Israel National Radio has begun what is possibly the first ever Sons of Noach radio show. Hosted by Ray Pettersen and Jim Long, the Noahide Nations show is a program about the Noahide, or Bnei Noach, movement - Gentiles who have accepted the Torah. In recent years, groups have been springing up, mostly in the United States, for non-Jews who are disenchanted with Christianity and seek spiritual fulfillment through the Torah of Israel, but don't convert to Judaism.
Below is the latest Noahide radio program broadcast.
There was no specific incident in Ray Pettersen's life that led him and his wife, 12 years ago, give up the religion upon which they were raised. "We all seem to have this feeling that something wasn't right," he says, echoing a sentiment felt by Jim Long and other guests on their show. "There was no controversy in the church or anything that would have caused this to happen. I just felt that G-d was telling me this isn't right. I wanted to find out what is right."
Pettersen is the founder of the Noahide Nations web site which offers information and networking for other like-minded individuals. He relates one story where someone wrote in that he thought he was the only Noahide in his city. Another person emailed him and they found out that not only did they live in the same city, but in the same building. Connecting Noahides in this manner is the goal of the new radio program.
To facilitate this process, IsraelNationalNews has opened a new forum entitled Torah Spirituality for Gentiles. A person need only register for free and may then begin posting messages to the forum.
In response to a forum question about the number of Bnei Noach in the world, forum manager Ashira Yosefa writes:
A precise number of the Bnei Noach population globally is difficult to know, but based on internet activity and the formation of Noahide groups and websites, inquiries, etc., it is arguably safe to say that Noahides, in a general sense of the word, presently number in the hundreds of thousands and that number is growing. The actual Noahides themselves are growing, progressively deepening their knowledge of proper Noahide observance and lifestyle with the help of Rabbis and Noahide leaders. As their spiritual journey continues, more and more true Bnei Noach take their place in today's world and readily proclaim their love of Torah, of Israel and of the G-d of Israel.
Radio show host Jim Long's journey to Noahide beliefs began as he was filming documentaries on archeological digs in Israel and Egypt. He is the founder of Lightcatcher, a publishing and film production company. Long is also the author and producer of several books and films such as Riddle of the Exodus, Digging Up the Future and Return to Gilgal.
The first guest on the Noahide Nations show was Darla, a mother from Texas who, like Jim and Ray, had slowly come to the realization that Christianity was not for her. In the radio broadcast, she details the story of how she broke the news to her family and informed them that she would not be attending the annual Christmas dinner. The result was a prolonged, painful period of not talking to her sisters and other family members.
We all seem to have this feeling that something wasn't right
Darla finally got back together with her family at an annual Thanksgiving dinner. She now says that her family has accepted her, despite what they see as her strange beliefs, and even ask her to teach them about Jewish holidays. Darla offers advice on how other Noahides can avoid family friction, especially during holiday time.
There are many different Noahide organizations. In general, all of them reject the New Testament and embrace the Torah, using the Seven Laws of Noah as a moral code. Different Noahides follow different Jewish customs, depending on personal inclinations. As Gentiles, Noahides are not obligated by Jewish Law to keep commandments such as keeping kosher, although many do.
Noahide Nations is a weekly podcast which can be downloaded from Israel National Radio by clicking here.
Jim and Ray welcome questions or comments, some of which they will read on the air. They can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org