A Lovely Day

Today Baruch and I had the pleasure of going down to Ashkelon today to meet with a small group of people to talk about the L-rd’s Supper and then partake together.

We were greeted by our hostess, who led us into a small, cozy living room which was set up for a luncheon.  There were seven of us there.  There was a low, round table in the middle of the room, with chairs and a long, upholstered bench around it.  It was such a cheerful setting for the delicious lunch which was prepared for us.  We ate a very traditional Jewish-Russian meal.

Baruch shared a little study about Pesach and the L-rd’s supper.  We were Hebrew speakers and Russian speakers, so one of the women translated from Hebrew into Russian.  Everyone there was a believer, but some didn’t totally understand about the L-rd’s Supper.  After the teaching, we all partook.

It was a lovely day to share with some brothers and sisters in the L-rd.

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Faithful and True

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Picture taken recently while out on my daily walk.  Yes, in January!

There is a blog which I visit regularly.  It is not from a believing perspective, but I visit it to see what blogging techniques she uses (vlogging, etc.) to see how to improve this blog. (Yes, I am hoping to do some vlogging at some point in the future.)  Recently on her blog she posted a saying which I found to be very disturbing, but yet is a common belief:  “What you believe becomes your truth.”

This is the trend today.  What you want to believe, follow, feel, etc., is right “for you.”  How many times have you heard that?  I have been burdened lately, as I discuss the End Times with Baruch, how there must be a culture of “spirituality” during that time, or why would the anti-christ come into the temple and declare himself god?  That must be on the radar of the people, right?

Today I hear so many people say that they are spiritual.  What does that mean?  To me, from what I hear, is that they have set up a “god” in their lives which makes them comfortable, affirms what they want affirmed, and doesn’t ever contradict what they want.  I even hear teachers today on Christian television saying that G-d wants you to be successful, G-d wants your plans to succeed, etc.  Now many Christians are incorporating this idea that G-d is here to serve us!  We should be submitting to HIS will for our lives, not the other way around!  Anything else is idolatry.

We need to remember that TRUTH is not on some type of sliding scale which can be manipulated into what we want.  I am reminded of one of my favorite Bible verses:

“And I saw heaven opened, and behold a white horse; and He that sat upon him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He doth judge and make war.”     Revelation 19:11

Who is Faithful and True?  YESHUA!  Anyone/Everyone at some point will disappoint us and let us down.  But not HIM!  He is always faithful.  And He is TRUE.  What does that mean?  Everything in the Scripture is 100% true and we can trust Him fully to KEEP His Word.  His word is TRUTH…not what the world says is truth, or anyone else, but HE is TRUE and all truth lies in Him alone.

Let’s reflect on the fact that what the world says is truth is not truth.  We must be immersed in the Word of G-d to know what truth really is.  Anything not in line with the Scriptures is not truth.

Work in Israel

Many of you may not know much about the work we do in Israel.  I thought I’d just tell you a little bit about it.  We have a study center located south of Tel Aviv in which we hold weekly Bible studies in Hebrew.  Both believers and non-believers attend.  During these studies, we have prayer, study the weekly Parasha, and then Baruch leads us in a study.  Right now we are studying the book of Luke.

We also have a weekly television broadcast (in Hebrew) where Baruch teaches from the Bible.  It is the only television show broadcast in Israel in Hebrew from a believing perspective.

There are a couple of new Bible studies Baruch is teaching now; one is in Beersheva and the other is in the Tel Aviv area.  These have believers and non-believers attending.

We would ask that you pray for the men and women learning the Word with us that they might come to faith in Messiah Yeshua.

Baruch also wrote, in conjunction with another organization, a Discipleship Manual, for new believers and even seeking non-believers to study.  It is being printed in Hebrew right now.  We are excited to get it into the hands of as many Israelis as possible.

Our New Study in the South

 

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Our new study in Beersheva is going well.  We studied this past week from Ruth chapter 2.  We had a great time of study.  This week is also Tu B’Shvat, which is the new year for trees. This holiday is the 15th of Shevat on the Jewish calendar.  This year it falls on January 25.

We mark this holiday by eating fruit, and you will see that grocery stores have put at the front of their stores different gift platters of different types of dried fruit.  At the study, our hosts provided a nice platter with different types of dried fruit.  They also provided a special Russian/Ukrainian specialty of a pastry filled with cooked cabbage and peppers with spices.  They were delicious.  Food is integral to the Jewish culture.  It gives us another opportunity to bless the L-rd, for whenever one eats, there are prayers which accompany the food.

Blessings for a wonderful week!

A Terrible, Senseless Murder

Perhaps many of you have heard about the murder of Dafna Meir from Otniel in Judea, Israel on Sunday.  She was in her home and was attacked in front of 3 of her 6 children and died protecting them.

Since her death, stories of her bravery and life have been revealed.  She grew up in a difficult home situation, she went on to marry and bear 4 children and adopt 2 more.  Her husband loved and respected her so much and looked very broken and her funeral.

 

Here is a video showing Israeli troops going to the home of the terrorist and capturing him.

The elite IDF troops were able to identify, locate and capture the murderer.  The father of the terrorist said that he was “proud” of what his son had done.  The international community needs to be aware of the kind of people we are dealing with!  There is no peace to be made with them.  They are raising their children up to hate and to kill.  This murderer was a teenager!

Please pray for Israeli’s leaders.  They need to protect their citizens while at the same time the are pressured severely by the international community.

 

Let’s Welcome Derrick!

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Derrick Skoglund has been working with us here at LoveIsrael.org for the past 3 years with the cooperation of a different organization.  Beginning October 1st of last year, he began working with LoveIsrael.org full time!

Derrick is our Global Initiative Director.  In this position, he is spearheading our efforts to fund the expansion of LoveIsrael.org around the world.  Although he is based in the United States, he makes several trips each year to Israel to be in tune with what is going on here.

Derrick has a Master of Divinity degree and has been married for over 20 years to his wife Anne.  They have 3 children.

Derrick appears regularly on radio shows and college campuses and is available to speak at congregations and home groups.

Mattresses from Heaven

We made aliyah 14 years ago.  When one decides to pick up everything and move to another country, you either pack up your belongings and ship them to the new place, or get rid of everything and start over.  For us, it was cheaper to ship our things to Israel.  (Only our beds did not come with us.)  However, it would take 6 weeks for the container to arrive.

When we got to Israel, and the city in which we chose to live, we were in a hotel for 2 nights and during that time we enrolled all of our children in school (and they began attending) and we found a place to rent.

The place we found was in a religious community and there was a family with 7 children who lived above us.  They immediately came downstairs and invited us for dinner the first Shabbat we were there.

When we first got to town, we also went to buy beds, and found that it would take weeks to get delivery on the beds.  Baruch said that we would only get beds if they came down from heaven.

In the mean time, we had bought a plastic table and chairs (like for a balcony or patio) to use as a place to eat.  But, all we could do is sleep on blankets on a concrete floor in Northern Israel in January.  Needless to say we were not comfortable.

On Friday night we went up to our neighbors’ for Shabbat dinner.  We talked (I spoke very little, as I had not learned Hebrew yet) and they mentioned that they noticed when the came to invite us for dinner that we didn’t have any furniture.  They wanted to know what we were sleeping on.

Once they found out, the wife/mother told their oldest son to go upstairs to get something.  The next thing we know, there are mattresses being hurled down the stairs!!  This family who we had just met gave us beds and mattresses for our entire family.  I cannot tell you what a blessing it was for us to sleep in beds.

Why am I telling you about this?  Of course first it is a confirmation of G-d’s love and provision for us.  It is a testimony that He will provide.  But, the reason I really chose to write about this is that we found out a couple of days ago that the wife/mother died last week.  She was in her early 50s.  This was a fond memory I had and I just wanted to share it.

Blessings, Rivka