The Voice of the Lord

As high as the sky is above the earth are my ways higher than your ways (Isaiah 55:9).

Joseph Vactor was born in Hungary before World War I. He lived his entire life as a devout, God-fearing Orthodox Jew. In 1944, the Germans led the last of Hungarian Jewish community on a long winter march, on foot, to the death camps. Joseph and his brother, David, were among them. During this death march, Joseph noticed a corpse on the side of the road. It was apparent from the clothing that the dead man had been an Orthodox Jew. In the hand of this Jewish man was something made of black leather that looked like a billfold. Joseph bent down and quickly took it from the dead man's hand. Only when they were already in the death camp of Bergen-Belzen did Joseph open the little leather pouch. It was not a billfold. It was a copy of the Brit Chadashah (New Covenant Scriptures) in Hungarian. This was the only book that Joseph and David had to read during the days of their captivity.

Many years later, in 1974, when I was attending the yeshivah (rabbinical school) in Jerusalem, I drove a group of Orthodox Jewish men to look for a place to build a new settlement in Judea. However, I forgot that the back seat contained some correspondence courses that I had written for sharing the gospel. As I was driving down to Tekoa in the Judean Mountains, I looked in the mirror and saw these Orthodox Jews reading the materials. At the end of the trip, Joseph and David Vactor pointed to the pamphlets and asked: "Who wrote this?" I answered that I had. They asked, "And do you believe what is written here?" "Yes!" I said to them. "We do too!" they joyfully replied. Since that day, until Joseph's recent death, our paths have not separated.

...pray for my Orthodox Jewish brothers, that they, like Joseph Vactor and his brother, would learn about Yeshua and come to believe in him.


Copyright Statement:
The Voice of the Lord, Copyright 1998 by the Lewis and Harriet Lederer Foundation, Inc. Published by Messianic Jewish Publishers, Distributed by Messianic Jewish Resources, All rights reserved. Used by permission. No part of this article may be reproduced in print or on the web, or transmitted in any form, without the written permission of the publisher.