On Sunday July 22, on a cold winter’s night in Melbourne over 300 people from the Jewish, Christian and Liberal Party communities gathered in the Central Shule Chabad in South Caulfield for the Victorian Liberal Friends of Israel launch.
The synagogue was awash with rows of politicians from Federal, State and local Council. Admittedly this was in the middle of the Jewish area of Melbourne, but was also quite a sight to behold. A busload of Christians came from Geelong and others travelled hours from country Victoria to be there.
Senator James Paterson (pictured 3rd, Front and Centre) was the MC for the night. He has been a bulwark for standing for Israel since his maiden speech. After a welcome from Rabbi Riesenberg, Josh Frydenberg was the first speaker who pointed out lucidly the need to stand with Israel against the barrage of biased and unwarranted condemnation coming at this tiny nation from the United Nations. The Hon Matthew Guy, Leader of the Opposition in Victoria, shared his personal account of witnessing a terrorist attack during his visit to Jerusalem and saw how the BBC totally twisted the facts to imply that the victims were the perpetrators. He thrilled the audience by saying that the Liberal Party rarely agreed on anything, but that their support for Israel was unanimous.
It was so encouraging to see so many politicians taking a stand for Israel…
I was asked to represent the ‘Zionist Christians’ and assured those present that they were not alone. I shared that a petition signed by 8,000 Christians had been tabled in parliament last year requesting the Australian Embassy be moved to Jerusalem and that 20 Christian groups had attended the 100th anniversary of Beersheba in 2017. I pointed out that the reason for our support was that we shared common Scriptures where the Hebrew prophets foretold an end-time return of the Jewish people from the ends of the earth to the land of their forefathers, a restoration of the land, the cities and the people to their God and that we stand with God’s unfolding plan for the land and the people.
Dave Sharma, the former Australian Ambassador to Israel, told of his personal experience of visiting Syrian refugees being looked after in Israeli hospitals, and the frequent requests from Israel to Australia to stand with her especially on the international stage, which he has attempted to influence the government to do. The synagogue choir entertained us with some music before the night was closed by Sherene Hambur from Zionism Victoria.
It was so encouraging to see so many politicians taking a stand for Israel and for Christians to be welcomed into the Jewish community and even into the synagogue. For me, it was an honour to find myself in such prestigious company and to be able to be a voice for the Christian community that loves and prays for Israel.
May God continue to open doors to link arms with the Jewish community and make a stand for God’s Word and the truth.