A Prayer for Peace in Israel

12 September 2000
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This prayer was composed by Rabbi Sacks in 2000 (5761) during the Second Intifada, and was recited by communities on Yom Kippur of that year.

Heavenly Father, Rock and Redeemer of Israel

On this holy and awesome day,

We come before You in prayer and supplication

On behalf of our brothers and sisters

In Your Holy Land, the Land of Israel.

You know every secret since the world began,

Nothing is shrouded from You.

All is revealed and known before You

Know how our ancestors in every generation

Prayed to return to Zion in joy.

They never lost hope,

And when, in Your great mercy, it came to pass,

It was like a dream fulfilled.

Therefore, we pray to You, the Merciful,

Have mercy on Your people,

And spread over the inhabitants of Your land,

The tabernacle of Your peace,

As it is written:

“I will grant peace in the land,

When you lie down, no one will make you afraid...

And through that land no sword shall pass.”

Please, King who reigns over all kings

Have mercy on Your people,

You know that we, Your people, love peace,

We have laboured for it and not found it.

We have lived too long among those who hate peace.

Therefore, remember, O Lord, the affection of Jerusalem;

Do not forget the love of Zion.

Arise and have compassion on Zion;

For the time has come.

And may we, in our time, be worthy to see

the words of your prophets fulfilled,

when You “will judge among nations,

and arbitrate for many peoples;

they shall beat their swords into plowshares,

their spears into pruning hooks.

Nation shall not raise sword against nation;

No more will they learn to make war.”

May this be Your will, and let us say: Amen.

אָבִינוּ שֶׁבַּשָּׁמַיִם, צוּר יִשְׂרָאֵל וְגוֹאֲלוֹ

בְּיוֹם זֶה קָדוֹשׁ וְנוֹרָא

בָּאנוּ לְפָנֶיךָ בִּתְפִלָּה וּבְתַחֲנוּנִים

בְּעַד אַחֵינוּ וְאַחְיוֹתֵינוּ

בְּאַרְצְךָ, וּבְאַרְצֵנוּ, אֶרֶץ יִשְׂרָאֵל.

אַתָּה יוֹדֵעַ רָזֵי עוֹלָם

וְאֵין דָּבָר נֶעֱלָם מִמֶּךָּ.

גָּלוּי וְיָדוּעַ לְפָנֶיךָ

תְּפִלוֹת אֲבוֹתֵינוּ בְּכָל דּוֹר וְדוֹר

לִרְאוֹת בְּשִׁיבַת צִיּוֹן בְּרִנָּה.

לֹא אָבְדָה תִּקְוָתֵנוּ

וְהִנֵּה בְּחַסְדְּךָ הַגָּדוֹל רָאִינוּ

וְהָיִינוּ כְּחוֹלְמִים.

לָכֵן בַּעַל הָרַחֲמִים

רַחֵם עַל עַמֶּךָ,

וּפְרוֹשׂ סֻכַּת שְׁלוֹמֶךָ

עַל כָּל יוֹשְׁבֵי אַרְצֶךָ,

כְּמוֹ שֶׁכָּתוּב:

"וְנָתַתִּי שָׁלוֹם בָּאָרֶץ,

וּשְׁכַבְתֶּם וְאֵין מַחֲרִיד...

וְחֶרֶב לֹא תַעֲבֹר בְּאַרְצְכֶם."

אָנָּא מֶלֶךְ מַלְכֵי הַמְּלָכִים

רַחֵם עַל עַמֶּךָ

כִּי אוֹהֲבֵי שָׁלוֹם אֲנַחְנוּ

יָגַעְנוּ וְלֹא הוּנַח לָנוּ

וְרַבַּת שָׁכְנָה לָנוּ נַפְשֵׁנוּ עִם שׂוֹנְאֵי שָׁלוֹם.

זְכֹר ה' חִבַּת יְרוּשָׁלַיִם

אַהֲבַת צִיּוֹן אַל תִּשְׁכַּח לָנֶצַח.

אַתָּה תָקוּם תְּרַחֵם צִיּוֹן

כִּי עֵת לְחֶנְנָהּ כִּי בָא מוֹעֵד.

וְנִזְכֶּה בְּיָמֵינוּ

לְדִבְרֵי עֲבָדֶיךָ הַנְּבִיאִים,

"וְשָׁפַט בֵּין הַגּוֹיִם

וְהוֹכִיחַ לְעַמִּים רַבִּים

וְכִתְּתוּ חַרְבוֹתָם לְאִתִּים

וַחֲנִיתוֹתֵיהֶם לַמְּזַמְּרוֹת

לֹא יִשָּׂא גוֹי אֶל גּוֹי חֶרֶב

וְלֹא יִלְמְדוּ עוֹד מִלְחָמָה."

וְכֵן יְהִי רָצוֹן, וְנֹאמַר אָמֵן.