The most wanted terrorist leader in the world (with the possible exception of Osama Bin Laden) was killed this week in Damascus. Imad Mureniyah served as the planner and commander of the terrorist activities of Hizballah in Lebanon, and coordinated their activities with Iran and Syria. On Monday night, he arrived in secret to the celebration of the 29th anniversary of the Iranian Islamic Revolution.
The following night, Tuesday the 12th of February, at 10:30 PM, he left his apartment in the Kfar Susah neighborhood of west Damascus. He entered his silver Pajero with his bodyguard, and when he turned the key, a bomb went off under his seat. Mureniyah and his guard were killed instantly; no one else was injured.
The leadership of Hizballah is in shock. Nasrallah announced their intentions to bring “open war” and “wipe out Israel.”
The Israeli government published a denial of any involvement (of course). Prime Minister Olmert, Defense Minister Barak, and Mosad chief Meir Dagan remained silent.
The U.S. State Department spokesman Sean McCormick issued a brief statement that “the world would be a better place now without this man.”
Mureniyah was responsible for:
- October 23, 1983 – bombing of US base in Beirut, killing 299 people.
- November 4, 1983 – bombing of Israeli base in Tyre, killing 29 people.
- March 10, 1985 – bombing of caravan outside of Metulla, killing 12 people.
- June, 1985 – Hijacking of TWA flight 847 from Athens to Rome – murdering an American sailor on the flight and throwing his body out on the runway.
- March 17, 1992 – bombing of Israel embassy in Buenos Aires, killing 29 people.
- July 18, 1994 – bombing of Jewish community center in Buenos Aires, killing 85 people.
- October 7, 2000 – kidnapping of Omar Sawad, Benny Avraham and Adi Avitan.
- March 12, 2002 – bombing near town of Metsuba, killing 6.
- July 12, 2006 – kidnapping of Eldad Regev and Ehud Goldwasser, killing 8 others.
Israeli security forces were convinced that he was planning another major terror bombing and therefore had to be stopped before it was executed.
Several Israeli relatives of Mureniyah’s victims were interviewed to get their reactions. Almost all said that his death brought them no joy or comfort, but that it was right that he was brought to justice.
Pe’er in Qatar
Israel’s top woman tennis star, Shachar Pe’er will make history this week as she flies to Qatar to participate in the tournament at A’ Ducha, the capital city. This will be the first time for an Israeli to participate in any Arab Muslim Persian Gulf nation. Israelis see her as kind of an ambassador of good will as she travels the world to play tennis.
Good News in IDF
This week, M’ and T’ were invited by a group of about 30 religious Jewish officers in the Israeli Army to discuss the meaning of Messianic Judaism. The discussion and friendly argument went on for almost two hours.
Brief Teaching Article: Friendship and Discipleship
Yeshua (Jesus) saw discipleship as a training process that took place in stages, the final goal of which was friendship.
John 15:14-15 – You are My friends if you do whatever I command you. No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing: but I have called you friends, for all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you.
With each stage of obedience, Yeshua gave His disciples more personal knowledge of Himself and His Father. With each stage of submission to authority, He gave them more authority to exercise themselves. They did not start as friends, but as servants. With time their servanthood turned into full friendship.
Yeshua Himself submitted to authority, obeyed His Father’s will, and lived a life of servanthood. For His disciples to be His friends, they had to become like Him. Through discipleship they developed the same character qualities He had. As they developed the same character qualities, they became united in heart attitude. In that way they became closer and closer friends.
Who were Yeshua’s friends? – The same men who were His disciples.
Who are our friends? – Those who have gone through similar training, submission, and character development with Yeshua.
The same holds true for raising children. Parents must keep the final goal in mind. Ultimately their children should become their friends. Children must be taught to obey; they cannot start out as friends. If they do not learn obedience, eventually they will be rebellious and betray friendship loyalty. Trying to have children as friends without the discipleship process will not succeed.
On the other hand, neither child-raising nor disciple-making are for the purpose of obedience and education alone. The goal of obedience and education is friendship. The final test of parenting and discipleship is whether trainer and trainee become true friends at the end of the process.
Asher serves as president of Tikkun Global family of ministries and congregations, dedicated to the dual restoration of Israel and the Church. He is founder of the Revive Israel five-fold ministry team, and oversees both Ahavat Yeshua and Tiferet Yeshua congregations in Israel.
He and his wife Betty share a passion for personal prayer and devotion, local evangelism and discipleship in Hebrew, and unity of the Body of believers worldwide.
Asher was raised in a conservative Jewish home and holds degrees from Harvard University, Baltimore Hebrew College and Messiah Biblical Institute. He has authored numerous books, tracts and articles.