[Note: please forgive any typos as I had to write this quick on an airplane.]
I don’t think I ever thought any of my daughters would be in a war. But sure enough, my youngest has been dragged into this heated conflict. I can’t share what she is doing, but I am very proud of her. Please keep her in your prayers!
Hamas was Compelled to Fight
Hamas would have you believe that this conflict is being fought over the death of a young Arab boy. In truth, most Israelis care more about that boy than they do. Hamas would gladly use that boy as a Human Shield, as they are many women and children in Gaza. These sick monsters long for the death of their own people, just so they can use them for propaganda.
Make no mistake; this attack has been planned for some time. They just needed an excuse to pull the trigger.
Abbas’ claims of Genocide
Secondly, today Pres. Abbas said that Israel’s bombing of Gaza is tantamount to genocide. Mr. Abbas is a very weak leader who has threatened to resign more times than I can remember. He cannot contain his partner in his government, Hamas, so he just hurls verbal grenades at Netanyahu. It is easier and most definitely safer.
However, if the goal were genocide, there would be tens of thousands of dead, not just a few. Israel has limited her attacks to specific, strategic targets. Furthermore, Israel has warned all Gazans to stay away from Hamas activists for their own protection.
Admittedly, that is hard to do when you are being forced to act as a human shields. It is remarkable that more innocent people have not been killed. Pray for the innocent Palestinians that they are not victims of their leaders’ aggression.
Father Rejects Peres and Netanyahu
Men in skullcaps and observant women crowded outside the mourners’ tent of the Abu Khdeir family in northern Jerusalem Tuesday to pay their condolences for the murder of 16-year-old Muhammad, burned to death last week, allegedly by Jewish extremists. (TimesofIsrael.com)
The father of the slain Arab teen however rejected the strong statement of Netanyahu condemning the murder and refused to allow Shimon Peres to visit and express condolences. Of course, the Palestinian Authority would never allow the father receive them. It would bad PR. They have no trouble using their teens death for propaganda.
There will be no Convictions in Teen’s Killing
The mother, when hearing of the arrests of her son’s killers, expressed no satisfaction, saying that they will released in days. She may actually believe that because everyone knows around here that the PLO jails are revolving doors. Terrorists are released in days. However, Israelis are sickened by the murder and these misguided Jews will spend the rest of their days behind bars. Contrast that with the fact that Hamas has taken credit for the killing of three teens!
Three Jewish Teens not Killed by Arabs?
The father also claimed that there was no evidence that Arabs/Palestinians killed the three Jewish Teens. Actually there was a 911 call made by one of the teens that recorded the boys being shot, while their shooters sang in Arabic. In addition, the two main suspects—Hamas members—cannot be found. Hamas leader claims that the murder of the three Jewish boys was just the starting point—thus confirming that Hamas was behind it.
Hamas Rockets are Inaccurate. Nothing to Fear?
Friends, while it true that the Rockets rarely hit a target, the danger is real. The Israeli police tweeted out a picture of a gaping hole in the side of a home. And don’t forget the trauma affect—particularly on children. Running to a shelter several times a day and often in the middle of the night can cause serious emotional injury. Let’s not forget, a terrorist’s goal is to cause terror!
Compassion from Israelis
I have noticed that many Messianic Israelis from different parts of the country have opened their homes to those who live near Gaza. We expect Elana’s family to use our apartment in Tel Aviv while we are in the U.S. (and longer if needed!). A ministry in Eilat has invited believers to come down and stay with them. Other believers in the north have posted on the Messianic email list that they can host people. Such are the people of Israel. It reminds of 2007 when Hezbollah reined down missiles on the northern cities and everyone fled south.
No where to Run
Only this time space is limited in our tiny little country. Hamas has fired missiles past Tel Aviv, almost to Haifa, and at Jerusalem. Last night they fired over 60 rockets in one hour. Clearly this is meant to overwhelm Israel’s missile defense system, the Iron Dome, which has held steady so far. The Iron Dome can predict within seconds if a rocket that has been fired needs to be shot down, saving our nations hundreds of thousands of dollars. But I don’t know how long we can hold up.
Hamas Targets Dimona
Two missiles were launched at Dimona, Israel. Dimona is where our not so secret Nuclear Bomb facilities are situated. Fortunately the Iron Dome took them down.
Finally, let me share from the Maoz weekly prayer letter:
In addition to all these events of the last couple of days, Israel is still not over the shock of the kidnapping and murder of the three Israeli teenagers, whose bodies were discovered just last week.
A spirit of fear is pervading Israeli society regarding kidnapping, and parents are afraid to let their children outside, fearing they might be abducted.
Needless to say, the situation in Israel is difficult. But in the midst of it God is at work “behind the scenes.”
With well over 300 rockets shot into Israel, there have been, so far, no reports of injuries (there have been several treated for shock) and no deaths. Even though some homes, businesses, roads and cars have sustained damage, this could have been so much worse!
Some stories being told are nothing less than miraculous, like that of a woman who had four children in her home, and decided to go to the pool in the morning, so she and the children were out of the house when it sustained a direct hit from a rocket, completely destroying the room where the children would have still been sleeping on a regular day.
Pray for Israeli Team as they Return Home
As many of you know, Elana and I, along with Maoz staff, have been serving Maoz Israel by leading a group of Israelis for the past 11 days. We had an amazing time at the MJAA conference and are so grateful to Maoz Partners and the MJAA for subsidizing about 80% of the cost. Lives were changed, relationships were built and there is no question that having Israelis at this yearly conference is a blessing for the American Messianic movement and Israel’s. We enjoyed a fresh outpouring of God’s spirit on “Israel Night.” The Tiferet Yeshua worship team did an amazing job and I had the privilege of giving the message. Go to MJAA.org to watch.
The team will head home tonight. Some of them may be called up as reserves (Israel’s army is a reservist army). They could go from the bright lights of Manhattan (where we spent the last two days) to the front lines of war. Please keep them covered in prayer.
While at the conference Tal and I and some of the team recorded a live podcast in front of audience. It was the most fun we have had doing a show. We took lots of questions. However, it doesn’t feel appropriate to promote it now with everything happening in Israel. Nevertheless, I know many of you have been waiting for it, so I wanted to include the link.