Sid Roth - Warren Marcus in 1999 Interview
Sid Roth: Hello, I'm Sid Roth, your investigative reporter. My guest, Warren Marcus, has produced the highest rated religious television special in history. You know, it says in the Bible "The Jew requires a sign", but Warren Marcus, this is so hard to believe. You were in Toronto, Canada, and you saw one of the greatest miracles I've ever heard of. Tell me about that.
Warren Marcus: We were just filming a regular conference. They had an intercession - that's like prayer and such - and all of a sudden people started having gold teeth - or gold caps - their fillings changed instantly, and it was just a little prayer this man said. And they laid their hands on their mouths, and all of a sudden this thing started taking place!
Sid Roth: How many people had gold teeth that weekend?
Warren Marcus: Over 300 that week, but it was amazing. It was like electric! I mean, you were sitting there, and I'm in a truck, and I had to come out of the truck because we were producing in the background with these six cameras...
Sid Roth: You had to see it yourself!
Warren Marcus: Well, I had to say, "What is going on"? Because people were screaming, and in the women's room you heard, "Aaahhh"! As they looked in mirrors. I mean, it was electric! I never experienced anything like that in my life, and so real! I mean, people who one second didn't have gold teeth, the next second they had somebody next to them look in their mouths and they said, "You have gold"! "No, you're kidding me". "No, you have gold"! "Now, come on, you're kidding me". They'd run to the bathroom or they'd run up on the stage to have them confirm this, and it was just incredible!
Sid Roth: You actually took the television camera and put it in their mouth!
Warren Marcus: Right. Well, what we saw was, as this was happening, I said, "You'd better get one of the cameras. Get them up there now. Let's see what this is"! Because I wanted to see what was going on.
Sid Roth: Did you want to see what was going on as a professional, to get it on film, or did you just want to see what was going on?
Warren Marcus: Well, you have to realize that I didn't just automatically believe this. I've seen a lot of things in my life. I just said, "Is this real"? But knowing the people that I knew, the pastor of that church and such: they're so low-key! This is not usually the type of thing that happens there. So knowing their character, knowing some of the people that I knew that were there, like a pastor - my first pastor - who, when I had started believing in Yeshua - Jesus - he was there for the first time in Toronto. He told me that one of his members got that, and so when you know people that wouldn't normally fall for something, you have to say, "This is something to this! This is something real"!
Sid Roth: You told me about a muslim man that wandered in. Tell me about him.
Warren Marcus: He was a muslim man that ran - that wandered into Toronto. He was invited by somebody - his whole family - and they prayed, and he got three teeth that were gold! Fillings that were changed to gold! And because of it, he said, "This Jesus must be real".
Sid Roth: You know, that is the really - the real purpose for a sign. You produced a 30-minute video, and people that watched this video actually are getting gold teeth. Let's take a look at that video right now.
Sid Roth: I tell you something, I don't wanna stop watching that video! Warren, it must have been - you said it was like electric in that place!
Warren Marcus: Oh, it was incredible. I mean, to experience that, to see people - I mean, you know, the testimonies of people, but the bottom line, Sid, wasn't just a miracle: it's what happened to people because of the miracle. All of a sudden they knew that there was a God! A God who created the universe was there - present - doing these things. And do you know what that does? It says that any problem I'm facing, no matter how big it is, God can do something about it. He's not just some dispassionate God, or someone impersonal, or just an idol that's - he's a real, living being that can change my life forever.
Sid Roth: Speaking of changing your life forever, Warren Marcus, you've come a long way. Tell me about your family, religious-wise.
Warren Marcus: Well, my mother was brought up in an orthodox Jewish home, and my father was just the opposite: agnostic Jewish home. As a matter of fact, his father said he was an atheist, but on his deathbed, of course, he called for the rabbi to pray for him. But that's the upbringing, and there was always a tension in the home about religious education and such like that.
Sid Roth: As a young boy, though, you had a dream. Tell me about that.
Warren Marcus: Well, I was 5-years old, and I was frightened of lightning and thunder, and I came running into my house, crying, and my sister - my agnostic Jewish sister - said, "Don't be afraid, Warren. You know, God will protect you". And I said, "God"? "Well, you can't see God, Warren, but he's everywhere, and he's there to protect you. He lives in a place called heaven, and you don't have to be afraid". And I said, "Well, is he in my bedroom at night"? You know? And she said, "Yes, he's there at night". And I started getting more afraid of this unseen person named God than I was of the lightning and thunder. And I had this dream. I can still remember this dream even now as I speak to you, and I was in the clouds. It was thundering and lightning. It was very frightening. And then this light in the center right in front of me, this intense light, was revealed as clouds departed from around them, from around that light and just parted out, and then these beams of light came out toward me and all around me making a pathway, and it was like being drawn in. And I heard this voice inside me and outside me saying, "Don't be afraid. I am your friend". And I knew that I knew that that was God because the feeling I got when I woke up, I wanted to get back in that dream so quickly, a little 5-year-old boy. The next day in kindergarten class the teacher said, "Draw a picture". So I started trying to draw this picture of God that I'd seen in my dream, with the yellow crayon. This other kid said, "Well, what are you doing? What are you doing? What's that supposed to be"? I said, "It's a picture" "Picture of what"? "A picture of God". "You can't draw a picture of God"! "Why not"? He said, "Because you can't see God". "Well, I saw God, and I'm drawing a picture". And then he said, "Teacher, teacher, he said he saw God"! And I became the subject of ridicule. All these kids started laughing, and I started crying and I said, "I did see God in my dream"! And there it was, Sid. This picture, the yellow mass, the teacher looking at the picture, looking at me like I'm nuts. But to this day, think of it: I didn't know this, but my first impulse was, in having this boy-childhood dream - a revelation of God - my first impulse was to not tell anybody about it, but was to draw a picture so others could see it. And what am I doing today?
Sid Roth: What you are doing today is he became a very successful producer and director. But even more important than that, from a young child, he knew of God's call to put these films together. Don't go away. We're going to be discussing some amazing, amazing things that happened to this Jewish man that says, "Yeshua - Jesus - is the Jewish Messiah".
Sid Roth: Hello, I'm Sid Roth, your investigative reporter. I'm speaking to Warren Marcus. Warren, as a young child had a dream, and he knew that God was speaking to him, and he drew a picture of this. And then, Warren, you went to a movie, "Ben Hur". What effect did that have on you?
Warren Marcus: My mom took me to see "Ben Hur". First I saw "The Ten Commandments" and it scared me. I said, "But that is God"! I mean, he parts the Red Sea, miracles, you know? I said, "That's the God of Israel! That's what we Jews are supposed to be believing in: this God"! Then she took me to "Ben Hur", and then I saw this man. You never saw Jesus in it, but I saw this man named Jesus - and it was a Jewish film, you know. Judah Ben Hur, this Jewish guy, looking into the claims of this, and seeing lepers being healed and all that. Well, I knew that I knew. At that point, I said that peace that I felt from that film was the same peace I felt in my dream as a little boy. So I asked my mom, "Was that Jesus real"? She said, "No, that's just a story".
Sid Roth: Did you believe her?
Warren Marcus: Well, I did, but it's amazing. Not one friend around me - Christian friend - ever told me about Jesus. For 22 years nobody ever told me about Jesus. But God was reaching out to me! I don't understand that, but he did! He was reaching out to me through films!
Sid Roth: Now, you had a feeling, though, when you saw the power in those films, especially "Ben Hur". What - as a young child - what was that feeling you had?
Warren Marcus: Well, the thing was, I knew there was a big God, and I was on a search. I mean, God had me on a search from the day I saw that dream to want to know who he is really is. I didn't find him in a synagogue. I would go in a synagogue and I would say, "God, where are you"? But he didn't - there was no "Burning bush", you know? And - but there was something there, and I started praying a prayer, Sid, faithfully, every night: "God, make me a really good filmmaker - a producer/director - and I will make films that say what you want me to say: not what I want to say, but what you want me to say". I didn't even know who he was, and I didn't know what he wanted to say, but that was my prayer.
Sid Roth: So you're in Hebrew school, you're preparing for bar mitzvah, and all of a sudden a little kid raises his hand: "Teacher, teacher"! What happened?
Warren Marcus: Aaron: he was a troublemaker in the class...
Sid Roth: There's always one.
Warren Marcus: And he says, "Rabbi, is Jesus our Messiah"?
Sid Roth: In your Hebrew class?
Warren Marcus: In my Hebrew class. So I just - all of a sudden I came awake, you know... And I'm looking at this and he says, "No! Jesus was not our Messiah". He said, "Well, was he a Jew"? And he said, "Of course he was a Jew"! And I go, wait a minute! I didn't even know he was alive, and if he was alive, he wouldn't be a Jew: he'd be a Catholic or something, you know?
Sid Roth: Of course!
Warren Marcus: But a Jew! And he said, "But he was not our Messiah. He was a nice man. He was a reformer. Some say he was even a prophet, but he was not the Messiah. "The wolf must lie down with the lamb", there must be perfect peace on the earth, and then Messiah will come. Now, I never want to hear his name mentioned in this class again"! And that blew me away!
Sid Roth: Why?
Warren Marcus: I mean, he said he was "A nice man". "He was Jewish. He was a reformer". You know? "Some say "He was even a prophet", but why can't we talk about him anymore? So I went to the library ...
Sid Roth: Good question!
Warren Marcus: On my bicycle.
Sid Roth: How old were you?
Warren Marcus: I was 12-years old, preparing for my bar mitzvah, and I went on my bicycle. Went to the library, found a book - looked up "Jesus Christ" - found this book - I can't find it to this day - written to - as if it was written to a Jewish kid - saying that he's "Yeshua Hamashiach", you know? His name is "Yeshua", meaning "Jehovah saves". And it gave the meaning, and it told me the prophecies: the many prophecies like Isaiah 53, and such. The prophecies that were there in the Bible, that - in the old covenant - that was written there that proclaimed Jesus as Messiah! And I said, after I read that book, I said, "Mom, Jesus is our Messiah"!
Sid Roth: What'd she say?
Warren Marcus: She said, "What's a Messiah"? She didn't know! And I said, "He's the one that we're waiting for! You know, 'the promised one'". She said, "Oh, where did you get that from"? I said, "A book in the library, mom"! You know, I'm not a Jehovah's witness or something like that, you know! But the key is is that nobody was there to tell me how to get him in my heart. You see, there's one thing to have a knowledge that he is the Messiah: it's another to have that supernatural connection between you and God, and no one was there to tell me how to get that.
Sid Roth: So you wandered into drugs, into the anti-war, and all of these things, and you were actually working, or was going to school in New York...
Warren Marcus: I started off going to school in New York, the school of visual arts, to take my film, and it was "A den of iniquity". People on drugs, all kinds of stuff: the anti-war movement. I got involved in everything. See, when you don't have God there, you know, somebody to tell you the right direction, the devil then comes in - and there is a devil! There is an anti-God force in this world - a supernatural force - and he was spinning this web of destruction in my life, trying to steal that which God wanted. But God has protection on me because he had people there on the streets, holding up signs, "Repent and be saved", giving me tracks. I mean, I was deluged with this. And in port authority, New York, where I traveled from New York to new jersey during school, and then later on as I was producing on Madison avenue, these high-quality spots and such like this: tv spots for deodorant and...
Sid Roth: Real important things.
Warren Marcus: Right. This one man was there and he would be sharing with me: every single argument I had, he'd be taking one at a time, for 7 years, and...
Sid Roth: Seven years?
Warren Marcus: Seven years it took.
Sid Roth: You're "A stiff-necked Jew"!
Warren Marcus: I was. I was. And then he just kept telling me, but the thing he finally told me, Sid, he said, "You understand this intellectually. You accept the fact that he could be the Messiah: but Warren, you'll never understand that he is the son of the living God. You'll never understand who he really is until you invite him in your heart". And I said, "Well, what do you mean 'invite him into my heart'"? He said, "He's like a salesman. He comes with his greatest product, and he's knocking on the door of your heart, and he's saying, "I want to come in and demonstrate this product. I want to plug it in to you and show you how well it cleans your house. It's called the Holy Spirit". And Warren, he wants to "Plug it in" because your house really needs cleaning. But until you invite him in to demonstrate the product, you'll never truly understand the beauty of what this thing is all about". And Sid, that's what I did. I finally got so fed-up. I was smoking marijuana every day. I mean, I said there's gotta be more, Lord! And I just said, "God of Israel, if Jesus is indeed the son of the living God, the Messiah - everything that Christians say he is, then I want him in my heart. If he's not, I don't want him in my heart. I don't want to do anything that would offend you, o God of Israel. You'll have to let me know what is right in this matter, but I invite him in my heart, right now". And from that moment on, Sid, something happened to me supernaturally. All of a sudden, the Bible that I had sitting on my table, I could understand what it meant: concepts that I could never understand before. The music I was listening to - the rock music - I mean, it didn't make sense to me anymore. "I am the walrus, I am the egg man, coo-coo-ca-choo", you know, the Beatles were - what does this have to do with life, you know? I threw it away. I started throwing booze down the sink. I started throwing away my marijuana right down the toilet. I'm saying, "I don't need this anymore"! My eyes were like, opened, and my whole - this "Peace that surpasses all understanding". It's like the whole key to the universe was unlocked, to me, and my wife. My Catholic wife comes home, she says, "What is going on here? Don't throw my records away"! I mean, she thought I went nuts!
Sid Roth: Of course!
Warren Marcus: But the bottom line is - this is in 1974 -
Sid Roth: Warren, Warren. If your Catholic wife thought you went nuts, how about your Jewish parents? Don't go away. We'll be right back.
Sid Roth: Hello, I'm Sid Roth, your investigative reporter, and I'm chatting here with Warren Marcus, a Messianic Jew, that is radically in love with Jesus. Well, Warren Marcus fulfilled his childhood thought: "I want to do films, God. I'll do films to reveal you to humanity". And he went on to work for CBN, produced award-winning productions, and then you actually went to work, and you're currently working for Jerry Falwell. But what about your Jewish parents?
Warren Marcus: Well, it's amazing. With my mom, she came to the Lord some time later, but the whole thing was at first I was scared to tell her. But God took care of that. When I started telling her my testimony of how I was on drugs and various things like that, she was more worried of the fact that I was on drugs. She didn't see the fact I was just saying I received Jesus as my Messiah. She didn't say anything about that. She said, "But I can't understand why you were on drugs"! So God has a way of taking care of that. But the big one was my father. I mean, a lot of my family have come to the Lord. I have a cousin who's a pastor, I have a cousin who's a greenwich village beatnik artist who's a believer. You wouldn't believe the numbers of people that came to the Lord, that became a believer in Messiah. But my father was the hard one. He was a drinker all his life and all that, and what happened was he got to the point where he was dying, and my mother said, "You'd better be very careful with dad. You need to come and see him because he is really dying, but I don't want you to mention anything about him dying to him because we don't want him to lose heart".
Sid Roth: What was he dying of?
Warren Marcus: Cancer. And I was saying, "But mom, I've got to tell him about the Lord", you know? And she said, "Well, Warren, you could tell him, but you can't mention anything about him dying". And so I - Jerry Falwell, it was right before his show, saw me very down and he said, "Warren, what's going on? Why are you down"? I said, "Well, my dad's dying" and I shared the story. "And yet, I can't tell him anything". "You want me to call him"? Jerry said. "Would you like me to call him and just talk with him"? I said, "That can't hurt". So he called him and spoke with my dad, and I didn't realize the affect it had on my dad.
Sid Roth: What did he think?
Warren Marcus: He didn't believe it was Jerry Falwell calling, plus there were all these Jewish relatives over at my house feeling guilty that my dad's going to die. They were visiting. So my mother said, "Jerry Falwell is on the line! Jerry Falwell"! And they're all going, "Jerry Falwell? Why would he call? Why would Jerry Falwell call"? My father - he talked to Jerry Falwell, and the thing was, he set up with Jerry. Jerry set up a friendship - a relationship with him, and he wasn't really telling him the Gospel. I'm going, "Oh, come on, Jerry! Tell him the Gospel"! But he ended praying for my dad's healing and said, "Can I call you back and see how you're doing"? My dad said, "Well, you don't have to do that, but sure you can"! Well, my dad was weeping, my mom told me, on the phone. When he got back there were tears coming down, and they asked him what happened. He said, "Jerry Falwell prayed for me". And they were all saying, "Wow! Jerry Falwell prayed for you"? Well, the next thing I know, Jerry has me in an airplane flying up to new jersey.
Sid Roth: Why? Why did he do that?
Warren Marcus: He said to my dad - he called him back and he said, "If I come up to visit you, would you allow me to share about the Messiah that your son believes in and your daughter -" my sister, Fran, "- believes in also, and your wife believes in now? Would you let me come up there and just share it with you"? And he said, "Well, you don't need to come up here, but that's up to you. But sure: of course".
Sid Roth: Why would - I mean, he's a busy - you know how busy he is!
Warren Marcus: I know.
Sid Roth: And he just stopped his whole schedule to fly to talk to a dying Jewish man.
Warren Marcus: Well, it tells you what kind of character he is. People don't know that about Jerry, but I know him. He's a man of God. I mean, he's a really good man. And we flew up there, and Jerry started opening up the scriptures to my father. He shared Isaiah 53 scripture. He shared that. "Who is this, Charlie"? He asked. Just like you did with your dad. And my father said, "Well, that's talking about Jesus"! He said, "Well that's in the old covenant scriptures. That's not in the New Testament". My dad said, "Wow"! And all of a sudden all the things that my sister and I tried to tell my dad and he wouldn't listen to, he was listening with Jerry. And then Jerry said, "Would you like to receive the Messiah into your own life? Would you like to become a believer in the Messiah, just like your son is, and just like your daughter is, and just like your wife is? Would you like to do that"? And he said, "Yes, I would". And he called my mother and I to come up. He said, "Come on, you've got to come up! Jerry's gonna minister to me". This is what - he used the word "Minister", you know. But I stayed in the kitchen, and I was just praying, and he received the Messiah into his heart, just like I had done - just as I had done in 1974. And there he was, praying, and then I kept saying -
Sid Roth: But you weren't there. Are you sure he did?
Warren Marcus: I stayed in the kitchen. I said, "God, is this real? Is he just doing this because Jerry's there"? So in the rush of things we had to leave. I said my good-byes, and I forgot my briefcase so I had to run back in. And I prayed, "God, let me know. Just let me have something that I would know that he is truly a believer". I walk in and there's my father, sitting - and my last memory of my father - with this joy! He looked healthy as could be! And this big smile on his face and he said, "Well, Warren, I prayed that prayer. I guess I wasn't much of a Jew anyway". I said, "Dad, you're more of a Jew, now that you prayed that prayer, than you were before! He's our Messiah"! He goes, "Yeah, that's true". And he says, "Well, I guess they'll want the rabbi to bury me, but I'd like him to be involved, too", meaning Jerry. I said, "Dad, don't talk about death. God could heal you"! He goes, "No, I know what's going to happen, but I know where I'm going now, son. I know where I'm going".
Sid Roth: Do you? Do you? Do you know where you're going? If you'll pray with me right now, out loud, right where you are, and mean it to the best of your ability, God will touch you, and you will know him. Not just believe in him. I don't care if you're Catholic, Baptist, Presbyterian, or Jewish or muslim: pray this prayer out loud with me now. Out loud, you! "Dear God I'm a sinner: "Against you, and you alone, have I sinned", and I'm so sorry. Please forgive me. I believe that Jesus died for my sins, and because of his blood, you remember my sins no more. And I am clean. And now that I'm clean, I make you Lord of my life. Dear Jesus, come inside of me right now, and take over my life completely. I made a mess of it! I'm turning it over completely to you! Fill me from the top of my head to the bottom of my toes with your Holy Spirit". Now, you begin to thank him. You begin to lift your holy hands to God and say, "Thank you, God! I love you, God! Oh, Jesus, I'm so grateful! This is the most important day of my life. I want to spend the rest of my life loving you and worshipping you. Oh, I love you, Jesus! Amen".