As promised – today we'll talk about the 5 day nationwide civil defense exercise – that actually ends today.
Here in Jerusalem there was no action. It was mostly concentrated with evaluations up north in a town called Afula which lies between the Mediteranian coast and the Sea of Galilee. Today it all ends after five days of rehearsing responses to missile attacks. The drill simulated a strike by missiles armed with chemical warheads – with emergency response units practicing the evacuation of “casualties” and people after “the attack”.
Defense and preparedness has long been a part of Jerusalem's history. Everyday I walk past at least three walls multiple times, go in and out of two gates multiple times, and even pass a mid-evil moat that was first part of a Herodian era compound from the time of Jesus! This was were He was taken at Herods request to see a miracle, during those early morning hours on Good Friday.
The Psalms are stacked with the imagery Jerusalem was like when David was King and writing the texts. They speak of the strength and fortitude of stones and walls… but David made it clear; that while we have to build up a defense (against our enemy called sin) God is our protector.
It is a marvel that so much of Jerusalem's often turbulent past still stands in bits and pieces through thousands of years of human history. But while the stones remain, man has come and gone… and we are reminded that only our Creator is eternal.
And really it is only God who is our defense – in all things. While it is necessary to practice and prepare wisely for our defense, as David and the other Kings of Israel did, when it all boils down – they mostly knew it is God our Heavenly Father who is our help in our time of need – whether it's in India, Alabama, or Israel.
May it be so!