The Jewish Feasts
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© 2016 Jewish Prayer Focus
ISRAEL’S NATIONAL BIBLE READING PROGRAM
On Sunday, December 21, 2014, Israel launched a National Bible study program called ‘929 Studying the Bible Together’. 929 is the number of chapters in the Hebrew Bible from Genesis to II Chronicles (as the Hebrew Scriptures follow a different order to the English Bibles). It is a daily Bible reading, Sunday to Thursday – the Israeli week – of one chapter per day for three years and seven months and will finish on Israel’s 70th birthday – Independence Day, April 19, 2018.
It was launched at the residence of the President, Reuven Rivlin, during the festival of Hannukka (the festival of [re-]dedication of the Temple or the festival of lights). The light is again shining forth from Israel. Rivlin and his wife host a regular Bible discussion group, as is the tradition for Israeli presidents, and as does the Prime Minister Netanyahu from his office. Rivlin claimed that, for him, the Bible represents the identity card of the Jewish people, which is also the identity card for all humanity.
Ninety-three percent of Israelis own a Bible but few read it, so the project aims to teach Jewish history and values to the diverse community and unify the nation around the treasure God entrusted to the Jewish people. The project was initiated by Deputy Education Minister Avi Wortzman, and Rabbi David Lau.
For Wortzman, this is an exciting dream coming true. It has taken five years to birth the project but now he says, ‘People are looking for something meaningful. They’re afraid of a meaningless existence. The Bible gives us values such as kindness to the stranger and care for the widow and the orphan – and these values are meaningful. We are all in search of meaning in our lives.’
The Bible studies will take place in schools, private locations and educational institutions, on social media, TV, smart phones, radio and internet. There will be a variety of commentaries from different viewpoints to promote discussion. There will also be community cultural events associated with the program. It is expected that one million Jews will participate, making it the largest Bible study ever.
Rabbi Benny Lau, the spiritual leader of the project, said that he was very excited about ‘the attempt to create a cure for society. A cure in which you don't complain about what you don't have, but create together what you do have.’
Fallen Israel is the only Western nation that is currently reversing the downward spiral to godlessness and this project is at the frontline of this move.
Praise God for this amazing project. We ask the Lord to bless it mightily (Is 55:10-11). We pray for the Holy Spirit to bring conviction to the hearts of the people so that they may repent and find salvation (Jn 16:7-14), and that the veil will be removed from their eyes as they read Isaiah 53 so they see Yeshua as their Messiah (2 Cor 3:14-18). This Scripture is normally not read in the synagogue readings.
|Breakthrough in Scripture|
|Introduction to the Feast|
|High Holy Day Readings|
|Israel and the Nations|
|Map of Israel|
|Days of Awe|
|Feast of Trumpets|
|Day of Atonement|
|Feast of Taberacles|
|Day of Prayer for Jerusalem|