Feast Review A Time of Turning Hearts to the Lord!Published on: 19.11.2021
By: ICEJ staff writers
The International Christian Embassy Jerusalem held a successful celebration of the Feast of Tabernacles from 20-27 September as largely an online event, featuring eight days of broadcasts from Jerusalem and other exciting locations around Israel. The daily broadcasts on Christian TV networks, the live streaming to registered viewers, and the numerous Feast watch parties held worldwide all reached a global television and online audience of tens of thousands of Christians in over 100 nations, and weeks later we are still receiving reports and testimonies of how the Feast blessed many around the globe.
Due to the global impact of coronavirus, the ICEJ’s Feast gathering went online again this year, taking our viewers on a special week-long Succot journey through the Land of Israel. There were daily broadcasts from Jerusalem, including the Southern Steps, Garden Tomb, Succat Hallel, and our host succah at TBN studios overlooking the Old City, plus programs from the Sea of Galilee, Qumran and Mount Carmel.
The daily celebrations featured anointed speakers and worship artists from Israel and abroad, as well as interviews with interesting guests on biblical topics and current affairs. Those who registered to access the new Feast streaming platform also were able to enjoy over 125 seminar teachings in several languages, visit online with Israeli exhibitors, and also take part in our 24/7 prayer vigil during the eight days of Tabernacles.
One notable aspect of this year’s Feast was the way senior Israeli officials, including an unprecedented five cabinet ministers in the new Bennett-Lapid government, used our Succot gathering to reach out to Christian supporters worldwide with a message of gratitude for their unwavering solidarity with the Jewish state and people. The Israeli leaders who addressed the Feast audience this year included President Isaac Herzog, Prime Minister Naftali Bennett, Foreign Minister Yair Lapid, Defense Minister Benny Gantz, Tourism Minister Yoel Razvozov, and Yad Vashem’s new chairman Dani Dayan.
“Our Christian friends and supporters around the world so much wanted to come to Jerusalem this year to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles with the Jewish people, but we produced instead a rich and colourful array of daily broadcasts from Israel out to the Christian world,” said ICEJ President Dr. Jürgen Bühler.
“We were especially excited about the new Israeli government’s outreach to the Christian world through our Feast,” added Bühler. “We have never had so many senior Israeli cabinet ministers address the Feast as was the case this year, and it shows the Bennett-Lapid government indeed understands and values the importance of Christian support for the Jewish state. We also were most grateful for the warm holiday greetings from new Israeli President Isaac Herzog, who has actively engaged with pro-Israel Christians throughout his public career.”
The Feast was held under the theme “Days of Elijah” this year. Just as Elijah’s time was one of the most challenging periods in Israel’s history, as a heaven-sent drought gripped the land for three years and tested Israel’s spiritual standing, we also live in times of extreme uncertainty, when a clear prophetic voice is needed to turn the hearts of the people back to God (Malachi 4:5-6; Luke 1:17). Amid the corona pandemic, our Feast messages aimed to give the global Body of Christ a fresh prophetic orientation for our times.
While Feast week has ended, there is still time to register for one of our enhanced Feast packages or to upgrade your basic package to give you online access to all the Feast content until the end of June 2022. Register today at: on.icej.org/FOT2021
Feast Watch Parties and Succahs around the world!
One amazing development at this year’s Feast was the way hundreds of churches, ministries, prayer groups, Bible study groups and ordinary families held Feast watch parties around the globe, with many also building colourful succahs (booths) and inviting guests to come share in a fuller Feast experience. The succahs and watch party sites were beautifully decorated, and thousands of Christians around the globe were able to join us in this way. At many of these Feast watch parties, the hosts not only streamed the eight daily Feast programs from Israel, but also included a time for local worship teams and speakers to minister, while others screened some of the seminar teachings for their guests. These watch parties also collected Feast offerings to bless Israel through the work of the Christian Embassy.
In Canada, for example, the ICEJ’s national branch organised numerous Feast watch parties from coast-to-coast. In one city, Jude Hodgson of the ICEJ-Canada team hosted a Feast watch party at a homeless shelter where she volunteers. She said it was remarkable how those served by the shelter kept coming back day after day to watch the Feast programs from Israel. As the crowd continued to faithfully come and even grow each day, they became more open to prayer and ministry over their lives.