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Blessing Israel

Building Bridges Around the World

{image_1}Bridges for Peace is not just working in Israel to build bridges between the Christian and Jewish communities! We are also building friendships and showing unconditional support and love to the Jewish people around the world. On a recent trip to Australia, we met with many Jewish leaders in locations all across the continent. On each occasion, we were blessed to see their open appreciation of Christian support and their willingness to extend a hand of friendship. In Perth, I had the opportunity to share my heart with 40 Jewish community leaders. This is just one example of a growing relationship between the evangelical world and the Jewish people. Each of our eight national offices work to develop Jewish–Christian relationships in their countries. Let me share a few examples.

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Reconnecting Christians To Their Hebraic Roots

{image_1}The Newer Testament is a Jewish book, a fact that few Christians or Jews realize. Christians read it with cultural eyeglasses that are 2,000 years and thousands of miles removed from the original; and most Jewish people have never read the Christian Scriptures.

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Temple “Trash”–A Treasure Trove

{image_1}On a sunny afternoon in April, a group of Bridges for Peace staff went on an archaeological adventure—into the past. On the undulating, pleasant lower slopes of Mount Scopus, an excavation appears to be underway, but this is no ordinary excavation. Archaeologists and volunteers busily screen, sift, and wash through tons of earth, searching out the smallest potsherds that litter Israel like shells on a seashore and normally get trodden underfoot. What is so special about this earth, and why are professional archaeolo-gists taking the unprecedented, mammoth step of sifting through it when they are all cognizant that its geological context has been completely erased?

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Preparing for War?

The atmosphere in Israel is drawn as tightly as a violin bow.

{image_1}Everyone from the man on the street to military analysts will tell you that a major conflict is imminent. Since last summer’s war, now called the Second Lebanon War, there has been a tense waiting for the next war to begin. There is a weariness of soul as so many are mourning over lost sons and daughters. The past year has been an intensely difficult year for Israel with 233 soldiers losing their lives in the ongoing battle; 119 of them in the 34-day-long Second Lebanon War. At the same time, there is recognition that Israel must be ready for any and all threats. Those threats are multi-pronged, ranging from Hizbullah in Lebanon, to Ahmadinejad in Iran, to Hamas, Fatah, and Islamic Jihad in Gaza and other Palestinian areas, and Syria to the north. War is in the wind. The question is which direction it will come from first. Lately, Syrian preparations have been escalating.

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Becoming Zealous for God and Israel

March 18, 2007

When people think of Bridges for Peace, they don’t usually think of a group of young adults cruising around Israel, riding ATVs, having ridiculous amounts of fun, and discovering the incredible depth and history of this nation. They don’t think of 18- to 30-year-olds setting apart 11 days to seek the Lord in Israel, pursue His heart, and develop a new passion and understanding for the purpose of God in Israel and the nations. Well, that is changing.

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God’s “Great Host” of Women

March 18, 2007

A study of the Hebrew roots of Bible words and events often challenges what many have been taught. Recently, I came across an explanation on the distinction between man and woman on “Judaism 101—Hebrew Language: Root Words” (www.jewfaq.org/root.htm): “…the rabbis concluded G-d* created women with greater intuition and understanding than men, because man was ‘formed’ (yeetzer, Gen. 2:7), but woman was ‘built’ (yeeben, Gen. 2:22). The root of ‘built,’ bet-nun-heh, is similar to the word “binah” (bet-yod-nun-heh), meaning understanding, insight, or intuition.”

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Touching Hearts and Lives

December 3, 2006

The war is over, but its legacy goes on. As we drove through northern Israel, a visible trail of destruction reminded me that despite the sun and breathtaking mountain views, all was not well in the Land. There were forests of burnt trees standing like dead men in a world of ashes. But deeper than this, there were many whose livelihoods had been, and are still, plunged into turmoil, as families struggle to make a living on an uncertain economic rollercoaster. And, of course, there are those who have lost loved ones, and their lives will never be the same.

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Face-2-Face

August 3, 2006

The beginning of something new…

On June 11, 2006, 45 young adults––mostly college students––went into the Judean desert for a unique face-to-face experience. What was interesting about this event is that it involved three different groups: 16 Jewish students from the Interdisciplinary Center in Herzliya representing StandWithUs (SWU), 19 Christian students on a tour with Eagles’ Wings, and 5 long-term young adult volunteers from Bridges for Peace in Jerusalem. This was a face-to-face encounter aimed at bringing Christians and Jews together, young people who love the Land of Israel and have a passion for Zionism.

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Israel–God’s Treasured Possession

December 11, 2005

Recently, I went to Netanya, on the Mediterranean Sea and spent three days alone with God. I walked on the nearly deserted beach and talked with God. I admired His creativity as I drank in the surroundings: the crashing waves of the sea, the blue sky dotted with fluffy white clouds, the delicate sea shells, the rocks shaped by the waves, and the water birds hunting for a fish breakfast. As I was expressing my love to the Creator, I suddenly was filled with a new awareness of His love for me. Amazing!  The Almighty God––who with a word from His mouth created this beauty––loves me.

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Conscience Of The Holocaust

Thoughts on the Death of Simon Wiesenthal

“When history looks back, I want people to know the Nazis weren’t able to kill millions of people and get away with it…” Simon Wiesenthal, who died in his sleep on September 20, 2005, was often called the “conscience of the Holocaust.” He died in his home in Vienna at the age of 96. During the Holocaust, he lost 89 family members, survived 12 Nazi camps, and weighed less than 100 pounds when he was liberated from Mauthausen in 1945.

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