“To you who fear My name the Sun of Righteousness shall arise with healing in His wings; and you shall go out and grow fat like stall-fed calves.” Mal. 4:2
ROOTS AND REFLECTIONS ON GOD TV WITH BARRY SEGAL: Join Barry Segal every week for his biblically based travel program focusing on the reality of life in Israel. It’s all about archaeology, history, the Bible, culture, music, the language, interviews, the food, and humor. You can view VFI’s Roots and Reflections Program on God TV at the following broadcast times: Monday 6:00 PM ET-GMT, also on Friday, 10:30 AM ET (9:30 AM CT, 8:30 AM MT and 6:30 AM PT).
HISTORIC ACHIEVEMENT: UN CONDEMNS ANTI-SEMITISM: The UN General Assembly convened a special session on Tues. 2 April, 2019 to adopt a resolution condemning hate crimes. In its original version, the proposal only referred to Islamophobia, but after a diplomatic effort led by Israel's ambassador to the UN, Danny Danon, with many UN states, the proposal was changed and condemned anti-Semitism as well. Danon said, "It seems that the memory of history is fading over time, but the diplomatic effort that we have led has shown that we will not allow the international community to remain silent while a wave of anti-Semitism spreads throughout the world. Unfortunately, we return to the days when kippot and Stars of David are targets, also Jewish businesses and synagogues," added Danon. "This is an Israeli achievement at the UN and a crushing loss to the forces of hatred. However, it is very unfortunate that we should have fought to include anti-Semitism in the draft resolution. I remind the world that denying the right to self-determination of the Jewish people in its land and being anti-Israel is no different from being anti-Semitic. The time has come for the world to channel its power to act uncompromisingly against hatred and anti-Semitism and to stop ignoring the forces, both inside and outside the corridors of the United Nations, who seek to harm these efforts," concluded Ambassador Danon. (Arutz-7) “Let justice roll on like a river, righteousness like a never-failing stream!” Am. 5:24
BRITAIN CONDEMNS TRUMP’S GOLAN RECOGNITION: Britain’s Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt on Tues. 2 April 2019 condemned USA President Donald Trump’s recognition of the Golan Heights as sovereign Israeli territory. Answering questions in the House of Commons Hunt was not shy in criticizing the Trump White House for breaking the international consensus for not recognizing sovereignty over land seized during war. Hunt made British policy clear in response to a question from Conservative Sir Nicholas Soames, who said it was “a matter of the greatest regret that our allies, the United States, are in clear contravention of UN Resolution 497”. Soames said Trump’s recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan was illegal because “annexation of territory is prohibited under international law” and asked Hunt to “condemn unreservedly this breach of the rules-based order.” Hunt said he was “absolutely happy to do that.” The foreign secretary added that he condemned Trump’s actions “with a heavy heart” because Israel was also “an ally and a shining example of democracy in a part of the world where that is not common. We want Israel to be a success and we consider them to be a great friend but on this, we do not agree.” (Arutz-7)
IT WOULD BE SUICIDAL TO HAND THE GOLAN HEIGHTS TO SYRIA: It would be suicidal for Israel to hand the high ground on the Golan Heights overlooking Israeli towns and villages to the Syrian mass murderer Assad who would use it to target Israelis civilians with chemical barrel bombs, as Assad has done to his own citizens. No country in history has ever given back to a sworn enemy, militarily essential territory that has been captured in a defensive war. No prime minister of Israel would ever think of ceding the Golan Heights to Assad. Israel's continuing control over the Golan Heights increases the chance for peace and decreases the chances that Syria, Iran, and Hizbullah will be able to use this high ground as a launching pad against Israelis. (Gatestone Institute) “Never again will an oppressor overrun my people, for now I am keeping watch. Zech. 9:8
GOLAN RECOGNITION PART OF LARGER USA EFFORT TO COUNTER IRAN: USA recognition of Israeli sovereignty over the Golan Heights is part of a larger effort by the White House to open new fronts to combat Iran in the region, according to USA officials. One White House official said, "To allow the Golan Heights to be controlled by the likes of the Syrian and Iranian regimes would turn a blind eye to the threats emanating from a Syrian regime that engages in atrocities and from Iran and terrorist actors, including Hizbullah, seeking to use the Golan Heights as a launching ground for attacks on Israel. This administration is willing to acknowledge the reality that there can be no comprehensive peace agreement that does not satisfactorily address Israel's security needs in the Golan Heights. The Golan is an area vital to Israel's national security." USA Middle East peace envoy Jason Greenblatt tweeted, "A regime that gasses its own people and drops barrel bombs on women and children is in no position to try to convince the international community of their right to the Golan. Anyone who says Syria should control the Golan is taking a position not based in reality." (Washington Free Beacon)
HASMONEAN-ERA BURIAL CAVES NEAR JERICHO ALLEGEDLY LOOTED BY LOCAL ARABS: Arab residents of Jericho have reportedly looted second Temple-era caves on the outskirts of the city. The caves form part of an extensive burial ground of what's believed to be a Hasmonean palace, which was discovered in the area recently after agricultural and landscaping work was being done by local Arab farmers. Professor Rachel Hachlili of Haifa University's Institute of Archaeology, who studied this region, noted that these caves are the largest Second Temple-era burial ground in Israel. Hikers came across the scene where they found bones and human remains strewn all over, while the catacombs had been badly ransacked and looted of any valuables. It was also discovered that the sarcophagi (burial caskets) that had been resting in the caves for more than 2,500 years had disappeared. According to the statement, antiquities theft and destruction of archaeological treasures is a rampant phenomenon, which has become a common practice throughout Judea and Samaria. "In this case, ancient catacombs were wiped out by illegal looting despite the constant stream of alerts, warnings, and documentation sent to the Regional Commander for Antiquities in the Civil Administration, the body responsible for law enforcement in the area," the organization said. (J.Post)
KINNERET WATER LEVELS CONTINUES TO RISE INTO APRIL: The Kinneret's (Sea of Galilee) water level rose 11 centimeters in a single day, and 15.5 centimeters since Friday 29 March 2019. Currently, the Kinneret stands at 211.96 meters below sea level, 1.04 meters above the lower red line, and 3.16 meters below the upper red line signaling that the lake is full. Rain has been expected to continue falling intermittently this week in northern and central Israel, accompanied by isolated thunderstorms. The lake has risen a total of 2.86 meters since the beginning of the season. (INN) What answers to prayer! Israel has been having such an abundant rainy season. Thank you intercessors! Continue to pray that April will bring more precipitation than is normal for this month as the rainy season tapers off.
JEWISH COMEDIAN GETS TOP VOTES IN UKRAINIAN ELECTION: A Ukrainian comedian who is Jewish was the top vote-getter in the first round of Ukraine’s presidential election on Sunday 1 April 2019. The polls showed Volodymyr Zelensky with 30.4 percent of the vote. At least half of the vote is required to win. A run-off is scheduled for 21 April 2019. Zelensky will face either incumbent Petro Poroshenko, who is seeking a second term and is showing 17.8% in the exit poll, or former prime minister Yulia Timoshenko, who polled at 14.2% in the run-off. Zelensky, a Ukrainian-Jewish comedian who portrays a history teacher turned president in his hit television show “Servant of the People”, has been branded by the local media as “the Ukrainian Donald Trump.” Born in Kryvyi Rih, near Dnipro, to a Jewish family of scientists, Zelensky has not mentioned his Jewish identity in interviews during the campaign, which critics say is purposefully vague. When a reporter asked him how he would deal with Russian President Vladimir Putin, Zelensky reverted to his comic roots, replying: “I would speak to him at eye level.” It was a reference to his and Putin’s being at least three inches shorter than Poroshenko’s six feet. As of 2012, Ukraine had the fifth-largest Jewish community in Europe and the twelfth-largest Jewish community in the world. The majority of Ukrainian Jews live in the cities of Kiev, Dnipro, Kharkiv, and Odessa. (Arutz-7)
SAN DIEGO JEWISH ACADEMY BREAKS WORLD RECORD FOR SANDWICH-MAKING: The school set a Guinness World Record for the most sandwiches made in under three minutes. The sandwiches went to feed homeless people in its Southern California city. Students, faculty, and parents made 868 sandwiches in those 180 seconds, a giant leap from the previous record of 490 and well above the goal of 600. And these weren’t just two pieces of bread with a slice of cheese slapped inside — the sandwiches also included a slice of tomato and a lettuce leaf. The food went to residents of a temporary shelter in San Diego and to others living on the street, according to the Alpha Project, a city organization dedicated to helping the homeless. Representatives from the Alpha Project attended the event and provided education for the participants on the challenges of homelessness in their community. (Arutz-7)
JOIN US FOR THE 2019 SUCCOT CELEBRATION: Begin now to plan for the annual Vision for Israel Succot Celebration at the Pavilion in the center of downtown Jerusalem. The dates will be 15 Oct. – 17 Oct. 2019. Take part in praise and worship with Joshua Aaron, Barry and Batya Segal, the Kadosh Dancers and local worship teams. Enjoy teachings focused on Israel and the Middle East with Dennis Greenidge, David Herzog, Barry Segal, Benjamin Siegal, Jones Boateng, Victoria Sarvadi, Tony Sperendao, Nizar Touma and more to come. Connect with local believers and congregations in the land. Walk and dance on the streets of Jerusalem during the annual Jerusalem March! VFI will also be marking its 25th anniversary in Jerusalem for which there will be a special celebration. For further details including times, venue location, and suggested hotel accommodations, visit our Event’s page on the VFI website at: https://www.visionforisrael.com/en/events/681/succot-celebration-jerusalem-2019-darkness-to-light
The suggestions, opinions and scripture references made by JNN writers and editors are based on the best information received.
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Barry Segal with the Editorial Staff