This is a story about how God is using the number 7 to try and prove that he was behind several of my trips to Israel. As of writing this testimony, I have currently visited Israel three times, with a prospective fourth trip on the way. Each time I have visited Israel, it has been God who has inspired me to go! How do I know that? Call it experience, but I know what it means to be divinely inspired and to receive a revelation from God!
Now that's all fine and good for me to say, but how can I prove that? Luckily I don't have to! God has provided that for me for your benefit. I guess I will call that a 'sign from God'.
You see, going back to 2010, I first received the idea to go to Israel while sitting in my motel room, staring blankly into the kitchen, with no thoughts whatsoever about heading to Israel! It just came out of nowhere like a bolt from the blue, and my eyes were opened! Within two minutes I was out the door and heading to the local bookstore to buy a travel guide to Israel.
This would later come in handy in determining the exact date that I got the idea to visit Israel for the first time. I didn't realise it at the time, but this would be the first part of a greater story that God was beginning to write. The date that I got the idea and bought the travel guide was April 10, 2010.
I eventually booked airline tickets on the 8th of May, with a departure date of the 29th of May, 2010. It wasn't until over two and a half years later that I would realise the significance of that departure date! In early 2013 I was just telling my neighbour that it was only about 3 months from the time I got the idea to go to Israel that I departed. That then got me thinking about how long it actually was, and so I went and checked up my records. That's when I discovered the significance of those dates!
It was exactly 7 weeks to the DAY that I got the idea to go to Israel to the day I actually departed. That blew my mind! I knew it was a divinely inspired trip, but I didn't know that God would leave his calling card on it and mark it with a sign!
What I didn't know at the time is that this would just be the beginning of a series of trips to Israel that God would inspire, and mark some of them with the number 7!
(Edit: May 18, 2018: Yesterday I discovered something even more interesting about this trip!
Yesterday I was prompted in my spirit to buy a book on the 'Feasts of Israel', and so I ended up buying a book called "The Feasts of Israel" by Dr. Chuck Missler and Dan Stolebarger in Kindle (ebook) format. It had 77 pages and 77 reviews according to Amazon.com as of yesterday! Here is a link to it Amazon.com if you would like to purchase yourself a copy. (It's only approx. US$5!)
Last night at about 8PM I realised something very interesting. In the book the authors provide a date for the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. The 10th of April, 32 A.D. That corresponds with the date of Passover in that year.
If that date is correct, that means that God inspired me to go to Israel for the first time on the VERY day that Jesus Christ was crucified exactly 1,978 years ago! Not only that, but I was 33 years old at the time - the same age that Jesus Christ was crucified on the Cross!) (End of edit)
(Edit: May 19, 2018: Another small thing that struck me while I was in the shower this morning; I was born on March 8, 1977, so on the very day that God inspired me to go to Israel for the first time, I was exactly 33 years and 33 days old!)
This third trip to Israel was even more astounding!
Back in May 2016, I started receiving strong promptings in my spirit to book a flight to Israel. At this point it is important to note that my financial situation had changed from six years earlier. I was broke and had no money, and living off my credit card, albeit this wasn't my choice. After selling my website business two and a half years earlier, I had run out of money and wanted to look for a job to bring in an income again. However, this didn't seem to be God's will as whenever I would go to look for a job, it would feel as if this is not what God wanted me to do. It didn't make sense at the time, and still doesn't, however, there was method to God's madness!
As a result of having no money, I was forced to sell my assets, including a Yamaha piano which I had purchased for NZ$10,000 (US$7,500) new back in 2009. I didn't have any luck selling it online on an auction site, so on November 3, 2015, I took it into the local piano shop to sell it on my behalf. In the meantime, while I waited for the piano to sell, I started getting these strong promptings to book a flight to Israel in May 2016. As I had no money at the time, all I would be able to do was put it on my credit card, and I didn't want to do that!
Finally on the 14th of May, 2016, after about ten days of strong prompting in my spirit to book a flight to Israel, it finally felt okay to book the flight. What I didn't realise until right this moment when I was looking up the date that I booked this flight, is that May 14 is the anniversary of Israel's independence in 1948! God had left another sign on this trip and I hadn't even discovered it until today! I didn't know what date Israel became a state until a few months ago, so there is no way I could have known that that date had any significance to it at all!
So, I booked the flight to Israel on May 14, 2016, and put it on my credit card. What's worse is that it was a non-refundable ticket, so if I decided not to go for any reason, I would lose the NZ$2,300 (US$1,500) I paid for it! I continued to plan my trip in the meantime, allowing God to inspire me with places to visit or see. I still wasn't sure whether I would actually go to Israel, because it seemed kind of stupid to be going on holiday when I had no money, and no way to pay for it, however, I just kept following the internal promptings in my spirit and allowed God to lead the way.
Exactly three weeks later after booking my flight to Israel, I received a very interesting email from the piano shop that was selling my piano on my behalf. It read:
I had some people in late yesterday who'd like to buy your piano.
They've offered $6500.
It's been here a while now, would be good to move it on.
Let me know your thoughts.
The date that I received that email was the 4th of June, 2016, so the date that they came into the shop to buy it was June the 3rd.
Needless to say, it was excellent timing! I agreed to sell the piano for $6,750 and they accepted. It was only the night before that I suddenly had a strong urge to tell my dad that it 'was probably more likely than not that I will be heading to Israel.' That was the night that they had - unbeknownst to me - come into the shop to buy it.
I was thrilled! I now had the money to substantially pay for my trip to Israel, without having to put it on my credit card! But that was only part of the story. I started to wonder how long my piano was in the shop before it actually sold, so I went back and had a look at the contract which I had signed with the piano shop. November 3, 2015. The people who purchased my piano came into the store exactly 7 MONTHS to the DAY that I had brought it in to sell it! Incredible! Here, if I needed it, was another sign that God was behind this trip and had his hand on it all the way along! All I needed was to believe, trust and have faith that God would provide.
I left for Israel on June 14, 2016, returning on June 30. Here again was another example of God leaving a sign on His work for all to enjoy!
In late March 2017, I suddenly got the idea to visit Israel again for a fourth time. My financial situation had not changed, if anything it had got worse! This time it was even more unlikely that I would be able to go.
Nevertheless, I followed the prompting in my spirit which was to look for flights on El Al's website. As is my custom whenever I am selecting out dates for a trip, I let myself be led to certain dates that feel like they are the right dates to choose. In other words, I use my instinct to choose the dates which I believe God wants me to choose! This situation was no different.
When I went to the El Al website and pulled up the calendar to select some dates which I believed were the dates that God wanted me to choose, I found myself selecting May 8 to May 27, 2017. That was about six weeks from the departure date. As I had no money, I couldn't actually buy the tickets, so I had to discard the booking process. Nonetheless, the prompting in my spirit was very real, and no different to the other times that God has led me to book a trip to Israel.
About half an hour later, I suddenly found myself wondering what date that trip got back to New Zealand, and so I went back to the website and went through the entire booking process again, only to discover that it arrived back on May 29, 2017 - Exactly 7 YEARS to the DAY that my first trip departed to Israel in 2010! Even more interesting, I discovered some time later that my first trip to Israel happened in the Hebrew year 5770, and this last trip would have ended in the Hebrew year 5777! So that's three God-inspired trips starting in the year 5770 and ending in the year 5777, marked by 7 WEEKS, 7 MONTHS, 7 YEARS.
On February 5, 2018, I suddenly received inspiration to book the King David Hotel in Jerusalem. As soon as it did, the first date that came to mind was May 14 - the 70th anniversary of Israel's independence in 1948!
This seemed a very unusual event to happen, as only a day earlier I had defaulted on paying back my credit card in full of NZ$33,000 (Click to View) (US$24,000). So to be booking a holiday to Israel at this time was completely ridiculous! Nevertheless, the prompting was very strong, and I was left in no doubt that it was God directing me to do so!
The King David Hotel is one of the most expensive hotels in Israel, and one of the most well-known. Many world leaders and dignitaries who visit Israel stay at the King David Hotel in Jerusalem. And so have I in 2010 and 2016 at God's direction. So, I went ahead and booked 5 nights at the hotel from May 14-19.
A day later, God started giving me inspiration for places to visit while I would be in Israel. The first two places He gave me were Armageddon (Megiddo) and Masada (the site of King Herod's palace-fortress high above the Dead Sea, and later the site of a several month-long showdown between rebel Jewish forces and the Romans in 73 A.D.). Quite an interesting selection of places to give me to visit to begin with! I wouldn't visit them in that order, they were just the first two places He gave me to visit.
Over the next nearly 5 weeks, He gave me an additional six places to visit, and then everything went quiet! I started wondering whether I wouldn't be going to Israel at all, and if something had happened to prevent me from going, because all of a sudden, God gave me no further places to visit.
That was until May 1!
I was sitting on a recliner watching TV at about 5:37PM, when all of a sudden I suddenly received a new location to visit! It was the Garden Tomb in Jerusalem - one of the suggested locations for the burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ! The other suggested location for his death, burial and resurrection is the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem. So I went back to the email I had been sending myself, recording the dates and times that God gave me each new location to visit, and I saw that the last time that God had given me direction for a place to visit was on March the 12th, 2018! That location was the Church of the Holy Sepulchre in Jerusalem!
Immediately I started wondering exactly how long it had been between the two dates of March 12 and May 1, so I went online and did a quick time duration calculation using Time and Date.com. The answer was exactly 50 days! From my basic knowledge of Judaism, I knew that that was an important number to them, but I didn't know exactly where from. So I did a quick online search of the Bible and discovered that it relates to a feast called the "Feast of Firstfruits". The "Feast of Weeks"/Shavuot or Pentecost comes exactly 50 days after the Feast of Firstfruits. Here is the exact reference from the Bible:
"And ye shall count unto you from the morrow after the sabbath, from the day that ye brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete: Even unto the morrow after the seventh sabbath shall ye number fifty days; and ye shall offer a new meat offering unto the LORD." - Leviticus 23:15-16
The Feast of Weeks is one of three solemn feasts in Judaism, and all able-bodied Jewish men were required to attend the feast in Jerusalem. The other two solemn feasts are Passover and the Feast of Tabernacles.
I also knew from my knowledge of the New Testament, that Jesus Christ is called "the firstfruits" of God.
"But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept." - 1 Corinthians 15:20
And that's when I realised that the last two places that God had given me to visit, both related to Jesus Christ's resurrection from the dead as the "firstfruits" of God! Here was my proof that God was behind this trip to Israel, and that He had been guiding me all along!
So what did the 50 days after the Feast of Firstfruits (resurrection of Jesus Christ) represent? In Acts 1:3, the author says that Jesus appeared to many people for 40 days following his resurrection, before He ascended to heaven. Ten days later on the Feast of Weeks (Shavuot/Pentecost), 50 days after Jesus's resurrection, the Feast of Weeks was fulfilled in the coming of the Holy Spirit (Acts 2:1-4).
So God has now inspired four trips to Israel that He marked with the number 7, starting with "7 weeks" in 2010, "7 months" in 2016, "7 years" in 2017, and "70 years" in 2018! That is not a coincidence! That is the Hand of God at work!
As an interesting footnote to this testimony, I see that if I add up all the days I have spent in Israel, including my second trip in December 2013, together with the 7 week, 7 month, 7 year and 70 year trips, they all add up to exactly 70 days!
Note: I am using full days or partly full days here. i.e. If the flight was scheduled to land at 11PM, I count the next day as the first full day in Israel. If it landed in Israel at 1am in the morning, I include that as my first full day in Israel. Likewise, if my flight departed Israel at 4PM or 10PM, I include that as a full day in Israel.
|"7 Weeks"||31 May - 15 Jun, 2010||16|
|2nd Trip||21 Dec - 29 Dec, 2013||9|
|"7 Months"||16 Jun - 28 Jun, 2016||13|
|"7 Years"||10 May - 27 May, 2017||18|
|"70 Years"||14 May - 27 May, 2018||14|
Edit: June 8, 2018: Exactly 3 months since my bank closed my bank accounts due to non-repayment of my credit card in full of NZ$33,000, I received $33,000 from my brother to repay the bank!
The bank had closed my bank accounts on the 8th of March, 2018 - My 41st Birthday, even though they were scheduled to be closed one month earlier on February the 7th.
What is interesting to me is the specificity of the numbers being used here. As previously mentioned, I was exactly 33 years and 33 days old on the day that God first inspired me to go to Israel back in 2010. I later discovered that that was the very day that Jesus Christ was crucified when He was 33 years old! And now, exactly 3 months from my Birthday, I received NZ$33,000 to pay off my credit card debt!
I don't think that that was a conicidence! I can clearly see the Hand of God at work here - proving to me that He is in complete control of the situation. (End of Edit)
What I haven't told you yet is how I got into debt in the first place! After belatedly selling my forex website business in 2013, I eventually ran out of money in January 2015. At that point I was fully intending to get a job to generate an income again, however, it seemed that God had other plans!
After maxing out my credit card limit of $30,000 the first time and having to borrow $30,000 off my Dad to repay my credit card, I hit my limit again in mid-2017. It may sound strange, but I think this was all part of God's plan! You see, the majority of that $33,000 debt owed the second time was largely the result of God prompting me to advertise this website on Google, even though I had no means to be able to pay it off.
So if you got to this website via a Google ad, that is why! God built up that debt on purpose in order to tell a story and fulfil his will. That's why I don't believe that it is a coincidence that I defaulted owing $33,000 on my credit card!
So what was the point of marking these trips with the number seven? I think to prove that God is real, that His Word as written in the Bible is true, and that He wants to prove to everyone that His Word can be trusted!
I hope that this testimony has gone some way to helping you do that. Believe and trust in God when it doesn't seem logical to do so!
On Saturday, October 20, 2018, God again inspired me to book a trip to Israel. I ended up picking January 14-28 as my departure dates from New Zealand and Israel.
I wrote the entire itinerary on this page: Israel 2019
Although I still didn't have the money to go on this trip, I have since realised that it is not always about going on the trip, it is about the story that God creates around the idea of going!
Over the course of the next 12 weeks, God inspired me with places to visit, places to stay, and towns to stay in. There were exactly 12 weeks and 2 days from the time that He inspired me to book the trip to Israel, to the time that I would depart.
With only two days left until my proposed departure date, on Saturday, January 12, 2019, I decided to look up what the weekly Torah portion was on the date that God inspired me to go to Israel. I did this because I realised that it was the Sabbath day on the day that God had inspired me to go, and I thought there could be a message behind that.
It turned out there was!
On Saturday, October 20, 2018, the weekly Torah portion (Jews read the first five books of the Hebrew Bible in weekly portions throughout the year) was called "Parashat Lech-Lecha", which is the Hebrew word for "Go". It is the first significant word in the Torah portion that starts with Genesis 12:1. Here is the exact quote:
"Now the LORD had said unto Abram, Get thee out of thy country, and from thy kindred, and from thy father's house, unto a land that I will shew thee:"
This was an amazing day for God to inspire me with the idea to go to Israel, given that the weekly Torah portion on that day referred to Abraham leaving his own country to go to the land of Israel that God would give him and his descendants! He was the father of Israel, and the Arabs. So it was as if God was telling me to "get out of my country and go to Israel that I will show you!" Amazingly, I discovered this Torah portion on the same date as the number of the verse exactly 12 weeks later! i.e. Genesis 12:1 on 12/1 (January 12, 2019)
The fact that I currently live with my father made the quote doubly apt! "Get thee...from thy father's house".
These Torah portions fall on a different date each year, so the fact that God inspired me to book the trip on October 20, 2018, and exactly 12 weeks later on January 12, 2019 I discovered the original Torah portion that had the same number as that date, was quite remarkable! It just goes to show you how God can divinely align you into certain events without you having any prior knowledge of it!
The final part of this story is that the weekly Torah portion on January 12, 2019 is called "Parashat Bo", which also means "go" in the Hebrew language! So there are two Torah portions separated by exactly 12 weeks apart that both are named by the Hebrew word for "go". It just so happens that the first one last year also corresponded with the day that God inspired me to book another trip to Israel!
Edit: January 31, 2019: The day after this trip was due to arrive back, I realised something else that God had left on this trip!
I realised that if I add up the days that I was due to spend in Israel, together with the 70 days from the previous trips, it added up to exactly 84 days or 12 weeks!
In my book I wrote about the importance of the number 12 to Israel in the Bible, and how there were 12 tribes of Israel, 12 apostles of Jesus Christ, and 144,000 saints made up of 12,000 people from each of the 12 tribes of Israel. This again seems to be 'proof' that God was behind these trips, and this is how He decided to leave His fingerprints on them!
Nearly a year earlier, on the trip marked by "70 Years", God gave me 12 locations to visit, and the most important one was given to me exactly 12 weeks to the day from the first one! So God introduced the number 12 into this story in the last trip, and backed it up with this one.
Here now is the updated table with the latest trip added:
|"7 Weeks"||31 May - 15 Jun, 2010||16|
|2nd Trip||21 Dec - 29 Dec, 2013||9|
|"7 Months"||16 Jun - 28 Jun, 2016||13|
|"7 Years"||10 May - 27 May, 2017||18|
|"70 Years"||14 May - 27 May, 2018||14|
|"12 Weeks"||15 Jan - 28 Jan, 2019||14|
(End of Edit)
12 Weeks - Part 2
Edit: March 18, 2019: Six weeks after this trip was due to get back, on March 17, 2019 (St. Patrick's Day), God put the location of "Yardenit" in my head. Yardenit is a location on the Jordan River just south of the Sea of Galilee. It commemorates the baptism of Jesus in the Jordan River, although it is not considered the authentic location of his baptism. That honour belongs to Qasr el Yahud, not far from Jericho.
My immediate thoughts were, perhaps God wants me to get baptised at Yardenit in the Jordan River in Israel. Despite becoming a Christian more than twenty years ago, I still have not been baptised! I just haven't got around to it yet!
I still didn't have the money to go, so whether I actually go or not is another story!
Nonetheless, I decided to pick out some dates for another potential trip to Israel. I ended up choosing June 13-26, departing New Zealand and Israel on those dates.
Two hours later, I was doing some mental arithmetic in my head, and worked out that it was 88 days from today's date until my departure date on June 13. But then I discovered something interesting!
The Feast of Weeks, Shavuot and Pentecost all fall on the 9th of June, 2019 - exactly 12 weeks from today's date!
So that now makes four times within the last 12 months that God has used the time period of '12 weeks' to leave a sign on these trips to Israel! What's more is that the first time it was used, it was done to mark the end of a 50-day period that Jews are told to count between the Feast of First Fruits and the Feast of Weeks, fifty days later!
I also see that my departure date comes exactly 12 weeks to the day from the Jewish holiday of "Purim" on March 21, 2019.
So it appears to me that God just wanted to back-up and prove that this was a sign from God! (End of Edit)
Interestingly, God got me to put my booking for Tiberias on the last two days of the trip - the closest location to Yardenit on the Jordan River. I found that slightly unusual, because I would normally visit Tiberias/the Sea of Galilee near the middle of any trip, after leaving Jerusalem and heading north. Nonetheless, I booked two nights in Tiberias for the 24th and 25th of June. That would mean that were I to be baptised, it would either be on the 24th or 25th of June, as I would be leaving Israel the next day.
Interestingly, I discovered that the 24th of June, besides being the day that my little brother Tim was buried exactly 10 years ago to the day, is also "St. Jean Baptiste Day" in Canada and other parts of the world. This day celebrates the birth of St. John the Baptist who baptised Jesus in the Jordan River! So I found that quite an interesting juxtaposition of dates that I could have been baptised on! Incidentally, the day I would land in Israel is also ten years to the day that my younger brother Tim was killed in an accident in Michigan on June 14, and he was buried ten days later on June 24, 2009.
Edit: May 14, 2019:
An interesting event occurred exactly one month to the day that my next trip to Israel is due to depart on June 13.
At about 8 P.M. on May 13, one day before Israel's 71st anniversary on May 14, I was scrolling through the trending stories on the Google App, and noticed one about Israel Folau - an Australian rugby player who ran afoul of the Australian rugby football union for posting comments about hell on Instagram. He now looks set to lose his playing career in Australia over it. In the article it says that God spoke to him, and that's what led him to make his post on Instagram. Here is the exact article: 'God Spoke to Me'
What was interesting to me was the date that he made the post to Instagram. April 10, 2019. April 10 for me is an important date! It was the day that God first inspired me to visit Israel for the first time back in 2010! Exactly 7 weeks later from that date on May 29, 2010, I departed for Israel for the first time. This led to a series of trips that God would mark with the number seven. I didn't know that it was exactly 7 weeks to the day that God gave me the idea to visit Israel for the first time, to the day I departed, and only discovered it two-and-a-half years later!
Furthermore, I later discovered that I was exactly 33 years and 33 days old on the day that God inspired me to visit Israel for the first time - the approximate age that Jesus was when He died on the cross. I would also later discover, eight years later, that April 10 was the suggested date that Jesus was crucified on the cross in Jerusalem! So, all those things conspiring to land on April 10, made it an important date for me!
That's why, when I saw that Israel Folau had made his post on April 10 that got him into trouble, I was intrigued! Interestingly, Israel itself which was formed on November 29, 1947, was passed with 33 votes on the 333rd day of the year! All those things seem more than a passing coincidence.
However, that was not the end of the story. Later that night, on May 13, 2019, I suddenly realised that it was exactly 33 days from April 10 to today's date! The day that I discovered and read the article! This all happening exactly one month to the day to my next proposed trip to Israel!
I decided to reach out to Israel Folau and share this story with him, however, he may or may not see it. (End of Edit)
Note: Israel Folau's rugby contract was officially terminated by Rugby Australia on May 20, 40 days after his post to Instagram on April 10.
Edit: June 14, 2019:
Once again, God did not provide the money for me to go on this trip! However, I don't think that was an accident! He didn't want me to go, nor ever intended for me to go, it was all about the story that He created around the idea of going!
Why do I say this? Because at exactly 1:43 PM yesterday, on June 13, eight minutes after my first flight was due to depart, I suddenly started sending out emails to people to ask them to read and write a review of my book! Prior to this, I had not done so, at least, not on a wide-spread scale. So it was interesting to me that after this flight had departed, God prompted me to start sending out these emails to multiple people. So it is clear to me that God did not want me to go, nor did He want anyone else to help me to get there either.
It was all about the story that He created around the idea of going - simply to prove that He was the inspiration behind the trip!
Amazingly, my flight departed on the very minute that I sent out my first email, according to FlightStats:
The Elijah Challenge
To read more about this next trip to Israel that God has inspired, please click here: The Elijah Challenge