Two Miracles and a Message

Published: March 1, 2024 | Maoz Israel Reports

Miracle One: Neria and the 30

Neria Sharabi and his brother Daniel were simply two brothers partying among the thousands of young Israelis who attended an all-night Super Nova Rave Concert in the desert of Israel near the Gaza Strip. Both had served in combat units during their army time; Daniel had been a medic. They were having the time of their lives at the concert billed as a celebration of “friends, love and infinite freedom!” 

It was now sun-up on the last day of the Feast of Tabernacles, October 7. The concert-goers were preparing to achieve an ethereal and celestial experience of serenity, peace and love, when a massive barrage of missiles came flying out of Gaza towards dozens of Israeli villages up and down the Gaza border. As Israelis are unfortunately familiar with being fired on by rockets, the 3,000 concert attendees automatically began running for nearby bomb shelters. 

The Nova festival hours before the massacre. Credit: Ido Derbi

“Don’t worry, that’s our guys!” Israelis could be heard trying to calm each other as gunshots were heard. However, Neria and Daniel quickly realized from their army service that it was the sound of Kalashnikovs­— Russian rifles used by Hamas. The sound of Israeli military weapons was nowhere to be heard.

Beginning to grasp that hiding in a bomb shelter would likely mean death, many jumped in their cars or ran, trying to reach the highway. However, Hamas had cut off the entrance to the road, firing at any car that tried to escape, creating a gridlock. Neria and Daniel spent the next couple of hours hiding behind wrecked vehicles already filled with the dead—trying to stay alive with some 30 other Israelis.

The Tank

About three hours later, they saw an Israeli tank trying to get off the highway where they were being fired on with RPGs. The tank swerved off the road, rolling over several cars and coming to a stop. 

Neria snuck up to take a quick look inside the tank and saw a soldier lying there. He then looked up to heaven and prayed, Elohim [God], I dont know why You did this—all this that You have done…They always taught me that we are not able to judge the things of heaven that we dont understand. But what I do know is that these soldiers who have just been killed, fought for You—You and Your nation.

The girls that are hiding under this tank—if they die—those are Your daughters, not my daughters! They are not my children! God! Im doing what I can—Im entering the tank. Now You bring us weapons! It doesnt matter how. Just bring us weapons!”

“I hadn’t finished saying this sentence when I thought of the soldier in the tank. I dashed back into the tank. I instinctively checked his pulse even though I knew he was dead. I apologized to him profusely as I rolled him over to search for weapons. Under him I saw the barrel of a gun, but no ammunition.” 

Neria took the weapon and called his commander, Yoni, who explained by phone where the ammunition was hidden in the tank. Yoni then jumped in his car in Tel Aviv with friends and directed the brothers by phone for several hours how to ward off the terrorists until he and the army could arrive.

“There was shooting from all directions constantly and all around me,” Neria explained. “People were lying, dead or alive, near the tank. I suddenly felt to scramble to get underneath the tank and seconds later an RPG was fired and the tank was destroyed. Realizing I am still alive, I stood up and ran from the tank. I saw that all my fingers were bleeding and Daniel had fragments in his arm, but with adrenaline, I didn’t feel anything.”

Moment from a video of Israelis hiding behind the tank that served as a source of weapons and protection for hours
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Oil and Sand

When the tank first came to a standstill, three soldiers jumped out of it and ran. Of the three that emerged, two were immediately shot and killed. The third managed to escape only to be attacked later by 10 Gazan civilians who had infiltrated from Gaza (not Hamas! Gazan civilians!) As they didn’t have weapons of their own, they took his gun and tried to shoot him with his own gun but it jammed because it was full of sand.

Neria’s gun from the tank was also full of sand. “I reach a group of people who had fled from the party, but when I look at my weapon, I see it is full of sand and I need oil to clean it so it won’t jam. I figure there is oil in the destroyed tank but my brother convinces me whoever goes back to the tank is dead. So I shout, ‘Where is some oil?’

“Then Daniel looks at the girls in the group and gets an idea. We had just been in the middle of a party and because of the desert wind, the girls always carry lip-gloss at such parties. So Daniel asks them if they have Vaseline or something. One girl reaches in her pocket and pulls out a tiny container of Vaseline. I shout ‘Perfect!’ The Vaseline is indeed a miracle. I clean my gun and oil it with Vaseline.” 

Neria and Daniel Take Command

In all, Neria, Daniel and the thirty Israelis with them fought off hordes of terrorists for six hours! Some had been security guards and had hand guns; others collected weapons off the dead terrorists.

“In the midst of the fighting I begin to shout, ‘Everyone wounded must do what he can. Everyone! Whoever can fight, fight! Whoever can take care of the wounded, do so! Everyone, though, needs to pray—scream the “Shema!” (Hear Oh Israel! The Lord thy God is one God—the cry of devotion by Jews in life and death situations.)’

“I shout again: ‘Sing a Psalm of Ascents! Just start praying!’

“And then I started singing Shir LaMa’alot (Psalm 121 Song of Ascents) quietly. 

I lift up my eyes to the mountains—where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth.”1

“Now!” I yelled, “Everyone together! Sing!” Everybody prayed! “Immediately as we began praying the shooting decreased, and eventually the army came to rescue us and we survived.”

Neria testified publicly, “I know ‘Something’ led me the whole time. I returned to that place months later to share our story and sang again and prayed,

Blessed art You, Lord our God, King of the world who did a miracle for me in this place. Amen.”

While Neria did not know everything there was to know about the God of Israel, he knew enough to trust that He is good and that Neria could reach out and cry out to Him in his time of trouble. Neria was taught well that there are many things about the Lord and His ways that we don’t understand and still we call on Him for there is no one else. The Lord saw that small seed of faith and answered.

And everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved; For on Mount Zion and in Jerusalem there will be deliverance, As the Lord has said; even among the survivors whom the Lord calls.2

Miracle Two: Rescue in the Night

Ori Megidish, an Israeli soldier, was on duty at her base near the Gaza Strip when she was seized by Hamas terrorists and taken hostage along with some 253 hostages on October 7, 2023.

Ori comes from a family of Sephardic Jews, who strongly believe in God, keep the Sabbath, and are known as good salt-of-the-earth people. When Ori was taken captive, the family went to war for their daughter the only way they could—a war in the spirit realm. A video recorded one prayer session of the mother, Margalit, leading the family and friends as they stormed the heavens in intercession.

The family brought a Torah Scroll (Five Books of Moses) into their home, and they began to pray,

Creator of the world! Bring Ori home in peace! Ori! Come back home in peace!!! Creator of the world! Hear our prayers! Come back home to us Ori! Just like we brought this Torah into our home! You will come home!

There is a commandment in the Torah known as the Law of Challah, where Moses instructs the Israelites to give a portion of their dough to the Lord as an offering throughout their generations.

It comes from a passage in Numbers:

The Lord said to Moses, Speak to the Israelites and say to them: When you enter the land to which I am taking you and you eat the food of the land, present a portion as an offering to the Lord. Present a loaf from the first of your ground meal and present it as an offering from the threshing floor. Throughout the generations to come you are to give this offering to the Lord from the first of your ground meal.’”3

Today, traditionally the practice is done to bring a blessing upon one’s home. In her cry to find favor with the Lord, Ori’s mother, Margalit, divided the dough of the challah bread she was making as she prayed, 

…May the mercy of the Holy One be awakened and have mercy on us.

He will save us from all enemies and pain, all of our days! Amen! May it be so! Amen! He will bring back our captives! Amen!

He will heal all of our sick ones! Amen!

He will bring back my daughter, Ori the daughter of Margalit. Ori, I am with you! Kapara (I speak redemption) on you! I love you Ori! Everyone please!!! Shake the Heavens!!!

Bring back all of the captives!! All of the sick should rise from their beds!!

Creator of the world please!!! I love You!!! Im in love with You!!

Heavenly Father, my Father, dont slumber! Dont rest! Dont let me down!!! Amen! 

Margalit Megidish declares her love for and petitions the God of Israel on behalf of her daughter Ori, a soldier who was kidnapped and held hostage by Hamas. Just days later Ori would be rescued in a daring IDF operation.
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Family and friends followed the prayers with their powerful ‘Amens’.

Suddenly, on October 30th, in the dead of night, she was rescued! The IDF at great risk plucked her out of hell. Their whole town of Kiryat Gat, rejoiced and even the ultra-Orthodox took to the streets singing and dancing while the Shofar was blown nonstop!

One Knesset member even openly marveled at Margalit, “That a woman whose daughter is in a deep dark tunnel in the hands of the murderous Hamas, would yet tell God, ‘I love You!’… she stated,  “I’m jealous of your faith!”

Her family announced to the press: “She is alive and healthy! It’s only our prayers! The Creator of the world brought her back!”

In the first four months of the war, Ori was the only living hostage rescued by the IDF out of more than 253 captives. She had been captive for 23 days. It would be more than another 100 days before the IDF would successfully rescue two more living hostages.

Both hostages, Argentinian nationals, were rescued the same week the President of Argentina visited Israel, publicly supported Israel and prayed at the Western Wall for the rescue of his citizens held hostage.

Of the 253 hostages who were carried off with evil glee, to the dark tunnels of Hamas—including babies and elderly, there are still 134 persons locked up in the tunnels. Until today, they suffer hunger, lack of medicine, torture, and rape. Some thirty are thought to have been murdered. (At the time of this article, some 110 hostages have been released through negotiations, and 11 bodies recovered.)

Ori Megidish meets with IDF Head and Chief of Staff after her rescue.
Credit: IDF Spokesperson

The Next Level

During this war, our nation has seen God obviously intervene because of the honest cries of individuals. His answers are a testimony that Israel is still very much a special nation before Him. But there is more to come—the promise of a nation restored to God through repentance. The return of our captives. The healing of our land.

In his days of wisdom, Solomon so beautifully prayed with all his heart for the children of Israel.

When Your people Israel have been defeated by an enemy because they have sinned against You, and when they turn back to You and give praise to Your name, praying and making supplication to You in this temple, then hear from heaven and forgive the sin of Your people Israel and bring them back to the land You gave to their ancestors.”

To Solomon’s prayer God responded, “If My people, who are called by My Name, will humble themselves and pray and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” 4

Though there are many, below are two promises we can hold to during this time of deep agony and uncertainty in Israel.

These promises are God’s will and the Bible states they will happen. And as things always begin in Israel and then spread, when Israel experiences breakthroughs, so will the rest of the world.

You will seek Me and find Me when you seek Me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the Lord, and will bring you back from captivity.” 5

“I will make a new covenant with the people of Israel…It will not be like the covenant I made with their ancestors when I took them by the hand to lead them out of Egypt, because they broke my covenant…I will put My law in their minds and write it on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be My people.”