David Brickner

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David Brickner (born September 29, 1958) is an ordained Baptist minister[1] who has been head of the Messianic Jewish missionary group Jews for Jesus since 1996.[2]

Background and family[edit]

Brickner was born and raised in Beverly, Massachusetts.[citation needed] Brickner describes himself as a fifth-generation Jewish believer in Jesus.[3] Brickner married Patti Vasaturo in 1979; they have two children, Isaac and Ilana.[4] They divorced in 2011.[5]



Brickner began his career as a missionary with the Chicago branch of Jews for Jesus. He led the New York City branch until May 1996, then was elected by a council of his peers as the organization's second executive director. Brickner has been in ministry for over thirty years and has appeared many times on secular television and radio programs.[6]

Controversial statements[edit]

On August 12, 2002, representatives of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the National Council of Synagogues signed a joint statement that Catholics should no longer try to evangelize Jews because they "already dwell in a saving covenant with God." Evangelical groups, including Jews for Jesus, strongly objected to the statement. A Los Angeles Times article reported that "the controversy has touched a nerve that underlies religious relations." The article went on to say, "And the ever-controversial Jews for Jesus movement, which believes that Jesus is the Messiah that Jews have been waiting for, also stepped in. David Brickner, the group's executive director, said the bishops had 'crossed the line' and betrayed their responsibility to spread the Gospel. 'Jews need to hear the Gospel. Period. Excluding my Jewish people from Christian witness is theologically and biblically untenable, yet this is exactly what American Catholic bishops' did, Brickner said."[7]

Brickner was reported to have said on 17 August 2008 that the deaths in the Jerusalem bulldozer attack were God's "judgment" for Jews having failed to convert to Christianity.[8][9] The comments created further controversy because they were made at the Wasilla Bible Church, where Sarah Palin is a member; Palin was chosen a week later to be the Republican candidate for vice-president in the United States presidential election, 2008.[9][10] Political analysts speculated that Brickner's remarks would cause the Republicans to lose Jewish voters.[11] In an interview with NBC news David Brickner responded to this assessment of his guest speech by saying "That's not what I was saying ... That's not what I believe. The violence is evidence that sin has marred our human condition and because of sin and non belief, God's judgment rests on all humanity."[8][12]


  • Mishpochah Matters: The Jewish Way to Say Family : Speaking Frankly to God's Family, 1996
  • Future Hope, 1999
  • Christ in the Feast of Tabernacles, 2006
  • Christ in the Feast of Pentecost, 2008

Musical albums produced[edit]

  • Times and Seasons 1986
  • Music for Messiah Live 1989
  • Messianic Music Festival 1991
  • Yeladim for Y'shua 1991
  • He Will Return 1991
  • Psalms of a Modern David 1991
  • David's Hope 1997


  1. ^ [1]"Meet our New Executive Director, Jews for Jesus Newsletter, July 1996
  2. ^ Jews for Jesus Hit Town and Find a Tough Crowd, Michael LuǍo, July 4, 2006, The New York Times
  3. ^ David Brickner, "Elephant in the Room," Christianity Today, May 2004 [2]
  4. ^ [3]"Meet our New Executive Director, Jews for Jesus Newsletter, July 1996
  5. ^ http://roshpinaproject.com/2010/11/30/chosen-people-missionary-sues-jews-for-jesus/
  6. ^ [4] David Brickner
  7. ^ "Catholics Called Wrong Not to Evangelize Jews," The Los Angeles Times, September 2, 2002 [5]
  8. ^ a b The full transcript and audio recording of the Aug. 17, 2008 speech is on the Wasilla Bible Church website.
  9. ^ a b Harris, Ben (2008-09-03). "McCain team: Palin rejects views of church's Jews for Jesus speaker". Jewish Journal. Retrieved 2008-09-07., "Palin attended Anti-Jewish sermon given by Jews for Jesus founder 2 weeks ago". Israel e News. 2008-03-09. Retrieved 2008-09-07.
  10. ^ Pulliam, Sarah (9 September 2008). "Jews for Jesus director defends remarks". Christianity Today. Retrieved 4 September 2009.
  11. ^ Smith, Ben (2 September 2008). "Jewish voters may be wary of Palin". Politico. Retrieved 4 September 2009.
  12. ^ "Jews for Jesus Head Defends Speech, by Domenico Montanaro,Sep 9, 2008 http://firstread.msnbc.msn.com/archive/2008/09/09/1368740.aspx