Yael Eckstein | April 11, 2019
Every Sabbath, Jews read a portion of the Bible, beginning with Genesis at the start of the year, all the way through Deuteronomy at year’s end. However, there is only one week a year that we are specifically commanded to hear the reading of the Torah portion. On the Sabbath preceding Purim, the Jewish holiday we celebrated in March, we read from Deuteronomy, “Remember what the Amalekites did to you along the way when you came out of Egypt” (Deuteronomy 25:17).
Of all the enemies that the nation of Israel has ever faced, the nation of Amalek is considered the archenemy, both physically and ideologically. The first time Amalek makes its appearance is when the Israelites left Egypt and travelled to the Promised Land – a miracle we’re preparing to celebrate during the upcoming observance of Passover. At that time, the Israelites were on a spiritual high. They had walked freely out of Egypt. God had performed miracles for them, both with the ten plagues and the splitting of the Red Sea. Other nations had heard how God was with the people of Israel, so none would dare to lift a finger against God’s people – except for Amalek.
In Exodus 17, Amalek attacked Israel, and while they did not win the battle, they did plenty of damage. They diminished the status of the Israelites in the eyes of all other nations and challenged the faith of Israel. This is the poison of Amalek – it confuses us, and causes us to doubt our faith in God.
I think of this story as I look at Israel today. We’ve come back to the land of Israel and we have watched prophecy unfold before our eyes. Yet, our enemies attack us daily – with words, as well as rockets and other forms of terrorism. The enemy wants the Jews to lose faith and give up. The enemy wants us to doubt God’s presence and His love. The enemy wants us to feel like God won’t protect us. Do we dare give up? Do we dare give in? How long can a nation fight for its very right to exist?
The nation of Israel is engaged in this physical and spiritual battle every day. Every moment, we need to choose between trust in God or giving up. This is why the contribution of the The Fellowship on behalf of Christians around the world is so essential.
Every time The Fellowship builds a bomb shelter, we not only help keep the people of Israel safe, we give them a boost in morale, reminding them that there is hope and that the words of the Bible are true. When we give communities at risk high-tech drones that save lives by preventing terror attacks – as we did this past week – we are holding up the arms of Israel, just as Aaron and Hur held up the arms of Moses in that first battle against Amalek (Exodus 17:12). When we bring Jews from all over the world home to Israel, we are affirming the words of God in the Bible and bringing prophecy to fruition.
Here in Israel, we are on the front lines between good and evil, between trust and doubt, between faith and fear. When Christians show their love and support of Israel, you are here, fighting with us too.
With blessings from the Holy Land,