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Herod Antipas, the king, soon heard about Jesus, because everyone was talking about him. Some were saying, “This must be John the Baptist raised from the dead. That is why he can do such miracles.” 15 Others said, “He’s the prophet Elijah.” Still others said, “He’s a prophet like the other great prophets of the past.”

16 When Herod heard about Jesus, he said, “John, the man I beheaded, has come back from the dead.”

17 For Herod had sent soldiers to arrest and imprison John as a favor to Herodias. She had been his brother Philip’s wife, but Herod had married her. 18 John had been telling Herod, “It is against God’s law for you to marry your brother’s wife.” 19 So Herodias bore a grudge against John and wanted to kill him. But without Herod’s approval she was powerless, 20 for Herod respected John; and knowing that he was a good and holy man, he protected him. Herod was greatly disturbed whenever he talked with John, but even so, he liked to listen to him. – Mark 6:14-20

Yellow Daisy | Austin, Texas | October 2020

We did a breathing test recently at the gym I go to. One part of it had to do with how long you could hold your breath. I managed less than 30 seconds in one test and over a minute in another. How so? Try this: Exhale all the air from your lungs. Don’t breathe back in and see how long you can go before giving into the urge to breathe back in. Less than 30 seconds for me that day. On the other hand, when I filled my lungs with air, I went more than 1 minute before I had to let it out and begin to breathe.

Sometimes the urge to give in is simply too strong. Sometimes we give into the forces of evil and sin around us. Sometimes we can hold Satan and his servants at bay. Sometimes we give in.

It’s not good when we give in. People get hurt. Lives are ruined. Guilt and shame overtake our hearts. Distress and worry block our view. Hope evaporates. All this when we remove the impediments to Satan’s ploys. 

This is what happened between Herod and Herodias. She sought to have John killed. But Herod prevented her from carrying out her scheme. Until that fateful day when Herodias’ daughter danced and delighted Herod and his guests. Until Herodias got the chance to advance her evil intent. Until Herod gave in. John was beheaded. Herod was conflicted. Herodias was happy. The devil danced for joy.

Sometimes our very presence will stand in the way of evil intent. Sometimes a little word will undo the tempter’s power. We can say, “I don’t think that would be a good idea.” We can let people know we won’t be a part of their petty put downs or conniving plans. 

Sometimes our lack of the most basic boundaries of good behavior can let the devil have a foothold. Anger unchecked. Resentment unfettered. Truth skirted. All of these are the devil’s foothold. And as such they can become the nose of the camel under the tent. And evil can have its day.

Thanks be to God there was One who did not let the devil have even an inch. He embodied truth. He loved perfectly. He offers grace, live, and salvation. One Day the fullness of his work will abolish the works of the devil. And evil will come to an end. 

Herod Antipas, the king, soon heard about Jesus, because everyone was talking about him. Some were saying, “This must be John the Baptist raised from the dead. That is why he can do such miracles.” 15 Others said, “He’s the prophet Elijah.” Still others said, “He’s a prophet like the other great prophets of the past.”

16 When Herod heard about Jesus, he said, “John, the man I beheaded, has come back from the dead.”

17 For Herod had sent soldiers to arrest and imprison John as a favor to Herodias. She had been his brother Philip’s wife, but Herod had married her. 18 John had been telling Herod, “It is against God’s law for you to marry your brother’s wife.” 19 So Herodias bore a grudge against John and wanted to kill him. But without Herod’s approval she was powerless, 20 for Herod respected John; and knowing that he was a good and holy man, he protected him. Herod was greatly disturbed whenever he talked with John, but even so, he liked to listen to him. – Mark 6:14-20

Intrepid Daisy | Austin, Texas | October 2020

I have my favored candidate in this year’s presidential election. Who it is is of no consequence to the following: I have no delusions about the way men of power can easily be co-opted by the very power they seek. I have no delusions about how power is wielded by the politicians and those who seek to influence them. I’m sure there are those who do not use brute force, threat, or deception. But it seems they are few and far between.

Herod was one of those who used brute force, intimidation, threat, and a general willfulness that does not mind upsetting people or alienating enemies. Many do not seem to worry about upsetting God, or disobeying him. Some would say that it is impossible to lead in the current political climate if you truly follow Jesus. I draw no conclusions there. I’m just glad that I don’t function in that realm.

Herod does function in that realm, however. And his life and rule put that on broad display. He divorces his wife and takes Herodias, his brother’s wife, as his own. Not good on God’s account. He is intrigued by John, but has him arrested. He listens to him out of curiosity, but will not free him. He will put on a party that displays all of his personal glory only to be put into a corner by Herodias and her daughter. Pitiful man. 

Against all this stands Jesus. Jesus will incur the wrath of the religious leaders, but he will not give up his primary allegiance to his heavenly Father. He will be charged with sedition and blasphemy, but he will teach his disciples to pay taxes and to respect those who have positions of responsibility in the church. He will die the death of a common criminal, but he reigns now at the right hand of God. Never does he bend his own character to match others’ whims or wishes. Never does he go along to get along. 

So when Jesus learns of John’s fate, he begins his ministry (Mark 1:14-15), announcing that the kingdom of God is at hand. Wherever Jesus is the Kingdom of God is present. And where he is present, grace and truth rule. And where grace and truth rule, there we find true peace, life and hope. 

Herod Antipas, the king, soon heard about Jesus, because everyone was talking about him. Some were saying, “This must be John the Baptist raised from the dead. That is why he can do such miracles.” 15 Others said, “He’s the prophet Elijah.” Still others said, “He’s a prophet like the other great prophets of the past.”

16 When Herod heard about Jesus, he said, “John, the man I beheaded, has come back from the dead.”

17 For Herod had sent soldiers to arrest and imprison John as a favor to Herodias. She had been his brother Philip’s wife, but Herod had married her. 18 John had been telling Herod, “It is against God’s law for you to marry your brother’s wife.” 19 So Herodias bore a grudge against John and wanted to kill him. But without Herod’s approval she was powerless, 20 for Herod respected John; and knowing that he was a good and holy man, he protected him. Herod was greatly disturbed whenever he talked with John, but even so, he liked to listen to him. – Mark 6:14-20

Sunlit Leaves | Austin, Texas | October 2020

Apparently it is fake news that Ricky Ricardo ever actually said to Lucy, “Lucy, you’ve got some ‘splainin’ to do.” But it seems so in character for him and their relationship. Lucy was always involved in some crazy scheme. Ricky was always frustrated with her. She would be sad and contrite until it suddenly turned out that she was right. She had no ‘splainin’ to do. He should have known.

The people of Jesus’ day should have known as well. Herod should have known better. He should have realized that you cannot dodge God forever. You can imprison his servants. You can ignore their call to repent. You can get away with murder. You can show everyone how powerful you are. 

Except you’re not powerful. You won’t get away with murder. You will one day repent – most likely too late for it to do you any good. But there is something happening here that Herod desperately wants to understand. Has John been raised from the dead? Has Elijah come again? Is there a new prophet to take John’s place? Can Herod ever get some peace? There’s got to be an explanation.

There are two reasons this desire for an explanation is wrongheaded. First of all, it is not for God to explain himself to him. If God is stirring things up, it is up to us to turn to him for comfort, in repentance, in faith, and humility. It is not up to us to figure God out so we can put him in a convenient and reasonable box. 

Second – and more important – getting our mysteries explained won’t really bring peace to our hearts. Proverbs says it well, “Lean not on your own understanding.” Better to trust in God – whether you can understand him or not. Better to allow God to work beyond our understanding. Better to marvel at the mystery than try to calm our hearts by grasping all the dynamics of God’s works and ways. 

We might take a lesson here from Herod: a lesson on how not to act. Rather than asking others, or speculating on what God is up to, or who Jesus is, better we look to Jesus’ teachings and life. Better to listen to his word. Better to trust in his ways. Better to disavow any idea that we’re in charge. Better to believe than understand.

Why will never fully satisfy. Our own understanding won’t bring peace. But faith in Jesus will prevail. In him we find peace. And the mystery is then focused on his goodness and grace and not on our having it all figured out. 

Herod Antipas, the king, soon heard about Jesus, because everyone was talking about him. Some were saying, “This must be John the Baptist raised from the dead. That is why he can do such miracles.” 15 Others said, “He’s the prophet Elijah.” Still others said, “He’s a prophet like the other great prophets of the past.”

16 When Herod heard about Jesus, he said, “John, the man I beheaded, has come back from the dead.”

17 For Herod had sent soldiers to arrest and imprison John as a favor to Herodias. She had been his brother Philip’s wife, but Herod had married her. 18 John had been telling Herod, “It is against God’s law for you to marry your brother’s wife.” 19 So Herodias bore a grudge against John and wanted to kill him. But without Herod’s approval she was powerless, 20 for Herod respected John; and knowing that he was a good and holy man, he protected him. Herod was greatly disturbed whenever he talked with John, but even so, he liked to listen to him. – Mark 6:14-20

Lavender Daisy – Closer View | Austin, Texas | October 2020

But I’m doing what God has called me to do!

Why is this so hard? I know it’s the right thing to do. 

Where is God? I’m not seeing God’s hand in this.

Do you ever say these things? Many of us struggle with these thoughts. When we’re striving to do right, to obey God, to follow Jesus, we think the path should be easy. In fact, we may be offended if we meet resistance which sometimes comes from people in the church. Sadly, not everyone will support us in our life of obedience and faithfulness.

John knew that full well. He was being faithful to God. Preaching the truth to power. Calling people to repentance. Fearless. Faithful. But not without trouble. For even as Herod was intrigued with John’s teaching, he was also disturbed by John’s message. 

Intrigued yet disturbed. This is an interesting and challenging combination of relational and emotional dynamics. Another way to put it: A confusing relationship! Did Herod want to believe, but couldn’t? Did he want to dismiss John’s teachings but couldn’t? In either case this lack of clarity and his personal insecurity, lack of moral clarity, and compromised self-definition would conspire to make things very difficult for John. They would – with the catalyst of Herodias (his wife about whom John had said, “It is against God’s law for you to marry your brother’s wife.”) would cost John his life.

It can seem trite to say, “We live in a fallen world, therefore bad things happen to all kinds of people.” But it is true. Just as God allows the rain to fall on the righteous and unjust, God does not exempt his people from the consequences of our own fallen nature or of the evil intent of others. John – though faithful, bold, and true – will lose his life because of Herod’s failures and Herodias’ provocation. 

He had not come back from the dead as Herod had supposed or feared. But the One who has come back from the dead has conquered death for us. Through faith in him we will overcome and experience the fullness of God’s promise in Romans 8:

What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us? 32 He who did not spare his own Son but gave him up for us all, how will he not also with him graciously give us all things? 33 Who shall bring any charge against God’s elect? It is God who justifies. 34 Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword? 36 As it is written,

“For your sake we are being killed all the day long;
    we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”

37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord. – Romans 8:31-39

Herod Antipas, the king, soon heard about Jesus, because everyone was talking about him. Some were saying, “This must be John the Baptist raised from the dead. That is why he can do such miracles.” 15 Others said, “He’s the prophet Elijah.” Still others said, “He’s a prophet like the other great prophets of the past.”

16 When Herod heard about Jesus, he said, “John, the man I beheaded, has come back from the dead.”

17 For Herod had sent soldiers to arrest and imprison John as a favor to Herodias. She had been his brother Philip’s wife, but Herod had married her. 18 John had been telling Herod, “It is against God’s law for you to marry your brother’s wife.” 19 So Herodias bore a grudge against John and wanted to kill him. But without Herod’s approval she was powerless, 20 for Herod respected John; and knowing that he was a good and holy man, he protected him. Herod was greatly disturbed whenever he talked with John, but even so, he liked to listen to him. – Mark 6:14-20

Small Lavender Daisy with Tiny Buds | Austin, Texas | October 2020

I’ve been known to dabble in things. Golf. Stamp collecting. Model railroading. Fishing. For the most part those are pretty benign pursuits. Although I’ve probably spent too much money on one or two of those pursuits, there has been little harm in my dabbling. 

But there is a danger in dabbling with Jesus. His message is profound. The implications of the faith is far-reaching. If we only dabble, we will not only miss the most important blessings, you might actually forfeit the benefits that come from his grace.

This is what Herod is doing. He’s dabbling. He’s curious about Jesus. He’s intrigued by John. And as such, he’s going to miss the whole point. Jesus is more than a reincarnation of John the Baptist. He is more than a religious curiosity. He is more than a bad dream replaying again and again in Herod’s mind. 

Matthew records Jesus asking his disciples who people said he was. The answers given there (Matthew 16:), are essentially the same as those offered here. Some people said he was Elijah, others a great prophet, and still others John, returned from the dead. No matter how people might dismiss Jesus, they will have to contend with him. No matter how intrigued people may be with the religious teaching of anyone, Jesus’ teachings will supersede them all.

Dabbling implies a cursory interest easily forgotten. Jesus’ teachings deserves more than a dabble.

Psalm 18:1-3

I love you, O Lord, my strength.
The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
    my God, my rock, in whom I take refuge,
    my shield, and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,
    and I am saved from my enemies.

Psalm 48:10

As your name, O God,
    so your praise reaches to the ends of the earth.
Your right hand is filled with righteousness.

Psalm 78:1-7

Give ear, O my people, to my teaching;
    incline your ears to the words of my mouth!
I will open my mouth in a parable;
    I will utter dark sayings from of old,
things that we have heard and known,
    that our fathers have told us.
We will not hide them from their children,
    but tell to the coming generation
the glorious deeds of the Lord, and his might,
    and the wonders that he has done.

He established a testimony in Jacob
    and appointed a law in Israel,
which he commanded our fathers
    to teach to their children,
that the next generation might know them,
    the children yet unborn,
and arise and tell them to their children,
    so that they should set their hope in God
and not forget the works of God,
    but keep his commandments

Psalm 108:3-4

I will give thanks to you, O Lord, among the peoples;
    I will sing praises to you among the nations.
For your steadfast love is great above the heavens;
    your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.

Psalm 138:1-3

I give you thanks, O Lord, with my whole heart;
    before the gods I sing your praise;
I bow down toward your holy temple
    and give thanks to your name for your steadfast love and your faithfulness,
    for you have exalted above all things
    your name and your word.
On the day I called, you answered me;
    my strength of soul you increased.

Jesus called the twelve apostles, sent them out two by two, and gave them authority over evil spirits. He instructed them to take nothing along on the trip except a walking stick. They were not to take any food, a traveling bag, or money in their pockets. They could wear sandals but could not take along a change of clothes.

10 He told them, “Whenever you go into a home, stay there until you’re ready to leave that place. 11 Wherever people don’t welcome you or listen to you, leave and shake the dust from your feet as a warning to them.” 

12 So the disciples went out, telling everyone they met to repent of their sins and turn to God. 13 And they cast out many demons and healed many sick people, anointing them with olive oil.

Leaning Toward the Afternoon Sun | Austin, Texas | October 2020

Have you ever been surprised when something actually works and yields a result you really didn’t expect?

  • You decide to have a conversation with someone with whom you’ve been in conflict. You pray first, think through what you want to say, then speak the truth in love. And surprise! They listen. The understand. Your conflict is resolved. 
  • Or, you put away a portion of your income regularly and faithfully each month. And over time, your investments grow beyond your wildest dreams.
  • You confront someone in love, calling them to repent, and offering mercy and forgiveness. They listen. They repent. They believe. 
  • You pray for a friend to be healed. They are healed. 

Seems the disciples experienced just that. They went out and preached, healed, and cast out demons. They were successful. They saw God at work. 

And Herod noticed. 

Seldom does our missionary activity merit the attention of world leaders. But there are those who do. Pastors and people in China or North Korea will gain the unwelcome attention of political leaders. Sometimes they suffer great and grave consequences. Faithful Christians in Muslim countries witness to their neighbors and are thrown in prison or lose their jobs. A college professor expresses his faith and convictions about marriage, human sexuality, and morality, and is taken off the tenure track, or worse yet, fired.

Not all attention to the success of those who spread the gospel is beneficial. Not all will be welcome. 

Sometimes I wish the church would make a bigger splash. Sometimes I long for the days when the church was the center of culture and society. But too often those were days of quiet acquiescence to the ways and values of the world. How else would we have gotten mainline denominations that espouse teachings so foreign to New Testament morality or human sexuality? 

I’m not suggesting that we never let our voice be known. But I am suggesting that when Herod notices, it won’t necessarily be good. For John. Or even for Jesus. 

At least in the long run. But take heart: demons are being cast out. People are being healed. The poor are hearing the Good News of God’s love. And one day, every knee will bow, and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of the Father.

Jesus called his twelve disciples together and began sending them out two by two, giving them authority to cast out evil spirits. He told them to take nothing for their journey except a walking stick—no food, no traveler’s bag, no money. He allowed them to wear sandals but not to take a change of clothes.

10 “Wherever you go,” he said, “stay in the same house until you leave town. 11 But if any place refuses to welcome you or listen to you, shake its dust from your feet as you leave to show that you have abandoned those people to their fate.”

12 So the disciples went out, telling everyone they met to repent of their sins and turn to God. 13 And they cast out many demons and healed many sick people, anointing them with olive oil. – Mark 6:7-13

Lantana | Austin, Texas | October 2020

Maybe you made wooden swords as a kid. Fought, or at least crashed swords against one another. Mine were little more than glorified sticks. Our kids would make swords out anything they could lay their hands on. There’s something about a sword. 

But a real sword isn’t a toy. Even ceremonial swords convey a reality of wounding and fighting far beyond finely-choreographed movie scenes. They are meant to harm. They are meant to wound. They are meant to kill. 

When the disciples are sent on this mission trip, they carry a two-edged sword. This one is meant not only to wound, but to heal. The two-edged nature is that division that comes in regard to our receiving (or not) of Jesus’ message and messagers.

Those who bring the message of God’s reign and rule matter to God. He has provided persons of peace to receive them. He has also provided a course of action if we are yet to discover them. That’s the rough part. Not everyone we meet will be a person of peace. 

We need not take out an actual sword and strike them. When he was arrested Jesus rebuked Peter for drawing his sword and cutting off the servant’s ear. But there does come a sword that divides a disciple from those who will not receive their message. That sword – meant to defeat Satan and conquer the demons – sometimes cuts us off from those who do not believe. 

“Shake the dust from your feet,” says Jesus, “if they will not receive you.” That’s a sad moment to be sure. But do not overlook those who do receive you, who do acknowledge Jesus’ true reign and rule of grace, power, and glory. Rejoice when you see the demons cast out. Thank God when his healing touch changes a person’s life.

Rely upon God all the while. It’s his mission. He is faithful. And truly good.

He couldn’t work any miracles there except to lay his hands on a few sick people and cure them. Their unbelief amazed him.

Then Jesus went around to the villages and taught.

He called the twelve apostles, sent them out two by two, and gave them authority over evil spirits. He instructed them to take nothing along on the trip except a walking stick. They were not to take any food, a traveling bag, or money in their pockets. They could wear sandals but could not take along a change of clothes.

10 He told them, “Whenever you go into a home, stay there until you’re ready to leave that place. 11 Wherever people don’t welcome you or listen to you, leave and shake the dust from your feet as a warning to them.” 

White Flowered Weeds | Austin, Texas | October 2020

Can God make a rock so large that he cannot lift it? After all, God is omnipotent, i.e. God can do anything which is logically possible. Making a stone which is so heavy that it cannot be moved is logically possible. Therefore God, being omnipotent, can make a stone so heavy that it cannot be moved. And two more Omnipotence Paradox questions: “If given the axioms of Euclidean geometry, can an omnipotent being create a triangle whose angles do not add up to 180 degrees?” and “Can God create a prison so secure that he cannot escape from it?”. (Wikipedia). 

O silly man. Do not ask such questions. They are the folly of foolish minds (cf. Psalm 14:1). These questions seek to avoid dealing with the God of the universe, the One to whom every knee will bow, to whom we must all give an account. 

I remember vividly a man I would visit in the nursing home during my first year of seminary. He was in a nearly-permanent fetal position. His voice was garbled and almost impossible to understand. But one thing I could understand. He would say, “There ain’t nothing God can’t do.” I guess the triple negative means, God can do anything. God can do all things. Best said, “There ain’t nothing God can’t do.” 

Except for healing people in his own city. This is a remarkable and sad sentence: He couldn’t work any miracles there except to lay his hands on a few sick people and cure them. Imagine it! Jesus could do no miracle. 

The problem isn’t in him, however. The problem is the disbelief and despisal of the people of his hometown. Doing a miracle for them would have amounted to Jesus turning stones into loaves of bread. It would have been like Jesus agreeing to perform a miracle for Herod (cf. Luke 23:8).

A second observation that may seem sad, but is actually encouraging: Their unbelief amazed him. It is certainly sad that they did not believe. But it is encouraging in that Jesus is aware of unbelief. I get the sense that he is distressed at their unbelief. 

God does not need to be validated by our belief. He doesn’t need us to believe in him to make him feel better. And even though he is sad when we disbelieve, his sadness is all about our failure to receive his gifts. Our sadness should be that we fail to honor God. And the best honor we can render to God is to believe his promises. 

Jesus left that place and went to his hometown. His disciples followed him. When the day of rest—a holy day came, he began to teach in the synagogue. He amazed many who heard him. They asked, “Where did this man get these ideas? Who gave him this kind of wisdom and the ability to do such great miracles? Isn’t this the carpenter, the son of Mary, and the brother of James, Joseph, Judas, and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” So they took offense at him.

But Jesus told them, “The only place a prophet isn’t honored is in his hometown, among his relatives, and in his own house.” He couldn’t work any miracles there except to lay his hands on a few sick people and cure them. Their unbelief amazed him. – Mark 6:1-6

Red and Black Insect on White Flowers | Austin, Texas | October 2020

I receive a weekly email from Caspari, an evangelical resource and education center for training, discipleship, and academic research and study. Messianic Jews and Gentile Christians work together to strengthen and support the movement of Jewish believers in Jesus in Israel.

Each week they send a brief summary of articles of interest to Christians who see the deep roots of Judaism in the Christian faith, and want to share the Good News of Jesus with Jewish people in Israel. This week they reported on four articles about missionary activities. Each of them highlighted opposition to such activity.

[You may see the summaries below this post.]

Somehow, since the death and resurrection of Jesus, his message of grace and truth has gone around the world. People call Jesus Lord on every continent of the earth. The message of his salvation is confessed by people from every tribe, language, ethnic group, and race.

That which started from Jerusalem has spread to the uttermost parts of the earth! (cf. Acts 1:8) When Diane and I prepared for our mission trip to China we read a book about the spread and growth of the faith all around the world…all the way “Back to Jerusalem.”

The message of Jesus has gone from east to west and it is now the hope of Chinese believers that they will carry the message through Asia all the way to Jerusalem. They look for the day when Jesus will be acknowledged to be Messiah by many Jewish people. After all, Jesus was a Jew.

Jesus’ homegrown credentials are of no value to the people of his home town. They will have nothing of his message. They reject his claim to be the Son of God, the embodiment of the Reign and Rule of God, the Messiah. So sad.

In the economy of God, and according to his plan for the salvation of all people, the message had to move out of Jerusalem, out of Capernaum, out of Galilee. It had to go to other peoples, tribes, nations, and lands. And so it has. Jesus would do no miracle there. He would leave his home town and go to other villages, preaching the reign and rule of God.

It is never God’s hope that any people would be lost. And so the message continues to be shared by those who believe in him and look forward to the day when people from every nation, from “all tribes and peoples and languages, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed in white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, ‘Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!’” (Revelation 7:9-10)

Summaries from the Caspari Media Review email (October 11, 2020)

The first article reported that missionary materials were distributed in the Haredi neighborhood of Kiryat Sanz. Yad L’Achim received many complaints, and some offered to join Yad L’Achim as volunteers in response to the missionary activity.

The second article recounted the story of Australian missionary Andrew Lewis, who was forced to leave his home in the south of Israel after protests were held there against him. Lewis was fined after being caught putting up missionary posters in playgrounds via his children. The article said that Lewis writes, prints, and distributes his own missionary materials. Nine years ago, he sent booklets to over one million Israeli homes, as well as New Testaments to every Knesset member.

The third article reported an old story about a bus driver who had been filmed preaching to his passengers and had been fired from his job.

The fourth article was about Michael Beener, who is said to run a missionary center in Sderot. Beener was accused of exploiting the security situation in order to appeal to Christians abroad for donations. Beener has reportedly taken groups of Jewish immigrants on trips around the country, and some have been baptized in the Jordan River.