Day 4: Pray for the Church to Have a Love for Israel

Today, as we continue our 10 Days of Prayer for Israel, we focus on praying for the Church to have an understanding and love for Israel. In Genesis 12, God promised Abraham that in him all the families of the earth will be blessed, and He will bless those who bless Israel. It is essential that the Church aligns with God’s heart for His covenant people and recognise the special relationship He has with this nation, which continues from the Old Testament to this day.

Related Scriptures

  • Romans 11:17-18: “If some of the branches have been broken off, and you, though a wild olive shoot, have been grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing sap from the olive root, do not consider yourself to be superior to those other branches. If you do, consider this: You do not support the root, but the root supports you.”
  • Romans 11:25-29: “Lest you be wise in your own sight, I do not want you to be unaware of this mystery, brothers: a partial hardening has come upon Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in. And in this way all Israel will be saved, as it is written, ‘The deliverer will come from Zion, he will banish ungodliness from Jacob, and this will be my covenant with them when I take away their sins.’ As regards the gospel, they are enemies for your sake. But as regards election, they are beloved for the sake of their forefathers. For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable.”
  • Romans 9:1-3: “I speak the truth in Christ—I am not lying, my conscience confirms it through the Holy Spirit—I have great sorrow and unceasing anguish in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were cursed and cut off from Christ for the sake of my people, those of my own race.”
  • Jeremiah 31:3: “The Lord appeared to us in the past, saying: ‘I have loved you with an everlasting love; I have drawn you with unfailing kindness.'”
  • Ezekiel 36:26-27: “I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws.”

The special relationship between God and Israel is evident throughout the Bible. From His covenant with Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, to His promises of restore Israel after discipline, God has demonstrated His unwavering commitment to Israel. Unfortunately, many churches around the world remain unaware of God’s love for the Jewish people due to a hardness that has come over the church, largely stemming from adopting a flawed theological framework known as replacement theology over the past 2,000 years.

Replacement theology, which wrongly states that the Church has replaced Israel in God’s plans, and that Jewish people can believe in Jesus and become part of the Church, but there remains no more national promise for Israel, and that all the promises of Israel’s restoration are spiritual for the Church. The problem, of course, is that all the judgments remain literal for national Israel. This unbiblical theology has caused much misunderstanding and even hostility towards the Jewish people, and laid the groundwork for 2,000 years of Christian Antisemitism, from Justin Martyr and John Chrysostom, to Martin Luther.

In his book, On the Jews and Their Lies, Martin Luther suggested that synagogues should be burned down, Jewish writings confiscated, rabbis forbidden to teach, along with several other harsh measures that ended with “We are at fault for not slaying them.” This eventually inspired Hitler, who referenced Luther for the Holocaust. The Church, who is predominantly gentile today, must collectively repent for these grievous sins to break the curse and restore right relationship with the Jewish people.

Despite the majority of the nation rejecting Jesus and being considered enemies of the gospel, the Bible promises that a day will come when they will believe. God made irrevocable promises in the Old Testament that He will fulfil because of the covenant. In Romans 11, Paul explicitly asks, “Has God rejected Israel?” and answers, “Of course not.” He uses the picture of an olive tree (Jer. 11:16) to explain that Gentiles were grafted into the promises God made to Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

Paul’s point in Romans 11:17-18 is clear: “Do not be arrogant toward the branches.” Gentiles should not think they are special because they have been brought into God’s family while some in the Jewish community have not yet believed in Jesus. Romans 11:25 emphasises the importance of understanding this mystery, warning against arrogance and ignorance. Paul’s heart for Israel is further expressed in Romans 9, where he says, “I’d be willing to lose my salvation if it meant for their deliverance.”

As we pray today, let us seek to align the Church with God’s purposes for Israel and understand His deep love for the Jewish people.

Prayer Points

  • Pray for the Church worldwide to engage deeply with God’s Word and understand His purposes for Israel (Romans 11:25-26, Jeremiah 31:3).
  • Pray that believers will read and study Romans 9-11, growing in understanding and aligning with God’s heart (Romans 11:17-18).
  • Pray that the Church will no longer be ignorant or arrogant towards the Jewish people and recognise God’s irrevocable covenant with them (Romans 11:25-29, Ezekiel 36:26-27).
  • Pray for the Lord to break off replacement theology from every Christian leader and church, leading to repentance and a renewed love for Israel (Romans 11:28-29).
  • Pray that the Gentile Church will develop a heart for our Jewish brothers and sisters, that pastors and church leaders will gain an understanding of God’s love for Israel and be motivated to act on this understanding (Jeremiah 31:3, Romans 9:1-3).
  • Pray for the Lord to purify the Church and forgive the sins of mistreatment towards the Jewish people, instilling a new spirit of love (Psalm 51:10, Ezekiel 36:26-27).
  • Pray for collective repentance for the history of Christian antisemitism and for God to heal and restore relationships with the Jewish community (2 Chronicles 7:14, Daniel 9:19).

Conclusion

Let us intercede for the Church to have a deep love and understanding of Israel, aligning with God’s heart and His eternal covenant with His people. Our prayers can bring about a transformation in the Church’s attitude towards Israel and a greater understanding of God’s redemptive plan.

Our first public virtual prayer meeting for Israel will be held TONIGHT. The meeting times according to timezones are as follows:

  • 7:00 PM UK time
  • 8:00 PM Central Europe
  • 9:00 PM Israel time
  • 2:00 PM EST

Please ensure you sign up to receive the Zoom link and join us in prayer.

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