.; 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: The Outlook from Mount Carmel
Josie and I are back home on Mt. Carmel after a month of ministry in our native New Zealand. New Zealand is literally the ‘end of the Earth’ away from Israel and it felt strange to be so far away from the action that has been taking place close on Israel’s borders with Syria and Gaza. Now we are home, we once again have the border with Lebanon in clear view, a mere 30 km or 20 miles to the north, but thankfully the situation seems to have calmed down significantly, and we are hoping it will stay that way for the forseeable future.It is nice to be able to be optimistic about the future, but as we continue to monitor the news, we see that all is not well on Planet Earth. Here is the situation the way it appears from the top of Mt.Carmel.
Israel and Iran: As the celebrations of Israel’s 70th anniversary and the moving of the US embassy back to Jerusalem approached, PM Netanyahu directed the Israeli army and air force to seek out and destroy all Iranian military sites in Syria. That mission is almost fully accomplished, with a high number of Iranian military personnel being killed in the process. Thankfully Iran refrained from striking back and it is now being reported that secret negotiations between Iran and Israel have been taking place in Jordan, not eliminating, but reducing the probability of a devastating conflict between the 2 nations in the months ahead.
Israel and Lebanon: Israel’s real problem is not with Lebanon, but with the Iran backed terror organisation Hizbollah, which is entrenched in the south of Lebanon, very close to the border with Israel. It is believed that Hizbollah has more than 100,000 missiles in its arsenal, including a number of chemical and biological warheads. The leaders of Hizbollah share an intense hatred of Israel with its backer, Iran. I believe that the only thing that holds Hizbollah back from starting another war with Israel is the fact that Israel has made it very clear that any aggression will be met with the full force of the Israeli military, however the threat of those 100,000 missiles is always there.
Israel and Hamas: The people of Gaza voted for the Iranian backed terror group Hamas to be their government. Now they are firmly in the grip of the radical Islamic regime, who rule by fear, and have the entire Gaza Strip under their control. Hamas will never acknowledge the right of Israel to exist, and under direction from Iran continues to prepare for terror attacks against Israel, producing rockets, smuggling in weapons from Iran and building tunnels which Israel is able to detect and destroy. As we saw earlier this week, Hamas is intent on provoking a war with Israel, firing 130 rockets at Israel in 24 hours. The rockets have stopped for the time being, but they will come again. If it chose to do so, Israel could totally defeat Hamas in a day, but for now chooses to uses very limited firepower against the Hamas regime, as the Israel government and the IDF do not want to harm innocent people, and is also very aware that the eyes of the world are fixed on what Israel does, and is not slow to voice its disapproval of Israel’s actions of self defense and self preservation.
Israel and the World: Surely we are in the days that the Bible prophesies when the whole world comes against Israel. Apart from President Trump and less than 10 other world leaders who stand with Israel, the rest of the world is increasingly coming against Israel. The nations continue to (falsely) accuse Israel of using disproportionate force against those who attack us first, while at the same time ignore the fact that what Israel really does disproportionately is to bless the with scientific and technological advances, not to mention the awesome tasting fruit and vegetables that we export every night of the year except on Yom Kippur. Of course we must not stick Product of Israel stickers on the produce or the silly BDS people will stop the products being sold. These foolish and very deceived people are only hurting themselves while God continues to prosper Israel. Biblical history shows that the more the nations oppress Israel, the more the GOD of Israel prospers her.
GOD’s Response: YHVH tells us very clearly in Genesis 12:3 that He will curse those who come against His people. He also tells us in Zechariah 2:8 that Israel is the pupil or lense of His eye. That means that everything that GOD sees, He is closely observing the everything that I have mentioned above, and surely He is not amused. Could it be that the shaking that is going on in many parts of the world is YHVH venting His displeasure and performing His word ? The weather continues to be extreme and often unseasonable, and the eruption of the volcano on the Big Island of Hawaii looks like Dante’s Inferno. And the world’s major financial markets are almost as shakey and volatile as the volcano !
Strategic times indeed for the world and for the Kingdom of GOD – let us increase our prayer and intercession and our readiness accordingly ……
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 a 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. IDF Soldier Murdered by Marble Block INN News May 27th
Relatives, soldiers and friends arrived on Saturday night at Mount Herzl in Jerusalem to pay their respects to Sergeant Ronen Lubarsky, a soldier in am IDF commando unit, who was killed by a marble block that was thrown on his head by an Arab terrorist. Lubarsky is the first Duvdevan fighter to have been killed as a result of terrorist activity. Deputy Defense Minister Rabbi Eli Ben Dahan (Jewish Home) took part in the funeral on behalf of the government. Lubarsky was critically injured during a routine military operation on the outskirts of Ramallah, when his unit arrested members of a terror cell known to have carried out shooting attacks against civilians in Judea and Samaria. During the Thursday night arrest, an Arab terrorist believed to be a reinforcement of the terror cell in question threw a marble block at Lubarsky?s head, crushing his helmet. Lubarsky was taken to a Jerusalem hospital in critical condition, but remained unconscious and on life support before succumbing to his injuries on Saturday. The terrorist who threw the block at his head fled the scene. PM Netanyahu expressed his “deep sorrow” over Lubarsky?s death and added, “The security forces will reach the terrorist and the state of Israel will bring him to reckoning.? Please pray for the family and friends of the fallen soldier
2. IDF Retaliates After Bomb Planted on Gaza Border Associated Press May 27th
An Israeli artillery strike Sunday morning killed two Islamic Jihad terrorists in Gaza. The IDF said a tank fired on an observation post in response to a bomb placed along the border fence separating Gaza from Israel that was aimed at killing patrolling IDF soldiers. Gaza media reported three fatalities – an Islamic Jihad spokesman suggested the three killed were members of that organization. He said of Israel?s shelling that the group ?will not abandon our right to respond to Israel?s dangerous escalation and we know what to do to remind Zionist terrorism that the blood of our people is not cheap.? Gaza terrorists regularly plant explosives near the border, occasionally harming Israeli soldiers. On Saturday, four terrorists briefly infiltrated Israel and set a army post on fire. The IDF said an improvised explosive device, disguised to look like a set of bolt cutters, was planted along the Gaza security fence. In order to neutralize it, the army used a robot to detonate the explosive under controlled conditions. The Islamic Jihad post that was targeted in the tank strike overlooked the portion of the fence where the IED had been planted.This exchange comes the morning after the air force hit targets in southern Gaza after four suspects who breached the security fence threw a firebomb at IDF soldiers. Pray that all attempted terror attacks will be intercepted and that those responsible will be dealt with accordingly.
3. Sixty Plus Rockets Fired at Israel – Air Force Bombs Hamas Site in Worst Escalation of Violence Since 2014 World News Israel May 29th
Israels Defense Force (IDF) says it struck over 35 Hamas and Islamic Jihad targets in the Gaza Strip on Tuesday as well as a tunnel that penetrated deep into Israeli territory during its wide-scale operation in response to a barrage of rockets fired from the coastal enclave. The army said it targeted six military compounds, munition storage warehouses, naval targets and terror headquarters belonging to the militant groups. Israel’s military announced that it was operation in the Gaza Strip in response to salvo of nearly 60 rockets fired in total into Israel in numerous rounds of missile attacks throughout the day. Islamic Jihad claimed responsibility for 28 mortar shells during the morning barrage. The majority of the missiles were intercepted by the Iron Dome missile defense system, but a number of mortars landed inside Israel, including one during the morning barrage which hit the empty yard of a local kindergarten just hours before children were due to arrive.
Amid the strikes multiple new rounds of incoming rocket alert sirens blared across southern Israeli communities as a new volley of mortar fire was launched from Gaza. A total of 25 missiles were said to have been intercepted by the Iron Dome during the barrage post 4pm.
Three Israeli soldiers were wounded by shrapnel during the afternoon barrage of missiles from Gaza. Two were released from from Soroka Medical Center, whilst one said to be in a moderate condition remained. Two further civilians were said to have been lightly injured in the southern town of Sderot. As the rocket attacks continued throughout the day, residents of southern Israeli communities were instructed to remain near bomb shelters. Israel’s PM Netanyahu said that Israel views Hamas, the Islamist rulers of the Gaza Strip, as responsible for preventing such attacks. The Prime Minister was set to meet with Defense Minister Liberman, the IDF Chief of Staff and Head of the Shin Bet security agency on Tuesday evening to discuss the tense situation. Tuesday’s incidents came after weeks of deadly demonstrations and clashes along the Gaza-Israel border, beginning on March 30. Pray that the Israeli military succeeds as it takes all action necessary to bring a stop to the attacks from the Gaza Strip
4. ID Destroy Tunnel that Extended 900 Metres Unside Israel Times of Israel May 29th
The Israeli army on Tuesday afternoon struck a Hamas tunnel in the Gaza Strip that extended hundreds of meters into Egyptian and Israeli territory. The IDF said the attack tunnel destroyed near Rafah and the Kerem Shalom border crossing was still under construction and not yet usable. The tunnel crossed from Gaza into Egypt and from there into southern Israel, and was intended both for smuggling weapons and for attacks against Israel. Its full length was around 2 kilometers (1.2 miles), the army said, and the segment inside Israeli territory was 900 meters (half a mile) long. The tunnel, described by as the army as “unique”, was said to have been detected in its ?mining phases? suggesting that it was still being built and was not yet operable. The IDF said the underpass is ?dual purposed – designated for terror purposes. The tunnels are intended for the use of militants who can infiltrate into Israel to carry out terror attacks. Since the 2014 Gaza war, in which several were used to devastating effect by Gaza militants against Israeli troops, the military has invested far more in detecting and destroying them. Tuesday?s strike marked the tenth tunnel destroyed since last October and the second tunnel neutralized in the area of the Kerem Shalom crossing. Pray that any other existing tunnels or those under construction will be discovered and destroyed
5. Gaza Ceasefire in Place Times of Israel News May 30th
A senior defense official said on Wednesday that Israel was prepared to refrain from further attacks on Gaza if terror factions in the Strip also kept the peace, indicating that an informal ceasefire has taken hold after a restive day. The Israeli Air Force bombed dozens of Hamas and Palestinian Islamic Jihad facilities across the Gaza Strip in two rounds of air raids, on Tuesday afternoon and predawn Wednesday, amid the largest exchange between Israel and Gazan terrorist groups since the 2014 war. The escalation began with a barrage of mortar shells fired into southern Israel by Islamic Jihad on Tuesday morning, one of which landed outside a kindergarten shortly before the children arrived. Over the course of 22 hours, from 7 a.m. Tuesday to 5:17 a.m. Wednesday, sirens were triggered at least 166 times in southern Israel, according to the IDF Home Front Command, by mortar fire, rockets or, in some cases, heavy machine gun fire. Pray that the Hamas is not so wreckless to start firing rockets again, which will bring a severe response by Israel
6. Israeli Farmers to Sue Hamas at the International Criminal Court INN News May 27th
On Sunday, Israeli famers near the Gaza border announced that they would file a lawsuit with the International Criminal Court (ICC) in The Hague against senior Hamas leaders through a non-governmental organization that represents terror victims while upholding Jewish values and causes. This is the first civilian response to the phenomenon of kite terrorism, which has plagued Israeli farming communities bordering the Gaza Strip since the riots began on March 30th. During the past few months, Gaza terrorists along the border between Gaza and Israel have been attaching firebombs to kites and launching them over the border in attempt to attack Israeli citizens and damage Israeli property. The US has denounced these ?terror kites? as acts of terror. The director of Kibbutz Nir Am, which is located near Sderot in southern Israel near the Gaza border, where thousands of dunams of wheat have been destroyed, is leading the pursuit of this criminal investigation.
The lawsuit will be filed against senior Hamas officials including, Yihya Sanwar, Isma’il Haniyeh, and other prominent members of the terrorist organization. The Israeli farmers have cited a number of offenses that are in violation of the ?Roman Statute? (treaty of the ICC), including the burning of fields, attacking Israel?s borders, using children for combat purposes, and utilizing civilians for human shields. An Israeli lawyer said, ?Israel will not remain silent. In the current situation, in which every single day terrorists burn fields and forests, is unacceptable.? ?It is inconceivable that the senior Hamas officials will accuse Israel of war crime when they themselves use the civilian population, especially children, as human shields, which are repeatedly directed at Israeli citizens. Therefore, we call on the ICC at The Hague to bring this matter to justice.? Pray that the case will be heard and that justice will be done
7. Newly Formed Jewish-Christian Party to Run in Next Election Times of Israel News May 18th
Avi Lipkin, a well-known lecturer who has spoken in over 1,000 churches, announced that he has formed the first joint Jewish-Christian party and intends to lead it in the next Knesset elections. A closer look at his motives reveals that this may be the wave of the future. The acceptance of Lipkin?s Gush Hatanachi (Biblical Bloc) party application was announced on Wednesday. The party?s founding document reads: ?The Biblical bloc protects everyone who believes in the Bible and opposes the ethnic cleansing of Jews and Christians from the Land of Israel. The Biblical bloc represents parties all over the world who espouse Judeo-Christian, democratic Western culture.? ?The party will also work to strengthen Israel by formulating a program to improve public relations around the world by recruiting Jewish and Christian speakers and training them to improve Israel?s image in the world and protect Western democracy.? The essence of his party is much more simple. ?Christianity has its share of hatred for Jews but we have our share of hatred for Christians,? Lipkin told Breaking Israel News. ?We have to stop hating the Christians. We have to become like Ruth and Naomi. In my lecture tours, I have seen that many Christians are ready for this.? In a candid interview with Breaking Israel News, Lipkin explained how this vision of a renewed relationship between Jews and Christians makes sense in Israeli politics. He sees the Christian demographic rapidly becoming a major factor which, shockingly, currently has no representation in the Knesset.