A Christian leader in the Holy Land has said that a "two state solution" for Israel and Palestine is the only way to achieve long-term peace in the region as the truce held out a second week; but another warned that reconciliation between the two societies remains a far away goal.
"It would be wonderful to see two states developed as this is the only way to keep lasting peace and for Islamic radicalism to be contained," Munir S. Kakish, chairman council of Local Evangelical Churches in the Holy Land, told The Christian Post in an email on Thursday. "A two state solution is good for both Israel and Palestine."
The long-term ceasefire agreed on by Israel and Hamas last week was brokered by Egypt and made in the hopes of stopping the fighting, which began in July and killed over 2,200 people, mostly civilians. more >>
What role does religion play in American attitudes towards Israel? An analysis by Frank Newport, the editor-in-chief of Gallup Inc., reviews 14 annual Gallup polls from 2001 to 2014 in which respondents answer the same question, "In the Middle East situation, are your sympathies more with the Israelis or more with the Palestinians?" The numbers offer insights different from what one might expect.
The study starts with two basic facts: First, looking at the whole sample of about 14,000 American adults, 59 percent answer that they have more sympathy for Israelis and 16 percent say they have more sympathy for Palestinians, a ratio of almost 4-to-1. Second, Newport finds that "Religious Americans are significantly more likely than less religious Americans to be sympathetic to the Israelis," confirming what common sense already tells us.
That said, his numbers contain several noteworthy subtleties: more >>
The founder of a global proclamation ministry who has trained thousands of church leaders in over 100 countries, has highlighted the importance of strengthening pastoral leaders in the Middle East as a means of helping suffering people, noting that ministries affect congregations, who then become a witness to their communities.
Ramesh Richard, the founder and president of RREACH (Ramesh Richard Evangelism and Church Health), told The Christian Post in an email interview Wednesday that in terms of the Christian faith, the Middle East is closest to Jesus Christ racially and geographically, but farthest from Him spiritually.
The theologian-evangelist, who serves as a professor of Global Theological Engagement and Pastoral Ministries at Dallas Theological Seminary, also serves as chair convener of the Global Proclamation Congress for Pastoral Trainers to be held in Bangkok in June 2016. more >>
Early in August, I flew from New York to Tel Aviv. I was a part of a faith oriented solidarity trip, with Christians United for Israel, focused on supporting Israel from a prayer and public policy perspective. In my mind this was a humanitarian trip – it was made up of a diverse group of 51 ministers representing all 50 states plus Washington, DC. We prayed earnestly for the peace of Jerusalem and Israel. Of special concern to everyone was the protection of women and children of all faiths and ethnicities.
The three-day trip to Israel was worth every moment we invested. We got a chance to talk with Israeli citizens who were practicing Christians, Jews, and Muslims. We were also allowed to view regions targeted by rockets, conflict zones, and selected sacred sites.
The most surprising bit of information we gathered was that nearly one out of every five Israelis is of Arab descent. Nowhere was this diversity more evident to us than in Jerusalem. Arabs and other minorities live with the full rights of citizenship in Israel, unlike Muslim controlled lands surrounding them - where religious freedom is almost non- existent. more >>
"I will bless those who bless you, And I will curse him who curses you; And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed."
There is a growing trend among Christians that claims this promise from Genesis 12 has expired that it is no longer valid. There are others in the Evangelical world, myself among them, who would rather stake our future and the future of our nation on the unchanging word of God.
It was this desire to bless Israel and publicly communicate our support of this resilient and remarkable nation, which gave birth to the recent "Christians in Solidarity with Israel" trip hosted by the National Religious Broadcasters. more >>
Israel and militant group Hamas have agreed to a long-term ceasefire in the Gaza Strip aimed at ending the conflict that has killed over 2,200 people. Israel has agreed to ease its economic blockade of Gaza, while Hamas has said it will stop firing rockets into Israeli territory.
The Associated Press reported that the truce was holding as of Wednesday. The open-ended deal was brokered by Egypt, with hopes it will stop the fighting, which besides the heavy death toll, has led to widespread destruction in Gaza.
"Israel has accepted an Egyptian proposal for a complete and unlimited-in-time ceasefire. Israel accepted already the Egyptian proposal on July 15. Israel has always supported an unconditional, open-ended ceasefire," an Israeli government official told AFP, speaking on condition of anonymity. more >>