A Guide to Intercessory Prayer for the month of February 2019 ~ Jewish Year 5779

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`I will stand upon my watch and set myself on the rampart, and watch to see what he will say to me,
and what I will answer.` (Habakkuk 2:1)

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The Battle is in the Heavenly Realm

“For we are not struggling against human beings, but against the rulers, authorities and cosmic powers governing this darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realm” (Ephesians 6:12 CJB).

Understanding that Jerusalem is the epicentre of all things spiritual, and that the battle over Jerusalem is the final stage for the kingdom itself as the place that God has placed his Name, we must focus our prayers on confronting the work of spiritual darkness, all the while keeping watch on the natural world around us.

As the prophetic time clock of Israel moves forward, we must all remain vigilant to the call upon the lives we are living now, remembering that we should not “become so heavenly minded that we are no earthly good.”  This falls along the same lines as the quote from Sir Winston Churchill when he stated, “Nourish your hopes, but do not overlook realities.”  While events around the world, such as natural disasters, blood moons, wars and possible wars, may very well point to the signs of the times, it is the here-and-now in which we live that matters for today.

In Psalm 36, David speaks of the wicked being so caught up in their ways that they don’t even recognise the error of their course.

“Crime speaks to the wicked. I perceive this in my heart; before his eyes there is no fear of God. For, the way he sees it, crime makes his life easy — that is, until his wrongs are discovered; then, he is hated. His words are wrong and deceitful; he has stopped being wise and doing good. He devises trouble as he lies in bed; so set is he on his own bad way that he doesn’t hate evil” (Psalm 36:2-5 CJB).

The nations aligning themselves against Israel are in the same situation.  They are ruled by principalities, as referenced in Daniel 10 and understood by Paul in Ephesians 6 and Colossians 1.  It appears that the “prince of Persia” is once again in charge as Iran presses into Syria with partnerships from Turkey and Russia to move even closer to Israel.

Yet as warrior, king and a man after God’s own heart, David knew that the battle belonged to the Lord, and the righteousness of God would prevail as he kept his eyes on him and his feet on the ground, doing the work of the Lord that lay ahead of him.

“How precious is your lovingkindness, O God! Therefore, the children of men put their trust under the shadow of your wings.  They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of your house, and you give them drink from the river of your pleasures. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light, we see light” (Psalm 36:8-10 CJB).

It is the light of God himself that shines and illuminates the way both for the future of Israel, and for those of us seeking to intercede for the fullness of his perfect will.  While much of the world around us is either spiritually asleep, teaching false doctrine, or simply turning away from God, our work for the Lord in the heavenly realm is to remain in the gap today, tomorrow and into the future.  Not only praying into the needs in Israel, and the peace of Jerusalem, but for the true light of God to shine so brightly that those around us can see its effect, feel its warmth, and begin to actively seek the source of that true light of understanding.

As Christians, it is indeed a privilege and honour to be spiritual warriors standing shoulder-to-shoulder with the brave defenders of the nation of Israel, whether they are protecting the land, the air, the sea, or the policies and precedents of the nation for the days ahead.

Let’s lay our prayers at the foot of the throne

As we pray for the peace of Jerusalem, let us remember to cover all of Israel’s citizens in prayer for peace, protection, and God’s perfect timing in preparing and revealing his plans for Messiah’s return (Psalm 122:6-7).

  • Exalt the name of the Lord for the wonderful steady rains that have come as a blessing to Israel and for his provision of water in this year as the land is now green and growing (Isaiah 55:10-11).
  • Pray for the wisdom needed for Israel’s citizens as they prepare for upcoming elections in April, as the Lord’s will is revealed for the next page of history to unfold (Ecclesiastes 9:1).
  • Keep in constant prayer Israel’s military leaders, as they will need heavenly wisdom to create the strategy for combating enemies bent on Israel’s destruction (Psalm 6:11).
  • Seek the face of the Lord in praying for the brave defenders of the land in all branches of the military and especially those in the north as the situation in Syria has brought in the Russian military, Iranian influence, and kept Bashar al Assad in control (Psalm 18:47-49).
  • Proclaim his word as Scripture entreats those Jews still in the nations to return to their homeland in Israel, and those still needing to awaken to the call of the Holy Spirit to come home (Isaiah 56:8).
  • Lift up in prayer the leaders of Israel, especially the Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, as they decide each day the next step of Israel’s future, and that the hand of the Lord himself will guide their decisions ahead (Psalm 143:10).
  • Petition the Lord that more than ever, those most in need in Israel will have their needs met by the Lord through the gifts and prayers of Christians around the world and through the outpouring of love from CFI (Hebrews 10:24).

[Note: All Scripture quotations are from the Complete Jewish Bible.]

As the sinful world around us continues to grow cold due to the increase of lawlessness as spoken of in Matthew 24, we must rely on the light from our Lord in order to see light ourselves as David did in Psalm 36.  In receiving that light of truth and righteousness from the Lord, we must share it as well with those around us in order for them to see clearly the path ahead in these times.

In his service always,

Kevin Howard

Christian Friends of Israel – Jerusalem (UK edited version)

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CFI UK News and Prayer items

We already have much to thank the Lord for.  The Minster’s Israel study tour went well with real engagement on the complexity of current issues, as well as the biblical and historical background.  There was astonishment at what Israel had achieved in its seventy years since re-establishment out of the depths of the Holocaust so movingly memorialised at Yad Vashem.  Pray that seeds sown will bear fruit and influence many in the congregations and wider influence of these ministers, some with national leadership responsibility.

Staff and Links involved in the Holocaust memorial remembrances across the country were conscious of being upheld in prayer.  Pray for those who suffered so much, including the next generation, that they will be comforted by true Christian friendship and that nations will learn from this tragedy to ensure all forms of anti-Semitism are rooted out before taking hold.

Continue to pray especially for the CFI UK trustees as they meet for the annual, residential Way Ahead board meeting mid-February.  Pray that all present will be envisioned for the ongoing work of CFI this year.

Pray for the CFI UK south west regional conference, that those who come will gain a fuller understanding of God’s ongoing purposes for Israel and how best to communicate this amongst fellow Christians as a result.

Continue to pray for timely responses from CFI and ZF supporters to attend the forthcoming joint lobby day of Parliament on 6th March.

Thank the Lord for excellent response to attend the CFI Prayer Conference from 27th to 29th March and pray over our preparation of the sessions.

A good number have booked onto the CFI UK Israel Tour, end of May start of June, linking to the CFI Jerusalem Conference.  Pray that more will join us for what is always an inspiring time and the forging of lasting friendships.

“Just then Boaz arrived from Bethlehem and greeted the harvesters, “The Lord be with you!”
“The Lord bless you!” they answered” (Ruth 2:4).

The CFI UK Team