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U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright called on Egypt to follow Israel's lead and offer to take a cut in its annual US foreign aid. In testimony to a House Appropriations subcommittee, Albright also welcomed Israel's recent proposal to gradually reduce foreign aid payments over the next 10-15 years.

A Russian woman forced to work at a factory in Nazi Germany run by a subsidiary of the Ford Motor Company filed suit against the auto manufacturer claiming the company profited from her work as a slave laborer. The suit was filed in Germany, after a law allowing forced laborers to file a claim against corporations that used forced labor during the war.

THE JERUSALEM POST: It’s never too late to make Aliyah. Belle Goldstein, 102 years young, became the oldest immigrant to arrive from North American since the founding of the State of Israel.

THE JEWISH PRESS: Newly revealed Irish government papers disclose that Ireland had a policy of refusing entry visas to Jews escaping the Holocaust, and that the government maintained that allowing more Jews into the country would lead to anti-Semitic feeling and increase their unemployment. Millions perished and only 65 Jews were allowed into Ireland between 1936-1946.

Yasir Arafat's real name is Abdul Rauf el-Codba el-Husseini. He is the cousin of the notorious Nazi collaborator and Grand Mufti of British Mandate Palestine. The real Arafat is a mountain near Mecca. He sees himself as Sala-din's "Second Coming" in the spirit of Cyrus the Great (2 Chronicles 36:22-23)

Jerusalem doctors have permission from the Health Ministry to be the first in the world to infuse a form of immune system into Aids patients. Active lymphocytes transplanted from the bone-marrow stem cells from a healthy sibling's blood may be the answer. Prof. Slavin of the Hadassah hospital and medical facility says each procedure costs $40-$60 thousand each. Slavin's article has been published in the prestigious journal "Blood"

The legal committee of Iraq's parliament not only recommended war-crimes trials for U.S. President Clinton, but also former President George Bush and their aids, and other U.S Government employees. They say these are responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of Iraqis, by the shortage of medicine caused by the embargo

The Vatican is permitting scrutiny of its archives of the Inquisition, one of the notorious periods of the Roman Catholic Church history, including the famous index of Forbidden Books, which Catholics were forbidden to read or own. The files show that even the Bible was on the blacklist; they were afraid to allow the faithful access, without ecclesiastical guidance.

BRIDGES FOR PEACE. (excerpts) Clarence H. Wagner Jr.
This is Israel's chronological Jubilee.
A 50th anniversary is called aflagbanr.jpg (8194 bytes)
Golden Jubilee and most people don't know what the biblical
'Year of Jubilee' is about. The term sabbatical today is defined as a year or more of absence for study, rest or travel, given every seven years to teachers in some colleges and universities. It is an ancient concept from the Bible.

God divides His time into cycles of seven. Seven days=week, God's first rest on the seventh day of creation, etc. Every seventh day is a Sabbath. The biblical holiday seven weeks and one day after Passover is Shavuot or Pentecost. There are seven biblical feasts in the year (Leviticus 23). Seven is the number of perfection and completion. The land was to rest the seventh year and every cycle of seven years (49) the 50th year was God's 'Year of Jubilee' a year for new beginnings (Lev. 25:23); all property would be returned to its original owners. God promised that if they obeyed Him, He would provide. When the shofar sounded that year, every debt was paid, and wiped out and all possessions reverted to the original owners.

BRIDGES FOR PEACE. The majestic white oryx once roamed the oryx.jpg (5992 bytes) plains of the Negev desert and it is 
said they could sense water 60 miles
away. Moses lauded the tribes of
Ephraim and Manasseh as having
horns like the horns of the onyx (wild
ox) Deuteronomy 33:17. Its horns,
sharp brown-black rapiers, however
were no protection against the
Turkish and then the British troops who slaughtered them - to the very last one - for food and sport. The onyx is making a come back to its biblical home, it is one of the four footed animals in Israel's 'Reintroduction' project. They are thriving.

Israel's software industry recorded exports of $500 million, an increase of 25% compared to a year ago. Israel has become one of the largest developers of computer software, rivaling Silicon Valley (USA). Most major computer firms are opening research and development plants in Israel. This enables them to benefit from the diversity of computer knowledge and brain power from the immigration that has brought specialists from around the world, especially the former Soviet Union. "Even if any of thine be driven unto the outmost parts, the L-rd thy G-d gather thee and fetch thee: and bring you into the Land which thy Fathers possessed, and multiply thee above thy fathers" (DEUT.30:4-5).

Israel's estimated aliyah (immigration) figures for 1997 exceeded expectation by 30% with the 81% from the former Soviet Union. coin.jpg (6467 bytes)

A complete and undamaged seal
of one of the biblical kings has been uncovered. The clay seal used for sealing a papyrus letter was stamped with the inscription "Ahaz (son of ) Yotam, King of Judah. Even more exciting is that on the edge of the clay daub, is a fingerprint, believed
to be that of the king himself, as he imprinted the seal with his signet ring. Ahaz reigned from 727-698 BC and is mentioned in the Bible (II Kings 16:11 and II Chron. 28:1). His son Hezekiah succeeded Ahaz and did that which was right in the eyes of
the Lord. II Chron. 29:2.

There are vast water reservoirs underneath the Al Aksa Mosque (Jerusalem) and they are in danger of collapse, a British archaeologist warns. Today, 49 cisterns and 49 underground passages crisscross below the compound. Many are abandoned with water inside, possibly 10 million gallons. This is the same mosque the Muslims claimed was being undermined by a tunnel, dug by the Israelis.

Late News From Jerusalem: (by Chris J.)

A few months ago we dedicated an edition of the Bible Light on the News to the "Anti-Missionary Law." We set forth facts to balance out the loud protests and bombardments by Christian missionaries upon the Israeli government; pointing out that this was just a "private member bill". 5,000 such bills are introduced each year and no more than 10 ever become law. But the protests and campaign to raise funds to fight this continued to pour out as we learned through publications received in weekly in our mail box.

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From the Jerusalem Post International Edition: Labor's Nissim Zvilli, left, shares a laugh with Christian leaders, Rev. Petra heltd, center, and Clarence Wagner, director of Bridges for Peace, at a meeting last week in Jerusalem. A broad spectrum of Protestants and Evangelical Christians appeared to endorse a statement which in effect rejects active proselytism. The move brought Zvilli to declare opposition to an anti-missionary bill he had sponsored with Moshe Gafni (United Torah Judaism). The bill proposes a one-year prison sentence for 'unlawfully holding, printing, copying, spreading, distributing, or importing material which has an element of proselytizing.' Wagner took the opportunity to reject accusations that any Christian group held out financial inducements for people to become Christians.

Now, we have learned via the internet edition of the Jerusalem Post and also a fax from Clarence Wagner (Bridges for Peace) in Jerusalem, that he and other members of the Christian community there had mediated the situation and the whole thing was defused. One of the Knesset members who drafted the bill, withdrew his support of it!

It is heartening to see Christians leaders with level understanding heads, rather than marching with banners and getting on soap boxes to proclaim their own "personal rights". If half that energy and time were spent decrying what is happening to Christian believers under Islam, couldn’t we make a difference?

Why do we Christian believers ignore the plight of Christians in Sudan who are under a campaign of torture and starvation? Into the millions are being slaughtered. Sudanese soldiers are snatching children from their parent’s arms and selling them into slavery. But we’d rather go on drinking our soft drinks and consuming candy the key ingredient of which is being supplied by Sudan.

Stories of persecution and atrocities against Christians in areas now under PLO control leak through now and then, but instead of crying out and running to help, many prefer claiming they are persecuted by "orthodox Jews". Have you ever heard of Jews committing the above crimes on Christians just because they are Christians? Let such "missionaries" serve somewhere else in the Middle East and see how they fare. Instead of heaping more trouble on Israel, our Biblical commission for today is: "Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God. Speak ye (comfort) to the heart of Jerusalem, and call out unto her, that her time of sorrow is accomplished, that her iniquity is atoned for; for she hath received from the hand of the Lord double for all her sins" (Isaiah 40:1,2, I.L. translation).

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