Argentina 2007

Iglesia Pilar Church in Buenos Aires ArgentinaI just returned from Argentina. I’m amazed at what I witnessed. Five hundred leaders from around the world gathered to explore the possibilities for societal transformation. Marketplace ministers joined church leaders to recount victories and strategize for the future. Concurrently my wife Katharine was in Israel with Cindy Jacobs. They were on a compassion mission, ministering both to the Arabs and Jews in the Middle East. It was difficult for Katharine and I to be in different nations, but we felt that there was a prophetic significance to the timing and meaning of this trip. Rosemary Schindler of Schindler’s Ark also came to the conference in Argentina. For many years Rosemary has carried the mantle of Oskar Schindler. She has been instrumental in building bridges between Christians and Jews in our day. Rosemary is our ministry partner in many Israel ventures.

sklar2From the very first evening in Buenos Aires, it was clear that God was going to highlight the importance of Israel to the church today. Ed Silvoso, the convener of the conference, leader of Harvest Evangelism and International Transformation Network asked me to open the first meeting with prayer. I did so in Hebrew and English welcoming the attendees and asking God to bless our time together. Maurice Sklar, a gifted violinist provided music that evening and for the rest of the week. Maurice is an anointed Messianic Jewish worshiper and we were privileged to have him with us in Argentina.

ITN is a consortium of business and church leaders implementing five paradigms identified by Ed Silvoso. The paradigms are:

ministry2ITN is succeeding in diverse places with breakthroughs in harvest, healing and hope. Examples can be seen at Documented transformation is happening in Hawaii, Minnesota, South Africa and other places. One outstanding example of transformation is Olmos Prison in Argentina. The inmates and guards are all Christians living, working and worshiping together. The revival in Argentina became the springboard for these transforming works. As this year’s meeting approached in Argentina, the question arose in the spirit, “Is it possible that the next phase of blessing for Argentina and ITN is connected to God’s protocol and heart regarding Israel?”

altar2Every morning the conference began with faithful intercession. Ted Hahs presided as Native Americans opened the sessions and all nations joined in prayer. As these prayer meetings developed, the importance of Israel to God became evident. Deep intercession ensued as all reached to birth the vision of the “one new man” of Ephesians 2:14. In that verse God confirms that at the cross he healed the oldest rift in his body, the gap between Jew and Gentile. As this split is healed, the glory of God is revealed. He is not ashamed to be called the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob (Israel). As the week progressed, God led Ed Silvoso to include Israel at the center of the ministry of International Transformation Network!

The previous year we saw wonderful reconciliation between the generations in the body of Christ. Jews, Catholics and Protestants prayed and wept over the grievous past of church history. The Crusades, Inquisition, pogroms and the Holocaust were dealt with as error, as sin. For the Jewish people, it is vital to know the difference between those things done in the name of Christ, and those done in His true spirit. Real Christians love the Jewish people and pray for them.

This year God had a special blessing for Argentina. It was important for them to deal with the sinful history of the 20th century. At the end of World War II, when Juan and Eva Peron came to power, they embraced the Nazis who were fleeing Germany. Two submarines of stolen gold arrived in Buenos Aires. The subs were filled with gold bars. These bars were melted from the wealth stolen from Jewish people murdered by the Nazis. This gold was exchanged for blank passports, which allowed the Nazis entrance into South America. Argentina’s history was exposed and dealt with spiritually during the time of this conference. What an honor it was for me to participate!

prayThe harvest team allowed me to teach two workshops, preach to the Argentine pastors and help preside over altar calls. On the final night of the conference, Maurice Sklar touched heaven with his violin and Ed Silvoso preached a powerful message on reconciliation. Ed then told the story of Argentina’s Nazi history, and knelt before the Jewish contingent asking for forgiveness. Rosemary Schindler laid a small Israeli flag on the altar and Ed called the Argentines to contribute to the offering for Israel. Tears of joy and dancing in celebration ensued. It was a historic meeting. Those of us who have participated in such meetings all recognized that we were witnessing something we had not seen previously. To put meaning to the altar, Ed Silvoso dedicated a portion of the offering to be distributed to ministries serving Israel and the Jewish people. I have been asked to help determine which ministries should receive this offering. It is an awesome privilege and responsibility, one that I do not take lightly.

Join us in prayer in the days ahead as we ask God to delay the so-called peace process. This includes the dangerous dividing of Jerusalem, and giving away the heartland of Israel, Judea and Samaria, erroneously called the “West Bank”. We need time for God to continue this masterwork of knitting the hearts of Jews and Christians together in preparation for the Messiah.

Let’s fulfill the Scripture that Mordecai spoke to Esther when he said “Who knows but that you have come to the kingdom for such a time as this…”