During my trip to Israel in late March, I ran into a group of Jewish kids on a field trip in Jerusalem's tourist area. They were giggling and chatting like a brood of cackling hens, when two of them jumped in front of my camera and asked me to take a picture of them. I did and they skipped off.
With backpacks in tow and ponytail dangling, those kids looked like the kids in my neighborhood; they looked normal to me. But their chaperone did not.
The 21-year-old wore a pair of blue jeans with a dark-colored jacket; a bracelet and something else--a high-powered assault rifle strapped to her shoulder. The weapon was longer than the arms that carried it.
British Midland Airways Limited (BMI) reportedly omitted Israel from in-flight charts on flights bound for the Holy Land, according toTimes Online.
"Passengers were shocked to discover that Israel had been wiped off the map by Britain's BMI airline, which omitted the Jewish state from its digital charts on flights from London to Tel Aviv. Neither Jerusalem nor Tel Aviv itself, which is Israel's largest city, were shown on the airline's in-flight map." To read more, click here.
Vowing that it will "never forget," a California church is today unveiling an interactive exhibit honoring the 6 million Jews who died during the Holocaust.
Built by Cornerstone Church in Fresno, the Holocaust Experience will guide visitors through scenes of 12 major events that took place between 1933 and 1945. The scenes span from the rise of Adolf Hitler to Kristallnacht, or "the Night of Broken Glass," when nearly 1,000 synagogues were set on fire across Germany, to Hitler's decision to execute genocide as "the final solution to the Jewish question."
The exhibit, which will be on display until Sunday, is housed in the church's 10,000-square-foot educational facility and cost nearly $10,000 to build.
My trip to Israel took me to many interesting and fascinating places. On the second day of my travels, I toured Caesarea, an ancient port built by King Herod. There I saw ruins of an ancient vomitoruim (my tour guide, Tison Ben David, explains the meaning of the name in the clip) and a reconstructed Roman theater. When biblical history meets archeology, the Bible truly comes to life.
Israelis shifted gears on Tuesday evening from mourning its fallen soldiers to celebrating the nation's 61st Independence Day.
Opening the official ceremony at Mount Herzl in Jerusalem, Knesset Speaker Reuven Rivlin said, "We have come once again to this hill—on one side the grave of the prophet [of Zionism], on the other the graves of our children—to remind ourselves once again from where we came, and where, with the grace of God, with the blood of our children and with the sweat of our brow, we have succeeded in reaching so far.
Rivlin said that moving directly from Remembrance Day to Independence Day is the "purest preparation" for the subsequent joy. Earlier in the week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told a memorial gathering to honor slain Israeli soldiers and that the global threat of terror was greater than ever. "We have no choice but to fight terror until it is obliterated and to defend our lives," he said.
The Israel Project (TIP) will begin airing a television ad campaign that focuses on the need to teach peace on both sides and to peacefully stop Iran from acquiring nuclear weapons. Three ads will air May 2-5 in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area. By the end of the week, the commercials will have aired more than 600 times on CNN, CNN's Headline News, Fox News and MSNBC.
"Today we celebrate Israeli Independence Day and it is a time to focus not only on the tremendous achievements but also on the ongoing threats to Israel's existence and what can be done to move towards a better future," commented Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, Founder & President of The Israel Project. "I believe there is no question that teaching peace and tolerance to children as Israel does as an official part of their curriculums is paramount. I only hope that Palestinian leaders will adopt this model and stop teaching hate so that together we can work toward a common more peaceful future."
The day before Holocaust Remembrance Day, Iran's President Ahmadinejad addressed the United Nations anti-racism conference in Geneva. Here, he did a great favor for all who love Israel—he was honest. He let his virulent hate for Israel and bizarre anti-Semitic conspiracy theories flow from his tongue largely unfiltered. It was an ugly performance.
The delegates from most European nations walked out on Ahmadinejad's speech. Even UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, was moved to criticism. Most other delegates, of course, remained in their seats. Many cheered.
But Ahmadinejad is rarely so honest. And he is rarely so helpful. It is what this man does in the shadows—not what he says in public—that is most dangerous. And what he does in the dark typically gets far less attention.
Christians United for Israel (CUFI) is providing believers with the opportunity to place their prayers in the Western Wall without leaving home.
Prayers submitted to CUFI web site will be printed out, prayed over at the national office in San Antonio, sent to Jerusalem, and hand-delivered to the Western Wall.
Prayer is an integral part of CUFI, which prays daily for the peace of Jerusalem, the well being of the state of Israel, growth and development of Christians United for Israel and for those in authority, including those in governmental and spiritual positions. Personal prayer requests are also welcome.
In late March I took the trip of a lifetime. I spent seven days in Israel touring historic sites and ancient ruins that date back more than 2,000 years. I discovered the roots of my Christian faith and watched the Bible come to life.
My schedule was packed with many interesting places to see, including the Western Wall, the Garden Tomb and the Upper Room, where Jesus ate the Last Supper. I floated in the Dead Sea and toured the Valley of Jezreel, which overlooks the ancient city of Armageddon, the place of the final war mentioned in Revelation.
But I was haunted by my visit to Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial Museum, located on the Mount of Remembrance in Jerusalem. Without any warning, I found myself in tears.
The media reported last week that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton "warned" Israel that if they don't support peace negotiations with the Palestinians, they risk losing Arab support for combating Iranian threats against Israel.
First of all, I was not aware that the Arab nations were supporting Israel in any way. In any case this is another warning to Israel from the Obama administration. Apparently the Obama administration believes that there is a good possibility that the Netanyahu government will NOT support the peace process in its current form. This is not what Secretary of State Clinton nor President Obama want to hear.
Clinton says that she is reserving judgment until her meeting with Prime Minister Netanyahu in Washington, D.C. in May. Though she is reserving judgment she and the Obama administration are letting Netanyahu know well in advance what they expect Israel to do.
This is becoming very interesting. I feel like saying to Clinton that I (General Secretary of the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America) am reserving judgment on her until I see how she handles herself with the Israeli prime minister. That'll teach her!
There is no doubt that whatever she has to say to PM Netanyahu will be exactly what President Obama wants her to convey. She will not sway from the party line.
What is clear is that they are heavily invested in the futile and dangerous two state solutionand don't really want to hear or entertain any other scenarios. They simply have a different agenda than Israel (whose main agenda is to survive and not put themselves at senseless risk) and want Israel to play along at whatever the cost.
We'll watch together. The future of our country rests on how we treat Israel. (Gen. 12:3)
Joel Chernoff, better known for pioneering Messianic Jewish Praise and Worship music with the group “Lamb,” serves as General Secretary (or CEO) of the Messianic Jewish Alliance of America (MJAA). Established in 1915, the MJAA is the single largest organization representing the interests of the Messianic Jewish community in the world. For more information about his ministry, go to http://joelchernoff.wordpress.com/.