Marking Jewish Themes with Devotion
Sabbath, Feasts, and More…
“I will bless those who will bless my people, and I will curse those who curse them” (Genesis 12:3).
Blessing the Jewish people is very scriptural. I learned growing up from my mother to bless them because they were and are God’s chosen ones. She used the scripture Genesis 12:3 to teach me. Although I didn’t fully understand why or how, I wanted to “bless” them even as a child.
There was a Jewish boy in my sixth-grade class named Carey. I used to smile at him each day. Then shortly after Christmas vacation, each member in my class went around the room and told what he did during the holiday break. When it was Carey’s turn to speak, he said, “We don’t celebrate Christmas, so we stayed at home.” The whole class gasped! I immediately understood in a childlike way why I should bless God’s chosen people—they didn’t celebrate Christmas or they didn’t recognize the birth of the Savior of the world!
Christianity and all its streams finds its heart and is deeply rooted in the Jewish faith. God enabled His people to pen the Scripture by the anointing of the Holy Spirit. The Ten Commandments are the rule of law for Western civilization. We unwittingly strive to obey it without even thinking about it seriously. It is so woven into the framework of our society.
Jesus was Jewish, raised keeping the laws of Torah, remembering the feasts, and honoring the patriarchs. Some Christians are shaken to the core to discover or remember this significant fact.
The Jewish people have an important historical and prophetic role in God’s plan for mankind and for the universe. Abraham is their father, and God called him out to follow and raise up a people who would reflect God’s light to the world and who would become God’s voice to humankind.
God’s ancient people have been called to bless all the families of the earth! Genesis 12:3, “And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed.” That is quite a calling. They have handled this quite well in many ways, contributing to modern medicine, science, literature, technology, etc., in the most innovative and remarkable ways. They comprise only one percent of the population of the world, yet they are world changers and innovators!
In some ways, they failed. They turned against the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob when they rejected Yeshua. It was God’s plan that they become a light to the nations through the resurrection power of Yeshua, through His death, burial and rise from death. The Messiah won power over everything we humans battle on earth when He died and rose. He triumphed over death — man’s ultimate enemy.
Whether secular or religious, Jewish people believe in themselves now and their human power to overcome, but the Scripture is clear that someday all Israel will be saved. Those who crucified Jesus will mourn Him (Zachariah 12:10). Although the Jews sent Jesus to be crucified, the Roman drove the nails into his hands. Still, it is important to note that Yeshua went to die according to His free will. He did it because our sin separated us from God.
Because of all this and much more, as Gentiles, as citizens of all nations, we are called continually to bless the Jewish people. Here are five practical ways to bless Israel.
To illustrate, these points are made using the acrostic PEACE. For the next five blogs, I will include an explanation on how we can practically the bless the Jewish people to fulfill Genesis 12:3.
1) – Pray for the peace of Jerusalem.
Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
“May they prosper who love you.
“May peace be within your walls,
And prosperity within your palaces.”
For the sake of my brothers and my friends,
I will now say, “May peace be within you.”
For the sake of the house of the LORD our God,
I will seek your good. ~ Psalm 122:6-9
There is much tension in the Holy City with three major religions fighting for the space and ownership of the city. There is hatred between two ancient brothers: Ishmael and Isaac, and the battles rage on generation after generation. It intensifies, and some are crazed because of it!
There have been wars and Intifada uprisings and there may be more, but the prayers of the saints and the power of God have stayed back an untimely blood bath again and again. There are many true believers within her walls who need our prayer support and encouragement. Many are Arab believers who desperately need our intercession and friendship. Pray often for the peace of Jerusalem. This is God’s beautiful and Holy City where He has chosen to display His fire and love. This place and people need our prayers desperately.
For more study….
Deuteronomy 32:10, Malachi 3:6, Jeremiah 3:14
Work it into daily life…
Add a prayer for peace in Jerusalem and between the Jewish people and their enemies to your daily prayer list. Read reports about Israel or the Jewish people in current events frequently. This will enlighten you to the details of the battle and help you pray with knowledge. Sign up for newsletters from Messianic believers or Gentile believers working with the Jewish people in Israel and worldwide. Visit a Messianic congregation in your area. They will be happy for the friendship and so will you!
©Bonnie Saul Wilks