November 5, 2015
Dear Friend of Israel,
A Russian plane crashes in the Sinai Peninsula, killing all 224 aboard. Thousands of Iranians mark the 36th anniversary of the seizure of the U.S. Embassy in Tehran by burning the American flag and chanting “death to America.” A 70-year-old Israeli man is critically injured in a stabbing attack in Netanya, one of the latest acts of violence in the wave of terror currently gripping Israel.
In just the last week alone, there are countless events that could strike fear in us all. And that doesn’t even account for more personal issues like unemployment, fractured marriages, or sick parents.
While fear is a natural human reaction to many things here in our broken world, we are counseled by God to avoid unwarranted fear. Throughout the Bible, God told His people not to fear. Many times, He reassured the Israelites that, though their enemies were in hot pursuit on all sides, He would protect and defend them. And He did – from raging seas, from warring nations, from those who would mock the things of God.
We stand in faith today knowing He is that same God.
In Isaiah 41:10 God tells Israel, "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." The Psalms, too, are full of words of human fear and godly reassurance. It is because of this reassurance that we can say, along with David, "The Lord is my light and my salvation – whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid?" (Psalm 27:1).
When we turn our human fear into trust in God, holding His power in greater esteem than any of the forces here on earth, we are changed. It is then, and only then, that we can look at the turmoil that is happening on the world stage – or perhaps in our own lives – and truly know peace in our hearts.
With prayers for shalom, peace,
Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein
Founder and President
Help IFCJ support Israel’s victims of terror and stay up-to-date on events in Israel during this time of crisis by going to ifcj.org/Crisis. And please share this website with your family, friends, and church members.