‘Passion’ worship movement comes to Israel
In what has been billed as “more than a concert,” the powerhouse worship group Passion will pause in the midst of touring Israel to host an event in Jerusalem next week to glorify God.
“This is the heart of Passion as we pause to gather together in the midst of traveling the Holy Land to collectively lift up the name of Jesus,” Misty Paige, Passion operations manager told KNI (Kehila News Israel).
The organization has opened the event to anyone who wants to attend.
Passion is known for several top Christian songs, including “How Great is Our God,” “God of this City” and “One Thing Remains.” Currently the group consists of Kristian Stanfill, Brett Younker and Melodie Malone, but well known Passion alumni include Chris Tomlin, David Crowder and Christy Nockels.
Passion Worship Night in Israel is part of the organization’s first official Holy Land Tour and is being facilitated by Premier Cruises together with Keshet Journeys. Some 500 people will be touring Israel with the organization’s leaders this month. The worship night will be held on Oct. 25 at The Hebrew University Amphitheatre and will include a teaching by Pastor Louie Giglio who founded and heads the organization.
Passion began as a movement 20 years ago calling for a generation to live lives that glorify God, based on Isaiah 26:8:
“Yes, Lord, walking in the way of your laws,
we wait for you;
your name and renown
are the desire of our hearts.”
Louie and Shelly Giglio, based in Atlanta, began the Passion Movement in 1995 in order to encourage Christian college students to strengthen their relationship with God. The organization holds worship nights around the United States and annual conferences. Last year, 55,000 people gathered in the Georgia Dome for the Passion Conference.
“We believe that Jesus has given us a unique platform to be a gathering place for churches all over the world — and we are excited to lift up the name of Jesus in Israel with you!” Passion said in its invitation the the Israel Worship Night. “We have also opened this event to the public and would love to have as many as possible be part of this night.”
Passion hosts Worship Nights around the United States and wherever the group tours.
“Rooted in the Passion movement, we are committed to leading people toward renewed intimacy with God and fresh encounters of worship wherever we go in the world,” Paige said.
Passion has won four Dove Awards and eight of its albums have debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Christian Albums Charts. The group’s latest album, “Whole Heart,” features a collection of songs recorded at conferences in Atlanta and Washington, D.C.
The event will begin at 6 p.m. on Oct. 25. Tickets can be purchased in advance or at the door.
For more information and tickets, please visit https://268generation.com/passion-worship-nights-in-israel/
To learn more about Louie Giglio, visit https://www.louiegiglio.com/
To listen to Passion music, click here: https://passionmusic.com/
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Netanyahu to Christian media: Continue to tell the truth
Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu thanked journalists attending the Christian Media Summit for their ongoing support and, responding to a suggesting, said he would consider appointing an ambassador to the Christian world reflecting Israel’s recognition of it evangelical allies.
“A great alliance with the evangelicals is something we do not apologize for,” Netanyahu said on Sunday. “We have no better friends in the world.”
Netanyahu told the gathered Christian media that they are “ambassadors of truth. You’re not merely the greatest ambassadors that Israel has around the world, you are champions of truth.”
“Tell the truth about who wants peace and who doesn’t want peace,” he implored the journalists.
Netanyahu said that Israel is the only country in the Middle East where the Christian community thrives and grows. He used the Palestinian town of Bethlehem as an example where the Christian population dwindled from from 80 percent to now 20 percent because “Christians are being pressured. Christians are being persecuted.”
“Israel is the only country that protects the human rights of all. We protect the religious rights of all,” he said. “We don’t just protect Christian sites — we protect Christian people. Christians should enjoy all freedoms to worship as they please in the Middle East and anywhere else. And the only place in the Middle East where they can do so is Israel. We have no better friends in the world than our Christian friends.”
The second annual Christian Media Summit, which continues until Wednesday, is sponsored by the Government Press Office. The sessions also featured U.S. Ambassador to Israel David Friedman and several Knesset members.
Friedman told the reporters on Sunday that be believes the world secretly respects the U.S. administration’s recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital despite a vote at the United Nations of two thirds condemning the move.
“Every nation, once off the public stage, has nothing but respect for what the president has done,” he said. “Because the president spoke the truth and, as we learn from the Book of John, ‘the truth will set us free.’”
America became the first country to move its embassy to Jerusalem on May 14 followed by Guatemala and Paraguay a few days later, though the latter has since returned to Tel Aviv.
During a question-and-answer session with Netanyahu, Monique Rijkers, a Christian pro-Israel activist from Jakarta, asked the prime minister to open his country’s borders to Indonesian Christians to visit the Holy Land, referring to a recent ban on visas issued to Indonesians.
“I will work on the visa, I will see what I can do,” Netanyahu said.
Netanyahu added that he wants to promote diplomatic ties with Indonesia, home to the world’s largest Muslim population.
“Indonesia is very, very important for us. It’s a very important country. It’s one of the last countries on earth that doesn’t have an open and robust relationship with Israel,” he said. “We would like to have excellent relations with them.”
Netanyahu also hinted at burgeoning diplomatic ties with African Muslim-majority nations. He said many countries there are interested in cooperating with Israel in fighting Islamic terrorism.
This “paves the way for additional countries to recognize the State of Israel, and I think you will be hearing about them very soon,” he said.
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SURVEY: Believers share their thoughts on home groups and congregations
In trying to determine new congregational trends and how believers feel about having their needs met in a congregation/home group, KNI recently conducted a brief survey asking mostly Jewish believers in Israel (and a few others) their opinion about the following questions:
Do you think home groups are the legitimate wave of the future? Do you attend a congregation and do you prefer it to a home group? If so, why? Do you attend a home group instead of or in addition to a congregation? Explain why.
Ben writes: I have always held that home groups are a core of community life and the best environment for discipleship, exercising the gifts of the spirit, and outreach. I believe that the weekly congregational service should be less of an emphasis than the engagement within home groups. I do attend a congregation. I think the weekly congregational service serves a different function than that of a home group. I think both are important. Many home groups become insular and do not maintain the accountability required so that they don’t stagnate. There should be a balance between the larger, corporate gatherings for worship (much as the Temple or synagogue was to the earliest Messianic believers) and the home group. The home group is where one can really build relationships of service, prayer, and growth together in the Lord.
Rob writes: I don’t know if home groups are the legitimate wave of the future (i.e., I won’t predict that that’s the way the body of the Messiah is going to go vis-a-vis fellowships with authority structures.). However, I don’t believe it would be the right way for the body to go, en masse, because I don’t think it inherently supports authority and accountability structures as described in the Scriptures. I attend a congregation. I do not attend a home group. The reason is that there is no home group in our congregation. I would attend a Bible study if there was one available, but it would be in addition to, not in place of, a congregation.
Eli writes: I do think home groups are not only legitimate but also important for the future of the movement. When there is a smaller number of people who meet in more private and informal setting of a home group, it is much easier to be able to build relationships to the level of personal friendship, prayer on a deeper level, etc. I am leading a small fellowship like this, and despite the usual attendance being 12 people, I never get upset that we are so small. We all know each other by name which helps us to have a closer relationship than what would happen in a big congregation, and we don’t have the issue of raising funds to pay rent and utilities.
I do not see a problem with attending a congregation at the same time. If anybody from our group is interested, from time to time, in participating in a service with a different format, I am definitely not against it. After all, my goal is to work with the people that were sent by God to me for a period of time (a month, a year, the rest of their lives…), and if He wants them to go to another place, who am I to hold onto them. In my opinion, both a congregation and a home group are the ways for God’s flock to be fed, to have an opportunity to fellowship with others, and to serve.
Helen writes: I do believe that home groups are the legitimate wave of the future. I believe there is an intimacy as well as the ability to truly share with each other that gets lost with big congregations. I no longer attend a large congregation and truly wish there was a vital and caring home group in my area. The few times that attempts were made to start a home group, I found a real sense of community, breaking bread, delving into life’s challenges on a more personal basis as well as an opportunity to become close to one another and forge a family type relationship as opposed to showing up once a week at a congregation and getting swallowed up by the crowd and becoming more invisible and lonely as time went on.
Jesse writes: I know that home groups are very popular nowadays, especially for people who’ve already been members of various congregations and have been hurt or disappointed in/by them. I personally don’t think that home groups on their own are the wave of the future. I attend a congregation and yes, I prefer it to a home group. When I first came to Israel, I was a teenager and the Messianic body didn’t have the wide variety of congregations we have now. All we had, at that time, was a small home group, which I did attend for a number of years. The worship was basic, and there was no one near my age with whom I could fellowship. Gathering in a home group was better than not gathering at all with believers, but as it was, I had an intense dislike for this manner of gathering which has affected my how I feel about home groups today. Children and youth NEED other kids with whom to fellowship, whether it’s a youth conference or youth ministry but home groups usually can’t offer that. On the other hand, I feel that small groups as part of a larger congregation are a wonderful way for people to get to know one another better (when there usually isn’t time enough at the weekly congregational meeting), for them to pray for one another and get involved in one another’s lives. I’m very much for small groups as part of a larger congregation.
Alex writes: Yes on Home Group wave of future. I attend a congregation but I prefer a weekly home group with a monthly congregational meeting cycle. I attend a home group for relationships, bible study, prayer, and community but I also attend a weekly congregation because I am expected to since I work in ministry. Often I feel I don’t get a lot out of it and that’s why I would like to see a larger community once a month to fellowship with others that do not live near me or that I’m not that involved with daily. Francis Chan has a teaching on all this – he promotes the development of strong communities, and activating the gifts among believers to each other that produces effective evangelism.
Shirley writes: We host a “home group” (Messianic Jewish Fellowship) so really love our small group. We have never felt “called” to be congregational leaders so have purposely kept our group small enough to fit into our living room (12-16 people max). It is a wonderful group of believers who encourage and support each other. All of our people are 50+ years old so we don’t have children in our group. That is the one drawback of home groups — children’s ministries. So, my opinion is that home groups are good supplements to a larger congregation but congregations can offer families, especially, more opportunities than a small group can. We do attend a congregation weekly but we are not involved at all. As an aside, some of our folks only attend our home group but I think they’re missing something by not being in a congregation. On the other hand, isn’t the purpose of a small group to give folks the opportunity to get to know one another better, support and encourage one another, and to help one another? If that happens, it is a wonderful supplement to a congregation, but I don’t think it should replace one.
Carol writes: I do not know if home groups are the wave of the future, but I believe they are important and growing for a reason. Others have claimed that “a new paradigm” is needed to sustain the body. I agree. I am part of a home group, although not regularly. I prefer it to a congregation, because of the structure, formality and scale (even the small ones are too big). A home group seems like a much more natural, convenient and uncomplicated way to sustain one another.
Karen writes: Yes, I feel that home groups are the way forward. I feel that biblical precedents were set with the early followers of Yeshua meeting in homes throughout that period until the diaspora. I believe that believers need fellowship that is meaningful with shared accountability. My husband and I don’t attend a large congregation. We are part of a home group. We feel that the Lord led us out of a congregational fellowship and we only attend a small group where we learn, pray, worship and care for each other. I believe that the early body of believers (what is referred to as “church” in the Greek) such as those in Jerusalem was to represent many groups and not a single congregation. The model of congregations was later imposed by Church Fathers following a pagan model from temples in the Graeco/Roman world. These imposed top down authority and corralled believers into a front facing arrangement that separated laity from clergy. Some were “holier and more learned” than others. This is still mostly the model with paid clergy. For us this model is unbiblical and creates systems, programmes and a mistaken authority. Additionally, we are able to support one another more effectively.
Tali and Bob say: We believe home groups can be fine as long as they’re well planned. They should be led by a mature believer, someone who loves (and seriously studies) the Word and is able to teach and generate good discussion. We believe home groups should be under the covering of a congregation. We’ve been with our fellowship since the spring of 1997.
Chava Stein, the granddaughter of Jewish European immigrants to the U.S., made Aliyah to Israel in 1993. Married to an Israeli, they live in the center of the country.
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Swedish yacht completes sympathy sail to Israel
After a marathon sail from Gothenburg to Herzliya Marina, the Swedish ocean-going yacht Elida arrived in Israel on Oct. 11.
KNI previously reported on the remarkable initiative to support Israel as the Elida was setting out from its home port in Sweden in late August. The 131-foot yacht with its 148-foot-tall mast made an impressive site as it entered the marina after being welcomed and accompanied to port by a fleet of Israeli yachts.
The Elida is Sweden’s pro-Israel answer to the notorious Gaza flotillas. The voyage was organized and funded by a Swedish Christian group that supports Israel. Senior and junior Swedish politicians, priests, journalists and musicians were on board the ship. The crew are captained by Stefan Abrahamsson.
The Elida’s crew are organizing several events for the Israel-supporters aboard the vessel.
As they entered Israeli territorial waters, the crew and passengers rendezvoused at sea with a flotilla of Israeli yachts that escorted the Elida into Herzliya. There they were met by Israeli and Swedish officials, members of the Israeli support team and the media.
The Swedish parliamentarians have returned to Sweden due to the fluid parliamentary situation there following recent elections.
During their visit to Israel, the Elida voyagers will be hosted at Israel’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs. They will also be guests of the Technion university in Haifa before enjoying an evening of festivities and music at Beit Scandinavia in Bat Galim where they will be greeted by the mayor of Haifa.
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Crowdfunding campaign to help Joshua Aaron’s LIVE Concert Album at the Tower of David in Jerusalem
Joshua Aaron needs our help to fund his upcoming live album! For this talented American/Israeli artist, it all started with a passion to share his faith with the people of Israel and boldly sing of his love for the Savior, Yeshua.
His new project will take place this October 30th LIVE at the Tower of David, located within Old City Walls of Jerusalem. He’ll be accompanied by an amazing team of local musicians and friends including Jamie Hilsden & Yaron Cherniak of the band Miqedem, Native American Chief Joseph RiverWind and Dove award-winning Christian singer Aaron Shust to name a few.
As stated by Joshua, “I felt a strong impression on my heart that this isn’t the season to shrink back but to move forward boldly for the King!”
Joshua is hopeful to fill this iconic space with local Messianic believers and Christians visiting from the nations and the team also expects secular Israelis to be in attendance as well.
Several perks are available when contributing to this project including pre-order of the CD or DVD. One very unique level of contribution allows you to join Joshua during his Israel tour. A link will be provided and posted each night (Israel time) for registered virtual tour members.
Tickets are also available on his site www.WorshipinIsrael.com for those residing in Jerusalem at this time. The concert begins at 6:30pm.