Tisha B’Av is a day of mourning when the Jewish people remember the destruction of both the first and second temples. Tradition holds that the temples were destroyed some 656 years apart but on the same date. This year, Tisha B’Av begins on the eve of July 29 and ends at nightfall on July 30.
Traditionally, it is also believed that many other tragic events occurred on the 9th of Av (Tisha B’Av):
• It was decreed that the Israelites, after leaving Egypt, would wander in the desert for 40 years, until a new generation would be ready to enter the Promised Land.
• Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylonia, destroyed the First Temple in 586 B.C.E.
• Titus and the Romans in 70 C.E destroyed the Second Temple.
• King Edwald I in 1290 signed the Edict of Expulsion of the Jews from England.
• Ferdinand and Isabella decreed this to be the official date of the expulsion of the Jews from Spain in 1492. Led by Isaac Abarbanel, 300,000 Jews began to leave Spain on that date.
Although a cliché, it is true that history repeats itself. This year I would like to encourage you to remember the many lessons learned on Tisha B’Av and prepare your temple for healing instead of destruction.
This is a special season for prayer and fasting; it is also a time of self-inspection and preparation for the fall feasts. Personally, as I prepare for the fall feasts, the Lord has been speaking to me about teamwork. The One New Man and the call for Jews and gentiles to unite is a beautiful picture of teamwork! Here are some examples of specific jobs for Jews and gentiles and how the Lord brought them together:
Isaiah 60:1, 3 “Arise, shine…the Gentiles shall come to your light.” (Israel provides the light, the Word of God, and the Gentiles are to come to it.)
Isaiah 60:5, 11 “The wealth of the Gentiles shall come to you … therefore your gates shall be open continually.” (Israel and the Jewish people have land covenants with God and the Gentiles are to bring the wealth as gifts of restoration.)
Amos 9:11-15 “They shall build … they shall plant.” (The Jewish people are called to bring restoration and posses the land; the Gentiles are called to bring the wealth of the nations and help plant vineyards and gardens.)
This is truly the blessing of the One New Man that Paul spoke of in Ephesians 2—it would be wise for every household and church to take part in one of these prophetic roles! In this unity, I believe, we will find our peace!
Curt Landry is CEO of the House of David (www.houseofdavid.us).