Christians Worldwide Celebrate Feast of Tabernacles

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Some 5,000 Christians from 80 nations traveled to Jerusalem this week to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles.

The International Christian Embassy (ICEJ) brought thousands of believers there to unite with Israel.

The Feast of Tabernacles is that one Biblical feast that involves the nations as a principle. People can read about it in Zechariah chapter 14.

Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat talked to a packed auditorium about his city, even as the international community would like to divide it.

"Ideologically, Jerusalem is the heart of the world. You cannot divide a heart. You cannot divide a heart. It will never work, Barkat said. "Practically, there's not one example in the world of a split city that ever worked."

Many Israeli leaders praised the Christian support.

"It gives us lots of power and energy to see such support from all over the world, to united Jerusalem, and I came here to say thank you to the people that came," Barkat said.

ICEJ Director Malcolm Hedding said this shows the impact that Christians have.

"It gives voice to the fact that over years of faithful engagement from the Christian world, the Jewish world, from it's highest echelons of government, to its grass roots, people recognize the importance of this worldwide global constituency, particularly as Israel moves into an increased time of isolation," Hedding said.

CBN President Michael Little spoke at the feast. This is his 50th trip to Israel, and he feels the feast is like a taste of heaven.

"It's kind of like heaven because you hear all of these languages, and you see all these people from different countries," Little said. "They're all talking about Jesus. They're talking about their relationship with other Christians. They're talking about God."

The pilgrims all come for many different reasons.

"I came to the Feast of Tabernacles because it's the Lord's covenant with the people of Israel," Queen Robinson-Oteh, of Nigeria, said.

Ernst Botha, of South Africa, said, "We come in solidarity with the Jewish people; to come and bless them, to come and support them, the Jewish people."

Yvonne Witmer, of Germany, said, "I come because of my great God. I wanted to see this place where He lived, where He died. It's a blessing to be here, and I want to come to be part of this great big feast because worshipping our God with one voice in unity, my heart is longing for it."

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