1. Praise: The closing verse of this Shabbat’s prophetic portion comes right after the prophet Samuel chastised the people for asking for an earthly king – so that they could be a nation like all other nations. Obviously, that was, and still is, not God’s will for Israel (Num. 23:9b). God gave a miraculous sign of displeasure and the people realized they had sinned grievously. Yet listen – and this now applies to us as well – to what the prophet says next:
    • For YHWH will not forsake His people for His great name’s sake: because it has pleased YHWH to make you His people.1 Sam. 12:22

    • Thank You for choosing us because of who You are and not because of who we are (Rom. 5:10).
    • You are so faithful to fulfill all that You have spoken – both to Israel and to us (Phil. 1:6).
    • We marvel at Your unconditional promise to the nation of Israel, especially as we see it coming to pass so evidently before the world today (Deut. 4:316:23Jer. 32:41;Romans 11:21-22).
    • Ancient of days, we thank You for already having placed all the power and authority in heaven and on earth in Your Son’s hands at His ascension (Dan. 7:13-14Matt. 28:18).
    • We bless You for continuing to encourage us as we labor in prayer for this nation, as the very next verse following this week’s prophetic portion, Samuel says, Moreover as for me, God forbid that I should sin against YHWH in ceasing to pray for you… (1 Sam. 12:23a)
    • Lord, in faith we thank You for giving us grace to persist in intercession for this people – whether they do Your will or resist it. They are still Your chosen nation (Rom. 11:28-29).
  2. Government: Only God knows how long the current Israeli government will last. It has been a huge struggle for Prime Minister Bibi Netanyahu to work with Defense Minister and Alternative PM Benny Gantz and Foreign Minister Gabi Ashkenazi of the Blue and White party in this unity coalition. Still, we are told to pray for those in authority (2 Tim. 2:1-4).
    • We thank You that at just a time like this, Israel still has Netanyahu as its prime minister (Est. 4:14).
    • Abba, Bibi absolutely needs Your wisdom and we ask You to give it to him (Prov. 2:6Jam. 1:5-6).
    • While this is impossible with the current Israeli leadership, we look to You and ask You to create out of Israel’s governing coalition a righteous, workable unity. May you take the hearts of these kings (Netanyahu, Gantz and Ashkenazi) and turn them into a stream of united purpose for Your glory (Jer. 32:1727Proverbs 21:1).
  3. Extending sovereignty: Despite all the plans and rumors and with the reality that Israel can gain up to 30% more of its promised inheritance – without a war – we still do not know what will be done and when. The very pro-Israel US Trump administration has been sending out very confusing directives: first it was that Israel as a sovereign nation will decide its fate. Now it is that Trump will decide what Israel can do at this stage.
    • Lord, while we might be confused, You are not. Show us how to pray (Psa. 71:1).
    • Arise Lord, and nullify all counsel from Trump that is not from You (Psa. 33:10-11).
    • Trump’s heart is in Your hand. Turn it in the direction of Your will in this matter (Prov. 21:1).
    • And do the same for Netanyahu and all the rest of the Israeli government (Psa. 103:19).
    • Remember Almighty God, all of the times we have asked You to set Israel free from trusting in America, and answer those prayers today (Psa. 118:9Jer. 17:5).
    • Send out from Zion the truth of Your Word and of what international law really says (Mic. 4:1-2).
    • Remove all fear and hesitation from the thinking of Gantz and Ashkenazi re: extending sovereignty regardless of what the Palestinians or Jordan or the UN, or the EU, or the media say (Prov. 29:25).
    • If the choice is between Israel extending its sovereignty over parts of Judea and Samaria or holding new elections, let Netanyahu and his Likud party not back off on extending sovereignty (Judg. 2:1-4).
  4. Extending sovereignty – the aftermath: We are concerned that the battle to get to this point has been so intense that Israel may not be fully prepared for what comes next.
    • Lord, let nothing interfere with Israel’s rightful insistence to extend its civilian rule over these areas.
    • Lord, oversee and overrule the map on what shall be the borders of Trump’s deal (Deut. 32:8).
    • Bring Israeli and US map makers into one accord with Your will for this time (Isa. 54:1260:18).
    • May the final map be used to draw the settler leaders into unity with Netanyahu (Prov. 22:28).
    • Lord of hosts, please impart to the IDF strategic planners wisdom on what is to come and to know what they will need to do to protect this nation (1 Chr. 12:32).
    • Give angelic protection to all innocent Jews and Arabs on the roads in these areas (Psa. 91:11-12).
    • Lord, much wisdom is needed to draw up all the plans and the timetable for the transfer of these settlements from military to civilian governance. We look to You to provide it (Ezra 7:25Dan. 2:20).
    • Smooth out all the security challenges of moving from IDF to police protection (Rom. 13:1-4).
  5. Security – internal: We expect to see an increase in terror attacks and riots if Israel extends its rule over any part of Judea, Samaria and the Jordan Valley. Yet, to be honest, way too many Palestinians do not need any excuse to want to slaughter as many Jews as possible.
    • Lord, have the IDF and the other security forces prepared for the day following (Prov. 21:31).
    • Give Israel super accurate intelligence into all the demonic plans of the enemy (Job 12:2228:11b).
    • Continue to protect all of Israel’s undercover agents and collaborators (Josh. 6:23).
    • Thank You for the reports that many Palestinians are fed-up with protesting against Israel.
    • Use the recent coronavirus rebound to keep Arabs away from all demonstrations (Deut. 28:61).
    • Direct the IDF to know exactly where all its forces are to be positioned (Psa. 103:19).
    • Enable the rules of engagement to be well thought out and clearly communicated (1 Cor. 14:7-8).
    • Aid Israel’s security forces to discern between peaceful Arabs from those with evil intent in their hearts (Prov. 12:20).
    • Supernaturally guard all roads and settlements in the areas taken under Israel’s wings (Jer. 31:10).
    • Once the Jordan Valley is under Israel’s total rule, allow the world to hear the huge sigh of relief that will come from the Kingdom of Jordan’s security forces!
    • Help maintain the IDF’s alertness on the Gaza border against all demonic activity by Gaza’s terrorist overlords and other anti-Semitic terror groups (Psa. 35:1-3).
    • [Rahab to the spies], I know YHWH has given you the land; your terror has fallen on us, and all the inhabitants of the land faint because of you. For we heard how YHWH dried up the Red Sea for you … and what you did to the Amorite kings on the other side of Jordan…whom you utterly destroyed. As soon as we had heard these, our hearts did melt; neither did courage remain in anyone because of you: for YHWH your God, He is God in heaven above, and in earth beneath.Josh. 2:9-11

  6. Security – external: The IDF has instituted some internal changes to focus on Israel’s main enemy, Iran – which is seen as a third circle threat. The first circle is the local terror groups; the second is Hizbullah and other anti-Israel groups in nations on its borders; and the third circle is Iran in particular, and any other nations with no direct border with Israel.
    • Lord, we lift up former fighter pilot Maj. Gen. Tal Kalman, the new chief of the Strategy and Third-Circle Directorate, whose focus will be Israel’s conflict against Iran. Anoint him and impart wisdom beyond his ability so that he is supernaturally successful in his new position (Deut. 20:1Psa. 18:39).
    • As this Directorate is mainly focusing on intelligence gathering at this time, please bring to them all they need to know to defend this nation – for Your glory’s sake (Isa. 41:1646:13).
    • Guard all of Israel’s intelligence gathering forces from disinformation and mistakes in analyzing the information that they do gather.
    • Enable Kalman to have clear communications and direct access with the IDF Chief of Staff Kochavi and with Defense Minister Gantz (Prov. 22:20-21).
    • Raise up in all the IDF’s command circles “mighty men” like You did for king David (2 Sam. 23:8).
    • Lord, we ask You to make sure that the IDF does not drop its guard against Turkey (Psa. 140:1-3).
    • As You unveil the vicious anti-Israel hatred residing in Turkey’s President Erdogan’s heart, show Israel how to deal with him and his threats without backing down (Psa. 101:5Prov. 16:5).
    • Thank You for the close working relationship Israel and Egypt have in the area of security,. Protect it and use it for Your purposes – but prevent Israel from putting their trust in Egypt (Isa. 31:1-3).
    • If You are drawing Turkey into a conflict with Egypt in Libya, then guide Israel to know what to do and what not do.
  7. Coronavirus’ comeback: Israel seems to be entering into a second coronavirus wave as more infected people are found. Blessedly, the death rate is still very low. There are also reports that the virus is mutating into a less deadly version.
    • Lord, thank You for the good job Netanyahu has done in guiding Israel through this up to this time, and we look to You to continue to anoint and use him (Psa. 118:8-9).
    • Give Israel plans that will lead to both an economic recovery as well as a reduction of infection rates (Deut. 28:3-6).
    • If this is a second Covid-19 wave, intervene please and protect Your nation (Deut. 7:15).
    • Surround Health Minister Yuli Edelstein with wise, godly counselors (Psa. 1:1Prov. 11:1415:22).
    • Shine Your light on plans that come from You and push all other plans off the table (Prov. 16:19).
    • Convict the media who too often print false alarmist headlines (Job 11:313:4).
    • Wake up Israelis in the Tel Aviv area to own their responsibility to love others and this nation as they already love themselves (Lev. 19:18).
    • We bless You for the willingness of the majority of Israelis to sacrifice their own comforts for what is best for the nation. Continue to maintain that attitude (2 Chr. 35:3bZech. 8:16-17).
    • Use this global plague to humble scientists and doctors to see their need of You (Eccl. 12:12-14).
  8. Aliyah: With God shaking so much that can be shaken in today’s rebellious world, this is an excellent time to ask Him to shake all Jews out of exile and to lead them back home to Israel.
    • Lord, use the rise of anti-Semitism, the Covid-19 infections and deaths, and the chaos in the streets of the West to drive You people home to You (Jer. 16:16).
    • Wake up the Jews to the reality that their comfortable lives in exile are coming to an end – and that the only nation guaranteed a future is Israel (Jer. 30:1146:28).
    • Anoint many rabbis and Jewish leaders in exile to speak of aliyah and also to plan on returning with their congregations and their families (Jer. 30:3).
    • Provide all that Your people need to return and to remain in Zion (Isa. 37:31Zeph. 2:7).
    • Abundantly supply all that is needed to both Jewish and Christian organizations that are involved in carrying Your people home (Isa. 49:222 Cor. 9:8-11).
    • Open wide the doors in Israel to receive with joy all who are returning (Jer. 30:18-1931:10-14).
    • May Israel receive as family Jews who are poor and of a different skin color (Psa. 41:1-3Eph. 6:9).
    • Increase the prayers of the Church to support this end time restoration of Your people (Isa. 62:6-7).
    • Increase the financial giving of Your Body to support this as well (Isa. 60:1-17).

Shabbat shalom and blessings from Zion (Psa. 134:3)

For the IFI team