Nov 19, 2017

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00019

Last Name
BIRNBAUM
First Name
Solomon
Life Span
Publications
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Details
He was appointed director of the Jewish Mission Course at Moody Bible Institute, in the Fall of 1922. He did the pioneering work for training missionary volunteers for the Chicago Hebrew Mission and the American Board of Missions to the Jews. The Moody Bible Institute considered the program of Jewish evangelism to be an integral part of its mission and took pride in it. In the early 1930s, the Institute advertised the program proudly in its bulletin, featuring a photo of Solomon Birnbaum, the professor of Jewish evangelization, with the twenty students who were enrolled in the department at the time. The photograph was accompanied by a short paragraph entitled “Debt to the Jew”: “The Jewish nation gave to the world the Messiah, and yet that nation remains blind to the glorious fact that Jesus of Nazareth is indeed He of whom the prophets wrote. The Moody Bible Institute has formally recognized, by the maintenance of a Jewish Missions Course, the debt that the Christian world owes to the Jewish race. Christian Jews, and such Gentile Christians as desire training for introducing Christ to the 'lost sheep of the house of Israel,' are in the course instructed in a number of subjects additional to the regular subjects of the General Course.” The Jewish missions program continued at the MBI throughout the 1930s, 1940s, and 1950s with little change. In addition to the general course (the basic curriculum for all students) and Jewish studies, the school added an additional course of studies of English for newly arrived immigrant students. The studies at the Moody Bible Institute not only gave prospective missionaries a good preparation for a career of spreading the Christian message among the Jews but also enabled them to become acquainted with the evangelical world. In 1940, Solomon was succeeded in this role by Max Reich, while he became a full-time missionary with the ABMJ.

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