Israel sent 47 athletes to the Olympics in Rio. They will compete in sports like judo, wrestling, taekwondo, triple jump, swimming and rhythmic gymnastics. Israel did not win a medal at the London Olympics but hopes to bring home some medals from Rio. Two days before the start of the Olympics, the International Olympics Committee officially honored the 11 Israeli athletes murdered at the Munich Olympics in 1972. UPDATE: Israel has won a bronze medal in judo.
Please pray for safety for all attending the Rio Olympics amidst worldwide terror threats.
Prime Minister Netanyahu will be getting his own Air Force One, instead of flying chartered El Al airplanes. This presidential plane will be outfitted with secure communications systems and defense features at a cost of 270 million shekels ($70 million dollars). Previously, Israeli heads of state flew Israel’s national carrier, El Al, but the planes are now outdated and have a high fuel consumption.
Please pray for Prime Minister Netanyahu, as he travels around, establishing Israel’s business, politics, military, and friendship around the world.
According to Shin Bet, Israel’s secret service organization, Hamas has been siphoning close to seven million dollars from charity donations given by World Vision over the past ten years. The Gaza director of World Vision, who has admitted to being a Hamas fighter, has funneled 60% of its budget to Hamas militants. The money was intended to build hospitals, schools, help in agriculture and fishing and to help those children and young families with psychological problems as well as rebuilding their homes and lives.
Please pray for due process to take place in the trial regarding the taking of this charity money and using it for war.
Recently, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas’ brother died while being treated for cancer in an Israeli hospital. Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu called Abbas to share his condolences, and no matters of politics were discussed. The two men have not spoken for some time, as the Middle East peace process is stalled at the moment.
Please pray for trust and conversations to be re-established between these two important men.
A much-needed train from Tiberius to Tel Aviv is slated to take seven years to build, adding tunnels and bridges across the Jezreel and Sharon Valleys. This express train will take an hour to connect the Galilee with the high tech and business opportunities of Tel Aviv and make the Galilee a more attractive place to live. Currently, Israel is doing extensive transportation projects to widen the highway to Jerusalem, build a light rail system in Tel Aviv and neighboring cities, and upgrade its trains and tracks.
Please pray for safety for the workers and patience for the civilians as road works cause lots of traffic.
Renovations Underway at Chosen People Ministries New Center in Tel Aviv
Recently, ministry space was rented in the greater Tel Aviv area after a long search and contract negotiations (most landlords refuse to rent to believers in Israel). Through this space, we hope to have special community helps programs for families, children and young adults, as well as Bible studies, music and café nights and special seeker-sensitive discussions for those who have ordered Isaiah 53 Explained in Hebrew. Please pray for the quick outfitting of our space and establishing these classes.
A Historic Deal Signed Between Israel And The United States
A new historic military aid package was signed between Israel and the United States in the amount of $38 billion dollars, lasting 10 years. This military deal is the largest ever given from the United States to another country. It was said that as long as Israel has existed, the United States has been Israel’s greatest friend and partner. The deal is significantly higher than past deals and will allow Israel to continue to defend itself and be a strategic Middle Eastern alley for the United States. This deal will allow Israel to continue its superior missile defense system as well as security research and development.
Please pray for this important strategic alliance between Israel and the United States.
Israeli School Year Started
Over 2.2 million children started school September 1st all over Israel. Over 159,000 children started first grade, whereas 123,000 just graduated. The new school year will see improved English education as well as math, science and a smaller classroom size. There was a time when there were 40 children in a classroom, but now regulations require just 32.
Please pray for the safety and wellbeing of Israel’s school children as they learn and grow to be the next leaders in industry, science and technology.
A Water Deal for Israel, Jordan and the Palestinian Authority
A deal has just been signed for an ambitious water-sharing project that has been in the works for 10 years between Jordan, Israel and the Palestinian Authority. A canal will be built between the Red Sea near the Israeli city of Eilat and the Jordanian town of Aqaba. Water from the Red Sea will go to a desalination plant in Jordan and then 30 million cubic meters of water will be transferred to Israel and to the Palestinian Authority. The saline by-product will be brought by canal to the Dead Sea, where water levels are sinking rapidly. This extra salty water will help keep the Dead Sea from reaching crucial lower levels. At the current pace, the Dead Sea could dry out by 2050.
Please pray for friendly deals like this to keep emerging between these Middle Eastern neighbors.
Israel Air Force Pilots Train Under “Red Flag”
Israeli Air Force pilots participated in the United States-led “Red Flag” advanced combat training exercise in Nevada with a couple of other countries. Israel has been involved in this important military partnership and training for a number of years. It simulates combat missions with coalition forces by intercepting other aircraft, attacking targets, rescuing pilots, intelligence gathering, cyber attacks, all the while under the threat of ground to air missiles. Since Israel’s air space is very small, this sort of vast exercise is valuable for Israeli pilots.
Please pray for Israel’s pilots, navy, intelligence, combat and army forces.
Gaza Barrier to Protect Israeli Citizens
The Israeli Defense Forces have begun to work on an above ground barrier to circle Gaza, but more importantly, the barrier will go underground as well. This underground barrier will prevent Hamas-led attack tunnels from burrowing from inside Gaza to civilian towns in Israel. These tunnels have been planned to cause death and destruction for Israelis. The project will cost two billion shekels.
Please pray for the safety of the citizens of the Israeli towns close to Gaza.
Gearing Up for the High Holidays
Please keep Chose People Ministries in Israel in your prayers as we gear up for a very busy season of the Jewish High Holidays. We will host many holiday dinners and events as well as kids camps, special food packages for the needy and exciting renovations happening in the recently rented Tel Aviv Messianic Center. Israel will practically close down for all of October and we wait in anticipation for Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur and Sukkot. The whole country takes on a special atmosphere while pomegranates, round challah bread and apples and honey are offered to everyone!
Aliyah Day Added to Israel’s Holiday Calendar
Israel is adding another holiday to its calendar – Aliyah Day – to commemorate those who have immigrated to Israel. It is not easy to uproot life and family from a familiar homeland and move to Israel where the language, style of life and weather is different. Aliyah Day is a way to give back to those who have moved to Israel to show the world that this is the Jewish homeland and a place to consider living and pioneering.
Please pray for safety and protection for Jewish people who live in regions and neighborhoods of antisemitism and fear.
Salt Levels in Sea Of Galilee on the Rise
Salt levels in the Sea of Galilee (the Kinneret) are on the rise as a result of another winter of low precipitation. Without new water flowing into the Sea of Galilee, underwater, and nearby salt water springs flow in and disturb the levels of “sweet water.” As a result, farmers may soon not be able to use the sea water to water crops, and it may damage its ability to be used for drinking water. The Sea of Galilee has shrunk from 480 million cubic meters in the 1970s to 320 million cubic meters of water today.
Please pray for the Sea of Galilee, a very important and necessary body of water in Israel with much biblical and modern significance to so many people.
Israelis Win Gold Medal
Israeli rhythmic gymnasts won the European Gold medal on their home court – the championship took place in Israel. This group of gymnasts is the most decorated in Israeli history. They will fly to Brazil to take part in this summer’s Olympic games and are a hoping for more medals.
Please pray for all the Israeli athletes traveling to Brazil, for safety and protection as they compete.
Terminally Ill Israeli Kids Fly To See Soccer Games
Russian-Israeli billionaire Roman Abramovich has helped sick children attend international soccer games in the past, and this time, 55 Israeli children and their caregivers have flown to France to see three soccer matches at the 2016 Eurocup. The charity that organized this is run by volunteers and Abramovich donated the money. Many of the kids have not seen an international soccer game and probably will not live long enough to see another major competition.
Please pray for these children, their families, and their doctors who care for them, that cures and solutions can be found to fight their illnesses.
Commemorating the Hostage Crisis of 1976 in Entebbe, Uganda
Four decades after the surprise, daring Israeli rescue mission by elite Israeli forces in Entebbe Uganda, Prime Minister Netanyahu and a large security detail have come to commemorate the mission in special ceremonies with the Uganda government. Over 100 Israeli hostages were freed while Netanyahu’s brother, Yonatan, was shot as his unit stormed the airplane. The raid made international headlines and embarrassed then-dictator, Idi Amin, who had taken power by force. Benjamin Netanyahu will continue to three other African countries – Kenya, Rwanda, and Ethiopia.
Please pray for continued good relations with Israel and African countries.
Short-Term Missions Teams Serve with Chosen People Ministries in Israel
So far this summer, we have had quite a few short-term missions teams come and serve with us in Israel. They have helped in our food distribution centers as well as packaging food parcels for the poor and needy. They have been involved in special events for Holocaust survivors where they shared many stories from the Word. There was even a special night of pampering for single mothers. Would you like to bring your church or school group to serve with us?
Please continue to pray for all the summer outreaches going on in Israel and around the world.
Netanyahu Visits Site of Attack In Tel Aviv
Prime Minister Netanyahu visited the restaurant where the horrific terrorist attacks took place. It was at the Sarona Market in Tel Aviv where gunmen opened fire on diners, killing four and wounding 16. He said we must mourn and return to life. The village where the attackers were from has been in lockdown, work permits have been revoked, and entry permits to Israel for 80,000 Palestinians were frozen during the Ramadan season. The United Nations Security Council voted unanimously to condemn the attack of terrorism and wanted those responsible for being brought to justice. This is the first official statement of condemnation of terrorism from the Council since the current wave of violence started eight months ago.
Please pray for the families and friends mourning the loss of their loved ones and for the victims recovering in the hospitals.
Israeli Unemployment Down
Israel’s unemployment rates dropped to their lowest in 30 years at 4.9%. Unemployment has been dropping since 2004 when it was 11% during the Second Intifada. More full-time work has become available and part-time jobs have decreased. Israel’s unemployment rates match the United States current percentages.
Praise God that more jobs are available for Israeli workers.
Ben Gurion Airport One of the Safest In The World
Ben Gurion Airport has been deemed one of the safest airports in the world. It has many layers of security, most of which the 16 million passengers who pass through the airport don’t see. It screens every cargo and passenger airline, pilot, crew and passenger before it enters into Israeli airspace. It is a relatively small airport, 20% the size of Heathrow in London and 15% the size of Atlanta’s airport. Regardless, because of the growing concern for airport safety, Israel is hosting 40 countries for a security demonstration in the coming weeks.
Please pray for the airport’s continued safety and security of passengers flying in and out.
Hezbollah Tunnel Digging In The North
Along with Israel’s northern border, Hezbollah is claiming to be preparing for its next conflict with Israel. It has been 16 years since Israel withdrew from southern Lebanon during its long conflict. Hezbollah now claims that it is learning from their counterparts in the south, Hamas, and are digging tunnels. These tunnels have a vast electric system, enough food for weeks and even a ventilation system to prevent moisture from damaging equipment. Hezbollah has a large supply of rockets, which they have used in the past on Israeli civilians in the north.
Please pray that Israel can stop the tunnel digging and the preparations for war on Israel’s northern borders where many civilians live.
Ministry in Tel Aviv
Please pray for our ministries and staff in Tel Aviv. We are praying to expand our work and ministry by planting a congregation and starting Bible studies and seminars, both practical and spiritually motivated. We are excited by the response of those who want the Isaiah 53 Explained book, most people ordering online from our Hebrew website. These people need to follow up and prayer, as they consider who the Messiah is. Through our ministries in Tel Aviv, we hope that these contacts can be invited for more discussion. Please pray for our workers, who do not live far from this last terrorist attack in Sarona.