Israel Prayer Teams
PO Box 111302
Carrollton, Texas 75006




The Seeds of Revolution
by Eitan Shishkoff
in the Haifa Bay region
April 2007 Report on the Israeli Messianic Youth

Revolutions are made by the young. I was a teenager when the 60's revolution broke out in the States. I took part in its music, its drugs, its immorality and its politics. My revolutionary companions across the nation were primarily college students or drop-outs from American universities. The same was true in Germany. Radical youth, desperate for change, took to the streets, intent on rearranging society. Like my European counterparts, I was ready to break the law and received a jail sentence for non-violent resistance to the War in Vietnam. My passion was to change the world. It still is, though it is forty years later. Now I find myself amidst a gospel revolution in Yeshua's homeland, Israel.

For seven weeks in the late spring of 1989, the world watched as a group of students on the other side of the world challenged the status quo in Communist China. Not knowing the outcome of their courageous resistance to the government's iron rule, thousands remained in Tienanmen Square, demonstrating for freedom. Then, suddenly the Red Army moved in. Tanks and troops charged the weaponless students, mowing them down. Hundreds died and thousands were wounded while the world looked on in shock. Though she remains under communist rule, China enjoys many freedoms today that were unknown in 1989. It was the youth of China who took action, willing to sacrifice their lives to end repression. Revolutions are made by the young.

Zionist Youth Built the Nation

The role of youth in revolution also applies to Israel's pioneers, the Zionists who re-established the nation. In its way, the concept of returning to the land of Israel was revolutionary. For more than 18 centuries Jews had been exiled from their homeland. How could we now go back and recreate a nation, especially in the desert and swampland of Palestine? A young Lithuanian named Eliezer BenYehuda was gripped, while yet in the Diaspora, with the need to revive the Hebrew language. Today modern Hebrew is spoken because of him. A Polish Jew arrived in Israel at the age of 19. In the decades that followed he became known as David BenGurion, Israel's first prime minister. The farmers, fighters and foundation-layers of reborn Israel were young men and women, willing to die for their dream of a Jewish homeland.

How will the nation of Israel be changed today? We desperately need a spiritual revolution that will bring our people back to the purity and power of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. It has been nearly 2000 years since the miracle working rabbi from Nazareth, Yeshua (Jesus) walked the shores of the Sea of Galilee. He was crucified in Jerusalem. Then, shocking his disciples, He appeared to hundreds, alive. A revolutionary movement of Jews embracing Him as Israel's promised Messiah began in that city and spread, eventually, to every nation. In the centuries since, however, He has become a foreigner, and faith in Him is considered by most to be un-Jewish. Through a virile combination of unbelief and anti-Semitism, Yeshua is a stranger in His own house.

How can that be changed? How can Israel rediscover the very One who can transform our nation? This is a question I ask myself daily. Of course there is no one answer. But after living as an Israeli and praying for God's light of revival to shine upon His ancient covenant people, I have come to at least one conclusion. Israel will be changed through its youth. Revolutions are made by the young.

In order to serve the Messianic revolution so needed among the people of Israel, we must invest in the youth of the nation. The prophet Isaiah saw this coming. "Behold, I will lift my hand in an oath to the nations, and set up my standard for the peoples; they shall bring your sons in their arms, and your daughters shall be carried on their shoulders. (Isaiah 49:22)" Another prophet, Joel, knew it too. "Your sons and your daughters shall prophesy…your young men shall see visions. (Joel 2:28)" The prophets knew that Israel's restoration would call our youth to the forefront.

Today's Israeli Youth

Meeting in run-down buildings scattered around our town, near Haifa, are the various Israeli youth movements. They go by names like "Shomair HaTzair - Youth Guard" or "No'ar Lomed V'Oved - Studying/Working Youth." Some are liberal, some are more conservative. All are seeking to win Israeli youth to their political cause. The high school students who are their target group are, however, not very interested. Their thoughts are pre-occupied with final exams, sexual encounters, drivers' liscenses and the inevitable induction into the Israeli Defense Force that awaits them following graduation. As in other industrialized countries, Israeli youth experiment with extreme forms of drugs and the occult. Tens of thousands attend "New Age" festivals designed as a market place of Eastern and esoteric spirituality. They are searching for a power beyond them, that will bring liberation, but few have found satisfaction.

Once the young Israeli enters military service, everything changes. During this 2-3 year period, the young man or woman is placed in a disciplined environment, wearing the uniform of the Israeli Army and learning to defend his or her country. For young Messianic Israelis, this time of service is a test. One's faith is either strengthened or weakened. But without exception, the young people from our congregation who've performed their duty with the IDF have returned as convinced believers in Yeshua, determined to make their faith known in Israeli society. It is particularly in these veterans that we are seeing the capacity to galvanize the next generation of Israel's Messianic Jews. They are passionate about their faith, having passed through the rigors of military training and combat. Their hearts are to serve and give. They are burdened for the teenage youth coming after them…to disciple them and equip them to be strong witnesses.

"'All Israel will be Saved' they shouted"

One of these young soldiers, Stephan (22), stood before 120 Messianic teens during a national conference last December. Several months before, Stephan found himself in the midst of heavy mortar and anti-tank missle fire in Southern Lebanon. As an officer it was his responsibility to direct troops, rescue the wounded and evacuate his fallen comrades in arms. The intensity of danger caused a deep renewal of Stephan's faith in Yeshua as Messiah. He led his troops in prayer. Relating these experiences to the teens, he spoke honestly and compellingly of the crucial importance of a vibrant faith. He exhorted the young believers to "get real" with God, to walk in His Spirit and to touch the lives of their fellow Israeli youth.

The response of the group was phenomenal. First, the youth came forward in sincere repentance. Many were weeping. Then gradually they began worshiping, pouring out their hearts in love to the Messiah. Finally, they lifted their hands before the Lord and shouted over and over again "KOL YISRAEL YIVASHA…ALL ISRAEL WILL BE SAVED!" It was electrifying. This cry is arising from the hearts of young disciples of Yeshua in His land. God heard them yielding their lives for His calling.This radical, biblical declaration of faith for Israel's salvation is a cry for revolution.

Here is perhaps the most encouraging, promising phase of the reborn Messianic community in Eretz Yisrael…the youth. Yeshua and the prophets spoke of the end of the age as a harvest. They pictured this harvest happening world-wide but particularly and finally in Israel. In order to equip the Messianic youth of Israel for this coming harvest, a multi-congregational ministry was formed in 2001, called "The Harvest," in Hebrew "HaKatzir." The December 2006 conference described above was a celebration of the festival of Chanukah and was organized by The Harvest. HaKatzir began, with inspiration and encouragement from the Chicago-based youth ministry, Souled Out, which has brought hope and transformation to Israeli youth for years. Seeing the pressing need for a national youth ministry conducted in the Hebrew language, with Israeli Jewish identity in Messiah a group of us came together in prayer, asking God to birth such a work. Our path has not been smooth, but with a solid team of 20-25 volunteer young adult leaders, we are beginning to see good fruit. The vision is to strengthen local congregations in their youth ministries and to provide events that will inspire, train and launch a new generation of messengers.

There are several active, dedicated ministries reaching out to young Messianic believers in Israel today. This is essential. If we only establish congregations and focus on adults, we will not see "all Israel saved." One simple reason is that many Messianic Jews in Israel arrived from other lands. For these, Hebrew is not our native language, nor is Israeli culture intuitively familiar to us. God honors our witness, but for Yeshua to become widely known, Israel must hear of Him in her own vernacular. Our children, however, are growing up as Israelis. They know the forms of communication and relationship instinctively. They go to Israeli schools, serve in the Israeli army and are an integral part of the society. Their refreshing testimonies are already drawing Israeli youth to Yeshua.

Israeli Messianic Youth Worshiping & Seeking God

Consider this report from two young Messianic Jews in their early twenties, who have grown up in the Messianic movement in Israel, served in the IDF and are now leading youth and young adults. Dima and Andrei live and serve the youth in their local area, the Haifa Bay towns, yet their vision for Messianic youth revival is also regional and national.

"On the 27th of January more than 300 youth and young adults from all of Israel and from many congregations met in a well known Haifa night club that was rented for the evening," Dima reports with evident enthusiasm. "They praised God freely. One could readily feel the presence of God. We could also see that God is uniting young Messianic believers across the land with fresh intensity. I can't remember when so many youth and young adults got together here in Israel, believers in Yeshua, and I'm sure it's just the beginning of what God intends to do among us."

His eyes sparkling, Andrei adds "Worship is central to what the Spirit is doing among young Israeli believers. In the last few months groups have been meeting around the country in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv, Haifa and more. There is a new unity. Kids are receiving words from God. They are seeking God's face, even all night. The barriers between generations are dissolving. There is an atmosphere of love and tenderness of heart toward God and each other. We are expecting more breakthroughs."

"In our congregation we are also meeting once a month, about 30 youth and young adults together (ages 13-25)," continues Dima. "We are simply coming before the Lord to worship Him and to support each other in our faith. God is doing something special. He is freeing us to worship with greater spontaneity and freedom. It has been at such a level that it is hard to stop praising and to end the evening. I believe that God is building relationships that are more open and intimate with Him.

I am privileged to serve as the coordinator for The Harvest and as a mentor for Dima, Andrei and Stephan. I am excited about the spiritual breakthroughs these young people are experiencing. I see a new generation of Israeli Messianic leaders emerging before my eyes. These youth have the potential of bringing to Israeli society the desperately needed end-time revolution spoken of by the prophets. Joseph, David, Daniel…these were youth in ancient Israel who found a revolutionary role, that shaped the history of God's people. The disciples of Yeshua were young men too. They changed the world forever. Only when today's young Messianic Jews of Israel are aflame with love for the Lord, equipped with God's word and emboldened to make Him known in Israeli society will the prophesied spiritual revolution take place. Revolutions are made by the young.

For more information about The Harvest, Messianic Israeli Youth Ministry, write to . Or visit our website at


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