A Rabbi and a Pastor walk into a restaurant is usually the start of a good joke, but I have been fortunate to live this reality. Over the past two years, I have established a beautiful friendship with Pastor John Paul Foster of Faithful Central Bible Church, a young professional who is passionate about faith, community, and Israel.
Pastor Foster and I break bread together regularly, discovering news ways in which we can assist the other’s community in our sacred work.
Rabbi Joseph Hertz emphasizes that God hardened Pharaoh’s heart ten times and nine times God caused his intransigence. Over time, Pharaoah became conditioned to his stubbornness. It seemed as if God Himself caused this to occur. Pirkei Avot teaches, “One evil deed leads to another.” Conversely, “One good deed leads to another.”
Pastor Foster and I come from completely different backgrounds and ascribe to distinct theologies. Yet, we share the common bond of faith in humanity to do good in relationship to God above. We have learned that good deeds truly do lead to other good deeds. My friend the pastor has taught me an appreciation for what we have as a Jewish community, both within our synagogue walls and as a people connected to the State of Israel. I am humbled and honored to welcome my friend and fellow preacher to the Sinai Temple pulpit this Friday evening at 7:30pm, as we celebrate unity this Martin Luther King Shabbat with our Orden Family Friday Night Live and our Feit Family Shabbat Live. May what divides us continue to unite us!