Today I had the privilege of attending a United Jerusalem Day Celebration at the Victory Assembly of God in Sharon, Massachusetts. The event was sponsored by Rabbis and Ministers for Israel; Pastor Joe Green; Victory Assembly of God; Pastor Dick Ingram; Christians and Jews United for Israel; Rev. Fumio Taku; Friends of the IDF; Lior Zommer; Russian Jewish Community Foundation; Alex Koifman; The Irwin M. and H. Ethel Hausman Memorial Speakers Series; Rabbi Jonathan H. Hausman.
The featured speakers were Shai Bazak, Consul General of Israel to New England, Cathy Lanyard, Executive Director, American Friends of ALYN Hospital in Jerusalem, Col. Amnon Meir, I.D.F. Liaison Offer to TRADOC, and Dr. Pat Robertson of CBN.
The day was a celebration of Israel and its eternal capital, Jerusalem. Rabbi Hausman spoke of the need for Christians and Jews who support Israel to travel to Israel to see the country for themselves. He pointed out that less than one quarter of American Jews have ever visited Israel. The Rabbi reminded us that Israel is the only country in the Middle East where Christians live freely.
Cathy Lanyard spoke of the work being done at ALYN Hospital in Jerusalem, Israel’s pediatric and adolescent rehabilitation facility. ALYN treats children with a wide range of congenital and acquired conditions including cerebral palsy, neuromuscular diseases, spinal cord injuries, brain injuries, burns, terror and motor vehicle accident victims. The goal of the hospital is the equip children to go home and lie with their families. Ms. Lanyard spoke about a Guardian Angel program to help Americans support this hospital and the work that they do.
Shai Bazak, the Consul General of Israel to New England, spoke of growing up in Israel and learning the history of the country and of the Jewish people. His father fought in the 1948 war for the liberation of Israel. In listening to him speak, I began to understand the role of the Western Wall in the life of an Israeli Jew. He described the Wall as a place for prayer and thanksgiving.
Pat Robertson spoke of God’s blessing on the Jewish people and the need for Christians to support Israel. Dr. Robertson spoke of the recent terrorist bombing in Boston. He reminded us that Islam divides the world into two categories–dar al-Harb, the house of war, and dar al-Islam, the house of Islam. There is no in-between. He pointed out that Islam is a political system with a goal of world domination. Dr. Robertson pointed out that in World War II we knew our enemy–we knew it was the Nazis–not all of the Germans–and we fought that enemy and won. He stated that we have to do that with Islam. He reminded us that David purchased Mount Moriah in order to make a sacrifice to God after he disobeyed God by taking a census. Solomon built his temple in Jerusalem. As both Christians and Jews, we need to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.
The final speaker was Col. Amnon Meir, I.D.F. Liaison Officer to TRADOC. He stated that he was born in Israel and that his parents were born in Israel. He spoke of a visit to the concentration camps of the Holocaust. In speaking with a survivor of a camp in Austria, he said that the man said that the three most important moments of his life were–the day the U.S. army freed his concentration camp, the day the state of Israel was established, and the day that Jerusalem was unified. He reminded us that Israel is a peaceful nation that desires peace, but Israel lives in a rough neighborhood and needs to hold a big stick (a strong army).
It was an amazing day. Listening to the speakers who were raised in Israel talk about the Western Wall and what it was like to grow up in the midst of such incredible history was awesome. It was a celebration of Israel and Jerusalem. It was also a celebration of the unity that can exist between Jews who love Israel and Christians who love Israel.