Year 2021 in Review
Isn’t God great! This past year, 2021 has been an exhibition of divine grace from beginning to end! Though we’ve seen people making decisions for the Lord, God did not call us to merely see decisions but to make disciples (Matthew 28:19).
One on One Discipleship
“Did you make disciples of all the people I sent to you?”
For several weeks in January, we trained teams to bring the Good News to the Jew first, then monitored their success and praised the Lord for all the contacts that were made. The teams then discipled people to get them grounded in the faith.
In my experience, the shallowness of many in the churches is a lack of personal discipleship. Don’t get me wrong, small Bible study groups are fine for developing fellowship in the community. But people don’t get sufficiently rooted in Messiah apart from one-on-one discipleship. Even in a small group you really can’t straightforwardly ask “did you read your Bible today?”, “are you praying daily?” and “have you shared your faith with anyone this week?” People don’t want to be embarrassed in front of others.
One-on-one discipleship is based upon the fact that there will be homework and review. If you had five children, did you teach them to brush their teeth in a small group or one at a time? Exactly! Too many churches have a very low expectation of the maturity of their congregants. If you had five children, how many would you want to become mature? All of them? So does God! And when the congregation leadership gets to Heaven, the Lord won’t ask, “how large was your congregation?” but, “did you make disciples of all the people I sent to you?”
As you may know, my latest book, “The Israel Factor” was published in late 2020 and I’ve been doing radio interviews regarding it. It is especially exciting to see this book being used in congregations to train their members in the whole counsel of God, and how vital Israel is to God’s plan of world-wide redemption.
“…and shall look upon Him whom they have pierced”
“many people don’t realize that His Second Coming is through the Jewish people as well”
Most believers understand that the Messiah had to come into the world through the Jewish people (Micah 5:2). But many do not realize that His Second Coming is through the Jewish people as well. For Yeshua won’t return to planet earth until my people as a whole repent and trust in Yeshua. It is then that they will confess Isaiah 53 and “shall look upon Him whom they have pierced” (Zechariah 12:10). It is so vital for all believers to pray for, and witness to Israel. “The Israel Factor” is providing an immense help to many.
This book will delve into the mystery form of the Kingdom
New books coming!
By the time you read this, my subsequent book, “The Mysterious Parable of the Kingdom of Heaven” (from Matthew 13) will be available. This material will help all of us understand the Israel-centric outreach of the Messiah. This book delves into the mystery form of the Kingdom during this present age. Because the King is rejected, it means that the Kingdom is a mixed bag of wheat and weeds, good and bad fish during this time.
It is vital to understand this portion of Scripture to understand what God is doing during “this present evil age” (Galatians 1:4). (Early next year we’re also hoping to publish my next book, “Messiah in the End Times”).
Training believers in Israel and elsewhere
“Each week I’m training believing leaders in Israel”
Though the pandemic has extended itself through its variants this year, the Lord has blessed by opening new doors aimed at reaching out and holding Congregation Planter Conferences and Marriage Conferences live and online through Zoom. Each week I’m training believing leaders in Israel and elsewhere through Zoom.
A Congregation is not any stronger spiritually than the families that make it up
“You need to have spiritually strong families to have spiritually strong congregations”
The Planter Conferences consist of new congregation planters, and some older planters who come to learn how to better develop the congregations that are established. The Messianic Marriage Conferences are aimed to strengthen the discipleship of the local congregation. A congregation is made up of families and despite its leadership, a congregation is not any stronger spiritually than the families that make it up.
You need to have spiritually strong families to have spiritually strong congregations. Our Messianic Marriage Conferences are intended to strategically develop the long-term health and outreach of the local Messianic congregations (and yes, church leaders register as well).
“to the Jew first as well as to the Gentile”
“a strong Messianic Sisterhood is an effective testimony”
That said, we also had an on-site Planter’s Conference which helped to establish and develop new outreach and congregation plants in Virginia, Pennsylvania, Florida, and Nebraska. I’m continuing to coach those leaders as they reach out “to the Jew first as well as to the Gentile.”
As to discipleship, earlier in the year Miriam led another wonderful Sisterhood Conference and I’ve been the leader/ teacher at a Brotherhood Conference. Strong women’s ministries are vital to a strong Jewish outreach, for in traditional Jewish synagogues, the Sisterhood has a great deal of influence. Therefore, a strong Messianic Sisterhood is an effective testimony to the greater Jewish community.
“Messianic Brotherhood Conferences are crucial”
Though it should go without saying, the work of God needs to have spiritually strong men in leadership. This is why Messianic Brotherhood Conferences are crucial to maintain the work of God among Jewish people as a Messianic Movement; moving forward and not allowing it to become a Messianic Monument to the past.
I am so very thankful to the Lord for the numerous churches that have opened their doors for our missionary staff to present God’s great burden for the lost sheep of the house of Israel; to see many people invited by believing friends to hear the Good News and to accept the Lord at these meetings, and for the countless believers who are encouraged by the Lord to share the Good News to the Jewish communities around them, as well as to the Gentile neighbors and acquaintances.
As you pray for God’s work in 2022, remember our mission to bring Messiah “to the Jew first, also to the Greek.”