Mitch Glaser - In Remembering the 'Chosen People'

Feb 10, 2003 02:23 PM EST

FORT WORTH Texas - Mitch Glaser, the president of the New York - based Chosen People Ministries testified his path of faith from orthodox Judaism to Christianity, to students at the Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary, Feb. 5. He encouraged the students to remember the first group of people mentioned in Romans 1:16 in their evangelistic efforts.

"My request and my prayer is that Jewish people in your life do not become the great omission from the Great Commission. I don't care in what way you put Jewish evangelism into your life, as long as you do it," Glaser said. "The 15.5 million Jewish people around the world need to know the Lord."

Glaser was born into a Jewish family in Brooklyn, and attended the orthodox rituals until his bar mitzvah.

"At the age of 13-and-a-half, I bolted from the synagogue like every other Jewish kid I knew," Glaser said. "There was no real intimacy or relationship with the living God."

Two years later his family moved to New Jersey, and Glaser returned to the synagogue to find peace. Finding no rest, however, he turned to drugs. He graduated from high school and entered college, but he dropped out and moved to California at the height of the Vietnam War Protest movement.

There, a Christian friend introduced him to Jesus, and told Glaser he was lost, and told him of a possibility of spending eternity in Hell.

Glaser replied, "'Oh, I don't have to go somewhere I don't believe in, and all I have to do is become a traitor?'"

To prove her wrong, he studied the Old Testament, but instead he became more receptive to the gospel. He eventually prayed to God, asking for a sign. That night, he found a copy of the New Testament and began to read it.

"I discovered two things: first, that Jesus was Jewish. Second, he was clearly God's Son," Glaser recounted.

Since then, Glaser went out to preach to the world, and has worked to see God move the hearts of the3 million Jews in New York City. He sees his mission as fulfilling a biblical mandate.

"The Jewish people are God's chosen people, but chosen for what? We have been chosen to be God's vehicle of blessing for the world. ... God has not set aside the Jewish people because the Jewish leaders at the time of Christ rejected Jesus," Glaser said, while teaching from Romans 11:1-4.

"The fact that there are Jewish people who believe in Jesus is living proof that God is faithful to his covenant promises."

Glaser believes that the severe sufferings undertaken by the Jewish people are due to their being the chosen ones.

"[God's] choice brings with it a heavy obligation and a whole host of heavenly enemies," Glaser said. "Satan has it in for the Jews because he understands that God wants to bring blessing through the Jewish people."

He continued to emphasize the importance of outreach to God's "chosen people." Glaser mentioned that "God has prepared a remnant of Jewish people who are ready to hear and receive the message of the gospel."

"There is a day coming when the promises of God to bless the world through the Jewish people, through Abraham, will be fulfilled in the most marvelous way. In other words, Paul is saying [in Romans 11:12], 'You ain't seen nothin' yet,'" Glaser said.

"Wait until the end-time remnant embraces the Messiah - then all the prophecies will be fulfilled," Glaser said.

The Chosen People Ministries helps plant churches in the United States, Israel, Germany and Ukraine. Glaser is currently coordinating efforts with the Messianic Jewish plant on the Heavily Jewish Upper West Side of New York City.

By Pauline C.