Rabbi and writer Daniel Gordis is really helping me to understand how an American Jew feels about living in Israel. This is valuable research for my main characters Dor Ben Habakkuk and Brianna Wilhelm as they will be dealing with the Jews in Israel in the book’s finale. I have added his YouTube channel to my blog, to listen to it. Currently reading his book called Home to Stay. This is a very thoughtful and intelligent Jew, much like my rabbi in Silver Skies. As a result of my research, I understand that I cannot wrest from my Jewish leads their love for the land of Israel, even when the land is about to be destroyed by the Antichrist. This will help make my Jewish characters very believable. Jews in Israel have an almost fanatical love for their land and Rabbi Gordis is helping me to understand this. And as a Christian, I see the deeper, spiritual implications for this as well, which should make Silver Skies a thoughtful, riveting read about the salvation of the Jewish nation during the 7-year tribulation. When I visited synagogues while doing research for Silver Skies, the rabbis seemed to be impressed that I, as a Christian, would go to the trouble to visit their synagogues, to research for my book.
The Jews in Israel really want peace badly. I can see why they’ll fall for the Antichrist, cuz that’s exactly what he promises them. In my novel, I’m going to have him make a deal with them that’s so good, not one Jew In Israel will oppose him in his first 3.5 years of his covenant with the Jewish nation. He’ll promise them all the land in the Palestinian covenant in the Bible. He’ll be a miracle worker to them. I’m conducting research on two fronts. I am researching the Jewish point of view about Israel and then the Biblical scholarship point of view about Israel in prophecy using various sources from Bible scholars and Bible prophecy experts, so that my fictional events will come across as likely future events, going by a literal interpretation of the Bible and Revelation. So, yes, this book is a fantasy romance, but is so well-researched, that it’s possible it could turn out to be prophetic.
Visiting Conservative synagogues is an interesting experience for a Christian. They conduct much of the service in Hebrew and it’s easy to get lost. I actually had my Christian lead visiting Dor’s synagogue and trying to keep up with the service and getting quite flustered. It was a humorous scene and I made it come alive. This is how research pays off when you’re writing a novel.
I told them I had a rabbi for a main character in my book. I can tell you the research has paid off. My main character seems so real and believable, even though he does become a Christian. But I can tell that though he’s a Christian, he will always be a Jew. If I make him otherwise, no Jew reading my book will consider him believable, especially the Israeli Jews, who are in the climax of the novel, so I have to get them right.
Here’s what I’ve posted at my site about rabbi Daniel Gordis. I’ve found a research GOLDMINE. It’s like he was born to help me write my book.
Dr. Daniel Gordis is Senior Vice President and the Koret Distinguished Fellow at Shalem College in Jerusalem. This is a thoughtful rabbi who I want to study to make my rabbi in Silver Skies 1996 Version like him. Raised as a Christian, he really helps me to understand how a thoughtful Jewish person perceives Israel. He is a regular columnist for Bloomberg Opinion. The author of numerous books on Jewish thought and currents in Israel, and a winner of the National Jewish Book Award, Dr. Gordis was the founding dean of the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the University of Judaism, the first rabbinical college on the West Coast of the United States. Dr. Gordis joined Shalem in 2007 to help found Israel’s first liberal arts college, after spending nine years as vice president of the Mandel Foundation in Israel and director of its Leadership Institute. Gordis is widely cited on matters pertaining to Israel. During the Gaza War of 2014, Bloomberg Views asked him to become a columnist explaining Israelis’ views of the conflict to the world at large. Professor Alan Dershowitz has called him “one of Israel’s most thoughtful observers,” while Jeffrey Goldberg of the Atlantic has written, “If you asked me, ‘of all the people you know, who cares the most about the physical, moral and spiritual health of Israel?’ I would put the commentator and scholar Daniel Gordis at the top of the list.” Leonard Fein has written that Gordis is “perhaps the single most popular speaker on Israel to American Jewish audiences.” The Forward has called him “one of the most respected Israel analysts around.” In 2014, the Jerusalem Post listed him as one of the world’s 50 most influential Jews. Dr. Gordis received his B.A. from Columbia College (Magna Cum Laude and Phi Beta Kappa), an M.A. and Rabbinic Ordination from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, and his Ph.D. from the University of Southern California.
- “Mr Prime Minister” – Gordis on Menachem Begin (A lecture as part of a series at the Begin Center)
- A Discussion on Israel's Purpose: Dialogue between Daniel Gordis and Rabbi Bill Hamilton (Nov 2019)
- Daniel Gordis AIPAC Policy Conference 2019 1
- Daniel Gordis AIPAC Policy Conference 2019 2
- 70 Faces of Israel -- Relationship of American Jews and Israel (for JCCA Leadership)
- Daniel Gordis and Peter Beinart at Harvard Hillel Reisman Forum (Feb 7 2019)
- Peter Beinart & Daniel Gordis on Israel Hoffman Lecture
- Daniel Gordis at Yeshiva University on the Balfour Declaration
- Must See Israel Diversity at Ein Kerem
- From Zionism to Palestinian Self Determination
- How The Shoah Shapes Israeli Thought
- Like a DNA Strand Intertwined
- Art Poetry and the Soul of Israel
- Daniel Gordis in dialogue with ADL's Jonathan Greenblatt (Skirball Center, NY)
- What is Wrong with How We Have Told Israel's Story