Merla Watson is a Christian musical artist who sees, in the Book of Esther, a parallel to the role of today’s Christian Zionists. Watson, along with her husband Merv, are among the founding leaders of the International Christian Embassy in Jerusalem (ICEJ).
Combining her musical gifts with her devotion to Israel and the Jewish people, Watson recently wrote and recorded “If Ever You Had Needed Us.” Among the words to the song, Watson wrote, “We are the modern Esther!/We’re standing in the courts/Of kings of ev’ry nation/To plead your true support!”
Although the song serves as a kind of Christian Zionist anthem, Watson said that the people she really wants to hear her message are, “Israel and international Jewry.”
She extends the comparison between what she termed “true Christian Zionists” to Queen Esther. “[Just] as Esther made herself beautiful, so we try to present ourselves in an acceptable way. As Esther defended her people, so we stand in the gap and try with all our hearts to do the same thing.
“We represent thousands of like-minded folks all over the world who think the same way. Our mandate is Isaiah 61 – that’s us and here we are! Late in coming – yes! But better late than never!”
The spirit of Hashem is upon me, Because Hashem has anointed me; He has sent me as a herald of joy to the humble, To bind up the wounded of heart, To proclaim release to the captives, Liberation to the imprisoned; (Isaiah 61:1)
Watson continued by distinguishing Christian Zionists from what she called “nominal Christians” who do not feel the same passion to support and defend Israel. “The Jewish people might expect someone at the UN or the World Council of Churches to defend their cause, but they are ‘barking up the wrong tree’ as these are just nominal Christians if that, and don’t have a clue, as they don’t study the Bible at all to know HaShem’s promises for the Jewish people, whether they are following Him avidly or not. They also do not have a personal relationship with the Eternal One!”
Prior to composing “If Ever You Had Needed Us,” Watson had often used her musical talents to deliver “messages of unconditional love and support for Israel and the worldwide Jewish community. A significant number of the almost 600 songs that I have written deal with this very topic!”
She is well-aware that her motives for doing so are often misunderstood, by both Christians and Jews. “I knew there would be those in the Christian community who would disagree, as they’ve swallowed the Replacement Theology ‘hook, line, and sinker’ and have stolen promises that are meant solely for [the Jewish people]!
“I also knew that probably most Jewish folks would mock and suspect my motives and think I was trying to convert them. Others would refer to the eons of time in which Jews were severely persecuted by the so-called Christians. But I went ahead anyway, as I knew God was with me, and I also knew that there surely must be [Jewish] folks who would at least approach me and sincerely desire communication.”
Purim for Christians
Watson advises her fellow Christians to observe Purim. “Use this feast, among other opportunities, to say that we are with the Jewish people, even during your celebrations.”
She suggests that Christians “dress up in suitable costumes and sing happy Israeli songs and dance Israeli folk dances.” She reported that she also attends a public reading of the Book of Esther where noises are made in order to drown out the name of the enemy Haman.
Israel365 News asked Watson to respond to an article that advises Christians to use Purim as a chance to pray for the Jewish people to accept Jesus. She said, “We have never, ever used this approach nor will we ever. It is deceptive.
“Biblical Judaism, as expressed in the golden pages of Torah, is the path to follow for everyone on the planet!” To the Jewish people, she concluded, “Don’t keep it to yourselves!! YOU are the LIGHT to the nations, and if ever the nations need that light, they need it NOW! RISE UP!!”
IF EVER YOU HAD NEEDED US
1) If ever you had needed us,
You really need us now!
We’re waiting in the sidelines,
Our cue you must allow!
We are the modern Esther!
We’re standing in the courts
Of kings of ev’ry nation
To plead your true support!
Chorus: Israel, you feel alone!
Israel, we hear your moan!
Israel, just lift your eyes and see
Thousands of us in unity!
2) It’s strange that God would use us,
Tho’ foreigners, not Jews,
To defend His Chosen people,
His care and love diffuse!
It wasn’t always like this!
We caused you untold harm.
But now the table’s turning –
You’re resting in our arms!
Chorus: Israel, you’re full of fear,
But Israel, your God is near!
Israel, reach out and take our hand!
We honour you, and love your Land!
3) Is there more that we can muster
With songs and words and deeds?
Are there ways, yet undiscovered
To satisfy your needs?
Oh may we heed God’s bidding,
Respond with faithful hearts!
What privilege, what wonder
God of Israel imparts!
Chorus: Israel, thru thick and thin,
Israel, your trust to win,
Israel, treasure of God’s own heart!
We vow to you never to part!
WORDS/MUSIC: Merla Watson
©copyright Catacombs Productions Ltd. – Abbotsford, BC – Canada