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Firm through the Trials

Friday, September 15, 2023

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Every week, we post seven to ten news stories from Israel with a suggested prayer focus and scripture for each one, guiding readers how to pray for Israel’s most urgent needs. This Prayer Update is also sent to over 18,000 subscribers every Friday by e-mail. Please contact us at intl.office@bridgesforpeace.com if you would like to receive this Prayer Update by e-mail.

Mossad: Spy Agency Foiled 27 Iranian Murder Plots against Jews and Israelis this Year

by JNS

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Mossad Director David Barnea

Monday, 11 September 2023 | The Mossad intelligence agency, in cooperation with its international allies, has so far in 2023 foiled 27 plots by Iran to murder Israelis and Jews outside the borders of the Jewish state, the agency’s Director David Barnea revealed on Sunday.

Speaking at the International Institute for Counter-Terrorism (ICT)’s 22nd World Summit on Counter-Terrorism at Herzliya’s Reichman University, Barnea spoke of a “significant increase in attempts to attack Jews and Israelis worldwide” by what he called “the Terroristic Republic of Iran.”

“The plots being pursued by these [terrorist] teams were orchestrated, masterminded and directed by Iran,” he said, noting that the attempted attacks occurred “all over the world,” including “in Europe, Africa, Southeast Asia and South America.”

Two weeks ago, Israel’s National Security Council cautioned citizens to remain vigilant while traveling over the upcoming Jewish holiday period. The updated travel warning cited a higher risk of Iranian terrorism in both neighboring and faraway countries, including Georgia, Azerbaijan and Turkey, as well as in countries in Africa and Latin America.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Defense Minister Yoav Gallant have also charged the Islamic Republic with orchestrating the most recent surge in Palestinian terrorism, which saw three Israelis killed and one seriously wounded in just under 72 hours last month.

As part of his remarks on Sunday, Barnea showed a video he said proved beyond a doubt that Iranian Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei is directly involved in murder plots against Jews worldwide. “The Iranian regime is no longer able to deny its involvement, and most importantly, it has no immunity,‎” stated the Mossad head.

“Any harm done to any Israeli or Jew in any way whatsoever will elicit a response against the Iranians who dispatched the terrorists and the policymakers who authorized the terror units to carry out the plots, from the bottom all the way up to the top,” Barnea warned, vowing to exact a price “deep inside Iran, in the heart of Tehran.‎”

Israel’s top spy also spoke about “Iran’s known nuclear weapon ambitions,” calling on the international community to “be on high alert and demonstrate unflagging determination to foil these ambitions.”

“The current dialogue between Iran and the West does not reflect genuine willingness on the part of Iran to curb its nuclear program. Rather, it demonstrates Iran’s cynical attempt to release money frozen as part of the international sanctions imposed on it, while continuing to develop and expand its nuclear capabilities,” he said.

Barnea continued: “We know how the Iranians are operating and planning to make progress in the nuclear program. This is being addressed and will be in the future. I will obviously not expose methods, but we are clearly not standing idly by.‎”

As part of Iran’s rapprochement with Russia, Tehran has tried to sell Moscow short- and long-range missiles in addition to the unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) that it supplied for the invasion of Ukraine. This deal was “interdicted,” he said.

“They have intentions to sell other weapons that will also be foiled. Our fear is that the Russians will transfer advanced weapons to the Iranians in return, which will certainly endanger our well-being and maybe even our existence here,” Barnea added.

“On the eve of the High Holidays in the Jewish month of Tishrei, we watch with concern as global terror raises its evil head. We will continue to employ a wide spectrum of methodologies and subterfuge to defend the State of Israel and its citizens,” he said.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on September 10, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Yossi Zeliger/TPS /jns.org

Prayer Focus
Thank God for the Mossad Intelligence Agency and its international counterparts, and their success in thwarting terror attacks the world over. Pray that the Lord will protect the Jewish people from such evil no matter where they are on the globe and beseech Him for a safe holiday season free from violence.


The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.

- Proverbs 18:10

Islamic Movement Incites Anti-Jewish Unrest ahead of Rosh Hashanah

by Akiva van Koningsveld ~ JNS

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The Islamic Movement in Israel’s Kamal Khatib

Wednesday, 13 September | The Islamic Movement in Israel, an offshoot of the Muslim Brotherhood, is upping its efforts to incite anti-Jewish unrest ahead of the High Holiday season, which kicks off this weekend with Rosh Hashanah [Jewish New Year], JNS has learned.

Sheikh Kamal Khatib, deputy chairman of the outlawed Northern Branch of the Islamic Movement, on Saturday urged his followers on X, the platform formerly known as Twitter, to “keep their eyes on Al-Aqsa,” referring to the mosque located atop Jerusalem’s Temple Mount.

“For weeks, in fact for months now, the Jewish religious communities have been calling on and mobilizing people to raid the blessed Al-Aqsa mosque,” declared Khatib in a video filmed on the Temple Mount that was seen by thousands of social media users.

He continued: “They are calling for the demolition of our blessed Al-Aqsa mosque at the beginning of a new Hebrew year. You want to start a new Hebrew year by violating the sanctity of our blessed Al-Aqsa mosque?”

In the recording, Khatib also charged the Israeli government with waging a religious war. “Remain certain and confident that we are closer to liberation, inshallah [God-willing],” he assured Palestinians.

JNS reached out to the Israel Police requesting clarification as to why Khatib is permitted to spread incitement from atop the Temple Mount.

Khatib’s remarks closely resembled rhetoric used by the Hamas terrorist group, the Palestinian affiliate of the Muslim Brotherhood, with official Haroun Nasser al-Din warning on September 11 that Israel was planning to “exploit the ‘Jewish holidays’ to carry out raids on the Al-Aqsa mosque.”

This alleged Israeli scheme is “part of the religious war led by the Israeli government on the Palestinian holy sites,” claimed al-Din, while calling on Palestinians to escalate their “resistance.”

Alleged threats to the Al-Aqsa mosque, Islam’s third-holiest and built on the site of the ancient Jewish Temples, have long been a rallying cry for terrorism. The 1929 Hebron massacre, in which Arabs murdered 67 of their Jewish neighbors, was sparked by false rumors that Jews were planning to take control of the mosque.

More recently, the Palestinian Authority and Hamas have turned the Temple Mount issue and the “Al-Aqsa is in danger” slogan into a major engine for inciting Israeli Muslims against the state. The incitement is conducted in the Palestinian education system, mosques, official media and social media.

The Islamic Movement in Israel was founded in 1971. Israel outlawed its Northern Branch in 2015.

“For years, the Northern Branch of the Islamic Movement has led a mendacious campaign of incitement under the slogan ‘Al-Aqsa is in danger’ that falsely accuses Israel of intending to harm the Al-Aqsa mosque and violate the status quo,” the Security Cabinet, under Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s leadership, explained at the time.

“The Northern Branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel is undermining the state. It incites violence against innocent people. It has close ties with the Hamas terrorist organization and it seeks to subvert the state in order to establish an Islamic caliphate in its place,” Netanyahu said in 2015.

Khatib was arrested two years ago on suspicion of inciting anti-Semitic violence at the height of Israel’s May 2021 war (“Operation Guardian of the Walls”) with Hamas in the Gaza Strip, which also sparked Arab pogroms throughout the Jewish state.

In 2018, Khatib implicated the Israeli government in causing a series of low-magnitude earthquakes felt in northern Israel and neighboring countries.

“As for the recent earthquakes in northern Palestine, it cannot be ruled out that the occupation is responsible for actions that could cause such earthquakes with the aim of destroying Al-Aqsa and [then claiming], as a pretext, that it was the result of a natural disaster,” he said.

Egypt, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have all designated the Muslim Brotherhood as a terrorist organization.

Source: (This article was originally published by Jewish News Syndicate on September 12, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Matanya Tausig/Flash90/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Cry out to the Lord for the truth to be revealed and for the deception being perpetrated by these terrorist groups to be exposed. Pray that the Muslim population in Israel will come to see and understand that there is no such plot to destroy Al Aqsa Mosque and that a religious war led by the Israeli government exists only as a propaganda ploy to manipulate them.


Not a word from their mouth can be trusted; their heart is filled with malice. Their throat is an open grave; with their tongues they tell lies. Declare them guilty, O God! Let their intrigues be their downfall.

- Psalm 5:9–10a NIV

Israel Part of “Unprecedented International Project” Linking Asia to Europe

by Kate Norman

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Hydrogen pipelines are part of the proposed infrastructure corridor linking Asia to Europe via Israel (illustrative).

Tuesday, 12 September 2023 | Israel will be part of an “unprecedented international project” to link infrastructure from Asia to Europe, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced Saturday night in a video statement.

“This link will also realize a multi-year vision that will change the face of the Middle East, and Israel, and will affect the entire world,” Netanyahu said in a statement published by his office.

The line will start in India, travel through the United Arab Emirates [UAE], Saudi Arabia, Jordan and then Israel before stretching to Europe.

Israel and the UAE normalized ties in the historic Abraham Accords in 2020, and the Jewish state and Jordan signed a peace treaty in 1994.

Saudi Arabia was rumored to be one of the next Arab states to sign a peace pact with the Jewish state following the historic Abraham Accords, in which the UAE as well as Bahrain and Morocco normalized ties with Jerusalem in a US-brokered agreement signed on the White House lawn.

That rumored peace has not come to fruition yet, however, as Saudi Arabia has reportedly presented the United States, which is looking to broker another peace deal, with a long list of demands before agreeing to anything with Israel.

US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said Saturday, however, that Israel’s involvement in the project alongside Saudi Arabia is “significant” but is not a “precursor” to any normalization agreement.

“The participants in this effort are focused on practical outcomes that deliver for their people,” Sullivan said, as quoted by the Times of Israel. “And a corridor of this kind by dint of geography works best having Israel in as opposed to out and the countries participating prioritized that.”

US President Joe Biden announced the project at the annual Group of 20 summit alongside Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen. The line is the offshoot of the Partnership for Global Infrastructure Investment.

Biden described the project as a “really big deal.”

The project will include railways, a hydrogen pipeline, which Netanyahu described as “the energy of the future,” as well as fiber optic communications cables, electricity cables and other infrastructure.

Israel “will be a central junction in this economic corridor,” Netanyahu stated. “Our railways and ports will open a new gateway from India, through the Middle East, to Europe, and back—from Europe to India via Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the UAE.”

The prime minister said that all of Israel’s government ministries will be involved in the project.

“The State of Israel will contribute its capabilities, all of its experience, momentum and commitment, to realize the largest cooperation project in our history,” Netanyahu added.

The prime minister thanked President Biden and his administration for initiating the project and bringing Israel into the fold.

“The land of Israel has always been a transit point for empires that trampled us in campaigns of conquest in every direction,” Netanyahu said at the start of the weekly cabinet meeting on Sunday. “Now the State of Israel has become a different kind of transit country. It has become a main junction in the global economy, a bridge of peace that is changing us.”

The project will likely be set in motion over the next year, with working groups getting together over the next 60 days to plan and set up specific timelines, according to Amos Hochstein, Biden’s special coordinator for global infrastructure and energy security.

The wheels were set in motion after Biden visited Saudi Arabia in 2022.

Source: (Bridges for Peace, September 12, 2023)

Photo Credit: GPA Photo Archive/flickr.com

Photo License: flickr

Prayer Focus
Praise the Lord for Israel’s involvement in this project, which serves as yet another opportunity for the Jewish state to influence the nations. Pray that Israel’s position as “a central junction in this economic corridor” will result in countless benefits for the nation and will help to bring stability and ultimately peace to the region.


The LORD will command the blessing for you in your barns and in everything that you put your hand to, and He will bless you in the land that the LORD your God is giving you.

- Deuteronomy 28:8 NASB

State Comptroller: Israel not Ready for Major Quake

by JNS

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The Knesset Guard, the IDF Home Front Command, firefighters, police and Magen David Adom drill an earthquake taking place near Ashkelon.

Monday, 11 September 2023 | Israel has failed to prepare for a major earthquake, State Comptroller Matanyahu Englman warned on Sunday, in the wake of the tremor that killed more than 2,000 people in Morocco.

“Despite warning signs, the State of Israel has failed in its preparation for an earthquake. Instead of waiting for a commission of inquiry after a tragedy has occurred, the prime minister and the relevant minister must correct the deficiencies immediately,” Englman said in a statement.

He vowed to release a detailed report outlining the danger after the High Holidays.

Ninety-three percent of all the buildings awaiting reinforcement in northeastern Israeli cities could collapse if an earthquake of sufficient intensity hits, according to a State Comproller’s Report published in March.

Although the Construction and Housing Ministry allocated a budget to reinforce the buildings, only 84 (7%) of the 1,208 structures requiring reinforcement had undergone the process, according to the report.

Government ministries and municipal authorities have not done enough to prepare for an earthquake scenario in the five cities of Beit Shean, Tiberias, Safed, Kiryat Shmona and Hazor Hagalilit.

“At this rate, it would take decades to complete the reinforcement of all the residential buildings” where there is an “immediate and concrete danger,” the report said.

Israel has scrambled to improve its earthquake preparedness in the wake of the devastating February 6 quakes in Turkey and Syria that, together with hundreds of aftershocks, killed just over 50,000 people in the former and some 8,500 in the latter, in what the World Health Organization called the region’s worst natural disaster in a century.

Experts have stressed that Israel’s current state of earthquake readiness is concerning. A 2018 report under the previous comptroller estimated that a major earthquake could result in 7,000 deaths, 8,600 persons with severe or moderate injuries, 9,500 people trapped in buildings and 170,000 people left homeless. A report from last year found that 600,000 buildings in the country do not meet the standard for earthquake resistance.

Israel is located along the Great Rift Valley, an active fault line that runs from the Red Sea to the Jordan River, along the border between Israel and Jordan. This geologic fault presents several significant hazards for the area, including frequent minor earthquakes and the occasional far more serious seismic events.

Israel has a long history of earthquakes, with a major one occurring approximately every 100 years. The last major earthquake to hit the region was in 1927. That quake, which had a magnitude of 6.2, claimed 284 lives and injured 940 other persons. The cities of Jerusalem, Jericho, Ramla, Tiberias and Nablus (Shechem) were heavily damaged.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on September 10, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Yaniv Nadav/Flash90/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Cry out to the Lord for protection from earthquakes and other natural disasters. Pray that the nation will launch an all-out effort to correct the deficiencies in Israel’s earthquake preparedness.


God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, even though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea.

- Psalm 46:1–2

Study: Some 50% of Jewish College Students Experience Anti-Semitism

by JNS

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Tuesday, 12 September 2023 | The World Jewish Congress (WJC) and Jewish on Campus partnered to produce the largest-ever survey of student perspectives on anti-Semitism, conspiracy theories and Holocaust awareness.

The study included 2,020 collegians from the general population and 1,022 identifying as Jewish for a total of 3,042. Of the Jewish students, 29% had seen or experienced an anti-Semitic incident on campus, while 44% had [seen or experienced one] outside of school. A total of 57% of Jewish students had seen or experienced anti-Semitism.

The different types of anti-Semitism students experienced and the percentage reporting them include microaggressions (72%,) hate speech (50%,) vandalism (48%,) the spread of conspiracy theories (43%) and calls for death or genocide against Jews (21%.)

Regarding the seriousness of anti-Semitism, 84% of Jewish students saw it as an “extreme threat” or “somewhat of a threat” to America, while 64% of non-Jewish students did.

On the history of oppression against Jews, 60% of college students did not know about institutional anti-Semitism in America against Jews, such as neighborhood restrictions and university quotas, while 15% found the death toll of the Holocaust either “not very believable,” “not at all believable” or felt “unsure.”

Julia Jassey, co-founder and CEO of Jewish on Campus, said the report “underscores the urgency of our mission to elevate the voices and experiences of Jewish students.”

WJC President Ronald S. Lauder said the survey results show “concrete evidence that not enough is being done by school administrators and government officials to protect Jewish students from hate.”

“It’s clear that something is very wrong with our education system when more than 50% of Jewish students in America have observed an anti-Semitic incident,” he said.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on September 11, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: An Nguyen/Shutterstock/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Pray that school administrators and government officials will do whatever is necessary to protect Jewish students from anti-Semitic violence on campuses across the world. Cry out for educational programming that will deal with issues such as anti-Jewish bias and the Holocaust. Also pray that such programs will be successful in reversing the climate of hatred that exists at so many colleges and universities.


Consider my enemies, for they are many; and they hate me with cruel hatred. Keep my soul, and deliver me; let me not be ashamed, for I put my trust in You.

- Psalm 25:19–20

Two Israelis Wounded in Huwara Shooting Attack

by JNS

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The scene of a shooting attack in Huwara, near Nablus in Samaria

Wednesday, 13 September | Two Israelis were moderately wounded on Tuesday night in a shooting attack on Route 60 in Huwara, located just outside Nablus in Samaria.

The victims came under fire while driving through town and were wounded by glass shards when bullets shattered the windows of their vehicle.

Magen David Adom [Israeli emergency services] medical personnel treated the victims in their 30s who were then evacuated to Beilinson Hospital in Petach Tikvah.

“Both victims are classified as moderately wounded,” Dr. Yoni Mendel, a doctor in the hospital’s emergency department, told journalists, adding that the two are “currently undergoing evaluation and imaging.”

Israeli forces launched a manhunt for the terrorist or terrorists.

Last month, a Palestinian terrorist killed Shay Silas Nigrekar, 60, and his 28-year-old son Aviad Nir in Huwara.

That attack took place after the two men had stopped at a car wash in the Palestinian Authority-controlled village.

The terrorist walked up to the car wash on foot, opened fire at close range with a handgun and fled in a vehicle.

Huwara has emerged as a center of Palestinian terrorism, prompting Israeli authorities to heighten security there.

In June, an Israeli driver was lightly injured by glass shards in a shooting near the town, a day after two IDF [Israel Defense Forces] soldiers were wounded when a terrorist rammed into them with his vehicle there.

The IDF recently upgraded the road infrastructure in Huwara to increase security for drivers on Route 60, the main north-south highway in Samaria that passes through the village.

The changes followed a series of terrorist attacks there, including the murder of brothers Hallel Yaniv, 21, and Yagel Yaniv, 19, as they sat in traffic on February 26.

Seventy-one percent of Palestinians supported the terrorist murder of the brothers, according to a Palestinian public opinion poll. Only 21% of those surveyed were against the attack.

Dual Israeli–US citizen David Stern, 41, narrowly survived a shooting attack on March 19 as he drove through Huwara with his wife on their way to Jerusalem.

In addition to the infrastructure changes, a large number of IDF soldiers have been deployed to the area and 13 new defensive positions were built to discourage attacks and to reduce security forces’ response times.

The IDF’s Samaria Brigade has bolstered security inspections, including the deployment of additional checkpoint barriers.

The main section of a road that bypasses Huwara will open after the High Holidays, which begin on Friday with Rosh Hashanah [Jewish New Year].

Israeli Transportation Minister Miri Regev recently toured the site together with the head of the Samaria Regional Council, Yossi Dagan. The two leaders announced that the road would open two months ahead of schedule due to the danger facing Judea and Samaria residents, who—without an alternative—are forced to drive through Huwara.

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on September 12, 2023. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Magen David Adom/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Thank God that these two Israelis suffered only moderate injuries. Pray for physical and emotional healing, and for the perpetrators of this attack to be caught and punished to the full extent of the law. Pray that tightened security measures will bring an end to Huwara’s reign as a center of terrorism.


Keep me, O LORD, from the hands of the wicked; preserve me from violent men, who have purposed to make my steps stumble.

- Psalm 140:4

First-ever Official Israeli Delegation Arrives in Saudi Arabia

by JNS

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Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Monday, 11 September 2023 | An official Israeli delegation arrived for the first time in Saudi Arabia on Sunday for a meeting of the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization [UNESCO].

UNESCO Director-general Audrey Azoulay told Israeli Foreign Minister Eli Cohen during a recent meeting in Paris that the Saudis had signed a “host country agreement” with the UN body, allowing officials from all member states to attend the 45th session of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in Riyadh on September 10–25.

The Foreign Ministry in Jerusalem declined to comment on the matter when contacted by JNS.

Israel withdrew from UNESCO in 2019, citing the body’s bias.

In a 2016 resolution, the UNESCO World Heritage Committee registered the Tomb of the Patriarchs, located in Hebron, in the name of the “State of Palestine” on its “List of World Heritage in Danger.”

UNESCO passed 47 resolutions between 2009 and 2014, 46 directed against Israel and one that criticized Syria.

More recently, Likud lawmaker Dan Illouz sent a letter to Azoulay asking her to prevent ancient Jericho from being listed as a city in the “State of Palestine.”

However, Israeli sites remain listed on the World Heritage List, and Jerusalem sends representatives as observers to the World Heritage Committee.

In June, UNESCO announced that the United States was rejoining the body the following month and paying more than US$600 million in outstanding dues. The Trump administration had withdrawn from UNESCO at the same time as Jerusalem.

Sunday’s development comes amid a US-led diplomatic push to persuade Riyadh to join the Abraham Accords, the Trump administration-brokered deals that normalized the Jewish state’s relations with the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco and Sudan.

In March, the Saudis blocked a group of Israeli Muslims from attending a UN event held in the kingdom.

The UN World Tourism Organization had invited villagers from the Circassian town of Kfar Kama in the Lower Galilee to the event honoring their village, but Saudi authorities denied them visas.

In July though, a team of Israelis competed in Saudi Arabia in the annual FIFAe World Cup, which sees participants play the latest version of the popular soccer video game.

This month, a delegation of Israeli athletes is competing in the 2023 IWF World Weightlifting Championships in Riyadh.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is actively courting Saudi Arabia to join the accords, which he said would constitute a “quantum leap” toward regional peace.

But Riyadh is demanding security guarantees from the United States before it enters into any normalization deal, along with American assistance in building its civilian nuclear program.

Nevertheless, Netanyahu said last month that, “I think that we are about to witness a pivot of history,” adding: “I’d bet on it.”

Source: (This article was originally published by the Jewish News Syndicate on September 10, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Mohammed Younos/Shutterstock/jns.org

Prayer Focus
Thank God for the warming of relations between Israel and Saudi Arabia. Pray for the budding relationship to grow and strengthen to the benefit of both nations and of the entire region. Pray that Saudi Arabia will join the Abraham Accords and ask the Lord for His hand of protection to rest on normalization talks, assuring that Israel’s security is protected in any agreement.


When a man’s ways please the LORD, He makes even his enemies to be at peace with him.

- Proverbs 16:7

Israeli Population Nears 10 Million on Eve of Rosh Hashanah

by Yaron Druckman ~ Ynetnews

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Around 70,000 people made aliyah to Israel over the past year.

Thursday, 14 September 2023 | In just over a year, Israel’s population is expected to reach 10 million residents. On the eve of Rosh HaShanah [Jewish New Year], Israel’s population is estimated at 9,795,000 people. And according to the report from Israel’s Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) published on Tuesday, the population is projected to reach 10 million residents by the end of 2024.

In 2048, when Israel will celebrate its 100th year of independence, the population is expected to reach 15 million residents, and in 2065, according to the same source, 20 million people will be living in Israel.

The report, published annually ahead of Rosh HaShanah, reveals that 7,181,000 of Israel’s residents are Jewish, accounting for 73% of the population. Approximately 2,065,000 residents are Arabs (21%), and about 549,000 are classified as other (6%). This includes non-Arab Christians, members of other religions and people with no religious affiliation, according to the Interior Ministry.

Additionally, the report shows that Israel’s population grew by approximately 194,000 individuals, with a population growth rate of 2%. During the last Jewish year, which is concluding this week, about 172,000 babies were born and 48,000 Israelis died. Furthermore, around 70,000 individuals were added to the population via aliyah or immigration to Israel, with approximately 66,000 being new immigrants.

To mark the Jewish New Year, the CBS also published data on the public’s attitudes and sentiments. Some 73% of Israelis believe that religion has a strong influence on life in the country. Among different sectors in the country, 77% of Jews believe that religion has a strong influence, compared to 52% of Arabs. The data also reveals that 56% of Israelis think that the influence of religion has strengthened in various aspects of life in Israel in recent years.

The data also shows that Israelis are relatively satisfied with their lives, especially among those ages 20 and above. According to the data, 90.2% of Israelis are satisfied with their lives, and 63% are content with their economic situation.

Additionally, 88% of Israelis are satisfied with their living arrangements, 84.2% are satisfied with their residential areas in general and 59.5% are content with the cleanliness of their residential areas. However, only 35% are satisfied with public transportation in their areas, a figure that suggests a need for improvement, according to Transportation Minister Miri Regev and other officials.

Data also showed that 19% of Israelis always or frequently feel stressed, 20.9% often feel lonely and 21% experienced discrimination in the past year. One-third of Israelis are not satisfied with the balance between the time they dedicate to work and other aspects of their lives. The statistics show a similar trend among both men and women.

Source: (Excerpt from an article originally published by Ynetnews on September 14, 2023. Time-related language has been modified to reflect our republication today. See original article at this link.)

Photo Credit: Michio Nagata/bridgesforpeace.com

Prayer Focus
Praise God for these amazing statistics regarding Israel’s growing population. Pray that aliyah will continue, bringing God’s people home from all around the globe, and for His favor to rest upon them as they become functioning Israeli citizens.


“For You said, ‘I will assuredly make you prosper and make your descendants as the sand of the sea, which is too great to be counted.’”

- Genesis 32:12 NASB