Taking God Seriously: Invitation To The First Ephraimite/Northern Israel National Congress
How seriously do we consider the promises of God? Do we believe what He said? Do we believe He will do what He said, no matter how fantastic and impossible? These questions address the very nature of our professed salvation by faith rather than works. If we truly believe God is able to save people and nations, then we should believe His promises. That, after all, is what qualified our father Abraham for esteem in God’s eyes. As the Scripture says, “Then he believed in the Lord; and He reckoned it to him as righteousness” (Genesis 15:6 NASB; see also Romans 4:3, 9, 22; Galatians 3:6; James 2:23). That also is at the heart of God’s many admonitions to us that with Him nothing is impossible (Luke 1:37; Genesis 18:14; Jeremiah 32:17, 27; Matthew 19:26; Mark 10:27; Luke 18:27). And yet we doubt that God will do what He said, leading to this great question by Messiah Yeshua (Jesus Christ): “When the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth?” (Luke 18:8).
We have seen so many acts of God in our day. No one among watchful Believers has any doubt that we have entered the Last Days. Although we have at best an incomplete picture of how and exactly when our Creator and Redeemer will carry out His promises at the end of this age, we know we are seeing these things unfold as promised. Why, then, do we have trouble believing the biggest promise of all: that God Himself will restore the Kingdom to Israel?
Is it such a fantastic, ridiculous thing to think that God is serious when He says He will bring all Twelve Tribes back into existence in the land promised to our fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob? Slightly over a century ago it was a ridiculous thing to think that God would bring the Jewish people back into the Land as a national entity, and yet He did. Some say that is all He promised to do in that regard – that the Jewish people are all that there is of Israel, and that once all Jews are back in the Land God will have fulfilled His Word. But that is not what the Word says. The single greatest topic in all of Scripture is the restoration of all Israel, meaning all Twelve Tribes. The Tribes were divided into the Two Houses of Judah (the Jewish nation) and Israel (Ephraim; the son of Joseph who inherited the birthright and the name of Israel). God said through His prophets that He would restore both houses under Messiah’s rule in the Land. If He said it, why should we not believe it? And if we believe it, why are we not doing anything to seek God’s will and see what He would have us do as His human instruments in this work?
That is the point of this letter of invitation to the First Ephraimite/Northern Israel National Congress, which will be held at Eshel HaShomron Hotel in Ariel, Israel, May 25-27, 2015. The hosts for the Congress are Etz B’ney Yosef (Tree of the Sons of Joseph), a collection of believers not afraid to be identified as the returning House of Israel who are willing to join with and support their brethren of the House of Judah in this great work of our God. This is an effort The Barking Fox is excited to bring to your attention in hope that you may participate as the Lord leads.
Dear Friend and Colleague,
“Repent therefore and be converted, that your sins may be blotted out, so that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord and that He may send Messiah Yeshua, who was preached to you before, whom heaven must receive until the times of restoration of all things, which Elohim has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets since the world began” (Acts 3:19-21).
Over the past 150 years the world has seen an ongoing and accelerated fulfillment of those “things, which Elohim has spoken by the mouth of all His holy prophets.” It seems that most of the prophecies and promises preceding the formation of Elohim’s Kingdom in the House of Jacob have already come to pass. Yet this Kingdom cannot be established without the re-gathering of all Israel, which started with His people (Jews) and nation of Judah, and is now continuing with His people and nation of Ephraim (generic term for the lost tribes of Israel), and the coming heart transformation and eventual union of both under Messiah King Son of David. This expectancy is at the forefront of our vision, and is the inspiration for the call to gather in Samaria, for a National Congress immediately following Shavuot of 2015.
For some weeks now in the weekly letters reference has been made to this event, and some of you have already expressed your interest. Before articulating the objectives and details, it must be stated that this is not about creating another organization. Instead, we are hoping to examine possibilities of the prophetic Word ‘transitioning’ into action on various levels in our day and in days to come. There are already many organizations and ministries devoted to this restoration. Having such a Congress in Israel will also afford an opportunity for meeting one another, for discussions, sharing ideas, and pooling resources.
Although present circumstances are vastly different from 1897, when the first Jewish Zionist Congress convened in Basel Switzerland, the ingathering of the Jewish nation and the accomplishments by our brothers and sisters of Judah are a source of inspiration for us. Even though many of them may have not recognized or acknowledged the involvement of the Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob in their path toward nationhood, we can see His Hand at work in their journey, and we can learn much from their example.
The founders of the Zionist Movement lived in a world of rapidly changing global events and circumstances. Today we, the scattered non-Jewish Israelite people, witness changes that are occurring even more rapidly and with greater upheaval. We must consider how to prepare and be ready when the opportunity arises for the return to the land of our forefathers. This is something our Jewish brethren took into consideration and acted upon when the Diaspora was their only home. However, having never lost their identity, some sense of national unity bound the Jews together even while being scattered around the globe. That is not the case for us from the House of Joseph whose identity has only recently been coming to the fore. We have a lot of catching up to do, especially in the area of defining this national identity, not only theoretically, but in practical terms. We must proactively embrace our Israelite national identity so that we may be propelled further, both in the near term and in years to come.
With this in mind, the takeoff point of the Congress will be a broad and widely acceptable definition of the Nationhood. This definition will be the cornerstone and benchmark from which to proceed. The definition must be Biblically based, although it is not the intention of the Congress to discuss, dissect and argue theological issues, as there are many other forums and venues for this type of activity.
Some short range topics for discussion and implementation:
- Identifying necessary elements/components conducive to enhancing the cohesion of a people group, such as creating local communities or communes in the various localities.
- Mechanisms and teaching tools for enhancing national consciousness and for practical preparation in anticipation of potential changes in the global system as they manifest locally, nationally, and internationally.
- Activities in the respective lands where the sons of Jacob reside: relevant studies, courses, camps, training, plans on an individual level (such as specific and ‘useful’ careers and vocations, especially for young people).
- Creating and maintaining a global network of the House of Joseph.
- Encouraging vibrant and consistent relationships with local Jewish communities.
- Connecting with Israel through tours, study programs, volunteering, maintaining relationships with various ‘relevant bodies’ or organizations in the Land. (There is a dual purpose in these connections: to foster individual and corporate relationships with our Jewish brethren and be exposed to Jewish culture and the Hebrew language, while simultaneously exposing Judah to the emerging House of Joseph.)
- Developing media tools to ‘get the word out’ to the general public.
Long Term Goals:
- Formulating, adopting and implementing governmental principles.
- Establishing and administrating a National Fund.
- Establishing and maintaining an Embassy in Israel.
- Creating and maintaining administrative committees as necessary for governmental functions.
None of the above are intended to take away from or diminish the activities in which you are now involved, nor from the ministry to which you have been called.
Along with the above topics, there may be other issues of concern that in your opinion are of great importance for reaching the goals ahead of us. The skills and giftings with which you have been blessed are imperative for implementation of these action points. Any input in that regard prior to the convening of the Congress would be most appreciated. We are confident that your input and participation before, during, and after the Congress will prove to serve and be of benefit to you, your community, organization, or ministry.
In closing, we note Yeshua’s admonition in Yochanan (John) 15:5, that without Him we can do nothing. We are fully trusting the Spirit of Elohim to direct, lead and guide this event. The details presented here convey the message that the agenda of the Congress will differ quite a bit from the Messianic conferences that we have all attended and loved. The idea is to be about our Father’s business in a literal sense of the word, with pragmatic and business-like sessions, presentations, discussions and decision-making processes. The preceding Shabbat and Feast Day will afford us the time to come together in prayer, praise, worship, study and fellowship so that we can segue smoothly, as it were, into the Congress objectives.
Hopefully fellowships, congregations, organizations etc. will pool their resources so as to alleviate financial burdens, allowing their leaders, members or affiliates to come, all are welcome who share this vision and have a right heart before the Elohim of Israel.
Click for a copy of the Registration Form.