On August 21st 2011, Glenn Beck kicked off the Restoring Courage event with a live broadcast from the Caesarea amphitheater in Israel. People from all over the world came to join Glenn, David Barton, Pastor John Hagee, and Dr. Mike Evans. It was a packed house with over 3,000 people in attendance.

The event opened with the phenomenal singing of Vernesa Mitchell, followed by Glenn arriving on stage to a huge ovation as he welcomed not only those in attendance, but also those around the world tuning in from over a thousand viewing parties and on GBTV! People were tuning in not only form Israel and America, but also Brazil, Egypt, China, South Africa, Kuwait, Afghanistan, and more!

David Barton was next with his focus on the history of Israel and Judaism. He told the audience that they were literally “sitting in the middle of history.” Barton said, “It was right here in this very theater where you are now seated that Paul was put on trial. Had you been here 2,000 years ago, you could have witnessed his trial.”

“It was here in this theater in June 1961 that a stone was found with an inscription dedicating it to Tiberius Caesar from “Pontius Pilate, Prefect of Judea.” This was the first ever archeological proof of the actual existence of Pontius Pilate, and it was found right here in this theater,” he added.

Barton the discussed the importance of the Jewish people to civilization, and used the words of John Adams to emphasize this connection. Barton quoted Adams “I will insist that the Hebrews have done more to civilize men than any other nation.” Adam continued, “[They] preserve and propagate to all mankind the doctrine of a supreme, intelligent, wise, almighty Sovereign of the Universe, which I believe to be the great essential principle of all morality, and consequently of all civilization.”

“Israel is the birthplace of monotheistic religion – of the worship of God Almighty, in which we will all participate tonight,” Barton added.

As Barton exited and Glenn returned to the stage, Glenn explained some of the things that had led him to Restoring Courage – and described a moment of divine providence that led to an important addition to the Restoring Courage event.

“I want this summer to change your life,” Glenn told his children earlier in the year. Glenn asked each of my children to read the story of one of the “righteous among the nations.” He told his children, “Tell me the story of someone who saved someone during World War 2.”

Glenn chose to read the story of Corrie ten Boom, The Hiding Place. He loved it so much that he insisted his wife, Tania, read the book as well. It wasn’t long after that he got a phone call from a man named Mike Evans.

After reading The Hiding Place, Glenn received a phone call from Dr. Mike Evans. “When I got that phone call from Mike I need he had to be here to share his story and the story of Corrie ten Boom”.

Mike Evans tale was one of personal tragedy and triumph. His mother, a Jew, told him when he was young that Christians kill Jews and that Jesus is dead and he shouldn’t “dig him up.” He was beaten in school for being Jewish, verbally and physically. Evans took his mother’s words to heart, and believed that Christians were out to get him.

His relationship with his father was even more abusive, His father, a Christian and an anti-Semite, would beat his mother and call her a “Jew-witch” and call Evans a “bastard”. His father beat him as well.

At the age of 11, Dr. Evans was asked what he wanted to be when he grew up. His answer? “I want to be 20.” His only wish was to stay alive until he was twenty years old.

Evans then told the story of his first prayer and the moment his life changed. He asked God, almost mockingly because he had never felt love, “God, why was I born?” And then something happened. The room turned white as snow and out of a glowing light, two nail scarred hands reach out to him. He saw a man who said, “Son, I love you. I have a great plan for your life.”

Evans said that ever since that day he has a new mother – Israel, as well as a new father, the God of Israel.

As the event continued, Glenn was joined by other leaders of faith including Rabbi Shlomo Riskin, Pastor Mullins, and Pastor John Hagee.

Read Part 2 here

Look for more on those speakers and events throughout the day.