Former US President Donald Trump’s closest evangelical adviser, Florida pastor Paula White, believes Christians should learn from Jews rather than try to convert them, so much so that she is now in Israel studying Torah with Orthodox Jews.
“Paul [the apostle] made very clear that God extended his love to the Gentiles, but he did not take something from the Jews and tell us to go back and course correct or convert them,” White told The Jerusalem Post on Wednesday, as she sat outside the King David Hotel. “I do not want to convert Jews or send them to [live in] Israel for the rapture. The plan for salvation for the Jews is God’s.”
The rapture is a Christian, particularly evangelical, belief about the end of days, when Jesus will return, the bodies of dead believers will be resurrected, and Christianity will be glorified.
White said that to be a good Christian, one must understand Judaism.
“There are so many churches in America that are deeply hungry to understand Torah,” White said. “You can be Jewish without being Christian, but you cannot be Christian without understanding Judaism.”
She added that it is “an injustice to ourselves” not to understand the habits and laws of God as told in the Jewish Bible.
White came to Israel on a personal mission with her husband, American musician Jonathan Cain, her children and grandchildren. While she has been in Israel dozens of times since the 1980s, this is the first time the mega pastor has brought her family.
While she has been in Israel dozens of times since the 1980s, this is the first time the mega pastor has brought her family.
Rather than take a traditional Christian tour, however, she opted to travel with Orthodox Rabbi Tuly Weisz of Israel365, an organization that builds bridges between Jews and Christians. She ascended the Temple Mount with former MK Rabbi Yehudah Glick; studied with Religious Zionist Rebbetzin Shani Taragin; walked through the streets of Jewish Hebron with Rabbi Simcha Hochbaum, director of tourism for the Hebron Fund; and visited Arugot Farms in the Judean mountains. She even spent a morning studying Torah at Nishmat – The Jeanie Schottenstein Center for Advanced Torah Study for Women.
“There is a new movement of Christians and Orthodox Jews coming together,” White told the Post. “We need each other. It is vitally important we continue to build these bridges.”