God and Government
©November 9, 2008 Asher Intrater
One of the first verses to remember in the 21st century is Proverbs 21:1: "The king's heart is in the hand of the Lord, like the rivers of water; He turns it wherever He wishes." Let us remember that the prayer of faith offered to the Lord has power to direct the heart of elected officials.
On Tuesday elections will be held for the mayor of Jerusalem. The two candidates are Nir Barkat, a conservative businessman with a background in the Israeli army, and Meir Porush, an ultra-orthodox who has worked to fight against Messianic believers in the Land. (Our sons have been volunteering for Barkat's campaign.) Please agree with us in prayer and fasting for God's will to be done.
Benjamin Netanyahu received a boost of support this week, as two former leaders of the Likud party, Benny Begin (son of former prime minister) and Dan Meridor (former minister of Justice), after having left politics for several years, have decided to return to the party. Netanyahu is the front runner to be the next prime minister, with elections scheduled for February 1, 2009.
Recently five local Messianic leaders, including myself, were threatened with a lawsuit by a major "anti-missionary" organization. Please pray for wisdom and protection for us, and for all others who have been attacked in the past, and that God would turn what they meant for evil into good.
Our friend Francis Frangipane gave some thoughts for hope and faith concerning the new US government. Here is an excerpt from his article:
"Let me remind you: the future of our nation is not determined by an election, but by the faith of the elect. If we continue to pursue God, humbling ourselves and not giving up on our intercession, God can turn this nation toward Him in remarkable and powerful ways.
Barack Obama's victory has filled most African Americans with a profound sense of joy. Indeed, the election of a black president by a majority of Americans from all backgrounds, says that the American dream is coming to pass.
Consider the words of our Pledge of Allegiance. Our allegiance is not merely to the flag, but for the "republic for which it stands." Our pledge is for "one Nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all."
Even now, with a black man ascending the seat of authority in this nation, hope is swelling in places bound by hopelessness. This breakthrough of racial healing has long been on the heart of God.
Regardless of who was elected president, the problems facing America are staggering. Threats of economic collapse, conflicts around the world, plus the possibility of a new cold war all await the president-elect. We must pray for him on these major issues, for in his success will be our success (Jeremiah 29:7).
What about Obama's staunch pro-choice voting record?
I was a Christian for several years before the Holy Spirit revealed the horror of abortion. It happened in a moment. Perhaps someone was praying for me, but God got through. Likewise, I believe God can get through to our new president. Let's take faith that Jesus Christ could lift president Obama's conscience to the "pay grade" where abortion becomes reprehensible to him.
Let me also say that America did not turn liberal; the majority of Americans in our nation are still right of center. Even in California, voters banned gay marriage.
What about Israel? Will the new president turn against the Jews?
The first cabinet position chosen by president-elect Obama was given to Rahm Emanuel. Emanuel is a hard charger, very clever Chicago politician. While partisan, he also is more a centrist rather than a left wing extremist. What you may not have known about him is that he is Jewish. His father immigrated to America from Jerusalem and was a former member of the Irgun, a militant Zionist group active in the British Mandate of Palestine between 1931 and 1948. There is no guarantee that Emanuel will defend Israel, but I do not believe Rahm Emanuel, whose family is very active in their Chicago synagogue, would abandon the Jews nor Jerusalem.
I'm not saying I agree politically or morally with everything that Barack Obama believes, but you'll remember that one of his initial plans was to bring God and religion into the Democratic Party. He fought the influences of those in his party who had rejected Christianity and he sought to make the Democratic party a place where faith could exist and even flourish.
So, dear friend, it is not a time to despair; it is time to pray with vision and with hope. If all you see is a "cloud the size of a man's hand," then pray with the faith of Elijah that a mighty outpouring of grace may fall. Let us give God the chance to bring into our world a blessed, prayed-for reality."
For more information concerning Francis' ministry, contact www.frangipane.org.
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