President Barack Obama lays wreath at Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial in Jerusalem
By Shira Sorko-Ram
I just couldn’t wait for the new Israeli government coalition to form. Boy, was I going to write a doozie! Nothing like these politics had ever been seen before. No one knew from day to day what the new government was going to look like. Would it be ultra-Orthodox? Labor? Far left? Some weird combination?
For 39 days, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu fought, wooed, bluffed, enticed and threatened the leaders of two other major political parties, Yesh Atid (There’s a Future) and Bait Yehudi (The Jewish Home).
The rules of the game were known to all. Twelve parties had won seats in the Knesset. Netanyahu and his merged co-partners gained a total of 31 seats out of 120. They needed another 30 seats to form a government.
I can’t go into all the details, because then I would be writing you the article that I’m not going to write. But what Netanyahu wanted more than anything else that this world has to offer (except his family) was to have his old buddies the two ultra-Orthodox parties with him in his government.
The reason isn’t hidden from any Israeli living in this country. The ultra-Orthodox demand only two things:
Not to have to serve in the army.
To receive billions of shekels for its population that does not work.
That’s all. If they receive these two benefits, Netanyahu has friends that stick closer than a brother. The only problem was: The two ultra-Orthodox parties won only a total of 18 seats.
Still, Netanyahu was determined to have them in his government. Maybe he could entice the leftist Labor party with 15 votes to join him and the ultra-Orthodox? The Labor leader would hear none of it.
THE TWO BROTHERS
Scene Two: Two young inexperienced politicians won a total of 31 seats: First-time secular politician Yair Lapid (Yesh Atid) won 19 seats on the basis that the ultra-Orthodox would be obligated to serve in the army for the first time ever. He also campaigned to restructure Israel’s incompetent coalition system, its deteriorating education system, and help small businesses in a shrinking middle class - all areas that would rile up the petrified stick-in-the-muds used to doing things the bureaucratic way.
The second first-time politician, Naftali Bennett (Bait Yehudi), is the modern and moderate Orthodox face of the settlers’ party. However, as an experienced entrepreneur who made millions in a startup company, he endorses many of the same common sense values as Lapid. [Note: The ultra-Orthodox have no love for the Orthodox and vice versa.]
To make an incredibly long story short, Yair and Naftali joined together in an unusually strong pact which Bibi was not able to break apart. They literally forced Bibi Netanyahu to include them and to exclude the ultra-Orthodox in the new government. Together with Tsipi Livni, and her six-member center-leftist dovish party (who was promised the office of conducting peace negotiations with the Palestinians), the government was born - literally minutes before the 40-day deadline was breached, which would have triggered new elections.
TWO DAYS LATER
But before I was able to get to my computer to write about the dazzling negotiations, President Obama came to town. As our daughter Shani has written (next article), Israel had never seen the likes of such a celebratory hosting of a visitor before in all its modern history.
You see, before Obama’s arrival, a reputable poll in Ma’ariv (an Israeli Hebrew news daily) showed that Obama had a 10 percent approval rating among the Israeli public.
And then Obama arrived! An Obama that Israel had never seen before. He never once mentioned forcing Israel back to the 1949 armistice lines, nor giving up the ancient city of Jerusalem. He didn’t even demand Israel discontinue building homes in the West Bank - although he did say he thought it would be wise to stop. All of the above Obama had demanded in the past - or else! It was a 180° U-turn.
Most of all, he assured Israelis that they have the U.S.’s backing, that the U.S. would not let Iran get nuclear weapons under any circumstances, and that the U.S. would supply Israel with the weapons she needs. He talked about Israel’s rich heritage in the Holy Land (Muslims profess to believe that Israel has no history here). And on and on. He astonished and literally dumbfounded the Israeli people.
The polls found a huge drop in Israelis who see Obama as hostile.
ISRAELIS CRAVE LOVE
Ra’anan Gissin, Ariel Sharon’s former spokesman, explained it like this: “Jews always need warmth,” Gissin said. “It has to do with our history. We crave for others to love us because we were always hated and castigated.”
Don’t get me wrong. We are glad that, at least for now, Obama has decided to stand with Israel. We know that the nations are being weighed in the balance by a God who sees everything. The evil which is spreading in ever-increasing waves across North America will one day bring judgment. Yet I believe that God will delay the most devastating judgments yet for a while as He remembers his promise to bless the U.S. and Canada and every other nation - there are so few - that stand with Israel.
Obama’s trip was so stunning that it was important for me to write an article that would enable you to catch a sense of the euphoria in this country. But before Obama left town, the TV and radio and Internet blared the latest breaking news.
TURKEY IS OUR FRIEND AGAIN?
Just before he left, Obama joined Netanyahu who got on the phone with Turkey’s Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to apologize for the deaths of nine Turkish activists among the hundreds who tried to break Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza in 2010.
If justice were the issue, Erdogan should have been apologizing to Israel - for approving the clubbing of Israeli soldiers who had boarded to inspect the MV Mavi Marmara ship. Under international law, Israel has the right to enforce a blockade in order to keep Hamas from receiving arms by sea to attack Israel.
But justice was not the issue. With so many enemies everywhere, Israel needs and wants Turkey’s friendship. In fact, for many years there were extremely close relations between the two nations until the Islamic Prime Minister Erdogan was voted in office.
Slowly but surely, Erdogan began to pull away from the Jewish nation. Then when the Israeli soldiers, attempting to defend their own lives from hundreds of vicious attackers aboard the ship, killed nine activists on the boat, Erdogan broke diplomatic relations with Israel, and since then has taken every opportunity to demonize Jews.
“Zionism must be regarded as a crime against humanity,” the Turkish premier said. “Israel is a terrorist state,” etc., etc., etc. Turkish movies portrayed Jews as killing Gentile children in order to use their blood in Passover matza, etc.
But Obama had been working on reconciliation between the two countries - of national interest to the U.S. because both are strong allies of America. And so, wonder of wonders, with Obama listening, Erdogan accepted Netanyahu’s apology. Euphoria knew no bounds in Israel! Israelis who used to love to go to southern Turkey for vacations, already started calling tour agencies to once again book flights to that exotic country.
But just as I was about to write this story, Erdogan decided that actually he had additional demands before there would be an exchange of ambassadors. Namely, he insisted on a million dollars to the families of each activist killed by the IDF. But the real non-starter was his demand for a complete removal of the Gaza blockade - meaning that Hamas would be free to bring in all the weapons they wanted. Israel’s officials called for “patience” with the Islamic prime minister.
Actually Erdogan has gotten a lot of mileage out of this phone call. Large billboards were put up by the Ankara municipality to thank Erdogan following Israel’s apology. “Israel apologized to Turkey. Dear prime minister, we are grateful that you let our country experience this pride,” the billboards read.
One thing is sure. There’s nothing like Islamic pride! One of our new politicians Naftali Bennett posted on his Facebook page that if Erdogan keeps this up, Israel will regret the apology. Well, we tried.
BREAKING NEWS ABOUT SYRIA
But before I could put together information about Turkey, we learned that Syria had started shooting across the Israeli Golan Heights border, and actually struck an army vehicle although thankfully not injuring any Israeli.
News also leaked out that Israel has set up a field hospital on the Syrian border caring for wounded Syrian opposition rebels, whose last hope is to beg the Israelis for medical help. Israel greatly fears a deluge of wounded Syrians. But on the other hand, Jewish values cannot allow them lie there at the border and die.
Today UN officials are warning that the Syrian bloody conflict might spill into the Jewish state sooner rather than later. The UN Security Council expressed grave concern at all violations of the “Disengagement of Forces Agreement” between Syria and Israel. If the 1000 UN peacekeepers are forced to leave for their own safety, then this becomes a very very dangerous situation. Remember that both Syria’s President Assad and the opposition are enemies of the Jewish State. Remember too, that Syria is floating in chemical and biological weapons.
Oh well, I better stop now before something else happens and I end up writing an article.
WAIT! STOP THE PRESS!
Wait till you hear this! Israel has gone from rags to riches. From a tiny country that had almost no natural resources, our country discovered natural gas three years ago 50 miles off the coast of Haifa. Today, the first piped-in flow of natural gas reached the shores of Israel through its new pipeline! And it is only the first of even massively larger reserves discovered that will allow Israel to move towards not only an energy independent nation, but an exporter of natural gas. There’s that euphoria again!
They say that not since the days that the Queen of Sheba graced Jerusalem with her majestic entourage has the Jewish capital seen such a procession as we saw when President Barak Obama came to town.
In ancient times they came with a caravan of camels loaded with spices and gold. In our time they come in a jumbo jet loaded with their own helicopters, SUV’s and the president’s armored limo.
Long time residents claimed they’d never seen the streets so clean. And some of Israel’s busiest highways and streets were shut down for hours at a time as the president was transported to and from selected locations.
For Jerusalemites who were ‘lucky’ enough to live along the path the president would take to his hotel, security was everything. Any car parked (legally) along certain streets would be towed at owners’ expense and if residents weren’t in their home before the shutdown began, they would have to wait at the security barrier until the president was safe and cozy in his hotel suite.
The week before Passover boasts some of the busiest shopping and workdays of the year in Israel. Companies struggle to complete orders and families strive to clean their homes of every last cracker crumb the kids dropped in the couch over the last year.
People buy new dishes, paint their walls and freshen up their home decor all for the coming celebration of Passover. This time around however, shopping definitely suffered as the threat of gridlock traffic due to closed roads kept many people huddled back in their homes - in front of their TV’s.
For a people usually known for their cynicism, there wasn’t much complaining. After all, little Israel was hosting the most powerful man in the world today. Israelis culturally love to host and there would be no topping this.
For all the drama that has gone on between President Barak Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu over the past four years, I felt strangely relieved to see the President smile directly at our PM. Israelis generally feel rejected by most every country in the world. So to have the top world leader come and say that the US will support (with finances and political backing) Israel’s right to defend itself against any threat - Iran, Syria, Hamas, etc., - meant a lot.
I know, of course, in the United States many people have strong opposition to some of President Obama’s domestic policies. But in Israel, one must come to terms with the fact that the United States’ relationship with Israel is extremely important and President Obama has a huge say as to whether that relationship will be a pleasant or rough ride.
As I and millions of other Israelis, watched the live procession at Israel’s main international airport (which had been completely cleared of non-security personnel) the whole deal was mesmerizing. In the three days of his visit, President Obama who until this visit could only boast of single digit Israeli approval ratings, managed to endear himself to the Israeli public.
He wowed the crowd with some Hebrew phrases, exchanged jokes with the Prime Minister and by the end of the trip he and our Prime Minster were publicly referring to each other on a first name basis.
I know it may be strange for some people to accept this as good news for various reasons, but the U.S.’s improved relations with Israel is good news both for Americans and Israelis. Taking solid steps towards blessing and supporting Israel is definitely a good thing, even if the steps are small.
It isn’t too much to believe that people pray for the President and that God is answering those prayers. Things don’t always have to get worse with no intervention from God. They call things “miraculous” because in the natural it doesn’t seem possible.
God commanded us to pray for our leaders because our prayers really do have the power to change things. Proverbs 21:1 says, “The king’s heart is like a stream of water directed by the LORD; he guides it wherever he pleases.”
Israel’s history is full of dead ends that God turned into glorious highways. Our job is to pray He does it again.
“Give the LORD no rest until he completes his work, until he makes Jerusalem the pride of the earth.” Isaiah 62:7
by Shira Sorko-Ram David Lazarus contributed to this article
Archeologist Ehud Netzer spent 40 long years looking for the burial place of King Herod the Great.
It became his personal passion, the mission of his life. His 41 year-old daughter said her father studied the former ruler and his famed building projects in Israel and the West Bank so deeply that he felt he actually knew the ancient ruler.
Archeologists have always been fascinated by Herod because he left them so much to excavate. He was the greatest builder in the history of the Jewish people and the ruins of his wonders can be seen throughout the country - Caesarea on the Mediterranean Sea being one of the most famous sites in all the Holy Land.
Professor Netzer immersed himself in the writings of the First Century historian, Flavius Josephus, who recounted that Herod had died in his massive, gorgeous winter palace in Jericho. Josephus even described the agonizing diseases of which he died.
From Josephus’ accounts, some medical experts suggest that Herod had chronic kidney disease complicated by a type of gangrene. More recently, others report that in his final days he may have also suffered from scabies, which produces unbearable itching. For the man who killed the babies in Bethlehem, his favorite wife, three of his sons and a brother-in-law - to mention only a few - he received a first course of his just desserts. (Wikipedia)
Josephus also stated that Herod was so concerned no one would mourn his death, that he commanded a large group of distinguished men to come to Jericho, and then gave an order that they should be killed at the time of his death so that the displays of grief he craved would really take place. Fortunately for them, Herod’s son Archelaus and sister Salome did not carry out his wish.
BURIAL OF HEROD, KING OF THE JEWS, 73-4 B.C.
According to Josephus, Archelaus, Herod’s successor, “spent all the kingdom’s wealth on a magnificent burial.” Relatives, armor-bearers and several battalions of well-armed soldiers marched, surrounding the coffin. Hundreds of servants and slaves marched behind, climbing the 25-mile road in the desert heat through the mountains to a place the king had prepared for his grave and which he called Herodium. Again, Josephus is the key source for the assertion that the king was buried there.
Flavius Josephus described the lavish funeral in opulent terms: “The bier was of solid gold, studded with precious stones, and had a covering of purple embroidered with various colors; on this lay the body enveloped in a purple robe, a diadem encircling the head and surmounted by a crown of gold, the scepter beside his right hand.”
Herodium, the desert palace, fortress and burial place of Herod the Great
Herodium is nine miles south of Jerusalem, just east of Bethlehem, on the edge of the Judean Desert. It was there that Herod the Great built another massive fortress. (Always fearful for his life, he built a number of fortresses including the famous Masada fortress overlooking the Dead Sea.)
Herodium was built between 23 and 15 B.C. as a combined palace and powerful stronghold. Surrounding the complex was a double wall 63 meters in diameter and seven stories high within which Herod built a palace that included halls, courtyards and opulent bathhouses. Earth was heaped up around the walls, which created a coneshaped artificial mountain.
At its foot, Herod built a kind of royal “country club,” including a large pool, a bathhouse and a roofed pool. Despite its desert location, the complex was surrounded by magnificent gardens irrigated by the pool. A special aqueduct from the area of Solomon’s Pools near Bethlehem brought water to the palace. (www.parks.org.il)
Archeologist Ehud Netzer found the burial place of King Herod the Great.
True, Josephus said Herod was buried in Herodium. But where? Despite the extreme heat, Netzer began digging there in 1972, not having a clue where to find the grave in the man-made 300-foot stone and earth mount. Some archeologists thought that the logical place would be at the top of the mound. But after 35 years and yet not finding the tomb, Netzer began digging into the extensive palace complex at the bottom of the hill, which he labeled “Lower Herodium.”
In 2006, his excavations revealed a ramp winding around the bottom of the hill from the lower palace complex and stadium. Along its path were discovered a theater and a monumental staircase, which led past a platform. And then in May 2007, Netzer came upon what he finally identified as the tomb of King Herod. Netzer found a beautifully carved sarcophagus with decorative urns of a type never before seen in Israel “shattered into hundreds of pieces.” This is exactly how Josephus described the tomb explaining that it had been smashed by Jewish rebels who had revolted against the Romans in 66 A.D. leading up to Rome’s destruction of Jerusalem. (LA Times 9May2007)
Immediately, Netzer began to promote the idea of a monumental exhibition of Herod’s mausoleum at the Israel Museum in Jerusalem. It would be a gigantic task, but Netzer began mapping his ideas and with great energy pushed the idea along.
Although 76 years old, he continued to dig and plan for his proposed exhibition. In 2010, as he sat on a safety railing near the tomb speaking with colleagues, the wooden rail broke and he fell 20 feet. Three days later he died.
THE LARGEST ARCHAEOLOGICAL PROJECT IN THE MUSEUM’S HISTORY
Dudi Mevorach, the Israel Museum’s curator, was with him when he fell. He and his colleagues spent three years putting together the exhibition, which will last until October 5, 2013. The exhibit is spread out over 900 square meters, and involved the transport of stones weighing 30 tons. The museums’ foundations had to be strengthened before the exhibit was mounted for fear it might be too heavy.
If you plan to be in Israel before the exhibition closes, make sure your tour guide takes you to the exhibition. It is certainly worth seeing! Going to Herodium itself would be very special!
HEROD’S PATHOLOGICAL CHARACTER
Herod was actually a converted Jew. His father was an Idumean (from the tribes of Esau) and his mother an Arab. Some of the descendants of the Maccabees known for converting surrounding tribes, demanded the Idumeans become Jewish. And so it was. A convert was acceptable in the Jewish world. But not a convert who became King of the Jews. Therefore, the Pharisees detested him and the Sadducees were angry with his high taxes. He was, indeed, a most unpopular King of the Jews.
It would seem natural then that when the Wise Men came asking where the King of the Jews was born, every fiber in his body sensed treachery. Killing babies was his sure way to stay on his throne.
Though successful in politics, Herod was bitterly unhappy in his private life. He married ten wives, including the beautiful Hasmonean (Maccabean descendant) princess, Mariamme, the granddaughter of the last true line of priests who were descendants of Aaron. Though he loved her passionately, he suspected her of infidelity and had her executed along with her mother. Later, in 7 B.C., he had her two sons killed. (Wikipedia)
When Herod found that his favorite son, Antipater, had been plotting against him, he had him executed along with two of his brothers - just five days before his own death in 4 B.C.
The Roman Emperor Augustus caustically remarked about Herod: “I would rather be Herod’s pig than Herod’s son.” He murdered members of his own family, yet scrupulously observed Mosaic dietary laws and would eat no pork.
His court was Hellenized and cultured. He ruled as an autocrat, supported by police, and, despite his rebuilding of the Temple, to the Jews he remained a detested foreigner and a usurper. Most Jews openly hoped for his death calling him “the wicked.”
THE TEMPLE AND YESHUA
Elected “king of the Jews” by the Roman Senate in 40 B.C., Herod began rebuilding the Temple in Jerusalem, in 19 B.C. It was an architectural marvel. Final work on the temple was not completed until just six years before the Romans destroyed it in 70 A.D. All that remains today is the great platform whose western side is the Wailing Wall, where Jews today still lament the destruction of the Temple. (Ibid.)
The demons of Herod’s life were jealousy of power, and suspicion, its necessary companion. A tyrant who bathed his own house and his own people in blood, and killed off the last priests of the line of Aaron. The high priests were then selected by the Romans, and sometimes the office went to the highest bidder.
A model of the palace of King Herod the Great in Jerusalem.
Here is what is so important to note. Caiphas, who was appointed by the Roman governors, was apparently not a Levite. He was not a descendent of Aaron if, as Josephus says, Herod purposely killed all the legitimate Hasmonean lineage who were descendants of the Maccabbees, who in turn were Levites. Thus, it seems, a false, corrupt high priest is the one who led the demand for Yeshua’s death. Caiphas is also believed to have been a Sadducee - a religious Jew who did not believe in the resurrection. (How furious he must have been when he heard about Lazarus! Ideologues do not change their opinion when faced with reality.)
Herod the Great’s son, Herod Antipas, ruler of Galilee, killed John the Baptist, and also interviewed Yeshua at his trial. But when Yeshua did not perform a miracle or even talk to him, Herod sent him back to Pilate. If Herod the Great had had a true heart for God, he could have traveled with joy to Bethlehem. His son did cross paths with the Savior of the world but did not recognize him either. How sad.
Thus the personal legacy of a megalomaniac. No picture of Herod, not even on a coin, exists. No one knows what he looked like.
The incredible massive and luxurious palace in Jericho where Herod spent his last days is now neglected, lying in ruins. Some of the gorgeous mosaics are covered in dirt, flooring torn up by marauders, paintings on the walls disappearing. Journalist Moshe Gilad who recently visited there lamented, “Here is all that remains of that powerful reign, backed by the great empire. Here is all that remains of an enormous construction project, most of whose components were brought in glory and splendor from Rome. (Haaretz, 11Feb2013)
And for all his 37 years of rule as an absolute tyrant with the lives of an entire nation - including his family - defenseless before his slightest whim, Josephus said, “He was a most unfortunate man.”
In a strange way, this exhibit made me more aware than ever of the power of the Man Yeshua. Even though at the time Herod was the highest authority in the land when Yeshua was born a babe, Yeshua is now King of the Jews, King of Kings and Lord of Lords, while the best of Herod are a gluedtogether smashed sarcophagus and the decaying ruins of a once great empire.
A Word From the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America
Dear Maoz Reader,
At Messiah 2012, the MJAA was profoundly blessed to have over 40 young Israeli believers attend our national week-long conference in central Pennsylvania. This was an historic event; there has never been so many Israeli believers attend at one time. Their coming created an excitement and expectation that the Lord was going to do something very special that would impact both individuals and the larger Messianic family. During the conference an entire evening was devoted to this group. The musicians and singers lead in worship and praise, Ari & Shira Sorko-Ram gave an encouraging message and update on Israel and the entire group was introduced to the 1400 attendees. The worship team also ministered to the YMJA (ages 13-30) during the week and had time to fellowship and make life-long connections.
We are overjoyed that for Messiah 2013 another group of Israeli believers are coming and bringing a new team of musicians and singers to minister during the conference, not only during the evening and youth services, but also during the new all-day outdoor music festival on July 4th. Their presence not only heightens our awareness of the needs and experiences of believers in Israel, but even more significant, our hearts are knit together in love and support for our Israeli brothers and sisters. The impact of their coming cannot be over emphasized.
MAOZ LOVES TO PARTNER!
Maoz Israel Ministries is again privileged to partner in providing the opportunity this year for 22 Israeli leaders and musicians to attend the MJAA Conference in Grantham, Pennsylvania. The participants will be personally paying $500 to attend and the MJAA is sponsoring the group’s week-long stay at the conference while Messianic congregations in North America are contributing half of the $40,000 still needed for the trip.
Maoz is partnering with the MJAA by raising the remaining $20,000 needed to help with the airfare, three-day hotels and food, bus transportation, etc.
This trip strengthens both the MJAA’s vision for encouraging Israeli believers and reaching out to the lost in Israel, while giving Israelis a greater vision of how God is moving among the Jewish people who come from countries around the world.
Ari and Shira Sorko-Ram
Your contribution is an investment in these young Israeli musicians to believe for greater things here in Israel!
Since its founding, “media” has been a major component of Maoz Israel Ministries. Perhaps that’s because our founders, Ari and Shira Sorko-Ram, both have a background in media. Ari was an actor in Hollywood, while Shira was a film-maker and musician, who even considered playing piano for Elvis Presley!
Not surprisingly, these pioneers of ministry were also ahead of their time in understanding the importance of media. Today, it’s a given. Every organization, whether for-profit or charitable in nature, must have a media presence. But that wasn’t the case back in the 1970’s when Maoz began.
For over 35 years, Shira has been writing the Maoz Israel Report monthly magazine with one major goal in mind: to educate people about what is really happening in Israel today from the perspective of believers in Yeshua.
For the last five years, that media outreach has expanded to include web and video content. And now, in 2013 we’re adding another new platform - the Maoz Israel Report Podcast!
If Isaiah, Jeremiah or John the Baptist were alive today, no doubt they’d be using modern media to share their prophecies from the LORD. They’d be tweeting, facebook’ing, YouTube’ing, and podcasting.
A podcast is really a radio show. But unlike the radio that most of us grew up with - that you could only hear if you were within range of that station’s antenna - podcasting allows anyone to reach a global audience. You record your show, then put it on-line and on iTunes for anyone to stream or download at their convenience. It is a virtual radio station right in your smartphone or laptop.
The Maoz podcast was the brainchild of Ron Cantor, from our Maoz Media team. The instant the idea came out of his mouth, it really excited me. It allows us to do all the things that the Maoz Israel Report magazine does, only in real-time. We can talk about the breaking news of the day, and give you analysis on the top stories, from the perspective of believers in the land.
We break the show down into four categories: news, interviews, teachings and historical stories.
First Ron and myself talk about all the headlines of the week and give a first-hand perspective on what it’s like to live in modern day Israel. It’s a mix of news and fun, as life for two Americans transplanted to Israel has to include some laughs!
Next, Ron interviews Messianic Jewish and Arab believers who live here in the land. They share with us about their testimonies, ministries, struggles and successes. God is doing awesome things here in Israel, and you’ll get to hear about them, first-hand.
Then Ron shares his gift of teaching by sharing a weekly lesson on the Jewish roots of the faith, giving life-changing lessons from a Messianic Jewish perspective.
Finally, Ron takes you on a weekly-guided tour through a piece of Israel’s history. There is no richer subject than the history of the nation of Israel, and Ron loves to share about both the modern and ancient historical saga of the Jewish homeland.
We’ve already uploaded almost a dozen episodes available for you to listen to. And by God’s grace we’re putting out a new one each week from our studio in Tel Aviv. It will usually be uploaded on Monday evenings, Israel time.
If you sign up for it, you will be notified each time a new podcast is ready.
To listen, you can just go to our homepage: maozisrael.org and link to the podcast from there. Or, better yet, just go to the podcast in the iTunes store, then hit “subscribe”. That way, each weekly episode will automatically show up in your computer, phone or tablet - free of charge.
We know that you love Israel and are praying for the salvation of Jews and Arabs. We also know you are hungry for accurate information about what’s really happening here. We’re so honored and excited to now be able to bring that to you each week, in the form of the Maoz Podcast. See you on the radio!
Chaim Goldberg is the Director of Media for Maoz Israel.
Once I heard a favorite minister tell a story of how he asked the Lord a question that was really bothering him. He asked, “Lord, you are so much more powerful than Satan. Why then, does Satan win so many battles, especially when your people are praying?”
He said the answer that came back from the Lord was, “STRATEGY.”
“Satan strategizes with his evil hordes to win a battle, while believers often pray in general terms.”
Thankfully, there are a growing number of the people of God who do know how to pray strategically and act strategically. The more that we ask for specific wisdom from God, the more he will direct us and increase our harvest.
Sending 22 young Israeli musicians this summer to the Messianic Jewish Alliance’s yearly July conference has strategic importance. These young leaders will absorb the multi-faceted revelation God has given to the Jewish movement in North America and abroad. They will witness a larger harvest of precious Jewish souls than they have seen in Israel.
They will learn of the skills, talents and creativity given to the Body of Messiah at large.
They will definitely gain new friends which will strengthen their own walk with the Lord, and give them joy and courage as they catch the vision of how Jews around the world are receiving salvation and becoming leaders in their own communities.
Furthermore, the North American Messianic Jews and those who come from various countries will receive vision and passion for the lost sheep of Israel.
It is with delight that Maoz has this opportunity to bring together these 22 Israeli leaders and musicians from seven Messianic Jewish congregations throughout Israel - together with an Arab believer who is also a part of the group!
We want to see them come back home full of grace, fire and even more determination to be a part of the sowers and reapers here in Israel.
If you grasp the possibilities and the benefits of sending Israeli believers to the Messianic Jewish conference this July, then we invite you to be a part of their growth and vision by investing in their journey.