Steven Barry Kaplan


   My name is Steven Barry Kaplan, and I was born in Brooklyn, New York. My family lived there until I was two years old and then we moved to the South Shore of Long Island. Both my parents are Jewish, I attended Hebrew School for five years and was Bar Mitzvahed after we moved to the North Shore of Long Island. When we moved to the North Shore, my father lost his job, and it was difficult for us to afford the six bedroom four bathroom house we were living in. My mother had to go to work, and my parents constantly fought about money. My childhood was unhappy. When I was old enough, I went away to college and learned how to drink alcohol. My life was miserable. After college I started a business but was so far in debt and drinking so much that I had to close the business and take a temporary job.

   At the temporary job, a co-worker told me if I didn't believe in Jesus, I would burn in hell! I thought she was crazy, couldn’t believe she said that to me, but I also thought if she was right I would have a problem. For seven months she told me Jesus is the Jewish Messiah, He died for our sins and rose from the dead so we could have eternal life. She told me He is real and personal and He wants to fill our lives with love, joy and peace.

   I filed for bankruptcy and came home from bankruptcy court feeling like a failure. I cried out to God and asked Him what I was supposed to do with my life? The next day, another co-worker took me to breakfast and challenged me to read Isaiah 53 in the Hebrew Scriptures. "We all, like sheep have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all."-Isaiah 53:6 I thought this might be talking about Jesus, so I began reading the Bible.

   Two weeks later, on August 5, 1992, I cried out to God and asked Him if everything they had told me about Jesus was the truth? I saw a vision of two Jewish faces on my ceiling with a pray mantis in my window pointing to it. I knew the God of the Universe had spoken to me. I knew the faces represented Jesus coming the first time and then coming back! I felt this incredible sense of love, joy and peace. I started crying because I knew God had forgiven my sins and my life would be changed forever!

   Shortly after meeting Jesus, I was able to forgive my father and had my last alcoholic drink on October 25, 1992.

   In 1998, Steven Barry Kaplan, a Jewish believer in Jesus living in Atlanta, Georgia, believed God called him to Jewish Outreach. Steven began volunteering with various Jewish missions throughout the world.

   In 2001, David Brickner, Executive Director of Jews for Jesus, recruited Steven for an eight month assignment as a "Tiger Team" Missionary. Steven went from city to city doing street evangelism in conjunction with the "Behold Your God" Campaigns throughout the United States and in South Africa.

   In 2002, Steven's Southern Baptist church appointed him as a faith-supported missionary to the Jewish people and later licensed him. Steven continued to volunteer with Jews for Jesus, Rock of Israel and other Jewish missions. Steven prayed about a t-shirt that could be used for Jewish Outreach, and God gave him the idea of a Jewish star with the words "Jesus Loves You" inside which proves to be a great conversation starter especially with Jewish people. Steven wore and equipped others with the "Jesus Loves You" t-shirt while ministering in Atlanta, Georgia and dozens of countries worldwide. He distributed hundreds of thousands of Gospel tracts and prayed with hundreds to receive Jesus.

   Several Jewish people Steven ministered to in Atlanta, came to faith, and Steven began hosting a weekly Bible Study Fellowship in 2005.

   In May 2007, "Jesus Loves You" t-shirts were made in Spanish and in August 2007, "Jesus Loves You" t-shirts were made in Russian.

   In 2007, Steven's church encouraged him and helped him to start Jewish Outreach International. Steven recruited some of his supporters to serve on the board of directors of this new Jewish mission. In December 2007, the Internal Revenue Service recognized Jewish Outreach International as an official 501(c)(3) non-profit, and we began operating on January 1, 2008.

   In March 2009, Moishe Rosen, the founder of Jews for Jesus, joined the Board of Directors of Jewish Outreach International and endorsed Steven's ministry.

   In July 2009, Eddie and Lura Beckford, laborers in Arad, Israel, joined the staff of Jewish Outreach International. In October 2009, Jewish Outreach International began working with the Beckfords to establish a Messianic Outreach Community Center in Arad, Israel.

   By the end of 2009, believers in 79 Countries and US Territories were equipped with over 20,000 "Jesus Loves You" t-shirts. Our staff and t-shirts have appeared in documentaries, on television programs, in newspaper articles and on radio programs the world over.

   In September 2010, Steven Kaplan was certified, by the North American Mission Board of the Southern Baptist Convention, as an Interfaith Evangelism Specialist on Judaism.

   In December 2011, Steven started selling our evangelistic t-shirts (and other evangelistic items) at Messianic Conferences. Eventually, “I Love Israel”, “I Love Yeshua”, “Yeshua Loves You” Jewish star and Hebrew “Yeshua Loves You” t-shirts were added to our collection of t-shirts and sweatshirts.

   As of January 2015, approximately 30,000 shirts have been distributed worldwide in over 90 countries.

   In June 2019 Cyril Gordon joined the staff of Jewish Outreach International.

Steven's Hearing His Voice Testimony

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