Assemblies of God Empowered Magazine God's Eternal Word - Page 28

MISSIONS e l c r i c l l u f going Karen Gower, Missionary Middle East, UK/Israel I have just had the incredible privilege of being in Jerusalem for the Feast of Tabernacles this October. This is one of the three feasts of the Lord, where God commanded his people to leave their homes and come up to His city to worship him at his Temple, and still, today, many Jewish people and Christians alike make the pilgrimage to attend family gatherings, conferences and various religious ceremonies at this time. This year was no different, and the city was full and bustling, heaving with waves of worshippers flocking into the churches and synagogues. Normally it pays to avoid Jerusalem at such a busy time, but I had felt an urgency to be there and assist at a unique event titled ‘Welcoming the King of Glory’. Around 2000 years ago the good news of Jesus began to spread out from Jerusalem and into Judea and Samaria….and eventually to the ends of the earth. ‘Welcoming the King of Glory’ was a vision held in the hearts of several different leaders in the South Pacific Islands, including New Zealand, Samoa, New Caledonia, Solomon Islands and Hawaii, of returning to Jerusalem from the ‘ends of the earth’ to present their thanks and worship in Jerusalem from where the Gospel started to Jesus, the King of Glory! After sharing with some of the local leaders, an invitation was given by the Israeli Pastors to the nations, to come and welcome the King of Glory in Jerusalem as Jewish and Gentile believers together, the ‘one new man’ Paul spoke so clearly about in Ephesians chapter 2. 28 | EMPOWERED MAGAZINE And come they did! We had expected about 600 people, but nearly 1000 attended. Every continent was represented, with indigenous groups coming from North America, East Asia, Africa, Australasia and the Middle East. The event spanned four days with six meetings, and at each meeting one or two of the indigenous groups would present themselves with their unique protocols, bringing music and song, dance, language, traditional costume and gifts. It was an amazing and incredible sight to see the nations come and present themselves before the Lord and also to their Jewish brothers, giving honour and respect to the people God chose to be a light to the nations and to be the ones that brought forth the Messiah, the Christ, the Anointed One - Jesus! At different times the place would erupt with incredible praise as we all joined in worshipping the King of Kings through each group’s unique culture. To me it was a picture of how heaven might be - the word will go out, ‘It’s Bolivia’s turn today!’ or ‘India is going to process before the King! Let’s go up and see!’ How incredible it will be one day to witness and participate in such exuberant worship and adoration, to enjoy the cultures, languages and styles of all the people groups on earth as they present themselves to God! Aside from assisting with practicalities, I was also asked to join a couple of the worship teams. The meetings were hosted by the Israelis and worship was in Hebrew and English, so it was a delight and honour to worship again with the local congregation I used to work with. As we led the people during the final gathering, an hour into it, the people began to come forward with gifts they had brought to Israel. These were not gifts of thanks or protocol for the people of the Land - no, this time they were gifts for the Lord! As we continued to worship the people filed past leaving their gifts on the platform, hand crafted gifts, items made with great care, time and expense, specific to their cultures, all being laid before the Lord. As the mountain of offerings grew larger and larger, I wondered if this was how it was when the people used to bring their gifts to the Tabernacle and the Temple and how it will be when at last we will literally come before the King of Kings a 䁽ȁɽݹ́ɔ!)Q͕͔é݅́х)Ёمɥ́ѥ́ѡɽ՝Ёѡ)ѡɥ$͕͕Ё݅́-ɽ)ЁݡéѕɹѽՍ)ȁѥͽѡɑ)ٕȁ́٥ͽٕɕ)͔A͔ѥՔѼɅ䁙)ѡ)ݥ͠Ʌ 䁽5ͥ)%ɅQ́e͡Մ)̰)ձ䁡́ձɍ́ɕ)ٕЁѡɽ)ݡЁхѕ