Hebrew Voices #12 – Nazarene Grape Pickers

This episode of Hebrew Voices – Nazarene Grape Pickers– begins with Nehemia Gordon driving into the “west bank” to learn why people from all over the world are coming there to assist the Jewish farmers of Judea and Samaria. Settle down in the passenger seat and enjoy the ride as Gordon reflects on the significance of the roads into the area – out near Bethel, and alongside the olive groves of Shiloh where the Tabernacle once stood. You won’t get too comfy though because Gordon also explains the close proximity of Jewish and Palestinian territories in the area and the risk of rocks and Molotov cocktails being thrown at cars passing through.

After taking a wrong turn into Palestinian territory (oops!), Gordon turns around and finds his way to an olive grove on a Samarian hillside. There, he meets with Joshua Waller, director of operations for HaYovel—a Christian organization that over the last ten years has brought more than 2,000 volunteers from 25 countries to work in the vineyards and olive groves of the region.

Waller explains that no evangelizing is allowed; HaYovel’s only goal is to “bless the Jewish people and see the farms flourish.” Gordon also chats with other volunteers and discusses Jeremiah 31:5 with them. Do they see themselves as “notzrim” guarding the vines? Gordon explains ancient and modern usages of “notzrim” and the prophetic period in which the verse was written.

We also learn surprising things about the Judean farmers who are restoring the Land. These producers of award-winning wines and the finest products in the world typically don’t come from agricultural backgrounds or generations of farmers. They left their city jobs because of a burning desire to see prophecy fulfilled. And along with a few thousand “foreign” friends are doing just that.

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Show Notes:

HaYovel - Serving Israel's Farmers

Harvesting olives by "beating" the trees in the hills of Samaria.

Harvesting olives by "beating" the trees in the hills of Samaria.

Harvested olives in Samaria.

Harvested olives in Samaria.

19 thoughts on “Hebrew Voices #12 – Nazarene Grape Pickers

  1. Thank you SO much for your Hebrew Voices information. What a life changing experience for a farm worker in central New York.!!!!!

  2. Most wonderful, Thanks as all ways for your dedication. It occurred to us in our Torah study and seems to make sense in listening to this piece that these people and all the others who feel the way they do, that we are Covenant people, if we would substitute that term for Messianic, Christian, or Jewish… it seems to me that we become one Stick instead of a bundle of twigs. We are the Covenant People of Yehovah!

    • Sadly, no. They found someone to say it was OK for them to pick the grapes during what had been declared the shmita year and sell the wine “at cost” so they went. Sadder still, that action split our local group because of intentional disobedience.

  3. Wonderful piece, Nehemia. Thank you for pursuing this particular story, and for the transparent uncut way in which you present these shows.

    I hope this goes at least a little way toward showing you that not all of the Notsrim, the followers of Y’shua, are Constantines or Luthers, and that you will see through the labels to the hearts.

  4. Shabbat Shalom from Finland! Prophecy in Psalm 147:1-4 came to my mind together with Jeremiah 31. Been following HaYovel for some years and that’s YAHsome! I am in tears here listening to this and as much excited as you Nehemia. Praise Yehovah for providing you boldness of a Lion in order to get to Samaria.

    I wish I could have been there with you. Well, what I could say more? Prophecy is being fulfilled halleluYah and I want to get my hands on the Land’s dirt as well and produce the world’s finest agricultural products for the Brothers dwelling together in Shalom. I know I will be there in the hills of Ephraim when Yah wills…

    -Outcast Notzri Brother from the Northern Kingdom

  5. Shabbat Shalom from Scandinavia, Finland! Prophecy in Psalm 147:1-4 came to my mind together with Jeremiah 31. Been following HaYovel for some years and that’s YAHsome! I am in tears here listening to this and as much excited as you Nehemia. Praise Yehovah for providing you boldness of a Lion in order to get to Samaria.

    I wish I could have been there with you. Well, what I could say more? Prophecy is being fulfilled halleluYah and I want to get my hands on the Land’s dirt as well and produce the world’s finest agricultural products for the Brothers dwelling together. I know I will be there in the hills of Ephraim when Yah wills…

    -Outcast Notzri Brother from the Northern Kingdom

  6. I also have met the Waller family, and have friends who have gone with them many times and felt so at home in Israel. My friends talked of how amazing it was to just put their hands in the dirt of the land and begin to work the fields in the spring with pruning and preparing the ground, and then to help reap the harvest in the fall. It is wonderful to see prophesy fulfilled in this way!

  7. Those who came to believe in Jesus (Yeshua) as the Jewish Messian (Annointed One, Holy One of Israel) and observe and teach the Covenant as given through MOses; were 1st called Nozrim, not christians, that name is Greek and spoken outside the land of Judea by foreinors; we should return to out Ancient Hebrew Name – Notzrim; branches or offshoots.

  8. I so enjoyed listening to this. My Christian daughter has spent a season there with HaYovel harvesting grapes and olives. At first I thought, why PAY for transportation, food, lodging, etc. to go WORK at harvesting somebody else’s crops. When she explained it was an opportunity to participate in and bless Israel and showed me the Scriptural support, I rejoiced. What a great ministry. And what fun to share Nehemia’s encounter with them.

  9. As exciting as it is, it’s been revealed for some time. HaYovel is, of course, a fulfillment of Scripture!! I have friends deeply involved with this beautiful ministry!

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