Saturday, November 17, 2012

Our Response to Events in Israel

This is a map as of Friday evening showing where rockets have landed in Israel since the barrage started.  Civilians have been killed.  All the rockets are randomly shot at the entire population, not military installations.  Overnight, more rockets have been shot toward Israel, including 14 in one hour.

Israel has done strikes on Hamas military personnel and rocket launch sites and overnight destroyed Hamas government headquarters without their leadership inside.  They have sent text messages to Gazans to stay away from Hamas members for safety's sake.

Yet Israel is being criticized for defending herself.  I know of no nation on earth, including those being critical of Israel, who would allow such an attack on their population to go unanswered. Such criticisms make no sense.

How should we as Christians respond in this crisis?

First, I ask that all believers pray for the people.  Pray for all the innocent Israeli and Palestinian civilians who are in the crossfire. While God has a special covenant relationship with Israel, He also loves the Arab people as well.  And we have Arab Christian brothers and sisters in the Gaza Strip too.  Pray protection for them all.

Second, pray for wisdom for the Israeli leaders.  In any incursion, lives will be at stake.  Hamas tends to hide their rocket launch sites and military installations in hospitals, schools and among civilian populations, using innocent civilians as shields.

Finally, please pray for Palestinian Chairman Mahmoud Abbas and his advisors that they may be able to exercise some influence to stop the violence.  He seems to have little control over Hamas currently and they are being supported by Egypt and Iran.  But he may be able to do something.  

This is personal for us.  We have friends in Eilat (where missles have fallen from the Sinai); our friend Nir, who lives in Gedera, just 23 miles from Gaza City; and people we know in the suburbs of Jerusalem where at least two rockets have fallen.  This is the first time since the 1991 Gulf War that air raid sirens have gone off in Tel Aviv and Jerusalem.

Nir has told us they are good and strong at this point.  He appreciates our prayers.  Thank you for joining us in praying. 

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