We had municipal elections here in Israel on Tuesday, October 30, and the polls opened at 7 AM. When we woke up the next morning to see the results of the voting, several incumbents who had been serving as mayors of large cities and small towns for years (in some cases for decades) found out they were out of a job as an apparent wave of dissatisfaction with the status quo swept new names and faces into city halls across the country.
In Jerusalem, we’ve had a fantastic mayor in Nir Barkat for the last ten years, but he wasn’t running for re-election this time around because he wants to run for the Knesset in the next national elections (which everyone is anticipating will be called in the very near future.) There were six candidates running to be the next mayor of Israel’s capital city and none of them received the 40% of the votes needed to win the race outright. So the two candidates who got the most votes in the first round will go head to head in a run-off election on 13 November.
So, why am I telling you all this?
Well, 1 Timothy 2: 1-2 says;
First of all, then, I urge that entreaties and prayers, petitions and thanksgivings, be made on behalf of all men, for kings and all who are in authority, so that we may lead a tranquil and quiet life in all godliness and dignity.
Now, I’m sure many if not most of the people who follow Kehilah News Israel and are otherwise supporters of the Jewish State probably make a regular habit of praying for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Maybe you also pray for some of the other senior officials in the government of this country whose names appear regularly in the news. But have any of you ever prayed for the mayors of Israeli cities and the members of the municipal councils, school boards, etc.?
I wouldn’t blame you if you hadn’t, but I’m asking you to make it a priority to start doing so. Because to be very frank, the ability of Israeli Believers to “lead a tranquil and quiet life” is VERY dependent on the policy and attitude adopted by these local officials and their staffs. The same goes for the work being done by Christian ministries in Israel. Local officials like mayors can make life really difficult for our Believing brothers and sisters, or they can do the opposite.
For that matter, the same is true for others “in authority” including the principals of the schools our children attend, the commanders of the IDF units we and/or our children serve in, etc. There are many people “in authority” over different areas of our lives and they all have the power to grant or withhold tranquility from our lives.
Public statements by the Prime Minister about how much Israel appreciates Christian support of Israel, about how Israel protects the rights of Christians, etc. is all well and good. But the fact is, on a day to day basis, from one town to the next, these matters are largely up to local municipal officials, and some are better than others.
So, with all that in mind, please pray for the new mayor of Jerusalem, and Haifa, and Tel Aviv, and Ashkelon, Ashdod, Rehovot, Tiberius, Rishon Letzion, etc. and all the members of the city councils in these places. Pray for the chief of staff of the IDF and all his subordinates. Pray for school superintendents and principals and teachers.
Don’t forget to also pray for the pastors and elders of the congregations in Israel.
Pray for their physical health and safety. Pray for them to have wisdom, vision and courage to be good leaders and stewards of what God has put under their care and authority. Pray for them to draw closer to their Creator and King, so that their decisions and directives will be more in sync with His.
Pray for your own leaders too. Much depends on it.