A Rise in Hatred
Nathan Jones: The early-2022 synagogue hostage situation in Colleyville, Texas seems to have raised to the forefront once more the drastic rise of Anti-Semitism that is spreading across the world. Messianic Rabbi Mottel Baleston joins us to provide some insight into what the rise of Anti-Semitism is doing to the Jewish people and to share what God’s plan is for Israel. Most might know Mottel from the video series “I Am Second” and “How I Met My Messiah” where he shared his testimony.
Mottel, having traveled all over the world and being so well connected to the Jewish community, do you see Anti-Semitic events increasing in frequency and in intensity?
Mottel Baleston: There is no doubt that we are seeing a rise in Anti-Semitism, particularly the acts of Anti-Semitism that are expressed through violent acts and through misleading videos. What I think we are seeing is that the generation that witnessed the Holocaust recognized the reality of this and so Anti-Semitism was dialed back, but we are now raising a younger generation that has no memory of this, and they are often growing up in countries where the reality of the Holocaust and the truth of the Holocaust is even doubted.
So, for instance, the gunman in Colleyville, Texas, was born overseas in a Muslim country where typically the reality of the Holocaust is denied. And so, their people are actively set against the Jewish people. They start with a hatred for Israel as a nation. They have made false accusations of apartheid against Israel, which is ludicrous. The nation of Israel is full of Arab Muslim doctors, municipal administrators, and policemen. There are even individuals in the Israeli army who are Israeli Arab. So, the charge of apartheid is nonsensical. It’s an intentional lie; it is propaganda. And yet, the false accusations of apartheid are believed in many Muslim countries and it is also believed in Europe. They have embraced this in Western Europe as well, so you have countries such as Ireland which have issued all sorts of declarations against Israel. They are being led by a hook in the nose in a sense into nonsense.
So, yes, Anti-Semitism now being expressed violently is a reality. I’ve seen it in the Jewish community, even here in my Messianic Jewish community. We are aware of it. We try to take extra precautions for security, something that we never had to think about ten years ago.
Tim Moore: Mottel, the BDS Movement has been propagandizing American youth on college campuses. We even have elected leaders in Washington who are vehemently Anti-Semitic. They hate and denounce Israel every chance they get. These are radicals, clearly, but they are getting traction among others.
As you travel so much, please tell us a little bit about some of the heightened security you’ve had to endure and a little bit about the reception you receive as a Messianic Jew proclaiming Jesus Christ.
Mottel Baleston: Back in 2019, it was my privilege to conduct a one-month speaking tour in various places throughout Europe, particularly in Italy and Germany. It is in Germany where a very poignant experience happened to me personally. I was walking around Berlin with a friend who was my translator. He was not Jewish and so he had never been into an actual synagogue service before, but he knew of one there in Berlin, as he had told me of this. They held an open service. It happened to be the holiday of Sukkot, which is the Feast of Tabernacles. As we approached the synagogue half a block away, I could see on either side of the doors German policemen with submachine guns. We immediately made eye contact with them, and they nodded at me. They saw my face, so my face becomes my passport. They could see that we were harmless middle-aged gentlemen. As we approached the door we had to show our “passports.” I spoke to the guard who was an Israeli, and I used some Hebrew, and he could immediately see who we were.
There is a heightened sense of angst and security in Germany. All of this happened to me in Berlin, a city that launched the most horrific murder of six million Jews but then after the war repented of that. Angela Merkel, the former German Prime Minister, had many opportunities where she publicly repented and expressed her incredible sorrow that her cultured nation had stooped to this. And yet, we now see a resurgence of Anti-Semitism within their own country, and a lot of it carried out by Islamic radicals.
We are living in prophetic times, that’s for sure. We are seeing events gathering together for the eventual laying out of the events of the last days.
Tim Moore: I certainly agree. I’ve observed this many times when I have traveled to Israel leading pilgrimage groups. I have actually encountered young people from Germany, as we often fly through Germany, who are going to Israel to voluntarily serve. I’ll ask them, “Why are you going to Israel?” There’s almost a cultural motive to say, “Well, I just feel like I owe something to the Jewish people.” That’s such a beautiful statement of repentance on the part of a nation.
But, you are so right, that repentance for the Holocaust is beginning to dwindle. Even here in America, we are seeing a rise in hatred against the Jewish people that is manifest all over, sometimes even within our own government.
The Purpose Behind the Hatred
Nathan Jones: Mottel, where do you see this Anti-Semitism going? Clearly, the Bible says that this hatred of the Jews is a spiritual thing. After all, why hate 14 million people as the world does? God must have a purpose and direction for this hatred. Can you tell us how the story ends?
Mottel Baleston: The purpose and direction is very apropos here because ultimately the goal of this hatred is a Satanic goal. You see, in the Scriptures, Zechariah lays out a chronology that basically says that at the moment the Jewish people look upon Him whom they have pierced, recognizing Him as the Messiah, and they call for His return, crying out, “Blessed are you who comes in the name of the Lord.” That is the precipitating moment that actually brings the return of Jesus and brings the Second Coming. So, it is in Satan’s interest to try to stop the Jewish people from coming to faith in Jesus. That’s the undercurrent of what is going on here with Anti-Semitism.
How more effective can you be at stopping the Jewish people from believing in Jesus if you use fake Christians and apostate churches over the years to persecute the Jewish people in the name of Jesus? This is what my grandparents in Poland and in Ukraine experienced. They were violently persecuted on Monday by people who had been to church on Sunday. And so, you can understand that the last thing my grandparents wanted to do was to believe in this Jesus. In other words, this is a diabolical scheme of Satan to drive a wedge between the Jewish people and Jesus, and separate the two so that our Jewish people would never come to believe. Anti-Semitism is that wedge.
No evangelical Christian — no born-again Christian — should ever play with Satan’s ideas, such as viewing these crazy, conspiratorial videos on YouTube that just simply lie about the Jewish people. And so, yes, the last days are here. It is a spiritual war. Believers need to be alert to what is happening.
Tim Moore: We certainly do as sometimes we don’t realize how at times we can become unwilling pawns in the hands of the Evil One. Satan can do much havoc to the cause of Christ if we are not focused on our Lord and Savior.
Fighting the Hate
Tim Moore: Mottel, you have such a powerful voice at speaking truth, not to just the Jewish community, but to Gentiles as well. How can our readers connect with you and view some of your tremendous materials and even see your own personal testimony?
Mottel Baleston: There is a simple page on my website which reads “The Jewish Way Back to God,” because you can’t take a typical Jewish person through the Romans Road because Romans is not in their Bible. And so, the way back to God is a pathway through the Jewish Bible.
The Old Testament shows first of all the need for a Savior because of sin. Sin is a concept that is highly disputed within the Jewish community. The Orthodox recognize it but the Liberal and Reform do not. They recognize sin, but they think that mankind is inherently good, whereas the Orthodox are a lot more honest about this and they recognize that we need atonement. So, what will that atonement be? In my course on the website, on that simple one page, I show that the only atonement available is through the sacrifice of the Messiah, and it is clear that the Jewish Scriptures point to Yeshua — to Jesus — as that Messiah.
You’ll also find on my website my testimonial video, as well as on various other venues. YouTube offers three or four versions of my testimony. There is a six-minute version that went viral. It was shared on YouTube about five years ago. It was shared 10 million times! That was astonishing to the Israeli believers who produced it. God is still using that video.
So, we are happy to communicate with folks. We need to multiply our audience and say to the Evangelical community that God can use them to reach people who need the Messiah.
Nathan Jones: Genesis promises that if you bless a Jew you will be blessed yourself. So, go out and bless a Jew today! Let them know that the Church supports them and wants to introduce them to their Messiah.