I write this from the beautiful city of Jerusalem, and am delighted to share this update amidst the joyous celebrations of Jerusalem Day! There are over 800 references to Jerusalem in the Bible, the city which God Himself chose in which to dwell and establish His Name. Back in Genesis 22:2, God spoke to Abraham, “Take now your son… and go to the land of Moriah, and offer him there as a burnt offering on one of the mountains of which I will tell you.” It was on this mountain that Solomon would build the Temple that housed the Presence of God. (2 Chronicles 3:1) and it was in Jerusalem that Jesus taught and ministered, laid down his life, and rose again. According to the prophets, the Messianic rule will be from Jerusalem. There is no other place on earth that has such a destiny.
However, although Israel wonderfully became a nation in 1948, Jerusalem was a divided city. Then, on the third day of the Six-Day War, June 7th 1967, against impossible odds the Israeli army captured the ancient, eastern part of this Holy City. The Jewish world was thrilled at the words of the military Commander, not heard since the fall of Jerusalem in 70 AD, ‘The Temple Mount is in our hands!’ Each year the reunification of Jerusalem is celebrated on Iyyar 28 in the Biblical calendar (June 7 1967). This year, Yom Yerushalayim/Jerusalem Day falls on Friday May 19th beginning from sunset the evening before. Flags and parades, singing and dancing are joyful features of ‘Jerusalem Day’.
Sadly, a united Jerusalem was not accepted by their neighbours, or indeed much of the world. When Israel declared Jerusalem its ‘eternal and undivided capital’ in 1980, countries pulled their embassies out of Jerusalem and relocated to Tel Aviv to avoid a threatened oil boycott. The International Christian Embassy Jerusalem came into being to stand with the nation and symbolically declare that “…Jerusalem, the city which I (the LORD) have chosen…” (1 Kings 11:32), is indeed their capital.
ICEJ Australia National Director