.; 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: An Overview of Church History – Information gleaned from ‘The Ghost of Marcion’ by Daniel Botkin
As I travel the nations and meet Christians from almost every denominational background, it has become very apparent that most people in and out of the Church have very little awareness of the history of Christianity. We do not need to be professors of history, but without some knowledge of what has taken place over the last 2000 years, it is not easy to discern where our doctrinal foundations come from, and whether what we have been taught to believe is Biblical truth, is in fact the truth. For that sake of our readers who have not been taught basic Church history, I will take a very quick overview of what I have learnt from my studies since I became a Believer 30 years ago,
I am sure most of you are aware that the ‘Church’ began in Jerusalem, with Jewish people who lived through the ministry, the death and the resurrection of Yeshua, and came out of that believing that He was the promised and long awaited Messiah of the Jewish people. For the first several decades of the ‘Church’, all of the leaders and most of the followers of Yeshua were Jewish. They did not stop being Jewish and they did not stop observing the Biblical customs, given by GOD through Moses. Acts 21:20 See how many thousands of Jews who believe and they are all Zealous for the Torah.
The ‘Church’ of the first 150 years did not have the New Testament in their Bibles. Everything that Yeshua taught and everything that Paul and the other Jewish apostles taught only came from the Hebrew Bible. And there were no ‘Church’s as we know them today. When the apostles went out to the surrounding nations and brought non-Jews into the faith, they often attended the local synagogue on the Sabbath, and they had their New Covenant fellowship at the end of the Sabbath, which was already the 1st day of the week (Sunday). I believe that most of the Believers in the first 150 years kept the Biblical Sabbath and followed the Biblical Feast cycle, and did their best to live by the GOD given instructions in the Torah.
However a major change was about to take place. In the 2nd century the number of Jewish believers began to decrease and the number of Greeks and Romans increased. Before long the leaders of the ‘Church’ were primarily men who had previously been disciples of the Greek philosophers like Aristotle, Plato and Socrates. They did not have the rabbinic training to equip them to correctly understand the Hebrew Bible and the letters of Paul, who also wrote and taught in rabbinic style. Even the Apostle Peter who was a Jew, wrote that the letters of Paul were hard to understand. (2 Peter 3:16) The other key factor was that most of the new Greek and Roman leaders of the ‘Church’ viciously hated Israel and the Jewish people, and that motivated the so called ‘Church fathers’ to reject the Hebrew Bible and cut the ‘Church’ off from her Biblical roots. The real ‘Church’ Fathers were the Jewish apostles, and going further back, the patriachs of Israel – Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, as the true Church is grafted into Israel (Romans 11:17 – Ephesians 2:19)
One of the prominent early ‘Church’ theologians was a man called Marcion. He taught that the God of the Hebrew Bible was evil and that the Jewish scriptures should be removed from the Bible. Marcion made a Bible that only had the Gospel of Luke and 10 of Paul’s epistles. Even from those, Marcion removed all verses that mentioned judgement for sin. Many of the other 2nd and 3rd century leaders and theologians were also responsible for introducing seriously heretical teachings into the ‘Church’. Historians claim that the heresies of Marcion and the others died out by the 5th century.
The question we have to ask ourselves is “did these heresies really die out, or are they still the foundation of a lot of Christian doctrine today ?” Even today, most Christians don’t read much of the Hebrew scriptures, and if the truth be told, most Christians do not like the war mongering God of ancient Israel. I believe that Replacement Theology, which is still rampant in the ‘Church’, is rooted in the teachings of Marcion. The Emergent Church and the hyper-grace preachers hardly mention Israel or sin and its consequences. Same sex relationships and other issues of morality are becoming more prevalent in the Western ‘Church’. Sounds like Marcion is still alive and well in the much of the ‘Church’ today.
All I can say is Hallelu YAH for the Christians in Africa and Asia who still go by what the Bible says and stand against the sin that is taking over in the West.
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 & Jose
This Weeks News Items
1. Terror Attack in Jerusalem on Shabbat – PA Blames Victim Arutz 7 New May 13th
The Palestinian Authority?s (PA) official news agency provided an alternative take on Saturday?s terror attack at the Lions Gate in the Old City of Jerusalem, in which a Jordanian terrorist stabbed and wounded a police officer before being shot and killed. The report laid blame for the attack on the Israeli officer, portraying him as a racist and violent individual, while claiming the terrorist was an innocent man. ?A 57-year-old Jordanian citizen was killed on Saturday afternoon by Israeli occupation forces in one of the gates of Old Jerusalem, on the grounds that he stabbed an officer in the occupation police,? was the language used in reporting the attack. The terrorist – a Jordanian citizen entered Jerusalem a week ago using a tourist visa for a visit,” the report said. The PA has not condemned the attack. Jordan condemned Israel for killing the terrorist, Muhammed Kasaji. Prime Minister Netanyahu slammed Jordan’s response. “It is outrageous to hear the Jordanian government’s speaker support the terror attack which occurred in Jerusalem’s Old City,” a statement from PM Netanyahu’s office said. “The security video clearly shows a Jordanian tourist stabbing an Israeli policeman with a knife. It’s time Jordan stopped playing both sides of the game. Just like Israel condemns terror attacks in Jordan, Jordan must condemn terror attacks in Israel. Terror is terror.” Lets pray for more angelic protection and better human security around Jerusalem and other strategic places in Israel
2. Israel: UN Security Council Must Stop PA From Paying Terrorists Arutz 7 May 12th
Israeli Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon demanded Thurs. 11 May 2017 that the UN Security Council intervene to end Palestinian Authority payments to jailed terrorists and their families, saying the PA policy incentivizes terror attacks on Jews and prevents the establishment of peace between Israel and the PA. ?The Security Council must act immediately to put an end to the funding of terrorists by the Palestinian Authority. Aid provided by the donor countries to the PA every year ends up funding terrorist who murdered innocent Israelis,? Danon said in a media interview outside of the Security Council. Danon?s statements came a day after the ambassador sent a letter to the Security Council on the issue ?According to Palestinian Authority laws and regulations, every terrorist arrested, tried and imprisoned receives monthly financial payments. The more Israelis killed, the longer the terrorist is sentenced to prison, the higher payment the terrorist receives from the PA,? Danon wrote. ?A Palestinian terrorist who murders civilians and is sentenced to over thirty years in prison receives over 3,000 USA dollars a month. Put simply, this is official Palestinian blood-money, rewarding terrorists who murder Jews. The State and people of Israel want nothing more than to live in peace and security with all of our neighbors. If the Palestinians seek the same goal, then their first step must be to stop the glorification of terrorists.? Pray that the UN will change its anti Israel politics
3. The US Embassy May Still Move Back to Jerusalem Arutz 7 May 12th
Marc Zell, the co-chair of Republicans Overseas in Israel, is saying there was no truth to the reports that President Trump had decided that the USA Embassy in Israel would remain in Tel Aviv. “According to my sources, and according to what I know, there is no intention of extending the waiver ordering that the Embassy remain in Tel Aviv,” said Zell, adding that the Embassy move would happen in a quiet manner. “I have said more than once in the media that in order for the Embassy to move to Jerusalem, the President simply does not have to do anything. If he does not do anything, then according to the law, the Embassy must move to Jerusalem. I understand that this is the plan and I think it’s wise to do it with out declarations. Let the American law do the job,? he said, adding that he believes Ambassador David Friedman will live in and work from Jerusalem. “The Ambassador is due to arrive here in five days, and I intend to meet him and he will tell us what he intends to do,” said Zell. His remarks came following reports in Israeli media last week that Trump has already decided to extend the order which prevents the Embassy in Israel from being moved to Jerusalem. I think it best that we pray the LORD’s will and timing be over the move of the US & other embassies back to Jerusalem
4. US Ambassador to President Trump: Not Much Chance for am Israel – PA Peace Deal INN News May 12th
While President Trump has expressed his ?personal commitment? to help reach a final status agreement between Israel and the Palestinian Authority, senior advisers are less than optimistic such a deal can be brokered, and have made their skepticism clear to the president. President Trump is scheduled to arrive in Israel in 10 days, a trip that will likely kick off his much-anticipated effort to bring Israel and the PA back to the negotiating table. A week before Trump arrives, USA Ambassador to Israel David Friedman will land in Israel. Friedman, a long-time Trump confidant, has reportedly warned the president that the chances of brokering a comprehensive deal between Israel and the PA are exceedingly slim. Two senior officials have said that Friedman and others told the president that efforts to secure a lasting peace would be unlikely to succeed. ?Trump heard this from Friedman, from other people on his team, and also from people outside the White House whom he consulted,? one official was quoted as saying. Nevertheless, Trump apparently remains optimistic. Lets continue to pray that there will never be a peace treaty based on un-Biblical foundations
5. Hamas: Nothing Has Changed Media Line News May 13th
Lest we be confused by the recent news stories about a ?new? Hamas charter that softens some of its most rabid terrorism, Hamas leadership has clarified the point. According to a senior Hamas official, the original 1988 charter calling for the destruction of the Jewish state remains very much in effect. Because of the media focus of attention on the changes in language in the supplemental document and the media?s insistence that because of a reference to pre-1967 borders being acceptable to Hamas the charter supplement somehow implied acceptance of Israel?s right to exist. The official set the record straight. ?When people say that Hamas has accepted the 1967 borders, like others, it is an offence to us. We have reaffirmed the unchanging constant principles that we do not recognize Israel; we do not recognize the land occupied in 1948 as belonging to Israel and we do not recognize that the people who came here (Jews) own this land. Therefore, there is no contradiction between what we said in the document and the pledge we have made to God [Allah] in our original charter.? Pray for the people of Gaza to oust Hamas
6. Israeli President to New US Ambassador: Time to Recognise Jerusalem as Capital INN News May 14th
New US Ambassador to Israel David Friedman met with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin Tuesday, a day after arriving in Israel to begin his service as ambassador. The Israeli president welcomed Friedman, his family, and staff to Israel and congratulated him on his new position. “I’m happy to welcome you and your dear wife to Israel, to Jerusalem, the capital city of Israel, and I’m welcoming you, not only as the President of Israel, but also as a Jerusalemite – seventh generation.” “I know you have been to Israel many times before. But this time you are an ambassador representing the United States of America, Israel’s greatest and most important ally.? Ambassador Friedman begins his term at the US Embassy?s present location in Tel Aviv. While President Trump had pledged to relocate the embassy to Jerusalem, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has said that the president was carefully weighing his decision, and would decide based on the move?s likely impact on future negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority. President Rivlin closed his remarks at the gathering for Ambassador Friedman with a call for recognition of Jerusalem as Israel?s capital ? a reference to deliberations on the issue inside the White House. “Next week we will celebrate 50 years since Jerusalem was united and Jews were able to once again pray at the Western Wall. But Jewish Jerusalem isn’t 50 years old. Since the days of King David, this city has been our capital.” “It is time for the whole world to recognize Jerusalem as the official capital of the State of Israel.” Pray that the US will be a true world leader and be the first nation to reconfirm Jerusalem as the capital city of Israel and then relocate its embassy
7. Arab Gulf States Changing Attitude Towards Israel Wall St Journal May
Attitudes about Jews are beginning to change in some parts of the Arab world. The secretary-general of the Saudi-based Muslim World League, recently pointed to a lesson in coexistence from Islam’s past. “The neighbor of the Prophet Muhammad was a Jew, and when that Jew was ill, the Prophet visited him and gave him kind words,” he said “The hard-liners don’t wish to know that.” The White House said last week that Trump’s first foreign trip as president will feature stops in both Israel and Saudi Arabia. “We have the same enemy, the same threat,” said Saudi Maj. Gen. Asiri, the kingdom’s deputy intelligence chief, “And we are both close allies of the Americans.” Most of the influential TV news channels and pan-Arab newspapers are owned by the Gulf states. “On TV, we no longer hear the usual words ‘Israeli aggression.’ Now, it’s mostly about the ‘Persian aggression,'” said Ahmad al-Ibrahim, a Saudi political analyst. Let’s pray Isaiah 19:23-24 over the Arab nations and Israel