Last But Not Least Feb/Mar 1976
Joel of Jerusalem
“Why Have We Lived So Long Without Him”
Here in Israel the people are very tired of war, and I am, too. Russian immigrants living in Israel ask how we can live in this country so long without peace. “Don’t you grow tired?” they asked.
“Yes, I am tired of war, but I have peace in my heart,” was my reply.
They wondered how this could be when everything was so outrageously expensive, and we don’t know what tomorrow will bring. “How can we have peace in our hearts? It is impossible.”
I told them that it is possible. “If you want peace, first you must let the peace of God rule in your hearts.”‘
“How can this be? How can we know that God is in our hearts?” they asked.
“Pray in His name and you will see God change your life, as He did mine. You will receive blessing from above because it is written, ‘Without me ye can do nothing’ (John 15:5).”
They asked me how I came to know all this. “I came to believe this through faith in the Lord Jesus. It is a fact. Without Him we cannot have peace in our hearts, in our homes or in the streets with our friends.”
“How do you know this is true? Did God speak to you?” they asked.
“Yes. God is my Father, and when I pray to Him I find rest and have great joy in my heart. If you have joy you will also have peace.”
The conversation continued. I shared with them that the Lord has given me great happiness. No one else can give these things except the Lord. I gave them each a Russian Bible and told them that everything they wanted to know could be found there. They were happy when they received the Bibles, and promised to read them. I told them to first pray to the Lord for understanding, and that without the Holy Spirit we can know nothing,
“Joel,” they asked, “are you a Christian?”
“Yes. I am a Hebrew Christian,” I replied.
“Ah . . . now we know to whom we are speaking. How can you believe that Jesus is the Son of God? Is this possible? If so, can you prove it?”
“Yes,” I replied, “it is possible. In Genesis 1:26 God said, ‘. . . Let US make man in OUR image . . .’
Jesus was a man. In Psalm 2:7 God said, ‘Thou art my Son; this day have I begotten thee. ”
“These things are in our own Scriptures. Why have we lived so long without receiving Him as our Saviour?” they questioned.
“That’s a good question. Many times Moses told God that His chosen people were a stiff- necked people. But God, in His mercy, gave His begotten Son to die for our sin and to rise again. By Him we can receive forgiveness of our sin.”
“If we receive Jesus as our Savior, we will no longer be Jewish,” they said.
“You can see me,” I said. “I believe in the Lord and yet I am still a Jew. In fact, I have served in the Israeli army since 1948 and have gone through the difficult times with my country. I am doing the very best for my country. I try to give my testimony to all those who have never heard about the Lord. It is only through Him that we can receive blessing.”
The men were extremely interested in our conversation and in my faith in the Lord Jesus that brought about a change in my life. I feel that the Lord is speaking to these men. Please join me in prayer that they may come to know Him as Lord and Saviour.