Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 05/05/2016

HOLOCAUST REMEMBRANCE DAY TODAY

auschwitzDo not believe the HOLOCAUST DENIERS. There is so much evidence, even survivors who are still alive to tell about it, thousands of books and movies, photographs and letters to prove that the Holocaust certainly did happen! The Israel Video Network says this: “On this day, we remember the loss of 6 million of our people. We remember this loss that so profoundly defines our past, our present and our future. Especially today, and every Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Remembrance Day, we resolve to remember this loss so that we may educate every future generation about this tragic chapter in our history. We remember these darkest days of the Jewish people. We remember how faith and hope led to the creation of the Jewish homeland. We remember the paramount importance of protecting and defending Israel’s existence. We resolve to never forget and to always proclaim “Never Again.”

brandToday, which is also the National Day Of Prayer in the U.S., let us “pray for the Peace of Jerusalem..” (Psalms 122:6a) and pray that the world will acknowledge the Holocaust and stand with Israel and the Jewish people.

Click on this link to watch a 3.5 minute video of the remains of Auschwitz, as filmed by a drone:

http://www.israelvideonetwork.com/a-drone-just-flew-over-auschwitz-and-captured-something-incredbily-powerful/?omhide=true&utm_source=MadMimi&utm_medium=email&utm_content=A+drone+just+flew+over+Auschwitz+and+captured+something+incredibly+powerful&utm_campaign=20160505_m131279945_05%2F05+Today%27s+Israel+Connection%3A+A+drone+just+flew+over+Auschwitz+and+captured+something+incredibly+powerful&utm_term=Holocaust-aushawitz-drone-email_png_3F1462433246

Just go to https://www.google.com Images and search for ‘Holocaust Concentration Camps’ if you want to see photos too horrible for me to post here. Show them to people who try to deny this ever happened. And, if you are ever in Israel, or Washington, D.C., visit the Holocaust Museums there. You will be overwhelmed. I was.

If we held a moment of silence for every victim of the Holocaust we would be silent for eleven and a half years.

 

 

 

Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 04/20/2016

PASSOVER PARALLELS

Passover Seder

   Passover 2016
April 22 – April 30

Posting this again for newcomers to the site – Most people have at least some knowledge of what the Jewish Festival of Passover (Pesach) is all about, even if it is only from watching Charlton Heston as Moses in the movie ‘Ten Commandments’. In the Bible book of Leviticus, God decrees that seven feasts are to be observed every year by His people (an eighth one is the weekly Sabbath).  “‘These are the LORD’s appointed festivals, the sacred assemblies you are to proclaim at their appointed times:  The LORD’s Passover begins at twilight on the fourteenth day of the first month.  On the fifteenth day of that month the LORD’s Festival of Unleavened Bread begins; for seven days you must eat bread made without yeast. On the first day hold a sacred assembly and do no regular work. For seven days present a food offering to the LORD. And on the seventh day hold a sacred assembly and do no regular work.’” (Lev. 23:4-8).

The Passover is basically to remember how God delivered His people from their 400 year slavery in Egypt. The Jews were told by God through Moses, on the night before their liberation, to paint the blood of a sacrificial lamb over the doorposts of their homes to avoid the angel of death to their firstborn. Christians believe that this event was a ‘shadow’ or ‘type’ of what was to come in the future when Messiah Jesus (Yeshua, the only sinless man in history) came to set people free from their captivity to sin and damnation by being the perfect Lamb who was sacrificed. The Passover in Moses’ day was celebrated by bringing a flawless lamb to the high priest to be slaughtered and have its blood sprinkled on the Mercy Seat in the Holy of Holies of the Tabernacle (“.. without the shedding of blood there is no remission of sin..” Hebrews 9:22) The blood of Christ symbolically covering Jewish and gentile believers likewise avoids for us eternal damnation for our sins.

Being a ‘pilgrimage festival’, all the men of Israel were to come up to Jerusalem in the Hebrew month of Nissan 14-21 (usually April – this year (2010) the eve of April 18) for an 8 day holiday beginning with a special meal called the seder (order) on the eve of the first day of Passover (erev pesach). (Did you know that the Christian Last Supper was a Passover Seder?) Today, as then, at the family table there are symbolic foods, special songs and the story of deliverance is retold in detail with the youngest child asking certain questions of the father, beginning with ‘What makes this night different from all [other] nights?’ This liturgy is called the Haggadah (telling your son). Before Passover, houses are swept clean of all leaven (symbol of sin) and unleavened bread (matzah) is eaten for the entire week.

Matzah

The matzah is striped and pierced in appearance. This is such a picture of the striped and pierced body of Christ at the hands of the Roman guards who pierced Him with a sword, and scourged Him with whips.

Passover symbolic foods

The symbolic foods eaten at the Passover seder are these:

  1. Beitzah – A roasted egg – symbolizes the cycle of the seasons and of the sacrifices in the Temple
  2. Karpas – Parsley (or vegetable) – symbolizes the renewal of spring
  3. Ze’roa – Roasted shank bone – symbolizes the pascal offering in the Temple
  4. Charoset – Chopped apples and nuts – symbolizes the mortar that the Israelites used to build the storehouses for Pharaoh
  5. Maror – Bitter herb (horseradish) – symbolizes the bitterness of the slavery that the Israelites endured in Egypt.
  6. Chazeret – Romaine lettuce – symbolizes spring
  7. Salted water — represents the tears the Israelites shed when they were slaves in Egypt.  The parsley is dipped in the salt water
  8. Four cups of red wine or grape juice — Each cup is related to a different Biblical verse that promises that God will redeem the Israelites from bondage in Egypt
  9. Matzah — the unleavened bread the Israelites baked before leaving Egypt

Finding the ‘afikomen’ (dessert) is part of the celebration of Passover. Three pieces of matzah are ceremonially set aside. The middle one is the afikomen. At one point during the meal, it is taken out, broken in half, wrapped in linen and hidden. Later in the evening the children are invited to search for it, and whoever finds it rejoices greatly as he/she receives a gift. Yeshua also was wrapped in linen and hidden in the grave. Three days later He rose again, a cause for great rejoicing by believers ever since because of the GIFT of Salvation! Our Christian celebration of Resurrection Day (Easter) commemorates the resurrection of Yeshua. Do you see the parallels? There are so many more but enough for this blog post. I will be attending a Passover Seder with the Messianic congregation of Mishkahn D’avid this year (True in 2010 and true in 2016!) . I also attended one in a Jewish family’s home in 2009. Remember, I am ‘GRAFTED IN’!

Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 03/24/2016

PURIM 2016

Queen Esther (costumed)

This year March 23/24 is the Jewish festival of Purim. This fun holiday is celebrated every year on the 14th of the Hebrew month of Adar (late winter/early spring). It commemorates the salvation of the Jewish people in Ancient Persia from Haman’s plot “to destroy, kill and annihilate all the Jews, young and old, infants and women, in a single day.” (sound familiar?)

Interestingly, Purim falls on Maundy Thursday this year. In both observances, we celebrate freedom from chains of oppression and slavery. With Purim, the people of God are SAVED from extermination; with Maundy Thursday through Resurrection Sunday, all who believe in Messiah is SAVED from slavery to sin and damnation and become the people of God. I am re-publishing this post on Purim for 2016. The date is different but otherwise the info is the same.

The story in a nutshell:
The Persian empire of the 4th century BCE extended over 127 lands, and all the Jews were its subjects. When King Ahasuerus had his wife, Queen Vashti, executed for failing to follow his orders, he orchestrated a beauty pageant to find a new queen. A Jewish girl, Esther, found favor in his eyes and became the new queen—though she refused to divulge the identity of her nationality.

Meanwhile, the anti-Semitic Haman was appointed prime minister of the empire. Mordechai, the leader of the Jews (and Esther’s cousin) defied the king’s orders and refused to bow to Haman. Haman was incensed and convinced the king to issue a decree ordering the extermination of all the Jews on the 13th of Adar—a date chosen by a lottery Haman made. Mordechai galvanized all the Jews, convincing them to repent, fast and pray to God. Meanwhile, Esther asked the king and Haman to join her for a feast. At the feast, Esther revealed to the king her Jewish identity. Haman was hanged, Mordechai was appointed prime minister in his stead, and a new decree was issued—granting the Jews the right to defend themselves against their enemies. On the 13th of Adar the Jews mobilized and killed many of their enemies. On the 14th of Adar they rested and celebrated.

Purim observances:
There is a special atmosphere in the synagogue during the Megillah (Book of Esther) reading. Children and sometimes adults arrive in costumes. Some costumes are traditional Mordechai and Esther disguises, and some are the more modern Spiderman and Harry Potter costumes. Anything goes on Purim.  Everyone brings noise makers (rashanim) which they shake whenever “Haman”, the villain in the Purim story, is mentioned during the reading, and they boo and hiss at his name. Another custom was to write Haman’s name on one’s shoe soles and to stamp one’s feet until the oppressor’s name was erased. The custom of making a noise when Haman’s name is mentioned is very ancient and widespread. When Mordechai’s name is mentioned they cheer loudly.

Purim Food Customs
It is a mitzvah (good deed) to eat Seudat Purim (a festive meal) on Purim day. Often Purim songs are sung during this meal. There is even a commandment to drink to intoxication (imagine a command to get drunk!), until they no longer know whether they are blessing Mordechai or cursing Haman.

Purim basket

“Haman’s ears”

Another Purim custom related to food is Mishloach Manot or Shlach Manos (sending of portions – food baskets). Part of the Purim atmosphere is seeing children and adults, in costume, walking through the neighborhood giving baskets and plates filled with hamantashan and other goodies to family, friends, and neighbors. At the festive meal, and during the rest of the day, Jews eat hamantashen (Haman’s ears). Kreplach is another food often eaten at the festive meal.

Matanot LaEvyonim is Hebrew for “gifts to the poor.” On Purim, every Jew is required to give a minimum of two gifts to two people in need. The gifts should be food or money. Often synagogues join together on Purim to raise money to give to the needy.

Costumes and Carnivals

Purim Party

The most popular way to celebrate Purim is to dress up in costumes. The costumes mark the reversal of fate and the fact that Esther concealed her origins. Some say it also portrays the mysterious fact that God’s name is not mentioned once (He is hidden) in the Book of Esther, yet He was clearly in control of the whole situation!

Purim Plays, called Purim Shpiels, are also prevalent as a way to increase joy on the holiday. In Israel, street parades, called Adloyada, which means “until we can’t tell” (the difference between cursing Haman and blessing Mordechai), have become popular on Purim. Carnivals and parties are also common ways to celebrate Purim.

Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 03/10/2016

“CHRISTIAN” Anti-Semitism

‘Christian’ Anti-semitism – How Can It Be?

chrantisemIncomprehensibly, there are so called Christians who hate the Jewish people and go along with anti-semitism. How can anyone who loves the Lord Jesus hate the Jewish people? You go to Sunday School and church and rejoice in your ‘so great . . . salvation” (Heb. 2:3), and you sing hymns and worship and yet hate the Jewish people. The same God who who chose the Jews has invited gentiles into His Kingdom also! How can true believers despise those who brought them Our Lord and Savior and beauty and truth including the laws for all true civilized behavior? I am honored to say that I stand with the Jewish people now and will continue to do so forever. I thank God for His Chosen People and His marvelous grace in preserving them despite endless attempts to exterminate them. Please refresh your memory of these passages from Romans chapter 11, as written by the Apostle Paul:

 

Israel Is Not Cast Away

“11 1I say then, God has not rejected His people, has He? May it never be! For I too am an Israelite,  a descendant of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. God has not rejected His people whom He foreknew.

What then? What Israel is seeking, it has not obtained, but those who were chosen obtained it, and the rest were hardened; just as it is written,

“God gave them a spirit of stupor,
Eyes to see not and ears to hear not,
Down to this very day.”

boycott11 I say then, they did not stumble so as to fall, did they? May it never be! But by their transgression salvation has come to the Gentiles, to make them jealous. 12 Now if their transgression is riches for the world and their failure is riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their fulfillment be! 13 But I am speaking to you who are Gentiles. Inasmuch then as I am an apostle of Gentiles, I magnify my ministry, 14 if somehow I might move to jealousy my  fellow countrymen and save some of them. 15 For if their rejection is the reconciliation of the world, what will their acceptance be but life from the dead? 16 If the first piece of dough is holy, the lump is also; and if the root is holy, the branches are too.

17 But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, being a wild olive (gentile), were grafted in among them and became partaker with them of the  rich root of the olive tree, 18 do not be arrogant toward the branches; but if you are arrogant, remember that it is not you who supports the root, but the root supports you19 You will say then, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.” 20 Quite right, they were broken off for their unbelief, but you stand by your faith. Do not be conceited, but fear; 21 for if God did not spare the natural branches, He will not spare you, either. 22 Behold then the kindness and severity of God; to those who fell, severity, but to you, God’s kindness, if you continue in His kindness; otherwise you also will be cut off. 23 And they also, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for God is able to graft them in again. 24 For if you were cut off from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and were grafted contrary to nature into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these who are the natural branches be grafted into their own olive tree?

25 For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery—so that you will not be wise in your own estimation—that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in26 and so all Israel will be saved; just as it is written,

“The Deliverer will come from Zion,
He will remove ungodliness from Jacob.”
27 “This is  My covenant with them,
When I take away their sins.”

hatred28 From the standpoint of the gospel they are enemies for your sake, but from the standpoint of God’s choice they are beloved for the sake of the fathers; 29 for the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.30 For just as you once were disobedient to God, but now have been shown mercy because of their disobedience, 31 so these also now have been disobedient, that because of the mercy shown to you they also may now be shown mercy. 32 For God has shut up all in disobedience so that He may show mercy to all.

33 Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!  For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who became His counselor? 35 Or who has first given to Him that it might be paid back to him again? 36 For from Him and through Him and to Him are all things. To Him be the glory forever. Amen.”

 

To read a previous post on the same subject please click here: https://graftedinelena.wordpress.com/2011/04/29/christian-anti-semitism-an-oxymoron/https://graftedinelena.wordpress.com/2011/04/29/christian-anti-semitism-an-oxymoron/

 

Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 01/27/2016

WORLD REMEMBERS HOLOCAUST TODAY

INTERNATIONAL HOLOCAUST REMEMBRANCE DAY

remdayAlthough Holocaust Remembrance Day is observed in Israel on May-4-5 this year, the world remembers today. . . .

Bridges For Peace publication

PM Netanyahu greets Holocaust survivors

PM Netanyahu greets Holocaust survivors

Wednesday, 27 January 2016Editor’s Note: Today is the International Holocaust Remembrance Day. It is a day that transcends borders and religions as the world remembers the terrible genocide during which an estimated 6 million Jewish men, women and children were murdered.

On 27 January 1945, Russian forces reached the ‪Auschwitz-Birkenau extermination camp and opened the gates to the largest Nazi killing center in Europe. Over the past 71 years, Auschwitz has become a symbol of the Holocaust, representing the depths of evil, cruelty and deprivation.

holoNearly 60 years after the terrible days of World War II and its unspeakable repercussions for European Jewry, a number of those who lived through the nightmare drafted a Survivor’s Declaration.  

“The Age of Holocaust Survivors is drawing to a close,” it reads. “Before long no one will be left to say I was there, I saw, I remember what happened. All that will be left will be books of literature and research, pictures and films, and multitudinous testimony.

“This will be a new era,” the declaration states. “The dark inheritance of the Shoah that was so indelibly stamped on the survivors’ souls and hearts will become a sacred mission imposed upon humanity.” “The Holocaust, which established the standard for absolute evil, is the universal heritage of all civilized people.”

Last night, as sunset ushered in the start of International Holocaust Remembrance Day, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu spoke of the importance of remembrance, anti-Semitism and the way forward for the Jewish state.

Hall of the Children - Holocaust Museum, Yad Vashem, Israel

Hall of the Children – Holocaust Museum, Yad Vashem, Israel

Following is Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s greeting on the occasion of International Holocaust Remembrance Day:

“Preserving the memory of the Holocaust is more important today than ever for in this period of resurgent and sometimes violent anti-Semitism, it is commemorations like this that remind us all where the oldest and most enduring hatred can lead.

Unfortunately, in Europe and elsewhere, Jews are once again being targeted just for being Jews. Around the world, Jewish communities are increasingly living in fear. We see anti-Semitism directed against individual Jews, and we also see this hatred directed against the collective Jew, against the Jewish state. Israel is targeted with the same slurs and the same libels that were leveled against the Jewish people since time immemorial.

Islamic extremists incorporate the most outrageous anti-Semitism into their murderous doctrines. We see this in Gaza; we see it in Raqqa; we see it in Tehran. And it’s not just Islamic extremists in the Middle East and Europe. Even respected Western opinion leaders have become afflicted with hatred for the Jewish people and the Jewish state.

The obsession with the Jews—the fixation on the Jewish state—defies any other rational explanation. While across the region, Islamist militants brutalize entire populations, enslave and rape women, murder Christians and gays, the UN Human Rights Council repeatedly condemns Israel. More than North Korea. More than Iran. More than Syria. More than all of them put together. Some things just don’t change.

Today, the world once again marks International Holocaust Remembrance Day. We remember the six million Jewish and five million Gentile victims of Nazi terror. We also stand with those being oppressed and murdered today. The world needs to remember so that the sins of yesterday don't turn into the reality of today. NEVER AGAIN!!!(Photo: Moshe Milner/GPO/Flash90

Today, the world once again marks International Holocaust Remembrance Day. We remember the six million Jewish and five million Gentile victims of Nazi terror. We also stand with those being oppressed and murdered today. The world needs to remember so that the sins of yesterday don’t turn into the reality of today.NEVER AGAIN!!!(Photo: Moshe Milner/GPO/Flash90)

But one thing has changed. We have changed. The Jews have changed. We are no longer a stateless people endlessly searching for a safe haven. We are no longer a powerless people begging others to offer us protection.

Today we are an independent and sovereign people in our own homeland. Today we can speak out against the voices of hatred and those seeking our destruction. Today we can protect ourselves and defend our freedom. We have changed and we stand and speak out and we defend ourselves. But where is Europe? Where is the rest of civilization?

When a state like Iran and movements like Daesh [ISIS] and Hamas openly declare their goal of committing another Holocaust, we will not let it happen. But Europe and the rest of the world must stand up together with us. Not for our sake; for theirs.”Source: (This press release was originally published by Government Press Office on 26 January 2016)  Photo Credit: Kobi Gideon/GPO

Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 12/16/2015

WHAT’S IN A NAME??

The Sinister Difference Between “ISIS” & “ISIL”

Here is an explanation of the difference between the terms ISIS and ISIL. The U.S. Administration stubbornly clings to the term ‘ISIL’. Why is that?

ISIS = Islamic State of Iraq and Syria.  Iraq is to the east of Jordan (shaped like the hatchet) and Syria is to the north.

ISIL = Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.  Iraq is still to the east of Jordan, and “the Levant” is a term that comes from “the rising (of the sun, i.e., to the east)” – and is basically the land along the Mediterranean – that includes Lebanon, Israel, and those countries along there.

levantBut by saying ISIL, you “negate” Israel as its own country and lump it in with the rest of the countries along the Mediterranean – and Israel sort of disappears (loses its sovereignty) and becomes part of “the Levant ” – which is therefore part of ISIL.

Why does the administration use the term ISIL?  Have you ever wondered about that?

Here is the difference: What makes up the near exact center of the Muslim Levant ? Israel.

ISIL stands for the Islamic State of Iraq and Levant.  We Westerners don’t really make much of a distinction, do we? No, from our perspective it’s all about the same.  But how would a Muslim living in the Middle East view it? Just what is the Levant anyway? The geographical term LEVANT refers to a multi-nation region in the Middle East.  It’s a land bridge between Turkey to the north and Egypt to the south.

If you look on a map, however, in the near exact middle of the nations that comprise the Levant, guess what you see?

It’s Israel.

When the administration refers over and over to the Islamic State as ISIL, it is sending a message to Muslims all over the Middle East, that it personally does not recognize Israel as a sovereign nation, but as territory belonging to the Islamic State.

Now you know why the U.S. has no plan, no goal, and no stated aim for dealing with ISIS.

But there is a plan, and it’s a really nasty, diabolical one.

The plan seems to be to do only the bare minimum that Congress demands.  Are we buying “ISIL” as much time as possible to make as many gains as they can? The Islamic State has garnered millions of dollars, a vast cache of weapons, and in their latest foray have captured Syrian fighter jets and now 12 commercial passenger planes. With each passing day that we do next to nothing, the Islamic State grows by leaps and bounds. The ultimate goal, of course, has not changed and will never change.

THE ULTIMATE GOAL IS THE DESTRUCTION OF ISRAEL!

Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 12/07/2015

FESTIVAL OF LIGHTS & MIRACLES!

DEAR READERS, HERE IS A RE-POST FROM 2011. THIS YEAR HANUKKAH IS CELEBRATED FROM DECEMBER 6 THROUGH 14.

_____________________________________________________

HANUKKAH –  Kislev 25 – Tevet 3, or Dec. 20 – 28, 2011

The festival of Hanukkah celebrates two miracles: 1- a great and humanly impossible military victory, and 2 – a miraculous supply of oil for the Jewish Temple. Though a very different holiday than Christmas, the two share a common theme – hope for the people of God and rejoicing in the midst of God’s miraculous provision for our needs. Both also celebrate light – for Jews, the light of the menorah, for Christians the Light of the World, Yeshua (Jesus), who came into the world in the fullness of time.

Hanukkah, which means ‘rededication’, is not, however, a holy day. Work is permitted during this 8 day festival. It is not a biblical holiday, the reason being that the events of Hanukkah occurred 300 years after the list of Hebrew Scriptures (canon) was completed. The Hanukkah events occurred in 165 BC, during the ‘400 silent years’ between the writing of Malachi and the gospels of Matthew and Luke. Actually, Yeshua celebrated Hanukkah! And it was at Jerusalem the feast of the dedication, and it was winter. And Jesus walked in the temple in Solomon’s porch.” John 10:22-23

There are many parallels between what happened to Israel in 165 BC and Israel’s situation today. In 165 BC The Macabees, a band of courageous Jews, defeated a larger Greek-Syrian army, led by king Antiochus Epiphanes, that had invaded Israel. They defiled the Temple and tried to forbid Jewish worship and force Greek culture upon them. Antiochus put restrictions on the Jews’ religious freedom; he placed a pagan altar in the Jerusalem temple for the adoration of Zeus, and offered the flesh of pigs on it – an especially abominable desecration. (A similar defilement is prophesied during the future 7 year Tribulation). He also forbade the covenant sign of circumcision, and prohibited Jews from studying Torah (the Bible). He burned several scrolls. Thousands of Jews were slaughtered for disobeying these rules. Just as today, the survival of Jews and Judaism was at stake. As we know, Hezbollah, Hamas, Iran and others are intent on wiping out the Jewish people and destroying every vestige of Israel itself. A small band of Jews, led by Mattathias and his five sons, including Judah Macabee, organized into a guerrilla army and revolted. After three years of struggle against a vastly superior and larger army, the Jews miraculously prevailed and restored Jewish rule to Israel. One way to look at this holiday is that the Jewish  ‘Festival of Lights’ was established in opposition to cultural assimilation which is the key to their survival.

The second miracle was the miraculous supply of oil for the Temple. There was an eternal flame that needed to stay lit by oil, signifying God’s constant presence. However, after the their victory, the Jews found only one flask of the pure olive oil – enough for only one day. They could use only the pure oil, not oil that had been touched by the pagans or used for pagan sacrifices. It would take eight days to produce more pure oil. But they lit the flame anyway, sending a message of faith in God to supply. And the lamp stayed lit for eight days! God sent a true miracle in response to their faith.

The most prominent tradition of Hanukkah is the daily lighting of the Hanukkah menorah, the Hanukkiyiah. A hanukkiyah is a candelabrum with eight candleholders in a row and a ninth candleholder set a little above the others. It’s different from a menorah, which has seven branches and was used in the Temple before it was destroyed in 70 AD. A hanukkiyah is nevertheless a kind of menorah. A candle is lit on the on each of the eight days. One candle is lit the first night, two the second, and so on, until the final night when all the candles are lit. Each of the eight candles is lit with a “helper” candle known as the shamash. The shamash is lit first, is used to light the other candles, and then is returned to the ninth candle spot, which is set apart from the others.

Another tradition is the dreidel, a spinning top with Hebrew letters on the four sides. Each side of the dreidel bears a letter of the Hebrew alphabet: נ (Nun), ג (Gimel), ה (Hei), ש (Shin), which together form the acronym for “נס גדול היה שם” (Nes Gadol Hayah Sham – “a great miracle happened there“).In Israel, the fourth side of most dreidels is inscribed with the letter פ (Pei), rendering the acronym, נס גדול היה פה, Nes Gadol Hayah Poh—”A great miracle happened here“.

Turn up your speaker and click here for a mini video and song of Hanukkah: Hanukkah Story

To our Jewish friends I say ‘Happy Hanukkah’ to all!

Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 11/20/2015

THE SKY HAS WARNED US

Terrorism

So, what have the four blood moon eclipses on Jewish feast days these past 2 years been telling us? https://graftedinelena.wordpress.com/2013/11/07/four-blood-moons-something-is-about-to-change/ Just look around. Read the news, watch the news, read Facebook posts, Tweets, etc. etc. and you can see that our world has drastically changed and is continuing to change. And it is not changing for the better. As the Bible tells us we are in perilous times, with fearful sightsThere will be great earthquakes, famines and pestilences in various places, and fearful sights and great signs from heaven.” (Luke 21:11). NIV “This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.” (II Timothy 3:1) NIV “You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still (yet) to come. (Matthew 24:6). NIV “But concerning that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father only.” (Matthew 24:36) NIV

Radical Islam believes fervently that they are to overcome the entire world with a caliphate headed by the 12th Imam (their messiah). I don’t have to spell out what they believe is their duty to allah. Is this happening? Are they doing this? Of course they are. Yet, our God tells believers not to be afraid, to pray, to repent, to fast. Unbelievers need to repent and become saved by Yeshua (Jesus) the only true Messiah.But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God—having a form of godliness but denying its power. . . “ (II Timothy 3:1-5) NIV

And yet we can hope. In the past, the lunar tetrads have portended dark times, yet they were always followed by times of healing and peace. However, we are now entering into an extremely dark time globally.  My prayer for the church and Jewish people is from II Chronicles 7:14 “ if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” NIV And my prayer for unbelievers is that they will turn to the one true God through Christ the Messiah and be born again. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16) KJV Last, I pray that the governments of the world will turn to God, the One who allowed them to be rulers, and rule in righteousness and faith.

 

Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 11/03/2015

Christians Tour Israel Despite Terrorism

October 2015 Joshua Fund tour

October 2015 Joshua Fund tour

According to Joel Rosenberg, the current wave of terrorism that’s been encouraged and incited by Palestinian leaders could be an eruption of a “Third Intifada”. Since September 17, at least 153 Israelis have been wounded, and 11 Israelis have been killed. Yet, amazingly, Evangelical Christians from all over the world continue to come to tour the country and bless Israel!

Nearly 200 Evangelicals just spent nearly two weeks in the Land with The Joshua Fund on their  “Prayer & Vision Tour,” and they had only a few cancellations, despite the violence. Click here for photos of the tour: https://www.facebook.com/Joel-C-Rosenbergs-Epicenter-Team-131231760678/?fref=ts

Currently 150 Evangelicals are here with Tony Perkins and Gen. Jerry Boykin on the Family Research Council’s first-ever tour of Israel. It’s been greatly encouraging to the Israeli people, the tourism industry, and government leaders to see Christians continuing to come to show their love and solidarity. As the world increasingly turns against Israel at the U.N. and in other international forums, Israelis often feel very much alone. But the steadfast love of Bible-believing Christians is very moving and unexpected here. Especially now.

Israel-Palestine-tent-meal

lunch in “Abraham’s Tent”

Please pray for the apple of God’s eye:

  • Pray for the peace of Jerusalem. (Psalms 122:6)
  • Pray for the Lord to comfort and heal all those who have been wounded.
  • Pray for what the Bible calls “peace that passes understanding” for the families and friends of those who have been killed.
  • Pray for the Lord to comfort and heal the deep emotional wounds of Palestinian families whose loved ones have turned into terrorists, or have been captured and killed for attacking Israeli citizens.
  • Pray for security forces to have favor and success in stopping terror attacks and restoring the rule of law. The good news is that Israeli security forces have learned over the years how to stop terrorist suicide bombing attacks. They have also created the Iron Dome system to neutralize the impact of rocket attacks by Hamas and other terror groups in Gaza. The bad news is that the terrorists have resorted to using kitchen knives, meat cleavers, broken bottles and cars to attack Israeli civilians, police officers and border guards.
  • Pray that the Lord restrains those who want to do evil, thwarts their plots, and brings them to justice — and that the Lord would dramatically change the hearts of Palestinian leaders who are inciting young people to attack and kill Jews.
  • Pray for wisdom for Israeli leaders to know exactly how to handle the situation, while also showing compassion towards Israeli Arabs who are citizens of the Jewish State, and compassion on Palestinian Arabs who are not terrorists and are suffering even further because of the actions of evil doers.
  • Pray that the Lord would knit together the hearts of Jewish and Arab followers of Jesus Christ, that we would not let the current violence and tensions divide us, but rather unite us in love, in prayer for the nation and region, and in humble service towards one another.
  • Pray above all that the Holy Spirit would dramatically and supernaturally open the eyes of the lost and the spiritually blind to the truth that Jesus is the Christ foretold in the ancient Biblical prophecies and that only by faith in His death and resurrection can any of us have true divine forgiveness of our sins, peace with God, and hope in this increasingly dark world.”

airportIt’s not just a physical war underway in this region, it’s a white-hot spiritual war, as well. So thank you for loving and praying for Israel, and God bless you.

To see some photos of my two trips to Israel, click on the Israel Travel tab above.

Posted by: Elena's Israel Blog | 09/25/2015

Last Blood Moon of the Tetrad Sunday night!

FOUR BLOOD MOONS – SOMETHING IS ABOUT TO CHANGE

Last  year I posted this information about the current signs in the sky that I believe the Lord is showing us. Each of the other tetrads (series of 4 total lunar eclipses on Jewish feast days) happened at times when circumstances were very bad for Israel, and then were followed by very good happenings. The 4th total solar eclipse of a Super moon, in fact, will be visible in much of the world, including Israel. It occurs on the eve of Sukkot, or the Jewish Feast Of Tabernacles. You can go outside Sunday night and watch for it or go to this site for live streaming at

http://www.space.com/19195-night-sky-planets-asteroids-webcasts.html

Please refresh your memory on the significance of these eclipses.

4bloodmoonsThis is a must-read book by Pastor John Hagee. As the world spins away totally ignorant of God’s celestial billboard, I believe we are heading for major changes globally. Is anyone aware of this? Genesis 1:1,14 of the Bible says “In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth … And God said, Let there be lights in the firmament of the heaven to divide the day from the night; and let them be for signs, and for seasons, and for days and years.”  Starting from that foundation, Hagee reminds us that Jesus Himself taught that there would be signs in the sun, in the moon and in the stars” (Luke 21:25) as a sign that believers should be alert to the nearing return of the Savior.

Hagee points out that major world changes have corresponded with the ‘blood moons’ of 1493-1494, 1949-1950, and 1967-1968. From the opening of the New World to the emergence of a Jewish state to major wars in the Middle East, Hagee writes that these events “centered on significant events related to Israel and the Jewish people” and that the coming blood moons of 2014-2015 could mark another major change for Israel and the world.

Each of the three previous series of Four Blood Moons began with a trail of tears and ended with triumph for the Jewish people,” Hagee writes. The central message throughout FOUR BLOOD MOONS, however, is not merely a call to watch the skies but an impassioned appeal for individuals to recognize the necessity for faith in Jesus/Yeshua. He also calls upon the nations to show unconditional love towards Israel and to be aware that God will punish or reward nations based on their treatment of Israel. Note these two verses from the Old and New Testaments:

“And I will show wonders in the heavens, and in the earth, blood and fire and pillars of smoke.  The sun shall be turned into darkness, and the moon into blood, before the coming of the great and awesome day of Jehovah.”  Joel 2:30 -31

“The sun shall be turned into darkness and the moon into blood, before that great and glorious Day of the Lord.” Acts 2:20 (spoken by Jesus)

How does the moon turn to’ blood’? NASA and science have named a certain type of TOTAL lunar eclipse as ‘blood moons’. This happens when certain conditions exist in the amount of celestial dust and the time of the full moon. Red light, defracted from the sun, plays across the moon when it’s inside Earth’s shadow. (*See notes from NASA below).

The Jewish Talmud (book of tradition / Interpretation) says; “When the moon is in eclipse, it is a bad omen for Israel. If its face is as red as blood, it is a sign that the sword is coming to the Jews.” Therefore: Lunar Eclipse = bad omen for the Jewish people and Israel; Solar Eclipse = bad omen for the world.

2014-15TetradA tetrad of four consecutive blood moons on Jewish Feast days within two years in Israel is very rare and has only occurred seven times since the time of Jesus. Each of these also contained a TOTAL solar eclipse somewhere in the middle of the two years. There are now four blood moons and a Total solar eclipse scheduled to appear in 2014/2015 on the Feasts of Passover and Tabernacles, and then there will NOT be any for the next 500 years.

Every time this blood moon/solar eclipse pattern has appeared on Jewish feast days a big event has affected the nation of Israel. The event affecting Israel begins just before the actual years of the blood moons. But immediately after the tribulations of Israel, a time of deliverance and victory follows. To understand what will happen in the 2014 – 2015 blood moons you must understand the pattern of blood moons in the past.

NASA found that we have had “blood-red moons” on the first day of Passover and the first day of Sukkoth (Tabernacles) on back-to-back years seven times since 1 A.D. Three of these occurrences were connected to:

1492 (the year the Jews were expelled from Spain by Queen Isabella, but followed by Christopher Columbus’ discovery of America where Jews were able to escape persecution, and where home is today for more than 5 million Jews.

1948 (Hitler’s Holocaust, followed by the statehood of Israel)

1967 (the Six-Day War, followed by the Jews’ reclamation of Jerusalem)

These are some of the most significant days in Jewish history.

blood moon calendar-bannerAccording to NASA – Four ‘blood-red’ TOTAL lunar eclipses with an intervening solar eclipse WILL fall again on Passover and Sukkoth (Tabernacles) in 2014 and 2015… the same back-to-back occurrences as at the times of 1492, 1948 and 1967. Seven back-to-back, blood-red moons have fallen on the first day of Passover and Sukkoth, with the eighth time coming in 2014 and 2015. Add to this the fact that 2015 is a Shemittah (Sabbatical) Year, which occurs every seven years. Historically, God punished the Jews for not observing the Shemittah year, that is, leaving the land to rest for one year. Hagee writes “In America, the judgment of violating Shemittah is not linked to the land of Israel but to our national disobedience to the Word of God. We give our allegiance to the idols of self indulgence and greed, and our immorality is equivalent to that of Sodom and Gomorrah.” “God always sends a nation warning before He sends judgment; are we listening?  Will America be at war? Will America’s mountain of debt come crashing down, destroying the dollar? Will global terrorists attack our nation again with a force that will make 9/11 pale by comparison? The attacks on the Twin Towers were on September 11, 2001. The Wall Street crash was on September 29, 2008. The next Tetrad will end in September 2015, which will include the Year of Shemittah. Will a crisis happen as before? What earthshaking event will it be? This we know: things are about to change forever!”

Hagee does not presume to say just what momentous events will occur in the next two years, but it is certain that something big is coming. Look at the state of the world – Israel, the U.S., Egypt, Syria, Iran, Russia, etc. etc.

It cannot be regarded as coincidence that all four blood moons of 2014/15 occur on religious festivals of Israel, together with two eclipses of the sun also on important days in 2015. A blood moon will occur on the 14th day of Nisan in 2014, when the Passover will be celebrated in Israel (Leviticus 23:5). Nisan is the first month in Israel’s religious calendar. On the 15th day of the seventh month (Tishri) when the Feast of Tabernacles begins (Leviticus 23:34) there will be another blood moon.

Exactly the same pattern will be repeated in 2015. Because of Israel’s lunar calendar these dates all coincide with the full moon – on these occasions the moon will become blood-red. Apart from the lunar eclipses there will also be two eclipses of the sun in 2015… on the first day of Nisan and again on the first day of Tishri. The Rosh Hashanah (Jewish New Year) is celebrated on 1st Tishri, which is the beginning of their civil calendar.

The eclipses of the sun and moon confront us with precise dates which cannot be manipulated…! Nevertheless, these signs should not be seen as an attempt to date-setting for the Second Coming of Christ but rather as a wake-up call to be ready for what may happen in the near future. Now is not the time to lapse into spiritual slumber like the Matthew 25 foolish virgins. I recommend that every Christian and Jew read this book and decide for yourself if God is sending us signs on his celestial billboard.

Rev. John Hagee is the founder of CUFI, Christians United For Israel, and was the initiator of all the wonderful ‘Nights to Honor Israel’, held in the U.S. and worldwide.

*NASA: Our planet casts a long shadow. It starts on the ground–Step outside at night. You’re in Earth’s shadow. Think about it!–and it stretches almost a million miles into space, far enough to reach the moon. Suppose you had a personal spaceship. Here’s your mission: Tonight, at midnight, blast off and fly down the middle of Earth’s shadow. Keep going until you’re about 200,000 miles above Earth, almost to the moon. Now turn around and look down. The view from your cockpit window is Earth’s nightside, the dark half of our planet opposite the sun. But it’s not completely dark! All around Earth’s limb, the atmosphere glows red.

 What you’re seeing is every sunrise and sunset on Earth–all at once. This ring of light shines into Earth’s shadow, breaking the utter darkness you might expect to find there. Turn off the cockpit lights. There’s a lovely red glow.

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