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ISRAEL INTERCESSORY PRAYER ITEMS - February 23, 2024

Updated: 5 days ago



1. NETANYAHU’S PLAN FOR FUTURE OF GAZA:

 

PM Netanyahu on Thursday (Feb 22) night submitted to the political and security cabinet his proposal for the day after Hamas in Gaza. The document contains principles that reflect a broad public consensus of the goals of the war, including establishing a civilian alternative to the rule of the terrorist organization in the Gaza Strip.

 

The plan contradicts several key points in President Biden and Secretary of State Blinken’s ambitious plans for the same day after. Israel’s plan will carve out a wide swath of land along the Gaza border to establish a security zone. The Americans have insisted on several occasions that Israel is not to acquire any territory inside Gaza. Also: Israel will determine who does what in Gaza for the foreseeable future. Egypt, the USA, the Arab states, and others are welcome to assist but not to dictate.

·         UNWRA will be expelled from Gaza. Israel will seek better agencies to care for the civilian population, the kind that doesn’t encourage terrorism.

·         Finally: no unilateral declarations of a Palestinian State, and no forced two-state solutions.In the immediate future, the document sets the prerequisite condition required to determine that the “day after” has arrived: “The IDF will continue fighting the war until it attains its goals: destroying the military capabilities and government infrastructures of Hamas and the Islamic Jihad; returning the hostages; and permanently preventing a threat from the Gaza Strip.”

 

IN THE INTERMEDIARY PERIOD

Military

1. Israel will maintain operational freedom in the entire Gaza Strip, with no time limits, to prevent the renewal of terrorism and to quash threats from Gaza.

2. A security zone will be established inside the Gaza Strip in the territory bordering Israel, which will exist as long as it is needed.

3. Israel will establish a southern blockade on the Gaza-Egypt border, to prevent the re-intensification of terrorist elements in the Gaza Strip. The southern blockade will operate as much as possible in cooperation with Egypt and with the assistance of the USA and will be based on measures to prevent smuggling from Egypt, both below and above ground, including at the Rafah crossing.

4. Israel will impose security control over the entire area west of the Jordan River, including in the Gaza envelope, to prevent the strengthening of terrorist elements in Judea and Samaria and the Gaza Strip, and to thwart threats from them toward Israel.

5. Complete demilitarization will be established in the Gaza Strip, except what is required to maintain public order. The responsibility for realizing this goal and overseeing its application in the foreseeable future is Israel’s.

 

Civilian

1. Civilian management and responsibility for maintaining the public order will rely on local elements with managerial experience. These local elements will not be identified with terror-supporting countries or organizations, and will not receive their salaries from them.

2. An extensive deradicalization program will be promoted in all religious, educational, and welfare institutions in the Gaza Strip, relying as much as possible on the involvement and support of Arab states with experience in the deradicalization of their populations.

3. Israel will act to terminate UNRWA, whose employees were involved in the October 7 massacre’ and whose schools taught terrorism and the destruction of Israel. Israel will act to end UNRWA’s activities in the Strip, replacing it with responsible international welfare agencies.

4. The rehabilitation of the Strip will be possible only following the completion of the demilitarization and the start of the deradicalization process. The rehabilitation program will be carried out with financing and leadership from Israeli-approved states.

 

LONG TERM

Basic rules for future settlement

 

1. Israel rejects outright international dictates regarding a permanent settlement with the Palestinians. Such an arrangement will be reached only through direct negotiations between the parties, without preconditions.

2. Israel will continue to oppose the unilateral recognition of a Palestinian state. Such recognition in the wake of the October 7 massacre would give a huge reward to unprecedented terrorism and prevent any future peace settlement.

 

Special Notes:

  • the goal of the declaration was to present principles that would get the broadest consensus possible but noted the consultations in the Cabinet will likely lead to changes before the policy is approved.

  • the document does not explicitly exclude the Palestinian Authority from potential involvement in the administration of Gaza, although it also does not specifically reference the PA.

  • the document also does not rule out the Jewish people’s return to Gaza either – something many people are now hoping for and openly discussing.

 

 

2. THE TAKING OF RAPHA UPDATE:

 

War Cabinet minister Benny Gantz announced that Israel is preparing for an operation in the southern town of Rafah in Gaza after the civilians are evacuated from the area. His statement was made during a press briefing on Wednesday (Feb 21) evening. Gantz, the head of the National Unity party, also claimed that unilateral international recognition of a Palestinian state, without bilateral agreements, is “a tailwind for terrorism. It would be a mistake to give such a tailwind to terrorism. Political arrangements must take place directly, otherwise they will not be sustainable. In any future situation, Israel will maintain its supremacy and security capability throughout the Gaza Strip.” He also clarified that Israel intends to exercise security but not civilian control over the Gaza Strip. In recent days, Gantz has repeatedly stated that if there is no deal, the IDF will enter Rafah – even during Ramadan. He repeated this statement in the press briefing. He stated, "In the fighting arena, we are facing an operation in Rafah, which will begin after the evacuation of the population from the area. The importance of cleansing Rafah lies in its ability to harm the Hamas forces operating there and the need to demilitarize the Gaza Strip. I repeat, if there is no plan for hostages, we will also act during Ramadan."

 

Father, oversee Israel's plans to invade Rafah, Hamas' final stronghold that is on the Gaza-Egyptian border. Empower Israel to control Gaza's Egyptian border and to keep good relations with Egypt (Isa. 19:23-25).

 

 

3. GAZAN WAR UPDATES:

 

Summary of Last Weekend

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said Sunday (Feb 18) that Hamas Gaza leader Yahya Sinwar has been incommunicado for weeks. Gallant added that 200 terrorists surrendered at Nasser hospital in Khan Yunis, with additional dozens surrendering at Amal hospital. These surrenders indicate a significant loss of morale among Hamas operatives. Gallant said "the Khan Yunis Brigade has been defeated and is not functioning as a military entity in any way. Hamas is left with marginal forces in the central camps and the Rafah Brigade, and what stands between them and complete collapse as a military system is an IDF decision...There's no one coming to their aid - no Iranians, no international assistance." 

 

On Sunday, the IDF took full control over Nasser hospital in west Khan Yunis, filtering out terrorists, many of whom are disguised in medical staff uniforms. During the operation, forces located medicine with the names and pictures of Israeli hostages held by Hamas - which was never delivered. Over the weekend, soldiers operating in the hospital engaged in intense combat with terrorists. The forces faced resistance from terrorists barricaded inside the hospital and came under rocket fire from within the compound. Armed terrorists emerged from the hospital and opened fire on the soldiers. Other terrorists would flee the hospital unarmed and run to nearby homes, where they armed themselves with rifles and machine guns to attack Israeli forces. After 12 hours of fierce fighting, soldiers reportedly eliminated 16 terrorists on hospital grounds.

  • Inside the hospital, soldiers located large quantities of weapons. A car stolen from Kibbutz Nir Oz was found in the hospital complex. An IDF commander said, "The hospital, which was supposed to serve as a humanitarian shelter, was found to be a battleground filled with weapons, communication infrastructure, and Hamas operatives." 

 

Summary of Monday (Feb 19): Day 136

 

Israel is preparing to carry out a pilot program that will see local authorities replace the Hamas terrorist group in governing the southern Gaza City neighborhood of Zeitoun. The military began a major aerial and ground offensive in the district on Monday (Feb 19) night to clear it of terrorists ahead of the initiative. Led by the 162nd Division, Israeli forces killed and captured dozens of terrorists and confiscated a large amount of ammunition. Israel’s goal is for community leaders to manage the reception and distribution of humanitarian aid to establish an alternative to Hamas in the northern Gaza Strip. Security forces will attempt to prevent the terrorist group from interfering with this process. Notably, the plan does not involve a return to the north for the tens of thousands of Gazans who evacuated to a humanitarian zone in the southern Strip at the behest of the Israeli army. Instead, the pilot will be carried out with the residents who remained there. Additionally, the pilot includes replacing the school curricula with textbooks that do not promote violent rejection of Israel and hatred towards Jews. Israeli leaders have repeatedly stressed the importance of deradicalizing the Gaza population, including moderating the educational system, after Hamas is defeated.

 

Summary of Wednesday (Feb 21): Day 138

 

The IDF revealed a strategic tunnel in Khan Yunis that Hamas' leadership used during the war, which the army has since destroyed. The IDF's elite anti-tunnel Yahalom unit has destroyed 11 strategic tunnels that constitute the "center of gravity" of Hamas' tunnel network, with each one requiring an investment of millions of shekels. As the IDF explored the tunnel network, it used special intelligence methods to identify Hamas terrorists, which made it easier to kill them in battle.

·         Once the IDF had eliminated the Hamas forces protecting the inner strategic tunnel area, they found extensive sleeping quarters, electric and water infrastructure, bathrooms, and kitchens stocked with food. The IDF said this strategic tunnel runs for more than a kilometer and had been used by Hamas leaders to manage the war.

·         Yahalom has found 1,325 grenades, 940 improvised explosives, 696 rocket-propelled grenades, and many other weapons. The unit has mapped over 100 km of tunnels and completely destroyed over 317 significant tunnel shafts, in addition to neutralizing a much larger number of tunnel shafts.

 

Yahalom troops and additional IDF forces operating under the 98th Division raided the underground route beneath the Khan Younis area. Upon entering the tunnel, the troops encountered blast doors and barricades set by the terrorists to prevent the forces from entering the tunnel. The troops broke through the blockades and identified terrorists in the tunnel, using special means and in close-quarters combat with terrorists. The tunnel was investigated and scanned for intelligence, sleeping quarters, electrical and water infrastructure before it was destroyed. (Note: The Yahalom unit has been operating throughout the Gaza Strip since the start of the war, both above and below ground. The unit focuses on the tunnel network, which constitutes a central part of Hamas’ mode of operation and includes significant and strategic centers of gravity of the organization. The fighters battle the enemy in close-quarters combat while exposing and destroying tunnels and underground routes.)

 

On Wednesday, the IDF launched a new large-scale raid on Gaza City's Zeitoun neighbourhood, striking dozens of Hamas targets including observation posts, weapon depots, and tunnels. So far, dozens of Hamas operatives have been killed in clashes and by airstrikes. Meanwhile, the IDF is operating in new areas in eastern Khan Yunis, killing many Hamas operatives.

 

Summary of Thursday (Feb 22): Day 139

 

The Israel Defense Forces’ large-scale operation in Gaza City’s Zeitoun neighbourhood is continuing, the military announced Thursday, saying troops have been raiding Hamas sites and killing Hamas operatives. The 215th Artillery Regiment directed airstrikes against some 10 Hamas sites in Zeitoun, located in the northern part of the Strip, while the 401st Armored Brigade killed some 20 operatives in the area and destroyed numerous Hamas sites. Meanwhile, in central Gaza, the Nahal Brigade located and destroyed a rocket launcher. The operation in Zeitoun comes after the IDF said it had largely defeated Hamas’s fighting force in northern Gaza, withdrew its forces, and began to focus on smaller raids in designated areas.

 

In southern Gaza’s Khan Younis, the 7th Armored Brigade killed more than 15 Hamas operatives; the Givati Brigade ambushed a Hamas cell with sniper fire; and the Commando Brigade located a cache of weapons and documents. Also in southern Gaza, the Navy carried out strikes against vessels belonging to Hamas and the Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

 

As the IDF prepares for a possible incursion into Rafah, Palestinian media outlets reported Thursday that at least three people were killed by overnight Israeli airstrikes in the Gaza Strip’s southernmost city. The strikes were primarily conducted in the neighborhoods of Al-Shaboura and El-Geneina. Israel believes that the last remaining Hamas battalions are in Rafah, along with some of the group’s leaders and hostages.

 

Across the Gaza Strip, the Hamas-run health ministry said that 99 people had been killed around Gaza during the night. The Hamas-run health ministry also updated its tally of casualties since the beginning of the war, claiming that a total of 29,410 Palestinians have been killed and 69,465 have been injured in Gaza since October 7. These figures also cannot be independently verified and do not differentiate between civilians and Hamas terrorists, or those killed by Hamas’s own rockets that exploded in the Strip.

 

 

4. GAZAN WAR REVELATIONS AND INSIGHTS:

 

The Israel Defense Forces said Monday (Feb 19) that IDF troops have killed 12,000 Hamas gunmen since October 7.   Hamas is also believed to have thousands of operatives who are seriously wounded.

 

Jamon Van Den Hoek, Associate Professor of Geography at Oregon State University, told Israeli media that more than 50% of the buildings in Gaza have been damaged since the start of the war. He added that the areas with the most damage are “Gaza districts and northern Gaza, which suffered the most damage before the temporary ceasefire.” He added that “the damage in Rafah has recently started increasing. The Gaza and North Gaza districts are still leading, but we see that the damage has become extensive also in Khan Yunis and it has caught up with the gap in terms of the level of damage.”

According to the data he presented, the damage is:

  • 69.3%-81.9% of the buildings in the north of the Gaza Strip,

  • 51.9%-64.8% of the buildings in Khan Yunis, and

  • 30.9%-43% of the buildings in Rafah

 

Rami Habibullah, 43, a teacher in the Galilee village of Ein Mahil, revealed to interrogators that he had aided Hamas by taking photographs of a security facility producing ammunition and providing the precise GPS location of the facility, sending this information to Hamas operatives on Telegram in October. Habibullah also met Hamas operatives in Turkey and transferred tens of thousands of shekels to them on various occasions. He confessed to having supported Hamas for years." Habibullah told his interrogators, "I thought about sending more locations if they needed them after the first one. I thought about sending Highway 1, Highway 6, and the Azrieli Tower." He said he sought revenge after the deadly explosion at Al-Ahli hospital in Gaza in October, which was initially blamed on Israel but turned out to have been from a failed rocket launch by Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

 

The Israeli army is expanding a road across central Gaza to facilitate its military operations, part of its plans to maintain security control there for some time. The corridor south of Gaza City stretches 5 miles from the Israeli border to the coast and will allow Israel's military to continue to move quickly along a secure route, even after most troops pull out. While the IDF plans to withdraw from populated areas, it is also building a 1-km buffer zone just inside Gaza's border with Israel, where Palestinians would be barred from entry. USA officials have publicly voiced opposition to the creation of a buffer zone. Israeli officials say they have no intention to permanently occupy Gaza but plan to maintain "security control" there for an indefinite period. Israeli officials have said they don't intend to let displaced Gazans return to the north at least until military operations are complete there and a deal is reached to return the 130 hostages and dead Israelis kidnapped by Hamas on October 7.

 

 

Hamas Secured Hezbollah Pact for Joint Attack on Israel, Documents Reveal – (by Yossi Yehoshua in Ynet News)

Hamas leader in Gaza Yahya Sinwar secured a commitment from Hezbollah before the October 7 terrorist attack to launch a joint assault on Israel, according to documents discovered by the IDF in Khan Yunis. New findings show that Sinwar counted on this scenario, claiming to have received Hezbollah’s commitment to its participation.

  • One document revealed Sinwar saying, "We received a commitment that the axis will participate in the large liberation project due to the nature of the relationship we are working on."

  • Additional documents stated that the operation in Israel will trigger concomitant action from the north, on which Hezbollah trained under the banner of "occupying the Galilee."

According to an Israeli source, Hezbollah’s basic desire was to join in immediately, but Iran held the organization back because it knew Israel would react forcefully. Essentially, Hezbollah’s dangerous capabilities were not built by Tehran at a cost of a billion dollars a year to serve as a force multiplier for Hamas, but rather as a response to a potential Israeli attack on Iran's nuclear facilities.

 

 

The Reactions of Gazans to the War

 

Gaza Protests Swell Against Hamas (Hadar Adi  in Ynet News)

There is growing popular resentment against Hamas and its leader Yahya Sinwar in Gaza after 4 1/2 months of fighting, as more footage of Gazans calling for the downfall of Hamas continues to surface. Videos circulated overnight Tuesday (Feb 20) depicted angry crowds chanting slogans against Hamas and Sinwar in the northern Gaza city of Jabaliya and in Rafah in the south.

   

A group known as Gaza's Liberators has recently begun to openly challenge Hamas' rule, as living conditions in the territory continue to worsen. The group has been distributing anti-Hamas materials in displaced persons' encampments scattered around the southern city of Rafah, calling for public protests against Hamas.

 

Gaza's Liberators has published videos of protests in northern Gaza, with added commentary such as, "May God take revenge on [Hamas leader] Sinwar, the dog who ravaged Gaza."

In a statement on Wednesday, the group called on Hamas leaders to stop the war.

  • "One word is what we need - help - and climb down the ladder. Save what's left of us from the onslaught of the Jews."

  • "We have no shelters, no tunnels and no Qatari and Turkish hotels like you do."

 

Another statement read, "A message to the people of Hamas - you have neither the right nor the permission to force the defenseless to die in your place."

 

 

More Gaza Protests Swell Against Hamas

Videos released on the anti-Hamas Telegram channel, “Gaza’s Liberators,” appear to show protests against the terror group and its leadership in recent days. The videos were filmed in the northern Gaza town of Jabaliya and the southern town of Rafah, along the Egyptian border.

  • In the video from Jabaliya, people can be heard shouting, "Ya Sinwar, ya Haniya - the people are the victims. Hamas will be overthrown! Hamas will be overthrown!" The chants are directed at Hamas military leader Yahya Sinwar and political leader Ismail Haniyeh. While the protests do not involve large crowds, they indicate that Gazan citizens may be feeling more freedom to express their discontent and opposition to Hamas.

  • At the protest in Rafah, reportedly the last Hamas stronghold in the Gaza Strip, a small group of people could be heard chanting against another Hamas leader, Osama Hamdan. “Hear, hear, Hamdan, come out of Lebanon!” the crowd chants.

  • Another chant, which rhymes in Arabic, was “Listen, listen Haniyeh, come back home from Turkey, listen listen Hamdan, come back home from Lebanon.” Except for Yahya Sinwar, his brother Mohammed Sinwar and Mohammed Deif, most of Hamas’ top leaders reportedly live outside Gaza in Qatar, Turkey and Lebanon.

  • Another video showed Gazans protesting over the lack of food. Hamas has been accused by residents and by Israel of stealing humanitarian aid delivered into the Gaza Strip and redirecting it to their fighters. "We need food, we need flour, Sinwar and Haniyeh, stay away from us, you thieves," the people could be heard shouting.

 

Lord of hosts, lead Israel to be victorious and restore its deterrence before its enemies (Isa. 51:9-10)! May Israel's leaders not accept any "ceasefire" which allows Hamas to survive (Luke 1:70-74). Let the war end when You say so – and not when Biden or anyone else says so (Eccl. 3:1, 8). Move Israel to become more self-reliant in supplying the IDF's material needs and so cut off threats and/or manipulations from other nations – including its "friends" (Num. 23:23; 2 Chr. 26:14-15). Defend IDF soldiers physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually, and provide them with all that they need to gain a victory that brings You great glory (1 Sam. 17:46-47; Psa. 24:15; Rev. 15:4). Anoint the IDF to fight as Sons of Zion and not in line with humanistic standards (Zech. 9:13-15). We bless You that the IDF's tunnel warfare tactics have grown more effective and deadly against the enemy, and ask for all remaining tunnels to be found and demolished (Job 12:22; Jer. 23:24). Direct Israel's plans to invade Rafah, Hamas' final stronghold on the Gaza-Egypt border, including the timing of it (Prov. 21:30-31). As that border is a major gateway for Hamas to smuggle weaponry, Lord bring down every spiritual force that rules over that area and let it be completely conquered by the IDF (Isa. 28:5-6). Lord, after the war, solidify Israel's total oversight of Gaza's Egyptian border, as well as help it to maintain, as much as possible, decent relations with Egypt (Isa. 19:23-25). As Israel permits Gazan civilians to leave the Rafah area, give IDF soldiers discernment to spot and capture all terrorists trying to escape by blending in with those civilians (Job 11:20; Psa. 56:7). Lord God, sovereignly release all remaining living hostages (Isa. 49:24-26; Jer. 32:17, 27), or lead the IDF to find them – or their corpses (Num. 21:1-3). Refine PM Netanyahu's just released strategy for the "day-after" the war so that it eventually lines up with Your will for Israel's repossession of Gaza as part of its inheritance (Josh. 15:1, 47; Judg. 1:18).

 

“Fear not for I am with you; be not dismayed; for I am your God. I will strengthen and help you… Behold, all that are enraged against you shall be ashamed and confounded: they shall be as nothing; they that strive with you shall perish…They that war against you shall be as nothing … For I YHWH your God will hold your right hand, saying, '…Fear not, you worm Jacob, and men of Israel; I will help you', says YHWH, your Redeemer, the Holy of Israel. Behold, I will make you a new sharp threshing instrument having teeth. You shall thresh the mountains, and beat them small, and make the hills as chaff. You shall fan them, and the wind shall carry them away, the whirlwind shall scatter them, and you shall rejoice in YHWH, and glory in the Holy of Israel.” (Isa. 41:10-16).” (Isaiah 41:10-16)

 

 

5. ISRAEL GOVERNMENT/KNESSET UPDATES:

 

On Monday (Feb 19) night, Attorney General Gali Baharav Miara dropped a live grenade on PM Netanyahu’s coalition government regarding the conscription law. At a meeting held between the Justice and Defense Ministries, the AG announced that if by the end of next month, the government does not extend the exemption from conscription for yeshiva students, and declares that it intends to enact a new conscription law, all conscription obligation would immediately apply to all yeshiva students, even those whose Torah study is their profession (Toratam umnutam). The government is considering appealing the AG’s decision to the High Court of Justice, on the grounds that such a move is destructive when the country is in the midst of an all-out war against Hamas in Gaza. This means that PM Netanyahu would have to renew the exemption for Haredi youths in the next few weeks, even as thousands of IDF enlisted men and reservists are involved in the Gaza War. But even worse, Netanyahu’s cabinet will have to work on a new conscription law that would resolve military service issues for Haredim, a feat that hasn’t been successfully carried out in decades.

 

 

On Wednesday (Feb 21), the Knesset voted to back PM Netanyahu's declaration opposing any "unilateral" recognition of a Palestinian state. The symbolic declaration also received backing from members of the opposition, with 99 of 120 lawmakers voting in support. Israel says that any permanent accord with the Palestinians must be reached through direct negotiations between the sides and not by international dictates. PM Netanyahu said, "The Knesset came together in an overwhelming majority against the attempt to impose on us the establishment of a Palestinian state, which would not only fail to bring peace but would endanger the State of Israel." Israeli leaders argue that Hamas' brutal rampage inside Israel on Oct. 7 highlighted the extreme danger of an autonomous Palestinian entity near its population centers. The atrocities have led to soaring support for Hamas among Palestinians.

 

Abba, we thank You for Israel's government who have rejected President Biden's and others' plans to recognize a Palestinian State after the war (Psa. 118:8-9; Zech. 9:13)! We thank You for the bold new document that PM Netanyahu has presented to the government to begin planning for the future. We praise You that the Knesset, Israel's parliament, then voted 99-11 to support that government decision to reject any unilateral recognition of a Palestinian State by the nations (Psa. 133:1). Guard over this unity in Israel's coalition and war cabinet (Amos 3:3). Make Netanyahu like Daniel who stood for You regardless of the personal costs (Dan. 3:16-18). Abba, comfort Your nation, especially those whose loved ones have been murdered or sexually abused by Hamas, or are still hostages, or whose fate is not known (Isa. 12:1; 61:1-3; 2 Cor. 1:3-4). We bless You that Netanyahu and most other Israeli leaders totally reject Hamas' absurd demands on a hostage exchange-for-ceasefire offer and ask You to make them unwavering on this (Prov. 21:1). Use those demands to shift the thinking of the hostages' families and Israel's media and to turn their anger and frustration towards Hamas and not at Bibi and the government (Psa. 76:10; Jam. 1:19-20). Lord, cast out of Israeli society every spirit of lawlessness and rebellion (Psa. 66:7). Use the municipal elections throughout Israel next week to bring Isaiah 1:25-27 that much closer. Send forth Your shalom on released soldiers and their families as they reunite (Num. 6:24-27). God of Israel, bless Israel's economy to grow amazingly during this time (Deut. 8:18; 28:3-6). Help Israel to quickly take in tens of thousands of foreign workers from friendly nations and replace the Palestinians, most of whom are raised to hate the Jews and the Jewish nation (Isa. 60:10).

 

“I will turn My hand upon you and purely purge away your dross…And I will restore your judges as at the first, and your counsellors as at the beginning; after this you shall be called, ‘The city of righteousness, the faithful city’.”  (Isaiah 1:25-26)

 

 

5. ALIYAH UPDATES:

 

Lord Yeshua, open the eyes of the whole Body to understand the biblical connection between the return of the Jews to their land and Your return to Jerusalem (Psa. 119:18; Zech. 14:1-4; Matt. 23:39). By Your Spirit, prepare Israel to receive and settle millions of Jews whom You are chasing out of the captivity and drawing back home (Jer. 16:16; 31:3; Zech. 4:6-7). Let more Western Jews see that their comfortable cages in exile are being torn apart (Jer. 16:16). Use the massive anti-Israel demonstrations to shake up even the most secure cages (Jer. 51:6-10). Send forth angels to pull Your people out of modern-day Sodom and Gomorrah (Gen. 19:15-16). Remove the erroneous thinking from Jews that this eruption of Jew-hatred is only temporary and show them that living among the nations was never meant to be permanent (Deut. 30:3-5; Isa. 54:7-8). Challenge Jewish parents with the choice of seeing their children in college persecuted for being Jews or seeing them in the IDF defending Jews and the nation of Israel (Deut. 33:29; Josh. 10:24-25). May the increased interest in Aliyah among Jews lead to increased Aliyah (Psa. 106:47). Release Jews who live in nations which forbid them to leave – like Iran (Ex. 9:1; Psa. 105:13-15). Use more Jewish children to ask their parents why they are not living in Israel (Psa. 8:2). May Jews who make Aliyah become firmly rooted in Your land (Isa. 37:31; Jer. 30:18-19). Show more pastors of their God-prophesied responsibility to teach on, and help with, the return of the Jews to their land – whether by prayer, financial help, physically carrying them, or sharing with Jews that their God sees them as in captivity and not at home (Isa. 49:22; 60:3-11; Rom. 15:26-27).

 

“When YHWH shall build up Zion, He shall appear in His glory. (Psa. 102:16)

 

 

6. ISRAEL TERROR ATTACKS UPDATES:

 

Last Friday (Feb 16) afternoon, two Israelis were killed and four others were wounded, including two in serious condition, in a shooting attack at a junction in southern Israel. The terror attack took place at Re’em Junction, just north of the city of Kiryat Malachi, shortly after noon. Police said the terrorist arrived at the scene in a vehicle and opened fire at people at a bus station with a handgun before he was shot and killed by an off-duty IDF reservist officer at the scene. The Shin Bet identified the terrorist as Fadi Jamjoum, 37, from East Jerusalem’s Shuafat. He holds Israeli residency.

 

Israeli authorities arrested a resident of the Negev accused of meeting with senior Hamas official Saleh Arouri in Turkey in January and transferring thousands of shekels to the terror group in Gaza. Osama Al-Okbi and his wife Samah, Israeli citizens from the Bedouin town of Hura on Monday (Feb 19). Financial records found in Al-Okbi’s home documented that he transferred tens of thousands of shekels donated in Negev mosques to a Hamas operative in Gaza for years. Investigators also found that Al-Okbi was in contact with senior Hamas officials abroad on several occasions, meeting with them personally in Turkey. During these meetings, he also received money from these Hamas figures for his activities in the Negev. During his last visit to Turkey in June 2023, Al-Okbi met both with a senior Hamas official close to the top of the Hamas leadership abroad, and with Saleh Arouri, the deputy head of the Hamas politburo and in charge of all Hamas terror activities in Judea and Samaria. Arouri was killed in an Israeli air strike in Beirut in January.

 

On Tuesday (Feb 20) one Israeli was wounded in a terrorist attack near the northern Samaria town of Homesh, close to the town of Burka. Palestinian Authority terrorists hurled an explosive device at a vehicle with Israeli license plates traveling through the area. Five people, all residents of Burka, were in the car when it came under attack. Security forces who arrived at the scene provided initial medical treatment to the victim. The 25-year-old driver continued traveling to the entrance to Shavei Shomron where he was met by MDA teams; he had mild limb injuries.

 

On Tuesday (Feb 20) night, three Palestinian gunmen were killed and 14 terror suspects were detained by Israeli troops in the Judea-Samaria city of Jenin. IDF troops also seized weapons and located explosive devices planted under roads in Jenin. An airstrike was carried out against a group of Palestinian gunmen who were shooting at the troops. The Israeli military has intensified near-daily raids across Judea-Samaria in the aftermath of Hamas' October 7 attack, in operations aimed at dismantling Palestinian terror groups.

 

On Thursday (Feb 22), one Israeli was killed and eight were wounded after three Palestinians opened fire at cars in a traffic jam on Highway 1 near Ma'ale Adumim just outside of Jerusalem. The terrorists came in two separate vehicles and shot at people sitting inside their cars, before they were killed on the scene by armed civilians. The terrorists got out of their car, pulled out their automatic weapons and opened fire on cars sitting in traffic. One terrorist was immediately killed. A second was neutralized. The third tried to escape and was found and killed. All three are from villages around Beit Lechem (Bethlehem). A fourth Arab suspect at the location has been arrested in suspicion he was connected to the attack. He was wounded in the arm. (Note: IDF data recently revealed that the number of terror attacks in Judea-Samaria throughout 2023 was 350% higher than in 2022. The data shows that there were 608 ramming, shooting, stabbing, and explosive device attacks, compared to 170 such attacks in 2022. 300 of the incidents were shooting attacks - the highest number since the Second Intifada.)

 

The IDF and the Shin Bet announced Friday (Feb 23) morning that an Islamic Jihad terrorist who was on his way to carry out an attack was killed in a drone airstrike in Jenin. The same terrorist carried out several shooting attacks against Israeli forces and the settlements of Merev and Mevo Dotan in recent weeks.

Father, use the war in Gaza and against the terrorists in Judea-Samaria to prove to Israelis that dividing Your land does not bring peace – but rather death and devastation (Lev. 25:23; Joel 3:1-2). Use these attacks to unify all Israel to reject plans to recognize "Palestine" in their biblical heartland, which is exactly where You are planting them with all of Your heart and soul (Jer. 32:41-44). Encourage Israel to make a bold move and in response to the world's push for a "Palestine" to be created, as well as in response to an increase of internal terrorism, let it extend its sovereignty over all of the land – from the river to the sea (Judg. 2:1-5; Psa. 10:16)! Continue growing the Israeli communities in all of Judea and Samaria (Isa. 54:2-3; Amos 9:14-15). Reveal all terrorist plans or tunnels which have not been uncovered in that region (Psa. 139:12). Shield the private security forces that are often used to guard Israel's communities and checkpoints, keeping them alert and willing to defend Israelis despite the personal cost (Psa. 115:9; John 15:13). Give Israel wisdom touching the thousands of terrorists now in their prisons (Psa. 5:4; 10:15). Lord, save many Palestinians and turn Their hatred into love for You and Your people (Matt. 5:44; Rom. 11:11).

 

“The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms, and He shall thrust out the enemy from before you, saying 'Destroy them'! Israel then shall dwell in safety alone; the fountain of Jacob shall be upon a land of grain and wine, and His heavens shall drip down dew. Happy are you Israel; who is like you O people saved by YHWH, who is the shield of your help, and the sword of your majesty! And your enemies shall be found liars unto you and you shall tread upon their high places.” (Deut. 33:27-29)

 

 

7. JUDEA-SAMARIA/JERUSALEM/TEMPLE MOUNT UPDATES:

 

For the first time since the Hamas-led October 7 atrocities, Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich announced that the committee in charge of approving settlement construction in Judea-Samaria will soon convene. The announcement comes after Smotrich earlier on Thursday (Feb 22) demanded that thousands of new settlement homes be constructed in response to the deadly terror attack this morning near Ma’ale Adumim. A statement issued by Smotrich, who is also a minister in the Defense Ministry, says the committee will approve plans to build 2,350 units in Ma’ale Adumim, 300 in Keidar and 694 in Efrat. Smotrich is quoted as saying, “May every terrorist planning to harm us know that any lifting of a hand against Israeli citizens will be met with a death blow and the destruction, and the deepening of our eternal grip on the entire Land of Israel.”…thereby calling the decision “an appropriate Zionist response.” The statement was issued after Smotrich held talks on the matter with PM Netanyahu, Defense Minister Yoav Gallant and Strategic Affairs Minister Ron Dermer.

 

As Ramadan approaches – Israel’s choice: Antagonism or appeasement

During last Sunday’s (Feb 18) cabinet discussion of the coming month of Ramadan on the Temple Mount (March 11), Israel Police put forward a compromise proposal regarding limiting the entry of Israeli Arabs to the holy site. According to this proposal, only men aged 40 and over will be allowed in during the first week of Ramadan, and at the end of the week, it will be decided whether to continue imposing the curbs. Curbs on women and children will be decided later. Meanwhile, Israel Hayom’s Shirit Avitan Cohen tweeted that regarding Arabs from Judea and Samaria, only men aged 60 and over will be allowed, as well as children under the age of 10. The position of the head of the Shin Bet and the representatives of the IDF in the discussion was that restrictions on Israeli Arabs could more unrest and conflict.

 

Considered the most sacred month of the Islamic faith, Ramadan, which will be commemorated from March 10 – April 9, is the time when Muslims are supposed to engage in self-reflection and piety. There is a belief, based on a hadith (collection of traditions containing sayings of Mohammed) that “during the month of Ramadan, the gates of heaven are opened and the doors to hell are closed,” (Bukhari and Muslim) indicating that anyone who dies during this month will go straight to paradise. Consequently, there is an added incentive for radical Muslims to become a shahid (martyr) over this one-month holiday, since they believe that their death, during this period, will ensure them a blessed eternal inheritance.

 

It is, therefore, given this backdrop, that Israeli policy is carefully considered as to whether or not extra restrictions should be put into place. This year, that consideration is being looked at with even greater caution, given what occurred on October 7 and still an open wound, fresh in the minds of all citizens.

 

King Messiah, reveal to Your Body that they have spiritual responsibility to pray for mercy for their nation's negative, or even only lukewarm, relationship with Israel today (Ezek. 22:30-31; Zech. 12:9). Lord, continue to guide us in prayer since we do not want to intercede against You fulfilling Your prophetic word – even if it results in wars and rumors of wars (Gen. 18:17; Amos 3:7; John 15:15). Let prophetic voices cry out in America, warning both the Church and the nation's leaders, that President Biden's push to create a Palestinian State after the war in Gaza will drive that nation deeper into God's Valley of judgment because it will divide His land and scatter His people (Joel 3:1-2). Hedge in the nations' foreign ministers, especially America's Blinken, who try to pressure Israel to agree with their "suggested" anti-biblical schemes and plans (Num. 23:23; Isa. 33:7). Anoint Israeli diplomats to speak truth irrespective of the world's response (Ezek. 33:9; Gal. 4:16). Help Israel to finally perceive that it has no real friends among the nations and then use that reality to turn Your nation to look to and trust in You alone. Harden Israel's leaders and people against the creation of a "Palestine" on Your land, as it is totally unbiblical, and would actually reward the Palestinians for slaughtering Jews (Isa. 50:7; Jer. 15:20). As pressure on Israel to allow a Palestinian State increasingly grows, also harden Palestinian leaders' hearts to refuse to accept a Jewish nation to continue to exist on "their" land (Neh. 9:10; Ezek. 20:9).

 

“Thus says the Lord of hosts: ‘Behold, I will save My people from the land of the east and from the land of the west; I will bring them back and they shall dwell in the midst of Jerusalem. They shall be My people and I will be their God in truth and righteousness.’” (Zechariah 8:7)

 

 

8. ISRAEL/UNITED STATES UPDATES:

 

The USA Senate last week approved $14 billion in wartime foreign aid to Israel. It still must be approved by the House. The Israeli aid is more than three times the $3.8 billion the USA allocates to Israel in a normal year. Israeli defense specialists say a lot of the funding is targeted toward replenishing weapons stockpiles - as well as helping Israel prepare for a potential future fight against Hezbollah.

  • $5.2 billion is for missile defense systems, including $4 billion for short-range missiles for Israel's Iron Dome.

  • $1.2 billion is for the Iron Beam laser antimissile system that is still in development.

  • To enable Israel's strikes to be more targeted, $801.4 million is for precision weapons.

  • Israel used money from its annual USA aid to pay for wartime munitions, such as Iron Dome.

  • Israel would use $3.5 billion in new funds to return to its priorities, including the modernization of F-15 and F-35 aircraft.

  • $4 billion goes to restocking weapons the USA keeps stockpiled in the region. These stocks have been depleted after President Biden allowed Israel to access them. This allocation makes sure the USA has the "readiness to respond to any emergencies," the official said.

  • The bill is said to include $2 billion for Palestinians' humanitarian needs. The bill bans any aid from reaching UNRWA, which Israel says acts in collusion with Hamas, and will be channeled through nonprofit organizations and international aid groups.

 

God, guide us so that we do not pray against what You are doing to fulfill Your Word (Amos 3:7). Lord, reveal to Your Body their spiritual obligation to stand in the gap for their nation (Ezek. 22:30) over its negative, or even just lukewarm, relations with Israel today (Isa. 60:12; Zech. 12:9). Raise up prophetic voices in the USA to warn political and church leaders that Biden's push to create a "Palestine" pushes America deeper into Your valley of judgment (Num. 23:19-24; Joel 3:1-2). Lord, have Your Body warn their nations how You will not be mocked, but what they are trying to do with Israel is even now coming back on their lands as the deep divisions in most Western nations at this time can be linked with their push to divide Your land (Gen. 12:3a; Psa. 9:16; Gal. 6:7). Remove this anti-God "two-state" non-solution from Israelis' thinking, as well as from the minds of born-again believers (Isa. 55:7-9; Ezek. 36:37-38).

 

“He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honour him.” (Psalm 91:15)

 

 

9. ISRAEL NORMALIZATION UPDATES:

 

Father, do not let the bait of "normalization" with Saudi Arabia that America is tempting Israel with trap Your nation to agree to anything that is not Your will (Psa. 124:1-8). Lord, if the Israel-Saudi Arabia normalization deal is of You, please oversee all the details, including the timing of when it should be done (Prov. 16:1, 9: Jer. 10:23). If it is true that America is the one insisting that Israel gives up land and eastern Jerusalem in a peace deal, then block all USA involvement whatsoever (Psa. 33:10-11). Use the current internal political chaos in America to answer the above prayer (Job 5:12; Isa. 46:10). Show both Israel and Saudi-Arabia how unreliable an ally America has become at this time (Isa. 36:6). Protect Israel from Qatar which comes across as neutral yet totally supports Hamas (Num. 23:23). Show Israel it has no real allies among the nations and cause it to look to You alone (Num. 23:9b)

 

“For your Maker is your husband; YHWH of hosts is His name; and your Redeemer the Holy One of Israel; He shall be called the God of the whole earth.” (Isaiah 54:5)

 

 

10. GOLAN HEIGHTS/SYRIA/LEBANON/IRAQ/TURKEY/YEMEN UPDATES:

 

Syria

On Wednesday (Feb 21), an air strike on a residential area of Syria’s capital, Damascus, killed at least two people. Israel did not confirm or deny the attack. Wednesday’s reported deaths came after Israel said it stepped up its air campaign against Iran-backed terror groups and individuals who target the Jewish nation, including in Syria. The Kafr Sousa neighbourhood is known for having a heavy presence of Iranian militias. Syrian reports claimed Iranian militias used parts of the targeted building as a headquarters.

 

Lebanon

The French newspaper Liberation claimed last Sunday (Feb 18) that Hezbollah has been digging hundreds of kilometers of underground tunnels in Lebanon for over 30 years, some of them reaching depths of 40-80 meters, using North Korean technology.

 

On Monday (Feb 19), the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) announced they had struck two Hezbollah weapons depots, located near Sidon, a coastal city in southern Lebanon. The retaliatory airstrikes were in response to an early Monday morning drone attack launched by Hezbollah targeting northern Israel, which did not cause any damage or injuries. The IDF is conducting an investigation into the Monday morning incident, where a drone carrying explosives hit an open area near the northern town of Arbel, without triggering any warning sirens.

 

The IDF also announced that on Monday afternoon, it targeted additional Hezbollah locations in southern Lebanon, specifically in Mays al-Jabal and Odaisseh. This followed earlier strikes on Hezbollah facilities in Dhayra, rocket-launching sites in Aitaroun, and various Hezbollah infrastructures in Odaisseh. (Note: Since October 8, Hezbollah has launched almost daily attacks on Israeli border communities and military outposts, claiming to support Gaza amidst the ongoing conflict. This has prompted Israeli counterstrikes and continuous cross-border exchanges, resulting in the displacement of approximately 80,000 Israelis from their homes in border areas along the Lebanese border.)

 

Early Monday (Feb 19) evening, the Israel Air Force struck deep into Lebanon, bombing two Hezbollah weapons storage warehouses in the town of Ghaziyeh, on the southern outskirts of Sidon, 50 kilometers (31 miles) from the border with Israel. Weapons that were stored in the facilities went up in a giant fireball as a result of the attack. The attack came in response to a Lebanese combat drone that landed in the Galilee, near Tiberias. Earlier in the day, a combat drone exploded in an open area in Moshav Arbel. The moshav is located near Lake Kinneret [Sea of Galilee].

 

On Tuesday (Feb 20), a drone launched by Hezbollah in Lebanon crashed into the yard of a home in Bustan HaGalil near the northern city of Acre. Hezbollah claimed a series of attacks on northern Israel throughout Tuesday. No injuries were reported. The IDF struck numerous Hezbollah positions in southern Lebanon, in response to its rocket and missile attacks.

 

On Thursday (Feb 22) morning, Iran’s Lebanese proxy, the Hezbollah terrorist organization, attacked multiple northern Israeli communities, scoring at least one direct strike on a private home in the village of Kfar Yuval in the Upper Galilee. The missile started a fire in the home; no physical injuries were reported. The terrorists launched multi anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) in the attack, with at least one projectile also landing in the city of Kiryat Shmona. A kamikaze drone fired by Hezbollah also hit the mark on an IDF military base near Kiryat Shmona during the morning hours. Israel returned fire to the source of the attacks. Kiryat Shmona has been targeted on a near-daily basis with rocket attacks fired by Hezbollah.  Due to the city’s close proximity to Israel’s northern border, Kiryat Shmona is especially vulnerable to rocket and missile fire, leaving residents just ten seconds or less to reach a safe space after the Red Alert incoming rocket siren activates. Sometimes the siren is not triggered by ATGMs, if the trajectory of the missile fire is low; such attacks are especially dangerous.

 

On Thursday (Feb 22), three Hezbollah group “terrorists” were killed in southern Lebanon in an airstrike attributed to Israel. One of those killed as Hassan Saleh, a prominent missile expert in the Lebanon-based Hezbollah militia. At least two Hezbollah fighters were killed and three people injured in Thursday’s Israeli strike. There was no immediate explanation for the slight discrepancies in the reported total death toll. Four air-to-surface missiles penetrated the two adjacent apartments from above and exploded inside, leading to their complete destruction. Neighbouring buildings were also severely damaged.

 

 

 

Yemen

Last Saturday (Feb 17), USA Central Command conducted five self-defence strikes against three mobile anti-ship cruise missiles, one unmanned underwater vessel, and one unmanned surface vessel in Iranian-backed, Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen.

 

Last Sunday (Feb 18), Yemen's Houthis targeted the British cargo ship Rubymar in the Bab al-Mandab Strait off Yemen. The UK Maritime Trade Operations agency reported the crew had abandoned a ship off Yemen after an explosion.

 

On Monday (Feb 19), Iranian-backed Houthi terrorists fired two anti-ship ballistic missiles at the M/V Sea Champion, a USA-owned bulk carrier delivering grain to Aden, Yemen, for the benefit of the Yemeni people. One of the missiles caused minor damage.

 

Overnight Monday (Feb 19), the French navy shot down two drones over the Red Sea where Yemen's Houthis have been attacking ships. France has deployed the Alsace, a frigate with air defense capabilities, and the Languedoc, an anti-submarine frigate, in the area.

 

On Wednesday (Feb 21), the USA military destroyed seven anti-ship missiles, one missile launcher, and a drone originating from Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen.

 

Early Thursday (Feb 22), the IDF intercepted a missile over the Red Sea fired at the Israeli city of Eilat, using the Arrow defense system. "The missile did not enter Israeli territory and did not pose any threat to civilians," the IDF said, though rocket sirens were sounded in the city.

 

Lord, prepare Israeli society and the IDF to fight a multi-front war if needed (2 Chr. 14:14; Psa. 23:5). Watch over Isaiah 8:9-10 in relation to Israel's current international security situation. Fight alongside the IDF to supernaturally magnify every attack against Hezbollah (Psa. 18:13-14). Expose and destroy Hezbollah’s extensive tunnel system in Lebanon and further afield (Amos 9:2-3). Lord, we Your priests are interceding for Israel, therefore please fulfill Joel 2:17-20 and destroy Hezbollah, that northern army threatening Your nation today. God, arise and shake Iran – physically, politically and economically to diminish their funding of terrorism. (Job 38:12-15; Psa.68:1, 30b)

 

“…when the ark set forward, Moses said, 'Rise up YHWH, and let Your enemies be scattered; and let them that hate You flee before You'. And when it rested, he said, 'Return, YHWH, unto the many thousands of Israel'.” (Numbers 10: 35-36)

 

 

11. GAZA UPDATES:

Father, release panic and fear into all of Iran's proxies surrounding Your nation (2 Chr. 17:10; Jer. 4:19). Set these whom You hate (Psa. 11:5) against each other and reignite the 1400-year-old war between Sunni and Shi'ite Muslims (2 Sam. 22:3; Psa. 55:9; 68:30b; Prov. 28:17).

 

By myself I have sworn, says YHWH, that because you have…not held back your only son, in blessing I will bless you …and your seed shall possess the gate of his enemies. (Gen. 22:16-17; cp. 24:60).

 

 

12. PALESTINIAN AUTHORITY UPDATES:

 

Last Sunday (Feb 18), Norway agreed to help facilitate the transfer of the Palestinian Authority's tax revenues. In the wake of Hamas' October 7 terror onslaught, the Israeli cabinet refused to transfer the portion of the funds that Ramallah uses to pay for services and employees in Gaza, arguing that the money could reach Hamas. Protesting the move, the PA had refused to accept any of the tax revenues, which make up the vast majority of the PA's budget. Last month, Israel approved a framework under which the Gaza portion of the funds would be transferred to Norway, which would then hold them until Israel approved their release to the PA.

 

Almost US $278 million in yearly tax revenue that Israel collects on behalf of the Palestinian Authority [PA] goes toward Ramallah’s “Pay for Slay” policy, under which it disburses monthly salaries to terrorists and their families, legal documents indicated on Sunday. The information was revealed during a hearing brought by the parents of Dalia Lemkus, who was stabbed to death by a Palestinian terrorist at a bus stop near the town of Alon Shvut in Judea almost 10 years ago. The terrorist, a Palestinian Islamic Jihad member from Hebron, was convicted in 2015 to two life sentences, in addition to paying US $1.1 million in compensation to the victims’ relatives. Lemkus’ parents subsequently took enforcement action against the PA, the Palestine Liberation Organization [PLO] and the Israeli Finance Ministry, noting that terrorist Maher al-Hashlamoun receives a monthly “salary” of US $3,300 from Ramallah for the murder. (Note: Jerusalem collects US $164–194 million in tax funds on behalf of the PA every month under the terms of the Oslo Accords, signed with PLO terrorist Yasser Arafat in the 1990s. The PA pays terrorists and their families huge sums every month; probably close US $278 million a year. Since Hamas’s October 7 massacre in Israeli communities near Gaza, the PA has added thousands of Palestinians to its list of people who qualify to receive terror stipends, an Israeli watchdog reported last month.)

 

 

USA Looking to Financially Prop Up the Palestinian Authority – (by Vivian Salama in Wall Street Journal)

The Biden administration is looking to financially prop up the Palestinian Authority as it hopes the PA will be able to govern Gaza when Israel's war with Hamas is over. The administration is trying to work around a law that prevents it from contributing directly to the Palestinian Authority, while also nudging allies to give more to the PA. The PA has been dogged by accusations of corruption and ties to extremists that led to the cutoff of USA funds in the first place.

   

After October 7, Israel suspended the transfer of tax revenue it collects for the PA which was earmarked for PA employees in Gaza, saying the funds go into the pockets of Hamas. In response, the Palestinian Authority said it wouldn't accept any partial revenue transfers. In January, Israel agreed to President Biden's plan to transfer the frozen tax revenues to Norway for safekeeping until an arrangement could be found that would assuage Israel's concerns that the money would fund Hamas.

   

The USA is limited in its ability to provide direct support after Congress enacted the Taylor Force Act in March 2018, suspending USA bilateral economic assistance to the Palestinian Authority because of its practice of providing payments to Palestinians accused of terrorism and their relatives.

 

Lord, use the internal fighting that is occurring among the Palestinians society, both in Judea-Samaria and in Gaza, for Your holy Name's sake (Psa. 74:22-23; 129:5; Zech. 14:13). Increase the division and infighting inside, and between, all Palestinian terrorist groups (Psa. 55:9). Yeshua, save many Palestinians and use them to impact their society (Prov. 14:34). Cleanse Palestinian Believers of all Jew-hatred and replacement theology (Psa. 51:2; 119:9; Jam. 4:8). Strengthen the true Church among the Palestinians to be Your light (Matt. 16:18). Give Israel much wisdom in dealing with the financial failure of the Palestinian Authority at this time. Use this situation to bring forth Your plans and Your purposes for the future of Judea-Samaria. Prepare the IDF for the day after Abbas is removed from being the PA's dictator (Prov. 16:1). Release Your angels to make up any gaps in the security shield over Your people (2 Kin. 6:15-17).

 

"Thus says the LORD: “Against all My evil neighbours who touch the inheritance which I have caused My people Israel to inherit—behold, I will pluck them out of their land and pluck out the house of Judah from among them. Then it shall be, after I have plucked them out, that I will return and have compassion on them and bring them back, everyone to his heritage and everyone to his land." (Jeremiah 12:14-15)

 

 

13. THE LIGHT SHINES INTO THE DARKNESS

(This weekly commentary documents incidents where God shines his light into the darkness and exposes pending attacks, injustices and terror incidents. It also documents situations where the goodness of God breaks through into evil circumstances)

 

Israeli Tourism Minister Haim Katz told 4,000 Christian communicators on Wednesday (Feb 21) that Israel is safe for tourism. Calling for increased Christian tourism to the Jewish State, Katz thanked the evangelical community for its unequivocal support during remarks at the opening of the NRB (National Religious Broadcasters) Christian Media Convention in Nashville, Tennessee. As part of his visit to the USA, Katz and Tourism Ministry representatives are expected to work towards strengthening collaboration with tour operators and opinion leaders in the Christian world, with a focus on expanding Christian tourism to Israel. Among other things, meetings are taking place with marketing and media companies specializing in the Christian market, including TBN, the largest Evangelical television network in the USA and the Salem Group – one of the most prominent in the field. Katz is slated to hold meetings in New York on Thursday with InterNova Travel Group, one of the largest in the USA, and with the director of the United States Tour Operators (USTOA).

 

South African Christians to Hold Nationwide Prayer event for Israel

 Christians in South Africa are organizing a nationwide February 25 afternoon prayer event in express support of Israel. Organized by Time2Rise South Africa, the event is intended to show solidarity with the Jewish state and counteract the South African government’s recent decision to bring Israel before the International Court of Justice on charges of genocide against the Palestinians in Gaza. Israel went to war against the Hamas Palestinian terror group, which rules the Gaza Strip, after thousands of terrorists invaded Israel on Oct. 7 and massacred 1,200 mostly civilian Israelis and abducted 240 more, including women, children, babies, and the elderly.

 

Hundreds of South African Christians are expected to gather for prayer sessions at 4 pm on Sunday (Feb 25) in major towns, including Pretoria, Johannesburg, Cape Town, Durban, Bloemfontein, Port Elizabeth, and Potchefstroom. Each session will include prayer for Israel, a declaration against the International Court of Justice case against the Jewish state and a prayer for Divine intervention in South Africa.

 

“Many of the Christian community are deeply unhappy about the allegations being leveled by our government on Israel,” Philip Rosenthal of ChristianView Network, who will participate in the event, stated, “We believe in Genesis 12 that this will bring a curse on South Africa unless we distance ourselves from it. So we will do that, and we have been doing that very strongly.”

 

In a separate statement, Pearl Kupe, who is on the Time2RiseSA advisory board and is helping to organize the event, said: “Not everyone in South Africa does not like Israel or supports Palestine. We want to make our voices heard and clear.”

 

 

PM Harper: Israel's War Is Just, Hamas Must Be Eliminated – (by Former Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper in National Post-Canada)

Below are statements made by the former PM of Canada while in Israel last week:

  • The systemic nature of the killing in Israel on Oct. 7 and the evident glee with which it was being undertaken by its participants betrayed something darker. These were acts of extermination - the killing of those who, in the killers' eyes, were less than human. It was the urge to commit genocide at its most evil.

  • Nor can this be regarded as some isolated episode of anti-Israeli violence. It was the consequence of decades of institutionalized antisemitic indoctrination of a population - to the point where such murderous acts become regarded as necessary and praiseworthy.

  • Israel's war objective - the elimination of Gaza's Hamas regime - is essential. Leaving the job unfinished, with Hamas tolerated and its actions contained, has been tried, and it has failed. The Israeli people cannot be reasonably asked to return to the pre-war status quo.

  • I say to Israel's friends, stop asking it to stop short of victory. Instead, bring pressure to bear on Hamas, directly and through its allies and partners, to force its capitulation.

  • Yes, we helped Germany to re-build after the Second World War. But we also insisted it de-construct the ideologies that led to its aggression. And we demanded it fully embrace the ethics of peaceful coexistence. By that standard alone, suggestions that a victorious Israeli army should simply walk out of Gaza and assume some harmonious "two-state solution" will emerge out of thin air is beyond foolish.

  • A two-state solution will not magically take root now for the same reason it has not happened since 1947 - it is rejected by way too many Palestinians. The core problem is not Israel.

  • Generations of Palestinians have been inculcated to reject the right of a Jewish state to exist on any piece of the land of the former Mandate for Palestine. We must stop pretending that a two-state solution can be pursued in the face of the continued propagation of such a view.

 

Lord, let Your light shine into the darkest areas of the earth. Expose all plots to harm Your people…both Jews and Christians. Thank You that there is increasing coordination between the agencies who are in charge of security and protection. We bless the security forces and police forces around the world…they have an impossible job to protect all the people all the time. Give them much wisdom and great alertness, we pray!

 

"YHWH discovers deep things out of darkness and brings the shadow of death to light." (Job 12:22)

 

 

14. ANTI-SEMITISM UPDATES:

 

Brazil’s President Lula da Silva has recalled his country’s Ambassador Federico Mayer from Israel following a reprimand delivered earlier in the day on Monday (Feb 19) by Foreign Minister Israel Katz over da Silva’s antisemitic remarks on Sunday accusing Israel of committing genocide in Gaza. Katz declared da Silva “persona non grata” in Israel until he apologizes and retracts his remarks. Katz chose to deliver the reprimand in Jerusalem at the Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Center to underscore his point that da Silva had crossed the line by trying to compare Israeli military operations in Gaza to the genocide of six million Jews by the Nazis during World War II. Immediately following the meeting, da Silva ordered the ambassador to return to Brazil. At the same time, Israel’s Ambassador to Brazil, Daniel Zohar-Zonstein, was summoned to a reprimand meeting with the Brazil’s Foreign Minister Mauro Vieira. Brazil’s president is deeply supportive of the Palestinian Authority “cause.”

 

Here are three statements that will get your attention:

·         Speaking at the Munich Security Conference, Palestinian Authority PM Shtayyeh called on Hamas to unite with the PA. Asked about working with the perpetrators of October 7, Shtayyeh replied, "One should not continue focusing on October 7."

·         Also at Munich, Qatari PM bin Abdulrahman Al-Thani said that Hamas should get a ceasefire without having to give up anything, not even the women it took hostage.

·         Speaking at an African Union summit, Brazilian President Luiz Inacio "Lula" da Silva called the Gaza war a "genocide" and "a war between a highly prepared army and women and children," comparing it to "when Hitler decided to kill the Jews."

 

A Norwegian university has decided to boycott its Israeli counterparts in the shadow of the October 7 war against Israel launched by Gaza’s Iranian-backed Hamas terrorist organization. The board of Oslo Metropolitan University announced a decision to suspend its student exchange program with the University of Haifa, and “not to enter into new general cooperation agreements with Israeli universities and colleges,” the university announced. The members of the university board voted 9-2 to approve the boycott advanced by board member Einar Braathen during its meeting on February 13, the university said. The board added that the decision does not cover research collaboration between researchers and professional environments at OsloMet and Israeli universities.

 

A Dutch Christian foundation supporting efforts to provide the Gospel, Bibles, and humanitarian aid to Jews is among the latest pro-Israel groups to distribute its publication in a sealed envelope amid mounting antisemitism in the Netherlands. Israel en de Bijbel (Israel and the Bible) sends its regular magazine with the same name no longer in an open package. The decision came after subscribers, including Jewish people, explained concerns about possible repercussions due to the Israel-Hamas war. The magazine is now sent in a white envelope. This is the first time since 1865 that the magazine has had take such action.

 

On Tuesday (Feb 20), Israel has thwarted an effort by South Africa and Algeria to deprive it of observer status in the African Union. The initiative to oust Israel from the AU, as well as the effort to have it cut off relations with Israel and accuse it of genocide, all failed in a weekend vote at the AU annual conference in Ethiopia, as a coalition of African states formed to oppose the move. Dan Diker, President of the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, noted, "Regretfully, South Africa has not overcome its apartheid past and instead of progressing with the rest of the African continent has regressed to become a proxy of the Iranian regime, as we previously saw with the weaponization of the ICJ [International Court of Justice] against Israel."

 

 

 

Father, open the eyes of the Jews who remain in exile to see how the current rise of anti-Semitism is being allowed by You in order to chase them home (Jer. 16:16). Yet with others, draw them back to Israel through Your everlasting covenant-love (Jer. 31:3). Abba, may the present Israeli government make Aliyah as much of a priority as You do (Jer. 32:41-42). Show Israel that while it is proper to be concerned for the security of Jews who choose to live in the exile – as well as to speak out against anti-Semitism – Israel must not encourage them to stay there. Father, You desire for Believers to co-labour with You to restore Israel and bring You people home (Isa. 49:22; 60:8-12). We ask You to raise up pastors and elders who will preach this truth without fear (1 Cor. 3:9; Gal. 4:16).

 

“I will return Israel to his home, and he shall feed on Carmel and Bashan [the Golan], and his soul shall be satisfied on mount Ephraim and Gilead [northern Jordan]. In those days… the iniquity of Israel shall be sought for, and none; and the sins of Judah shall not be found: for I will pardon [+forgive] them whom I reserve [the remnant].” (Jeremiah 50:19-20)

 

 

15. IRAN UPDATES:

 

Iran has provided Russia with 400 powerful surface-to-surface ballistic missiles capable of striking targets at a distance of between 300 and 700 km. The shipments began in January. An Iranian military official said there had been at least four shipments of missiles and there would be more in the coming weeks. Some of the missiles were sent to Russia by ship via the Caspian Sea, while others were transported by plane. UN Security Council restrictions on Iran's export of some missiles, drones and other technologies expired in October. (Note: Russia had already received missiles from North Korea. However, the ballistic missiles supplied by North Korea had proven unreliable on the battlefield, with only two of 24 hitting their targets. By contrast, the Iranian missiles were precision weapons.) Iran also supplies Shahed drones to Russia. Ukraine's air force said in December that Russia had launched 3,700 Shahed drones during the war.

 

God of Israel, if Israel needs to attack Iran directly, guide it so that the results are miraculous (Lev. 26:7-8). We rejoice over the growth of Your Body in Elam [ancient Iran] (Jer. 49:38a; Matt. 16:18b). Now Lord God, fulfill Jeremiah 49:38b suddenly by removing Iran's king and its princes. Also strip off from the Iranian regime all of its demonic spiritual protection (Num. 14:9b). Set-free the Iranians and Iranian minority groups who suffer under that wicked regime (Isa. 14:5). Lead Iranian believers to constantly pray for their nation (1 Tim. 2:1-4), and for Israel (Psa. 122:6).

 

“Arise YHWH, let not man prevail; let the nations be judged in Your sight. Put them in fear, YHWH that the nations may know themselves to be but men. Selah.” (Psalm 9:19-20)

 

 

16. UNITED NATIONS UPDATES:

 

The UN agency for Palestinian refugees warns it has reached a critical juncture as it struggles to cope with the war in Gaza. “It is with profound regret that I must now inform you that UNRWA has reached a breaking point,” chief Philippe Lazzarini says, as donors freeze funding, Israel exerts pressure to dismantle the agency and humanitarian needs soar.

 

Israel has denied allegations made on Monday (Feb 19) by the UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) charging Israeli forces with rape, abduction and extrajudicial killings of Palestinian women in Gaza. Israel's Mission to the UN in Geneva said, "Israel forcefully rejects the despicable and unfounded claims published today by a group of so-called UN experts, including one who just days ago legitimized the massacre of October 7 in which more than 1,200 people were murdered, executed and raped, and another who publicly doubted the testimonies of Israeli victims of gender-based and sexual violence. These [UN] mandate holders have remained silent on the horrific sexual violence and gender-based violence perpetrated by Hamas on and since Oct. 7. It is clear that the co-signatories are motivated not by the truth but by their hatred for Israel and its people." 

 

On Tuesday (Feb 20), the USA vetoed an Arab-backed UN resolution demanding an immediate humanitarian ceasefire in the Israel-Hamas war in Gaza. The vote in the Security Council was 13 in favour and 1 - the USA- against, with the UK abstaining. It was the third USA veto of a Security Council resolution demanding a ceasefire in Gaza and came a day after the USA circulated a rival resolution that would support a temporary cease-fire linked to the release of all hostages.

 

At International Court of Justice, USA Argues Against Declaring Israeli West Bank Rule Illegal – (by Jeremy Sharon in Times of Israel)

On Wednesday (Feb 21), the USA called on the International Court of Justice not to issue a ruling calling for a unilateral Israeli withdrawal from Judea-Samaria. Richard Visek, a legal adviser in the USA State Department, said, "The established framework for achieving a comprehensive and enduring peace is anchored in UN Security Council Resolutions 242 and 338. At their core, these and subsequent resolutions call for...peace and security for states in the Middle East, through the acknowledgment of the sovereignty, territorial integrity and political independence of every state in the area."

   

Visek said that it would not be conducive to the achievement of peace for the court to issue an opinion "that calls for a unilateral, immediate and unconditional withdrawal that does not account for Israel's legitimate security needs," which, he said, were underlined by the atrocities perpetrated by Hamas against Israel on October 7. Visek also pointed out that international law does not provide for an occupation to be declared unlawful or void, regardless of its duration.

   

The ICJ is currently holding six days of hearings following a request by the UN General Assembly for the court to issue an advisory opinion on the legality of Israel's 56-year-long rule in Judea-Samaria and eastern Jerusalem. Advisory opinions are non-binding and Israel has not sent a delegation to The Hague to argue against the petition.

 

 

USA Submits Ceasefire Proposal to United Nations Security Council In Bid to Pause Israel’s Advance into Rafah

The United States has put forward an alternative draft for a United Nations Security Council resolution to ‘“support for a temporary ceasefire in Gaza as soon as practicable, based on the formula of all hostages being released,” according to Reuters, and such a move “would have serious implications for regional peace and security, and therefore underscores that such a major ground offensive” in Rafah, Hamas’ last stronghold in the Gaza Strip, “should not proceed under current circumstances.”

 

The proposal represents a new direction in diplomatic efforts, mirroring sentiments President Joe Biden recently expressed in conversations with PM Netanyahu. The introduction of this resolution marks a notable shift in the US’As stance on the Israel-Hamas conflict. It underscores the USA’s concern over the humanitarian impact of a potential large-scale ground invasion into Rafah, particularly highlighting the risks of increased civilian casualties and displacement.

 

Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant has indicated that of the remaining six Hamas battalions targeted for dismantlement, four are located in Rafah, currently home to over a million displaced Palestinians. The draft resolution published by Reuters reflects U.S. concerns about the extensive displacement of civilians. It asserts that, given the current situation, a significant ground offensive into Rafah would lead to further civilian harm and displacement, potentially affecting neighboring countries as well.

 

The USA’s move to draft its own resolution seems to stem from increasing international pressure for a more assertive approach to ending the conflict in Gaza. However, the report did not specify when the 15-member council would vote on the resolution crafted by the United States or whether it would even be voted on.

 

Israeli officials have indicated that the timeline for a major operation in Rafah is aimed to be before Ramadan, the Muslim holy month, starting this year on March 10. The temporary hold on Israel’s significant military push into Rafah is due to extensive planning to mitigate international concerns regarding the displacement of a million Palestinians.

 

Nonetheless, behind-the-scenes preparations are underway on how Israel plans to address the humanitarian impact while committing to eliminating Hamas from the Gaza Strip. The Wall Street Journal revealed last week that Israel proposed establishing 15 camp cities, each accommodating approximately 25,000 displaced Palestinians from Rafah, across the southwestern part of the Gaza Strip. Additionally, the report outlined that Egypt would oversee the construction of these proposed camps and field hospitals.

 

 

UNRWA Is the Tip of the Iceberg at the UN – (by Olga Deutsch in the Washington Times. The writer is vice president of NGO Monitor.)

Since freezing UNRWA funding in January, after evidence emerged that the agency's employees participated in the murder and kidnapping of Israeli civilians in the October 7 massacre, the USA said it will instead send money to other UN bodies and NGOs in Gaza. This is premature, ignoring the fact that serious problems with terror support, incitement and antisemitism are replicated throughout the entire ecosystem of UN agencies and NGOs active in Gaza and Judea-Samaria. Stronger, broader, long-term action is needed before continuing to fund any organizations in Gaza.

   

UNRWA has partnered with Palestinian NGOs to carry out "advocacy" projects to accuse Israel of "war crimes" and "violations of human rights" and seek condemnations of Israel from international bodies and governments. The biased reports and claims from UNRWA's NGO partners are often cited as "evidence" in UN investigations of Israel. South Africa's submission to the International Court of Justice accusing Israel of genocide - a charge that the USA has called "meritless" - contains 45 references to NGO publications and 13 footnotes citing UNRWA.

 

 

ICJ's New Chief Judge Has a History of Bias Against Israel – (by F. Kittrie in Wall Street Journal. The writer, a senior fellow at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, is a law professor at Arizona State University.)

The International Court of Justice began hearings Monday (Feb 19) on meritless claims that international law requires immediate and unconditional Israeli withdrawal from the West Bank [Judea-Samaria] and eastern Jerusalem, regardless of risk to Israel's security. Presiding was the ICJ's newly promoted chief judge, Nawaf Salam. Salam, who has demonstrated personal bias against Israel, served as Lebanon's UN ambassador from 2007 to 2017, repeatedly denouncing and voting against Israel's military conduct and presence in the disputed territories.

   

USA officials have rightly criticized the ICJ proceeding as "one-sided" and warned it will undermine prospects for "a negotiated two-state solution." Future Palestinian or other Arab leaders would find it hard to make concessions that the ICJ has ruled Israel doesn't deserve.

   

The USA should make clear that regardless of any politically driven ICJ ruling, it will continue supporting Israel's security and ensure that direct bilateral negotiations remain the only route for addressing the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

 

Father, block every attempt by the Enemy to divide Your land by using the evil tactics of the United Nations. As well, dismantle these new initiatives to revive a two-state solution in Israel, we pray! Make Israel's leaders deaf to this accusatory feedback from the nations (Prov. 11:9). Father, have mercy on the nations who are supporting the many resolutions against Israel. Abba, increase and bless all the nations that support Israel…we pray that the Canadian government will be pro-Israel in all future resolutions.  (Num. 24:9). Confront all lukewarm nations. (Rev. 3:15-16). Father, wake up Believers in the nations that they may see the curse that is brought on their country when their nation votes against Israel in the United Nations (Hab. 3:1-2). Reinforce Israel's resistant to this hellish plan that in reality will reward the Palestinians for raping, burning and massacring Jews and taking hostages (Psa. 11:5-6; Prov. 24:20; Eccl. 8:13). Lord, in the spiritual realm put up a big "No trespassing" sign on Your land (Jer. 10:25; 51:24). Speak truth through Israel's diplomats irrespective of the world's reaction (Prov. 29:1; Gal. 4:16). Anoint them to know with which nations to develop new, or deeper, relationships – and with which nations there needs to be a greater caution on Israel's part (Judg. 3:1; Isa. 55:5). As Israel sees that it has very few dependable "friends" in the world, allow this truth to turn many Israelis to cry out to, and trust in, You alone (Num. 23:9b; Psa. 50:15; 80:3, 7, 19).

 

“Let God arise, let His enemies be scattered: let them also that hate Him flee before Him…Rebuke the company of spearmen…scatter the people that delight in war.” (Psalm 68:1,30)

 

 

17. SALVATION FOR THE JEWS:

 

Father, for Your glory's sake, pour out the spirit of grace and supplication upon Your people (Zech. 12:10). Lord, especially with the Jews who live in Your land, sprinkle their hearts with clean water (Ezek. 36:25) and write Your law on their hearts (Jer. 31:33). Use both Jewish and Gentile believers in Israel to provoke many Jews to jealousy (Rom. 11:11, 14). Messiah Yeshua, lead secret Jewish Believers to openly confess You (Matt. 16:24). Cause more born-again Gentiles to see that Romans 1:16 and 11:11 are still valid today. God, turn more Jews to study Your Word instead of the words of men (Isa. 55:11; Jer. 15:16). In mercy, remove the divine blindness placed on the Jews for the Gentiles' sake (Rom. 11:25). Lord Yeshua, encourage all secret Jewish believers to openly confess You at this time (Matt. 16:24). Shine Your light through Your disciples in the IDF and in Israel's society (John 12:36; 1 Thess. 5:5).

 

“Shout for joy and rejoice, daughter of Zion: for, behold, I come and will dwell in your midst, says YHWH, and many Gentiles shall be joined to YHWH in that day, and shall be My people. I will dwell in your midst, and you shall know that YHWH of hosts has sent Me to you'.” (Zechariah. 2:10-11)

 

 

18. WATER:

 

Israel is in a season of cold, wet weather, for which we bless and praise God. In fact, for the first time in 30 years there has been rain in Israel daily for more than two weeks.

 

Lord, we bless You for the latter rains which are soaking Israel at this time (Deut. 11:14). Thank You for this witness in nature to how merciful You are (Matt. 5:45b). Again, we ask You to use the weather to bless Israel and hinder its enemies' plans (Psa. 148:7-8).

 

“But as for me, I would seek God, and to God I would commit my cause—Who does great things, and unsearchable,marvelous things without number.  He gives rain on the earth and sends waters on the fields.” (Job 5:9-10)

 

 

19. ISRAEL GOOD NEWS ITEMS:

 

The Israel Premier – Tech Cycling Team made history in Rwanda on Monday (Feb 19) with an exceptional victory at the Tour of Rwanda, as Itamar Einhorn claimed a significant win in the second stage of the race. This victory not only marks a milestone for Einhorn but also for Israeli cycling as a whole, being the first time an Israeli champion has triumphed in this prestigious event. Covering 130 kilometers and conquering three challenging climbs, Einhorn showcased his prowess and determination as he surged ahead in the final sprint, leaving his closest competitors trailing behind.

 

“Widow’s mite” Ancient Coin Discovered Near the Dead Sea

 A 2,000-year-old coin of a type some experts describe as a “widow’s mite” was recently discovered near Israel’s Dead Sea by a young boy who was evacuated to the area following the October 7 genocidal attack.  Nati Tokiar, 11, found the tiny bronze coin on the ground while walking in the vicinity of the hotel he and his family were sent to after their home in Kibbutz Magen close to the border with Gaza was declared unsafe. Nati and his family turned the coin over to the Israel Antiquities Authority (IAA) which confirmed the artifact was minted during the reign of the Hasmonean King and high priest Alexander Jannaeus, who ruled over Judea in 104–76 B.C. The coin is inscribed on one side with an illustration of an anchor and the Greek words “Alexandro Basilous,” denoting “(of) Alexander the King.” The other side has an 8-pointed star inside a crown. It has the king’s name and title in partly decipherable ancient Hebrew letters. This type of coin was minted in abundance; a large number of such coins was found in the past at a Hasmonean-Herodian port of the Dead Sea called “Hurvat-Mazin.”

 

The proliferation of these coins along the Dead Sea coastline serves as a testament to the military campaigns and conquests waged against the Kingdom of Nabataea across the Jordan River. They facilitated payment to the king’s soldiers, fortified strategic outposts such as Masada, Machaerus, and Qumran, and contributed to the establishment of a naval fleet operating in the Dead Sea. Hence, the presence of the anchor symbol on the coin may well derive from this maritime activity.

 

Biblical scholars believe this coin is of the type mentioned in the story of the Widow’s Mite in Gospels of Mark 12:41–44 and Luke 21:1–4.

 

 

Thank You, that You continue to bless Israel. Thank You that You have chosen to bless the world through the Jewish people. May the world see these inventions and discoveries as a fulfillment of Your promise to Abraham!

 

“The LORD had said unto Abram, ‘Get out of your country, from your kindred, and your father's house, unto a land that I will show you. I will make of you a great nation, and I will bless you, and make your name great. And you shall be a blessing…and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed’” (Genesis 12:1-3)







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