1. Praise: Our praise to our Lord this morning was based on Isaiah 40:27-41:16, which is the prophetic portion that is read in the synagogues this Shabbat. In spite of all that we hear in the news, our God reigns.

    –Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.Psa. 119:105

    • We rejoice that You know what is coming and are not surprised by anything.
    • You keep Israel as the apple of Your eye (Psa.17:8).
    • Thank You that as Yeshua was lifted up to heavenly places (Eph. 1:20) to intercede for us, He also descended to the depths (Rom. 10:7) so that He knows our frailty (Psa. 103:14).
    • We rest in the knowledge that You do not faint in the face of difficulty. Instead, as we wait on You, we are strengthened (Isa. 40:28-31).
    • You are unchanging and faithful forever (Mal. 3:6).
  2. Security: For years the Lord has led us to pray into Micah 4:11-13. As we intercede for Israel’s security situation and the reality of it becoming more dangerous weekly, let’s keep in mind that our God reigns (Psa. 99:1; 103:19), and that He is also using Israel as bait in His trap to deal with the pride of the nations. Yet those of us who live in Israel are part of His bait – and we need your prayers.
    • Now also many nations are gathered against you, who say, ‘Let her be defiled; let our eyes look on Zion’. But they do not know YHWH’s plans, nor understand His counsel, for He has gathered them like sheaves to the floor. Arise and thresh, O daughter of Zion; for I will make your horn iron, and your hoofs bronze, and you shall crush many peoples. And I will give their gain to YHWH, and their wealth to the Lord of the all the earth.Mic. 4:11-13

    • Lord, You are making Jerusalem a pain-in-the-neck to the world (Zech. 12:2-3), yet we see that the end of those arrogant nations is total destruction (12:9). Have mercy God.
    • In Your perfect timing spring this divine trap so that the nations know You are God (Psa. 83:16-18).
    • You know the end from the beginning, so we have great confidence in You (Isa. 46:10; Prov. 3:5).
    • We thank You in advance for the outworking of Your will – for Your glory and Israel’s salvation.
    • May Your kingdom come and Your will be done in all these situations (Matt. 6:10).
    • We bless You for creating the IDF for these last days (Ezek. 37:10).
    • Yet we trust in You and not in the IDF (Psa. 20:7-9).
    • Blessed is YHWH my Rock, who teaches My hands to war, my fingers to battle; my goodness and fortress; my high tower and deliverer; my shield and He in whom I trust…Psa. 144:1-2a

    • We praise You for being so faithful to watch over Your Word to do it (Isa. 55:11; Jer. 1:12).
    • Thank You for the Haman effect that we see in history – that the higher Israel’s enemies build the gallows to destroy them, the more they fail and fall into Your judgment (Est. 7:10; Joel 3:1-2).
    • YHWH brings the counsel of the nations to nothing; He breaks the plots of the people. The counsel of YHWH stands forever, the thoughts of His heart to all generations. (Psa. 33:10-11) Amen!
  3. Security: Israel’s number one enemy Iran has Israel surrounded at this present time. They have done this via their control of various proxies – Hamas and especially Palestinian Islamic Jihad in Gaza; Hizbullah in Lebanon; plus other terrorist groups in both Syria and Iraq. Iran has often made their intentions clear that their goal is the destruction of “the Zionist entity” – their name for Israel. Yet God is moving and hearing our prayers as we see in the following.
    • Thank You for the panic we are seeing in Iran’s leaders as the Iraqi and Lebanese people openly protest against their governments links with Iran (Psa. 35:26; Jer. 49:37).
    • Are You answering our cries that Iran’s leaders make major geo-political mistakes? Their breaking out of the restraints of the nuclear deal has even the UN and the EU concerned, and much of the world is now warning of how dangerous this could be (Psa. 50:15).
    • As Iran’s leaders respond to sanctions in great pride, use that to bring them down (Prov. 16:18).
    • Iran has used its finances to curse Israel, so cut off its ability to provide money to all its terrorist proxies (Num. 24:9; Isa. 14:29-32).
    • Thank You for increased sanctions on Iran’s leaders by America. Now confront the EU to join in this righteous effort to stop the world’s leading terror sponsoring state (Eccl. 8:11).
    • As per Jeremiah 49:38a, You are setting Your throne in Iran via the growth of the Body of Messiah.
    • Please watch over the next part of that verse and destroy Iran’s “king and princes”!
    • Confound all of Iran’s plans and communications that are aimed at destroying Israel (Psa. 129:5).
    • Thank You for shaking Iran through natural disasters: earthquakes, droughts, and floods (Psa. 99:1).
    • Cause an increase in the frustration and anger of the common Iranians to once again protest against their demonically-driven government leaders (Psa. 94:1-11).
  4. Security: We then prayed for Israel to know what to do in the face of this open Iranian threat.
    • Lord, if the IDF must pre-empt, give them the timing, courage and wisdom to do it (Isa. 41:14-16).
    • From all Israeli leaders who are responsible to make these decisions, remove the fear of man – or the fear of the nations – and replace it with the fear of God (Prov. 29:25; Isa. 35:4).
    • Any IDF plans that are not from You, toss them and impart Your plans only (Prov. 19:21).
    • Supply any lack in training, finances and equipment so that Israel can defend itself (Psa. 44:3-4).
    • Continue to enable Israel’s intelligence gathering to be miraculously accurate (Job 24:1; 28:11).
    • Guard all of Israel’s spies and collaborators from Your enemies (Psa. 83:3).
    • Thank You that Qatar is halting its $30 million monthly support to Hamas.
    • Show Israel what Hamas’ reaction will be and how to defend against it.
    • Depoliticize all that has to do with Israel’s security – so that Israel can defend its people even in this period of only having a temporary government (1 Tim. 2:1-4).
    • Give Prime Minister and Defense Minster Bibi Netanyahu wisdom from on high (Eccl. 7:19; 9:18).
    • Guide the physical placement of Israel’s Iron Dome batteries, its air force and submarines (Prov. 16:9).
  5. Government: So far we seem to be no closer to forming a new government than we were when we first went to the polls. What is God saying and how should we pray? These questions have been part of our approach to this very confusing and aggravating situation. Since the first elections were called in December 2018 Israel’s government has been in a waiting mode; it really needs a functional government. Negotiations are continuing, led by Benny Gantz of the Blue and White party in an effort to form some kind of coalition. Discussions to form a unity government with Netanyahu’s Likud party have been unsuccessful. The possibility of forming a minority government with support from the Joint List, Arab block has been suggested. We are told there are negotiations behind closed doors, but no details are evident. Rumors are flying but facts are few.
    • Ultimately, the government is on Your shoulders and You reign over all (Isa. 9:6-7).
    • We do not understand the cause of the blockage that prevents this process from moving forward. When You are ready to bring release in this area, show us how to intercede so that Your will prevails (Amos 3:7).
    • Block from the new government all haters of Zion and those who would divide Your land. I will enter into judgment with them there on account of My people, My heritage Israel, whom they have scattered among the nations. They have also divided up My land. (Joel 3: 2)
    • You know what is being negotiated in secret (Mark 4:22), and as You are the righteous judge, bring forth those who negotiate in righteousness (Gen. 18:25b; Prov. 14:34).
  6. Aliyah: As we prayed for an increase of scattered Jews to come home to Israel, we asked God that the next government would see both aliyah and the settling of new immigrants as a priority.
    • Lord, please send a dramatic shift in policy in the Ministry of Interior and Ministry of Absorption.
    • Make these ministries to actively welcome new immigrants.
    • Also provide the appropriate infrastructure to be in place to make the regathering of Your people much more successful.
    • You have set watchmen on the walls of Jerusalem (Isa, 62:6) who are told to remove via prayer the obstacles that stand in the way of Aliyah. Go through, go through the gates! Prepare the way for the people. Build up, build up the highway! Take out the stones; lift up a banner for the peoples! (62:10)
    • While we know that humanly speaking, bureaucratic changes happen extremely slowly, we beseech You for a miracle, that these changes may happen quickly.
    • As Yahweh Yireh, the God who provides (Gen. 22:14), we ask You for affordable housing and practical work options for new immigrants – and we ask for it is going to take a miracle to do this!
    • With all the new road and light rail construction that is happening around the country, may the transportation between the periphery and Israel’s center aid the new immigrants (Isa. 49:11-12)
    • Prepare the hearts of those who are immigrating for the change that is before them (Prov. 16:9)
    • Last year we had more than 30,000 new immigrants arrive in Israel. We are asking You this year for more than 40,000 (Jer. 32:17).
  7. Rain: While Israel is in better shape than at this time last year, it is still in need of a very wet rainy season.
    • Be glad then, sons of Zion, and rejoice in YHWH your God, for He has given you the former rain according to righteousness, and He will cause the rain to come down for you, the former rain and the latter rain in the first month. And the floors shall be full of wheat, and the vats shall overflow with wine and oil. (Joel 2:23-24) Amen!
    • Lord, thank You that the Sea of Galilee is in better shape this year than it was last year at this time.
    • Thank You for the early rains that Israel has already received (Jam. 5:7).
    • We bless You for enabling Israel to be a leader in desalinization techniques.
    • Yet we ask for rain from heaven to fall in all the right areas (Matt. 5:45).
    • Make this land like the Garden of Eden – as You have promised (Ezek. 36:35)
    • Use an abundance of rain as a sign of Your care and goodness to Your people (Deut. 11:11-12).

Shabbat shalom and blessings from Jerusalem,

The IFI team

PS from Chuck: I thank you for your prayers covering me during my time ministering in America. The messages were well received and when there were times in which we could pray corporately, in the IFI style, our American brothers and sisters joined in in one accord. Your prayers contributed to all of that (1 Cor. 3:6-7).