TJCII is excited to announce a new member of our Board of Directors, Jerry Rassamni. Get to know Jerry via the Q&A below.
How does your faith story act as a driving force for reconciliation?
I was a Muslim militia fighter during the Lebanese Civil War with a deep hatred for both Christians and Jews. However, after immigrating to the States, The L-rd saw it fit to remove the scales from my eyes so that I could cry out with the Apostle Paul in one voice:
“I thank Christ Jesus our Lord, who has strengthened me, because He considered me faithful, putting me into service, even though I was previously a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent aggressor. Yet I was shown mercy because I acted ignorantly in unbelief; and the grace of our Lord was more than abundant, with the faith and love which are found in Christ Jesus.” (I Tim. 1:12-14 NASB).
I saw Him excise the blinding hatred from my own heart firsthand and replace it with His love. Thus, I know He is ready and able to do it for anyone.
What is the biggest barrier, in your opinion, to seeing reconciliation between Jewish believers and believers living in the Arab world?
I grew up in Lebanon with the constant media indoctrination regarding the purported evils of the Jewish state. Similarly, being immersed in the Muslim culture, most Arab believers have also drunk the Muslim worldview cool aid which paints Israel and the Jews as violent aggressors instead of G-d’s Chosen vessel to bring salvation to the world through Mashiach.
Replacement theology/Supersessionism are the natural fruit from this indoctrinated worldview among believers in the Arab world. This however, is a very dangerous mindset as it casts aspersions on the immutability, unchanging nature, character and stability of God by attempting to invalidate or reassign His Covenants. This is troubling as The Scriptures clearly state that God’s gifts and His call are irrevocable (Romans 11:29). Moreover, the great lesson the New Covenant teaches us is that God will be faithful and true to His Covenants despite the fact that humans are altogether incapable to do so.
Human devices and persuasions can never bridge the great divide of this errant and rampant tribalism. Nor can they amputate the unfortunate sense of inferiority derived from the fact that G-d in His infinite wisdom set apart a different people for His glory and gave them a piece of land in order to offer salvation to all peoples. Only the Ruah HaKodesh can perform such feats with the needed heart surgery. He is anxious to do so when we love our Arab brethren unconditionally and humbly present our supplications to Abba concerning them. The great news is that nothing is too difficult for the Great Physician!
How did you first hear about TJCII?
Rabbi Marty introduced me to the great work that TJCII is doing.
Many years ago prior to learning about TJCII, I lead some conferences at Baruch HaShem regarding Unveiling Islam. Since I grew up hating Israel, the Ruah HaKodesh laid it on my heart to conduct a reconciliation and repentance session during one of those conferences. I confessed and repented of my personal and generational sin against Abba’s Chosen People to Rabbi Marty during that session and received the pleasure and forgiveness of the L-rd.
“Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brothers to live together in unity!” (Psalm 133:1 NASB)
What are you most excited about in joining the board of TJCII?
To appropriate the words of the Prophet Isaiah regarding John the Baptizer, we too are called to be voices calling in the wilderness, ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.’
It is undeniable that in order for the bride of Mashiach to be ready for His soon return, we need to come together in unity and humility. There needs to be repentance on the part of the church for personal and generational sins committed against G-d’s Chosen People so that forgiveness and restoration will rain upon us, lest we are found to be like the five foolish virgins who were away searching for oil (Ruah HaKodesh) when the bridegroom returns (Matthew 25:1-13).
The L-rd counsels us that we need to keep watch, because we do not know the day or the hour.
What aspects of TJCII are you most hoping to impact or help grow with the wide skill set that you bring?
I led Global Business Planning and Analysis in a Fortune 100. I later founded a Business Intelligence and Software development firm that has helped Christian ministries around the world to become better stewards and grow.
I hope to put my skillsets to use at TJCII working with the leadership team in order to help ensure that the proper infrastructure and funding are in place.
In very practical terms, we must find ways to increase awareness by adding more like-minded believers to TJCII’s contact list so that we can create greater unity in the church body by preparing hearts for His soon return and thus fulfill TJCII’s mandate around the world.
Can you tell us a bit about your ministry?
I am the author of “From Jihad to Jesus – An Ex Militant’s Journey of Faith” by Living Ink Books. By His mercy and grace, I am a living testimony that Yeshua can save and transform hearts of stone and turn them into hearts of flesh, and that His love doesn’t leave anybody out no matter what you’ve done and no matter what anyone has done to you.
“Those who do not love, do not know God; because God is love.” (1 John 4:8 CJB)