We are just hours away from the start of Chosen People Ministries’ conference at Biola University entitled Israel, the Church, and the Middle East Crisis.
The main speakers are Joel Rosenberg, Dr. Walter Kaiser, myself, Hormoz Shariat (a former Muslim) and Michael Zinn (Director of Chosen People Ministries’ work in Israel).
The conference will focus on the current Middle East crisis, with special attention to what is happening in Iran, Syria, Egypt and Israel. I believe it is critical to understand contemporary events from the perspective of Scripture, as all too often we allow ourselves to be overly influenced by CNN, Fox News or even USA Today! We always need to balance our news sources with the truth of God’s Word.
I’d like to tell you why I believe this conference is unlike any other, and why this event is so critical for believers in Jesus.
Many Christians are struggling to figure out if they should support Israel or the Palestinian cause. A recent conference held at Bethlehem Bible College in Bethlehem, Israel, seems to have exacerbated this struggle in the hearts of many believers. I know of quite a few who came away from this conference feeling they have to choose between Israel or the Palestinian cause – yet I don’t think a choice needs to be made.
This is especially true when you focus on the spiritual needs of both Israelis and Palestinians. Christians need to pray for the peace of Jerusalem – including all who live within the environs of the nation of Israel, both Jews and Arabs. We need to pray that they come to know the Lord Jesus and have their lives and futures transformed by His grace. This would certainly begin the peace process within the hearts and souls of individuals, though it might not have immediately obvious political effect. However, it will certainly help in developing deeper relationships and true spiritual brotherhood in the Messiah. After all, if more citizens of the Middle East believe in Jesus, it would lead to greater opportunities for peace on all sides.
Let me list a few of the reasons why this conference is unique:
- The speakers at the conference all believe that the Jewish people have a divine right to the land of Israel.
- The speakers all believe that both Jewish people and Arabs need to believe in Jesus to be saved, and that faithfulness to their own historical religions will not suffice.
- The speakers all believe that Christians need to separate the wheat from the chaff regarding the news we hear about events in the Middle East.
- The speakers all believe that the true answer to peace is the Middle East will come from the Prince of Peace, Jesus, and that the lives of Jews, Arabs, Israelis and Palestinians need to be transformed one at a time.
- This conference will offer workshops on reaching Jewish people for Jesus – both in Israel and in the United States – as well as seminars on how to reach Muslims around the globe.
Be sure to check both my blog and our Chosen People Ministries website as we will be posting tidbits from some of the terrific conference messages.