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A Year of Crisis

Israel & Jerusalem

Israel: God’s Oaks of Righteousness

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“The Spirit of the Lord GOD is upon me, because the LORD has anointed me to bring good news to the afflicted; He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to captives and freedom to prisoners; to proclaim the favorable year of the LORD and the day of vengeance of our God; to comfort all who mourn, to grant those who mourn in Zion, giving them a garland instead of ashes, the oil of gladness instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of a spirit of fainting. So they will be called oaks of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that He may be glorified” (Isaiah 61:1–3, NASB).

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JERUSALEM, My Home

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What do you think of when you hear the word “Jerusalem”? Perhaps you think of the Mount of Olives splitting in two, when Messiah Yeshua (Christ Jesus) returns. “And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, from east to west, making a very large valley; half of the mountain shall move toward the north and half of it toward the south” (Zechariah 14:4). Perhaps you think of wars––past and future. Maybe you think of the prophecy in Zechariah (12:3), which says all nations will come up against Jerusalem. “And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.”

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A Year in the Life of Israel—PART 2

Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem Day)

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Last month, we began our look at Israel’s annual celebrations, some biblical, some traditional, and some secular. We started with Purim (Feast of Esther), which usually takes place in March, and ended with Shavuot (Pentecost). In this Teaching Letter, we will complete the year’s cycle of remembrances.

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A Year in the Life of Israel—PART 1

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As Bible-believing Christians living in Israel, my husband Tom and I have come to see Israel from a unique perspective. It is an amazing place, called in Scripture “the glory of all lands” (Ezek. 20:6, 15). An immense variety of plants and animal species are native to the Land. The cultural diversity of Jewish people from over 100 nations is charming and maddening in turn. An eclectic mix of ancient and modern assault the senses. Israel is my home and I love it dearly. Certainly life in Israel is never boring. But, if I were to pick the most wonderful experience to us, it would be the celebrations.

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ISRAEL—Whose Land Is It?

“Next year in Jerusalem!” 

{image_1} This has been the heartfelt cry of countless thousands of Jewish people over the centuries. It is recited daily in prayer, spoken out with longing and rejoicing, cried out in adversity, often hidden deep within hearts, and even thought of as an answer to dreams. What or whom has made this statement a reality for so many Jewish people from the time of Abraham to David––when Jerusalem was acknowledged as the capital of Israel in 1000 BC––right up to the past 100 years?

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Things I Have Learned in Israel

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In the seventeen years I have lived in Israel, I have been blessed to learn many things which have given me fresh insight on the Scriptures. Some say that my husband and I, and the staff of Bridges for Peace, have given our lives to the Lord’s call to Israel. That is true, but what is also true is that Israel has given us new life as well. Christians who visit Israel invariably remark about how their Bible reading has come to life after a trip to Israel. In this Israel Teaching Letter, I want to share a few things that I have learned.

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Praying For Israel In Tough Times

Through the centuries, the Jewish people have endured persecution, danger, and death. They have experienced unparalleled pain as a nation throughout the long years of their dispersion. Hundreds of years of persecution culminated in the Holocaust as Hitler and the Nazis systematically attempted to annihilate the Jewish people. Six million Jews were murdered.

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The Return to Zion—Aliyah in God’s Plan for Israel

{image_1}We are living in a special time in history! It is a time when God is fulfilling His Word to Israel in the sight of the whole earth. He is bringing the Jewish people back to Israel—over one million in the past 15 years. We are seeing Bible prophecy being fulfilled with our own eyes. Those of us who live in Israel not only read about Bible prophecy, or see it being fulfilled on the daily news, but also reach out and touch it, as we hug new immigrants from around the world. The prophet Jeremiah talked about this day when he said, “‘Therefore behold, the days are coming,’ says the Lord, ‘that it shall no more be said, “The Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of Egypt,” but, “The Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north and from all the lands where He had driven them.” For I will bring them back into their own land which I gave to their fathers’” (Jeremiah 16:14–15).

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Lessons from Nehemiah

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Editor's note: Cheryl Hauer, Deputy National Director for Bridges for Peace (BFP) in the United States, delivered a wonderful study on Nehemiah in relation to BFP as we look to the future. You, our many bridge builders, are a part of this plan, and so I asked Cheryl to write out her notes so that I could share them with you in this month's Israel Teaching Letter.

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Jerusalem, Driving The Nations Crazy

For most of recorded history, Jerusalem has been the central city of the world. Many
ancient maps show Jerusalem as the center of the world. This is because it is a very special city to God. During the Old Testament period, Jerusalem was the place where God’s presence dwelled in His Temple. Jerusalem was, and is, both the religious and political center of Israel and the destination of the pilgrimages of God’s people. During the New Testament Period, Jerusalem was the scene of the death, resurrection, and ascension of Yeshua (Jesus), and in a day to come, He will return to this city again.

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