What is the difference between these and the B’nei Menashe?
This was the question that Christine Darg, from Jerusalem TV, asked when she first saw the three Mizos that had accompanied me. We were in the UK and the two girls had missionary visas so the could take the gospel back to the Welsh people, of whom they owed such a great debt. The man was a pastor and teacher at a bible college in Birmingham.
My reply was, “Nothing, except they haven’t converted to Judaism yet, they’re still Christian.”
“What!” she exclaimed, “why hadn’t I been told.” This was her reaction after ascertaining from the three Mizos present that it was indeed the case. The B’nei Menashe were simply a subset of the Mizos [or Kuki, if they come from Manipur] that were no longer Christian, but had converted to Judaism.
We see from Scripture that the Creator’s processes are lengthy, thorough, and often completely different from what humans desire or expect. This should not be a surprise. YHVH says quite plainly that His ways are not our ways and His thoughts are not our thoughts. Nevertheless, He does tell us what we need to know, and He reveals things at the appointed times to those who bother to seek Him. What we often learn is that the answer has been there all along, but we have never understood it correctly until the right time and until we approach with the right heart. When it comes to the purpose of the Lord’s processes regarding His people Israel, the answer has been staring at us for about 3,000 years. He spoke it through Moses to prepare the people for their first great meeting with Him at Sinai:
In the third month after the sons of Israel had gone out of the land of Egypt, on that very day they came into the wilderness of Sinai. When they set out from Rephidim, they came to the wilderness of Sinai and camped in the wilderness; and there Israel camped in front of the mountain. Moses went up to God, and the Lord called to him from the mountain, saying, “Thus you shall say to the house of Jacob and tell the sons of Israel: You yourselves have seen what I did to the Egyptians, and how I bore you on eagles’ wings, and brought you to Myself. Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be My own possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is Mine; and you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words that you shall speak to the sons of Israel.” (Exodus 19:1-6 NASB, emphasis added)