“Human history began in the Middle East, and human history will culminate and end in the Middle East,” noted an internationally renowned Bible teacher several decades ago.* The church recognizes Israel as God’s timepiece to the end of this age. Do we also recognize that we have a responsibility in blessing Israel if we wish to bless God?
God has been challenging me afresh to bless Israel. Here are three ways to do that:
1) Pray. Over and over, scripture exhorts us to intercede for Israel. Proclaiming these verses over Israel is a great place to start. Here are a few:
“Keep Israel as the apple of Your eye; hide them under the shadow of Your wings, from the wicked who oppress them, from their deadly enemies who surround them” (Psalm 17:8-9)
“For the Lord will not forsake His people, for His great name’s sake, because it has pleased the Lord to make Israel His people” (1 Samuel 12:22).
“He who scattered Israel is gathering him and will keep him as a shepherd keeps his flock” (Jeremiah 31:10b).
The Psalms of Ascent (Psalm 120-Psalm 134) are also rich in specific protection prayers for Israel. Here are a couple:
“Let them all be confounded and turned back that hate Zion. Let them be as the grass upon the housetops, which withers before it grows up” (Psalm 129:5-6)
“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: ‘May they prosper who love you.’” (Psalm 122:6, NASB).
2) Sow financially into Israel. You can inquire of The Lord as to some Kingdom-minded groups that He’d have you give to that will bless the needs of His people Israel. “Ask and you shall receive.” He will lead you to the right one(s).
3) “Defend” Israel as the Spirit prompts you. Some of my personal heroes in the faith were those who took a stand for God’s people when it cost them everything. I know each time I publicly encourage believers to pray for Israel, I draw fire from unbelieving friends – usually the more “tolerant” ones. Have you taken note of the fact that Anti-Semitism is again fashionable in Europe and gaining ground in the United States? Does the term “Jew” strike an unpopular chord in your own heart? We must remember that Jesus is a Jew, and He has not ceased being Jewish since His ascension (see Revelation 5:5).
“I will bless those who bless you, and whoever curses you I will curse; and all peoples on earth will be blessed through you” (Genesis 12:3). God said this to Abraham when He made a covenant with him. God is in the business of keeping covenants, and He is still keeping this covenant that He made thousands of years ago. If you want to receive for yourself a great blessing – or a curse – you may do so through your response to God’s people Israel.
Let’s bless Israel!
*This is a paraphrase of a Derek Prince quote.