Tisha B’Av,"The Ninth of Av," is a fast day that commemorates the destruction of the two Jerusalem Temples.
This year it starts at sundown, Monday, August 8, and ends at sundown, Tuesday, August 9, 2011. Join together with us and Jewish people all over the world in humbling ourselves before God, and asking for his mercy and healing.
Many other calamities have befallen the Jewish people on this day:
587 BCE (3338)- The First Temple is destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar and the Babylonians.
70 CE (3830)- The Second Temple is destroyed by Titus and the Romans.
135 CE (3895) - The Romans defeat Bar Kochba, and Emperor Hadrian turns Jerusalem into a Roman city.
1290 (5050) - King Edward I of England signs an edict expelling all Jews from England.
1492 (5252) - The Alhambra Decree takes effect, expelling the Jews from Spain and from all Spanish territories.
1914 (5674) - World War I begins when Germany declares war on Russia
1940 (5700) - Himmler presents his plan for the "Final Solution" to the Jewish problem to the Nazi Party.
1942 (5702) - Nazis begin deporting Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto.
Sources: Aish.com and "Jewish Literacy," by Rabbi Joseph Telushkin.
From Sundown February 24 to Sundown March 17, 2011
Dear Beth Israelites,
I want to invite you to join us for Beth Israel Messianic Synagogue's annual "Daniel Fast." We dedicate 21 days to fasting and prayer, as Daniel did, seeking personal and congregational breakthroughs.
We want breakthroughs from longstanding hindrances and difficulties that try to defeat us or stop us from fulfilling the will of God. We want victory over anything that threatens our well-being and future.
We are fasting and praying so we can move into a fresh, new season of ministry to the Jewish people of Jacksonville, and into the shalom and prosperity God wants to give us.
Everyone can participate at his or her own level and own way. We'll take inspiration from Daniel, who sought the Lord with all his heart, and believed that the breakthrough he needed would come when he prayed with fasting (Daniel 10).
May the Lord bless you!
Rabbi David Levine
Topics for Prayer
We will pray that the Lord God will open our own eyes, and especially reveal to us things that we haven’t seen or understood before.
We will ask the Lord to help us understand things which are “mysterious” to us.
We will seek wisdom regarding these matters so we know what to do, how to do it, why to do it, and the timing and sequence for our actions.
We will also pray that the Lord will give us His breakthrough in areas of our lives that have resisted change.
We will pray for God's direction and provision for Beth Israel’s future location.
We will pray for the establishment of our congregation's ministry leaders, and for each member to find his or her place of service in the congregation.
For full employment for our congregation. We will pray for financial blessings and prosperity for all of God's people who are participating in this fast, and for their families and loved ones.
We will pray for the health and healing of all who are fasting together this time.
We will pray for the peace of Jerusalem, that the government of Israel will make wise decisions, that Jewish hearts will be spiritually open, and that Jewish people will return to God through Yeshua the Messiah.
We will pray for Israel's protection from all terrorism and nuclear threats, especially from Iran, Hizbullah, and Hamas.
We will pray for the peace and well-being of our country and city. We will intercede for President Barack Obama and his cabinet members, and Congress, along with the governor of our State and the mayor of our city. We will pray that our president will have a heart for Israel.
We will pray for the economic situation of our country and its global effect.
We will pray that anti-Semitism in American and European society will be weakened and replaced by love and respect for the Jewish people, especially among Christians.
1. To make our hearts more willing
2. To give God our best
3. To strengthen our hearts for service to God by:
a. Dedicating all we love and hold dear to the Lord
b. Seeking the Lord through prayer and fasting
c. Receiving breakthroughs in any area that has resisted progress
1. We will each pray and seek the Lord every day during the fast.
2. We will make an appointment with God, and set aside a specific time to meet with him each day.
3. We will start our prayer time with praise, adoration and thanksgiving.
4. We will read the Bible each day.
5. During this fast, we will eat primarily a vegetarian diet or eat with some restrictions, such as fasting sweets, certain tasty foods, chocolate, etc. However, each person will be free to fast in some other way because of personal, physical or health needs. We’ll each take our fasting inspiration from Daniel’s three week fast (Daniel 10:2-3).
6. We will talk with one of the other participants each day to agree together in prayer.
Topics for Prayer:
1. We will pray that the Lord God will open our own eyes, and especially reveal to us things that we haven’t seen or understood before.
a. We will ask the Lord to help us understand things which are “mysterious” to us.
b. We will seek wisdom regarding these matters, so we know what to do, how to do it, why to do it, and the timing and sequence for our actions.
2. We will also pray that the Lord will give us his breakthrough in areas of our lives that have resisted change.
1. We will pray for the establishment of our congregation’s ministry leaders, and for each member to find his or her place of service in the congregation.
2. We will pray for land to build a new synagogue for Beth Israel.
3. We will pray for financial blessings and prosperity for all of God’s people who are participating in this fast, and for their families and loved ones.
4. We will pray for the health and healing of all who are fasting together this time.
1. We will pray for the peace of Jerusalem, that the government of Israel will make wise decisions, that Jewish hearts will be spiritually open, and that Jewish people will return to God through Yeshua the Messiah.
2. We will pray for the peace and well-being of our country and city. We will intercede for President George W. Bush and his cabinet members, and Congress, along with the governor of our State, Charlie Crist, and the mayor of our city, John Peyton. We will pray that our next president will have a heart for Israel.
3. We will pray that anti-Semitism in American and European society will be weakened and replaced by love and respect for the Jewish people, especially among Christians.
I want to invite all the members and regulars at Beth Israel to participate in a special prayer meeting on Wednesday evening, March 7, from 7-9 pm at the congregation.
This will be a time of consecrating ourselves to the Lord, freely offering ourselves in service to the Lord.
The Lord wants to take us individually, as families, and as a community to a higher level in our relationship with him, and in our ministry to him and his people.
If you are committed to the congregation, please adjust your schedule in order to participate. Cancel or reschedule anything which might conflict with this, so that you can personally be present for this holy time.
Please listen this week to my sermon, "Going to the Next Level" (Click below to listen)
from this past Saturday's service, in order to be prepared, along with the Saturday message from the previous week, "Strengthening a Willing Heart" (available at this Blog in a recent post).
Also, please dedicate Wednesday to fasting and prayer, so that you come ready.
Topic: That we would know practical steps to take so that the dross is removed-The Lord is refining us, using his fire to reveal the dross or schlock in our lives. It's important for us to know how to cooperate with the Lord so that we have victory.
We will pray this Monday for wisdom, understanding and knowledge:
o Some dross requires wisdom to deal with. We need to know what practical steps are required. When we don't have wisdom, we can connect with other people who do. So we can pray that we will know who to connect with.
o All of us have strengths and weaknesses, so we both have the ability to give help and to receive help. Let's pray that we'll be open to give and receive.
o Keep sharing your experiences with others. They can encourage you to keep moving forward, and your victories can help encourage others too.
Topic: How can you actively participate in God’s restoration of the Jewish people—We will fast and pray this Monday for each of us to find our place of service in God’s plan to restore the Jewish people, and to make the Jewish people a holy nation of priests. God’s refining process helps us take this place of active ministry, because his refining removes the dross that would hinder us from actively serving God’s restoration of the Jewish people.
Here are some thoughts to help you pray in this direction:
1. Both Jews and non-Jews can have dross that keeps us from serving this vision. For instance, Jews may want to assimilate or disappear from sight in order to avoid rejection, persecution, or the difficulties of being Jewish. This can happen to Jews in every walk of life, including Jews who attend synagogues or churches. And non-Jews can have dross that keeps them from serving this vision. They may be afraid of interacting with Jewish people about spiritual issues. Or they can be afraid of rejection or neglect or not being cared for inside the congregation, because they are not Jewish. If any of these kinds of dross is rising up in you, you can take comfort that the Lord is working right now to refine you.
2. Remember our congregation is a spiritual community with a calling. We are called to participate in God’s restoration of the Jewish people. Everyone who is called to this—whether Jewish or non-Jewish—can find their place in the congregation. If God called you to this congregation, you will grow in your understanding of how your ministry will reflect our vision and calling.
3. Your service to the Lord touches every aspect of life. So you can carry out your ministry in every part of your life. Don’t limit God’s work and don’t limit yourself.
4. Open your heart to receive the congregational vision and calling deeply inside of your heart, soul and even your body. Actively open up the different parts of your person. If you see that some part of you is closed, be deliberate in opening yourself up.