1. Praise: This Shabbat’s prophetic portion closes with the perfect verse summing up how Israel has escaped the worst of the coronavirus pandemic.
    • Heal me, O YHWH, and I shall be healed; save me, and I shall be saved: for You are my praise. (Jer. 17:14) Amen!
    • We praise You for Your power and desire to heal and save Your people (Psa. 6:2106:47).
    • Thank You for the wisdom You gave to the Israeli government to pre-empt the worst of this virus.
    • We bless You that this nation still sees its elderly as deserving of respect (Ex. 20:12).
    • Thank You that in a crisis Israelis tend to pull together and heed their government (1 Pet. 2:13-14).
    • Great is You faithfulness, O God our Father (Lam. 3:22-23)!
    • What a joy to see You at work today in Your resurrected nation (Ezek. 37:1-14).
    • How beautiful on the mountains are the feet of him bringing good news, announcing peace; bearing exceedingly good news, proclaiming salvation, and saying to Zion, Your God reigns!Isa. 52:7

  2. Government: Israel’s new government of Bibi Netanyahu & Benny Gantz was supposed to be sworn in this week, but it has been delayed until Sunday – we hope. The confusion and infighting for positions is understandable because it is politics involving real people with real ambitions. Yet as we Jews often say, “Enough is enough already!” We’ve been praying for a government for more than 18 months and now we have the responsibility to hold this one before God in intercession.
    • Pray without ceasing.1 Thess. 5:17; cp. Luke 18:1

    • Lord, as the delay is over dissatisfaction from Bibi’s Likud ministers on what positions they will receive, please work in this so that the final result is better than if it were not delayed (Eccl. 3:1).
    • Abba, while not all our prayers were answered, there is evidence from those in this government – and those who are not – that You have heard and answered many of them (Psa. 50:15). Thank You.
    • Thank You that the Arab Joint List and Avigdor Liberman. Yair Lapid and Moshe Ya’alon are not in this government (Dan. 2:21). Each of them expressed deep Bibi-hatred during the campaigns and we are most grateful that none of them has a part in the running of Your nation (Prov. 10:1215:17).
    • Move on the hearts of Netanyahu and Gantz to choose what is best for the nation and not for their political careers (Prov. 19:2121:1).
    • Abba, touch all the ministers hearts to embrace the responsibility they have accepted (1 Cor. 4:2).
    • Lord, help the new government pass a budget as soon as possible (Psa. 78:201 Tim. 5:8).
    • God of Israel, thank You for placing in Netanyahu a love for You Word. Use him to draw Gantz to Your Word as well (Psa. 119:46Jer. 15:16).
    • We see the pressure Bibi has been under with more to come as the court case over his indictment starts May 24th. Comfort and sustain him and give him a Shabbat rest (Psa. 37:7Isa. 51:3).
    • Continue to gift him with the ability to compartmentalize the issues for which he is responsible.
    • Shield him from all spirits of discouragement (1 Sam. 30:6b).
    • Let him use the next 18 months to train up capable people to lead Israel after him (Prov. 4:122:6).
    • We bless You for Gilad Erdan being Israel’s new ambassador to the UN and the US (Psa. 75:6-7).
    • Anoint him mightily to defend Israel at the UN (Gal. 4:16) and to know how to communicate biblical truth when dealing with the American government (Eph. 4:15).
    • We thank You for the incredibly courageous job Danny Danon did at the UN and ask that You now, as he returns to Zion, You would guide him to where he can be used for Your glory’s sake (Psa. 23:3).
  3. Security: Benny Gantz will be Israel’s defense minister for the next 18 months. He was the IDF’s Chief of Staff, a military position, yet this is very different, as it is a political position and will require a change of thinking. This also applies to Gabi Ashkenazi who will be Israel’s new foreign minister and also comes from a background of being the IDF’s Chief of Staff.
    • We look to You to make Gantz the best defense minister Israel has ever had (Judg. 6:34).
    • Pour out a boldness on Ashkenazi in his vital new role of defending Israel globally (Joel 3:16).
    • Lord, surround both with godly and wise counselors (Prov. 20:1824:6).
    • Lord, remove all unwise, ungodly counselors from influencing them (Job 1:10Psa. 1:1).
    • Build a good relationship between Gantz, IDF Chief of Staff Kochavi and Netanyahu (Psa. 133:1).
    • May Gantz continue Bennet’s aggressive tactics and strategy against Israel’s enemies, as in Israel’s neighborhood, strength and the willingness to use it bring respect and fear and safety (2 Chr. 20:29).
    • Let Ashkenazi recognize how excellent a foreign minister Netanyahu was and to seek him out for advice and counsel (Prov. 11:14).
  4. Annexation: A majority of Israelis want Israel to extend its sovereignty over the 30% more of God’s promised homeland that are part of the Trump peace plan, yet most do not think it will happen. If we only look at the furious resistance of the nations over annexation, we would agree – but if we look to the One who swore by an oath to give this land to His people (Gen. 26:3), we can pray in faith for God’s will to be done on earth as it is in heaven. What is fascinating is that this Shabbat’s Torah portion includes the following verse:
    • The land shall not be sold forever [permanently], for the land is Mine, for you are strangers and sojourners with Me. (Lev. 25:23) Amen.
    • Yes, Lord, this land is Yours and the Jewish nation is Your chosen steward to care for this land for Your holy name’s sake (Psa. 85:9). Therefore in line with Your will, we ask for You to make this the time for more of the land to come under Israel’s sovereign rule (Ex. 23:27-30).
    • Give great courage to the new leadership to say “yes” to You and “no” to the world (Psa. 118:8-10).
    • Thank You that Bibi is totally behind this. Now bring Gantz into one accord with him (Ezek. 47:14).
    • Use Israelis innate stubbornness to make this extension of Israeli sovereignty a reality (Judg. 2:1-5).
    • As most nations and global entities rage against this annexation, open up the eyes of believers to recognize that this is of God (Psa. 2:1-3 [note: In Psalm 105:14-15 Israel is called His “anointed”!])
    • As this is clearly seen, wake up the Church to intercede for their nations who if they resist this move of God will end up being driven deeper into God’s valley of judgment (Ezek. 22:30Joel 3:1-2).
    • Lord, wake up the UK Church to perceive that their government’s threats against Israel if it extends its sovereignty are much more dangerous for their nation than Brexit ever was (Num. 24:9b)!
    • Deal with all Jewish communities in exile which are against this move because they think it will raise the level of anti-Semitic hatred. Open their eyes to see that this is already a reality (Psa. 83:1-4).
  5. Trump’s peace plan: With a new government in place, decisions have to be made – sooner rather than later – on how to respond to this offer by the US president.
    • Thank You that US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visited Israel this week. Use this born-again believer to provoke Israelis in high positions to jealousy (Rom. 11:11).
    • Reveal all the dangers in the Trump Peace Plan relating to the formation of a truncated Palestinian State that have not be looked at and analyzed yet (Isa. 48:6Obad. 1:6).
    • Remind those who are against this plan because of a possible future ‘Palestine’ the recent lessons of history – that You have always hardened the Palestinians and their leaders to say “No!” (Prov. 21:1). [Why expect God to change His mind now? Also Trump’s plan offers the Palestinians less than a full state and also demands a total revamping of their society, thinking and religion in order to receive US recognition and money! Any PA leader who would agree to this would end up dead! Also this week, the Palestinians marked “Nakba [catastrophe] Day,” the catastrophe of Israel’s rebirth May 14th, 1948 and its victory against six Arab armies in the war following. With Islam’s eternal Jew-hatred (Ezek. 35:5) and the Palestinians viewing Israel’s rebirth this way, how can the world – including the US administration – want Israel to negotiate peace with these anti-Semites (Psa. 35:20120:7)?]
    • Abba, the Palestinians are threatening Israel with violence over annexation. Yet they threaten Israel with violence for anything it does to live securely. Prepare Israel to fight against these threats and forbid that this would stop it from doing what is right in Your sight (Deut. 12:10).
    • Lord, how long will the world honor dead Jews yet castigate living Jews as they defend themselves and their children from their enemies? Arise, YHWH; let not man prevail: let the nations be judged in Your sight. Terrify them, YHWH that the nations know themselves to be but men. (Psa. 9:19-20)
  6. Security – Judea & Samaria: The extension of sovereignty over settlements in these areas will give terrorists another reason to murder Jews. As already said, they do not need any more excuses as the Koran says to kill or convert all “infidels” and adds that Jews are Islam’s worst enemies.
    • Lord, prepare the IDF m to battle Hamas wherever they are in Your land (Psa. 44:4-5).
    • An IDF soldier was murdered this week as a huge stone was dropped on his head. Lord, please comfort his family (Isa. 57:18).
    • We thank You God that the death of soldiers is now an exception and not the rule (Psa. 140:7).
    • Yet let the issue of stone throwing be seen as it really is – an attempt to murder Israelis, and then change the rules of engagement to line up with Your Word: If he kills him by throwing a stone …the stone-thrower is a murderer: the murderer shall surely be put to death. (Num. 35:17)
    • Expose all of Hamas’ demonic plans to kill and destroy in Judea and Samaria (1 Cor. 4:5).
    • Forbid that the rapport between PA security forces and the IDF would put Israel to sleep (Mic. 7:5).
    • As Israel allows more free movement from the lockdown, heighten security alertness (Psa. 44:4-5).
    • Increase the confusion and mistrust between the PA leadership (Psa. 129:5).
    • Let common Palestinians rise up against their wicked, thieving overlords (Prov. 22:22Mic. 2:1).
    • Reveal any Palestinian leaders who truly want their people to only live and prosper (Prov. 29:2).
    • Use both the fear of Covid-19 spreading and the extremely hot weather forecast to hit Israel at this time keep all Palestinian demonstrations to a minimum (Psa. 83:13).
    • Lord, send forth Your hosts to fight for the survival of Your nation at this time (Psa. 35:1-8).
  7. Security & Iran: An Iranian cyberattack vs. Israel’s water and sewage treatment facilities has just been exposed to the public. Israeli leaders are furious over this attempted attack against civilians at a time when the war Israel is fighting with Iran is strictly against Iranian military threats.
    • Thank You for enabling Israel to thwart this attack (Psa. 44:7).
    • Show Israel how to respond to this and all Iranian threats (Prov. 21:31).
    • Use this as a warning to Israeli authorities of the type of terror state Iran truly is (Ezek. 40:4).
    • Continue to guard all of Israel’s intelligence gathering forces – whether human or cyber.
    • Show Israeli spy satellite operators if they need to move their eye-in-the-sky a few degrees this way or that to uncover something that has been missed, or ignored before (Job 20:27Phil. 3:15b).
    • Lord, You said those who curse Your nation would reap curses (Num. 24:9bGal. 6:7), so we ask for a drying up of all Iran’s finances and other resources which encourage terrorism.
    • We also ask You to remove the blinders from many nations, especially in Western Europe, who still are greedily making deals with Iran – before they reap what they sow (Prov. 15:161 Tim. 6:10).
    • Protect and mature the Iranian Church in every way (Col. 1:9-10).
    • Use them to minister the good news of Yeshua to multitudes of Iranians today (Eph. 6:18-19).
  8. Covid-19 & Israel: Whether this plague is a conspiracy by the Global Elite to gain control of the world’s sheep, a pandemic which China planned or just handled poorly, or a part of God’s end-time judgments on nations, the reality is that Israel handled this crisis better than most. We give God the glory for this, while recognizing that most often He works through people to accomplish His goal. It is far from over and while Israeli authorities are preparing for another outbreak, the nation is slowly but surely being released from the lockdown.
    • For all that You’ve done we will thank You, and for all that You’re going to do… (Psa. 121:3-4).
    • Thank You for the new health minister, the former Knesset Speaker Yuli Edelstein (Prov. 18:16).
    • Lord, it upset many Israelis when large crowds of ultra-Orthodox men and their rabbis, flaunted government guidelines to celebrate Lag B’omer with dancing and bonfires. As the percentage of this group dying from the virus was so much higher than the rest of society, how can they continue to put You to the test like this (Deut. 6:16)?
    • Open their eyes to who You really are (John 1:1817:1).
    • Thank You that Shas’ Aryeh Deri actually said that his whole sect needed to do soul-searching as he felt God was trying to show them something. Reveal Yourself and save him (Isa. 45:15).
    • Bless You that Israel as a whole is a society that honors its elders (Lev. 19:23).
    • Lord Yeshua, we ask that this emphasis in Jewish thinking, which is based on Scripture, would flood today’s Church. After all, it was elders who led NT congregations (1 Tim. 5:17Tit. 1:5).
    • Lead Israel in each step it takes in its exit strategy (Psa. 143:8Prov. 8:20).
    • Help the authorities to clear up any confusion and miscommunications with the public (Isa. 61:7).
    • Clarify the guidelines for public transportation – especially with soldiers being released to go home for the first time in a while (1 Cor. 14:33).
    • Thank You for how well the Israeli medical system did in dealing with this crisis (Deut. 4:6).
    • Thank You also for exposing the medical system’s flaws that must be dealt with (Heb. 11:34b).
    • Impart to Health Minister Edelstein and his ministry Your plans and the finances to do just that.
    • Bless with incredible insight and courage the new finance minister – Yisrael Katz (Matt. 25:21).
    • Enable him and Edelstein to work together as one (Neh. 4:6)!
    • Sustain those who have taken a severe economic hit through this lockdown (Deut. 15:11).
    • Show the government how to help get these people back on their own feet.
    • Revive the school system and bless students and teachers as they pick up the pieces (Isa. 54:13).

As we just passed the 72nd anniversary of Israel’s rebirth – on the Gregorian calendar – we once again consider the incredible privilege we have been given to serve our God in these exciting days. May He keep each of us persevering in prayer in that exact spot on the walls to which He has assigned us to. To paraphrase Luke 18:1: Yeshua taught us, His disciples, through a parable, that it is imperative for us to always pray, and not to give up.

Shabbat shalom and blessings from Zion

For the IFI team