.; A compilation of news reports from the past week for the information of those committed to ..praying .. for the restoration of Israel
David’s Comment: Connecting Israel & the Nations
Ephesians 2:19 Therefore you are no longer foreigners, but now you are fellow citizens with the saints and the members of the household of GOD
As we set out into 2018, Josie and I have two subjects that we want to share with you ……
1/. Isaiah 2:3 Come and let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob
If you have never visited Israel, we want to encourage you pray about fulfilling the above verse from Isaiah chapter 2. This passage is speaking not to Jewish people, but to people who live in the nations. I believe that there a two ways to come up to the mountain of the LORD – spiritually and actually. When a non Jewish Believer in the Messiah has a revelation of the Biblical truth concerning the relationship of the Church to Israel, as Paul teaches in Romans 11:17 and Ephesians 2:11 – 19, he or she is really coming higher up the mountain of the LORD. And if he or she is open and teachable, then the next part of the verse can be come into play – He shall teach us His ways and we shall walk in His paths. We see this happening in the lives of many Christians today, especially in Asia where we are seeing a greater openness to learning about the Hebraic roots of the faith.
The other way to fulfill Isaiah 2:3 is to physically come up to Israel. Last year a record breaking 3 million tourists visited Israel. Twenty percent were Jewish, which means that 80% or 2.4 million non Jewish people, predominantly Evangelical Christians, came up to the mountain of the LORD in 2016. We do not have the final figures yet, but the statistics are ever higher in 2017. Josie and I want to say to all of our brothers and sisters in the nations … Baruch Ha Bah B Shem YHVH. That is a BIG Welcome. We absolutely welcome you to come to Israel, but NOT as a tourist. Time is getting shorter by the day and there is a lot of work to do here in Israel. There are 6.5 million Jews and 1.3 million Muslim Arabs that need to have a revelation of Yeshua being the ONLY way to eternity with GOD. Also we are surrounded by sworn enemies who are encamped very close to Israel’s borders, and are committed to Israel’s destruction.
So when (not if) you come to Israel, of course visit the places of Biblical importance, but as you move around in your bus or car, and when you are walking … PRAY. Pray for the people you are seeing all around you to be saved, because more than 90% of people living in Israel are not walking with the LORD. And when you are traveling near the borders, pray that no weapon designed to harm Israel will succeed. When you are in Jerusalem go to the Knesset (Government building) stand by the large Menorah and pray for salvation and wisdom for PM Netanyahu and the other government leaders. And when you are near the Western Wall, pray that the Jews who go there to pray, will have a life changing encounter with the Holy Spirit. If you see people suffering from illness or injuries, politely tell them who you are and what you believe and ask them if you can pray for them. Very seldom will they say no.
One other important thing we want to share with you … when you come to Israel, make it a priority to visit a Messianic congregation. We personally invite you to come and visit us on Mt. Carmel. Come and fellowship with us at the weekly Shabbat service at 11 am Saturday or come and participate in the 2 hour prayer and worship watch on Tuesdays 2 pm to 4 pm. We are also prepared to set up a seminar to ensure that everyone in the group returns home with a full understanding of GOD’s plans and purposes for Israel. We promise you that visiting the Messianic brethren in Israel will be the highlight of your tour, as you will stand in the midst of 3000 year old Biblical prophecies being fulfilled.
But we also need to warn you that the tour operator and your guide (if they are not believers) will not be keen to include such a visit in the itinerary. This is because Satan does not want you to see the amazing things that GOD is doing here, incase you get excited about it and pray even more. So if you plan your tour with an travel agent, you need to insist that you are the customer, and if they are not willing to do what you want, then you will find another agent. We have a side ministry called Living Stones Tours and we are here to advise you and to help you make your travel arrangements. You can write to me at firstname.lastname@example.org
2/. Let’s Pray Together
With the communication technology that is available today, it is relatively simple to set up an audio or even video connection during your prayer meeting so that we can participate and pray with you from our location on Mt. Carmel. Skype is one option that works well if you have a good internet connection. If you have a computer or laptop or a tablet with a camera we can make a video call and be able to see each other while we are praying. If you have a data projector and sound system where the prayer meeting is being held, everyone in the room can see and hear us and we can hear and see you all.
We have already tried this with some groups and it works well. If you are keen to move ahead with this idea, please email me at email@example.com
Josie and I look forward to communicating with you concerning the ideas that I have shared with you in this week’s comment ……
The LORD bless you as you bless Israel by standing in defense of her right to exist on the land given to the Jewish people by the God of Israel. Lets pray that Israel will turn back to their God. Do not be silent, but share this with your fellow Christians, share it with your pastors, and with anyone you have a chance to speak to. Lets also pray for that breakthrough to the Muslims, and please remember to pray Divine protection for all of the soldiers in the IDF.
Shabbat Shalom …… David & Josie
This Weeks News Items
1. Gaza Rockets Hit Buildings in Israel Friday INN News Dec 29th
Sirens sounded in southern Israel Friday afternoon as rockets were fired from Gaza towards southern Israeli towns and two were intercepted by Iron Dome missiles. No one was hurt, but at least one building was damaged. According to an IDF spokesperson, three rockets were identified as being fired towards Israel, and the Iron Dome intercepted two of them. Arab media reported that IDF tanks responding to the rockets shot at targets in Gaza. The rockets and sirens interrupted an event marking the 24th birthday of kidnapped and murdered IDF soldier Oron Shaul. Pray that the IDF is able to eradicate all rocket launching equipment in the Gaza Strip
2. Israel Cabinet Pass Law Preventing Future Division of Jerusalem
Following a succession of impassioned speeches both for and against, Israel’s Knesset finally voted on and passed the “United Jerusalem Bill.” The bill is an amendment to the Jerusalem Law passed in 1980, when Israel officially declared the entirety of Jerusalem to be its undivided capital. This new legislation requires a three-fourths majority of 80 members of Knesset to ever alter the status of Jerusalem or surrender portions of the Holy City as part of a future peace agreement. Corralling a 75 % majority for anything in the Israel Knesset is next to impossible, as evidenced by the vote on this very bill. Sixty-four MKs voted in favor of the bill, 51 voted against and one abstained, despite the fact that the vast majority of Israeli Jews (including members of Knesset) insist that Jerusalem must never again be divided. The bill’s author, Education Minister Naftali Bennett was perfectly aware of what he had done. “Just now we ensured that Jerusalem will be united forever. We initiated the law that guards Jerusalem so that it cannot be divided without a huge majority of 80 MKs,” Bennett wrote on Facebook. “The Mount of Olives, the Old City, the Temple Mount and the City of David will remain in our hands forever. There will be no more political maneuvers that will allow to tear our capital apart. This is also Israel’s response to the shameful UN vote against Jerusalem. Pray that the new bill will never be prepealed
3. Likud Party Votes Unanimously to Annex Judea And Samaria Israel News Report Jan 1st
More than a thousand members of the Israel?s ruling Likud central committee called unanimously on the party?s leaders Sunday night to ?exercise Israel?s sovereignty over Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley? and remove restrictions on new construction. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who is head of Likud, was conspicuously absent. A source close to him said he is not bound by the vote. Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein noted that the Knesset last year enacted legislation for extending Israeli sovereignty to Maaleh Adummim for a contiguous link with Jerusalem. Pray that this plan to rightfully annex these areas that GOD promised to Abraham will become a reality
4. Israeli Experts Predict War in 2018 World Israel News Jan 2nd
The Institute For National Security Studies warned Monday of the danger of ?The First Northern War? in a report submitted President Reuven Rivlin. The annual report on the security challenges facing Israel in the year ahead warned of three possible scenarios on the northern front:
Firstly, a war with Hezbollah and Syria supported by other Iranian proxies, or a war with Hezbollah and Syria with full-blown Iranian involvement. Iran continues to arm and finance proxy terror groups as an arm against Israel, and Tehran?s steps to build a military force in Syria may lead to an escalation on the northern front, the report said. Such a conflict, according to the assessment would likely lead to confrontation on the Syrian and Lebanese fronts simultaneously with the integration of forces of Hezbollah, the Syrian regime, and forces serving Iran.
The second major security challenge for Israel in the year ahead, the report noted, is the possibility of military confrontation in the south. The potential for a flare-up with Hamas in Gaza continues, the report said. According to the report, while Hamas remains deterred, it continues to build its strength, and even if both sides wish to avoid full-blown conflict, confrontation may break out due to a variety of circumstances including uncontrolled escalation of a localized incident; an initiative of Jihadi elements; difficulties in implementing the internal Palestinian reconciliation agreement, or tensions surrounding the issue of Jerusalem. The assessment noted Gaza?s socio-economic crisis as a major stress point that could lead to an outbreak of hostilities. It also pointed out that the IDF?s recent progress in developing solutions to uncover Hamas? cross-border tunnels ? a major strategic asset for the organization ? could lead it to initiate confrontation.
Thirdly, although ISIS has been defeated and has lost its strongholds in Syria and Iraq, it is now transferring activities to areas where a comprehensive military effort to combat the organization has not yet been concentrated, the report said, noting the presence of the Islamic State in southern Syria near the Golan Heights and especially in the Sinai and less conspicuously in the southern Syrian Golan Heights. ISIS? presence in these areas points to a growing threat with potential for a major terrorist attack against Israel, the report said. Pray that the current peace will hold for as long as possible
5. IDF Strikes Gaza Targets in Response to Rocket & Mortar Fire Times of Israel News Jan 4th
Shortly after 1 a.m. on Thursday, the Israel Air Force announced that its jets had just struck ?significant terror infrastructure? in the Gaza Strip in retaliation for mortar fire on Wednesday. According to official Palestinian media, that ?significant terror infrastructure? was farmland in the southern Gaza Strip. It?s more likely that the target was, in fact, something beneath the farmland ? a tunnel. The strike came after three projectiles were fired at the Eshkol region in southern Israel over the course of a few hours on Wednesday and amid a substantial increase in the number of attacks coming from the Gaza Strip over the past two months. The IDF would not elaborate on the nature of the ?significant terror infrastructure? it targeted. ?Every missile or shell we fired was at a valuable target, at underground targets,? Eisenkot said. ?We have developed a capability that allows us to strike them.? Israel’s military has said it was ?prepared for any scenario? and would not allow any breach of Israeli sovereignty. ?The IDF will continue to use all the measures at its disposal, above and below ground, to thwart attacks against Israelis,? the military said. Pray that the IDF will successfully destroy all enemy targets that it discovers.
6. Saudi Intellectuals In Favour of US Jerusalem Decision Israel Today News Dec 30th
While much of the Arab world predictably reacted with outrage to US President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel, a number of leading Arab intellectuals took a different position. Among them was Abdulhameed Hakeem, head of the Middle East Center for Strategic and Legal Studies in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. While Riyadh publicly decried Trump’s announcement, the Saudi regime did not engage in long-winded rants against Israeli control over Jerusalem, prompting many to wonder where the oil-rich kingdom really stood on the issue. In an interview on the US-based al-Hurra Arabic-language TV channel, Hakeem tried to clarify why Trump’s decision actually met with muted acceptance, even some degree of appreciation, in Saudi Arabia: “The decision will prompt a positive shock towards moving the stagnant water surrounding negotiations. We, as Arabs, have to come an understanding with the other side and know what its demands are so that we can succeed in peace negotiation efforts.” Hakeem even went so far as to recognize the historical and religious connection of the Jewish people to Jerusalem: “We have to admit and realize that Jerusalem is a religious symbol for the Jews that is just as holy for them as Mecca and Medina are for Muslims. “Arab mentality must free itself from the heritage of Nasser and the political Islam of the Sunni and Shia sects, which has instilled for purely political interests the culture of hating Jews and denying their historic right in the region.” The positions held by Hakeem and other Saudi intellectuals like him is one of the reasons Israelis are increasingly open to Saudi Arabia taking a leading role in the Middle East peace process. Pray that other leaders in the Arab world will begin to follow suit.
7. Ben Gurion Airport to Receive Major Upgrade
Israel’s main international airport to expand to accommodate 50% increase in passenger turnover in coming years. Israel?s Ben Gurion International Airport will undergo upgrades and expansions at a cost of $1.43 billion. The Israel Airport Authority announced the plans on Monday, saying the upgrades are necessary to accommodate an expected 50 percent increase in passenger turnover in the next five years, the Israeli business daily Calcalist reported. Earlier this week, the airport welcomed 2017?s 20 millionth passenger, according to Calcalist. Among the scheduled upgrades: 86 additional check-in stations, more stations for self check-in, plus six more luggage screening machines. The airport also will receive eight new passenger boarding bridges and two additional shuttle gates. Construction of a new Terminal 2 for is scheduled to absorb domestic flights after the closure of Tel Aviv?s domenstic. Pray that tourism to Israel continues to increase as it has been over the last several years