Zion's Glory Update
May 6 2015
The following is a Zion's Glory prayer update from Eddie and Jackie Santoro in Israel. We encourage you to forward it to whomever you think might be interested in the following information. It is sent out in conjunction with a monthly newsletter. If you are currently not receiving this information and would like to become a regular subscriber, please forward your name, email and address to us at email@example.com
Dear Faithful Friend,
Tumultuous would be the word that best describes this week in Israel: a riot in Tel Aviv by Ethiopians who were protesting police violence against them, Israeli attacks in Syria against Hezbollah who were attempting to bring advanced weapons across to Lebanon, and with just one day to go until the deadline is reached for Prime Minister Netanyahu to form his government, the coalition seems to be coming undone instead of coalescing.
A Major Riot in Tel Aviv
In what was truly a fulfillment of prophecy in 1984 and again in 1991, over 20,000 Ethiopian Jews were flown from Ethiopia and Sudan to the Promised Land of their dreams. Those original 20,000 immigrants have grown into an Israeli Ethiopian community of over 125,000 people today. Historically, this ancient community traces its beginnings to the Queen of Sheba's visit to King Solomon when she came to behold the wonders of his empire.
Although they have been absorbed into Israeli society, speak Hebrew, serve in the army and attend university, many from within their population live much poorer lives than most Israelis. Sunday night's demonstration followed a similar violent one several days earlier in Jerusalem. The demonstrations were triggered by an incident of police brutality against a young Ethiopian soldier and were organized through social media. In Tel Aviv, at the appointed hour, many Ethiopians and their supporters started gathering in the center of Tel Aviv's commercial district. The demonstrators blocked the main highway for two hours. They then traveled towards the direction of Rabin Square where they were confronted by riot police.
Demonstrations at Rabin Square are a regular part of Israeli culture, but this time there was no organization or program planned and chaos resulted. As the thousands arrived at Rabin Square, some started hurling stones and bottles at police. The police responded with stun grenades and the resulting riot was unlike anything that has occurred in Tel Aviv for many years. Roving battles continued for hours and peace was not restored until nearly midnight.
Ethiopian citizens are a valuable part of Israeli society and they comprise a significant part of the believing community in the Land. Please pray against discrimination in this society and for solutions to the problems that plague them as an ethnic group.
Pray against the spirit of anarchy that is sweeping the earth today. In many ways the chaos which marked the police brutality protest in Baltimore leapt across the ocean and influenced the Ethiopian community here in Israel.
Pray also for unity in our society. Israel is made up of people that have been gathered together from over sixty nations. The ability for us to function as a unified culture is vital for the well being of this nation. The tension in the Ethiopian community is only one of numerous fracture lines that permeate Israeli society.
Danger in the North
The terrorist group Hezbollah, whose declared goal is the destruction of the Jewish State and which serves as a proxy army for Iran has recently embarked on a modernization campaign of their vast supply of offensive missiles. With the help of Iran and Syria, they are endeavoring to upgrade their somewhat primitive weapons to advanced guided missiles that would be able to more accurately strike important targets throughout Israel. Last week Israel carried out its 8th attack since 2013 against a shipment of advanced missiles that was in Syria on its way to be delivered to Hezbollah in Lebanon.
The threat that Israel is facing in a coming war with Hezbollah on its northern border is sobering. Military experts predict that over 1,500 rockets and missiles a day would be fired at Israel.
The strategic threat is continually growing on all of Israel's borders. The normalization of international ties with Iran will only facilitate the arming of Israel's enemies.
Please continue to pray for the security and defense of Israel. Pray that Israeli intelligence would discover each arms shipment and know how to destroy it before it reaches its destination. Pray that the world would rightly understand the evil intentions of Iran and the devastation that will be released through a "nuclear agreement" with a nation that does not even believe in entering into agreements with "infidel nations".
We are just hours away from the legal deadline for the formation of the next Israeli coalition government. Yesterday, Liberman, the current Foreign Minister and leader of one of the parties that Netanyahu was counting on to join his ruling coalition quit his post and announced that he would not join the new government, leaving Netanyahu in a vulnerable position. If, as expected, the "Jewish Home" Party led by Bennett agrees to join the coalition with its seven seats, Netanyahu's new government would now only have a one vote majority in the Israeli legislature, making it a very unstable government. It would also be dependent on several ultra-orthodox parties for its survival, which would in turn give them tremendous political power.
Please join us in praying for the formation of a stable and strong Israeli government. If the process is not completed successfully, a left wing party could be given the opportunity to form a government or new elections would be called for and the whole process would again start from the beginning.
Our recent ministry trip to Italy was greatly blessed. We spent much time with their young leadership team, teaching and fellowshiping - with the whole group and in several personal meetings. In addition, I shared with the whole congregation in two other meetings and we had wonderful quality time with our hosts, Pastor Roberto and his wife Ada and their family. And of course, as is always the case in Italy, all the fellowship was done around a table of delicious food! We felt that our relationships with one another were greatly deepened. It has become one of our homes away from home!
We returned to Israel greatly encouraged by all that the Lord has done between us and this congregation in Italy. In the end, if what we build it is to last, it must be based on loving, committed relationships. Nothing else will stand the shaking that lie before us.
Please pray for the congregation, Beth Yeshua in Dolo. Pray that this unique group of believers would continue to shine forth with the love of Yeshua and that their right relationship to Israel would impact those that surround them. Pray that Roberto and Ada and their daughter Elena would receive healing from health issues that are hindering them.
Finally, we thank you for your love and faithfulness to us. There is no doubt that the situation in Israel and throughout the world is rushing forward toward those great End Time shakings that must come. We are encouraged to know that you are standing with us. Together, in Yeshua, we shall certainly persevere to the end.
We send you our love from Zion,
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