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Weekly Devotional: Outpouring of the Holy Spirit

“But you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be witnesses to Me in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth” (Acts 1:8 NKJV).

Pentecost (or Shavuot) was one of the three pilgrimage festivals within ancient Judaism. Along with Passover (or Pesach) and Sukkot, the Law of Moses required every able-bodied male to appear before the Lord on these festivals.

In the first century, that meant coming to Jerusalem and the Temple. Luke describes the throngs of pilgrims from all over the world that traveled to Jerusalem for Pentecost. 

Jewish tradition identified the festival of Pentecost as the time when God appeared to Israel on Mount Sinai and gave them the Torah.

God’s appearance at Sinai included fire, wind and sounds. Luke wove these same images into his story in Acts 2. He wanted to draw his reader’s attention back to what God did on Sinai when He gave the Torah to Israel, connecting the giving of the Spirit with the foundation of Israel as a nation.

As the crowds hear the disciples uttering the wonders of God in their various languages, Peter stands up before the crowd and explains that what they have experienced is the fulfillment of the words of the prophet Joel. Then, he began to preach and share the good news about Jesus. 

Within the book of Acts, the proof God gives of Jesus’ messiahship is the Holy Spirit. The Spirit’s coming provides the divine evidence that Jesus is truly the Messiah and that God raised him from the dead. The two—the coming of the Spirit and Jesus’ messiahship—are always linked in Acts. 

People often focus on other aspects and manifestations of the Spirit, but we can never forget that the coming of the Spirit ultimately testifies that Jesus of Nazareth is God’s Messiah, whom He raised from the dead.

Peter’s response to the crowd that listened to him: “Repent, and let every one of you be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins; and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38 NKJV).

The coming of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost fulfilled God’s promises through Joel. It connected to His act of the giving of the Torah on Mount Sinai. And, most importantly, it testified that Jesus is His Messiah, raised from the dead.

Whatever the Spirit’s work is in our lives and in our communities, it should also testify to these things.

PRAYER

Father, thank You for sending us Your Holy Spirit to testify of the truth of Your Son. Amen.

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Yom HaAtzma’ut: Israel’s Independence Day

By Julie Stahl

Yom HaAtzma’ut is Israel’s national Independence Day, and this year marks the 76th anniversary of the modern Jewish state!

“Who has ever heard of such things? Who has ever seen things like this? Can a country be born in a day or a nation be brought forth in a moment? Yet no sooner is Zion in labor than she gives birth to her children” (Isaiah 66:8 NIV).

On May 14, 1948, just before the Sabbath, some 350 guests crammed into an un-air-conditioned, Tel Aviv art gallery for a 32-minute ceremony that would change the world forever.

We, members of the people’s council, representatives of the Jewish community of Eretz-Israel and of the Zionist movement, are here assembled on the day of the termination of the British Mandate over Eretz-Israel and, by virtue of our natural and historic right and on the strength of the resolution of the United Nations General Assembly, hereby declare the establishment of a Jewish state in Eretz-Israel, to be known as the State of Israel,” declared David Ben-Gurion, Executive Head of the World Zionist Organization, Chairman of the Jewish Agency for Palestine, and soon to be the first prime minister of the fledgling state.

On that historic day, Ben-Gurion spoke for 11 million Jewish men, women, and children around the world who had no voice, no address, and nowhere to go. For the first time in nearly 2,000 years, they finally had their own nation in their ancestral homeland.

“It was promised to us by God. We are the only people in the history of the world that live on the same land, speak the same language, and believe in the same God more than 3,000 years,” says Isaac Dror, who heads the education efforts for Independence Hall, the place where the declaration was made.

Among the crowd of witnesses was Yael Sharett, whose father Moshe Sharett was on stage with Ben-Gurion and was the country’s first foreign minister and second prime minister. At age 17, Yael wrote as her father dictated one of the drafts of the declaration. She shared a chair with her aunt at the ceremony.

“It’s really epic. It’s poetry actually. The only time I was really moved I must say was when the Rabbi Levine made the old age Jewish blessing: shehecheyanu, v’kiyimanu, v’higiyanu la’z’man ha’zeh,” Yael told CBN News.

That ancient Jewish prayer, which is recited on momentous occasions, offers thanks to God “who has given us life, sustained us, and allowed us to reach this day.”

Then they sang HaTikvah (“The Hope”), which is Israel’s national anthem.

The next day, which was the Sabbath, U.S. President Harry Truman became the first world leader to recognize Israel.

“He understood something that most of his top advisors and ministers failed to see. This is truly prophecy being realized,” Dror said.

On November 29, 1947, the United Nations had passed resolution 181 calling for the creation of a Jewish State and an Arab State in British-controlled Mandatory Palestine.

The plan set aside land in the Galilee, along the Mediterranean and the Negev Desert for the Jewish people, while the Arabs were to receive all of biblical Judea and Samaria, later known as the West Bank, the Gaza Strip and other small portions. Perhaps the most controversial part of the plan was that an international body would control Jerusalem.

Still the Jewish people accepted the plan, but the Arabs rejected it. Less than six months later the Jewish people declared independence. The following day, the armies of five Arab nations attacked Israel.

Many countries have fought wars for their independence, but Israel’s war was not common. They had been granted independence by the sovereign, Britain; the decision was confirmed by the United Nations; and the Jewish people were returning to the historic land of their ancestors. But it was their neighbors who did not want them to exist.

A year later, the Jewish state was still standing and had increased its size by nearly 50 percent. Against overwhelming odds, this fledgling State of Israel not only survived but grew beyond expectation.

In honor of the 70th anniversary of the United Nations Partition Plan, Israel’s mission to the U.N. celebrated by returning to the hall in Flushing Meadows, New York, where the U.N. vote took place.

Former U.S. Vice President Mike Pence said: “In this very hall 70 years ago when the United Nations declared to the modern world an ancient truth that the Jewish people have a natural, irrevocable right to an independent state in their ancestral and eternal homeland.”

Israelis commemorate their Independence Day on the 5th of the Hebrew month of Iyar. During a televised ceremony that includes various leaders, Israelis make the transition from mourning on their memorial day to celebrating their independence. 

This year, the nation marks this momentous occasion for the first time since the brutal Hamas invasion and massacre on October 7th. The ongoing war has brought untold suffering. Innocent lives have been lost and the entire nation is living under the shadow of danger.

As of this month, 132 hostages remain in captivity in Gaza, over 200,000 Israelis are internally displaced, and the country continues to face a grave threat from its sworn enemies in the region who seek to harm her people, devastate her land, and erase her existence.

On this special day, may we continue to pray for the Jewish nation and renew our pledge to stand united with Israel.

Julie Stahl is a correspondent for CBN News in the Middle East. A Hebrew speaker, she has been covering news in Israel full-time for more than 20 years. Julie’s life as a journalist has been intertwined with CBN—first as a graduate student in Journalism at Regent University; then as a journalist with Middle East Television (METV) when it was owned by CBN from 1989-91; and now with the Middle East Bureau of CBN News in Jerusalem since 2009. She is also an integral part of CBN News’ award-winning show, Jerusalem Dateline, a weekly news program providing a biblical and prophetic perspective to what is happening in Israel and the Middle East.

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Weekly Devotional: Do You Sanctify His Name?

But the LORD said to Moses and Aaron, ‘Because you did not trust Me to show My holiness in the sight of the Israelites, you will not bring this assembly into the land I have given them’” (Numbers 20:12 HCSB).

The children of Israel found themselves in the wilderness of Zin without water. They grumbled against Moses and Aaron, wishing themselves back in Egypt.

God instructed Moses to speak to the rock to bring water out for the people. Moses, however, in his anger, struck the rock and brought forth water. The disobedience of Moses and Aaron prevented them from entering the Promised Land.

This seems like an odd story. Regardless of how Moses did it, water still came from the rock. Why did God get so upset? Because Moses did not do what He commanded. Moses and Aaron brought the congregation before the Tent of Meeting, and God’s glory appeared to everyone. They heard what He said. But still, water came from the rock. Problem solved. Yet, it wasn’t.

Shepherds, like Moses, have a knack for finding water in the desert. Moses’ efforts made him the source of Israel’s provision, not God. His action showed that he did not trust God to bring forth water simply at his word. Moreover, his disobedience in front of the congregation did not sanctify God; in fact, it did the opposite. It profaned Him.

According to the Bible, our behavior either sanctifies God’s name or profanes it. We sanctify His name through our obedience to Him in the common and ordinary aspects of our everyday lives. The Bible often provides ordinary examples of ways to sanctify God’s name in our daily lives. To disobey means that we profane His name.

We often want to blame the media, secularism, politicians, and non-believers for God’s name being profaned in the world. However, the Bible tells us that non-believing nations were not called to sanctify God’s name; His people were.

The secular forces in our world are not responsible for God’s name being profaned in our world; we are. When we fail to obey Him, we profane His name. But when we obey Him, we sanctify His name before the world.

God takes this seriously. So seriously, that it prevented Moses and Aaron from entering the Promised Land. The first benediction of the prayer Jesus taught His followers to pray requested, “May we sanctify Your name.” How? By obeying His will.

PRAYER

Father, may we sanctify Your name in our world today through our obedience to Your word. Amen.

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Yom HaZikaron: Israel’s Memorial Day

By Julie Stahl

“The LORD cares deeply when his loved ones die” (Psalm 116:15).

A week after Yom HaShoah (“Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day”), Israelis mark Yom HaZikaron (“Israel’s Memorial Day”) to honor and remember those who died fighting for their country and those murdered in terror attacks.

A televised state ceremony is held at the Western Wall and neighborhoods throughout the country hold their own ceremonies in public places, with the participation of the youth. 

Israelis stand in the streets for an hour or more as the people who died from those neighborhoods are remembered and honored.

Following the October 7th invasion and massacre as well as the ongoing war with Hamas and Hezbollah, this day is more real and relevant than ever for most Israelis.

Many visit cemeteries and attend other ceremonies on the day. Schools are in session but have special programs to honor fallen soldiers and terror victims.

Twice, on the evening before Israel’s Memorial Day and the following morning itself, Israelis collectively stand in silence as a siren sounds calling to mind the sacrifices that were made by family and friends for Israel’s freedom and security. 

“I was thinking about all the soldiers from the beginning of the modern State of Israel up until today who had to fight on the frontlines and on the home front,” said Shai Yosipov, a former IDF combat medic.

“It’s so important that everyone understands the price and the responsibility we have for living in this country. We not only remember our fallen loved ones, but we also acknowledge that there has always been a sacrifice that needed to be made so that we could be here today,” says Yosipov.

“During the siren, I was praying for families who’ve lost so many, and I prayed that God would give them comfort from the pain,” says Sarah Rivka Yekutiel, who moved to Israel from Boston many years ago.

“It’s an emotional time for everyone, whether you’ve lost family or not. This day is very heavy and intense,” said Orital Saban, who recently moved to Israel from Canada.

More than 23,000 Israeli and Jewish soldiers and more than 3,100 terror victims have fallen since 1860. 

At sundown on Israel’s Memorial Day, Israelis make an incredible leap from mourning those who gave the ultimate sacrifice, to celebrating Yom HaAtzma’ut (“Israel’s Independence Day”).

Julie Stahl is a correspondent for CBN News in the Middle East. A Hebrew speaker, she has been covering news in Israel full-time for more than 20 years. Julie’s life as a journalist has been intertwined with CBN—first as a graduate student in Journalism at Regent University; then as a journalist with Middle East Television (METV) when it was owned by CBN from 1989-91; and now with the Middle East Bureau of CBN News in Jerusalem since 2009. She is also an integral part of CBN News’ award-winning show, Jerusalem Dateline, a weekly news program providing a biblical and prophetic perspective to what is happening in Israel and the Middle East.

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Biblical Israel: Pool of Siloam

By Marc Turnage

Located on the southern part of the rock cliff that marks the hill of the City of David (in Jerusalem), near the southern end of the Tyropoean Valley sits the Pool of Siloam. The pool was accidentally discovered in 2004 by workmen laying a new sewage line in the southern part of the City of David. The Gihon Spring, Jerusalem’s primary water source, supplied water to the pool in antiquity via the so-called Hezekiah’s Tunnel. 

Archaeologists uncovered two flights of five narrow steps separated by a wide landing that descend into the pool. This enabled people to descend to different levels based upon the fluctuation of the water level due to either the rainy or dry seasons within the land of Israel. Although the archaeologists only uncovered one side of the steps of the pool, it seems that such an arrangement of steps surrounded the pool on four sides. The pool covered roughly an acre of land. Coins and pottery date the construction of the stepped pool to the mid first century B.C.

To the north of the pool, archaeologists uncovered a fine pavement of stones that resemble the first century street that runs to the west of the Western Wall of the Temple Mount. Discovery of column drums and column bases protruding from the pavement suggests that a colonnade ran along the pavement. 

The Pool of Siloam appears twice within the New Testament (Luke 13:4; and John 9:7). In John, Jesus instructed the blind man to wash the mud from his eyes in the pool to be healed. It served the water needs of ancient Jerusalem (along with other pools in the city), and it also served as the largest ritual immersion pool within the city. Jewish pilgrims, who needed to be ritually pure before entering the sacred precincts of the Temple (see Acts 21:26), could use the Pool of Siloam for ritual immersion. Its size and proximity to the Temple makes it a suitable location for the baptism of the three thousand who responded to Peter’s sermon on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2). 

Archaeologists have suggested that the holes found on the steps leading into the pool might have supported screens made of wood or mats to provide privacy for those ritually immersing in the pool. Jewish ritual immersion, like what we find in the New Testament, required privacy as the person immersing did so in the nude, nothing can come between the bather and the water. 

During the first century, on the last night of the festival of Sukkot (Tabernacles), water was drawn from the Pool of Siloam and brought to the altar of the Temple and poured out as a libation. The festival occurs at the end of the summer (around October), and the water libation requested rains from God (see John 7:37). This ceremony, known as the Beth HaShoeva, occurred at night. Jewish sources describe how pilgrims lined the route from the pool to the Temple carrying torches.

The first century Pool of Siloam likely covers the same pool mentioned in Nehemiah (3:15). Then, at a later time, the pool was enlarged and constructed in the manner of a Jewish ritual immersion bath. 

Marc Turnage is President/CEO of Biblical Expeditions. He is an authority on ancient Judaism and Christian origins. He has published widely for both academic and popular audiences. His most recent book, Windows into the Bible, was named by Outreach Magazine as one of its top 100 Christian living resources. Marc is a widely sought-after speaker and a gifted teacher. He has been guiding groups to the lands of the Bible—Israel, Jordan, Egypt, Turkey, Greece, and Italy—for over twenty years.

Website: WITBUniversity.com
Facebook: @witbuniversity
Podcast: Windows into the Bible Podcast

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Weekly Devotional: Have You Ever Wanted to Give Up?

The prophet Jeremiah lived in troubled days. God called him to prophesy to the kingdom of Judah in the years leading up to the Babylonian invasion of Judah and the destruction of Jerusalem, its Temple, and the deportation of many of its citizens to Babylon.

There were other prophets in Jerusalem at this time, too, and some of them had the very opposite message to the people from what Jeremiah had shared.

As a result, Jeremiah ran into trouble with the Jerusalem priests. Pashhur the son of Immer, the chief officer of the house of the Lord, had Jeremiah placed in stocks for his prophecies.

Jeremiah found himself disillusioned and discouraged:

“LORD, You persuaded me and I let myself be persuaded; You have overcome me and prevailed. I have become a laughingstock all day long; everyone mocks me. For each time I speak, I cry aloud; I proclaim violence and destruction, because for me the word of the LORD has resulted in taunting and derision all day long” (Jeremiah 20:7-8 NASB). 

Jeremiah had a message that no one wanted to hear. Not the king and his court, not the priests in the house of God, and not the people.

He even came to the point of despising the day he was born (20:14-18). He was ready to give up. He didn’t want the calling of being a prophet anymore. It separated him from those around him, including his close friends (20:10).

Yet, when Jeremiah came to the point of no longer speaking the word of God, he found that he could not. He could not hold it in; he had to speak, even if it meant he still felt overwhelmed, isolated, and frustrated.

Why? Because Jeremiah understood something very important: God was King and had laid claim to his life; therefore, regardless of the circumstances and what Jeremiah felt, he had to proclaim the word God had placed in him. 

Too often we want to be comfortable in our faith. We don’t want God’s calling to disrupt our lives or our standing within the world around us. We definitely don’t want to be seen as strange or weird—one of those people.

The prophets of the Bible did not always fit in. At times, God commanded them to do some strange things to convey His message. And they did it. Why? Because God is King, and they had submitted to His calling for their lives.

Of course, not every weird thing a person does makes him or her a prophet. But sometimes living in obedience to God will put us on the opposite side of our friends, family, and society.

Jeremiah endured because God had called him—and because God’s message sought to redeem His people. 

Sometimes we, too, can feel overwhelmed, frustrated, and disillusioned with our faith. We may feel like Jeremiah and want to throw up our hands and walk away. In those moments, it is more important than ever that we renew our minds and hearts in the word and calling God has given us.

Remind yourself that He is King, and if we commit our cause to Him (20:12), He will redeem our obedience and faithfulness.

PRAYER

Father, never let our feelings overwhelm us to the point that we give up from what You have called us to do. May Your word and message burn inside of us today so that regardless of our circumstances, we proclaim it to a world that needs You. Amen.

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Yom HaShoah: Holocaust Remembrance Day

By Julie Stahl

Israel is commemorating its national Holocaust Remembrance Day against the backdrop of the October 7th massacre. Although the scale was much smaller, it brought many back to the murder of Jews during the Holocaust and many Israelis felt the spirit was the same.

It’s more important than ever that we all remember the Holocaust. We must remember how the viral poison of anti-Semitism in Germany and throughout Europe led to the genocide of 6 million Jewish men, women, and children.

Yisrael Meir Lau, a former Israeli Chief Rabbi, is a Holocaust survivor who was born in Poland. He described anti-Semitism like this: “Anti-Semitism you can explain, but you cannot find a reason for it. It’s against dialogue. It’s against logic. It’s a spiritual madness.”

In 1959, Israel set the 27th of the Jewish month of Nisan, about a week after the end of Passover, the Feast of Unleavened Bread, as Yom HaShoah or Yom HaZikaron laShoah ve laG’vrurah (“Holocaust Martyrs’ and Heroes’ Remembrance Day”).

That day marks the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising, when the Jews in the ghetto in German-occupied Poland resisted the Nazis’ attempt to transport the remaining population there to concentration camps.

Each year, Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial in Jerusalem opens the events with a large ceremony addressed by both the President and Prime Minister. Six Holocaust survivors, often accompanied by a family member, light six giant torches in honor of the 6 million murdered by the Nazi death machine.

The following day, air raid sirens blare, and the nation comes to a standstill to honor the memory of those who perished at the hands of the Nazis.

The name Yad Vashem is taken from a passage in Isaiah, where God declares, “I will give them, in My house and within My walls, a memorial and a name better than sons and daughters. I will give each of them an everlasting name that will never be cut off” (Isaiah 56:5 HCSB).

In 2005, the United Nations established International Holocaust Remembrance Day on January 27. This day marks the anniversary of the liberation of the largest concentration camp—Auschwitz-Birkenau—where it is estimated that more than 1 million people died, most of them Jews.

This Yom HaShoah, please continue to pray for Israel and her people in the aftermath of October 7th, the deadliest day for the Jewish people since the Holocaust.

Julie Stahl is a correspondent for CBN News in the Middle East. A Hebrew speaker, she has been covering news in Israel full-time for more than 20 years. Julie’s life as a journalist has been intertwined with CBN—first as a graduate student in Journalism at Regent University; then as a journalist with Middle East Television (METV) when it was owned by CBN from 1989-91; and now with the Middle East Bureau of CBN News in Jerusalem since 2009. She is also an integral part of CBN News’ award-winning show, Jerusalem Dateline, a weekly news program providing a biblical and prophetic perspective to what is happening in Israel and the Middle East.

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Biblical Israel: Megiddo

By Marc Turnage

Situated in the western Jezreel Valley at the foot of the lowlands of Mount Carmel stands the ancient mound of Megiddo. It overlooks where Nahal Iron crosses through the Carmel lowlands, which provided passage for one of the branches of the most important highway in the Ancient Near East, a highway that connected Egypt via Israel’s coastline, through the Jezreel Valley, onto Damascus and Mesopotamia. Megiddo’s importance stemmed from its location guarding this most import roadway. 

Archaeological excavations have revealed twenty layers of civilization beginning in the Neolithic period until the fourth century B.C. Its strategic significance made it the stage for battles through much of its history, with Pharoah Thutmoses III in 1468 B.C., Pharoah Merneptah in 1220 B.C., Pharoah Shishak in 924 B.C., and the battle in which Josiah, king of Judah, died at the hands of the forces of Pharoah Neco in 609 B.C. (2 Kings 23:29-30). 

Megiddo’s strategic importance made it the object of Israelite conquest when the Israelites entered the land (Joshua 12:21). By the “waters of Megiddo,” the forces of Deborah and Barak defeated the Canaanite forces of the king of Hazor (Judges 5:19). Megiddo fell within the territorial allotment of Manasseh (Joshua 17:11), but the Manassites could not take possession of Megiddo. It remained under the control of the local Canaanites (Joshua 17:12; Judges 1:27). 

During the United Monarchy, Solomon is said to have fortified Megiddo, along with Gezer and Hazor (1 Kings 9:15)—all three cities provided overwatch of the international coastal highway running from Egypt to Damascus and Mesopotamia. The final mention of Megiddo within the Bible is the death of King Josiah (2 Kings 23:29-30; 2 Chronicles 35:20-24). Within the destruction of the northern kingdom of Israel by the Assyrians in 722 B.C., Megiddo became an administrative city of the Assyrians, but its settlement steadily declined until it was abandoned in the fourth century B.C., most likely due to Alexander the Great’s conquest of the land. 

Visitors to the site today can visit two multi-chambered gate complexes from the Bronze and Iron Ages. Two separate palace and administrative complexes have been excavated, as well as an area that contained several cultic places of worship from different time periods. The site contains the remains of horse stables, stone mangers, and an exercise corral for the horses. Kings of Israel stationed horse and chariot forces, which were the tank corps of the ancient world, at Megiddo due to its strategic location. 

Perhaps the most impressive feature of the site that has been excavated is the water system. Ancient sites, especially administrative centers like Megiddo, had to provide the water needs for the city in times of peace and war. Most ancient sites sat on hills to offer the protection of elevation from an attacking army. Springs, however, usually do not sit on hills; they are found at their base. At Megiddo, the spring sits at the bottom of the west side of the mound. To bring the water into the city, the engineers cut a square shaft through the earth within the city’s fortified walls that connected to a long horizontal tunnel (80 meters long) that had been dug to the source of the spring. This tunnel brought the water to the area where the shaft had been dug, and the shaft enabled the people in the city to descend and draw water. 

A final word should be made regarding the well-known idea that the ancient site of Megiddo had some connection with John’s mention of Armageddon in Revelation (16:13-14, 16). The usual explanation, Armageddon represents the Hebrew meaning the “mountain of Megiddo.” People will speak about the Valley of Armageddon, yet the Bible never mentions a Valley of Armageddon. This is a modern fiction, which appears for the first time in the nineteenth century. 

No ancient Church father or Christian source ever connected Armageddon with Megiddo. Moreover, as we noted, Megiddo ceased to be inhabited in the fourth century B.C. The location of the site was forgotten. The first century Jewish historian Josephus did not know of it. In fact, he relocated the death of Josiah to a town he knew on the border between Egypt and the land of Israel. The fourth century Church father, Eusebius, did not know its location, nor did he connect Megiddo with Armageddon. No one, then, knew in the first century, when John wrote Revelation, where Megiddo was. 

Finally, while Megiddo sits on a hill created by layers of civilization, it cannot be described as a mountain. Hebrew has a word for “hill,” a word that accounts for the names of places like Gibeah, Geva, and Gibeon. Megiddo is a hill, and not a mountain. Time does not permit a full explanation for what stands behind John’s Armageddon, but suffice to say, he expected the gathering point for the armies of wickedness to fight against God to be Jerusalem (Revelation 11:1-2; 14:20; and 20:9), the mountain of assembly.

Marc Turnage is President/CEO of Biblical Expeditions. He is an authority on ancient Judaism and Christian origins. He has published widely for both academic and popular audiences. His most recent book, Windows into the Bible, was named by Outreach Magazine as one of its top 100 Christian living resources. Marc is a widely sought-after speaker and a gifted teacher. He has been guiding groups to the lands of the Bible—Israel, Jordan, Egypt, Turkey, Greece, and Italy—for over twenty years.

Website: WITBUniversity.com
Facebook: @witbuniversity
Podcast: Windows into the Bible Podcast

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Weekly Devotional: The Lord Alone Exalted

“The eyes of the arrogant will be humbled and human pride brought low; the LORD alone will be exalted in that day. The LORD Almighty has a day in store for all the proud and lofty, for all that is exalted (and they will be humbled)” (Isaiah 2:11-12 NIV).

Our world marvels at mankind’s stunning and impressive achievements. We celebrate human success and ingenuity. We are so often consumed by the latest advancements in modern science, medicine, and technology.

At the center of our universe stands humanity. Our postmodern culture tends to evaluate everything through the lens and vantage point of the human individual. Such a worldview is foreign to the biblical mindset. In fact, the biblical worldview challenges and affronts our modern outlook.

The biblical writers were overwhelmed by the God of the universe and His awesomeness. They recognized the transience and fragility of human existence against His dwelling in eternity. They saw the foolishness of human pride and arrogance as God raised up and brought low.

They recognized humanity as created by the Creator to do His will instead of viewing itself as the master of the universe. It understood that God is King, and we are not. They also realized that creation—all of it, including humanity—existed to glorify God, not itself. His redemption of the world brings Him glory and points to His goodness and greatness.

For the biblical writers, God is the subject of the universe, and we are the object. Our modern world flips that around, if we even place God in the sentence at all.

Unfortunately, even our modern Christianity can all too often make us the subject and Him the object. We look to Him for what He can do for us, our needs, our dreams, our salvation, our comfort.

God does care deeply about us, more than we can ever comprehend, but He does not exist for us. We exist for Him. May we be swept away by His awesome majesty!

PRAYER

Father, You are awesome and are enthroned in majesty. May we live each and every day to exalt You in all that we say and do. Amen.

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Giving Help and Hope During Passover

For over a decade, CBN Israel has hosted a special Passover dinner for single-parent families, widows, and families in crisis. These events are offered in various locations all over the country.

Through these Passover gatherings, friends like you are making it possible to provide families with a quality dinner as well as a meaningful time of fellowship. At the culmination of the evening, each family is blessed with a holiday package and food vouchers.

Thanks to caring donors, the individuals and families who attend are reminded that they are not forgotten—and they are not alone. These holiday events also enable CBN Israel to maintain contact with each household in order to continually assess the needs and offer basic assistance. 

“CBN Israel has been giving me help and support for over a decade—since my two children were babies,” said one single mom. “It makes me so happy that you care about us—both during holidays like Passover and all throughout the year. I cannot thank you enough!”

Another woman shared, “I am a new immigrant in Israel without any family or relatives. I am so grateful that you invite us to come celebrate Passover and other holidays with CBN Israel. You not only welcome us with dinner and hospitality; you also give me food vouchers so that I can afford to buy food and other essentials for my kids. Thank you!”

Your gifts to CBN Israel can bring emergency aid, shelter, and trauma counseling to so many whose lives have been devastated by the war—while continuing assistance to single mothers, aging Holocaust survivors, and others in dire need.

Please join us in delivering help and hope across Israel.

GIVE TODAY

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