Wartime in Israel!

Two weeks before the October 7th events, as my parents-in-law were coming for a visit in the Holy Land, my wife and I looked at each-other and shared a wish that a war will not begin while they are here. 

Neither one of us has any prophetic abilities, but it seemed like the ‘smell’ of war was in the air, and many people felt it… though sadly not among the ones who’s job it was to smell it.

Our wish did not come true. The surprise attack began while our parents were still here, and they’ve had to run with us to the ‘safe spaces’ when the first few sirens went off near Jerusalem, until we’ve managed to get them on a flight back home.

After the initial shock caused by the scale and magnitude of this ruthless invasion, something very profound has changed in the Israeli mindset. It became obvious and clear to most of us, that things can never be the same again. The testimonies, the photographs and the video bits began to circulate, and it became clear that this was not just another ‘ordinary’ attack from Gaza. 

The amount of hate and brutality displayed by the Hamas militants and the many so-called ‘civilians’ that came along with them to wreak havoc on ’the Jews’, showed us that the peace that we’ve been hearing about for two generations, has been nothing but an illusion and a false hope. The devilish atrocities that were so joyfully executed on the weakest and most fragile members of our society, were a clear reminder that the spirit of Amalek is still alive and festering beneath our faulty ‘radar’. The old anti-Semitic sentiment, that we so hoped was cast into the bottomless pit already, has made a surprisingly quick comeback, and Israelis understood that we are now in great danger just for being alive while Jewish.

Yet perhaps the saddest thing, for us who know and love Jesus, was the realization that it has now became far harder to share His message of grace with our non-believing people, who are now more than ever, on the lookout for any sign of anti-Semitism, and who often perceive Christianity to be an anti-Semitic alternative to the rabbinic religion they were taught is ‘true Judaism’.

“How do we share the gospel at a time like this?” An American brother asked me, and after some thinking I’ve had to say: “We preach the same message but do it even more lovingly and sensitively than before.”

The events of October 7th, as troubling as they were, have not changed the gospel of Christ, nor did they give us a time of recess from the Lord’s Great Commission! If anything, they’ve only made it more urgently needed. 

The timeless Gospel proclamation “Repent and believe the good news!” is now more relevant than ever, as we can clearly see that the time is getting shorter.

As Israeli society begins to examine itself and try to make sense of things, the inevitable thought: “Why is this happening to us?” Is a great opportunity, for us who know the Lord, to lovingly share the gospel. 

We need to let our brothers and sisters grieve and speak their minds and hearts, but then need to illustrate to them that our nation is mostly living in open sin and in rebellion against the God of our fathers, and that we cannot expect God’s protection and blessing to be over us, as we are dancing around golden calves!

Obviously, this must be done with extreme sensitivity, as we are dealing with two nations in Israel who are both very proud, very self-righteous and very traumatized. Yet nonetheless, we need to continue to call the both of them, each out of their own darkness and sin, into the light of God and His amazing grace upon repentant sinners who trust in the cross of the Savior alone for their redemption.

In the Jerusalem branch of Moriel, we’ve been focusing, these last few months, on building good ministry relationships with some of the more faithful churches and ministries in our area, and we are reaching out, especially now, to the soldiers of the IDF.

Not only have we supported the excellent Netivah ministry, that blesses and supports believing soldiers in Israel, but we’ve also used our own ‘connections’ in the infantry forces and the Air Force, where some of our believing friends and relatives serve, to share Christian love with their entire units, as we’ve provided for many needs they’ve expressed, in the Lord’s name.

We’ve also been putting a special emphasis, at this time, on personal evangelism, in hope for many souls to hear the Lord’s cry for their salvation in our voices. 

We’ve produced and mass distributed a new and relevant tract explaining the sacrifice of Christ through the lens of the sacrifices of our brave soldiers and have been receiving good feedback from some faithful brothers and sisters, who have used it to share their faith in and around the army.

We’ve also been cooperating with two fellowships in the Jerusalem area in practical evangelism, and are hoping to continue to train, encourage and equip the Body of Christ in Israel, to speak the truth in love, both in Hebrew and in Arabic.

We thank you all, precious Moriel family, for your generosity, love and support. 

The Lord has used you to be a great blessing and a hope, in a time when we need every friend we can get.

Please pray for the remnant of Israel and of Ishmael to grow and be made stronger in His Spirit, as hatred and evil rage around us. 

Please pray for our hearts to remain focused on Christ and not on the things of this world, and that the Lord, by His grace set the spiritual captives free, both of Israel and of the Jihadi Amalekites.

K&L T.

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