Likud’s Assulin: Opportunist or Apostate?

It’s hard to know what truly motivates a young Israeli politician to embrace a Jesus cult, but on the eve of Shavout - a festival which marks our spiritual redemption from the bondage of idolatry and immorality – Likud’s Sagiv Assulin has chosen to play with a strange fire which threatens to consume the Jewish State.

Assulin has recklessly thrown his support and faith behind the messianic Christian Ephraimite movement and he has embraced the theology and promoted the agenda of Joel Bell – a notorious evangelical missionary leader, who sits on the Board of Governors of World Likud.

Bell has called upon messianic Christians to move en masse to Israel , "buy land in Israel” and lay claim to their “right to own a home” in the Land of Israel, because Gentiles “have been grafted in to the commonwealth of Israel through Melchizedek - Yehoshua HaMashiach (Jesus)”. Israel is, therefore, their “eternal inheritance” which they will share with their “brother Judah” (religious Jews).

And this Shavout , Joel Bell’s World Biblical Zionist organization has a “gigantic homecoming celebration” planned to WELCOME HOME EPHRAIM! - Complete with “an official homecoming welcome from a government official who will speak to the returning pilgrims and welcome them here”

Whether it was a case of political opportunism, a quest for funding, or an ideological journey, Assulin admittedly and wholeheartedly entrusted evangelicals Joel and Pamela Bell with both fully managing his political campaign, and raising funds for him through the messianic Christian Ephraimite movement.

In addition, JewishIsrael obtained correspondence in which Assulin personally solicited funds from messianics and disseminated a link to a speech he gave which endorses and accepts Christian end-times theology and a program which opens the doors of the Jewish State to accepting vast numbers of evangelical Christians as joint heirs to the Land of Israel.

Back in December, JewishIsrael reported that certain messianic leaders had accused Bell of mishandling WBZ funding and questioned his credibility and accountability. It was also reported that eyewitnesses at a pre-election Likud event saw Danny Dannon run up to Joel Bell with an urgent request for heavy funding. At that time it was suggested that the money trail be investigated. It is imperative that responsible Jewish citizens demand transparency on this issue. How entrenched and influential are evangelizing Christians in the Israeli government?

JewishIsrael urges you to read Sagiv’s letter addressed to the cult leader Don Esposito and to listen to the condensed version of the speech Assulin gave at the Worldwide Biblical Zionist (WBZ) inauguration. A letter from cult leader Esposito can be accessed here, and it will give you some idea as how entrenched Likud* is in this movement. The Bell Files are also essential reading, and for additional background information on the Ephraimite movement and recent developments, see the blog postings at Palm Tree of Deborah and The Key to Redemption.

In answer to the question posed in the title of this post, JewishIsrael wonders if perhaps Sagiv Assulin started as a political opportunist and became a “believer”.

*[Jewish Israel notes that up until now the only Likud faction to publicly separate from Joel Bell and evangelical funding has been Moshe Feiglin’s Manhigut Yehudit.]

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Comment by ellen on May 26, 2009 at 9:41pm
Who pays for the flight ticket and accomodations?1
You would be a great person to kick off the forum that Sharbano is suggesting.
Hey Sharbano and Yoel, do you guys have faces? Put something on your profile so we can see you.
Comment by Jewish Israel on May 26, 2009 at 8:58pm
Good idea, Sharbano. There are certainly enough JI members who have stories to tell. We can send out a notice for this type of forum in our next update.
The day the pope arrived, JI launched on the Tamar Yonah show in the morning. We would like to arrange some advertising with INR. And our long term goals involve hitting the lecture circuit on this issue and going into organizations and schools. We're still working on the Hebrew site, too.
Comment by Sharbano on May 26, 2009 at 8:43pm
I can assure you that I've done my share of bringing lost Jews home

When I read this it struck me that maybe it would be worthwhile to have these Jews who have found "their home" to write a short essay on their experience and how they returned, etc. Maybe there could be a forum just for that. It may be that if a person is questioning themselves and read about someone else with a similar experience it would give them encouragement. Also, maybe it would be a good idea to go on INR, and/or other venues to promote this site. Any exposure would help. I would consider this a most propitious time for a site as this.
Comment by ellen on May 26, 2009 at 6:37pm
I can assure you that I've done my share of bringing lost Jews home -,and have done so with great compassion and patience, and I'll will continue to do so via my open and loving home, writing, and lecturing. I think we all have different tasks to do at different stages in our lives.
Right now, getting this online project off the ground is one way of providing the information needed to save Jewish souls. Getting out in the streets with direct kiruv work is obviously essential. Jews who are qualified and inspired to take this information and bring their fellow Jews back - and who do so within the bounds of halacha - have my blessings.
Comment by Yoel on May 26, 2009 at 3:42pm
Ellen, you are right my sister and wrong at the same time. Sharbano and I could tell you how we faced all these christian proselytising Jew lovers with out the help of other Jews. There did come some help from other christians who stood with Sharbano and my self telling these evangelist that they were wrong for posting there christian views about yashu. Where were the other Jews why did they not speak up, it is there duty to speak up.Than we had a young Jewish fighter not orthodox but a Jew who lives in Israel who did come to the aid of Sharbano and my self may be he saw an orthodox Jew and not so orthodox man stand up to these people because we are all Jews who love Israel and the Jewish people and we could not let these proselytising christian get away with there false bible quotes. Than there came along some other allies gentiles who stated to doubt the NT bible who spoke up for the Jewish people and told these christian posters why they doubted the christian messiah yashu.
Ellen I am not a writer like you are with your talent but I do write from my heart and I say we have to take this fight to the front especially when our young people are being tricked by these blood sucking vultures. How are they going to find the truth if we do not show them what is written in Tanakh is the true words of Adonai and what is written in NT book is a lie. You said teach them Torah yes but go after them with more love than the christians are showing these young Jews. Bring them back with more love more than what the christians gave them. Do you know some of these young unknowing Jews left Judaism because they had a guilt about something they did or are doing and they felt trapped along comes love from a stranger who tells these unknowing Jews G-D loves them (they say jc loves them) and all there sins are gone by accepting jc he died for there sins, and all there sins are washed clean from them. Than these christians tell these unknowing Jews that they are now a completed Jew with a new clean body and soul when they accept yashu in to there hearts.. Ellen we must all of us go to the front and bring them back if we don't than we are as guilty as these poor lost sheep for not fighting for there souls. I say we are responsible for them show them love bring them back we have lost them because we are not showing the love of Adonai. If I stand alone and you still think I am wrong I will still know in my heart and soul that the G-d of Israel tells me that I am right.
Comment by Sharbano on May 25, 2009 at 5:25pm
Every time I read one of these articles my stomach literally gets sick and churns. Now we hear that the Courts want to allow Reform conversions in Israel, thereby allowing virtually anyone to claim rights to the land.

I Do agree with those who say that the best solution is to teach Torah and that will the best weapon against apostasy. Virtually Every "messianic Jew" I've heard about had a history of little education in Torah. For those with little education this xtian sect is a very addicting drug. A person can offload All his troubles, ills, and even misdeeds on someone else and thereby Not taking Any responsibility for themselves. From what I've seen these people don't even "confess" their sins but merely "state" they are a sinner in need of redemption. From here they "accept" the yoke of that belief and all is well. From that point on there is no need for further confession and there is no responsibility for any subsequent actions. This Certainly does Not fit with any Torah conditions and therein lies the problem. It Is interesting that the catholic church is actually a little closer to the Torah way than the evangelicals' doctrine. In any event, both sides, (could this be the two legs of the beast of Daniel), have "changed" the definition of the words written in Torah. When a group can apply their "own" definition to words, then it will allow any interpretation desired and even change those meanings over time. What is interesting, and even highly amusing, is that these cultists will purport to say the Jews are "blinded" to the truth, yet they don't understand a single word of Hebrew, and have No concept of the historical context whatsoever. It would seem to be obvious who is "blinded" when one can read in Devarim that Hashem Himself says that "you saw no form or image in the likeness of a man or anything else."

What is fascinating is that these "believers" will state they "know" the truth, yet when given specific texts that will counter their arguments, it will either be ignored or the subject will be changed. This is a common tactic and I suggest should be exploited. If they change the subject, a person needs to consistently return to "that" subject and a person will find that will end their arguments will cease. I have found that even the "most" skilled of these cult leaders are ignorant of their "own" texts also. This too, can be exploited.

I don't know how much good it would do to speak out against the xtians if a person doesn't know their texts. I, for one, do think they should be shamed for what they are doing. What they are doing is akin to what the communists said years ago, that to end the American ideal would be to destroy it from within. This is what the Ephraim movement strives to accomplish and unfortunately there are many xtians, especially evangelicals, who agree with this goal. For this reason I consider that these days we are in a type of warfare, a clash of Torah vs Idolatry + Islam. It's two against one and Hashem usually uses overwhelming odds to show His Truth, with many examples written in Torah.
Comment by Jewish Israel on May 25, 2009 at 6:52am
There is no question that all Jews are responsible for one another. And Jewish Israel is certainly engaged in spiritual battle for Jewish souls. But even the Lubavitcher Rebbe was strict with regards to his approach to apostates. Look at the video at JI features of him and Jewish convert to Catholicism

Also take a look a JI member Shannon's recent comment on the forum She also seems to imply that we Jews need to battle with missionaries by becoming "intimately familiar with our own faith" (Jewish education), while leaving the counter-missionary field work to the professionals. That doesn't mean that we shouldn't be activists, educators and create public awareness on this issue - Which is what Jewish Israel does.
Comment by Yoel on May 25, 2009 at 4:15am
Ellen my sister I know you are a great warrior for the Jewish people and I have missed you on Israelinsder. I have read your love for our people and have felt it in my heart, but I believe we have to go on to the battle field and bring back our sisters and brothers we are all Jews and we are responsible for each other.
This letter is From correspondence of the Lubavitcher Rebbe; I Will Write It In Their Hearts

The meaning of areivus, the mutual responsibility of Jews
This letter was addressed to a philanthropist whose identity has been withheld.

B”H, the fourth candle of Chanukah, 5703

Greetings and blessings,

By now, you have certainly received your membership card for the Society for Studying Mishnayos by Heart. The Gemara states (Shvuos 39a): “All Jews are areivim for one another.” The Rebbe shlita offers three interpretations of the word areivim:1

a)sweet, i.e., every Jew must consider another Jew sweet;

b)intertwined, i.e., every Jew is intertwined with another Jew; and

c)mutually responsible; every Jew is responsible for all other Jews.

Through our one Torah, the Jews become one nation, connected with G-d, who is “our L-rd, “ and who “is one.”2

It is our hope that you will not content yourself with looking after your own personal welfare, but will instead become one of those who bring merit to people at large, and will participate with all your resources in the broad range of activities promoted by Machne Israel.

As the Rebbe shlita has frequently alerted us, we are in the last phase of the exile, and Torah and teshuvah are the only means to alleviate the birth pangs of Mashiach.

The love which one Jew must feel toward another Jew spurs the heart to great feelings of mercy for those who do not do teshuvah in the present time.

From the newspaper clipping which accompanies this letter, you will be able to find the aspect of our activities in which it will be easiest for you to begin work. Before beginning any task, it may appear difficult. As one proceeds with the work, however, one sees that with G-d’s help, it is possible to achieve results.

Awaiting your speedy reply, [I conclude] with the blessing, “Immediately to teshuvah, immediately to Redemption,”

Rabbi Menachem Schneerson

Chairman of the Executive Committee

P.S. The Rebbe shlita has released the enclosed letter.3 It is a great mitzvah to publicize it to the greatest degree possible by hanging it in synagogues and the like.
Comment by ellen on May 24, 2009 at 11:20pm
Hi Yoel,
Obviously I am pained and concerned about Jewish souls, otherwise I wouldn't be engaged in this work. But, like I said before, method and approach is important and qualified rabbis and counter-missionary experts should be bringing those lost sheep home. I don't think it's the task of every Jew to try and bring the apostate back into the fold - because Avodah Zarah is serious stuff. However I do believe that every Jew is obligated to educate and bring fellow Jews who are not Torah observant closer to Torah. I don't think we disagree here.
Comment by Yoel on May 24, 2009 at 11:02pm
The problem we have is the Jewish people them self's. I have said on previous post that the knowing Torah Jew should go out to these Jews who have been taken in by the so called loving christians who love us so much they want to steal our souls. Show these lost sheep that Yashu was not the Mashiach show them the Tenakh where it is written that G-d is not a man or the son of man. Sorry Ellen I do not agree with you about pushing them away. It is our duty to bring these Jews back. If you don't than you are willing to give up there souls to these Jew loving christians. Yashu came from the cursed side of King David and not from Solomon. Are you so above others as a orthodox Jew you forget about saving a soul. You and I and others must not let theses evangelist take in these poor unknowing Jewish people, if we do not help than we are no better than theses proselytising christians.

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