In 1999, Rick Ridings received a word from the L-rd to lay down his ministry of establishing international prayer and worship gatherings in cities throughout Africa, Asia and Europe and move to Israel. Before making his move, Rick contacted the leaders of the International Messianic Jewish Alliance and asked them to pray for him regarding settling in Israel. He says he was thinking of spending half of his time there but after prayer the leaders told him that he should set up a full-time ministry and start 24/7 worship and prayer. Rick arrived in Israel with his family, including wife Patricia and his then young daughters Anna and Esther. His oldest daughter, Bethany, remained studying in the United States and had a heart for reaching out to Jewish young people in Israel by attending a youth festival outside of Chicago and videoing Jewish speakers…
Messianic Judaism in Israel, in which Jewish believers identify both as Jews and as followers of Yeshua Jesus, began to truly emerge only after the Six Day War in 1967. In the years prior to this and going back to British Mandate times, previous attempts by believers in Yeshua to identify as Jews were made under such leaders as Moshe Imanuel Ben-Meir and Hyman Jacobs, who founded a Messianic fellowship in the 1920s and 1930s with the intent of bringing Jewish believers together outside of the context of the Christian church. This effort how- ever, never gained the support of the Christian community where many outreach- es to the Jews did not support the idea of a distinct Jewish identity for Jewish believers apart from the historical churches.
It’s a “one foot in front of the other” journey to serve the people of Israel, filled with treacherous terrain, problematic potholes, massive downed trees, flash flooding, and constant detours unforeseen by GPS, metaphorically speaking. Were it not for the
mandate to bless Israel, many would consider the governmental hoop-jumping, looming threats of deportation, miles of red tape and various other forms of adversity to be insurmountable and maybe not even worth the trouble of serving such a nation. Why do so many Christian and Messianic groups serve then? Why do they sacrifice so much to bring assistance to its citizens without a promise of any kind of return? Is it just about that Biblical admonition to go? Or is there something more?
Even Israel’s enemies agree that the two-state solution is dead, especially since President Donald Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. Saeb Erekat, the secretary-general of the Palestine Liberation Organization, told the New York Times that the PLO should make a radical shift and embrace a single state, but one in which Arabs could vote in national elections
In July of 1947, the packet steamer, President Warfield, originally designed to accommodate 400 passengers, sailed from Set, France toward British Mandatory Palestine with over 4,500 Jewish refugees onboard. Most were Holocaust survivors with no legal immigration status. All hoped to begin new lives in the promised land. The steamship recently renamed Exodus 1947 approached Palestine. Though still in international waters, it was encircled and attacked by what crew member Reverend John Stanley Grauel described in his autobiography as “a formidable representation of the British fleet.”
After a prolonged ordeal at sea and in port as a captive ship, its passengers were refused immigration to Israel and dispatched by the British to a detainment camp in Europe.
As the State of Israel turns 70, it continues to be surrounded by opposition groups. This centers around the conflict over the occupation of the Land. .Palestinian revisionist history asserts its rights to the Land as hereditary: “The Arabs of Palestine are the indigenous inhabitants of the country, who have been in occupation of it since the beginning of history.” The Case for Palestine: Evidence Submitted by the Arab Office, p. 92. This argument, however, has nothing but sentiment in its support.
– By Summer Mansell
G-d loves you with an everlasting love, and He’s numbered every one of the hairs on your head,” were the formative words of a kind-eyed stranger to a Jewish college student minding a frozen yogurt shop in Florida. From nursery school to high school, this student, Alyse Merritt, was immersed in Jewish learning and culture. When she set off from her very Jewish hometown in New Jersey to begin college in Florida, her mother warned against anyone who might try to speak to her about Yeshua. Little did anyone comprehend that a messenger from G-d, an angel, would come into Alyse’s life with the message of Yeshua at just the right time, allowing a mighty calling on her life to unfold.
Does anyone outside of Israel have the moral authority to solve Israel’s problems with the Arabs? How did the plight of the Palestinian Arabs become everybody’s business? What about the stateless Kurds, who are being bombed in Syria every day
by the Turks? I can draw a circle on the map where five countries come together and declare it an independent state for its Kurdish inhabitants. But I’m not Kurdish, so I’ll mind my own business.
Walk just two blocks in Jerusalem’s city center and you’re likely to hear five different languages spoken; Hebrew, Arabic, English, French and Russian. On a recent Shabbat visit to learn more about the leadership, mission and this year’s Pesach plans at Jerusalem’s Ethiopian Jewish congregation, Amud HaEsh (Hebrew for Pillar of Fire), we were treated to the sounds of a sixth tongue. The congregation’s service, prayer, music and teaching were rendered throughout not only in English and Hebrew, but also in Amharic, the Semitic national language of Ethiopia.
– By Batina Lorenz – You can’t escape it. Each year, from the time the Thanksgiving leftovers are put away, until December 25th, every church, radio station, music hall, college auditorium and shopping mall in America is permeated by Handel’s Messiah. Not so in Israel. But this musical super- classic recently made history (and headlines),
– By Ben Volman –
Would you rather observe Thanksgiving in Canada or in the United States?
Yes, Canada does celebrate Thanksgiving. Though it usually comes in early October, America’s northern neighbors are just as fond of turkey, cranberry sauce, pumpkin pie and even enjoy their own brand of football. But the American holiday is bigger and Canadians, who have lived in the United States, as well as Americans living in Canada, agree. Americans do it better.
Canadians don’t make that admission easily—even a Messianic Jewish Canadian; so it’s surprising that the verdict was unanimous from everyone who was asked.
– By Karen Faulkner –
Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; His love endures forever. (Psalm 107:1)
With approximately 110,000 American immigrants now living in Israel, plus half a million visitors from the U.S.A. and Canada each year here are plenty of people who appreciate Thanksgiving in the Land. The Pilgrims based this celebration on Leviticus 23: 34 to 44, the Fall feast of Sukkot. And now, even the Hebrew language has found room for it. “The word for both ‘turkey’ and ‘give thanks’ is the same in Hebrew,” explains Baht Rivka, singer and worship leader. “It’s hodu.”