The first thing Jonathan Cahn did as a believer in Jesus was an act of spiritual warfare.
Cahn is the messianic rabbi who came to national attention with his New York Times mega-bestseller, “The Harbinger,” and now the subject of the documentary, “The Harbinger Man: The Jonathan Cahn Story.”
Recalling vaguely from Hebrew school how God often spoke to His people on mountains, at age 20 Cahn found his way to a mountain and gave his life to Jesus Christ. It was only later he was told that “his” mountain had been used by a group of Satanists. He even recalled graffiti on the ground reading, “No Jew shall enter these sacred grounds.”
“Too late,” he thought.
It was only the first of many incidents in which the man who became the pastor of the Jerusalem Center/Beth Israel would engage in a “spiritual showdown” with “witchcraft and darkness.”
The exciting journey of “America’s prophet” from atheism to evangelism can be found in a new updated edition of “The Harbinger Man: The Jonathan Cahn Story,” on sale today.
This new edition contains special features, including:
- Home movies – A compelling look at Cahn’s family background and his humble beginnings.
- Passport to Israel – The amazing story of how even Cahn’s attempt to secure a passport to visit the Jewish state for the first time became an adventure. He was accused of being a terrorist and was ultimately saved by an unlikely connection.
- Presidential Inaugural Prayer Breakfast – The full video they don’t want you to see of Cahn’s sensational jeremiad about America’s spiritual decline at the 2013 Inaugural Prayer Breakfast.
- Return to the Mountain – Cahn goes back to the mountain where he dedicated his life to Jesus Christ after a terrifying near-death experience.
“Return to the Mountain” illustrates some of the most important themes in Cahn’s life and teachings: the presence of God, the connection between Jewish heritage and the practice of believers today, and what he sees as the power of the Lord over pagan deities and “the enemy.”
Cahn recounts how he sought out a mountain and knelt on a stone at the peak.
“And there, not knowing how to do it, not knowing exactly what was I doing, but knowing I had to do it, I knelt down on the stone by a tree,” he remembered. “And there I prayed and said, ‘Lord forgive me for my sins. I put my trust in you and in salvation, by the sacrifice of Messiah, by his death and resurrection, I am following you. I receive you, cleanse me, wash me, give me a new beginning, and from here on in, I’m yours, I’m going to serve you.’ And I remember as I was praying, this wind swept through at that moment.”
Cahn felt the change in himself immediately.
“I was sensitized,” he recalled. “Certain words could not come out of my mouth.”
He summarized his transformation: “It wasn’t a dramatic thing happening on the outside but it was changed on the inside, there was a new openness in my heart.”
As he so often found in his life, Cahn later identified a connection between his actions and his Jewish heritage.
“I remember afterward I was reading something. There was a time in the Bible in the Temple when the Levites would serve the world, but they would start serving the Lord when they were 20 years old, so their 20th birthday. Well, I didn’t plan it, but that was my tribe, and it turned out I came to the Lord on my 20th birthday only because of that train. And from then on, I started serving the Lord and said, lead me.”
It seems God did.
Cahn authored the book, “The Harbinger,” which remained on the New York Times bestseller list for more than 100 weeks. He popularized the Shemitah cycle, which captured the imagination of the world this fall. He’s even been called “America’s prophet,” giving fiery sermons and calls to repentance that quickly go viral and are witnessed by millions of people.
But “The Harbinger Man” helps those interested in one of the most influential figures in American Christianity understand how an obscure Jewish-American became such an important figure. And it also introduces one of the most important figures in Cahn’s life and the Jewish Messianic movement, the late Gary Selman.
The new edition of “The Harbinger Man” contains a touching 25-minute video about Selman, the Jewish founder of the Jerusalem Center/Beth Israel.
“Somehow, when I look back, God was trying to reach me,” Selman recalls in the video.
Though a Jew who never considered Jesus as divine, Selman encountered a series of seemingly supernatural experiences pushing him toward being born again. From friends and associates suddenly telling him about being born again to bizarre phone calls and encounters with believers he had never met before, Selman believes he was pursued by God over a period of months. Eventually Selman received what he thought was a direct sign from God in the form of a strange manifestation of lightning and smoke within his own bedroom.
After making a frantic phone call with a Messianic Jewish organization to understand everything happening to him, Selman was born again and became a believer in Messiah. Desperate to find a way to spread his message, he started a small radio program, sharing the Jewish perspective on Jesus Christ. Eventually, he met Cahn. And it was Cahn who Selman maintains God told him should be in charge of Beth Israel.
“I just can’t believe that I’m still born again and still excited that I’m born again,” Selman said in the video. “But Jonathan, the effect that he’s had on the world with “The Harbinger” and “The Mystery of the Shemitah,” and even before that, how effective he’s been speaking in the U.S. Capitol. It’s just such an anointing on him.”
Selman died this year. But his words as chronicled in this new edition remind viewers about the Jewish identity of Yeshua/Jesus and the universal mission of the Jewish Messiah.
“Jesus is for everybody,” Selman said. “Believing in Jesus is the most the most Jewish thing you can do. What could more Jewish than believing in the Jewish Messiah? You, who are not a Jew, have the Jewish Messiah in your heart, Yeshua in your heart.
“There’s nothing written about a Messiah to the Gentiles. There’s one Messiah who comes to save the world.”
“It’s been a tremendous ride,” Selman tells the audience about his life and partnership working with Cahn. And the new edition of “The Harbinger Man” contains a message from Selman that encompasses the essence of Cahn’s teachings.
“[Jesus] is the only hope that I know of, there’s no other hope,” he said. “Every empire that’s come up against Israel has collapsed. There’s only one answer to this planet to this world. And yet the only choice we have is to evangelize.
“If you’re not talking about Jesus, I don’t know if you know Jesus. He’s the greatest thing that could ever happen to you. He’s your salvation. He gives you eternal life. You don’t have to worry about dying. It’s the greatest thing and there’s nobody else who can do it.”
See the “Harbinger Man” trailer: