Israel Celebrates 70 Years of Independence

Benjamin Netanyahu Speaking on Israel's 70th AnniversarySeventy years ago, on the fifth day of Iyar in the Hebrew calendar, Israel declared its independence – effectively establishing the modern state of Israel.

That date, which this year fell on April 20 in the Gregorian calendar, was recalled during a special cabinet meeting convened Friday by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who called it “a unique date in our history.”

“On it, in this room, the members of the People’s Council gathered,” he said, according to a transcript provided by his media adviser. “They decided on the establishment of a Jewish state in the Land of Israel. In so doing they restored to us political sovereignty in our land.”

Netanyahu quoted David Ben-Gurion, who headed the Jewish leadership 70 years ago and would later become Israel’s first prime minister, noting that he “summarized the occasion in short, incisive words: ‘The State of Israel is arisen; the exile of Israel is over.’”

“I add: And the Jewish People have been reborn,” Netanyahu continued. “Because if the state had not been established, Heaven forbid!, the Jewish People would have shriveled away in exile and perhaps taken awful blows again. It is doubtful whether we would have had another opportunity to establish our sovereignty.”

In his address, the prime minister noted that celebrations for the nation’s 70th anniversary have been held through various events, and that the “joy and the pride [of the citizens of Israel] are not ordered from on high – they spring from the heart.”

Next month, there will be more celebrations as the Gregorian date of Israel’s independence, May 15, will be observed.

In Washington, D.C., American Christian Leaders for Israel will host the Israel: Seventy & Strong Summit May 13-15 to send a message both to Washington and abroad that Christians will stand with Israel in unity and strength now and for years to come.

“I want in invite you to join me and other Christian leaders as we celebrate the 70th anniversary of the modern state of Israel, May 13-15, in Washington, D.C.,” said Dr. Jerry A. Johnson, president & CEO of NRB, who will be among the summit’s speakers. “We’ll be marking especially the planned movement of the U.S. Embassy to Jerusalem, where it ought to be.”

According to organizers, the summit will celebrate the past, evaluate the present, and create strategies for future generations of Christians to stand alongside Israel in her next 70 years. The festivities will culminate with a Jerusalem Day celebration on Capitol Hill in partnership with the Israel Allies Caucus on Tuesday, May 15.

To register, go to

To find sponsorship opportunities and information, visit

NRB is a sponsor of the summit.

PHOTO ABOVE: Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu convenes the Cabinet at Independence Hall in Tel Aviv for a meeting in honor of the 70th anniversary of the proclamation of the state by Prime Minister David Ben-Gurion. Photograph courtesy of Israel's Government Press Office/Haim Zach.

By NRB Staff

Published: April 26, 2018


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