the text of a message which was preached
Message in a Forest: Repairer of the Breach
by Eitan Shishkoff
Tents of Mercy,
Intro/October 2002: This past Shabbat it was my privilege and my challenge to address a multi-congregational gathering of Arab and Jewish believers in Yeshua in a forest clearing in the
These past two years have been an onslaught by the enemy not only on Israeli life, but on the relationships between Jewish and Arab Israeli citizens. At times
Last spring an Arab Israeli pastor whom I highly respect approached me to convey some of that complexity. He believes in
As a direct result of this brother reaching out to me, I found myself standing nervously before several hundred Jewish, Arab and non-Israeli believers last Shabbat. God came through with a message that touched many hearts. I'm taking the liberty of attaching the message, "REPAIRER OF THE BREACH" in hopes that it will assist you in interceding for us and for our Arab brothers and sisters. We have indeed been handed an unwanted opportunity. That opportunity is to demonstrate the covenant love of brothers, followers of the same Lord, during a time of terrible conflict.
Repairer of the Breach
A message given by Eitan Shishkoff
to Arab and Jewish believers gathered together in a forest in the Galilee on October 5, 2002
Isaiah 58: 9-12 Then you shall call and the Lord will answer; you shall cry and He will say, “Here I am.” If you take away the yoke from your midst, the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness, If you extend your soul to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted soul, then your light shall dawn in the darkness…the Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought…those from among you will build the old waste places; you shall raise up the foundations of many generations; and you shall be called the Repairer of the Breach, the Restorer of Streets to dwell in.
In an intercessory prayer meeting last week, a pastor from
This was a breach between people groups caused by historic circumstances that produced fear and even hatred. But in this prayer meeting the pastor rejoiced because now he actually knows “Russian” people—Russian Israelis actually—and in the place where fear once prevailed now is love. After his confession, he prayed so tenderly for the Russian-speaking Israelis, who in turn forgave him and confessed similar fears of Americans. “Perfect love casts out fear,” Yochanan (the apostle John) says.
After these things Dalia, an Israeli-born believer, prayed about the breach in our country between Russian-speaking olim (Jewish immigrants) and tsabarim (orsabra, a native Israeli Jew). She confessed the antagonism she and other native Israelis have felt and of the rejection of the new immigrants and feelings of distance and dislike.
The Russian-speaking intercessors admitted to similar feelings of victimization and anger against tsabarim (native Israelis). As an immigrant, I had to agree that I have struggled at times with similar feelings of rejection and great feelings of inadequacy in the process of absorption.
Ezek 37:21, 22 describes exactly the opposite of this: One nation, one people, one King.
Ahhhhh….one King. That says a lot! That says that in the Kingdom of our King, there is the promise of being one people.
We may not be able yet to unite all streams of Israeli society, but within the Kingdom, where Yeshua is King, we have not only the possibility, but also the mandate.
He has broken down every wall of partition. Through the cross He abolished the enmity that existed in the flesh in order to bring us together (Eph 2). We no longer know any man according to the flesh, but by the Spirit. (2Cor ).
What IS the
Some of our [Jewish] people point to the deceased
Clearly our people are looking for and waiting for a king who will inaugurate a
Yeshua said to pray “that your Kingdom come on earth, as it is in heaven…” What does that look like?
Yeshua instructed His disciples to announce the coming of God’s Kingdom with the accompanying actions of setting the demonized free and healing the diseased. He taught them to say “The Kingdom of God is at hand.” We are to Seek first the
While volumes have been written on the subject, it is possible to say simply that Yeshua’s Kingdom is a reversal of the effects of the curse of rebellion on mankind.
Paul says that it is righteousness, peace and joy in the Holy Spirit. B’kitsur—the Kingdom is now likened to leaven, which spreads through flour, making bread. Infiltrating. The Kingdom is to infiltrate society, bringing a taste of the King’s coming.
How can we as ambassadors of this magnificent, merciful, eternal King, bring His reign to our land? One very visible and immediate way to manifest His Kingdom is in the midst of the complex relationship being watched by all the world right now: Arabs and Jews.
We are faced in our land not only with the coming together of cultures among Jewish people, but our nation consists of Arab Israelis as well. Many of your families have been in this land for centuries. You speak Hebrew better than I do, and in many ways you are far more “Israeli” than I, or other immigrants are. After all, you are native to the
The foods we all love to eat as “Israeli” food, including such delicacies as “schwarma” and “felafel,” are in fact given to us by you—our Arab neighbors. Yet here is another area of sensitivity; another area abundant with rejection; another area greatly in need of healing.
For the past two years we have both been pounded by the forces of satan seeking to destroy what had been fragilely built over the years of Arab-Jewish relationships among believers in the land.
In my brief 10 years in
He also gives us the power to forgive and to counter fear with love. If I know that I am no longer a loser—even if I am given that impression from another ethnic group--then I can respond from security and reach out instead of withdraw.
TRUE reconciliation can only happen through the Cross. Only when you and I are willing, because of our security in the love of Messiah—only when I have lost my rights by identifying with Yeshua’s death—can we embrace each other with hearing hearts and affirmation.
Anise, our extraordinary Arab pastor brother from the
He sought me out to touch sensitive things—to help to me identify with your pain as Arab Israelis during this war and to break down a wall.
This path is costly. This path is includes pain and misunderstanding and awkwardness. But it is a high and glorious path that reflects the very nature and triumph of our King!
Let me sum it up: Those who have come recently to the land feel fear, embarrassment, bitterness, inferiority, anger and frustration. Those being attacked for being Jewish, feel rage, frustration, grief.
Those being identified with “the enemy” because of shared Arab culture, language and identity feel injustice, resentment, rejection and anger.
But what is God’s plan? To awesomely use both the “aliyah” (return to
The enemy hates aliyah. The enemy hates Arab-Jewish brotherhood in Messiah.
It will not do to oppose the arrival of new olim (immigrants). It is a supernatural act of God, fulfilling His ancient, inviolable Word. It will not do to resent our co-existence as Arab and Jew in this land: His Torah says to embrace the “ger” who dwells in the land and to live together according to the Law of the Lord.
Therefore, if we cooperate with God, He will bless and use us. This is our promised land! We must embrace His calling to dwell in this land according to His law of love. To bring patience, kindness, encouragement and honoring into our midst.
We have an incredible opportunity to demonstrate the
I cannot pretend to know all about how to do this. But I believe deeply that if we take honest, obedient steps---if we watch for opportunities as Arab & Jewish followers of Yeshua, as olim and tsabarim who love His appearing, that He will make a feast from the broken pieces of bread that are our lives.
Let us forgive those who have judged and rejected us. Whether it is in the realm of olim and tsabarim or in the area of Arab and Jewish Israeli.
It is time to repent of our unholy attitudes of judgment and rejection. It is time to announce The Kingdom of God is at hand!
If you take away the yoke from your midst, the pointing of the finger, and speaking wickedness, If you extend your soul to the hungry and satisfy the afflicted soul, then your light shall dawn in the darkness…the Lord will guide you continually, and satisfy your soul in drought… and you shall be called the Repairer of the Breach, the Restorer of Streets to dwell in. Isaiah 58:9-12