• View of the hall where the "Third Israel and the Church Congress" took place. Approximately forty Israel organisations set up their information booths. | Photo credit: Christians for Israel Germany

Israel & the Church Congress: Berlin

editor - 21 December 2018

By Joachim Kudlek, Editor Israel & Christians Today Germany.. From 8 to 10 November 2018 more than 1,200 people participated in the 3rd Israel and the Church Congress in Berlin. The theme chosen was “Your Kingdom come. Israel and the Church as light for the nations”.

In his introduction, Harald Eckert, Chairman of Christians for Israel Germany, emphasised that the Lord’s Prayer, ‘Your kingdom come’ is a ‘deeply Jewish prayer request’. It requests that the Son of David comes to the city of David – Jerusalem – sits on the throne of David and establishes the Kingdom of Peace of God. Thus, the Kingdom of God is not only something spiritual but also has an external dimension for Israel with a Jewish perspective.

Harald Eckert, Chairman of Christians for Israel Germany, delivering his opening speech | Photo credit: Christians for Israel Germany

This clearly emerges from Acts 1, where it is reported that Jesus taught the disciples about the Kingdom of God for 40 days and that they finally asked Him when He will restore the kingdom to Israel (Acts 1:6). So, according to Harald Eckert, an inner and an outer dimension belong to the Kingdom of God, both of which are closely connected.

Joela Krüger, Sister of Mary, emphasised the close connection between Christians and Jews: Jesus Christ is not only the King of Kings but also the King of the Jews, as it was written on the cross: ‘Jesus of Nazareth, the King of Jews’. But Christianity left this title ‘on the cross’ instead of elevating it to an honorary title. Regarding all efforts promoting the unity of the Church, Sister Joela stated: “It must be said: We belong to the God of Israel!”

An act of repentance, addressing the guilt of the German and Christian Church towards the Jewish people, was led by Harald Eckert, Sister Joela and other speakers.

The programme included further lectures, reports on aliyah, a Shabbat celebration, an evening commemorating the 80th anniversary of the Reichspogromnacht (a pogrom against Jews throughout Nazi Germany on 9–10 November 1938), short presentations of Israel organisations and times of worship. Forty organisations had information booths in the foyer.

The Congress had been organised by the Christian Forum for Israel (CFFI), an umbrella organisation of more than twenty Israel organisations in Germany, including Christians for Israel Germany.

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