Tag Archives: Yeshua/Jesus

Unleavened Bread: First-born of Israel grow in grace and knowledge

The first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread pictures the beginning of a new living way. But that new living way was not joyous when Israel left Egypt — days of affliction — and our departure from our “house of bondage” isn’t either. They were learning to live in a way, and so are we.

The Messiah rode into Jerusalem on a small male donkey, on the day that we call Palm Sunday. Why was the donkey so important that God said to break its neck if you don’t redeem it by killing the lamb instead. Imagine sacrificing a lamb to save a donkey?

Today is the day that you are to redeem your first born son and make him holy. Did you know that your first born son is holy to God? Did you know that the donkey, even though it’s an unclean animal, is holy to God?

God writes His law deep in our hearts, which flow with “living water.” We are to grow in grace and knowledge as we get older. We never stop growing, even when we are very old.

Continue reading Unleavened Bread: First-born of Israel grow in grace and knowledge

John 16:16–33: Grief turned to joy

In John 16:16, Yeshua repeats the warning He would be separated from His disciples physically (Mk. 9:31–32; Jn. 7:33; 12:35; 13:33; 14:18–24; 16:5). 

The Eleven are a little confused and didn’t understand or want to understand His proverb: “you won’t see Me then you will.” The  Greek word that is translated as “little while” is μικρός mikros (Strong’s lexicon No. G3398). It’s a word that is the root of words such as micro, micron. It means something very small.  It seems to refer to the “three days” of Yeshua’s death and resurrection. It’s Hebrew equivalent is katan. For example a talit katan, is a small talit often worn as an undershirt. 

However, other Scriptural uses of mikros and related words βραχύς brachus (G1024) and ὀλίγος oligos (G3641) point to Yeshua’s time as a human and the time leading up to the Day of the LORD being a brief time (Heb. 10:37 (quoting Hab. 2:3); Jas. 4:14; 1Pet. 1:6; 5:10; Rev. 6:11; 17:10). 

Critics say that the disciples use of the word mirkos was based on their misunderstanding but that is not the case. The expectation of “a little while” is really a little while because in God’s time, all of time is “a little while.” 

Why does God keep using the term “a little while” and says He is not going to tarry, when from the time of Habakkuk to Yeshua was 400 years? Or even Moshe’s foretelling of a Messiah was over 1,400 years before He came. 

We have to live as if He is going to come today. Today, if you hear God’s voice, is when you are to respond and make your choice. 

Since the times of Moshe and Israel’s exilic prophets ― about four centuries ― the people had waited for the Coming One (ὁ ἐρχόμενος ho Erchomenos, Matt. 11:3), aka the Mashiakh.

Yeshua taught via a string of interconnected parables and proverbs that we must always be ready for the Day of the LORD (Luke 12:16–53):

“And the Lord said, ‘Who then is the faithful and sensible steward, whom his master will put in charge of his servants, to give them their rations at the proper time? Blessed is that slave whom his master finds so doing when he comes.’ ” (Luke 12:42–43 NASB)

One lesson of this parable is that we are to respect other people. We are to treat those in our realm of responsibility and contact with respect today, not to wait until we get our act together. This is the point of the  “second-greatest commandment.” (Lev. 19:18; Mt. 19:19; Mk. 12:31; Lk. 10:27; Rom. 13:9; Gal. 5:14; Jas. 2:8). 

We are to remember that we are in the presence of the Master. We are not to become obsessed with pleasure, leisure and departure. People like to “tune out” in various ways, but taking ourselves from situation doesn’t really take us away from the situation. 

Pleasure, beauty and laughter are enjoyable, but they are fleeting. Excesses lose their fun, wrinkles come, and jokes get old. Thankfully, sorrow can be as fleeting, if we let it go. What we put into the lives of others, that is what lasts through time. 

The apostles likened our training as ambassadors for the Kingdom of God to preparing for endurance in sports:

“Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win. Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.” (1Cor. 9:24–25 New American Standard Bible Update)

“Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us, let us also lay aside every encumbrance and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Yeshua, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” (Heb. 12:1–2)

If we are going to “run” as God’s servants, we have to be careful not to run faster than we’ve trained to, otherwise, we set ourselves up to get “winded” and quit. If we are running faster than the Spirit, we can exhaust that Spirit. 

Some of God’s servants have gotten so caught up in the work, they forget to pray, to take care of their house and they burn out. This is what happens when we presume that the call of God is a sprint when it’s actually a marathon.

We are racing against our former way of life before the covering of Mashiakh’s death and invitation of the Spirit of God. We are to rejoice at every milestone we pass. Yeshua repeatedly told the congregations they were to overcome. Each congregation had to overcome a different issue but they all were called to overcome to reach their goal.

As we wait for the “little while” we can see where God has changed us and moved us from the old life to the new life.  

“Do you not know that those who run in a race all run, but only one receives the prize? Run in such a way that you may win. Everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable.” (1 Corinthians 9:24–25 NASB)

We are not racing our fellow believers in Yeshua as though we are in competition with each other. That old life lacked self-control and shrank away from persecution, leading one to want to decide the Kingdom of God isn’t worth the personal sacrifice.

For Yeshua, washing people’s feet, like the lowest slave, was not an issue for Him. He knew where He came from and where He is going. What the world considers as a high or low status meant nothing to Him. 

We are sons and daughter of the Kingdom of God. That is not a pollyanna goal that we will never attain. You are not looking at yourself as God sees you. God told Paul that He had a lot of people in Corinth. Corinth was one of the most decadent cities in the Roman Empire but God was looking at the inside, not the outside. 

The Apostle Paul in Romans 12 revealed to us the point of the offerings in the Torah: sacrifice all of what’s inside of us that keeps us from siding with the Creator of the Universe and His direction for how life works best. The Torah is not a slaughterhouse manual, it’s about a transformation of a nation and the entire world. It’s how to erase the old man or old woman and to bring out the new man or woman. 

The needed endurance training is what Yeshua had been telling the Eleven that Pesakh, recorded in John 13–15: God’s Helpers ― the Mashiakh and the Ruakh haKodesh ― are essential to starting and maintaining the new life as a guilt-free. 

Just as in the Torah, you see how leadership moved from Moshe to Joshua is similar to how Yeshua was preparing the Eleven to take over leadership. From the one who spoke to God face to face to ones who have the Spirit of God in a different kind of fullness. 

“Until now you have asked for nothing in My name; ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be made full.” (John 16:24 NASB)

What are we asking for? We are asking for the Helper to help us and move us into the new realm. 

Read Deuteronomy 30-32 to get the whole context just as you read John 13-17. I encourage you to feel the same emotion that is going on through a transition in leadership. Yeshua would be leaving the Eleven, but they were not going to be left behind, powerless and alone. Neither are we.

Speaker: Jeff. Summary: Tammy. Because of a technical problem, there is no recording of this discussion.

John 15:25–16:11: Tag-team Comforters of Israel

Apostle Yokhanan frequently describes Yeshua’s role as Advocate and the Spirit’s role as Helper, particularly in John 14–16. The gospels of Mark and Matthew use the term a couple of times. 

The Helper not only will remind believers of Yeshua’s words but also fully bring prepare them to  comfort. 

The Greek word for helper in Jn. 14:16, 26; 15:26; 16:7 (cf. Mt. 10:19f; Mk. 13:11; Lk. 12:11f) is παράκλητος paraklētos (G3875), derived from the word παρακαλέω parakaleō (G3870).

God’s Parakletos for Israel foretold

In the Septuagint (Greek translation of the “Old Testament”), parakletos is used for the Hebrew word נחַם nocham (H5164, repentance) and its verb root נָחַם nacham (H5162, to breathe deeply or to sigh out of a deep sorrow). This is the kind of deep sorrow, a sorrow too deep for words that the Holy Spirit translates for us and lifts up to the Father. 

In the intertestamental literature (between the time of the writing of Malachi and Matthew), the name Menakhem, or “instrument of nacham,” is another name for the Mashiakh (Messiah, Christ). The Menakhem would be the consolation of Israel. The prophets promised return from exile(s) and foretold the coming of the Mashiakh. This idea of the Menakhem was not just someone who would come in on a horse but also one who would take away one’s distress and bring comfort. 

The Comforter is also an Advocate who speaks to us before the Father and the Messiah also is an advocate who brings comfort to His people. You see this mirrored in Revelation, when the Menakhem will take away the sorrow and there will be no more distress or anguish. 

Just as God breathed into man to become living being and to become a “reborn” person in the Kingdom of God, God “sighs” over the agony of those who suffer.

According to Scripture, both the Mashiakh and the Spirit of God act as “the consolation of Israel.”

Hated without a cause

Yeshua returned to the message of God’s Helper ― παράκλητος / מְנַחֵם. 

“They hated me without a cause.” (Jn. 15:25)

Those who persecute Yeshua and His disciples hate God, Who sent the Messiah.

The power of God displayed through Yeshua’s words, miracles and actions were in line with Messianic prophecy testify, and the Spirit confirms these by reminding us of them and putting them into the context of the plan of the Kingdom of God. The Jewish leadership were well-versed in Torah and had memorized large portions of Scripture so knowledgeable speakers could quote just a small snipped of Scripture and the hearers who were very learned would understand the entire context of the snipped quote. 

Yeshua is warning His Apostles that just as people hated Him, they will hate them too. 

This is a quotation from Psalm 35:

“Do not let those who are wrongfully my enemies rejoice over me; Nor let those who hate me without cause wink maliciously. For they do not speak peace, But they devise deceitful words against those who are quiet in the land. They opened their mouth wide against me; They said, ‘Aha, aha, our eyes have seen it!'”(Psa. 35:19–21; cf. 69:4)

What is “winking maliciously”? This is “narrowing the eyes” or pinching your eyes together. There’s a lot of angst and anger in the expression. It’s an outward sign of aggression. The Hebrew euphemism is שֹׂנְאַי חִנָּם sheyn’ai khinnam = hating graciously, i.e., freely, without cost. 

What is “hating graciously”? The Talmud gives us an insight into that phrase. Sages reflecting on the destruction of the Temple in A.D. 70 also noted how “free hate” was a big problem for that generation. This hatred was like an illness eating away at the heart of the people of Israel:

“Why was the Second Sanctuary destroyed, seeing that in its time they occupied themselves with studying Torah, obeying mitzvot and practicing charity? Because in it prevailed hatred without a cause. That fact serves to teach you: gratuitous hatred weighs in the balance against the three cardinal sins of idolatry, fornication, and murder.” (Yoma 1.3.5.R–S (9b))

Yeshua touched on this issue when He rebuked them saying: 

“Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law: justice and mercy and faithfulness; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others.” (Matthew 23:23 NASB)

You see this in the kangaroo court nature of the proceedings against Yeshua, Stephen and later the Apostle Paul. The Jewish court was not concerned about justice and doing what was right. They did not protect their fellow Jew but threw them to the Roman wolves.

You see this also in the story of King Saul and David. Saul knew that he had sinned so egregiously that his crown and anointing was given to David. Saul had been chosen as the leader but he was deviating from God’s instructions. God stopped talking to Saul and that pain of that silence was devastating to Saul but he took it out on David. He even tried to break into God’s back door by speaking with mediums. 

David wrote Ps. 35 during this period of turmoil. 

Israel had stopped listening to God during the Maccabean period moving into the First Century. There was a revival when the people returned to the Land after exile in Babylon but they quickly devolved after that. The people stopped listening so God stopped talking. The prophets who were heralding the consolation of Israel, the Messiah, were ignored. 

The Sages shifted their views in what the Messiah was supposed to be to the point where today there are many different views of Messiah but none of them match the truth. 

You can understand why Yeshua is quoting Psalm 35 here. The majority of the leaders thought they were doing the will of God by helping Saul chasing down David. 

Spirit convicts on sin, righteousness, judgment

The three convictions by the Spirit upon the world will be “sin and righteousness and judgment” (Jn. 16:8). 

They didn’t want to listen to God or ask for God’s help to understand what was coming. They didn’t want clarity from God. There were a few who reached out to Yeshua such as Nicodemus. There were also a group of priests we read about in the Book of Acts reached out too, but they were not the majority. 

Most of the Jewish leadership heard the words of God about the coming Menakhem–Mashiakh, but they didn’t want to listen or ask for God’s help ― Helper ― to discover and recognize God at work. They were more concerned about the Romans taking away their position than they were about knowing their Messiah. They hated Messiah Yeshua without cause. 

“and concerning righteousness, because I go to the Father and you no longer see Me;” (John 16:10 NAS95)

Dependence on visual signs of God’s power at work can be a roadblock to trust in God.

Yeshua said to a royal official from Capernaum who asked Him to come heal his sick son: “ ‘Unless you people see signs and wonders, you simply will not believe.’ ” (John 4:48) He trusted Yeshua’s word without Yeshua being physically present with his son. That fait was rare. 

You also see that Yeshua had “breathed ― passed along ― the Spirit to 10 closest students, Thomas the Twin came in but wanted lots of physical evidence of Yeshua’s resurrection. On Yeshua’s visit to them eight days later, Thomas confesses not only the truth of Yeshua’s resurrection but Yeshua’s identity as God. Thomas didn’t even touch Yeshua to confirm. Yeshua told him: 

“Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.'” (Jn. 20:29)

This is the reason that Yeshua, the Parakletos had to leave and the other Parakletos had to come. They needed more boldness and more power now that Yeshua would not be physically present on the earth. 

“In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls.” (1Pet. 1:6–9)

This is why Yeshua had to leave. We see the immense, horrific trials that people who hate God freely do to those who trust in God, yet they trust God with their lives. For example, the martyrs who have been butchered by ISIS in Syria, Libya and Iraq are not throwing their lives away but are making a proclamation of God’s greatness. 

It is not random that the Apostle Yokhanan uses the same word to describe both Yeshua and the Holy Spirit. The people kept demanding a sign and Yeshua said the only sign you will get is the sign of Jonah. The people of Nineveh were told that 40 days and you will be dead. They repented so much that they even made their animals repent. This foreign nation had more trust in God than the nation the prophet Jonah came from.

They had a prophet Yokhanan the Baptist, they had Yeshua, they had the Apostles going two-by-two throughout the land. They had a chance to repent and did not take it. 

Everyone has a bias. There is no such thing as objectivity and detached. But you can test and see if your bias is valid or not. You can have a hypothesis but as the experiment goes, do you skew your readings to fit your hypothesis or can you acknowledge the hypothesis is wrong? 

Even those who have no fleshly connection to Yeshua can put their trust in God because of the Holy Spirit. 

“concerning judgment, because the ruler of this world has been judged” (Jn. 16:11) Light had come, so darkness (places unlit) must run:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.” (Jn. 1:1–5; cf. spiritual things being spiritually discerned, 1Cor. 2:14)

The English word translated as comprehend is καταλαμβάνω katalambanō in Greek (G2638), which means to lay hold of so as to make one’s own or to seize. That’s why some translations use overcome or overpower.

People shrink from the light because they don’t want their deeds to be exposed. The ruler of this world brings darkness and confusion but in the light, it goes away because of the tag-team of Messiah Yeshua and the Holy Spirit. 

You become a new person with a new heart. It’s not a matter of a list of do’s and don’ts but God changes your inclinations so that you don’t want to do what is wrong. Yeshua and the Holy Spirit knows our deepest anguish. Yeshua lived it Himself and the Holy Spirit experiences it in us. That is why the Holy Spirit can translate our deepest groaning to God for us. 

Speaker: Jeff. Summary: Jeff and Tammy. 

John 15:16-24: Bear ‘fruit’ via agape love for one another

“You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you. This I command you, that you love one another.” (John 15:16–17 NASB; cf. Luke 12:51-53; 1 Cor. 1:10-13, 11:17-19, 12:24-26; Jude 1:17-21)

This phrase, “whatever you ask of the Father in My name … that you love one another” is a very important phrase to consider. We’ve encountered Yeshua’s phrase “whatever you ask” a couple times before in the Farewell Discourse (Jn. 14:13–14; 15:7) and we will once again before it’s complete (Jn. 16:23).

This points back to the parable of the vine and branches from the beginning of John 15. You know you have healthy vines and they are growing well, and the fruit is good when the members of the congregation chose to esteem each other higher than themselves. 

Sometimes you don’t know if you really esteem someone higher than yourself until you are put to the test. We are commanded to do this, though. It’s not optional but the good new is that it can get easier to highly esteem others as we practice it. We have the Helper to help us because we really need His help to love this way. This is hard and God knows that. 

One way that people can see that God is at work in our assembly is when they can see all of us speaking to each other and about each other in higher esteem than we speak of ourselves. 

One of the greatest “works,” “fruits” or “signs” of the origin of the trust and hope the followers of Yeshua the Mashiakh held would be their and our agapao love ― the choice to consider someone important ― for each other.

True followers agapao each other because they agapao Yeshua and Yeshua them. This is the heart of Yeshua’s command, “… love one another, even as I have loved you…” (John. 13:34; 15:12, 17; 1 John. 2:7; 3:11, 23; 2 John. 5).

We’ll see Yeshua take this command to a deeper level in John 17:

“Holy Father, keep them in Your name, the name which You have given Me, that they may be one even as We are.” (John. 17:11 NASB)

Not only are believers to esteem each other as important the way Yeshua did them ― selflessly ― believers were to do so the way the Father does the Son.

So, believers must be able to work out disagreements in ways that build up the assembly, rather than create divisions.

Yeshua’s rules for conflict resolution in Matthew 18:

  1. Try to settle the matter privately.
  2. Bring a trustworthy and mature witness, and try to settle it privately.
  3. Take it to the assembly, presumably where the leaders will guide the resolution. (Acts 15)

Apostle Paul advises us to never take our matter into the public eye or secular court.

Why? Because we nullify God’s testimony when we fail to get along, when we prefer to take our disagreements to a secular court rather than to each other. We don’t want the hard hammer of the law in our assembly. 

After all, didn’t Yeshua promise that He would bring division? People seem to think that offending people on purpose is to be expected when we follow Yeshua’s command but that is not necessarily the case. 

“Do you suppose that I came to grant peace on earth? I tell you, no, but rather division; for from now on five members in one household will be divided, three against two and two against three. They will be divided, father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.” (Luke 12:51–53 NASB)

The word division in this passage is translated from διαμερισμός diamerismos (G1267), which means disunion or dissension.

Other uses of division in the NT are the Greek word σχίσμα schisma (G4978). This the source of our word schism. It literally means a cleft, rip;  metaphorically, a division, dissension (John 7:43; 9:16; 10:19; 1Cor. 1:10; 11:18; 12:25). Heresy creates schisma

There are several texts where the Greek word schisma shows up, many of them are in Paul’s letter of 1Corinthians. There were several sources of schisma in the community. 

“Now I exhort you, brethren, by the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you all agree and that there be no divisions among you, but that you be made complete in the same mind and in the same judgment. For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe’s people, that there are quarrels among you. Now I mean this, that each one of you is saying, ‘I am of Paul,’ and ‘I of Apollos,’ and ‘I of Cephas,’ and ‘I of Christ.’ Has Christ been divided? Paul was not crucified for you, was he? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?” (1Cor. 1:10–13)

We still have this type of schism in the Messianic community today. Everyone listens to a different teacher on the Internet and they argue with each other over which teacher is more educated and superior to the other and whose system for determining or counting this or that is more original to the text. The idea that you can’t be under the same roof with someone who prefers one teacher over another is not in Scripture. That is not  agape love, esteeming others higher than ourselves. 

“But in giving this instruction, I do not praise you, because you come together not for the better but for the worse. For, in the first place, when you come together as a church, I hear that divisions exist among you; and in part I believe it. For there must also be factions among you, so that those who are approved may become evident among you.” (1Cor. 11:17–19)

Bringing disparate factions together is part of God’s work.

“But God has so composed the body, giving more abundant honor to that member which lacked, so that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it.” (1Cor. 12:24–26)

This goes back to one of the key points of this letter to the Corinthians. They were going out of their way to accept a member who was indulging in a very wicked relationship but they were arguing with each other which teacher was the better teacher. 

“But you, beloved, ought to remember the words that were spoken beforehand by the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ, that they were saying to you, ‘In the last time there will be mockers, following after their own ungodly lusts.’ These are the ones who cause divisions, worldly-minded, devoid of the Spirit. But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, waiting anxiously for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to eternal life.” (Jude 1:17–21)

Those who cause divisions are “worldly-minded, devoid of the Spirit.” When you assume that you are smarter, more holy than others in the community, you are separating yourself from that community. 

Rather, Spirit-minded believers are to be אחד ekhad — one — with each other and with God. We’ll see that in Yeshua’s prayer in John 17.

Speaker: Jeff. Summary: Jeff and Tammy.

John 15:1-11: Face to face with the Vine

“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit.”  (John 15:1–2 NASB)

If a branch is not productive, the vineyard owner sends out workers to prune away any branches that are sickly or unproductive. When one prunes a branch, it is removed. It can no longer get nutrients, water, etc. When it no longer abides in the vine, it dies. To live, the branch must remain attached to its source. 

Before we dive into John 15:1-11, let’s read through prophet Isaiah’s parallel parable of the vineyard (Isa. 5:1-5, 7, 13). The “beloved” is the owner of the vineyard, and the vines are the tribe of Judah. The vineyard owner does everything He can so the vines will produce good grapes to make good wine but the fruit is lacking. How are they lacking? 

“Therefore My people go into exile for their lack of knowledge;…” (Isaiah 5:13 NASB)

Let’s read Psalm 80, which is a psalm of Asaph. Here the people of Israel are compared to a vine that God removed from Egypt and transplanted in a new land. There’s a refrain that is repeated three time and is amplified and intensified throughout the Psalm. 

“Turn us again, O God, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.” (Psalms 80:3 KJV)

When the heart turns to God, God’s face turns towards the repentant person. When God shines He face, he is showing His favor and salvation. Vines thrive with sunlight and need the sunlight to grow. 

“It came about when Moses was coming down from Mount Sinai (and the two tablets of the testimony were in Moses’ hand as he was coming down from the mountain), that Moses did not know that the skin of his face shone because of his speaking with Him. So when Aaron and all the sons of Israel saw Moses, behold, the skin of his face shone, and they were afraid to come near him…the sons of Israel would see the face of Moses, that the skin of Moses’ face shone. So Moses would replace the veil over his face until he went in to speak with Him.” (Exodus 34:29–30, 35 NASB)

Moses was speaking to God face to face and God’s glorious residue remained on Moses’ face even when he left God’s direct presence. The Hebrew word here is קָרַן qaran (Strong’s lexicon No. H7160), which literally means “to display horns.” The mechanical translation of qaran as to have horns in the Latin Vulgate translation led Michaelangelo to depict Moshe has having two horns in the famous statue. Fortunately, the KJV followed the Septuagint and rendered qaran as glory in Exodus 34. Think of it as the light shooting out like rays of light. 

The other important word here is face, which in Hebrew is פָּנִים panim (H6440). The continual petition for God’s “faceshine” on the commonwealth of Israel is embodied in the Aaronic blessing (Nu. 6:24–26). When God’s face is not there, there is no knowledge, no connection anymore.

Have you lost a connection with a high school or elementary school friend and then met them again many years later? The reconnection might have been very awkward because you have grown so far apart over the years that you don’t really know each other anymore. 

This is what happened to the northern tribes of Israel and the southern tribes of Judah. The northern and southern kingdoms had drifted so far away from God that they were estranged to each other and from God, too. 

But amid the long devotional prayer of Psalm 119 is the connection of God’s faceshine bringing understanding of God’s statutes:

“Make Your face shine upon Your servant, And teach me Your statutes.” (Psalms 119:135 NASB)

God wants to have the same connection with you that you have with your children, that you teach your children about the world and He wants to teach us about Him. God’s face shining is not about getting money or material blessings from God about learning God’s ways and longing to live the way God wants us to live. 

When Ezra and Nehemiah returned from Babylon, they had very little knowledge of God and they were thirsty to know Him. That is how revival came to the Jewish exiles returning from Babylon. 

The reason the children of Israel had been sent into exile is because they didn’t acknowledge God. They didn’t care to be with Him at all. The Prophet Daniel’s prayer for the end of the exile and restoration of God’s embassy in Yerushalayim included an appeal to “let Your face shine on Your desolate sanctuary.” It was desolate because when the people would come there, they worshipped Him with their tokens and their lips but not with their hearts and minds. 

The Tabernacle without the Panim, the “face” or “Presence” of God, is just an elaborate tent, and the Temple without the Panim is just a beautiful building. 

Yeshua said several times in John 6 that He was the “bread that came down from heaven,” which was referring to the “daily bread” God provided Israel between the Exodus and entering the Land. Yeshua was the face of God. 

“And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us, and we saw His glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John. 1:14 NASB)

The connection between Yeshua and the faceshine of God for Israel is pictured again in the vision of the “Mount of Transfiguration,” where Moshe also was shown (Mt. 17:12–13), and the introduction to the “Revelation of Yeshua the Messiah” (Rev. 1:16).

Did the Jews in the first century know more about God than the people who were exiled to Babylon? Not really. The literalist Sadducee’s were specifically rebuked by Yeshua for their lack of knowledge of God’s word, but the charismatic Pharisees didn’t really know God well either. They were more concerned about the forms and rituals and separating themselves from “contamination” than about showing love, mercy and justice to their fellow man. 

What is the veil? What is the real issue we see in 2Cor. 3:1-4:6?:

“For God, who said, ‘Light shall shine out of darkness,’ is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.” (2. Cor. 4:6, NASB) 

Moses’s face shown, not because he had the tablets but because he was in God’s presence. With Christ, there is no condemnation (Rom. 8:1), so there’s no reason to consider being in God’s presence something to fear but something to look forward to (Heb 10:19–20, 34–36; 1 John 2:28–3:1; 3:19–22; 4:15–19). This is the great hope of all the prophets is that no one would be scared to be in the presence of God but would long for it. 

Part of remaining in the vine is wanting to be connected to the vine, wanting to be connected to God and being in His presence. That is our great hope: to know God and be known by Him. It’s a return to Eden and no longer being ashamed.

Speaker: Jeff. Summary: Tammy. 

Symbols of Passover: Original, Messianic, today and Day of the LORD

The “Law of liberty” mentioned by the Apostle Ya’akob (James 1:25; 2:12) is connected to entering into God’s “rest” (Hebrews 3-4) and “walking in liberty” (Psa. 119:45). And the symbols of פסח Pesakh (Passover) show how God planned for this to work originally, at the time of Yeshua Mashiakh (Jesus Christ), today and at the future Day of the LORD.

We are looking at a few of the symbols you encounter in Passover, specifically what they were originally, what they were in the time of Messiah, what they are in the present and what they are in the future. You may have heard that the Appointed Times were only to celebrate agricultural cycles but not that we don’t live in an agricultural society, these Appointed Times don’t have any importance anymore. The Law of Liberty presented by the Apostle Paul in the Book of Hebrews is directly connected to entering into God’s Rest and walking in liberty.

Continue reading Symbols of Passover: Original, Messianic, today and Day of the LORD

2nd Kings 5: Faith in God by Naaman vs. Gehazi and King of Israel

Daniel AgeeIn 2nd Kings 5, we should see a connection between Yeshua (Jesus) and Elisha the prophet. Aramite captain Naaman, a pagan, was not the only one being examined in his healing from leprosy. The king of Israel and Elisha’s servant Gehazi were also being examined or tested.

In an account of Yeshua’s healing 10 lepers, only a Samaritan, a “foreigner,” returned to give God praise. Both Naaman and the Samaritan paid spiritually by having to acknowledge that salvation comes from Israel, not from their false views of God.

Continue reading 2nd Kings 5: Faith in God by Naaman vs. Gehazi and King of Israel