Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Have You Any Room For Jesus"1 (Lyrics)
Exodus 6:7a – I will take you as My people, and I will be your God. (NKJV)
On October 27, 2018, a gunman entered the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, USA, and killed eleven Jewish parishioners and wounded six other people. The news media quickly told us that this man was a hater of Jews and that he took it upon himself to kill these mostly elderly people. The ensuing newscasts often mentioned the persecution of Jews during World War II, the various extermination camps, the infamous Kristallnacht terror against Jews and synagogues on the night of November 9-10, 1938, and the creation of the Jewish Ghettos in Poland.
After the Netherlands had been occupied for some time, a decree was issued that all the Jews were to wear the yellow Star of David on their outer garments so that they could easily be identified as Jews. One lady in Pittsburgh mentioned that they were proud to wear the Star of David. But it was not always a badge of honour. One of the reasons that this was done was so that when the time came to pick them up for transportation to the camps, there would be no problem in knowing which ones to take.
In the area where we lived, there were a lot of greenhouses and always a lot of broken glass, which the growers would keep for pickup by a recycler. One of these recyclers was a Jewish man who used to come from Amsterdam with a hand-pushed cart. He apparently dealt in broken pieces of glass, and he had several growers where he would go on a regular basis. He told my parents that he had a wife and family in Amsterdam, so whenever he came to our place, my mother would always invite him to have lunch with us and give him something to take home to his family. One day when he arrived, he was crying. He said that his family had been picked up and taken away in a truck. He was sure that he would never see them again. The police had said that he was too old and had left him behind. For several months, he still came on a somewhat regular basis, but then, he stopped coming, and we never saw him again. We don't know what happened to him.
All through the ages there have been a great number of theories as to why there was and still is so much discrimination against the Jews, but they, too, are God's children, as the Lord had said to Abram:
Genesis 12:3 – I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you; and in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed. (NKJV)
During this time of discrimination against so many people who believe in the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob in different places around the world, we need to pray that such people will stay strong in their faith, and that a change in attitude on the part of persecutors will come about. We are assured through faith that the Lord invites us to bring our concerns to Him in prayer.
Prayer: Our Father in heaven, we pray for steadfastness on the part of all people of faith who are persecuted and even killed for their faith. It is our urgent prayer that You would speak to the hearts of those who have the ability to change things. We ask it in Jesus' name. Amen.