Colorado Recap – Part 2

IMG_5755Holding conferences around the country is very rewarding for us. To see people who know each other but have not been together for awhile really gives us a good feeling.  People from all over Colorado came to our conference.

On Shabbat, most people brought their lunches.  Our contacts arranged at the hotel to have a room set up with tables for people to bring in their own food.  This is extremely unusual and we appreciated the hotel’s cooperation.  They were so good to meet our needs.

Of course the main purpose of the conferences is to share the Word of G-d, but a nice extra is to see fellow believers meet with like-minded people and many times make arrangements to meet/study together in the future.

We also want to express a big “Thank You” to Marianne, who contacted me about a month before the conference.  She offered to play her harp at the conference if there was a time that would be appropriate.  Her lovely playing added to the conference and I so appreciate her ministry.  She has played the harp for years at a hospital to make a serene environment for patients.

Advertisements

The Colorado Recap – Part 1

The Rock Church, Grand Junction, CO, prepped for the LoveIsrael.org event.

On Thursday evening, due to the generosity of The Rock Church, we were able to hold a meeting in Grand Junction.  There was a great turnout, with people coming from all over the State of Colorado and as far away as Indiana!  Baruch spoke on Acts 18:1-17, “Truth Under Attack.”

The weekend in Grand Junction was put together with the great effort of several people, mainly:  Ben, Ora, Joan, Kenton, Huba and Devorah.  We want to send out a big “Thank You” to them.  They are very special to us.

Friday was a very full day.  In the afternoon, Baruch met with a group of men, to share about our work and to have a time of questions and answers.  I met with a group of ladies in the library of a Christian coffeeshop.  I shared about our work and also opened up the time to Q & A.  It was a nice time of fellowship and I enjoyed it very much.

In the evening, we met at the DoubleTree Grand Junction for the first part of our two-day conference.  The conference theme was:  “Political Trends and the End Times.”

The picture above (left) doesn’t do the meeting justice.  This was taken early Friday, before Shabbat began.  In the end, we had approximately 2 1/2 times the people attend than what we planned!

Shabbat Shalom – Parashat V’etchanan

IMG_5760

View from Grand Junction, Colorado today.

We are now in Grand Junction, CO, for our Conference.  The conference theme is:  Political Trends and the End Times Biblical Perspective.  Due to the conference, I will not be on the YouTube Live Chat nor Facebook during the “Midnight from Jerusalem” Live Stream.  The Live Stream was pre-recorded and we hope that you will benefit from our study in the book of Acts.

Here is a brief commentary on this week’s Torah Portion by Baruch:

Bible Reading:  Deuteronomy 3:23-7:11

In this week’s Torah portion, Moses pleads that HaShem will remove the consequence of his sin and allow him to enter into the Land of Israel. However, his request is rejected by G-d. Moses, in relating this to the people states,

And HaShem became angry with me on account of you and did not hearken to me and He said to me רב לך, do not continue to speak unto Me (HaShem) anymore regarding this matter.” Deuteronomy 3:26

You will notice that I did not translate two Hebrew words, רב לך which are often translated to mean “too much or too great for you”. This is the rendering of the Stone Edition of the Chumash, an Orthodox Jewish publication of the Torah. The question is how to understand the intent of this phrase within the context of the passage? It is clear that Moses made this request after leading the people to two great victories over Sichon and Og, two mighty kings. Despite these great victories, still Moses’ punishment would remain.

It is clear that the simple rendering of the phrase רב לך does not fit the context. Would it make sense that it would be too great of a thing for Moses to enter into the promise Land? An alternate translation, which is quite literal, is “great for you”.  The verse would read as follows,

And HaShem became angry with me on account of you and did not hearken to me and He said to me, (there is something) great for you, do not continue to speak unto Me (HaShem) anymore regarding this matter.” Deuteronomy 3:26

The idea here, based upon this alternate translation, is that although HaShem is rejecting Moses’ plea to enter into the Land and to continue serving G-d, there is something else which will be great for Moses. This something relates to the future, more precisely, to the last days.

In the Book of Revelation there are two witnesses mentioned in chapter 11. It is said about these two witnesses,

They have the power to stop the heavens so that it will not rain during the days of their prophecy and they have the power over the water to turn them to blood and to strike the earth with all kinds of plagues as they desire.” Revelation 11:6

Malachi reveals that Elijah will return at the end of the age and it would seem that, based on the first half of this verse, stopping the rain would relate to what Elijah had done during the days of King Ahab. Likewise, turning the water into blood and striking the earth with plagues sounds most similar to Moses. Hence, the phrase רב לך could be referring to the role Moses will have in the last days, as one of the two witnesses. In other words, while Moses in this passage is beseeching G-d to allow him to enter into the Land, and thereby continue to serve Him, and although HaShem refuses, He is not rejecting Moses altogether; rather G-d is saying to Him, I have something greater for you to do in the future.

Each of us needs to remember that there are times when we will be disciplined by HaShem, but this discipline is not an all-out rejection of us by our L-rd, rather it may simply be a necessary part of preparation for something greater for you(רב לך) in the future.

Bronx Meeting

IMG_5750.JPG

New York City this past Wednesday.

Our meeting on Wednesday night, July 25, was a very nice event.  It was a parlor meeting in the Bronx at the lovely home of our host and hostess, Randy and Tammy.

Several pastors and leaders in the greater NYC believing community attended.  Baruch was able to share about the work of LoveIsrael.org and answer questions concerning it as well as some Bible questions.

As virtually everyone in the New York area have friends and colleagues who are Jewish, we were also reaching out to them to make them aware of us as a resource.

As with all networking, this is but the first step in opening up communication and partnerships in the New York City area.  We appreciate our friend Tom Mahairas facilitating this meeting and wanting to draw us into this group of influencers.  They have a heart for their city and also for the Jewish people and Israel.  We look forward to seeing how we can work together in the future.

New York City

IMG_5745

Ben’s Kosher Delicatessen/Restaurant, NYC.

Today we are in New York, preparing for an evening meeting tomorrow.  This is a new opportunity for Baruch to teach and reach out to this particular group.  This meeting was arranged by a friend and  we look forward to being with them tomorrow.

We are also preparing our July newsletter.  We hope to have it out by the end of this week or first part of next week.  If you have not yet signed up to receive our email updates, please go to LoveIsrael.org, scroll to the bottom and subscribe.  You will receive an email asking you to confirm your subscription.  Once you do that, you will begin receiving our newsletters.

I received an email today from the folks who are arranging for our Conference in Sydney, Australia.  They are doing a fantastic job of promoting this event and we are very excited to go.  Derek Prince Ministries, which is very well-known there, heard about our conference and asked to partner with us.  They have put forth great effort as well to make this conference a success.

Already on this trip, we have met several people asking for prayer.  There are many needs and we would ask that you just take a moment to pray for those who are concerned about the spiritual condition of loved ones and those who have received news of disease.  We are in a fallen world and there is much sadness and hardship.  We must remember to pray for those who we may not know who are hurting today.  Just knowing I am surrounded right now by millions of people who most likely do not know the L-rd is heartbreaking.  Let’s intercede for them today!

Martinsville Conference Recap

We met at the Quality Inn Dutch Inn in Martinsville, VA.  Beginning at early afternoon on Friday, we began arriving from all over the US and Canada!  There were 9 people from our Israel Study tour who made the trip to this conference.  Two of them were from Canada!  Everyone was excited to see each other again and to share about what G-d has been doing in their lives since the trip.

But, there were also several people who hadn’t seen each other since our Conference in Orlando last November.  It is very encouraging to see people developing friendships with like-minded people.  Several of the attendees told me that they feel alone where they live as far as having spiritual brothers and sisters nearby.  This gathering gave them an opportunity for fellowship and to make lasting connections with others.

In the end, we had people from Virginia, Kentucky, Tennessee, Georgia, Maine, South Carolina, and Canada attending the Conference.  Maybe more!  We enjoyed and appreciated each person who came.

Over the course of the conference, there were also people who found out they live close together and plan to begin meeting together on Shabbat!  These are just some of the exciting stories from the conference.

 

Shabbat Shalom! Parashat D’varim

IMG_5673

This weekend, Baruch and I are in Martinsville, VA, for our Fourth LoveIsrael.org conference.  We are very excited to be here again.

Because of the conference, I (Rivka) will not be joining the YouTube Live Chat or Facebook for our Live Stream this Saturday.

Here is a brief commentary by Baruch on this week’s Torah Portion.

In this week’s Torah portion, HaShem commands the Children of Israel saying,

“…Enough dwelling at this mountainSee, I have given before you the Land, come and take possession of the Land…” Deuteronomy 1:6-8 (Selected)

The mountain where the Children of Israel were dwelling was of course Mount Horeb (Mount Sinai). There, HaShem revealed Himself in a mighty way to the people. This place is also known as the Mountain of G-d. The people felt secure there and it is significant that HaShem commanded the people to leave this location. In other words, the Children of Israel were most content to simply remain in the same place. This parallels many believers who are comfortable to simply rejoice in their salvation, hearing the Gospel message over and over and never moving past their salvation experience. Salvation is not the means to the end, but only the beginning of one’s call to be a servant of Messiah Yeshua.

This passage is simply a call for Israel to move forward in the purposes of the L-rd. These verses should cause each of us to ask ourselves whether we are pursuing the will of G-d or have we become spiritually stagnate? Israel was told to turn and travel in order to inherit the Land. If one reads carefully, the Land which is being referred to in this passage is not only the Land of Canaan, but also Lebanon and all the way to the great river, the Euphrates. This is a tremendous amount of land and far more than Israel ever inhabited. Some have argued that this promise of such a great amount of land only relates to the future, i.e. the Kingdom age. Although this promise will be fulfilled in the future, it was possible 3,500 years ago as well. The problem is that Israel did not act on the full extent of the promises of G-d.

Believers in Yeshua are equally guilty today. Just think of the miracles that Yeshua preformed. It was these great wonders that were being referred to when He said to His followers,

Truly I say to you, He that believes on Me, the works that I do, he shall also do; even greater than these he will do….” John 14:12

It is important to realize that Yeshua was not only speaking to His disciples on that day, but all of His followers throughout the ages. Yeshua wants to use you and me in much greater ways than we can imagine. The question is whether we are going to turn and go in the direction that the Holy Spirit leads and obey Him, or never move past the comfort of our salvation experience. Some of the rabbinical commentators speak of Mount Sinai as the pinnacle of Israel’s spirituality (See Rashi’s commentary of Exodus 20:15). If Rashi is right, then it is most sad that the beginning was the best that Israel reached. The same thing can be said about many believers, as the closest that they draw near to G-d is the day that they were saved.

When HaShem commanded the people “to turn and travel forth” it implies a necessity to make a significant change. Too many believers are failing to move forward and take possession of the ministry that Yeshua has for them. Do not let the height of your spiritual life be behind you; go forth and receive that which G-d has called you to accomplish with the life that He purchased with His blood.