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Strategic Access to Galilee and Israel

The Harvest of Asher Congregation is located in the ancient port city of Acco in northern Israel. Jutting into the Mediterranean Sea, Acco boasts the best natural harbor in Israel and served throughout much of history as one of the most strategic cities in the world - a central axis point connecting East and West, Asia and the Mediterranean. Numerous empires fought for possession of this key access city into the northern heartland of Israel and major land routes of the Near East.  The following gives context and background regarding the city and the spiritual/human dynamics with which the Messianic congregation there interacts today.


The city of Acco is one of the oldest continuously inhabited sites in the world, starting about 5000 years ago. Among those who ruled it were: Phoenicia, ancient Israel, Tyre, Greece, Persia, Egypt, Rome, the Byzantine Empire, Mamluk Muslims, Crusaders, Ottoman Turkey, Britain, and now modern Israel.

The fortified city of Acco is mentioned in the Bible several times, first in Judges 1:31 as belonging to the territory of Asher. Israel was not able to conquer it at the time of Joshua.

   "Nor did Asher drive out the inhabitants of Acco or the inhabitants of Sidon, or of Ahlab, Achzib, Helbah, Aphik, or Rehob."

Later King David conquered additional areas of the Promised Land, including Acco. His son, Solomon, inherited the kingdom and built the temple in partnership with Hiram, King of Tyre. In exchange for Hiram's help, Solomon gave him 20 cities including Acco.

Acco is referred to in the New Testament in Acts 21:7 under the name Ptolemais. The Apostle Paul entered the city by way of the sea and met with believing brothers there:

" And when we had finished our voyage from Tyre, we came to Ptolemais, greeted the brethren, and stayed with them one day."

It was from Acco, in the year 67 A.D., that Roman generals Vespasian and Titus staged their attack on the Great Revolt. The battles continued from there through the Galilee and eventually culminated in the tragic siege of Jerusalem prophesied by Yeshua in Luke 19:41-44:

"Now as He drew near, He saw the city and wept over it, saying, “If you had known, even you, especially in this your day, the things that make for your peace! But now they are hidden from your eyes. For days will come upon you when your enemies will build an embankment around you, surround you and close you in on every side, and level you, and your children within you, to the ground; and they will not leave in you one stone upon another, because you did not know the time of your visitation.”

King Richard the Lionheart also came to Acco and made it the capital of the crusader kingdom in the Holy Land in lieu of Jerusalem, which he failed to conquer. Many times throughout history, controlling Acco was the key to defending Jerusalem. Control of Acco dictated control of the bay coast line now called the "Krayot” (or Haifa Bay). The Jezre'el Valley curves past Nazareth and Megiddo ("Armageddon") ending at this same bay. So, we see a future connection with Armageddon and the events leading to the conquering return of King Yeshua. This gives us additional motivation to embrace the challenge of spiritually preparing the way of the Lord in this strategic city.

Acco Today

When the modern state of Israel was established in 1948, there was much tension between Jews and Arabs in Acco. Since that time, relations between the two communities have steadily improved. Remarkably, today there are some neighborhoods which have integrated populations of Jews and Arabs making Acco one of the few cities in Israel with mixed demographics, a multicultural city where Jews and Arabs co-exist peacefully, living and working in close proximity.

While over half the inhabitants live at a low socio-economic level, there are many joint cultural and business ventures which exist in the city today. Acco is also home to many faiths including Jewish, Muslim, Christian, and Bahai.

Harvest of Asher opens its door to all who live in Acco and the surrounding region. The significance of being located in Acco, within the allotted land of the Tribe of Asher, cannot go unnoticed. Since opening our doors, the face of the city has changed drastically. Once a city where the Jewish inhabitants were moving out and the streets were littered with signs of a growing community of addicts and not one playground or park could be found, Acco is coming back to life. The neighborhoods of Acco today are filled instead with playgrounds, the city has a newly renovated cultural center and there are many sports facilities throughout the city.

We are located twenty minutes in all directions to many sites of historical, geographical and biblical importance which draw many tourists to the area. In addition, Acco’s part in past and future events with a historic and biblical connection make the location of the Harvest of Asher congregation prophetically significant as well.

Ниже приводится контекст и предыстория города Акко и духовной/человеческой динамики, с которой сегодня взаимодействует там ме
The Harvest of Asher Congregation is located in the ancient port city of Akko in northern Israel.
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Tribe of Asher

  From Jacob to Israel:

         “He said to him, 'What is your name? ' And he said 'Jacob. ' Then he said, 'Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel, for you have striven with God and with men, and have prevailed'”

Genesis 32:27-28             

  Jacob had twelve sons which then became the heads of the twelve tribes making up the ancient nation of Israel. The tribe of Asher is one of the twelve tribes of Israel, named after Asher, the eighth son of Jacob, born to Leah's maidservant Zilpah:

“And Zilphah Leah's maid bare Jacob a second son. And Leah said, Happy am I, for the daughters will call me blessed: and she called his name Asher.”

Genesis 30:12-13            

    In Joshua 19:24-31, we read the biblical account of the allotment of the land, the inheritance, to each of the twelve tribes:

 "The fifth lot came out for the tribe of the children of Asher according to their families. And their territory included Helkath, Hali, Beten, Achshaph, Alammelech, Amad, and Mishal; it reached to Mount Carmel westward, along the Brook Shihor Libnath. It turned toward the sunrise to Beth Dagon; and it reached to Zebulun and to the Valley of Jiphthah El, then northward beyond Beth Emek and Neiel, bypassing Cabul which was on the left, including Ebron, Rehob, Hammon, and Kanah, as far as Greater Sidon. And the border turned to Ramah and to the fortified city of Tyre; then the border turned to Hosah, and ended at the sea by the region of Achzib. Also Ummah, Aphek, and Rehob were included: twenty-two cities with their villages. This was the inheritance of the tribe of the children of Asher according to their families, these cities with their villages."

  Asher’s allotment is located in the northwestern coastal region of Israel known as the Western Galilee, the western Upper Galilee and into parts of Lebanon. This area is known to have some of the most fertile land in Israel, with rich pastures, wooded hills and orchards, and olive groves. Thus, Asher became particularly prosperous, and known for its olive oil which lead in part to the fulfillment of the blessings on The Tribe of Asher:

 “Asher’s food will be rich; he will provide delicacies fit for a king."

Genesis, 49:20             

  And of Asher he said:

“Asher is most blessed of sons; Let him be favored by his brothers, And let him dip his foot in oil."

Deuteronomy 33:24 

  

Harvest of Asher

Harvest of Asher – Strategic and Prophetic Positioning

Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow!

   Harvest of Asher began with a small home group and then grew to meeting in the home of a one of our families. During that time our intercessors, joined on occasion by visitors from around the world, met on the ancient walls of Akko. Standing in that strategic place, Yeshua’s name was proclaimed in intercession, where once the worship of idols and ancient gods went forth. Who were those gods and where are they today?

 Historically, the name of the land of Israel is Canaan. The territory of that land today would be from modern day Gaza to Ugarit, in northern Syria. The Canaanite people that occupied this territory were involved in agriculture, fishing, trade, building and art. The name Canaan came from the word argemon (ארגמן in Hebrew) which is the color purple made from a dye produced from a sea snail. 

 The Canaanites worshiped differently from group to group, each group having religious leaders and writers and with specific ways of worshipping their idols. In Canaanite mythology we see that their religion was based on nature and that some of their idols were in the image of man alone while others man covered by animal skins.

 They believed in El (God of Heaven) who married with Asherah (God of the land) and gave birth to Baal. Some of the other gods worshipped during that time are Ashtoreth, Anat, Ida, Mot (death), Shemesh (sun), Koshar (arts and crafts), Resheph, Shachar, Shalem (Salem), Oron, Milkham, Molech, Baal Zebub, Baal-peor, Chemosh, Teraphim, Yarikh (moon).

 We can see that when the Hebrews came into the land they had to fight against the worshippers of each of these idols. The way of worship to Ashtoreth (Goddess of fertility, love, sex) was lustful, what we would call today free sex. The babies that were born were sacrificed through fire (burned to death).

 This is what the Hebrews did in the Hinnom Valley, they burned their children as an offering to the god Molech. This is just one of the many ways they worshipped to idols. When we look at the ancient times when Israel came into the land and all they had to do was worship God and bring Him sacrifices; we see instead that they were tempted.

 The cities listed in Judges 1:27-36 were not captured by the Israelites according to God’s command. I want to put emphasis on verse 31 where Asher did not inherit the cities of Acco, Sidon, Ahlab, Akzib, Helbah, Aphek or Rehob. The reason for this is that they didn’t do what God commanded them to do. So they failed and lived in agreement with idol worshippers. One of the forms of high worship in our area was to Ashtoreth.

 In Revelation 2:14 it is written that there are those in the church in Pergamum following the Nicolaitans’ doctrines. Here we also see that the way of turning away from God is by eating from the sacrifices of idols and through sexual immorality. The promised people looked to this idol worship, were tempted and fell into the same immorality. Jeremiah 7:16-19, 31 and Jeremiah 44:18 all speak of these same acts of immorality.

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 So what we see here is a cycle of events – worship to goddess of sex, birth of babies, and sacrifice of babies to the goddess of sex (fertility).

 The question is how does this apply to us today? We don’t have Ashtoreth worship today and we don’t have altars to sacrifice babies to her. REALLY? The scriptures are the same yesterday, today and tomorrow, so how does this apply to us today?

 If we look at the world today and the condition of the heart of man we can see that man’s heart is drawn to temptation, trying to do everything to satisfy his emotions and his flesh, to enjoy the things of this world.

 We know today how many marriages and families are broken. In the public schools they teach about sex but they don’t teach about the word of God. There is free access to pornography through the internet and advertising. We have the same worship to Ashtoreth today through sex parties, trafficking and prostitution. 

 Where does this put us the believers? Are we keeping our walk with God intimate and pure? In the bible in the book of Revelation we see that the harlot is drunk on the blood of the saints and the blood of Yeshua’s witnesses (martyrs)

We can see that the children who were sacrificed to Molek in the Valley of Hinnom, in Acco and in other parts of Israel are still being sacrificed today. HOW? Through abortion. The same as they put them on the fire then, they are burning them today.

 There are two hospitals in our area administering abortions, one in Haifa and one in Nahariya. Abortions are performed in many ways; one way is surgical and another chemical (the baby is literally burned).

 The hospital in Haifa is the main one for abortions administered to our soldiers. Many of whom had an abortion while completing their two-year military service.

 So, although hidden because people don’t recognize it for what it is, abortion is today’s form of worship to Asheroth and Molek.

 Following is a quote from a woman who served as a prolife counsellor and ministered for many years in Acco and the surrounding area:

 “I feel in my spirit that even until today there has been a great influence in the city of Acco because of the sins of our ancestors. Bringing sacrifices to idols such as Ashtoreth and Molech allowed the influence of these territorial spirits through idolatry to rule over people’s lives and draw them to sin. Families today are still being affected by generational curses as a result of the sins of our ancestors, stuck under the control of these spirits.”

 The blood that was spilt on the ground of Acco is crying out to God even today.

 There is one sacrifice needed to pay for the sins of this world and it was made by the shedding of the blood of Yeshua once and for all.

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