Because the vision of JCFI is to raise a greater awareness of Israel in the churches of Johnson County, we want to connect you to some of our friends who work to bless Israel.
This month I want to connect you to a new Bridge of Hope partner:
Pastor Michael Yaron & Congregation Tehilat Yah
Pastor Michael Yaron and wife Marianne lead Congregation Tehilat Yah in Rishon Letzion.
The Hebrew name "Tehilat Yah," meaning the Praise of God, comes from Psalm 22:3, where it says that "God inhabits the praises of Israel." Rishon Letzion is located in the central Israeli coastal plain and is the 4th largest city in Israel today. Rishon Letzion is also significant in that the Israeli flag originated there (click HERE for the story behind the flag).
Pastor Michael was born in Israel and has an incredible family heritage and story. Michael's grandparents miraculously survived the holocaust, and his grandfather lived to be 107. (Click HERE to see a video about Michael's amazing story)
For about 14 years, Michael worked alongside the lead pastor of a congregation in Kfar Saba. At one point, Michael was standing on the shores of the Sea of Galilee when God gave him the vision for a new congregation. Michael says, "I heard the words Rishon Letzion, and the scripture in Isaiah 41:27 came to mind. It says, "I was the first to tell Zion,..." Interestingly, Rishon Letzion means "first to Zion." Also, Pastor Michael thought about Ezekiel 34 concerning the mistreatment of the sheep by the bad shepherd and the soon coming Good Shepherd who would love and die for the sheep. At this moment, Michael knew that the Lord was calling him to begin a new work in Rishon Letzion and reach out to the hurting, wounded, and neglected sheep there.
Michael and Marianne first started a home group which quickly grew into a congregation. Today, Tehilat Yah has about 120 regular attendees. Currently, they are only able to rent, though they are praying for Lord to provide something more permanent. The congregation is made up of Believers from 15 different nations, and while the primary language spoken is Hebrew, they also minister to members in Finnish, Amharic, Spanish, and Russian. Michael says, "We have so many different cultures, languages, and ages represented, but the love of the Lord has put them all together."
Tehilat Yah has a 3 part Vision for ministry. First, they emphasize Discipleship (Matthew 28:18-20). Michael believes that disciples of Yeshua should be taught to "dwell on the Word" (John 8:30-32), bear fruit (John 15:8), love one another (John 13:35), and become living sacrifices (Luke 14:27). Second, Congregation Tehilat Yah envisions "Unity in Diversity." Pastor Michael pictured in his mind a wall with many stones that were not easy to put together. He felt the Lord gave him this image to say that the congregation would be diverse but unified through the glue of God's love. Though many nations comprise the body at Rishon Letzion, they are one in Christ. Finally, their vision includes a ministry to the oppressed (Isaiah 61:1-3) called Maim Haiim Hinam (Free Living Water). Through this nonprofit ministry, Pastor Yaron and the people of Tehilat Yah reach out to poverty-stricken Russian immigrants, Holocaust victims, and others in need of assistance and support.
Pastor Yaron and Tehilat Yah have connected in a Bridge of Hope with Pastor Corey Cornutt and FBC Grandview. Pray for these 2 pastors as they develop this new relationship. Also, pray for the work that Pastor Michael leads in Israel and that the congregation will find a property soon that will meet their needs.
Check out this VIDEO to learn more about the work at Tehilat Yah.
IDF Enlistment of Christian Israelis Set to Break Records
In the seventy odd years since the birth of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF), the army guarding the tiny Jewish state has arguably become synonymous with a commitment to break new ground and top the status quo.
This coming year, the IDF is set to shatter yet another record, as the number of Christian youths lining up to defend their country is expected to reach an all-time high. With numbers climbing gradually over the past years, the army predicts an unprecedented 200 new Christian recruits in the year to come, Israel National News reported.
At first glance, 200 seems but a paltry trickle. Yet circumstances-and statistics-tell a different story.
Just over 130,000 Christian citizens currently call Israel home, the majority of whom identify as Arabs. This translates to some 1,400 youths eligible for IDF recruitment each year, said Breaking Israel News.
Due to consistent incitement from the Arab community against young Christians considering army service, only a dozen or so traditionally chose to face the threats and intimidation to sign up.
Yet three years ago, the tide started turning. Last year saw 100 Christian soldiers join the army of Israel. Moreover, the number is predicted to double over the next year as 200 new Christian recruits prepare to join the ranks of the IDF.
The increased numbers are due in part to the efforts of Christian community leaders like Greek Orthodox priest Father Gabriel Naddaf. Naddaf's own son, Judaan, proudly enlisted for his three-year stint in the IDF last December.
For its part, the Israeli military has also embarked on a number of avenues to ease the enlistment journey. This includes a pre-military seminar for Christian youths considering army service. Col. (res.) Pini Gonen, initiator and leader of the Gadna youth battalion project, told Walla! that 48 potential recruits, including two women, attended the four-week program, which included military preparation and leadership training as well as field trips to churches and other historic landmarks in Jerusalem and northern Israel.
"They arrive with very high motivation for military service," Walla! quoted Gonen as saying. "Just last week Jennifer, an Arab Christian soldier, was selected for exceptional performance in a course operating Iron Dome. She also finished basic training with exceptional ratings."
"I believe that the number of recruits will rise," he added. "Already today you can see (Arab Christian) officers at the rank of major in the teleprocessing branch, navy and other units. Even more senior rankings are just a matter of time."
Speaking to Israel National News, another seminar participant, 20-year-old Tawfiq, explained the reason for his enlistment. "I'm in favor of the state and want to raise it as high as possible," he said. "I will enlist in my own name and in the name of the entire (Arab Christian) community, and I hope to be one of the best commanders."
Tawfiq also had a message for his peers. "I tell all the communities in Israel, you don't have to enlist but don't attack those who chose to contribute.
"This is my country."
by Ilse Posselt
Please, PRAY FOR THE PEACE OF JERUSALEM !
Bridge of Hope Update...
We Are Growing !
One way JCFI raises awareness of Israel's role today is through building a Bridge of Hope (BOH). A Bridge of Hope is a "bridge" built between a Church or organization of Johnson County and a Congregation, Home Group, Faith-Based Organization, or Individual within Israel. At JCFI we currently have 23 Congregational BOH's and 5 Organizational BOHs that are up-and-running with
in the process. The BOH project is blessing people both in Israel and here in Johnson County as it provides connection through fellowship, prayer support, educational exchange, and more. (Click
for more info)
We would love to hook you up! I am Skyping almost weekly with those in the Land who are eager to link up in a "sister" relationship with a congregation or organization in Johnson County. Be in prayer for us as we establish new connections with ministries in Israel that desperately need our support and prayer.
If your church would like to know more about becoming a BOH to a congregation in Israel, click HERE or contact me by phone at 817-556-1061 / by email at email@example.com.
Let's build a Bridge together as we stand For Israel!
Prayer Requests from our BOH Friends in Israel
- Pray for several of the Messianic pastors taking specialized university courses at ICB this fall.
- Pray for efforts between Arab Christian pastors and Messianic pastors to come together in unity.
- Pray for all IDF soldiers currently defending Israel against recent terrorist attacks.
- Pray for Prime Minister Netanyahu and the Israeli Knesset as they navigate troubled political and economic waters.
- Pray for Israel's Rosh Hashanah feast (New Year), Yom Kippur observance (Day of Atonement), and Sukkoth feast (Tabernacles) coming in September and October.
- Special Prayer for Pastor Eddie Santoro.
His surgery to remove a brain tumor went well. However, due to malignancy, he will soon undergo extensive chemo and radiation treatments. Eddie and Jackie lead Congregation Ahavat Yeshua (Love of Jesus), a BOH partner with Pastor Rick Douglas and Covenant Church.
(More info about Eddie)
Until we are all ONE! (Eph.2:15) !
One-third of Israelis are volunteers.
Israel receives more media coverage per capita than any other country in the world.
Israel is ranked first place in the world in the survival of cancer patients.
Israel has the highest percentage in the world of home computers per capita.
This month JCFI encourages you to get a copy of:
by Sandra Teplinksy
by Spangler & Tverberg
As we work to build a greater awareness of Israel in Johnson County and continue to connect to Believers and Jews in the Land,
we are often ask, "What does that word mean?". So, each month at JCFI we will ad to a glossary of terms to help broaden our Hebrew vocabulary. Please, enjoy this Hebrew Help and
with any definitions you think we should ad.
This month's Hebrew Help definition is:
Rosh Hashanah (rōSH (h)aˈSHōna)
Rosh Hashanah is the Jewish New Year. The Biblical name for this holiday is Yom Teruah or the Feast of Trumpets. It is the first of the High Holy Days, which usually occur in the early autumn of the Northern Hemisphere. Rosh Hashanah is a two-day celebration, which begins on the first day of Tishrei. Tishrei is the first month of the Jewish civil year, but the seventh month of the ecclesiastical year.
Previous Month's Definition
A person sent with authority to carry out a mission. This person represents and speaks for the one who commissioned him. Other names include apostle, delegate, envoy, emissary, ambassador, and messenger. Plural shlichim((Matt.10:2 / Mark 6:30 / Luke 22:14)
o see the entire Hebrew Help Glossary!
HOW CAN I STAND FOR ISRAEL?
Since the Banquet, many have ask me, "What can I do for Israel?" While this is certainly not an exhaustive list, here are a few suggestions I hope you find useful:
1. Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem (Psa.122:6)
"For Zion's Sake I Will Not Be Silent" by Rebecca Brimmer is an excellent guide on
prayer for Israel. Click HERE for more info.
2. Learn more about Israel-related ministries
There are wonderful Israel-related ministries doing a great work to support Israel. Click HERE to learn more about a few of them.
3. Learn more about the Hebraic Roots to Christianity
The Bible often takes on deeper meaning in the context of its Hebraic Roots. The
Ancient Hebrew Scroll project at the CHF is a testimony to this fact. There are
numerous writings about Hebraic Roots. A good place to start is the book by
D. Thomas Lancaster entitled Grafted In.
4. Take a trip to Israel I've been blessed to travel to Israel many times. It has
changed my life. I baptized my daughter, Lauren, in the Sea of Galilee during my trip
there in 2011. She had accepted Jesus as her Savior 3 days before we left. This
should be at the top of any bucket list!
5. Be an Israel contact person for your church
The vision at JCFI is to increase the awareness of Israel within the churches of
Johnson County. Maybe you could support your pastor by volunteering to be the
church's Israel contact person for JCFI.
6. Build a Bridge of Hope
Speak with your Pastor / Church Leaders about building a BOH. Feel free to