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The Israel Report Volume I, Number 5
June 29, 2013
"I will betroth you in faithfulness, and you will acknowledge the Lord."
Israel in the time of the Dire Straits
A narrow gorge near SdeBoker in the Negev south of Beer Sheva.
THE 17TH OF TAMMUZ AND THREE WEEKS "BETWEEN THE STRAITS"
Tuesday, June 25 to Tuesday, July 16
"When I call, answer me my Righteousness-God. In a narrow place you have made wideness for me. Grace me and hear my prayer!" (Psalm 4:1; Robert Alter translation)
Tuesday, June 25, or "The 17th of Tammuz," commemorated the breaching of the walls of Jerusalem before the destruction of both temples. 21-days later, this period of mourning and fasting will culminate on Tuesday, July 16, with Tisha B'Av, or the Ninth of Av, that commemorates the destruction of the First Temple built by Solomon in 586 BC, and the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 AD. These tragic destructions occurred about 656-years apart, and as tradition has it, both were destroyed on the Hebrew Calendar's Ninth Day of Av.
This three-week period is a period sometimes known as "the Dire Straits" or in Hebrew Bein haMetzarim -"between the narrow places." The expression comes from Lamentations 1:3: "All her persecutors overtake her in dire straits." (NKJV), and alludes to terrible things which according to tradition have historically overtaken Jews and Israel itself during this time of the year.
Tisha B'Av, or the "Ninth Day of Av," has been called the "Saddest Day in Jewish History." The 17th of Tammuz also marks the day that Moses broke the Ten Commandment Tablets as he returned from Mount Sinai and found the Israelites worshipping a golden calf. If you would like to read more about The 17th of Tammuz and The Ninth of Av, go here.
We do indeed believe these three weeks to be a time for special sobriety and watchfulness - especially as regards Israel and the seed of Jacob. Yet it is a time attended often attended by unease, dread and superstition - especially as it culminates with the 9th of Av.
God has not given us a spirit of fear. We believe it to be a time for stressing the sovereignty and omnipotence of Elohei-Yisrael -The God of Israel! Of Magen-Avraham-the "Shield of Abraham!" The Earth is the LORD'S - and He is expanding His Kingdom through both space and time!
This is a time for believers in Israel to look forward with the spirit of Caleb and Joshua, to 'take the territory', and the very giants which loom shall be "our bread; their protection [Hebrew: "shadow"] has departed from them, and YHVH is with us. Do not fear them!" (Numbers 14:9).
(Source: Martin and Norma Sarvis; Jerusalem)
- Angelic protection over Israel, over her borders, over the minds and integrity of her leaders during this three-week period.
- Protection over Jews throughout the world during this time.
- For spiritual discernment and integrity over the Body of Messiah in separating the true from the superstitious!
- For the merciful conviction of Jewish hearts during this period by the Holy Spirit (Ruach haKodesh) of God-conviction of sin and righteousness and judgment-and revelation of the ONE who came to redeem us from the straits of sin to release us into a place of freedom and life!
- "From the straits I called to Yah. Yah answered me in a wide-open place. The LORD is for me, I shall not fear. What can humankind do to me . . . All the nations surrounded me. With the LORD's name I cut them down. They swarmed round me, oh they surrounded me. With the LORD's name I cut them down.You pushed me hard to knock me down, but the LORD helped me. My strength and my might [song] is Yah, and He has become my rescue." [Hebrew: yeshuah-'salvation'](Psalm 118:5-14-Robert Alter translation).
Kerry Visits Israel
Kerry Visits Israel:
Adds pressure to Israel/Palestinian peace process,
by presenting requirements and "opportunities" for both parties
Kerry has been making repeated trips (5 in all) to Israel since March, and with each visit, the situation becomes more dangerous. Kerry keeps insisting that this is the time for peace and that huge sacrifices must be made to produce an independent PA State. Naturally, the sacrifices are demanded of Israel, while largely giving the Palestinians a pass. The fact that there are no raw materials for a functional, legitimate, Palestinian State is a moot point in the discussions. One simply must conclude that the international and Arab goal (in this Palestinian State mess) is the annihilation of Israel. The whole Palestinian claim and demand for their own state, is a Trojan horse; perched on top of a feeble house of cards. And yet . . . this seems to be the #1 project of the entire world community!!
The latest word is that P.M. Netanyahu is being told to release 120 Palestinian prisoners, who have been jailed since before the Oslo Accords were signed in 1993. As a goodwill gesture to entice the Palestinians to return to the negotiating table, Israel is supposed to release terrorists with Jewish blood on their hands. How ridiculous is that? Just to get these Palestinian negotiators to the table to talk, Jewish lives are already being put at risk by such a demand . . . and justice is being thrown out the window to be trampled underfoot.
How about if everyone dumps that prisoner release idea, and begins discussions with the basic demand that ALL of the Palestinians agree that Israel has a right to exist? Now that is a reasonable (and a just) STARTING PLACE worth demanding!! Think about it! No one releases terrorists, to bring other terrorists to a negotiating table, so that they can give a massive number of terrorists (who have already covenanted together to kill you) a permanent home on your own property. Such an endeavor is the definition of insanity . . . but that is what Washington is demanding of Israel.
With this kind of help from Washington, we would soon be crushed under the Palestinian agenda, if not for the Lord! Oh, and I should add that the Palestinians are demanding that ALL construction of Jewish homes in East Jerusalem and the "West Bank" be stopped immediately, if we want any Palestinian to talk peace with Kerry. (Private source)
- Pray that NOT ONE SINGLE PALESTINIAN PRISONER is released, and that Israel will have the chutzpah to say, "NO!"
- Pray that Israel will stop trying so hard to please the Obama administration, and the EU, and the Arab League, and the UN, and instead begin to make it a priority and our goal to please YHVH the most.
- There are people, like Deputy Defense Minister, Danny Danon, who are committed to holding onto the truth and onto the Land . . . those, who want to annex the disputed territories and to build upon them legally, rather than kowtow to the Palestinian lies/agenda. Pray for these visionaries to have increased authority, credibility and opportunity. Also pray for their protection.
- Pray that the eyes of Israel's leaders will look to the Lord and not be swayed by the world. Pray for a reverent fear to arise in this nation, that no one would be willing to give up the Land-their inheritance from God-and all would put their trust in Him.
(To read more prayer points, please go here.)
- "Listen to Me, O house of Jacob, and all the remnant of the house of Israel, who have been upheld by Me from birth, who have been carried from the womb; even to your old age, I am He, and even to gray hairs, I will carry you! I have made, and I will bear; even I will carry and will deliver you!" (Isaiah 46:3-4)
1. ELECTED ARAB MK CALLS FOR INTIFADA DURING KNESSET SPEECH
An elected Arab member of Knesset this week called for an Intifada (violent uprising) during the heated debate on a law which proposes solutions to pirate Bedouin settlements in the Negev. MK Afou Agbaria was one of several Arab MKs who got up to the podium to denounce the bill, because one section stipulates Bedouins who have no proof of ownership of the land on which they built their homes will need to relocate to alternative land, which will be given by the government. The plan, proposed by former Minister Benny Begin just before the last elections, will add more Bedouin settlements to the list of those that will receive official recognition, and increase the amount of land that will be handed over to Bedouins as part of an agreement.
The Arab MKs, however, chose to ignore this. While most of the Arab MKs who spoke during the discussion chose to tear up a copy of the proposed bill, MK Agbaria took things one step further. As he spoke at the plenum, he said, "I am in favor of a new Intifada, because you are causing a new Nakba in the Negev." (Nakba, meaning catastrophe in Arabic, is the word described by Arabs to describe the founding of the Jewish State.) Responding to Agbaria, Deputy Finance Minister Mickey Levy said, "Shame on you, a member of Knesset calls for aggression against Israel? You're calling to hurt the country in which you live?" MK Ahmed Tibi also turned to Levy and said, "It is not the right of Arabs in the south to rebel. It is their duty." (Arutz-7) [Reported by: JNN News]
- Pray that the treasonous, hateful, Palestinian members of the Knesset will resign from their posts and not be replaced by others like them . . . or that they will be run out of the Knesset, and have their citizenship revoked on the basis of treason, Those, who call for the destruction of Israel, should not be allowed to be legislators for the State of Israel.
- "You have plowed wickedness, you have reaped injustice, You have eaten the fruit of lies. Because you have trusted in your way, in your numerous warriors, Therefore a tumult will arise among your people, And all your fortresses will be destroyed . . ." (Isaiah 10:13,14)
2. ARAB MKs' INCITEMENT HAS TO STOP
The Knesset must put a stop to unbridled anti-Israel incitement in its halls, MK Nissim Ze'ev said Wednesday in an impassioned speech from the Knesset podium. "The time has come to put a stop to the wild incitement that Members of Knesset voice here," he declared. "They curse the state, attack the state, they insult it. Mr. Knesset Speaker," he said, addressing MK Yuli Edelstein,
"I am begging you, when a Member of Knesset gets up here and says, 'you are criminals, you are thieves, you are cursed,' when he reads a verse of the Quran with all of the curses - stop him!"
Ze'ev said patience had gone too far. "They eat here, drink here, what don't they do? Then they vomit all this excrement on us. Enough." His angry reproach followed a stormy debate during which Arab MKs made a display of ascending to the Knesset podium and ripping up a proposed solution to the ongoing land dispute between Bedouin tribes in the Negev and the government. (Arutz-7) [Reported by JNN]
- Pray that blatant enemy attacks from within Israel's own government will be penalized and blocked. May those who continue to perpetrate them be excluded from the Knesset.
- "I am for peace; but when I speak, they are for war." (Ps. 120:7)
3. LIEBERMAN: ANOTHER ABBAS GESTURE OF DEFIANCE
MK Avigdor Lieberman said, Wednesday, that the recently-reported readiness by Chairman Mahmoud Abbas of the Palestinian Authority to re-open direct talks with Israel was not a matter of peace talks. Lieberman said the strategy Abbas is preparing is one of "more defiance and incitement against Israel which will happen in the framework of the UN General Assembly in September." He added that at the center of the move Abbas is preparing will again be accusations against Israel that it does not want to achieve peace, one more hate speech and requests to be accepted into the various UN agencies, as well as an appeal to be received as a full member of the UN.
Lieberman concluded, "To enable this process Abu-Mazen knows he should first make a few moves to make it look as if he wants peace and so that he will be able to blame Israel." Economics and Trade Minister Naftali Bennett, like Benny Begin and others in the last Netanyahu government, thinks nothing will come of the talks. He believes they will be no more than a game of guilt. Netanyahu is aware of this possibility, but Israel is in a position in which it can't say no to a meeting with Abbas. (INN)
- Pray against this deceptive, manipulative, and entirely illegal scheme on the part of the Palestinian Authority to gradually achieve statehood, via the UN, while sidestepping negotiations with Israel. Pray Israel's leaders will stand strong against US pressures to bend to Palestinian Authority demands and preconditions.
Rockets Fired into Israel Again
Rockets are being fired into Israel from Gaza again!
Supposedly a power struggle of disagreement between Hamas and Islamic Jihad in Gaza is playing a role in these rocket launches. However, it could be that the terrorists are baiting Israel into a larger confrontation with them, to gain greater sympathy and support from the whole Arab Islamic world; manipulating them into coming forth into a war with Israel, on behalf of the "Palestinian struggle."
Whatever this is all about, the IAF will be hitting back hard on Gaza. There are currently some discussions going on, in some circles, about the Jews re-taking Gaza and cleaning it out. After all, Gaza is part of Judah's biblical inheritance from YHVH. Israel handed it over a few years ago for a promise of peace . . . and got increased terror attacks in return. (Private source)
- Pray that the terror factions in Gaza and elsewhere would really begin to battle each other for ascendency . . . destroying each other and making it clear to the world that this will never work.
- Pray protection over all the Jews (and over the sojourners with Israel) against these rocket attacks.
- Pray for the IAF to have skill, wisdom, supernatural intelligence, and accuracy when it comes to responding to these attacks.
- Thank the Lord for the period of quiet that southern Israel has enjoyed since the end of Operation Pillar of Defense (November 2012). Ask the Lord to shield this part of the country from the violence in Gaza and calm their hearts.
(Read more prayer points here.)
- "Deliver me, O LORD, from evil men; preserve me from violent men, who plan evil things in their hearts; they continually gather together for war."
(Psalm 140:1, 2)
The Situation in Syria
The Situation in Syria
1. THE SITUATION IN SYRIA
The situation in Syria continues to intensify; with Russia standing firmly with Assad. The message is clear from Putin. An attack on Assad's forces is an attack on Russia. Western powers, including the USA, have been joining with Sunni forces from various Islamic nations, to train and to discuss how to support rebel forces so that they can oust Assad. They are also preparing for some potential cross border fighting from Syria into Jordan and Turkey (by land or by air.)
Of course Israel is watching her borders to the north for the same threat from hostile forces on either side of the conflict. To add to the tension, Hizbullah is now being embroiled with conflict in Lebanon's city of Sidon, with Sunni forces, who are in favor of the Syria rebels. Many of the members of the Lebanese army are Sunni, even as the government of Lebanon includes (Shiite) Hizbullah leadership . . .as well as Hizbullah infiltration into that nation's army. What a tangled, Islamic mess!!
The USA and the west would do well to stand back and let the Moslem's fight it out, as Israel's enemies sometimes battled each other in Bible times. YHVH could be blessing Israel by putting her enemies at odds with each other. We shouldn't get into the middle of what YHVH is doing and thereby try to change it. Father knows best!
- Pray that the Lord would sort out all this mess, and in doing so, fulfill His word to Israel.
- Pray that Israel's enemies would be continually stirred up against each other to the point that they forget about Israel altogether. Pray that the destruction of Israel would not be raised up by satan, in their minds and hearts, as a renewed, common, goal around which, they can all rally in common purpose for Islam.
- Pray that YHVH would make Russia too busy to threaten Israel on behalf of her Islamic allies. Pin Russia down, Lord!
- Pray that YHVH would put up a roadblock against any US involvement in the Syria conflict. Pray that there would not be any American boots on the ground in Syria, or pilots flying over Syria.
- Pray that YHVH would sort out the leadership and power struggles in Syria; putting His own people into leadership posts.
- Pray for revival to fall upon the Syrian people. Pray strength, wisdom, and courage into the hearts and minds of the Syrian believers.
- Although Prime Minister Netanyahu has said, "This is not our war," the conflict in Syria has great potential to involve Israel. Continue to pray for the protection of Jewish communities near the Syrian border. Ask God to give wisdom to the IDF commanders who are on the frontline.
- "Why do the nations rage, and the people plot a vain thing? He who sits in the heavens shall laugh the LORD shall hold them in derision." (Psalm 2:1, 4)
(Verse decreed by Bridges for Peace)
2. OBAMA AND PUTIN HOLD TALKS ON SYRIA
Admit to Differences on Syria, But Share 'United' Goal of Ending Violence
Russia said on sidelines of G-8 that it would prevent no-fly zone in Syria, to which U.S. said such option not on table at NATO.
U.S.President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin held a tense meeting on Monday, where they both admitted to differing views on the war in Syria but said they shared an interest in stopping violence and ensuring chemical weapons were not used. Speaking to reporters during a meeting at a G-8 summit in Northern Ireland, Obama said the two leaders had instructed their teams to work on a peace conference about Syria in Geneva. Obama also said he and Putin expressed cautious optimism aboutthe ability to move forward on a dialogue with Iran after amoderate cleric was elected president there. Putin, meanwhile, said both he and Obama wanted the bloodshed in Syria to stop and the warring parties brought to the negotiating table. "Our positions do not fully coincide, but we are united by the common intention to end the violence, to stop the number of victims increasing in Syria, to resolve the problems by peaceful means, including the Geneva talks," Putin said. (Haaretz) Read more.
[Reported by Hebrew Nation News]
What does it mean? Commentary from HN News editor.
Is this news headline "doublespeak" or what? Putin's actions are CLEARLY propping up the Assad regime and he is adamantly opposed to regime change that would give authority and power to the Muslim Brotherhood backed Syrian rebels.
When the showdown occurs, there will be no gray or blurred lines: it will be Sunnis v/s Shiites. Here is how it stacks up:
ON ONE SIDE: (Shiites) - Assad's Syria; Iran; Russia
ON THE OTHER SIDE: (Sunnis/Muslim Brotherhood) - Syrian rebels; Saudi Arabia; US/EU/UN troops
3. OBAMA LEADS US INTO A NEW HOLY WAR OUT OF SYRIA
Early releases of security notes circulating in the Kremlin today, provided to the Office of the President by diplomats accompanying President Putin during his G-8 meetings with Western leaders, are confirming that US President Barack Obama, along with British Prime Minister David Cameron, are preparing for "all-out Holy War" in the Middle East and are siding with Sunni Muslims against both the Shiite and Christian minorities of this most volatile of regions.
Not being told to the masses of Western peoples by their propaganda media organs is that the current war in Syria has morphed into one of the most dangerous religious wars in all of human history, and was confirmed this past September by Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, and as we can, in part, read:
"While discussing the bloodshed in Syria at a September 7 conference held in Turkey, Prime Minister Erdogan drew a chilling parallel. "What happened in Karbala 1,332 years ago is what is happening in Syria today," he said, comparing the Syrian revolution to the most divisive event in Islamic history, the Battle of Karbala.
Those in the West with any interests in the region have much to learn from Erdogan's history lesson. What was originally depicted as a popular uprising against tyranny is now undeniably a war for religious supremacy in the Middle East. In this war, those Syrians who originally took to the streets in their aspirations for democracy have become the only guaranteed losers. (EU Times) Read more.
> > > Perversely, however, where one would logically think that the Western powers would be natural allies to Shiite run nations (Iraq, Iran, Lebanon, Syria), they instead have used their immense power to support Sunni backed nations (Afghanistan, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, Kuwait, Egypt, etc.) which continue to outlaw freedom for women, openly persecute Christians and Jews, do not allow their citizens to vote in free elections, and are now calling for a "Global Jihad" against all Shiites.
- As we see the enemies of Israel closing in from all sides, and yet lining up against each other, too, let's follow the example of the warriors in the day of Jehoshaphat: Let's just PRAISE THE LORD, trust Him to send a spirit of confusion over the enemies, and see the enemies of Israel turn on each other and, in the end, devour each other.
Thank the LORD for the souls that will be saved as a result of this debacle. Praise You, Yeshua!
- "When he had consulted with the people, he appointed those who sang to the LORD and those who praised Him in holy attire, as they went out before the army and said, "Give thanks to the LORD, for His lovingkindness is everlasting." When they began singing and praising, the LORD set ambushes against the sons of Ammon, Moab and Mount Seir, who had come against Judah; so they were routed. For the sons of Ammon and Moab rose up against the inhabitants of Mount Seir destroying them completely; and when they had finished with the inhabitants of Seir, they helped to destroy one another."
(2 Chronicles 20:21-23)
This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .
This Week, Worship Our Lord As . . .
GOD OF MY RIGHTEOUSNESS
"Hear me when I call, O God of my righteousness! Ypu have relieved me in my distress; have mercy on me and hear my prayer." (Psalm 4:1)
Oh God, my righteousness is all because of Yeshua, Jesus, living in my heart. Messiah in me, the Hope of Glory, is the praise on my mouth today. For God made Messiah who knew no sin, to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Messiah. Oh how I praise You for the bounty of blessings You give! Amen!
(Source: THE NAME- HaShem: Daily Devotional Worship by Dr. Barri Cae Mallin)
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