A Russian

Jewish Salvation Testimony

of Beata Yakubovitch

     I was born in a typical Soviet Jewish family where the name of God was never mentioned, and Jewish traditions and festivals were never kept. My mother attended the local synagogue three times a year: on Passover, Yom Kippur and Rosh Hashana, but did not explain to us the meaning of these Holidays or why she did what she did. We loved the "honey cake" which mother baked on Rosh Hashana, matzot on Passover, and the fact that she fasted ... till the first star on Yom Kippur. That was all we observed while growing up in our so called "Jewish" family.

     The Soviet school taught us that there is no God. Then the theory of evolution by Darwin was introduced in the higher grades. I recall buying at age 13-14 a book entitled "The amusing Bible," (a caricature of the Word of God), and how hard I was laughing while reading it. Then, during my university studies, we were forced to take a course in "Basics of Scientific Atheism." In other words, this was a purposeful sterilization of human spirituality.

     When I read the book "Master and Margarita" by N. Bulgakov, I was struck and deeply touched by the, person of Jesus Christ described in this novel. After graduating from the University, I conducted seminars on the "Basics of Scientific Atheism" right there at the institute. But about that time my oldest brother became a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ and was baptized in the Russian Orthodox Church, Our mother could not understand and accept this so called "betrayal," and insisted that "he lost his mind." As for me, it made me only curious, and we talked for hours about religion, faith and church rituals. I recall telling him that in my opinion it was wrong to baptize babies, because people have to make a conscious decision and have a choice. After many considerations and doubts, I decided to go with him to the Orthodox church and was eventually baptized there. This act had no effect on my life, I rarely went to church and seldom read the Bible or prayed. My heart remained empty and so was my life.

     In June of 1991 I immigrated to Israel with my daughter and grandson. We settled in Eilat and shortly after, perhaps only a few days later, we met with Boris (Dov). He told us that he believes in the Lord Jesus Christ and invited us to a place called the "Shelter" where Jewish believers in Jesus regularly met. I refused to go, basing my refusal on the fact that I am an Eastern Orthodox believer and such meetings were not for me.

     Three long years followed, full of confusion and disappointments, hurts and heart aches. In May of 1994 a popular Christian singer, Victor Klimenko, came to Eilat from Europe, and I went to his concert at the "Shelter." He talked about his family and life, his search for truth and many disappointments, and in between sang his beautiful songs about God and His everlasting love. Then he told us that he wants to share something "about a Jew who saved me," and he began to talk about the Lord Jesus Christ. His testimony shook me to the very core of my heart, and when he asked, "who wants to give his (her) life to Jesus and open before Him ones heart and soul so that He may enter in," I raised my hand without hesitation. Seeing my hand, Victor said: "May the Lord bless you," and from that day on I have indeed given my life to Jesus, my wonderful Lord and Savior. He has been leading, directing, instructing and changing me ever since. I began to read the Word of God - His eternal Book, the Bible. This consistent reading and studying of His Word opened my eyes and helped me grow in Him. Attending services of our congregation where we again read and studied His Word further deepened my understanding of the Scriptures. The Lord taught me to trust Him and bring to Him in prayer all my problems, believing that He indeed hears our prayers and gives His help in due time. And He really does help! But without faith it is impossible to please Him; for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him. Hebrews 1 1:6

     Ever since the day of my baptism in the Red Sea in June of 1995, I wanted to share with all who are willing to listen, my joy, love and assurance which were given me by my Lord the moment I committed my life to Him. It is amazing how the Lord began to provide many opportunities for sharing His Word and love with others. I began to distribute messianic literature on the streets and beaches of Eilat almost every morning; which is a customary task of our leaders and fellow believers. I talk to people about God's great love to all of us, His "prodigal children." Many are amazed and some are indignant, saying: "How dare you, a Jewess, preach Jesus Christ to us?!" And I quote passages from the Gospels, the very words of our Lord, when He says: I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Matthew 15:24 I tell them to read the Bible to see for themselves if what I say is true, and also that the Lord answers all questions. I share with them all that I received from and in the Lord Jesus, how He blessed my life by allowing me to quickly learn the Hebrew language (Evrit) to enable me to witness to the Israelis in their own tongue.

     Recently I was witnessing to my neighbor, a young Israeli woman. I gave her a Bible and a few other books in Hebrew and invited her to come to our meeting. Oshra (her name) and her husband, Shalom, began to attend our meetings. Then our sisters and brothers visited them in their home, read Scriptures with them. A year later this young family repented of their sins and was baptized. So now we are one family in the Lord.

     We have a remarkable congregation. In spite of the fact that we speak several languages: English, German, Dutch, Hindu, Chinese, Hebrew, Romanian and Russian.... we understand each other magnificently, because our most important language is the language of love of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. It unites us into one Body of believers - Christ's Body - His Bride! Our pastor, John Pex, and his lovely and modest wife Judy, more than 20 years ago established here in Eilat this wonderful work in their home and at the "Shelter"; a facility of an American-based Mission which operates another facility in Haifa under the name "Bethel." People come from all over the world to both of these places. John and his side-kick, Johan, whom John led to Christ over twenty years ago, are both tireless workers in the Lord's vineyard: all year around, in any kind of weather, they travel all over Israel and abroad, taking the Good News message of Jesus Christ to the Jew first and to the Greek. Romans 1:16 They have led to our Lord Jesus a countless number of lost souls, who were without hope in this world, never dreaming of obtaining salvation. Many of these new believers are servants of God today in many parts of the world and in Israel. One of them is Boris (Dov) who labors now in BeerSheva, Israel.

     I am writing this testimony on Yom Kippur. The streets are deserted, stillness fell upon our city, people are fasting. But my heart is full of joy and thanksgiving. The Lord Jesus redeemed me with a great price of His own blood, shed on the Cross of Golgotha. And this is the source of my joy!

For when we were yet sinners, Christ died for the ungodly.  Romans 5:6

...Much more then, being justified by His blood, we shall be saved from wrath

Through Him. For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled

to God by the death of His Son, much more, being reconciled,

we shall be saved by His life.  Romans 5:9,10

Thank You, Yeshua! Praised, be Lord Jesus!.
Beata Yakubovitch

Hallelujah!  Eilat, Israel

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