Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Intolerance on the Temple Mount

Intolerance on the Temple Mount
September 27, 2009

Last week, our synagogue in Beit Shemesh made its annual High Holy Day week visit to the Temple Mount. We began the tradition six years ago when the site was reopened to non-Muslims. During the first three years following the start of the September 2000 war launched against Israel by the Palestinian Authority, Hamas and Hizbullah, the government decided to reward Arab terror by barring all non-Muslims from even setting foot on the Temple Mount.

Visiting the Temple Mount is a schizophrenic experience. When standing there, it is impossible not to be awestruck by the magnitude of where you are and the enormity of the colossal events that took place there. It is on the Temple Mount that both the First and Second Temple stood for nearly 1,000 years, where millions of Jews from all over the Land of Israel and the Diaspora made the three festival pilgrimages and where, according to Jewish belief, the Third Temple, ushering in the days of the messiah, is destined to be built. Throughout history, whenever and wherever Jews were engaged in prayer, they faced Jerusalem. And when in Jerusalem, they pray in the direction of the Temple Mount.

It boggles the mind to imagine your family tree and to consider when the last time anybody in the family line had been on the Temple Mount. Might that ancestor have been one of the survivors of the fighting that took place there prior to the destruction of the Second Temple by the Romans in 70 CE? Might it have been on Shavuot of that year, the final pilgrimage festival celebrated by the Jewish people prior to the destruction?

But now that I was standing in that holiest of places, which generations of Jews for 2,000 years could only dream of visiting, I was forbidden to pray. Simply moving my lips in whispered prayer could be grounds for removal. Why? Because I am a Jew. And only a Muslim can pray on the holiest site in Judaism. A Jew may not.

DURING THE War of Independence in 1948, the Old City of Jerusalem fell to the Jordanians. Nearly 1,500 Jews, including many women and children, were killed. While it was under Jordanian control, dozens of Jewish synagogues, many centuries old, were destroyed and the cemetery on the Mount of Olives, where Jews have been buried for 2,500 years, was desecrated. For 19 years, no Jew was allowed to set foot in the Old City or pray at the Western Wall, the retaining wall of the Temple Mount closest to where the Temples stood.

In June 1967, when Egypt, Syria and Jordan embarked on a war to annihilate the Jewish state, Israel recaptured Jerusalem's Old City. One of the most stirring announcements in Jewish history was the message transmitted from the front during the Six Day War: "The Temple Mount is in our hands."

But then, in a mind-boggling display of attempted appeasement of an enemy that just days before had sought Israel's destruction, defense minister Moshe Dayan decided to allow the Muslim religious council, the Wakf, to retain administrative authority over the Temple Mount. Thus, a truly bizarre and unacceptable situation developed.

Israel has scrupulously upheld Muslim worship at the Aksa Mosque, which was built just off the supposed site of the Temples, even when the site has been used to stone Jewish worshipers at the Western Wall and sermons are delivered calling for the demise of Israel and the US. Nor have Muslim prayer services been banned even in the worst periods of Arab terror attacks. During the just-completed Ramadan, hundreds of thousands of Arabs prayed at al-Aksa and held nighttime picnics on the Temple Mount breaking their fast. The garbage and leftover food items we saw strewn over the Temple Mount during our visit was appalling.

But in glaring contrast, Israel has, for the past 43 years, failed to challenge the Muslim ban on Jewish worship on the Temple Mount. On our visit, the number of Jews allowed up at one time was severely limited, we were checked for any religious items, which cannot be brought onto the Temple Mount by a Jew, and we were warned by the police not to even whisper a prayer.

THE STATUS quo is woefully offensive and intolerable. Never mind that at no time during the lengthy Muslim control over much of the Middle East did the Muslims ever designate Jerusalem as an imperial capital or even as a provincial or subprovincial capital. Even if we choose to overlook this very relevant history, the pattern of Islamic religious imperialism, exemplified by the Wakf's contemptible conduct on the Temple Mount, must not be ignored.

The problem is not simply that the Arabs have attempted to take as their own every site in Israel holy to Judaism, whether it be the Temple Mount in Jerusalem, the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron, Rachel's Tomb in Bethlehem or Joseph's Tomb in Nablus. But in doing so, they have consistently attempted to obliterate the historic Jewish connection and claim to each of those sites.

In the same manner, in the years following the Oslo Accords and Israel's withdrawal from Bethlehem, a concerted policy by the Palestinian Authority to Islamicize the city and terrorize the Christian population resulted in a reduction in the percentage of Christians living there from 60 percent to less than 15% today.

We pay a terrible price when we close our eyes to the trampling of human rights and religious freedom out of fear of enraging the Muslim world. The Temple Mount is a huge area. It is the length of nearly five football fields north to south, and nearly three football fields east to west. It is certainly large enough to accommodate the ancient call of the prophet Isaiah recited in fervent prayer by Jews on Yom Kippur: "My house shall be called a house of prayer for all the nations."

The sooner we take action to help bring this about, the better.

I was unjustly deported from Israel for highlighting the plight of the Temple Mount suffering under Nazi-Muslim occupation in an article published in Jerusalem.

A House of Prayer For All Peoples?
Jewish guards prevent Christians and Jews from exercising their religious right to pray on the Temple Mount? That's right! Only Muslims have unlimited access to Judaism's most holy site. Only the Koran is permitted within. The Tanach (Jewish Scripture, known to much of the world as the "Old Testament") and Christian Scriptures (the New Testament) are forbidden. Yet Israel claims to respect the religious rights of all people.

Jews Must Demand Rights to Temple Mount
During a 1995 Root and Branch lecture in Jerusalem, Professor Nahum Rakover, author and then Deputy Attorney General of Israel, publicly agreed with me that it isn't illegal for Christians or Jews to pray upon the Temple Mount, even though it is forcibly prevented by the police.

Restore Israeli Sovereignty Over Temple Mount
The Wakf, the militant Muslim authority that oversees Jerusalem's Temple Mount, Judaism's holiest site and Islam's alleged third holiest site (following Mecca and Medina) continue to show blatant disregard for Jewish, Christian and biblical history and non-Muslim sensitivities.

From Toledo to Jerusalem
You could say I have a God-given love for the Jews and the nation of Israel (Isaiah 62:6-7). That sacred bond has been strengthened over the years by the fact that I've been blessed to have lived all over Israel, getting to know its land and people quite well.

Israel's Unjust Deportation of David Ben-Ariel
As a Christian-American member of the Temple Mount Faithful Movement, I had been privileged to participate in their legal demonstrations during my 10-month stay in Jerusalem awaiting dual citizenship. Israeli television often showed me with my Jewish friends carrying Israeli flags throughout the Old City.

American Detained in Jerusalem's Russian Compound
Nobody arrested me. I was detained when I faithfully reported to the police office at 9 a.m. Monday morning, January 9, 1996 (day before my birthday) the day after The Jerusalem Post published on their front page an article shedding light on what they were doing in the dark: "GSS Seeks to Deport American Citizen for Plot to Blow Up Al Aksa Mosque."

Still at Large!
The Jerusalem Post, Jan. 8, 1996, had a front page story about how the GSS sought my deportation for alleged involvement in a "plot to blow up the Al-Aksa mosque."


The Daughter of Judah's Kings

Hannah Senesh




David Ben-Ariel
Oct. 10, 1989
Kibbutz Sdot Yam, Israel

Monday, September 28, 2009

Nations repent or die

Will our nations repent or die?

2 Chronicles 7:14 (New King James Version)
14 if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.

Meditating on this holy Day of Atonement, Yom Kippur, recognizing how difficult it is for Sabbath-keeping Christians to overcome sin, to avail ourselves of our great spiritual resources, to receive the pardon and the power to go and sin no more, I thought about how much more difficult it is for non-Christians since many of them don't even acknowledge their sins are sins, as defined by the Bible (1 John 3:4), just like many professing traditional Christians refuse to believe their baptized paganism, their religious ways, are sins (1 John 2:4). How can our nations then be saved from the coming destruction foretold in the Scriptures?

God offers the gift of repentance and our English-speaking nations of White Israelites are rejecting it. It strongly appears then we'll be rejected and become so much refuse, littered among the nations, insisting upon learning the hard way, as usual. The good news is that those individuals who do favorably respond to God's call, who receive the gift of repentance and forgiveness, can be spared from the worst of what's about to be unleashed upon this world.

Overcome in Christ Daily
GOOD NEWS: Yahshua is able to break the bonds of sin and set free those who are slaves, saving us from both sin's eternal death penalty and delivering us from the sin. Some deny this POWER and only want the pardon but the Throne of Grace offers both.

Don't Give Up!
If you begin to cry out to God for help, even if it's only a whimper because you're so weak, He'll see and hear and respond. "The LORD is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saves such as be of a contrite spirit... none of them that trust in Him shall be desolate" (Ps. 34:18, 22).

Shape up or get shipped out!
If we insist on foreign ways, we'll be deported to foreign lands

A Nation of Drunks and Whores
We’ve been living a lie and have loved to indulge in deception. “Don’t confuse me with the facts” has been our shameful attitude, and truth has been treated like some social outcast. Therefore, God threatens to use Europe to wake us up...

Ravaged by Weather and War
Thomas Jefferson was moved to remark: "My God! How little do my countrymen know what precious blessings they are in possession of, and which no other people on earth enjoy!"

Thanksgiving: Attitude of Gratitude
"Beware that you do not forget the LORD your God by not keeping His commandments, His judgments, and His statutes which I command you today, 12 lest—when you have eaten and are full, and have built beautiful houses and dwell in them; 13 and when your herds and your flocks multiply, and your silver and your gold are multiplied, and all that you have is multiplied; 14 when your heart is lifted up, and you forget the LORD your God...17 then you say in your heart, 'My power and the might of my hand have gained me this wealth...'

Death to the American, British and Jewish Peoples?
The German-Jesuit EU will conquer the British-Israelites and Jews because God will use them to punish us for our idolatry and immorality. Such defeat, deportation and occupation will last 3 1/2 years and then Yeshua will return and reign and save us from our sins and our enemies.

British-Israelites and Jews in Grave Danger
Beyond Babylon: Europe's Rise and Fall warns that due to our idolatry and immorality, our nations are prophesied to fall and fall hard if we don't turn from our ways and remember our Hebrew roots and biblical responsibilities (Malachi 4:4).

Death to America: Major American Cities Targeted by Terrorists?
Will Providence permit foreign murderers in our midst (in attitude, if not yet in action) to unleash nuclear fires within our major cities? Will militant minorities work with them against us? Won't our British-Israelite brethren suffer the same within their respective biblical inheritances?


The Day of Atonement and Reconciliation

We have already seen—through the symbolism involved in the Passover—that Christ's shed blood atones for our past sins. In fact, atonement means reconciliation. The Day of Atonement symbolizes the reconciliation of God and all humanity.

The Day of Atonement

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement)

Tradition - even empty, hollow, shallow - has assisted Jewry to preserve this Day, however imperfectly; yet I also couldn't help but think of God & Kahane who might dismiss such "worship" as vain and such "devotions" as void. Liberal, Hellenist, humanists who have nothing to do with God and are ignorant of or deny His Word as a general rule, as hypocritical & unacceptable as professing Christianity on the pagan days of Christmas and Easter...
Yom Kippur at Sdot Yam

Nazi Muslim disturbances on Temple Mount

Arab Riots on the Temple Mount
by Hana Levi Julian

(IsraelNN.com) Two police officers and two Muslims were injured Sunday morning when Arab riots erupted on the Temple Mount. The area was immediately shut down, although the Western Wall plaza remained open to Jewish worshippers. One police officer lost his temper and cursed the Jews.

Email readers, please click here to view the video footage.
Warning: Video footage contains strong language.

Eight suspects were arrested in eastern Jerusalem following the incident, according to Israel Police spokesman Mickey Rosenfeld, who said that scattered disturbances were continuing around the area, primarily near the gates to the Old City and in Arab neighborhoods in Jerusalem. A security presence has been beefed up in the area, he added.

The riots began after Jewish worshippers arrived to begin preparations for Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, which begins Sunday at sundown. Arabs who worship at the mosque on the site started hurling rocks at approximately 7:30 a.m. as a group of 100 Israeli Jews attempted to enter the Temple Mount. It's all because of you religious Jews!

A mob of some 150 Muslim worshippers surrounded the Jews, according to Rosenfeld, who told Israel National News that officers on the scene fired stun grenades at the rioters, and were able to bring the riot to a halt. A dialogue was opened with Muslim Waqf officials in an attempt to calm the situation, but ultimately riot control procedures were required.

Click here to continue

Jews Must Demand Rights to Temple Mount
During a 1995 Root and Branch lecture in Jerusalem, Professor Nahum Rakover, author and then Deputy Attorney General of Israel, publicly agreed with me that it isn't illegal for Christians or Jews to pray upon the Temple Mount, even though it is forcibly prevented by the police.

A House of Prayer For All Peoples?
Jewish guards prevent Christians and Jews from exercising their religious right to pray on the Temple Mount? That's right! Only Muslims have unlimited access to Judaism's most holy site. Only the Koran is permitted within. The Tanach (Jewish Scripture, known to much of the world as the "Old Testament") and Christian Scriptures (the New Testament) are forbidden. Yet Israel claims to respect the religious rights of all people.

The Issue of the Temple Mount
The common knowledge of our time is that the vast majority of Rabbis of this generation have prohibited the Jewish people from entering the Temple Mount (Har HaBayit), the holiest site in Judaism. The Temple Mount is the site of where the Beit HaMikdash (the Jewish Temple) once stood and the place where the Moslems have erected one mosque, the al-Aqsa and a site of pilgrimage, the Dome of the Rock.

Restore Israeli Sovereignty Over Temple Mount
The Wakf, the militant Muslim authority that oversees Jerusalem's Temple Mount, Judaism's holiest site and Islam's alleged third holiest site (following Mecca and Medina) continue to show blatant disregard for Jewish, Christian and biblical history and non-Muslim sensitivities.

G-d Doesn't Listen to Jewish Prayers at the Western Wall
Gershon Salomon warned Israel and its leadership that as long as the shameful situation on the Temple Mount continues, and as long as they do not obey the call of G-d, peace will not come to the land. The enemies of Israel will continue to desire her land and will pressure those in power to divide it. Obedience to the call of G-d will bring peace, all of Israel's enemies will be removed and no one will wish to divide or desire the land


David Ben-Ariel's first webcam video

This is a test that David Ben-Ariel ran in an attempt to learn how to use his webcam for videos rather than his digital camera that all his other youtube videos were created on.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Save Zimbabwe, restore Rhodesia: Mugabe must go!

Mugabe: Don't speak against farmers with your mouth full!

Transcript: Christiane Amanpour interviews Robert Mugabe
Story Highlights
CNN interview is Mugabe's first in years with a major Western network
Mugabe rejects criticism that he has turned Zimbabwe into a "basket case"
On land reform: "Zimbabwe belongs to the Zimbabweans, pure and simple"
Denies any responsibility for harm to the nation from his economic policies

Robert Mugabe, the horribly selfish and deceitful African dictator, the black racist who has raped Rhodesia and left it as Zimbabwe ruins, hardens his heart against honest questions Christiane Amanpour dared to ask.

White Rhodesians, productive white Zimbabweans, are being hounded off their God-given land by racist black dogs - land that they've diligently worked and effectively managed to the blessing of every Zimbabwean - by both the military and thugs who thrive in the climate of hate against people of white color, especially farmers.

These barbarous acts of injustice are aided and abetted by Mugabe's racist policy of "land reform." It's the Black African version of the same socialist demand to "spread the wealth around" - taking from those who produce and giving it to those who don't - failing to grasp that killing the goose that lays the golden eggs ruins it for everybody. Taking over a farm (often by brutal means), seizing farm equipment, and lacking the knowledge or will to work it leaves the land barren and the country destitute. Such is Zimbabwe under Mugabe!

Dictator Mugabe, drunk on the dregs of socialist poison, slurs that white farmers have a "debt," that "they occupied the land illegally. They seized the land from our people." When Christiane Amanpour attempts to sober him up with facts, noting some "80 percent of that land was acquired after you took office, some of the farmland, and with the very certificates that mean government approval. Why are these people being hounded out of the country? Why are they being... They're being hounded off their land," Mugabe denies it's their land, even though his corrupt government went through the charade of certificates, and then attempts to sanction such ethnic cleansing by exposing the British betrayed their white brethren during Lancaster House discussions: "They knew we had this program of land acquisition and land reform." Ian Smith's book, The Great Betrayal, was appropriately titled.

Black African Dictator Mugabe brands the productive white farmers (whom all Zimbabweans owe a debt) as: "Citizens by colonization, seizing land from the original people, indigenous people of the country." Sounds like the various inter-tribal African conflicts, the different historic tribal wars, the Mfecane, except the superior tribes of white color raised everybody's standard of living, all things considered.

Mugabe professes to be a Christian, but he clearly isn't a Bible-believer. Mugabe goes against the Word and Will of God whose prophets identify Israel in these last days. The birthmarks of fulfilled biblical prophecies include, as the Jerusalem-based Brit Am Israel organization teaches:
According to the Bible ten out of the twelve tribes of Israel split away (1 Kings 12:19), formed their own kingdom of "Israel" (1 Kings 12:20) and were exiled by the Assyrians (2 Kings 17:18). They forget their identity (Hosea 1:9, 7:8; Isaiah 49:21) and became the Lost Ten Tribes. In the future they will re-unite with the Jews (Ezekiel 37; Isaiah 11:13; Jeremiah 3:18) of "Judah", but until then they have a role of their own to fulfill. They were destined to be situated at the continental extremities of the earth such as North America, the British Isles, Scandinavia, the Netherlands, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa (Deuteronomy 33:13; Isaiah 24:16, 26:15, 41:8-9, 49:6), to be the richest (Genesis 27:28, 49:25; Deuteronomy 33:13-16; Hosea 2:8), and most powerful (Numbers 24:8-7; Micah 5:7-9) nations on earth and to control major international strategic bases (Genesis 22:16-17, 24:60). All of these points together with numerous others show that descendants of the Lost Ten Tribes can only be found amongst Western Nations, especially the English-speaking ones.

We have an old saying here in America, "Don't complain about farmers with your mouth full." Africa owes white farmers a debt. Mugabe can rail against colonialism but if it weren't for people of white color in Africa, the pioneers and their descendants, all of Africa would still be living in the Stone Age!

Our Great Creator God decreed parts of Africa for white Israelites and it is His good earth, His land to give - not shifting and warring black populations, so-called "indigenous peoples."

Manifest Destiny rings true for the United States and Manifest Destiny rings true for Africa; for Israel in the Isles and the Jewish homeland, even if politically correct cultists are tone deaf to this plain truth.

Save Zimbabwe, restore Rhodesia: Mugabe must go!


Friday, September 25, 2009

Hard-core Zionist David Ben-Ariel

Weekend Opinionator: Qadaffi’s Bombast, Iran’s Bombs - The Opinionator Blog - NYTimes.com Says: September 25, 2009
[...] some hard-core Zionists, like David Ben-Ariel, found the whole thing more than a bit squishy: How can Netanyahu condemn Holocaust-denier Ahmanijedad while collaborating with Holocaust-denier [...]


Holocaust Hypocrisy!
Learn the lessons of Hitler's war against the Jews: there's no lasting place for Jews in the Exile (where most remain), that such a self-imposed exile will lead to self-destruction (in one way or another), that you must take your enemies at their word, not your wishful thinking (like the delusional "peace" process), and it's necessary to return to the Torah of God and Homeland of Israel.

Christian Zionists, Jews, and Israel
I am a Bible-believer, a Christian-Zionist (one who believes the Prophets foretold the restoration of Jews first of all 12 Tribes of Israel to the Promised Land of Israel before the end of this world as we know it). I am not a Protestant or a "Jew for Jesus" and certainly not a member of the Roman Catholic Cult. I am a baptized member of the Sabbath-keeping Church of God...

Israel's Only Way Out: Follow Kahane!
Israel must make concessions, Israel must do this, Israel must do that, while the Arabs continue to get away with mass murder and terrorism (while promising peace and feigning ignorance), aided and abetted by the international community...


Yom Kippur: the Divine Gift of Teshuva

Tishrei 7, 5770/ September 25, 2009

Yom Kippur is a day of great trepidation, on the one hand, and great hope, on the other. For on Yom Kippur we stand before G-d in judgement. Our fates, in accordance with our own deeds, are sealed. Who shall live, and who shall die; Who shall be comforted and who shall be troubled; Who shall prosper, and who shall grow destitute... But above and beyond all else, Yom Kippur is a day of great empowerment. For on this day we determine our own fates. On this day we can change the past and we can redirect the future. Yes, G-d applies the seal, but only in our presence, only after we have spoken our heart, and only after we have confessed, in the deepest sense of the word, who we are, who we strive to be, and in which direction and toward what end we are heading.

Our sages teach us that there are three things which predate creation: Shabbat, the Holy Temple, and teshuva, (repentance, literally, "return," - return to ourselves, return to G-d). By virtue of their pre-creation status, each of these three realities enables us to enjoy an "out-of-creation" reality. Shabbat, which is the sanctification of time, grants us, on a weekly basis, a refuge from the temporal world. It provides for us a world above time, beyond time. A pure world unaffected, untainted, undiminished by time.

The Holy Temple, which is the sanctification of space, enables us to enter a world above space, beyond the limitations of distance, where, like the Shabbat, there exists no divide between ourselves and the Divine. Within the confines of the Holy Temple we are one with the Shechina - the transcendant, limitless presence of G-d Almighty. The light years of distance between our physical world and the reality of G-d do not exist within the Holy Temple.

If the Shabbat allows us to step outside of time itself and to enjoy a taste of eternity, and thereby gain ascendancy over the ravages of the temporal world, and the Holy Temple allows us to step into a border-less unity with G-d's presence, liberating us from our earthly parameters, then teshuva, the ability to return, grants us mastery over our own selves.

Our sages tell us that if one repents out of fear of G-d, then all his former intentional transgressions will be seen by G-d as having been unintentional. And if one repents out of love for G-d, his former intentional transgressions will be considered by G-d to be merits! For the ability to repent, to do teshuva, empowers us to not only determine our futures, but to recreate our past, in essence, to renew, reshape, and recreate ourselves.

Perhaps this is why Yom Kippur, the great day of teshuva, is called by Torah a "shabbat shabbaton, (Leviticus 16:31)" literally a "sabbath of sabbaths," or a "sabbath of rest." Teshuva, like the shabbat, allows us to transcend time, our own time. And perhaps this is why Yom Kippur in the Holy Temple involved the most intensive of Temple services, performed in its entirety by one man, the Kohen Gadol - the High Priest. The act of teshuva likewise grants to the individual access to the life transforming potential of a seamless relationship with G-d.

The Divine gift of teshuva is here for all who avail themselves of its life-transforming power. And while teshuva exists every day of the year, it is on Yom Kippur that G-d grants us His undivided attention, as it were. It is on Yom Kippur that G-d expresses His absolute trust, and faith, and love for all His children. Teshuva is a gift we dare not squander.

Tune in to this week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven discuss the Ten Days of Repentance and Yom Kippur, and the Divine process of these remarkable life-changing, life-renewing days. The Torah portion of Ha'azinu, read n the very first Shabbat of the new year of 5770: What message does it impart for the upcoming year?

A Short Yom Kippur Message from Rabbi Chaim Richman: If you've ever made a mistake, watch this short message. If you ever wished you could simply delete all the errors you made in your life, watch this video. If you ever dreamed of a new beginning, guaranteed, no questions asked, this short video is for you. If your heart is sincere, and you're willing simply to show up, to make a difference in your own life, and to get down to the task of being who you know you can be, this year will be the best year of your life. Click here to view this three minute video blessing. G'mat Chatima Tova! - May you be sealed in the Book of Life!

This week features the Bat Melech video teaching with Rabbanit Rena Richman, entitled, "The Season of Teshuva: It begins on the first day of Elul, and culminates forty days later, on the tenth day of Tishrei - Yom Kippur: the irresistible heavenly call to man to do teshuva - to return to his true self, and to strive anew to reach his G-d given potential." Click here to view.

Today also features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, "Reflections on Yom Kippur - 5770: The opportunity to do teshuva, commonly translated as repentance, but more accurately defined as returning to G-d, and returning to yourself, as G-d intended you, awaits us every day of the year. But there is no day as propitious for teshuva as the 10th day of Tishrei - Yom Kippur. On this day, G-d, our Father and King, opens before us His Book of Our Lives, and allows us to make the changes we need to draw closer to Him, to our own true selves, and retstart our lives on a whole other level." Click here to view.

Click here to learn more about how Yom Kippur is observed in the Holy Temple.

“Listen, O heavens, and I will speak! And let the earth hear the words of my mouth! My lesson will drip like rain; my word will flow like dew…” (Deuteronomy 32:1-2)
Sometimes our spirits are in the clouds; other times we’re feeling totally grounded. Sometimes we feel G-d’s presence around us as strong as the driving rain. Other times He seems as elusive as the morning dew. But whether we’re up or we’re down, whether we are focused on our attachment to G-d, or we’re feeling distant and disconnected, G-d is here. Always. This message of the first Shabbat of 5770 will serve us well throughout the coming year. Click here to view Rabbi Richman's short teaching on parashat Ha’azinu (Deuteronomy 32:1-32:52).

G'mar Chatima Tova - May you be sealed in the Book of Life,
Yitzchak Reuven
PO Box 31876
Jerusalem, Israel 97500

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Netanyahu's UN speech

The hypocrisy of Benjamin Netanyahu's UN speech

What chutzpah! Why should CFR Benjamin Netanyahu invoke the Holocaust when he's collaborating with Nazi Muslims to dismember the Jewish homeland? Isn't that hypocrisy? How can CFR Benjamin Netanyahu invoke the Holocaust when he aids and abets twisting parts of the Promised Land of Israel into an accursed Palestine? Isn't that hypocrisy? Such a perversion of the holy Land of Israel meant for the Children of Israel (not hateful Ishmaelites who are sworn enemies) wouldn't only be a thorn in Israel's side but a constant clear and present danger and source of friction - just like the Military Industrial Complex would order.

How can Netanyahu condemn Holocaust-denier Ahmanijedad while collaborating with Holocaust-denier Mahmoud Abbas? Isn't that hypocrisy? How can Netanyahu dare preach to the world about the Holocaust and facing the dangers Iran presents when he shamefully endangers Israeli men, women, children and babies in strollers by rewarding terrorism? By disgracefully ignoring there is no difference between Hamas and Fatah? That both terrorist organizations call for the destruction of Israel, whether phased destruction or immediate? Why foolishly remain in denial about Fatah? Is he unteachable?

How can Netanyahu decry the miserable failure of Israel's bizarre ethnic cleansing of 8,000 Jews for "peace," hatefully uprooting 21 Jewish pioneering communities (settlements), and how Gaza instead became a hornet's nest of terrorism, a war zone, when many clearly warned that's exactly what would happen, when he's ready to cruelly evict more Jews and destroy more Jewish homes? Has he no shame? Is he unteachable? How can Bibi fail to learn the lessons of the Holocaust and Gaza?

If Netanyahu truly believes "the Jewish people are not foreign conquerors in the Land of Israel. This is the land of our forefathers...We are not strangers to this land. It is our homeland," then why hatefully speak of dividing the land? Why be double-minded and despise Israel's God-given inheritance and dishonor Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? Why does Judaism's holiest site - the Temple Mount - remain Judenrein for the most part? Is Israel so weak it needs the affirmation or approval of the world to love and defend its people and land? Israel needs to break free from such a ghetto-mentality!

If Israel truly wants peace, based in reality and not wishful thinking, they must learn the lessons of the Holocaust, they must learn the lessons of Gaza, and reject "risks for peace" and enforce peace through strength!

Let Netanyahu and every Israeli and Jewish leader hear and know this:

“No Jew is at liberty to surrender the right of the Jewish Nation and the Land of Israel to exist. No Jewish body is sanctioned to do so. No Jew alive today has the authority to yield any piece of land whatsoever. This right is preserved by the Jewish people throughout the generations and cannot be forfeited under any circumstance. Even if at some given time there will be those who declare that they are relinquishing this right, they have neither the power nor the jurisdiction to negate it for future generations to come. The Jewish Nation is neither obligated by nor responsible for any waiver such as this. Our right to this land in its entirety, is steadfast, inalienable and eternal. And until the coming of the Great Redemption, we shall never yield this historic right.”

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Obama hates the God of Israel!

Obama Orders Israel to 'End the Occupation'

by Maayana Miskin
(IsraelNN.com) United States President Barack Obama issued a stinging condemnation of the Jewish presence in Judea and Samaria on Wednesday in a speech to the United Nations General Assembly. The U.S. “does not accept the legitimacy of continued Israeli settlements,” Obama announced.

Using unusually harsh terminology, Obama called to "end the occupation that began in 1967" - referring to Israel's control of Judea and Samaria.

Click here to continue


Yes, Israel must reclaim all the Jewish homeland and end the Arab occupation of the Promised Land of Israel, especially the sacred Temple Mount. The Holy Land of Israel deserves to be liberated. What chutzpah for Emperor Obama, the president usurper, the fraud and foreigner, to go against the Word and Will of God!


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Holy Temple Mikveh Discovered

Holy Temple Mikveh Discovered Near Western Wall
by Hillel Fendel

(IsraelNN.com) A 2,000-year-old mikveh (ritual bath) has been uncovered just 20 meters from the Western Wall.

Given its location just outside the Holy Temple - where untold numbers of Jews regularly immersed before entering - the newly-revealed pool is among the largest ever discovered in Jerusalem.

The mikveh was found at the site known as the Western Wall Tunnels, which has long been under excavation and study by the Israel Antiquities Authority, with the support of the Western Wall Heritage Foundation.

It is located about 30 meters past the entrance to the Tunnels, in the general direction of the Western Wall. Once it becomes open to the public, the 11 broad steps leading down to the mikveh will be seen approximately 8 meters below floor level.

Josephus, the famous turncoat general and historian of the period, wrote that the administrative and governmental center of Jerusalem was located at the foot of the Temple, and that among the buildings there were the National Council and the Lishkat HaGazit, Chamber of Hewn Stone, where the Sanhedrin – Israel’s Supreme Court – convened. The archaeologists feel that it is possible that the luxurious hall aside the mikveh was originally one of these structures. ..

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Monday, September 21, 2009

Read Beyond Babylon for FREE!

The link to Beyond Babylon in the caption of the Beyond Babylon blog takes you to where you can read Beyond Babylon online for FREE.

See for yourself:


David Ben-Ariel warns about a German-led Europe that God will permit to nuke the American, British and Jewish peoples for our national sins. Whether it's Christmas, Easter, abortion or homosexual marriages, they're all to blame and abominable, as brought out in Beyond Babylon: Europe's Rise and Fall


Fuzzy thinking Christians

Re: God's Fuzzy Clock.pdf
by Bernard Carman
A slightly different light in which to view the controversial issue of God's calendar system through the example of His astronomical clock.


Isaiah 8:20
To the law and to the testimony! If they do not speak according to this word, it is because there is no light in them.

There's absolutely no reason for folks to remain "fuzzy" in their thinking when God's Word clearly states the Jews alone have this God-given responsibility to preserve and proclaim the proper holy dates and festivals, specifically the Pharisees/Rabbinic Judaism whom Yahshua endorsed by publicly acknowledging their God-given authority on these matters. Why trespass on this holy ground or attempt to steal this part of the scepter that is to remain with Judah until the return of the King? Why remain in denial rather than let the plain truth set you free?

The Oracles of God
God's empowered the Jews - despite themselves - to preserve His Word. They are the only people on Earth that God has blessed and ordained to fulfill such a calling! God will not retract His Word or renege on this gift and responsibility that He's graciously bestowed upon Judah.

Passover and Pentecost Differences Settled!
The correct dates to observe God's holy days should not be a Church of God issue, having been settled by God thousands of years ago and preserved throughout the ages by faithful Jews.

The Passover Memorial

The Pharisees
Who isn't aware of the sins of the Pharisees? Especially the Accuser of the Brethren? But does that mean the truths they teach, even if they don't live them, are no longer true?


Pursue justice until it is found!

Orly Taitz: the Alexander Solzhenitsyn in this Constitutional crisis!

I will respond to Judge Land’s outrageous attack and threat of sanctions. This is very similar to what I have seen in the communist dictatorship in the Soviet Union.
- Notice. Important
September 20th, 2009

God bless you Orly Taitz! You're the Alexander Solzhenitsyn in this Constitutional crisis created by the president usurper, speaking truth to power, demanding Emperor Obama stop keeping America in the dark and start bringing documents to light to prove whether or not he is a natural born citizen!


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Fast on Yom Kippur

Re: Muslims Find new Ramadan Fast Partners: Christians

Such holier-than-God apostate Christians would do well to stop aiding and abetting Nazi Muslims and repent and start keeping the same biblical ("Jewish") festivals as Yahshua. They can fast on the holy day/date our Great Creator God, the God of Israel, YHVH, has ordained: on the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur).

Ultimately all nations will learn from Jews and go up to Jerusalem and celebrate the biblical festivals and worship our King in the House of Prayer for All Peoples, growing in understanding of the God of Jacob - not learning everything they never needed to know about the moon cult of Islam from Muslims!


Judging Jews by the Torah

Re: Good Jews oppose Obama

Where do you have the chutzpah to say anything about what is or isn't a "good Jew"?

Ever hear of the Torah? It's the standard I go by, as do good Jews.

The last I looked, you're a goy pretending to be something you aren't while at the same time denying what you are and why you're banned from ever setting foot in Israel again!

Apparently you have problems with your eyes as well as your ears because I am of the Israelite tribes of Joseph and Judah. If you still don't know the difference between the two, go educate yourself.

Joseph isn't Jewish!

Not All Twelve Tribes of Israel are Jewish?

The Israeli government informed Senator Mike DeWine of Ohio I was eligible to return in 2005. Don't facts matter in your world?

Blow Up the Mosques or An Expired Visa?

Israel sets date for 2005

I wish the Mossad would put you out of our misery once and for all.

How hateful your multiple personalities appear to be! It's sad the plain truth of my posts obviously disturbs your darkness. Shame on you for aiding and abetting the Nazi Muslim occupation of Judaism's holiest site - the TEMPLE Mount. Thankfully, the Temple Mount will soon be restored as the TEMPLE Mount and all your unclean kind, like so much chaff, will be swept away, history.


Rabin was Shabak target

Re: Good Jews oppose Obama

Mossad is busy with more important targets.

Like Shabak targeted Yitzhak Rabin?

Shimon Peres Came to Power Over Rabin's Dead Body

Avishai Raviv was an Israeli government agent provocateur (whose code name was "Champagne" for the bubbles of incitement he created to tarnish the right-wing Israelis) who goaded Yigal Amir to assassinate Israeli Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin (although this is hotly disputed by investigative reporters like Barry Chamish)...
Avishai Raviv, Eyal, and Yitzhak Rabin

Didn't Mossad target NYC?

Now he will start thinking they are out to get him.

Do I appear worried in the least? Have I seem concerned about them all these years I've highlighted the plight of the TEMPLE Mount suffering under Nazi Muslim occupation, exposing how the religious rights of Christians and Jews are trampled daily by the foreign dogs who belong in Mecca or Medina rather than barking at the Children of Israel, both Joes (Joseph) and Jews (Judah)?

A House of Prayer For All Peoples?


Saturday, September 19, 2009

That false prophet Gerald Flurry

Gerald Flurry has FAILED to repent

That false prophet Gerald Flurry has FAILED to repent of his Nimrodian ego and for his false accusations against me. I'm not surprised but saddened that false prophet Gerald Flurry has hardened his heart and appears bent on self-destruction, taking his blind organization down with him.

The Philadelphia Church of God is so close and so far away from the plain truth, mixing truth with lethal error, misrepresenting what Herbert W. Armstrong stood for and offering an adulterated version of it, polluting the gospel of the Kingdom of God. Thankfully, the Two Witnesses of Revelation 11 will set the record straight and testify from Jerusalem before a worldwide captive audience!

Gerald Flurry's Outrageous Attack Against David Ben-Ariel

Is David Ben-Ariel a Terrorist?
(Apparently Gerald Flurry and Stephen Flurry would mislead you to believe so!)

I'm not a terrorist
Is David Ben-Ariel a terrorist? Did he try to blow up the mosques in Israel? Is that why he was deported from Israel? Or is he simply somebody who has been targeted for exposing the German-Vatican plot against Jerusalem and highlighting the Nazi Muslim occupation of the Temple Mount?

God-given love for Jews
(mentions my volunteer service on 8 kibbutzim throughout Israel)

The Temple Mount Faithful is not a terrorist organization!
(Although Gerald Flurry and Stephen Flurry strongly insinuate it is, to their shame)

Star Witness testifies against Gerald Flurry

A little known blogger


Friday, September 18, 2009

The Feast of Trumpets

The Feast of Trumpets introduces the autumn festivals—representing the culmination of the present age of man and the beginning of an incredible time during which God will play a much more direct part in world events. The previous festivals constitute personal responses to the workings of God in the people He calls and chooses. But the Day of Trumpets heralds the intervention of God in the affairs of humanity on a global basis. This Holy Day represents a dramatic turning point in world history.

This particular festival also marks the beginning of the third and final feast season (Exodus 23:14; Deuteronomy 16:16), which includes the final four Holy Days of the year.

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Shana Tovah!

Shana Tova

Shana Tovah

Shana Tova! ...Happy Jewish New Year!!
-Dry Bones- Israel's Political Comic Strip Since 1973

Standing this Day before the L-rd

"You are all standing this day before the L-rd, your G-d"
(Deuteronomy 29:9)
Elul 29, 5769/September 17, 2009

"You are all standing this day before the L-rd, your G-d the leaders of your tribes, your young children, your women, and your convert who is within your camp both your woodcutters and your water drawers." (Deuteronomy 29:9-10) We read these words this past Shabbat, the Shabbat proceeding Rosh haShana. The verses describe the assembly of the entire nation of Israel, the elders, the young, the leaders, the followers, the learned, the simple, men and women of all professions, newly arrived members of the nation, and even all those who stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Israel to give honor to the G-d of Israel. More appropriate words could not be chosen to describe the very essence of Rosh haShana itself. For on this day, Adam haRishon, the First Man, was created from the dust of the earth, and on this day, his children, all his children, stand before their Father and Creator, the King of all existence. On this day we search our own souls and take stock of our own deeds. On this day we stand before G-d to be counted, to be judged, and to inscribe ourselves into His Book of Life.

Nitzavim is the Hebrew word used in the above verse for "standing." It is not commonly used in this fashion. It is from the word yetziv, which means steady, stable, secure. The same word is used in the story of Yaakov avinu - our father Jacob - in Beit El, where he dreamed of a ladder "standing on the ground and the top of it reaching to heaven." (Genesis 28:12) The Hebrew word translated as "standing' is mutzav, is from the same word yetziv - steady, stable, secure, solid.

Yaakov understood his dream to be about the future Holy Temple. Upon waking he stated, "Surely the L-rd is in this place," and named the place Beit El - "the house of G-d." (ibid 28:16,19) The steady, secure foundation of the Holy Temple is what enables man to enter its gates and approach the heavens. There is a direct connection between the stable foundation of the Holy Temple, and the assembly of the people before G-d in our above quoted verse. For when the children of Israel are united, then G-d stands with them. This is the reality of the Holy Temple, an unbreakable bond between the heavens and the earth.

When Yaakov awoke from his dream, he saw that the twelve separate stones that he had placed beneath his head had united into one: the twelve distinct tribes of Israel had merged and been fused into one. Our sages teach us that this one indivisible stone was none other that the foundation stone of the Holy Temple, upon which the Ark of the Covenant rested in the Holy of Holies.

This Rosh haShana we will stand united and indivisible before our Father and Creator. May we, by the steady and stabilizing strength of unity and our determination to turn this Divine encounter into a universal reality, merit to build G-d's Holy Temple, surely His Book of Life!

Tune in to the week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven share some original Torah thoughts relating to the current Torah readings and Rosh HaShana, answer last week’s mystery question concerning Moshe’s whereabouts, and connect all the dots leading to Rosh HaShana, our renewal, and the renewal of all creation.

A Short Rosh Hashana Blessing for 5770: On Rosh Hashana, the birthday of all mankind, we receive from G-d the greatest gift of all - the gift of life. Rabbi Chaim Richman shares his thoughts on Rosh Hashana, and extends his blessings to the entire House of Israel, and to all humanity. Click here to view this three minute video blessing. Shana Tova!

On the next-to-last day of 5769, (September 17, 2009), Rabbi Professor Daniel Hershkowitz, the Israeli Government's Minister of Science and Technology, paid a visit to the Temple Institute. Click here to see and learn more.

Today also features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, "Rosh HaShana Blessings, 5770: The great day of renewal for the children of Israel, and for all humanity. We are all the children of Adam haRishon - the First Man, who was created on this day from the very earth of atonement upon which the great altar of the Holy Temple stands. On this day it is up to us to stand before the Creator and King of all the universe, and sign ourselves into His Book of Life. Click here to view.

Click here to learn more about how Rosh haShana is observed in the Holy Temple.

We have just added to our Members Area two new, print-quality, downloadable, (pdf), exclusive Temple Institute images: the recently completed Temple harp, and the Rosh haShana greeting which appears at the top of the Events page. All members are welcome to download these images for their personal use. If yo are a member of the Temple Institute, but have never logged in, or have forgotten your login information, please contact us. If you are interested in becoming a member, please click here.

Shana Tova uMetuka - A Good and Sweet Year - from the holy city of Jerusalem,
Yitzchak Reuven
PO Box 31876
Jerusalem, Israel 97500

Monday, September 14, 2009

From Shiloach to the Temple Mount

Second Temple Pilgrimage Route Uncovered
by Gil Ronen
(IsraelNN.com) Archaeologists have uncovered a section of a stone-paved street with stairs which connected the Temple Mount with the Pool of Shiloach (Siloam). The section is about 550 meters south of the Temple Mount, and is believed to be the point at which pilgrims began to ascend by foot to the Temple during Second Temple times (516 BCE – 70 CE).
The archaeological dig at the location is being conducted by the Nature and Parks Authority, with the sponsorship of the Elad nonprofit organization. Prof. Roni Reich of Haifa University and Eli Shukrun of the Antiquities Authority are in charge of the excavation.

Click here to continue

Thursday, September 10, 2009

"The Blessing and the Curse"

"The Blessing and the Curse"
(Deuteronomy 30:1)

Elul 20. 5769/September 9, 2009

On the eve of their exodus from Egypt, the infant nation of Israel was given by G-d an awesome responsibility: the determination of the new moon, the fixing of the calendar. Any error in calculation could place the Israelite nation out of sync with the Divine will, even at odds, G-d forbid, with the Creator's plan. Yet along with the implicit trust of G-d's command, He also "did His part" by seeing to it that the moon would indeed renew itself in its appointed time, and that there would be no celestial surprises that could prove a stumbling block for the young nation. All in all, a grave responsibility was granted, with an implicit expression of eternal trust, and with heavenly guarantees that all would, indeed, go well.

Over the ensuing forty years in the wilderness the young nation grew into maturity, witnessing the Divine revelation at Sinai, and accepting and performing the six hundred and thirteen commandments of the Torah. They faced many challenges and tests along the way, passing some, failing others, but constantly growing stronger and more sure of themselves as a nation. In the concluding chapters of the book of Leviticus appears a terrifying enumeration of tribulations, ("curses"), that will surely befall them should they stray from the path that G-d has set for them. The frightful list concludes with words of consolation and assurance that no matter how far the children of Israel wander, G-d will forgive them and return them, both spiritually and physically, to His Torah and to the land of Israel. For G-d, our heavenly Father, will always pluck His children from danger and faithfully return them to the refuge of His embrace.

Now, in the concluding chapters of the book of Deuteronomy, as G-d and His servant Moses are preparing the forty year old nation for their final destination, the land of Israel, they are being entrusted by G-d with a responsibility even more awesome than the fixing of the calendar and the determination of the new moon. The children of Israel are being handed the responsibility of their own destiny! As a nation of free men and women, it is they who will determine whether they will adhere to the word of G-d, or not. It is they who will determine whether they will establish the Torah nation that G-d has intended for them, or not. It is they who will determine whether they will "build for [G-d] a sanctuary, so that [He] will dwell amongst them" (Exodus 25:8) or not. A second list of repercussions ("curses"), is rolled out, should they fail, this time twice as long as the admonitions spelled out in Leviticus. However, unlike the earlier warnings, this lengthier list is not followed by words of reassurance. G-d doesn't promise Divine intervention to save the children of Israel from their self-inflicted fates, as He did earlier. Why? Are all bets off?

We who have raised children to maturity are certainly familiar with the moment when we recognize that our children have reached the age of responsibility, and that our overt reassurances are no longer required, or even desired. Our love for them, and our trust that they have successfully imbibed all that we have strived to impart to them, ultimately allows us to "let go," to let them take their own steps, with the knowledge that they might stumble, but with the certainty that the will always pick themselves up again. And so it is with G-d, as He prepares His children for entry into the land of Israel. For forty years He has seen to it that their clothes will not fray, that their shoes will not wear thin, and that food awaits them every day as they awaken (Deut. 29:4-5). But now they will be seeing to all these things, and much more, on their own.

Of course G-d never takes leave of His people, and of course He is always there for His children. But the greatest gift He bequeaths them, on the eve of their taking leave of the wilderness, is the Divine promise of repentance, return, and reconciliation:

"and you will return to the L-rd, your G-d, with all your heart and with all your soul, and you will listen to His voice according to all that I am commanding you this day, you and your children..." (ibid 30:1) Yes, you will wander, yes you will stray, but you will return, and your return will come from your heart, from your soul. This is surely a nation ready to set foot in the holy land of Israel.

Tune in to this week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven discuss the "admonitions" delineated in last week's Torah reading of Ki Tavo that will be visited upon the Children of Israel if they do not heed G-d's instructions. But are these chilling "curses" not simply blessings waiting to be realized? What are we to make of the cryptic statement made by Isaiah of "hastening in its time" the advent of the End of Days? Countdown to creation, and a review of the past year's Temple Institute's efforts to ready the world for the building of the Holy Temple.

This beautiful harp (nevel in Hebrew) was recently donated to the Temple Institute. The harp was hand-crafted by the renowned Jerusalem craftsman Micha Harrari out of wood from a native Israeli Rosewood tree, and has twenty-two strings, the number of letters in the Hebrew alphabet. To learn more about the nevel, please click here.

This week features the Bat Melech video teaching with Rabbanit Rena Richman, entitled, "The Wedding Ceremony: : An in-depth explanation of the spiritual significance of the various elements of the Jewish wedding ceremony." Click here to view.

Today also features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, "The Repentance of Love, Part II: On Rosh HaShana we stand before G-d in awe, and our repentance is inspired by fear before the King and Judge. But the repentance of the month of Elul comes from a place of love, a desire to please G-d. Click here to view.

” …and you will return to the Lord, your God… you and your children… “ (Deut. 30:1) The positive commandment and the Divine promise of repentance and reconciliation between G-d and His children is THE message of the days preceding the awesome day of Rosh HaShana. Click here to view Rabbi Richman's short teaching on parashat Nitzavim-Vayelech (Deuteronomy 29:9-31:30).

Blessings from the holy city of Jerusalem,
Yitzchak Reuven
PO Box 31876
Jerusalem, Israel 97500

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Rabin exposed Peres as an "indefatigable subversive"

Shin Bet to Investigate Peres Murder Accusations?

Considering Shimon Peres came to power over Rabin's dead body, Yitzhak Rabin was dead right.

Shimon Peres Came to Power Over Rabin's Dead Body


Sunday, September 06, 2009

A Temple Mount tweet?

Prayer at Temple Site Gets 'Really Tweet'
(IsraelNN.com) For everyone who has ever dreamed of having a direct line to G-d - your prayer has been answered. The Almighty is just a Tweet away.

In an interview with Israel National Radio's Yishai Fleisher, 25 year-old university student and founder of TweetYourPrayers.org Alon Nir says his time is consumed with keeping up with the steady bombardment of prayers sent to him daily on the popular networking site, Twitter. After printing, cutting, and rolling the notes into tiny scrolls, those prayers are placed in Jerusalem's Western Wall, a remnant of the Holy Temple which was destroyed by the Romans 2,000 years go...

Click here to continue


G-d Doesn't Listen to Jewish Prayers at the Western Wall
Gershon Salomon warned Israel and its leadership that as long as the shameful situation on the Temple Mount continues, and as long as they do not obey the call of G-d, peace will not come to the land. The enemies of Israel will continue to desire her land and will pressure those in power to divide it. Obedience to the call of G-d will bring peace, all of Israel's enemies will be removed and no one will wish to divide or desire the land.

Thursday, September 03, 2009

The First of All the Fruit

"... you shall take of the first of all the fruit... "
(Deuteronomy 26:2)
Elul 13, 5769/September 2, 2009

The book of Deuteronomy is rapidly drawing to a close, and with it, of course, Moses' stay on this earth. These final chapters are dedicated to his preparing the children of Israel for entering, conquering, and settling the long-promised land, and for establishing a just and righteous society based on the Torah - the word of the living G-d.

Toward this aim many of the commandments being communicated are concerned with man's behavior toward his fellow man, (bein adam lachaveiro). However, there are commandments bein adam laMakom - between man and G-d - whose fulfillment are also essential for the establishment of a just society, and a guarantee for Israel's continued existence in the land. The bringing of the first-fruits is one such commandment.

Having taken possession of the land, having prepared the pastures and orchards, having planted, cultivated and raised sweet, succulent fruits, it is incumbent upon the Israelite farmer to set apart the very first fruits of his bounty by tying a brightly colored ribbon around their branches. Having done so, he gathers all his first-fruits in a willow basket, and, (beginning with the Shavuot festival in early summer), brings them to the Holy Temple. There he will hand over his first-fruits to the officiating kohen, (priest), who will place the basket before the stone altar. The supplicant will then recite a liturgy, whose words appear in Torah, (Deut. 26:5-10) These prescribed words describe Israel's historical trek throughout the generations, beginning with the patriarch Yaakov, and concluding with the entering of the land of Israel. The closing of a circle!

How appropriate that the Israelite farmer will express his praise and gratitude to the G-d who has guided his people to the land He promised his forefathers! How fitting that the very first fruit, the consummation and confirmation of the fulfillment of G-d's word to His people, should not be gobbled up by the farmer who has invested so much of his own energy and resources into its fruition, but brought before the L-rd, in "the place which the L-rd, your G-d, will choose to have His Name dwell there," (ibid 26:2) the Holy Temple in Jerusalem. This act of self-abnegation, of submission and humility before G-d, whose will has made all this possible, and without whom all our efforts and endeavors are ultimately for naught, is a cornerstone in building the spiritual character, not only of the individual, but of Torah civilization in the land of Israel, in its entirety.

The short recitation referred to above begins with the patriarch Yaakov, but it could have begun much earlier. Not only did Avraham bind his son Yitzchak on this spot where the Holy Temple stands, it was also the place where Noach made his offering to G-d after emerging from the ark. And prior to this the very same location was where Adam, the first man made his offering to G-d, after being expelled from the Garden of Eden. And, of course, it was from the dirt of this very location that G-d first fashioned man and breathed into him His eternal spark of life.

It would be a great oversight and a colossal omission were we to not understand this solemn yet sublimely joyful ceremony in light of the very first words of the book of Genesis: "In the beginning G-d created the heavens and the earth..." (Genesis 1:1) The great commentator Rashi states that the Torah begins with these words in order to provide irrefutable proof to all the nations that it was G-d who created the earth, (ha-aretz, in Hebrew, also, "the land"), and that it is therefore His to bequeath to His people Israel, as He sees fit.

The first act of creation, the first expression of G-d's desire to bring His people into the land and to dwell amongst them; the bringing of the first-fruits, the first thing the children of Israel are instructed to do upon entering the land of Israel. The first and the finest of all we do, and all we are, belong to G-d. By acknowledging that we become the people He intended.

Tune in to the week's Temple Talk as Rabbi Chaim Richman and Yitzchak Reuven study the disease of forgetfulness and the sorry state of affairs in which masses of humanity veritably sleepwalk their lives away, as well as this week's Torah reading of Ki Tavo and the joyful experience of bringing the first fruits of the Land of Israel to the Holy Temple! Our hosts declare: Somnambulism stops here! Time to wake up! A lesson for our month of Elul and preparation for the Days of Awe.

This week features the new Light to the Nations teaching by Rabbi Chaim Richman, entitled, "The Repentance of Love, Part I: On Rosh HaShana we stand before G-d in awe, and our repentance is inspired by fear before the King and Judge. But the repentance of the month of Elul comes from a place of love, a desire to please G-d." Click here to view.

The war against complacency: How do we keep our relationship with G-d vibrant? How do we maintain the edge He requires? The secret is in acknowledging today as being the most important day, the only day. Click here to view Rabbi Richman's short teaching on parashat Ki Tavo (Deuteronomy 26:1-29:8).

Blessings from the holy city of Jerusalem,
Yitzchak Reuven
PO Box 31876
Jerusalem, Israel 97500