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Takok (unknown, near Sandur/alQosh)

A Kurd kindly conducted me to the house of Nahum, a Jew, whom I had seen in Baghdad. I was not long in his room, when the rest of his brethren followed. They were all exceedingly ignorant, and scarcely knew the essential doctrines of Judaism.

I asked them whether they had ever heard of the Messiah? They replied: We believe he will come. Yes, if you repent, and believe in Jesus, whom your forefathers crucified, the glorious period of your redemption will speedily approach; but if you persevere in stubborn unbelief, reject his benevolent plans of mercy, and continue to be satisfied with the promises and hopes with which the rabbies have deluded you, there remains nothing to mitigate the afflictions of time, and nothing to exhilarate the prospects of eternity. One of them said: Our sufferings in this world will be accepted as a compensation for all our offences. The law is in direct opposition to what you allege, and as a friend and brother, I can assure you that unless you bow your knees before Christ, and acknowledge Him as your Saviour and Redeemer, the curse of God will for ever rest upon you.

In the evening, the Kiahya, or mayor of the village, who was a Chaldean Catholic, with the priest, and the whole of the Christian community in the place, came to see me. I endeavoured to converse with them on the causes which lead to their separation from the Nestorian Church, but they could not assign any other ground for the change, except that the Papa, as they style the Roman pontiff, was the head of the Church.

Before I started again the next morning, I went into the house where the Jews (it being the Day of Atonement) were assembled, and addressed them once more. I more particularly reminded them that all their prayers, tears, and fastings, since the last 1800 years, had not been, and would not be, of any avail with an offended Deity, so long as they did not believe in the saving blood of the Lamb. I gave them three copies of the Gospel, for which they were grateful, and wished me a prosperous journey. Stern (1848), p 113; travels during - in Tukok


Reverend H A Stern, 1848. Jewish Missionary Intelligence, Volume 14, Journal of the Reverend H A Stern.