Psalms 122:6 Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: "May they prosper who love you."
Last week, just before Chanukah, the United Nations passed resolution 2334. The resolution, in a nutshell, states that Israeli settlements in Judea and Samaria (commonly called the "West Bank"), have "no legal validity and constitute a flagrant violation under international law". The resolution enjoins the world to "to distinguish, in their relevant dealings, between the territory of the State of Israel and the territories occupied since 1967."
The timing and content of this resolution contain a remarkable correspondence to the events surrounding the Jewish festival of Chanukah. The Apocryphal book of 1 Maccabees, [vs.15:33-34] records the straightforward words of Simon, the Jewish high priest at the time. He declared to the Greeks, "We have never taken land away from other nations or confiscated anything that belonged to other people. On the contrary, we have simply taken back property that we inherited from our ancestors, land that had been unjustly taken away from us by our enemies at one time or another. We are now only making use of this opportunity to recover our ancestral heritage."
We are witnessing a recapitulation of those events some 2200 years ago... the people of Israel is still laboring with the grace of YHVH to recover its ancestral heritage. The Bible declares the land of Canaan to be the inheritance of Isaac and Jacob on the basis of this eternal covenant; [Psalms 105:8-11]. The nations of the world are uniting in The United Nations determined to nullify this covenant and the very word of God by dividing the Land. In the coming months and years we will witness the ramifications of this resolution.
This season of peace, "shalom", in Hebrew, a gauntlet has been thrown down in this resolution by the nations of the world, to which we must respond by praying for the peace of Jerusalem. The word "shalom" is one of the richest in the Hebrew language, indicating peace, completeness, wholeness, health, welfare, safety, soundness, tranquility, prosperity, perfection, fullness, rest, harmony, and the absence of agitation or discord.
When will this explicit prayer for Jerusalem be fulfilled and "shalom" be the very character and essence of "Yerushalyim" (City of peace)? Believers in the Messiah know that Jerusalem will only arrive at her final destiny when the Sar Shalom, (Prince of Peace) Yeshua (Jesus) returns. So when praying for the peace of Jerusalem you are praying for its King to return to rule and reign there. Yet even now, our affirmation of Israel's restoration to her ancestral homeland carries deep prophetic significance, as we await the second advent of Messiah.
Chanukah, the Festival of Lights, is a time of light. We who know and love Him, carry that light as we bear the light of His Word -- His covenants -- His truths -- to a world deceived and motivated by the Prince of darkness. The promises concerning God's faithfulness to Israel must be prayed and proclaimed in the midst of this global darkness. Prosperity is the Lord's promise for all who recognize and stand for His covenant with the children of Israel. Yeshua's great faithfulness to all of us is powerfully expressed in the restoration of this Land and people. Not all believers recognize this truth. Yet prayers in accord with God's word will affirm and confirm this beautiful revelation. Glory to God in the highest, and peace on Earth to men of good will!