Bobbie Ann Cole launches her latest book called Love Triangles, Discovering Jesus the Jew in Today’s IsraelBy Gisele McKnight
Bobbie Ann Cole has come over to the other side. But in the eyes of the Israeli government, that makes her a defector.
So the Messianic Jew — one who has accepted Jesus as the Messiah — no longer lives in Israel, where they are persecuted by their fellow citizens and by the government. They are attacked, bombed, murdered. In Israel, it is better to be an atheist Jew than a Messianic Jew.
"I had to creep around as a Jew who believes in Jesus," she said. "I was not acceptable to the state or to the people."
Bobbie travelled a long and painful road that eventually led to better things seven years ago: marrying a New Brunswicker, becoming an Anglican, and settling 8,000 kilometres from home in Pennfield, N.B.
She told some of that story during the launch of her latest book, Love Triangles, Discovering Jesus the Jew in Today’s Israel, on Sept. 18 at Christ Church in Pennfield.
The small community, including Anglicans and many from other denominations, packed the church to celebrate the book, hear passages from it, learn about Israeli culture and sample Jewish cuisine.
Several years ago, Bobbie was a wife, mother and successful businesswoman in her native London, UK.
Then one day she felt a lump in her breast and nothing was ever the same. She endured a cancer that almost killed her, the dissolution of her marriage and the failure of her business.
Such profound and widespread loss eventually prompted her to seek solace in her spiritual homeland of Israel.
She found herself there with a long-time Canadian friend, and because her friend had attended the synagogue with her, it was only right that she attend church to reciprocate.
Bobbie explains what happened at that church on her website, testimonytrain.com:
A wave of human kindness hit me in the face as I entered that Jerusalem church. Tingles began to go through me. By the end of the service, I didn’t want to leave. I sat, swathed in balm and electricity, hoping my friend would say yes to going up to the 24/7 Prayer Tower we’d just been invited to. She was beside me now, reviewing the photos that she had taken to share with her brother, Butch. But they didn’t show the congregation or the platform. They showed tongues of golden flame. What could that mean? In the Prayer Tower, I received a prophecy I thought laughable: Jesus would give me a new husband. How could that be, when surgery had left me with a body image so dire that I hadn’t so much as dated since my marriage break-up?
I had another concern about all that was happening here, too — a defection to Christianity would be viewed as treason by my Jewish family and friends. Everything I was experiencing was so powerful, however, that I had no choice but to go with it. From this time on, Jesus began to speak to me so strongly, and in so many diverse ways, that my whole life’s direction became spirit-led. He led me from darkness into light, not just the light of knowledge, but the sparkle and joy of living in trust and faith in His goodness, His tenderness.