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Dispatch from Jerusalem

The Changing Face of Jerusalem

From the window at Christ Church Guest House, I watched the ancient sandstone streets swell at all times of the day and night as pilgrims went about celebrating Sukkot (Feast of Tabernacles). Just like the Jerusalem conjured in my imagination—a city lost in time, an eternal city, untouched by the winds of modernity—my first stay

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Israel’s Extraordinary Family Dynamic

Nowadays when we travel, especially internationally, we are warned to be careful of strangers. Beware of pickpockets, chancers and cheats. Be aware of your surroundings. Don’t wear your wallet in your back pocket or carry an open purse. Keep your valuables close to keep them safe. Don’t trust strangers on the street. This is wise

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A History of “No”

You could hear a pin drop as the two judokas stepped onto the mat. Tensions had been mounting for days before the match as Egyptian Islam El Shahaby faced a floodgate of criticism from fans for failing to withdraw from the first round of the heavyweight judo tournament in the 2016 Rio de Janeiro Olympics

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Up and Away: Floating Above the Jezreel Valley

The early morning stillness broke with the sound of a propane burner flame penetrating the air. A small crew worked skillfully at their task, tugging at the mounds of colorful fabric piled in the field. Gleeful anticipation mounted in our group as we watched the fabric take the shape of a balloon that grew larger

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Racial Equality: A Jewish Legacy

Racism is an issue that has long been a matter of critical importance to the Jewish people. Since their origins in the ancient world of the Middle East, they have been persecuted, hunted, dispersed and murdered—often erroneously in the name of righteousness. It has created in them an awareness of discrimination that few others have.

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2020: A Bad Year for Iran

The year 2020 has been a tragic and challenging year for the world—from the coronavirus pandemic to protests to political battles. But it’s been an especially difficult year for Iran. The economy has struggled under sanctions imposed by the US, the leader of Iran’s top terrorist spy agency was assassinated and then mysterious explosions hit

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Seven Species Cake

“For the Lord your God is bringing you into a good land…a land of wheat and barley, of vines and fig trees and pomegranates, a land of olive oil and honey.” Deuteronomy 8:7a–8 The seven species are a collection of grains and fruits that depict the landscape of both ancient and modern Israel. As in

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Aliyah Boom

Despite the global challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic, the number of Jewish people making aliyah (immigrating) to Israel in 2020 is set to top 50,000—almost double the figure in 2019. That figure is anticipated to double again in 2021, with predictions of 90,000 new immigrants making Israel their new permanent address. Israeli Minister of

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The Surging Tide of Faith-based Diplomacy: A Review

I have known and worked with Josh Reinstein since 2003. I, along with a few other Christian leaders, sat with Knesset (Parliament) Member Yuri Shtern and Reinstein, strategizing how to make better connections between the Knesset and Christian leaders around the world. In 2004, the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus was born. Over the past 16

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Recalibrating the Focus to God

We are indeed living in troubled times, and the world has become a frightening and uncertain place. Self-help books abound that purport to have all the answers I need, telling me all about myself, who I am, what I can do and that the sky is the limit if I can just learn to love

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