Middle East / News / Religion

For the first time since 1948, Yom Kippur falls on the same day as the Feast of the Cross, an Eastern Orthodox festival

Fears of riots in Haifa as Jewish, Christian holidays collide

Authorities are preparing for possible riots or altercations in Haifa Saturday, as the holiest day of Jewish year, Yom Kippur, coincides for the first time since the founding of the State of Israel with the Eastern Orthodox Feast of the Cross.

Representatives of the Christian community recently met with Haifa police to coordinate activities and security for the holiday, and Haifa Mayor Yona Yahav convened with Archbiship Elias Chacour to discuss the issue, Maariv reported on Monday.

The city has several Jewish and Christian neighborhoods that abut each other. While Jews mark Yom Kippur with fasting and prayers and even the nonreligious refrain from driving, the Feast of the Cross is traditionally celebrated with parades, carnivals and fireworks, which may ignite tensions.

Authorities said they were concerned that religious Jews would be offended by the Christian festivities. “The big fear is that religious Jews will interpret the joy of Christian Arabs celebrating in the wrong way, and a riot will begin,” a police representative told the Maariv newspaper.

In 2008, rioting broke out in Acre on Yom Kippur after Jewish youths threw stones at an Arab motorist who was driving in a Jewish neighborhood after the holiday began. The resulting riots lasted for 24 hours and required hundreds of police officers.

The Feast of the Cross celebrates the dedication of the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in the year 335 and is celebrated every September 13 by the Eastern Orthodox. Yom Kippur, which Jews mark as the Day of Atonement, will begin at sundown on September 13, and end at nightfall the next day.

Have you accepted God’s priceless gift for you? It can’t be earned otherwise it wouldn’t be a gift. There is only one true, living and uncreated God. The God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacobs still lives today, unchanging, because He is eternal. God is triune (Three in One); God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. John 10:30 “I and My Father are one.” He loves you completely just as you are. He has been reaching out to you for relationship, He needs you, has a plan for you and is eager to bless you. No one has the luxury of time as these end time events unfold. Acknowledge His incomparable, unchanging, unconditional love for you and believe in Him.

Admit you are a sinner (every single one of us are!) in need of a Savior. Ask Savior Jesus Christ of Nazareth (NOT Jesus the prophet, but the one and only begotten Son of God!) the one and only True living God, to forgive you of your sins and to be your personal Savior. Turn from your sins (repent). Believe that Jesus Christ died for your sins and rose from the dead to live forever more. (the penalty for sin has always been the shedding of blood.)

Please get connected with a Bible believing and Bible teaching church right away.  Again, time is not on our side and every new Christian must “grow up in Him” fast.  Get a Bible, I recommend the New King James version. Get into His Word (Bible) to learn more about Him and His expectations.  The gospel of Mark or John in the New Testament (the second half of the Bible) will give you a speedy overview. If you are able to read this, then you have access to a Bible online. Also available to you are commentaries. Google the Book and chapter (ie: Genesis chapter 23) and under commentaries you will find a summary and explanation of the chapter in case you’re not sure what you just read is all about.

I am so very happy for you and your decision! Now tell others about Jesus Christ of Nazareth, steer them away from the fiery, torturous, eternal pit of hell while you still can!

Romans 10:9-13 “That if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes unto righteousness (right standing with God), and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation. 11 For the Scripture (Bible) says, “Whomever believes on Him will not be put to shame.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call upon Him. 13 For whoever calls on the Name of the Lord shall be saved.” NKJ

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