Ron CantorBy Ron Cantor

Over the past several weeks, Hamas has shot over 2,000 rockets at Israel—not just in her southern cities but reaching over 80% of Israel. This goes against all conventions of war. Targeting noncombatants is terror. It is not allowed under the Geneva conventions.

Israel has had no choice but to defend herself. In doing so, over 700 Palestinians have died. We are told that possibly as many as 80% were noncombatants. First of all, we cannot trust the numbers Hamas is giving, as they are a terrorist organization and more known for propaganda than honesty. Nevertheless, we have to ask ourselves, who is to blame for the high number of civilian deaths in Gaza?

Mahmoud Abbas has accused Israel of genocide. The president of Turkey said Israel’s “barbarism has surpassed even Hitler.” The UN Chief has condemned Israel in recent days calling our defensive actions “atrocious.” And even John Kerry mocked Israel’s response, not realizing his mic was on before an interview.

However, any honest human being should be able to lay the blame squarely at the feet of the ones who started this conflict: Hamas.

So why are innocent people dying in Gaza today?


There is ample evidence that Hamas surrounds its weapon launchers with children. This is beyond inhumane. Their goal is two-fold: to keep Israel from taking out the launchers, but better yet (in their twisted jihadi minds), “If Israel responds we can parade through the streets with dead children.”

Hamas uses children as Human Shields

Hamas uses children as Human Shields

I heard an Abbas adviser on CNN sharing, that no mother would ever allow her children to be used like this. That was the whole of her argument—emotions over photographic evidence. But to answer the question, these are the same mothers who go on TV praising Allah that their sons have become suicide bombers. The same mothers who hand out candy on the streets when Israelis are murdered—and rejoice at the news that Hamas had killed three teenage boys in cold blood.

Here’s the difference between us. We’re using missile defense to protect our civilians, and they’re using their civilians to protect their missiles. (Israeli PM Netanyahu)



This week 20 rockets were found in a United Nations-funded school! When Israel discovers something like this she has an important decision to make. Do you destroy the weapons depot, in this case, a school, and risk collateral damage, or do you pass it by, knowing those weapons will be used against Israeli citizens and troops.

Oh…and on a side note…The UN, upon discovering the rockets, handed them over to the Gaza police under Hamas control! They gave them back to be used against Israeli civilians. Mr. Ban, that is atrocious!

IDF tank shells that hit the Al Aqsa Hospital, sadly causing civilian casualties, happened only because Hamas was storing a cache of anti-tank missiles right next to the hospital. These missiles have already killed nearly a dozen Israeli soldiers. Hamas purposely hides them next to hospitals, bating Israel into bombing them.

“While the IDF takes every possible measure to minimize civilian causalities, Hamas and its deliberate tactic of embedding terrorist activities with the urban environment are ultimately responsible.” (IDF spokesman)


But let’s be clear—there is a huge difference between collateral damage as Israel seeks to destroy Hamas’ ability to attack Israel, and what Hamas does: targeting Israeli civilians. It is not Israel’s fault that Hamas is simply not very good at it. But it is not for a lack of trying—over 2,000 rockets in two weeks and only three deaths.


In 2006, after Israel left Gaza and hoped for peace, the people of Gaza voted Hamas into power. They chose Hamas! Now I understand that this was largely due to the fact that the Palestinian Authority was (and is) utterly corrupt, and politicians were lining their own pockets with US, UN and European aid money. But still, the alternative was a terrorist organization that would bring Islamic rule upon Gaza and sacrifice their sons and daughters with the same amount of thought that it takes to buy a candy bar.


This form of terror began nearly a decade ago and Hamas still rules Gaza. The people have not risen up against them. This is the third time in five years they have invited a deadly Israeli response upon them because of endless rocket fire. And maybe yesterday, after over 700 Gazans died, the people would have had enough. So Hamas announces they have kidnapped an Israeli soldier. Like a dog that loses focus the second you wave a tennis ball in front of him, the people of Gaza immediately took to the streets to celebrate the kidnapping. (The kidnapping has yet to be substantiated.)


The Times of Israel reported yesterday, “Tunnel entrances have been found in houses and mosques, according to the army.”

Missile launcher in a residential building

Missile launcher in a residential building

A lot has been made of the so-called ‘massacre’ in the city of Shejaiya. There are claims of dozens of innocent women and children being killed. What you are not being told is there were over 100 terror targets including two mosques that served as Hamas compounds and weapon storage sites. (

Furthermore, the IDF warned noncombatants to get out of that area before they entered. Did Britain and the US warn Berlin before dropping 70,000 tons of explosives on the city? Or course, the residents of Berlin didn’t wait for telephone calls and leaflets warning of the coming doom—1.7 million of them fled the city. However in Gaza, Hamas is encouraging its citizens to stay and die.

And no one condemned the US and Great Britain for the bombing of Berlin—why? Because it was not an act of aggression, but self-defense. In the same way, Israel is in Gaza only to destroy terror tunnels and take out Hamas’ ability to fire rockets.


Prime Minister Netanyahu was correct when he said on Monday, “This is the cruelest, most grotesque war that I have ever seen. Not only does Hamas target [Israeli] civilians, and hide behind their civilians, it actually wants to pile up as many civilian deaths as possible” for the television cameras, in order to garner sympathy.

Yes, while Israel seeks to prevent Palestinian deaths, Hamas wants them to die—the more the merrier. This is their strategy. While Hamas commanders hide in underground bunkers, they cheer as more and more of their own people die for the cause. More fuel for the propaganda machine.

So…ask yourself…WHO IS TO BLAME?

Ron Cantor is the Executive Pastor of Tiferet Yeshua in Tel Aviv. For more information go to

War Feelings in Israel

admin —  July 24, 2014 — Leave a comment

by Rutie S.

Israel is a very small country. Here everyone is directly and personally affected by Operation Protective Edge. We understand the safety and continued existence of Israel is what is at stake. Most Israelis believe this is our chance to oust a terrible terrorist organization that torments Israelis and Gazans alike. It is the time to destroy the tunnels and dismantle the weaponry that is so ubiquitous in Gaza.

So we send our sons and daughters to do a job – not of vengeance or antagonism, but of necessity. However, all of Israel realizes there is a price. It is the heaviest price – the lives of our loved ones.

Each time a casualty is revealed we freeze because they are our sons, our husbands, our fathers, our friends, our neighbors and our colleagues. They are all OURS, as even those we don’t know. We collectively mourn for each and every soldier who falls for Israel. We learn their names, ages and hometowns. We read news stories about them, about who they were as individuals and the parents, wives and children left behind. We honor them with our thoughts and prayers. Each soldier. Every soldier.

Our hearts ache for the loss and our thoughts always turn to those we personally know in battle – and everyone knows someone. We pray for their safe return and to see them again soon.

This is what it is to be Israeli.

And we are proud of it.


Since we published the 66th episode of the Maoz Israel Report, there has been some breaking news which we want to update you on. Direct from Ron:

“I had mentioned in the podcast about a supposed kidnapped Israeli soldier. Other than Hamas announcing that they had kidnapped the soldier there was no news for about 48 hours and so the assumption was that it was a lie. What we know now is that the soldier’s name is Oron Shaul. It’s most likely he was killed, everyone that was in his tank were killed. All bodies but his are recovered. It’s most likely that Hamas has taken his dog tags, maybe his body…it’s very unlikely he survived it but if he did he definitely needs your prayers. As I said, the worst case there is for Israelis is that there is a kidnapped soldier. So, go ahead and listen to the rest of the podcast but I just wanted to update you on that since we recorded yesterday and there is new information. Thank you so much for all of your prayers for the IDF and my daughter Danielle, that the Lord’s will will be done.”

Ynet article on missing soldier: Oron Shaul

Podcast Episode 066

admin —  July 22, 2014 — Leave a comment

Ron Cantor and the Maoz Media team bring you the 66th episode of the Maoz Israel Report Podcast!

This week Ron brings you more updates about the current conflict going on in Israel and Gaza. Ron examines the world’s tainted view of the conflict and who is actually to blame for the loss of innocent Palestininan lives.

Our featured song is Dear Brother by Avraham Tal.


This broadcast of the Maoz Israel Report Podcast is brought to you by Maoz Israel Ministries and Congregation Tiferet Yeshua

Maoz Israel Report

Messiah’s Mandate

2015 Israel Tour:

Click here to get Ron’s free ebook

Contact Ron:
Ron on Twitter: @ronscantor

Maoz on Twitter: @maozisrael

Podcast Episode 065

admin —  July 15, 2014 — 2 Comments

Ron Cantor and the Maoz Media team bring you the 65th episode of the Maoz Israel Report Podcast!

Ron broadcasts to you from the US this week with a heavy heart for what is going on in Israel. This weeks show is devoted to discussing the current conflict taking place in Israel including the effect of rocket fire on Israeli citizens and a special letter requesting prayer from Ron’s daughter serving in the IDF.

Our featured song is Ha’im Lo Tivke (Will You Not Weep?) by Shani Ferguson.


This broadcast of the Maoz Israel Report Podcast is brought to you by Maoz Israel Ministries and Congregation Tiferet Yeshua

Maoz Israel Report

Messiah’s Mandate

2015 Israel Tour:

Click here to get Ron’s free ebook

Contact Ron:
Ron on Twitter: @ronscantor

Maoz on Twitter: @maozisrael

2380_53969225969_9583_nBy Katy Sorsher Smith

It was bound to happen sooner or later. Everyone here knew it. After all, when you fail to finish the job, just as the Israelites in the Bible, you’re going to be left with a thorn in your side.

Ever since the kidnapping and murder of the three Israeli teenagers, a steady rocket fire has been coming out of the Gaza strip.

It was a rocket here and there at first, gradually increasing, until yesterday’s culmination of 160 rockets towards virtually all parts of Israel, including Tel Aviv, Jerusalem and even Hadera (about halfway between Tel Aviv and Haifa).

Yesterday morning, the IDF announced the calling of 40,000 reservists, and Operation Protective Edge (Tzuk Eitan – literally High or Strong Rock) began.

In addition to rocket fire, five Hamas terrorists were spotted yesterday, just before sundown, coming from the sea into Israel’s territory close to the border with Gaza. Because of the alertness of a female soldier, they were taken out within minutes, averting a disaster effecting soldiers and civilians in the area.

Even as I’m trying to write this blog, rockets are falling in various parts of Israel. A couple of hours ago 5 rockets were shot down by the life-saving Iron Dome over Tel Aviv.

Thankfully, there have been no serious injuries and no deaths. I give all the credit to our Father in heaven for that.

However, we must not forget the faces behind the facts. Behind every rocket that falls, or is intercepted and destroyed before it reaches its destination, there are people: they are soldiers… they are children, mothers, fathers, the elderly…

Though I’ve seen hundreds of times the glimpse of horror in the eyes of people in southern Israel after each attack, experiencing war in person brings out emotions that cannot be easily described.

I could not help but think about all the people in the south, who have been living with this reality daily for a few weeks now… and even before that. All the children whose summer camps were cancelled and are forced to stay home, since they only have 30 to 45 seconds from the time of Red Alert until they have to be in the shelters. I thought about all the children in Gaza who are being held hostage by the blood-thirsty Hamas and their likes.

Last night, my family and I were watching TV. My two girls were tucked safely in their beds. They went to their daycares in the morning. They came home and played. They had their baths and ate their dinner. I kissed them goodnight and they fell asleep happy as can be.

The events that followed just after 9pm made me realize how privileged beyond measure we have been to have a day without interruptions of attacks on our town just north of Tel Aviv.

Suddenly, the reports started coming in very quickly of Red Alerts… and these sirens were sounding across Israel, in areas far beyond the Gaza proximity. It was Tel Aviv, Jerusalem, and small towns around the greater Tel Aviv area… these flashes were accompanied with images of rockets being fired from the strip. Some were intercepted in the air by the incredible Iron Dome. Some, which were destined to fall in unpopulated areas continued traveling. Each time we saw a flash in the sky and a rocket go down without harm it was like a little victory.

And then, the dark screen of the TV (it was after sunset, and the camera was toward the Gaza strip that is quite dark) lit up like the fourth of July. Simultaneously, it seemed like a dozen rockets were fired… and a few second later a dozen more… and then again…

In a couple more seconds, the Red Alert alarms went off near our house.

What goes through the mind of a mother during these moments is indescribable. Because we are beyond Tel Aviv, we have 90 seconds to get into a protected area. In our apartment, there isn’t one. The decision making process, much like the analytical thinking of Sherlock Holmes, is so quick, it can hardly be traced back.

Here’s some of my train of thoughts:

My girls sleep in different rooms. To get them both out of bed will take longer than 90 seconds. By then it will be over. I don’t want to scare them by taking them out of beds in the middle of the night, so I think I will just let them sleep. I am not afraid of the arrow by night… The Lord will just have to protect us extra carefully tonight. Father, please protect us and let the girls sleep through whatever follows.

All this took less than two seconds to process, and with my heart beating out of my chest, I, against all reasoning and advise, ran up to the roof of the apartment, from where I can see Tel Aviv and surrounding areas.

It is only when with my own eyes I saw three fireballs light the sky several miles south of me, signaling that the rockets have been shot down by the Iron Dome, that I realized how real and close to home the danger was, and how God must love me, my girls and all Israel. It made me realize that all the prayers of those who love Israel – those who read mine and other posts asking for prayer in real time – make a huge difference in our reality.

I want to thank you for your prayers. I thank God for His protection. His army of angels is, no doubt, surrounding our country these very moments. Please don’t stop them, as the coming days will continue to be hard on all Israel.

Podcast Episode 064

admin —  July 8, 2014 — Leave a comment

Ron Cantor and the Maoz Media team bring you the 64th episode of the Maoz Israel Report Podcast!

This week Ron and Tal are recording in front of a live audience at the MJAA Messiah Conference. Featured topics include life in Israel, suprise interviews from special guests, and questions from our audience!


This broadcast of the Maoz Israel Report Podcast is brought to you by Maoz Israel Ministries and Congregation Tiferet Yeshua

Maoz Israel Report

Messiah’s Mandate

2015 Israel Tour:

Click here to get Ron’s free ebook

Contact Ron:
Ron on Twitter: @ronscantor

Maoz on Twitter: @maozisrael

A Devastating Week for Israel

admin —  July 4, 2014 — 1 Comment

Liz-thumbBy Elizabeth (Liz) Goldstein

Life in Israel has truly been a whirlwind in this past week.

On Monday evening, when the bodies of the three kidnapped boys, Gil-Ad, Eyal, and Naftali, were found, the attention of the entire country was captured. We were all hooked to the news on our cell phones, TV’s and radios as we listened for the latest updates in the aftermath of this most recent terror attack.

shimon-peres-eyal-gilad-naftali - Copy

The consequences are devastating. As Israel mourns there are many different reactions from different sources. Some far-right activists are screaming for revenge, while the government is being more careful and calculated in its reactions. A teenage Palestinian was found dead on Wednesday, and we all hope and pray that this is not a result of a vengeful plot.

The IAF is targeting strategic sites in Gaza to take down rocket launchers and the like, while the South of Israel endures another downpour of rockets. Since Wednesday night there have been close to 30 rockets which have fallen on Israeli citizens bordering the Gaza strip, four of which hit homes in Sderot.

Sderot, being less than 1 km away from Gaza, is extremely vulnerable; the news yesterday morning announced that the Iron Dome cannot effectively protect the area due to its proximity. Thankfully there were no casualties, but many are being treated for shock.

F140701MA06-800x400 - Copy

And the West Bank is full of rioting protestors throwing rocks and even Molotov cocktails at the Israeli police patrolling the area.

And through all this I can’t help but think about the fact that we are just one small example of the pain and grief which encompass the world.

Yes, this week (and a lot of the time) Israel is a mess. We are mourning the loss of our boys and at the same time fighting a battle against Hamas. It is unjust what happened to them as well as what is happening to the citizens of Southern Israel and the innocent lives being lost in the West Bank and Gaza. Furthermore, all of the victims which have lost their lives in the bloodshed of the past years in Syria, and most currently what is happening with the ISIL group sweeping through Iraq. There are also the recent terrorist attacks in Kenya and the Nigerian girls who were kidnapped three months ago.

When I look around at the world today, I wonder, has it always been this bad?

In all of this chaos, as believers, we have a responsibility to be peacemakers.


While it is easy to react, grab a side, and join, I think it’s important to pray and consider those who don’t have a voice. Whether it be those who worry daily about rockets falling on their homes, or those who fall victim to violence because of the terrorist group reigning over them, each party is suffering.

To try to address the question I asked, “Has it always been this bad?” I think it has. But there is a greater evil at hand which must be defeated. There is a larger battle going on than what is happening in Israel, Kenya, Syria or Iraq. While we don’t have control over what will happen, we do have access to the Lord. We must pray for Him for His wisdom and His peace. We must pray for His justice to be done in His way and not to take things into our own hands, no matter what we are feeling. Let us be a light and witness to His justice and love, for He is returning soon!

“This is what the Lord says: ‘Maintain justice and do what is right, for my salvation is close at hand and my righteousness will soon be revealed.’” Isaiah 56:1

Podcast Episode 063

admin —  July 1, 2014 — Leave a comment

Ron Cantor and the Maoz Media team bring you the 63rd episode of the Maoz Israel Report Podcast!

Ron and Tal are in Pennsylvania this week at the MJAA Messiah Conference! This week they discuss their trip over to the US, an Israeli perspective of the US, and the news around the world including the extremist ISIS fighters and kidnapped boys in Israel.

Don’t miss Israel Night happening TONIGHT which you can watching streaming on the MJAA website!


This broadcast of the Maoz Israel Report Podcast is brought to you by Maoz Israel Ministries and Congregation Tiferet Yeshua

Maoz Israel Report

Messiah’s Mandate

2015 Israel Tour:

Click here to get Ron’s free ebook

From the News:

US: Jordan may ask Israel to go to war against ISIL

IDF said to arrest father of kidnapping suspect

Netanyahu says he will move to outlaw Israeli Islamist group

MJAA’s Messiah Conference:

Contact Ron:
Ron on Twitter: @ronscantor

Maoz on Twitter: @maozisrael

2380_53969225969_9583_nBy Katy Sorsher Smith

“A voice is heard in Ramah, mourning and great weeping, Rachel weeping for her children and refusing to be comforted, because they are no more.” (Jeremiah 31:15)

It was almost 8pm last night. A few of us were enjoying the evening outside – grilled meat, humus, pitas, Israeli salad and other traditional trimmings. The World Cup game was on in the background, nearing the end of the first half.

We were having small talk about this and that and the other when all our phones began buzzing. The message was from Ynet news service, alerting that a big amount of IDF soldiers was gathering on the outskirts of Hebron.

None of us needed an explanation. This was about the three boys kidnapped 18 days before by two Hamas terrorists, whose names were made public just a couple of days earlier.

Shocked, we feared the worst. Ynet messages kept coming… IDF chief is on the ground; special news coverage at 9:30pm; heavy feelings among the families of the boys… it was by now obvious that our worst fears were realized.
For eighteen days, hope was in our hearts, and prayers in our mouths for a safe return of Ayal, Gil-Ad and Naftali… teenagers who never made it home from school. Now, we knew, even before the official reports… finding them alive was not meant to be.

With heaviness in our hearts, we waited for the promised report at 9:30, watching the second half of the game. Of course, no one was really watching, as there now was a cloud above our heads. We spoke about the families of the three…

The game was interrupted around 8:25 with a special news report. Three bodies have been discovered. All signs show that they were those of our boys. Notices had been given to the families.

Our hearts were broken. The news set in quickly, since all of us are, by now, used to bad news of terror acts against our people. There is nothing more we can do but pray for those still living.

When you realize that the battle here in Israel is truly that between good and evil (God and Satan, not Jews and Arabs!)… you don’t ask questions like, “Why does God allow this?” That is, you don’t speak them out loud.

But my heart was crying out these questions to my Maker, who sees and knows everything… who is a just and loving God… who is a Father to the fatherless and a helper to those in need…

As grownups, sometimes it’s not enough to get the answer we so many times give to our children – “because that’s how it is…” It is at those times we have to choose to be like the little children, accepting that Father knows best.

The atmosphere in Israel is heavy today. Glued to the TV, I hear all points of view about what Israel’s reaction should be… I hear the disappointment in the world leaders, who, once again, are brushing Israel’s tragedy off with either an unofficial tweet or with an official response that is weak and, in my opinion, not suitable for the situation.

Our children were taken away on their way back home. They were taken in a pre-meditated, well-planned terror act. They were shot in cold blood, according to the reports, just mere minutes after getting into the fatal car. They were then buried in a hurry in a place that would be hard to find. The grave was covered up to further obstruct the possibility of finding it. They were left there, and the people of Israel were left with the hope and the wondering.

As I’m writing this blog, I just got an alert that the three boys will be laid to rest together today at 5:30pm. Though they come from three different towns, they will remain together until the resurrection.

Israel will mourn… Israel will unite, if just for a moment in time, to remember. But the God of Israel, who never slumbers nor sleeps, will have His revenge on His enemies.

But long after we, those who this time were spared a tragedy close to home, stop mourning, the families of Gil-Ad, Eyal and Naftali will be in mourning… for the rest of their lives they will have to live without their children.

As you go through your day, please say a prayer for the mothers, fathers, siblings, other relatives and friends of these three boys. May God give them peace that surpasses all understanding. May He be a spring of life in the midst of death and a source of joy in the midst of mourning. May Yeshua’s love shine through to them, and may they see Him and know that He is their Messiah.

Yehi zichram baruch.