Many ministers tell us, As go Israel, so goes the Church. I really think there is truth in that. We are told above all to pray for those in authority because of LOGICAL reasons:
1 Timothy 2:1-2 (NKJ)
“Therefore I exhort first of all that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.”
When we think of authority, we often think of those who hold the whip or the power to hurt us or crush us. I think this is a snare to many believers. While it is true that authority does not bear the sword in vain, we need to understand the reasoning behind it. We don’t want fear to be in our foundation.
Romans 13:1-5 (NKJ)
Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves. For rulers are not a terror to good works, but to evil. Do you want to be unafraid of the authority? Do what is good, and you will have praise from the same. For he is God’s minister to you for good. But if you do evil, be afraid; for he does not bear the sword in vain; for he is God’s minister, an avenger to execute wrath on him who practices evil. Therefore you must be subject, not only because of wrath but also for conscience’ sake.
In some homes and in some countries, the foundation of that institution is not goodness. But when we come to understand the Lord, we realize His foundation is, and then we see the reason why some evil things happen the way they do.
What role does Israel play in the life of a believer? There are many who are clueless about that. And honestly before the Lord made it an issue with me, I didn’t care! It seemed out of my territory (and I even lived in a Jewish neighborhood). I just didn’t think it affected my small world that much, but it does.
And of course most all of us feel small when it comes to world politics. We would love to change the world but many of us have trouble changing our neighborhood. Thank God, many do make a difference, and we should honor those who do. Many too are called to public service. But not everything in government is pure, by a long shot. So the Lord knows what He means when we are exhorted to pray for (and about) those who rule over us for good. Our prayers make a difference.
God sees the birthplace of the faith through Israel. It started with Abraham being promised a land. He is called the father of the faith, and the nations are grafted in by their choosing the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. And from that story we know there are even family squabbles, but the Lord knows what HE is seeking.
When God has righteous leadership, He can bless. He can reveal the future, too. He says:
Genesis 18:17-19 (NKJ)
And the Lord said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am doing, since Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? For I have known him, in order that he may command his children and his household after him, that they keep the way of the Lord, to do righteousness and justice, that the Lord may bring to Abraham what He has spoken to him.”
The blessing comes through authority and obedience. When leaders sin, the people suffer. It almost seems unfair, but God demands representatives. Even in the military service, they teach the necessity of teamwork and when one fails, all suffer, so that a strong brotherly bond is formed and there is accountability.
I believe that when God feels slighted, He withholds blessings because He feels that He is not being honored. He is quite long suffering, but it is apparent that He has emotions and feelings as well. They are just higher and above ours, but we can understand them to a certain degree!
God is not whimsical but He sets boundaries even in His creativities. He founded the world on wisdom (Proverbs 8). We have to learn what God likes. And it’s always a challenge to learn because while there is order, there are no limits!
Right now the American Christian Body is carrying a huge burden for its nation, as are others. (My writings go beyond this country, but the majority goes to Americans.) As I was praying the other day, I felt the Lord give me this burden. And while I know it is for me, I really believe it is for all the believers and churches.
I’ve never been to Israel and I look forward to the time I do go. The Lord already told me (years ago) that it will be a special time with Him. I almost went once, but He said it was not the time yet. But I do read up and study and as I’ve shared, I grew up in a community where many Jewish people lived, so I feel I know them somewhat through that. When the Lord gave me His Heart for them, a lot of the things that puzzled me about them started to make sense. But they are just people like everyone else, with their own faith. I know, I went to school with them, worked for them and have them as friends.
Most are good people and like every society, there are some who can be a challenge. But I have been in and out of that area, and while I find them to be hard workers, great benefactors and interesting people, people are people! The good people make things good, the bad ones cause problems.
God has two sticks. They are joined together in many ways. There is the Cross, and there are the two sticks in Ezekiel regarding the joining of the tribes and nations into the one new man. I can’t go into detail here but it’s a great study. The point is that God is joining and restoring Israel and the nations in faith, long story short here.
I have said all these things as a foundation to what I feel the Lord wants me to share with the Body. There is a part of Israel that He has put on my heart that I feel I am to pray for. I have prayed for it generally in the past, but I feel that now I am to get more specific. And of course we all should pray for the peace of Jerusalem.
But as I felt Him speaking to me about my area to pray for, I felt Him saying that we all should have areas of Israel that we specifically pray for, as if it were our own territory. The leadership and authorities there struggle all the time. They need prayers. And I believe different parts have different meanings and as goes Israel so goes the Church!
If what happens there directly or even indirectly affects us, then we should be on top of our game. The area the Lord gave me to pray for is the Golan Heights. The more I thought about it, it made sense as a prophetic strategy. They are the high places of vision and are strategic to Israel’s protection. Other areas are important for other critical things.
I believe, as the Lord leads, that each person, prayer group, Sunday School class, and church, take on a specific area of Israel to pray for. Pray for it like it is your own area. Pray for the people, the businesses, the witness of the true God there, protection, government strategies and helps, just as if it were your own neighborhood. We need to get familiar in personal ways.
Not only do I think it will bless you now, but it will bless America for us to do this, and it will also touch God. The righteous leadership needs to be there as it needs to be here. THAT is what God honors.
There is an INCREDIBLE prophecy for the last days we all should notice:
Zechariah 12:5 (NKJ)
“And the governors of Judah shall say in their heart, ‘The inhabitants of Jerusalem are my strength in the Lord of hosts, their God.'”
and later in that chapter you read:
Zechariah 12:8-10 (NKJ)
“In that day the Lord will defend the inhabitants of Jerusalem; the one who is feeble among them in that day shall be like David, and the house of David shall be like God, like the Angel of the Lord before them. It shall be in that day that I will seek to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem. And I will pour on the house of David and on the inhabitants of Jerusalem the Spirit of grace and supplication; then they will look on Me whom they have pierced; they will mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and grieve for Him as one grieves for a firstborn.
I could preach a sermon on this, but I think you can get the idea and then some. Israel is not a good luck charm. It is a nation of nations, like America is. In God’s eyes, it is for His believers who keep His statutes. It’s not about becoming Jewish, although there are people who will tell you it is, it’s not. It is about wanting the love of God for all humanity, starting in Israel and Jerusalem. When they failed, they were punished. We are no different, especially as the Church.
The love of God is righteous. It has good will for others. When the angels sang at Jesus’ birth and said, “Peace on earth, good will to all men,” it meant that God was sending and desiring good will TOWARDS mankind. Not harsh judgments, but a loving family spirit. That is His desire. Jesus strongly introduced the Father concept of God to the people.
The God of Peace crushes Satan under our feet. He crushes the crusher, He oppresses the oppressor, He makes captivity captive to Him so they will be free. I believe God will hear the cries for our land as we reasonably and logically pray for His Land.
When you get your territory in mind, look it up, get a map of it, study the area, keep up with the news and pray for the people and goverment and watch the changes happen! Pray for it when it comes to mind. Pick a region, a city, or a certain area – what ever you can keep up with. You can make a big difference and your heart will be knit with His!
If you want to share it with me, I will be glad to hear, but more importantly, do it! God bless you!