Ancient Traditions Bring New Life

By Wayne Wilks, Jr., Ph.D.
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Posted in Featured ArticlesNewsletter, Uncategorized, on October 15, 2014

The Jewish Lemba of Zimbabwe are known for carrying Kohanim genes. They have not intermarried and have been isolated for years maintaining ancient Israelite customs. When the Lemba chief and headmen accepted Yeshua, a great door opened to spread the Good News — even to the Muslim Lemba who are being saved and renouncing Islam.

The first MJBI graduation among the Jewish Lemba took place in July. Thirty-nine graduated, and all are working in full-time congregational ministry. The traditional Lemba are also hungry to be trained to start new congregations. To date through Jewish Voice Ministries’ medical outreaches, 24 congregations have been planted, all with MJBI-trained leaders.

We are responsible to train and equip ALL the laborers for this harvest. Currently, 9000 of the 250,000 Lemba are now registered as believing Jews. In September, MJBI will begin ten DVD schools in strategic locations in concentrated but remote Lemba areas. The MJBI is also now registered as a Public Trust in Zimbabwe.

I am thrilled to share a brief testimony of a Lemba graduate, Colin Ivakavapano.

I have personally benefited from my study courses at the Messianic Jewish Bible Institute. One of the main enlightenments for me has been learning why it is important to understand the difference between the Mosaic Covenant and the Messianic Covenant. I also have gained a deeper understanding of the Torah, and how it is applicable to our personal lives and the life of the Messianic congregation.

I am very eager to put into practice the things I have learned from the teachings. The most important thing is that it is critical for each person to understand who Yeshua is and accept Him through salvation. I have also learned that each Lemba may continue to live a Jewish lifestyle and experience fully the benefits of the new birth. Many of my people need to hear this message.

Truly, the MJBI courses showed me that it is not necessary for the Jewish Lemba to abandon their culture to serve Yeshua. In reality, it is just the opposite. Many of our ancient traditions are rooted in the Torah. Gaining a greater understanding of this truth brings new life and meaning to who I am. My time at the MJBI has influenced my life for good. I have great confidence in the things that I learned and can share them with assurance that they have power to influence other lives like mine.

The New Covenant tells us that this Good News must be preached to every tongue and tribe before the end will come. With the pandemonium of an uncertain world spinning out of control economically and politically, the light of Yeshua and His changing power marches onward. Nothing can stop the power of that light to shatter the darkness and grip of sin. Its message is the world’s only hope. In the outback of Africa, the Lemba have found light and truth that substantiates their history.

Please give a generous gift today that will continue the work and ministries of the MJBI in Zimbabwe and around the world. Each MJBI student’s testimony, like Colin’s, becomes a light of hope shining against the hopelessness of today’s chaotic world. You and I together are making an eternal difference among the Jewish Lemba.

Wayne Wilks, Jr., Ph.D.
For Zion’s Sake, Wayne Wilks, Jr., Ph.D. – President