Kfar Saba has been a very important settlement in the South of the Sharon Valley ever since the Second Temple era. The city is located at the biblical border between the land allotted to the tribe of Ephraim and the tribe of Manasseh, the sons of Joseph. Fifteen km from the coast of the Mediterranean sea and right at the foothills of Samara, only some 30 km west of Mount Gerizim and Elbal ( the mountains of blessing and curses- Deut. 28 ) near the city of Shechem (Nablus ) with Jacob's well and Joseph's tomb.
Kfar Saba is the first settlement mentioned in the writings of Josephus Flavius ("Antiques of the Jews", book 13, chapter 15); here, Flavius describes a deep ditch built by Alexander Yanai. It was dug from "Chaber Zaba", which is now called "Antipatris", to the sea of Joppa (Yafo, Tel Aviv), in order to stop the advance of Antiochus Epiphanius Dionysius, attacking with an army of 8800 soldiers. Due to this incident, however, some questions concerning the location of the modern Kfar Saba in relation to the ruins of Antipatris are left unanswered.
The name Kfar Saba is mentioned also in the Talmud, in "Massechet Damai" - 'A Tale of an Almond Tree in Kfar Saba'.
Rabbi Meir and many other Tanaiim lived in Kfar Saba, in the neighborhood known then as "Shabazi", today "Shikun Alyia". Old maps have indicated the existence and centrality of Kfar Saba.
There was an Arab settlement in the area of the neighborhoods known today as "Shikun Kaplan", "Yosseftal" and Givat Eshkol". This hundred-year old settlement simply took on the name of the older Jewish settlement. The rest of a big settlement was discovered under the ruins of the Arab Kfar Saba, built 100 years ago and abandoned in 1948. There is a spot between "Givat Eshkol" and Cinema Hen on the Eastern side of the city, which is now a public park - where milestones were used for producing olive oil. The remaining ancient cities from Roman times were excavated. oil lamps called "Samaritan Lamps" were found near by.
The existence of Samaritans in Kfar Saba is recorded in the Talmud (Yerushalmi, Damai 22, 3) and in other writings from the Hellenistic era. Tradition says that Kfar Saba was half populated by Samaritans and half by Jewish population. There is even a mention of some christian family who populated the town.
The name "Saba" is probably derived from a family name "Saba" or " Sabah "(similar to the name "Mar Saba", the monastery).
Jewish settlers purchased the land in the surroundings of Kfar Saba already in 1892. Rabbi Yechiel Pines and his wife, Michal, bought chunks of land as well, in order to build an agricultural settlement. However, this piece of land was left untouched for seven years. After becoming property of Baron de Rothschild, an experiment was made to grow jasmine for the perfume industry, but this enterprise failed. Only in 1903, when the land came into the hands of farmers from Petach Tikva, who wished to work the soil, was the settlement really established under the name of "Kfar Saba"
The present municipality building ''the Chan" was the first house built in the city. The settlers lived around it. One of their first assignments was to plant eucalyptus and almond trees in front of the municipality. Two huge eucalyptus trees, which those first settlers planted, are still standing. Those trees, along with the building, are the symbols representing the city of Kfar Saba. During the first years, the settlers had a difficult time building their homes due to the opposition of the Turkish administration. However, because of the determination of those pioneers, they succeeded in building eleven houses during the period of just a few years, and the settlement began to flourish.
The 1st and 2nd World Wars
In 1917, during the 1st World War, many residents of Tel Aviv and Petach Tikva who were expelled from their homes by the Ottoman Turkish Government found refuge in Kfar Saba. They built temporary houses out of Eucalyptus branches, and lived extremely poor conditions, suffering from hunger and sickness. Many died of various epidemics.
In 1918, the British succeeded to force their way North through Kfar Saba and pushed the enemies farther North. The British Mandate did not ease on the settlers of Kfar Saba. The residents returned to attempt to rebuild the ruins of the new settlement destroyed during the War, and in 1921 the uprising started. This uprising was called "Pra'ot Tarpa". The Arabs attacked the settlement, which was again left abandoned. In 1922, people returned, new families joined and the building of the settlement was resumed and the expansion began. The first house, "Ha-Chan", was restored in 1928 and used as office, post office, public bath and for the first public school.
In the 1930's there were 1800 people living in Kfar Saba already. There were two major public struggles with important historical significance during those years:
The fight for Hebrew work; The fight for independence;
These were bitter battles, and many leaders were imprisoned.
During the attacks by the Arabs, between 1936 and 1939, the habitants of Kfar Saba fought to protect themselves and the settlement, often standing in the forefront of attacks.
Due to the tenacity of the population, Kfar Saba was finally declared a local municipality in 1937. The main street, which was the first to be paved - now known as Weizman Street - was used as the main road from Tel Aviv to Haifa, passing through the Arab cities of Tul-karem, Shechem (Nablus) and Jenin. Kfar Saba served also as a training hostel for groups of pioneers before they would go to their own settlements.
Many residents of Kfar Saba had active roles in the political situation of the country and volunteered in the British Army. During the 2nd World War they joined the Hagannah, the Irgun and other Jewish organizations that supported free Aliyah (immigration).
In 1939, the local congress was elected for the first time.
The year of 1944 will be remembered in the history books of Kfar Saba as a year of great changes in the Alyiah policy of the city. The first immigrant's house was built then. This area, now known as "Shikun Rupin", was the first in the country to receive immigrants who came from Mauritius. Since then, Kfar Saba has absorbed new "olim" (immigrants) from all over the Diaspora.
War of Independence
The vicinity of Kfar Saba to the Arab villages, brought new difficulties to its residents during the War of Independence. The Arab residents of the Kfar Saba School, located in the center of the Jewish residential area, attacked the Jewish workers and tried to hurt them in any way they could.
In May of 1948, the Arab section of Kfar Saba was conquered. Not far from the border between the Jewish and the Arab areas of Kfar Saba, stands now the "Memory Garden", or "Gan Ha-Zikaron" in Hebrew, one of the most beautiful parks in the city. This park stands in memory of all the sons and daughters of Kfar Saba who lost their lives during the Israeli wars.
The population of Kfar Saba is almost entirely Jewish, with a minority of 3000 non-Jews.
In its 100 years of history, Kfar Saba has grown from a small agricultural settlement to a thriving modern and expanding city.
In the past 20 years, the city has taken up the challenge to increase its population by more than 100%. For example:
In 1982, 35,000 people were registered as inhabitants of Kfar Saba; In 1989, 55,000 and today, the population is well above 95,000 people.
Many new immigrants from Russia and Iran came to live in the city. The latest immigration wave from Argentina Jews shifted the cultural "face" of the city. Also many new immigrants from France are starting to make their home in Kfar Saba. The Sharon area has the highest concentration of South American Jews.
The original houses, built by the pioneers, are being demolished and their descendants are building four-story buildings in their place. Construction sites are a common sight in Kfar Saba. The battle for the soul of the city has already begun. Kfar Saba is known as a "family town", where children can be seen and heard everywhere. The children growing up in this current generation are becoming a strong entity, and much prayer is needed on their behalf.
Kfar Saba's center shopping mall: the "Harim Shopping Mall", one of the largest and most beautiful in the country. The Mall attracts Kfar Sabaiim from all walk of life, middle class, artists, youth and children. Also from neighbouring Arab towns. It is the meeting point for the teens at Friday nights, from here buses take them to various dance clubs and pubs in Tel Aviv and Hertzelyia. The mall of Kfar Saba also suffered from terrorist attacks, being located at the foothill of Samaria, close to the Palestinian cities. Now another " Kanyon " the G has been opened on the east side of the city , close to road number 6 . It has become the main attraction shoping of the last few years.
Now the new park, situated in the east side of the city, between ha Galil street and Hapoelis attracting a lot of visitors , parents with small children, making it an ideal family park outing.
The main municipal and administrative buildings are located at the "gates" of the city:
The Court of Law, the Income Tax Authority, Police station, Meir Hospital - Western gate;
Beit HaHistadrut (Workers' Union House), Beit Berl college, which used to be a center of Labour Party, gives courses in alternative medicine, arts. - Northern gate; "Yes" Satellite TV Company ( cable Tv company releasing programs with pornographic materials), The Soccer Stadium. The home of first league soccer team "Hapoel Kfar Saba" Many people from Kfar Saba our proud of their green jersey team
Many members of HaMaayan congregation were led by God to become residents of Kfar Saba. Some were led to purchase houses and others are renting apartments . We all do care a lot for our city and are praying regularly for the welfare of its people. We were led to start social services to the poor and the needy, the single mothers and distressed people .We have a burden to see God's blessings being poured out upon the city, on the Mayor and all the authorities of the city as well as all its inhabitants. Our community is also in relation with communities of Kfar Saba twin partners cities in Germany : Wiesbaden and Mulheim on the Ruhr.
The God we serve loves the city of Kfar Saba. And so do we .
Culture and Education
Kfar Saba is well known throughout the country as a city that "breathes culture", with a music conservatorium, libraries, a theater and many different cultural activities. The "pride" of Kfar Saba is the Sapir Cultural Center, located in the center, near the Mall. A few years ago, the leading advertisement for the city was a picture of a little child running in the fields, the slogan read: "We breathe culture in Kfar Saba".
The city prides itself of the Music Fund, which encourages children to study music at very young ages. The Fund helps the local schools to finance musical instruments for their orchestras. The wind orchestras of Kfar Saba are very well known outside of Israel as well, having even played before the King of Thailand.
EAST: Kalkilyia, one of the major Palestinian Arab city where many Moslem fundamentalists associated to the Hammas terror organization are concentrated. ( 2 Km East, on the way to the settlements of Samaria).
NORTH-EAST: Tira, an Arab town located within the so-called "green line". In the past, before the last upheavals from October 2000, many Jewish citizens from Kfar Saba and surroundings used to go shopping in Tira. The majority of Arab students in Beit Berl college come from this town. Most car thieves apprehended by Kfar Saba's Police come from Tira or nearby Taibe. (approx. 2 Km North-East).
SOUTH: Hod Ha Sharon, Jewish town, . Hod Ha Sharon had a highest rate of poor people in the Sharon area but it is now changing. There are many psychiatric hospitals in Hod Ha Sharon. (on the way to Petach Tikva).
WEST: Raanana, one of the wealthiest Jewish cities in the area, after Hertzelyia and Ramat Ha Sharon, with a predominantly religious orthodox population. The majority of Raanana's inhabitants are from Anglo-Saxon origin (South Africa and England), and South Americans and French new immigrants.
Please pray for:
A thirst for righteousness, truth and humility, and submission to godly standards.
Wisdom and boldness in proclaiming the message of true love, hope and peace in Yeshua of Nazareth, the Jewish Messiah;
Repentance and conviction of sin regarding immorality, greed and the pride of life;
Exposing the lies of the false worldview of the New Age spirits, Humanistic socialistic roots and Anti-Christ religious orthodox extremist influences, which are bringing confusion, deception and hindering the blessing of God to be poured upon the people of this city;
The protection of the children in the elementary and high schools, as violence and crime are a growing concern in the Israeli educational system;
For the victims of domestic violence and abuse (Kfar Saba has the highest rate of battered women in the Sharon area);
For the shedding of innocent blood to be stopped in our city and for the residents of Kfar Saba to choose the alternatives of life for their unborn children.
For the growing problem of drugs and alcoolism in the city .
For the poor and the needy in our midst who are increasing in large number due to the cost of living and the huge rising of rent ( more than 30 % increase since the last year )