Millions to Pray for Peace of Jerusalem
Roughly 100 million people worldwide are expected to pray Sunday for the peace of Jerusalem.
Organizers say 300,000 churches in 175 nations—including underground congregations in China and the Middle East—will participate in the Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem, which is considered the world's largest Israel-focused prayer event.
Eagles' Wings founder Robert Stearns, who is hosting the prayer day with Foursquare Church leader Jack Hayford, will lead a prayer event from the Tayelet Haas Promenade in Jerusalem. Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat, Christian Broadcasting Network President Michael Little and Rabbi Shlomo Riskin of Efrat are scheduled to participate in the gathering, which will be broadcast on God TV.
"We are living in challenging days, when Jerusalem is under tremendous pressure on all sides," Stearns said. "The prayers of faithful people on her behalf will make a difference, especially as Christians and Jews from the nations, along with Arab Christians and Jews from Israel, stand together in Jerusalem on Oct. 3."
The eight-year-old effort is rooted in Psalm 122:6, which calls on believers to pray for the peace of Jerusalem. But Stearns said Jerusalem is growing increasing central in world events, which should further motivate Christians to intercede.
"The centrality of Jerusalem to global affairs has never been more obvious and more at the forefront," he said. "... The city of Jerusalem is [having] and will have in the future massive global geopolitical ramifications. So Christians must become educated on the complex issues surrounding the city of Jerusalem."
Stearns said Christians will intercede for all Israel's inhabitants, both Arabs and Jews, and the prayer day won't center on politics.
"We do not pray from nor towards a specific political agenda," he added. "But we pray from a scriptural basis, which we believe transcends momentary political understanding and ultimately works toward God's intended blessing for all people."
This year, organizers also are calling intercessors to link their prayers with action by supporting Eagles' Wings' efforts to feed at least 1,000 needy families in Israel.
"We really felt the Lord telling us in prayer ... faith without works is dead," Stearns said. "So we're inviting people to feed the poor in Jerusalem and Israel- both Jew and Arab. And we've already begun to see great response toward that."
The prayer day began in 2002 and now has support from hundreds of Christian leaders, including Christians United for Israel founder John Hagee, Bible teacher Kay Arthur, author Joel Rosenberg, Gospel for Asia President K.P. Yohanan and Aglow International President Jane Hansen Hoyt.
"Never has it been as critical as it is now that we stand in the gap for the nation of Israel and its people," Hoyt said in a statement. "The biblical mandate to ‘pray for the peace of Jerusalem' must take on greater priority in our lives as we watch the intensity of warfare increase, both in the natural and spiritual realms, over God's end-time purposes for His people-Israel and the body of Christ."
In addition to the Jerusalem event, prayer gatherings will be held across the globe and on college campuses. Intercessors can also participate through a 24-hour telephone prayer room.