Dozens of security coordinators from the Eshkol Regional Council (alongside the Gaza Strip) who were invited to a ceremony where they were to receive security equipment last weekend, were surprised to discover that a Christian missionary organization was behind the donations.
Some of the coordinators realized during the event that it was being exploited with the goal of converting Jews to Christianity. They were furious, left without taking any of the gifts, and reported the incident immediately to Yad L’Achim.
Yad L’Achim, Hebrew for “a hand for brothers”, is an Orthodox Jewish organization operating in Israel, focusing on outreach, counter-missionary and inter-religious intermarriage activity.
At the event, a missionary working for a Baptist group called Gentile Ministry, delivered costly security equipment that included state-of-the-art binoculars, night vision equipment, hiking boots, and vests, along with innocent-looking Bibles.
Inside the Bible’s were an attached page of quotes of Biblical verses that missionaries have argued for generations suggest the Jewish prophets prophesied the coming of the Christian messiah. Jewish scholars have shown ages ago that every single one of those citations could mean a lot of things, and most of them were picked because of a lack of command of Hebrew on the part of the missionaries.
Yad L’Achim attorney Moshe Morgenstern on Monday sent an urgent letter to the Justice Minister and the Attorney General demanding an investigation into the incident.
In his letter, Morgenstern cites Article 174 A of the Penal Code which prohibits the provision of benefits to cause a person to convert, and adds: “In practice it turned out that the benefits offered the security coordinators were a cover to a deliberate attempt to convert them…My client is asking that the case be reviewed thoroughly, and the violators of the law be brought to justice.”