August 2021 / Av 5781
Shalom Haverim v’ Mishpocha, (Greetings, Family and Friends)
Global News That You Can Use
The KINGDOM of God is expanding in spite of globalist resistance to the international community of faith! Yeshua’s Kingdom is invisible to the secular eye, but we know HE is coming soon. Our June Middle East interaction with Chinese missionaries and Iranian Pastors convinced us afresh that His Body is moving forward around the world. You can hear about our journey on the “To Life” podcast with our ‘Back To Jerusalem’ friend Eugene Bach.
One of our joys as Messianic Believers is to pray for our Arab brothers in Christ. At Beit Abba we recently hosted Pastor Steven Khoury from Bethlehem. Steven is from a family dedicated to preaching the Gospel in the midst of a Muslim majority city and around the world. They have faced severe persecution.
On our 2009 Bay Area Pastors tour, we delivered a $50,000 donation to the Khourys’ work in Bethlehem and East Jerusalem.
Good News to Beat the Blues
Having come through Tisha B’Av [the ninth day of the month of Av] we are in the sacred season looking forward to the Fall Feasts of the Lord. Tisha B’Av is the most sorrowful day of the Jewish year because it commemorates a surprising number of tragedies that have happened to the Jewish people on this very same date throughout history. Most importantly, both the first and second Temples were destroyed on the ninth of Av hundreds of years apart.
It began with the 10 spies:
Adonai spoke to Moses saying, in Numbers 13
“Send some men on your behalf to investigate the land of Canaan, which I am giving to Bnei-Yisrael. Each man you are to send will be a prince of the tribe of his fathers, a man from each tribe. ”They returned from investigating the land after 40 days. Then Caleb quieted the people before Moses, and said, “We should definitely go up and capture the land, for we can certainly do it!”
But the men who had gone up with him said, “We cannot attack these people, because they are stronger than we.”They spread among Bnei-Yisrael a bad report about the land they had explored, saying, “The land through which we passed to explore devours its residents. All the people we saw there are men of great size! We also saw there the Nephilim. (The sons of Anak are from the Nephilim.) We seemed like grasshoppers in our eyes as well as theirs!”
Tradition states that this sin of unbelief set the Israelites up for a series of remarkable tragedies:
~ In 586 B.C. and AGAIN in 70 AD, the Temple was destroyed
~ In 135 C.E., the Bar Kochba Revolt was quashed and hundreds of thousands of Jewish people were killed. After the Revolt, the Roman Emperor Hadrian changed Judea’s name to Syria Palestina after Israel’s long-time enemy, the Philistines
~ In 136 C.E., Hadrian leveled what remained of the Temple in Jerusalem, leaving only what we know today as the Temple Mount
~ In 1096 C.E., the first Crusade officially began. Thousands of Jewish people were killed or persecuted during these campaigns attempting to force them to convert to “Christianity”
~ The banishment of all Jewish people from England in 1290 by King Edward
~ The final day for Jewish people to leave Spain after the expulsion order of 1492
~ The beginning of the Nazis’ deportation of Jewish people from Warsaw to Treblinka in 1942
Although Tisha B’Av is considered a season of deep mourning, the Rabbis say that in the “Olam Ha Ba” (the world to come), Tisha B’Av will be the most joyous holiday of the calendar! God of redemption!
We are now entering the period of the “seven sabbaths of comfort” leading up to the Fall Feasts. Each Shabbat the “Haftarah” (Prophets portion) is read along with the Torah. These seven weeks are full of hope for the Jewish people (and those grafted in…)
They began last week with Isaiah 49:1 “Nachamu nachamu ami” = Comfort, O comfort My people!
The countdown to the Fall Feasts begins in the summer with the Hebrew month of Elul, the last month of the civil calendar year. The new moon of Elul starts a 40 day period that culminates in the High Holy Days (Days of Awe). Elul is the last month of the year, a time to make “new year’s resolutions” and turn from sin before the start of the year and the According to some Sages, Elul is likened to a time when “the king is in the field” and, in contrast to when he is in the royal palace, “everyone who so desires is permitted to meet him.”
Elul is an acronym for Ani L’dodi V’Dodi Li (I am my beloved’s and He is mine) from Song of Songs 6:3
~ It is meant to remind us to return to our first love during this 40-day period
~ A time of soul searching and appeals for forgiveness (selichot)
~ Reminds us of the high calling to prepare and examine ourselves as the spotless, blameless bride
Thanks to you, this month House of Peace will be sending a generous donation to our Israeli Arab brothers and sisters in Messiah
”Thank you so much for standing with Israel, the international Body and House of Peace as we “look up, for our redemption is drawing near!”
We love you and thank God for you!
B’rachot Ha Gadolot [Great Blessings on you – and yours!],
Myles and Katharine