Permanent United States Embassy in Jerusalem
With a vote in the United States Senate of 97–3, the new administration resoundingly decided to keep the United States Embassy permanently in Jerusalem. In late 2017, the Trump administration recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and officially moved the embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem in 2018. Plans are in the works to enlarge the property, build the ambassador’s compound nearby, and add living space for workers.
Please pray for strengthening of diplomatic ties between the United States and Israel.
Two Possible Cures for COVID-19
Two Israeli hospitals have reported success in clinical trials treating patients in moderate to severe condition with COVID-19. In Tel Aviv, thirty patients were treated with an experimental drug currently referred to as EXO-CD24. The once-a-day medication is administered over five days. Twenty-nine of the thirty subjects in the trial showed remarkable improvement within two days with the thirtieth patient taking a little longer to recover. Most were released from the hospital after three to five days. Meanwhile, in Jerusalem, another medication was administered to twenty-one subjects in critical condition from the coronavirus with additional underlying conditions. This group received a drug called Allocetra, and within six days, nineteen of the twenty-one subjects had recovered and were released from the hospital within eight days. The drug works to prevent the cytokine storm that has been identified as the primary cause of serious and critical illness resulting from the virus.
Please pray for the development of these drugs and others like them around the world to help find a cure for COVID-19!
Parties Registered for Election
The Israeli elections recently went into second gear with the deadline for each political party to register. Of the thirty-nine parties that registered, only thirteen parties are reported as having a realistic chance of winning seats in the Knesset. Israel has never had a single party win the necessary sixty-one-seat majority in the Knesset. The party winning the most seats in the election must cobble together a majority by making coalition agreements with other parties until the total Knesset seats for the coalition reaches a majority. This will be Israel’s fourth election in two years. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is looking to extend his twelve consecutive years as the leader of Israel. He will need to fight hard against center-left parties Yesh Atid (“There is a Future”) and a new party, “New Hope,” which was founded by Gidon Sa’ar, a former political ally. Blue and White leader Benny Gantz’s political future is not looking promising. Once a partner in the unity government dissolved in December, Blue and White has fallen dramatically in the polls. Right now, Gantz is the alternate prime minister who would have taken over from current Prime Minister Netanyahu in November.
Please pray for this election season as each political party starts its feverish race toward the March 23, 2021 elections.
Lockdown Has Lifted, Planning for the Future
With the third lockdown lifting, please pray for Israel’s government as they make decisions for the safety and security of Israel’s citizens. It is difficult to find the delicate balance between opening the economy and relieving people from desperate financial problems and keeping people healthy. Our workers at Chosen People Ministries—Israel are grateful for your prayers as we keep moving forward in sharing the gospel! Please pray for us as we plan for the future while still obeying the laws and keeping people’s health in foremost mind. As many are suffering from loneliness and isolation, we pray we can cheer them up with prayer, conversation, and encouragement. God’s Word is strong and will reach those who are struggling.
Please pray that we find the right words at the right time to share with people the hope and joy we find in Jesus!
We are praying for you too!