we living now? We are still living, and we are still a nation because God loves us. He wants us to be His chosen nation as He promised our fathers. Is it not so that we love our children? If we do not punish them for their misdeeds, they will continue to do as they wish. We do not punish our children because we hate them and desire to take revenge. No! No! Our God loves us intensely; therefore, He punishes us when we need it until that time when we come and ask for His forgiveness. If people ask for forgiveness and change their ways and turn to God, He will bless them. Then you and all your friends shall know about the Lord our God. You see, He does not strike revenge upon us. Also, when He makes a promise, He keeps it! Not as we humans do. You know that it is an easy thing to make a promise, but it is sometimes difficult to perform that which is promised.”
After that he said to me, “What do you think I should do? Should I believe in God as you say?”
“Yes,” I replied to his question. “But, why don’t you ask God what to do?”
With surprise he asked, “How can I ask God? Do you mean He will answer me? How can I speak with Him?”
I told him that he could certainly go to God in prayer because He is our Father, and He will answer him.
“What shall I say? How shall I pray?” he questioned.
At this point I opened the Bible and read for him what the Lord taught on how to pray. I started to read, “Our Father who art in heaven . . .” I read also from Matthew 5 what the Lord said to the large multitude which was on the mountain with Him.
He said, “JESUS? He is not for the Jews. He was against our Torah. How can I believe Him?”
Then I read from Galatians 3:10, “. . . Cursed is every one that continueth not in all things which are written in the book of the law to do them.” This indeed was another surprise to him. He said that Jesus is the big enemy of the Jews.
“Yes, this is what people say, and you, my friend, believe them.”
He replied, “This is how I felt before, but not now.”
After this statement, we read together from John 3:16. “It is all so new to me. It would be nice of you if you would give me some books. May I have one for myself and some for my friends? I wish to show them how they lied to me. I will come to you every week and you can teach me from the Bible.”
Through this man two other families also came to me, and I gave them my testimony about the Lord. I had thought that after such a lengthy conversation about our Saviour, they would not return, but the Lord opened their hearts and they are our guests every week. I also visit in their home, and we are good friends. These dear friends are now Christian secret believers. Perhaps one day soon they will openly acknowledge Christ as their Messiah and Lord.