God’s Peace & Hope Amid War

Saturday, February 24, 2024

“And the shalom of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Messiah Yeshua”

Philippians 4:7

Dear friends,

Amid war, peace is one of the hardest things to find. On October 7, 2023, the nation of Israel was shaken to the core and lost all peace, when the enemy invaded from Gaza and massacred our citizens. The evil enemy made it their goal to murder babies, children, the elderly, women, and all the citizens who were sleeping in their beds early on a Shabbat morning. This Shabbat was also a holiday — Simchat Torah. It is normally a day of rejoicing, yet instead, the enemy swept in and made it one of the worst days in the history of this nation. These wicked people murdered, butchered, decapitated bodies and limbs, burned babies in ovens, and stole from houses. 1,144 people in Israel were murdered, most of them civilians, and 243 were taken as hostages. And thousands more were injured. We, the citizens, have become the main targets in the enemy's war against us.

Pain, suffering, and heavy grief were laid on the shoulders of our people that day. So, in the midst of all of this, how in the world do we find peace? How can we find hope and faith in such chaos and evil? The only place we can find true and deep peace is in Yeshua. He is the only one who can help guard our hearts and our minds by giving us a peace that surpasses all understanding. In the book of John, Yeshua says:

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” - John 14:27

All of these horrible things bring me (Batya) to a place of searching for justice, especially in the areas of social and personal security for the citizens living in the "promised" land. Today, Israelis are looking for promises in the scriptures about the long-awaited days of peace for our people. From the day the state of Israel was established in 1948, we have been at war for our existence and have had battles against terrorism almost daily. Yet, we still believed in signing peace agreements with the Arab countries around us and thought we had entered a new era of ‘peace’. But instead, we find the small state of Israel once again being attacked by enemies around us.

Since the war began, the Israeli people have been bombarded with daily updates and news about what is happening to their beloved people and our land. All of this horrible news has stolen our peace. Many are disturbed by their thoughts, horrific images they have seen, overwhelming fear, worry about hostages and loved ones, and many other heartbreaking aspects of this tragedy.

Our lives here in Israel have been turned upside down, and we don’t know when this war will end. We all feel the pain, grief, and bereavement. And we ask, ‘Why are we doomed to go through another Holocaust?’ ‘How do we keep our minds at peace during war?’ ‘How do we maintain a balance between the harsh reality and a healthy inner peace for our soul?’

One of the ways for us to fight fear and worry is by accepting the word of God and His promises to us.

“Say to those who are fearful-hearted,

Be strong, do not fear!

Behold, your God will come with vengeance,

With the recompense of God;

He will come and save you.” — Isaiah 35:4

The best thing we can do is to read the scriptures, pray, and fix our eyes on the Lord. God intended for us to have a relationship with Him. When we focus on His word our eyes are fixed on Him and not on ourselves. The word of God can redirect our thoughts towards the Lord, instead of being focused on the world and ourselves or overwhelmed by this horrific war.

Thus says Adonai:

“The people surviving the sword

found grace in the wilderness—

where I gave Israel rest.”

“From afar Adonai appeared to me.”

“Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love.

Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness. Again I will build you,

so you will be rebuilt, virgin Israel!

Again you will take up your tambourines as ornaments,

and go out to dances of merrymakers." - Jeremiah 31:1-3

With enemies on all of Israel’s borders and others rising all around the world, Israel needs hope now more than ever.As believers, the only true way to overcome hopelessness is to stand firm in Yeshua. He is our hope and light no matter what we go through. The prophecies in the Bible remind us that the Messiah will redeem and save us. And it is only with the power of the Holy Spirit who resides in us, that we can stand firm in this truth during the war.

God’s promises are eternal and unchanging. Three thousand years ago, God promised this land to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and it still belongs to the Lord and His chosen people. And yet, this promise is being challenged by the enemy and many others believing lies about God and His covenant with Israel.

Before the war, there was such a great divide among the people here in Israel. There were terrible demonstrations about legal reform that led to the unstable security situations on the borders of our nation. However, since October 7th, there has been a strong unity and a great change in the hearts of the people. We can see the people of Israel supporting one another, comforting one another, and crying together. So many social initiatives, open hearts, giving to those who need help, and speaking about unity to bring peace to one another as the war rages on.

The enemy came to destroy us, but the Lord will restore, rebuild, and revive us! Pray with us that the people of Israel will find peace and hope amid war having the assurance of His salvation and everlasting love.

“But Israel shall be saved by the Lord with an everlasting salvation; You shall not be ashamed or disgraced forever and ever.”

Isaiah 45:17

Are you willing to bless Israel, make a difference in the lives of people, and partner with God's plan for restoration of the land of Israel?

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