Back to Jerusalem ministry concluded its sixth annual conference, held in the Seven Arches Hotel in the Old City of Jerusalem, Monday July 2 to Wednesday July 4, 2013.The theme of the conference was “Spiritual Awakening."
Pastor Edward Tannous welcomed the audience who came from several cities, the Palestinian Authority, and from abroad. Afterwards, Pastor Munir Qaqish, Chairman of the Local Evangelical Council in the Holy Land, welcomed the attendance in the name of the Council. He said in his short message, "We ask the Lord to intervene in the events that are taking place in the Middle East; to give wisdom to the governors; and to bless the people of this land - both Christians and Muslims." He then prayed to the Lord and asked His blessing on the conference.
Brother Victor Hashweh spoke of the importance of “waking up” so that we might be aware of what is going around us in the Middle East. The person who is asleep is not normally aware of what happens around him. He asked the attendance to put before their eyes taking God’s Word to the whole world because Jesus came and suffered for everyone. He concluded his word by saying, “It is time for us to wake up.”
The second message was shared by brother “Little Jacob” who serves Christ through the Christian satellite channels. He talked about the importance of taking the Lord’s redemptive work to everyone without any exceptions.
On the second day, Brother Victor talked about being spiritually lukewarm. He said that the first church was a praying church, a strong church and a fiery church, a church that evangelized the Gospel. The church in Laodicea was lukewarm. He wondered why the church got to this stage. “Why is the church today too busy with its own affairs and relationships and works and why is it not evangelizing the Gospel?” He asked.
Brother Victor talked about believers of this day who are satisfied with what they have and who claim to know everything. Those who have enough talents for God to powerfully and mightily use them; but at the same time claim to be humble, although they are proud and do not look like God’s true children.
Brother Jacob then talked about honoring the name of the Lord amongst non-Christians and how this should be done in a courageous way. Later he shared several personal testimonies, one of which being his father taking him to court where he was later found innocent. He encouraged everyone to evangelise and lift high the name of the Lord; this is the solution for every problem.
During the afternoon of the second day, the participants in the conference held an outreach in Jerusalem and Beit Sahour. They went out in different groups and distributed several books and evangelistic tracts to the people in the streets and in the Old City. They also visited different homes and shared the message of Christ with them.
In the evening Brother Victor Hashwah talked about the “Church of Christ and the world” He said when Jesus told the disciples to go to the world, they understood the world to be the Jewish world in the Holy Land back then as seen in Acts chapters two – eight. He challenged the believers what they understood the world to be. He encouraged the believers to work in the fields and to go out to the people regardless of their religion and habits.
There were prayers afterwards for the events happening in the Arab countries and the Middle East. "The hearts of the kings are like rivers in the hands of the Lord." They prayed especially for the situations in Egypt, and for Syria and for Iraq and for all the peoples so that they might discover the deceit of the devil and so they might see the Love of Christ and His salvation.
On the last day of the conference, Brother Little Jacob said that the only way forward for what is going on in the land is through Jesus Christ, because He is the Almighty. Without Jesus Christ there is no peace. He shared a word from the book of Jonah chapter one and said that the spirit of religiousness is dominating over the Middle East especially as Satan has spread the darkness on this area. He said that Christians should not run away like Jonah did from a city or a country, because in doing so they are running away from the commission that God has given each of us. He said that Jonah paid for the ship to run away from the face of the Lord, but running away from the great commission is running away from our responsibility. There is a price that has to be paid; it might be your life or the life of your family in Nineveh.
Afterwards, Brother Jacob shared his personal testimony that touched many people. He shared how he got to know Christ, and about the difficulties and persecutions that faced him because He followed Jesus.
The conference concluded with a symposium. Joel Rosenberg joined Brother Jacob and Brother Victor in discussing the importance of the second coming of Jesus Christ in spiritual awakening and evangelism.
At the end of the conference, Pastor Rajai Samawi thanked the speakers for their contributions and they were given gifts from the board of Back to Jerusalem ministry. Other people were thanked and appreciated such as Michael and Jackie Qaqish, Rani and Rasha Ghareeb, and Brother Hanna Basha, for their wonderful and blessed leadership during the times of praise and worship. Brother Salim Hanna was thanked for providing the English translation. Brother Walid Kamar and his team were also acknowledged for offering their technical assistance for the Back to Jerusalem conference since the beginning in 2008.
For the conference photo album- Click Here