This past Monday morning at 10:00 AM, while on my way to work, I stopped the car in the middle of the road like all of those who were around me, stepped out, and stood still for two minutes as a siren wailed all around. This was not a warning of war, but rather a time to remember the six million Jewish people who were brutally and systematically murdered by the Nazis in World War II.
As I was standing, paying my respects to those who suffered the horrors of the Holocaust, I looked around me and was struck by the immensity of that moment. I immediately understood the great privilege God gave me to be part of such a special and unique group of people. I don’t know of any other people group who would do such an act of honor, and I am honored to be part of the people of Israel. This is an honor that those in Europe during the Holocaust did not have since Israel was not yet reborn.
This coming Sunday night, once again, everyone in Israel will stop what they are doing, all businesses will shut down early, flags will be taken down to half-mast, TV and Radio stations will change shift from regular programming to memorial songs & programs, and a siren will sound at 8:00 PM. We will remember all those who died in the various Israeli wars and acts of terror. For the following 24 hours, the people of Israel will remember and grieve those who lost their lives.
Then 24 hours later, the flags will go back up, and the tears of sadness will be replaced with tears of joy and dancing, as we will celebrate Israel’s 66th Independence Day. For me, personally, this is a very special time, as I remember my own personal friends who lost their lives in order to protect me and allow me to live in freedom today. I also remember and pray for those who today defend the borders of this Land, which God gave the people of Israel as a fulfillment of His promises thousands of years ago:
“Who has heard such a thing? Who has seen such things? Can a land be born in one day? Can a nation be brought forth all at once?” Isaiah 66:8
As I reflect upon this verse and many others like it, I marvel at the great honor and privilege which the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob has granted me to live in such a time as this, and to witness one of the greatest miracles in modern history, the rebirth of the Jewish State in the Land of Israel!
While Israel’s Independence was declared in May of 1948, the realty is that since that time, Israel is still fighting for its survival. It is for that reason, I believe those two days are so close to each other; we celebrate our Independence fully aware that it came with a heavy price. We also celebrate the privilege and honor that we have to be in this Land today.
As a disciple of Yeshua, the promised Messiah, I know that the true independence of Israel will only come when Israel will turn their eyes back to God and will come to repentance saying, “Baruch Ha’ba Be’Shem Adonai” (Blessed is He who come in the Name of the Lord) effectively ushering in the return of our Messiah.
It is during this time that I remember the One who was given for you and me; I remember the reason and I remember the heavy price that was paid for our redemption. And I also celebrate the amazing freedom from sin that I have because of Him.
Would you join me this week, as we pray for the Peace of Jerusalem, i.e. Israel’s true Independence?
I am looking forward for that glorious day where we will see the fulfillment of the verse: “I will also rejoice in Jerusalem, and be glad in My people; And there will no longer be heard in her the voice of weeping and the sound of crying.” Isaiah 65:19
Share this Post