ALL EYES WERE ON JERUSALEM AS MUSLIM DAY OF RAGE ENGULFED CITY
Israel Police deployed some 3,000 officers in and around Jerusalem and announced that the Temple Mount would be open for traditional Muslim prayers during a recent Muslim “Day of Rage” held in that city. “Heightened security took place in and around the Old City. Police and border police units were mobilized in all areas and neighbourhoods and responded to any incidents or disturbances throughout the day,” Israel Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said in a statement. “The Temple Mount was open for women of all ages and men over the age of 50,” he continued. “Police coordinated to enable Friday prayers to take place and at the same time secure measures taking place.” Meanwhile Palestinian factions in the West Bank (Judea and Samaria) and Gaza Strip called for Muslims to storm the site to protect the al-Aksa Mosque.
Hamas leader Ismail Haniyeh used social media to get the message out, YNet reported. “This is an important turning point in the defence of the al-Aqsa Mosque and we will be the victors,” Haniyeh said the day before the Day of Rage. “The Israeli plans for al-Aqsa will not be carried out. This is a red line. You are stoking the fire. We are calling for a day of rage and general mobilization of the Palestinian society and the entire Arab nation in the framework of the campaign to defend Jerusalem and al-Aqsa.” The call didn’t stop with Haniyeh. Hamas spokesman Fawzi Barhoum announced that Israelis were attacking the al-Aksa and preventing Muslims from praying there. At the same time, imam’s (clerics) in east Jerusalem neighbourhoods and in Judea, Samaria, and Hebron closed mosques to encourage tens of thousands to come storm the Temple Mount.
Netanyahu convened the Security Cabinet to prepare for the situation. Following the lengthy meeting, the cabinet decided to buck international pressure and not to remove the metal detectors installed outside the Lion’s Gate entrance to the Temple Mount. Ministers also affirmed their confidence in the police, authorizing them to take whatever steps necessary to maintain public order and security both on city streets and at the site. Just like visitors to the Western Wall, and the Vatican for that matter, anyone wishing to enter the Temple Mount will be required to pass through the scanners. (Non-Muslim visitors to the Temple Mount, who must enter through a separate gate, have been subjected to rigorous security checks and metal detectors for years.) Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat weighed in on the decision, calling it “courageous.”
“The decision of Jerusalem District Police Commander Yoram Halevy to place metal detectors on the Temple Mount was a courageous decision because a couple of weeks ago two policemen were murdered at the site. The decision was a responsible one that will help to ensure that such incidents do not repeat themselves,” the mayor said. “This is not a political matter; it is a professional security issue. No one is challenging the status quo on the Temple Mount.” While police dealt with sporadic rioting during the week, as well as attempted terror attacks in several locations, hundreds of Muslims entered the site to pray, passing uneventfully through the newly installed metal detectors. The terror attack, which took place exactly one week earlier, prompted the upgraded security measures. Two Israeli officers were shot dead in that attack and a third injured.
Netanyahu closed the site temporarily for purposes of investigation, reopening it on the Sunday morning. The weapons used in the attack had been brought into the mosque the night before, reportedly aided by officials with the Wakf, the Islamic Trust responsible for the day-to-day administration of the site. Following the closure, the Wakf cried foul, claiming Israel was endangering the al-Aksa mosque, a ploy that’s been used repeatedly to incite violence. In response to a White House press release, Netanyahu issued a statement he’s repeated many times over the years. “Israel is committed to maintaining the status quo on the Temple Mount and the freedom of access to the holy sites. Israel is committed to protecting the safety of all worshipers and visitors to the Temple Mount,” the statement read.
22 DAYS OF FOCUSED PRAYER FOR THE JEWISH PEOPLE – SEPTEMBER 20 – OCTOBER 11 2017
The theme for this year’s Jewish Prayer Focus is ‘Breakthrough’ (Micah 2:13). Only with the King passing through before them could the miraculous Light Horse charge at Beersheba have succeeded in World War 1. We commemorate this ANZAC victory that turned the tide of the war and cleared the land for the Jews to return to the land of their forefathers and ultimately for Israel to be re-established as a nation. However, God is not returning His people to be a secular nation. There is a greater spiritual return yet to unfold. God is at work removing hearts of stone and giving hearts of flesh to many in the land. Web-based ministries in Hebrew have had an explanation of the gospel viewed over 1.5 million times! Congregations continue to grow and multiply, with many youth amongst their ranks.
In the Jewish Prayer Focus you can meet some of the pastors and ministry leaders who share their insights about the Biblical Holy Days, introduce their ministries, and share prayer needs. Each year the dates, articles and writers differ. The Jewish Prayer Focus is a 22-day call to prayer (Sept 20 – Oct 11) for a harvest of souls amongst the Jewish people group, at the time of year when they are soul-searching and repenting in accordance with the Holy Days of the Biblical calendar in Lev 23:26-44. These include the Feast of Trumpets, the Day of Atonement, and the Feast of Tabernacles, which all foreshadow the return of the Messiah. The project is endorsed by Lawrence Hirsch (Executive Director, Celebrate Messiah, Australia) and John Dawson (President, YWAM), Rob Stearns (International Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem) and Tom Hess (House of Prayer for all Nations in Jerusalem).
All our profits are returned to those for whom we are praying. Please join us and learn the GOOD news from Israel, and see how God is moving. Copies available from JPF, PO Box 54, Kerrimuir VIC 3129, call 03 9090 7575 or email firstname.lastname@example.org Donation: Aud $10.00 for one copy, $17.50 for 2, $23.50 for 3, $75 for 10, $125 for 20, incl local postage. Cheques should be made payable to Living Way Christian Network Inc. Credit card purchases can be made at the website or download from http://jewishprayerfocus.org/ Also available from Koorong.
DESPITE BAD PRESS ISRAELI TOURISM BREAKS ALL RECORDS
Despite the bad press Israel often receives, people are flocking to the Jewish state. Not only were April and June record-breaking months for Israel’s tourism industry, during the first six months of the year, 1.7 million tourists arrived, 26 percent more visitors than during the same period last year. June saw a whopping 76 percent increase in tourists from China, the Central Bureau of Statistics reported. Russia followed with a 30 percent increase and American tourists rose by 20 percent. Overall, June saw a 28.4-percent increase over last year, with 303,000 tourists arriving as Israel celebrated the 50th anniversary of the Six-Day War, which saw Jerusalem reunited under Jewish sovereignty for the first time in two millennia. In honour of that special anniversary, Israeli Tourism Minister Yariv Levin said a lot of hard work behind the scenes produced the record-breaking statistics.
“Our policy continues to prove itself and to bear fruit and we can see that the right marketing strategy can bring Israel to new heights,” Levin said. “We are implementing marketing activities and innovative processes to brand Israel and to bring new airlines and new routes into Israel, and all this activity proves itself, month after month.” With more than $9.4 billion in revenues since January, Levin said the tourism sector is making an “exceptional contribution” to the overall economy and to the broad spectrum of Israelis who make a living in hotels, restaurants and shops that cater to visitors. “I am convinced that, with the correct activities, we will see continue to see good results in the coming months,” he said. The increases reflect the Tourism Ministry’s efforts to help visitors get the most out of their visit to the country.
Messianic believers in southern Israel have been the target of a violent protest over a new meeting centre that recently opened in Dimona. Ultra-Orthodox Jews caused a disturbance outside the new Messianic meeting place, then took their protest out into the community, attacking believers’ homes. Please pray for Albert and Esther Knoester who lead the new centre in Dimona and for their congregation. Those behind the attacks are thought to be linked with the anti-missionary organisation, Yad L’Achim. After protesting outside the Messianic centre, they attacked the Knoesters’ home and that of another member of the congregation, breaking windows and causing other damage. There were children in both houses at the time, and they were said to be extremely frightened.
Attacks on Messianic congregations in Israel are common: the one in Arad town reportedly suffers harassment almost daily, and several church buildings have been attacked in recent years. Please pray:
* that our almighty God will comfort and strengthen Messianic believers in Dimona and across Israel. Pray that they will know He will protect them ‘in the day of trouble’ (Psalm 27:5).
* asking God for wisdom for Albert and Esther, and for other families in their congregation: pray they will continue to witness to their community, despite opposition.
* that Israeli officials will deal effectively with those responsible for these incidents, for the sake of religious tolerance in their nation.