Just a little explanation of our motivation:
Just a little explanation of our motivation:
That should have been “Lot”.
Judgey people will run with that! But, the scriptures call Lot a Tzadik. A Tzadik is a “Just One”. “Just” in the sense of ‘having been justified’. The Messiah was prophesied to be “HaTzadik”, “THE Just One,” and His ‘justification’ was given after He bore all OUR sins on the tree. Lot, on the other hand, was not ‘justified’ by his works; he was not considered a Tzadik because of his acts of tzedaka. He was considered a Tzadik through emunah: believing trust in יהוה . G-d is consistent and fair; he ‘justified’ Avraham because of TRUST. The same is true of everyone whom we find in the roll of Heaven.
I have learned that my ‘justification’ is ONLY because of ONE THING: I believe and confess that Yeshua the Messiah, the Son of G-d, is risen from the dead, and that He bore the punishment for my sins. I declare it! I would shout it every day! I crave to share it with others, that they may know this great wonder: G-d loves us BEFORE we love Him! Even in our sin. He loves us when others do not! He knows us better than we know ourselves, and certainly better than judgey people know us. In that sense, I am a Lot! Because most people know Lot’s faults, but do not ‘know’ that He is a Tzadik!
“… and [He, G-d,] delivered Lot HaTzadik, mortified by the filthy conduct of those without Torah; 8for while that Tzadik dwelt among them, in seeing and hearing their deeds against Torah, his righteous soul was vexed from day to day…” [Kefa Bet/2 Peter 2]
I have been made right before G-d by trust in His Son Yeshua. I strive to live a life worthy of being called ‘a just [ified] one’, but the world, the flesh, and the adversary make that all the more difficult every day. Just like Lot, I have my imperfections and failures. But, G-d saved him! And he is counted in the Roll of Faith in Ivrim [Hebrews] chapter 11, as part of a great ‘cloud’ of witnesses of our faith! There are only three men in the scriptures who do not have blemishes on their record: No’akh, Dani’el, and Iyov [Noah, Daniel, and Job]. EVERY OTHER ‘GREAT MAN’ of scripture has a blemish on his record: Avraham committed adultery, Yitz’khak deceived; Ya’akov deceived [and more], Moshe murdered a man, David had a man killed and committed adultery….but of these three men, there were no such acts to record in the record of their lives. Were they ‘perfect’ like Messiah? NO! But, even though they lived clean lives, they could not save a soul on their own!
3“Ben Adam, when a land sins against Me by trespassing grievously, and I stretch out My hand upon it, and break the staff of the bread thereof, and send famine upon it, and cut off from it man and beast; 14though these three men, No’akh, Dani’el, and Iyov were in it, they should deliver but their own souls by their righteousness, says Adonai יהוה . If15 I cause evil beasts to pass through the land, and they bereave it, and it becomes desolate, so that no man may pass through because of the beasts; 16though these three men were in it, as I live, says Adonai יהוה , they shall deliver neither sons nor daughters; they only shall be delivered, but the land shall be desolate. 17Or if I bring a sword upon that land, and say, ‘Let the sword go through the land, so that I cut off from it man and beast; 18though these three men were in it, as I live, says Adonai יהוה , they shall deliver neither sons nor daughters, but they only shall be delivered themselves. 19Or if I send a pestilence into that land, and pour out My fury upon it in blood, to cut off from it man and beast; 20though No’akh, Dani’el, and Iyov, were in it, as I live, says Adonai יהוה , they shall deliver neither son nor daughter; they shall but deliver their own souls by their righteousness.” [Yekhezkel/Ezekiel 14]
Faith, trust in the message of Messiah, is the ONLY thing that sets one right before G-d, that expunges the record of sin. And, after having that done, like Lot, we yet remain in this dark and fallen world. And ever more, every day, there is vexation because of what is going on around us. And this year everyone should have 20/20 vision as to what is going on, but so many are utterly blind.
I lost some of my best friends back in 2007/08 because I insisted that BKO was a deceitful communist and would ruin the country. He was not permitted to do so overtly and utterly destroy the US, but was able instead to work in subterfuge after the fact. I insisted back in 2016 that HE was at the top of this ‘Russia’ accusation, this obviously rigged, false narrative. Understand, I was never a big Trump fan, and still have some things about him that give me pause, but I also never just wrote him off. But, when this whole collusion thing came out, it was OBVIOUS to me that BKO was the mastermind. So, I am vexed that someone somewhere with some kind of authority did not PUSH an investigation. ALL of congress equivocates over ‘justice’, using it only when it serves their narrative, their purpose. No one today seems to have the will to hold the ‘elite’ accountable for their grievous offenses, offenses for which, if any ONE of us did HALF of what they did, we’d be under lock and key before the bread rises.
It vexes me that in this country, which was founded on scriptural principles by people who believed in The Creator, that most people, including most of those who SAY they believe in the Creator, yet deny the CREATION and the flood, and accept a very well orchestrated LIE, that we created ourselves. It vexes me that we kill so many babies as a country, and no one cares. We all sit and watch as millions of babies are SLAUGHTERED, on a daily basis they are murdered for the convenience of sex. It vexes me that we ‘tolerate’ adultery, so much so that we do not recognize it at times when it is in plain sight. [self included] We are ‘entertained’ by adulterers, and many look to these fools for moral guidance. It vexes me that depravity is glamorized in society, and that we think baiting young children into depravity with video games and movies is ‘okay’. It vexes me that we treat homosexuals as ‘man and wife,’ as if G-d no longer looks on that as an anomaly, as error, but somehow approves of it, even in His congregations. It vexes me that the community of faith points ONLY to THAT sin as sin, and tolerates all other ‘abominations’, to include eating abominable foods and foods offered to other gods, even though the ‘New Testament’ tells us not to! It vexes me that politicians of every ilk lie with such straight faces. It vexes me that major media outlets lie every single day, blatantly pushing an agenda rather that simply reporting ‘new facts’, serving themselves and their wicked desires rather than serving the people information that is true. It vexes me that social media outlets censor our free speech EVERY SINGLE DAY, thinking THEY are the arbiters of truth and of the American forum, and that only THEY know what information is best for us to consume, and we just sit back and allow them to run our minds and hearts with contentment. Our politicians, our ‘representatives’, have been put on notice about it, and have done NOTHING. It vexes me that the believing community denies the simple truth of His Sabbath, and His Holy Days, in spite of the very COMMON knowledge that His Sabbath, [not the ‘jewish sabbath’] is the SEVENTH day of the week, and NOT the first, and that scriptural gymnastics have to be used to justify worshipping Him on the venerable day of the sun, with the pagans. But, what vexes me most right now is that so many people are so willing to just sit by and watch the country implode due to a cold. We are allowing doctors and tech-nerds to scare us into just watching our country fall before our eyes. We are allowing the media largely to cover up the fact that the last president committed TREASON against us. Politicians are soft-shoeing around that, and seem absolutely spineless, whereas our forefathers would have already hanged him for treason. The media is barely reporting anything about the most capital offense ever committed against the American people, while brainwashing society into thinking a virus barely more harsh than the flue, which we face every single year, is worthy of our fear such that we allow politicians to shut down our businesses and leisure sites/activities without even so much as a WTF? ONE person, a WOMAN, has stood up and said ENOUGH.
So, I’m a Lot. I am vexed. I have a great level of comfort, especially since the grand deception of COVID came out, because I also know that TIME IS SHORT, and that so many people, ESPECIALLY believers, are going to get caught off guard. I am vexed because even declaring His Name and Truth is seen as a joke, as laughable, and people today just don’t seem to want to hear any truth. But, I rejoice, because my Master said to do so ‘when you see all these things,’ because I know that the resurrection is near, according to Him.
So, why don’t I get all ‘bent out of shape,’ start a protest, proclaim a call to arms, create a revolt? Because I must be about my FATHER’s business. I am a citizen of His Kingdom FIRST, and I care not about the affairs of man. Mankind is blind and lost. And especially now. Yekhezkel said it best [above], and I add Avraham’s message to the rich man who neglected Elazar his whole life, and found himself in She’ol:
‘If they will not hear Moshe and the Nevi’im, even if a man rises from the dead, they will not believe in Him.’”
Today, people do not ‘hear’ Moshe, and so they cannot hear Messiah Yeshua Himself. They think they ‘believe’, but they persist in ‘tolerating’ their own sins: believing in evolution and denying the creation, moving His holy days, all of them, approving of and participating in adultery, fornication, and perversion, lying and deceiving, and being deceived. etc etc. Yeshua instructs us “Do NOT be deceived,” and yet so many have allowed themselves to be deceived, of SO MUCH these days. That is what vexes me. Yet, I still will declare that Yeshua is the Son of G-d, and requires that those who ‘say’ the trust in Him repent [turn] and no longer do those things. Even though we know we will stumble, yet we turn, and strive, and live according to HIS WORD. I will yet declare that HE IS COMING VERY SOON to take unto Himself a bride, and so few are ready. That is my preoccupation: preparing myself, and any one else who truly has oil. I am a Lot. May I be counted worthy to escape, as was he.
Join me on “The Torah of Messiah” channel at https://www.facebook.com/historah for an exciting study!
“Come lawdy, go lawdy, and come back again, lawdy!” From “The Jeffersons.”
I do not pretend to stand in the office of a Navi [Prophet]. In fact, I’m not certain I would want to, because the Nevi’im of old suffered at the hands of people who thought they were righteous. O, wait. So have I. Ad nauseam. Nevertheless, I am not at all arrogant enough to think myself equal to those great men. But, nineteen years ago, when my children were about 10 and 7 years old, we had our evening dinner on 09/10, I did my usual time on the piano playing worship music, and then at probably around 8:00 p.m. I sat them down at my feet and read the scriptures to them. I had an ‘urge’ to compel them to consider the times. People were known to criticize me [ad nauseam] for trying to prepare my children for things to come. That urge somehow led me to 2 Tim 3 that night:
1Know this, that in the Akharit HaYamim [last days] disastrous times will come. 2And men shall be lovers of themselves and lovers of money, proud, conceited, blasphemers, disobedient to their own people, ungrateful, wicked, 3false accusers, addicts to lust, brutal, haters of good things, 4traitors, hasty, boasters, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of Elohim; 5having a shade of the fear of Elohim, but far from the power of Elohim; from such turn away. “
As soon as I finished reading aloud the above paragraph, my daughter immediately asked “What does ‘brutal’ mean?” And my answer was immediate: “It means killing for no reason.” I began to explain to my children that we were living in those times, and that was nineteen years ago. I remember telling them, “We are there now, and it is just going to get worse”. I had remembered that night having a conversation about seven years before in which a ‘believer’ said that I was too ‘alarmist’ in my world view. What amuses me now is that a ‘herald’ of truth in the scriptures is, by nature, an alarmist! “Sound the alarm on His Har Kodesh! [Holy hill]”. I told my children, “If you were running into the hiway in front of a truck, would it suffice to whisper at you? To cajole you? Or would it be best if I shout?” The answer was obvious, even to my children. The next morning, my children were in school, and I was down at a customer site when the news broke that the twin towers had fallen; I watched the replay, and muttered, “We’re going to war.” A woman laughed and said it was an accident, and that no one would do that on purpose. My children had confidence that day, understanding better what was going on, while others were terrified.
Fast forward 19 years, to just before Covid-19. I observed last fall that Gates was doing a ‘practice run’ pandemic. I observed protests going on in China. I observed Harvard professors working in Wuhan. In the meantime, I ‘discover’ finally the timing of the last Yovel of Israel. Right around that time the small rumor of another virus coming out of China emerged. I told my wife, “They want to shut down the protests.” Those protests indeed immediately stopped, and no one even questioned it. The virus begins to make it into the states, and around the same time, Harvard bio-chemists are arrested in Boston for their dealings with Wuhan, China, and no one even thinks to look closer. I start to see the looming threat, and I am beginning to fill with joy, knowing that a paradigm shift is coming, and that I’m seeing the convergence of many of the ‘signs of the times.’ My wife and I took a long-awaited vacation, and when we returned, my employer pulled the trigger on sending us home. Knowing better than to rock the boat, I decided simply to enjoy the opportunity to work at home. But, around that time I posted a blog that posited the notion that this was a manmade virus [Gates owns the patent], instigated by China with the help of Harvard democrats [Bill Gates, the bio-chemists, et al]. I didn’t know the political affiliation of those arrested, but I told my wife that 99% of Harvard professors are liberal, hard-left democrats. I believed at that time that China and one of our political parties were conspiring together for their common purposes: shut down protests in China, and weaken the U.S. economy [China for their desire for world conquest, which most people think nothing of, and democrats for their desire to destroy Trump and right-leaning America at all costs, forcing socialism on us]. Melly and I have also observed other ‘secrets’ of the left from our home over the years, and we do NOT read any conspiracy sites or follow any ‘alternate’ news! We simply watch network news, and ‘sense’ the evil behind people, simply ‘knowing’ things that others are just now coming to know. That Obama is a criminal fraud, and has orchestrated what others are calling ‘spy-gate’. That Flynn was framed. That Clinton was colluding with Russia and trying to undermine Trump’s bid for the presidency [among all the many other evils of that couple that are somehow overlooked], and then his presidency. That Ford was falsely accusing Kavinaugh from the start, with so-called ‘experts’ saying ‘she really did endure something’. P’shaa! That Biden is an offensive creep with darkness in his past, and a thief who robs the American people. That Comey is lying to America, and abused the power given to him by the nation he claimed to ‘serve’. And on and on.
1Know this, that in the Akharit HaYamim [last days] disastrous times will come. 2And men shall be lovers of themselves and lovers of money, proud, conceited, blasphemers, disobedient to their own people, ungrateful, wicked, 3false accusers, addicts to lust, brutal, haters of good things, 4traitors, hasty, boasters, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of Elohim; 5having a shade of the fear of Elohim, but far from the power of Elohim; from such turn away. “
I do NOT believe that all of this Wuhan nonsense is the onset of the ‘mark of the beast’ in our very near future. I do not believe that the U.S. even plays a minor role in that, with the exception perhaps of creating the technology for the ‘beast’. I know who the ‘beast’ is, and he is not an American. In fact, I believe that the U.S. and much of our side of the earth will at his arising be suffering from some cataclysmic event before his mark is mandated. That event may be a cosmic accident or a manmade disaster. It doesn’t matter which. But, I do believe that the symptoms we are observing now, about which we read so clearly in Sha’ul’s letter to Timoteus, are indicative that “Et Ketz” is upon us. Et Ketz [The end of time] is the last portion of “Akharit HaYamim”, the last days. Dani’El HaNavi set aside “Et Ketz” for the latter end, and Yokhanan HaShaliakh, Yeshua’s best friend on earth, ‘revealed’ it to us. And the world psyche is indeed being prepared to accept that ‘mark’. More importantly, they are being prepared in mind and soul to accept THE LIE, that a man IS GOD. That is what we are seeing: the spiritual hypnotism of the whole world, being lulled into a dependence on government, so that this ‘beast’ can indeed arise in one hour.
I follow a very narrow road: The Torah of Messiah. It is very difficult. As such, I see ‘prophecy’ starting and founded in THAT book [Genesis-Deuteronomy]. I see in that book the “Menorah of Time”, the seven-segmented clock of God, the timeline of prophecy. I cannot un-see that roadmap. Others who ‘prophesy’ and interpret the prophecies, who do not follow His Way fully, are seeing far less than they need to see in understanding the Hitgalut [Revelation]. Those who study Daniel’s prophecies without knowing Torah are seeing far less than they need to see to fully understand.
“ever striving to learn, and never able to come to the knowledge of HaEmet…”
One could interpret that verse [in 2 Tim 3, just after the previous passage cited] more literally and say, “They will study all the time, but never be able to know The Truth“.
I do NOT pretend to ‘know fully,’ or to understand completely what is about to happen, nor to have some special gift of prophecy. In fact, I fully admit that I could be wrong. But, my issue is, I cannot ‘unsee’ how very intricately G-d wove His appointed times around Yeshua and His Ministry the first time, and as such, I KNOW that the finishing of all things MUST be woven around those remaining appointed times. That is why Mashi’akh HaSheker [the false Messiah, whose spirit has been in the world since ancient days] will CHANGE HIS APPOINTED TIMES for the people, by law [that spirit did that 1700 years ago: see post script]; to keep people from seeing and understanding ‘end things’, making ‘scoffers’ out of most who profess to believe.
What I do KNOW with CONFIDENCE is this:
We have NOT had a prophetic fulfillment of Messianic importance since, except the ministry of Yeshua laid out in Yesha-Yahu 61:1-2a, as He declared at the beginning of His ministry in 27 AD, and that was left in the hands of His followers:
1“[The] Ru’akh of Adonai יהוה is upon me; because יהוה has anointed me to bring good tidings unto the humble; He has sent me to bind up the broken-hearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the eyes that are bound; 2to proclaim the year of the good pleasure of יהוה ….
At this point, we are and remain on the middle branch of that seven-segmented clock, number 4, in the ‘summer’ without feasts, awaiting the very next feast. This is why Yeshua ‘left us hanging’, not reading that second part of verse two:
“and the day of vengeance of our Elohim.”
That ‘day’ begins with a shout:
These things I know with absolute confidence. They are more solid than any truth man can observe with his eyes. Even though to most they sound like folly, as ridiculous as Marvel and DC. But these are absolutes, and will happen, and of that, I have NO DOUBT. And I do know that these events are ever closer to us, and that what the world is living in right now is symptomatic of it all beginning, very, very soon.
And I know that MOST of the world is oblivious to them. And, much of the believing world is ambivalent about it, caring not when it happens. The theme I have seen, and taught on Shabbat of late, is that we as believers are SUPPOSED to LOOK for it, PRAY for it, anticipate it, and be EXCITED about it, without fear! And without the arrogance of ‘assuming’ we are ready, as most do.
The ‘good news’ is STILL the good news [b’sorah/gospel], but today, it comes with bad news for those who are rejecting it or turning from it: TIME IS SHORT.
“But when you see these things coming to pass, have courage and lift up your heads, because your Salvation is at hand.”
“The Little Smuggler…”
This poem broke me down at the Sho’ah Museum in Israel.
Inside the Museum, there is an exhibit called The Little Smuggler…. but, before I explain it, let me give you some personal history.
When I was about 3 to 4 years old, we lived in my Mom’s hometown in Georgia, next to my grandparents there. My grandmother was Jewish, but did not make a fuss about it until I asked her when I was 28 years old. Then she told me about the Dreyer family and how they came to Georgia. I later found Louis Dreyer, one of our grandfathers, on the Simon Wolfe database of Jewish Civil War soldiers.
While living in that town, on the weekdays while my siblings were at school, myself being the youngest, my Mom would send me to the store/post office to collect the mail and buy us a coke and a bag of peanuts. I thought I was walking a mile. It turned out to be about 75 yards, I realized later in life. We’d sit at the kitchen table and share peanuts in coke [a Georgia thing, you gotta try it], and talk. It’s one of my fondest memories.
So, at Yad VaShem’s main museum, Melly wandered ahead of me. I’m standing in front of this one exhibit called “The Little Smuggler.” There’s a photo of a boy carrying bread, and of a hole under the ghetto wall, and an asortment of other suffering children’s photos. We had already gone through the children’s museum, and it was hard. The picture is from within it, and represents all the children killed in the Sho’ah, whose name, age and city are called out as you walk through. I’m a more visual person, so that did not get to me as much as the following.
Not only am I very visual, stimulated by the many photos here, but I’m a poet. It’s one way I deal with my inner thoughts, much like Melekh David did [Tehillim/Psalms]. So, I’m standing there perusing these sad pictures, and then I begin to read this poem, written by a child herself, who was eventually killed in a camp…
I could not finish it.
My memories of that trip in peace and safety to get mom and me a coke and peanuts were superimposed over the little boy in the main picture…..
THE LITTLE SMUGGLER
by Henryka Lazawart
Past walls, past guards
Impudent, hungry, obstinate
I slip by, I run like a cat
At noon, at night, at dawn
In foul weather, a blizzard, the heat of the sun
A hundred times I risk my life
I risk my childish neck.
Under my arm a sack-cloth bag
0n my back a torn rag
My young feet are nimble
In my heart constant fear
But all must be endured
All must be borne
So that you, ladies and gentlemen,
May have your fill of bread tomorrow.
Through walls, through holes, through brick
At night, at dawn, by day
Daring hungry, cunning
I move silently like a shade
if suddenly the hand of fate
Reaches me at this game
’Twill be the usual trap life sets.
Don’t wait for me any longer
I won’t come back to you
My voice won’t reach that far
Dust of the street will cover
The lost child’s fate.
Only one grim question
The still face asks
Mummy, who will bring you bread tomorrow
Let’s just say I lost my ‘military bearing’ here….
I have since found the Dreyers who perished in the Sho’ah and lamented their death. I give thanks for the blessing of survivors, realizing how very precarious is our existence.
May they always be remembered, and may their memory remain a blessing…
Most of the world is commemorating His resurrection at the rising of the sun, on ‘sun-day’, but Yeshua arose RIGHT AFTER the Sabbath ended, at the beginning of the BIBLICAL “first day” of the week, ie, SATURDAY NIGHT.
That time is called in Israel, “Motza’ei Shabbat”, the ‘departure of the Sabbath’, and those words are used even in the greek texts of the NT to tell us when Yeshua arose.
There is a ceremony that has been held EVERY WEEK for THOUSANDS of years among Jews, called “Havdalah”. It is held approximately one hour AFTER sundown on Saturday evening, and it marks the “Motza’ei Shabbat,’ and officially begins the new week.
All of the verses that tell us of the ‘timing’ of Yeshua’s resurrection do not actually say the timing of the resurrection, but of the arrival of the women at the tomb. When they got there, it was ALREADY empty. But, even the timing of this is way earlier than dawn or sunrise. They likely went out there just after their Havdalah observance, when Shabbat has ended and we are released to our work. Traditionally, we start our week with ‘good deeds’. To these women, this was probably one of the most important things they could be doing ‘at the beginning of the week’, just after the Havdalah has marked the end of Shabbat and the start of the week. By the time they got there, Yeshua had already been out of the grave for some time! Here are each of the accounts:
Yokhanan Markos 16:9 :: “Now He rose early at the start of the week…..“
Luka 24: 1 :: And at the beginning of the week, before dawn, while it was still dark, they came to the tomb and brought the spices which they had prepared; and there were with them other women. 2And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb.
Yokhanan 20:1 :: At the beginning of the week, very early while it was still dark, Miryam of Magdala came to the tomb; and she saw that the stone was removed from the tomb.
Matti 28:1 :: In the evening of the Shabbat, when the first of the week began, there came Miryam of Magdala and the other Miryam, to see the tomb.
None of these give us the actual moment of His rising from the dead, but an account of what happened AFTER He had risen from the dead. Luka [Luke] may not have been as close to this as were Yokhanan and Matti, and it seems their accounts get a little more precise, and more early, especially Matti’s. Yokhanan Markos’ [Mark] is pretty ‘dead on’ in saying when He arose, however. But, if one has walked under the light of Messianic Judaism for any length of time, one knows how every ancient ceremony of Judaism points to Yeshua in some way, and how very related to the death, burial and resurrection the Pesakh [Passover] season is, and how critical the timing of biblical days is to the mindset of “peshat” study of scripture, seeking out the plain meaning of the text. Cultural context clears up many questions.
The Havdalah ceremony is brief, and happens in the home, just as the Sabbath starts in the home with the Erev Shabbat ‘mini-pesakh’ meal every week. The ceremony begins after a special candle has been lit on Shabbat. This candle is one unit, with three wicks, and is called “Lapid”. In Ma’asei HaShlikhim [Acts] 20, we see these candles burning:
“7And at the beginning of the week, [Sat night] when we assembled to break bread, Pavlos declared to them, and because he was going to leave the next day, he prolonged his speech until midnight. 8Now there was a great glow of light from the lapidot in the upper chamber where we were gathered together. “
Once the ceremonial lapid is lit, a blessing is said to consecrate the ceremony and the ‘light of the fire’. We sing the blessings in Hebrew, because they are more easily memorized that way, and it is a form of praise.
But by this time, 1990 years ago, Yeshua had been in the grave since Wed evening; the three days and three nights of time in the grave are over. The Sabbath is almost departed.
There are two other elements of the Havdalah ceremony. A glass of wine, and a container of spices. The wine is blessed as in every other ceremony involving wine, such as the ‘third cup,’ the ‘cup after supper’ that Yeshua blessed on Tue night at His last Pesakh Seder, when He renewed and ratified the covenant with Israel, as was prophesied by Jeremiah [31:31-34]. We hold up a full cup of wine, a symbol of the Joy of יהוה , and bless the creator for creating the “Fruit of the Vine”, and then we partake of the ‘sweet joy’ of the Sabbath.
We then hold up the spices and bless them in similar fashion. The spices are then drawn to the nose by everyone, enjoying the aroma of the mixture of spices. This is symbolic of all the nations being ‘mixed together’ as a sweet aroma to יהוה . Our prayers are described as a sweet aroma, as ‘incense’. This, then, is an expression of our hope and trust that He hears our prayers. After the ceremony ends, the first thing we do is pray and petition Him for the needs of others. Here we are expressing our trust in that hope. Further, Yeshua was wearing the spiced perfume that was applied to him before He suffered. The women were bringing spices with which to anoint Him again! [see Mark citation below].
After the spices are enjoyed by all, the wine is poured out, diminishing our ‘joy’ just a bit, as the departing of the Sabbath is bittersweet. We have assembled at His appointed time, a time HE said He would meet with us. Yeshua is “Adon of the Shabbat”, the ‘master of the sabbath,’ and our intimate time with Him is almost over. We pour out some of the joy, and extinguish the light of the Sabbath in that joy. Yeshua’s death is likewise bittersweet to us.
The light of the fire ‘sparks’ and tries to remain, but eventually succumbs to the wine. This is symbolic of ‘the joy that was set before Him’. Yeshua died knowing He would rise from the dead. At this moment, Shabbat has ended. At THIS moment, Yeshua rose from the dead! This is the very beginning of the first day of the week, and in scripture, the ‘first day’ began with Elohim [God] saying “Yehi Or”, “LET THERE BE LIGHT”. Creation was not witnessed by any man. Likewise, the resurrection was not witnessed by anyone! It happened in darkness. It had to be proven to the Talmidim! The Body of Yeshua is the PROOF of the resurrection; no one caught it on film, and no one saw it happen. But hundreds of people later SAW His resurrected body, people who had witnessed His dead body, torn open and drained of its blood, put in a ‘kever’, a tomb.
We then partake of and drink the rest of the wine, which was blessed on Shabbat, the last day of Yeshua being in the grave. His blood had been shed for us. The wine symbolizes His blood. And it is symbolic of the Joy of יהוה . We enter into the week with His joy, carried over from Shabbat. It was some time AFTER this that the women came to the tomb, and “they went away hurriedly from the tomb with fear and with great joy…“
On this day, at this time of year after Passover, last night for us, we also begin the counting of the Omer, with the “First Omer”, which is the beginning of the season of Bikkurim, or “Firstfruits”. Most Jews actually begin the counting rotationally on the day after their High Sabbath, which they also have wrong. They consider the “High Sabbath” to be the 15th day of the first month, having started on the night of the 15th [biblical days start at night]. We do not, and neither did Yeshua. Yeshua observed His Pesakh Seder a day BEFORE the P’rushim [Pharisees], along with much of Israel. At that time, the P’rushim were vying for control of Judaism, and were beginning to exert their authority over G-d, and had MOVED the Pesakh. But Yeshua observed it on the 14th evening after the new moon. They were hurrying trying to get Yeshua down off the tree before THEIR observance, the 15th evening, beginning their high sabbath on that Wed night, which would end on Thur night. After THAT ‘sabbath’ had ended, it was friday, and THIS is when the ladies went and bought spices, which they would not have been able to do on thur OR sat! And if Yeshua had been put in the grave on fri night, they CERTAINLY would not have been able to BUY spices in Jerusalem after the sabbath on Sat night to be at the tomb VERY EARLY on sun morning!
Yokhanan Markos 16:1 :: “And when Shabbat [High Sabbath of the P’rushim] had ended, Miryam of Magdala and Miryam the mother of Ya’akov and Salome bought spices, that they might come and anoint Him.
This is key! It FIXES the day of Yeshua’s execution to have been long before the weekly Sabbath that started on friday night! The customary timeframe most follow, Jews AND christians, would rob these ladies of their opportunity to buy spices. So, the Jewish people today STILL erroneously keep Pesakh on the 15th, and begin to count the Omer on the 16th. We do NOT! Yeshua is our “Bikkurim,” our ‘first fruits’, and He did not rise until the ACTUAL WEEKLY SABBATH was over! And this is what VaYikra [Lev] says is the timing of the ‘first omer’:
“[you] shall reap the harvest thereof, then you shall bring the Omer Reishit of your harvest unto the kohen. 11And he shall wave the omer before יהוה , to be accepted for you; on the morrow after the Shabbat the kohen shall wave it.” …. 15And you shall count unto you from the morrow after The Shabbat, from the day that you brought the omer of the waving; seven Sabbaths shall there be complete; 16even unto the morrow after the seventh Shabbat shall you number fifty days… ” [VaYikra/Lev 23]
No ‘high sabbath’ is EVER called “HaShabbat” in the Torah! THE Sabbath. So we ‘count’ the first day of the Omer on Sat night, after the weekly regular Sabbath that falls after Pesakh. Using this, we can easily see that the Jews were wrong, and that Yeshua is indeed our “First Omer”.
So, after we closed out the Sabbath, we began to count the Omer last night, saying, ‘today is Day 1 of the Omer.’ the ‘fifty’ days and ‘seven’ weeks will be counted. This was going on while Yeshua was meeting with His Talmidim and giving them final instructions. On day 43, He ascended into Heaven before their eyes. On day 50, after all seven sabbaths from Pesakh had been counted, He sent them the “Ru’akh HaKodesh,” [holy spirit], the power they would need to declare His Truth to the world.
We do this every year. But, this year was special, because this year the biblical calendar was in lock-step with the year Yeshua suffered, died, and rose from the dead, becoming our “First Omer”. That morning, when the ladies finally found Him WHILE IT WAS STILL DARK, He would NOT let them touch Him, saying, “I have not yet ascended to my Father.” This is the words of the Kohen Gadol [High Priest] before the offerings are made; no one is to touch him and defile the offering. That same EVENING, Yeshua told His Talmidim, ‘TOUCH ME, and SEE that I am FLESH AND BONE JUST AS YOU ARE”…. Why was it now okay for Him to be touched? Because He had, during the day, ascended, and presented Himself as our ‘FIRST OMER,’ our waive-sheaf offering, the Firstfruits from among the dead!
Our Father cares very deeply about the timing of these things. We care that you see that HE is utterly Jewish, and worked within the framework of the customs of Israel! Even though some of their leaders were already in error. The REMNANT of the truly righteous ‘saw’ these things, and rejoiced in their fulfillment, still keeping these feasts as Messianic Jews [ 1 Cor 5:7-8, Acts 20:7 ].
Tonight begins Pesakh, the Passover of יהוה , commemorating the SALVATION of our Jewish people, and all those who would trust in Him through His Son, Yeshua the Messiah. Yet most of our Jewish people, including many of those who are Jewish and also believe in the Son of G-d, are not holding Pesakh until tomorrow night. And many who are not Jewish but who do trust in the Son of G-d for Salvation will not observe it at all, with many of whom who have declared this previous first day of the week “Palm Sunday”; all of that group will celebrate the time they ‘think’ the resurrection occurred, on the next first day of the week. ALL OF THESE ARE WRONG.
Yeshua is the Son of G-d. He is also, as declared in the Brit Khadashah [NT] scriptures, our ‘Kohen Gadol’, or High Priest. As such, it is Him we follow in regard to keeping the sacred observances set down by His Father, the Creator of the Universe, and observed by Him as a Jew while He was here on earth. Yeshua kept His Pesakh Seder [Passover meal] the night before the Jewish Rabbis of the day did. They had moved it, for convenience’s sake. Another group of religious Jews, and many observant Jews not in a particular religious order, kept it the same night as Yeshua, including His own Talmidim [Torah Students, known now as ‘disciples’]. His Talmidim came to Him on the third day of the week, a Tuesday, and asked Him, “Where do you wish that we go and prepare the Pesakh for you to eat?” As this was a day earlier than the Rabbis, the P’rushim [Pharisees], kept their observance, we see that the Talmidim aligned with many in Yisra’el who had not yet conformed to the erroneous observance of the P’rushim. Yeshua kept His Pesakh, therefore, according to the instruction of Torah, ON the EVENING of the FOURTEENTH day after the observed Khodesh [crescent new moon] was seen along with the ripened, “Aviv” barley. That is how the calendar was set in Yisra’el, by the Kohen Gadol. This, the Rabbis still did right at that time, blowing the shofar at the Khodesh that was observed along with the ripened barley, to declare the 1st “month” of the new, sacred year, rather than observing a 13th month. [The Aviv barley is how the Creator determines when Pesakh is, and when the new year is].
Since Yeshua was in Beit Anya for six days leading up to this day, and travelled back and forth to Yerushalayim for the four days leading up to His Pesakh, then Yeshua’s ‘triumphal entry’ would NOT have been on a ‘sun-day’, but on Shabbat! Our ‘saturday’. The day they waved palm branches and hailed Him as King, they sang part of the Hallel, Tehillah 118, “Hoshia Nah! Barukh HaBa B’Shem יהוה , ” a traditional Pesakh song [Ps 113-118 are the Hallel] “Please save us now! Blessed is He who comes in the Name of יהוה .” Yeshua then held His Seder four days later, being examined as the spotless Pesakh Lamb for four days, just as Yisra’el was instructed to do in Shemot 12 [Exodus] for the first Pesakh offering. They drilled Him with questions and insults more than any other year during that four days, and found Him to be ‘without fault’. On TUESDAY night, Yeshua held His Pesakh Seder with His Talmidim [Matti 26, Yokhanan-Markos [Mark] 14, Luka 22, Yokhanan 13]. He was tried after midnight that night, in violation of the Torah, without the whole court present. He was ‘examined’ by Herod, and by Pilatos, and found innocent. He was yet sentenced to death, whipped and beaten, and executed at 3:00 P.M. on Wednesday afternoon, and was taken down off the tree just before sundown on Wednesday evening, just before the Rabbis, the “Shammai” sect of the Pharisees, observed their erroneous Pesakh on the FIFTEENTH evening of the 1st khodesh, as most of our Jewish people today still do, missing Messiah, blind to His leadership, as is the rest of the world.
Yeshua remained in the grave for THREE DAYS and THREE NIGHTS, just as HE SAID He would. [Matti 12:40] Wed night through thursday, thur night through friday, and friday night through saturday DAY. Yeshua ROSE from the dead at the END of Shabbat, at ‘deep dark’, at the beginning of the Jewish week: SATURDAY NIGHT! The end of Shabbat and the beginning of the week are marked by “Motza’ei Shabbat”, the ‘exit of the Sabbath’, with a ceremony called “Havdalah”, or “Making Distinction”. We Messianic [Peshitta] Jews and Gentiles celebrate the Sabbath as a Mini Pesakh [as do all Jews, but not seeing Messiah in it]. We mark and commemorate His death and atoning for our sins on Erev Shabbat, the beginning of the Sabbath on fri night; we rest and assemble on saturday day, and then hold Havdalah on Saturday night after sundown, at ‘deep dark’, to commemorate the TRUE time of His Resurrection on a weekly basis. But we fully celebrate the Pesakh, just as Sha’ul [Paul] says we should [1 Cor 5, “Let us celebrate the Khag”], each year in its proper time.
I’ve said all of that to say this. “Ma Nishtana HaLailah Hazeh?” That is the question at the top of this article. It is a question the children at a seder ask in song, “Why is THIS night DIFFERENT from all other nights?” For us, it is so vastly different this year!!
My family and I used to have to observe Pesakh at home with just us, because twenty years ago there were NO OTHER MESSIANIC JEWS assembling in our town! After we began to build His Congregation, we started holding public Pesakh Seders, just as Yeshua did for His last Seder. This year, we ‘have’ to observe our Seder in our HOMES again! And this time, NOT because there are no others to observe it with us, but because there is a PLAGUE! And because we have been ‘commanded’ not to have gatherings more than TEN people, the SAME number to which Elohim [G-d the Creator] limited the first Pesakh Seders!
Further, THIS year is one of those RARE years when we are doing it on the SAME DAY as Yeshua, when He held His LAST SEDER and declared to Twelve JEWISH MEN , “This [the cup after supper, the third cup in every Jewish Seder] is the cup of the Brit Khadashah in my blood, which is shed for you.” That was spoken on a TUESDAY NIGHT, roughly 1990 years ago. Because the ‘khodesh’ is declared by the observance in Israel of the crescent moon and the Aviv barley, and because Pesakh is always the 14th evening of that khodesh [NOT the 15th as most Jews do today], Pesakh is hence not always on the same night of the week. It moves. But, THIS YEAR, in the midst of a PLAGUE, it IS on the same night that Yeshua observed it, and I contend ALSO the same night of the original Pesakh.
THIS year it is indeed different for those who keep The Word according to it’s PLAIN MEANING [Peshitta/Peshat]. We are in lock step with the TRUE “Savlanut” [suffering, ie ‘passion’] of Messiah. He was plagued that night with false accusations, curses, beatings, etc; and that ‘day’ [wed] He was mocked, scourged, and executed, shedding His blood for the very people who were doing it to Him, and for ALL the world. He was put into the grave on the first ‘day’ of Matzot, the second day of eating Matzot, with six days remaining [Deut 16:8] , the day of commemorating having made MORE Matzot [unleavened bread] for their journey out by NIGHT on the FIFTEENTH evening [THAT is what we SHOULD be commemorating/meditating over on the actual 15th night, that AND Yeshua’s journey into the netherworld for us, for three days and nights]. Note that Yeshua marked the ‘cup of the renewed covenant in His Blood’ while His blood was still contained in His living Body. That is the night we celebrate the Brit Khadashah [Jer 31:30-34], the fulfillment of G-d’s promise to write His Torah upon our hearts. That process BEGINS when we truly understand Yeshua’s work for us, and ‘trust’ that HE ALONE can redeem us from our sins, and that He was RAISED from the dead THREE DAYS and THREE NIGHTS LATER, at the END of the Sabbath, at the START of the [Biblical] week, on Saturday night.
This year COULD be the LAST year ever that we have a somewhat “peaceful” Pesakh Seder, observed in relative freedom [although already abridged this year], before terrible things change this earth. This night is indeed different from all other nights! ESPECIALLY for the VERY, VERY SMALL strand of believers who actually follow Yeshua in His observance of this, HIS PESAKH.
Many believers are cognitively aware that an ‘anti-messiah’ would come. Some are also thus aware that the ‘spirit’ of the anti-messiah is already in the world. But, what most DO NOT know is that this Ben HaAbadon, this ‘son of destruction’, the MAN who would embody that spirit, would ‘Change the Mo’edim’ and the ‘Torah’. “…he shall think to change the Mo’edim and the Torah…” [Dani’el 9] The “Mo’edim” are the sacred APPOINTED FEASTS of יהוה . This happened already in our history! That ‘spirit already changed the Mo’edim, and the Torah. Our Jewish people moved the Pesakh, Matzot, Bikkurim, and Shavu’ot, some 2500 years ago [time, times, half a time]. Since then, they now consider ‘Talmud’ as sacred writ, and observe many mitzvot that G-d did NOT speak, though they claim He did. Notice that they did NOT move Yom Teru’ah, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot! The early ones in the spring, the first four, point to what Yeshua HAS ALREADY DONE, and because the Rabbis MOVED those feasts, most of our Jewish people remain BLIND to Yeshua’s fulfillment of them! But, they STILL observe Yom Teru’ah, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot on the right days, the ones that teach about His Return and coming Kingship. But, they only coincide when the khodesh of G-d [the seventh crescent from the Pesakh] aligns with their declared ‘Rosh Hashanah’, AS IT DOES THIS YEAR!!!!!!!! Because today, they ‘calculate’ the khodesh, and do not ‘see’ it.
Timing is VERY IMPORTANT! Yeshua said, “KEEP WATCH”, saying that His Day will come as a THIEF, at such an hour as you know not. Our Jewish people do not ‘know’ that Yom Teru’ah could mark the beginning of the Time of Jacob’s trouble [Great Tribulation]. Our fellow believers do not know that Yom Teru’ah is the “Day That No Man Knows”, the “Last Shofar”, the “Day of Judgment”, the day of the Wedding of the King, the “Coronation of the King’, etc.
Tonight is indeed different than EVERY OTHER NIGHT!! Our little group is having virtual fellowship, so we can all observe it in Hebrew, together. But, we will be gathered as families this year, in our homes, safe from the ‘plague’. This feast was the very beginning of the OBSERVANCE of HIS yearly ‘sabbath’ DAYS!!! And it STARTED IN THEIR HOMES!!!! We will also have a virtual ‘q&a’ about ‘end things’, because, with all that is happening in the world, we who trust in Yeshua had BETTER take His advice, “34But take heed to yourselves that your hearts may not become heavy by extravagance, and drunkenness, and the worries of this world, and that day come suddenly upon you. 35For like a downpour it will entrap all those who dwell on the face of all the earth. 36Therefore keep watch always, and pray that you may be worthy to escape all these things which are to happen, and that you may stand before Ben HaAdam.”
Many times when Yeshua was asked and/or began to teach about ‘end things,’ the FIRST thing out of His mouth was, “do NOT be deceived“. That is our prayer. But, since He told us to be alert, and to watch, and gave us the ‘signs’, it would be FOOLISH not to pay attention to what’s going on right now. There are many opinions and streams of thought about ‘why’ we [in the world] are going through what it is we are going through right now. It is so easy to be deceived about it. And there are thousands of interpretations of the prophecies about end things, most of which IGNORE the biblical model of interpretation. THIS night is different tonight, because of the very things going on, for all who actually observe HIS WAYS, and keep the Pesakh of יהוה . It is NOT the “Jewish Passover.” It is HIS! [Shemot/Exo 12:27]. This year, our spring observance is lock-step with the Year Yeshua suffered. And we will likely be on lockdown through ALL the spring feasts. Most believers are forbidden to fully observe their erroneous “easter” observance, but we have been given the OPPORTUNITY to observe the Pesakh in our HOMES, FULLY, the way it was originally observed! Yet we still can ‘relax’, and not eat in haste as did our forebears, but can still eat in a relaxed manner like the twelve did, when Yokhanan leaned against Yeshua’s bosom and asked, “Is it I?” Is not a false observance of HIS PESAKH a betrayal? Yehudah [Judas] the betrayer was not permitted to finish the Seder with Yokhanan and the eleven faithful. Ask yourself if you are among the betrayers. Are you keeping Pesakh for the right reason? At the right time? If you think motive and ‘timing’ do not matter to G-d our Creator and Father, you are sorely mistaken.
Timing is, indeed, everything.
Here is a video I was challenged to make; I hope it helps someone get through tough stuff during all this chaos.
I made it before finishing my second cup of coffee, so I’m still a little disheveled. But, the scriptures are very helpful for those who would ‘hear’.
I wish you all shalom, Simkha, and Bri’ut.
I mean that with the utmost of respect, both for Yeshua, and for those who are called or consider themselves ‘redneck’; I come from a long line of ‘rednecks’, given my understanding of that word. My dad used to say, “There are some smaaart people hiding in these woods.” And indeed there are. Rednecks, like myself, can be very plainspoken, and frank, which to some is offensive. That is not my intent. But, the plainspoken part is: Yeshua was VERY clear about ‘end things’, and very, very clear about us not fearing. “Do not fear” is the most repeated command in all of scripture.
We are indeed in tricky, weird, perhaps even perilous times. Along with all the chaos in the world, with the panic of a pandemic, economic systems failing, and everyone’s livelihood being threatened by a depression, which would probably take ten years or more to recover from, especially if a stimulus is not offered sooner than later, I have also heard of other types of suffering. And it put my heart in a deeper mode of supplication for His Presence this morning.
After saying ‘the prayers’ that are customary every morning [Acts 2:42], I presented my pleas for others, who have or have not asked it of me, feeling some measure of their pains and fears, and a little of my own, admittedly, though I have had great shalom these past few months. As I sat and meditated, and hoped for Him to ‘move’, [sometimes I hate our cliches, but that is what I was hoping], the letters to the seven congregations in the Revelation went through my mind for some reason, particularly the last phrase of each letter, repeated seven times: מִי שֶׁמְּנַצֵּחַ , “mi shem’natze’akh”, whoever ‘overcomes’, ‘obtains victory,’ ‘perseveres’…
Life is challenging enough. Living a life of true faith in this world is even more challenging, and is not for the weak, or those who want to live a basically trouble-free life. And a trouble-free life can be achieved, without faith in the Creator and His Messiah. There are those in the community of faith who would say otherwise, but I assert that they do not understand the life of Faith, and may themselves not truly know Him. Faith in Messiah Yeshua separates you from people. “I did not come to bring shalom, but a sword, to divide” people. “In this world you will have tzarah..” You WILL have ‘tribulation’; not ‘may,’ but ‘will’. בָּעוֹלָם צָרָה יֵשׁ לָכֶם; אֲבָל הִתְעוֹדְדוּ, אֲנִי נִצַּחְתִּי אֶת הָעוֹלָם There is for y’all tribulation in this world, but y’all CHEER Yourselves up! I have ‘overcome’ this world! [Redneck, uh, literal Yeshua]. His word there for ‘overcome’ is the same word as in the seven letters: nitzakhti.
As I sat and thought, I strove to remember what exactly it was that we were to ‘overcome’, or have ‘victory’ or ‘perseverance’ over. Some of those ‘tribulations’ came to mind, as I have studied those letters many times. And as I sat there thinking on them, I was compelled to share them here, and remind the believing community of our hope. And of against what our ‘fight’, our ‘struggle’, really is.
Yeshua dictated seven letters to seven congregations in the general area of western Greece in Asia Minor, what we know today as modern Turkey. These Greek cities each had their own chief, false gods. The congregations were founded there by Paul [Sha’ul], and had existed for at least twenty to thirty years by the time of Yeshua’s visit to Yokhanan on the Island of Patmos, which was west of all these cities. If one were to look at the map, one could ‘see’ a Menorah formed between Patmos and these seven cities. Yeshua said that he walked among the seven “Menorah”s, which is the spiritual manifestation of His Presence in an assembly of believers. He warned them that if they did not correct their error, individually as congregations, He would remove their Menorah from their midst. But, with that correction, came encouragement. “Mi shem’natze’akh,” WHOEVER OVERCOMES….
Many good minds over the last 2,000 years have attempted to analyze those letters, and theories abound as to what the seven congregations represent. I’m going to look at it from a very simple, unified approach. Yes, there are many individual assemblies around the globe. In our day, unlike in that day, there are many individual assemblies even in the smallest of towns, much less in cities. Back then, there was ONE congregation in each of these cities, even if they met in various homes or public venues. These were assemblies that were likely founded by Sha’ul who was the Shali’akh to the Goyim, [Apostle sent to the Nations/Gentiles] who went into the SYNAGOGUES of these cities, where Jews AND Gentiles met to worship יהוה , the Creator, God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the God of the Jews, from the Gentile perspective. Sha’ul introduced this mixed company to Yeshua, the Son of God, who gave them His Ru’akh. [Breath/Spirit] Time has passed, and they are now entering into error, and Yeshua Himself is correcting them, warning them to prepare for His return, and warning them that if they do not “Shema”, “HEAR”, [the greatest command in all of scripture, Mark 12], His Presence will leave them. In those seven cities today, there is no congregation! So, who do these cities ‘represent’ for us, the modern reader of the Hitgalut?
As I said, the theories abound, but there is no doubt that ‘they’ represent the WHOLE, INDIVIDUAL congregation of Messiah, His Body, throughout the ages, and the struggles that every assembly would or could endure until He returns; the struggles they faced are the same today. The spirits they fought have been the same for every true assembly through all the ages. The Body of Messiah worldwide has always and will always face these same challenges, until the day He puts His foot down on earth and brings everything under His rule, finally. How individual assemblies respond to those challenges determines whether their veracity is lasting, whether His Presence remains with them, or whether they become obsolete in the realm of the Spirit. In the practical, these seven congregations became obsolete, so much so, that within 1,000 years they were gone, and today, there is barely a vestige of their memory in those places. Most ‘assemblies’ of people today have become obsolete in His Realm, and merely function as gatherings of people, and not as light and truth, healing, compassion, and change for individuals and families. At least, not on a lasting, eternal level.
How can we, then, as individuals, learn from these seven letters, and how might they encourage us in these most perilous of times our generation has seen?
The first assembly Yeshua addressed is that of Ephesus. He told them that they have left their first love, and then turns around and tells them to return to the FIRST WORKS. Efesus is the ONE city that we have more information on in the scriptures than the others. Perhaps that is why Yeshua started with this one? Sha’ul had spent three years there, and he had used the “School of Tyranus” in order to teach the SCRIPTURES every day for those believers, also going house to house on Shabbat to do so. [Acts 19-20] Sha’ul did not teach them to abandon the Torah, but to walk it in Messiah, trusting Him for Salvation, but also obeying Him, as He obeyed His Father. He taught them to love one another. He taught them the Jewish customs [1 Kor 11:2, 2 Tes 2:15, 3:6] in order to show them how to worship. They all, together, worshipped on Shabbat. The ‘first works’ of Efesus, then, can be none other than what Sha’ul taught them for three years. When Yeshua tells this assembly, ‘Whoever overcomes,’ the promise for them is that they will partake of Etz Khayim, ‘The Tree of Life’, in Gan Elohai, the Garden of His God. Gentiles and many theologians have a hard time admitting it, but Etz Khayim, the Tree of Life, has always been represented figuratively by the Torah, and symbolically by the Menorah. This is well established in ancient Jewish custom. Yeshua is telling His congregation to return to the Torah, as evidence of their trust for Him and obedience to Him, and be rewarded with Eternal Life as a result.
To the next assembly, Yeshua says, ‘do not fear anything that you SHALL suffer.’ The first struggle of every congregation, other than that of the propensity to turn away from simple obedience to His Word/Torah, is that of physical suffering of some sort: poverty, persecution, etc. Both of these come with the threat of physical, earthly death. Yeshua says to the ones who persevere that they will not be ‘hurt’ by the SECOND death. Many do not understand what this is. Many believers in Messiah do not realize that EVERY human will rise from the dead! Believers and unbelievers alike! Believers will rise from the dead before He returns, unbelievers 1,000 years later! And those will experience/be hurt by the SECOND DEATH: eternal separation from the Creator, and other suffering we cannot pretend to explain. Those who ‘struggle,’ those who strive to continue to trust Him and obey, will ‘overcome’, and not be hurt by it.
To the next assembly, He instructs that they should repent from two doctrinal errors: that of Bilam, and that of the Nicolaitans. We know without doubt what the error of Bilam was: he desired money for his service to God. He fell away from being a true servant because of his desire to profit from harming Israel through false prophecy. The Nicolaitan error is harder to ‘see’, as there is no recorded history of a possible people group, but it is encoded in the name itself. The name means “controller of the people”, where the suffix is actually where we get our word ‘laity’ from, as in, ‘lay people’, who are led/controlled by a clergy, a superior religious class that feigns to serve, but actually controls people, using money as the catalyst. This is true of MOST EVERY assembly today, but especially of those that are institutional in any way, or married to the state by contract on paper in any way. This is a ‘spirit’, and Yeshua warns this assembly to free itself from it through REPENTANCE. Interestingly, it is to this city that Yeshua says He knows where they live, where “Kiseh HaSatan” is, the throne of Satan. Yes, there was an altar to Zeus there, that looked like a throne; but, on a spiritual level, it is the place where the ‘laity’ are controlled by those ‘above’ them spiritually [temple on high places]. Many ‘churches’, even today, have a ‘throne’ somewhere, where the ‘leader’/clergy sits. The name of this city actually means ‘high/exalted’. When people think they are the ones who judge or are ‘in control,’ Yeshua has left the building. If we are able to repent, and to ‘overcome’ this, we are promised first the ‘hidden manna’; Yeshua is telling us that His Body, the WORDS of His truth, cannot be deprived from us by any human, even if that human[s] pretends to serve in His Name; we are also promised a “New Name”, with a white stone that has a ‘secret name’ written on it, known only to the individual and to Him.
The next city has a spirit that is very, very common in many, if not most congregations, a spirit that our last assembly was not able to avoid, unbeknownst to most there, though we prayed and were aware of its threat. This is Jezebel/ Yizevel. Yizevel is the spirit of adultery/harlotry. Because of this ‘spirit,’ which many people think is simply that of a contentious woman, Yeshua promised that whoever the prophetess was that brought it into the Thyatira congregation would be put into a coffin. The adultery about which we speak is physical adultery, which can be an outward manifestation of spiritual adultery/harlotry. People today in MOST congregations do NOT take this spirit/sin very seriously at all. We ‘tolerate’ it abundantly in our culture. Most assemblies today are packed with people who court with/lust after and sleep with one another before marriage. We use the business of life and the attitude of the world as an excuse to ‘try on’ a person sexually before marriage, like we try on shoes. We use the excuse of ‘grace’ to justify breaking up a home in order to have ‘happiness’, in spite of a covenant made before God with a spouse. This is such a serious sin in an assembly that Yeshua promised that the congregation leader who was committing it would die. He warns the whole congregation to repent of it. Along with the harlotry/adultery, there came the practice of eating things offered demonically to idols. Most do not realize that this is not a ‘mythical/symbolic’ thing, but that people were eating food that Yeshua said not to eat, particularly things that were offered up to other gods. We have today pagan restaurants that actually offer their food to demons, “Buddha,” “Krishna”, and others found in many ‘eastern’ themed restaurants. Further, we have “Halal” food flooding our grocery stores and restaurants, meats that have been offered to Allah by a muslim Imam. And churches do not seem to care, but want to accommodate these practices and overlook them. Most of the believing world is quite content not to pay attention at all to what they put in their mouth. But, Yeshua was very serious about this, as this was part of the practice of an adulterous, false prophet. Consider this: food is a serious matter. So serious, that it was over FOOD, over WHAT we put in our mouth, that ALL sin came into the world! Yeshua warns this congregation to repent, saying He will put Yizevel into a coffin, and all those who follow her into ‘great tribulation.’ This is a warning that any believer who does not turn from these behaviors will go through the WORST of the tribulation! Incidentally, the name of the city here means ‘the stench of affliction/tribulation’. The promise of reward for repenting of her adtultery, however, is ‘authority over the nations,’ and ‘the morning star’. The ‘morning star’ is the sun, in practicality. But, Yeshua called Himself the ‘morning star’ at the end of this book [Rev], so it is clearly a reference to Himself. This could obviously be a reference to ‘eternal life’, which I truly believe it is, as all the ‘rewards’ offered at the ends of these letters allude to eternal life. It is, I believe, the RESURRECTION, as the sun gives us a picture of this every single morning. Kefa tells us of this concept in his second letter:
“We have also a D’var Nevu’ah [Prophetic Word] which is true; you do well when you look to it [Torah] for guidance, as you look to the lamp that shines in a dark place until the dawn of day, when the sun will shine in your hearts, knowing this first, that not every prophetic writing is made clear in its own book.”
He is speaking here of the Torah, and of the rest of scripture, which prophesies about Yeshua as a ‘Star out of Ya’akov,’ saying the Scepter [authority of kingship] shall never leave His hand. Overcoming the spirit of adultery/harlotry is thus rewarded.
The next city is warned to ‘wake up,’ or He will come as a thief. This is clearly a reference to Yeshua’s warnings to believers to be alert to His coming, and of the signs He gave to signal it. He tells them that there are only a FEW who do not have dirty garments, who will walk in white, because they are worthy. Yeshua told us in Luka 21:
“But take heed to yourselves that your hearts may not become heavy by extravagance and drunkenness and the worries of this world, and that day come suddenly upon you. For like a downpour it will entrap all those who dwell on the face of all the earth. Therefore keep watch always, and pray that you may be worthy to escape all these things which are to happen, and that you may stand before Ben HaAdam.”
All of this is most probably an allusion to the wedding theme of His return. And those few who are ‘awake’ for it are the ones who overcome, and are then promised they would be given ‘white robes’; interestingly, the city’s name means ‘red ones’; ‘though your sins are as scarlet, they shall be white as snow’; they are then promised that their names would not be ‘blotted out’ of the Sefer Khayim, the Book of Life, but their names would be confessed by Yeshua before His Father. Being ‘spiritually’ awake, then, assures clean garments, and is itself a means to overcome this world. Might it be that the stupor of sleep causes the other sinful things already mentioned to the other assemblies?
The sixth city has ‘a little strength’; ‘meh’at ko’akh.’ “Ko’akh” is the outward presence of the Ru’akh ‘upon’ those who have Him inside by trust, who have been transformed by His resurrection. It was promised to the believers who assembled a week later on Shavu’ot and received it. Yeshua acknowledges that the assembly has but a little of it. It is interesting that shortly after the Hitgalut was written, a believer asked of Polycarp, the student of the Yokhanan who wrote the Hitgalut, why there was so little ‘power’ or ‘miracles’ any more in the assemblies, and this was a mere 1 generation from the Shali’akh [Apostle]. Certainly now we have but very little outward ‘ko’akh’. None of us are raising the dead, healing the sick [though so many claim to be; if so, why are so many still ill after they ‘name it and claim it’; they excuse their lack of a miracle somehow. The miracles of Yeshua are undeniable.] We experience a small amount of His Ko’akh, at times, as have I, and my whole family, but we are not overflowing with it like the apostolic generation was. Anyone who says otherwise is fooling themselves. It is self-righteous self-hypnosis. Having ‘meh’at ko’akh’, just a little of His power, is not a bad thing, but seems to be a compliment from Yeshua! Encouragement. Be GLAD that He does allow it to manifest ‘on’ us at times! He tells them, ‘You have OBEYED my Word and have not denied MY NAME.’ That is FAR more important than having signs and wonders. He mentions false Jews here, those who ‘claim’ to be Jewish/Israel and are not, but do lie. This time, He mentions the ‘synagogue of Satan’. Most people are not aware that this was actually a name for the “School of Shammai,” an early first century way of thought of a Rabbi named Shammai, a Parush [Pharisee]. He taught that salvation was by obedience to the Torah. He taught that Gentiles must become Jews, with the final sign of that conversion being circumcision in the flesh. His error is the same error of Galatia. THAT is the ‘synagogue of Satan.’ One does NOT become ‘Jewish’ by circumcision in the flesh, but by TRUST in the Creator, and in His Son Yeshua, the King of the Jews. [Rom 2:29] It is interesting that those of us who simply obey the Scriptures are accused of being the ‘synagogue of Satan,’ though we NEVER claim salvation by circumcision, or by obedience to any mitzvah. What if THAT is part of the ‘hour of testing’ that will come on the world, to see if we know the difference between a real “Jew,” and anyone who puts any trust in their flesh in any way. It is my contention that most of the Hebrew Roots/Two House people fall dangerously into this category, trusting their flesh, even if in the smallest way, to be part of their salvation. So many people of ‘faith’ are indeed coming to an outward Torah walk, but are also ‘identifying’ with the Jewish, though they call themselves “Israelites” and claim their genetic descendant from the 10 tribes is ‘why’ they are saved. They have fallen from grace. They put their trust in their flesh, the fact that they are Ephraim or Dan, or another ‘lost tribe’, and that this is one reason Abba ‘called them’. This is a self-important ‘work,’ that of being “Jewish” by any means but trust in Him.
This assembly is told that because they continue in the Word of Suffering/Patience, I will keep you from the hour of testing that is coming on the whole world. This ‘time of testing’ will be to ‘try’/’prove’ those on earth. But Yeshua will keep those who indeed have ‘a little strength’ from going through it. THAT is the ‘gate’ that is opened to them! The “Opening of the Gate” is a reference to Yom Teru’ah/Rosh HaShannah! And in the very next chapter, that gate is opened, with a SHOUT and a BLAST, and Yokhanan is told to ‘come up here!’ Those who have a small bit of strength, ‘ko’akh,’ will indeed be kept from the time of tribulation that is coming on all the world, by going through the gate at the sound of the shofar! He tells them, ‘hold on, so that no man can take your crown,’ and we see the crowns in the next chapter, where PEOPLE are assembled around the throne of God in Heaven. He promises these who ‘overcome’ the temptation to be concerned with genetics and self-importance versus TRUST ALONE that they will be made ‘pillars’ in HIS SANCTUARY, which is above. They will have the Name of Elohim written on them, and Yeshua’s NEW name, whatever that may be. That is a ‘sign’ of His character, and again, a reference to life eternal.
The last assembly gets the worst warning. But, remember, all of these apply to all of us through all times. Just because a believer dies before the Shofar is blasted and is not alive before Yeshua returns, does not mean that his soul will not be weighed in the balance; every person will stand before the Judge, at one time or another. Yeshua tells this assembly immediately that they are neither cold nor hot, but lukewarm. Lukewarm is a mixture of cold and hot. Mixture is similar to adultery. It is a combining of the thoughts of God with the ways of this world. It is a ‘comfort zone’. Yeshua basically tells us that we are, in this condition, ‘blind,’ ‘naked’, ‘poor’, ‘wretched’, ‘helpless’. He tells us to acquire ‘white clothing’, and to anoint our eyes so we can ‘see’. This is done, He says, with GOLD REFINED IN THE FIRE. This is no doubt a reference to His Torah. Indeed, ALL the thoughts of these letters seem to be summed up in Tehillah [Ps] 19:
“The heavens declare the glory of Elohim, and the firmament shows His handiwork; Day unto day utters speech, and night unto night reveals knowledge; There is no speech, there are no words, neither is their voice heard. Their line is gone out through all the earth, and their words to the end of the world. In them has He set an Ohel [tent] for the sun, Which is as a bridegroom coming out of his Khupah, and rejoices as a strong man to run his course. His going forth is from the end of the heaven, and his circuit unto the ends of it; and there is nothing hidden from the heat thereof. “
Pay particular attention here to the last half, in regard to ‘gold refined in the fire’:
The Torah of יהוה is perfect, restoring the soul; the testimony of יהוה is sure, making wise the simple.
The precepts of יהוה are right, rejoicing the heart; the Mitzvah of יהוה is pure, enlightening the eyes.
The fear of יהוה is clean, enduring forever; the ordinances of יהוה are true, they are righteous altogether;
More to be desired are they [commandments of the Torah] than gold, yes, than much fine gold [refined in the fire] ; sweeter also than honey, and the honeycomb.
Moreover, by them is Your servant warned; in keeping of them there is great reward. Who can discern his errors? Clear me from hidden faults. [Yeshua is revealing these faults to us]
Keep back Your servant also from presumptuous sins, that they may not have dominion over me; then shall I be faultless, and I shall be clear from great transgression.
Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable before You, O יהוה , my Rock, and my Redeemer.
It is just very interesting that His Name is seen SEVEN TIMES in this song.
Here, those who ‘overcome’ ‘sit down on His throne, as He is on His Father’s throne, which we see in the next two chapters.
So, we are to overcome:
It is evident to anyone who has even the smallest measure of His Ru’akh that we are in the last of the last days, whether it all begins this year, or fifty years from now. Regardless, our ‘faith’ is definitely being put to the fire right now. So, in the words of Redneck Yeshua:
“In this world you will have tzarah..” You WILL have ‘tribulation’; not ‘may,’ but ‘will’. בָּעוֹלָם צָרָה יֵשׁ לָכֶם; אֲבָל הִתְעוֹדְדוּ, אֲנִי נִצַּחְתִּי אֶת הָעוֹלָם
There is for y’all tribulation in this world, but y’all CHEER Yourselves up! I have ‘overcome‘ this world!”
Are we really in a pandemic that justifies the reaction our government is demanding?
I do not disbelieve that there is a ‘bug’ out there. From the start, which for me was back in December, I’ve known there is actually a virus; I just also know it was manufactured and released, and did not just ‘appear’ from nowhere. It is manmade. So I do not see the cause for the degree of response I am seeing, but for the willingness of people to accept at face value that there is a plague of death threatening us. Unless they are not telling us all we need to know, which, to me, is always the case. But, what they are not telling us has nothing to do with the severity of this ‘disease,’ but with the why of it, the who of it.
I’m not a conspiracy theorist, either, trying to be very careful of doomsayers and alarmists, but, I also know that the governments of this world, ALL of them, belong to someone other than HaTzadik, the Righteous One, for now. Yeshua the Messiah is indeed and always has been on the throne, since forty days after His resurrection. He is indeed ‘in control’ of HIS Kingdom. But, for now, the ‘kingdoms’ of THIS earth, ALL earthly governments, belong to other powers.
I have read too much history, and witnessed too much sleight of hand on the parts of ‘governments’ and politicians, just to accept on face value anything they say. I have seen nefarious behavior from both political sides in our country; subterfuge, to achieve a political agenda. I am of the mind that all of what we ‘see’ is a grand stage, and that if there are any individuals in the political realm who are indeed honest, they are powerless to change anything.
More than that, a host of individuals who are oblivious to the two kingdoms that are really at opposite ends of the spiritual paradigm is not going to change for one or two people who actually understand that people are evil, and that governments are controlled by spiritual things that even governments themselves do not understand.
The kingdoms of this earth are controlled by ‘other’ rulers. Unbeknownst to the ‘people’ that are their apparent rulers. The adversary has dominion over them all, and uses them all in a grand game of chess, fooling those who try to ‘watch’ the game. But most people are the pawns and kings in the game, and do not understand that all the pieces are moved by the same force. And fewer still understand that ALL of it happens by G-d’s leave! There are not two players in the game of world governments; only one. There are two players in the very real ‘game’ of life: truth and lie. Darkness and light.
So, I want to get at the truth of things, before I react. I have been taught by humanity not to trust man, whatsoever. And that means I do not just patently accept that this virus is potentially going to wipe out humanity, and that we must all react as if it were.
Historically, the Black Plague was far worse. It killed upwards of 200 million people across Europe and Asia. Interestingly, it originated in Asia, much like our current ‘virus’. But, they did not know the source of it then, and for a long time. We know precisely where ours started: Wuhan, China. In a lab. Is it a coincidence, then, that a typically liberal American ‘scientist’ from Harvard was working with China, went to Wuhan, and all of a sudden a pandemic breaks out?
Is it a coincidence that the H1N1 virus, which broke out under our former President’s watch, and was far worse, also originated in China? And the bird flu before that? And each election year plague we’ve had over the past 16 years or so? Were those possibly just to get our minds ‘set’ to accept these global outbreaks without question? Every second or fourth year for the last 16 years, we’ve had an Asian outbreak of some kind. Hmmm.
So, if there IS something nefarious going on behind the curtain, what is it? And to what end?
Some are thinking it is that the Democrats want Trump out of office, so they are using this, playing the blame game, and they will force him out somehow, by hoping to cause an economic crash. Or maybe that they intend to expose him to the virus? Perhaps he’s already infected; after all, he’s an old man? Some think it’s an attempt to force single-payer health care on society, and forced vaccines, using scare tactics. Some think its to cause a global economic meltdown to ‘reset’ monetary systems and make one currency.
What if it is ‘all of the above’? And more? Back in December, at my birthday, I declared for myself and my family a Yovel, based on the fact that I’ve been hearing The Word of God for fifty years. I wrote an article stating that I believe I have finally anchored the last actual, biblical Yovel of Yisra’el to 27 AD, the day Yeshua stood in His home-town Synagogue and made the declaration, likely around Yom Kippur:
18“The Ru’akh of יהוה is upon me; because of this He has anointed me to declare good news to the poor; and He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, and to proclaim release to the captives and sight to the blind; to strengthen with forgiveness those who are oppressed, 19and to declare the year of the favor of יהוה .”
These are Yovel words that The Creator instructed Yisra’el to declare in the year of the Yovel. I believe the Yovel is the clock of prophecy. I have long believed that, and have studied and searched for an anchor, a benchmark of time; I now believe that it is indeed 27AD when HIS ‘clock’ declared a Yovel, and He used HIS OWN SON to declare it, simply, from a Synagogue in a small mountain town in Northern Israel. If that is true, and 27AD was a Yovel, then 2027 would be forty Yovels from that date; in other words, forty Yovels will have passed since 27AD.
You will note that we would then be SEVEN YEARS from the Yovel of 2027, if indeed it is a Yovel.
The Yovel, if not observed, brings punishment to the nations. Those punishments are seen clearly in VaYikra 25-26 [Lev], and in the Hitgalut [Revelation].
The punishments of the Hitgalut clearly take place over a seven-year period. The Yovel is the year of RETURN, when possession of land goes back to its original owner. The earth has been leased from the Creator by mankind for nearly 6,000 years. It is possible, then, that it will return to its owner in 2027, the possible beginning of the seventh, ‘Shabbat’ Millenium. A time of Great Trouble is supposed to occur before that.
Remembering that the calendar of prophecy is rooted in the original, Biblical calendar, where the tracking of time/years began in the fall, it is fitting to note that certain people who ‘own’ a patent on this corona virus met in the fall of last year, in October, to plan for a pandemic coronavirus outbreak. Using the coronavirus as a model. This virus, incidentally, a modified, manmade version of it, has its origins in the pig, an ‘unclean’ animal that many people who do not follow His instructions love to eat.
During this time, protests were pretty frequent in China, and intensifying, and on the mainstream and other news sources every day. The coronavirus broke out in December [right around the declaration of our personal ‘yovel’], but was perhaps released in October [there are certain sources that insist this is so], and the Chinese protests came to a screeching halt. Their plight is forgotten. Use 1 of COVID-19, perhaps? Many left-wing people began to call for the death of others, publicly stating that the elderly should just be allowed to die if they contract that disease. Most recently, European hospitals are obliging on that. Martial law was declared in New Rochelle, NY, today, and no one is batting an eye, because they’re not even calling it that, though that is precisely what it is. Has this ever happened over the influenza virus that is endemic?
So, an ‘engineered’ virus was sold to the Chinese by a liberal, Harvard professor, who was quietly indicted; the outbreak mysteriously starts there when demonstrations were heating up, and they’re pretty much squelched. It very quickly spreads around the world, even though it supposedly started in a chinese meat market in Wuhan? Exactly how many tourists were there? And people, this time, respond as they hoped: panic. Largely because the media keeps crying ‘wolf!’. Mortgage debt is being ‘forgiven’ in Italy, since the country is locked down and many people cannot work. Euthanasia for the elderly is ‘declared’ necessary, martial law is being used on American soil. Something is ‘going on’, and it ain’t just a cold.
If you are not one who believes in the Messiah, and in His promised return, which is a huge part of His gospel, as He stated in His Passover Seder:
“I go to prepare a place for you. 3And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and take you to me, so that where I am you may be also.”
then you may just think this is a cyclical event of the world, a consequence of living as a human. Another case of fleas infesting the rats in ships. If you ARE a believer in Messiah, then you ‘may’ have the itch that something of significant import is going on? Something you can’t quite put your finger on. That this is a ‘sign’ of things to come?
I’m not certain it is. But, what I can say is this: this thing ‘came out of the east’. Every biblical ‘plague’ that I can think of came out of the east. This thing was engineered by a leftist, sold to a communist nation bent on the destruction of democracy, in a nation that has released a new plague during EVERY U.S. election cycle for the last 16 years; it has been treated by the media as a very deadly force, though no evidence is given to show that it is worse than the endemic flu we experience every single year; [this virus may also become endemic, meaning we’d have to deal with it every year, just like ‘flu season’] economic instability is on the horizon, ruining the best economic run the country has ever seen, coincidentally in the middle of an election cycle; this thing started right after the failed coup attempt via impeachment of Trump just ended; this thing started right after the WHO and the Gates foundation ‘practiced’ a pandemic scenario with coronavirus; [Gates is pushing for a culling of the poor and weak from the population, by death] Leftists of every ilk are salivating at the death of anyone they decry as enemy; it is bringing out the worst in humans.
Whether or not there is a wizard behind the curtain, something is amiss. The reaction to this thing far exceeds the evidence of any danger worse than the flu. I cannot find ONE scientist who has said this thing is more deadly than the flu. But, the whole world is willing to SHUT DOWN, simply because it is ‘new’. How does something barely more dangerous than the common cold cause such disarray?
Something is not right. And it matters not to me. I certainly HOPE that as few as possible contract this infection; I prayed to that end moments ago. I certainly do NOT wish for the economic stress it is going to bring. I mourn the resultant inhumanity of man that is arleady rearing its ugly head. But, I do NOT fear for myself or my household. I’ve been working from home for near two weeks now, by compulsion, but I have quite enjoyed it. I’m seeing some very positive advantages to having the whole world in an uproar. But, I know that humanity is indeed on the precipice of change, and that this is indeed a ‘sign of the times.’ But, probably not in the way that many think.
I have said for years that the believing community of Messiah, those who truly TRUST in Him, will indeed go through ‘birthpangs’, that we will NOT escape ALL the trouble that is coming on the world. I think it is entirely possible that, given the timing of this thing, this is indeed ‘another’ sign that mankind is going to be disciplined by the Creator, in the hopes that ALL men “do teshuvah”.
There is a popular meme going around that cites a verse about G-d staying the plague if we REPENT.
That was Yokhanan HaMatbil’s [John the Baptist] message; that was Yeshua, the Son of God’s message. The word ‘repent’ is a bit weighed down with stigma, with the idea that “Repent!” is a mean and negative word spoken from the platform of hypocrisy. For Yeshua, it was spoken from the platform of perfect tzedaka, ‘righteousness’; for everyone after Him, it SHOULD be spoken from a low place of grateful humility.
And many are ‘saying’ it, or ‘implying’ it, but so few ‘understand’ it. To ‘repent’ means to ‘turn back to the Creator and His ways.’ Israel had turned away from His compassion and His free gift of righteousness [Genesis 15:6], which has ALWAYS been the way of Salvation, and had turned to self-righteousness and hypocrisy. The P’rushim [Pharisees, Rabbis in control of religious Israel in the 1st century] made up ‘new rules,’ to control and manipulate people, and to make money off of religion, and moved His feasts to suit their needs [Yeshua clearly observed Passover a day before the Rabbis did, and He would NEVER move a sacred feast]. Yeshua came to set the example, to call for TURNING BACK TO TRUTH, and ALSO to GIVE people the ‘power’, the ‘authority’, to do so! And He took the spiritual authority away from the Rabbis, and gave it to those who TRUST in His blood, and His FREE GIFT of perfect tzedaka before God, which is proven ONLY by obedience to Him. That obedience is our expression of LOVE for HIM, for saving us, for giving us His Breath of Life.
To ‘repent’ means to recognize that the direction we are going in is ‘away’ from God, and to turn and go TOWARD Him by following the narrow path He put in front of us. That path is indeed His book, the book of the Torah, and the rest of scripture that comments on and clarifies how to walk it.
There are indeed ‘signs’ of the times given to us.
First, we’ve been in the “Last Days” for the last 2,000 years, since the day of Shavu’ot, when Kefa [Peter] stood up and declared that we were in the last days. Yeshua gave us very clear ‘signs’ that we who trust would be able to ‘see’ and interpret:
“Be careful that you may not be deceived; for many will come in my name and say I am the Mashi’akh, and the time is near; but do not follow them. And when you hear of wars and revolutions, do not be afraid, for all these things must first come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be great earthquakes in different places, and famines and plagues; and there will be alarming sights, and great signs will appear from the heavens; and the winters will be severe.”
From this, we can glean that all the things He said would happen have happened. His treatise here [Luka 21] and in Matti 24-26 are not in any way chronoligical, but He bounces around in the chronology of things; but, to the trained eye, He leaves us clues that relate to the Mo’edim, the prophetic timepieces of the Torah. I do not have time to elucidate all that here. But, I want to remind us of one thing He said as He taught and foretold our day:
“But when these things begin to happen, have courage and lift up your heads, because your Salvation is at hand.”
Yeshua ilucidated in both treatises on ‘end things’ a general overview of the last days, and then a ‘zeroing in’ on the last seven years. We are not there yet; but, I do believe we are closer than we care to think.
Sha’ul, in teaching these things, warns of other ‘symptoms’ of the last days. People often cite part of this passage, but MISS one of the BIGGEST blessings in it:
1Know this, that in the Akharit HaYamim [Last Days] disastrous times will come. 2And men shall be lovers of themselves and lovers of money, proud, conceited, blasphemers, disobedient to their own people, ungrateful, wicked, 3false accusers, addicts to lust, brutal, haters of good things, 4traitors, hasty, boasters, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of Elohim; 5having a shade of the fear of Elohim, but far from the power of Elohim [to become sons, Yokhanan 1:12]; from such turn away. 6For of this sort are those who creep into houses and captivate women sunken in sin, led away with diverse lusts, 7ever striving to learn, and never able to come to the knowledge of HaEmet. [Truth. Torah.] 8Now just as Yannes and Yambres stood up against Moshe, so do these also resist the truth, [Your Torah is Truth; Ps 119:142: Your Word is Truth Yokh 17:17 ] men of corrupt minds and far off from HaEmunah [The Faith]. 9But they shall not progress, for their folly is well known to every man, even as that of the others also was.
Sha’ul warned us NOT to resist Moshe/Torah/Truth! The Torah, followed as MESSIAH teaches it, would prevent all these evil human behaviors.
Anyone who studies this life and people knows very well that these things are progressively manifesting faster and faster; people are absolutely godless, and many of those who say they trust in Yeshua yet ‘mingle’ with things of this world far too much. Might Yeshua be trying to get our attention, gently, by shaking the rest of the world, to show us all the folly that Sha’ul wrote about? We’ve got to examine ourselves and compare ourselves against this passage, and Gal 5:19-21
19For the works of the flesh are well known, which are these: adultery, impurity, and lasciviousness, 20idolatry, witchcraft, enmity, strife, jealousy, anger, stubbornness, seditions, heresies, 21envyings, murders, drunkenness, reveling, and all such things;
Becaus Sha’ul goes on and warns us:
those who practice these things, as I have told you before and I say to you now, shall not inherit Malkhut HaElohim.
Nineteen years ago, on 9/10, after dinner that evening, and after I played the piano and worshipped for a bit, I sat my two children down at my feet, who were about 7 and 10, and read the 2 Tim passage above to them. When I read the word ‘brutal’, my daughter asked what it meant. “It means people will kill for no reason.” And I further explained to them that those scriptures were ‘intensifying’ in our day. Then, twelve hours later, 9/11 happened. Seven days before Rosh Hashannah/Yom Teru’ah.
I do not desire to ‘scare’ people; unless they do not know Messiah at all. Most do not. Would that people would listen. But, we, the WHOLE world, are in a similar frame of mind to Kena’an, and to S’dom and Amorah, and to the Israel of Yirme-Yahu’s day: though we ‘hear’ the Word of God, we do not change; we do not fear God. We do not consider our latter end. We scoff. Even beleivers scoff at the notion that we might indeed be on the precipice of great change:
3Knowing this first, that there shall come in the Akharit HaYamim, mockers who scoff, following after their own lusts 4and saying, “Where is the promise of His coming? For since our fathers died, all things continue as they were from the beginning of creation.” 5Of this they are willingly ignorant, that by D’var HaElohim the heavens were of old, and the earth emerged from water and by means of the water; [evolution predicted] 6and those men, because of whose deeds the world of that time was flooded, perished under that water; 7but the present heavens and earth are sustained by His D’var and are reserved for fire on Yom HaDin, which is the day of the destruction of ungodly men.
Regardless of WHEN Messiah returns, though I say with confidence we are closer to it than we’ve ever been, we can clearly see that things are progressing as expected. This current ‘virus’ situation may indeed be one of the plagues mentioned by Yeshua. But, there is a biblical timeline mapped for us in the Torah, that most people ignore.
But, even IF they think it is close, the message of repentence is a soft whisper by most who declare it, and betrayed by a lack of knowledge of what that actually means. And, the fact that mankind initiated this plague, and is using it for some other, hidden agenda, is missed by far too many. “All the world is a stage, and we are merely players.” Most of the world is being ‘played’ by darkness. This ‘plague’ is just a tool.
Even IF we know Messiah, we should find ourselves sobered a bit by the threat this ‘plague’ poses to our lifestyles. We should consider what TRULY matters: the people with whom we ‘hunker down’; the BLESSINGS we have taken for granted for far too long. The blessing of His Presence, invoked by our repentance and supplication to the most merciful יהוה , Yeshua HaMashi’akh.
This coronavirus may indeed be one of the signs of the times; but, as I said, these things get far worse at the ‘end of the end,’ during “Et Ketz”. This is why Yeshua said:
“Therefore keep watch always, and pray that you may be worthy to escape all these things which are to happen, and that you may stand before Ben HaAdam.”