Jacob’s Sheep Make Their Way Home to Israel After Thousands of Years
Let me pass through your whole flock today, removing from there every speckled and spotted animal—every dark-colored sheep and every spotted and speckled goat. Such shall be my wages.
אֶעֱבֹר בְּכָל־צֹאנְךָ הַיּוֹם הָסֵר מִשָּׁם כָּל־שֶׂה נָקֹד וְטָלוּא וְכָל־שֶׂה־חוּם בַּכְּשָׂבִים וְטָלוּא וְנָקֹד בָּעִזִּים וְהָיָה שְׂכָרִי
A certain breed of speckled and spotted sheep known as “Jacob’s Sheep” has its origins in the Middle East, yet there were none in the Land of Israel, until recently. A Canadian Jewish couple heard about the rare breed and made it their life’s work to bring the animals back home to Israel in recent years.
Jenna and Gil Lewinsky learned how to raise sheep in Canada and then struggled with bureaucracy for several years before finally making Aliyah along with over 100 sheep. The Lewinskys have been breeding their sheep in the Land of the patriarchs and matriarchs, giving the lambs biblical names to connect them with the people to whom God promised Land. Today in Israel “Jacob’s Sheep” are considered an endangered species and are now having baby lambs and using their horns for Shofars in the Jewish State.
This verse alone proves the Biblical heritage of the Lewinskys’ sheep as “They are the only sheep breed in the world to produce spots and speckles in offspring,” Gil explained to Breaking Israel News.
The labor of love comes with a price. Jenna has been blessed by the support of many Jews and Christians who are touched by her commitment and the ability to be part of a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of biblical proportion. For instance, just bringing the sheep to Israel cost $80,000.
The restoration of Jacob’s Sheep is a labor of love of Jenna Lewinsky who acquired a flock of 119 sheep while in Canada. She dealt with bureaucracy of importing livestock to Israel for which there was no precedent. As much as she met importing resistance, she also was encouraged by the outpouring of support recognizing the sheep’s role in prophecy.
Isaiah explained that the return of the People of Israel to their Land is comparable to the return of sheep (Isaiah 49). Jeremiah lamented, “Look at those who are coming from the North. Where was the flock that was given you, the sheep of your glory.” (Jeremiah 13:20). Both Jeremiah and Ezekiel prophesied a return of the lost sheep, the nation of Israel, as vital to the final redemption.
“At first I thought that this was a crazy idea,” Jenna said at the ceremony. “But when we started to hear the reactions from around the world, how so many people see the Geula (redemption) coming when they see the sheep, I realize that all the effort is worth it. After all, what can be more important than that?”
Reflecting further on the theme of redemption, Gil Lewisnsky told Israel365 News he hopes his sheep will be used in the Third Temple, “Once the Beit Hamikdash (Holy Temple) is built, the sheep can be sacrificed there, being the original sheep of our ancestors. In fact, the sheep is a central animal for Temple service; without it, it cannot function. Until the Beit Hamikdash is built, the sheep will be conserved and prepared for such a time.”
After a journey as dramatic as anything in the Bible, the first Jacob’s Sheep born in the land of Israel in over two millennia made their auspicious appearance last month in the Jordan Valley.
Connect with Israel and Bible lovers from across the world