Setting Up An Office – to Assist Aliyah in Australia!

Setting Up An Office – to Assist Aliyah in Australia!

The ingathering of the Jewish people to their land is one of the greatest End Time signs being played out before our very eyes. Has the time come for a greater return of the Jewish community from Australia to the promised land?

The Current Exile

One of the clearest evidences of the Bible’s supernatural origin is its many prophecies describing the return of the Jews from exile – prophecies which are being fulfilled in the world-wide regathering which is happening in our day. All the way back to Moses (Deut 28:64-67), the Bible predicted an exile of the Jewish people from their land – followed by a return from the four corners of the globe (Is 43:5).

But why is God bringing His people home? Ezekiel describes two key purposes of this return in the context of the End Times. Firstly it is for the glory and honour of God’s name. Ezekiel describes the exile of Israel as bringing shame to God’s name among the nations. Seeing ahead to our day, Ezekiel prophetically predicts that God will bring them home – not due to their righteousness – but for His Name’s sake (Ezek 36:22-24). Jesus taught us to pray ‘Hallowed be your Name’ and a key avenue for this prayer to be answered is through the world-wide return of the Jewish people to their land.

A second purpose Ezekiel foresaw is for Israel and the nations to know He is God. Ezek 39:26 declares “when I am hallowed in them in the sight of many nations, 28 then they shall know that I am the Lord their God, who sent them into captivity … but also brought them back to their land”. Our heartfelt prayer and desire is for Israel to truly know the Lord. Ezekiel predicts this will happen in conjunction with the return to the land (see also Ezek 36:24-25, 37:9-13, Is 11:12) and that it will be a sign to the Gentiles of God’s faithfulness.
Ultimately, Israel’s return to the Land sets the stage for the End Time events predicted throughout the Bible – and most importantly of all for Israel to be in place to welcome back her Messiah.

Christians Assisting Aliyah

With a clear End Time vision in mind, many Christian organisations have been actively working to help the Jewish return. One example is Ebenezer Operation Exodus which has helped over 170’000 Jews mainly in Russia, and another example is the aliyah work of Christians for Israel in Ukraine.

When will it be Australia’s Turn?

While Aussie Christians have been praying for and assisting the return of Jews in places like Russia and Ukraine, a question that has been burning on my heart is “when will it be Australia’s turn”?
Over the years, my prayers have joined the prayers of many other Aussies asking God to stir the hearts of our Jewish community regarding aliyah. In 2016/17 we saw the first fruits of an answer to this prayer. For the very first time in 20 years of ministry, Australian Jews began contacting Ebenezer for assistance – with 7 people making aliyah here locally within 12 months.

This wave of aliyah enquiries co-incided with my mum and I’s move into Caulfield two years ago for the purpose of praying in the area and supporting aliyah. Given the higher cost of living in Caulfield, we really could not afford the move – but the very day we gave notice, I was given a business by a Christian business owner whom I had never heard of or met. The business transferred to my ownership at no cost to myself – and funded the move into the area as well as a general increase in my income. We really could see God’s hand at work!

Now in 2019, we are looking to take it to another level. My wife Sarah and I have just signed the lease to an office in the heart of Jewish Melbourne. The office space will be multi-functional, but is particularly setup with the goal of supporting aliyah via Ebenezer. The price of the office was a bit high for us, but only days after we got the keys, extra finances begun to come in to cover the shortfall!
We have also already interviewed one Jewish couple who are seriously considering returning – and we believe there will be many more coming through our doors in the coming days.

Do They Need our Help?

Does the Australian Jewish community need our support in terms of aliyah? While it is true that many members of the community are well off and while there are generous Israeli government programs setup to assist aliyah – there are people who fall between the cracks. For example, one young man contacted Ebenezer who wants to volunteer in the IDF – but because he had previously lived in Israel, he was not eligible for the usual assistance. Others need practical assistance with last minute cleaning of their homes or getting to the airport (having just sold their cars!).
Ultimately, Ebenezer’s goal is to also encourage the local Jewish community with a sense of divine destiny and the fulfilment of prophecy – helping them to see that their move back home is not just another act of migration, but is the fulfilment of what their Bible predicted so long ago.

Storm Clouds of Anti Semitism

When praying about setting up the office, my wife Sarah got the words ‘It is time’. A sudden surge of anti-Semitic incidents in Australia certainly witnesses to this fact. 2018 featured the single largest increase on record of anti-Semitic incidents – a whopping 60% increase from the previous year. For example, Neo-Nazi groups have plastered flyers across the country with pictures from the holocaust and the words ‘legalise the execution of Jews, join your local nazis’.
2019 is off to an even more shocking start here in Melbourne. At the beginning of the year, neo-Nazi stickers were placed at the entrance to an Aged Care centre for holocaust survivors. A few days later – on the 100th anniversary of the German Workers Party – a far right rally was held in neighbouring St Kilda featuring Nazi salutes and an SS helmet on display.

Will You be Involved?

We believe that this is truly the time when God is beginning to call His people home even from Australia. Isaiah declares that the Gentiles would be involved in aliyah carrying Israel’s sons and daughters “on their shoulders” (Is 49:22). Would you consider being involved and supporting this work?
We certainly need prayer. Pray for us that we will have favour with Jewish community leaders and that we may have divine connections with individuals in the community whose hearts are being stirred for aliyah (Zec 10:8, Is 11:11-12).
For more information or to find out more about practical support for the work of aliyah in Australia, please contact us directly via our web site

Escaping Venezuela – Dramatic Answer to Prayer

Escaping Venezuela – Dramatic Answer to Prayer

When Daniel Oritz moved to Israel from Venezuela , his first meal was a bowl of chicken soup. He took one spoonful and began to cry.

For him, the soup signified an escape from the poverty and deprivation he has experienced for more than two years.

“We were very hungry,” said Oritz, who moved in late 2016. “There was no meat, no sugar, no pasta.”

Venezuela’s economic crisis is so severe that citizens must wait in lines for hours at grocery stores to buy basic staples, or pay exorbitant prices on the black market. Some have even died of basic illnesses because of a shortage of medical supplies.

In addition to sky rocketing crime, there is also a significant risk of Jews being kidnapped – as they are seen as ‘wealthy’.
Israel and Venezuela have no diplomatic relations, which has forced Israel, the Jewish agency and Christian organisations like Ebenezer Operation Exodus to work quietly behind the scenes in order to facilitate aliyah.

On the 7th of June, a family that Ebenezer was helping were stopped at the airport in Columbia. They had no passports for their children – and despite Israel accepting them, the Colombian authorities refused to let them board their plane. An urgent prayer update was sent out to intercessors across the world – and after a 6 hour stand-off, they were finally given permission to board and go to Israel! Praise the Lord!

Let’s pray: for the remaining 9000 Jews in Venezuela to find safe routes of escape to Israel. Many are leaving behind everything to go – may they experience divine provision and blessing on the way. Let’s pray for wisdom for the teams in Venezuela and neighbouring Colombia who are assisting these returning Jews.

The prophetic significance of Israel’s new national holiday

The prophetic significance of Israel’s new national holiday

“ shall no more be said, ‘The Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of Egypt,’ but, ‘The Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north and from all the lands where He had driven them.’” Jer 16:14-15

The Netanyahu government is receiving broad political support for a proposed new national holiday celebrating ‘aliyah’ or Jewish immigration to the land of Israel. The motion is expected to be passed into law in coming months, and would set aside the 10th of Nissan to honour the crucial role of aliyah both in the re-birth and in the ongoing strengthening of the nation of Israel.

The 10th of Nissan was chosen as many Rabbis believe it marks the date the ancient Israelites first entered the Promised Land under the courageous leadership of Joshua. While this is interesting, I believe that establishing the holiday on this particular day also has a significant connection to Bible prophecy.

2600 years ago, the prophet Jeremiah predicted that a day would come when the original Exodus from Egypt would be overshadowed by a far greater Exodus ‘from the land of the north and from all the lands’ (Jer 16:14-16). It is therefore very interesting to note that this new annual celebration of the modern day return of the Jewish people falls four days prior to Passover on the Jewish calendar. Is the stage being set for a celebration of a greater Exodus that will literally overshadow Passover celebrations?

The Miraculous Modern Day Exodus

National Aliyah day will be a time for the nation of Israel to retell the many miraculous and touching stories of their modern day ingathering. Their modern day Exodus includes the desperate stories of Jews returning en-masse out of the ashes of the holocaust, only to find themselves in the midst of another war of survival upon arrival in Israel. The story of aliyah continues with the dramatic return of over 600’000 Jews from Arab lands to the struggling and virtually bankrupt nation of Israel in the late 1940’s. While being advised to slow down the flood of Jews arriving in Israel, Israeli Prime Minister David Ben Gurion doggedly refused to turn back any Jew that wished to return despite the growing financial burden on the young nation.

The modern Exodus goes on to the story of the dramatic return of the long lost Jews of Ethiopia, with 14000 being whisked home in hurried secrecy during one weekend in 1991. In addition, one could not fail to mention the story of the Soviet Jews being refused permission to leave for decades. The dramatic crumbling of the Soviet bloc in 1989 was seen as a direct answer to the persistent prayers of many Jews and Christians that this modern day Pharoah would ‘let my people go’. Today there are over one million Jews from Russia living in Israel, and Russian is one of the three official languages of the new-born state. Many Christians were assisting the return from Russia, and in so doing found themselves literally fulfilling the words of Isaiah by carrying the Jews on their shoulders on the way back to Israel (Is. 49:22).

It is interesting to note that the original Exodus from Egypt involved around 3 million Jews returning to Israel – and the modern day return likewise has featured just over 3 million Jews, this time returning from the ‘four corners of the world’ (over 150 nations) to the reborn and regathered nation of Israel.

Yet, despite all this, the story of the modern day Exodus is presently far from overshadowing the annual celebration of the Passover miracle. A further and even more dramatic return of worldwide Jewry would be required for this to take place.

What could set the stage for this greater exodus?

Could a further return of the Jews from Russia be the greater exodus that was foretold? In the 1970’s and 80’s many Christians across Europe independently reported seeing visions of destitute Jews fleeing Russia and many prepared safe houses and provisions for the expected flood of Jewish refugees. While this was partially fulfilled in the early 1990’s, perhaps it is still waiting a future fulfilment? Some safe houses and preparations remain in place, especially in Finland. Under the leadership of the Finnish Exodus Committee, Finland has an active network of 25’000 Christians ready to assist Jews leaving Russia in an emergency.

While Russia certainly is located due north of Israel, the prophecy of Jeremiah also talks about the worldwide regathering of the Jewish community. What about the return of the world’s largest diaspora Jewish community in the US?

Today there are around 6 million Jews living in the US. In 2014, only 0.06% of them made aliyah to Israel, and the prosperous and stable lifestyle in America means that very few would consider making the change. But is there a change in the air?

In early 2016, two respected Jewish leaders (Rabbi Ari Abramowitz and Mrs. Lori Palatnik) – not at all known for being ‘doom and gloom prophets’ –released widely watched videos uncharacteristically begging the Jews of America to see the writing on the wall and return to Israel (see ) . Their message has had a lukewarm reception among American Jews, but Rabbi Ari reports that his message has resonated with many American Christians who see the potential dangers facing the Jewish community in their midst.

The early months of 2016 have also seen the veteran Christian aliyah ministry ‘Ebenezer Operation Exodus’ – traditionally known for assisting Soviet Jews in their return to Israel – opening an office in the heart of Brooklyn, New York to assist the Jews of America. They have also started an active campaign in the US to educate the churches about God’s call to the Gentiles to assist in bringing the Jewish people home ‘on their shoulders’ (Is. 49:22).
Could it be that the time is coming when God will call His people home from America – and that this return combined with the already large-scale ingathering that has taken place – will tip the scales marking it as the greater exodus that Jeremiah foretold?


It is positive that Israel is seeking to have a national celebration remembering their modern day return to the Promised Land. Seeing how God has preserved the Jewish people and brought them back from the four corners of the world is a story that can build the faith of both Jews and Gentiles in the God of the Bible.

At the same time, we look forward to the day when Jeremiah’s words will be completely fulfilled, with this latter day Exodus even superceding the former Exodus. Then we will surely join the Jewish people in saying ‘The Lord lives who brought up the children of Israel from the land of the north and from all the lands where He had driven them”

Operation Solomon – the Return of Ethiopia’s Jews

Operation Solomon – the Return of Ethiopia’s Jews

In the largest aerial expedition in Israeli history, 14,500 Ethiopian Jews were transported to Israel in two days on May 24, 1991.

Just like the original exodus from Egypt was in haste, so this operation required quick action as the Ethiopian government was collapsing to a rebel takeover – and as the arab nations between Ethiopia and Israel could attempt to stop the airlift. Due to the haste of the operation, seats were taken out of the planes in order to seat as many as possible – smashing the world record for the most passengers on a plane!

The ancient prophet Zephaniah foretold this event in the Bible, when he foretold that: “From beyond the rivers of Sudan/Ethiopia my worshipers — including my dispersed people— will present offerings to me.” Zep 3:10.

2015: The Growing Tide of Returning Jews

2015: The Growing Tide of Returning Jews

2015 saw the highest number of Jews returning to Israel (making ‘aliyah) in the past 12 years, with the numbers doubling since 2008.

The Bible predicts a great end time ingathering of the Jewish people from the four corners of the globe. This arguably started to take place at the beginning of the 19th Century as Jews began returning to Israel. This return was not just from Babylon as in the days of Ezra, but rather a return that would bring Jews from virtually every country on the globe. Now as we enter 2016, the ingathering of the Jewish people continues unabated and is gathering momentum as economic woes and rising terrorist threats dominate the headlines.

France, Ukraine and Russia are three countries leading the way in global aliyah – and each of their Jewish communities have a story to tell of the increasing pressures they face in their host countries. We’ll look at each one in turn.

France – Rising Anti-Semitism Driving Aliyah

On International Holocaust Remembrance Day in 2014, a crowd of 17’000 people marched through the streets of Paris. The march specifically ridiculed the holocaust by singing the ‘holocaust banana’ song, and the marchers repeatedly chanted chilling slogans such as ‘Jews, out of France’, ‘Jew, Jew, Jew, Jew’ and ‘Jews, France is not yours’1

Watching video footage of the march, what struck me personally was the lack of any visible counter protest or any voices loudly condemning the protestor’s actions. Where was the church in this hour of need for the Jewish people? Why was she not standing more strongly and visibly with the Jewish community?

The French Jewish community has also been the target of several terror attacks in recent years. In response, the French Government has taken the drastic measure of placing armed troops outside of Jewish community installations. However, a growing number of French Jews see the ‘writing on the wall’ and believe they have no future in France. In fact, a recent survey indicated that 43% of French Jews – in other words 200’000 Jews – are currently considering making aliyah9.

No wonder that the phones are ringing hot at the Israeli call centre handling aliyah enquiries. In response to the demand, the number of French speakers at the call centre has had to be doubled2.

The recent refugee influx into France may well add fuel to the fire in coming years as many migrants arrive with ingrained anti-Semitic attitudes from their Middle Eastern countries of origin. French Jews are also likely to face the continued rise of far right parties whom often harbour their own anti-Semitic tendencies.

The prophet Hosea spoke over 2500 years ago of a time when the Jews will return to Israel ‘trembling from the west’ (Hos. 11:10). As waves of terror and anti-Semitism continue to be a leading driver of aliyah from France, we seem to see the beginning of the fulfilment of Hosea’s words.

Ukraine – A Forgotten War

According to the UN, the war in Ukraine has led to the displacement of 1.4 million people and left over 9’000 dead3. The conflict is continuing to this day with regular reports of lives lost in cross-fire and indiscriminate shelling. In addition, the economy has been hard hit by the fighting, leading to one of the worst recessions world-wide in 2015.

Anti-Semitic tendencies have been reported to be on both sides of the conflict. A top rebel leader on the pro-Russian side has blamed the ‘Jews of Ukraine’ for masterminding the downfall of the previous pro-Russian government in Ukraine 4. Meanwhile, there are also concerns about neo-Nazi/fascist groups who have been taking part in the fighting on the Ukrainian side.

In the midst of the conflict zone in Ukraine one finds a Jewish community that has seen a large percentage of its members make aliyah over the past 20 years. Those who have remained have often been resistant to the idea of making aliyah, as Ukraine has been their home for generations.

The Scriptures foretell that God would first send for ‘fishermen’ and then for ‘hunters’ in the process of regathering the Jewish people (Jer. 16:16). Volunteers working among the Jews of Ukraine see the past 20 years as a time of the ‘fishermen’ encouraging Jewish aliyah, and now believe that the time of the hunters may be coming upon those who still remain behind.

In the past year, Christian and Jewish volunteers have been stretched to their limit handling desperate aliyah enquiries and fielding calls for help in transporting remaining elderly or sick Jews out of the perilous war zones. The International Fellowship of Christians and Jews has even taken the drastic step of arming its volunteers with small bribes used to curry favour at the checkpoints as they drive into rebel territory to help the remaining Jews5.

Now at the beginning of 2016, the conflict in Ukraine remains unpredictable and the nation’s economy continues to be very fragile in the face of a faltering global economy. Let’s remember the Ukrainian Jews in our prayers and also the volunteers who are assisting them often at great personal risk.

 Russia: A Surprising Sudden Rise of Aliyah – why?

In 2015, Russia experienced a sudden spike in aliyah with an increase of 40%. What is behind the sudden sharp rise?

A major driving factor would be the financial crisis of 2015 that has seen Russian wages drop by 8.5% and the value of the Russian Ruble halve compared to the US dollar.6

Another motivating factor would be the continued strengthening of Russian nationalism and patriotism combined with the lack of any real democratic checks and balances to restrain the Russian leadership. Today Russia is home to half the world’s Neo-Nazis, and just as in times past, the Russian bear could easily turn on its Jewish population7. A recent brazen assassination attempt on a key Jewish leader in Moscow has also sent shockwaves in the community.

Many Jews making aliyah are dependent on the assistance of Christian volunteers who offer practical assistance, financial aid and advice across the vast landmass of Russia. Most of these volunteers are backed by foreign funded Christian charities that have been operating for years in Russia. However, a recent crackdown on foreign funded organisations has ended up labelling such NGO’s and their workers as ‘foreign agents’ and their activities and finances have been subjected to a much higher level of scrutiny8. A number of these charities are openly speculating that the time might come soon when they are forced to close their doors in Russia.

Without the assistance of these Christian volunteers, the Jews in far-flung communities will find themselves stranded. 2700 years ago, Isaiah the Prophet issued a prophetic command to the “land of the north” to ‘give them up’ (Is. 43:6), and today we continue to pray that all resistance to their safe return to Israel be removed.

Final Summary

In summary, 2015 has been a year of increasing aliyah in these troubling times for the Jewish community. While it is interesting from the perspective of Bible prophecy to witness increasing numbers of Jews returning home to their God-given land, let us also remember that many of them are fleeing great personal hardship.

Life in Israel is not exactly easy either, but the God of Israel has promised to protect His returning people. Jeremiah’s comforting words foretell that “He who scattered Israel will gather him, and keep him as a shepherd does his flock.” Jer. 31:10 NKJV

1 – ‘Jews out of France’, Arutz Sheva Israel National News, Jan. 29, 2014,

2 “Jewish Agency Expands Jerusalem Call Centre”, Jerusalem Post, Sep. 4, 2104 –

3 International Business Times, “Ukraine-Russia Conflict Update: Peace Agreement Extended Until 2016 as War Continues”, Dec. 30, 2015 –

4 “Top rebel leader accuses Jews of masterminding Ukrainian revolution”, Jerusalem Post, June 22, 2015 –

5  “Israel Beckons to ‘hardcore’ Jews Displaced in Ukraine”, Times of Israel, Aug. 13, 2014,

6 “Can Russia’s Economy Really Get Any Worse? Maybe” CNBC, Oct 15, 2015 –

7 “Russia’s Resurgent Anti-Semitism”, Times of Israel, July 19, 2015 –

8 “Russia: Government against rights groups”, Human Rights Watch, Dec. 9, 2015 –

9 “Operation French Kiss: 200’000 French Jews Planning Aliyah”, The Jewish Press, Jan. 17, 2016 –

Aliyah now or later – Lessons from the Jews of Baghdad

Aliyah now or later – Lessons from the Jews of Baghdad

“Up, Zion! Escape, you who dwell with the daughter of Babylon” Zec. 2:7 NKJV
Jews have lived in Iraq since the time of Nebuchadnezzar. The Iraqi Jews were mostly a prosperous and stable community living with their Arab neighbours in relative harmony. Apart from the occasional wave of persecution, they were in many ways treated better than the Jews of ‘Christian’ Europe. However, with the formation of the nation of Israel in 1948, and the embarrassing losses of the Arab armies against the fledgling Jewish state, persecution of the Jews quickly spread across Iraq. Ultimately over 120’000 Jews left behind their prosperous lives and fled to Israel with the help of underground smuggling routes established by the Jewish Agency and its representatives.

In this turbulent time, around 5000 Jews bucked the trend and stayed behind in Iraq. They were Jews who were not interested in Zionism and who identified themselves so much with the Iraqis that they chose to remain in Iraq despite the wave of persecution after 1948. ‘Surely’, they reasoned, ‘we will be safer here’.

How did the Jews who stayed behind fare when compared to those who left everything to return to the land of their forefathers?

In the early 1950’s, the situation in Iraq did indeed improve and the Jews of Iraq were once again prosperous and were rising in influence. In the meantime, the situation seemed bleak for those who had made Aliyah only to come to an Israel which at the time was inundated with impoverished refugees from all over the world. These Iraqi Jews – many of whom had previously lived in mansions in Baghdad – now found themselves living for months and even years on end in squalid refugee camps scattered throughout Israel. Unemployment was high, language and cultural tensions were growing and it may have seemed that they had made the wrong choice.

However, a decade later the tables were dramatically turned. The Iraqi migrants to Israel were by this time established in their own houses and were starting to taste success in their new homeland. The Jews in Iraq meanwhile found themselves in the cross-hairs of the government again after the 1967 war – and an intense wave of public executions, kidnappings and torture broke out. Ultimately the remaining Jews of Iraq were forced to flee for their lives leaving everything behind, and some did not make it. It became clear that they would have been better off if they had left earlier when they had the chance.

How do the lessons of history apply to today? The Jewish communities of Europe are facing a growing wave of anti-Semitism at the moment, but many of its leaders are still hoping to ‘ride out’ the storm. Those who make Aliyah now might in the short term face more hardship than their fellow Jews who stay behind in the prosperous West.
However, I believe that in the long run those who make Aliyah now will be better off than those who seek to wait out the storm. Unfortunately, Bible prophecy indicates to us that the situation will indeed get worse, and it is therefore time for us as watchmen to pray for the Jews of the West to recognise the perils they are facing, and hear God’s call to return to their God-given homeland.

Zec. 10:8 tells us that God is indeed ‘whistling’ (alt. translation = ‘whispering’) that the time has come for His people to return home to their Land. He is using us as the Gentiles to warn them and assist them in the return – let us continue to pray that their hearts will be soft to hear and obey God’s call. Pray that they will like Abraham hear and sacrificially obey God’s call. Pray that those who go will have the spirit of Caleb and Joshua who through faith in God were not afraid of the giants in the land.
Source: Operation Babylon by Shlomo Hillel