My dear friends, during this turbulent war, instead of encouragement, there are believers who are judging, some even blaming Israel.
So a few words to shed some light on the situation according to the Bible.
The nation of Israel is not the most righteous in the world, nor is it the best of the nations, but it is not the worst either. (Isaiah 43:21) The nation of Israel is simply the nation that the Creator made for Himself.
The relationship between the Creator and the nation of Israel is that of a father to his children; he will discipline, he will punish, and he will do it all in the process of love. But He will keep His promise and return His people to their land and watch over them as an eagle watches over its chicks (Deuteronomy 32:11). We can see this in all the wars of Israel.
The impression seems to be that this war between the Jews and the Arabs is like the war in Europe between Russia and the Ukraine, or like the different wars in different places in the world.
This is a different kind of war! The enemy is fighting against the God of Israel, against the divine plan for the people of Israel, against the Bible (Psalm 83:1-5). The enemy’s desire is the destruction of the people of Israel and the taking of their land.
Let me share with you a personal story. One of my personal friends, a pastor of a church in a city in America, I asked him on his birthday a year ago what gift he wanted from Israel for his birthday. His request was a Jewish prayer book (sidur), he wanted to understand the Jewish prayers in depth and what is the rationale? From time to time he would ask me a question by e-mail about this or that prayer and the reasons behind it.
3 days ago, he sent me a wonderful and encouraging e-mail, and I have decided to share it with all of you:
Usually on the last day of Sukkot, the people of Israel begin to pray for rain. (It is well known that nothing happens in the land of Israel without prayer).
The prayer goes like this (thousands of years ago):
“…He will cause the wind to return and blow and the rain to come upon us…”
Two words in this prayer are double meaning. One RUACH is both Wind and SPIRIT, and the other is GESHEM, meaning RAIN and a second meaning material BLESSINGS.
And notice how the same prayer, especially in those difficult and terrible days, keeps changing the two words, as follows
“HE MAKES THE SPIRIT RETURN AND BLOW, AND THE BLESSINGS FALL UPON US.
These days when we are really under attack from the south as well as from the north. When many citizens, old people, children and soldiers are being attacked by the forces of evil.
The occasional shelling and alarms stop normal life and you have to go into a sheltered space.
Finally, some encouraging themes:
– Just today, Thursday 10/19/23, twenty-two new immigrants arrived from the USA. These immigrants from the U.S. arrived in spite of the war, they had the option to postpone their arrival in Israel, but they insisted, and not only that, they want to be part of the war effort. We wish them a warm welcome and may God bless them and may our Heavenly Father protect them.
– Many of our friends around the world are sending us wonderful, encouraging emails and almost all of them are asking “How can we help you?” many dear friends and brothers are donating and wanting to be part of the Holy Work to help now.
As we announced in the last update, we are going to publish some of the letters of encouragement that you have sent.
We here at Sabra pray that the God of Israel will bless each and every one of you. May the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob fulfill His promise to each and every one of you for your encouragement and desire for UNITY (Genesis 12:3).
May the blessings of the Most High be upon you, your family and your community.
From the Land of Zion and the City of Jerusalem Your brother in faith Mordechai ben Yaakov