Still No Answers After Israeli Elections
It has been almost two weeks since the fourth Israeli election in two years, and the outcome was inconclusive. No clear coalition emerged, and the new prime minister has yet to be determined. The timing of the election, which came right before the Passover holiday, also slowed down the process. However, the last few days have seen much talk and many meetings between the parties, leading to plenty of outside speculation. Netanyahu’s Likud and right-wing bloc need to woo and welcome both Naftali Bennett’s Yamina and the Ra’am Islamist Arab party, led by Mansour Abbas, in order to have enough seats for a majority coalition. Reports say the “change” bloc, led by Yair Lapid’s Yesh Atid, has offered Naftali Bennett the first round as prime minister in a power-sharing agreement. The left-bloc is just a few seats away from forming a majority coalition, and many hope this coalition is without Benjamin Netanyahu, who has been serving since 2009. Bennett must now decide if he wants to be prime minister in a left-wing coalition (his party leans “right”) or back current Prime Minister Netanyahu and send the country to a fifth election since Likud would still not have enough seats to form a majority coalition. President Rivlin will be meeting with party heads early this week to decide who officially has the first opportunity to form a coalition.
Please pray for wisdom and grace for Israel’s members of Knesset as they try to form a stable government and for patience among Israelis as they are anxious to see the results of the election resolved and have clear leadership in these trying times.
Israelis Urged to Take Caution
As Israel’s Ben Gurion Airport slowly reopens, Israelis are urged to take caution and not become targets of Iran. Recent security threats from Iran to Israel, the Israeli embassy bombing in New Delhi, and the attack on the Israeli cargo ship have all led to a heightened awareness. These security warnings come as the number of Israelis traveling increases. Israel’s inbound and outbound travel has been heavily restricted for much of the past year, and still only Israeli passport holders can leave and enter the country. Despite this, Israel’s Taba border crossing from Egypt was recently opened after a year’s closure. It is currently allowing 300 Israelis to enter the Sinai each day provided they are fully vaccinated. In a normal year, more than 500,000 Israelis travel into Sinai to vacation along the beautiful coast. With so much travel, there is heightened concerned not only about the virus, but about keeping Israelis safe from terror and targeted hate.
Please pray for safety for those Israelis who decide to travel, and that Iran would stop making threats against Israeli civilians.
Celebrating Ten Years of Security under the Iron Dome
Ten years ago, the Iron Dome missile defense system made its debut in southern Israel, vastly changing life for its residents. Prior to the implementation of the system, Israel—and especially the areas near the border—were constantly subjected to rocket fire from Gaza with only seconds to drop everything and run to their safe rooms before impact. Many lives were lost, and the people lived in perpetual fear and panic. The deployment of the Iron Dome has since saved countless lives and allowed some normalcy to return for many. Each rocket costs tens of thousands of shekels, which some think is excessive. The Iron Dome technology includes a high-precision radar, launch, target acquisition, and attack on the enemy rocket mid-air. It only deploys when it determines the missile is inbound for civilian centers. The Iron Dome can now be quickly deployed and used anywhere in the country. Those who are critical of the system say that intercepting the rockets fired from Gaza makes Israel too lenient toward Hamas and the terrorist factions in the Gaza Strip and removes any reason for a swift, powerful response against Gaza’s terror groups.
Please pray that enemies of Israel stop launching rockets from Gaza into Israel!
Passover Seders Held in Israel
Praise God for all the amazing Passover Seders our ministry team led last week in Israel. There were Zoom Seders with friends, family, and ministry partners from all over the world. There were personal family Seders, Seders with extended family and friends, and many seekers were in attendance. Our team held a few small Seders with Holocaust survivors in Jerusalem, Sderot, and a few other cities. Everyone was able to hear about Jesus, the Passover Lamb whose life and death brings us eternal redemption. It is a wonderful and clear message. Even more, conversations with neighbors and friends were held after the Seders about how they spent their Passover, which opened up more opportunities to share about the spotless Lamb of God!
Please pray for all who heard about the deliverance and redemption of God through the Passover Seders this year, that they would see and accept the ultimate deliverance and redemption provided through Jesus!