It is tempting to trust the IDF. But my hope is the Messiah Yeshua.

What time is it? The room was dark, but I was awake. I reached for my phone and saw that it was too soon. It was Saturday, October 7, just before 7 a.m., and I was hoping to sleep in.

But as I looked at my phone, I noticed an unusual number of messages waiting to be read on WhatsApp and iMessage. When I started reading about what was happening in Israel, my stomach dropped and my eyes filled with tears.

In a shocking and devastating turn of events, the Hamas terrorist group had launched a highly coordinated attack on Israel, what the world now calls 9/11 Israel, a surprise attack using over 3,000 rockets as well as ground forces. from land and sea. In less than 24 hours, this evil attack left hundreds dead and injured, mostly Israeli civilians, but also some tourists and visitors. Hamas kidnapped dozens more.

It would be two weeks before my wife and I could travel to Israel to be with our family, friends, and staff at Jews for Jesus, where I am the director of operations, during these unimaginably difficult days.

When we got off the plane we felt deep sadness and sorrow. You can feel it in the air and see it on people’s faces. Tel Aviv’s lively and energetic nightlife has disappeared. Instead, there are constant memorials and gatherings to mourn. You should stay close to known, safe places so you can take shelter if a siren sounds.

Now, a month later, the numbers have tragically increased: More than 8,500 rockets have been fired from Gaza, more than 1,400 innocent Israelis have been killed and more than 4,500 injured, and more than 240 hostages are being held in Gaza. And since arriving in Israel, I have found time to reflect on the reality of this war.

It is impossible not to think about the crisis. Stories about the war constantly appear on television and posters across the country show the faces of kidnapped hostages. Every Israeli knows someone who has been murdered or kidnapped or has friends and family among the victims. This kind of personal impact is inevitable in a small country (only 7 million Jews live in Israel). There is deep sorrow for the loss of innocent lives and the suffering of those kidnapped in captivity.

Now, hundreds of thousands of Israeli men and women have left their homes to serve in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), risking further trauma for more families. The parents are worried about the kids and the kids are worried about the parents who are serving on the front lines.

Israel’s military, intelligence and security have always been a source of national pride. Sure, we’ve had terrorist attacks and our fair share of rockets, but, for the most part, both Israelis and diaspora Jews felt safe in our homeland. Many Christians traveling to Israel from abroad would comment on how safe they felt even in the midst of a long-running conflict.

The reason for that sentiment is that Israel takes security seriously. Israelis know it, feel it and trust it. Prime ministers have won and lost elections on the promise of security. But one consequence of October 7, now known in Israel as Dark or Black Sabbath, is that Israelis feel that we can no longer trust the security promises of the current government.

Many have compared this crisis to the Yom Kippur War, where Israel was also taken by surprise. But there is a big difference: in 1973, the dead and kidnapped they were all soldiers. This time, they were overwhelmingly civilians. The brutality of this evil has shaken Israelis and caused many to lose all sense of trust and security. People are really afraid. Everyone is on high alert.

We are also grieving, but we are doing it together. Next to the posters with photographs of the kidnapped, there are posters with the motto Yachad NeNatzeach: Together we will be victorious.

It is ironic – or perhaps providential – that this great unity occurred during the most divided period in Israel’s history. Before the attack, and for 10 months before, the nation was fragmented into a controversial judicial reform, causing large protests. Some said the country is on the brink of civil war.

No more. After October 7, the nation has united in what our Prime Minister called a fight for our survival. Never in the history of Israel have so many people gathered so quickly. It seems like everyone is lending a hand in whatever is needed during this crisis. Thousands upon thousands volunteer to help each other.

This unity gives strength. The camaraderie, camaraderie and togetherness now on display in Israel is inspiring.

It is especially inspiring in the body of the Messiah in Israel. Many Christian ministries and congregations have come together to love and serve our people, providing care to displaced families and soldiers. It has been wonderful to see firsthand how the church can share the love of the Messiah in a tangible way.

These are undoubtedly difficult times, and the loss of our beloved sons and daughters to the cruelty of terrorism has left many people grappling with questions and longing for hope and comfort. The IDF has a long history of success and the United States has shown strong support for Israel. Trying to draw hope from these things is tempting, but honestly, I know it’s futile and temporary. As Psalm 20:7 says: “Some trust in chariots, and others in horses; but we will remember the name of the Lord our God” (NIV).

I need to be reminded daily (sometimes every moment of the day) that my trust must be firmly rooted in the Lord. Only when I admire him, only when I draw strength from his Word and sit in his presence in prayer, do I feel rooted. Only then do I remember the eternal hope I have in Messiah Yeshua. He is our present and future hope.

The October 7 attack will be remembered as one of the most serious attacks ever carried out on Israeli soil. We are praying day and night for the God of Israel to arise and save our people. The God of Israel is alive. He has his daughter Zion in the palm of his hand. He parted the sea, broke down walls and stopped the sun for her. He will not abandon us today.

Dan Sered was born in Israel but came to faith in Jesus while attending Stony Brook University in New York. He is the director of operations for Jews for Jesus and has served the organization in Israel, where he also pastored a church and taught at the Israel Bible College.

Source link

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button