Shattered windows. Sagging infrastructure. Crumbled blocks. Littered ash. Daystar's Jerusalem studio is in ruins after an arsonist firebombed the Christian network.
The fire destroyed the new work of recent renovations, as well as much of the old facility, CBN's Chris Mitchell said as he toured the wreckage.
But Daystar Founder Marcus Lamb says the answer isn't in retaliation, but in restoration:
As many of you know, Daystar's Jerusalem studio was recently destroyed by arson. [It has been] reduced to a pile of rubble and ashes, [and] I'm certain the enemy thought this attack would be fatal to our efforts to share the gospel across Israel. But as usual, he's wrong.
What the devil meant for evil, God will use for our good. Even now we're exploring every option and discovering how best to rebuild on a foundation the Lord laid for us long ago. Just as it was in the days of Nehemiah, who rebuilt the crumbling walls around Jerusalem, God will stand with us as we remain fully committed to the work of His kingdom. And my hope is that you'll join with us!
I wonder what areas of your life need restoration? Keep in mind, we serve a God who knows every hidden wound and heartbreak, and nothing is ever beyond repair. I believe that as you partner with us to rebuild the Jerusalem studio, the Lord will release His healing power to redeem what seems utterly lost or completely out of reach in your heart.
He's not simply a good God; He's also good at being God and wants to mend the frayed edges of your faith as you put your trust in His promises. So I invite you to give today, and let's believe for full restoration in every area of your life. Together, we'll watch the Lord bring beauty from the ashes of tragedy and make all things new!
According to Daystar, security cameras recorded an arsonist torching the building at 2:30 a.m. Saturday morning.
"They see the explosion, then the fire," Dave Sharett, the contractor overseeing the renovations, tells The Jerusalem Post. "The next second, you see a rope going over the balcony and him climbing down the rope. He goes down to the floor below, gathers the rope and runs off."
Police say they have opened an investigation and are exploring all directions.
The Israel studio was dedicated in 2009 in the Abu Tor neighborhood of Jerusalem, overlooking the Temple Mount.
"In the wake of this disaster, I'm humbled by the outpouring of support from our partners and other ministries," said Lamb. "It's really a beautiful picture of how the body of Christ comes together to boldly declare our unwavering commitment to the Great Commission, and we are eternally grateful!"
According to the Post:
Sharett said police have two theories about the incident. The first is that the crime was religiously motivated because "the TV station is Christian and its Ramadan and Muslims are upset and blah, blah, blah," he said.
The other theory is that it was an Arab employee of an adjacent studio who recently became upset with some of the workers at the Daystar studio. That employee has not returned to work since the incident, according to Sharett.
"We'll find the truth," he said, noting that there has not been a final assessment of damages but that "if it didn't burn, it melted," including all of the media equipment.
Mitchell said that Daystar, which is owned by Lamb and his wife, Joni, is one of the "most important and popular Christian networks in the U.S. and around the world." The Jerusalem studio was inaugurated in October 2009.
Similarly, Joshua Reinstein, who formerly filmed his "Israel Now News" show in the studio each month for seven years said that, "Daystar is a real voice for Israel." He noted that Daystar broadcasts its programming in 191 countries.
"If it really is arson, it is a real hit for those who want to see good news come from Israel," Reinstein told the Post.
Watch the video to see the extent of the damage.
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