Watchman’s Prayer Letter
A Guide to Intercessory Prayer for the month of January 2018 ~ Jewish Year 5777/5778
Click here for PDF copy
`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)
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
Guarding the gates
“They and their descendants were in charge of guarding the gates of the house of the LORD – the house called the Tent.” (1 Chronicles 9:23, NIV).
In August 2015 the alleged gates of Goliath and entrance to a famous biblical metropolis were uncovered. Professor Aren Maeir is Director of the Ackerman Family Bar-Ilan University Expedition to Gath – a city once occupied by Philistines who plotted against the Israelites, their sworn enemies. It was the home of Goliath. The fortifications were large, mighty and complex. The bars of the gates were heavily built, sturdy and stalwart so as to withstand great force or pressure. They were thought to be indestructible, only the power of God Almighty could break it down, just as he defeated Goliath with one little stone, slung by the right person – little David. Evil is at the gates, as Carter Conlon, a great preacher from Times Square in New York City, has said. It is as if “the fingers of a man’s hand” have appeared and written on the skies of our world something similar to: “Your kingdoms are divided”.
As we watch the erosion of strong nations in the world, as the evils of immorality, corruption, godlessness and lawlessness abound around us, we say to ourselves, “What happened to our nation? It is not the same country I grew up in!” Over time the cup of iniquity in all of our nations has risen to a dangerous level and without repentance, there is no hope. But with repentance there is much hope!
Likewise, the beloved nation of Israel needs to ask God for forgiveness for allowing too many of the ways of the nations to come in, as well as outright disobedience to his commandments. We need, in the spirit of prayer, to strengthen the bars of the gates at the entrances against the evil which is attempting to overtake this nation (and our own nations). Almighty God is our Sovereign Lord.
Let us stand at the gates every day and pray for Israel, God’s chosen city of Jerusalem, the soldiers and brave warriors of today’s military in Israel, and also
for our own nations, to be given humble hearts and led to confess perversion and all sorts of evil that come with pride and humanism. Let us defeat them through faith, fervent and prevailing prayer – it is the way to strengthen the bars! God bless each intercessor and prayer warrior who is standing strong with weapons in hand, weapons which are not carnal, but weapons that have divine power!
Let us go to the throne room of prayer
- Pray fervently concerning the lack of humble hearts in Israel and our own nations among those who are in public office, governmental positions and religious authority. “But you his son, O Belshazzar, have not humbled yourself, though you knew all this” (Daniel 5:22).
- Beseech the Lord for the opening of eyes to the fact that God does not often get the glory for achievements in medicine, science, archaeology, technology and all advancements in knowledge and understanding. Too often people thank other people, but they need to begin to give God all the glory! “... But you did not honour the God who holds in his hand your life and all your ways.” (Daniel 5:23).
- Thank the Lord that he is able to destroy the 1,000-1,500 rockets threatening to explode upon God’s land, on the heavily populated centre of Israel. May the toxic ideologies and the lies of the evil one not achieve the goal of dominance which they seek. They stand on human error instead of God’s words.
- Thank God that the IDF has sealed off 10 tunnels which were under the West Bank security fence. This is indeed strengthening the bars of Israel’s gates.
- Pray for Christian prayer warriors worldwide and intercessors spread all around the world, away from the jungles of disunity among Israel’s religious and secular groupings. Only God’s unity can bring about the ultimate redemption we are all praying for, for Israel and the nations - remembering that great leaders take a personal interest in their people and their nation.
- Pray that the challenges existing in Israel and further afield (all forms of immorality, drugs, uprooting of Jewish communities, gay pride events, Iran-sponsored advancement towards Israel’s border, ISIS, European and Western lack of desire amongst the Jewish communities to immigrate to Israel, and much more) will be addressed by those given the responsibility of leadership.
- Pray that all of the Knesset seeks the Lord (2 Chronicles 26:5). God has the power to help and overthrow all evil (2 Chronicles 25:8). Israel should never be seeking any of the gods of this world, only their covenant God (2 Chronicles 25:20). May the leaders of Israel receive understanding in their hearts as to what God wants from Israel.
- Watch carefully for the verge of greater darkness. Carter Conlon says “listen to me ... if you cannot see the hand of God right now, something is wrong. The writing is on the wall in this hour in which we are now living.” Evil is attempting to close in, making a semi-circle around the Middle East that resembles the Islamic half-moon and includes little Israel. It is time for Israel, and for all of us, to get more serious in prayer and to humble ourselves and pray. “If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray...” (2 Chronicles 7:14).
- Stand in the gap regarding the sabre-rattling coming from Lebanon, Hezbollah, ISIS, Palestinian and Gazan terrorists, Syria, and all of Israel’s enemies. Any future confrontation between Israel and Iran will be earth-shaking. Israel will need all of our help, in prayer and in practical ways, if war breaks out. “See how my enemies have increased and how fiercely they hate me!” (Psalm 25:19). The Northern border confrontation would immediately become a battle on two fronts. Wherever you are as Watchmen, on whichever side of the gates, strengthen the bars against an invasion of the beautiful northern Galilee region. With your two-edged sword in your hand, take a stand upon the promises of God for Israel, and strengthen your faith in God. As Christians, Yeshua (Jesus) will guide and direct your paths by the Holy Spirit when searching God’s word for strength.
Our positions must be unwavering, we must be diligent. Living in these trying times we need to be spiritually awake to discern God’s heart for his precious people, and pray that unbelievers will come to the knowledge of the truth. May a great harvest of people, currently caught in the web of Islam, be set free. May Israel know her calling and walk worthy of it.
Until He Returns,
Christian Friends of Israel – Jerusalem (UK edited version)
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
CFI-UK News and Prayer items
Coming into the new calendar year we look forward to the many opportunities that will come our way where we can express true friendship of Israel.
The Church ministers’ tour is planned for Monday 15th to Tuesday 23rd January 2018. Pray that the practicalities will go well and that those joining us will make real progress on their journey toward a better understanding of Israel in the Bible and the present reality of the people in the land. The group is formed of influential church leaders in the UK, including some from theological colleges, national and international para-church organisations; some with corporate church roles, others with a civic role. As participants listen to voices from across the communities, may they also listen to God’s still, small voice and be led into all truth by the Holy Spirit.
Pray for the upcoming joint CFI-ZF parliamentary lobby day, Wednesday 28th February 2018. Pray that many will see the need to gather and meet with their MP in Parliament and benefit from the pre-lobby morning briefing. Pray for early booking to assist in the administrative side and planning. Pray we obtain and retain the larger committee room in parliament, and that MPs supportive of Israel will be available to address us, encourage us and be encouraged by us in the work they are doing to meet the challenge of prejudice toward Israel and anti-Semitism in its various guises. Pray for the finalising of the message we aim to share with our constituency MPs as we celebrate the modern State of Israel’s 70 years as a reconstituted nation in their promised land, through illustrating 70 ways in which Israel has contributed to the region and the world in the fields of medicine, agriculture, technology, safety, humanitarian relief, archaeology, academia, theology, law and democracy – while recognising much that remains outstanding.
Pray and consider joining us as we fellowship in prayer at our Strategic Prayer Conference Friday 23rd – Sunday 25th March 2018, returning to Windmill Farm Conference Centre, Oxfordshire, to seek the Lord for Israel, the surrounding nations of the region, our own nation and the witness of the Church to the enduring truth set out in God’s Holy Scripture.
Thank the Lord for Fiona Lindsay and her faithful service at CFI in preparing the weekly intercessors’ update email and pray as this moves into a new day, that we are attentive to the leading of the Holy Spirit in this going forward.
Thank the Lord for the long service of Revd Clive Jones who stands down as a trustee of CFI. Pray for refreshing and improved health. Pray for the right trustees to join the CFI Charitable Trust and for our existing trustees in their responsibility of godly oversight in the outworking of good governance.
Pray for good and godly working together with CFI Jerusalem and for the CFI Jerusalem Conference Monday 16th – Thursday 19th April, to include joining with Israel’s 70th anniversary celebrations on Thursday 19th (Jewish calendar date) and post-conference tour Friday 20th – Thursday 26th April 2018.
Pray for applications to exhibit CFI and our resources at a variety of Christian festivals and exhibitions in 2018, that we will have the right resource material, funding and staffing. Thank the Lord for applications already accepted at Big Church Day Out (South and North) Saturday 26th – Sunday 27th May 2018 and Friday 1st – Saturday 2nd June 2018; and also at CRE 16th – 18th October 2018.
May this coming year be a year of God’s favour upon us in our service at CFI, upon Israel and the nations, upon the church and its witness to the wider world.
The CFI-UK Team