Many who do not live in Israel do not understand the complexities of politics here. Correspondingly, many do not know how to pray.
Israel is a parliamentary system with multiple parties. No party here has ever received a majority of the votes. Therefore the “winning” party must form a coalition with the other parties. It is exceptional and very unsettling that two general elections this year have failed to produce a clear block of parties with enough votes to form a coalition government!
Before describing the parties, I want to list five important issues. Most Messianic Jews here (as well as many other groups) want to see a government that will make progress on the following issues:
- A strong national defense;
- Not entering into a land for peace deal with Palestinian leadership that does not want a real peace agreement but rather to use it as a step to destroy Israel;
- Diminishing or limiting the power of the ultra-Orthodox who currently have a great deal of control over citizenship, marriages and official conversions to Judaism. In addition, they oppose all who are believers in Yeshua. Most of the ultra-Orthodox do not serve in the Army, and many do not work but are on welfare so they can devote themselves to a fulltime study of the Talmud;
- Lowering the costs of living, especially housing. This causes some to leave Israel;
- Arab Israeli citizens not being treated as second class citizens.
There are three blocks of parties.
The Right includes the current Prime Minister, Benjamin Netanyahu, leader of the Likud party which is allied with the ultra-Orthodox and other extreme right wing parties. He is good on #1 and #2, but yields up policy to the ultra-Orthodox in #3.
The Center is made up of the Blue and White party led by General Benny Gantz and Yair Lapid. They are wrongly called the left by Netanyahu. They are led by two other generals, one of whom is the conservative former defense minister under Netanyahu. It appears to me that their policies on #1, and #2 would be the same as Netanyahu. However, they are committed to not yield to the ultra-Orthodox. They do not want them in the coalition. They desire to have a unity government with Likud but not with Netanyahu as its leader since he may soon be under indictment for fraud. But Netanyahu refuses to leave the ultra-Orthodox and other right wing parties out or to step down from leading his party. This is a nonstarter for Blue and White who may be forced to have a coalition with the left including the Arab party. Lapid especially cares about issues #4, and #5 where Netanyahu has failed.
The Left parties, including Labor and others, are weak on #1, and #2. They tend toward socialism. They are undeclared on #3, the role of the ultra-Orthodox. The Arab party is on the left but does not want to be in a Zionist government, and nearly all the other parties are Zionist.
Avigdor Lieberman leads a conservative but anti-ultra-Orthodox Party. He is pressing for a unity government with Likud and Blue and White, but without the ultra-Orthodox.
So how should you pray? As always, pray for God’s will to be done and in addition, intercede for a government that will make progress on the five points we listed.