God's People

January 31, 2019
by Joel Jongkind

Exodus 6:7a – I will take you as My people, and I will be your God. (NKJV)

On October 27, 2018, a gunman entered the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, and killed eleven Jewish parishioners and wounded six other people. The news media quickly told us that this man was a hater of Jews and that he took it upon himself to kill these mostly elderly people. The ensuing newscasts often mentioned the persecution of Jews during World War II, the various extermination camps, the infamous Kristallnacht terror against Jews and synagogues on the night of November 9-10, 1938, and the creation of the Jewish Ghettos in Poland.

After the Netherlands had been occupied for some time, a decree was issued that all the Jews were to wear the yellow Star of David on their outer garments so that they could easily be identified as Jews. One lady in Pittsburgh mentioned that they were proud to wear the Star of David. But it was not always a badge of honour. One of the reasons that this was done was so that when the time came to pick them up for transportation to the camps, there would be no problem in knowing which ones to take.

In the area where we lived, there were a lot of greenhouses and always a lot of broken glass, which the growers would keep for pickup by a recycler. One of these recyclers was a Jewish man who used to come from Amsterdam with a hand-pushed cart. He apparently dealt in broken pieces of glass, and he had several growers where he would go on a regular basis. He told my parents that he had a wife and family in Amsterdam, so whenever he came to our place, my mother would always invite him to have lunch with us and give him something to take home to his family. One day when he arrived, he was crying. He said that his family had been picked up and taken away in a truck. He was sure that he would never see them again. The police had said that he was too old and had left him behind. For several months, he still came on a somewhat regular basis, but then, he stopped coming, and we never saw him again. We don't know what happened to him.

All through the ages there have been a great number of theories as to why there was and still is so much discrimination against the Jews, but they, too, are God's children, as the Lord had said to Abram:

Genesis 12:3 – I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed. (NKJV)

During this time of discrimination against so many people who believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in different places around the world, we need to pray that such people will stay strong in their faith, and that a change in attitude on the part of persecutors will come about. We are assured through faith that the Lord invites us to bring our concerns to Him in prayer.

Prayer: Our Father in heaven, we pray for steadfastness on the part of all people of faith who are persecuted and even killed for their faith. It is our urgent prayer that You would speak to the hearts of those who have the ability to change things. We ask it in Jesus' name. Amen.

About the author:

Joel Jongkind <austria67@bmts.com>
Meaford, Ontario, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Yes good today.


    May it be true, Joel.


    My prayer echoes yours, Joel.


    Thanks for sharing this today, Joel. I echo your prayer. God bless you.


    Thanks for a good word Joel.
    Blessings.


    Thank you for your insight today, Joel. I was praying your prayer right along with you.


    Thank you for sharing this heartbreaking but important story, Joel. May God hear all our prayers and bless all those who suffer. Blessings.


    Thank you for sharing this devotional with us. So many horrors grew from prejudice during WWII and still occur these days. Let’s pray for generous hearts filled with love for everyone God sends into our lives. Blessings.


    Thank you for proclaiming the truth. Sadly, there are those in certain segments who are trying to brainwash others into believing that it never happened. It did happen and it is still going on.
    (Ontario)


    Dear Pastor Joel,
    Thank you for your devotional.
    Yes, indeed we must pray for our persecuted brethren, and for a change to come about in the hearts of their persecutors, and I am thankful to God Almighty that we have read the back of the book… and we Won!!!
    Amen.


    That is a heart-breaking experience that so many of us cannot imagine. The people today who are also being hunted down and persecuted because of their belief in Jesus Christ are suffering in ways that I, and so many others, cannot imagine. I often wonder why we are so unwilling to spend time, lots of time, time that is otherwise just wasted (“killing time is a true phrase”) in prayer for others who so clearly need God’s help. Thank you, Joel, for your story and your wake-up call. Bless you, and all who have such disturbing memories from their past experiences.


    Thanks for the story. We visited a concentration camp and stood where the prisoners gathered every morning. No one knew if this was the moment they might die. Never had I felt that I was standing on holy ground as I did there. If only we could care for all because God is father of all mankind. Shalom.

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