In the days leading up to what is unfolding in Ukraine, Christians and Jews came together in prayer.
Anatoliy Raychynets of the Ukrainian Bible Society posted photos earlier this month of Jewish and Christian leaders in Ukraine joining together in prayer. The gathering — an “appeal to the Almighty for the protection of Ukraine” — took place in St. Sophia’s Cathedral in Kyiv, he wrote.
Rabbi Yaakov Dov Bleich, the chief rabbi of Kyiv, reportedly invited Christian leaders to join the Jewish community in praying Psalm 31, a hymn of protection, over the evolving situation in Ukraine, according to Eternity News.
“For me, as a pastor, that Psalm … well, I read it differently now, because it’s about our current situation in Ukraine,” the faith-based outlet quoted Raychynets as saying. “This ancient prayer — written several thousand years ago — now we see is so alive, is living.”
He also purportedly offered insight into what Christians and Jews are praying for amid the tension between Ukraine and Russia, which violently invaded the small European nation in the wee hours of the morning Thursday:
[W]hen people come to us asking questions, we pray together. We encourage them to stand for peace and to pray for peace. We don’t pray for victory over our enemy. We pray that the diplomacy of Ukraine and the whole world will bring a solution. We pray that God’s miracle happens because we know that it must be a miracle to stop this. So we read the Bible with people and pray.
Raychynets told Eternity News he and other believers are looking to John 1:5 — “That light shines in the darkness, and yet the darkness did not overcome it” — for hope (CSB).
Christians in Ukraine and around the world are turning to prayer in the wake of Russian President Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine, an unprovoked attack the government in Kyiv says has already resulted in casualties.
CNN’s Clarissa Ward even paused the network’s live coverage of the Russian assault in Ukraine to highlight a “very moving” sight of Christians kneeling outside in the bitter cold in Kharkiv to pray. Looking on, Ward said, “I think this … really speaks to the sort of desperation of this moment.”
Listen to the latest episode of the Faithwire podcast 👇
Pastors in the U.S. have also voiced their concern for Ukraine, urging believers to respond in prayer.
“As you know, Russia has attacked Ukraine,” tweeted Harvest Christian Fellowship Pastor Greg Laurie. “Let’s all be in prayer for the people there. Pray also for our leadership that they make wise and prudent decisions in the next few critical hours.”
“Vladimir Putin is a murderer and a tyrant,” added Dr. Russell Moore, a minister-in-residence at Immanuel Nashville. “He is an abuser of evangelical Christians, other religious minorities, and even his own country’s orphans. And now he attacks a neighbor, a democracy, a friend of the USA. God save Ukraine.”
Owen Strachan, provost of Grace Bible Theological Seminary, encouraged Christians to “pray for peace,” “pray for Gospel advancement (somehow),” “pray for God’s many people in Ukraine,” “pray for God to depose world leaders who are unwise, unsound, unbiblical, [and] ungodly,” and to “pray for God to rouse His global church.”
Please pray for the people of Ukraine, pray for wisdom for the leaders in the U.S., in Russia, in Europe, and around the world. Pray for peace in these troubled times.
***As the number of voices facing big-tech censorship continues to grow, please sign up for Faithwire’s daily newsletter and download the CBN News app, developed by our parent company, to stay up-to-date with the latest news from a distinctly Christian perspective.***