The OSJ Knights of Malta – 2013 Miracle at Akko
(By Bart Peacher)
It was on September 3, 2013 (the day before Israel’s new beginnings holiday of Rosh Hashanah) that a team of twelve of us were in Akko (Acre), Israel seeking God.
This was the third trip to Israel for my wife and I and probably won’t be our last since we now have a ministry called ‘It Is Time Israel’ and I serve on an Israeli ministry board in Tel Aviv.
We had stayed in Tel Aviv a few days then rented vans and drove to Caesarea, Tiberius, Capernaum, Akko, and Haifa at Mt Carmel, staying in several of these cities before returning to Tel Aviv for our trip home.
Two of us on the team (Bart Peacher and Jim McLaughlin) are members of ‘Knights Hospitallers of the Sovereign Order of St. John of Jerusalem, Knights of Malta, The Ecumenical Order’ or OSJ for short. We, with our team, were given a mission to accomplish here.
We stayed two nights in the old fortified walled city of Akko which is located approx. 20-30 miles from Lebanon/Syria borders on Haifa Bay (just across from Mt Carmel in Haifa).
Akko has a unique history in that it has been in existence for about 4,000 years and experienced the following time periods: Hellenistic Period, Roman Period, Byzantine period, Early Arab period (638-1104), Twelfth century – Crusader Period (1104-1191), Thirteenth century – golden age of Akko as the capital of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem (1191-1291), Modern Akko.
1The thirteenth century was the golden age of Akko as the capital of the Crusader Kingdom of Jerusalem. The city’s population reached at least 40,000. Economically, socially and culturally Akko became one of the world’s major cities. It was the most important trading center between Asia and Europe and the main Italian trade cities kept a permanent base in Akko. Most of the trade between the West and the Near and Far East passed through its port and markets. Akko was also a financial center of transactions and loans run by the Templars, and of real estate transactions in Europe led by the Hospitallers.
Crusader Akko was under constant threats from the Muslims and suffered from internal strife between its various quarters and communes. Any events taking place in the city had an effect beyond the country borders. In the eyes of the Christian West Akko symbolized the realization of the Crusader quest. There was a special cultural blending in Akko influenced by east and west. It was the home of the Kings of Jerusalem and other visiting rulers. It was the seat of the Supreme Court of the Kingdom. 1(“History of Akko” by Nathan Shore)
One can go online and read more about the rich history of Akko, but I want to share with you the miracle that happened to us on this day, September 3rd.
Our mission had been given by a prophetic word (from Donna Hoover) that I was to bring my OSJ Cross pin with me and bury it somewhere in Akko with prayer and prophesy to revive the Hospitaller spirit of the OSJ in Christ Jesus (Yeshua) for the days to come when the Middle East turmoil would spill over into Israel.
We walked thru the Knight’s Halls:
The Great Hall (The actual Hospital)
The Great Hall was the heart and soul and the core reason that the Hospitallers existed. Here we stayed a while praying for the Hospitaller Knights, that God would forgive the Order for any past sins that may have been committed against the Jewish people and to restore the spirit of the Knights in righteousness in Jesus (Yeshua). This place would be spiritually revived for any goodwill missions to come. This was the place to bury the Knight’s Cross pin!
As we walked thru this hall, the Great Hall, I asked the Lord how to accomplish this pin burial. I sought a word of knowledge from some team members and the response was that The Lord Himself would show me. OK Lord, what do I do?
My spirit spoke to me thus I prophesied aloud that it had to be placed in an inner wall within the heart of this hall such that it can never be retrieved.
After studying several holes in the faces of these walls (stone structures several feet thick) one came into focus about 6 to 8 inches deep that could allow a fist to enter horizontally.
Visioning that the pin must find its resting place deep within these stones via this entrance, I felt around for a hole or crevice within this fist sized cavern for a place for the pin to drop vertically into the wall. My fingers signaled me that I found one (confirmation)!
The group assembled to pray before administering the pin but I decided to check one more time for the hole that would allow the vertical drop; it was not there this time!
Ok, I thought to myself, I don’t understand but I’ll have to settle for inserting the pin horizontally and leaving it at the far end of this space.
As the group prayed, I put the pin in my fingers and placed it into the back of the opening then removed my hand. On second thought, realizing that it could be discovered and thinking that maybe this isn’t the right place after all, I reinserted my hand and grasped the pin to remove it when suddenly it was sucked out of my fingers vertically dropping down deep into the wall! What? How did this happen without an opening? And it seemed to leave my fingers forcibly?
Carolyn checked it repeatedly. Jim, Marc, and I checked again for an opening that would have allowed the pin to drop vertically but it did not exist!
Our conclusion: The pin was miraculously taken from my fingers and inserted vertically thru solid stone to the deep inner part of the wall! It is there to stay forever.
Jim McLaughlin checked it one more time as he ran his finger over the entire surface; no holes or crevices to be found! This has to be a miracle.
OK, the Knights Hospitallers are back in Akko! The Lord will take it from here.
Was this by accident that an unplanned team of 12 (we arrived in Israel with 11 but a 12th person was unexpectedly added in Tel Aviv before beginning our travels) lived a miracle by hearing and obeying a prophetic word on the eve of Israel’s Rosh Hashanah holiday of new beginnings? Not to mention during an intense time with the Syrian crisis just miles away which could spill over any day now (missiles were hurled near Akko before our arrival)? God knows what He is doing. We have only to obey and enjoy His fantastic ride!
My natural mind still cannot grasp what happened but I believe that God wanted us to know for sure that we accomplished a mission endorsed by Him; another mission in Israel, the land of promise, miracles, and blessings to the world!
*Many thanks to the team: Fred Hoover, Donna Hoover, Jim McLaughlin, Peg McLaughlin, Marc Yow, Charlotte Yow, Bob Seymour, Rick Stoker, Lee Anna Stoker, Bart Peacher, Carolyn Peacher, and Zoey!
See team picture below:
We thanked the Lord and moved on that day across the Bay to Haifa and Mt Carmel to experience another miracle called “Game Changer” (I plan to write about this in a separate article and place both of these on my website: itistimeisrael.org)
I am so thankful to be part of this team and the end days plan that the Lord has in store for those who want to be used (in my case, helping to bringing Israel into her destiny).
Lord, thank you and continue to Send Me!