Last week I want to the first event at the Feast of Tabernacles at the International Christian Embassy Jerusalem (ICEJ) at a hotel here Jerusalem. I personally know quite a few of the volunteers from this organisation and this is their busiest time as they put on a 5 day event for Christians supporting Israel and the Jewish people.
On the thursday we got our tickets and queued up, my friend John who came to visit me and two friends who are fellow volunteers at Bridges for Peace.
There is some really good speaking followed by a translator which was in surprise, Portuguese! There were a lot of attendees from Brazil. Actually there were people there from all over the world, with different groups of believers who got up on stage with flags representing their countries, not unlike the Olympics or Eurovision, there were even people from Egypt and Jordan there. In the lobby outside I got chatting to some people from Finland who were waving their white and blue flags.
For anyone often thinking that Christian supporters of Israel = Nutters, well I support Israel, but number One – I love Jesus, and this land played a part in the events of the bible, there is still an important role in what the Lord has still for this country today and in the future. Its important that Christians reject the common but completely bogus “replacement theology” doctrine which mistakenly gives the impression that the Israel mentioned in the bible is a metaphor for today’s church. Check out Romans 11 : 1 which clears up this confusion.
The worship consists of a band with about 20 musicians and there are many dancers and acrobats. I particularly liked the version of Paul Baloche’s Glorious (heres a Youtube clip of a version of this song) which has become recently one of my favourite worship tracks.
During this event, there was a man from the Israeli government who came to show his thanks for the support (I forget his name) as the Embassy has always had good relationships with government here, and they are now celebrating their 30th year here supporting this nation. Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu made an appearance, but via a recording on a TV screen at the beginning.
After the event, there was a variety of stands outside you can visit and get food, falafels, hotdogs etc and drinks whilst wandering around. One of the stands I saw was the blacksmith who recycles rockets that hits Jewish towns close to the Gaza strip into a variety of table decorations and candlesticks, I blogged on recently.
This was a nice evening, the only downside was tickets for the whole week, and even for this one event was a lot, although I got a heavy discount being a Christian volunteer here.