Years ago when we first made aliyah, I met many secular Israeli Jews who were self-confirmed atheists. I also met some spacey Buddhists and colorful hippies who dabbled in the new age. And I’ve had conversations with more than a few Orthodox Jews who don’t believe in G-d but instead believe in religion.
However I’ve also encountered many traditional Jews who do believe in G-d and even seem to have a healthy fear of Him. When I speak with them about the G-d of Israel, or HaShem as they say, we are in agreement.
So I’ve reached the conclusion that we, the Body of Messiah, have mislabeled many who are hungry for something to fill that spiritual vacuum in their lives. When we refer to everyone who doesn’t follow Yeshua as a “non-believer”, that does not describe many potential seekers and it’s a declaration I refuse to make!
May I suggest a new name for all people, Jew and Gentile alike, who don’t yet follow Yeshua? How about calling them pre-believers? This way we don’t repeatedly declare a lack a faith over them. Each time we say this new term, it’s like declaring Jeremiah 29:11 over people, thus giving hope and that’s what I want to give in abundance!
“For I know the plans that I have for you,” declares the L-rd, “plans for welfare and not for calamity to give you a future and a hope.”