Styles and Methods in Jewish Evangelism
By Dan Sered, Israel director of Jews for Jesus
Thank you for allowing me to come and share with you here in
South Africa. It is a privilege and an honor for me to attend this
At the start of this paper I do want to mention David Tsadok and
the great work that he is doing as the coordinator of LCJE Israel.
Earlier this year, we had an intriguing, interesting and stimulating
LCJE Israel conference at the Baptist Village. It was a great success
and many people who were not aware of the LCJE network were
in attendance. David did an excellent job planning, executing and
leading the conference. We have much to build on for the future of
Serving in Israel with Jews for Jesus my perspective for Jewish
evangelism comes from living in the land. In this paper I want to
discuss the current state of outreach in Israel which I believe will
give us a look at difference styles and methods of reaching our
people for Jesus. This paper will highlight three areas: an overview
of the state of outreach in Israel, obstacles to Jewish evangelism
that exist in the land and the opportunities that are set before us.
Knowing and appreciating the past is important for us as we look
into the future. Being a young leader, I believe it is important to
show appreciation for all the people that have gone before us.
There are many that I know and many more that I do not. I
imagine Kai can probably fill this entire conference with papers
about the history of outreach in Israel. That is not my purpose
here, but I do want to acknowledge those who have gone before us
and have paved the way leading us to the current state that the
body in Israel is in. Many of these people have paid a huge price
for their faith and for their stand for the Gospel.
Most of the outreach that we see in Israel now and in the past has
been a congregational oriented approach. Ralph Winter in his
article “Two Structures of God’s Redemptive Mission” speaks of the
sodality structure and the modality structure. The modality
structure being a local church oriented outreach and the sodality
structure being the apostolic band. Much of the outreach that has
gone on in Israel over the years has been that of a modality
structure; local congregations having a presence in a community
with the members of the congregation doing personal evangelism
by sharing their faith and inviting friends to services. Similarly in
his book, “The Missionary Nature of the Church”, Johannes Blauw
differentiates between centripetal and centrifugal mission. Mission
in the Old Testament was largely centripetal; inviting the nations
to come up to Jerusalem to the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
Mission in the New Testament is centrifugal; going out to the
nations and inviting them to come to believe in the Jewish Messiah
Jesus. In Israel most of the outreach has been centripetal, inviting
people to come in. What is increasingly needed in Israel is the
centrifugal mission approach – going out and evangelizing
through proclamation and outreach in multiple forms.