March of Hope by Women Wage Peace – personal perspectives
morning march (photo: Lisa Loden)
As someone who longs for and actively pursues peace, to join a march with thousands of women who share this passion was not much of a question for me. Despite never having taken part in a public march, this one, from the first time I heard about it seemed right. It was more than right; it was a hope inspiring journey for me. From early morning when I left my home to travel on a bus with women I’d never met to the end of the day when I arrived home near midnight on the same bus, this time with women whose names I now know and who I’ve seen both laugh and weep with happiness and hope, this was an extraordinary day.
The numbers who marched are disputed, but in the end, exact numbers are unimportant. What is important is that thousands of women (and hundreds of men) joined together to publicly proclaim their passion and commitment for peace – for a peacefully negotiated settlement to end the Israeli/Palestinian conflict.
The morning events began near the Dead Sea at the baptismal site of Jesus at the Jordan river with a gathering of several (3-4) thousands from Israel and the Palestinian Authority. I met and exchanged greetings of peace with Arab Muslim women from Ramallah, Tulkarem, Bethlehem, Jenin, Hebron and their nearby villages who were bussed in with the full cooperation of the Palestinian Authority. I watched as Israeli Jewish women from all over Israel embraced their Palestinian counterparts, marched together and spoke words of peace to each other. I saw Christian Israeli Palestinian women, Jewish Israelis and Muslim women embrace. I heard their shared heartfelt words of peace.
We marched down a long hill and gathered at the Jordan to hear women speakers powerfully speak about peace, justice and equality for all. I heard the cry of thousands of mothers for a better future, for another way, for an end to violence, bloodshed, and terror. We raised our voices in Arabic, Hebrew and English singing a song especially composed for this event:
From the West to the East, from the North to the South, hear the mother’s prayer, Bring down the peace, Bring down the peace.
Then we traveled to Jerusalem where we were joined by thousands more, including over one hundred Druze women from the north of Israel. Still singing, we marched together through the streets of Jerusalem, three kilometers to the Prime Minister’s house, ending in a large rally in central Jerusalem. There we heard deeply moving personal stories of the quest for peace and its cost.
All the speakers, from across the wide spectrum of society, from the right and the left, Jews and Arabs, secular, religious, settlers, business women, mothers, politicians, young and old all spoke powerfully about an end to war, peace, justice and equality for all. We were encouraged, even exhorted, to continue, to be steadfast, to believe that we can make a difference; that together we can turn the tide away from war and violence. For the sake of our children, for the children of Israel and Palestine, for our shared future.
As a Messianic Jew in this gathering I could have felt very alone. To my knowledge, in the morning I was one of less than five from my community. In the afternoon and evening I don’t know if there were any from my community, but I never felt alone. I was with sisters who share my heart and God’s heart for peace. Again and again I heard the words “Blessed are the peacemakers” and from Psalm 34 “who is the one who loves life. . . let him turn from evil, do good, seek peace and pursue it.” Together, thousands of like-hearted people, we said no to despair and death and yes to hope and life. My joy in this day was colored with sadness for the absence of those from my community. Hope, together with longing, was kindled in my heart for my Messianic sisters and brothers to walk in solidarity with me and those many from among our people Israel who are seeking peace and pursuing it, together crossing every divide and difference the world can lay in our paths.
Below are the thoughts of other believers, Israeli and Palestinian, who participated in the March of Hope.
This past Wednesday, I marched with 4,000 Israeli and Palestinian women at Jesus’ baptismal site near Jericho, chanting “Women walk for peace.” I walked to show solidarity with my Israeli Jewish, Palestinian Muslim and Palestinian Christian sisters that I, as an evangelical Palestinian, believe that our leaders should come to the negotiation table to make a political agreement that will end our conflict.
Listening to the Nobel Peace Prize winner Leymah Gbowee, a devout Christian who mobilized her church and community to end the civil war in Liberia, and Hind Khoury, director of Kairos, I felt empowered that we, as Christians, can play a role in achieving a just and equal peace. Leymah’s words stay with me: “As we stand in this space of equality, justice and oneness, the message that I get as a Liberian coming to Israel and working with Israelis and Palestinians is that this space is a representation that we are doing peace because we are equal and none of us is better than the other.” May this be our prayer and call to action as Palestinian Christians and Messianic Jews.
–Shadia Qubti, Israeli-Palestinian Christian
Sukkot, the Feast of Booths, is a time where Jews remember that G-d brought us out of Egypt and we dwelled in the desert for 40 years as the generation changed their perspective from that of slaves to free people.
This Sukkot, thousands of women voluntarily gathered in the desert, this time as free women, to protest the idea that we are enslaved to war, conflict, or politicians that seemingly dictate our futures. And just as it was 4000 years ago, so it is now — they do not dictate our futures.
Several concepts stood out to me. First, there is the biblical concept that when you walk out of the land, G-d will give you the land where you put your foot (Gen 13:17). Second, do not believe them when they tell you it cannot be done (“There is no partner”) (Psa 1:1). Third, G-d requires us to do justice (Mic 6:8) and walk humbly. As Israelis, we have walked too proudly for too long, thinking that we can treat people unjustly and it will not affect us.
To me this march demonstrated that we are changing our mentality again, from slaves to free people.
–Hedva Haymov, Israeli Messianic Jew
It sent chills down my spine to see so many people gathering together to bring an unmistakable message to the world: that peace is possible, that there is hope, and that Israelis and Palestinians can work together, walk together, and cheer together for a better future for all the people of this land. The sense of solidarity was astounding!
Leymah Gbowee’s inspiring words were dynamite. She could hardly speak two words without the audience breaking out in rapturous applause, because everything she was saying was so poignant, expressing what many of us feel but have had a hard time articulating within our respective communities in the (oftentimes) very isolating and exhausting grind of day-to-day peace work.
The march reminded me that I am not alone. There are thousands all around me who believe as I do and share the same vision for equality, justice, security, and freedom for all. Peace is happening, and has been happening, for a very long time. Wednesday’s march simply made visible the invisible and brought to the fore a current that, though often overlooked, is no less real.
–Elie Pritz, Christian in Israel
It gave me hope to see all these women (and men) come together for peace in light of recent despair and violence. While our situation in Palestine is quite different from Liberia, it was moving to hear Leymah Gbowee encourage us from her experience waging peace in her country’s dangerous and violent conflict.
Women Wage Peace put aside issues that divide and committed to peace. As a Palestinian, I was uncomfortable that they did not address core issues like the expulsion of Palestinians in 1948 and 1967, the settlements, and more. At the same time, I wanted to show solidarity and my commitment to peace.
I was happy to see Hind Khoury, a Palestinian Christian, address the Israelis: “Will you last? Peace is hard work. Poverty, unemployment, insecurity, daily oppression and violence cannot endure. We also want our children to live, to love, to have a family, to have a decent and secure world, and to enjoy freedom.”
As a Palestinian Christian, I was proud to walk in solidarity with Palestinian Muslims, demonstrating that we as Palestinians want an end to the conflict, we want peace, and we are partners for peace.
–Shireen Awwad Hilal, Palestinian Christian
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Aggressive Humility, or “The Wall”
Recently while praying over a situation affecting many of our friends both in Israel and internationally, I saw a picture in my heart of a massive stone wall, indicating the difficulty of the problem. The wall was too big to destroy or to climb over.
The bottom of the wall was not connected to the ground, with some space between the two. There was light coming through the strip between the wall and the ground. The light was emanating from the other side of the wall.
The wall represented the pride, ego and honor of the leaders involved. The solution to the situation was on the other side of the wall—represented by the light. The strip below the wall was large enough for a person to pass through to the other side if he simply bowed down low enough.
There was no other obstacle. The space was open. Anyone could pass through to the “enlightened” solution. The only thing that had to happen was for the leaders to humble themselves… and everyone else for that matter. Nothing else was needed. With humility the situation could become glorious.
It’s such a simple yet challenging principle of Scriptures. If we humble ourselves, God will lift us up (James 4:10, Matthew 23:12). If we are prideful, God purposely hides from us His wisdom and knowledge (Matthew 11:25-29).
Pride was the cause of the first sin, and the root of satanic rebellion. If we can avoid that one temptation, we will be on a good start for the rest of our spiritual “walk.” As Yeshua humbled Himself, so should we (Philippians 2:5-9).
However, pride often seems to just “spring up” by itself. We have to push it down. We have to humble ourselves in a rather “aggressive” way. Yet humility almost always seems to bring about much positive fruit.
This article originally appeared on Revive Israel, October 20, 2016, and reposted with permission.
Asher Intrater is the founder and apostolic leader of Revive Israel Ministries, and oversees Ahavat Yeshua Congregation in Jerusalem, and Tiferet Yeshua Congregation in Tel Aviv. Asher was one of the founders of Tikkun International with Dan Juster and Eitan Shishkoff, and serves on the board of the Messianic Alliance of Israel and Aglow International.
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Thoughts on Bereshit
This week’s Parasha is Bereshit, Genesis 1.1 – 6.8.[i] In his introduction to the Koren Siddur, Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks notes, “The opening chapter of Genesis, with its account of creation, evokes a sense of order. Each day has its task; each life-form has its place; and the result (until the birth of sin) was harmony.”[ii] As the narrative in Bereshit continues, disharmony grows further until:
… Adonai saw that the wickedness of humankind was great on the earth, and that every inclination of the thoughts of their heart was only evil all the time. So Adonai regretted that He made humankind on the earth, and His heart was deeply pained. So Adonai said, “I will wipe out humankind, whom I have created, from the face of the ground, from humankind to livestock, crawling things and the flying creatures of the sky, because I regret that I made them.” (Genesis 6.5-7)
The disharmony reached the point that the Creator of the Universe, who once said that all His work was very good (Genesis 1.31), seemingly reached the point of regretting His own handiwork. Then, in the very next breath He presents His solution for curtailing the disharmony— Noah, who “found favor in Adonai’s eyes” (Genesis 6.8).
This week’s parasha ends here. We do not discover why or how Noah found favor in the eyes of the LORD until next week’s portion. Taking a peak at the beginning of next week’s reading, we see that the sages saw a common link between Noah and Enoch. Their names in Hebrew are similar חנח (Enoch) and נח (Noah) and they are the only two men recorded in the Scripture to have “walked with God” (Genesis 5.22, 24 & 6.9). The JPS Commentary on Genesis 5.22 describes this “walking with God” as “a life spent in full accord with God’s will and in close intimacy with Him.”[iii] Later the Psalmist would write, “From ADONAI a man’s steps are made firm, when He delights in his way. Though he stumble, he will not fall headlong, for ADONAI is holding his hand,’ (Psalms 27.23-24). Possibly Rav Shual had in mind this idea of walking with the LORD when he encouraged the believers in Rome
…those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Ruach set their minds on the things of the Ruach. (Romans 8.5).
The beginning verses of this week’s Haftarah (Isaiah 42.5-21) links the concepts of “walking with God,” “holding His hand,” and “living by the Ruach”.
Thus says God, ADONAI, who created the heavens and stretched them out, who spread out the earth and what comes from it, who gives breath to the people on it, and Ruach to those who walk in it — “I, ADONAI, called You in righteousness, I will take hold of Your hand, I will keep You and give You as a covenant to the people, as a light to the nations… (Isaiah 42.5-6)
It is the LORD who gives the Ruach for guidance, and holds our hands as we walk with Him in case we stumble. Our security, our harmony, is not in the cares or distractions of the world, but rests solely in His care. Another prophet expressed the LORD’s desired relationship thusly,
He has told you, humanity, what is good, and what Adonai is seeking from you: only to practice justice, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God. (Micah 6:8)
Like Enoch, Noah, and countless other witnesses throughout the ages, let’s “walk with the LORD” and thereby find “favor in His sight.”
[i] Unless otherwise noted, all Scriptures are from the Tree of Life (TLV) Translation of the Bible.
[ii] The Koren Siddur with Introduction, Translation and Commentary by Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks. Koren Publishers, Jerusalem 2009. p xxii
[iii] The JPS Torah Commentary, Genesis; The Traditional Hebrew Test with the New JPS Translation and Commentary by Nahum M. Sarna. Jewish Publication Society, Philadelphia, 1989. p 43
Michael Hillel with his wife Vered and their three children, made aliyah from the US in late 80s, and in biblical fashion has, for the last 27 years, done whatever his hands have found to do. In 2013 Michael began working on a MA degree in Messianic Jewish Theology. Using the tools learned from his studies, he has been writing teaching and devotional materials from both the Tanakh and Apostolic Writings. Since Messianic Judaism shares a communal context with both Judaism and Christianity, he incorporates material from both traditionally Jewish and Christian perspectives.
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The Gospel, the New Covenant, and the Messianic Faith are neither Jewish nor Greek
Jude 3 – contend earnestly for the faith which was once-for-all delivered to the saints
[Lk 22:19-20]; 1Cor 11:23-26 – remember Yeshua and His death until He comes again
The heart and foundation of the gospel and of the New Testament and of our faith as Christians is Yeshua the Messiah and Him crucified, risen from the dead, ascended to glory, and coming again. Our sins are forgiven through faith in the once-for-all sacrificial and atoning death of the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of the Living God. We have fellowship (communion) with God our Father and with His Son, and with one another through the Holy Spirit indwelling all who are born again by the Word and the Spirit of God.
Does this sound like the religious teaching of Judaism? Does it sound like the wisdom of the world’s great thinkers and philosophers? NO! For the cross is an offence to the one born with natural honor and privilege before God, such as to the Jews being the chosen people, and a rock of stumbling to our fleshly pride and ambitions. For the wise of this world, the cross – the means of a sure and shameful death for the transgressor – is foolishness, simplistic. Yet for the one who believes, whether Jew or Gentile, the gospel of Jesus Christ and the Kingdom of God is the power of God unto salvation!
The gospel breaks down the wall of hostility between God and mankind, and also between Jews and gentiles, men and women, free and slave – in such a new way that it was a mystery known only to God until He revealed it in His own time to the Apostle Paul, in particular, who then made it known to the gentiles (nations), to kings, and to the children of Israel.
From the beginning in the Garden of Eden, the LORD God promised a Deliverer – a Savior – from the devil and evil to humankind through the Seed of the woman. We learn in Romans how this deliverance extends to the whole creation. To Abram the gospel was preached in that God told him that through him all the families of the earth shall be blessed. It is faith such as Abraham showed which characterizes the faith of the true Messianic: he believed the LORD; he believed what God said; he believed and trusted in the LORD that God Almighty could and would fulfill His promises, even if He had to raise the dead to do it! The God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob is the living God of the living, the God whose power raises the dead to life eternal! The Creator of the heavens and the earth is the one God of both the Jews and the Gentiles!
Is this what Judaism or any other of the world’s religions teaches? Yet it is this good news and covenant of grace through repentance and faith in God which Yeshua came to bring and to fulfill. He came to fulfill all that is written in the Law and the Prophets; He came to fulfill the word of God His Father – not the words or interpretations of anyone else. The Jews and the nation of Israel as a whole rejected Him; so have too the gentile nations and peoples once the gospel is brought to them. For the gospel allows no flesh to glory in itself or to approach God and live: we must all – both Jews and gentiles from whatever nation or culture – be born again. When we are baptized, we acknowledge not only Jesus’ death for us and His resurrection, but also our own death in His death, and our own resurrection in His, that we may no longer live unto ourselves but rather unto God in holiness and righteousness. Therefore, there is continuity with our past life as unbelievers in that the Law and the prophecies are still being worked out fully; yet there is discontinuity in that we are alive in the reality of resurrection life, eternal life by the indwelling Holy Spirit –no longer under law but under grace. The Holy Spirit will fulfill in us the righteousness of the Law, which we establish by faith.
The gospel and new covenant are so contrary and transcendent to the natural man’s religion and intellect. Let’s consider just a few points regarding Israel, since God gave Israel as an example for the Church and to the world:
- The religious and political leaders (in whom the people were represented) claimed that Yeshua consistently broke the Sabbath regulations, even as He was manifesting the grace and mercies and compassion of God the Father towards others . (Mt 12:2,10; Mk 3:2; Lk 23:14; John 7:23; Is. 58)
- They claimed that He was demon-possessed and cast out demons by the power of Satan, even as He was bringing the reality of the Kingdom of God into their midst. (Mt 12:24; John 7:20; 10:19-20)
- They called Jesus a blasphemer because He claimed to be God’s Son, or that God was His Father, thus making Himself equal with God; they accused Him of blasphemy because He, as a man, forgave sins. (Mk 2:7; John 5:28; 10:31-39; cp. 1 Chron. 22:9-10)
- The meek shall inherit the earth, rather than the rich and mighty who trust in their wealth and power and wisdom. (Mt 5:5; 19:23-26; Jer 9:23)
- Many of the disciples themselves stopped following (walking with) Jesus when He spoke about eating His flesh and drinking His blood – a thought contrary to Israel’s law received from God. (John 6:66; Lev. 17:11-12; Gen. 9:4; Acts 15:18-20)
The apostles themselves were scattered when the Shepherd was crucified. (Mt 26:31; Zech 13:7)
- Before knowing the Lord, did we see any beauty in Him that we desired Him? Did we not, each in our own way perhaps, despise and reject Him? Did we not consent to His death, assuming that there must have been some justification for it because of some sin of His own rather than for ours? Paul, as Saul, was a blasphemer and a persecutor of Yeshua (who was already exalted back in Heaven) through the believers, the Body of Messiah, while being himself a zealous and God-fearing Israeli! (Is 53; 1Tim 1:13; Gal 1:13; Acts 9:4-5)
- A new commandment has been given God’s elect: to love on the level of God’s love to us as shown and demonstrated through Jesus. (Mt 5:43-48; John 15:12)
Brothers and sisters, the Christian testimony of Jesus being the Messiah and the Son of God the Father is confessed by both Jews and Gentiles who have believed and obeyed this revelation. The gospel crosses every nation, culture, and language; the gospel brings Heaven’s rule and authority into the midst of the rule of the prince of this world’s power. Jesus came to bring a sword into the world and to give His peace to the believer. The church of the first-born includes all from Adam and Eve onward who have put their faith for salvation in the Creator God Almighty, who later revealed Himself as YEHOVAH, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob, and still later as the God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ.
The equality of Jews and Gentiles before God under the New Covenant in Christ is still difficult for both to accept and be reconciled to. The Jews wanted to stone Yeshua and, later, Paul when they spoke of their mission including gentiles. For about 15 years after the death and resurrection of the Lord and after Pentecost (Shavuot), the early church was Jewish in character. The Jews thought that all gentile believers had to become Jewish. The Holy Spirit and the council at Jerusalem declared otherwise in the wisdom of God. Later in Church history the opposite occurred: the non-Jewish believers thought that all Jewish believers had to become gentile, fitting the cultural norm wherever they were living.
The truth is that in Messiah God has made of the two one new man – one loaf representing Christ’s one body in unity. Today there is still a spiritual battle being fought to bring the Body of Christ to full maturity of the faith of the Son of God – comprised of both Jews and Gentile believers, but not being either quite Jewish or ethnic in character. Our unity in Messiah and our love for one another is our testimony in and to the world that we are disciples of the Lord Jesus and that God sent Him and loves us as our Father, even as He loved Jesus.
The gospel is God’s good news – offering peace on earth, goodwill towards mankind. Give thanks and praise His Name!
This article originally appeared on Streams in the Negev, December 19, 1998, and reposted with permission.
Howard Bass is the congregation pastor/leader of Nachalat Yeshua (Yeshua's Inheritance) in Beer Sheva, Israel.
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A mosaic of nations, and a violin in the vineyard for the King
Christian volunteers harvesting grapes (Photo: HaYovel)
Question: What’s the connection between grape harvesting in a Jewish settlement in the “occupied West Bank,” the UNESCO vote on the Temple Mount, the Feast of Tabernacles, and thousands of Christian visitors marching through the streets of Jerusalem?
Answer: They all point to the coming of a King – so that we should stand and lift up our heads
The strains of soft music float from the bow of a violinist standing in the vineyards of Har B’racha – the Biblical Mountain of Blessing.
Clippers in work-stained hands, Christians from West Papua, New Zealand, The Netherlands, Sweden, Canada and the United States cut bunches of blue-black merlot grapes high in the hinterland of Israel. Others beat the last olives from trees in a nearby field. Wine and oil: two of the symbols of the feast they have come to enjoy.
Gentiles are completing the harvesting here; the vines belong to the indigenous people who have planted them throughout the mountains of Samaria – Jews returned from centuries in dispersion to lovingly and sacrificially restore the famed fruitfulness of their ancestral land.
The ‘strangers’ are among an estimated 5000 Christians who – foretasting the future – have come up to Jerusalem from many nations for Tabernacles, a harvest celebration, one of the Feasts of the Lord.
From where they stand in the vineyard they can see Elon More, where Abraham stood when God said, “…look from the place where you are – northward, southward, eastward, and westward; for all the land which you see I give to you and your descendants forever…” (Genesis 13:14-15)
From the Hayovel community comes this beautiful, challenging song – I believe – an anthem for Christian Zionists.
What also rings in these Gentile hearts are the admonitions of the Hebrew prophets who foretold, 2500 years ago, that after the Jews had completed their long years in captivity, God would bring them back and settle them in this very land, where they would plant trees and eat their fruit, plant vines and drink their wine as they prepared for the coming of the Son of David – the Lion of Judah, King of Israel.
A day before driving into Samaria – on the day UNESCO foolishly but deliberately denied the Judeo-Christian world’s relationship to the place where Israel’s God chose to put His name – these same Christians stood on the steps to the hill they know beyond doubt – for God says it – will accommodate the royal residence of this coming King.
Addressing them, Likud Knesset Member Yehuda Glick said that never, in the history of humanity, “has there ever been a nation that has left its homeland and returned to its homeland.
“And here we are – after we were sent from our homeland 2000 years ago we have come back and we have come home.”
This unprecedented and unparalleled preservation and restoration of an indigenous people was, Glick said “all in the Book.”
“Moses told us that God would send us to the four corners of the earth, and that He would bring us back from there.”
The times we are living in are without parallel. A thousand years ago, the rabbi continued, “you could have come to this land and walked in the steps of Abraham and Joshua and David.
“But today you can come to the land reconstituted in fulfillment of the words of Jeremiah and Isaiah.”
Pointing to the new super highways and high-speed train lines for which tunnels have been burrowed through many mountains, Glick declared this construction to be nothing less than the fulfillment of prophecy. Zion is being rebuilt, he said, “for the millions of pilgrims that will come from all over the world” as Zechariah foretells (Zechariah 14:16; Psalm 102:16).
“We didn’t come here to play football and to build malls. We came back to be a light to the nations” and “we are standing at the Gate to Jerusalem,” Glick declared, reading Psalm 122.
The name of the city, he said, means city of peace and also the city that unites.
“This beautiful psalm praises not Israel the land nor Israel the people… It praises a moment when two lovers meet each other … when the people meet Jerusalem.”
Said Glick: “In the world there is Jerusalem and there is Babylon. In Babylon everybody was in agreement – was forced to think the same. Jerusalem wants everyone to be special and unique.”
The Temple Mount, Glick continued, is “the origin of the energy of our souls.” From Jerusalem all men will be calling on the name of the one true God.
“We will be a mosaic of nations with our different ways of praying and singing.”
Swaying in the way Jews do – praying with his whole body – this remarkable* Jewish teacher led the Christians to sing in Hebrew: “Hodu l’adonai ki tov” (Give thanks to the Lord for He is good) and “Anna Adonai Hoshia na” – (Please God save us).
In return, the Christians sang the words from Psalm 122: “Shalu shalom Yerushalayim” (Pray for the peace of Jerusalem) – a prayer they believe will be answered with the coming of the King – the Prince of Peace.
Christians around the world assert their belief in the return of Messiah to this earth. What one could well ask them, though, is just where they think He is coming back to?
For most Christians, Israel and Jerusalem are hardly relevant to the future of their faith.
A Church that spiritualises its notions of the coming Kingdom in its interpretation of the Word is fast asleep on the geographical restoration work being done by God, the physical preparation being set in place, and the furious counterattack by the enemy.
The most recent glaring example of this played out in UNESCO’s foolish attempt to sever the Temple Mount from its Judeo-Christian history, and the Church’s abject failure to see that the battle for the heart of the Kingdom is being fought on the ground…and that God, watching over His Word to perform it, is also watching the Church to see how it will engage in this battle.
God has sounded serious warnings to Believers who are lukewarm in their faith.
Here is a reminder: If we want to plug into the light and become hot rather than lukewarm, then we must plug into the heart of our God.
His heart is Israel-centred – physically and geographically Israel-centred.
This is the God-strand of the unbreakable three-fold cord that is God, His people and the Covenant land (the Land, Jerusalem and the Temple Mount).
The Lord has appeared of old to me, saying:
“Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love;
Therefore with lovingkindness I have drawn you.
Again I will build you, and you shall be rebuilt,
O virgin of Israel!
You shall again be adorned with your tambourines,
And shall go forth in the dances of those who rejoice.
You shall yet plant vines on the mountains of Samaria;
The planters shall plant and eat them as ordinary food.
For there shall be a day
When the watchmen will cry on Mount Ephraim,
‘Arise, and let us go up to Zion,
To the Lord our God.’” (Jeremiah 31:3-6)
* Yehuda Glick’s story
The rabbi told part of his story. In 2006 he had begun to try raise awareness of the future of the temple that will one day stand on the mountain. Then, three years ago, he had held a related event in Jerusalem’s Menachem Begin Center.
“Afterwards I went over to a reporter for Israel National News and told them that only their subscribers would know about this event. But half an hour later the entire world, had heard about it.”
A man on motorbike wearing a white helmet and black clothes had ridden up to him and told him, “You are an enemy of Al-Aqsa” (the mosque on the Temple Mount), before firing four shots point blank into his body.
He should have been dead, Glick said, but God had done a miracle and saved him because, he believes, “My mission wasn’t over.” After his recovery he was made a Member of Knesset (parliament).
“When God saved my life I promised that not only will I not stop what I am doing [concerning Jerusalem and the Temple] – but I will go ahead. I have published a book and trained guides, and I will teach any group who invites me. God told me to teach this in the Knesset and to all men. I appoint you as ambassadors. Go and teach,” he told Christians gathered in Jerusalem for the Feast of Tabernacles.
This article originally appeared on Jerusalem Watchman, October 23, 2016, and reposted with permission.
Stan has lived in Israel for half of his life even though he was born to a Gentile couple serving on the mission field in the small kingdom of Swaziland. Following three years volunteering on Israeli collective farms in the 1980s, he worked as a political reporter for the South African newspaper, The Daily Dispatch – where his pen had its training during apartheid’s waning years. He has traveled to various nations, speaking to Christians about developments in Israel. In 2011 he was accredited by the Israel Ministry of Tourism as a tour guide, and takes individuals, small groups, families, busloads and helicopter-loads of Christians around God’s Land.