Ad Anah

Miqedem is a Messianic Israeli team of musicians who sing The Word set to very compelling, interesting ‘Hebrew’/Middle Eastern sounding music.

They have a song called “Ad Ana”, which is Tehillah [Ps] 13 set to a moving, melodic, tune that, in my view, gets very close to expressing the ‘tone’ of the heart of Melekh David, the writer.

I have been ‘contemplating’ Melekh David of late, and have been re-reading his history, and as such, have decided to teach His life in our next Torah study.  I think one of the reasons he has been on my mind of late is because of the near three-month ‘trial’ that I endured, when I turned to David’s words of ‘prayer/praise’ daily [more than the one or two I usually do], echoing them back to my Savior, Messiah Yeshua, because David ‘gets me’, and expresses ‘right thinking’ in times of trouble.

This ‘Tehillah’, which is ‘praise’, is one of MANY that he wrote, that expresses deep, deep emotion.

Personally, people who say they know Messiah and have not experienced His ‘compassion’ [deep affectionate love] for Him and for His people are missing ‘something’.  Moreover, if they ‘say’ they do not suffer ‘trials’, then their ‘tzedaka’ is suspect.  “MANY are the tribulations of the tzadikim”; “Tzadikim” is “Justified Ones,” those who are set right before G-d by their trust in the blood of Messiah.  They are not perfect, as was not David HaMelekh, who had his own bouts with sin AND affliction; but he understood the compassion of Elohim, and boiled over with it at times.  And, he ‘suffered’ at the hands of PEOPLE, and GRIEVED over it… weeping, crying out, mourning, full of sorrow for things not being ‘right’ between him and people he loved.  I venture to say he emoted more even than me!  He lamented wrongdoing, his own, AND that of others, especially when they wronged him simply because he was anointed, or wronged him simply because they were disobedient to truth and bereft of the compassion of יהוה .  “My tears SOAK my bed,” he lamented.  “My heart writhes within me,”  “I moan ALL the day,” and on and on.

There are those who misread [past tense] my “Chimera” post.  Which is why I took it down.  There are those who misread [present perfect tense] me, when I ‘sorrow’ over affliction.  First of all, they see only one facet of what I might be enduring.  [Right now, I am enduring NOTHING but His joy!  Do not weep for me!]  And, they do not understand the very spiritual truth of the enemy wanting to destroy the Tzadikim, body and soul, if he can.  If WE let him.  “Kol Yisra’el aravim zeh lazeh,”  “All of Yisra’el is responsible one for another”.  Or, the way the Brit Khadashah puts it, “BEAR ONE ANOTHER’S BURDENS”, “BEAR WITH ONE ANOTHER.”  Like Iyov, most people do not ‘see’ when a Tzadik is ‘suffering’ spiritually, because of and for the WILL OF GOD; they only see in human terms, and try to diagnose the Tzadik, instead of simply giving him ‘compassion.’  They judge.  Just as Iyov’s [Job] ‘friends’ did.  Just as those closest to David did. They blurt their perverted version of what is happening, many times in hatred and extreme anger, and condemnation.  They have NO COMPASSION for their ‘friend.’  Especially if they are the one who errs with and/or against their ‘friend’.  Sha’ul even accused his own son of having a perverted relationship with David, when Yehonatan was petitioning the king for David’s life!  He twisted their deep love into perversion!  That is the way of the accuser. David was afflicted by BELIEVERS and PROPHETS!  Not by the wicked, but by fellows, brothers, beloved friends, even his own son.  People who had genuinely ‘experienced’ G-d!  Sha’ul was not only king, but a Navi, given the very Ru’akh of Elohim!  David was NOT troubled by the Kena’ani;  NOT the P’lishtim.  In fact, he once was ‘taken in’ by the P’lishtim, running from those who professed trust in  יהוה !  I once told my wife that I could probably go to a bar and get more compassion than I can among the ‘brethren’.   Sometimes it really does seem that way.  As such, I am abundantly grateful for the brothers who did ‘take me in’, and who did show me compassion during my recent trial, without judging me or reading things into my life that were not there, because of their own perverted views, and worldly counsel.

Looking into David’s life and seeing his experiences, and his EMOTIONAL AND SPIRITUAL RESPONSE to those experiences has been a great comfort to me, especially with the echo of judgement, suspicion, and accusation lingering behind the words of wise and compassionate counsel at times.  Singing this song this past Shabbat [practice] was cathartic, to a  degree, punctuating all the ‘counsel’ given to me of late, by King David, and good friends.  Singing it by myself [with Miqedem] this morning moved me in a new way, and ‘opened my eyes’ again to the purpose of these ‘prayers’ written for the Congregation by King David, the ‘shadow and type’ of King Messiah, Yeshua HaNatzri, who is ‘familiar with suffering’.  Even when it ‘seems’ like Abba is ‘absent’ and not attending to us, yet do we TRUST in HIS COMPASSION, REJOICE in His YESHUA, and SING to HIM, because of His bountiful compassion toward us, ‘ad olam’…

It is NOT wrong, at times, to have ‘sorrow’.  It is wrong to have sorrow and NOT PRAISE HIM ANYWAY!  It is wrong to listen to the counsel of those without compassion, and wrong to trust ‘judgement’ rather than HIS COMPASSION.  His compassion is what sustains us in the sorrow that HE has allowed into our lives, for the purpose of drawing us closer to Him, and showing us where His compassion truly lies. 

Sha’ul understood the depth of His Compassion, writing:

“If He did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him up for us all, why will He not freely give us all things with Him? Who is to complain against the chosen ones of Elohim? It is Elohim who justifies. Who is He who condemns? It is Mashi’akh who died and rose again, and He is at the right hand of Elohim, making intercession for us. What shall separate me from the love of Mashi’akh? Tribulation, or imprisonment, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? As it is written, “For your sake we die every day, and we are accounted as lambs for the slaughter.” But in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor HaMalakhim, nor empires, nor armies, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else created, shall be able to separate me from the love of Elohim which is in Yeshua HaMashi’akh Adoneinu.”

Tehillah 13

For the Leader. A Mizmor of David.  

Until when, O יהוה , will You forget me forever?  עַד אָנָה יהוה תִּשְׁכָּחֵנִי נֶצַח

                Ad ana, יהוה  , tishkakheini netzakh?

Until when will You hide Your face from me?    עַד אָנָה תַּסְתִּיר אֶת פָּנֶיךָ מִמֶּנִּי

                Ad ana tastir et paneikha mimeini

 Until when shall I take counsel in my soul, having sorrow in my heart by day?                                              עַד אָנָה אָשִׁית עֵצוֹת בְּנַפְשִׁי יָגוֹן בִּלְבָבִי יוֹמָם

                Ad ana ashit etzot b’nafshi yagon bilvavi yomam

Until when shall my enemy be exalted over me?  עַד אָנָה יָרוּם אֹיְבִי עָלָי

                Ad ana yarum oiyevi alai?

 Behold, and answer me, O יהוה my Elohim;   הַבִּיטָה עֲנֵנִי יהוה אֱלֹהָי

                Habit, aneini,  יהוה  Elohai

 Lighten my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of Mavet [eternal death];          הָאִירָה עֵינַי פֶּן אִישַׁן הַמָּוֶת

                 Ha’irah einai pen ishan haMavet

Lest my enemy says, “I have prevailed against him”; lest my adversaries rejoice when I am moved.

פֶּן יאֹמַר אֹיְבִי יְכָלְתִּיו; צָרַי יָגִילוּ כִּי אֶמּוֹט   

                 Pen yomar oiyevi “Yakholtiv!” Tzarai yagilu, ki emot

But as for me, in Your compassion do I trust; my heart shall rejoice in Your Salvation. [Yeshua’s Name is in this word]

                וַאֲנִי בְּחַסְדְּךָ בָטַחְתִּי יָגֵל לִבִּי בִּישׁוּעָתֶךָ

              Va’Ani b’khasdeikha batakhti, yagel libi bishuateikha

I will sing unto יהוה , because He has dealt bountifully with me.   אָשִׁירָה לַיהוה כִּי גָמַל עָלָי

               Ashirah la  יהוה  ki gamal alai

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Returning to your vomit…

The ‘two house’ people tend to twist and pervert scripture in order to make their doctrine fit.

One of the newer passages that they have perverted is this beautiful passage about repentance and humility.  It is traditionally called the “Prodigal Son” parable. 

“A man had two sons; 12and his younger son said to him, ‘My father, give me the portion which is coming to me from your house.’ And he divided to them his possessions. 13And after a few days, his younger son gathered everything that was his share, and went to a far country, and there he wasted his wealth in extravagant living. 14And when all he had was gone, there was a severe famine in that country, and he began to be in need. 15So he went and got acquainted with one of the citizens of that country, and he sent him to the field to feed the swine. 16And he craved to fill his stomach with the husks that the swine were eating, and yet no man would give him. 17And when he came to himself, he said, ‘How many hired workers are now in my father’s house who have plenty of bread, and I am here perishing with hunger? 18I will rise and go to my father and say to him, ‘My father, I have sinned before Heaven and before you; 19and I am no longer [he was still a son!] worthy to be called your son; just make me like one of your hired workers.” 20And he rose up and came to his father. And while he was yet at a distance, his father saw him and had compassion on him, and he ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. 21And his son said to him, ‘My father, I have sinned before Heaven and before you, and I am not worthy to be called your son.’ [he was still a son!]  22But his father said to his servants, ‘Bring the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand, and shoes on his feet; 23and bring and kill the fattened ox, and let us eat and be merry; 24for this my son was dead and has come to life; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to be merry. 25But his elder son was in the field; and as he came near the house, he heard the voice of the singing of many. 26And he called one of the boys, and asked him what it was all about. 27He said to him, ‘Your brother has come; and your father has killed the fattened ox because he received him safe and well.’ 28And he became angry and would not go in; so his father came out and besought him. 29But he said to his father, ‘Behold, how many years I have served you, and I never disobeyed your mitzvah; and yet you never gave me even a kid that I might make merry with my friends. 30But for this son of yours, after he had wasted your wealth with harlots and come back, you have killed the fattened ox.’ 31His father said to him, ‘My son, you are always with me, and everything which is mine is yours. 32It was right for us to make merry and rejoice; for this your brother was dead and has come to life; and was lost, and is found.’”

The new ‘twist’ on this passage is that the ‘prodigal’ son is equivalent to ‘northern Israel,’ the ‘lost tribes of Israel,’ which the two-house proponents think are today’s ‘christians’ who are descended from European stock.  Apart from the fact that it is a ridiculous notion to assert that anyone can prove that Danes, Brits, Dutch, etc., are descended from the ‘ten lost tribes’, it is further ridiculous to assume that this parable is about any ‘group’ of people.  They claim that the ‘faithful’ son is Yehudah [Judah], or, our Jewish people.  This alone BREAKS their narrative right away, because Yeshua spent a great deal of His time showing Israel, the Jewish people, how very DISOBEDIENT they were!  They did NOT remain faithful in His house, as did the older son in our story.  They had, before Yeshua visited them, already turned salvation into a merit-based system, much like two housers today, who need the merit of being genetically of the ten tribes in order to justify their salvation. 

The notion that the ‘ten lost tribes’ are seen as the ‘younger son’ is ‘off’ as well.  Since three of the tribes in the northern kingdom were ‘older’ than Yehudah: Re’uven, Shimon, and Levi.  But, worse, in the parable, the younger son TAKES his ‘birthright,’ or his ‘inheritance’ with him, and spends it.  This is NOT how the ten tribes left Israel… they were DRIVEN OUT, by GOD HIMSELF!  They did NOT leave the Home of their father with HIS FAVOR, with Him willingly giving them the GOODNESS of HIS HOUSE…. They DISOBEYED, and were PUNISHED.  In our parable, the younger son leaves with his father’s blessing!  In history, the ten northern tribes left in BONDAGE, as Assyrian SLAVES.  And they were NOT driven into Europe, but further east into Asia Minor and beyond.  The simple fact is, NO ONE KNOWS where they went AFTER they were driven into the places EAST where the scriptures say they were driven.  Further, the Danes, Brits, Dutch, Germans, Gauls, Celts, etc, ALREADY EXISTED as people groups LONG before the northern tribes were driven out of Israel, EASTWARD in 900 BC. 

In our mashal, the younger son ‘comes to himself’.   In the B’sorah, the FATHER CALLS US!  [Yokh 6:44]  At the beginning of the mashal, he is ALREADY A SON!  THAT is NOT a state of being ‘unsaved’ at all.  This mashal is about the realization of the need of repentance.. But, it is MORE about the OLDER SON, who RESENTS the younger son’s blessing when he returns….

The older son in NO WAY can represent Judah.  Yehudah WAS DISOBEDIENT when Yeshua arrived in Yisra’el.  Yehudah, in fact, according to Yirme-Yahu, was WORSE OFF spiritually than had been the northern tribes, since they defiled the ACTUAL TEMPLE of Elohim, and not a mock temple such as the two the northern tribes had built in Efrayim and Dan.  To say that the older son represents the Jewish people, who resent the “xtian ephraimites” because god is blessing them, is writing into this text that which is simply NOT THERE.  In fact, it defies Yeshua’s narrative, and His whole point… HUMILITY.  Our Jewish people are NOT in our Father’s house!  They rejected the Son of G-d, and are still being wooed to repentance themselves!  They are in NO WAY in possession of the inheritance nor the blessing.

This mashal is NOT about a group of people that Elohim scourged with punishment, sent them away destitute as slaves, whose POSSIBLE descendants then may or may not become believers in the Messiah.  This notion completely disregards that the Samaritans were ACTUAL descendants of the Northern tribes, and Yeshua told His Talmidim NOT to go to them when He sent His Twelve out to the ‘LOST SHEEP of Yisra’el.’  The two-housers pervert that very simple historical FACT, that the twelve went out TO JEWS whom Yeshua called the LOST SHEEP OF ISRAEL… They were LOST because they had no spiritual shepherd, just as Yirme-Yahu said of them some 600 years before Yeshua came.  Two-housers further ignore Sha’ul, a Benjamite, who called himself BOTH an ISRAELI AND a Jew.  How can that be?  He’s NOT from the northern tribes, and NOT from Yehudah, but calls himself BOTH an Israeli and a Jew.

Two-housers take prophecies that they do NOT understand, most of which have already been fulfilled, and make NEW doctrine out of them.  They twist the scriptures, and base their salvation in part on their GENETICS.  “I’m saved, because I’m descended from Ephraim.”  If salvation is in ANY MEASURE weighted against genetics, IT IS NOT SALVATION. 

Two Housers need to learn that the WHOLE OLIVE TREE WAS CUT DOWN, TO THE ROOT [The root is Messiah]; then, JEWISH BRANCHES grew out of it FIRST, and GENTILE branches were grafted in to the JEWISH TREE, as Yeshua is a JEW.

Historically, there were CONVERTS to Judaism from the areas where the northern tribes had been driven 900 years before Shavu’ot [Acts 2], “Parthians, Scythians…”   these are the areas where the ten lost tribes were driven nearly 1,000 years before Acts 2 took place.  And converts AND Jews from there were present.  But, NOT ONE of them were called an “Ephraimite” in Acts…. They were called ‘resident strangers’ JUST LIKE ANY OTHER GENTILE convert who was there to witness Shavu’ot.

The egregious thinking of these people shows that they are likely not saved at all, as they need something OTHER than the blood of Yeshua to tell them they are part of a ‘house.’  A TRUE JEW is one who is circumcised in heart.  There is ONLY ONE House, the Kingdom of Messiah.

27For those who have been immersed in the name of Mashi’akh have been clothed with Mashi’akh. 28There is neither Yehudi nor Arami, [Jew nor Aramean] there is neither slave nor free, there is neither male nor female; for you are all ONE in Yeshua HaMashi’akh. 29So if you belong to Mashi’akh, then you are descendants of Avraham, and his heirs according to the promise.”  Avraham’s descendants are so by FAITH ALONE.

Aramean happens to, in this context, represent the territory where the ten lost tribes were driven.  They are NOT called “Ephraimites” here, as their dna had so mixed with their host nations, they do not exist as a people any more, and did not in Sha’ul’s day either.

Timothy, who LIVED in the area of the ten lost tribes, was instructed:

“Charge certain ones not to teach diverse doctrines, 4and not to give heed to fables and stories of endless genealogies, which cause dispute, rather than build up HaEmunah of Elohim.”

Two-house doctrine is FABLE.  It is a twisting of scripture that diverts attention off of the blood of Messiah and puts in on flesh!  In fact, the two-housers have, if they ever knew Messiah, SQUANDERED the inheritance for the flesh of swine, turning to fables, turning away from TRUST in Messiah ALONE as our IDENTITY.

Your inheritance: Lies, or TRUTH?

Allow me to solicit your thoughts on certain matters, if I may. I am asking those of you who know you love the Messiah to consider that His Father was Elohim, the Almighty G-d. That Almighty G-d created the Sabbath for all mankind, to which Yeshua attested:

“The Sabbath was made for MANKIND, and not mankind for the Sabbath”.
Mark 2:27

Yeshua is referring to Genesis 2, here, where G-d blessed the SEVENTH DAY. He did not bless the first day. He created the Sabbath as His last act of creating. We pray a prayer, “though made last…” in our congregation. The Sabbath was made…for all of us.

My question, then, is an honest question offered in love: Who changed the Sabbath Day?

Did G-d? Did the Messiah change it, after declaring that it was made for all mankind? Do you understand that the word Sabbath means “Seventh Day”? It is a day of rest, but it is the SEVENTH DAY, and it was instated at the creation, NOT for the Jews only! But for all mankind.

So, WHO changed it? I beg you to consider this. And I ask you to read further and allow me to show you who changed it. Not only so, but I would like you also to consider, with all my heart, who changed the other Holy Days of G-d, which the Messiah Yeshua also observed? Passover, Matzot, Reysheet Omer, Shavuot, all of which detail the first coming of Messiah and his death, burial and resurrection, as shadows. Also Yom Teruah, Yom Kippur, and Sukkot, which teach us very clearly of the details of His return. [Colossians 2:17]

Who changed these feasts to Easter, Halloween, and Christmas? Who changed the Sabbath to “Sun-day”.

I will tell you: the Spirit of the Lying Messiah. You may call it “Antichrist”.

This is the spirit that will one day possess an individual who will rule the world, very soon. But, this ‘spirit’ has been in the world for millennia. It does not go after the lost, but after believers, to deceive them. It was in the world in the first century, and already lying to ‘christians’ then, those who confessed that they believed in Yeshua as the Messiah. Yokhanan [John] had to remind them that this spirit was already around, as a warning of great danger:

“My little children, it is the last days; and as you have heard that the Lying Messiah will come, even NOW there are many lying messiahs, and from this we know that it is the last days”.
I John 2:18

“The Ruakh of Elohim [Spirit of G-d] is known by this: every spirit that declares that Yeshua the Messiah is come in the flesh is from Elohim. And every spirit which does not declare that Yeshua the Messiah is come in the flesh is not from Elohim. This is the spirit of the Lying Messiah, which you have heard that it should come into the world, and even now is already in the world.”
I John 4:2-3

This is a clear warning that there is a demonic presence in the world that means to deceive the people of Messiah. Shaul [Paul] wrote of it too:

“Now the Ruakh clearly says that in the last days some shall DEPART from the faith, giving ear to seducing spirits, and doctrines of demons.”
1 Tim 4:1

Both Yokhanan and Shaul declare that the believers had heard of and that the Ruakh had spoken of this “lying Messiah”. Many think that the “Holy Spirit” whispered in their ears and told them this, but do not realize that the Ruakh wrote the Tanak [the Torah, Prophets, and Poets], and that is how they had ‘heard’ of the lying Messiah:

“He shall be a serpent by the way, an adder in the path, that bites the horse’s heels, so that his rider shall fall backward.”

“He shall speak great words against the Most High, and shall wear out the set apart ones, and HE SHALL THINK TO CHANGE THE APPOINTED TIMES [FEASTS] AND THE TORAH.”

“Appointed Times” are specific: Leviticus 23:2, “These are the Appointed Times of יהוה.” The first one is the Sabbath, and the other seven are listed above in the same order they are listed in Leviticus.

So, it is the spirit of the Lying Messiah, that has been in the world for atleast 2000 years, [really, it was in the garden of Eden too, however, but Yokhanan’s letter was written before 90AD, so it has been atleast that long], that would CHANGE THE FEASTS and the TORAH.

But, when did this happen? When did the Christian world CHANGE? Most of you may think that it was very, very early in the cycle of ‘christian’ observance. It was not. True, there were second century ‘confessors’, a handful, who observed the ‘Sunday Sabbath’ as the “Lords Day”, but were they right to do so? Where is it written that Almighty G-d gave authority to men to CHANGE HIS FEASTS and to IGNORE SCRIPTURE? It is not, but it is written that the “Antichrist”, the “Anti-Messiah”, the Lying Messiah, the “Son of Perdition”, would do so. And, it is written that the ‘spirit’ that would possess him was already in the world in the first century. So, WHEN, I ask you lovingly, did your forefathers STOP observing the Sabbath?

Check the book of Acts, and you will see that ALL believers, Jewish and Gentile, worshipped Elohim on the Sabbath, and that it was a LIE that was spread that they changed the Torah for Jews and for Gentiles.

It happened ‘officially’ starting in 312AD.

“On the venerable Day of the Sun let the magistrates and people residing in cities rest, and let all workshops be closed. In the country, however, persons engaged in agriculture may freely and lawfully continue their pursuits; because it often happens that another day is not so suitable for grain-sowing or vine-planting; lest by neglecting the proper moment for such operations the bounty of heaven should be lost.”

This is Constantine. It is after he called the Pagan sign Sol Invictus [which also is his ‘sun-day’ ]  the “Sign of the Cross”, and went to war pretending to war in the name of ‘christ’. It was at the Battle of the Milvian bridge in 308 where he ‘claimed’ to have seen his ‘sign’, and shortly thereafter declared HIS empire to be a ‘christian’ Empire. And four years later, he made it LAW that “The Venerable Day of the Sun” [sol invicuts] would be the day of rest.

So, indeed, the first thing he did was change the Appointed Times. But, it did not end there. He further declared the Passover of the Jews to be “disgusting”. Even though MOST of his ‘empire’ who believed in the Messiah actually kept the Passover with the Jews! He was a rabid anti-Semite, and it did not take long for it to manifest, and to officially change the other “Appointed Times”.

“It was, in the first place, declared improper to follow the custom of the Jews in the celebration of this holy festival [Pesakh/Passover], because, their hands having been stained with crime, the minds of these wretched men are necessarily blinded. … Let us, then, have nothing in common with the Jews, who are our adversaries. … Let us … studiously avoiding all contact with that evil way. … For how can they entertain right views on any point who, after having compassed the death of the Lord, being out of their minds, are guided not by sound reason, but by an unrestrained passion, wherever their innate madness carries them. … lest your pure minds should appear to share in the customs of a people so utterly depraved. … Therefore, this irregularity must be corrected, in order that we may no more have any thing in common with those parricides and the murderers of our Lord. … no single point in common with the perjury of the Jews.” [Ecclesiastical History by Theodoret, Book 1, Chapter 9, concerning the matters transacted at the Council, addressed to those overseers who were not present]

Now, if you’re an anti-Semite, this rings true for you. But, if you recognize that he is saying that things must CHANGE, you see that many in the empire were STILL keeping the Passover, TOGETHER WITH JEWS. Check the History, the believers in Messiah got along with the wider Jewish community for a long, long time, even though some gentiles were already trying to break away from the Jewish community. [hence, the corrective ‘epistles’ of Sha’ul/Paul] Constantine, however, and his followers, made it LAW that things should CHANGE!

If you read history further, you find that another law had to be written a mere 80 some odd years later, to FORCE people to quit observing the Sabbath and the Passover, and the other feasts, with Jews, on PAIN OF DEATH. Can you really justify a DEATH PENALTY sentence for KEEPING THE SABBATH of the GOD? If you can, you are of the spirit of the Lying Messiah.

The overseers who were not present were the Jewish Overseers of the congregations around the empire, and the Gentile overseers who would NOT go to the council of Nicea, because Constantine would not permit the Jewish Overseers to go! Out of some 2500 overseers around the empire, only around 250 actually went. So, a TEN PERCENT showing of overseers decided the fate of the ‘christian empire’; and that 10 percent began KILLING anyone who disagreed with them on these two matters, and on one more: Who Messiah is.

The Council of Nicea DENIED that Yeshua is come in the FLESH!

They delared this: “He is said to be “one in being with The Father”. Eusebius of Caesarea attributed the term homoousios, or “consubstantial, i.e., “of the same substance” (of the Father), to Constantine, who, on this particular point, may have chosen to exercise his authority. The significance of this clause, however, is extremely ambiguous, and it would be hotly contested for centuries, before the final ‘Trinitarian formula’ was accepted. It, too, was forced on the wider ‘christian empire’ by the DEATH PENALTY.

“Homoousios” is the issue. “One SUBSTANCE”.
This DENIES that Yeshua is [and remains] FLESH AND BONE!

“Behold, my hands and feet, that it is I myself: HANDLE ME, and SEE, for a SPIRIT DOES NOT HAVE FLESH and BONES, as you see me have.” Luke 24:39 [He said this AFTER having risen from the dead]

For Constantine to declare that “jesus” is the same SUBSTANCE with the father is to make him NOT IN THE FLESH, since the scriptures say that the Father, Elohim, is SPIRIT! Yeshua said so HIMSELF!

“Elohim is RUAKH [Spirit], and they that worship HIM must do so in spirit, and in TRUTH”.
John 4:24

THIS IS THE “SPIRIT OF THE LYING MESSIAH”, that Yokhanan warned us about!

“The Ruakh of Elohim [Spirit of G-d] is known by this: every spirit that declares that Yeshua the Messiah is come in the flesh is from Elohim. And every spirit which does not declare that Yeshua the Messiah is come in the flesh is not from Elohim. THIS IS THE SPRIIT OF THE LYING MESSIAH, which you have heard that it should come into the world, and even now is already in the world.”
I John 4:2-3

Please pray, read the scriptures, and see if this is not true! OUR FATHERS INHERITED LIES!
And the liar who foisted these deceits on the ‘christian empire’ was NOT EVEN A BELIEVER! He waited until his DEATH BED to consider being ‘immersed’, and when he did, he was ‘baptized’ by a man who did NOT accept his ‘homoousios’ clause! Eusebius!

THIS is the man who began to ‘change the seasons and the torah’ officially, with the backing of the state. And those who came after him eventually had to use MURDER in order to get the majority of the people to comply. One day soon, this SAME SPIRIT will govern the whole world. And, I tell you now, our country is governed by a man and his followers who follow this SAME SPIRIT.

They are now changing the Torah: making it ‘legal’ for men to marry men, women to marry women, and for babies to be murdered in the womb and out. This was done in the ‘churches’ first, and now it is becoming the law of the land. So, we cannot utterly blame the lawmakers. ALL of this stems from that acquiescent attitude of those 250 “bishops” nearly 1700 years ago, who had no courage to stand for the TRUTH. They caved, because the world leader told them they needed to.

Is this really who you want to follow? Or would you follow Messiah, and imitate Him, who Himself kept the Appointed times of His Father?

Yeshua

HaDavar Ba!

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After SEVEN + LONG YEARS and much labor, the new translation of the Jewish Scriptures, which we are calling “HaDavar”, has gone to the publisher for printing!  Our great hope is that it will be available before the fall feasts!  It would be a gift from above to begin our new, liturgical season with His Word treated as the SINGLE sourced, Jewish, semitic book that it is, finally!  Below is the introduction from the upcoming printed volume, to explain fully why this was done.

 

Introduction

דִּבְרֵי חֲכָמִים כַּדָּרְבֹנֹות וּֽכְמַשְׂמְרֹות נְטוּעִים בַּעֲלֵי אֲסֻפֹּות נִתְּנוּ מֵרֹעֶה אֶחָֽד׃ וְיֹתֵר מֵהֵמָּה בְּנִי הִזָּהֵר עֲשֹׂות סְפָרִים הַרְבֵּה אֵין קֵץ ….

 

“The words of the wise are as goads, and as nails well fastened are those that are composed in collections; they are given from One Shepherd. And furthermore, my son, be admonished: of the making of many books there is no end…”

~Kohelet 12:11-12a

When one encounters a new translation of the sacred writings, one is perhaps hesitant, and that is understood.  But, the words of G-d are indeed ‘nails well fastened,’ and are powerful beyond language.  Nevertheless, a new translation begs the question, what would compel a soul to attempt another rendering of these same words in a language which has offered so many translations already?  Is it fanciful desire?  Or necessity?  For us, who undertook this monumental task with great hesitance and trepidation, it was necessity.  We realize what we see as necessity may not be so looked upon by others, but we had a specific goal in mind, and we hope every reader can find value in our bringing that goal to fruition out of our necessity.

What authority or qualifications do we have in order to presume to do this work and offer it to the wider believing community?  We do not claim any superior authority over anyone else, nor over His Word, that precludes anyone else having authority over His Word.  Further, we do NOT presume to have authority over The Creator and His Son, who are the arbiters of our destiny.  But, we do know this “One Shepherd” who is the composer of these words in Hebrew and Aramaic, collected herein in English, and are as capable through Him of understanding them as any other who has studied those languages.  Our great desire is to restore the context of those words from the original texts: historical, religious, and cultural context, as well as scriptural and linguistic. 

While many people helped to bring this final version to print, this was primarily the effort of one person, a BA in Biblical Studies and an MA in History, whose study of the Hebrew language began some twenty years ago, after having become a Messianic believer by studying the Greek and Greek-sourced “New Testament” texts.  After becoming a fluent reader of the Hebrew scriptures, and learning of the Aramaic Peshitta texts, he began to study the Aramaic Peshitta Brit Khadashah in Hebrew and Aramaic.  He is now convinced by those words, and also other, external proofs, that they preceded the Greek translations, and are the source texts of those Greek translations.  We realize not many scholars agree with this conclusion, but some very qualified persons do, and so we are in good company.  But, the greater desire was to have a completely Semitic source of scriptures rendered into English, with the ancient Hebrew and Peshitta texts in Hebrew on facing pages, to give The Word a single flavor: a Jewish flavor.  We still await the completion of a Hebrew/English version.  But, there are many reasons for the desire of a more Jewish, English rendering of the sacred Hebrew texts, even though some already exist.  Those reasons are further elucidated herein.

This is not the making of another book entirely.  This is the making of a single volume that contains the Tanakh and Brit Khadashah writings of the ancient Jews who trusted in  יהוה  for Salvation.  This work is meant to offer the Jewish scriptures which most call the “Old Testament”, in their original language, sourced from the Masoretic Texts, with an improved English rendering of those texts.  The necessity of another English rendering is predicated upon seeing His Name,  יהוה , in the English side of the book, and of seeing the Hebrew nature of the ancient concepts that are communicated in Hebrew to a modern world.  It is thereby meant to bring the reader of the English closer to the Creator, if only from another, slightly different perspective.  We are confident that the English Tanakh herein does exactly that, with integrity, and with beauty.

This work is also meant to offer a Brit Khadashah portion of the printed “Davar” [Word] in the Hebrew language, sourced from the Aramaic Peshitta texts, and an English rendering on the facing pages.  We still await the Hebrew version. But, this English version shows the reader that His Name,  יהוה , was used by Yeshua and by His Talmidim, including Sha’ul, to declare the Good News of Messiah to the world.  This Brit Khadashah text in English does that, and also serves to offer readers the Jewish flavor of HaDavar, maintaining the integrity of the original texts. It also shows just how Jewish the believers in the Brit Khadashah were, and remained for the rest of their lives.  This volume, therefore, will be unique, giving the reader a different perspective on the use of the Name, completely Semitic text sources for both sides of the Bible, and Hebrew transliterations of important biblical words and concepts.

This translation contains translations of the Masoretic Texts of the Tanakh, and an English rendering of the Aramaic Peshitta Brit Khadashah.  The English Tanakh herein is new and original, but relies heavily on the Jewish Publication Society 1917 Tanakh.  Similarly, the Brit Khadashah herein is new and original, but relies heavily on Lamsa’s 1933 New Testament.  Other sources were consulted for controversial/disputed passages, such as the “Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon”, the “Ancient Hebrew Lexicon of the Bible” by Jeff Benner, “The Analytical Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon”, by Benjamin Davidson, and “Dictionary of the Targumim, Talmud Bavli, Talmud Yerushalmi and Midrashic Literature” by Marcus Jastrow.

We realize there are similar works out there, but none that we found using the Peshitta as a base text for the Brit Khadashah and the Masoretic Hebrew texts as the base for the Tanakh, that also satisfies our other desires, in a single volume.  

There is not one volume offered by anyone we found that offers both the English and the Hebrew of these source texts in a single volume. And that was our primary motivation for setting about to do this work.  We have yet to complete the Hebrew translation of the Brit Khadashah, but chose to publish the English ahead of time, by request.

Our secondary and tertiary motivations have already been stated: those of giving The Name  יהוה  a preeminent place in the English versions, of making the English language more Jewish in tone, and of clearing up confusing and/or contradictory renderings of certain phrases seen in the more traditional versions of scripture.  We will cite just a few of those to begin to make our point herein.

There are many places where other Jewish translations of the Hebrew Tanakh into English are obviously not drawing on the Hebrew language alone, but possibly on doctrine, and they seem to betray a motivation to hide the Messiah Yeshua from our Jewish people.  One of these places, and perhaps one of the more important, is in the book of Zekhar-Yah [Zechariah] 12:10 “…and they shall look unto Me [ where it is clear that  יהוה  is speaking ] whom they have pierced; and they shall mourn for Him, as one mourns for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for Him, as one that is in bitterness for his first-born.”  The traditional, Jewish renderings of this verse, which read in this wise: “and they shall look unto Me because they have thrust him through”, change the meaning altogether, seemingly in an attempt to hide Messiah from the Jewish reader.  The Christian community has also done likewise with certain verses, seeming to promote doctrine rather than translate the text faithfully.  One example is from the book of Ma’asei HaShlikhim [Acts] 20:7, “And at the beginning of the week, when we assembled to break bread…”  Most offer a different reading of this verse, inserting a word, seemingly to support a doctrine.  Similarly, though probably not deliberate, the use of antiquated English words can leave room for misinterpretation.  The best example of this, perhaps, is the use of the word “tongues” in the Brit Khadashah, where the context clearly shows us this word is referencing known, earthly languages.  Others have used the literal but vague nature of this rendering to create doctrine. 

There are several examples in both sides of the book [OT and NT] where these types of renderings give us pause.  Again, this was NOT our primary motivation, and we are not trying to say that all other versions are bad, but only that in certain places the translators seemed to have been influenced by something other than the language and culture of the scriptures.  Having these passages cleared up and made more plain seemed a useful pursuit.  Returning the English to a closer, more faithful “Hebrew” flavor gives the reader a better sense of the Jewish nature of these texts, and an understanding of the plain meaning of the text itself, leaving the establishment of doctrine to the reader[s], as much as possible.

The last motivation, but a good one, was that giving the Hebrew tone of the names of Biblical characters, places, and consecrated items not only gives the reader a better sense of the culture of the book, and compels the reader to learn more vocabulary, but also allows a Hebrew student to learn the language more quickly.  Having the Hebrew on hand with this volume makes learning the language more meaningful, by having so large a vocabulary accessible in the texts, and a glossary to help learn those words.

This seven years of diligence, dedication, hard work, and sacrifice has truly been a labor of love.  We truly hope that everyone who invests their time and means into this work is blessed for doing so, as we know and trust that His Word is the most important earthly evidence of our Creator, apart from His People, and the creation itself.

 “Yes, He loves the peoples, all His K’doshim, they are in Your hand; and they sit down at Your feet, receiving of Your words.”  

~D’varim 33:3

“O, Happy Door”

יהוה  is good to all; and His tender mercies are over all His works.  All Your works shall praise You, O יהוה ; and Your Khasidim shall bless You.  They shall speak of the Kavod of Your Malkhut, and talk of Your might;  To make known to the sons of men His mighty acts, and the glory of the majesty of His kingdom….” Tehillah 145:9-12
As I prayed one morning, these verses pierced me.
For years, I have been striving to do just this, to make known the glory of the Kingdom of Elohim, through His appointed and anointed King, Messiah Yeshua, King of the Jews, King of Israel.
So many people miss the beauty, the majesty, the glory of His Kingdom, which is seen in His People most clearly when Jews and Gentiles are assembled together around His Torah.  Our Congregation is a beautiful picture in microcosm of His WHOLE kingdom: A small number of Jews surrounded by people from EVERY RACE and nation, language, and culture, coming together to exalt the CREATOR and His Son Messiah Yeshua, to declare His Word, to learn, and most importantly, to “impress” His Words upon the hearts of our children, so there will be a righteous generation following after us.
It never ceases to amaze me how this simple goal is thwarted and fought so much.  When we declare the beauty and benefit of keeping His Torah as ONE BODY, we are hammered!  And many times by those who say they know HIM.
I know that sometimes our message is blurred by my humanity, and by others in the Messianic Faith who are sometimes frustrated by the opposition.  [the opposition is never really any person, may we understand this].
We are His ‘works’, and He truly does extend His TENDER MERCIES to me every single day.  Today, I only echo Shaul’s words in that regard:
“For I am persuaded that neither death, nor life, nor HaMalakhim, nor empires, nor armies, nor things present, nor things to come, nor height, nor depth, nor anything else created, shall be able to separate me from the love of Elohim which is in Yeshua HaMashi’akh Adoneinu.”
Our congregation is getting to a place where we are becoming “Ekhad.”  It has been hard work, and it has oftentimes been very painful and sad; but, at the SAME TIME, it has been a GREAT JOY.  This morning, as I prayed, I began to pray beyond the bounds of our Congregation for the whole Body of Messiah.  We who keep His Torah do passionately believe that His Whole Body should and DOES keep His Torah.  Yeshua is STILL a Torah-observant JEW!  He wears a ‘vesture’ [once called a me’il, which we NOW call a tallit, but which Jews have ALWAYS worn], and on His is written the following:
מֶלֶךְ הַמְּלָכִים וַאֲדֹנֵי הָאֲדֹנִים
Melekh HaM’lakhim, V’Adonei HaAdonim
King of Kings and Master of Masters
When we in Messianic thinking try to communicate the rule of law in His Kingdom, we are often seen as being judgmental and ‘legalistic.’    And, make no mistake, I have seen people who claim to be Messianic to be the MOST judgmental people at times, and it is NO WONDER to me any more why some stand so  opposed to the ‘law’, the Torah of His Kingdom.  But, His Torah is not a burden: MEN make it into a burden.  His Sabbath, His most frequent appointed CALLED OUT [of our homes] assembly is the MOST IMPORTANT of the feasts, and it is PRECIOUS to Abba.  He calls it an “ONEG”, a SWEET DELIGHT!  And it is made sweet like various spices when His many different children assemble together for ONE purpose: to PRAISE THE KING!  On the DAY HE said for us to do so.  He blessed the SEVENTH day, for eternity!  We enter into HIS BLESSING when we ‘observe and remember the Sabbath.
We in our congregation are STRIVING for a BALANCE.  One of the primary concepts of the Torah, “Justice”, or “Just weights and just measures,” or ‘equal’ weights and measures, applies to how we apply the Torah to our lives and THEN those around us.  Judgment within the Body of Messiah is absolutely necessary!  We are told that we ARE to judge our brethren.  But, what most do not realize is that where English has ONE word for ‘judge’, Hebrew has three!  And in this case, it simply means to ‘measure’ the behavior of our brethren and ‘see’ if there is an equal measure of mercy to be applied!  THERE USUALLY IS!  There are precious few reasons we are given to divide from our ‘brothers’ [who may not actually be our brothers, but may be false brothers].  Those reasons are CLEAR, in both the “FIRST” and “RENEWED” covenant scriptures.  But, on the lesser ‘measures’ of the Torah, we are ALWAYS supposed to apply MERCY!  This is what Yeshua meant when he says, ‘LEARN WHAT THIS MEANS:  I DESIRE        MERCY!    and NOT sacrifice.’  Serving Abba without mercy for those around us is a STENCH in His nose.  But applying MERCY to our brothers in EVERY OPPORTUNITY is SWEET!  “ONEG”, a unique, SWEET DELIGHT.  He gives us the opportunity to do this EACH WEEK on Shabbat.
My prayer for myself, our congregation, and the WHOLE Body of Messiah, is that we learn not only the need to OBEY HIM as individuals, but the need to LOVE EACH OTHER as a unit: ONE MAN,  ONE BODY, where we all take signals from the ‘head’, Messiah Yeshua.  Bat Tzion is small, and the ‘least’ among congregations, and we passionately believe that we should obey His Word, ALL of it.  BUT, we hearken to the words Yeshua told Kefa when Kefa tried to ‘deflect’ to Yokhanan:
“What is it to you?”
It is the WEIGHTIER ‘measures’ of the Torah that are MOST important:
“Woe to you, Sofrim and P’rushim, you hypocrites! For you take tenth-parts on mint, dill, and cummin, and you have overlooked the more important matters of the Torah, such as justice, compassion, and absolute trust. These were necessary for you to have done, without having left the others undone..”
That’s the ‘balance’ we seek.  To do the stuff that is EASY: attend the synagogue on Shabbat, keep the Seven Feasts of G-d, avoid pagan feasts, wear tzit-tziyot, give offerings.  These are SIMPLE things.
“Compassion”, here, is the word “Khesed”, which means ‘overflowing kindness’/’goodness’ out-flowing from the one giving it.  The three Hebrew letters are חֶסֶד, khet, samekh, dalet.  The meaning of each of these letters/symbols is interesting:  LIFE, APPOINTED, DOOR.  “Samekh” is to ‘lean into,’ to put weight on; but it rhymes, in one sense, with ‘same’akh’, for ‘Happy’.  Many ‘thinkers’ have noted rightly that happiness comes instantly when we do good to others.  Yeshua is the door to happiness, and doing ‘good’ to others is the FOUNDATION of His teaching, and THAT is what Torah teaches!  It’s just that so many get HUNG UP on trying to ‘be’ perfect, they cannot even ‘see’ that Messiah has ALREADY imparted HIS PERFECTION to those who trust, in regard to ‘judgment’.  And HE challenges us then to strive to reach that same perfection!  “Messiah is the goal at which the TORAH AIMS.” Rom 10:4
Recently, during a Torah discussion, something was said concerning Eli-Yahu’s experience at Mount Khorev, implying that Elohim ‘smacks’ us when we get ‘down.’ Eli-Yahu had just won a great victory over the prophets of Ba’al, and then was threatened by the queen of harlotry, and ran for fear.  He subsequently had been sent on a long journey by The Messenger of יהוה , and was hiding in a cleft in a rock on the Mountain of יהוה .  Then He [HaDavar] appears to Eli-Yahu, who heard first a great wind, then felt an earthquake, and then saw fire;  ALL of these are elements of ‘judgment,’ and G-d was NOT IN ANY OF THEM!  G-d did not ‘smack’ Eli-Yahu for being down.  He wooed him with a still, small voice.  He ‘calmed’ him, and comforted him.
“And He said, “Go forth, and stand upon the mount before יהוה .” And, behold, יהוה passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and broke in pieces the rocks before יהוה ; but יהוה was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake; but יהוה was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire; but יהוה was not in the fire; and after the fire, a still, small voice. And it was so, when Eli-Yahu heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entrance of the cave. And behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, “What are you doing here, Eli-Yahu?”  This ‘still, small voice’ continued to speak to the Navi, WITHOUT judgment, only telling him to continue to do His service for the Kingdom.
Abba showed KHESED to Eli-Yahu that day, something of which most ‘believers’ are bereft.  We are quick to ‘shout’ [wind], to tremble in anger [earthquake], and to excoriate with judgmental words [fire], and very, very slow to express compassion to His servants, our brothers.
I am not speaking from a high place of judgment, either, thinking that I have perfected anything.  But, I do ‘press on,’ as Sha’ul set the example and expressed to us in Messiah:
“My brethren, I do not consider that I have reached the goal; but this one thing I do know, forgetting those things which are behind, I strive for those things which are before me; I press on toward the goal to receive the prize of victory of the highest calling of Elohim through Yeshua HaMashi’akh.”  Fil 3:13-14
May all of us strive toward that end, keeping in mind that KHESED is ‘life’s happy door’, and Yeshua is the MERCIFUL ONE.  “Do not CONDEMN, unless you want to BE CONDEMNED.”  The word here is ‘din’, which means to judge in the sense of handing down a ‘sentence’, punishing your brother.  Matt 7:1  It is NOT OUR PLACE to punish ANYONE for their offenses!
“Love covers over a multitude of offenses.”  “It is the discretion of a man to be slow to anger, and it is his glory to pass over a transgression.”  I believe THIS is the ‘glory’ of the Kingdom of Elohim, that we CHOOSE to express ‘khesed’ when we ‘think’ we should punish!  That we continue to strive for ‘shalom’ with ALL men, most especially our brothers.

Don’t! Shoot a foot!

Many Messianic believers, including our congregation, quote 1 Jo 1:6-10 weekly in our liturgical, congregational prayers.  For two weeks or so, I’ve had a very rare word from that prayer rolling around in my mind.

שֻּׁתָּפוּת       שתף     לְשַׁתֵּף

In Hebrew, this word is ‘shutafut’.  From the verb l’shatef,  from the root shataf.

The ultimate numeric value of the root is “6”, the number of man, the day Adam and Khava were created.

The verbal root concept of it is ‘to include’, and comes to ‘participation’ and eventually can get rendered as ‘fellowship’, and hence ‘communion.’   In this sense, it is literally “ONENESS” in the context of the scripture in mind, where we read, “ואִם אוֹמְרִים אָנוּ שֶׁשֻּׁתָּפוּת יֵשׁ לָנוּ עִמּוֹ “  and “ יֵשׁ לָנוּ שֻׁתָּפוּת זֶה עִם זֶה  “If we say we have ‘shutafut’ with Him…[Yeshua],” and again “We have ‘shutafut’ one with another.”    The passage is telling us that if we ‘claim’ to have ‘oneness’ with Messiah but do not walk the Torah as He walked it, then we are liars;  the converse is this, that if we DO walk the Torah the way He taught it, then we ALREADY  have ‘shutafut’ with one another, and/because the Blood of Yeshua the Messiah cleanses us of all our sin.  [‘walking’ in Hebrew is a 1st Century Jewish Torah concept, the way one follows a Rabbi and how he lives out the Torah; Yeshua is the ONLY Rabbi ever to do it perfectly and teach it correctly]

Shutafut is a funny sounding word to the English ear.  It means ‘inclusion in’ , ‘participation in’.  In this case, ‘inclusion’ in the oneness of Messiah’s Body [not of flesh, but of His Ru’akh, given by the Father, to [in] Him, and to us through Him], and thereby inclusion IN EACH OTHER.  This ‘inclusion/participation’ is in spite of our sins, against G-d, and against one another.  The Blood of Messiah ‘covers’ over ALL of those.  IF WE LET IT.

Most people do not realize the very ‘literal’ level these words have to us.  We are NOT our own.  We are NO LONGER little individuals.  We have become part of HIS BODY, a LIVING ENTITY which covers the globe, but is NOT made up of flesh and blood, yet is ‘contained’ in vessels of flesh.  But, it is ONLY made up of those who ACTUALLY ‘participate in’ Messiah, in HIS WALK.   Just a few verses later, Yoknanan writes: “Hereby we know that we are in Him: he who says “I am in Him” ought himself also to walk His Halakha.”  Yeshua did NOT follow the Rabbis, not those of His day, and certainly not today’s.  Neither did He follow the popes, who moved the Shabbat and all the feasts, taught about three gods in one ‘substance’, and licensed everyone to go against the Torah in most ways, falsely reporting that ‘grace’ is the free ticket to heaven no matter how one lives his life.

We as believers find it very difficult at times to separate the flesh from the neshama [the life of G-d in those of us ‘born again’].  But, we who claim to be IN HIM are instructed shortly thereafter, “He who loves his brother abides in the light.”

Love is NOT an emotion, like many people think.  It does at times ride on our human emotions, but the source of love is NOT ‘feeling,’ but G-d Himself.  It is a function of our “NEW NATURE” AND our WILL.  And if Yeshua is IN US, then we WILL [decide to] love one another.  And that is what real ‘shutafut’ is: participation in Messiah and in ONE ANOTHER, in the supernatural, in His Presence, which is in anyone who trusts AND follows HIM.  This was the very theme of Yeshua’s last prayer, before he went to hang on the tree: “Let them be EKHAD BANU,”  ONE IN US [The Father and His Son].  Sha’ul and Kefa both teach this concept, one saying we are a ‘body’ made up of closely knit joints, sinew, and marrow, and another saying we are a building of ‘living stones’ fitly joined together.  If you’ve seen the Temple’s foundation in Yisra’el, you know just how ‘close’ that is.  Though we are ‘individuals’, we, as those who trust in Messiah and follow His Way, are not to think that way any longer.  We belong to Him, and to one another.  While we are “free”, we are yet “servants” of Tzedaka. 

Our western mindset and our society over-influence us on a subconscious level to ‘think’ in opposition to this very radical idea, which is not an idea, but a hard reality.  We, as ‘corporate’ believers are, at times, failing, tearing at the Body of Messiah.  He [the mind/head] is striving to communicate [Through His Living WORD] to His various parts to ‘cooperate’, “l’shatef” zeh im zeh. [have oneness one with the other].

Good Sap

The richness of Jewish faith in Messiah Yeshua:
“For if you [non-Jews] who have been cut from the wild olive tree which is natural to you, and grafted contrary to your nature into a good olive tree [Israel], how much more fruitful would they be [Jews], if they were grafted into THEIR OWN natural olive tree [Israel IN Messiah Yeshua!]? I am desirous, my brethren, that you should know this MYSTERY, so that you may not be wise in YOUR OWN CONCEITS…”
Yeshua said, “Salvation [life] is from the Jews”, Jn 4:22
When Constantine severed the ‘church’ from Jewish Believers, he cut that ‘church’ off from life!  Before you defend him, in his own words, “Let us no longer have ANYTHING to do with that disgusting people, the Jews.”  He said this as the ‘head of the church’, when he MANDATED the CHANGE from worshiping on the Shabbat to worshiping on The Sun’s Day.  He acted as an anti-Messiah, a False Messiah [Daniel 7:25, 1 Jn 2:18]  He cut all those who followed him and the first ‘ecumenical counsel’ OUT of the Olive Tree of Israel!  Shaul was prophetic when he wrote,  “Well, they were cut off because of their lack of trust, but you exist by trust. Be not high-minded, but fear!  For if Elohim did not spare the natural branches, beware, or He will not spare you!  Consider therefore the goodness and severity of Elohim: on those who fell, severity; but on you, goodness, IF you continue in His goodness; otherwise you also will be cut off!”
Am I saying that no one who is a ‘christian’ is saved.  NO.  Because in spite of him, the WORD remains true!  What I am saying is that those who DO know Messiah know that He IS a JEW.
And, I am saying that if a Jew comes to trust in Messiah, his ‘fruit’ in Messiah is marvelous!  All the TRUE traditions of Israel ‘come alive’ in Messiah Yeshua, even some of those they developed AFTER Yeshua came to earth.  Suddenly, the Synagogue is a place to hear the VOICE of the MESSIAH, His Torah.  The Sabbath is a day of JOYFUL rest, and not a drudgery done to try to be perfect and earn salvation.  The FEASTS become a living example of what Yeshua did, especially Pesakh [Passover].  And, they become predictive of what He is about to do, if we understand them FROM A JEWISH PERSPECTIVE.
Jews, unbelieving ones, point to Yeshua, even when they don’t WANT to!  They have established some customs that can ONLY be explained in Yeshua, long after they rejected Him.  “To them is given the oracles of G-d” [Romans 3], even if they don’t believe!
One example: The Affikomen at Passover.  This is a later tradition of Jews.  This is a ‘dessert’, which is actually a piece of the Matzah [unleavened bread] placed in a ‘unity bag.’  That “Matzah Tash’ or matzah bag/unity bag has three compartments.  A piece of Matzah is divided up into three pieces and placed into each of the compartments.  The MIDDLE piece of the ONE broken piece of bread is taken out at a certain point in the ceremony.  Three pieces of ONE Matzah: Father, Son, Ruakh.  The middle piece is taken out. [“I came out of my Father”]  It is wrapped in LINEN and hidden away for children to find.  It must be sought together, and brought to the FATHER [the one conducting the ceremony in a home is the father].  The Seder is not complete until the Affikomen is found!  The father gives the child who found the Affikomen a token, usually a coin [silver dollar], and promises a greater gift later.  This ‘custom’ is such a CLEAR picture of Messiah Yeshua, the “middle matzah”, the Son, coming to earth, dying, being hidden in a grave, rising from the grave and leaving his linen cloth behind, being sought out, returning to the Father, and giving a ‘deposit’ on LIFE, with the promise of RESURRECTION at a later date!
Another:  Khannukah is a custom that developed about 200 years before Yeshua ministered.  During the Maccabean revolt, Jews took the Beit HaMikdash back from Antiochus Epiphanes, an “anti Messiah” Greek who told Jews they could not study Torah NOR keep the Sabbath [just like Constantine].  He defiled the temple by offering a pig in the Holy Place, and erecting a statue of zeus and declaring himself god.  The popes have done the same.  The Maccabees revolted.  They took the Temple back, cleansed it, and “Dedicated” it.  The word for “dedication” is Khannukah.  They began to celebrate that “Dedication” AS A NATION, and Yeshua honored it!  He went to Jerusalem during Khannukah [Jn 9-10], and preached a message about the false shepherd! [Antiochus, Constantine, and the eventual Anti-Messiah, the son of perdition who will soon appear].  It’s important to note that as passionate as Yeshua was about pointing out the errors of the Pharisees, HE DID NOT REBUKE THEM FOR THIS FEAST!  Khannukah is called the Festival of Lights, because they would light a lamp with 8 lights during this season.  Why?  Because they ‘dedicated’ the Temple in the 9th month of the year [our December], and that dedication was considered a “Sukkot” celebrated out of season, Sukkot usually being celebrated in the 7th month as commanded, and is a 7-day feast, with an 8th day called “Yom HaShmini”, also known as “Simkhat Torah” [Lev 23].  The two Temples that Israel had built before had been dedicated on Sukkot, an EIGHT DAY FEAST [seven days, with a “Great Day” at the end].  At ‘Khanukah,’ the ‘dedication’ after his defilment, to begin that feast out of season, they LIT THE MENORAH, as lighting lights begins EVERY DAY with Elohim, especially His Sacred Days [Sabbath, and the feasts] They had not been able to keep the ‘Season of Our Joy’ [Sukkot] for three + years because of the Greeks, and its kicking off with the lighting of the Menorah was a GREAT JOY to them!  Little did they know that the Messiah would be CONCEIVED during Khannukah, and be BORN DURING SUKKOT!  And, after all that took root in Israel, nearly 1500 years later a new custom developed around the “Khannukiah.”  The original, in-home Khannukiah [Khannukah Lamp] was an oil lamp with eight holes in it [these 1st century pottery lamps have been found all through Jerusalem].  When candles became the standard ‘lamp’ for the home, the “Khannukiah” of today was developed.  This was an eight-stemmed candelabra that looked like the Menorah.  [Hence, it came to be called a Menorah].  Today, there are NINE LIGHTS.  None are certain why, but one account says that In the late middle ages, a community of Ashkenazi Jews [probably one of my grandfathers, 😉 as “Dreyer” means ‘turner’, which also happens to be the root of the ‘turning toy’, Dreidel, of Khannukah] ordered a bunch of 8 branched “Menorahs” ahead of time.  When they were received, they had NINE lamps on them! Oy!  No bother, we’ll use it, and call it “The Shammash”, the servant candle.  It is used only to light the other eight lights!  This, too, is a beautiful picture of Messiah Yeshua, conceived at Khannukah, who gives light to the world!  And, He gives light into the ‘eighth millennium!  [8’s symbol also means infinity; in Hebrew, it is the letter khet, LIFE, also known as the “Letter of Light!”].
He was conceived during the commemoration of ‘new light’ after one of the ‘darkest’ times in Israel’s history.  He was born during Sukkot, the ‘Feast of the Ingathering.’  He died and rose again during the feast of Pesakh.  He sent the Ru’akh on Shavuot, and will call His Bride out on Yom Teruah!  He will judge the world on Yom Kippur, and begin to dwell with us at Sukkot.
The JEWISH nature of our faith is SO RICH.  EVERYTHING Jews do, whether believers or not, if it does not contravene Torah, it points to Yeshua!  They can’t help it!
Again, “how much more fruitful would they be [Jews], if they were grafted into THEIR OWN natural olive tree? I am desirous, my brethren, that you should know this MYSTERY, so that you may not be wise in YOUR OWN CONCEITS…”
And, “If their rejection [of Messiah] has resulted in reconciliation of the world, how much more will their restoration [to Messiah] be? Indeed, it will be life from the dead!”
Be good to Israel.  It could be the life of you.