In 2016, Steve Wearp left his distinguished job as a Caterpillar engineer and sold his family home in Texas to pursue his dream of advocating for the land and people of Israel full-time. After decades of coming closer to Israel, Wearp, his wife, and his five boys decided to launch a family business of selling merchandise exclusively made in Judea and Samaria.
A year later, the Wearp family is now preparing for an aircraft shipment of 2,500 chocolate bars as well as four pallets of honey, dates, silan (date honey), cosmetics, tea, and ceramics via boat to their home – all while they prepare for a multi-month speaking tour to educate Christian communities around the United States about Israel and God’s promises to the Jewish people.
The vision of their company, Blessed Buy Israel, is to “provide a way for people around the world to stand with the Jewish people against the existential threat posed by those who promote the destruction of Israel through the BDS (Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions) movement,” Wearp told Breaking Israel News.
“We believe that Christians and Jews are called to a different standard of BDS, which is to Bless, Defend and Serve the Land, People and God of Israel.”
The foundation for his beliefs was established 20 years ago after reading the scriptures and realizing that his “roots, faith, and worldview is deeply rooted with Jewish people, Judaism, Israel,” he told Breaking Israel News. “Without them, my faith would be empty.”
In 2010, after a March of Life trip to Tubingen, Germany to learn about the Holocaust, Wearp was deeply affected by the organization’s mission of memorializing the Holocaust through education and and reconciliation marches. He decided to take the responsibility upon himself “to rectify what’s been done in our Christian forefathers’ name.”
He said, “Our forefathers were ignorant and refused to be involved. If you go back in Christianity you can see how anti-Semitism took place, rooted, and kept growing. This mission solidified my understanding that the main issue is silence: people being apathetic and uninvolved.”
Wearp quoted Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a German Lutheran pastor and participant in the German resistance movement against Nazism, who said, “Silence in the face of evil is itself evil. God will not hold us guiltless. Not to speak is to speak, not to act is to act.”
With this quote in mind, Wearp jumped into action when he returned home, organizing educational events with March of Remembrance, an annual Christian prayer walk in remembrance of the Holocaust, working with Holocaust survivors, and travelling around the US, teaching about the Holocaust.
But by the end of 2015, Wearp was again catapulted into action following a political decision by the European Union to require the labeling of Israeli products from Judea and Samaria. “When I heard that stores must label products from Judea and Samaria as different, I thought of the big yellow star on Jewish storefronts- it was 1933 (the year Nazi Germany boycotted Jewish businesses) all over again,” he told Breaking Israel News.
He continued, “A week later, the Obama administration followed suit and tried to push the same issue in America. At that point the family sat down and decided that we needed to bring products to America from farmers in Judea and Samaria, support them financially, and tell their stories.” Thus was Blessed Buy Israel born.
In addition, the family adopted the educational mission of educating Christians about the prophesies in the Bible, including the promises God gave to the Jewish patriarchs and prophets.
“Israel is the biggest miracle story of all time. The Bible says that in the last days, Jews would return to the land, and the land would flourish. Vineyards would grow and children would play in the streets,” he said.
He spoke of seeing these prophecies come to life before his eyes in Israel. “I was in Shiloh in 1991, and there was just a little sign and nothing there, only grass field and rocks. There was nothing I could see that’s tangible. But now, it’s vineyards and olive groves, it’s thriving. History is right there, and I can walk to pick up pottery shards thinking of the kids who used to come here when Samuel was a prophet, not only touching history, but taking hold of God’s promise of the future,” he said.
“This is happening right now, and we want to be involved. We believe it’s an imperative that people get involved,” Wearp told Breaking Israel News.
He continued, “If you believe what God says about the restoration, of geula (the redemption), then you need to be involved. You need to put forth your whole life and resources, and we wanted to be a testimony to that. We wanted to be a part of what God is doing in the land and be a complement to the Jewish people, enabling them to fulfill God’s calling, destiny, and purpose, and enjoy the fruit of God’s promises.”
Many Christians are heeding that very call. The majority of Blessed Buy Israel customers and participants in the Wearps’ educational tours are American Christians of all denominations. “Anyone who wants to hear the message needs to hear the message. The door’s open if they’re Evangelicals, Messianic, main line denominations, Catholics, Baptists… We even shared with the Amish in Ohio, riding their buggies up [to their homes].”
But according to Wearp, further education is needed so that all Christians heed the call. Part of ensuring that, he says, is negating replacement theology, the theory that the blessing from God was transferred from the Jewish people to the Church.
He explained, “You can’t call upon the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob without recognizing God’s promises to Israel. If Christians aren’t centered on God’s promises to the Jewish people, then they’ve missed it. Whether it’s ignorance, naivety, or on purpose because they’ve grown up in wrong teaching, we need to expose that. We need to ask, ‘what did God say and promise?’ Well, one of his biggest promises was the land, and God’s promise to Israel is for all the nations.”
Wearp believes that listening to God’s promises and heeding his calls is the answer to many of the tragedies and confusions of today’s world. “The world is scattered, scrambling for truth, for something to bring restoration, but we are ignoring the fact of what God is doing,” he told Breaking Israel News.
“I liken it to my sons,” he explained. “We had a ranch in Texas and when I would work there, my sons wanted to be doing exactly what dad was doing, grabbing tools, getting involved, grabbing a hammer, and that’s what I see the heavenly father doing. And I want to be part of it; I want to be a good son. As a good son, your priorities are your father’s priorities. All Christians have a responsibility to do this work.”