A Guide to Intercessory Prayer for the month of May 2018 ~ Jewish Year 5778

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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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Worldwide prayer rises from many nations

“And foreigners who bind themselves to the LORD to serve him, to love the name of the LORD, and to worship him, all who keep the Sabbath without desecrating it and who hold fast to my covenant – these I will bring to my holy mountain and give them joy in my house of prayer …” (Isaiah 56:6-7).

All of God’s mountains around about Jerusalem are holy.  But God calls one of them “my holy mountain” (Psalm 2:6).  Only one mountain receives the honour of being called God’s mountain because God’s house will be upon it, and it will have a name.  It will be called ‘a house of prayer for all nations.’  Mark recounts the challenge posed by Jesus: “And as he taught them, he said, “Is it not written:” ‘My house will be called a house of prayer for all nations’? …” (Mark 11:17).  All ‘watchmen on the walls’ for Jerusalem are part of this house of prayer, including those people from all nations who use CFI’s materials to pray for the peace of Jerusalem (Psalm 122:6) and all issues related to the safety and welfare of the Jewish people.  Praying in many languages and on different continents, they have two things in common: all love Jesus and all love his people.

At the same time there is a deception spreading around the world that Jesus, the Son of God, is not God.  While not totally revealed, the mystery of the Godhead is clear enough in God’s word to show that there is one God, but that God is made up of three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit.  The Bible confirms that Jesus, the Son, is God:  “But about the Son he says, "Your throne, O God, will last for ever and ever, and righteousness will be the sceptre of your kingdom. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness; therefore God, your God, has set you above your companions by anointing you with the oil of joy” (Hebrews 1:8-9).

While deception runs rampant it is vitally important to know the word of God.  Study – and study in context – searching out the meaning from the original languages and culture, if necessary, not relying on Western perspectives.  Acknowledge that the God of Israel is the only God.  Confirm in your hearts that Jesus is the greatest son of Israel that was ever born (in the flesh), and he is indeed the Messiah.  And the Ruach Ha’Kodesh (Hebrew for Holy Spirit) is the Spirit of the one true God, who loves both Jew and Gentile.

Jesus, who is God, issued a rebuke to the Jews who were buying and selling in the temple courts: “It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are making it a ‘den of robbers’” (Matthew 21:13).  Thus he highlighted the importance of the house of prayer and echoed the words of the prophet Jeremiah, who told us that God said, “Has this house, which bears my Name, become a den of robbers to you? But I have been watching! declares the LORD (Jeremiah 7:11).

We need to be careful to not to misinterpret such rebukes.  For God has promised to “pour out on the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem a spirit of grace and supplication” (Zechariah 12:10). “On that day a fountain will be opened to the house of David and the inhabitants of Jerusalem, to cleanse them from sin and impurity” (Zechariah 13:1). 

God is determined to bless people from the nations of the world who will bless his Jewish people (Numbers 24:9) – people who will pray for the city which will host the house of prayer for all nations: Jerusalem.  “These I will bring to my holy mountain and give them joy in my house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and sacrifices will be accepted on my altar; for my house will be called a house of prayer for all nations” (Isaiah 56:7).

In an historic move in February, Christians joined Israeli Jews in the Knesset to study the word of God.  Dean Bye commented: “It’s humbling. I pray that the Lord will grant many more Christians to have this experience and to be able to go back into the nations as ambassadors (shigurim) – to be able to let them know that we are living in probably the most exciting times since the resurrection of Jesus Christ” (Knesset Bible Study Brings Jews and Christians Together, CBN News, 23/02/18).

Let Us Pray with Thanksgiving

  • Thank God for that historic Bible study in Israel when Christians were invited to join Israeli Jews in the Knesset, to study the word of God.
  • Proclaim the Scripture that was read that day: “Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at his tabernacle will I sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the LORD (Psalm 27:6).
  • Rejoice that it is being seen that the words of the prophets are really being fulfilled as people from the nations come from around the world to study the Bible in Jerusalem, a realisation of God’s promises in Isaiah.Many peoples will come and say, "Come, let us go up to the mountain of the LORD, to the house of the God of Jacob. He will teach us his ways, so that we may walk in his paths." The law will go out from Zion, the word of the LORD from Jerusalem” (Isaiah 2:3).
  • Give Glory to God that the Bible, which has been a source of division throughout history, is becoming a source of unity between Jews and Christians. “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness” (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
  • Exalt the Lord Our God as we see the heart of the whole matter coming to pass.  “The return to Israel was called Zionism. Zion is the name of the Temple Mount, and connecting to the House of Prayer for all nations is this exact thing, what we’re talking about, what we see right here. That’s what’s happening.” (Rabbi Yehuda Glick, Knesset Bible Study Brings Jews and Christians Together, CBN News, 23/02/18).)

All we need do is live for God, believing his promises!

Until He Comes,

Sharon Sanders

Christian Friends of Israel – Jerusalem (UK edited version)

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CFI-UK News and Prayer items

Thank the Lord for his answer to prayer that our application to exhibit for the two weeks at New Wine Christian Festival is now approved.  We have also been allocated a speaking slot in the Showcase tent early in week two.  Please pray for the right presentation and many to come along to hear it.  Pray also for the right teams to attend to the CFI resources stalls at all the festivals this year.

The first of the festivals starts this month.  Big Church Day Out (south) Saturday 26th – Sunday 27th May at Wiston House, West Sussex, staffed by Jacob Vince, Lucy Synenko and Ruth Henderson; Big Church Day Out (north) Friday 1st – Saturday 2nd June at Capesthorne Hall, Cheshire, staffed by David and Julia Soakell.  Pray for many open enquirers to receive information helpful to their fuller understating of Israel and the Church.

Continue to pray for the right staffing arrangements since our bookkeeper Lynda Hailes went part-time at the beginning of April.  Thank the Lord for increased hours from our assistant bookkeeper, Alina Gawel, plus some help provided by our local Christian accountants in the interim.

Thank the Lord for his help so far in responding to the new General Data Protection Regulation that takes effect later this month, on 25th May 2018.  Pray that our implementation will prove satisfactory and the new procedures will not be too complicated for new supporters signing up.

As Christians gather together to celebrate Israel’s 70th anniversary at Central Hall Westminster on Wednesday 9th May, pray that this will be a great encouragement to Israel and the UK Jewish community.  Pray that travel arrangements from across the country work well and the speakers, music and audio-visual presentations make it a fitting occasion.

“To him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work
within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations for ever and ever! Amen.
(Ephesians 3:20-21)

The CFI-UK Team