For a whole host of reasons, I'm sceptical about the prospects of the Israeli-Palestinian peace conference, scheduled to start in Annapolis tomorrow, to bring peace (not least the disastrous legacy of the Oslo Agreement and the candid statements of even "moderate" Palestinian leaders that Israel should not be recognised as a Jewish state). I pray that I'll be mistaken.
God's path to peace, however - the gospel - has a proven track record in bringing peace between the most irreconcilable of enemies - even Jews and Arabs:
Richard Gibson writes here on our part in reconciling Jew & Arab in Israel;
whilst I today received the following prayer requests from the Arab General Secretary of the Fellowship of Christian Students in Israel, which unites Jewish and Arab students in gospel witness:
- Praise the Lord for two student conferences last month (October): Arabic speaking conference in Bet-Jala (Near Bethlehem) from 10-13 October with the topic "Be zealous and repent" (Revelation 3:19), about 40-50 students took part. There was also a chance for some students from the Palestinian Authority areas to join. The Hebrew speaking conference took place in Sde Boker in Southern Israel (11-13 October), main teaching was from Ephesians, 80-100 students took part and also had the chance to explore nature around.
- The academic year "started" more than three weeks ago with a strike by the senior lectures in the universities, this means that most courses are not taking place in universities while colleges are working as usual. In addition a strike by the high school teacher has been going for more than one month with no solution yet. Please Pray for the whole education system in Israel in this crisis. Pray for decision makers both in the government and from the teachers/lectures side to find fair solutions. Pray also for students so that the strike will not affect their studies, especially that this strike comes 6 months after a long student's strike!!
- As to the student groups some groups were able to start while other the strike affected and they could not start, but praise the Lord for the groups (Some locations have more than one group) in: Jerusalem, Beersheba, Carmiel, Haifa, Netanya and Tel-Aviv.
- Please pray for the student groups and their witness in campus/dorms, for students to grasp the vision in each group and be light and salt.
- Pray for FCSI as a whole to be effective in supporting the students and for wisdom in future decision making.