JERUSALEM, Israel - An estimated 300 million Christians from more than 175 nations are expected to unite in prayer on Sunday, October 3, to pray for the peace of Jerusalem.
More than 1,000 Christian leaders support the annual Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem, sponsored by the U.S.-based Eagles' Wings ministry.
"It is a new day in the Christian Church," said Rev. Robert Stearns, founder and executive director of Eagles' Wings ministries and co-founder of the "Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem."
"There are millions of Christians declaring that they will pray for the peace of Jerusalem. We are not spectators, we are not bystanders, and we will not be silent…The sin of silence [during the Holocaust] will not be repeated… Shalom to Israel is shalom for the world!" Stearns said at last year's gathering.
Organizers say it has become the "largest Israel-focused prayer event in history" since it began in 2002 drawing Israeli political and religious leaders, as well as Christians from around the world.
According to the Day of Prayer website, the day is intended to "raise global awareness and intercession for God's purposes in Israel."
As in previous years, the local Jerusalem celebration of the day of prayer will be streamed live on the Internet via God TV from a venue overlooking the city.
Why Pray for the Peace of Jerusalem?
"Day of Prayer for the Peace of Jerusalem" co-founder Dr. Pastor Jack Hayford said praying for the peace of Jerusalem is actually praying for the Kingdom of God to come.
"To pray for the peace of Jerusalem is to pray, 'Lord, let your Kingdom come and Your will be done on earth, not only in the ultimate revelation of His King coming from Heaven, but in the present revelation of God's peace as it comes into our hearts in a troubled world, to bring to the heartbeat center of the world, something of a peace that alleviates the tensions, the hatred, the bombings, the torments," Hayford said.
Hayford is the founder of Foursquare Church, Church on the Way.
Michael Little, president of the Christian Broadcasting Network, said praying for the peace of Jerusalem is a matter of obedience.
"The enemy of our souls wants to destroy Israel; he is opposed to the peace of Jerusalem, just as he is opposed to God's grace working in each one of us. It is essential that we obey the scriptures and pray for the peace of Jerusalem, for the people of Israel, and for all those that are influenced by the Prince of Peace around the world," Little explained.
Jane Hansen Hoyt of Aglow International said as spiritual and natural warfare increase so must prayer for the peace of Jerusalem.
"The biblical mandate to 'pray for the peace of Jerusalem' must take on greater priority in our lives as we watch the intensity of warfare increase, both in the natural and spiritual realms, over God's end-time purposes for His people - Israel and the Body of Christ," she said.