Pri HaGafen

My Parasha [weekly reading portion of scripture] is VaYishlakh: “And he [Ya’akov] sent…”  That is this week’s [12/8-12/14] parasha.

The scriptures in this scheduled reading which was read in the synagogues during the Sabbath week of my birth 54 years ago have been special to me since I discovered the parasha reading schedule some fifteen to twenty years ago.  Ya’akov, whose name my son now bears, wrestled with Messiah, who manifested to him as a “Malakh”, a messenger.  He changed his name to “Yisra’el”.  He was then reconciled with his estranged twin; then, his daughter, Dinah, plays the harlot and is defiled, and his sons take vengeance for her.  Ya’akov is then sent back to Beit El, where he first saw the spiral stairway, and the messengers ascending and descending on it, and finally Ya’akov purges his household of idolatry from there.  At this point, the covenant of Avraham is ratified with Ya’akov under his NEW name, Yisra’el.  He then loses his wife, Rakhel, as she dies as a result of her theft and idolatry, and he names her last son “Binyamin”, “Son of My Right Hand”.  Rakhel was buried in Beit Lekhem of Efratah, where Yeshua, the Son who sits on His Right Hand, was born.  Then, all the twelve sons of Yisra’el are named together for the first time, in this portion.  And then, his father, Yitz’khak, died, and is buried at Khevron [see: “I’m in Khevron”] , the same place where Avraham and Sarah’s bodies were interred.  After this, all the sons of Edom are named.

Needless to say, this is a very ‘full’ portion.

And the “Haftarah” that goes with it is the whole book of Ovad-Yah.  And here, Edom is warned for ‘standing in the way’, which is in the 14th verse, and is where the word ‘perek’ is in Hebrew, which means ‘cross-road’, intersection, from where my surname is derived. This portion speaks about “The Day of  יהוה ”, and there is a promise that on that day there will be those that “escape”, and France and Spain’s Jews are promised the cities of Southern Yisra’el on that day.

But, the portion that I have not paid as much attention to over the years is the Brit Khadashah portion of VaYishlakh, particularly the portion of the B’sorah, as we just adopted that part of our reading schedule about three years ago.

It is the immersion of Yeshua by Yokhanan, the calling of the first few Shlikhim, in particular Netan’el, and then  a wedding in Kana.  All of these events are monumental in the life of Yeshua.

What most people do not recognize about this portion is that this wedding takes place on what we call ‘Tuesday’.

 “On the third day there was a wedding in Kana…”

In the Bible, the ‘third day’ is the name of that day, counting from the first day, which most call ‘Sunday’.  In Ancient Yisra’el, and in some Jewish communities today, the third day was the day many people had their weddings.  This is because on the very first ‘third’ day of the week ever, the third day of Creation, all of the plant life was created, ‘with fruit in them’.  This is the very inception of life in our universe, and is seen as a particular blessing for wives bearing fruit.  And at the wedding Yeshua attended, on this day, He performed His first miracle, the miracle of ‘creating’ “Pri HaGafen,” the “Fruit of the Vine”.  This was an echo of the third day of creation, and was a manifestation of Yeshua’s role as the power behind creation.  Whoever the groom was, who is not named, should have been very grateful for Yeshua, and I’m willing to bet that family flourished, and that groom’s descendants are numerous today.

Yeshua also created the ‘Pri HaGafen’ at Pesakh three years later, in that He ratified the renewed covenant with the THIRD cup of the Pesakh Seder, the ‘cup after supper’, saying, “This is the cup of the Brit Khadashah in my blood, which is shed for you.” [Luka 22] And in Matti, “Then He took the cup and gave thanks, and gave it to them and said, “Take, drink of it, all of you.  This is my Blood of the Brit Khadashah which is shed for many for the forgiveness of sins.  But I say to you, from now on I shall not drink from this fruit of the vine [Pri HaGafen] until the day when I drink it anew with you in Malkhut HaElohim.”  And they sang the Hallel, and went out to Har HaZetim.”  Har HaZetim, the Mount of Olives, is where Yeshua prayed so earnestly that He shed blood from his sweat glands, on a Tuesday Night.  The Third Day; ratifying a betrothal to His new Bride.

Pri HaGafen, the Fruit of the Vine, takes on a whole new meaning for me in ‘realizing’ this, this week.

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

Update on “HaDavar, D’var יהוה “


Hu Ba!

It is FINALLY here!

I HOPE you get your copy, and are blessed and increased by reading His Word from these sources, and from a better, Messianic Jewish perspective, glorifying His Name and not hiding/blotting it out.

Click the link “HaDavar D’var יהוה ”  below…. amazon has it, they just haven’t posted the cover image yet.  If you struggle with the link, you can go to Amazon and search on “HaDavar Perek” and you’ll find it.

Read about it below if you’re not familiar yet with our project:

“HaDavar, D’var יהוה “



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 intellectual authority over His Word, that precludes anyone else having interpretive 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-one 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 writ, “HaDavar,” [The 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 eight 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

I’m in Khevron

A couple of weeks ago, while studying parashat “Khayei Sarah” with my wife, I saw a few things on a deeper level.

Sarah died and was buried at חֶבְרוֹן , Khevron, which was formerly called, קִרְיַת אַרְבַּע , Kiryat Arba.  Reading these in English or transliteration doesn’t reveal much.  Reading them in Hebrew, with some understanding, starts to peel back some layers.

First, ‘Sarah’ means ‘princess’.  Or ‘female ruler’.

Khevron is the city from where David ruled his kingdom for seven years.  Most people know that “Sar Shalom” is “Prince of Peace.”  ‘Sarah’ is the feminine version of “Sar”. קִרְיַת אַרְבַּע , or “Kiryat Arba”, means “City of Four”.  And Khevron means “Friendship”.

In the portion, Sarah has died.  Avraham is looking for a place to inter her body.  On a peshat level, that is as plain as it can be.  But, is there a deeper reason that so much detail is given us concerning her burial?  Is there anything to see, beyond just her interment?  I believe there is.

Everyone should know that Avraham believed in the resurrection.  If so, then everyone should know that, like Avraham, who now lives in “Eden”, otherwise known as “Paradise”, or the “Bosom of Avraham,” Sarah, too, is alive.  Elohim is the G-d of the LIVING, and NOT the dead.  Though her body is dead, Sarah yet lives.  But, her body represents who she was/is on earth.  And she is a princess.  She is the wife of the father of our faith.  She is seen as a symbol of faith.  [Ivrim 11].  Is it possible, then, at all, that she could be representing the Bride of Messiah?

David ruled from Khevron during the first seven years of his reign.  It means “friendship”, where ‘khaver” is the root, and vav-nun is the suffix.  I will leave my thoughts about vav-nun out for now, but to say that a vav is both a nail, and an upright man, and a nun is a ‘seed’, and an upright man.  One might see ‘death’ in the first one, and ‘life’ in the second.

Khevron is a city; and Sarah’s body was placed there.  This is the city where David was anointed to be “Melekh David,” literally “A Beloved King”.  The z’kanim were gathered together there to see him anointed as king .  There are overtones of “prince and princess” in that event, of bride and groom:

“Then came all the tribes of Yisra’el to David unto Khevron, and spoke, saying, “Behold, we are your bone and your flesh. In times past, when Sha’ul [a picture of Mashi’akh HaSheker, the false/lying anointed one] was Melekh over us, it was you that did lead out and bring in [shepherd] Yisra’el; and יהוה said to you, ‘You shall feed My people Yisra’el, and you shall be prince over Yisra’el’.” So all the elders of Yisra’el came to HaMelekh to Khevron; and Melekh David made a covenant with them in Khevron before יהוה ; and they anointed David Melekh over Yisra’el.”    2 Sam 5:1-3

So, the place where Sarah is buried was formerly called “City of Four”, or ‘a city ‘foursquare’, perhaps?  And it is here that David enters into a covenant, bone of bone, flesh of flesh, with Yisra’el’s elders?  And the city is then called “friendship” or “association”.

Is it mere coincidence that Yeshua’s bride, or princess, is seen as “elders”, ‘z’kenim’ assembled around a throne in the Hitgalut [ch 4 and 5]; and that this city is called ‘foursquare’; and that He is anointed/declared the only one worthy, and declared King there; and that a marriage occurs there, and that it takes seven ‘earth’ years to complete the event?  And then Yeshua returns from that City, then to rule in the earthly Yerushalayim for the remainder of man’s time on earth?  It cannot be mere coincidence. Is it also mere coincidence that this is one of the cities of “refuge”, where a person flees from an avenger?  I am a firm believer that every letter, every stroke of the pen in the Torah matters.  [Matti 5:17-19].  There is so much more depth to all of this than I am able to convey right now.  But the overtones, to me, are obvious and glaring.  I cannot wait to see our “Khevron”, our city of refuge, our foursquare city of friendship, where our King will be anointed as King.




It has been a while since my last post.  I have taken some time to press in to our Creator, to seek His face, concerning personal matters.  I do not know what the immediate future holds, but one thing I have is absolute shalom.  And I have gratitude for that, as well as His many other blessings.  These past few weeks have not been fun.  But, in a sense, they have been more beneficial for me in so many ways, ways that others cannot fathom.  Due to huge waves of misunderstanding, I have pursued only Him.

The nightly prayer  we pray with the Shema is Tehillah [ps] 4, and the verse that always ‘shines’ out to me is, “Rigzu, v’al tekheta’u; imru vilvav’khem al mishkav’khem, v’domu; Selah.”

“Tremble, and do not sin; speak with your own hearts in your beds, and be silent. Selah” [sic: on the fly verse citation and xlation from memory]  Selah is likely a musical ‘pause’, or an encouragement to meditate on the prior words.  No one really knows for sure, but to me, that’s what the evidence suggests.  In my morning prayers, I have great communion with Avinu in His Words through our Messiah Yeshua.  During the daily standing prayers, I have a much needed repast from work, and a brief connection to Avinu through His Son again.  But, at night, after the Shema and Tehillah 4 are offered as sacrifices of praise by my wife and me, the ‘deep’ meditation in Him begins, the ‘crying out’ of the soul.  Every night, I ‘know’ that He hears me.  Even though sometimes I don’t ‘feel’ like He did.

The last two weeks have been some of the tougher weeks of my life.  But in the midst of it, I have had a deep, deep Shalom, in spite of the ‘storm’ of words and emotion that is going on.  Two Fridays ago, I was so full of Shalom, that my unusually low resting heart rate of 50-52 was even lower: 40 beats per minute.  In spite of being on a Keto diet, which can rob a person of sleep, I have slept deeper and more sound, apart from the 3 a.m. break required by most men at my age.  And that break actually gives me a second opportunity to ‘commune’ with Him ‘with my heart’.  And those times have been some of my most cherished times, especially these past couple of weeks.

On two separate nights, I asked specific things of Abba concerning His thoughts of me.  Last night I did the same again.  As someone who was raised in a bit of a dysfunctional home, negative ideas about oneself are sometimes difficult to overcome.  When others perpetuate the negative criticisms, they can be even harder to overcome, tearing open old wounds again.  Those have been near incessant for me this year, for some inexplicable reason.  I am all too aware of my many flaws.  But, I am also very aware that there are good things about me, most of which others seem not to see at all.  But, the greatest and single most important ‘thing’ about me is my confession of Yeshua’s death FOR ME.

Each of those three nights that I prayed, asking Abba of His thoughts concerning me, I ‘saw’ in my mind the right wrist of Yeshua being laid on an old piece of gnarly wood, already bloody, with a huge nail poised on His wrist [In ancient Hebrew, the ‘hand’ included the wrist up to where the arm starts to widen out], and I all but heard the first blow of the hammer on the huge nail, and I saw the metal go into His flesh, in my mind.  Last night’s episode was the more vivid, as it seems that it has gotten clearer every time.

Avinu, Our Father, ‘thought’ enough of me, in spite of all my many flaws people are so quick to point out, to send His Son ahead of time, almost 2,000 years before I existed, to take that nail, and two others, into His flesh, after having taken the stripes on His back already, for me.

Not very many people besides my wife ever truly seem to offer me compassion and grace; but, the ONE who NEVER fails to do so for me is our Creator, and His Son, Yeshua.  Each of those nights, when I ‘saw’ His suffering right arm, I awoke the next morning, and in my morning reading I read a Tehillah that spoke specifically concerning the questions that I asked of Abba during my communing with Him by His Son’s Name the night before.  Tehillah 31, then 40, and 129.  Others, who have preconceptions in their hearts and judgments for me, if they read them, may read ‘into’ them what they ‘think’ I took from them; but Abba knows TRULY  what He spoke to me by and through His Son.

I’m not a very confident person; but, I take absolute confidence in the truth of His Word, and for myself, especially in regard to the absolute fact of the death of His Son, Yeshua, for ME.  Others don’t seem to want to give me that compassion, but He has, abundantly.

There are three sides to His Death: the Father’s, who had to forsake His Son for a season while sin was heaped upon Him; the Son’s, whose soul was laden with the sin-guilt of every human being, while His Father turned His back on Him, and the sins that were heaped on Him included all sinners. For me, it is the recognition of His deep, unfathomable love, that He would do such a thing ahead of time, knowing the very depth of our propensity to betray Him by sinning again, against G-d, and against our brothers.

Yeshua rose from the dead, and now His right arm, left arm, and both feet, and His side, bear the scars for eternity that have lifted ALL of my sin debt off of me.  If there is NOTHING ELSE in this world for which to be grateful, there is that.  And I will be able to look upon and touch those scars one day, much as did T’oma, and the eleven.  I cannot wait to see in flesh the reminder of  what I have seen in my nighttime prayers of late.

“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.”



Sha’ul the Jew

This goes along with my previous blog, “Who is Yisra’el”.  I was reading in Phil this morning, and read through the third paragraph below, and thought immediately of the first two.  I’ve gotten good feeback on the previous blog, so this supplement may prove useful to some.

People who identify as “Israel” today, who are not Jewish, are fooling themselves.

THEY say that Israel is today’s gentile Christians descended from their preferred genetic stream, which they cannot trace back to the twelve sons scientifically or by heritage.  Some of these streams are: Brit Am, who say the Anglo Saxons are the ten lost tribes.  “Danites” and Efrayimites” who say the “Danes” are Dan, “Black Israel”/”Hebrew Israelite who say that all ‘true Jews’ are black, and today’s Jews are fake Jews, “Two House” who say that anyone who claims faith in Messiah is absolutely descended from the 10 northern tribes, because they are the lost sheep of the house of Israel about which Yeshua spoke [if you believe that, you’re wrong, see the previous blog]. The list keeps growing of people who claim and end-around of the tree of Messiah’s gospel to be saved.

Yeshua is a Jew.  His pedigree is established better than anyone’s in the world, in Matti 1 and Luka 2, and Hitgalut 5.  Sha’ul [Paul] was a Jew.  And he was an “Israelite”, and a Benjamite, and a Hebrew. See the verses below.  Israel is ONE PEOPLE!  And our Jews are that people today, and genetically, NO ONE ELSE IS.  [see previous blog].

“But Pavlos [Sha’ul’s name of Greek citizenship] said, “I am a Y’hudi [a JEW] of Tarsus in Cilicia, born a citizen of a well-known city; I beg you, permit me to speak to the people.” And when he had given him permission, Pavlos stood on the stairs and beckoned with his hand to them. And when they were quiet he spoke to them in the Hebrew language and said to them…..”

“I am a Y’hudi, [JEW] born in Tarsus of Cilicia, yet I was brought up in this city at the feet of Gamli’el, and trained perfectly according to the Torah of our fathers, and was zealous toward Elohim just as you are also.”

“As for me, I once relied on things of the flesh. However, if a man thinks his hope is on things of the flesh, I have more hope than he has; for I was circumcised when I was eight days old, being brought forth from Yisra’el, of the tribe of Binyamin, a Hebrew son of Hebrews…”

Sha’ul, being a Benjamite, nonetheless called himself a Jew in the public defense of his Torah observance.  This betrays the lie that the Jews are JUST “Judah”.  Yehudah is the ruling house of Israel.  True Israel is submitted to that house.

Being a Jew, he called himself a “Hebrew“, which is in deference to his culture AND language.  Hebrew is and was always spoken exclusively in the LAND of ISRAEL.  NO OTHER PEOPLE GROUP in the Middle east, or Africa, or anywhere in the world ever spoke that language.

Being a Hebrew, he called himself an Israelite, meaning he was ‘brought forth’ in birth into the covenant of Avraham and circumcised on the eighth day.  No African or European culture used circumcision until the 20th century.

There is only ONE HOUSE and ONE PEOPLE in the Kingdom of Elohim, and genetics plays NO part in it.  The gospel was OFFERED to the Jew first, and THEN to the gentile.  But, both get in by the SAME WAY, and it has NOTHING to do with your flesh.  If it does, in the least way, you are still lost, or have turned to another gospel from His Truth. [Gal 1:9]

Who is Yisra’el

[This summary is for a project we are working on, and is a very first draft; but, it is a good summary, concise and clear, “plain”.  I covet your thoughts]

[for transliterated terms, reference: ]

Elohim, the Creator and King of the Universe, chose Avram, changed his name to Avraham, and entered into covenant with him, preaching the B’sorah to him, and declaring him a Tzadik because he trusted in  יהוה .  He then also obeyed the Torah.

The genetic, chosen children of Avraham are the descendants of his son Yitz’khak, through his son Ya’akov.  There are only twelve tribes, descended from the twelve sons of Yisra’el.  They formed a nation in Eretz Yisra’el.

The nation split in two, and the northern tribes were scattered and forgotten [Hoshe’ah 4:6] because of their spiritual harlotry, mixing the worship of  יהוה with the worship of Ba’al and Ishtar. 

The southern Kingdom was called “Yehudah”, and from there we get our moniker for this people, the “Jews”.  The Jewish people today are all of genetic Israel.  The remnant of the ten northern tribes already returned and rejoined the southern Kingdom, as plainly seen in scripture [2 Chron 30], and all twelve tribes were scattered, together, in 150 AD, and will again be brought back into the land, together, as the Nevi’im declared.  The ‘two sticks’ are already united, and the descendants of Yisra’el are ONE: the Jewish people.

This is earthly, genetic Israel, and no other

[We are certain that there are descendants of the northern tribes in other areas, but no one can ascertain where or who they are, with any certainty.  It is all mere speculation, and some of the proponents of genetic identity make up word associations, such as “Brit Am” must mean that “Britains” are the ten tribes, “Covenant People suddenly means “Britain”; they ignore etymology and real linguistics to dupe people.  They make up genetic mumbo jumbo, asserting they know whose DNA is whose.  They forget the 12 sons had five different mothers, and that Efrayim and Menashe had an Egyptian mother.  There is no “Israel DNA”, as there is NO KNOWN base for it.  It is deceit.  The ones that were scattered are forgotten.  Some of their very distant offspring today may indeed be believers in Yeshua, but if so, they are saved because of and by their trust ALONE, and are become the Yisra’el of G-d, along with Jews AND Gentiles.  Consider this: the ten northern tribes were scattered, according to scripture, into parts that are now exclusively Islamic, oddly enough.]

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

Two-house doctrine does NOTHING to build trust in Yah.  It only divides, just as our Jewish people divide the Body at times.  “Is Mashi’akh divided?” No!

The Israel of Elohim [Gal 6:16] , the CHOSEN BY PROMISE THROUGH TRUST, is any JEW who TRUSTS IN the risen Yeshua as the son of Elohim, AND, any Goy that has joined himself to Yeshua, the King of the Jews, in like manner. [Rom 2:29, 11:17-21, Gal 3:9, 6:16]

Read more:

The Malakh  יהוה  appeared unto Avraham, Yitz’khak, and Ya’akov, and Moshe, and was a manifestation of “HaDavar”, the Word, which later manifests in the man Yeshua, as it is today. [Ivrim 1:1-4]

Elohim, through His Malakh, chose the son of promise, also a Tzadik, the one named Yitz’khak.  And His son, Ya’akov, inherited the covenant and the promise.  Ya’akov’s name was changed to Yisra’el.  His sons and their descendants are the people of Yisra’el.

The nation of Yisra’el was established through covenant with  יהוה  at the mouth of Moshe at Mount Sinai.  All twelve tribes were present.  Elohim delivered them from bondage and brought them into the land of promise.  Eventually, they became a Kingdom.  That Kingdom was divided in two because the northern kingdom rebelled against the southern kingdom, and His appointed king.  The northern kingdom was called “The Kingdom of the House of Yisra’el”.  The Southern Kingdom was called “The Kingdom of the House of Yehudah”. 

The Kingdom of the House of Yisra’el went into mixed paganism, creating two houses, one in Dan and one in Efrayim.  In each of those houses was a golden calf.  The golden calf represents gods made by man. [doctrines of harlotry]  The northern tribes called each calf  by His Name,  יהוה , just as did their fathers in the desert.  As such, יהוה said that He would forget northern Israel [Hoshe’ah 1:4, 4:6], but would save a remnant [Is 1:9, 10:20-23, Jer 37:31] and unite them again with Yehudah [Rom 11:7].  This already happened. [2 Chron 30:5]   

Yeshua is the ROOT of the tree of Yisra’el.  The B’sorah was OFFERED to the JEW first, which was to all Yisra’el.  The Brit Khadashah was ratified at the Pesakh Table, when Yeshua offered the Cup of Redemption, to TWELVE JEWISH MEN, who represented Yisra’el, Yehudah [Jer 31:30-33].  Yisra’el and Yehudah were BOTH present at the Seder, as ONE people.

NOT all of Yisra’el accepted that cup, however.  And they are CUT OFF, just like the northern Kingdom had been cut off.  The “Yisra’el of Elohim” is made up of Jews who are genetic Yisra’el, who are saved because of the promise and BY TRUST ALONE, such as Avraham, Yitz’khak, Ya’akov, Moshe, David, Khizki-Yahu, Yeshua, Yoknanan, Kefa, Matti [from Levi], Sha’ul [from Binyamin], Shimon and Khana [Luka 2:25-36, NOT of the tribe of Yehudah but Asher, 2 Chron 30, Luka 2], because it was offered to them FIRST, and it is also made up of GOYIM from the OTHER nations NOT descended at all from Avraham.  The Goyim, NOT of Yisra’el, were offered the B’sorah after Yisra’el in large part rejected it.  A remnant, the Talmidim, were Jews, Israelis, who received it.

The phrase “the lost sheep of the house of Yisra’el” was spoken to the Kingdom of Yehudah, in both the Tanak and Brit Khadasha:

Yirme-Yahu [the prophet to the SOUTHERN KINGDOM, as the northern kingdom had already been destroyed, and the disobedient scattered and forgotten] 50:1-17 [go and studiously read this passage!  See to whom it was addressed, and when, and why]

This is spoken concerning the destruction of Bavel, because it was prophesied that ALL YISRAEL, in the Kingdom of Yehudah, in the restored/reunified SOUTHERN KINGDOM, would go into captivity to Bavel TOGETHER, and then RETURN, BOTH HOUSES TOGETHER.  The people of Yisra’el were LOST DOCTRINALLY because of the DISOBEDIENCE of SHEPHERDS [pastors, supposed teachers of His Word], and that is why they would soon go into captivity, TOGETHER, [seen in Yirme-Yahu and Lamentations] and return TOGETHER to the land [seen in Ezrah and Nekhem-Yah].  They were also TOGETHER in the time of Yeshua.

In Yeshua’s day, ALL TWELVE TRIBES were LOST DOCTRINALLY, because their teachers [Pharisees] were teaching salvation by GENETICS AND WORKS [be a Jew, be circumcised, keep MAN’s mitzvot].  Yeshua sent the twelve to Yisra’el’s lost sheep, explicitly telling them NOT to go into Shomron, the nearest GENTILE community, descended from the 10 northern tribes! [Matti 10:5-6].  Yeshua came to minister to Yisra’el, the land of Yehudah at that time, the small, reunified kingdom of Yisra’el.

Sha’ul repeatedly refers to the Jewish people of his day as “Yisra’el”.  He called himself a JEW, though he was of the tribe of Binyamin.  He referred to the people who ministered in the Temple as Yisra’el. 

There is ONE Yisra’el of G-d, and ONE NATURAL Yisra’el that is our Jewish people today.  Only a genetic Jew [which are all twelve tribes restored] can be both.  Salvation ‘because’ one is a northern Israelite is ANOTHER GOSPEL [Gal 1:9], and is an utter waste of time and energy.