Went to TLV for a couple of meet-ups

Shalom from Israel.  Today we had early summer temps and it was a beautiful day.  I had the fun of going to Tel Aviv (TLV) for 2 meet-ups; one with a friend from the DC area and one with our oldest daughter.  It was so nice to catch up with both of them!

The Dizengoff Fountain, Tel Aviv

Baruch is currently in the States and I will be meeting up with him on Friday morning.  I am hoping to make hamentashen tomorrow and post the recipe and pictures while I’m traveling.  Purim will be here before you know it.  In the stores now you can see Purim costumes and lots of candies and hamentashen in the bakeries.  I will write more about the customs and traditions, as well as what the Scriptures teach, concerning Purim.

A TIP:  For those of you who live in the States, go to stores after halloween and you can buy costumes for a couple of dollars for Purim.

Have a great day!

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This Blog

The motivation for doing this blog is to connect you with Israel, our work here, and a little bit about us on a personal level.  I also hope to give you useful information, such as how the various Jewish (Biblical) holidays are celebrated and how to incorporate them into your life, at your comfort level.

Over the next couple of months, I plan to have a series on Purim (story of, customs, food), Pesach (Passover), Zionism (what it is and isn’t, the difference kinds).  I will also report on our LoveIsrael.org conferences in Europe.

If there is something you are interested in me writing about, please feel free to leave me a comment below.  The major Bible teaching is Baruch’s area, so I will not do that, but I can draw from our years of living in the Charedi community to give insight into various areas of Jewish life today.

On The Way to Eilat

 

Here are a few pictures I took on my way to Eilat yesterday.  Eilat is at the southern tip of Israel and we have Jordan on one side and Egypt on the other.  On the bus ride down, one travels through the Negev…the desert.  It is beautiful.  It is so neat to see how more and more trees and plants are being planted there and they are thriving.  People come from around the world to study how Israel deals with agriculture with limited water.

Please join me in praying for Israel this week in regard to her agriculture and need to produce to feed Israelis as well as generate revenue with exports.  G-d is richly blessing the land.  Of course we must pray for the Salvation of the people here, that their hearts would be open to the L-rd as He knocks.

The Jewish (Biblical) Calendar

We get many questions about the Jewish Calendar, so I thought I’d share a little overview of it.

First of all, it is important to know that the Jewish calendar uses both the sun and the moon to mark time.  The sun measures a day.  We find in Genesis 1:2 that G-d created light and it was good.  It also says that He divided the light from the darkness and that He called the light “day” and the darkness “night.”  Then it says, “And the evening and the morning were the first day.”

G-d marks the months of the year by the moon.  Each new moon begins a new month, “Rosh Chodesh.”  Therefore, each Biblical month contains 29 or 30 days, corresponding to a lunar month average of 29 1/2 days.  We find many places in the Bible which speak of the New Moon festivals and the New Moon sacrifices.  So these are appointed times which are important to the L-rd.

The problem with strictly lunar calendars is that there are approximately 12.4 lunar months in every solar year, so a 12-month lunar calendar is about 11 days shorter than a solar year and a 13-month lunar is about 19 longer than a solar year. The months drift around the seasons on such a calendar: on a 12-month lunar calendar, the month of Nissan, which is supposed to occur in the Spring, would occur 11 days earlier in the season each year, eventually occurring in the Winter, the Fall, the Summer, and then the Spring again. On a 13-month lunar calendar, the same thing would happen in the other direction, and faster.

To compensate for this drift, the Jewish calendar uses a 12-month lunar calendar with an extra month occasionally added.  The extra month added is called Adar Aleph.  The “permanent” month is the Adar Bet.  Therefore, if someone’s birthday is in Adar, during a leap year they will celebrate it during Adar Bet.

This year is a leap year, and we are currently in the month of Adar.  The holiday of Purim is the 14th of Adar.  Since Adar Aleph is the added month, we will not celebrate Purim until the 14th of Adar Bet this year, which corresponds to March 24th, instead of the 14th of Adar Aleph which is February 23.

Some things you need to know now

I wanted to briefly make you aware of some things that are going on, which I’m sure you will not hear on the news.

First, the European Union, under their diplomatic privileges, is bringing in prefabricated homes, building them on land that belongs to Israel, or is disputed, and setting up homes overnight, giving them to Palestinians, putting a European Union flag on them and then when Israel removes them they circulate in the media that Israel is demolishing Palestinian homes.  Whether this is their intent or not (which I think it is their intent), it is increasing anti-Israel and anti-Semitic feelings.

In the death of the young woman who was killed, which I featured on my blog earlier,she acted heroically to protect people.  Concerning this terrorist attack, CBS news reported that 3 Palestinians died in Middle East aggression.  They are continuing to ignore terrorist attacks, and put them on the same level as Israeli victims or they ignore Israeli victims altogether.

A former Palestinian spokesman recently encouraged terrorist attacks against American targets, even American owned airlines, saying that Americans need to feel the pain of the Palestinian people.

Recently,  Abu Mazen said (in Arabic), that the best way to destroy the Jewish state is by establishing a Palestinian State.  So you can see what their real motivations are for wanting a Palestinian State.

These are just a few things that are happening here and abroad.  Please be careful when you read the news.