ROCKETS BURSTING IN AIR AND ON GROUND – 12 Mar 2012

Israel in the south (Negev regioin) is undergoing daily rocket and missile attacks from Gaza for the fourth day now, with air-raid sirens going off during the day and the middle of the night.  We just had an attack about 1/2 hour ago as I have been writing this letter, plus one around 3:00 in the morning.  Schools are still closed, and other public places are opening and closing as they see fit.  One missile landed and damaged a school yesterday, but thank God that no one was there.  The Iron Dome missile defense system is doing a very good job of intercepting many of the rockets, but it is not capable of stopping them all, and the one that got through to the school yesterday happened because of a technical malfunction just at the time of the attack.  There have been reports of shock and property damage from some of the missiles which have landed.

After four ‘red alerts’ on Friday night into Saturday morning, large public gatherings were not allowed on the Shabbat.  We went ahead with our congregational service for whoever would come.  Mothers with young children (especially if the husband was away) were encouraged not to come.  Thanks to those who did come, plus a group from the UK, and another from the US, and some locals from other congregations whose service was cancelled, we had a full house for the guest speaker from Texas!  The Lord really blessed us with His peace and joy.  No sirens were heard until later in the afternoon, well after everyone had gotten back home in peace.  We will have to see how things develop through this week as to how it may affect our service this Shabbat (Sat.).  Please pray for the Israeli government and military to know what to do, and that the God of Israel would intervene to put everyone in fear of Him, that many would repent and be saved, and that the meek would be glad for His name’s sake.

Please also remember the Christian believers in the Gaza strip, and others of the general population who oppose what their leaders and terror groups are doing.  They are surely more nervous and afraid than the one million Israelis facing the on-going attacks.  In Gaza there are no bomb shelters for the general populace.  Their government and terrorist leaders do not take much official concern to protect them.  The Islamic jihadist spirit boasts of loving death as much as we love life, and they send out their people to blow up themselves and as many others with them as they can.  Their God is not a Father, and he has no son or other children.  Pray for many Muslims in Gaza and elsewhere to turn to the God of Israel, who is the holy and righteous Father, and “whose love is seen in that He sent His only begotten Son, Jesus Christ, into the world, that we might live through Him.  In this is love, not that we loved God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as the propitiation for our sins”. (1Jn 4:9-10)

TRUTH, AND THE LYING SPIRIT – 23 Aug 2011

Greetings from the land where the lie is often spoken as truth,

Thanks to the many of you who have written in, and to those who didn’t yet lifted a voice to our Father in Heaven.

From the time that the serpent got Eve and Adam to listen to him over the clear Word of God, we have inherited the tendency to believe lies over truth.  And when the lie is repeated enough and taught and passed on as being true, it takes a rude awakening sometimes to open our eyes and ears to reality.  I was always brought up to believe that the truth of Jesus was not true — at least not for Jewish people.  If something is true, it is true for everyone.  Today Israel and Jewish people curses — although not always knowingly — both Jesus and those who believe in Him.  And Israel herself finds the nations delegitimizing and cursing the truth of her existence, and her witness to the one true God — even in her unbelief.  We reap what we sow; as we judge, we shall be judged.

In the present state of war preparations, Israelis were attacked and murdered.  Israel responded by killing the terrorists, and also some Egyptians, who may or may not have been complicit in the attacks near Eilat last week; and the news media, including some of Israel’s own, give a picture that Israel is the aggressor against Gazans and Hamas.  I heard a BBC newscast just two days ago, with the story stating that Israel had killed 15 Palestinians, including civilians, in response to a militant raid which killed  eight Israelis.  NOTHING about the civilians that the terrorists killed, including the injury of two children.  NOTHING about all the rocket attacks which had already begun on southern Israel towns and cities.  And with all this, Hamas and the other terrorist organizations involved who started the latest salvo during Ramadan, threatened Israel should Israel retaliate during Ramadan! 

The terrorists who chose to start the killings and attacks then also decided when the “cease-fire” should begin — 9:00 pm on Sunday.  Since Sunday at 9:00 pm (2100), rockets have been fired towards Ashkelon and other Israeli towns near Gaza.  Israel, once again, finds itself in a dilemma that no matter what she does, it is wrong.  Believers in Jesus/Yeshua, whatever we do or say about the truth of who He is, are never right in Judaism thinking. 

Praise the Lord for His righteousness!  His thoughts and ways are just and true, and His wisdom is awe-inspiring, and His judgments past finding out! 

Here is a link to a pretty amazing video about Hamas tactics against their own people and Israel:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RUuhw0RpRMY

Here is a very wry response to the U.S. demands for Israel to always apologize:  http://yossibarnegev.wordpress.com/  (I do not know who the author is, as far as I know.)

And here is a video of rocket attacks in Beer Sheva this past Saturday night, with most being intercepted:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0n5ICddnSJk

BEER SHEVA UNDER FIRE – 20 Aug 2011

This morning before we left home for our congregational service, the sirens went off, and we went down to our bomb shelter.  The rockets from Gaza this morning, and also on Thursday night, fell not too far from the section of the city in which we live, and on one of the rocket falls, the house shook from the vibrations of the impact.  This evening we have had twice to go into shelters while we were visiting friends from the kehila (congregation) who lived within sight of what we were hearing this morning. 

The missile interceptor system, called Iron Dome, has been brought back to the city after being taken out a couple of years ago.  It has successfully taken out some of the rockets which have been fired these past days.  Hamas has taken responsibility for these attacks, after denying any for what took place in Eilat a few days ago.

Sadly, this evening a grad rocket hit in a neighborhood, destroying a car and seriously damaging the house.  Worse, one person was killed, seven seriously injured, at least one mortally.  All of these remained outside during the attack, rather than get inside under cover.  Very likely, they were curious to see the Iron Dome work to intercept the missiles.  It is interesting to watch, but dangerous:  curiosity killed the cat.  The guidelines the news and the security authorities are stressing is to get into shelters, and remain there for some minutes after the alarm finishes.  We also know that not all neighborhoods have bomb shelters prepared to use, and many complaints are being heard for the city and the state to do something about this, which has been very clear since the Gaza War.

During the war in Gaza in 2009, no one was killed over a month in Beer Sheva.  One young boy was seriously injured.

I do not believe that any believer is exempt from being harmed, either directly or indirectly.  What will distinguish us is our reaction and response in the event of personal suffering, and how we relate to others who do suffer:  the issue is glory to our Father in Heaven, and honor to the name of the Lord Yeshua Messiah/Jesus Christ.  Before the event, it is difficult to ‘plan’ for our reaction, but the Holy Spirit within us wants to steady us as quickly as possible on The Rock of our salvation.