Praying Daily for the Elections – Day 9 – 9/26/12
Fifty Days of Prayer for the National Election 2012 – Day 9
Day 9 September 26th
Focus: America’s alliance with Israel
Today is the Jewish Day of Atonement – Yom Kippur
“This is to be a lasting ordinance for you: On the tenth day of the seventh month you must deny yourselves and not do any work— because on this day atonement will be made for you, to cleanse you. Then, before the Lord, you will be clean from all your sins.” (Leviticus 16: 29-30)
Yom Kippur is probably the most important holiday of the Jewish year. It is a day set aside to “afflict the soul,” to atone for the sins of the past year. According to Jewish tradition, God inscribes each person’s fate for the coming year into a book, the Book of Life, on Rosh Hashanah, and waits until Yom Kippur to “seal” the verdict. During the Days of Awe, a Jew person tries to amend his or her behavior and seek forgiveness for wrongs done against God (bein adam leMakom) and against other human beings (bein adam lechavero). The evening before and day of Yom Kippur are set aside for public and private petitions and confessions of guilt (Vidui). At the end of Yom Kippur, each Jewish person prays that his sins have been forgiven by God.
Yom Kippur is a complete Sabbath; no work can be performed on this day. It is a complete, 25-hour fast beginning before sunset on the evening before and ending after nightfall on the day of Yom Kippur. Most of the holiday is spent in the synagogue, in prayer. The services end at nightfall, with the blowing of the tekiah gedolah, a long blast on the shofar. It is customary to wear white on the holiday, which symbolizes purity and calls to mind the promise that sins shall be made as white as snow. (Isaiah 1:18)
Pray: for the Jewish people of our nation to receive the revelation of forgiveness of sins through Christ’s death and resurrection.
Today’s prayer focus for this election: America’s alliance with Israel
America’s support of Israel and the naming of Jerusalem as her capitol has been a hotly debated issue this election season.
Background: Why America’s support of Israel is important to Christians
The survival of the Jewish people is a miracle of God. The return of the Jewish people to the land promised to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is a miracle of God. The remarkable victories of Jewish armies against overwhelming odds in successive battles in 1948, and 1967, and 1973 are clearly miracles of God. The technological marvels of Israeli industry, the military prowess, the bounty of Israeli agriculture, the fruits and flowers and abundance of the land are a testimony to God’s watchful care over this nation and the genius of this people. Yet what has happened was clearly foretold by the ancient prophet Ezekiel, who, writing at the time of the Babylonian captivity, declared this message for the Jewish people concerning the latter days.
“For I will take you out of the nation; I will gather you from all the countries and bring you back to your own land… I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you… to follow My decrees and be careful to keep My laws. You will live in the land I gave your forefathers; you will be My people and I will be your God. I will save you from all your uncleanness.” (Ezekiel 36)
Evangelical Christians support Israel because we believe that the words of Moses and the ancient prophets of Israel were inspired by God. We believe that the emergence of a Jewish state in the land promised by God to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was ordained by God. We believe that God has a plan for Israel, a nation which He intends to be a blessing to all the nations of the earth. The God who spoke to Moses on Mount Sinai is our God. Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob are our spiritual Patriarchs. Jeremiah, Ezekiel, and Daniel are our prophets. King David, a man after God’s own heart, is our hero. The Holy City of Jerusalem is our spiritual capital. And the continuation of Jewish sovereignty over the Holy Land is a further bulwark to us that the God of the Bible exists and that His Word is true. God is responsible for returning Jerusalem to the world stage. He is doing so for His own purposes – and He is not subject to the behavior of Israel or the threats of Israel’s enemies.
“’And I will return My people Israel out of captivity, and they will rebuild the waste cities and inhabit them, and I will plant them upon their land, and they shall never again be plucked up out of their land which I have given them,’ says the LORD your GOD.” (Amos 9:14-15)
(these words were taken from a Pat Robertson speech)
Prayer Points (pray for Israel as the Holy Spirit leads you):
· Humanists believe the universe is silent and all that matters is how we human beings interpret the silence. The humanist does not see any need to single out the land of Israel, because neither any land nor any nation have any special significance. There is no God to give any land special significance.