In Eilat

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View from Eilat, Israel,  March 20, 2017.  The land in the background is Jordan.

I have been in Eilat getting some work done for the past couple of days.  Tomorrow I leave to head up to Beer Sheva for our Bible Study.

Eilat is a very interesting city situated at the southern tip of Israel.  When standing at the water’s edge, one can see Saudi Arabia, Jordan and Egypt, all at the same time.  It is quite an awesome view.  As Pesach approaches, it is so neat to be able to walk in the Red Sea.  What a feeling that is.

We are working on some very exciting new projects for LoveIsrael.org to better teach, encourage and get to know the people we reach.  These won’t take place for at least the next few months, but I will document our progress and get some feedback and ideas from you!

 If you haven’t noticed, the registration information for the Eighth Annual LoveIsrael.org Conference in Orlando, FL, is now up on our website.  We already have over 60 people signed up in 1 week!  This is going to be a great conference and we hope you will be able to join us.

New Anti-Semitism in Barbados

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The Nidhe Israel Synagogue in Speightstown, Barbados.

Thursday, the exterior walls around the historic Nidhe Israel Synagogue in Speightstown, Barbados, were vandalized with anti-semitic graffiti.  The synagogue was originally built in 1654 but was destroyed in a hurricane in 1831.  This is the first instance of such anti-semitism in modern history in Barbados.  This follows the increase in anti-semitism around the world.

One famous person who attended the synagogue for a couple of years, and who died in the Bahamas was Rabbi Raphael Haim Isaac Carregal.  He was a very close friend of Ezra Stiles, who became the president of Yale University.  Stiles was not Jewish, but he and Rabbi Carregal held a close friendship in which they discussed Messianic passages and wrote letters back and forth in Hebrew.

A few Jewish people from Brazil, who were persecuted by the Portuguese, came to Barbados in the 1660s and brought with them knowledge of the sugarcane industry.  They helped make Barbados one of the richest European colonies in the West Indies.

Joshua 2

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Reading the account of Rahav in the book of Joshua, it always bothered me that Rahav was supposedly a harlot, yet the two G-dly spies went there.  However, if one looks at the Hebrew word for harlot, it is from the same root as “mazone”, which is meal.  So, it could be that she was the proprietor of a Bed and Breakfast!  Just something to think about.

We also see some parallels between Joshua 2 and Exodus 12.  Just as the scarlet string was a sign for the spies for the protection of Rachav and her family in Jericho, so too was the blood on the doorposts for death to pass over those homes which had blood on their lintels.  This Shabbat, read over Exodus 12 and Joshua 2 to see the parallelism.

Shabbat Shalom!

 

 

 

LoveIsrael.org on CNL

CNL is the foremost Christian network in Russia and the Ukraine.  This network also broadcasts in many other places in Europe, where there is a large Russian-speaking population.  Similarly, CNL is available in Israel, for the over 1 million Russian immigrants.  What is unique about CNL is that all programs on their network are dubbed into the Russian language or into Ukrainian for the Ukraine.

Below is a link to one of our programs so that you can watch and hear how the dubbing works.  Although we have only been broadcasting a short while, we have received correspondence from these countries.  We are excited to be going to the Ukraine to conduct our second LoveIsrael.org conference there, May 19-21.

It is through your generous support that our Biblically-based teaching is now impacting literally tens of thousands Russian/Ukrainian speakers.

Recently we received a report from someone who saw our program broadcast on CNL while he was in Paris.

http://cnl.video/27/8#.WMuusxJ96SM

 

Shabbat Shalom

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Parashat Ki Tisa

(For you shall lift up—an idiom which means “take a census”)

Exodus 30:11-34:35

Haftarah: 1 Kings 18:1-39

In this week’s Torah portion, Moses ascends once more upon Mount Sinai to receive the second set of Tablets. He was upon the Mountain for forty days and forty nights and we are told that he did not eat bread nor did he drink water (See Exodus 34:28). This is most similar to what one reads concerning Yeshua, for He was tempted in the wilderness also forty days and forty nights, during which He did not eat or drink anything (See Matthew 4:2 and Luke 4:2). What is the connection between these two verses?

The number forty appears numerous times in the Scriptures and it relates to a transition or a change. Certainly when Moses received the Torah and descended to the people and gave to them this revelation from G-d it represented a new dispensation for the Children of Israel. In other words, by means of the Torah, the Children of Israel would now know what the will of G-d is. Yeshua, during those forty days of temptation, demonstrated that He had overcome the temptation of Satan which was foundational in Him achieving the victory / salvation for humanity. What did Yeshua use in combating this satanic temptation? The answer is of course the Torah. Hence, the commandments, while they do not provide the victory, they are related to the victorious lifestyle of one who has overcome.

In addition to the forty days and forty nights there is another similarity— the fact that neither Yeshua nor Moses ate anything for these forty days. What is the significance of fasting during this period? Fasting relates to the denying of self while relying upon G-d. This reliance is based upon a trusting in HaShem to supply a supernatural provision, rather than depending upon the natural. The message from this week’s Parashah is that one cannot truly receive the Torah, i.e. the will of G-d, by means of the flesh. Rather it is only when one comes before G-d in faith, and in a spirit of dependence upon Him, that this one will be provided the ability to receive and fulfill the Word of G-d.

This section concludes with the people noticing that Moses’ face had become radiant, i.e. reflecting the glory of G-d. Would it not be fitting that others could see the glory of G-d radiating from believers, because of our obedience to Scriptural truth?

Baruch and I had to do a little bit of traveling this week in Israel.  Last night we had our Beer Sheva study where Baruch spoke from Joshua 2.  I hope to get my notes together before Shabbat and share with you tomorrow some of the insight he gave concerning that passage.

We are also working to get the registration up on our LoveIsrael.org site.  It should be ready the first part of next week.  We hope to see you in Orlando, FL, November 10-12!

Are you on Facebook?  Have you seen our LoveIsrael.org page?  Come join us.

 

 

In the Desert

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On Thursday, Baruch and I were at Qumran, where the Dead Sea Scrolls were found.  The cave above is where the first ones were found.  This discovery was so important.  Baruch explained that one of the things it did was verify the Old Testament quotations which are found in the New Testament.  One of the things people who want to discredit the New Testament do is to say that the Scriptures from the Old Testament which are cited in the New Testament are misquoted.  Judaism uses the Masoretic text and not the Septuagint. When the New Testament quotes the Old Testament, it uses the Septuagint, which lines up with the Dead Sea Scrolls.

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There are several caves in the desert around Qumran, and the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered in 12 of them.  The discovery in the 12th cave occurred this year.  I don’t think they have released additional information about it yet.

On our way home, we saw a lot of scenes like this below:

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I never get tired of seeing the sheep!

Purim Sameach!

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A decorative Megillah on display at the Jewish Museum in Amsterdam.

Tonight we had a nice meeting at our study center.  Baruch read the Megillah in Hebrew while we followed along.  Then we had some desserts and great fellowship.  We were so glad to have several visitors and hope they will return.

Judaism requires the hearing of the reading of the Megillah.  In our city, there is a sect of Judaism which set up a tent outside the mall and had continuous Megillah readings every half hour from last night through this morning, because they wanted to help people to fulfill the mitzvah.  What a neat idea!

The following verse is something we should all commit to memory:

“For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance will arise for the Jews from another place and you and your father’s house will perish.  And who knows whether you have not attained royalty for such a time as this?”    Esther 4:14

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Plaque I saw at a clothing store when I was stranded in Minneapolis.

The reading of Esther should motivate us to listen to the voice of G-d and obey what He tells us to do.  Sometimes it may be something small.  Sometimes it might be huge.  But, most times we don’t know the full extent of the impact.

Let’s pray that we will be obedient to the L-rd so that we might be a tool in His work. What a blessing that would be!