Shelanu TV, the Messianic Hebrew language internet television channel www.shelanu.tv has been going strong online for over a year since they were shut out from the Israeli cable TV provider HOT. Now they have a few exciting new developments coming. KNI spoke to Ron Cantor, President of Shelanu TV and the Israel regional director for God TV, about what’s ahead for Shelanu.
The first development is an app that will work with all phones, tablets and smart-TVs, bringing the channel to all viewing devices. The other development is that Shelanu will bring the popular series “The Chosen” to Israel with Hebrew subtitles.
The app, which should be ready to go live by the end of the year, is developed by God TV. “We’ve been working with the app developers of God TV for the past year, creating a state-of-the-art platform which will be a Netflix-type feeling,” Cantor told KNI. “I’ve been told it’s the first of its kind in Hebrew. Over the past year, even during COVID, our team kept creating content. We have ten new series, including a travel show, a question-and-answer show, a testimony program, and content created by other ministries and congregations. It will all be on there. The app will also have the option of English subtitles, so English speakers can view the Hebrew programs as well.”
The launch of the app will be accompanied by advertisement in Hebrew on social media about “the channel that was too hot for HOT,” leveraging the fact they were shut off from the Israeli cable TV provider HOT.
The series “The Chosen” will air on Shelanu with Hebrew subtitles beginning around Hanukkah. “We got a meeting with the creators about four months ago,” Cantor tells KNI. “They’ve started licensing it to other countries, and they were very excited about bringing it to Israel. I did an interview with Dallas Jenkins, the creator and director of The Chosen, on my YouTube Channel. The Chosen is the most Jewish-friendly representation of Jesus and the gospel that I’ve ever seen. They had a Messianic Rabbi from America on their team, making sure they get everything right. They really wanted it to be authentically Jewish and honest to the Jewishness of the gospel. So we’re very excited it will air on Shelanu. The subtitles are done, but we’re proof-reading the first eight episodes now, making sure everything is perfect, having two teams review it, and then it will go on the air. We will advertise it all over social media, making sure Israelis know about it.”
The actor who plays Simon Peter, Shahar Isaac, is Israeli, but not a believer. One believer floated a request to pray for him in a closed local Messianic group on Facebook, and another one commented that he is a childhood friend of Isaac.
Shelanu has launched a fundraising campaign to cover the costs involved in licensing, airing and producing the subtitles for this. On the page, Cantor writes: “I believe that when Israelis see this, they will fall in love with the man in the movie. My colleague Asher Intrater, after graduating with honors at Harvard, began studying every religion but Jesus. When he finally read the New Testament, he said, ‘This guy is amazing!’—speaking about Yeshua. I believe Israelis will respond the same way to THE CHOSEN.”