Tuesday, February 9, 2010

A Call to Pastors Regarding Iran, Purim, and February 28


Wouldn't it be powerful if pastors all over the world would call the Church to prayer and fasting for God to save Israel and Iran?

By Joel C. Rosenberg

(Washington, D.C., February 9, 2010) -- This is not the first time in history when the Jewish people have been threatened with annihilation from Persian/Iranian leaders who hated them without cause. The Book of Esther tells the story of how two heroic believers -- Mordechai and Esther -- prayed and fasted and encouraged others to do the same.

In response to those faithful prayers, the Lord intervened in a dramatic and powerful way. The evil Prime Minister of Iran (Haman) was removed from power and hanged. The heart of the Supreme Leader of Iran (King Ahausuerus) was miraculously changed. The Jews did have to fight. But they were saved from destruction and scores of Iranians converted and became true followers of the God of Israel.

This year, the holiday of "Purim" commemorating these events falls on Sunday, February 28th.

If you are a pastor or Bible teacher, may I ask you to prayerfully consider preaching and teaching on the Book of Esther that Sunday? May I ask you to help followers of Jesus Christ remember how the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob saved the Jewish people from Iran once in history, and how He will do so again if His people will pray and fast as never before?

I am not speaking in a church that particular Sunday morning. But the next day, March 1st, God has opened a door for me to speak at the National Religious Broadcasters conference in Nashville. I have entitled that address, "Israel, The Iran Threat and Lessons From The Book of Esther."

Wouldn't it be powerful if thousands of pastors all over North America and all over the world would call the Church to prayer and fasting for God to save both Israel and Iran?

The situation is urgent. Iran's Supreme Leader Ayatollah Khamenei this week again threatened to destroy Israel and warned that next week Iran will unveil a "punch" that will stun the infidels in the West. Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has just announced that Iran will enrich part of its uranium stockpile to 20%, moving steadily and aggressively to creating weapons-grade uranium capable of producing nuclear bombs.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu today called on the U.N. Security Council to impose immediately on Iran "crippling sanctions" in the hopes that this will bring the regime in Tehran to its knees and cause them to change course. But I don't think Netanyahu is holding his breath for the world to act. The French this month are running the Security Council, and they understand the threat and support strong sanctions. The Chinese, however, have expressed no intention of cracking down on Iran, since Beijing buys an enormous amount of oil and gas from Tehran. The longer the world takes no decisive action, however, the greatest the prospect of a massive Israeli preemptive strike against Iran.

Now is the time for the Church to get on our faces and seek the Lord's grace and mercy for Israel, Iran and the people of the epicenter.

This summer, we will be gathering in Philadelphia for the 2010 Epicenter Conference. I hope you will join us for the latest geopolitical updates from the Middle East, in-depth Bible teaching and very practical training on how to help mobilize a global movement to "learn, pray, give and go" to the Lord's work in the epicenter. Among my guests will be Kay Arthur, the internationally renowned Bible teacher; Lt.-General (ret.) Jerry Boykin, fmr. commander of Delta Force and fmr. Deputy Undersecretary of Defense for Intelligence; Greg Laurie, the senior pastor of Harvest Christian Fellowship in California who has preached the good news of Jesus Christ to more than 3.8 million people around the world; Janet Parshall, the nationally syndicated radio talk show host; and other wonderful guests we will announce as we get closer to the event.

The conference will be held in Verizon Hall at the Kimmel Performing Arts in Philly. All tickets can be purchased by calling Ticket Philadelphia at 215-893-1999, on line at www.kimmelcenter.org, or in person at the Kimmel Center Box Office. Please keep your ticket as it must be presented at both events on 6.25 & 6.26 to gain entry into Verizon Hall. (One single ticket will be issued for admission to both days.)

Tickets can also be purchased through our new website, www.epicenterconference.com. This site has all the conference details. It will also have regular updates over the next few months (including specifics coming soon on how your congregation can sign up for a live webcast). Please note that the facility only holds 2,000 people, so please sign up today to reserve a seat for you and your family.

Thanks so much -- we look forward to having you join us at this critical hour in the history of the epicenter.

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