Back in 1983 I was a student at All Nations Christian College, where my tutor David Harley was the International Co-ordinator for a new network within the Lausanne Movement, the Lausanne Consultation on Jewish Evangelism. He invited me to come and tape-record the sessions of this conference. I little realised it would be the start of my involvement in this network, which recently held its tenth conference for over 200 people in Jerusalem. Below is both the 1983 Statement, and the Statement from 2015. Compare and enjoy!
Prayer: Thank you Lord for the LCJE, which as a network has drawn many together over the years – Jewish believers in Yeshua, different agencies, theological institutions and others. May it continue to be a source of encouragement and challenge, especially in the changing contexts of the Jewish and Christian worlds today. In Yeshua’s name we pray. Amen.
LCJE 1983 Second International Consultation Newmarket Statement
The following statement was issued by the Consultation and is commended to the Churches for study and action:
We rejoice in the growing number of Jewish people who believe in Jesus as Messiah and Lord. These Jewish believers are variously known as Hebrew Christians, Jewish Christians, Christian Jews or Messianic Jews, depending on personal preference or the culture in which they live.
We also rejoice in the enrichment of the Church as a result of the added insights on Biblical Jewish customs and practices (e.g. Passover) provided by these Jewish believers in Jesus.
We appeal to our fellow Christians to recognise that Jewish believers have the freedom to keep or not to keep certain customs and practices that are prescribed in the Mosaic Law, while continuing to rely solely upon the sufficiency of Christ for salvation. The Law which was given by God through Moses is part of the heritage of both Jews and Christians.
We affirm that God has not cast away His people, and we call upon all Christians to pray that the Jewish people may he saved. Furthermore, we call upon all Christians to acknowledge the continued election of the people Israel, and their return to the Land of the Fathers as a demonstration of God’s faithfulness.
We believe that Scripture teaches that it is our Christian duty to speak the truth in love and to comfort Israel (Isaiah 40:1-11, Matthew 11:28-30, Acts 3:19). We proclaim that Jesus is the only way to the Father. We realise that to fail in this is to betray our Lord and Saviour. We call upon all Christians who claim to be friends of the modern state of Israel to sustain, support and co-operate with the Christian community within the Land, Jew end Arab and other.
We proclaim that it is a fundamental tenet of the New Testament that salvation comes through Jesus Christ alone. Yet it is frequently maintained today that the Jewish people have their own covenant which is sufficient for salvation, and that therefore Christians have no evangelistic obligation to Jews. We believe that the mission to the Jewish people is the foundation stone upon which the Christian mission to all the peoples of the world is built. It is the Jewish people who were the original focus of Jesus’ mission: and even when the church widened its approach to include the Gentiles, its witness was still ‘to the Jew first’. If this foundation stone is dislodged, then the universal mission of the Church is in danger of theological collapse.
We rejoice in the growing co-operation among Jewish missions, as exemplified in the recent ‘Messiah has come’ evangelistic campaign in London, England. We urge that this spirit of co-operation be emulated elsewhere by those concerned to reach the Jewish people with the Gospel.
“From Jerusalem and Back: An Unchanging Gospel”
The Tenth International Conference of
the Lausanne Consultation on Jewish Evangelism (LCJE), held in Jerusalem, Israel
For out of Zion shall go the law, and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem (Isaiah 2:3)
From 16th-21st August 2015, more than 200 participants from six continents met in Jerusalem – the city from where the gospel went forth into all nations – for the tenth International Conference of the Lausanne Consultation on Jewish Evangelism (LCJE). LCJE is an international network of agencies, congregations, educational institutions and individuals engaged in mission to the ewish people, and is affiliated with the global Lausanne Movement. LCJE began in 1980 at the Consultation on World Evangelization (COWE) in Thailand as a task force on reaching Jewish people and has grown to include eight regional chapters. LCJE is the longest standing working group within the wider Lausanne Movement and Michael Oh, the CEO of Lausanne, describes Jewish mission as ‘part of our DNA.’ The conference celebrated and honoured the many Hebrew Christians and Messianic Jews who, during the last 2,000 years, have enriched not only the believing Jewish community but also the wider church. At the conclusion of the conference the delegates issued the following statement:
“We, the participants at the 10th International Conference of the Lausanne Consultation on Jewish Evangelism, as Jewish and Gentile followers of Jesus, rejoice that in every generation there have been Jewish people who embrace Jesus as Messiah and continue to identify as Jews.
We thank God for the increasing number of such Jewish people worldwide, especially in the land where Messiah lived, died for our sins, rose from the dead and ascended to the right hand of God.
We rejoice in the impact of a new generation of Jewish followers of Jesus on Israeli society through their bold witness and contribution to the country in education, the arts, health care, the military and start-up companies, and by providing help to the marginalised within society.
We rejoice also that God is working among Arab believers in the land and pray for their effectiveness in proclaiming Jesus in these troubled times.
With the wider Lausanne Movement we affirm that Jesus, through his saving work, has ‘broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility’ and we applaud those Messianic Jews and Arab Christians who live out this reality. We also affirm:
* The Jewishness of Jesus, who, as Israel’s Messiah, is the Saviour of the world
* The Jewishness of the Christian faith
* The irrevocable character of God’s gifts and calling in relation to Israel
* The special importance of taking the gospel to the Jewish people as an ever-present obligation on the Church, in accordance with Romans 1:16
Encouraged by the promises of God regarding Israel and the evangelistic successes of the past, LCJE is seeking to nurture a new generation of gifted leaders who, empowered by the Holy Spirit, will inspire the worldwide Church to share the life-giving message of Messiah with Jewish people until, as foretold by the apostle Paul in Romans 11:26, ‘all Israel will be saved’!”
(The conference statement is also available in PDF form and can be downloaded here).