The front cover of this book says “Called To Controversy…..The Unlikely story of Moishe Rosen and the Founding of Jews For Jesus”. It is written by his daughter, Ruth. She then describes him as a daydreaming loner. And eccentric introvert. Athletically challenged. And he stutters. Are these the makings of a preacher and missionary who would radically change the face of Jewish missions in America? When God is at work, absolutely!
This is a well written book about a pioneer, if you will, who will organize and lead a well known mission organization called Jews For Jesus. He doesn’t start out that way at all. He is raised in a Jewish home and asks the question I would imagine many Jewish children ask, “Why isn’t Santa Claus coming to our house at Christmas?” To which he was probably given the same answer as other Jewish children received, “Because we’re Jewish, and Santa Claus doesn’t come to Jewish homes,” his mother responded.
Even though Moishe was Jewish, he did not go to the synagogue regularly. It was on the Day of Atonement, when he 17 yrs old, that Moishe was at a bus stop all dressed up because he had been to the synagogue earlier. There he met a man who was all excited when he heard Moishe was Jewish and he said, “Every Jew I meet increases my faith in God and the Bible.” Thus starts Moishe’s introduction to the gospel message and he brought his soon to be wife, Ceil, into the conversation as well. After Moishe and Ceil were married, Ceil invited Jesus into her heart as Messiah first. And it is quite interesting how Moishe tried to persuade her that she was wrong. But it didn’t work. Thankfully, it didn’t work!
In the 1960’s and 1970’s, people were very cause oriented. The Hippie revolution started and people were against the “establishment”. “God is Dead” was another slogan that was proclaimed on posters and at colleges, etc. Drugs were prominent at love fests where “free love” was preached and even demonstrated. This is the era where Moishe took his evangelism to the streets and preached about Jesus’ love to anyone who would listen. He learned how to bring a crowd, how to handle hecklers, and how to turn a bad situation into good. He also led classes teaching others how to evangelize in that era.
This book is a wonderful testimony to Moishe Rosen’s life and also to his wife, Ceil, and his family. He had hardships. He had adversities. Sometimes he was his worst enemy. But when God is at work, He gets all the honor and glory. Read the book!!
I received this book free from Thomas Nelson Publishers for an advance reading as part of their Booksneeze bloggers program . I was not required to write a positive review and therefore, the book review is 100% my own opinion.