To The Jew First

A Christian Ministry to the Jew first, and also to the Gentile.  Romans 1:16

East gate in Jerusalem

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Dec. 4, 2012 Near Beth Shemesh

Beth Shemesh: A city in Dan. Samson was born in Tsora which is close to Beth Shemesh. Jdgs 13:2 Beth is house and shemesh is sun in Hebrew and Arabic. Apparently the name Samson comes from the root of sun. The Israelites lost the ark of the covenant in Aphek to the Philistines. God judged the Philistines for possessing the ark then they sent it back from Ekron to Beth Shemesh. 1 Sam 4, 5. 6 In 1 Sam 6:9 the ark reaches Beth Shemesh. Aphek & Beth Shemesh are in the Shefelah. It is translated in the KJV in Deut 1:7 as vale and in Jdgs 1:9 as valley. Aphek is the northern most point of the Shefelah. They are the lowlands or rolling hills that you come to as you leave the Mountains of Judah going towards the Philistine Plain to the west. I recently visited Gath the city of Goliath. 1 Sam 17:4 It is close to the Shefelah. It is near Azekah & the Valley Elah where David fought Goliath. 1 Sam 17:1-2 Azekah is in the Shefelah. May we be challenged by the faith of David and his confidence in the God of Israel.

Moses sent out the 12 spies into the land of Canaan to search the land. Num 13:16-25 The spies searched the Land for 40 days. It is a privilege to once again search out the Land. There are Biblical sites to visit, opportunities to witness and believers and churches to visit. A visit to Israel is inspiring especially to a believer in Jesus Christ.

In 1969 I was riding in a taxi from Baer Sheva to Jerusalem. As I recall I did not witness but as we came to Bethlehem I felt compelled to say something. I quoted Micah 5:2.

2But thou, Beth-lehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.

A woman next to me in the taxi asked if I knew why it says Bethlehem Ephratah? I said no. She said because there is another Bethlehem ( House of Bread ) in Israel. This trip (2012) I shared from this verse before breaking of bread in Beth Hesda ( House of Mercy-Jn 5:2 ) church in Haifa. From Bethlehem the Messiah must come. When the wise men came from the East to find Him that is born King of the Jews King Herod asked the chief priests and scribes where is the Messiah to be born. From Micah they said Bethlehem. Matt 2:4-6 Bethlehem is the city of David. Luke 2:11

11For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

There were thousands in Judah but only one city was chosen. The probability that it would happen in only one city with the name given is quite small. And then add to that detail that the child will be virgin born from a Jewish woman of the tribe of Judah and the family of David. Isaiah 7:14, 9:6-7 There are many other details given about the birth of the Messiah so only God could have fulfilled each detail exactly. It is interesting to note there are no Jews in Bethlehem today. It is to become a city of Palestine.

One verse says that the ruler in Israel who is the Messiah is to come to God. In Psalm 40:8 it is said that the Messiah delights to do the Father's will. Jesus said.

John 6:38 (KJV) For I came down from heaven, not to do mine own will, but the will of him that sent me.

Just before dying Jesus Christ said "not as I will, but as thou wilt." Matt 26:39 Messiah came to His Father. It was the Father's will that His Son the Messiah would come unto His own the Jews.

John 1:11-13 11He came unto his own, and his own received him not.
12But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name:
13Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. Have you received Him as your personal Savoir?

To give your life to Jesus Christ is a marvelous Christmas present for Jesus Christ. For those of us who belong to Christ I pray that we can follow in the footsteps of Jesus Christ seeking to do His will and not our own.



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