After months of being cooped up, the David & Jonathan Foundation (D&J) has arranged two upcoming events in the Cape Town region.
This Sunday, February 21, at 4pm, the Salem Biblical Garden outside Paarl sees an open air prayer vigil joining with Jewish people worldwide who will be praying at that time for the revelation of Messiah.
Next Friday, the 26th, sees the return of the foundation’s regular Shabbat gatherings, this time at The Church on the Rise at Blouberg Rise, northern suburbs of Cape Town — from 6pm to 9pm.
The organisers ask for people to book their tickets (no charge) to monitor numbers. Due to the lockdown restrictions, only 100 people may attend the Biblical Garden event and a restriction of 50 people may attend the Shabbat evening event, both of which usually draw large attendances.
The Salem Biblical Garden event, organised by D&J, apart from prayer will also include addresses by Jack Carstens, (founder of D&J,) Vivienne Myburgh (Director, ICEJ South Africa) and Herschel Raysman, (well known leader of the Beit Ariel congregation in Cape Town).
The Friday night meeting will be addressed by Jack Carstens speaking on Esther; the Power of Prayer in a Time of Crisis. This is to coincide with the approach of Purim, the story of God’s intervention in an attempt to destroy the Jewish people — and as we see antisemitism and anti-Christian events taking place physically and online around the world.
D&J is a non-profit mission established 26 years ago by Jack and Annalee Carstens that focuses on partnering churches around the world with Messianic congregations in Israel. These people who believe Yeshua/Jesus is the Messiah are often forsaken financially and humanly in the drive to spread the good news to the people who don’t know Yeshua. As David and Jonathan of old entered into a friendship covenant with each other (1 Sam 18:3), so D&J extends the same.
The biggest need of Messianic Believers in Israel is friendship, prayer and the sense of belonging to the body. They are a small minority in Israel that is growing fast, yet many times they are persecuted and feel isolated. Knowing there are other believers out there that not only care and stand with them in their trials but share with them materially, is a great encouragement to them.
D&J provides the opportunity for individuals and churches to “partner” with one of the many Messianic congregations in Israel and a means to send financial blessings. There are churches in South Africa whom D&J assists in finding a suitable group with whom to partner, send reciprocal newsletters, share God testimonies and teaching and support them with material and financial blessings. When next on an Israel tour, (which they pray will be possible again soon) it is an unusual and unique way to meet the pastors and congregants.
The mission also has a Simcha Puppet Ministry to share the Gospel and Bible lessons at Sunday schools or children’s events.
The David and Jonathan Foundation is also affiliated with Salem, the Biblical Garden. It was established in 2011 on a farm on the slopes of the Paarl mountain in the Windmeul Valley, Agter Paarl. The natural fynbos, 300 hundred year old wild olive trees and granite rocks closely resemble parts of Israel. Paths have been cut through the bush to reveal stations of artefacts and depictions of Bible patriarchs. People can “journey through the Bible” starting with depictions from the book of Genesis and ending with the expected return of Jesus at the end of the age. It is a shady and peaceful place in which to pray, take communion or enjoy a church outing with delightful picnic spots under the trees.
It is hoped that many people will visit the garden — tour and church groups as well as families seeking a place of peace to be inspired by the Word of God, enriching and building their faith.
Before lockdown, D&J hosted Friday evening events at churches in many parts of South Africa, introducing people to the blessing of Shabbat, which they intend to revive as soon as possible.