Like David, Jews will prevail – for we have God at our side. But unlike David, we are not standing up to Goliath alone – for we have our extraordinary Christian friends.
I’m a proud Jew – but I love Christian music.
This past Sunday, just one week after Hamas terrorists brutally butchered over 1,400 Jews in the worst antisemitic attack since the Holocaust, I found myself at Kenneth Copeland Ministries’ Eagle Mountain Church in Dallas. Well over a thousand Christians were singing and praying together for Israel while waving Israeli flags. Overwhelmed with emotion, I couldn’t stop crying as Pastors Terri and George Pearsons passionately preached about the 200 Jews taken hostage by Hamas, including babies, children and the elderly. “Let my people go!”
When I stood up to speak, I put away my notes and spoke purely from the heart. At that moment, I thought of the words of my favorite Christian song, Same God. “I’m calling on the God of David, Who made a shepherd boy courageous, I may not face Goliath, But I’ve got my own giants…” We, the people of Israel, are David – and we are facing Goliath. After Hamas’ brutal slaughter of innocents, Hezbollah began launching rockets from the north as millions of terrorist sympathizers in Judea and Samaria and throughout the world celebrated the rape of Jewish women and slaughter of Jewish families with firewords and candy.
Like David, we will prevail – for we have God at our side. But unlike David, we are not standing up to Goliath alone – for we have you, our extraordinary Christian friends.
Allow me to backtrack for a moment. When the war broke out on October 7, the last day of the Feast of Tabernacles, I was leading the services in my synagogue in Efrat, a Jewish town bordering the Arab city of Bethlehem. From the moment the first rocket sirens sounded, the nightmare grew ever darker. Within days, our small town already lost several vibrant young men, friends and neighbors who gave their lives to defend us. Israel is a small country; every Israeli knows someone murdered, injured or taken hostage by Hamas.
Everyone, civilians included, immediately joined the war effort. School was canceled, synagogues became soup kitchens, and our teenagers volunteered to fill in for the hundreds of thousands of men called to the front. We are all on war footing. But even as our lives turned upside down, with my family regularly running to the bomb shelter, my wife bravely allowed me to fly to the US to speak with Jews and Christians and build broad support for Israel during this time of need.
Arriving in Orlando and then Dallas, it was jarring to see people go about their lives as usual, watching football at airport bars and chatting about the weather. At first, I felt alone, though also strangely privileged to be part of the great battle of good and evil on this earth. It is not the Jewish people’s fate to be bystanders. But when I stood together with Pastor Paula White that evening as she kicked off her annual “Unleashed” conference, I no longer felt alone. Pastor White, the President of the National Faith Advisory Board, invited me to speak at the very beginning of the conference. I shared the pain of our people, the losses we’ve suffered, as best I could. But what I will never forget about that evening was the way Pastor White spoke to her Christian audience about Israel. Throughout the four-hour program, she passionately and repeatedly called on her audience to support Israel. She told everyone to “give to Israel until it hurts,” to buy a used car instead of a new one, to stop going to Starbucks and to make coffee at home – so they could give more to Israel.
Having publicly rejected Christian proselytizing of Jews a few months ago, Pastor Paula’s unconditional love for the Jewish people cannot be questioned. Witnessing this extraordinary woman rise up in defense of my people, embracing her role as a lioness for Israel, I was brought to tears. It wouldn’t be the last time I cried on this trip.
When I arrived in Dallas, I learned that our planned Jewish-Christian rally for Israel was in jeopardy. Hamas supporters had pressured the Allen School District to forbid us from using their parking lot, and so we were forced to look for another location for the rally. With less than two days before the planned rally, we scrambled to find another location without success. But at the eleventh hour, Pastor Nick Vujicic of Life Without Limbs saved the day, covering the cost of the Marriott Hotel in Dallas to host the rally. Jews and Christians came together to pray and stand in support of one another, and Pastor Larry Huch delivered the most powerful speech in support of Israel that I have ever heard.
Everywhere I went, good people saw that I am Jewish and came over to me to express their love and support. A Delta Stewardess prayed for my family. A Coptic Christian who emigrated to the US from Egypt told me that she stands with Israel. And as I prayed in the Dallas airport, a Christian couple hugged me and prayed alongside of me, our prayers, in Hebrew and English, rising up to heaven together.
The love so many good Christians feel for Israelis at this time of terrible pain is real, and I am here, first and foremost, to say thank you from the bottom of my heart.
But I also have an urgent request. As we in Israel fight this dangerous war, we need Jews and Christians to express their love through practical and sustained action. As we speak, Hamas supporters all over the globe are violently demonstrating and screaming for Israel and the Jewish people to be wiped off the map, God forbid. Their goal is to intimidate and frighten, and most of all, to silence us.
We must not allow these lovers of evil to win! Pray for us – but also rally for us! Go on social media and scream out the truth! Sign up at Israel365action.com and join our growing army of activists for Israel. If Jews and Christians join together, our voices will be louder than those of our enemies. It is in our hands!
The weeks and months ahead will not be easy. We are fighting an evil of Amalekite proportions. But this time, the Jewish people are not fighting alone.
Rabbi Elie Mischel is Director of Education at Israel365.