Israel Has Highest Cost of Living among Developed Countries
Data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) lists developed countries with their cost-of-living index. This study analyzes price differences among countries through indicators like consumer price indices, exchange rates, and purchasing power. Israeli prices are 38 percent higher than the average OECD member country. Switzerland, Iceland, and the United States are the next most expensive countries. Israeli prices for basic staples like milk, cheese, and bread are 50–70 percent higher than in other OECD countries. The soaring cost of housing is another major reason many Israelis find it hard to make ends meet. More than half of Israelis believe the government should do more to find solutions. In response, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu recently formed a committee of different government representatives to work on these issues and find ways to reduce the cost of living.
Please pray for those finding it hard to fulfill their needs because of the high cost of living.
Israeli Flight Makes Emergency Landing in Saudi Arabia
Last week, an Air Seychelles flight to Tel Aviv had to make an emergency landing in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. The 128 Israeli passengers on board stayed overnight in a nearby hotel. Israel and Saudi Arabia do not have diplomatic relations, so Israelis are generally restricted from traveling to Saudi Arabia. Once the plane landed, the passengers had to remain onboard for three hours while the Foreign Ministry in Israel received permission for the Israelis to disembark. Once they left the plane, the passengers received much kindness and willingness to help from the staff in Saudi Arabia. The Israelis flew to Tel Aviv the next day. Prime Minister Netanyahu said, “I greatly appreciate the warm treatment of the Saudi authorities toward the Israeli passengers whose plane was forced to make an emergency landing in Jeddah. I am pleased that everyone is returning home. I greatly appreciate the good neighborliness.”
Praise God for the safety and well-being of the Israeli travelers.
Israeli School Year Begins after Narrowly Avoided Strike
Israel’s school year started on September 1, with 2.5 million children returning to the classroom. Among them are 181,000 first graders beginning school and 140,000 seniors starting their last year. All in all, 231,000 educators are working in more than 5,000 schools. The school year began after a narrowly avoided teachers’ strike. Education and Finance Ministries agreed to incrementally raise teachers’ salaries over the next five years, totaling an additional 2,000 shekels (a bit more than $500) per month. Teachers will work an extra hour per week. The government also agreed to recruit 2,000 new teachers to address the nationwide educator shortage.
Please pray for Israel’s children to learn and grow in their school environments so they can be the next leaders of Israel.
Hebrew New Testament Bears Fruit
Chosen People Ministries—Israel has various witnessing tools, but one we use quite often—the New Testament in Hebrew—always bears fruit. After all, it is the Word of God.
Please pray for Israelis from all walks of life who have received New Testaments from us. Additionally, please keep us in your prayers as we follow up. One of our missionaries in Israel told us this fantastic response one young Israeli woman had as she encountered Jesus in the New Testament:
Christian groups visiting Israel occasionally dedicate a day or two to collaborate with Chosen People Ministries staff. They participate in various outreach activities, including lending a hand in supporting Holocaust survivors and organizing cultural events for young people. A young woman named Yael* recently attended one of our cultural events. She was deeply moved by the love Christians showed in Israel toward Jewish people, igniting her interest in the gospel.
Our team gifted her a New Testament. A few days later, she returned to tell us, “I am truly amazed. I used to believe the New Testament was against Jewish people. But reading it, I discovered that Jesus taught about love, patience, and strong morals.”
How touching! We continue to pray for Yael and cultivate a growing relationship.
Please pray Yael will take an interest in Jesus’ teaching and come to follow Him wholeheartedly.
*Name changed for privacy.