“Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.”
Ascension Day is more than a date on the calendar. Ascension Day is an annual reminder to live with expectancy!
As mortal beings, it’s impossible to foresee the outcome of events where the course of history is altered in a way we never anticipated. Yet, on Yom Yerushalayim—Jerusalem Day—such an outcome is commemorated.
Prophetic passages in both Testaments of the Bible affirm the centrality of Jerusalem in Israel’s future. Only those with a premeditated obsession to destroy Israel and rewrite history disavow what every rational person recognizes—Jerusalem is the capital of Israel and the heart of the Jewish world.
Come and see the works of God…We went through fire and through water; but You brought us out to rich fulfillment.
“May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble; may the name of the God of Jacob defend you; may He send you help from the sanctuary, and strengthen you out of Zion.” PSALM 20:1-2
“If any of you are driven out to the farthest parts under heaven, from there the LORD your God will gather you, and from there He will bring you.” DEUTERONOMY 30:4
I strongly encourage you to not only set an alarm to pause in a moment of silent solidarity with our Jewish friends, neighbors and co-workers; but, also determine to use Yom HaShoah to vocally counter those who aggressively attempt to diminish and co-opt the memory of the Holocaust.
“Blessed be the Lord, who has not given us as prey to their teeth. Our soul has escaped as a bird from the snare of the fowlers; the snare is broken, and we have escaped. Our help is in the name of the Lord, who made heaven and earth.” PSALM 124:6-7
“Why do you seek the living among the dead? He is not here, but is risen! Remember how He spoke to you when He was still in Galilee, Saying, ‘The Son of Man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again.’” LUKE 24:5-7
The resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead is a non-negotiable and foundational tenet of Christianity. The historical record is open for investigation; and, the evidence provided in eyewitness testimony documents the facts.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.” JOHN 3:16
Commonly called Maundy Thursday, Christians worldwide use the day to prepare their hearts for the commemoration of the most decisive day in history—Good Friday.
And the descendants of the captivity kept the Passover on the fourteenth day of the first month.
Recounting God’s provision in the wilderness, coming to Israel’s defense against enemies and providing the Davidic Dynasty to furnish leadership for the nation, the 78th psalm provides vital instruction to future generations.
That the Jewish people have carefully adhered to God’s requirements to communicate the message of Passover to successive generations authenticates the historic event that marked the founding of the nation of Israel.
As Jesus and the disciples proceeded to Jerusalem, followers began attaching themselves to the company. By the time they reached Bethany at the crest of the Mount of Olives, an eager throng surrounded them.
Even as He journeyed toward Jerusalem, a contingency of sympathetic religious leaders intercepted Jesus’ company warning: “Get out and depart from here, for Herod wants to kill You.” Jesus calmly assured them that Herod had no ability to affect His plans. He would continue toward Jerusalem undeterred.
“The works of the Lord are great, studied by all who have pleasure in them.”
Don’t be a pew warmer. Be informed. Be alert. Use every opportunity to counter misinformation about Israel that will pervade our culture unless we remain vigilant.
O God, You are my God; early will I seek You . . . When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches.
In a reincarnation of the spirit of Amalek, Adolf Hitler and the Nazi regime instigated the most aggressive program to annihilate the Jewish people in the history of mankind.
You can choose to ignore the animus focused on the Jewish community and delude yourself into thinking you have no responsibility. Or, you can choose to follow Esther’s example and stand in solidarity with and as an advocate for God’s Chosen People.
Much to the disgrace of humanity, history is replete with attempts to exterminate the Jewish people. Even though it would be instructive, those intent on harming the Jewish fail to take into account a consequential principle demonstrated in the Old Testament book of Esther.
While God set the stage for a dramatic intervention, the players who had been strategically positioned to meet a clear and present danger still had a choice as to whether they would fulfill their destiny.