Follow on Twitter @joelcrosenberg

Archive for December, 2010|Monthly archive page

AHMADINEJAD FIRES FOREIGN MINISTER: Replaces with Iran’s nuclear chief

In Uncategorized on December 13, 2010 at 10:19 pm

“President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad fired Iran’s foreign minister on Monday, a move that caught many here by surprise and appeared to reflect a strengthening of the president’s power, reports the New York Times. “Mr. Ahmadinejad said in a presidential order that he had dismissed the minister, Manouchehr Mottaki, a career diplomat who has for many years been Iran’s face to the West. Mr. Mottaki was on an official trip to Senegal on Monday and did not immediately react to the news, which appeared to catch even the state-run Iranian news media by surprise….[Some experts] said the move signaled the rising prominence of nuclear matters in Iran’s foreign policy. Mr. Ahmadinejad’s choice for acting foreign minister, Ali Akbar Salehi, is the head of Iran’s nuclear program and has also served as ambassador to the International Atomic Energy Agency, the United Nations nuclear watchdog. Mr. Salehi, who is fluent in English, graduated from the American University in Beirut and earned a Ph.D. from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. With a new round of talks over Iran’s nuclear program scheduled for January and the prospect of new Western sanctions looming, it was not immediately evident how the new appointment would affect Iran’s posture in negotiations over its nuclear program, which the West suspects is aimed at producing nuclear weapons. Tehran says it is for peaceful purposes only. It is possible that Mr. Salehi is only a fill-in. Some Iran observers speculated that Mr. Ahmadinejad might try to replace him with a permanent candidate from his inner circle.”

and into His family.

>> GIVE A GIFT TO ISRAEL FOR CHRISTMAS — Please prayerfully considering helping The Joshua Fund raise $1.5 million December so we can stay on track with the projects we are engaged in to educate and mobilize Christians around the world about God’s love and plan Israel and her neighbors, and to continue distributing food, clothing, medical supplies and other humanitarian relief to the poor and needy, and to those affected by the recent fires.

>> GIVE THE GIFT OF ISRAEL THIS CHRISTMAS — Bring a loved one, or your whole family, on The Joshua Fund’s “Prayer & Vision Tour” to Israel next May and be part of the 2011 Epicenter Conference in Jerusalem. Learn more by watching an on-line video describing it all.

71% OF IRANIANS WANT NUCLEAR WEAPONS

In Uncategorized on December 9, 2010 at 11:09 pm

New poll reported by the Jerusalem Post shows Iranian public support for nuclear weapons has climbed from 52% in 2007.

UPDATED: CONFERENCE CALL WITH PM NETANYAHU BRIEFING ON THE FIRES IN NORTHERN ISRAEL

In Uncategorized on December 9, 2010 at 6:23 pm

(Washington, D.C. 1:19pm Eastern Time) – A short while ago, I finished listening in on a 35-minute conference call organized by the Jewish National Fund. Over 900 people participated, including The Joshua Fund’s Chief Operating Officer and Director of Communications. The purpose of the call was to brief JNF friends and allies on the fires that started in northern Israel on December 2nd and what are some of the next steps Israel faces now that the fires are out. Various leaders – including Shimon Romach, Israel’s Fire Commissioner – recapped the situation.

  • The fires were the worst in Israel’s modern 62 history.
  • More than 17,000 people from 12 Israelis towns had to be evacuated.
  • It took 82 hours to contain and extinguish the blaze.
  • Forty-two Israelis died, including a 16 year old junior fire fighter volunteer.
  • About 45% of the Carmel Forest was destroyed, approximately five million trees.
  • Israel has “lost a lot of [fire fighting] equipment, at least $1 million worth of equipment,” the Fire Commissioner noted, adding his concern that “a lot of our fire trucks are older than the fire fighters. The men are in their 20s. The trucks are in their 30s. We need new trucks.”

JNF Chairman Ronald Lauder introduced Prime Minister Netanyahu, who spoke for about 10 minutes.

  • Netanyahu thanked the JNF for their support for Israel’s fire fighting services over the years. “You have provided nearly 80 trucks in recent years, and they have made a big difference. This call is to say thank you, and continue what you’re doing.” He also thanked JNF for being the leaders in planting trees and helping develop Israel’s forests.
  • The PM said Israel has three jobs now:
  1. “One is to restore the buildings and homes and various communities that have been destroyed or damaged.”
  2. The second is to “renew the Carmel Forest.”
  3. The third is to “build an aerial capability.”
  • The PM explained that this fire convinced him that Israel needs to think much differently about fire fighting from this point. “We have to face the possibility of fires in the future that consume a large part of Israel.” He noted that “mega fires” are different from normal home, office or factory fires. “This requires a fundamentally different strategic plan.”
  • The PM noted that he began thinking differently about fire fighting “accidentally” in August, when he was having lunch with Greek Prime Minister George Papandreou on a Greek island. As they were meeting – the first visit of an Israeli Prime Minister to Greece in history – Netanyahu said the two men happened to see a forest fire break out on another island and start spreading rapidly. “I said, ‘George, what are you going to do to stop that fire?’” Netanyahu asked. “George said, ‘Don’t worry about it.’” Netanyahu said he kept pressing the Greek PM several times, but kept being told, “Don’t worry about it.” Netanyahu then noted that “within thirty-five minutes there were three Canadian planes, Canadian-built planes, flying over the fires, and by the time we were done with lunch, they had basically put out the fire.”
  • Netanyahu was impressed, and said that when he returned back to Israel, “We began organizing for this….I realized that the normal means we have were inadequate for this.” He said that he learned of the Carmel fires about 5pm] on December 2nd. Immediately he realized the need for an aerial strategy, yet Israel does not currently have such planes of their own. “I spoke to [Greek Prime Minister] George [Papandreou] by seven.” Greek fire suppression planes were on the ground in Israel very soon thereafter. “Within 24 hours, we had 10 planes in the air from many countries.” More planes came within 48 hours, including the American “supertanker” that can drop 80,000 gallons of water in a matter of minutes. 

It was an interesting call. On a personal note, as the Prime Minister talked about the prospect of Israel facing “mega fires” in the future, I couldn’t help but think of Ezekiel 38-39 which indicates that in the “last days” there will be fire raining down from heaven in the region. The Lord’s purpose will be, in part, to defeat Israel’s enemies. But there could be collateral damage, and Israel will need to be ready to fight such massive fires to protect their own citizens, as well as to be a blessing to their neighbors.

Let’s be praying Israel can get better prepared, and quickly. Let us keep praying for wisdom for PM Netanyahu and his fellow leaders. At the same time, let’s be faithful in prayer for the families and friends of those who were killed and wounded in these recent blazes. It is a difficult time. May the God of Israel comfort them and draw them close to His heart and into His family.

>> GIVE A GIFT TO ISRAEL FOR CHRISTMAS — Please prayerfully considering helping The Joshua Fund raise $1.5 million December so we can stay on track with the projects we are engaged in to educate and mobilize Christians around the world about God’s love and plan Israel and her neighbors, and to continue distributing food, clothing, medical supplies and other humanitarian relief to the poor and needy, and to those affected by the recent fires.

>> GIVE THE GIFT OF ISRAEL THIS CHRISTMAS — Bring a loved one, or your whole family, on The Joshua Fund’s “Prayer & Vision Tour” to Israel next May and be part of the 2011 Epicenter Conference in Jerusalem. Learn more by watching an on-line video describing it all.

READER QUESTION: WERE THE WIKILEAKS FORETOLD IN BIBLE PROPHECY?

In Uncategorized on December 8, 2010 at 5:15 pm

Over the past two months, I have been asked a number of fascinating questions about Israel, Iran, The Twelfth Imam, The Joshua Fund, and the WikiLeaks controversy as I have spoken in 12 cities across the United States, as well as at the European Union Parliament in Brussels. 

Some of the questions I have answered this week include:

  1. How can I be praying for the work of The Joshua Fund right now?
  2. Will the Twelfth Imam also be the Anti-Christ?
  3. When will the sequel to The Twelfth Imam be released?

Here’s another one.

QUESTION“Joel, do you believe that Luke 12:2-3 could be referring to all the documents released through WikiLeaks?”  This was an intriguing question that a reader of my books asked me last week, while I was doing a Q&A session at First Baptist Church of Naples.

ROSENBERG: At first glance, the question seemed humorous to the audience and to me. After all, the notion that release of some 250,000 sensitive and classified U.S. government cables and related documents — exposing U.S. diplomatic, intelligence and security secrets — might have been foretold by Bible prophecy is not one I had heard raised before. But in fairness to the gentlemen who was asking the question, I opened to the passage in question and read Luke 12:2-3.

“[T]here is nothing covered up that will not be revealed, and hidden that will not be known. Accordingly, whatever you have said in the dark will be heard in the light, and what you have whispered in the inner rooms will be proclaimed upon the housetops.”

Hmm. Very interesting, isn’t it?

Now, don’t get me wrong. What the 39-year old Australian-born activist/anarchist leader of WikiLeaks, Julian Assange, has done is absolutely unconscionable. It is also quite possibly criminal. Assange was arrested in Britain on suspected rape charges. If those charges are true, he should be extradited to Sweden (where the alleged sexual crimes took place), prosecuted and convicted as soon as possible. Simultaneously, I believe Assange has put U.S. interests and national security at risk and should be aggressively prosecuted for this as well.

The Chairman of the U.S. Senate Intelligence Committee this week wrote a column in the Wall Street Journal arguing that Assange has “intentionally harmed the U.S. government.” Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) further noted, “the release of these documents damages our national interests and puts innocent lives at risk. He should be vigorously prosecuted for espionage. The law Mr. Assange continues to violate is the Espionage Act of 1917. That law makes it a felony for an unauthorized person to possess or transmit “information relating to the national defense which information the possessor has reason to believe could be used to the injury of the United States or to the advantage of any foreign nation.” If Sen. Feinstein’s argument is accurate, then Assange should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. Meanwhile, the U.S. government should do everything in its legal power to prevent the further release of classified information. After all, American officials should be able to communicate in private to one another. The effective development and implentation of our foreign policy and national security policy depends on secure, secret communications available only to those with proper security clearances, and none others.

That said, it is worth noting the prophecy found in Luke chapter 12, that all secrets will eventually become known. This seems to be coming true more today than ever before. In today’s Information Age, there is an insatiable thirst for new information throughout our culture and around the world. Countless media outlets determined to uncover, report new, interesting, and previously secret information. This is certainly true of the mainstream media. It is also true of countless bloggers, YouTubers, Facebook-ers, Twitter-ers, and millions of other “unofficial” reporters of what they see and hear. It is, therefore, increasingly unlikely that a person’s secrets can hold for long. This should sober us to live holy and pure lives, should it not? Because if we are engaged in activities we don’t want others to know about, we are kidding ourselves. Secrets don’t hold for long in the Information Age we now live in.

What’s more, Luke 12 is also true in the sense that everything we have ever said and done is already known by the Lord, who sees and hears and knows all things. And the Bible teaches that if we have not been forgiven every unfair, unkind, untoward, or unrighteous thing we have ever said or done, then all of our secrets will be laid bare on Judgment Day. We will not only be exposed, but we will be held accountable for every willful and careless statement and action. That is bad news, sobering if not frightening.

The good news — especially worth discussing during the Christmas season — is that the Bible also teaches that God loves us with an “everlasting love.” He has a wonderful plan and purpose for our lives. He does not want to judge us. He prefers to save us, forgive us, transform us. He wants to be the God of second chances in our lives, if we will but let Him. The Scriptures tell us that if we personally receive Jesus Christ to come into our lives and be our Messiah, Lord and Savior — if we bow our knee before Him and chose to love Him and follow Him and serve Him forever — then He promises to forgive us and adopt us into His family and give us both eternal life as well as an “abundant” life here on earth, one that is full and meaningful and pleasing to Him. Amazing, but true — Jesus Christ promises to forgive us of all of our sins, past, present and future. Now that is good news.

  • John 1:12 — “But as many as received Him [Jesus Christ], to them He gave the right to become children of God, even to those who believe in His Name.”
  • 1 John 1:9 — “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just, and will forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” Not some unrighteousness. Not most unrighteousness. The Bible says Jesus Christ will forgive us from “all” unrighteousness — if we receive Him, if we confess our sins, if we place our faith in Him to save us and depend on His death and resurrection as the once-for-all sacrifice and payment for our sins.
  • Psalm 103:11-13 — “For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is His lovingkindness toward those who fear Him. As far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. Just as a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him.”
  • Isaiah 43:25 — “I, even I, am the one who wipes out your transgressions for My own sake, and I will not remember your sins.”
  • Acts 2:37-39 — “Now when they heard this [gospel message], they were pierced to the heart, and said to Peter and the rest of the apostles, ‘Brethren, what shall we do?’ Peter said to them, ‘Repent [turn around], and each of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins; and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is for you and your children and for all who are far off, as many as the Lord our God will call to Himself.'”
  • Why not give your life fully to Him today?

————————————————–

>> GIVE A GIFT TO ISRAEL FOR CHRISTMAS — Please prayerfully considering helping The Joshua Fund raise $1.5 million December so we can stay on track with the projects we are engaged in to educate and mobilize Christians around the world about God’s love and plan Israel and her neighbors, and to continue distributing food, clothing, medical supplies and other humanitarian relief to the poor and needy, and to those affected by the recent fires.

>> GIVE THE GIFT OF ISRAEL THIS CHRISTMAS — Bring a loved one, or your whole family, on The Joshua Fund’s “Prayer & Vision Tour” to Israel next May and be part of the 2011 Epicenter Conference in Jerusalem. Learn more by watching an on-line video describing it all.

READER QUESTION: HOW CAN WE BE PRAYING FOR THE WORK OF THE JOSHUA FUND RIGHT NOW?

In Uncategorized on December 8, 2010 at 5:13 pm

Over the past two months, I have been asked a number of fascinating questions about Israel, Iran, The Twelfth Imam, The Joshua Fund, and the WikiLeaks controversy as I have spoken in 12 cities across the United States, as well as at the European Union Parliament in Brussels. 

Some of the questions I have answered this week include:

  1. Were the WikiLeaks foretold in Bible prophecy?
  2. Will the Twelfth Imam also be the Anti-Christ?
  3. When will the sequel to The Twelfth Imam be released?

Here’s another one.

QUESTION: “Joel, we are grateful for all you’re doing for Israel through The Joshua Fund. What are some of the main ways we can be praying for the work right now?”

ROSENBERG: Thanks so much for asking. Right now, our main prayer request is that the Lord would use us to truly bless Jewish and Arab Israelis, as well as Palestinian Arabs and other neighbors in real and practical ways, and in a faithful, humble, Christ-like manner. This is our heart. We want the Lord to show us what to do, how to do it, and give us the courage we need to do His will, and not our own. Time is short. War is coming. Christ is coming. We want to be found faithful in the time we have remaining.

We certainly need prayer for physical, spiritual and emotional strength for our staff and board. As you might imagine, this is challenging work, with lots of travel and time away from our families.

Financially, we are asking the Lord to graciously provide The Joshua Fund $1.5 million in year-end giving in the month of December.  Should this happen, it will allow us stay on track with the educational and charitable projects to we have committed. We had a not insubstantial decline in giving in November. That was a bit of a surprise, but we thank the Lord that He is Jehovah Jireh, our Provider. His grace and provision is sufficient. He gives and He takes away, blessed be His Name. If you would like to make a year-end, tax deductible donation to The Joshua Fund, please click here.

Israel faces enormous challenges at the moment:

  • One-in-four Israelis living in poverty (including 1-in-3 children)
  • Recent fires in the north
  • The threat of war with Iran/Hezbollah/Syria/Hamas and other Radical Islamic forces
  • Rising anti-Semitism around the world
  • Replacement Theology and other efforts to delegitimize Israel
  • The growing threat that Palestinians will abandon all efforts to negotiate with Israel, unilaterally declare their own sovereign state, and receive widespread international recognition, thereby imposing a solution on Israel rather than encouraging diplomacy and true, lasting peace.

Honestly, the educational and charitable needs Israel has are far larger than our budget can meet. But we count it an honor to do be able to do our part in the Lord’s overall work.

Here are some of the projects The Joshua Fund has accomplished by His grace in 2010:

  • Made our rented warehouse facility fully operational and began using it to care for poor and needy people throughout Israel. Last year at this time, I reported that TJF had just signed a lease to rent a warehouse in central Israel. By God’s grace, today I am pleased to report that in the past 12 months, TJF:
    • Hired a full-time Israeli warehouse manager
    • Hired an Israeli assistant to help in the warehouse part-time
    • Hired a full-time Director of Humanitarian Relief
    • Hired a full-time Deputy Director of Humanitarian Relief
    • Built two offices in the warehouse
    • Built a kitchen and conference room in the warehouse
    • Outfitted the bomb shelter with emergency supplies
    • Installed a state-of-the-art video security system
    • Purchased a forklift and had our manager trained/licensed in its use
    • Purchased a delivery truck and had our manager trained/licensed in its use
    • Best of all, since spring 2010, we have been purchasing, storing, repacking, and distributing hundreds of tons of flour, rice, beans, corn, pickles, tuna, cooking oil, honey, paper towels, diapers, and other supplies to the poor and needy throughout the Land of Israel
    • We are stockpiling food and relief supplies in our warehouse for the next war. And we continue to provide funds to a Christian organization ally of ours so that they continue stockpiling more food and relief supplies at a separate warehouse in northern Israel ahead of the next war.
    • Dozens of evangelical Christians from the United States – including several church groups – have come to Israel to volunteer in TJF’s warehouse, packing food and relief supplies, praying for the Lord to bless each of the recipients of those supplies, and then actually going out and deliver those supplies to the poor and needy.
  • Expanded the number of food distribution centers in Israel that we have opened and assist on a monthly basis from 4 in 2009 to 7 in 2010
    We refer to these seven centers as “storefronts.” The staff and volunteers in each work with the social welfare offices in local municipalities to determine the poorest and neediest in their communities, and then distribute boxes or baskets of food and other aid to these needy families, supplies.  

    • Thousands of poor and needy Israeli Jews – including Holocaust survivors, elderly, children, single mothers, widows, orphans, and others – are being served and cared for each month.
    • Some storefronts are strategically located near the northern and southern borders. Others are in Jerusalem, Tel Aviv and the interior of the country.
    • TJF has purchased a total of 7 vans in Israel to increase the mobility of our allies and our staff and help them deliver aid directly to people’s homes, especially important for the elderly and Holocaust survivors.
    • TJF is training storefront managers in best practices and for the next war.
  • Through our storefronts, some 1,200 needy Jewish families in Israel were directly provided food and supplies for Passover. In another project we financed, about 1,600 needy Israeli families living under the poverty level received gift cards that enabled them to buy Passover supplies for this vital Biblical holiday.  
  • Helped provide monthly rent for a facility in central Israel for a soup kitchen.

>> To read a memo with more examples of The Joshua Fund’s work in 2010, please click here

>> To read my “Open Letter To The Friends of The Joshua Fund,” please click here

READER QUESTION: WILL THE TWELFTH IMAM ALSO BE THE ANTI-CHRIST?

In Uncategorized on December 8, 2010 at 4:48 pm

Over the past two months, I have been asked a number of fascinating questions about Israel, Iran, The Twelfth Imam, The Joshua Fund, and the WikiLeaks controversy as I have spoken in 12 cities across the United States, as well as at the European Union Parliament in Brussels. 

Some of the questions I have answered this week include:

  1. Were the WikiLeaks foretold in Bible prophecy?
  2. How can we be praying for the work of The Joshua Fund right now?
  3. When will the sequel to The Twelfth Imam be released?

Here’s another one.

 

QUESTION: “Hello Joel, I am in reading The Twelfth Imam.  I’m starting chapter 50. During one part in the story, when Najjar reads a part in a book describing the Twelfth Imam, it was the same description to me as what anti-Christ will be to us Christians. Will this Imam also be the anti-Christ?”

ROSENBERG: To be clear, it is by no means certain that someone claiming to be the Twelfth Imam will truly emerge in history, much less in our lifetime. But our Lord Jesus warned us three times in Matthew 24 that “false messiahs” and “false prophets” will come in the last days, and that some will be able to do “great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect.” (Matthew 24:24) Therefore, we need to be on guard that the Twelfth Imam could come as a false messiah and deceive many. Should that happen, this person would certainly be one of the many anti-Christs (little “a”) that the Apostle John foretold in 1 John 1:18 would be coming. “Children, it is the last hour; and just as you heard that antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have appeared; from this we know that it is the last hour.” The Twelfth Imam would not, however, be the final “Anti-Christ” (capital “A”) described by the Book of Revelation and the Book of Daniel, the one that will come to full power during the Tribulation, take over the world, but eventually be judged and destroyed by the Lord Jesus Christ Himself. Why not? Pat Robertson asked me the same question in October on “The 700 Club.” You can watch the answer I gave him by clicking here (this specific question comes up at about 2 min, 10 seconds into the interview).

READER QUESTION: WHEN WILL THE SEQUEL TO THE TWELFTH IMAM BE RELEASED?

In Uncategorized on December 8, 2010 at 4:47 pm

Over the past two months, I have been asked a number of fascinating questions about Israel, Iran, The Twelfth Imam, The Joshua Fund, and the WikiLeaks controversy as I have spoken in 12 cities across the United States, as well as at the European Union Parliament in Brussels. 

Some of the questions I have answered this week include:

  1. Were the WikiLeaks foretold in Bible prophecy?
  2. How can we be praying for the work of The Joshua Fund right now?
  3. Will the Twelfth Imam also be the Anti-Christ?

Here’s another one.

QUESTION: “Joel, when will we see the conclusion of your latest offering, The Twelfth Imam? We purchased it on CD, and listened to it on our trip from Washington to Reno, Nevada.”

ROSENBERG: Thanks for the question. I hope you enjoyed the audio version. My current plan is that there will be three novels in this series. The Twelfth Imam is the first. I’ve got the next two sketched out. I’ll begin actually writing the second one next week. Lord willing, it will be released in the fall of 2011. The third should be released in the fall of 2012.

OPEN LETTER TO FRIENDS OF THE JOSHUA FUND: TOP PRIORITIES FOR 2011 & UPDATE ON 2010 ACCOMPLISHMENTS

In Uncategorized on December 6, 2010 at 1:50 pm

>> UPDATE: 14-year-old from Carmel region admits to accidentally starting massive wildfire

December 2010

“I am on my way to Jerusalem in the service of the saints there. For [the believers in] Macedonia and Achaia were pleased to make a contribution for the poor among the saints in Jerusalem. They were pleased to do it, and indeed they owe it to them. For if the Gentiles have shared in the Jews’ spiritual blessings, they owe it to the Jews to share with them their material blessings.” (The Apostle Paul in Romans 15:25-27)

Dear faithful friend of The Joshua Fund:

First, we have great news to celebrate: the fires in northern Israel are finally extinguished, and for this let us thank the God of Israel.  “The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness.” (Lamentations chapter 3:22-23).

Now the recovery efforts begin. The Joshua Fund believes it is vitally important the followers of Jesus Christ be part of these aid efforts, to bless Israel with unconditional love and unwavering support. Last Friday, we begun funding initial relief efforts to care for those Israelis who are suffering as a result of the fires, and we will continue to do so in the days and weeks ahead. Please be praying for our team as they go about this important work, and please consider investing in this work financially. We’ll keep you posted on what we’re doing.

Second, I want to thank you so much for your generous support of The Joshua Fund already this year! While many of you are doing okay, or even well, through these difficult economic times, I know some of you have lost your jobs, or are struggling in other ways to make ends meet. I want you to know how grateful I am to all of you. The lives of thousands of Jews and Arabs in the epicenter have been touched with the love of Jesus Christ, and many saints in the epicenter have been blessed and encouraged. 

Third, we have compiled a summary of the ways in which your prayer and financial investments have blessed Israel and her neighbors in 2010 — please click here to see that summary.

The enormous challenge we face now is getting ready for what is coming. As you know, the stakes are very high. Will Israel launch a military strike against Iran in 2011? Will Iran launch first? What will Hezbollah and Hamas do? None of us knows what the future holds. We may eventually be headed for a major regional war, but I continue to pray for peace, and I urge you to join me. In the meantime, I believe the Lord is telling The Joshua Fund team to continue caring for the poor and to accelerate our preparations for a possible war. 

I am so glad to report that since 2006, The Joshua Fund has consistently and significantly invested in blessing Holocaust survivors, the elderly, single mothers, homeless people, widows, orphans, and other needy Jews, Muslims and Christians in the epicenter; in training and encouraging pastors and ministry leaders in the epicenter; and in educating and mobilizing Christians around the world to bless Israel and her neighbors in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ. We couldn’t have done this without you, and we are deeply grateful.

Fourth, that said, there is so much more to do. Here are our top priorities in 2011: 

  • DOUBLING THE SIZE OF THE WAREHOUSE – We are prayerfully considering buying a 20,000 sq. foot warehouse in Israel. Currently we’re renting a 10,000 sq. ft. facility. Please pray. I’ll keep you posted.
     
  • OPENING MORE FOOD DISTRIBUTION CENTERS – Lord willing, we hope to double the number of food distribution centers in Israel from 7 to 14. We are also preparing to purchase more vehicles and equipment to distribute aid, and to hire more staff to help us with relief distribution. Please pray for the Lord’s wisdom and clear direction.
     
  • PROCLAIMING THE GOOD NEWS OF GOD’S LOVE – Lord willing, we will invest in a wide range of other important projects “to bring the good news to the poor…bind up the brokenhearted…and proclaim liberty to the captives and freedom to the prisoners,” as the Lord commanded through the Hebrew prophet in Isaiah 61:1-3. This includes supporting Christian radio ministries in Iraq and the West Bank, Bible training conferences for pastors in the region, a “Prayer & Vision Trip” to Israel in May 2011, and the 2011 Epicenter Conference in Jerusalem on May 15-16 to teach more people about God’s everlasting love for Israel and all the people of the Middle East. (www.epicenterconference.com.) 

Would you stand with us in prayer? We need this most of all. And, if you are able, would you also make a generous, tax-deductible, year-end gift to The Joshua Fund of $100, $250, $500, or more? Would some of you who are able be willing to make a $5,000, $10,000, or $25,000 investment to help us advance this urgent work? You can do so by clicking here.

In Matthew 24-25, our Lord Jesus tells us some of the ways He wants us to serve Him in the last days – feed the hungry, clothe the naked, visit the prisoners, care for the suffering, teach the Word of God, proclaim the gospel of the kingdom, and help the Church be ready for His return. He calls us to do this with unconditional love and unwavering support, and with gentleness and respect. (See our year-end report here.)

This is the mission of The Joshua Fund. Thank you so much for standing with us. May the Lord bless you and your family!

Yours to bless Israel and her neighbors in the name of Jesus,

Joel C. Rosenberg

Founder and President
The Joshua Fund

www.joshuafund.net

As always, we will do our best to keep you up-to-date on the kinds of projects we are doing, and brief you on how those projects are proceeding. In no way do we want to pressure anyone to give financially. We fully believe the Lord will provide for the needs of the people we seek to serve. But if you or others wish to help, we gratefully welcome your support. All financial gifts are tax-deductible in the U.S.A, and TJF is a member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA). If you would like to make a contribution to the on-going work of The Joshua Fund, please make your check payable to “The Joshua Fund” and send to: 

The Joshua Fund
18940 Base Camp Road
Monument, Colorado 80132-8009

Or you can give securely on-line at:
 www.joshuafund.net

DESIGNATED GIVING: If The Joshua Fund is successful in raising our financial goal for a specific project for which you have designated your donations, all excess funds for that project will be applied to related projects or to the general fund of TJF.

CHANUKAH BLESSING: BY THE GRACE OF THE GOD OF ISRAEL, FIRES FINALLY CONTAINED

In Uncategorized on December 5, 2010 at 11:21 pm

Firefighting plane drops water over the Carmel mountains. (AP photo)

Great news: the fires in northern Israel near Haifa and the Carmel mountains are finally contained. Let’s thank the Lord for His mercies, which are new every morning. Let’s thank the Lord for the hard work of so many Israelis in putting out the fires and caring for the wounded. Let’s thank the Lord for all the international assistance that poured in, and continues to pour in from Jewish and Christian organizations. Let’s thank the Lord for believers all around the world that have been praying faithfully for Israel at this critical time, and for our brothers and sisters in Israel who have been working hard to love their neighbors and assist those in affected by the fires. As we read in Lamentations chapter three….

    22The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease,
         For His compassions never fail.
    23They are new every morning;
         Great is Your faithfulness.

Please keep praying faithfully for:

  1. the families of the 42 Israelis who lost their lives, that the Lord would comfort them and draw them close to His heart
  2. the 33 Israelis injured in the fires, including the Haifa police chief, for healing and comfort from the God of Israel
  3. the 17,000 Israelis who are beginning to return to their homes to assess the damage and their next steps, for wisdom and courage from the Lord Himself
  4. the Israeli leaders as they begin to assess why they were so poorly prepared for this fire, for wisdom as they plan for the future
  5. the Lord to pour out physical and spiritual rain on a dry and needy land
  6. The Joshua Fund team as we assist those impacted by the fires and assist organizations that are making a real difference

>> Please consider making a year-end $50, $100, $250 or other tax-deductible donation to the work of The Joshua Fund to assist families impacted by the fires; to bless needy Israelis — Jews and Arabs — with food, clothing, medical supplies, and other aid; to educate Christians around the world about God’s everlasting love and wonderful plan for the people of Israel and the epicenter, and to mobilize Christians to “learn, pray, give and go” at this critical time. Thank you so much and may the Lord bless you bless Israel in the name of Jesus, according to Genesis 12:1-3.

HEADLINES TO TRACK:

FIRE UPDATE: 17,000 EVACUATED, NEGLIGENCE SUSPECTED, THE JOSHUA FUND ASSISTING THOSE SUFFERING, NEW PRAYER REQUESTS

In Uncategorized on December 4, 2010 at 2:46 am

Smoke from the fires blazing in northern Israel can be seen from space. (photo credit: Haaretz)

Arson was first believed to be responsible for “the biggest inferno in the country’s history.”  But now police have arrested two youths from a Druze village and say negligence may be the cause, not arson. A major investigation continues. Meanwhile, firefighters are having a difficult time containing the blaze, and the smoke is now visible from space.

At the request of one of our key allies in Israel, The Joshua Fund has begun funding relief efforts to care for those Israelis who are suffering as a result of the fires — if you would like to make a tax-deductible contribution to help, please click here. And please click here to read the latest update on The Joshua Fund blog.

SATURDAY UPDATE: “As the sun set on Saturday evening over the scarred and still burning Carmel Mountains, police and firefighters took cautious satisfaction in progress that had been made after more than 36 hours of relentless battle against the monstrous inferno, and took up defensive positions around Haifa, Usfiya and other communities, while hoping that nocturnal winds would not undo all of their hard work,” reported the Jerusalem Post. “A fleet of international assistance aircraft from Russia, Greece, France, Bulgaria, Britain, Turkey and Italy flew sortie after sortie over the flames, dropping large quantities of water and fire retardants, before returning for more runs. On the ground, besieged firefighters managed to beat the fires back from Nir Etzion, Ein Hod, Haifa’s Denya neighborhood, and the Tirat Hacarmel – Atlit area.”

Also, there is growing concern by Israelis that their government was not — and is not — adequately prepared to fight massive fires.

  • A Jerusalem Post columnist wrote: “Why, for years, have the Fire Services’ entreaties for greater budgets – to replace and supplement dismally antiquated equipment and bolster manpower from the current 1,400 to 2,400 – been rebuffed? Why is it only now that the government is promising to purchase the fire-fighting planes the service had been begging for? Why were the stockpiles of fire-fighting materials so low? Why, after the Fire Service stated explicitly during its worst-case scenario emergency drill in May that it simply lacked the resources to confront precisely this kind of disaster, was that anguished warning ignored? Just days ago, on November 24, The Jerusalem Post had noted that ‘For decades there has been talk about equipping our fire-crews with amphibian planes capable of ferrying in water and dousing flames from above.’ The editorial, written after a fire broke out high in Tel Aviv’s Shalom Tower, pointed out that ‘Such planes aren’t only the answer for skyscrapers but also for the sort of brush fires that have decimated many Golan nature reserves in recent months. However,’ we added bitterly, ‘these planes are costly and each day that passes disaster-free is all too evidently another day that the expense can be put off and out-of-mind.’”
  • A Ynet columnist wrote: “Imagine that a missile barrage landed Thursday on the Carmel, in central Israel, or in the Galilee region, producing fires in five different sites. What state would this country be in then? Thursday’s catastrophe is merely an example of the helplessness of the State of Israel’s emergency services. The weakest link within this establishment is the fire department…We don’t really have a national firefighting force. What we have is some brave people risking their lives, but we also have people who are turning these brave souls into a laughing stock with improper equipment and standards only familiar in the Third World.
  • A Haaretz story reported: “The [Israeli] Interior Minister, Shas leader Eli Yishai, responded on Saturday evening for the first time to criticism leveled at him for the performance of the country’s firefighting services, which fall under his purview, in the massive fire burning through the Carmel region of northern Israel. The minister emphasized in an interview with Channel 2 throughout his political career, there was no issue that he dealt with more than the firefighting services in Israel, which are, in his words, in a ‘catastrophic condition….'”

FRIDAY UPDATE: “Mass evacuations continued across northern Israel Friday morning as dry easterly winds fanned a massive brushfire towards the city of Haifa,” reports Haaretz. “Over 17,000 residents, including 600 prison inmates, were evacuated as the blaze raged out of control, devastating hundreds of acres of pine forest before sweeping down the slopes of the Carmel plateau towards Israel’s third largest city.” Here is video of Israelis battling the fires.

NEW PRAYER REQUESTS — please pray….

Thanks so much, and may the Lord bless you as you pray faithfully for Israel, help The Joshua Fund care for Israelis affected by the fires, and mobilize others to get involved to help, as well.

>> To join The Joshua Fund’s new Facebook page, please click here

>> To join the “Epicenter Team” on Facebook, please click here

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 38,439 other followers