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  • Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts | Menorah Ministries

    Biblical - Traditional Jewish Feasts Biblica l: Shabbat Sabbath Passover (Unleavened Bread) Pesach The Messiah In The Passover Passover and the Messiah Yeshua-Jesus Firstfruits Feast of Firstfruits Pentecost Shavuot-Feast of Pentecost Trumpets Rosh Hashanah-The New Year Yom Kippur Yom Kippur: Feast or Fast? Day of Atonement Tabernacles Sukkot-Tabernacles Non-Biblical/Traditional: Chanukah Feast of Lights/Feast of Rededication Purim Purim - The Lesson Of Purim- Esther ​ The 9th of Av A day of fasting commemorating the destruction of the First and Second Temples ​ Jewish Holidays Shabbat and Holiday Readings 9/22-4/23 Shabbat and Holiday Readings 4/23-12/23 ​ 8 Year Jewish Holy Days 2020-2028 ​ Shabbat or Sabbath The first three verses in Leviticus 23, which precede the list of appointed feasts, show the importance of what can be called the most important day of the sacred calendar, the Sabbath. Contrary to popular notions, the Sabbath was a day of delight. If you take the Sabbath from a Jew, you are robbing him of a precious jewel. The Sabbath was one of God's most precious gifts to Israel. It refers back to God's act of creation before man sinned. "God blessed the seventh day and made it holy, because on it He rested from all the work of creating that He had done". Genesis 2:3 & Leviticus 23:1-44. That rest was the Lord's own refreshing rest, made known to man, to be shared in by man newly created. The eye of God rested on His holy creation, and was refreshed. (It is a Jewish remark that "whoever does any work on the Sabbath denies the work of creation."! Hebrew Sabbath, day of holiness and rest observed by Jew from sunset on Friday to nightfall of the following day. The time division follows the biblical story of creation: “And there was evening and there was morning, one day” (Genesis 1:5). Weekly observance begins with candle lighting Friday evening before sunset & ends Saturday at nightfall. In Jewish homes the woman of the house lights white Sabbath candles before sunset on Friday evening and pronounces a benediction. The Sabbath meal that follows is preceded by the Kiddush (blessing of sanctification). Shabbat Shalom! How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected?In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. He, the Messiah is the way to Eternal Shabbat, Yom Shekulo Shabbat! Reprinted for educational purposes from: ISRAEL’S Holy Days, In type and Prophecy, Daniel Fuchs, introduction Chosen People Ministries.​ Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE Shabbat Pesach Passover, Four More Questions by Rachmiel Frydland ​ ​ The Passover table was prepared and set for the Seder. In the center was the five branched candlestick with the holiday lights over which the blessings were pronounced by the mother of the household. The father had been busy for the last twenty-four hours removing the leaven and cleaning ritually in boiling water some of the utensils that had to be used all year round and on Passover. The special utensils, kept only for these eight days of Passover, were taken out from hiding. The matzo was purchased and brought into the house along with the wine for this special season. Now it was time to prepare the ceremonial platter where the various additional items are placed into their proper place arranged in two triangular patterns: first the roasted shank bone, symbol of the roasted Passover lamb, is placed on the right. Opposite it, on the left, is the egg, roasted whole and symbolic of the Passover and the new life and resurrection. The bitter herbs are placed somewhat below and centered between the shankbone and the egg, to remind us of the bitter life which our ancestors endured in Egypt. The next triangle consists of the haroseth, made of grated nuts and apples with a dash of wine to produce the color of mortar as it is written: "And they made their lives bitter with hard bondage in mortar" (Exodus 1: 14). This item is placed on the lower right. Opposite it on the left is the vegetable called karpos, usually a stalk of petersilia or carrot to remind us of the low fare given to our ancestors in Egypt. It also is a symbol of the hyssop used for the sprinkling of the blood of the Passover lamb. Then centered below them are the grated bitter herbs to complete the second triangle. There is also a seventh item outside the large platter. This is a dish of salt water to remind us of tears shed in Egypt and of the crossing of the salted Red Sea. ​ The Four Questions The four questions are to be asked by the youngest son as it is written: "And it shall be when thy son asketh thee ... What is this?" (Exodus 13:14). The four questions which are really four responses to one question are: Why is this night different from all other nights? (1) Any other night we may eat either leavened or unleavened bread, but on this night only unleavened bread (2) Any other night we may eat any herbs, but this night only bitter herbs (3) Any other night we do not dip even once, but on this night twice (the bitter herbs in the haroseth and the vegetable in the salt water) (4) Any other night we eat either sitting or leaning (on cushions) but on this night we all lean. This is an opportune time for the father to begin the chanting of the Haggadah, the great story of the exodus from Egypt and the many miracles which accompanied it. He performs actions symbolic of God's great miracles. At the recital of the ten plagues that God brought upon the Egyptians the wine in the cup is diminished. This shows God's compassion on the very enemies of God and His people. Every person drinks four cups of wine during the Seder to symbolize the four "I wills" of redemption found in Exodus 6:6-7. The wine must be red to symbolize blood. ​ The Broken Matzo Early in the ceremony the father uncovers the three matzot which lie in front of him in a three-pocketed napkin. He takes out the middle matzo, breaks it in half, takes the larger half and wraps it in a napkin and hides it somewhere under his cushion. One of the children will try to steal it away and claim a price if successful. Otherwise it will lie there "buried" until the service is over. Then it will be taken out and broken into small pieces and distributed to the members of the family. This, too, is a symbol of the Passover of which everyone was to participate. This matzo, since it had been broken, has become the aphikomen, a word apparently derived from the Greek, meaning, "I arrive," or "I come to." (not epikomen which means dessert). ​ Four More Questions The following questions are not in the Hagadah but should be asked nevertheless: 1. Why do we place three matzot in one napkin? The usual explanation is that they represent the threefold division in Israel: Priests, Levites and Israelites. But the Priests and Levites are of the same tribe and the whole people of Israel are called a kingdom of priests in Exodus 19:6! 2. Why is the middle matzo broken in the course of the Seder? Why is the larger half hidden away, buried under the cushion, taken out later and eaten by all in memory of the Passover lamb? 3. What is our pesach today? Is it the roasted shank bone, the Zero'ah? It can hardly be so, for its blood was not sprinkled on the doorposts of the houses as prescribed in the Torah. It was not roasted whole either. Is it then the roasted egg on the Passover platter? An egg is surely not a sacrifice. Why are we advised to have wine red as blood on Passover? What or Whom does this represent? 4. What is the meaning of the verses we recite from Psalm 118:22-23: "The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner. This is the Lord's doing; it is marvelous in our eyes. “Who is the "Stone" and who are the "Builders?" ​ Our Answer Jewish believers in the Messiah are convinced that there is a connection in the Passover Seder with the Last Supper of our Messiah. Almost 2000 years ago, Jesus of Nazareth, Yeshua HaNotzree, who claimed to be Messiah, sat down with His disciples to celebrate the Passover Seder after accomplishing His teaching and healing ministries. On the table were probably the three matzot and red wine. When the time came to break the matzo and drink the wine, the Lord Yeshua gave the following explanation as we read in the Brit Hadashah (New Covenant): He took bread and gave thanks and broke it, and gave it unto them, saying, This is my body which is given for you: this do in remembrance of me. Likewise also the cup after supper, saying, This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you. (Luke 22:19-20). From this we can make the following inferences: 1. The three matzot may represent the triune nature of God: The Unity, His Shechinah, and the One who is concealed from most of the people, as we pray "Behold I am prepared and ready to fulfill the commandment of the first (second, third, fourth) cup. In the name of the Holy Unity, blessed be He and His Shechinah, through Him who is hidden and concealed." 2. The middle matzo represents the One whose body was broken and given for us. It was hidden and buried, and then resurrected with the promise of aphikomen. I have come already and am coming again. ​ 3. The late Professor Solomon Birnbaum had the opinion that it was no longer possible for our people to offer the Passover lamb since the Temple was destroyed in A.D. 70. However, seeing the followers of Jesus of Nazareth celebrate Passover with matzo and wine to represent the sacrifice of Messiah, the Jewish leaders "incorporated it into the religion of the people ... [for it] completely answered the purpose." In other words, some of our ceremonies at the Seder Table are adapted from the practices by which the followers of Yeshua commemorated His sacrificial death. A Jewish believer, referring to Yeshua, declared: "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." (John 1:29). He is our Passover sacrifice. 4. He, the Messiah, is the Stone, the Rock of Israel. Him, many of our builders, or leaders, rejected, and He has become the headstone, the most important Jew in the history of our people. But one day our people will accept Him, "And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, there shall come out of Sion the deliverer, and shall turn away ungodliness from Jacob." How about you? ​ Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. ​ Reprinted with permission of The Messianic Literature Outreach www.messianicliterature.org ​ Return to B iblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE It was no coincidence that Jesus chose the Passover now celebrated as communion, the Lord's supper. For the story of the Passover lamb, Jesus the Messiah could best communicate the course he would be taking over the confusing hours that were to follow. PASSOVER - Pesakh - Hag HaMatzot The number four plays a significant role in Judaism. There are the four species of vegetables for Sukkot; four kingdoms in the book of Daniel; four Torah portions in the tefillin;* four Matriarchs. At Passover, we find this number in abundance. In the course of the Seder we have four sons, four cups of wine, four expressions of redemption (Exodus 6:6-7) and perhaps the most famous"Four" of all--the Four Questions. As the Seder developed over the centuries, the Four Questions underwent many changes and were altered as different situations arose. 1. For example, originally one question dealt with why we ate roasted meat. ​ 2. After the destruction of the Temple, that question was deleted and one about reclining was substituted. Today, the Four Questions (phrased as observations) are asked by the youngest child in the family: Why is this night different from all other nights? 1. On all other nights, we may eat either chometz* or matzoh; on this night, only matzoh. 2. On all other nights, we eat all kinds of vegetables; on this night, we must eat maror. 3. On all other nights, we do not dip even once; on this night we dip twice. 4. On all other nights, we may eat either sitting or reclining; on this night, we all recline. The father then explains the Passover story. There are other questions that the rabbis could have chosen as well. In the spirit of rabbinical adaptation, here are some additional questions that both children and adults might ponder. (* This and all other italicized Hebrew terms will be listed in a glossary at the end of this article.) Why do we place three matzot together in one napkin? There are any number of traditions about this. One tradition holds that they represent the three classes of people in ancient Israel: the Priests, the Levites, and the Israelites. Another tradition teaches that they symbolize the three patriarchs, Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Yet another explanation is that it is a depiction of the "Three Crowns": the crown of learning, the crown of priesthood, and the crown of kingship. 3 And a fourth option is that two of the matzot stand for the two weekly loaves of Exodus 16:22, and the third matzoh represents the special Passover bread called the "bread of affliction." 4 And if those are not enough to keep one's imagination running, here's another. Rabbi Abraham Isaac Sperling suggested that the three matzot stand for the three "measures of the fine meal" which Sarah prepared for Abraham's angelic guests (Genesis 18). The reason for this interpretation lies in the rabbinic tradition that this event occurred on the night of Passover. Out of all these explanations, how can we decide which is the right one, or is there yet another? Why is the middle matzoh, the afikoman, broken in the course of the Seder? Are we breaking the Levites, or Isaac, or the crown of learning, or one of the guests' cakes, or the bread of affliction? Or are we symbolizing the parting of the Red Sea (another explanation)? 6 If any of these explanations are correct, why is the matzoh hidden away, buried under a cushion, and then taken out and eaten by all, as the Sephardic ritual puts it, "in memory of the Passover lamb?" Where is our pesach, our Passover sacrifice, today? The Torah prescribes that a lamb is to be sacrificed and eaten every Passover as a memorial of the first Passover lambs which were killed (Deuteronomy 16:1-8). In reply, it is said that without a Temple we can have no sacrifices - yet some have advocated that the sacrifice still be made in Jerusalem even without a Temple. 7 Since the Passover sacrifice, like others, involved the forgiveness of sins, it is important that we do the right thing. Some feel that the pesach had nothing to do with forgiveness. But in Exodus Rabbah 15:12 we read, "I will have pity on you, through the blood of the Passover and the blood of circumcision, and I will forgive you." Again, Numbers Rabbah 13:20 cites Numbers 7:46, which deals with the sin offering, and then adds, "This was in allusion to the Paschal sacrifice." Clearly the rabbis of this time period regarded the pesach as effecting atonement, and Leviticus 17:11 confirms that "it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul."' Today, however, we have only a shankbone, the zeroah, as a reminder of the Passover sacrifice, and roasted egg, the chaggigah, in memory of the festival offerings. But nowhere did God say that we could dispense with sacrifice. So, where is our pesach today? The answers to these questions can be found by examining how and why the Seder observance changed dramatically in the first century. The Seder celebrated by Jesus and his disciples The "Last Supper" was a Passover meal and seems to have followed much the same order as we find in the Mishnah. In the New Testament accounts, we find reference to the First Cup, also known as the Cup of Blessing (Luke 22:17); to the breaking of the matzoh (Luke 22:19); to the Third Cup, the Cup of Redemption (Luke 22:20): to reclining (Luke 22:14): to the charoseth or the maror (Matthew 26:23), and to the Hallel (Matthew 26:30). In particular, the matzoh and the Third Cup are given special significance by Jesus: And he took bread, gave thanks and broke it, and gave it to them, saying, This is my body given for you; do this in remembrance of me." In the same way, after the supper he took the cup, saying, "This cup is the new covenant in my blood, which is poured out for you. Luke 22:19-20. The Passover Lamb The early Jewish believers in Jesus considered him the fulfillment of the Passover lambs that were yearly sacrificed. Thus Paul, a Jewish Christian who had studied under Rabbi Gamaliel. wrote, "Messiah, our pesach, has been sacrificed for us" (1 Corinthians 5:7). John in his gospel noted that Jesus died at the same time that the Passover lambs were being slaughtered in the Temple (see John 19:14) and that like the Passover lambs, none of his bones were broken (the others being crucified had their leg bones broken by the Romans - John 19:32, 33, 36). The idea behind all this was that just as the Israelites were redeemed from Egyptian slavery by an unblemished lamb, now men could be freed from slavery to sin by the Messiah, the Lamb of God. The cessation of the Temple sacrifices The first Christians were considered a part of the Jewish community until the end of the first century when they were expelled by the synagogue. Until the temple was destroyed, these Messianic Jews worshipped regularly with those Jews who didn't believe in the Messiah. In fact, there were entire congregations that worshipped Yeshua and they continued in their observance of the regular Jewish festivals. In such a setting, much interchange of ideas was possible. Jesus declared over the matzoh, "This is my body." Since the Jewish believers of that time saw Jesus as the Passover lamb, it followed that they would see the matzoh as symbolic of Jesus, the Passover lamb. In turn, with the destruction of the Temple and the cessation of sacrifices, the larger Jewish community might well have adopted the idea that the matzoh commemorated the lamb, even if they discounted the messianic symbolism. The Afikoman Ceremony As mentioned earlier, the significance of the middle matzoh and the ceremony connected with it is shrouded in mystery. The derivation of the word afikoman itself sheds some light. The word is usually traced to the Greek epikomion ("dessert") or epikomioi ("revelry").9 But Dr. David Daube, professor of civil law at Oxford University, derives it from aphikomenos, "the one who has arrived."10 This mystery clears further when one considers the striking parallels between what is done to the middle matzoh (afikoman) and what happened to Jesus. The afikoman is broken, wrapped in linen cloth, hidden and later brought back. Similarly, after his death, Jesus was wrapped in linen, buried, and resurrected three days later. Is it possible that the current Ashkenazic practice of having children steal the afikoman is a rabbinical refutation of the resurrection, implying that grave-snatchers emptied the tomb? These factors strongly suggest that the afikoman ceremony was adopted from the Jewish Christians by the larger Jewish community which also adopted the use of the three matzot. Jewish Christians contend that these three matzot represent the triune nature of God, and that the afikoman which is broken, buried and brought back dramatically represents Jesus the Messiah. THE QUESTION THEN REMAINS: WHAT WILL IT TAKE TO CONVINCE YOU? FOOTNOTES: 1. Daube, David, The New Testament and Rabbinic Judaism (University of London, 1956), p. 187. 2. Klein, Mordell, ed., Passover (Leon Amiel, 1973), p. 69. 3. Rosen, Ceil and Moishe, Christ in the Passover (Moody Press, 1978), p. 70. 4. Klein, p. 53. 5. Sperling, Rabbi Abraham Isaac, Reasons for Jewish Customs & Traditions, (Bloch Publishing Co., 1968), p.m 189. 6. Ibid. 7. Klein, p. 28. 8. Morris, Leon, The Apostolic Preaching of the Cross (Eerdmans, Third ed., 1965), pp. 137-732. 9. Gaster, Theodor Herzel, Passover: Its History and Traditions (Abelard-Schuman, 1958), p. 64. 10. Daube, "He That Cometh" (London Diocesan Council for Christian-Jewish Jewish Understanding, no date). ​ GLOSSARY OF HEBREW TERMS USED chaggigah-roasted egg representing the festival offering; also symbolic of mourning for destruction of the Temple. Charoseth-mixture of apples, cinnamon, nuts and wine representing the mortar of Egypt. Chometz-any fermented product of grain, all leavening agents; hence, that which makes "sour." Maror-bitter herbs, usually ground horse-radish. Matzoh-literally "without leaven"; a flat wafer of unleavened bread ( plural matzot). Pesach-the holiday of Passover; the Paschal lamb. Tefillin-phylacteries consisting of inscriptions on parchment encased in two small leather cubicles attached to the arm and head when at prayer. Zeroah-literally "arm"; the roasted shank bone on the seder plate representative of the Paschal sacrifice. ​ References & Quoted Material a. Passover article written by Rich Robinson, Jews for Jesus, ISSUES vol. 3:2 b. The Messianic Passover Haggadah, Lederer Foundation, 1989 ​ Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE ​ ​ The Messiah in the Passover P A S S O V E R & M E S S I A H YESHUA-J E S U S Pesach The story of the Egyptian Passover is found in Exodus 12. The student of the Scriptures should not let the familiarity of this passage keep him or her from continuing to study it over and over again. ​ Passover, a Sacrifice. The Passover was a sacrifice. Modern theologians dispute this but without any basis. It was an unusual sacrifice. In many respects, it differed from the later sacrifices of the Law, but in some aspects it was similar to what later became the sin offering, combined with the peace offering. It is very important to realize its sacrificial aspect. The proofs of its sacrificial characteristics are clear and abundant. The details of the selection of the lamb, "year old males without defect" (Exodus 12:5 ), the method of sprinkling the blood with hyssop (Exodus 12:22 ), and the disposal of the remains of the meal (Exodus 12:10 ), all testify to its sacrificial character. ln fact, Moses himself says, "It is the Passover sacrifice to the Lord" (Exodus 12:27 ). The purpose of this sacrifice was that the blood of the Passover lamb would be sprinkled on the doorposts and the lintels of the Jewish homes, so that the homes would be protected from the destroying angel. It is impossible for any theologian who takes the Scriptures seriously to come to any other conclusion. Exodus 12:13 says, "The blood will be a sign for you on the houses where you are; and when I see the blood, I will pass over you. No destructive plague will touch you when I strike Egypt." Whether or not one believes in the doctrine of substitution, an objective reader of Exodus 12 must admit that the doctrine is there. The lamb without blemish was carefully chosen and kept four days. Then the head of the family, Who was the representative, slew the lamb. When he sprinkled the blood of the lamb upon the doorposts and lintels, he confessed that the family stood imperil of the death angel. He and his family accepted God's means of safety. The result was that he and his family was delivered from bondage. In other words, the Passover is a gospel before the gospel. The Passover was not only a sacrifice, it was a festive meal. It later became the basis of what is known in the Law as the "peace offering." The peace offering was not an offering for peace; it was a meal eaten together by people who were at peace with one another. Later, in the temple days, the peace offering was shared with the priests, who represented God, and the offerer. It became a feast between God and man. The peace offering always followed the sin offering. It is a picture of our fellowship with our Lord. All of this is typified by the peaceful fellowship which the one who partakes of the Passover meal experiences. "But if we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, & the blood of Jesus, His Son, purifies us from every sin"(1 John 1:7 ). The Passover feast looked forward to "the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world" (John 1:29 ). "Christ, our Passover lamb, [who] has been sacrificed" (I Corinthians 5:1 ), becomes "Christ in you, the hope of glory" (Col. 1:27 ). Passover, a Commemoration All over the world, the Egyptian Passover is remembered each year in Jewish homes. "This is a day you are to commemorate; for the generations to come you shall celebrate it as a festival to the Lord.....a lasting ordinance" (Exodus 12:14 ). It was celebrated for the first time before deliverance was accomplished. A new calendar was reckoned from it. "This month is to be for you the first month" (Exodus 12:2 ). The month of the Exodus, from then on, would be the first of the year. The Passover, a sacrifice; the Passover, a feast; the Passover, a memorial; all became the Passover, a prophecy. "Christ our Passover is sacrificed for us" (1 Corinthians 5:1 ). For us, the past is crowned with His sacrifice. For us, we have fed on the bread of God, and we now live in communion with Him. For us, the memorial of deliverance is celebrated at His table. Here we now eat of the sacrifice as God spoke to the Israelites, "with your cloak tucked into your belt, your sandals on your feet, and your staff in your hand" (Exodus .12:11). We look forward, by His grace, to the time when we all eat with Him in His kingdom. The past, the present, and the future are filled with our Passover Lamb. P R A I S E G O D ! For further information contact: ​ Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE T he Feast Of Firs t Frui ts T HE FEAST OF FIRSTFRUITS was the third feast Israel celebrated during the passover festival. Speak to the Israelites and say to them: 'When you enter the land I am going to give you a nd you reap its harvest, bring to the priest a sheaf of the first grain you harvest, He is to wave the sheaf before the LORD so it will be accepted on your behalf; the priest is to wave it on the day after the Sabbath' Leviticus 23:10-11 Passover week, in the days of the Temple, originally consisted of three events: (1) the Passover lamb slain on the fourteenth of Nisan, (2) the Feast of Unleavened Bread beginning on the fifteenth of Nisan, and (3) the Offering of Firstfruits on the sixteenth of Nisan. The Sadducees at the time of our Lord disagreed with this chronology. Some modem Commentators also disagree. The difference is due to a misunderstanding of the words "on the day after the Sabbath" (Leviticus 23: 11). The word "Sabbath" not only refers to the seventh day of the week; it also clearly refers to the day of the festivals themselves (see Leviticus 23:24-25, 32, 39). The Sadducees, however, believed that the first sheaf was always offered on the day following the weekly Sabbath of the Passover week. The testimony of Josephus proves beyond a doubt that the word "Sabbath" in this instance is the fifteenth of Nisan, on whatever day of the week it fell. But on the second day of unleavened bread which is the Sixteen day of the month, they first partake of the fruits of the earth, for before that day they do not touch them. (Josephus, Antiquities of the Jews, Book 3, X, 5.) Firstfruits: The Temple Service The Feast of Firstfruits was not just a harvest festival it was an acknowledgment of God's bounty and providence to Israel. The order of service for the presentation of the firstfruits during temple days is fascinating and instructive. Remember, the day began at sundown. Alfred Edersheim details the order of service: Already, on the fourteenth of Nisan, the spot whence the first sheaf was to. be reaped had been marked out by delegates from the Sanhedrin, by tying together in bundles, while still standing the barley that was to be cut down. Though, for obvious reasons, it was customary to choose for this purpose the sheltered Ashes Valley across Kedron, there was no restriction on that point provided the barley had grown in an ordinary field in Palestine itself, and not in garden or orchard land and that the soil had not been manured nor yet artificially watered. When the time for cutting the sheaf had arrived, that is, on the evening of the fifteenth of Nisan (even though it were a Sabbath), just as the sun went down, three men, each with a sickle and basket formally set to work. But in order clearly to bring out all that was distinctive in the ceremony, they first asked of the bystanders three times .each of these questions: "Has the sun gone down?" With this sickle?" "Into this basket?" "On this Sabbath (or first passover day)?" and lastly, "Shall I reap?" Having each time been answered in the affirmative, they cut down barley to the amount of one ephah, or ten omers, or three seahs, which is equal to about three pecks and three pints of our English measure. ·The ears were brought into the court of the Temple and thrashed out with canes or stalks, so as not to injure the corn; then “parched on a pan perforated with holes, so that each grain might be touched by the fire, and finally exposed to the wind. The corn thus prepared was ground in a barley mill which left the hulls whole. According to some the flour was always successively passed through thirteen sieves, each closer than the other. The statement of a rival authority, however, seems more rational-that it was only done till the flour was sufficiently fine, which was ascertained by one of the Gizbarim (treasurers) plunging his hands into it, the sifting process being continued so long as any of the flour adhered to the hands. Though one ephah, or ten omers, of barley was cut down, only one corner of flour, or about 5.1 pints of our measure, was offered in the Temple on the second paschal, or sixteenth day of Nisan.? (Edersheim, Alfred, The Temple, Its Ministry and Services, pp. 223·224.) By the consecration of the firstfruits, the people of Israel joyfully proclaimed that they not only offered the firstfruits to the Lord, but that the whole harvest belonged to Him. Firstfruits: Its New Testament Fulfillment The New Testament tells of another harvest. But Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep. For since death came through a man, the resurrection of the dead comes also through a man. For as in Adam all die, so in Christ all will be made alive. But each in his own turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when He comes, those who belong to Him. I Corinthians 15:20·23 "Christ has indeed been raised from the dead, the firstfruits of those who have fallen asleep." We rejoice in the fact of our Lord's resurrection. He is risen from the dead. There is a vast difference between the teaching of the immortality of the soul and the resurrection of the body. Paganism gladly accepts the truth of the immortality of the soul, but that is not our hope. Our hope is not in an immortal, disembodied soul. It is in the resurrection of the body. Our Lord really died; His body was buried; He rose from the dead. The body of our Lord, which was resurrected, was the same body that died for us. Since He is the firstfruits of the harvest, so also is the harvest: "But each in his own turn: Christ, the firstfruits; then, when He comes, those who belong to Him" (I Corinthians 15:23). This truth gives us abundant comfort. We should be clear in our thinking about the meaning of the word ‘resurrection" as it applies to the Lord Jesus Christ and as it will apply to believers. It means more than to reanimate, to resuscitate, or to reinvigorate. There were several resurrections before our Lord rose from the dead. In. the Old Testament, the Lord heard Elijah's prayer and raised the widow s son from the dead (1 Kings 17:17.23). In the New Testament, our Lord raised from the dead the daughter of Jairus (Luke 8:41·56), the son of the widow of Nain (Luke 7:11·15), and Lazarus (John 11:43.44). There is a remarkable study in contrasts concerning these three resurrections found in the New Testament. The body of each was in a different condition. The girl appeared to be sleeping; the young man was being carried to his grave, decay already begun in the warm climate; Lazarus had been dead four days and decay was advanced. Our Lord used a different method in each case: He took the little girl by her hand; He didn't touch the body of the young man, He touched the bier which was bearing him to the grave; and He cried to Lazarus with a loud voice. His care for each was different: He fed the girl; He gave the son to his mother; and He had Lazarus released from his grave clothes. Here the contrasts end. The comparisons are equally vivid: they were all dead, they were all raised from the dead, it was our Lord who raised them, and they all died again. Our Lord’s resurrection was different. He rose to die no more! "Christ, the firstfruits; then, when He comes, those who belong to Him." The contrasts and comparisons between our Lord's resurrection and that of Lazarus are especially instructive. The stone had to be rolled away to let Lazarus come out of the tomb. The angel rolled the stone away from our Lord's tomb, not to let the Lord out, but to permit the disciples to enter: Lazarus "came out, his hands and feet wrapped with strips of linen, and a cloth around his face" (John 11:44), and the disciples had to take off the grave clothes and let him go. How different it was with the resurrection of our Lord! He is the Prince of Life. It was utterly impossible that He should be holden of death. He arose. And although His body had been bound by grave clothes, neither the grave clothes, nor the walls of the tomb, nor the walls of the room could confine His glorious body. It is His resurrection that comforts us in our sorrow. "Because He lives, we too shall live." It was "after the Sabbath, at dawn on the first day of the week, [when] Mary Magdalene and the other Mary went to look at the tomb" (Matthew 28: 1) and learned that the Lord Jesus Christ had indeed been raised from the dead and become the firstfruits of those who belong to Him. The firstfruits were representative of the entire harvest. There is yet to be another harvest: "Christ, the firstfruits; then, when He comes, those who belong to Him" (1 Corinthians 15:23). Our faith in the future is not in philosophical vagaries concerning the "immortality of the soul." It is firmly embedded in the fact of our Lord's resurrection. The resurrection of the believer is not patterned after that of Lazarus. We shall be raised in our Lord's likeness. It is human for us to wonder about the resurrection body of our loved ones. With what body will they be raised? He is the firstfruits. Like Him, the resurrection bodies of our loved ones (and ours too) will be the same bodies that were buried in the grave, but with splendid differences. They will be our loved ones; we shall see and recognize them. "He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away" (Revelation 21:4). How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. ​ Reprinted for educational purposes ISRAEL’S Holy Days, In type and Prophecy, Daniel Fuchs, chapter 3 Chosen People Ministries www.chosenpeople.com And other publication sources. Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE ​ "The LORD said to Moses, From the day after the Sabbath, the day you brought the sheaf of the wave offering, count off seven full weeks. Count off fifty days up to the day after the seventh Sabbath, and then present an offering of new grain to the LORD. From wherever you live, bring two loaves made of two· tenths of an ephah of fine flour, baked with yeast, as a wave offering of firstfruits to the LORD. Present with this bread seven male lambs, each a year old and without defect, one young bull and two rams. They will be a burnt offering to the LORD, together with their grain offerings and drink offerings-an offering made by fire, an aroma pleasing to the LORD. Then sacrifice one male goat for a sin offering arid two lambs, each a year old, for a fellowship offering. The priest is to wave the two lambs before the Lord as a wave offering, together with the bread of the firstfruits. They are a sacred offering to the Lord for the priest. On that same day you are to proclaim a sacred assembly and do no regular work. This is to be a lasting ordinance for the generations to come, wherever you live." (Leviticus 23:9, 15-21). THE FEAST OF PENTECOST , climaxed the glad season of Israel's grain harvest. The beginning of the grain harvest was marked by the sacrifice, at the sanctuary, of the omer, the first sheaf of the newly cut barley; fifty days later, at the close of the harvest period, two loaves of bread, baked from the wheat of the new crop, were offered as a sacrifice. This bread offering was called the firstfruits of wheat harvest and the festival was therefore also called Yom ha-Bikkurim; the day of offering the first loaves of the new crop to God. Schauss, Hayyim, Thejewish Festivals, pp. 86-87 The first omer, which was offered during the Feast of Unleavened Bread, on the sixteenth of Nisan, was of the sheaf as it was reaped from the newly grown plants, as described in Leviticus 23:15·21: "From the day after the Sabbath, the day you brought the sheaf of the wave offering, count off seven full weeks. Count off fifty days up to the day after the seventh Sabbath, and then present an offering of the new grain to the LORD. From wherever you live, bring two loaves made of two- tenths of an ephah of fine flour, baked with yeast, as a wave offering of firstfruits to the LORD. Present with this bread seven male lambs, each a year old and without defect, one young bull and two rams. They will be a burnt offering to the LORD, together with their grain offerings and drink offerings-an offering made by fire, an aroma pleasing to the LORD. Then sacrifice one male goat for a sin offering and two lambs, each a year old, for a fellowship offering. The priest is to wave the two lambs before the LORD as a wave offering, together with the bread of the firstfruits. They are a sacred offering to the LORD for the priest. On that same day you are to proclaim a sacred assembly and do no regular work. This is to be a lasting ordinance for the generations to come, wherever you live." Pentecost and the Giving if the Law The day after the Sabbath the sheaf of the first grain (Leviticus 23:10) was offered on the sixteenth of Nisan. From that date, fifty days were counted and usually the sixth day of the Hebrew month Sivan is proclaimed as Shavuot (a Hebrew word meaning "weeks") or Feast of Weeks or Pentecost. This chronology is fascinating because it is the basis of the rabbinic reason why Judaism now celebrates the giving of the Law on the Day of Pentecost. Dr. Alfred Edersheim gives insight to this reasoning: The "feast of unleavened bread" may be said not to have quite passed till fifty days after its commencement, when it merged in that of Pentecost, or "of Weeks." According to unanimous Jewish tradition, which was universally received at the time of Christ, the day of Pentecost was the anniversary of the giving of the Law on Mount Sinai, which the Feast of Weeks was intended to commemorate. Thus, as the dedication of the harvest, commencing with the presentation of the first omer on the Passover, was completed in the thank offering of the two wave loaves at Pentecost, so the memorial of Israel's deliverance appropriately terminated in that of the giving of the Law, just as, making the highest application of it, the Passover sacrifice of the Lord Jesus may be said to have been completed in the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the day of Pentecost. Jewish tradition has it, that on the second of the third month, of Sivan, Moses had ascended the mount, that he communicated with the people on the third, reascended the mount on the fourth, and that then the people sanctified themselves on the fourth, fifth, and sixth of Sivan, on which latter day the Ten Commandments were actually given them. Accordingly, the days before Pentecost were always reckoned as the first, second, third, etc., since the presentation of the omer. Thus Maimonides beautifully observes: 'just as one who is expecting the most faithful of his friends is wont to count the days and hours to his arrival, so we also count from the omer of the day of our Exodus from Egypt to that of the giving of the Law, which was the object of our Exodus, as it is said: 'I bare you on eagle's wings, and brought you unto Myself.' And because this great manifestation did not last more than one day, therefore we annually commemorate it only one day." Edersheim, Alfred, The Temple, Its Ministry and Services, pp. 225·226. We can see that, even though Scriptures do not say that Pentecost is the actual anniversary of the giving of the Law on Mt. Sinai, there is compelling evidence that indicates that "when the day of Pentecost came" as described in Acts 2:1, God's revelation on Mt. Sinai was probably in the minds of the apostles when suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. (Acts 2:2). A modern Orthodox Hebraist scholar describes the giving of the Law: The Revelation on Mt. Sinai Dawn of the sixth day of Sivan, in the year 2448 after the creation of the world ... thunder and lightning rent the air, and the sound of the shofar was heard growing strangely louder and louder. All the people in the camp of Israel trembled. Then all was quiet again. The air was very still. Not a sound was to be heard. No bird twittered, no donkey brayed, no ox lowed. Every living thing held its breath. Even the angels interrupted their heavenly praises. Everybody and everything kept silent ... waiting .... Suddenly God's mighty words were heard from one corner of the earth to the other: "I AM GOD THY GOD!" One after another, God proclaimed the Ten Commandments. (Mindel, Nissan, Complete Festival Series, P: 167.) Pentecost: Its Old Testament Offerings On Pentecost, many different offerings were presented in the Temple. After the regular morning sacrifice, there was a burnt offering of "seven male lambs, each a year old and without defect, one young bull and two rams (Leviticus 23:18). This was followed by a meal offering and a drink offering. After that, there was a sin offering of one kid, and then the climactic offering of the day, a "fellowship" or "peace" offering of "two lambs, each a year old" waved before the Lord, together with the two loaves which had been baked with leaven. (See Leviticus 23: 17,19). This peace offering was not offered on the altar; it was given to the priest. It could not be placed on the altar, because the loaves were baked with leaven. It is highly significant that the sin offering preceded the peace offering. We will never understand the meaning of the peace offering until we grasp this truth. The sin offering came first, then the peace offering. The peace offering was not an offering for peace. It is a heartfelt thank offering of one who has peace with his Lord. It is a sacramental meal where God, who is represented by the priest, eats a meal together with His children, who have already been cleansed from their sin. It should be observed that the two loaves, together with the two lambs which were offered at Pentecost, were the only public peace offerings that were celebrated by Israel. The peace offering of Pentecost was a feast of fellowship and peace between God and His redeemed people. Pentecost: Its New Testament Fulfillment Messiah Jesus’ coming to provide such. See: Jeremiah 31-31 Ezekiel 36:26 Romans 3:20 6:14-15 8:8-11 and Hebrews 9:15 , 7:22 Ephesians 2:8-9 13-14 Matthew 5:17 Luke:22:20 Was Pentecost, like Passover, Unleavened Bread, and Firstfruits, also prophetic? The New Testament is abundantly clear that it was. Our Lord Jesus Christ, having fulfilled the type of the passover lamb at Calvary, when the corn of wheat was planted in the ground, rose from the dead and became the "firstfruits," fulfilling the type of the wave sheaf on the "day after the Sabbath." Then fifty days were counted, and when the day of Pentecost came, they were all together in one place. Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting (Acts 2: 1-2). If Jewish tradition connected the "feast of firstfruits" with the "mount that might be touched," and the "voice of words which they that heard entreated that the word should not be spoken to them anymore," we have in this respect also "come unto Mount Zion," and to the better things of the new covenant. To us the Day of Pentecost is, indeed, the "feast of firstfruits," and that of the giving of the better law, "written not in tables of stone, but on the fleshy tables of the heart," "with the Spirit of the living God." For, as the worshipers were in the Temple, probably just as they were offering the wave lambs and the wave bread, the multitude heard that "sound from heaven, as of a mighty rushing wind," which drew them to the house where the apostles were gathered, there to hear "every man in his own language" [proclaiming] "the wonderful works of God." And on that Pentecost day, from the harvest of firstfruits, not less than three thousand souls added to the Church were presented as a wave offering to the Lord. The cloven tongues of fire and the apostolic gifts of that day of firstfruits have, indeed, long since disappeared. But the mighty rushing sound of the Presence and Power of the Holy Ghost has gone forth into all the world. 'Edersheim, Alfred, The Temple, Its Ministry and Services, P: 231 ​ How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. He, the Messiah is the way to Eternal Sabbath, Yom Shekulo Shabbat! - The Messianic Age Day of Total Shabbat - Eternal Paradise/Heaven, of the world to come. Is that of one long extended, unending eternal Sabbath Day. Reprinted for educational purposes from: ISRAEL’S Holy Days, In type and Prophecy, Daniel Fuchs, chapter 4 Chosen People Ministries www.chosenpeople.com And other publication sources. ​ Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE Shavuot-Feast of Pentecost Rosh Hashanah New Year’s Day _ Feast of Trumpets _ NEW YEAR'S DAY for the Jews is not a holiday, it is a holy day, often called, together with the Day of Atonement, the "days of awe." It is celebrated on the first and second days of Tishri. It is not a time of frivolity but of introspection and prayer. It is a solemn day when Jews believe that all people stand before the Creator. The Orthodox Jew does not come to this season unprepared. He knows the New Year is approaching. During the preceding month, the month of Elul, which to the modern Jew is the last month of the year according to the civil calendar, the approach of Rosh Hashanah is heralded by the sounding of the shofar in the synagogue. All year long the shofar, which is usually a ram's horn, lies hidden, probably in the holy ark in the synagogue. It is not sounded on the Sabbath. However, on the first day of Elul, it is taken from its hiding place to play a prominent role as Israel's days of awe approach. The sounding of the shofar reaches its crescendo on Rosh Hashanah, when it is sounded after the reading of the Law. The Sacrifice of Isaac The reading of the Law on the second day's service is the story of the sacrifice of Isaac. The rabbis believe that the sacrifice of Isaac, when a ram was offered in his stead, took place on New Year's Day. Because of this belief, this story, together with that of Isaac's birth, is the basis of the liturgy of the second day's service in the synagogue. Because of this, there is no Bible story more familiar to the Orthodox Jew than the story of Abraham offering up Isaac. It abounds in spiritual truth. This story is found in Genesis, chapter 22. It is helpful to study it together with Psalm 22 and Luke 22:42·44. It is the story of Abraham's faithfulness: Some time later God tested Abraham (Genesis 22:1). We should realize that God did not tempt Abraham, as the Authorized Version states; God tested Abraham. When Satan tempts, he tries to defeat us. When God tests, He provides victory. Nor does God test everyone. C. H. Mackintosh writes concerning Abraham's test: However, it is well to see that God confers a signal honor upon us when He thus tests our hearts. We never read that the Lord did tempt Lot. No, Sodom tempted Lot. He never reached a sufficiently high elevation to warrant his being tried by the hand of Jehovah. It was too plainly manifested that there was plenty between his heart and the Lord, and it did not, therefore, require the furnace to bring that out. Sodom would have held out no temptation whatever to Abraham. This was made manifest in his interview with Sodom's king, in chapter 14. God knew well that Abraham loved Him far better than Sodom; but He would make it manifest that he loved Him better than anyone or anything, by laying His hand upon the nearest and dearest object, "Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac."! 'Mackintosh, C. H., Notes on Genesis, pp. 225·226; Genesis to Deuteronomy, pp. For many long years Abraham waited for his promised seed. Finally, the Lord gave him a son by Sarah and then commanded him to cast out Ishmael, the son of the bondwoman. That in itself was enough to test any man. It was a test of faith. But Abraham believed God and obeyed Him. Isaac's birth was in a very real sense miraculous. He was the seed of Abraham, born after his mother was past the age of childbearing (Genesis 18:11). Perhaps Abraham even thought that Isaac was the Messiah. (This is one of the reasons why Jewish couples earnestly desire their firstborn to be a son. They hope he may be the Messiah.) But the promised Messiah was not only to be the seed of Abraham, but also the seed of the woman (Genesis 3:15). Thus we see Jesus, born of a virgin, Mary, who was herself of the seed of Abraham. Isaac grew into young manhood. Josephus says that Isaac was twenty-seven years old when his father was told to sacrifice him. The Scriptures don't give his exact age, however, but he had grown strong enough to carry the wood that covered the altar that was large enough to bear his body. Thus, he was not a young weakling. Abraham Believed God It was when Abraham's only son, the heir to the Abrahamic covenant, the son of promise whom he greatly loved, blossomed into manhood that God ordered Abraham to offer him up as a sacrifice on Mount Moriah. This command did not come from within Abraham, it was not suggested by the human sacrifices of the Canaanites, nor did it come from Satan. It came from the one true God, who was proving Abraham's faith! The final issue dearly showed that God wasn't interested in the death of Isaac. Rather, He wanted Abraham's complete surrender. You and I know the outcome of Abraham's deep trial. At the time, Abraham did not. He drank the dregs of the bitterness of his sorrow. Imagine the pain these words must have brought to Abraham: Take your son, your only son Isaac, whom you love (Genesis 22:2). He laid the wood on his son (verse 6). He told Isaac, God Himself will provide the lamb (verse 8). Then he "bound his son Isaac" and "took the knife to slay his son" (verses 9-10). Luther remarked that it must have seemed as if God's promise would fail, or that this command came from Satan, not from God. How beautifully Paul describes Abraham's faith in Romans 4:20-21. Yet he did not waver through unbelief, [he] was strengthened in his faith, [he was] fully persuaded. But the letter to the Hebrews shows the basic reasoning of Abraham, that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death. (Hebrews 11:19) Abraham's answer to his great trial was he believed God. Four centuries before any of the written Word came into existence, God spoke to him, and Abraham implicitly put his trust in God's Word. God commanded Abraham to leave his kindred, Abraham obeyed; God promised him a seed, Abraham believed. For long years Abraham waited for God to fulfill His promise. Finally, Isaac was born. God had fulfilled His promise. The same God who fulfilled His promise now demanded that Abraham offer Isaac, his beloved son, as a sacrifice. Abraham believed God and showed his faith by his works. He knew that God honored His Word. As previously mentioned, it is very possible that he even thought that Isaac was the promised Seed of the woman of Genesis 3:15, the Messiah. In any event, Abraham knew that Isaac was his own promised seed. God had said that in his seed all peoples on earth will be blessed (Genesis 12:3). Abraham believed and obeyed God. The key to Abraham's obedience was that he actually believed in the resurrection. If Isaac was the Messiah and the Messiah had to die, then it was necessary for God to raise Him from the dead! By faith Abraham, when God tested him, offered Isaac as a sacrifice, He who had received the promises was about to sacrifice his one and only son, even though God had said to him, "It is through Isaac that your offspring will be reckoned." Abraham reasoned that God could raise the dead, and figuratively speaking, he did receive Isaac back from death" (Hebrews 11: 1 7-19). Abraham actually expected God to raise up Isaac from the dead! Enemies of the gospel complain that the biblical doctrine of justification by faith alone is amoral. Even some well· meaning friends of the gospel frequently teach a "faith-plus works" salvation. They complain that if righteousness is by faith alone, apart from works of the Law, then a man who is saved by faith could still commit heinous crimes. This could not be if he has the faith of Abraham. Abraham's faith resulted in acts of obedience. Romans 4:20·24 says: Yet he did not waver through unbelief regarding the promise of God, but was strengthened in his faith and gave glory to God, being fully persuaded that God had power to do what He had promised. This is why "it was credited to him as righteousness." The words "it was credited to him" were written not for him alone, but also for us, to whom God will credit righteousness-for us who believe in Him who raised Jesus our Lord from the dead. Abraham's trial stands out in history like a mountain peak whose height only one other Climber has been called upon to scale: "He who did not spare His own Son, but gave Him up for us all" (Romans 8:32). Abraham is a beautiful type of God the Father. Just as Abraham had an only son, whom he loved, so did God and He gave His only begotten Son to be slain for us. God stayed the hand of Abraham before Isaac could be sacrificed. When the Lord Jesus Christ was on the cross upon which He was to be sacrificed, God did not stay His hand! Isaiah 53:10-11 says: Yet it was the LORD'S will to crush Him and cause Him to suffer, and though the LORD makes His life a guilt offering, He will see His offspring and prolong His days, and the will of the LORD will prosper in His hand. After the suffering of His soul, He will see the light of life and be satisfied; by His knowledge My righteous servant will justify many, and He will bear their iniquities. Two thousand years after Abraham, One stood in the Temple that crowned Mount Moriah and said, Abraham rejoiced at the thought of seeing My day; he saw it and was glad. (John 8:56). We believe that it was when Abraham received his son figuratively speaking ... back from death (Hebrews 11:19) that this prophetic rejoicing took place. It is no wonder that Abraham called this place Jehovah-jireh, which means the LORD will provide (Genesis 22:14). Some erroneously interpret this name to mean that God will provide for all our needs. This is a comforting truth, but it is not the one taught in the name Jehovah-jireh. The reason for this name is given in Genesis 22:14: On the mountain of the LORD it will be provided." What was it that Abraham saw after he had received Isaac as if from the dead? Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son (Genesis 22:13). Years later, John the Baptist exclaimed in joy when he saw Jesus, the Messiah, Look, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world ! (John 1:29). Thus, we see another truth in the offering up of Isaac. It is a type of God's provision of a sacrifice. But our Lord Jesus Christ did what Isaac could not do-He became our Sacrifice for sin. Abraham was not the only one whose faith was tested on Mount Moriah. Isaac was a grown man and could easily have resisted his aged father, but he was obedient. We have mentioned that he was not an infant. It takes strength to climb mountains; it takes greater strength to climb mountains carrying wood. How much wood Isaac carried, we do not know, but it was sufficient to bear his body. Think for a moment of the important effect of this event upon Isaac. From the account in Genesis 22, it seems as if Isaac was ignorant of the fact that he was to be offered up as a sacrifice. Imagine then how he felt when he was actually tied to the altar and watched as his father reached for his knife! Two thousand years later, One also bore the wood of sacrifice, but He knew what He was doing. He had been born for this very purpose. The Scriptures do not tell us how Isaac acted when he was bound to the altar. We have seen him as a robust youth who, as previously mentioned, could have resisted Abraham if he so desired. But he didn't resist. When he allowed himself to be bound and laid upon the altar, he fully entered into the spirit of Abraham; he joined in Abraham's faith. In so doing, he showed himself to be the heir to the promises. How much was the behavior of Isaac like our Lord, who was oppressed and afflicted, yet He did not open His mouth; He was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so He did not open His mouth (Isaiah 53:7). In both Psalm 22 and Luke 22:42-44 we see parallels between the story of Isaac in Genesis 22 and the sacrifice of our Lord. As Isaac lay on the altar and saw the hand of Abraham upraised, certainly he could have wondered, "Father, why have you forsaken me?" But the record is silent. The whole picture given of Isaac shows him in the same attitude as our Lord in Gethsemane, Not as I will, but as You will. (Matthew 26:39). The timing of Isaac's sacrifice is also symbolic. When God commanded Abraham to offer up Isaac, he obeyed; and in Abraham's heart, Isaac was dead from that moment on. We should realize that Abraham did not know for sure that God would also provide a way out (1 Corinthians 10:13), although he had faith in God's goodness. It was three days later that Isaac was offered, and it was on this third day that Isaac was returned to his father. To some this may seem to be an unimportant detail, but as we saw in Hebrews, chapter 11, Abraham, "figuratively speaking, did receive Isaac back from death." Isaac is clearly a type of the Lord Jesus Christ, who rose on the third day, having yielded up His spirit to the Father. Thus the Father also received His Son on the third day. God not only "provided a way out" for Abraham; He also provided the lamb for the sacrifice. Abraham looked up and there in a thicket he saw a ram caught by its horns. He went over and took the ram and sacrificed it as a burnt offering instead of his son. (Genesis 22:13). And thus God the Father has provided us a way of escape from the penalty of sin: For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (Romans 6:23). This is why the shofar is sounded on Rosh Hashanah. How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. He, the Messiah is the way to Eternal Shabbath, Yom Shekulo Shabbat! - The Messianic Age Day of Total Shabbat - Eternal Paradise/Heaven, of the world to come. Is that of one long extended, unending eternal Sabbath Day. ​ Reprinted for educational purposes from: ISRAEL’S Holy Days, In type and Prophecy, Daniel Fuchs, chapter 7 Chosen People Ministries www.chosenpeople.com . And other publication sources. ​ Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE YOM KIPPUR: FEAST OR FAST? By Rachmiel Frydland According to Jewish tradition and the Talmud (Tractate Ta'anith 26b), Yom Kippur has been one of the great Jewish Feasts celebrated annually. In ancient times the people would joyfully dress in white, anticipating their purification from sin. It was only once a year, on this day, that would allow the High Priest to enter behind the veil into the innermost court f the tabernacle. And this could be done only after sacrificial blood had been shed to cover his own transgressions as well as those of the Jewish nation. In the Holy of Holies, he could then approach the mercy seat and receive assurance, that God had sanctified the sacrifice for sin. We read in the Hebrew Scriptures: And there shall be no man in a tabernacle of the congregation when he goeth in to make an atonement in the Holy Place, until he come out, and have made an atonement for himself, and for his household and for all the congregation of Israel. And he shall go out unto the altar that is before the Lord, and make an atonement for it; and shall take of the blood of the bullock, and of the blood of the goat, and put it upon the horns of the altar round about. And he shall sprinkle of the blood upon it with his finger seven times and, cleanse it, and hallow it; from the uncleanness of the children of Israel. For on that day shall the Priest make an atonement for you, to cleanse you, that ye may be clean from all your sins before the Lord. Leviticus 16:17-19,30 CHANGING ATTITUDES: From Faith To Fear If Yom Kippur was at one time one of the most significant feasts, why is it still not so today? For what reason are the ten days between Rosh Hashanah (New Year) and Yom Kippur (Day of Atonement) called the Tamim Nora'im (Ten Days of Fear)? Why do Jewish people now spend time fasting, weeping and pleading before God instead of rejoicing at His compassion as their forefathers once did? The Talmud states that toward the end of the Second Temple period, certain distressing signs began to appear: Our Rabbis taught: At first they used to bind a shining crimson strip of cloth on the outside door of the Temple. If the strip of cloth turned into the white color, they would rejoice; if it did not turn white they were full of sorrow and shame. (Tractate Yoma 67a) Hence, the problem: The people began to realize more and more that the sacrifice of Yom Kippur did not have the power to cleanse their sinful hearts. They no longer experienced the release of sin's heavy burden that the Psalmist King David wrote about: Blessed ("Happy" in Hebrew) is he whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed (Happy) is the man whose sin the Lord does not count against him and in whose spirit is not deceit. Psalm 32:1,2 It seemed that God no longer found the sacrifice acceptable. However, God will never go back on His word. He has not canceled out the Torah principle of atonement for sin by blood. Leviticus 17:11 states: For the life of the flesh is in the blood: and I have given it to you upon the altar to make an atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that maketh an atonement for the soul. Jewish people who observe Yom Kippur will take either a rooster for a male or a hen for a female and turn it about the head. They hope to obtain pardon as, they recite: "This is my substitute. This is in exchange for me. This chicken will die instead of me, so I may obtain life instead of it." Also a part of the Yom Kippur prayer is these words: "And may the diminishing of my blood and fat as a result of the Yom Kippur fast be accepted by God as though I would have offered it upon the altar of God in Jerusalem." ​ Something is missing. The people are left with apprehension and serious doubts as to whether God had indeed accepted their sacrifice. The rest of the day is spent in sorrow and fasting. If they knew beyond a shadow of doubt that they were forgiven, there would be no further need for tears. Instead, the hearts would be overflowing with joy for answered prayer. Jewish tradition has also taught us that the reason for using a ram's horn or shofar on the Ten Days of Fear and on Yom Kippur is to remind God of Isaac's willingness to be a sacrifice when his father Abraham bound him to the altar an Mount Moriah. As we read the account in the Tanakh (Genesis 22), we realize that God honored the faith of Abraham and the obedience of Isaac. Abraham said, "God Himself will provide the lamb for the burnt offering, my son." They both rejoiced for a ram was found in a near by thicket! God wanted to spare Isaac's life; He still has the same desire for each of us today. Blood must be shed before there can be remission of sins, yet animal sacrifice is no longer pleasing to the Lord. Since God is faithful to His word and will not leave us without help, who will be our sacrificial lamb? THE VOICE OF ISAIAH The prophet Isaiah speaks of the one who will give his life for us in chapter 53:7-10: "He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he openeth not his mouth. He was taken from, prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living, for the transgression of my people was he stricken. And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Yet it pleased the Lord to bruise him; he hath put him to grief: when thou shalt make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of the Lord shall prosper in his hand." ​ THE NEW COVENANT ​ About 2,000 years ago, while our Jewish people were under Roman domination, Yeshua HaNotzree (Jesus of Nazareth) came to the people claiming He was the Messiah, the one sent by God to provide salvation. The moment Yeshua died, the veil of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. (Matthew 27:50-51) The earth quaked beneath men's feet. The Talmud says that forty years before the destruction of the Temple, the gates opened of themselves. This event is of utmost importance because it establishes Yeshua as being the new High Priest and Lamb of God. No longer must there be an annual offering for sin on our behalf; instead, He has made restitution for us once and for all. It is now possible for each of us to have direct access to God through the blood of Yeshua HaMoshiach. One of the early Jewish followers of Messiah has expressed it in this way: "But Messiah being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building: Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the Holy Place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the, ashes of an heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifieth to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Messiah, who through the eternal Spirit (Ruach Hakodesh) offered himself without spot to God, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living God?" Hebrews 9:11-14 ​ In the same chapter, he further describes the holy place as being heaven itself where God dwells. Messiah is now at the right hand of God and continually makes intercession for us. The Lord has made a new covenant with the house of Israel. I will put my laws in their minds and write them on their hearts. I will be their God, and they will be my people. For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more. Hebrews 8:10, 12; Jeremiah 31:30-33 The choice is now left to each of us: Should we follow after sacrifices no longer prescribed by God or follow Yeshua HaMashiach, the eternal Yom Kippur Lamb and High Priest? Here is the account of a Jewish man, one of the earliest and closest believers in Messiah, who still celebrated Yom Kippur in the traditional manner of having a feast of true simcha and gratitude: "For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver and gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your forefathers, but with the precious blood of Messiah, a lamb without blemish or defect. He was chosen before t e creation of the world, but was revealed in these last times for your sake." I Peter 1:18-20 ​ Yeshua invites you to receive Him and the new life He has to offer you. We encourage you to search your own heart and ask yourself, "Where is my atonement of sins? Is it in prayer and fasting alone? Is animal sacrifice sufficient? Or is it true that the blood of Yeshua the Messiah cleanses from all sin?" Once you discover God's Lamb, He will give you His joy and peace which passes all understanding as your Yom Kippur fast truly becomes your Yom Kippur feast. How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. ​ Reprinted with permission of The Messianic Literature Outreach www.messianicliterature.org Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE ​ Succot, The Feast Of Tabernacles "The Lord said to Moses, Say to the Israelites: On the fifteenth day of the seventh month the Lord’s Feast of Tabernacles begins, and it lasts for seven days. The first day is a sacred assembly; do no regular work. For seven days present offerings made to the LORD by fire and on the eighth day hold a sacred assembly and present an offering made to the LORD by fire. It is the closing assembly; do no regular work." Leviticus 23:33·36 THE MOST JOYFUL of Israel's festivals was the Feast of Tabernacles. It came at the end of the harvest when the hearts of the people were naturally gladdened, The crops had been reaped. As they looked around them, they remembered that six months before, at Passover time they had dedicated the entire harvest to the Lord by the offering of firstfruits, and now not only were their barns full, their heats were overflowing with joy and thanksgiving. But that was not all. As they looked around on the goodly land, the fruits of which had just enriched the they remembered that by interposition the Lord their God had brought them to this land and had given it to them, and that He ever claimed it as peculiarly His own. For the land was strictly connected with the history of the people; and both the land and the history were linked with the mission of Israel. If the beginning of the harvest had pointed back to the birth of Israel in their Exodus from Egypt, and forward to the true Passover· sacrifice in the future; if the corn harvest was connected with the giving of the law on Mount Sinai in the past, and the outpouring of the Holy Spirit on the Day of Pentecost; the harvest thanksgiving of the Feast of Tabernacles reminded Israel, on the one hand, of their dwelling in booths in the wilderness, while on the other hand, it pointed to the final harvest when Israel's mission should be completed, and all nations gathered unto the Lord. ('Edersheirn, Alfred, The Temple, Its Ministry and Services, pp. 232·233). The Feast of Tabernacles is two weeks after Rosh Hashanah. It is always on the same day of the week as New Year's Day. A pious Jew began his preparation for the festival as soon as the Day of Atonement was over. He had only five days to erect a sukkah, a booth in which he and his family would dwell during the feast. The Feast of Booths Historically, Tabernacles looked backward to the Exodus when Israel lived in booths. "Live in booths for seven days: All native-born Israelites are to live in booths so your descendants will know that I had the Israelites live in booths when I brought them out of Egypt. I am the LORD your God" (Leviticus 23:42-43). Each family built a sukkah, which was actually a temporary outdoor structure. It had a twofold purpose: to remind the Jews of their Exodus and to indicate the transitoriness of human life. The roof was made of slats placed closely to one another so that the shade inside the sukkah was greater than the light. The roof had to rest on the walls; it could not be fastened. It was then thatched with green branches, and the entire room, walls, and ceiling decorated with flowers and fruit. Every male who attends an Orthodox synagogue during Tabernacles (Sukkot) carries with him what is called "the four species": an etrog, which is a citron, in his left hand; the lulav, a palm branch, in his right hand; two myrtle twigs and two willow branches are bound to the palm branch. The Scriptures state, "On the first day you are to take choice fruit from the trees, and palm fronds, leafy branches and poplars, and rejoice before the LORD your God forseven days" (Leviticus 23:40). Sukkot not only looked back into history, it also looked forward into the future when Cod's promise to Abraham will be fulfilled, when all peoples on earth will be blessed through you. (Genesis 12:3). The Feast of Tabernacles was the last of the three festivals when all adult men of ancient Israel thronged Jerusalem. "Three times a year all your men must appear before the LORD your God at the place He will choose: at the Feast of Unleavened Bread, the Feast of Weeks, and the Feast of Tabernacles. No man should appear before the Lord empty-handed: Each of you must bring a gift in proportion to the way the LORD your God has blessed you" (Deuteronomy 16: 16·17). The Mishnah gives us a vivid picture of these pilgrimages. From all over the land, all roads were thronged with gaily clad people keeping the holy days. Everybody carried his offering to the Lord. There were olives, dates, pomegranates, wheat, barley, and perhaps a pigeon or turtledove. The rich brought more, the poor less. Those who could, brought their offering in carts, heavily laden with gifts; the poor carried theirs in wicker baskets; but each brought a gift in proportion to the way the Lord God blessed him. As the pilgrims journeyed, they sang the songs of Zion, the psalms. On one side of the road, a family would sing from Psalm 121: I lift up my eyes to the hills. Across the road, the response would come: Where does my help come from? And all together: My help comes from the LORD, the maker of heaven and earth. Others would sing: I rejoiced with those who said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the LORD.' Our feet are standing in your gates, O Jerusalem. Jerusalem is built like a city that is closely compacted together. That is where the tribes go up, the tribes of the LORD, to praise the name of the LORD according to the statute given to Israel (Psalm 122:1·4). It was Sukkot, the Feast of Tabernacles. The tribes of Israel, their hearts with praise to the Lord, were going up to Jerusalem to render unto Him honor and praise and glory. Every Sukkot service in the Temple. not only looked backward in history, it looked forward in prophecy. God had spoken to Abram from Ur of the Chaldees and promised him, All peoples on earth will be blessed through you. (Genesis 12:3), and the temple service proclaimed this truth. The services of the week were elaborate; in all there were seventy bullocks that were sacrificed. According to the Talmud, there were seventy nations in the world, and a bullock was slain each year during the Feast of Tabernacles for each of them. The ancient rabbis realized a wonderful truth about the prophetic message of Sukkot: Then the survivors from all the nations that have attacked Jerusalem will go up year after year to worship the King, the LORD Almighty, and to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles (Zechariah 14: 16). The seventh and last day of the feast is a very special day. It is called Hoshana Rabba, "the great Hoshanah." !n the synagogue during the morning service after seven circuits are made around the altar with the lulav (palm branches, they are beaten on the floor of the synagogue floor or its furniture while the worshipers are chanting, the voice announcing the coming of the Messiah is heard. Succot (anonymous publication by the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations Rabbinical Council of America) p. 10. This beating of the branches is work which is illegal on the Sabbath. It is for this reason that "the calendar was fixed in such a way that the New Year would not occur on a Sunday so that Hoshana Rabba should not fall on the Sabbath which would cause the taking of the willow to be cancelled. The Encyclopedia Judaica, “Hoshana Rabba,” vol. 8, p. 1027 How Jesus Kept the Feast One of the ceremonies of the Sukkot service was the libation of water procession each morning. Abraham Millgram aptly describes this ceremony: The water was brought in a golden flask from the fountain of Siloam and poured by the officiating kohen into the basin near the altar. This was the most joyous of the temple ceremonies. The Mishnah says that "he who has not seen the rejoicing at the place of water-drawing has never seen rejoicing in his life" (Sukkah 5:1). The ceremony was accompanied by a torch-light procession, dances, singing and chanting by the Levitical choir of the fifteen pilgrim psalms, the songs of ascents (Psalms 120-134), to the accompaniment of musical instruments. It was a symbolic act performed in compliance with the prophetic verse, "With joy shall ye draw water out of the wells of salvation" ' (Isaiah 12:3).4 Millgram, Abraham, Jewish Worship, p. 204. Picture this scene from the life of Jesus: It was Hashana Rabba, on the last and greatest day of the Feast. See the crowds in the temple courts, watch the white-robed priests as they climb the steep ascent from Siloam to the Temple. They are carrying a golden vase of the water they just drew with joy from the well of Siloam. The water was poured into the basin near the altar. Then, as the priest stood with his empty flask, a Man who had been watching cried with a loud voice: If a man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. Whoever believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him. (John 7:37-38). These were strange words to say, anywhere, at any time. But in the Temple on Hoshana Rabba, they were not just strange, they were audacious. The entire libation-of-water ceremony celebrated God's provision of life-giving water to the Israelites when they were dying of thirst in the wilderness. "If a man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink." Our Lord was claiming that the miracle in the wilderness, when the rock gushed forth water 'pointed to Himself! This is one of the messages of John’s Gospel where we also find our Lord claiming to be the fulfillment of other incidents under the Law: Jacob’s ladder, the brazen serpent in the wilderness, and the manna: There is a future Feast of Tabernacles that is described in the New Testament: And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, Now the dwelling of God is with men, and He will live with them. They will be His people, and God Himself will be with ,them, and be their God. He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new! Then He Said, write this down for these words are trustworthy and true." He Said to me: "It is 'done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life. (Revelation 21:3-6). Christ our Passover became Christ the Firstfruits from the dead. At Pentecost, the firstfruits of Israel's ripened harvest were presented to the Lord. The first sheaves were reaped from Israel. But Israel did not keep the harvest to herself. The gospel, which was to the Jew first, has been proclaimed to the uttermost parts of the. earth. It has been a long time since Pentecost, and we longingly listen for the sound of the trumpet, the return of our Lord. Then after that we look for Israel's Day of Atonement and the nations of our Lord keeping the Feast of Tabernacles. After this I looked and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people, and language, standing before the throne and in front of the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm, branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: ‘Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb’ (Revelation 7 :9-1 0). It's Hoshana Rabba, the great day of the feast! How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. He, the Messiah is the way to Eternal Shabbath, Yom Shekulo Shabbat! - The Messianic Age Day of Total Shabbat - Eternal Paradise/Heaven, of the world to come. Is that of one long extended, unending eternal Sabbath Day. ​ Reprinted for educational purposes from: ISRAEL’S Holy Days, In type and Prophecy, Daniel Fuchs, chapter 11 Chosen People Ministries www.chosenpeople.com And other publication sources. ​ Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE Chanukah, Feast of Lights/Rededication Chanukah, while not being a feast given by God in Scripture, is mentioned in the B’rit Hadashah (New Testament): Then came Chanukah in Yerushalayim/Jerusalem. It was winter, and Yeshua was walking around inside the Temple area, in Shlomo’s (Solomon's) Colonnade. Yochanan/John 10:22-23 This Feast of Lights/Rededication is historically a time to rededicate oneself to God and His purposes. Many Messianic Jews and Gentiles see this feast time, rather than the modern day of Christmas, as a unique factual Bible time event of miraculous deliverance to be a more fitting time to remember the birth of the Messiah, the Light which came into the world. In him was life, and the life was the light of mankind. The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not suppressed it. Yochanan/John 1:4–5 THE STORY Under Syrian rule. It was in the time of the Second Temple in Jerusalem, nearly twenty two centuries ago (165 b.c.e./c.e.), that the events took place which we commemorate each year at Chanukah time. The Jewish people had returned to the land of Israel from the Babylonian Exile, and had rebuilt the Holy Temple. But they remained subject to the domination of imperial powers, first, the Persian Empire, then later, the conquering armies of Alexander the Great. Upon the death of Alexander, his vast kingdom was divided among his generals. After a power struggle which engulfed all the nations of the Middle East, Israel found itself under the sway of the Seleucid Dynasty, Greek kings who reigned from Syria. The 'Madman Though at first, the rule of the Seleucids was rather mild and uneventful in Israel, there soon arose a new king, Antiochus IV, who was to wage a bloody war upon the Jews, a war which would threaten not just their physical lives, but their very spiritual existence. Over the years of Greek domination, many Jews had begun to accept the Greek culture and its self-serving pleasure oriented, pagan/false god way of life. These Jewish Hellenists became willing pawns in Antiochus' scheme to obliterate every trace of the Jewish religion. The Holy Temple was invaded, desecrated, and robbed of all its treasures. Vast numbers of innocent people were massacred and the survivors were heavily taxed. Antiochus placed an idol of Zeus on the holy altar and forced the Jews to bow before it under penalty of death. And he forbid the Jewish people to observe their most sacred traditions, such as the Sabbath and the rite of circumcision. Antiochus went so far as to proclaim himself a god, taking the name 'Antiochus Epiphanes' --the Divine. But even his own followers mocked him as 'Antiochus Epimanes' --the madman. The Turning Point In every city and town, altars were erected with statues of the Greek gods and goddesses. Soldiers rounded up the Jews and forcibly compelled them to make offerings and engage in other immoral acts customary to the Greeks. As Antiochus' troops tightened their grip on the nation, the Jews seemed incapable of resistance. It was in the small village of Modi'in, a few miles west of Jerusalem, that a single act of heroism turned the tide of Israel's struggle and altered her destiny for all time. Mattityahu (Matthew), patriarch of the priestly Hasmonean clan, stepped forward to challenge the Greek soldiers and those who complied passively to their demands. Backed by his five sons, he attacked the troops, slew the idolaters, and destroyed the idol. With a cry of 'All who are with God, follow me!' he and a courageous circle of partisans retreated to the hills, where they gathered forces to overthrow the oppression of Antiochus and those working with him (even many Jews). Guerrilla Warfare The army of Mattityahu, now under the command of his son Yehuda (Judah) Maccabee, grew daily in numbers and in strength. With the Biblical slogan, Who is like unto You, 0 God, emblazoned on their shields, they would swoop down upon the Syrian troops under cover of darkness and scatter the oppressors, then return to their encampments in the hills. Only six thousand strong, they defeated a heavily armed battalion of forty-seven thousand Syrians. Enraged, Antiochus sent an even larger army against them, and in the miraculous, decisive battle at Bet Tzur, the Jewish forces emerged victorious. From there, they proceeded on to Jerusalem, where they liberated the city and reclaimed the Holy Temple. They cleared the Sanctuary of the idols, rebuilt the altar, and prepared to resume the Divine Service. A central part of the daily service in the Temple was the kindling of the brilliant lights of the Menorah. Now, as Jewish legend has it, with the Temple about to be rededicated; only one small cruse of the pure, sacred olive oil was found. It was only one day's supply and they knew it would take more than a week for the special process required to prepare more oil. Undaunted, in joy and with thanksgiving, the Maccabees lit the lamps of the Menorah with the small amount of oil, and dedicated the Holy Temple anew. And miraculously, as if in confirmation of the power of their faith, the oil did not burn out —and the flames shone brightly for eight full days. The following year, Jewish Sages officially proclaimed the festival of Chanukah as a celebration lasting eight days, in perpetual commemoration of this victory over religious persecution. Chanukah Traditional Kindling Blessings * This 9 post ‘Chanukiah’ is not the biblical 7 post Menorah, Sh’mot/Exodus 25:31-37 1 Bah-rookh Ah-tah Adonai Eh-loh-hay-noo Meh-lehkh Hah-ohlahm Ah-shehr Keh-deh-shah-noo Beh-mehtzoo-tahv Veh-tzeh-vah-noo Leh-had-leehk Nehr Shehl Khah-noo-kah. Blessed are You Adonai our God, King of the universe, who has sanctified us by His commandments, and allowed us to kindle the lights of Khanukah. 2 Bah-rookh Ah-tah Adonai Eh-loh-hay-noo Meh-lehkh Hah-ohlahm Sheh-ah-sah Neh-seem Lah-ah-voh-tay-noo. Bah-yah-meem Hah-hah-eem Bahzeh-mahn Hah-zeh. Blessed are you Adonai our God, King of the universe, who did miracles for our fathers in days of old, at this season. The following blessing is said traditionally only on the first evening: 3 Bah-rookh Ah-tah Adonai Eh-loh-hay-noo Meh-lehkh Hah-ohlahm Sheh-heh-kheh-yah-noo Veh-keh-yeh-mah-noo Veh-heh-gee-ahnu Lehz-mahn Hah-zeh. Blessed are You Adonai our God King of the universe, who has kept us alive, and has preserved us, and enabled us to reach this season. After kindling the lights recite: We kindle these lights to commemorate the saving acts, miracles and wonders which You have performed for our forefathers, in those days at this time, through Your holy Cohanim/Priests. Throughout the eight days of Chanukah, Lessons For Today The Chanukah lights are more than simply a reminder of God's deliverance and miracles in days gone by. They provide inspiration for us, in our times, to enrich our lives with the Light of Messiah Yeshua and in remembering the greatest miracle of all, His birth! In ancient times, the Jewish people rededicated the Temple with the Menorah. Today, we rededicate ourselves to the Lord and to the salvation of this world. For I am not ashamed of the Good News, since it is God’s powerful means of bringing salvation to everyone who keeps on trusting, to the Jew especially, but equally to the Gentile. Romans 1:16 Chanukah Festivities - Foods, Games, Fellowship THE KHANUKAH DREIDEL The Origin of the Dreidel The Syrians decreed that the teaching or studying of Torah was a crime punishable by death or imprisonment. But the children defiantly studied in secret; and when Syrian patrols were spotted, they would pretend to be playing an innocent game of dreidel. Playing Dreidel The dreidel is a four-sided spinning top, also called a svivon in Hebrew. On each side is a Hebrew letter: 'Nun' 'Gimel' 'Hay' and 'Shin'. The letters stand for the phrase "Nes Gadol Hayah Sham" --a great miracle happened there. It is traditionally used to play a lively Chanukah game. Each player places some raisins, candies, or nuts into a kitty, and the players take turns spinning the dreidel. Nun means nothing --you win nothing, you lose nothing. Gimel means you take all. Hay means you win half of what is in the kitty. Shin means you lose, and must put more into the kitty. Thank God for sending Yeshua/Jesus .... but when the appointed time arrived, God sent forth his Son. He was born from a woman, born into a culture in which legalistic perversion of the Torah was the norm, so that he might redeem… Galatians 4:4, 5a ​ How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. He, the Messiah is the way to Eternal Shabbath, Yom Shekulo Shabbat! - The Messianic Age Day of Total Shabbat - Eternal Paradise/Heaven, of the world to come. Is that of one long extended, unending eternal Sabbath Day. ​ Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE ​ By Rachmiel Frydland PURIM is a Persian word meaning 'lots." Several hundred years before the Christian Era, Haman, a Persian Jew-hater, persuaded Ahasuerus (Xerxes), king of Persia, to have all the Jews in the king's realm destroyed. The Persians of that day, including Haman, were fire-worshippers. Their religion was founded by Zoroaster, an ancient philosopher who taught that there were two gods who ruled the world in opposition to each other, Ormuzd, the good or positive god, and Ahriman, the bad or wicked god. The Jews living among the Persians could not accept this religion for they believed in one God only, Jehovah, who created the day as well as the night, the good as well as the evil. As the prophet Isaiah said in the name of the Lord: I form the light, and create darkness; I make peace, and create evil. I, the Lord, do all these things. Isaiah 45:7 Therefore the Jewish people in King Ahasuerus' realm could not accept the Persian religion. Haman ACCUSES THE JEWS Haman, a court favorite of King Ahasuerus, was jealous of Mordecai, a Jew, and presented a reasonable case against the Jews to the king. The kingdom of Persia had been kind to the Jews, and after the Babylonian captivity of seventy years, had given them permission to return to their ancestral land. Should not the Jews now show their gratitude to the king by accepting the religion, the laws and the customs of their benefactors? Haman's petition to King Ahasuerus against the Jews was presented in clear words which could not be contradicted: And Haman said unto King Ahasuerus, There is a certain people scattered abroad and dispersed among the people in all the provinces of thy kingdom; and their laws are diverse from all people; neither keep they the king's laws:therefore it is not for the king's profit to suffer them. If it please the king, let it be written that they may be destroyed(Esther 3:8,9) HAMAN'S MISCALCULATION The Persian king, a pagan, agreed. But Haman did not know the God of the Jews, Who long ago declared that the seed of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob (the Jewish people) could not be exterminated. God, Who is not dead but is living forevermore, decreed an everlasting blessing upon Abraham and his seed, saying, And I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing. And I will bless them that bless thee, and curse him that curseth thee: and in thee shall all families of the earth be blessed. Genesis 12:2,3 Moreover, God confirmed His decree with an oath: And the angel of the LORD called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, and said, By myself have I sworn, saith the Lord; for because thou best done this thing, and best not withheld thy son, thine only son; that in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the seashore; and in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed, because thou best obeyed my voice. Genesis 22:15-18 How foolish of the Human's and the Hitlers to trust in a lot and ignore the Lord Who has decreed blessings upon the seed of Abraham! Haman put his trust in purim lots), but he forgot Pesach (Passover) when mighty Egypt paid a heavy penalty for its oppression of Israel. Let this be a warning to all would be Jew-haters - in Russia, in Europe, in Asia, and in the world everywhere. God is on the side of His people. By blessing them, they who bless bring a blessing on themselves. By the same token, they who curse the Jews, bring a curse upon themselves. ISRAEL'S SALVATION, In ancient Persia Israel's salvation came through a humble man named Mordecai, who was related to Esther, the Jewish queen of Persia. He and his people were destined to die by royal edict. Nevertheless, Mordecai was able to inspire his people to repent in sackcloth, in fasting and prayer. Even Queen Esther joined her people in this act of humility before the Lord. God heard and answered. Mordecai was exalted and his people honored by the king while Haman was hanged and the Jew-haters were abased. This was one of many episodes in God's dealing with His people. The Jews were saved physically at this point in their history. The time of their full salvation, and the complete fulfillment of God's prophecies given to Abraham, was drawing nigh. It happened five hundred years later with the coming of adon Yeshua HaMashiach, (the Lord Jesus, the Messiah). He was the greater Mordecai. Condemned to die for His people, Jesus the Messiah became the supreme sacrifice of atonement for the sins of Jew and Gentile alike. In Him were truly fulfilled the prophecies of old, "In thee shall all the nations of the earth be blessed." (Genesis 12, 22) Today we see millions of people in all parts of the earth who have received these blessings through Abraham's seed, the Messiah, flesh of our flesh and bone of our bone. PHYSICAL OR SPIRITUAL SALVATION? You ask, "What salvation did Messiah bring? There are still wars and hatreds among men." The answer is that salvation is two-fold. There is the physical salvation, as it happened at Purim long ago, and spiritual salvation - redemption of a person's soul. Physical salvation is of value in God's sight only when joined with spiritual salvation, as expressed in the Book of Tehiliim (Psalms): They that trust in their wealth, and boast themselves in the multitude of their riches; None of them can by any means redeem his brother, nor give to God a ransom for him. (For the redemption of their soul is precious .... Psalms 49:6-8 The same thought is found in the Brit Hadasha (New Testament) in the words of the Messiah: For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Mark 8:36 According to the Word of God we need spiritual salvation, and it should be explained clearly. Spiritual salvation is: Salvation from sin. Disobedience to God by the first man, Adam, and by his descendants, broke the oneness, the fellowship between God and man, as the Word of God says: But your iniquities have separated between you and your God, and your sins have hid his face from you, that he will not hear. Isaiah 59:2 Jesus, the Messiah, became the sacrifice for our sins, and by believing in Him, our sins are forgiven. This is not a figment of our imagination but is based squarely on the Hebrew Scriptures, as Isaiah's prophecies about Him state: All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; and the Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all. Isaiah 53:6 Peace and restored fellowship and oneness with God. Do you have perfect peace in your heart? If you do not, it is because of this lack of oneness and fellowship between you and God, the result of unforgiven sin. To have peace in your heart, you need the forgiveness of sins only possible through faith in Messiah Jesus. Everlasting life with God. Death is not our destiny and is not our end. Job says: For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth; and though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God. Job 19:25,26 Job, the sufferer, knew that after this life there awaited him everlasting life with God. He knew about his Redeemer who is alive, and who would bring him into oneness and fellowship with God forever. Our appeal to you is to accept your Messiah now. Your celebration of Purim will be a true one and a spiritual one. It will be not only a celebration of the physical deliverance, which is temporary, but also a spiritual one that will last forever. A Drink From The Fountain Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight; for by the law is the knowledge of sin. But now the righteousness of God without the law is manifested, being witnessed by the law and the prophets; Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Messiah Jesus unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God; Being justified freely by his grace through the redemption that is in Messiah Jesus: Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God; To declare, I say, at this time his righteousness; that he might be just, and the justifier of him which believeth in Jesus. Romans 3:20-26 How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. ​ Reprinted with permission of The Messianic Literature Outreach www.messianicliterature.org ​ Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE Purim, The Lesson of Purim Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE Return to Biblical/Traditional Jewish Feasts To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE

  • Was the New Testament Written In Hebrew | Menorah Ministries

    Was the New Testament New Covenant (Brit Chadashah) written in Hebrew? ​ Many scholars in Israel are now convinced that the spoken and written language of the Jews in the Land of Israel at the time of Jesus was indeed Hebrew; and that the Synoptic Gospels (Matthew, Mark, Luke) were derived from original Hebrew sources. ​ These scholars, fluent in both Greek and Hebrew, have proposed impressive solutions to major problems of New Testament interpretation. Important discoveries which they have made serve to illuminate the very Hebrew style of speech used by Jesus and his first followers, and to make possible a more accurate translation of the Gospels. With a new understanding of the language Jesus spoke, they are now able to correct numerous mistranslations in the English text of the New Testament. ​ Professor David Flusser of Hebrew University of Jerusalem, and the world's leading Jewish authority on the New Testament and early Christianity, holds strongly to the view that the life of Jesus was originally composed in Hebrew. ​ Dr. Moshe Bar-Asher, also of Hebrew University and their foremost Aramaic scholar, agrees. He thinks the Synoptic Gospels go back to a Greek translation of an original Hebrew (not Aramaic!) document. ​ Outstanding scholars from outside Israel also have arrived at this conclusion. ​ -- Harris Birkeland, a Norwegian, states, "The Language of the common people in Palestine in the time of Jesus was Hebrew." ​ -- William Sanford LaSor, professor emeritus at Fuller theological Seminary (an outstanding Semitic scholar) has said, "With the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, it now seems highly probable that the language Jesus spoke was Hebrew and not Aramaic." ​ An impressive amount of evidence points to the use of Hebrew in first-century Israel: the testimony of the church fathers, the Dead Sea Scrolls, coins, and inscriptions from the first centuries B.C. - A.D., the writings of Josephus, and Rabbinic Literature. ​ Further reference: 1. Jewish New Testament by David Stern ISBN 965-359-006-5 2. The Messiah in the New Testament in the light of Rabbinical Writings by Risto Santala ISBN 965-447-010-1 God bless your reading of His Word! ​ For More Information ​ To return to How We Got The New Testament page ​ To return to B I B L E..... T O R A H " God's Instructions To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Is The Torah For Today | Menorah Ministries

    IS THE TORAH FOR TODAY? by Rachmiel Frydland ​ When Moses came down from Mount Sinai with the original Torah of God in his hands, he found out that his people had broken one of its commandments. For the Torah he held in his hands said, "Thou shalt not make unto thee ... any manner of likeness, of anything that is ... in the earth. ... Thou shalt not bow down unto them, nor serve them....... Our people transgressed this command and, as a result, there was no need for the whole Torah, for we have the record which says: And it came to pass, as soon as he came nigh unto the camp, that he saw the calf, and the dancing; and Moses' anger waxed hot, and he cast the tables out of his hands, and broke them beneath the mount. (Exodus 32:19) ​ One command was broken and, therefore, there was no need for the rest of the commandments, for the Torah is one. The Torah was transcribed again but only after full repentance, punishment, and restitution, was fellowship with God restored. ​ According to rabbinic reckoning, there are 613 commandments in the Torah: 248 positive commands (what we should do); and 365 negative commands (what we should not do). The 248 positive commands correspond to the number of separate parts of our body and the 365 negative commands correspond to the days of the year, so that, throughout the year, we are commanded to do all the commands with all the joints and parts of our body. ​ Yet we are told that all these commands can be reduced down to one. This was done already by the famous Hillel (a contemporary of Jesus). We are told that a Gentile came to him and asked for conversion to Judaism on condition that Hillel would teach him all the Torah while he stood on one foot. Hillel agreed and told him the whole Torah is summarized in one command. "What is hateful to you do not unto others. The rest is commentary." Clearly it was the official teaching of the rabbis that one mitzvah (command) equals the whole Torah. Thus we have it in Midrash Rabbah Exodus 25:16: Rabbi Levi taught, 'If Israel should keep the Sabbath as it ought to be kept, even for once, then the Son of David (Messiah) would come. Why? Because it is as if they would have kept the whole Torah.' ​ Rabbi Elazar, son of Abina, goes on to explain in the same context that this can be proved in a threefold way from the Torah, the prophets, and the writings. In the same Midrash we have the exposition on Exodus 22:24: Come and see: he that is well to do and gives charity and does not take usury on his loans, it is as he would have kept all the commands of the Torah. ​ Should the objection be made that these are extra important commands and therefore one of them is equal to the whole, the highest Talmudical authority warns us saying, "Be careful to perform a minor mitzvah just as well as a major one, for you do not know the reward for each mitzvah." (Aboth 2:1) ​ GOD IS ONE The Hassidic saying that, "God, Torah and Israel are one," has its origin in hoary antiquity. Right in the first book of the Torah we are told how our ancestor Jacob became Israel, taking on the name of one God, El, and receiving the blessing of the mysterious Person who struggled with him. After it, Jacob said, I have seen God face to face. (Genesis 32:31) Our ancestor Jacob is joined to God by ruler ship and by struggle and now carries the name El (Israel) in his own name. Possibly the best summary is given by Moses in Deuteronomy 30:19-20 (Devariim). He had told his people that the command is nigh to the Jewish people in their mouth and heart to do them. Summarizing the covenant, he warns us saying: I call heaven and earth to witness this day against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing: therefore choose life, that both thee and thy seed may live: that thou mayest love the Lord thy God, and that thou mayest obey His voice, and that thou mayest cleave unto him, for he is thy life... . ​ The situation we have before us can be summarized as follows: God is one. Rebellion against the angel of the Lord is rebellion against God. Behold, I send an angel. ... Beware of him, and obey his voice, provoke him not... for my name is in him. (Exodus 23:20-2 1) Rebellion against God's prophet is again rebellion against God. (Deuteronomy 18:18-19) The same is the case with rebellion against the Holy Spirit, as is seen in the inspired record, But they rebelled, and vexed his holy spirit: therefore, he was turned to be their enemy, and fought against them. (Isaiah 63: 10) All aspects of God's manifestation are One. ​ The same applies to the Torah. One cannot eliminate or change even a letter of the Torah or of the prophets without hurt to God Himself. This is clearly taught in the Talmud and in Midrash Song of Solomon 5: Rabbi Levi said: Even little things which are only end of letters are actually mountains that can destroy the whole creation: It is written, 'Hear, 0 Israel, the Lord our God the Lord is One.' If you change the letter daled in Echad so that it becomes a resh, you destroy everything. Another example, 'Thou shalt not worship another God.' If you make a daled of the resh it will come out, 'Thou shalt not worship the One God.' Thus you will destroy the whole creation. A third example: It is written in Leviticus 2: 2, And ye shall not profane my Holy Name. If you change the letter het in profane and make it a hey, it will say, 'and ye shall not praise my Holy Name,' and so you will destroy the world. A fourth example from Isaiah 8: It is written, And I will wait for the Lord. But if you change the het in wait to the letter hey, it will come out, 'I will smite the Lord.' Thus you destroy [God]. ISRAEL IS ONE ​ Yeshua (Jesus) the Messiah expressed this thought a long time before in the sermon on the mount: For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the Torah (Law), till all be fulfilled. Matthew 5:18 ​ The same applies to Israel. Israel is one people. He that toucheth one Israelite toucheth all of Israel. This is well summarized in the Babylonian Talmud, Tractate Sanhedrin 37a: Therefore was man created alone, to teach you that he who destroys one Israelite, Scripture considers him as if he would have destroyed the whole world. But he who preserves one Israelite it is as if he would have preserved the whole world. ​ Yaakov (James), the apostle and brother of Jesus (Yeshua), the Messiah, reminds his Jewish brethren of the well-known, sacred principle that God is One; the people of Israel are one; the Torah is one. Hence Yaakov warns: ​ For whosoever shall keep the whole Torah (Law), and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all. James 2:10 ​ Destroy one part of any of them and you destroy the whole. Preserve and keep one part and you keep it all. ​ The question is, are we aware of it? The answer must be a resounding YES! Books would have to be written to quote from our Jewish sources, even if we limit ourselves to the most outstanding references to human sin in general and to Israel's sins in particular. The references in one tractate of Berakhot would be too many to quote. Rabbis one after the other admits that the sufferings they endured and the Jewish people endure is a result of some transgression of the Law at one time or another. Only one rabbi stands and claims that his ten fingers kept the ten commandments. But the very boastful claim shows that he is a transgressor in the matter of humility. ​ On the other hand we have the oft-quoted story of Yohanan ben Zakkai who was visited by his disciples while he was sick. They found him crying and weeping. They said to him, "Rabbi, you are the light of Israel, the pillar on which we lean, the hammer that crushes all heresy. Why should you weep?" He sincerely confessed and said he was afraid to die because he was not too sure whether he would end up in heaven or hell or enjoy the light of God or be thrown into the darkness of Satan and his host. (Berakhot 28) ​ Who of us is not acquainted with the Siddur and Mahzor and with the constant confessions and admissions of our guilt and sin? In the Amidah, the Shemoneh Esreh (18 benedictions), we implore God: "Forgive us, our Father, for we sinned; blot out our sins, Our King, for we transgressed." ​ ATONEMENT IS ONE ​ There was one Israelite who lived, and only one, who never broke the Torah. He is Yeshua, the Messiah, who fulfilled the righteousness of the Law. He is God's son - God manifest in the flesh who came not to destroy the Torah but to fulfill it. As concerning Yeshua, the Brit Hadasha (New Covenant Scriptures) says: ​ And this is [God's commandment that we should believe on the name of his Son Yeshua, the Messiah, and love one another, as he gave us commandment. And he that keepeth his commandments dwelleth in Him, and He in Him. ' And hereby we know that he abideth in us, by the Spirit which he hath given us.' (I Yochanan 3:23-24) The whole world stands condemned by a righteous and just God. The whole world can be saved only by the One who kept the Torah and provided an atonement for our sins - Messiah Yeshua. How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. Reprinted with permission of The Messianic Literature Outreach For further information contact: ​ To return to Torah, Talmud, Midrash, Biblical Discussion Articles To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE

  • Gog and Magog | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Re’uben What is this Gog and Magog stuff.... who & why?? S H A L O M ! _______________ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW _______________ Biblical Question: ​ What is this Gog and Magog stuff.... who & why?? ​ Our Question: ​ Frank. from Savannah, GA asks: ​ Dear Pastor Reuben, ​ I am really getting confused. What and/or should I say is Ezekiel talking about in chapter 38, 39. Just what does it mean? Is Russia really the invaders of my home land Israel in the last days? Many of my friends tell me I am not to read these "mysterious" scriptures nor try to figure them out. Why? ​ Are these important to understand and if so why? Your help and recommendations of further reading would be appreciated. ​ Frank B. ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Dear Frank, shalom, YES, these Scriptures are important to us and it is good to seek understanding. While many, especially in the Jewish community, would say to not read or seek to understand, I do believe God gave the Scriptures for our edification, peace, direction, help, understanding of His plan and love. And, most of all, to assure us and the world of His redemption/salvation plan in His Messiah. ​ G O G and M A G O G ---- Ezekiel's vision concerning an attack upon Israel by a violent enemy, Gog and Magog, occupies two chapters (38-39). The prophet foretells the utter destruction of Gog, whose weapons will provide Israel with fuel for seven years and whose corpses will require seven months to bury; then the entire world will acknowledge the power and majesty of the true God. "On that day, when Gog invades the land of Israel....mountains shall be torn apart, and cliffs shall topple over....I will overwhelm him with utter panic...O Gog, I will strike your bow from your left hand and will make your arrows drop out of your right hand. You shall fall upon the mountains of Israel, you and your hordes....I will restore the fortunes of Jacob and have mercy on the whole house of Israel..." ​ Traditionally interpreted, this vision refers to a distant future, at the end of days, in which God will eventually defeat the enemies of Israel in the land of Israel. Gog and Magog are spoken of in connection with the Messianic Era: "Then Gog & Magog will hear about the descendant of David & the excellence of his people and country & the abundance of their wealth... He will gather people from various nations...notorious sinners marked for perdition...On that day four types of misfortune will descend upon them. Then the spirit of prophecy will descend upon all Israel, young and old. This blessed period will last until the end of time....." Recommended further reading: The Footsteps of the Messiah, Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum. ​ May the Lord bless and keep you Frank. ​ Thank you for your sincere question. (Yeshua = Salvation = Jesus) ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ​ ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask To return to ..... Ask Pastor Reuben Biblica l Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to To Life L'Chaim Find Eternal Life Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Can a Christian Convert to be Jewish | Menorah Ministries

    C O N V E R T ? .... CAN A GENTILE CHRISTIAN BECOME A JEW? ...... R E A L L Y ?! ​ To return To Jews Gentiles and the Church Web Site To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE Can A Gentile Christian 'Convert' (become a Jew) To Judaism & Remain A Christian To Convert or Not to Concert, That is the Question The Messianic Movement and A Messianic Gentile In A Messianic Jewish Congregation

  • Pretribulation The Rapture | Menorah Ministries

    PRETRIBULATIONAL POSITION ‘RAPTURE’ OF THE CHURCH I. THE EVENTS OF THE RAPTURE: THE PROMISE TO RETURN FOR THE CHURCH …...John 14:1-3 THE PROGRAM OF THE RAPTURE …..I Thessalonians 4:13-18 vs 13-15 no soul sleep, no cessation of spirit-soul activity, only physical activity. Dead and living Believers benefit from the Rapture and share in such. vs 16-17 spells out the chronology sequence of the Rapture, in 7 stages. 1. the Lord Himself shall descend from Heaven 2. with a shout. A command for the resurrection and translation to occur by Jesus. 3. with the voice of the archangel. Repeat of the command by the sub-commander. 4. with a the thrump of God, Triggers the actual Rapture to get into motion. 5. the dead in Christ rise first. To those only baptized in H. S., Acts 2, the Church. 6. the living in Christ rise second and join with the dead ones. “to be Caught up” 7. both meet the Lord in the air The ‘Change’ in the ‘Nature’ of the bodies: I Corinthians 15: Nature 35-49, Change 50-58 II. THE TIMING OF THE RAPTURE: In no Biblical passage which discussed the Tribulation is the Church mentioned. The fact that saints are found in the Tribulation does not prove that the Church is there any more than the existence of saints in the Old Testament proves that the Church was there. And clearly the OT saints are not apart of the Church as seen in Acts. Saints in the Tribulation are never called the Church. However, the Church is evident in Revelation 1-3 and 19-22 and not in 6-18 dealing with the events of the Tribulation. The following passages all state that the Church will be removed before the wrath, or the Day of the Lord, or the Tribulation begins: A Pretribulational Rapture Luke 21:34-37 I Thessalonians 1:9-10 I Thessalonians 5:10 Revelation 3:10 These following Scriptures all state that the coming of the Messiah for the Believer (The Church) is imminent, at any time or moment. John 21:20-23 Romans 13:11-12 James 5:7-9 Revelation 22:20 Note: imminency does not mean ‘soon’ but only means that nothing else must precede it and that it could at any time happen, come, occur. When Before? The Rapture “precedes” the Tribulation but it does not “begin” the Tribulation. The Seven-Year covenant does. The Rapture merely comes some time before this, perhaps even many years. Then comes the immediate Judgment Seat of the Messiah Romans 14:10-12 II Corinthians 5:10 I Corinthians 3:10-15 Rewards: I Corinthians 9:24-25 I Thessalonians 2:19 II Timothy 4:7-8 James 1:12 Revelation 2:10 I Peter 5:2-4 Purpose: determining degree of authority in the Messianic Kingdom, only the Eternal Order. All are equal there. Parable: Luke 19:11-27 Reference: The Footsteps of the Messiah Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum Arial Ministries pp. 142-160 To Return to Menorah's Web Page To Return to To Life - L'Chaim Find Eternal Life Web Page

  • Christian Convert to Jew remainChristian | Menorah Ministries

    Can a Christian Gentile "Convert" to Judaism “Become a Jew" and Remain a Christian? By Timothy J. Huckabay/Cohen A major challenge within Christendom has always been the struggle for, and maintenance of Biblical orthodoxy. It is with this in mind, that the question must be raised, "Can a Christian Gentile convert to Judaism and remain a Christian?" Because a growing number of Christians are now entertaining conversion, this issue has great implications for the future of the scriptural Messianic movement. 1 ​ Before proceeding, let's consider what conversion to Judaism is. Is it physical, such that the converted individual is said to be of the physical descent of Jacob, whom God called Israel? Or is it spiritual, so that the person is identified with a religion. Conversion does not alter a person's genetic makeup. If a Gentile becomes circumcised physically, he becomes a circumcised Gentile. If an Israelite (i.e., a Jew) becomes uncircumcised (e.g., through an operation—something which has happened in the past to avoid persecution or exclusion), he becomes an uncircumcised Israelite. 2 Therefore, contrary to the opinions of some, when a person converts to Judaism, he is identifying with a religion, not a physical lineage. ​ Though Christianity is a faith centered upon the Messiah (Christ), it is also Biblical Judaism. Unlike Rabbinic Judaism, it sees Yeshua (Jesus) as the Messianic goal and fulfillment of the Hebrew scriptures. Israelites are today known by the blanket term "Jews," the root of which means "praise" (cf. Genesis 49:8; Isaiah 43:21). Yet "he is not a Judean [Jew] who is one outwardly, nor is that circumcision which is outward in the flesh; but he is a Judean who is one inwardly, and circumcision is that of the heart, in The Spirit, and not in the letter, whose praise is not from men, but from God." A Christian is one who, like the Israelites spoken of in Romans 2:28-29, gives praise to God through the circumcision of his heart, not his flesh. ​ Born again Christians have the right spiritual nature. Should they, therefore, seek to take upon themselves a wrong spiritual nature, one that denies the triune Godhead, through conversion to a different, non-Biblical Judaism (i.e., a counterfeit gospel)? And if they are not seeking a spiritual conversion (which would require a renunciation of belief in Yeshua as The Messiah), how can they honestly say that they are converting at all? 3 ​ Different opinions are held regarding such conversions. There are those who do not see any theological problems with them (even though most are done covertly—cf. 2 Peter 2:1), and there are others who would denounce them outright as the fruit of a destructive heresy, one that sooner or later leads to a falling away, or apostasy from the simplicity and truth of Biblical Christianity. 4 ​ Some, if not most of those who undergo such conversions do so in an effort to emigrate to Israel as Israeli citizens, often with the expressed intent to evangelize unbelieving Israelis. Further, they do so knowing that Israel's Supreme Court has declared Christian Israelites outside of Israel ineligible for guaranteed citizenship as Israelites under its Law of Return. Unfortunately, once there, few Christian "converts" engage in open evangelization for fear of possible revocation of citizenship and subsequent expulsion. Yet Christians visiting Israel are, like Israel's indigenous believers, relatively free to share their faith. 5 ​ Is conversion for the sake of emigration (or any other reason), at the cost of implicitly, if not explicitly denying the Name of Yeshua before men, really commendable? Could God's will possibly be found in this kind of maneuver? Shouldn't both Israelite and non-Israelite Christians be willing to suffer exclusion from the land of Israel for the Name of their Messiah, and the latter all the more so, inasmuch as God never promised the land of Israel to them (cf. Galatians 6:12-16)? Yeshua did say that His followers would be excluded by unbelievers for His sake (see Luke 6:22-23; cf. Galatians 4:17, 4:21, 5:1).6 ​ According to the Hebrew scriptures, Israelite males were to be physically circumcised on the eighth day after birth as evidence of the covenant between God, Abraham, and Abraham's physical descendants. Yet that circumcision was intended not merely as a fleshly token of the faith of the parents, but as a reflection of the circumcision in the hearts of those parents who faithfully served God; for it was a "seal of the righteousness of the faith." 8 Indeed, Israelites often looked with disdain upon those who were not so-circumcised. 9 In the pre-Messianic economy, Gentiles who wanted to serve the God of Israel were generally required to enter into the Abrahamic Covenant, which was later incorporated into the Mosaic Law (for men, this involved physical circumcision; see Leviticus 12:3; cf. John 7:22-23).10 Through such entry, these Gentiles became foreign proselytes, not Israelites. 11 ​ Though the first-century leaders of the New Testament church used the word "apostasy" of believing Israelite parents who "forsake" (Lit., apostatize) the Mosaic Law and the physical circumcision of their sons (Acts 21:21, Gk.; cf. 1 Maccabees 1:48-50, 1:60-62a, 2:15; Romans 3:1-4),12 the Bible as a whole places far greater emphasis upon circumcision in the heart. 13 In fact, God chided unfaithful Israelites for their uncircumcised hearts. 14 Yet every born again Christian who serves God in spirit and in truth (John 4:23-24) has a circumcised heart in Yeshua, 15 through His death and resurrection, 16 and through the indwelling of His Holy Spirit. 17 Division between Israelites and Gentiles no longer exists in this regard (see Ephesians 2:11-22). ​ The New Covenant expressly forbids the requirement of physical circumcision for Gentiles as a sign of faithfulness to God (e.g., see Acts 15:1-29), and strongly discourages its encouragement by Israelites (e.g., see Titus 1:9-11) or false Israelite brethren (cf. Galatians 2:2-5), though circumcision of the heart is required. All believers have liberty to either observe or not observe those aspects of the Mosaic Law that do not concern themselves with God's righteous standards. 18 Christians are "not under law, but under grace" (Romans 6:14); for "if righteousness is through the Law, then Messiah died in vain" (Galatians 2:21). ​ But what if a Christian Gentile wants to "convert"? Should someone who spiritually fulfills the physical token seek to have the token itself or the calling that it implies? Can a believer attain a closer, or more "complete" walk with Yeshua, as some claim, through conversion? No, but "let each one remain in the same calling in which he was called" (see 1 Corinthians 7:17-20), being "straightforward with the Gospel," not building again those things which have been "crucified with Messiah" (see Galatians 2:11 to 3:5). In the opinion of most scholars and theologians, a literal reading of the scriptures would seem to indicate that when a Christian converts (e.g., through physical circumcision or bloodletting for men, or ritual immersion for women), he nullifies his liberty in Messiah, such that the keeping of the Mosaic Law is no longer an option, but a Biblical mandate. Indeed, belief in Yeshua will profit that person "nothing" (see Galatians 5:1-3), his having "become estranged from Messiah," having "fallen from grace" (see Galatians 5:4-12). Even when desired, such circumcision, which Paul called mutilation, 19 leads to estrangement from Yeshua. 20 If that's not a destructive heresy secretly brought in by false teachers, what is (see 2 Peter 2:1-3; cf. Galatians 5:13-26; 2 Timothy 4:1-5)? What about the inherent deception involved in the feigned "conversion" of a Christian Gentile to Judaism for purposes such as emigration to Israel, or more effective witnessing to Israelites? 21 God's Word everywhere encourages and admonishes those who faithfully serve Him to do so "in truth" (cf. Revelation 14:5). Deception and truthfulness do not usually mix. 22 In the very context of Israelite circumcision (Romans 3:1-4), Paul addressed the use of deception to achieve good aims, stating, "And why not say, 'Let us do evil that good may come'?—as we are slanderously reported and as some affirm that we say; their condemnation is just" (Romans 3:8; cf. 3:5-7). Therefore, we cannot Biblically justify false circumcisions (mutilations) or conversions, which can only serve to discredit and obscure the Gospel before unbelievers, especially when they are discovered. 23 ​ Footnotes: 1 If, after reading this article, you feel that it has not satisfactorily addressed the issues at hand, please specify your concerns, ideas, etc., in writing to: MENORAH -Menorah Ministries- Fax: 303-339-0365 303-355-2009 menorah@menorah.org . We will happily consider anything that you have to say. Keep in mind that we are primarily addressing issues related to the conversion of Christian Gentiles to Judaism while still professing to be Christians. We are not concerned with circumcision for peripheral, non-spiritual reasons (e.g., physical health). (written for and by request of MENORAH -Menorah Ministries- Copyright 1993 by Timothy J. Huckabay. All Rights reserved for MENORAH -Menorah Ministries-.) 2 Gordon Lewis, Professor of Systematic Theology at Denver Seminary, comments, "If the questions have to do with ethnic Israelites, it is impossible for a Gentile to become a Jew. The oneness of Jew and Gentile in Christ does not rule out ethnic differences any more than male or female distinctions. In spite of our gender and ethnic differences, however, we are one in Christ spiritually. No, Gentiles cannot become ethnic Jews or vice versa." Rich Robinson, Jews for Jesus' Research Librarian, adds, "Jewishness is dependent not only on identifying as a Jew [religiously] but on descent from Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.... A Gentile who converts to Judaism is still a Gentile biblically." 3 Robinson remarks, "converting to Judaism makes a statement that a Christian should not want to make. That statement is, 'By converting I agree with the tenets of Reform Judaism, or Orthodox Judaism, or whatever.' However, a Christian cannot in good conscience subscribe to those tenets. In other words, a Gentile Christian who converts is claiming to accept a set of beliefs and attitudes that he or she shouldn't be holding.... [How] are converts going to remain honest about their faith in Jesus?... Even though Jewishness and faith in Christ are not mutually exclusive, the religion of Judaism and faith in Christ are. And it would be unethical to hide the fact that one is a follower of Yeshua." 4 Sam Nadler, President of Chosen People Ministries, Inc., remarks, "I consider it deceptive and dishonest, and/or theologically foolish.... Indeed, it confounds the testimony of Messiah by negating the diversity and unity we have in Him, who has made the two into one new man." Dave Hunt, a well-known Christian author, comments, "Since the cross, there is neither Jew nor Gentile, but a new creature in Christ. Therefore, it is utter folly for a Christian—indeed, impossible—to go back to the OLD COVENANT relationship (which they would have to do) in order to 'become Jewish.'" Robinson states, "Though some others on our Jews for Jesus staff might have other observations to make, I don't know of any who would differ from my basic point. That point is that it's both wrong and counter-productive for Gentile Christians to convert to Judaism." 5 Robinson adds, "some might seek conversion out of a desire to identify with the Jewish people and be a better witness. In reality, most Jewish people would be confused by such a move.... And as for being a witness, it is much better for a Gentile to show love for the Jewish people by friendship and practical actions rather than by converting." 6 Christians should note that the 144,000 Israelites who are to be sealed during the Tribulation Period (Revelation 7:1-8, 14:1-3) are not only martially chaste, following The Lamb "wherever He goes" (Revelation 14:4), but they also have "no guile" (i.e., deceit) "in their mouth," being "without fault before the throne of God" Revelation 14:5. 7 See Genesis 17:10-14, 17:23-27, 21:4. 8 See Romans 4:11; cf. Joshua 5:2-8; 2 Timothy 2:19-23. 9 E.g., see Genesis 34:13-27; Judges 14:3, 15:18; 1 Samuel 14:6, 17:26, 17:36, 31:4; 2 Samuel 1:20; 1 Chronicles 10:4; cf. Leviticus 19:23; Isaiah 52:1; Jeremiah 9:25-26; Ezekiel 28:10, 31:18 to 32:32, 44:6- 9; Habakkuk 2:15-16; Acts 11:2-3; Ephesians 2:11-12. 10 Prophecies concerning the Millennial Temple seem to indicate that Gentiles will not be permitted to enter God's sanctuary on Mount Zion, when the Mosaic ordinances will be reinstated (with the exception of those pertaining to guilt and sin offerings), unless they are circumcised both in the heart and in the flesh (e.g., by their parents; see Ezekiel 44:6-9). 11 E.g., to keep the Passover; see Exodus 12:43-45, 12:48-50; cf. Genesis 17:23, 17:27. Rachel, Leah, Tamar, Rahab, and Ruth were proselytes (see Ruth 4:10-12; cf. Genesis 38:11-29; 1 Chronicles 2:3-4), not Israelites, who married Israelite men. Their sons (e.g., the sons of Jacob, Perez, Boaz, and Obadiah), however, were Israelites inasmuch as their fathers were Israelites. Therefore, these women, and others like them, cannot rightly be used as examples of Gentiles who "became" Israelites; rather, they adopted the faith and religion of Israel, and dwelt among the Israelites as proselytes (cf. Ezek 47:21-23). Indeed, Dr. Arnold G. Fruchtenbaum notes, "The Jew is the nationality; Judaism is the religion. Acceptance of Judaism by a Gentile does not make him a Jew, but a proselyte. For that reason, the New Testament makes a distinction between Jews and proselytes in four passages [(see Matthew 23:15; Acts 2:10, 6:5, 13:43)].... Gentile converts to Judaism are never given the title of Jew.... Many Gentiles have tried to claim Jewishness on the principle of conversion based on Ruth's story. However, Ruth is consistently called a Moabitess both before and after her acceptance of the God of Israel [(see Ruth 1:22, 2:2, 2:6, 2:21, 4:5, 4:10; cf. Ruth 1:16-17, 4:11-12; Revelation 2:9)]" (Israelology: The Missing Link in Systematic Theology {California: Ariel Ministries Press, 1993}, pp. 751-752). What about the men of Shechem? After Jacob's daughter Dinah was raped by Shechem, Shechem sought to marry her (see Genesis 34:1-6). But Dinah's Israelite brothers were incensed and bent on revenge and justice. When Shechem's father proposed that marriage and other marriages between the two peoples (see Genesis 34:7-12), which he saw as an opportunity for commerce and wealth (see Genesis 34:10, 34:23), Jacob's sons decided to trick them into being circumcised so that they could more easily attack and kill them, not so that they could become proselytes (see Genesis 34:13-31). Consequently, we see that despite appearances, this incident had nothing to do with spiritual conversion, and nothing in it, when it is understood in context, even remotely suggests that a Gentile can become part of physical Israel through circumcision. 12 Timothy, a believing Israelite with a Gentile father, was physically circumcised by Paul for the sake of his (i.e., Timothy's) witness to other Israelites as an Israelite (see Acts 16:1-3), not for "conversion" to Judaism. Historically, the sons of Israelite mothers and Gentile fathers were generally not circumcised by their fathers in accordance with the Abrahamic Covenant. Consequently, there was a legitimate question of ethnic identification. Were these sons to be considered Israelites or Gentiles? So long as they remained uncircumcised, in violation of the Abrahamic and Mosaic covenants, they could not properly be called Israelites, though their lineage as such was never in question (cf. Leviticus 24:10-15). Yet these sons had the right to choose for themselves to identify with Israel through physical circumcision. Under Paul's guidance, Timothy did so. Fruchtenbaum remarks, "Timothy had Jewish roots and so, for him, circumcision was a valid option" (Israelology, p. 750). Timothy, therefore, cannot be used as a New Covenant example of ethnic affirmation (when just one parent is an Israelite) or conversion, which it everywhere mitigates against or condemns (irrespective of ethnicity). He can, however, be used as an example of ethnic identification by uncircumcised sons who have an Israelite parent. 13 E.g., see Deuteronomy 10:12-18, 30:6; Jeremiah 4:4; Romans 2:23-29; cf. Exodus 6:12, 6:30; Deuteronomy 30:2, 30:8,30:14; Jeremiah 31:31-34, 32:37-40; Ezekiel 11:19-21, 44:6-9; Romans 4:7-12. 14 E.g., see Genesis 17:14; Leviticus 26:41; cf. Exodus 4:24-26; Jeremiah 6:10, 9:25. 15 E.g., see Colossians 2:10-11; cf. Romans 8:3; Colossians 3:9-17. 16 E.g., see Romans 6:1-15; Colossians 2:12-15. 17 E.g., see 1 Corinthians 12:12-13; Philippians 3:3. 18 E.g., God's sabbaths and feasts (which Israelites were to observe), the dietary commandments, etc. (see Romans 14:5-8, 14:21-22; Colossians 2:16-17; cf. Hebrews 8:5, 10:1). 19 See Philippians 3:2-3, NKJV or NIV. The NASB calls this mutilation false circumcision. 20 None of the passages just referenced (e.g., 1 Corinthians 7:17-20, Galatians 5, Philippians 3:2-3, etc.) are set in a Judaizing context. They are, therefore, applicable not only to those who would require such circumcision (i.e., Judaizers), but also to those who merely recommend or encourage it. 21 Some individuals have actually attended synagogues of unbelievers for months in order to obtain "conversions" without openly admitting their Christian faith. Israeli authorities, and all but the most liberal rabbis, consider conversions of the nature we have been discussing to be deceptive and dishonest, and, if they are discovered, null and void. In fact, most Israelites, including many of those who are believers, are agreed on these points. 22 Not even Abram (Abraham), who for a noble purpose (i.e., staying alive for his wife's sake) implored Sarai (Sarah) to identify herself as his sister before Pharaoh, can be said to have lied; for she was his half- sister (Gen 20:12). True, Abram conspired with his wife to deceive Pharaoh, but he did so out of desperation to save both their lives (see Genesis 12:11-20; cf. 20:1-14). Yet the scriptures do not leave room for such tactics where the Gospel is concerned. 23 See Matthew 18:15-20; 1 Timothy 5:19-21; 2 Timothy 2:24-26; cf. Leviticus 19:17; Deuteronomy 19:15; Romans 16:17-18; 1 Corinthians 5:11 to 6:3; 2 Corinthians 13:1-2; 2 Thessalonians 3:6, 3:14-15; Hebrews 10:28; James 5:20. For Additional Information or with questions contact: ​ Return to Convert? .... Can A Gentile Christian Become A Jew? ...... Really ?! To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE

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  • B.C.E vs C.E. What does it Mean | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Pastor Reuben What does B.C.E. & C.E. mean and why does the Jewish community use them rather than B.C. & A.D. S H A L O M ! _______ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW ______ Biblical Question: ​ Our Question: ​ Bev from California asks: ​ Dear Pastor Reuben, ​ I am confused as to why the Jewish people and a lot of people dealing with the Bible and Israel date history using B.C.E. and C.E. rather than the most common used B.C. and A.D. Is there a Jewish reason? Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Dear Bev, shalom, This is a fast but pointed answer Bev, but I know you can quickly get more information by looking at the local public library. Research on our calendar's development, ok.? So, a simple help will do from me. B.C., meaning "before Christ," & A.D., meaning "in the year of our Lord", are abbreviations primarily used/developed by Christians. Their use implies the acceptance of Jesus Christ as divine, a concept rejected by traditional rabbinic Judaism. Hence, in Jewish scholarship B.C.E., meaning "before the Common Era," & C.E., meaning the "Common Era," were introduced to draw a distinction between Christian and Jewish belief. ​ God bless you ! ​ Pastor Reuben Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask..... ​ To return to ..... Ask Pastor Reuben Biblical Answers To Asked Questions.... . To return to To Life L'Chaim Find Ete rnal Life Page To return to Menorah's Web Page Return to Israel Gods Plan Page

  • Bible/Torah/Prophecy God's Instruction | Menorah Ministries

    B I B L E..... T O R A H Phophecy God's Instruction s ​ THE NEW TESTAMENT B’RIT HADASHAH 40-100 B. C. E. (B.C.)./C. E. (A.D.) : How We Got The New Testament / B’rit Hadashah Was The New Testament Written In Hebrew? ​ P R O P H E C Y and E N D - T I M E S E V E N T S Yeshua-Jesus In Bible Prophecy Understanding_Bible_Prophecy ​ T H E B I B L E The Authenticity of the Bible ​ I N D E X of T A N A K H - O L D C O V E N A N T P A S S A G E S C I T E D in the B ' R I T H A D A S H A H - N E W C O VE N ANT Index of Old Testament-Covenant Passages Cited in the New Testament-Covenant To return to How Catholics May Know They Go To Heaven page To return to Menorah's Web Page ​

  • Underatanding Bible Prophecy | Menorah Ministries

    Understanding Bible Prophecy The Future According to Almighty God ​ Armageddon, The Rapture of the Church , The Second Coming of Christ , The Book of Revelation, The Great Tribulation , The Apocalypse, The Prophets Daniel, Isaiah, Ezekiel, Zechariah and John, World War III, The End of The Age, The Millennium, False Prophets, The Antichrist, The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse , The Day of the Lord, The Grapes of Wrath, 666 and The Mark of the Beast. What do these terms have in common? They are all related to the study of Bible prophecy . And very few topics are more misunderstood than Bible Prophecy. The study of Bible Prophecy is one of the most controversial topics in the Christian Church today. Most Christian Churches ignore or are ignorant of the significance prophecy plays in the Bible. Approximately 30% of the Bible is prophetic in nature. Since the Bible is God's Word and 30% of that Word has to do with prophecy, should not Christians have a significant interest in this area? When studying Bible Prophecy, it is essential that the various prophecies are understood in their correct context and application. Bible Prophecy deals with the Jew, the Christian and the non-believer. Failure to correctly discern these applications leaves the reader in constant turmoil, unable to resolve Scripture: ... the Church is not Israel and Israel is not the Church. Some of the most confusing prophetic voices today teach that there is no distinction between Israel and the Church, and that the Church today is spiritual Israel and is destined to fulfill the promises of God to that chosen nation. There is a God in Heaven that reveals secrets ... (Daniel 2:28 ) The Lord God Himself, the Alpha and Omega , the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last, has ordained prophecy for the expressed purpose of proving He is Who He says He is. In fact, in the Old Testament of the Bible, Moses asked God Whose Name he (Moses) should declare to the Israelites when they ask Who commissioned him to lead them out of Egypt into the land that would later be known as the Land of Israel. God's succinct reply to Moses said it all. Almighty God has spoken and inspired men to write His Word into the collection of Books we now know as the Bible . But how does He prove to the human race that this is His Word and that He is Who He says He is? He foretells the future to His prophets who speak His Word and write it down for future generations before the events take place. This marks the uniqueness of the Bible, as the Only Book that not only claims a Resurrected Savior, but as the Only Book with the ability to accurately foretell the future, authenticating God's stamp of approval Although a Russian-backed Arab invasion of Israel is foretold in the prophecy of Ezekiel (38 , 39 ) after Israel is restored as a nation (Ezekiel 36 , 37 ) this invasion is not the Battle of Armageddon. While the prophetic language in Ezekiel seems to describe Armageddon in many ways, there are several reasons to differentiate this invasion from the Battle of Armageddon (Prophecy Watch, 212-214). It should be noted that some Bible Prophecy scholars see Ezekiel 38 starting at the mid-point of the Tribulation Period. Either way, by the time Ezekiel 39 comes to pass, it seems Armageddon is the final result of the battles. This invasion (unsuccessful by the way) may result in the emergence of the Antichrist who arrives on the scene just in time to take credit for the devastating defeat of the Russian-Arabian alliance. If so, the Antichrist would then institute the false peace covenant as the False Messiah of Israel. The Bible clearly indicates that the overwhelming majority of the world is fooled by the Antichrist into believing he is the "messiah", albeit a political one (even and especially Israel! ). The term Antichrist doesn't just mean "opposed" to Christ but the name "Antichrist" actually means "instead of" or "counterfeit" Christ. He will seem to embody all of the qualities the non-believing world expects from Jesus Christ but does not represent the true Biblical portrait of Him . The Bible is explicitly clear, the visible Second Coming of Jesus Christ to the Earth occurs at the Battle of Armageddon when He defeats the Antichrist's armies, not just a World War II Axis-style alliance (Revelation 19:11-21 ). It is quite possible that the world will mistake the Russian-Arabian invasion of Israel as Armageddon and gladly receive the Antichrist as false messiah (oops!) unwittingly ushering in the real Battle of Armageddon a short seven years later. When Jesus spoke of the Rapture of the Church in Matthew 24:38-39 , He noted that it will be a surprise to the non-believing inhabitants of the Earth. The armed invasion of Israel in Ezekiel 38-39 will also be a surprise. Ezekiel 38-39 seems to indicate that Israel will stand alone but with her God in this battle. Henry Kissinger said: "The main aim of any American President is to prevent World War III. Second, that no American President would risk World War III because of territories occupied by Israel. Three (sic), the Russians know this." Israel knows this as well. Since the early 1970's, Israel has maintained a ready force of fighter-bomber aircraft equipped with nuclear weapons with one primary target in mind: Moscow. Israel can comprehend Old Testament Bible Prophecy too and they know that they will be facing Moscow in the next major prophetic war of Ezekiel 38-39. US-made F-4 Phantom II fighter-bombers were the first assigned with nuclear weapons; they have since been augmented with American-made F-16 Falcon fighter-bombers for the nuclear delivery. A poor man's ICBM … The tremendous economic problems of Russia, her continued export of advanced weaponry to oil-rich Arab states, the instability / unpredictability of Islam and the Arabs states, the PLO and Hamas' continued terrorist operations and Israel's ongoing expansion into East Jerusalem are all combining to bring Ezekiel 38-39 to pass. Jerusalem is the Burdensome Stone of God . When is the Battle of Armageddon? The actual date of Armageddon is a hidden mystery of prophecy. Yet it is a temporary mystery because the Day of the Lord, another term for Armageddon, cannot be known and yet can be known. What absurd paradox is this? This is but one of several mysteries God presents us with in Scripture. When Jesus was talking to His disciples, He was speaking on several topics including the End of the Age, Armageddon and the Rapture of the Church . He told them they could not know the day and hour of the Rapture but that they could know the season (Matthew 24:32-35 ). Jesus is coming two more times, first (invisible to the world) at the Rapture of the Church, as a Thief in the Night (Matthew 24:36-51 ) and again (visible to the world) at the Battle of Armageddon (Zechariah 14 ). "Watch therefore, for ye know neither the Day nor the Hour wherein the Son of Man Cometh" (Matthew 25:1-13 ) The Day of the Lord, the Battle of Armageddon, cannot be known right now because the Church must first be Raptured so that the Antichrist can be revealed (2nd Thessalonians 2:1-12 ). After the Antichrist makes a seven-year peace treaty with Israel (Daniel 9:27 , Matthew 24:15-18 ) he (the Antichrist) will break the covenant 1,260 days into the "week" of years (Daniel 9:27b,c ). Now (the middle of the week of 7 years) wise Jews will know when Christ returns because there are references to 1,290 days and 1,335 days (Daniel 12:11-12 ). The Battle of Armageddon begins 1,260 days after the Antichrist breaks the false peace agreement with Israel (Armageddon is at the end of the 7 years of the false peace accord). The indication is that the Millennial Reign of Christ begins at the end of the 1,335 days. That God will be dealing uniquely with Israel and not the Church during this period seems to be confirmed in the fact that the Christian Church was not present for the first 483 years of the Decree upon Israel and Jerusalem ; therefore it does not follow that the Christian Church will be present for the last 7 years of the Decree. There will, of course, be Jews and non-believing Gentiles converted to Christ during the Tribulation Period. In the Book of Daniel, the prophet Daniel is told that the mystery of the End Times is sealed up until the Last Days, (Daniel 12:4 ) and that many people will travel extensively and human knowledge will be dramatically increased (Daniel 12:4 ). During the first 5900 years of recorded human history from 4000 B.C. to 1900 A.D. men conveyed themselves mainly on horseback. In 1903, the Wright brothers were thrilled when the world's first motorized airplane flew a few hundred feet. Between 1900-1969, in just 69 short years, men developed mass production of automobiles, massive steel passenger ships, refined the airplane and evolved it into the jumbo jet airliner, left the bonds of Earth and orbited the sky, set foot on the Moon 240,000 miles away in the cold vacuum of space, created the television, the computer and the inter-continental nuclear bomb. All in only 69 short years! And yet the optimism for man in the 20th century has been stained by the fact that the major wars claimed 87,000,000 (that's right million) lives while another 83,000,000+ have been lost in the various pogroms, insurrections, etc. The total for the highly-educated 20th century: 170,000,000+ indicating man's intelligence is not capable of breeding true peace. "Watch therefore: for ye know not what Hour your Lord doth Come" (Matthew 24:42 ) So we study Bible Prophecy, looking for the Prince of Peace, the King of Israel, the King of Kings, Jesus Christ who will set up a never-ending Kingdom on Earth and True Peace. This Kingdom, of which the first 1,000 years are known as the Millennial Reign of Christ, begins after the Battle of Armageddon. The details of the period known as the Day of the Lord, including the Battle of Armageddon are found in the Apocalypse. The Book of the Bible known as the Apocalypse is actually the Revelation of Jesus Christ, written by the Apostle John on the island of Patmos around 90-95 A.D. The Apostle John is known in evangelical songs and teachings as "John the Revelator". Know this, Armageddon will not take place until seven (7) 360-day years are completed after the false peace pact with Israel is signed by the Antichrist, as foretold in Daniel's prophecy. For More Information ​ To return to Bible Torah Prophecy God's Instructions Page To return to Bible.... Torah " God's Instructions " Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Angel Of The Lord = Jesus? | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Re’uben The angel of the Lord is Jesus? S H A L O M ! ​ _______ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW ______ ​ Biblical Question: ​ Dear Pastor Reuben, In the Old Testament, 'the angel of the Lord' is often referred to, and in most versions I have seen in the margin it will write 'or Angel' and I have often heard people say that the reference here is to the Son of God, this would seemingly offer support to the doctrine of some that Jesus was an angel who later passed to glory and was crowned next to God...in an attempt to keep things short I think that you know the confusion that this can present.. do you have anything on this that can help, perhaps the original Hebrew can help...perhaps you can help me....? ​ Thanks, Graham ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Shalom Graham, ​ Jesus is not nor never has been an angel. Scripture clearly says He has always since the beginning existed with God, and is God. John 1 and countless other references which are available to your Biblical study and search. Also look at these to see that the phrase Biblically = God in the majority of the cases: Exodus 3:2, Genesis 31:11,13; 22:11, Judges 13:20 Some falsely and without Biblical evidence, teach that Jesus was mere man or an angel who was exalted for his service and faithfulness. Like the Jehovah Witnesses, who are mislead and on a route of destruction; much like those referred to in my answered question #8. ​ Hope this helps your walk with the Lord. ​ Pastor Reuben ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, Email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask...... To return to ..... Ask Pastor Reuben's Biblical Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Menorah's Privacy Policy | Menorah Ministries

    Menorah Ministries Privacy Policy Privacy Policy: Introduction: Menorah Ministries Menorah.org is committed to protecting the privacy of its users. This Privacy Policy outlines the types of information collected from users and how that information is used and protected. Information Collection: We may collect personal information such as names, email addresses, and contact information from users who voluntarily submit such information through forms or donations on our website. We may also collect non-personal information such as browser type, operating system, and IP address for statistical purposes. Use of Information: Personal information collected is used solely for the purpose for which it was provided, such as processing donations, sending newsletters, or responding to inquiries. Non-personal information may be used to analyze website usage and improve our services. 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  • Has God Forsaken His People? | Menorah Ministries

    Has God Forsaken His People? _ Replacement Theology_ by Dr. Michael Brown— Some things are non-negotiable. God’s covenant with Israel is one of them. How could He have made Himself more clear? He gave His oath to Abram, and reiterated it six more times to Abraham, to his son Isaac and to his grandson Jacob. On one occasion, “When God made His promise to Abraham, since there was no one greater for Him to swear by, He swore by Himself” (Hebrews 6:13). Why did God speak so decisively? It was because He “wanted to make the unchanging nature of His purpose very clear to the heirs of what was promised, [so] He confirmed it with an oath’ (Hebrews 6:17). God Who cannot lie bound Himself by an oath! His covenant with Israel was reiterated through Moses, repeated by the prophets and rehearsed by the psalmists. Jesus Himself affirmed it (Matthew 19:28), Paul articulated it (Romans 9-11) and the gates of the New Jerusalem announce it forever (Revelation 21:11-12). God has chosen Israel as His covenant people. What if Israel broke the covenant? What would then happen to them? Listen to these unmistakably clear truths: “Though I completely destroy all the nations among which I scatter you, I will not completely destroy you. I will discipline you but only with justice; I will not let you go entirely unpunished” (Jeremiah 30:11). God will completely destroy other nations, but He will not completely destroy Israel! He treats His people differently from other people; they are judged more strictly, but they will never be wiped out. No matter what Israel does, God will never forsake them as a distinct people. In Jeremiah 31:31-34, the Lord declares that He will make a new covenant with Israel and Judah. But He doesn’t stop there. It’s as if He’s saying, “Now, don’t get me wrong! Don’t think that this new covenant means that I’m abandoning My people. No!” This is what the LORD says, He who appoints the sun to shine by day, who decrees the moon and stars to shine by night, who stirs up the sea so that its waves roar – the LORD Almighty is His name: “Only if these decrees vanish from My sight,” declares the LORD, “will the descendants of Israel ever cease to be a nation before Me.” This is what the LORD says: “Only if the heavens above can be measured and the foundations of the earth below be searched out will I reject all the descendants of Israel because of all they have done,” declares the LORD (Jeremiah. 31:35-37). As long as there is a sun, moon, stars, earth, and sea, there will be a distinct people of Israel – no matter what they do. It’s God’s promise! It’s true! “Is not Ephraim my dear son, the child in whom I delight? Though I often speak against him, I shall remember him. Therefore My heart yearns for him, I have great compassion for him, ” declares the Lord (Jeremiah 31:20) Look at how relevant God’s prophetic word is to our day and age. For centuries the Church, in arrogance, because of ignorance, claimed that she alone was the true Israel, that she had replaced the ancient covenant people. The Church taught that it was the Christians alone who were the true Jews. (How strange that these Christians were not claiming to be Jewish during the Holocaust!) The Church taught emphatically that the physical people of Israel (those who were ethnically Jewish and those who joined the nation through conversion to Judaism) were eternally rejected. This is not some worn-out old doctrine. It is on the increase again in our day. Yet the Lord is not surprised. Twenty-five hundred years ago, He already addressed this issue: The word of the LORD came to Jeremiah: Have you not noticed that these people are saying, ‘The LORD has rejected the two kingdoms He chose?’ So they despise My people and no longer regard them as a nation. This is what the LORD says: ‘If I have not established My covenant with day and night and the fixed laws of heaven and earth, then I will reject the descendants of Jacob and David My servant and will not choose one of his sons to rule over the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. For I will restore their fortunes and have compassion on them’ Jeremiah 33:23-26 People are still murmuring against Israel and despising the people and the nation. God’s answer is still the same: “I will never reject them!” What exactly did God promise Abraham and his descendants? How long are His promises good? Psalm 105 has the answer for us. He remembers His covenant forever, the word He commanded for a thousand generations, the covenant He made with Abraham, the oath He swore to Isaac. He confirmed it to Jacob as a decree, to Israel as an everlasting covenant: “To you I will give the land of Canaan as the portion you will inherit” (Psalm 105:8-11). Did God make himself clear? The Scriptures speak of God’s covenant, the word He commanded, His oath which He confirmed as a decree forever, for a thousand generations, as an everlasting covenant. The Lord is trying to make a point! Not only did He promise to bless Abraham and make him into a great nation; not only did He promise to multiply his seed; not only did He promise to make him the father of many nations; not only did He promise to bless those who blessed him and curse those who cursed him; He also promised Abraham the land of Canaan, with clearly defined borders, as an everlasting inheritance to his natural descendants – until this earth is no more. Amazingly, some teachers have tried to get out of this perpetual land promise to Israel. They claim that in the New Testament, neither Jesus nor the apostles ever reiterate this particular aspect of the covenant. But why should they reiterate it? When almost all of the New Testament was being written, about one million Jews were living in the Land, Jerusalem was the spiritual and national capitol and the Temple was still standing. And Jesus made it clear that, despite Jerusalem’s soon-coming destruction – a destruction that would last “until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled” – He would come back to a Jewish Jerusalem (Luke 21:24; Matthew 23:37-39). Obviously Jews would be in the Land! But there is another reason why Jesus and the apostles did not explicitly stress the land promise to their people. The specifics of God’s covenant with the patriarchs were so clearly stated in the Scriptures that it would have been a waste of words to repeat them all! David Brown, the respected nineteenth century Bible commentator, was correct when he said: “What is permanent in the kingdom of God under the Old Testament is PRESUMED in the New.” And let all believers who question Israel’s rights to the Land, based on the New Testament, take note of this: The New Testament doesn’t state that Israel would be exiled from the Land either! Both of these Old Testament truths, Israel’s scattering and Israel’s regathering, are presumed in the New. The covenant God made with Israel is just like the covenant He made with David. The Lord declared to David that He would establish a lasting dynasty for him. He gave this promise to David’s son who would succeed him on the throne: When he does wrong, I will punish him with the rod of men, with floggings inflicted by men. But My love will never be taken away from him, as I took it away from Saul, whom I removed from before you. Your house and your kingdom will endure forever before Me; your throne will be established forever (2 Samuel 7:14-16) What a wonderful word! In spite of David’s terrible sin and Solomon’s tragic backsliding, in spite of the godlessness of Davidic kings like Ahaz and Manasseh, the kingdom would never be taken from his physical descendants. When the kingdom was divided and God gave Jeroboam the ten northern tribes, He did so to humble David’s descendants, “but not forever” (1 Kings 11:39). He still left one tribe with the sons of David, “so that David My servant may always have a lamp before Me in Jerusalem, the city where I chose to put My Name” (1 Kings 11:36). The King of kings and Lord of lords is a direct descendant of David! God was faithful to keep His word to David, and He is just as faithful to keep His word to Israel. His covenant with Abraham is just as unconditional and everlasting as His covenant with David. Read Genesis 15 carefully. In ancient days, that is how covenants were made. Sacrificial animals were cut in two and their severed bodies placed in two lines. Both parties entering into the covenant would then walk between the carcasses. By doing so they were symbolically saying, “If I break this binding agreement, if I fail to uphold my side of the pact, then let me suffer the same fate that these animals have suffered.” But something was different in Genesis 15. Only God passed through the pieces! This was a one-way deal (see Genesis 15:17-21) The Land belonged to other nations. But at the proper time it would be given to Abraham’s seed. If they violated the terms of the covenant – especially as expressed through Moses – then they would be punished and even driven temporarily from the Land. But just as God’s word to David stands firm, His word to Abraham endures, no matter what Israel does. This is what He said through Moses. When the Israelites are…in the land of their enemies, I will not reject them or abhor them so as to destroy them completely, breaking My covenant with them. I am the LORD their God. But for their sake I will remember the covenant with their ancestors whom I brought out of Egypt in the sight of the nations to be their God. I am the LORD (Leviticus 26:44-45; see also Deuteronomy 4:27, 30-31) Even today, when “As far as the gospel is concerned, they are enemies on [our] account; [yet] as far as election is concerned, they are loved on account of the patriarchs, for God’s gifts and His call are irrevocable” (Romans 11:28-29). Could anything be more plain? Right now the great majority of the Jewish people are our “enemies” as far as the gospel is concerned. They reject our message (the Orthodox Jews reject it most strongly), and some even actively oppose it. As individuals, they forfeit their covenant blessings when they turn from Jesus the Messiah. But as a people, they are still elect and loved “on account of the patriarchs.” Otherwise, God’s promises have no meaning and election has no significance. “Abraham, I’m swearing by Myself, I’m putting My reputation on the line. I will bless your offspring always – no matter what. (But I may replace them with someone else one day!)” That is not the Lord that we serve. God’s covenant with Abraham is just as unconditional and everlasting as His covenant with the Church. The Lord “saved us, not because of righteous things we had done, but because of His mercy” (Titus 3:5). Praise God, we were chosen by grace! But we are not the only recipients of the Lord’s unmerited favor. To Israel, Moses said: The LORD did not set His affection on you and choose you because you were more numerous than other peoples, for you were the fewest of all peoples. But it was because the LORD loved you and kept the oath He swore to your forefathers that he brought you out with a mighty hand and redeemed you from the land of slavery, from the power of Pharaoh king of Egypt (Deuteronomy 7:7-8). Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? God’s covenants with Israel and with the Church are based on His promise, not our performance. Old Testament Israel and the New Testament Church both stood, and still stand, by grace. Both received God’s eternal promises. Together we make up the family of God: The faithful ones of Israel and the chosen ones from every nation become one new man out of the two, one body, one people. “For through Him [Jesus!] we both have access to the Father by one Spirit” (Ephesians 2:18). Great is the wisdom of God. This is not what the Muslims believe. It is a fundamental tenet of the Koran that both Israel and the Church failed. Moses was a prophet. Jesus was a prophet. But Muhammad was the seal of the prophets, the messenger of the final revelation. The Jews are not the people of God – they failed! The Christians are not the people of God – they failed! It is Muslims who are the people of God. Of course, this is preposterous. But, in the event that you are still uncertain about the calling of Israel, consider this simple truth: If God could forsake Israel, in spite of His unconditional, everlasting promises, then He could forsake the Church! If God could replace Israel, in spite of His unconditional, everlasting promises, then He could replace the Church! So, if you hold to a theology that says, “God has forsaken physical Israel,” or “The Church has replaced Israel,” you had better be extremely careful. Maybe the Koran is right! Excerpted from Michael L. Brown, Our Hands are Stained with Blood, chapter 12 www.askdrbrown.org To Return To Bible…… Torah God’s Instructions Page ​ To Return To Israel God's Plan Page To Return To Menorah’s Web Page

  • Yeshua-Jesus Name Study | Menorah Ministries

    Yeshua-Jesus Name Study To Return To Menorah's Web Page ​ To Return To The Real Jesus Web Page

  • For the Rapture of the Bride He Comes | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Pastor Reuben "For His bride He comes secretly to "rapture"" and I wanted to ask when do you think this will occur? S H A L O M ! ______ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW ______ Biblical Question: ​ In the last paragraph I read "For His bride He comes secretly to "rapture"" and I wanted to ask when do you think this will occur? ​ Our Question: ​ Dear Pastor Reuben, ​ I was reading your page on "JEWS, GENTILES & THE CHURCH" and I have a question that I will not linger on by replying to any answer you give me unless directly requested to do so. In the last paragraph I read "For His bride He comes secretly to "rapture"" and I wanted to ask when do you think this will occur? Thanks, Roger ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Shalom Roger, ​ The Believers’ Hope The imminent return of the Lord! ​ The early Believers stood firm that Jesus could come at any moment. Today many have lost that urgent sense of expectation—and the fire, passion, and motivation such a hope inspires. But He is coming, and we can renew our strength, witness and excitement for the future! Yochanan/John 14:1-3 Mattityahu/Matthew 24:44 Luke 12:35-40 I Thessalonians 4:16-18; 5:9-11 A Believer’s Hope The imminent coming in the air to take all Believers to join Him, then His subsequent (unknown time frame) physical return to the Mount of Olives. Z’kharyah/Zechariah 14 (especially verse 5) Often I discuss the coming of the Lord Jesus for us and frequently with Christians tired of the changing world moving away from the real God. They are tired as many I talk to state, “things are so depressive, so bad politically, financially and morally”. Even in the Church things are moving away from the Bible. Some say, too flippantly I think, that they really want the Lord to return. Others say they pray for His coming, to be today if not sooner! Yes He will soon come for us but “at any moment”. So the question now is “are our attitudes and actions reflecting our unconscious answer that we are willing to leave this earth right now...or is there something standing between us and our Lord at the moment?” Now I am increasingly hoping for His coming for His Body of Messiah, the Church. Come Lord Yeshua/Jesus! I believe there is no condition that must be met before He will do just that: no revealing of the Anti-Christ, 7 year signed peace treaty with Israel primarily, nor the start or finish of the Tribulation is needed. Yes, like those near Him during His first coming who were told He would return for them, I too look daily as the times are heatedly getting worse all around us. Are you? Are you ready? Really? Ready? As a full time minister and missionary I think our opportunities to share the Gospel hope (www.menorah.org/savior.html ) has never been keener, more listenable. Not that most people have changed their hearts toward God but in that more are seeing that they and the human race have not been able to change the world into a better place. Things are not getting better. So how close are we? No one knows nor can tell of Jesus’ coming for the Believers, the real Christians, the Messianic Body of Believers (Jews and Gentiles) in Him, The Church. Yes we can tell that He will come to set up an earthly 1,000 year Kingdom and rule Himself after the end of the 7 year period where the Anti-Christ rules after brokering a 7 year so called peace agreement. But that coming of Christ is not the coming the early Believers nor am I excitedly looking to! I see the coming changing times as what the Lord Biblically warned us about and told us to look for and that such would usher in His advent/coming/return for His talmidim/disciples. In the twinkling of an eye, so fast will be our leaving into His presence. At the start of this brief and inadequate article on the imminent return and taking of the Believer both dead and then alive on earth to be with Him eternally, I give some Scripture references. Please take time to prayerfully read them. If you are not sure if He came today that you would be taken, ask for the forgiveness of your sins and for Jesus to be your Lord and Savior. That is all it takes for an honest heart to come home to God and live eternally in His glory. This is not just an offer to escape the present troubles as it is the very same offer that was initiated 2000 + years ago. John chapter 3 ends with, Whoever trusts in the Son has eternal life. But whoever disobeys the Son will not see that life but remains subject to God's wrath. To disobey is to reject Jesus’ freedom free-gift atoning offer from our sin and certain eternal death that He paid for by His own sacrificial death. Yes there is true hope, one way, God’s way! I pray for the Believers especially to be refreshed in remembering this thoroughly Biblical prophecy and real lasting hope. God’s sovereign plan for His followers should today until Jesus comes, renew our love and commitment to the Lord. Let’s look up for our redeemer to come. Let’s be changed in the way we think, speak and live. His future is our promised hope. Thank you for your support and prayers. Menorah wants to continue until we join the Lord to be a faithful resource and referral ministry about the Messiah, helping others to know Him, the Bible, Biblical Jewish roots of Christianity, Israel, Jesus (Yeshua), and God's plan of eternal redemption/salvation. God bless and keep you, ​ Pastor Re’uben ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask ​ To Return To Jews, Gentiles and The Church ​ To Go To Menorah's Theme Song Web Page ​ To return to ..... Ask Pastor Reuben Biblical Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to To Life L'Chaim Find Eternal Life Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • The Modern Birth Of Israel | Menorah Ministries

    The Birth Of Israel In Modern Times The Impossibility …..But For God…. The concept of a homeland for the Jews was advocated by the Zionist Movement in the 19th century – although the return to the Promised Land was a 2000-year-old dream. Dr. Theodor Herzl translated the Zionist Movement's concept into a political program, namely a Jewish State. This was supported by the famous Balfour Declaration of 1917. International recognition was assured by the League of Nations in the Treaty of San Remo in 1920. Following the defeat of Germany and her allies in WWI, Turkey lost her empire. Its vast domains were divided in order to create the new states of Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Saudi Arabia. Palestine, on both sides of the Jordan, was entrusted to Britain for the establishment of the Jewish National Home. Although the original area designated National Home was considerably reduced by the British in 1922 in order to provide for the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan - the Jews nevertheless succeeded in developing the small area left to them into a flourishing enterprise, literally causing the desert to bloom. With the benefit of hindsight, it is instructive to compare Arab gains from the Allied victory in WWI with those of the Jews. On the one hand, five independent newly- born states on an enormous area, as against the promise of a National Home on a very small area. The growth of the Jewish population in Palestine was resented by the Arabs who expressed their hostility by fomenting bloody riots in 1920, 1929, 1933 and 1936-39. The most tragic was the massacre of the ancient Jewish community of Hebron in 1929. In order to resolve the conflict, on November 29, 1947 the UN voted in favor of a Partition Plan which provided for two independent states, one Jewish, one Arab, while Jerusalem would be internationalized. Although there was hesitation among the Jewish public, it was decided to accept the Plan, notwithstanding that the area allotted to the Jewish State was, once again, considerably reduced. The Arabs rejected the plan outright. Contemptuous of the will of the world, bands of Palestinian Arabs, aided by irregular volunteers from neighboring countries, attacked Jewish communities and clashed with the Hagana defense force. With the termination of the UN Mandate on May 14, 1948 the British forces had withdrawn from Palestine. Regular troops of the armies of Egypt, Iraq, Transjordan, Syria, and Lebanon invaded the country, along with volunteer detachments from Saudi Arabia, Libya, and Yemen. "The Arabs intend to conduct a war of extermination and a momentous massacre which will be spoken of like the Mongolian massacre and the Crusades," declared Azzam Pasha, secretary-general of the Arab League, on the BBC, May 15, 1948. Despite the fierce resistance of the nascent Israel Defense Force, the Arabs made significant headway in their assault. Egyptian troops reached the Jerusalem suburb of Talpiot, and, advancing along the coast, were stopped 40 km. short of Tel Aviv. In the North, the Syrians took Kibbutz Mishmar Hayarden, only 25 km. from Tiberias. Jordan captured the Old City of Jerusalem and destroyed its 58 synagogues. They also took Gush Etzion, the resort hotel of Kalia (and the kibbutz next to it on the Dead Sea) and the Monastery of Latrun on the Tel Aviv- Jerusalem road. The Latrun stronghold - as well as the bitter fighting at the nearby Castel fort and Arab villages - frustrated Israeli attempts to break the six month siege on Jerusalem. The Jewish casualty toll in the 1948 war was far greater than that of the Arabs. Estimated at 3.2%, it is among the highest casualty rate of any recorded conflict. Israel and the Axis of Evil One and a half million Jews fought with the Allies against Germany, Italy and Japan in WWII. Among them were over 30,000 Jewish volunteers from tiny Palestine. In the cemeteries of Normandy, Stalingrad and El-Alamein, one can see tombs engraved with the Magen David but none with the Islamic Crescent. The Arab world stood aloof. Moreover, leaders like the Grand Mufti of Jerusalem and the ruler of Iraq sided with the Nazis. Some Western democracies, while misjudging Israel's present struggle, seem to have forgotten these facts. This article appeared in the Jerusalem Post 1-15-2003 approximately, and is reproduced solely for educational purposes. ​ To return to Psalm 122:6 Page To return to Menorah's Web Page To return to Flag of Palestine To return to the Israel Page....The Land Nation People God’s Plan Time of the Rapture page

  • Who is the Jewish Messiah | Menorah Ministries

    Who Is The Jewish Messiah? ​ The common 20th century view of Messiah amongst religiously oriented Jews is someone who will usher in the coveted peace on earth that mankind has longed for since ancient times. Many religious Jews agree that when the Messiah comes, "the lion will lie down with the lamb" and peace will rule. Yet, since that day seems no nearer today than it did 4,000 years ago at the time of Abraham, many Jews have abandoned all hope of a coming Messiah, or of the rule of peace on earth. What the majority of Jewish people do not realize, however, is that the common 20th century Jewish view of Messiah is not the "traditional Jewish view." The 20th century religious Jewish view of Messiah-as-King who will establish peace on earth now, while it reflects an important part of the traditional view, overlooks an equally important part - the role of Messiah-as-Servant. This "oversight" was largely a backlash to the growing number of Jews and Gentiles who had concluded that the Suffering Servant spoken of in the Hebrew Scriptures was Yeshua (Jesus), the Jew who suffered a humiliating death after claiming to be Messiah. Ignoring the servant-atoning role of Messiah was then a Medieval reaction to those masses of people who were proclaiming that Yeshua was the fulfillment of Scripture. In all fairness, it must be pointed out that rabbinic motivation for adopting the newer view was reasonable. Anti-semitism posed a constant threat to the nation of Israel, especially following the destruction of the Second Temple in 70 A.D. Jewish leaders, therefore, needed to find ways of keeping Diaspora Jews unified. One way was to reinforce the belief that Yeshua was the "Christian Messiah," not the Jewish one. To do this they often overreacted and distorted the picture of the Messiah in a way that was inconsistent with the picture of the Messiah presented by the the biblical prophets. Ironically, the majority of rabbis have done a great disservice to the very people whom they wished to preserve. By eliminating a cornerstone of Jewish thought - the Servant Messiah - they have not helped the many Jewish people today who are disillusioned, secularized or otherwise alienated from the very spiritual beliefs that the nation of Israel held for more than 2,000 years. By removing the concept of the Suffering Messiah who brings personal peace to those who embrace Him, they have helped blind them to the hope that lies in Messiah Yeshua. In addition to overlooking an important aspect of the Messiah's atoning role on earth, most in modern Jewish rabbinical studies overlook the genealogy factor. Biblical Judaism teaches that Messiah's lineage will be a key criterion for his identification. Modern Judaism downplays this, perhaps because Jewish records were destroyed in 70 A.D. along with the Second Temple. Therefore, one must conclude that either Messiah came before the Temple was destroyed or else physical proof of his genealogy is unnecessary because he will be recognizable in other ways; or, worse still, that He will not come. Most rabbis, if they still believe in the biblical concept of Messiah, opt for the explanation that the genealogical proof is unnecessary since the Messiah will be identified in other ways. Believers, on the other hand, place great importance upon the royal lineage that the Messiah is to possess, and the evidence of such. Not only is the genealogical evidence necessary to identify the Messiah, but it exists biblically. By tracing the Messiah's lineage and the key roles assigned to him by God throughout the Hebrew Scriptures, it becomes clear that Yeshua met at least two key Messianic criteria. 1. First, He came from the right "kingly roots" second, 2. He fulfilled the role of the "atoning servant." What The Rabbis Know About The Messiah by Rachmiel Frydland Reprinted With Permission of the Messianic Literature Outreach www.messianicliterature.org For further information contact To return to 54 Reasons Jesus = Messiah page To return to Torah, Talmud, Midrash, Biblical Discussion Articles To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE

  • IsTheBiblicalMenorahOnlyAJewishSymbol | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Re’uben Is the Biblical Menorah only a Jewish symbol? S H A L O M ! _______ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW _______ ​ Biblical Question: ​ Is the Biblical Menorah only a Jewish symbol? Our Question Jermiah. G from Florida asks: Dear Pastor Reuben, What really is the menorah to you as a Messianic Believer in Yeshua (Jesus)? Is it right for you (& me) to use this Jewish Biblical symbol? Can the Christian properly use this symbol? Thank you. ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ The Tabernacle's golden lamp-stand, the menorah (Exodus 25:31-37) was a constant testimony to the priests that they must not walk in the light of man's wisdom or human nature but that they could fulfill the service of God only as they walk in the light provided by Him. The seven post menorah was both a light and a light bearer, a symbol of faith and hope. ​ The menorah is a symbol of the Church as a light bearer in the world. Our Lord Jesus said: You are the light of the world Matthew 5:15 Be dressed in readiness,& keep your lamps (lights) shining Luke 12:35 You appear as lights in the world Philippians 2 :15 ​ Believers in Jesus the Messiah are to reflect His light, even as He was and is the Light. The menorah is a perfect, fitting and divine symbol of our Lord. ​ He was the true light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man John 1:9 David in Psalm 36:9 says, In thy light shall we see light. Whether it is direct light from Jesus, or diffused light through the Christian, all light is given to us for perception. In Jesus the Messiah's light, we shall truly see light! ​ In Messiah Jesus-Yeshua, blessings and purpose! ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via email; always state your name, Email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask ​ To Go To Menorah's Planned Giving Web Page To return to ..... Pastor Reuben's Answers To Asked Questions..... ​ To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Tribal Affiliation Still Through Father | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Pastor Reuben I'm very confused regarding a Jewish objection to Jesus as the Messiah which goes like this: Tribal affiliation is conferred through the birth father only!? S H A L O M ! ___ ___ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW ______ Biblical Question: ​ Dear Pastor Reuben, ​ Hello, I'm very confused regarding a Jewish objection to Jesus as the Messiah which goes like this: "The Bible says that the Messiah would be of the tribe of Judah and a descendant of David. According to Christians, Jesus was born of a virgin. However, tribal affiliation is conferred through the birth father only (Numbers 34:14, Numbers 1:18-44, Leviticus 24:10). The mother's tribal affiliation was considered irrelevant to what her children's tribal affiliation was and tribal affiliation/genealogy could not be inherited though a stepfather; only property could be inherited. Because Christians believe that Jesus had no human father, he would have had no tribal affiliation and would be eliminated from messianic consideration." ​ This Jewish anti-missionary site has an article entitled "Jesus Failed To Fulfill Any of The Six Authentic Jewish Messianic Criteria" which makes the above objection. ​ How can this claim be answered or refuted? ​ Thanks in advance. In Christ, ​ Dylan ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Shalom Dylan, Thank you for your concern and question. The battle for the soul of mankind is pressing and the answer from God (of Israel) maligned by even those who have been entrusted with His promises. ​ TO LIFE - L'CHAIM! ... How to find Eternal Life ​ The promised Messiah from God is according to His way, not any limited human path or means. Proverbs 3:5-6 ​ The True Messiah has both a natural origin and a supernatural origin, which became possible by virtue of the virgin conception. Genesis 3:15 presents the clear prophecy of the coming of the Messiah, as the "seed of the woman". The woman's seed is Jesus the Messiah. As God, He was eternally existent; as a Man, He was conceived of the Holy Spirit and born of a virgin. So He was truly both God and Man. The very mention of a seed of a woman goes contrary to the Biblical norm, for nationality was always reckoned after the seed of the man. That is why, in all the genealogies of Scripture, only the male names are given with some very rare exceptions. The reason why the Messiah must be reckoned after the Seed of the woman is explained by Isaiah 7:14: the Messiah will be born of a virgin. Since the Messiah will not have a human father, His national origin will have to be reckoned after the woman, since His humanity comes only from her. So the very expression "her seed" implied a miraculous conception. His father was God. ​ Please review: The Real Yeshua/Jesus information If Yeshua/Jesus is not the Messiah of God, let others Biblically and historically show who is. Source and reference: The Bible (Old & New Covenants) The Footsteps of the Messiah by Dr. Arnold Fruchtenbaum May God bless you and keep you Dylan . In His service, ​ Reuben ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask To Return To Jews Gentiles and the Church Web Page To return to ..... Ask Pastor Reuben Biblical Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to To Life L'Chaim Find Eternal Life Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

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  • Jesus The Center of the Old Testament | Menorah Ministries

    Jesus Christ The center of the Old Testament by Armand J. Boehme -Everything in RED are Old Testament books/prophets- Jesus said that Moses had written of Him (John 5:46). Jesus said that all of the Old Testament Scriptures “testify of Me” (John 5:39). Before His ascension, Jesus again taught His disciples everything “in all the Scriptures” that spoke of Him (Luke 24:27). Jesus' exposition of all the things “in the Law of Moses, and the Prophets and the Psalms” that spoke of Him, and his saving work was a Bible class that assisted the disciples in their ability to understand and comprehend how the Old Testament Scriptures spoke of Christ’s suffering, death, and resurrection. Christ also taught them the need to evangelize the world with the gospel message of salvation from sin in Jesus Christ (Luke 24:44-48). Here follows some glimpses of the portrayal of Christ in the Old Testament: Genesis proclaims Jesus the “Seed of the woman” (Genesis 3:15; Matthew 1:22-23), our Creator God (Genesis 1-3; John 1:1-5), the Descendant of Abraham in Whom all the nations of the earth will be blessed (Genesis 22:18; Acts 3:24-26; Galatians 3:8-9, 27-29). It is Christ Who passes through the sundered parts of the animals and brings down on Himself the curse of death in order to pay for the broken promises of sinful human beings (Genesis 15:7-21; Galatians 3:10-14). For God to die He needed to become a human being. Thus, the incarnation of Christ, His birth, the shedding of His blood, and His sacrificial testamentary death are here prophesied (Luke 1:26-33; 2:25-35; Hebrews 9:11-28). Jesus is the only Son Who like Abra-ham’s son is a willing sacrifice, and Who carried the wood of the sacrifice (the cross) on His back, and Who unlike Abraham’s son truly dies as the sacrificial Lamb provided by God (Genesis 22:1-19; John 1:29; 19:17-19). Exodus portrays Christ “the Passover Lamb” (Exodus 12; I Corinthians 5:7). Leviticus reveals Christ our “Great High Priest” (Leviticus 8-10; Hebrews 1:17-2:6; 4:15-16), Who is the “Atoning Sacrifice” (Leviticus 16 & 23:26-32; Hebrews 9) for our sin. Numbers speaks in prophecy about the Christ Who will be “lifted up on the cross” like the “Brass Serpent” was lifted up in the wilderness (Numbers 21:4-9; John 3:14-15). Deuteronomy proclaims Jesus Christ as the “Prophet like unto Moses” (Deuteronomy 18:15-19; John 6:14; Acts 3:17-26). Joshua preaches Jesus, the “Captain of our Salvation.” (Joshua 5:13-15; Hebrews 2:10 KJV) Who will lead us into the Promised Land of heaven. Judges reveals Christ our Judge & Deliverer (Judges 2:16-19; John 5:21-23 & Acts 10:42-43). Judges also reveals Christ as the Angel of the Lord present with His people (Judges 2:1-5; 6; 13; Acts 7:30-34). Ruth proclaims the Kinsman-Redeemer of all the world, Who is a descendant of a Gentile woman (Ruth 4; Matthew 1:1-6 – note also here the tie to Rahab the harlot in Joshua 2 & 6:22-25. She is Boaz’s mother & great great grandmother of David.). I Samuel speaks of Jesus the King anointed by the Holy Spirit (I Samuel 10 & 16; Matthew 3:13-17). II Samuel reveals that Christ the Messianic King will be a descendant of David. He is our Rock, Deliverer, Horn of Salvation & Savior (II Samuel 7 & 22; Matthew 21:1-11; Luke 1:30-25; 68-75; 2:10-14; Matthew 7:24-25; I Corinthians 10:4). I Kings speaks in prophesy of Jesus as the kingly descendant of Solomon the Temple-Builder Who has an eternal Kingdom (I Kings 2:45; 8:1-26; John 2:13-22), and of John the Baptist as the Second Elijah Who will come (I Kings 17-22; Malachi 4:5-6; Matthew 11:7-15). Moses and Elijah appeared with Christ on the Mount of Transfiguration (Luke 9:28-36). Their prophetic work pointed to the Messiah they appeared with on this holy mountain. II Kings portrays Christ as the Prophet Who having completed His work ascends into heaven (II Kings 2:1-14; Luke 24:50-53; Acts 1:9-11). The Messiah’s work of saving even Gentiles is seen in the healing and conversion of the Gentile soldier Naaman (II Kings 5:1-19; Matthew 8:5-13; John 3:16; Acts 10; Romans 3:9-4:25; 15:7-13). I Chronicles shows the Messiah to be the promised Descendant of David Who would have an eternal throne (I Chronicles 17; Luke 1:30-33). II Chronicles proclaims Jesus Christ as the faithful kingly descendant of David in contrast to the imperfect kings who sat on Judah’s throne. Unlike Joash who was murdered because of his sins (II Chronicles 24:23-25), Jesus the King dies bearing our sins, and His death saves sinners from their sins (Matthew 1:21; John 1:29; Luke 23:6-12, 36-38; John 18:33-19:22). We also see mourning like the mourning at Jesus’ death (II Chronicles 35:23-25; Luke 23:48; Zechariah 12:10-14). Ezra in speaking about the temple rebuilt in Jerusalem, reveals Christ our Messiah. Just as the physical temple in Jerusalem was rebuilt so the Temple of Christ’s body died and was “rebuilt” (resurrected) (Ezra 5 & 6; John 1:14; 2:18-22). Nehemiah speaks of the Christ as the Savior God Who is merciful and kind (Nehemiah 9:3). Just as Jerusalem and its walls were rebuilt under Nehemiah, so Christ rebuilds lives broken by sin. Mary Magdalene & Paul are notable examples (Nehemiah 9:31; Luke 8:2; John 20:1-2, 11-18; Acts 9). Esther is someone who puts her life on the line to protect and preserve the lives of the Jewish people. So, Christ laid down His life for all people – Jew and Gentile alike (Luke 2:29-35; Romans 9:22-33). Wicked Haman plotted to wipe every Jew from the face of the earth. This would have destroyed God’s plan of salvation for salvation was to come from the Jews in Jesus Christ (John 4:22). Thus, working through Esther & Mordecai, God delivered the Jews to bring salvation to all (John 3:16). Job speaks of the Messiah Who is our living Redeemer, the One Who is able to raise us from the dead (Job 19:23-27; John 11:1-44; Galatians 3:13-14; I Peter 1:18-21; Revelation 5:1-14). In the sufferings of Job we also see the sufferings of Christ. The Psalms proclaim Christ as our Good Shepherd (Psalm 23; John 10:1-18), the Crucified and pierced One for Whose robe lots were cast, the One Who cried out “My God! My God! Why have You forsaken Me?” (Psalm 22; Mark 15:34; John 19:24, 33-37). He is the Priest like Melchizidek (Psalm 110; Hebrews 5:1-12; 6:17-8:2), the One who like David was betrayed by His good friend Ahithophel – so Jesus was betrayed by His friend Judas. Just as Ahithophel hanged himself when his plans came to naught, so Judas hanged him-self in despair over his sin (II Samuel 15:10-17:23; Psalm 49:1-9; Matthew 26:47-50; 27:3-5; Acts 1:16-20). Jesus is prophesied to be the Messiah Who would rise, Whose body would see neither corruption nor decay (Psalm 16:5-11; Acts 2:25-33; 13:26-39). Jesus is the Lord’s Anointed against Whom the heathen would rage (Psalm 2; 132:10-18; Acts 4:24-28). Proverbs proclaims Christ the Messiah as Wisdom personified (Proverbs 8:1-9:10; Matthew 13:54; Luke 2:40-52; I Corinthians 1:17-3:20). Ecclesiastes reminds all that life is vanity, and that life is empty without God/Christ in one’s life. All need to heed God’s wise words that tell us to “Fear God and keep His commandments” for God will judge all human works (Ecclesiastes 12:1-14). Jesus was the only one to perfectly “fear God and keep His commandments,” for He lived sinlessly under the Law “fulfilling all righteous-ness” (Matthew 3:15; I Peter 2:19-25; 3:18). He will judge all people’s secret deeds with righteousness and truth (Matthew 10:26-27; Mark 4:22; John 5:30; 17:17; 21:25). The Song of Solomon reveals Christ as the Husband to His Bride the Church. It also reveals the blessedness that should exist in the love of husbands and wives which is to reflect the perfect love Christ has for His Bride the Church (Ephesians 5:21-33; I Corinthians 13). Isaiah is often described as the Gospel of the Old Testament because it prophetically reveals so much about Christ – His Virgin Birth as Immanuel the God Who is with us (Isaiah 7:14; Matthew 1:22-23); His being God’s Son, the kingly Prince of Peace Who sits on David’s eternal throne (Isaiah 9:6-7; Luke 1:32-33; 2:14). Jesus is seen as the Stone of stumbling and the Rock of offense (Isaiah 8:13-15; Matthew 21:42-44; Romans 9:32-33; I Peter 2:7-8). Jesus' ministry in Zebulun & Naphtali are prophesied in Isaiah 9:1-2; Matthew 4:12-16. Jesus is described as the Root of Jesse Who will be anointed by the Holy Spirit and will save even Gentiles (Isaiah 11:1-16; Matthew 3:13-17; Romans 15:12; Revelation 5:5; 22:16). We see Christ as our Suffering Servant, the Man of Sorrows Who carries our sins and sorrows and is acquainted with our grief's, the One by Whose stripes we are healed (Isaiah 52:13-53:12; Matthew 8:17; Matthew 26-28; Acts 8:30-40). Jesus is the Light to enlighten the Gentiles (Isaiah 42:6; 49:6; Luke 2:27-32; Acts 13:46-49). Jeremiah reveals Christ as the Righteous Branch, the Lord our Righteousness, Who will pardon sinners from their sins (Jeremiah 23:5-6; 33:14-15; Matthew 5:6; Luke 23:47; Romans 5:18-19; I John 2:1-2). Lamentations reveals the Christ Who weeps over Jerusalem as Jeremiah wept for that same city (Lamentations 3:48-49; Matthew 23:37-38). It is only by God’s abundant mercies in Christ that come to us new every morning that we are redeemed rather than being consumed in our sins (Lamentations 3:22-26, 58; Ephesians 2:4-7; Hebrews 4:14-16). Ezekiel reveals Christ as the true Shepherd Who will feed His flock (Ezekiel 34:11-31; John 10:1-18). Our resurrection from the dead is seen in the resurrection of the dry bones in Ezekiel 37:1-14; I Thessalonians 4:16-17. Ezekiel reveals the loving God Who performs heart surgery on sinners – removing from them the dead stony heart of sinful unbelief, and giving sinners a living heart that beats with the joy of faith in the Messiah (Ezekiel 36:24-28; II Corinthians 3:2-3). Daniel reveals Jesus as the Son of Man Who rules with the power of the Ancient of Days (Daniel 7:13-14; Matthew 12:40; 16:13-16; 17:9, 22-23). This title, “son of man” is also used to refer to the prophet Daniel (Daniel 8:17). This phrase is also used to identify the prophet Ezekiel (Ezekiel 37:3, 9, 11, 16). These references point to Christ’s prophetic office (Ezekiel 36:25-28; Romans 2:29; II Corinthians 3:2-3), and to Him being the Son of Man (Matthew 8:20; 12:8, 32, 40; 16:13). Just as God delivered His servants Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego from the fiery furnace to we are delivered from the fires of hell by the grace of our God and Savior Jesus Christ (Daniel 3; Revelation 20:14-15). Hosea refers to Jesus as the beloved Son Who is called out of Egypt (Numbers 24:8-9; Hosea 11:1; Mat-thew 2:13-15). Christ’s redemption of His Bride the Church is seen in Hosea’s redemption of his faithless wife, Gomer (Hosea 1-3; Ephesians 5:21-33). Joel speaks about the promise of the Messiah to send the Holy Spirit in His fullness to His Church (Joel 2:28-32; Acts 2:1-21) Amos speaks of the Messiah Who raises up the fallen Tabernacle of David and Who brings Gentiles to His Church (Amos 9:11-15; Acts 15:13-18). Obadiah points us to the deliverance and salvation God provides on Mount Zion through the kingly Messiah (Obadiah 17 & 21; Revelation 11:15; Revelation 21-22). Jonah points to the Messiah Who dies, rests in the tomb for three days and then rises again (Jonah 1:17-2:10; Matthew 12:39-41). Jonah also proclaims the Messiah Who is the Savior of all, even terrible Gentile sinners like the Assyrians, the Samaritan woman, Roman soldiers, and even of publicans and tax collectors (Jonah 3 & 4; Luke 7:1-10, 34, 39-50; 15:1-2; John 4). Micah prophesies about the Savior’s birth in Bethlehem (Micah 5:2; Matthew 2:1-11). Micah also portrays the Messiah as a God of mercy Who in compassion pardons the iniquity of sinners (Micah 7:18-19; Romans 15:8-9; Titus 3:5-7; Hebrews 5:1-2). Nahum speaks about the beauty of the feet of those who bring the Gospel of peace in Christ to the nations (Nahum 1:15; Acts 10:36; Romans 10:15). Habakkuk is known as the prophet of the Reformation for he speaks emphatically about justification by grace through faith in the coming Messiah (Habakkuk 2:4; Romans 1:17; Galatians 3:11; Hebrews 10:37-39). Zephaniah speaks about the Christ Who comes to judge the living and the dead and encourages the meek to seek the righteousness that can only be found in the Messiah (Zephaniah 2:3; Matthew 5:6; 6:33). Haggai speaks about the Messiah as the Desire of the nations Who will come and fill the rebuilt temple with His glory (Haggai 2:7; Luke 2:25-35). Zerubbabel, a descendant of David who rules as governor, is described as the signet ring, the seal of God to reassure His people that the promises about the kingly Messiah and Descendant of David’s Descendant Who is to come are still in effect and that all those promises will come to pass (Haggai 2:20-23; Matthew 1:12-13; Luke 1:67-79). Zechariah is the most Messianically dense book in the Old Testament. The Holy Spirit led Zechariah to provide a “Reader’s Digest” condensed summary of all previous Old Testament prophecy which then is seen fulfilled in the New Testament books. Christ’s work as the High Priest Who cleanses His penitent people from the filthy robes of their sins and dresses them in His righteous white robes is seen in the cleansing of Joshua the High Priest (Zechariah 3:1-10; Revelation 4:4; 7:9-17). Jesus is again described as the Servant Branch (3:8) and as the Stone (3:9). The Messiah is the Branch, a kingly priest Who will build a temple (6:9-15; John 2:19-21). The Messiah’s fountain for cleansing from sin is seen when Jesus side is pierced by the spear and out comes blood and water (Zechariah 13:1; John 19:34-35). We receive cleansing from sin in the waters of Baptism and in the body and blood of Christ in the Lord’s Supper (Acts 2:38; Colossians 2:11-14; Matthew 6:26-28; I John 5:6-9) Christ’s entrance into Jerusalem on Palm Sunday is prophesied in Zechariah 9:9 (cf. Matthew 21:1-5). The Messiah will be a Man of peace Who rules as a King (Zechariah 9:10; Luke 2:14; John 14:27; 16:32-33). The shed blood of the Messiah will free sinners who are imprisoned by their sins (Zechariah 9:11-12; I John 1:7). Jesus is prophesied to be the Cornerstone (Zechariah 10:4; Matthew 21:42; I Peter 2:6-8). The betrayal price paid to Judas was 30 pieces of silver – Zechariah speaks of them and of the potter’s field in 11:12-13. The Holy Spirit combined this prophecy with God’s command to Jeremiah to buy some of the “potter’s field” (Jeremiah 19:1; 32:6-10) and these prophecies come to fulfillment in Matthew 27:3-10. The impartation of the Holy Spirit on Christ at His Baptism, His being pierced on the cross, and the great mourning at His death are seen in Zechariah 12:10-14; Matthew 3:13-17; John 19:33-37; and Luke 23:48. Jesus is the Shepherd Who is stricken, and the sheep are scattered at His death (Zechariah 13:7-9; John 10:11; Matthew 26:31 & 56). The Messiah will be the King of all the earth (Zechariah 14:9; I Timothy 1:17; Revelation 19:16). Malachi proclaims the coming of the Second Elijah, John the Baptist, the messenger who prepares the way before the Messiah (Malachi 3:1; Matthew 11:7-15). Malachi also proclaims the Christ Who is the Sun of Righteousness Who arises with spiritual healing in His wings Malachi 4:2;( Matthew 17:1-2; Acts 26:12-18; Revelation 1:16; 21:23; 22:5 Romans 1:16-17; 3:21-26; I Corinthians 1:30; II Corinthians 5:21). Luther and Althaus on the Christological nature of the Old Testament: “There are some who have little regard for the Old Testament. They think of it as a book that was given to the Jewish people only and is now out of date, containing only stories of past times. They think they have enough in the New Testament…But Christ says in John 5[:39], ‘Search the Scriptures, for it is they that bear witness to me.’ St. Paul bids Timothy attend to the reading of the Scriptures [I Tim. 4:13], and in Romans 1 [:2] he declares that the gospel was promised by God in the Scriptures, while in I Corinthians 15 he says that in accordance with the Scriptures Christ came of the seed of David, died, and was raised from the dead. St. Peter, too, points us back, more than once, to the Scriptures. They do this in order to teach us that the Scriptures of the Old Testament are not to be despised, but diligently read. For they themselves base the New Testament upon them mightily, proving it by the Old Testament and appealing to it…The ground and proof of the New Testament is surely not to be despised, and therefore the Old Testament is to be highly regarded. And what is in the New Testament but a public preaching and proclamation of Christ, set forth through the sayings of the Old Testament and fulfilled through Christ?” “In order that those who are not more familiar with it may have instruction and guidance for reading the Old Testament with profit, I have prepared this preface to the best of the ability God has given me…Here [in the Old Testament] you will find the swaddling clothes and the manger in which Christ lies, and to which the angel points the shepherds [Luke 2:12]. Simple and lowly are these swaddling cloths, but dear is the treasure, Christ, who lies in them.” [Luther's Works – Vol-ume 35 - Word and Sacrament I (Philadelphia: Muhlenberg Press, 1960), pp. 235-236] “It [the Old Testament] not only offers to lead men to Christ but is itself already filled with Him. This is true first because Christ is always present in the God of the Old Testament, in his activity and promises, and in his relationship to the godly…These promises, ultimately, are all promises of Christ. The God who speaks in them is the God who is already at work fulfilling them and saving the world through Christ…Christ is promised in the prophets, in the Psalms, and in the well-known Messianic passages of the historical books-but also in many places beyond these…Like the prophets, the Psalms are filled with prophecies of Christ, his person, his suffering, his death and resurrection, his ruling as king, the gospel, the kingdom, and Christianity, or the church. Not only the Psalms, however, are to be interpreted in a Christological and prophetic sense but also much in the historical accounts of the Old Testament and in the books of Moses…[for] he ‘prophecies powerfully of Jesus Christ our Lord’…the Old Testament [also] offers figures of Christ and of his church.” [Paul Althaus, The Theology of Martin Luther, trans. Robert C. Schultz (Philadelphia: Fortress Press, 1966), pp. 93-95.] ​ ​ To Return To Menorah's Web Page Return To The Real Jesus Page

  • Messiah To Be God-Divine | Menorah Ministries

    Messiah To Be God-Divine The LORD our Righteousness Jeremiah 23:5-6 Shows That the Messiah Was to be God Himself ​ Buried within the pages of the book of Jeremiah lies one of the most precious and revealing prophecies of the Messiah (see Vocabulary p.6) to be found within the bounds of the Hebrew scriptures. In it, we see revealed that the Messiah, the Branch whom God was going to raise to fill the throne of David, would be given the name of the LORD OUR RIGHTEOUSNESS, YHWH Tsidkenu ( hÛfwhºy Un×"q:dic ) As we will see below, this phraseology points us to the divine nature of the Messiah, specifically that He was to be YHWH- hÛfwhy Himself. Below, this shall be briefly explored, and some of the more common Jewish objections to this proposition will be examined. Let us look at the passage in question , “The days are coming,” says Adonai (Lord God) when I will raise a righteous Branch for David. He will reign as king and succeed, he will do what is just and right in the land. In his days Y’hudah (Judah) will be saved, Isra’el will live in safety, and the name given to him will be Adonai Tzidkenu [Adonai our righteousness]. Jeremiah 23:5-6 CJB From what is said in this passage, we see that this portion is specifically Messianic in content. This is seen both from the term "Branch" (tsemach - xamØec ), and from the Davidic ancestry of the King who was to be raised up. The name "Branch" is almost universally accepted as Messianic, both by Jews and Christians alike. This term is a metaphor, literally meaning "shoot" or "sprout", and signifies the new life that Messiah was to bring to the Davidic monarchy, which was presumed dead. Further, the implications of the name were that Messiah would bring new life to all mankind, not just to His people Israel. This description as "Branch" appears several times in the Hebrew scriptures. It appears in Isaiah 4:2, where the Messiah's presence in the coming Kingdom is described as "beautiful" and "glorious". In Isaiah 11:1, the Branch is said to come from the "stem of Jesse", and is filled with the Spirit of God. In Jeremiah 33:15, the Branch again is said to come from the royal line of David. Yet, this same Branch from the royal line is termed God's servant in Zechariah 3:8, and is described as a man who will carry out God's work in Zechariah 6:12. The rabbis recognized that Branch was a name for the Messiah. R. Y'hoshu'a notes this as a name for Messiah from Zechariah 6:121 . Rav Huna also refers to this as a Messianic name2 , with Buber concurring in his commentary notes on that statement3 . Likewise, the instances in Jewish rabbinical literature in which the Messiah is explicitly understood to be descended from David are too numerous to list more than a sampling here. Moses Maimonides pointed to the statements of Numbers 24:17 when he wrote, "And there he says: 'I see him but not now', this refers to David; 'I behold him but not nigh', this refers to King Messiah; 'A star shall step forth out of Jacob', this refers to David; 'and a scepter shall rise out of Israel', this refers to King Messiah."4 Rav Y'huda taught that the Messiah would be "another David", and that the Messiah and the first David would rule as King and viceroy, respectively5 . The Aramaic Targum of Jonathan b. Uzziel likewise interprets Jeremiah 23:5 specifically in the sense of the Messiah's descent from David, even translating "branch" as "Messiah"6 . Levey notes that in his Targum, Jonathan expands the name "LORD our righteousness" to read "may vindication be accomplished for us by the Lord in His day", a paraphrasical explanation of "YHWH Tsidkenu— hÛfwhºy Un×"q:dic " which the commentator felt impelled to explain because of the Messianic idea contained in the verse7 . Thus, the interpretation of Jeremiah 23:5-6 as Messianic would seem to rest on a solid Biblical foundation, and is also supported by the understanding of Jewish traditional theology. Most interesting to our point here is that many of the rabbis recognized that the Messiah would be God. R. Abba bar Kahana explicitly stated that the Messiah's name would be "LORD-God (Adonai)", and quotes Jeremiah 23:6 as evidence8 . Smith remarks that the Jewish teachers frequently interpreted this name in Jeremiah 23:6 as a personal name of the Messiah (rather than as a title for Israel or Jerusalem) in the Targumim, Midrashim, and Talmud9 . In the Peshikta Rabbah, we find the statement, "You find that at the beginning of the creation of the world King Messiah was born [and] that he emerged in the thought [of God] even before the world was created..."10 The sentiment that the Messiah, or His name, was pre-existent as a thought or word of God is found widely across the rabbinical literature. In many cases, the statements imply a pre-existence of the Messiah, which, if one understands the Hebrew scriptures correctly, therefore implies the deity of the Messiah, as the Tanakh is quite explicit in stating that before God created the world, nothing else existed with Him. The Genesis Rabbah explains the Messiah as being one of six things preceding the creation of the world, with the Messiah being cast as one of these which arose in the thought of God11 . In this same work, R. Shim'on ben Laqish explicitly states that the "spirit of God" mentioned in Genesis 1:2 as hovering over the face of the waters is the spirit of King Messiah, and appeals to Isaiah 11:2 ("And the spirit of the Lord will rest upon him") for support12 . The Babylonian Talmud likewise records that it was taught that the name of the Messiah was one of seven things created before the world, and that his name would endure forever, relying upon Psalm 72:17 for support13 . The First Book of Enoch reiterates that the Messiah (there called the "Son of Man") was hidden in God from the beginning, before the creation, and even that the kings and rulers of the earth worship the Son of Man, setting their hopes in him and petitioning for mercy at his hands14 , something directed appropriately only to God. Perhaps most explicitly of all is the statement found in R. Simeon b. Yochai's comments on the Zohar, "There is a perfect Man, who is an Angel. This Angel is Metatron, the Keeper of Israel; He is a man in the image of the Holy One, blessed be He, who is an Emanation from Him; yea, He is Jehovah; of Him cannot be said, He is created, formed or made; but He is the Emanation from God. This agrees exactly with what is written, Jeremiah 23:5-6, Of xamØec dÙiwfd:l , David's Branch, that though He shall be a perfect man, yet He is ‘The Lord our Righteousness.’"15 Throughout the Targumim, we see the Lord and His name being referred to with the term Memra" (Aramaic for "word"), which has been attributed to the discomfort of the Targumists with the many places where the Lord appears to be dealing with Himself in a uniplural sense (ex. Exodus 17:16) or where there seemed to be anthropomorphic references to God (ex. Deuteronomy 30:8, Jeremiah 30:11). In Ezekiel 34:24, as in other passages, where the prophet says, "...I the LORD have spoken it", Jonathan renders, "I, the Lord, have decreed this by my Memra". Elsewhere, the Memra which appears in the Targumic commentaries appears to take on distinct functions itself. For example, in Genesis 19:24, the Hebrew text says, "The LORD rained upon Sodom and Gomorrah brimstone and fire from the LORD out of heaven." Grammatically, the Hebrew here seems to indicate that two separate Jehovah's are fulfilling two distinct roles. The Targum of Jonathan at this verse substitutes "The Memra of the LORD" for the first of the two Jehovah's in the verse, indicating the Targumist's understanding that the two actors described with the name "YHWH" were distinct in person from each other, yet intimately connected in essence, hence his use of the Memra, or Word. In many other places, the Memra of the LORD in the Targumim takes on personality and characteristics of God Himself, indicating the understanding of the Targumists that the Memra could be equated WITH God, while yet dealt with as a separate personality. At various points, the Memra is praised and prayed to as God16 , it speaks to men17 , it is to be trusted in with the same sense as trusting in God Himself18 , it is an active agent in creation19 , and is even said to be God20 . This all would seem to indicate a view of the Memra of the Lord as an hypostatic agent of the Lord, whereby the Lord's word takes on separate and distinct function while yet retaining the essential character and being of the Lord Himself21 . From this, we can see in the literature both that the Messiah was pre-existent before creation as a thought or word of God, and that the idea of hypostasis of aspects of the Lord's personality was a known quantity in Judaism. This concept seems to be explored by Baron in his analysis of Zechariah. He notes, "Perhaps in no other single book in the Old Testament is Messiah's Divinity so clearly taught as in Zechariah. In the second chapter (8-11) the prophet calls Him Who is to come and dwell in the midst of Zion, Whom the Jews always understood to be the Messiah, by the name Jehovah. This passage must be a very difficult one to the Jew or Unitarian, for here the prophet represents two Persons, both of Whom he calls by the Divine title Jehovah, though One is sent by the Other to accomplish some mission on the earth."22 . We note, of course, that there are several other portions of the Hebrew scriptures where God appears to have a uniplural nature, with multiple persons yet each with the same revealed essence. The angel of the LORD which appears to Hagar is a distinct personality from the invisible LORD, yet is identified with Him and addressed as the LORD (Genesis 16:7-13). Manoah, the father of Samson, dealt with the angel of the LORD, and stated that he had seen God (Judges 13:22). Both of these would be impossible in light of the narrative in Exodus 33:18-23 (where it is said that no man can see God and live) unless what they were seeing was the hypostasis of God's Word, manifested in the flesh as a theophany. Further, we see in Isaiah 48:12-16 that the LORD is speaking, yet says that "the Lord GOD, and his Spirit" had sent him, which implies three different personalities of God in action in this passage. Also, in Zechariah 3:1-5, the angel of the LORD commands that Joshua the high priest be clothed with clean garments, saying "Behold, I have caused thine iniquity to pass from thee...." (v.4), which is forgiveness and cleansing from sin which only God can give. Thus, the uniplurality of God appears on numerous occasions in the Hebrew Scriptures, and is often intimately connected with the manifestation of divine hypostasis in the form of the angel of the LORD, who is from God and yet is God, a messenger who yet is of the essence of the author of the message, treated as God Himself. It is in Jeremiah 23:5-6 that we see these two concepts, pre-existent Messiah and divine hypostasis, united into one person who was to be God incarnated into the flesh, a physical manifestation of the Word of God, just as is taught in the Brit Chadassah-New Testament in John 1:1,14. In this passage, we see the King being raised up, the Branch identified by both Jew and Christian as the Messiah, given the name "Jehovah our Righteousness, hÛfwhºy Un×"q:dic ", a name which firmly teaches that the Messiah would manifest the divine trait of righteousness, both in His actions as ruler and in His own intrinsic character. Yet, because of the understanding derived from Hebrew scriptures themselves (and recognized on numerous occasions by the rabbis as well as by Christian theologians) that the name and character of the Messiah would be pre-existent and divine, we can understand that Jeremiah 23:5-6 is teaching that the name of the Messiah was to be "YHWH Tsidkenu, hÛfwhºy Un×"q:dic ". As Laetsch has stated, the name given is itself a statement of the Messiah's nature and essence23 . Rabbinical Objection #1 - Is a divine title applied to Jerusalem in Jeremiah 33:16, and why shouldn't Jeremiah 23:6 be understood as referring to Jerusalem, in parallel with 33:16? This objection refers to the fact that, in Jeremiah 33:16, Jerusalem will be called "the LORD our righteousness, hÛfwhºy Un×"q:dic ", in language that roughly parallels that of Jeremiah 23:6. Because of this, it is supposed either that Jerusalem is also being spoken of in 23:6, or else that the Christian understanding of 23:6 as predicting a divine Messiah is incorrect since the parallel would suggest that Jerusalem also be a divine Messiah, an obvious illogic. Dealing with the first objection, we see that the reason for viewing the name given in 23:6 as not speaking of Jerusalem but rather the Messiah, and 33:16 as what Jerusalem will be called, has to do with the simple grammar of the verses. In the Hebrew of 23:5-6, the emphasis of these verses centers upon the Branch introduced in v. 5. The "days" mentioned in v. 6 are "in his days wyfmæy:B, a masculine possessive construction, and "he" is the one being called "YHWH tsidkenu hÛfwhºy Un×"q:dic . Yet, in 33:16, the emphasis upon reaching that verse moves from the Branch and to Jerusalem, with "she" being the one called "YHWH hÛfwhºy “ and instead of "in his days", we find the more neutral "in those days" {yÜimæYaB , which again shifts emphasis away from the Branch. The other angle of this argument, that the Christian argument taken to its logical conclusion would propose a literal divine Jerusalem, fails to take an important consideration into account. While both the Messiah in 23:6 and Jerusalem 33:16 are referred to with "YHWH tsidkenu hÛfwhºy Un× " q:dic " .“ , we see that there is a very important difference. In 23:6, the Branch is said to be called “by the name yÙim:$-håzºw” of the Lord our Righteousness. This word, "name", is a translation of the Hebrew word "shem" ( {"$ ). Shem has a much more full and complex meaning than the simple word "name" in English implies. Shem refers to the very character and essence of the one bearing the name. As Kaiser tells us, "This noun appears 864 times, but less that 90 times in the plural. No certain etymology has been established for this root. Two earlier conjectures are now rejected: Redslob (Zeit. deut. morgenlandische Gesellschaft 1872: 751-56) sought to derive it from the root for shem {"$ "to be high" and thus "monument" (Genesis 11:4), "excellence" or "majesty" (Psalm 54:1 [H3]), while others have regarded it as a shortened form of shema' ( Ùam:$ . ……. "The concept of personal names in the OT often include existence, character, and reputation (I Samuel 25:25). Often the plural form of shem tOêm"$ is rendered as "persons," (e.g. Numbers 1:2,18,20; 3:40,43; 26:55). Further "to cut off the name" was equal to liquidating the person himself (Deuteronomy 7:24, 9:14; I Samuel 24:21 [H 22] etc.). the name chosen for a child was often descriptive of the parents' wishes or expectations for the personality that was to mature. This is particularly evident in the renaming process, e.g. Jacob becoming Israel (Genesis 35:10)..... "In some passages shem Yahweh y Ùim:$-hÛfwhºy , Name of God, is so inextricably bound up with the being of God, that it functions almost like an appearance of Yahweh (Exodus 23:20-21; Isaiah 30:27). Cf. the tabernacling of the Name at various spots almost like a Christophany (Exodus 20:24; Deuteronomy 12:5; II Samuel 7:13, etc.). "The name of God also signifies the whole self-disclosure of God in His holiness and truth (Psalm 22:22 [H 23]). This Name can be "walked in," i.e. people are to live according to its teachings (Micah 4:5)."24 Shem {"$ engenders the whole gamut of reputation and renown which a person or thing being "named" has, it's character, what is known of it, it's essential being. The fact that in Jeremiah 23:6 it is said of the Branch that "this is his name whereby he shall be called..." is very enlightening. What is essentially being said here is that this Branch, this Messiah who was to be raised up, was going to be invested with the full body of God's revealed character and reputation. This contrasts with the statement in 33:16 about Jerusalem, where (despite the italicized added word in the KJV) the word shem {"$ is NOT used. Jerusalem, unlike the Branch in 23:6, would not be invested with the essential reputation and character of God Almighty, though it would still be called after God, and would bask in His care and concern. Rabbinical Objection #2 - Many names for Israelites in the Hebrew scriptures contain the name Jehovah, so this means that Christians consider these people to be the Messiah too, or perhaps deity as well, right? This objection relies upon the modern sense of the term "name", which in most Western societies today means little more than just the word used to distinguish one person from another. Thus, it is assumed that when speaking of the theological importance of "name" (shem, {"$ ), that the importance rests upon whether the word used as the name contains the same letters as the word used to refer to Jehovah, hÛfwhºy . This ignores the theological emphasis on "renown" or "reputation" which is engendered in shem, {"$ . Further, we should note that none of these Israelites or others in the Hebrew scriptures whose names contain the word Jehovah, hÛfwhºy , are specifically said to be given the name, shem, {"$of Jehovah, hÛfwhºy . They are not invested with his repute and renown the way the Branch is in Jeremiah 23:6. Further, it should be noted that when a person in the Hebrew Scriptures has a name which contains the word Jehovah, the full tetragrammaton is never included in the name. Most often, the name takes the shorted form "Jah/Yah", such as appears in names like "Isaiah" or "Zechariah", or some other shortened form of the name, such as in "Joshua" or "Jehoshaphat". Nowhere, however, are all four letters of the tetragrammaton (YHWH, hÛfwhºy ) found together in that form in a name given to a human being or other created creature. Rabbinical Objection #3 - At various places in the Tanakh/|anaT, Old Testament, objects such as altars, etc. are "named", using the word shem/ {"$ . Does this mean that Christians believe these object to be divine, because they are named using the Divine name? This objection ignores now the other pertinent reason as to why Christians interpret Jeremiah 23:5-6 in a divinely Messianic sense. This is because of the fact that in v.5, the person of the Branch, the Messiah, had been specifically introduced. Because the Messiah is elsewhere alluded to in the Hebrew Scriptures, Tanakh/ |anaT , as "the LORD" (Psalm 110:1) and as the "son of God" (Psalm 2:7,12; Proverbs 30:4), there is a fundamental difference between a Messiah who is given the shem/ {"$ name of Jehovah and an inanimate object which is given the same. This is not to say, however, that objects given the shem/ {"$ , name of Jehovah are not imparted at least vicariously with the renown and reputation of God, at least in the sense of their symbolizing His character, etc. A good example of this would be in Exodus 17:15, where after the defeat of the Amalekites, Moses builds an altar and "names" (with shem) it Jehovah-nissi Sén úhÛfwhºy , meaning "Jehovah is my banner". The altar was meant to symbolize the great victory wrought by God for Israel, and thus both His great power and saving ability. However, the full implications of shem, {"$ go beyond (but will still yet include) this sort of symbolic attribution when the term is applied to a figure which is elsewhere in the Tanakh imbued with traits fitting to God Himself. Further, as a personality, the Messiah would be able to manifest in a very real and concrete way the full meaning of the shem of Jehovah as our righteousness, whereas the naming of an altar would be unable to extend to that level. Also, the names of the altars and other inanimate objects such as Jehovah-nissi, Sén úhÛfwhºy , Jehovah-yireh, hÕe):réy úhØfwhºy (Genesis 22:14, meaning "Jehovah will provide"), and so forth all depict the objects named (and thus, their builders) as passive. God is acting upon the builders of those altars for a visible testimony of God's activity. God is providing, God is the banner acting as a shield and rallying point. Yet, in Jeremiah 23:6, the Branch is given the name "Jehovah our righteousness", which is not an activity of God, but an essential trait. God is completely holy and righteous (see I Samuel 2:2, Isaiah 6:1-6, etc.), and the Messiah He sent with the shem, {"$ , name of "Jehovah our righteousness" would fulfill this true and complete righteousness. Thus, one set of "names" depict the one named as a passive agent, while the other depicts an active, personal being. ​ In conclusion , we can see that Jeremiah 23:5-6 shows us a messianic Branch who was to be a divine hypostasis of God Himself, and who was to manifest to His people the full account of righteousness, a trait inherent to God alone. This is seen in the systematic theological construct built up involving the Biblical teaching of the messianic nature of the Branch, and the appearance of divine theophanies and uniplurality in the Hebrew scriptures which imply the incarnation of God in the likeness of man to fulfill this messianic role. This view is supported from the teachings of the Tanakh, |anaT , Jewish Scriptures and in its parts, was recognized at various times in the Jewish theological writings of 2nd Temple and post-2nd Temple Judaism. End Notes (1) - Lam. Rab.. 1:51; Y. Ber. 5a (2) - Midrash Mishle, ed. S. Buber, p.87 (3) - Midrash Mishle, ed. S. Buber, p.87 (4) - Maimonides, Yad haHazaqa, Shoftim, Kilkhot M'lakhim 11 (5) - B. Sanh. 98b (6) - Targum Jonathan on the Prophets, Jer. 23:5 (7) - S.H. Levey, The Messiah: An Aramaic Interpretation, n. #82, p. 156 (8) - Lam. Rab. 1:51 (9) - J.E. Smith, What The Bible Says About The Promised Messiah, p. 347, n. 18 (10) - Pes. Rab., ed. M. Friedmann, p. 152b (11) - Gen. Rab. 1:4 (12) - Gen. Rab. 2:4 (13) - B. Pes. 54a; B. Ned. 39a (14) - I Enoch 62:7-9 (15) - The Propositions of the Zohar, cap. xxxviii, Amsterdam ed. - emphasis mine (16) - Jerusalem Targum, Genesis 16:13, "And Hagar praised and prayed in the name of the Memra Of YHWH who had revealed Himself to her..." (17) - Jerusalem Targum, Exodus 3:14, "And the Memra of YHWH said to Moses: "I am He who said unto the world 'Be!' and it was: and who in the future shall say to it 'Be!' and it shall be." And He said: "Thus you shall say to the children of Israel: 'I Am' has sent me to you." (18) - Targum on Psalm 62:8 [H 9], "Trust in the Memra of Yah at all times, O people of the house of Israel! Pour out before Him the sighings of your heart; Say, God is our trust forever." (19) - Targum Jonathan, Genesis 1:27, "And the Memra of YHWH created man in his likeness, in the likeness of YHWH, YHWH created, male and female created He them." (20) - Targum Onkelos, Genesis 28:20-21, "And Jacob vowed a vow, saying, "If the Memra of YHWH will be my support, and will keep me in the way that I go, and will give me bread to eat, and raiment to put on, so that I come again to my father's house in peace; then shall the Memra of YHWH be my God." (21) - Similar to the orthodox Christian principle of the Trinity, with its three distinct personalities of God which yet share the one, united, divine nature and essence. (22) - D. Baron, Rays of Messiah's Glory: Christ in the Old Testament, p. 77ff, n.1 (23) - T. Laetsch, Bible Commentary: Jeremiah, p. 195 (24) - W.C. Kaiser, Theological Wordbook of the Old Testament, eds. R.L. Harris, G.L. Archer, and B.K. Waltke, Vol. II, pp. 934-935 Vocabulary: Brit Hadashah—New Testament 27 books Messiah — xyÙi$fm ; means "Anointed One," the name given to the promised Deliverer who would some day come to the people of Israel as their great Savior and Redeemer , “anointed ” as Prophet , Priest , and King by God Himself. Midrashim— ancient Rabbinical expositions of Holy Writ. The term Midrash (of which Midrashim is the plural form) occurs twice in the He brew Bible (2 Chron. Xiii. 22, and xxiv. 27); and in both passages it is represented in the Anglican version by the word "story," while the more correct translation, "commentary," is relegated to the margin. "Legendary exposition" best expresses the full meaning of the word Midrash. The Midrashim, for the most part, originated in a praiseworthy desire to familiarize the people with Holy Writ, which had, in consequence of changes in the vernacular, become to them, in the course of time, almost a dead letter. These Midrashim have little or nothing to do with the Halachoth or legal decisions of the Talmud, except in aim, which is that of illustration and explanation. They are not literal interpretations, but figurative and allegorical, and as such enigmatic. They are, however, to be received as utterances of the sages, and some even regard them of as binding obligation as the law of Moses itself. The following are fairly representative extracts. Moses Maimonides—Name at birth: Moshe ben Maimon; regarded by many as the greatest Jewish philosopher ever. As a doctor, rabbi, religious scholar, mathematician, astronomer, and commentator on the art of medicine, his influence has spanned centuries and cultures. He was born in Spain and educated by his father, a Jewish judge. Eventually settling in Cairo, he became court physician to two viziers of Egypt, Saladin and el Fadil, and chief rabbi of the city’s Jewish community. His Guide of the Perplexed(1190) used philosophical reasoning to argue that the Bible and Jewish faith did not conflict with Artistotle ‘s popular system of thought. Today, Maimonides’ “Thirteen Principles of Faith” are still recited in synagogues. His works continue to be studied by Jewish scholars, including Commentary on the Mishnah (1168), nicknamed “The Luminary,” and Mishneh Torah (1180), 14 volumes of biblical and rabbinic law, coded and compiled. His nickname, Rambam, is an acronym for Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon… Scholars disagree on his birth year. Recent research points to 1138, not the more frequently cited 1135… He was multilingual and wrote most of his works in Arabic… Hospitals in such cities as Brooklyn, N.Y., San Francisco and Montreal bear his name… His tomb in the Galilean city of Tiberias has attracted tourists for centuries… Paraphrasical—rewritten in the reader's own words. Righteousness — be in the right, be right, have a just case , what is right, just, normal; rightness, justness, of weights and measures. Talmud—normally refers to the collection of writings named specifically the Babylonian Talmud, although there is also an earlier collection known as the Jerusalem Talmud , or Palestinian Talmud. When referring to post-biblical periods, namely those of the creation of the Talmud, the Talmudic academies and the Babylonian exilarchate ( head of the Jewish community in Babylonia in talmudic and medieval times), Jewish sources use the term "Babylonia" from a strictly Jewish point of view, [1] still using this name after it had become obsolete in geopolitical terms. The Talmud has two components: the Mishnah (Hebrew: 200 CE), a written compendium of Rabbinic Judaism's Oral Torah (Talmud translates literally as "instruction" in Hebrew); and the Gemara (500 CE), an elucidation of the Mishnah and related Tannaitic (the Rabbinic sages whose views are recorded in the Mishnah , from approximately 10-220 CE.) writings that often ventures onto other subjects and expounds broadly on the Hebrew Bible . The term "Talmud" may refer to either the Gemara (the component of the Talmud comprising rabbinical analysis of and commentary on the Mishnah ) alone, or the Mishnah and Gemara together. The entire Talmud consists of 63 tractates, and in standard print is over 6,200 pages long. It is written in Tannaitic Hebrew and Aramaic , and contains the teachings and opinions of thousands of pre- Christian Era rabbis on a variety of subjects, including Halakha (law), Jewish ethics , philosophy, customs, history, lore and many other topics. The Talmud is the basis for all codes of Jewish law , and is widely quoted in rabbinic literature . Targumim—spoken paraphrases, explanations and expansions of the Jewish scriptures that a Rabbi would give in the common language of the listeners, which during the time of this practice was commonly, but not exclusively, Aramaic . This had become necessary near the end of the last century before the Christian era, as the common language was in transition and Hebrew was used for little more than schooling and worship. Tanakh—Old Testament 39 books Uniplural—A uniplural noun can be used to indicate an object in the singular or plural sense. Example: The word sheep can be used to describe one sheep or many sheep. This article is drawn upon: -The LORD our Righteousness —Jeremiah 23:5-6 Shows That the Messiah Was to be God Himself and used by permission of the author Timothy W. Dunkin. -Multiple general Jewish texts and resources -Experience of Menorah’s staff For Further Information: ​ Return to The Real Jesus Page ​ Return To Menorah's Web Page

  • How We Got The New Testament | Menorah Ministries

    How We Got The ​ New Testament Jesus severely rebuked the Pharisees for setting aside the word of God for the teaching of men (Matthew 15:6). They are by no means unique; throughout the ages traditionalists have wanted to elevate human tradition to God's word. Jesus also severely rebuked the Sadducees in Matthew 22:23-33 and Mark 12:18-27. They believed all the Old Testament except the Torah was just human tradition. Jesus told them they did not know the scriptures nor the power of God. How did we get the New Testament? What of the claim that it too is just human tradition? We will look at that question and the very foundation of our faith. THE FOUNDATION OF OUR FAITH The center of our faith is Jesus Christ; but some would like to think we do not reliably know what He taught. Ephesians 2:20 says, "[God's household is] built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone." It is interesting what is absent from the Early Church: there is no debate about what is scripture. It was not an issue until after Marcion the Gnostic began writing his own scripture and rejecting most of the Bible. Diocletian also ordered the burning of all Christian books, and Christians needed to know which were God's Word and worth risking death. ​ SCRIPTURE'S CLAIM OF AUTHORITY ​ 2 Tim 3:16 says, "All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness," Peter in 2 Peter 3:15-16 says some people distort Paul's letters, just like they do the other scriptures. Paul says in 1 Thessalonians 2:4 that "we" are entrusted with the gospel. 1 Thessalonians 2:13: "... you accepted it not as the word of men, but as it actually is, the word of God... " 2 Peter 1:20-21: "Above all, [that's very high] you must understand that no prophecy of scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit." ​ THREE TESTS FOR SCRIPTURE ​ In trying to recreate how the early church recognized what was scripture, we see three tests. 1. Authorship: Was the author an eyewitness or a "secretary" for an eyewitness? See Luke 1:1-3, John 19:35, 1 John 1:1-4, 2 Peter 1:16-18, 1 Corinthians 9:1-2, 5, and 1 Corinthians 15:7-9. 2. Truth: Does the book contradict what the Bible says anywhere else? If so, throw it out. See Hebrews 6:18, John 10:35, 17:17, John 17:8, Proverbs 30:5, Numbers 23:19, and Psalms 119:42-43, 86, 137-142, 151, 160. 3. Widespread Confirmation: Did Christians every-where generally accept the book as scripture? ​ WHO WROTE WHAT ​ Matthew - Matthew the apostle Mark - John Mark, (Acts 15:37, 2 Timothy 4:11) and Peter's interpreter Luke and Acts - Paul's companion John and Revelation - John the apostle 1, 2 and 3 John - John the apostle Romans and Philemon - Paul the apostle Hebrews - unknown today (knew Timothy, Hebrews 13:23) James - the Lord's half-brother 1 and 2 Peter - Peter the apostle ​ SO WHAT ABOUT HEBREWS? ​ True or false: The Book of Hebrews could not have been evaluated by the authorship test. Today we do not know the author of Hebrews. However, the original readers of Hebrews knew the author, as can been seen by Hebrews 13:18, 23. Thus the correct answer is false. This highlights an important fact: we are dependent on the judgment of the early (130 A.D.) Church. So who do we think wrote Hebrews? Clement of Rome (97 A.D.) alludes to it nine times, so it must have been written before then. Best guesses are Barnabas and Apollos. Clement of Alexandria, Jerome, and Augustine believed it was written by Paul in Hebrew. Tertullian stated it was written by Barnabas. In fact in the Codex Claremontanus, Hebrews is called "Epistle of Barnabas." (Barnabas was called an apostle in Acts 14:4,14) Martin Luther guessed the author was Apollos. ​ WHAT ABOUT JAMES? ​ James was not James the disciple but Jesus' half-brother. He was an apostle based on these verses: • Called an apostle by Paul: Galatians 1:19 • Like Paul, Jesus appeared just to him: 1 Corinthians 15:7 • Pillar of the Church: Galatians 2:9 ​ WHAT ABOUT JUDE? ​ We do not know as much about Jude the Lord's brother as James. While it is easy to prove Jude was an apostle, because an apostle's teachings are God's direct word, and Jude is in the Bible, that is a circular argument. He was certainly an eyewitness, but we rely on the judgment of the early church Fathers to recognize that it belonged in the Bible. ​ DID THEY INCLUDE THE RIGHT BOOKS? ​ The previous discussion does not "prove with certainty" we have the right books, but it gives us good reasons to trust that God knew and made sure Christians got the right books. Almost every other book written at that time totally fails these three tests: authorship, truth, and widespread confirmation. The two that are closest are First Clement and The Gospel of Thomas. ​ First Clement , written 97 A.D., is an excellent book to read that some in Antioch and Alexandria thought should be scripture. Its problem is that Clement was not an eye-witness but was in the next generation. It also has a few small errors (i.e. phoenixes do not really live in Arabia). Whether or not the Apostle Thomas wrote a gospel we may never know until heaven. A book called the Gospel of Thomas was circulated among Gnostics (only), but Gnostics often altered their scriptures and not surprisingly, their Gospel of Thomas teaches Gnosticism and contradicts the Bible. ​ INFALLIBLE PRESERVATION OF THE BIBLE ​ It would do no good for God to accurately give us what was correctly recognized as His Word, if as Mohammed has accused, He failed to ensure its preservation. A God who would do such a thing is not the God who wrote Jeremiah 1:12, Luke 21:33, and Isaiah 55:11. (Also, if He allowed His Bible to be corrupted, then why would He preserve the Quran?) Faith in God's watching His word is an adequate answer, and it is the only answer we had until the mid-twentieth century. Now however, with early manuscripts and Carbon-14 dating, we have documents that prove historically the reliability of today's scripture. They are: • John Rylands Manuscript: part of John 130 A.D. • Bodmer II Papyrii: most of John 150-200 A.D. • Chester Beatty Papyrii: most of the N. T. 200 A.D. • 10,000 Greek, 14,000 other manuscripts after that. ​ For more on its accuracy and reliability, read F. F. Bruce's Book, The New Testament Documents: Are They Reliable? ​ FALSE BELIEFS ABOUT SCRIPTURE ​ Christian liberalism : It is not all the word of God but contains the word of God. The parts we accept become God's word for us. Rev. Moon: It was fine 2,000 years ago, but we need something more advanced today Mohammed: It was originally ok, but it was totally corrupted later. Mormonism: The official teaching of the church leader today has priority over scripture. ​ Culture and the Bible ​ What in the Bible is merely cultural and for that time? An "easy" answer is that if you do not like a verse, then it must be cultural! Christ's servants must not settle for "easy" answers. A few things in the Bible are indisputably for that time, because the Bible says so. Examples are 1 Corinthians 7:25-26 and Acts 10:9-18. To call anything cultural in the Bible, there have to be verses saying or implying so. Otherwise, we have an "easy" answer. ​ To Be Obeyed ​ The Bible may be talked about, speculated about, but it was really written to be obeyed. See John 14:23, 24 and Psalms 119:4-5, 17, 67, 101, 134,167,168 among others. The Bible never tells us to do evil or unwise things. What if the Bible said for you to do something you thought was not the best? What would you do? After prayer and discussion with other Christians, would you trust God's judgment more or your own judgment? ​ We are indebted to the early Church and the early Church fathers, not for deciding, but for recognizing the New Testament. ​ We have solid reasons to believe it was : a) meant to be taken as scripture b) given accurately, c) the right books were included, and d) preserved reliably. ​ PEOPLE MUST CHOOSE IF THEY WILL OBEY GOD AND HIS WORD. ​ FOR MORE INFORMATION : www.biblequery.org ​ To return to B I B L E..... T O R A H " God's Instructions To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Rabbi Asher Levy | Menorah Ministries

    Rabbi Asher Levy ​ I was a Jewish Rabbi for 35 years. Born in Yugoslavia, I was brought up in a very orthodox Jewish home. I was taught to say formal prayers and wear phylacteries as prescribed for every pious Jew (Deuteronomy 6: 8; 11: 18). At the age of 15 I went to the theological school for Rabbis where I studied the Old Testament and Talmudic commentaries and six years later I was ordained as Rabbi in Romania. Afterwards I served in Belgium, England and California. ​ Outwardly I was happy and successful in my ministry but in my heart I was restless and discontented because I suffered much as a result of the emptiness of life in general. Six years ago I met a Jewish man with whom I discussed this matter. I did not know that he was a believer in Jesus Christ. His advice was: "Read Isaiah 53." I then read this well-known chapter concerning Jesus of Nazareth, which says that He was wounded for our transgressions; he was bruised for our iniquities. I felt urged further to examine the Hebrew Scriptures and found these words written by the same prophet: For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulders: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even forever. “The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this (Isaiah 9:6, 7). I also read: Hear ye now, O House of David; is it a small thing for you to weary men, but will ye weary my God also? Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; behold a virgin shall conceive and bear a son. and shall call his name Immanuel (Isaiah 7 :13, 14). "Immanuel" means "God with us”. ​ This proved to me that Jesus was and is the Messiah in Whom all the prophecies were fulfilled. Meanwhile I had found a clear portrait of the Messiah in a small book which I had the privilege of getting into my hands. It was my first introduction to the New Testament. I started reading it like any other book, from the beginning: “The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David son of Abraham," and found to my amazement that I was reading a Jewish book about a Jew. By reading it carefully I came to the conclusion that Jesus Christ was a Jew of the race of Abraham and David; that He was born of a Jewish virgin in the Jewish town of Bethlehem; of a Jewish tribe, the tribe of Judah. ​ Because He knew the Law and the Prophets I followed Him on His journeys through the Holy Land, listened to His beautiful sayings and teaching, observed and admired His compassion and healings. It became my spiritual food. His promise of forgiveness of sins and eternal life lo those who believe in Him. drew me till I trusted Him as my Messiah and my personal savior. ​ I want to confirm the fact that my heart does not condemn me for my new belief, because I feel that I am still a Jew and shall always be a Jew. I have not renounced our inheritance of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. Like Paul I can say after my acceptance of Christ as my Savior: Are they Hebrews? So am I. Are they Israelites? So am I. Are they the seed of Abraham? So am I. (I Corinthians 11:22) Thus I repeat with pride the word of Romans 1:16: For I am not ashamed of the Gospel of Christ; for it is the power of God unto salvation to everyone that believeth; to the Jew first. and also to the Greek. ​ The brilliant example of the great apostle Paul influenced me very much and gave me the courage to accept the Lord Jesus as my personal Savior. Paul first was a zealous persecutor of Christ and then became His most faithful follower. He was a disciple of that great doctor of the Law, Raban Gamaliel, at whose feet he sat. It is believed that Raban Gamaliel became a follower of Christ before Paul did. The Bible tells us that some wanted to kill Peter and the other apostles because they were preaching Christ so boldly. Then stood there up one in the council, a Pharisee, named Gamaliel, a doctor of the Law, had a reputation among all the people, and commanded to put the apostles forth a little space; and said unto them, Ye men of Israel, take heed to yourselves what you intend to do as touching these men. . . And now I say unto you, refrain from these men and let them alone, for if this counsel or this work be of men it will come to naught, but if it be of God, ye cannot overthrow it, lest haply ye be found even to fight against God (Acts 5:34, 35, 38, 39). ​ It is two thousand years since the lowly Galilean, Jesus, traversed the hills and dales of Palestine, and He is still Master of the world. His Gospel is still preached. and Christ's name as Messiah of Israel is still proclaimed. And His message is still repeated everywhere: For God so loved. the world, that He gave his only begotten Son. that whosoever believeth in Him should not perish but have everlasting life John 3:16. Hear, O Israel! ​ For further information contact: To Return To Dr. Rabbi Max Wertheimer Testimony Page To Return To: Salvation Testimonies Page To Return To: L'Chaim -To Life! Page To Return To: Menorah's Web Page

  • Is Jesus the Father & Holy Spirit | Menorah Ministries

    Is Jesus the Father and the Holy Spirit? “Jesus Only-Jesus is the Father and the Holy Spirit” ????? Modalism first surfaced in the third century in the writings of Sabella's and Paul of Samosata. This heretical view denies there are three distinct persons in God, claiming instead there is only one being who manifests Himself in three different modes. Modern Oneness Pentecostals garner support for their modalistic view by interpreting Matthew28:19 in conjunction with Acts 2:38. In Matthew 28:19 Jesus instructed the disciples: “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit” (emphasis added).1 In Acts 2:38, however, Peter instructed his listeners: “Be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ” (emphasis added). Oneness Pentecostals2 conclude that Jesus Himself must be the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, because they claim that “Jesus” is the “one name that refers to three titles of one God.”3 They then assert that the apostles correctly fulfilled Christ’s command to baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matt. 28:19) by baptizing converts in the name of Jesus only (Acts 2:38;8:16;10:48); hence, a Trinitarian baptism is invalid. The phrase “in the name of Jesus” must be pronounced over the person being baptized. It is difficult to know where to begin in evaluating Oneness Pentecostal hermeneutics. It is certainly not like looking through a telescope at a single hermeneutic problem, but more like looking into a kaleidoscope, for there are many interrelated hermeneutic problems that, when combined, only serve to distort biblical Christianity (2 Pet.3:16). In what follows, I demonstrate that Oneness Pentecostals are “serial offenders” where it concerns violating some of the fundamental rules of hermeneutics. Holding Illegitimate Preunderstandings. A theological “preunderstanding” is a doctrinal opinion one has previously formed. The danger for Bible interpreters is that their interpretations easily can be biased by their theological preunderstandings. Oneness Pentecostals unfortunately approach the whole of Scripture with the preunderstanding of the Oneness doctrine, and it distorts their view of many Scripture verses, including Matthew 28:19 and Acts 2:38. The International Council on Biblical Inerrancy provides this helpful corrective: “We affirm that any preunderstandings which the interpreter brings to Scripture should be in harmony with scriptural teaching and subject to correction by it. We deny that Scripture should be required to fit alien preunderstandings, inconsistent with itself.”4 The point of this affirmation is to avoid interpreting Scripture through an alien grid or filter that obscures or negates its true message. To avoid misinterpreting Scripture, interpreters must be careful to examine their presuppositions in the light of Scripture. Only those preunderstandings that are compatible with Scripture are legitimate. Inappropriately Cross-Referencing Verses. It is inappropriate to draw theological conclusions from cross-referenced verses without giving due consideration to what other explicit and clear verses reveal on the matter. For example, Isaiah 14:12 identifies Lucifer as the “morning star.” Revelation 22:16 identifies Jesus as the “morning star.” Ignoring other relevant verses, one inappropriately could conclude that Jesus is the Devil. Oneness Pentecostals are guilty of inappropriate cross-referencing in their treatment of Matthew 28:19 and Acts 2:38. One must recognize that the theological inferences one draws from comparing cross references are legitimate only to the extent that they reflect the teachings of explicit and clear Scripture verses on the matter.5 This is precisely where Oneness Pentecostals go wrong. Not Interpreting Difficult Verses in Light of Clear Verses. It is common sense that one must interpret difficult verses in light of the clear verses of Scripture. Martin Luther expressed this principle with the words, Scriptura sui ipsius interpres—Latin for “Scripture is its own expositor.” The Westminster Confession of Faith perhaps put it best: “When there is a question about the true and full sense of any Scripture… it must be searched and known by other places that speak more clearly.”6 Contrary to the Oneness preunderstanding of modalism, many clear Scripture verses indicate that the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit are distinct persons. We know the Father is a person because He engages in I-Thou (direct, interpersonal, mutual, reciprocal, and loving)7 relations with the other persons in the Trinity (John 3:35), and has the attributes of personality: intellect (Matt. 6:8), emotions (Gen. 6:6; Ps. 86:15), and will (Matt. 12:50). The Son likewise engages in I-Thou relations (John 11:41-42), and possesses intellect (John 2:24–25), emotions (Matt. 9:36; John 11:35), and will (Luke 22:42). The Holy Spirit also engages in I-Thou relations (Acts 8:29), and possesses intellect (Rom. 8:27; 1Cor. 2:10–11), emotions (Isa. 63:10; Eph. 4:30), and will (1Cor. 12:11). Scripture, moreover, affirms that these persons are distinct from each other. We know Jesus is not the Father because the Father sent the Son (John 3:16–17). The Father and Son love each other (John 3:35) and speak to each other (John 11:41–42). The Father knows the Son and the Son knows the Father (Matt. 11:27). Jesus is our advocate with the Father (1 John 2:1). They are two distinct witnesses (John 5:31,32,37). We also know Jesus is not the Holy Spirit because the Holy Spirit is another comforter (John 14:16). Jesus sent the Holy Spirit (John 15:26). The Holy Spirit descended upon Jesus (Luke 3:22) and seeks to glorify Jesus (John 16:13–14). What all this means is that however one reconciles Matthew 28:19 with Acts 2:38, it is not an option to say Jesus is the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, for clear verses in Scripture render such a view impossible. As the Reformers put it in their principle, analogia scriptura, if an interpretation of a particular verse contradicts a truth taught elsewhere in Scripture, the interpretation of that verse cannot be correct. Ignoring Context. In the broader context of the New Testament, Jesus considers the Father as someone other than Himself hundreds of times. In fact, the New Testament describes the Father and Son as distinct from each other within the very same verse dozens of times (e.g., Rom. 15:6; 2 Cor. 1:4; Gal. 1:2, 3).8 This broad context alone sets the interpretive parameters beyond which one is not free to go, effectively prohibiting anyone from claiming that Jesus is the Father. In terms of immediate context, Matthew’s gospel is solidly Trinitarian. There is one God (Matt. 4:10;16:16;22:32,37). The Father is God (6:6,9,14–15;10:32–33;11:25), Jesus is God (1:23;9:6;11:27;12:8;16:27;19:28;25:31;26:64), and the Holy Spirit is God (1:18,20;10:20;12:18,28,32). Within the unity of the one God are three persons: the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (28:19). All three persons of the Trinity, moreover, were present (and distinct from each other) at Jesus’ baptism (3:16–17). In view of this, it makes good sense that Jesus, before ascending into heaven, would instruct the disciples to baptize in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, for each played a pivotal role in human salvation. The context of Acts 2 is different. Here, baptism “in the name of Jesus” makes good sense because the Jews—“men of Judea” (v.14), “men of Israel” (v.22)—to whom Peter was preaching had rejected Christ as the Messiah. It is logical that Peter would call on them to repent of their rejection of Jesus the Messiah (vv.22–37) then invite them to identify with Him publicly via baptism (v.38). Using Faulty Exegesis. Proper exegesis of Matthew 28:19 reveals two pivotal facts about the nature of God: (1) The singular form of “name” indicates that God is one, and that His nature is singular (one divine essence); and (2) Within the unity of this one God are three distinct persons, the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit, something given strong emphasis in the original Greek with the three recurring definite articles before Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.9 Word studies also reveal that the phrase “in the name of” often meant “by the authority of” in biblical times. Acts2:38 thus indicates that the Jews to whom Peter was speaking were to be baptized according to the authority of Jesus. The verse does not mean that the words “in the name of Jesus” must be pronounced liturgically over each person being baptized. If Acts 2:38 were intended to be a precise baptismal formula, one must ask why this formula is never repeated in exactly the same way throughout the rest of Acts or the New Testament. In different verses, people are exhorted to be baptized “on [Greek: epi] the name of…” (Acts2 :38), “into [Greek: eis] the name of…” (Acts 8:16), or “in [Greek: en] the name of…” Jesus Christ (Acts 10:48). Such variations militate against an unbending baptismal formula. It is entirely possible that being baptized in the authority of Jesus essentially amounts to being baptized by the baptism authorized by Jesus—one in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit (Matt. 28:19). A.T. Robertson comments: “In Acts the full name of the Trinity does not occur in baptism as in Matthew 28:19, but this does not show that it was not used. The name of Jesus Christ is the distinctive one in Christian baptism and really involves the Father and the Spirit.”10 In keeping with this, some scholars have suggested that Acts 2:38 may contain what is called asynecdoche of the part—a figure of speech in which the part stands for the whole. Such figures of speech were common in biblical times. For example, the term face can refer to a whole person (1 Kings 10:24; Job 11:19), field can represent a whole country (1 Sam. 27:7), and day can refer to an indefinite time period (Ps. 18:18).11 ​ It may be, then, that “the apostles indeed did use the full formula [Father, Son, and Holy Spirit], but simply referred to the act of baptism by the shorter phrase ‘in the name of Jesus Christ’…in common with the wider practice of that day of being baptized ‘in the name’ of one’s spiritual teacher, as John’s disciples were ([Acts] 19:3).”12 Whether or not this is so, the hermeneutic principles summarized above decisively debunk the Oneness view that Jesus is the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Scripture consistently testifies that Jesus is the second person of the blessed Trinity, the eternal Son of the eternal Father, and the blessed One who came to earth to reveal the Father to humankind (John 1:1,14,18; cf.14:9–14). — Ron Rhodes NOTES 1. Unless otherwise noted, all Scripture quotations are from the New American Standard Bible. 2. Oneness Pentecostalism, distinct from mainstream Pentecostalism, is similar to other cults in its denial of the Trinity. It is different from other cults, however, in its strong insistence on the absolute deity of Jesus Christ, holding that Jesus is the one true God who manifests himself in three modes. 3. Brent Graves, The God of Two Testaments (Hazelwood, MO: Word Aflame Press, 2000), 297. 4. Norman Geisler, Explaining Hermeneutics (Downers Grove, IL: InterVarsity Press, 1988), 14–15. 5. Gregory Boyd, Oneness Pentecostals and the Trinity (Grand Rapids: Baker, 1992), 85. Note that while Boyd offers sound arguments against Oneness Pentecostalism in this book, he elsewhere expresses belief in open theism, an unorthodox view. 6. Westminster Confession of Faith, 1:9. 7. Jewish existentialist Martin Buber (1878–1965), in his book I and Thou (1923), made the phrase “I-Thou” famous, distinguishing this type of relationship from an “I-It” relationship. In this article, I use the term in a simple, nonformal sense to speak of direct, interpersonal, mutual, reciprocal, and loving relationships between persons. 8. Boyd, 68. 9. Daniel Wallace, The Basics of New Testament Syntax (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2000), 94. 10. A. T. Robertson, Word Pictures in the New Testament, Logos Software, emphasis added. 11. See original Hebrew. 12. Jerome Smith, The New Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, Logos Software, insert added This article first appeared in the Practical Hermeneutics column of the Christian Research Journal, volume31, number 2 (2008). For further information: http://www.equip.org Dating of Matthew 28:19 and the Trinity www.answering-islam.org/Shamoun/q_mt28_19.htm ​ To return to The Real Jesus Page To return to Menorah's Home Page ​

  • The Shoah/Holocaust | Menorah Ministries

    SHOAH ....HOLOCAUST AWARENESS AND TESTIMONIES - 2 Articles - I Escaped Fro m The Nazis by Rachmiel Frydland It was on the 28th of August 1939 that I came to know the possibility of war. I decided to stay in Warsaw. Supplies soon ran low and from September lst there was nothing to buy. Other young Hebrew Christians and myself lived on what little we had for ten days. Then we were called up to help defend Warsaw. Three of us went and were accepted. As I did not want to shoot, I asked for physical work and received it. They were hard days. Though we were near the front and were being bombarded day and night, we all survived. One of us was seriously injured, but recovered after a few weeks in the hospital. ​ THE GERMANS ARRIVE The Germans entered Warsaw toward the end of September, and soon there was famine in the city. One of the Hebrew Christians stood in the line to receive some hot soup which the German Army was distributing to the hungry Polish population in Warsaw, but he was recognized to be Jewish, was beaten up and thrown out of the line hungry. I decided to leave for a village near Plock, which meant 75 miles on foot. Jews were not permitted to use any public conveyances. As I was leaving Warsaw the Germans stopped me. One looked me straight in the face and said with a rough voice: "Are you a Jew?" I did not answer him. Upon this he hit me and pushed me to the other side of the road, where I was handed a spade and had to work with all my strength, though I had nothing to eat all day. Toward the evening they took us to a camp where I sat down and wept. I do not really know why. Some Jews tried to comfort me, so I wiped my tears away and told them of my faith. A little later I felt moved to leave the camp and in the sight of all I did so. No one challenged me. I went on my way and slept in the open. The next day I found something to buy; great was my joy when I went into a shop and found that there was bread on sale there. How fresh and appetizing it was! After three days I reached Plock and was received by the brethren with open arms. ​ TRIUMPHANT FAITH In the summer of 1940,er of 1940 I was going from our village to Chelm. On the way some drunken German soldiers fell on me and beat me with a stick until I fell senseless. They left me, and with my last powers I dragged myself, bleeding, to Chelm. The doctor said he did not know whether I would recover, as my wounds were probably infected and I might die of blood-poisoning. To his great surprise I recovered after a week, though I suffered a lot and could not eat for some time, for when I did, I vomited blood. I earned my living by working from time to time for farmers. At first I had not much work, but soon I became known as an honest worker. Then, except on Sundays, I was kept working hard at every kind of farm work from sunrise to sunset and had no time for spiritual things. Oh! if I could only have foreseen what would happen, surely I would not have eaten or worked but would have done something to help those that were to pass through such misery. GOD STRONGER THAN MAN In the winter of 1941-42 there was not much work on the farms. The bigger cities had Ghettoes where a certain slum district in the town was given up to the Jews and surrounded by a wall and barbed wire. We in the villages were forbidden to leave the village on pain of death. However, many times I risked my life for my parents to go to the nearby town and bring home the necessities for our lives. Being so faithful to them, my mother first got interested and began to read my Yiddish New Testament secretly. The Jews in the surrounding villages respected my faith and witness. THE GAS CHAMBERS It was the time when train load after train load of Jews were being taken to the gas chambers and crematoria only about twelve miles from our village. We knew what awaited us. In danger of death I went from time to time on Sundays to Chelm to have communion with the brethren there. I spent a few months in a slave labor camp working hard, but this gave me a chance to witness to Jews there. On August 30th, 1942, I received the order to go to the gas chambers. I did not go, but stayed at home and awaited the mercy of the Lord. On September 24th the village mayor came and told me, while I was at work (helping one of the peasants cutting wood), that he had received orders to hand me over to the Gestapo. He gave me permission to say good-bye to my parents who were in tears, especially my mother. The man who led me had pity on me and hinted that I should escape. I did so and fled to the woods. My sister was in hiding in the village, but my parents went when they were called to go. At this time two Jewesses joined us; they had escaped from the train that was taking them to a death camp. Then three young Jews joined us in the woods. They shared with us in the reading of the Bible, in song and praise. ​ SNOW AND DEATH On November 24th our fortunes changed. My sister, who was in the village, was killed. We hid ourselves in the high grass that grew in the wood. They discovered and took away all our food, but our lives were spared. That night heavy snow fell some three feet deep. We had to go and get some food. Alas! when we reached the road leading to the village, the police were there. What were we to do? There were shouts of "Stop! stop!" and shots. For quite a time I did not know what I was doing and where I was running, nor what was happening. I did not think; I just ran and ran as shots whistled over my head and around my ears. At last there was silence; no one was pursuing me any longer. I flopped on to a tree trunk; I could neither speak or pray. My sweat chilled me. I gathered some sticks, made a fire and gradually recovered my senses. No one was near to comfort me; only the flame of my little fire broke the darkness around. My whole being seemed to cry aloud, "Why are we so persecuted?" The coming of morning brought no news, but I was convinced that my companions lived no more. What was there left for me? I would have sought the police that they might kill me too, but I had not yet recovered enough strength to go and find them. But there still remained the Lord, the same yesterday and today. He began to speak to me with His soft voice. "You have enough of My grace. Had not job enough; had not Paul enough?" I became silent to hear what the Lord had to say to me, and He said much. For a time I continued to weep, but then the victory! I stayed where I was and decided to live as long as the Lord would allow me to live and work for Him. I said, "If I am not necessary to God, surely He would have taken me away; but if God wants me to live for Him, should I not bow to His almighty will?" I bowed my knees and was cured. There I was, alone in this cruel world, alone in those woods with the wild goats and swine. I could no longer stay there. but there or elsewhere I was not alone, for He had promised to be with me always; how true this became to me, especially in those days when it seemed that no one remained. ​ LIFE SPARED I started on my way to Warsaw but was caught. I was not killed but put into a camp where there were some 5,000 Jews. I was there eight days but not in vain. Some believed my testimony and I soon had a circle of sympathizers. At the end of the eight days the camp was surrounded by black uniformed S.S. guards armed with machine guns, but God led me out, for I jumped over the well from which both the peasants and the Camp drew water. Once again I tried to go to Warsaw. This time I got to Chelm safely; here brethren helped me to get a railway ticket for Warsaw. I arrived there on December 20th, 1942. I returned to Chelm for Christmas, but was caught again on Christmas Day as I was going from our village to Chelm. Approaching the town, I stopped and told my captor that I was not going to move until I prayed. His protests and threats had no effect on me as I knew that only a few hundred yards further were the Gestapo quarters. I knelt and prayed, yielding my life to God. When I arose my captor began to talk to me softly and finally let me go free. I returned to Warsaw, where I stayed awaiting the Grace of God. THE WARSAW GHETTO From time to time I went around the walls of the ghetto thinking of the possibility of getting inside. One of the places where I was permitted to spend a night or two in hiding was in the shop of a Christian undertaker. With another Jewish Christian boy we put chips in one of the unfinished coffins and thus spent the night. (Alas, this boy, too, was later caught and killed). Here in the spring of 1943 1 became acquainted with Jews who worked outside the Ghetto for a German firm adjacent to this Christian undertaker. As they had a special permit for ten to leave and enter the Ghetto, one Friday they took me in with them instead of the tenth who did not leave the Ghetto on that day. Thus a week before the liquidation of the Ghetto I was able to get inside for the weekend. I met some of our precious Jewish believers. They told me their miraculous stories. Some had already died of starvation or were imprison- ed and tortured to death. Stasiek Eizenberg, a young man who accepted his Messiah immediately before the war, had received special permission for a Polish Pastor, Mr. Krakiewiczm, to enter the Ghetto and baptize him there. He was later imprisoned for being late to work and as he was awaiting death, he wrote a verse of his favorite hymn on the wall. It so happened that the German officer came in on that day and asked his Polish interpreter to translate all the inscriptions of the victims. When they came to his hymn and the officer heard the words (it was a Polish hymn translated from the German) he stopped and demanded that the one who wrote it should confess, otherwise all would be guilty. Stasiek confessed. The officer went away, but in a few hours Stasiek Eizenberg was released. As the Jewish believers were now awaiting definite extermination, I tried to comfort them as best as I could. They insisted that I leave the Ghetto, for God who preserved me until now would keep me to the end of the war, and then I would be able to tell the Christians of those woes. I left the Ghetto and was probably one of the last to leave before the liquidation began. Time dragged on slowly. I had to learn to trust the Lord for each minute. Whether spending the night with a Christian family who risked their lives to take in a Jew for the night, or in a coffin in the shop of a Christian undertaker, or in some barn, there was the same assurance that the Lord wanted me to live and as long as He wanted it, I was ready. FREEDOM ALAS! Finally the hour came, and I was no more hunted and condemned to die just because I was a Jew. However my heart longed for freedom and fellowship with others who believed that Jesus was their own personal Messiah and Saviour. God granted me the desire of my heart and helped me to leave Poland and get to England. Later God opened for me the way into the USA and afterwards I went to Israel and spent four years there among my own brethren. There I married a Jewish believer in the Messiah. She also suffered under the Nazi occupation, in France. We have four children, two girls and two boys, whom we have brought up in the faith of God and the Messiah. We trust that you, too, know sins forgiven and peace in all circumstances through the Messiah of Israel, the Lord Jesus (Read Isaiah 53 and Romans 8-1 1). Reprinted with permission of The Messianic Literature Outreach How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. ​ To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE ​ 6 Million Tragedy by Rachmiel Frydland ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ ​ MORE THAN FORTY years have passed since the perversity of men contrived to kill, murder, and exterminate God's chosen people, the Jews. Hitler and his associates, like Haman of old, devised a way to destroy, to kill, and to cause to perish, all Jews, both young and old, little children and women. Esther 3:13 Haman's design failed completely. Haman and his ten sons were hanged on the very day when all the Jews were to have been exterminated. Hitler had a similar end to that of Haman, except that he committed suicide along with the cohorts who were close to him. Jewish people could have established a festival in memory of the victory over Hitler. They would only have to decide what delicacy to eat. Potato latkes are eaten on Hanukah in memory of the victory over Antiochus Epiphanes, and hamentashen on Purim in memory of Haman's downfall. Yet, there are no joyful celebrations over Hitler's defeat. On the eve of Israel's independence celebrations, there is a memorial service commemorating the six million Jews who were exterminated under the Hitler regime. There are no joyous celebrations over Hitler's defeat because about one third of the Jewish population was wiped out in the course of World War II! THE GREATNESS OF THE TRAGEDY There is a Jewish saying based on the Talmud: "Whosoever destroys one life in Israel is as he would destroy the whole world, and whosoever preserves one life in Israel is as he would preserve the whole world" (Talmud, Sanhedrin 38a). Since Jewish people consider tradition and Talmud to be inspired, the next step is to blame God Himself for this tragedy. This feeling is expressed in strong words by Richard L. Rubinstein in his book entitled, After Auschwitz: How can Jews believe in an omnipotent, beneficent God after Auschwitz? Traditional Jewish theology maintains that God is the ultimate; omnipotent actor in the historical drama. It has interpreted every major catastrophe in Jewish history as God's punishment of a sinful Israel. I fail to see how this position can be maintained without regarding Hitler and the SS as instruments of God's will. The agony of European Jewry cannot be likened to the testing of Job. To see any purpose in the death camps, the traditional believer is forced to regard the most demonic, antihuman explosion in all history as a meaningful expression, of God's purposes. The idea is simply too obscene to me to accept. THE DOUBLE TRAGEDY Thus, the tragedy is double. First, there is the physical and mental damage that was done to those who perished and those who survived the horrible death camps. Then, there is the mental and spiritual pain of those who identify themselves with the perishing Jews of World War II. Many of our people have failed to look into God's Word to find out what God wants to say through these fearful events. From the Hebrew Scriptures we present some of the things God says: 1. The Deceitful Heart Here is the first thing we could learn from this tragedy. The prophet Jeremiah records in God's Word: The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it? Jeremiah 17:9. Similar words are found in the Brit Hadasha (New Testament): From whence come wars and fighting's among you? Come they not hence, even of your lusts that war in your members? James 4:1 The liberal world, of which our people are prominent spokesmen, maintained that the world is getting better and better and soon liberal men would be able to bring about a happy world. But, they ignored God's Word which states that man's heart is wicked, deceitful, and capable of every crime and cruelty. Have we learned our lesson? 2. The Neglect of God's Word We know that great honor belongs to the Jewish people. From them God raised lawgivers, wise men, psalmists, and prophets who presented God's Word to the world by the inspiration and power of the Holy Spirit. The Brit Hadasha (New Testament) expresses it so beautifully: What advantage then hath the Jew? ... Much every way; chiefly, because that unto them were committed the oracles of God. (Romans 3:1-2 While due honor is given to the Jewish people, the prophets also place upon them special responsibility as recorded in God's words through the prophet Amos: "You only have I known of all the families of the earth; therefore I will punish you for all your iniquities" (Amos 3:2). Instead of heeding God's Word to instruct our sons and daughters in the living Word of God, the very Book which justifies our existence as a people and a nation, we sent them to colleges and universities to instruct them in secular topics. Our religious Jewish people send their children to the Yeshivot. There, too, they are taught the words of men, the Talmud, because it is maintained that the study of the Talmud is more important than the study of the Tanakh (Old Covenant Scriptures). As a result Christians have been translating the Hebrew Bible into hundreds of languages, while we who gave the Bible to the world are standing on the sidelines. 3. The Rejected Redeemer In this respect also great glory belongs to the Jewish people. The following is a quotation from the writing of the great Jew, the Apostle Saul of Tarsus, later called Paul, in which he says of the Jewish people: I say the truth in Messiah, I lie not, my conscience also bearing me witness in the Holy Spirit, that I have great heaviness and continual sorrow in my heart. For I could wish that I myself were accursed from Messiah for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh: Who are Israelites: to whom pertaineth the adoption, and the glory, and the covenants, and the giving of the law, and the service of God, and the promises; Whose are the fathers, and of whom as concerning the flesh Messiah came, who is over all, God blessed forever. Amen Romans 9:1-5 Jesus the Messiah and Redeemer is ours; He is of our flesh and blood. We should join the Apostle in celebrating not only a simhat-torah (rejoicing of the Law) but also a continuous celebration of simhat-moshiach, as he admonishes believers in the city of Philippi: "Rejoice in the Lord always; and again I say, rejoice" (Philippians 4:4). Instead we are still looking for someone else. Many times we thought that "someone else" had come and we were ready to follow him, but we paid dearly for our mistakes. From the time of the false messiah Bar Kosiba, killed in 135 A.D., to Sabbatai Zvi (died 1676) and his followers, large crowds of Jewish people, sometimes even the majority, would commit their lives to encourage these so-called "messiah-heroes" who brought woe and destruction to our people. Jesus Himself foreseeing that this would happen, expressed these words: I am come in my Father's name, and ye receive me not; if another shall come in his own name, him you will receive. John 5:43 The rabbis, writing in the Talmud, knew that Messiah was to be rejected, would suffer, and die. However, instead of applying these prophecies to Jesus, they posited two Messiahs: Messiah ben Joseph to suffer, be rejected and be pierced through in accordance with the prophecies of Isaiah 53 and Zechariah 12:10, and, Messiah ben David to fight God's wars, defeat the pagans, and restore Israel. But God's Word speaks of one Messiah to be despised and rejected and then exalted. Other Jewish people, after disappointments with false messiahs, put forth a hypothesis that Messiah is not to be a person but an ideal. For many years our people hoped that social changes in the East and the promise of full quality was the redemption of which the prophets spoke. What a great disappointment! God's Word speaks of the only person Who can claim messiahship - a man of the household of David, born in Bethlehem in a supernatural way. THE ANSWER TO MEN’S' TRAGEDY If the Jewish people had a prophet today or if we would heed the words of God's prophets of old, we would cry out as did Hosea: "Come, and let us return unto the Lord; for he hath torn and he will heal us; he hath smitten, and he will bind us up" (Hosea 6:1). God has already started to heal us. He is beginning to bind up our wounds. With these acts of mercy and restoration, God wants to woo us again to Himself. At the same time God's Word extends to us a warning in the words of the Apostle Paul: Or despisest thou the riches of his goodness and forbearance and long-suffering; not knowing that the goodness of God leadeth thee to repentance? Romans 2:4 Here is the answer for us as a special people of God and for you and me as individuals. What has happened cannot be changed. God's Word says that we have failed - not God. Herein are set forth some of the mistakes we have made. Are we ready to correct them? If so, then we should acknowledge before God that we, too, have sinned, and being God's chosen people, a greater responsibility rests on us than on others. We must return to the Holy Scripture and seek the answer there. If we will sincerely seek, then it will become clear that our greatest mistake was and is that we have not accepted our own Messiah and Redeemer who still calls to us. Are you willing to receive Him? 0 Jerusalem, Jerusalem ... how often would I have gathered thy children together, even as a hen gathereth her chickens under her wings, and ye would not! Behold, your house is left unto you desolate. For I say unto you, Ye shall not see me henceforth,till ye shall say, Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord. (Brit Hadasha, Matthew 23:37-39) WRITE M.L.O. below for the booklet "Messiah in the TENACH." It will be sent to you free. Reprinted with permission of The Messianic Literature Outreach How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. ​ To return to MENORAH'S HOME PAGE

  • To Life- L’Chaim! Find Eternal Life | Menorah Ministries

    God Loves You! __ T R U T H __ For God so loved the world ... that He gave His only and unique Son, that everyone who trusts in Him may have eternal life. Instead of being utterly destroyed. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but rather … so that through him, the world might be saved. Yochanan/John 3:16-17 …and, He will .... redeem your(my) soul from the power of the grave. Tehillah/Psalm 49:15 ​ David says of Him, Thou wilt show me the path of life: in thy presence is fullness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore . Tehillah/Psalm 16:11 L'Chaim..... To Life! How To Be Born Again… gain Eternal Life With God Do you know for Sure that you are going to be with God eternally in heaven??! ​ How a Catholic may KNOW that He will go to Heaven when He dies CÓMO UN CATÓLICO PUEDE SABER QUE VA A IR AL CIELO DESPUÉS DE MORIR ( How a Catholic may KNOW that He will go to Heaven when He dies in Spanish) Questions on just what the Bible has to say about something? Read a small booklet in over 40 languages Also many Bible Studies in these languages can be found here ! Did You Get Your Get Out of Jail Hell FREE Card? Click Here ​ M e r e C h r i s t i a n i t y by C. S. Lewis 1898-1963 He was a professor of Medieval and Renaissance literature at Cambridge University who became a Christian at a late age. He is the most popular Christian theologian and master lucid apologist. Audio files of this book which contain 4 separate books: Book 1 . Right and wrong as a clue to the meaning of the universe Book 2. What Christians Believe Book 3. Christian Behavior Book 4. Beyond personality: or first steps in the doctrine of the Trinity Part 1 Part 2 For further information contact To Return To Jews Gentiles and The Churc h Web Page To Return To This is The Answer Web Page To return to Menorah's Web Page 00:00 / 1:09:43 00:00 / 1:11:50 00:00 / 1:11:57 00:00 / 1:12:05 00:00 / 1:09:31 To Life in Hebrew Victory Over Death is possible!

  • Menorahs Bible Page | Menorah Ministries

    Bible Page The Accuracy of the Bible video Menorah Ministries does not at this time have an on-line Bible. We did for about 25 years. Hopefully you will find a good Bible and regularly stu dy it. May God bless and keep you! Please feel free to contact us and use our Ask Pastor Reuben Question and Answer section. ​ There are plenty of reasons to study the Bible. Here is a list of eight of the main reasons why reading and studying the Bible is not wasted time. ​ While not an exhaustive list, below are eight reasons for studying the Bible: Cultural literacy To learn what it says firsthand Personal edification To help others Jesus Because it is God’s Word to us To know God better Avoiding error We do suggest checking out www.biblehub.com www.blueletterbible.com www.youversion.org www.bible.org www.biblegateway.org

  • Resurrection of Jesus | Menorah Ministries

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  • Star of David | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Pastor Reuben Was the "Star of David" really something King David or his son King Solomon used on their shields? S H A L O M ! _______ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW _______ ​ Biblical Question: Dear Pastor Reuben, Was the "Star of David" really something David or his son King Solomon used on their shields? I have been told that. Thanks, Robert ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Shalom Robert, ​ Although it is now the most common and universally recognized sign of Judaism and Jewish identity, both within and outside the Jewish community, it has only achieved this status in the last two hundred years. Before that it was chiefly associated with magic or with the insignia of individual families or communities. While many legends state it was used by David and Solomon, no real historical proof exists. Rather all evidence suggests that early use of it, the hexagram was limited to "practical Kabbalah", that is, Jewish magic, probably dating back to the 6th century. When the Zionist movement looked for a symbol they chose the "Star of David" because it was so well accepted as a Jewish symbol. Then when Israel became a state, it became the state symbol of its own national redemption. The "Star of David" is not in the Bible. For more information on the history please see our below article on such, Hope this helps. ​ THE STAR OF DAVID Magen David The evolution of the six-pointed Jewish star, the Magen David," literally the "Shield of David, also known as the hexagram, or more rarely, *Solomon's Seal, is long and complex. Although it is now the most common and universally recognized sign of Judaism and Jewish identity, both within and outside of the Jewish community, it has only achieved this status in the last two hundred years. Before that it was chiefly associated with magic or with the insignia of individual families or communities. Yet despite its equivocal history, Jews have long been attracted to this design and have sought to ascribe to it venerable origins. In our own day, its universal Jewish popularity, especially as the symbol of the State of Israel, has made the question of its origins moot. Because of its geometric symmetry, the hexagram has been a popular symbol in many cultures from earliest times. Anthropologists claim that the triangle pointing downward represents female sexuality, and the triangle pointing upward, male sexuality; thus, their combination symbolizes unity and harmony. In alchemy, the two triangles symbolize *"fire" and *"water"; together, they represent the reconciliation of opposites. Some medieval alchemists even borrowed the talmudic punish mayim, fiery water, and shamayim , heaven - to demonstrate the interpenetration of the two realms. 1 Because if this symbolism, the hexagram was even used occasionally as the emblem displayed above a brandy shop. The earliest known Jewish use of the hexagram was as a seal in ancient Israel (6th century B.C.E.) and then eight centuries later in a *synagogue frieze in Capernaum. But these early hexagrams may have been only ornamental designs; ironically, a swastika, another popular ancient motif, appears alongside the hexagram on the Capernaum synagogue wall. In the Middle Ages, hexagrams appear frequently on churches, but rarely in synagogues or on Jewish ritual objects. It was the *menorah that served as the primary Jewish symbol from antiquity until the post-Renaissance period, not the " Jewish star." Although scholars have attempted to trace the Star of David back to King David himself; to Rabbi Akiva and the Bar Kokhba ("son of the star") rebellion (135 C.E.); or to *kabbalists, especially Rabbi Isaac Luria (16th century), no Jewish literature or artifacts document this claim. Rather, all evidence suggests that the early use of the hexagram was limited to "practical Kabbalah," that is, Jewish magic, probably dating back to the 6th century C.E. Legends connect this symbol with the "Seal of Solomon," the magical signet signet *ring used by King Solomon to control demons and spirits. 2 Although the original ring was inscribed with the Tetragrammaton, the sacred Four-Letter *Name of God, medieval *amulets imitating this ring substituted the hexagram or pentagram (five-pointed star), often accompanied by rampant *lions, for the sacred Name. The star inscribed on these rings was usually called the "Seal of Solomon." In addition to such legends about Solomon's ring, medieval Jewish magical texts spoke of a magic shield possessed by King David which protected him from his enemies. According to these texts, the shield was inscribed with the seventy-two letter name of God, or with Shaddai (Almighty) or *angelic names, and was eventually passed down to *Judah Maccabee. The 15th-century kabbalist, Isaac Arama, claimed that Psalm 67, later known as the "Menorah Psalm" because of its *seven verses (plus an introductory verse), was engraved on David's shield in the form of a menorah. Another tradition suggests that Isaiah 11:2, enumerating the six aspects of the divine spirit, was inscribed on the shield in the outer six triangles of the hexagram. 3 In time, the hexagram replaced this menorah in popular legends about David's shield, while the five-pointed pentagram became identified with the Seal of Solomon. The hexagram was also widely regarded as a messianic symbol, because of its legendary connection with David, ancestor of the *Messiah. On Sabbath eve, German Jews would light a star-shaped brass *oil *lamp called a Judenstern (Jewish star), emblematic of the idea that Shabbat was a foretaste of the Messianic Age. The hexagram was also popular among the followers of Shabbatai Tzevi, the false messiah of the 17th century, because of its messianic associations. Among Jewish mystics and wonderworkers, the hexagram was most commonly used as a magical protection against demons, often inscribed on the outside of *mezuzot and on amulets. Another use of the hexagram in medieval times was as a Jewish printer's mark or heraldic emblem, especially in Prague and among members of the Jewish Foa family, who lived in Italy and Holland. In 1354, Emperor Charles IV of Prague granted the Jews of his city the privilege of displaying their own *flag on state occasions. Their flag displayed a large six-pointed star in its center. A similar flag remains to this day in the Altneuschul, the oldest synagogue in Prague. From Prague, the "Magen David" spread to the Jewish communities of Moravia and Bohemia, and then eventually to Eastern Europe. In 17th-century Vienna, the Jewish quarter was separated from the Christian quarter by a boundary stone inscribed with a hexagram on one side and a cross on the other, the first instance of the six-pointed star being used to represent Judaism as a whole, rather than an individual community. With Jewish emancipation following the French Revolution, Jews began to look for a symbol to represent themselves comparable to the cross used by their Christian neighbors. They settled upon the six-pointed star, principally because of its heraldic associations. Its geometric design and architectural features greatly appealed to synagogue architects, most of whom were non-Jews. Ironically, the religious Jews of Europe and the Orient, already accustomed to seeing hexagrams on kabbalistic amulets, accepted this secularized emblem of the enlightened Jews as a legitimate Jewish symbol, even though it had no religious content or scriptural basis. When Theodor Herzl looked for a symbol for the new Zionist movement, he chose the Star of David because it was so well known and also because it had no religious associations. In time, it appeared in the center of the flag of the new Jewish state of Israel and has become associated with national redemption. During the Holocaust, the Nazis chose the *yellow star as an identifying badge required on the garments of all Jews. After the war, Jews turned this symbol of humiliation and death into a badge of honor. Today, the Star of David is the most popular and universally recognized symbol of the Jewish People. In his seminal work entitled the Star of Redemption (1912), Franz Rosenzweig framed his philosophy of Judaism around the image of the Jewish star, composed of two conceptual "triads," which together form the basis of Jewish belief: Creation, Revelation, and Redemption; God, Israel, and World. On the popular level, Jews continue to use the Jewish star as it was used for centuries: as a magical amulet of good luck and as a secularized symbol of Jewish identity. References: 1 Scholem, "The Star of David; History of a Symbol," in The Messianic Idea in Judaism, 271; 2 Gittin 68a; 3 Eder, the Star of David, 73 ​ Signifies: CONTINUITY, GOOD LUCK, HONOR, JEWISH IDENTITY, JEWISH PEOPLE, JUDAISM, REDEMPTION, SURVIVAL, ZIONISM. I pray the Lord will increase His will and purpose in your lives. In Messiah, Pastor Reuben ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask To return to ..... Ask Pastor Reuben Biblical Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to To Life L'Chaim Find life Eternal Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • HowNonJewBecomesRighteousInBiblicalTimes | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Re’uben How did (do) non-Jewish people become "righteous" before G od in Biblical times and today, according to Jewish Law? S H A L O M ! ________ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW _______ ​ Biblical Question: ​ How did (do) non-Jewish people become "righteous" before God in Biblical times and today, according to Jewish Law? ​ Rick from Colorado asks: ​ Dear Pastor Reuben, ​ I have been told by some Jewish people that I as a Gentile can become righteous to and before God without keeping the Jewish Law (613 Commandments). What really are they talking about? How can a Gentile become righteous before God? Is Jewish Law seen as the way or is there another according to Jewish Law? I appreciate your help. ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Dear Rick, shalom, The Seven Noahide Laws According to rabbinic tradition, non-Jews are obligated to abide by seven basic laws, called Noahide Laws, which are based on chapter nine of Genesis. Judaism never expected anyone but Jews to abide by all the laws of the Torah (5 books of Moses), but it did expect all human beings to live by elementary moral precepts. The 7 Laws are: ​ 1. To behave equitably in all relationships, & to establish courts of justice. 2. To refrain from blaspheming God's name. 3. To refrain from practicing idolatry. 4. To avoid immoral practices, specifically incest. 5. To avoid shedding the blood of one's fellow man. 6. To refrain from robbing one's fellow man. 7. To refrain from eating a limb torn from a live animal. ​ A Gentile who observes these is considered a righteous person (Chassid), & as such is assured a place in the world- to-come, just as any observant Jew who abides by all 613 precepts of the Torah . Gentiles can become righteous. ​ Of course this is not t he Biblical way, which is seen as only possible through acceptance of the Messiah's way by all people, Jew and Gentile (non-Jewish). I believe such way to 'eternal life' with God, in the world-to-come, is only by faith in the Messiah Jesus. On the basis of Jewish Scripture (the Bible) and historical facts, Yeshua (Jesus) is this expected anointed one from God, the " ONLY " Messiah, Redeemer, Savior. Romans 1:16-17 ​ What is born from the flesh is flesh, and what is born from the Spirit is spirit. Stop being amazed at my telling you that you must be born again from above! The wind blows where it wants to, and you hear its sound, but you don’t know where it comes from or where it’s going. That’s how it is with everyone who has been born from the Spirit.” Nakdimon replied, “How can this happen?” Yeshua answered him, “You hold the office of teacher in Isra’el, and you don’t know this? Yes, indeed! I tell you that what we speak about, we know; and what we give evidence of, we have seen; but you people don’t accept our evidence! If you people don’t believe me when I tell you about the things of the world, how will you believe me when I tell you about the things of heaven? No one has gone up into heaven; there is only the one who has come down from heaven, the Son of Man. Just as Moshe lifted up the serpent in the desert, so must the Son of Man be lifted up; so that everyone who trusts in him may have eternal life. “For God so loved the world that he gave his only and unique Son, so that everyone who trusts in him may have eternal life, instead of being utterly destroyed. For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but rather so that through him, the world might be saved. John 3:6-17 ​ God bless you, Reuben ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask ​ To Return To Jews, Genti les, & The Church To return to ..... Ask Pastor ReubenBiblical Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to To Life L'Chaim Find Eternal Life Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • GodTaking Human Form | Menorah Ministries

    Theophany and a Christophany. A Theophany is an appearance of God. A Christophany is a pre-incarnate appearance of Messiah-Christ in the Tanakh-Old Testament. The God of the Tanakh-Old Testament is not and cannot be any different from the God of the New Testament. First let’s look at the Oneness and The Plurality of God. ​ The Tanakh-Old Testament indicates that this one God did not act alone in either creation or redemption. There was Another with Him who, by definition, would have to be a part of this one God. It is easy to find God’s Co-creator in the book of Genesis: ​ Genesis 1:1 “In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth” . Here He is called “Elohim,” the plural of “El” or “Eloha,” the word for God. Why is the word plural? Critics would say it is “the plural of majesty,” similar to the “editorial we” when a royal person speaks in the plural. But “the plural of majesty” was unknown in Scripture. Furthermore, the plural pronoun is used for God: "Let us make humankind in our image, in the likeness of ourselves” in verse 26. And when God created man in His image, He did not create a single individual, but a family (Adam = mankind) to mirror the divine image. Some argue that God is speaking in the plural with the heavenly court in mind-the angels: “Let us make.” But angels did not “make” man, and man is not made in their image. God also uses the plural pronoun in Genesis 3:22; 11:6-7, and Isaiah 6:8. God appears in the Tanakh-Old Testament in different ways: 1. As an angel of the LORD* Acts 7:30-32 “After forty more years, an angel appeared to him in the desert near Mount Sinai in the flames of a burning thorn bush. When Moses saw this, he was amazed at the sight; and as he approached to get a better look, there came the voice of the LORD, 'I am the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.' But Moses trembled with fear and didn't dare to look. The angel of the LORD* appeared to him in a fire blazing from the middle of a bush. He looked and saw that although the bush was flaming with fire, yet the bush was not being burned up.” Exodus 3:2 He made Himself lower than Moses in order to speak to him. At the same time He insisted upon His divinity: “Take off your sandals, for the place where you are standing is holy ground” . (v. 5) Was He foreshadowing a future time when He would humble Himself to enter human flesh? When Hagar fled from her mistress, Sarah, The angel of the LORD found her by a spring in the desert,” and appeared to her. But he is also the LORD Himself: “So she named the LordI who had spoken with her El Ro'i [God of seeing],” because she said, "Have I really seen the One who sees me [and stayed alive]?" Genesis 16:7, 13 God told Abraham to sacrifice his son (Genesis 22), but at the crucial moment “the angel of the LORD” called from heaven reversing the command (v. 11). In His second speech He says, “I swear by myself, declares the LORD, that because you have done this...I will surely bless you” (vv. 15-17). Once again the LORD’s messenger is identified as the LORD. When Jacob blessed his grandsons, he recognized the Angel as God: “The God before whom my fathers Abraham and Isaac walked, the God who has led me all my life long to this day, the angel who has redeemed me from all evil, bless the lads" . Genesis 48:15-16 Judges 2:1 Now the angel of the LORD came up from Gilgal to Bokhim and said, "I brought you up out of Egypt, led you to the land I swore to your fathers and said, 'I will never break my covenant with you.’” During the exodus from Egypt “the angel of God” traveled with Israel in the pillar of cloud, separating Israel from the Egyptians. Exodus 14:19 The next morning it was ”the LORD” who looked down from the cloud and troubled the Egyptians (v. 24). God’s angel, traveling with Israel in the cloud, was the LORD. God tells more about this angel in Exodus 23: “Behold, I am sending an angel before you, to guard you on the way and to bring you to the place which I have prepared. Give heed to him and hearken to his voice, do not rebel against him, for he will not pardon your transgression; for my name is in him. . . . My angel will go ahead of you and bring you into the land of the Amorites, Hittites,” etc. (vv. 20-23). This angel is distinct from God -- he is sent by God. The distinction is further emphasized in God’s pronouncement after the golden calf incident: “I will send an angel before you... but I will not go with you”. Exodus. 33:2-3 But this “angel of the LORD” is also God. Judges 13:20-21 . As the “flame went up toward the sky from the altar, the angel of the LORD went up in the flame from the altar. When Manoach and his wife saw it, they fell to the ground on their faces. Then Manoach realized it had been the angel of the LORD, That they had seen God and lived.” 2. Apparently in physical form . Genesis 3:8 “They heard the voice of the LORD, God, walking in the garden at the time of the evening breeze, so the man and his wife hid themselves from the presence of the LORD, God, among the trees in the garden.” Genesis 18 On one occasion Abraham looked up and saw three men standing by. The text indicates that one was the LORD and the other two were angels. They took on physical bodies, feeling the heat of the day, needing their dusty feet to be washed, and eating an unkosher dinner of veal, bread, curds, and milk. Afterward the LORD walked with Abraham down the dusty road toward Sodom, professing to be on a mission to investigate for Himself whether conditions there were as bad as He had heard. He let Abraham bargain with Him about the fate of the city. Almighty God condescended to come down to earth as a man and dialog with his friend Abraham! Exodus 24:9-11 “Moses, Aaron, Nadav, Avihu and seventy of the leaders went up; and they saw the God of Isra'el. Under his feet was something like a sapphire stone pavement as clear as the sky itself. He did not reach out his hand against these notables of Isra'el; on the contrary, they saw God, even as they were eating and drinking.” In Joshua’s encounter with the LORD outside of Jericho, there are two Persons mentioned. “As commander of the army of the LORD I have now come.” Joshua 5:14 The commander of the army is presumably second in command to the LORD of the army. But in his instructions to Joshua regarding the conquest of Jericho, this commander of the army himself is called “the LORD.” “And the LORD said to Joshua, ‘See, I have given into your hand Jericho,’” . Joshua 6:22ff So again there is the LORD on earth speaking to Joshua in behalf of the LORD in heaven. 3. In visions and dreams Numbers 12:6-8 He said, "Listen to what I say: when there is a prophet among you, I, the LORD, make myself known to him in a vision, I speak with him in a dream. But it isn't that way with my servant Moses. He is the only one who is faithful in my entire household. With him I speak face to face and clearly, not in riddles; he sees the image of the LORD. So why weren't you afraid to criticize my servant Moses?” 4. In a cloud and a column of smoke Exodus 13:21 “the LORD went ahead of them in a column of cloud during the daytime to lead them on their way, and at night in a column of fire to give them light; thus they could travel both by day and by night.” Exodus 14:19-20 “Next, the angel of God, who was going ahead of the camp of Isra'el, moved away and went behind them; and the column of cloud moved away from in front of them and stood behind them. It stationed itself between the camp of Egypt and the camp of Isra'el - there was cloud and darkness here, but light by night there; so that the one did not come near the other all night long.” Exodus 34:5-6 “Then the LORD came down in the cloud and stood there with him and proclaimed His Name, the LORD. And he passed in front of Moses, proclaiming, ‘The LORD, the LORD, the compassionate and gracious God....’”. In the Bible God defines Himself by His great acts. He alone is the Creator. For says the LORD, who formed the earth and made it: “I am the LORD, and there is no other” . Isaiah 45:18 Remember …. He alone is the Redeemer. Would God Become a Man? In the Old Testament we have seen God becoming a man. Scripture tells us God will take on humanity before His birth at Bethlehem! Micah 5:2 says: “But you, Bethlehem near Efrat, so small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come forth to me the future ruler of Isra'el, whose origins are far in the past, back in ancient times.” Jesus told His opponents that He had known Abraham, “Abraham, your father, was glad that he would see my day; then he saw it and was overjoyed." "Why, you're not yet fifty years old," the Judeans replied, "and you have seen Abraham?" Yeshua-Jesus said to them, "Yes, indeed! Before Abraham came into being, I AM!" John 8:56-58 Isaiah predicted in explicit terms that God would be born in human flesh. “Therefore the LORD himself will give you people a sign: the young woman [virgin] will become pregnant, bear a son and name him 'Immanu El [God is with us]”. (7:14) Matthew applies this text to Yeshua-Jesus: “She will give birth to a son, and you are to name him Yeshua, [which means `ADONAI saves,'] because he will save his people from their sins." Matthew 1:21 The name of this child means God dwelling with humanity -- “God with us.” Isaiah’s prophecy of a child called Emmanuel, then, had a local application of deliverance and judgment, but became a type of a greater Child who would bring salvation to believers and judgment to unbelievers. Isaiah describes this Child as follows: “For to us a child is born, to us a son is given, and the government will be on his shoulders. And he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace”. Isaiah. 9:6 Isaiah explains what “mighty God” (“El Gibbor” in Hebrew) means, since he is the only one who uses the term. It occurs just a few verses later: “A remnant will return . . . to the mighty God” (10:21)! The term definitely means God Himself. Isaiah goes on to explain the expression “wonderful Counselor” -- “the LORD of hosts; he is wonderful in counsel” . (28:29) The other expressions, “Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace,” are equally divine. The text continues by saying that His government will have no end. It is indisputable that the passage is referring to God -- the God who would be born as a son to the human race! We have reviewed some Tanakh-Old Testament passages which reveal a second Person called God and Yahweh- hwhy who appeared in ancient times to His people as “the angel of the LORD,” as God in human form, and as God to be born a son to humanity. It is clear that the one God of the Shema includes a second Person whom we know as Yeshua Hamashiakh, Jesus Christ. "Sh'ma, Yisra'el! The LORD Eloheinu, The LORD echad [Hear, Isra'el! The LORD our God, The LORD is one.” Deuteronomy 6:4 The Shema itself tells us that there are two divine Persons, “The LORD our God” and “the LORD”? The Shema tells us that these two are one? The Hebrew word one (echad) is related to the verb yachad which means to unite. God, here, is a unity of two Beings in one. Two because God is love and love cannot exist alone. One because love unites Them in character, mind, and purpose. Clearly the plurality of God is visible and seen as a united single being. What difference does it make if Jesus is God or not? And how could He be God when the Bible says “The LORD our God, the LORD is one” ? Deuteronomy 6:4 If we believe that the Father, Son, and also the Holy Spirit are God, do we then worship three Gods? No, the Godhead is a unity of three Persons who are one in character and purpose, cemented together by love. Out of this love relationship all things animate and inanimate were created. Three gods would have to be lesser, rival gods, competing with each other for dominance. Their massive conflicts, as described in heathen pantheons, would place the whole cosmos in jeopardy. The security of the universe depends on the unity of the Godhead. See: www.menorah.org/the trinity.html But why must Jesus be God? Why couldn’t God create a savior to redeem us? First, because the task was so huge that only God could accomplish it. “I, I am the LORD, and besides me there is no savior”. Isaiah 43:11 Only the Creator Himself has power to re-create human beings in His image. Second, a created being has only one life to give. His life would not have sufficient value to redeem the millions of lost humanity. Only the life of the Creator Himself had sufficient value to redeem His creation. Third, only one equal with the Torah-law could meet the demands of the law. The law is an expression of the character of God and His instructions. Only God could satisfy His own requirements. Fourth, God was not willing to send a substitute. He would not stand aside and watch someone else suffer to vindicate His name. He chose to become personally involved in the struggle to save His lost family. Philippians 2:5-11 How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. ​ For More Information: Return to Who Is Yeshua-Jesus Page Return to Biblical-Traditional Jewish Feasts Page Return to Menorah's Web Page

  • The Real Jesus | Menorah Ministries

    Father & Holy Spirit =Jesus The Messiah in the Prophets The Messiah in the Prophets The Messiah in the Prophets Christ–Center of the O.T. The Messiah in the Prophets The Messiah in the Prophets The Messiah in the Prophets The Messiah in the Prophets The Messiah in the Prophets The Messiah in the Prophets The Messiah in the Prophets The Messiah in the Prophets 54 Reasons Jesus = Messiah Virgin-Birth of Jesus Messiah's Geneological Chart Messiah's Geneological Chart Messiah's Geneological Chart Resurrection of Jesus He is the visible image of the invisible God He is supreme over all creation, because in connection with him were created all things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones, lordships, rulers or authorities they have all been created through him and for him. He existed before all things, and he holds everything together. Colossians 1:15-17 Jesus the Soul Sheperd Video Yeshua Jesus Is The Messiah Jesus Was A Jew Isaiah 53 Jesus Name Study Messiah is God-Divine Father-Holy Spirit-Jesus Biblical Jesus Is God Virgin-Birth of Jesus The Sign of the Virgin When Was Jesus Born? Jesus Claim To Be God God Taking Human Form Who Is The Jewish Messiah Resurrection of Jesus 54 Reasons = Messiah Messiah's Geneology Jesus in the Prophets Messiah proclaimed to Israel The Trinity Jesus is in all of the Bible Jesus–Center of O.T. Jesus' Return for the Church Messiah to = Last Sacrifice Yeshua-Jesus in Torah Talmud Midrash Biblical Discussion Return to To Life L'Chaim Eternal Life Web Page Return To How Catholics May Know They Go To Heaven page Return to Menorahs Web Page Return To Israel Tours Detail page

  • One Billion People-This Is The Answer | Menorah Ministries

    Israel One Billion Pe ople-This Is The Answer by Rachmiel Frydland ​ There are over 1,000,000 people who believe that one of our people who lived in Eretz Yisrael (land of Israel) was unique, that he was the Messiah, the Ben Elohim (Son of God) . They believe in the Brit Hadasha (New Testament) which was written by Jews. They also believe in the Tanakh (Old Testament), in Moses, and the Jewish Prophets. As a result many of them have gone to distant parts of the earth. They have spent their lives teaching the heathen faith in the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob and in His Messiah, and translating for them our Bible. All this they did and do because they believe in a Jew, born of flesh and bone, that He is the Messiah of Jew and Gentile. Does it mean that they are all meshuga (crazy)? Or could it be that we have made a mistake in relation to Him? The Prophets Agree Our Prophets agree that our Messiah will also come to redeem the Gentiles. Ya'acov Avinu (Jacob our Patriarch) says in Bereshit (Genesis 49:10) that: "The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between His feet until Shiloh comes, and unto Him shall the gathering of the people be." (Hebrew: "Velo Yikhat Amim" = Him shall the nations obey). Yeshayah Hanovee (Isaiah the Prophet) says: "And in that day there shall be a root of Jesse, which shall stand for an ensign to the people; to it shall the Gentiles seek: and His rest shall be glorious." (11:10) Further it is written: And He (the Lord) said, It is a light thing that thou shouldest be my servant to raise up Israel. I will also give Thee for a light to the Gentiles, that Thou mayest be My salvation unto the end of the earth. (The "Servant" raises and restores Israel but is not identical with Israel). The Prophet Haggai (2:7) speaks of the desire of all nations (Hebrew: Goyim) who shall come. Will you then agree that at least part of these prophecies have been fulfilled in the Jewish Messiah whom the nations worship, namely Yeshua (Jesus) of Nazareth? Modern Rabbinical Thought Some of our Orthodox Rabbis told us the worst stories about Jesus. They said that He performed the miracles by stealing away the Shem Hamphorash (Sacred Name of Jehovah) and sewing it into the calf of His foot. Now does it stand to reason that God Himself would permit such a horrible impostor, as these Rabbis picture Him, to use God's Holy Name to perform miracles, and that millions of people should be misled to this very day? Modern Jewish Rabbis and scholars have a lofty opinion about Jesus. He is considered by some a great prophet, a great ethical teacher, the best of men and even the Messiah of the Gentiles. (Eg., Graetz, Montefiore, Joseph Klausner, Sholem Asch) Now if He was such a good man, he surely would not have told a lie when He continually claimed to be the Messiah. This Is The Answer We Jews who believe that He is the Messiah say with Yeshayah Hanovee (Isaiah 53:4-6): Surely He has borne our griefs and carried our sorrows. Yet we did esteem Him stricken, smitten of God and afflicted. But He was wounded for our transgressions; He was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon Him and by His stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way, & the Lord(Jehovah) hath laid on Him the iniquities of us all. For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given, and the government shall be upon His shoulder: and His Name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, The Mighty God, The Father of Eternity, The Prince of Peace. Isaiah 9:6 The time will come when Zechariah's prophecy will be fulfilled: They (the Jewish people) shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him, as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. (12:10) Reprinted by permission of Messianic Literature Outreach ​ For further information contact: To Return To Jews Gentiles and the Church Web Page To return to The Real Jesus Page To return To Salvation Testimonies Page To return to Torah, Talmud, Midrash, Biblical Discussion Articles To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Kingdom of Heaven Suffers Violence | Menorah Ministries

    ASK PASTOR REUBEN Kingdom of Heaven suffers violence and the violent take it by force? S H A L O M ! _______ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW ______ ​ Biblical Question: Dear Pastor Reuben, ​ I have been reading some of the articles from the Menorah home page that are very interesting, I have some questions that I would like to ask you. I am a Christian believer who is beginning to see a missed richness in our generally accepted faith today in the church. ​ I may be wrong however, it seems that there are sayings and doctrines that we do not perhaps fully understand in a modern western society, one I have no idea about is the 'kingdom of Heaven suffers volience and the violent take it by force', if you know the explanation to this I would dearly love to know it. Thanks, Graham ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Shalom Graham, ​ I understand that the reference to Matt. 11:12 "violence, etc." means a personal breaking through the opposing multitude, in order to enter in through the narrow door. Which was in opposition to the many, the Pharisees and Jews generally, who were seeking to enter in, in their own way, never doubting success, but who would discover their terrible mistake. When we remember, that in the Sermon on the Mount, the call was only to 'enter in', we feel that we have now reached a period, when the access to the 'narrow door' was obstructed by the enmity of so many, and when it needed "violence" to break through, and 'take the Kingdom' 'by force'. Please read this whole section and see then that the Lord will say He knows not some who got close to 'in' but He knows them not. ​ It is a struggle to correctly enter not by the wide door, by the narrow door provided by God. Hope this helps your walk with the Lord., ​ Pastor Reuben ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask To return to ..... Ask Pastor Reuben Biblical Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to To Life L'Chaim Find Eternal Life Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • CanAJewStopBeingJewishIfBelieveInJesus | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Re’uben Does a Jew stop being Jewish when they believe in Jesus? S H A L O M ! _______ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW _______ ​ Biblical Question: ​ T. H. from Denver asks: ​ Dear Pastor Reuben, Recently I was told by a rabbi and several other people that I was no longer a Jew because of my having accepted Yeshua (Jesus) as Lord & Savior. As a Believer in Jesus as Messiah I know they are wrong but, can you help me? ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Dear T.H., shalom, ​ First let us understand that people are born by the flesh into one cultural ethnic group or another due to no choice of their own. Second, a spiritual faith system is something a person chooses for themselves. A Jew does not give up their Jewish Heritage, culture and identity when they accept the Messiah Jesus. Rather, they gain important Jewish values; atonement as described by Moses, Israel's promised Messiah, and a personal relationship with the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. So they do not give up; they gain. They do not lose their Jewishness, they intensify it in a Biblical way. They become a Messianic Jew, a Jewish follower of the Jewish Messiah promised by the Jewish Scriptures. Remember the Jewishness of the Biblical faith. (see John 4:22; Romans 9:4-5; and 11:11-27; Acts 26:6-7) The authors of Scripture were Jewish, as were Jesus and the apostles. And they all, including the "Jew of Jews" Paul, retained their Jewishness. (Acts 2:26, 3:1, 21:21-26, 22:3; 28:17; I Cor. 7:18) ​ This does not mean that a Gentile becomes a Jew when he believes in Jesus, but neither does a Jew stop being Jewish when he accepts the Messiah. ​ Source and reference: The Bible (Old & New Covenants) The Olive Tree Connection by Dr. John Fischer. Jews & Jesus by Zola Levitt In His service, ​ Pastor Reuben ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask To return to ..... Ask Pastor ReubenBiblical Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to To Life L'Chaim Find Eternal Life Main Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Planned Giving | Menorah Ministries

    We appreciate your consideration in planning your giving through your estate planning, gifting to the Lord’s Gospel work beyond your earthly life. God bless and keep you! Please consult your legal and tax professionals and call us at any time. 303-355-2009 menorah@menorah.org www.menorah.org Giving Through Securities What are the Advantages of Making a Gift of Securities? · You avoid all capital gains tax when y ou contribute long-term appreciated securities to Menorah Ministries. · You receive a charitable income tax deduction equal to the securities' fair market value if they have been held longer than one year. -The fair market value can be deducted against up to 30% of your adjusted gross income and any excess deductions can be carried forward into as many as five additional tax years. Giving Through Real Estate By using real estate to fund a gift, you may be able to make a gift to Chosen People Ministries of a size that would otherwise not have been possible. Whether it is a house, farm, vacation home, office building or plot of undeveloped land, your property can be a very helpful gift for you and for Menorah Ministries. A real estate gift can provide you with a combination of advantages and tax savings. Some of the benefits of a real estate gift accepted by Menorah Ministries include: · An immediate charitable income tax deduction in the year you make the gift. · Avoiding capital gains taxes at the time of the transfer. · The opportunity to live in your home or use the property for the rest of your life. · Knowing that the property will be excluded from any estate and inheritance taxes. Because each property and gift plan is unique, any real estate gift will require careful consideration by your legal and tax advisers. They can explain how advantageous a real estate gift can be. Giving Through Life Insurance Life Insurance, Retirement and Savings Accounts How to Give When Your Needs Change Life insurance, pension plans, individual retirement accounts, certificates of deposit, and savings accounts are convenient gift options that people often overlook. Giving Memorial Gifts Endowments and Memorials: The Gifts that Endure Menorah Ministries is an organization dedicated to bringing the Gospel to Jewish people. What better way to pay tribute to someone that has touched your life and who loved the Lord and the Jewish people than through a memorial gift to Menorah Ministries? ​ Memorial gifts are very flexible. Every gift outlined in this web site can be made in memory of a loved one. Giving Through Wills and Bequests A bequest is one of the most meaningful legacies you can provide for your family, friends, and Menorah Ministries. Your bequest helps ensure that your wishes for the future of Jewish evangelism will be honored. We have been able to sustain many of today's outreach programs due to the generosity and vision of our former supporters. ​ If you are planning to write your will, or if you already have one, you may want to consider these common ways to make a bequest: ​ Specific Dollar Amount "I give, devise and bequeath to Menorah Ministries, 393 S. Ivy St. Denver CO 80224, $____________ ." Percentage of Your Estate "I give, devise and bequeath to Menorah Ministries, 393 S. Ivy St. Denver CO 80224, ___________% of my estate." ​ Residue of Your Estate A residuary bequest to Menorah Ministries directs that all the residue, or a percentage of the residue, of your estate be paid to the ministry after all debts, taxes, expenses, and all other bequests have been paid. "All the residue of my estate, including, without limitation, real and personal property, I give, devise and bequeath to Menorah Ministries, 393 S. Ivy St. Denver CO 80224." Specific Asset from your Estate "I give, devise and bequeath _______ (insert a description of the asset here, such as stocks, bonds, mutual fund shares, real estate, works of art or antiques) to Menorah Ministries, 393 S. Ivy St. Denver CO 80224." Contingent Bequests You can name Menorah Ministries to receive all or some of your estate if your primary heirs predecease you. You might do this to protect your estate from expensive litigation or from ultimate distribution to the state or unintended beneficiaries. "If _____________ (insert the name of your heir) predecease me or disclaims any interest in ____________ (describe the asset or portion of your estate here), I give such property to Menorah Ministries, 393 S. Ivy St. Denver CO 80224." ​ Giving Through Trusts Trusts are formal legal arrangements designating a trustee to receive and hold legal title to property and administer the property according to your instructions. Trusts can arrange for any financial or administrative function. Trusts can be very simple, or they can be as complex as necessary to meet your various financial, charitable and personal goals. Retirement account assets, if left to anyone other than a spouse, may be subject to very high taxation. By designating Menorah Ministries as recipient of any benefits remaining in your retirement plan, or by using them during your lifetime to be used in the Lord’s work is important to think about. ​ To return to Donation Support Page To return to Menorah's Resource Website ​

  • Torah, Talmud, Midrash Discussion | Menorah Ministries

    TORAH - TALMUD - MIDRASH BIBLICAL DISCUSSION ARTICLES ​ ​ ~ Is The Torah for Today? ~Who Is The Jewish Messiah? ~Yeshua In the Tenach..The Name of JESUS In the Old Testament ~ How Did Daniel Decipher It? ~Our Tragic Mistake... Messiah's Mistaken Identity ~Messianic Rabbinic Dialogue of Yeshua Jesus ~When Talmud Is Right Who Is the Jewish Messiah? ~The Rabbis Speak About the Messiah ~Messiah Promised "In the Beginning" To Eve ~Messiah Promised to Noah's Son - Shem ~Messiah Out of The Seed of The Patriarchs ~Judah Named Successor to Messianic Promise ~Moses Called as Prophet and Priest but Not Messiah ~Messiah: A Branch from Jesse ~Messiah Is Son of David and Son of God ~Messiah Of the Linage of Solomon and Hezekiah ~Messiah To Descend From Jehoiachin and Zerubbabel ~ Messiah After the Order of Melchizedek ~ Messiah To Be The Final Sacrifice ~The Suffering Messiah Ben Joseph ~The Exalted Messiah Ben David ~Messiahs Of the Wrong Seed ~The Seed of Messiah ~Yeshua Is the Messiah! ~Why Messianic Jews For further information please contact: To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Yeshua Jesus In Bible Prophecy | Menorah Ministries

    Yeshua-Jesus Prophecy The Whole History of Salvation in the Light of the Tehillim-Psalms ​ Yeshua said to them, "This is what I meant when I was still with you and told you that everything written about me in the Torah of Moshe, the Prophets and the Psalms had to be fulfilled. Luke 24:44 The Messiah Was Despised: But I am a worm, not a man, scorned by everyone, despised by the people. Tehillah/Psalm 22:6 You know how I am insulted, shamed and disgraced; before you stand all my foes. Insults have broken my heart to the point that I could die. I hoped that someone would show compassion, but nobody did; and that there would be comforters, but I found none. They put poison in my food; in my thirst, they gave me vinegar to drink. Tehillah 69:19-22 Was Rejected: The very rock that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone! Tehillah/Psalm 118:22 Was Mocked: All who see me jeer at me; they sneer and shake their heads: "He committed himself to ADONAI,so let him rescue him! Let him set him free if he takes such delight in him!" Tehillah/Psalm 22:7-8 Your enemies, ADONAI, have flung their taunts, flung them in the footsteps of your anointed one. Blessed be ADONAI forever. Amen. Amen. Tehillah/Psalm 89:51-52 Was Whipped: The plowmen plowed on my back; wounding me with long furrows. Tehillah/Psalm 129:3 Was Derided: I am estranged from my brothers, an alien to my mother's children, Insults have broken My heart to the point that I could die. I hoped that someone would show compassion, but nobody did; and that there would be comforters, but I found none. Tehillah/Psalm 69:8, 20 Was Impaled On A Stake-Cross: My God! My God! Why have you abandoned me? Why so far from helping me, so far from my anguished cries? My God, by day I call to you, but you don't answer; likewise at night, but I get no relief. /Psalm 22:1-2 I am poured out like water; all my bones are out of joint; my heart has become like wax it melts inside me; my mouth is as dry as a fragment of a pot, my tongue sticks to my palate; you lay me down in the dust of death. Dogs are all around me, a pack of villains closes in on me like a lion [at] my hands and feet. I can count every one of my bones, while they gaze at me and gloat. Tehillah/Psalm 22:14-17 Was Thirsty: my mouth is as dry as a fragment of a pot, my tongue sticks to my palate… Tehillah/Psalm 22:15 Was Given Wine Mixed With Gall While On The Stake-Cross: in my thirst, they gave me vinegar to drink. Tehillah/Psalm 69:21b Lots Were Casted For His garments: They divide my garments among themselves; for my clothing they throw dice. Tehillah 22:18/Psalm His Bones were Not Broken: He protects all his bones; not one of them gets broken. Tehillah/Psalm 34:20 He Rose From The Dead: for you will not abandon me to Sh'ol, you will not let your faithful one see the Abyss. Tehillah/Psalm 16:10 He Ascended To Heaven: After you went up into the heights, you led captivity captive, Our God is a God who saves; from ADONAI [God] Adonai [the Lord] comes escape from death. Tehillah/Psalm 68:18a, 20 He Is At The Right Hand Of Adonai-God: Adonai says to my Lord, "Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool." Tehillah/Psalm 110:1 Help the man at your right hand, the son of man you made strong for yourself. Tehillah/Psalm 80:17 He Is The High Priest: "You are a cohen forever, to be compared with Malki-Tzedek." Tehillah/Psalm 110:4 He Will Judge The Nations: You said, "I made a covenant with the one I chose, I swore to my servant David, 'I will establish your dynasty forever, build up your throne through all generations.'" (Selah) Tehillah/Psalm 89:3-4 His reign Is Eternal: I have sworn by my holiness once and for all; I will not lie to David, his dynasty will last forever, his throne like the sun before me. It will be established forever, like the moon, which remains a faithful witness in the sky." Tehillah/Psalm 89:35-37 He Is The Son Of God: "I will proclaim the decree: ADONAI said to me, 'You are my son; today I became your father. Tehillah/Psalm 2:7 He Spoke In Parables: I will speak to you in parables and explain mysteries from days of old. Tehillah/Psalm 78:2 He Calmed The Storm: You control the raging of the sea; when its waves rear up, you calm them. Tehillah/Psalm 89:9 The People Sang Hosanna To Him: Please, ADONAI! Save us! Please, ADONAI! Rescue us! Blessed is he who comes in the name of ADONAI. We bless you from the house of ADONAI. Tehillah 118:25-26 He Is Blessed For Ever: I address my verses to the king; My tongue is the pen of an expert scribe. You are the most handsome of men; gracious speech flows from your lips. For God has blessed you forever. Tehillah/Psalm 45:1b-2 Your throne, God, will last forever and ever; you rule your kingdom with a scepter of equity. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness. Therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of joy in preference to your companions Tehillah/Psalm 45:6-7 I will make your name known through all generations; thus the peoples will praise you forever and ever. Tehillah/Psalm 45:17 He Will Come In His Glory In The Last Days: The nations will fear the name of Adonai and all the kings on earth your glory, when Adonai has rebuilt Tziyon, and shows himself in his glory, ….from heaven Adonai surveys the earth …. to proclaim the name of Adonai in Tziyon and his praise in Yerushalayim when peoples and kingdoms have been gathered together to serve Adonai. …. God, your years last through all generations; …. In the beginning, you laid the foundations of the earth; heaven is the work of your hands. …. But you remain the same, and your years will never end. Tehillah/Psalm 102:15-27 Ref. The Messiah in the Old Testament, Risto Santala, p.110b Keren Ahvah Meshhiit , Jerusalem 1992 All Scripture from The Complete Jewish Bible How about you? Have you received your Redeemer, the Stone whom the builders rejected? In Him is life, light and joy and in His sacrifice is forgiveness of sin. For further information contact ​ Return To Bible Torah Prophecy God's Instructions Page ​ Return To The Real Yeshua-Jesus Page To Return To L'Chaim - To Life! Page ​ To return to Torah, Talmud, Midrash, Biblical Discussion Articles ​ To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Israel Tours Detail | Menorah Ministries

    The Land of the Bible! I S R A E L Study Tours Dear friend, shalom! Do you ….. HAVE A GROUP THAT WANTS TO GO ? DO YOU WANT TO GO? LAND OF THE BIBLE - 14 DAY ISRAEL Walking TOUR Not just another 'normal’ tour .... it is a real step into Jewish & Israeli life of today & that of Bible times. SMALL GROUP SIZE PREFERRED Live in the 'Old City' of Jerusalem … on the bank of the Sea of Galilee, and more! Come With Us To Walk The Holy Land ! ! We will fellowship and worship with Jewish Christian ministries and congregations. This wonderful time will be much more than just a normal tour as I and my wife Donna have personally lived and extensively traveled and ministered in Israel. I strongly believe in joining with the culture and people to experience the vibrant spirit of God's chosen people and land. Each evening will be special times also as we go to local activities, synagogue and experience local Israeli life!! This truly is a fantastic opportunity to see the land of your Lord and Savior, Messiah Jesus! Our ministry goal is to edify & equip you to better know your Biblical roots and to truly increase in the joy of serving God within your own church life. Looking to sharing this special time with you, in the Lord, Messianic Jewish Pastor Reuben Drebenstedt Executive Director Menorah Ministries Menorah Israel Study Tours 303-355-2009 - Fax 303-339-0365 email ​ To return to Israel Study Trips Page To return to the Messiah's Genealogical Chart page To return to Menorah’s Web Page

  • False Religions | Menorah Ministries

    Truth vs. Error 7 Biblical Fundamentals Compared to 13 False World Faith Religions ​ TRUTH.... "They received the Wor d with all readiness of mind, and searched the Scriptures daily, whether those things were so." Acts 17:11 Armstrongism vs. The Bible Christian Science vs. The Bible Eastern Mystism vs. The Bible Freemasonry vs The Bible Islam vs The Bible Jehovah Witness vs. The Bible Mormonism vs. The Bible - Mormon brother letter from a brother -Mormon Rebuttal and Response to Such -The Bible vs Joseph Smith Video -The Bible vs the Book of Morman New Apostolic Church vs. The Bible Roman Catholic vs Biblical Christianity Spiritualism vs. The Bible The Way International vs. The Bible Unification Church vs. The Bible Unity vs. The Bible World Mission Society Church of God - Biblical Answers To the World Mission Society Church of God - Encountering the Cult of Ahnsahnghong ​ Other Information: False and 'Near Christian' Religions Islam and Why All Religions Cannot Be True Suggested(recommended) Reading The Bible! The Real Yeshua/Jesus Biblical--Historical! ​ To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • About Our Logo | Menorah Ministries

    The M e n o r a h and the S h e e p Our logo is very special and unique as it represents the lost sheep of Israel making tishuvah (repentance from one's own ways, path, and sin) and turning to follow God's way! The 7 branch Biblical Menorah is the symbol of that correct way. The Tabernacle's menorah (Exodus 25:31-37 ) was a constant testimony to the priests that they must not walk in the light of man's wisdom or human nature but that they could fulfill the service of God only as they walk in the light provided by Him. The seven-post menorah was both a light and a light bearer, a symbol of faith and hope The menorah is a symbol of the true Church (Body of Messiah) as a light bearer in the world. Our Lord (Yeshua) Jesus said: You are the light of the world… Matthew 5:15 Be dressed in readiness, and keep your lamps (lights) shining... Luke 12:35 You appear as lights in the world… Philippians 2:15 Believers in Jesus the Messiah are to reflect His light, even as He was and is the Light. The menorah is a perfect, fitting and divine symbol of our Lord. He was the true light which, coming into the world, enlightens every man… John 1:9 David in Psalm 36:9 says, In thy light shall we see light Whether it is direct light from Jesus, or diffused light through the Christian, all light is given to us for perception. In Jesus the Messiah's light, we shall truly see light! Menorah - Menorah Ministries - is a witness for God's salvation and the light of Jesus Christ. We are called to be a true and faithful witness for Him .....first for the Jews, then for the Gentiles. Romans 1:16-17 As Believers in Messiah Yeshua we have the joy of celebrating our Biblical Jewish roots in our Savior. With a servant's heart, we strive to proclaim God's love, redemption and salvation in Messiah Jesus. John 3:16 Psalm 2:1-12 Romans 11:17-21 Ephesians 2:8-9 Isaiah 52:13-53:12 Ministry Publications - In addition to our multiple types of literature and tracts for presenting the Gospel, we minister to Christians by publishing The Menorah Light periodical and a frequent Mission Report. These are sent free to Christians who take an interest in our ministry. They contain useful information on the Jewish roots of Christianity, our ministry news and inspiring instructional articles. Building A Reputation For responsible Evangelism and ministry * References Gladly Provided * To Return to G entile Christian Convert To Judaism Web Page To Return to Menorah's Web Page

  • JehovahSameAsAllahToBeUsedByChristians | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Pastor Re’uben ​ Should Jehovah God Be Called Allah? S H A L O M ! ______ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW ______ Biblical Question: ​ Dear Pastor Reuben, I am in a group that has Arab Christians in it and they refer to Jehovah/God as "Allah”. They say that Arab Christians before the onset of Mohammed and Islam called Jehovah "Allah” ​ I responded that Jehovah should never be called "Allah" because "Allah" was a pre-Islamic god worshipped by pagan Arabs at the Kaaba. I appreciate your help as this does not seem to have an easy answer and I do not want to irritate Arab Christians if I'm wrong. I appreciate your thoughts on this. Blessings, Brad Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Shalom Brad, I greatly appreciate your concerns and stand with you. We work a lot in face to face witnessing situations taking the Gospel to Muslims. Two Islamic scholar Christian friends gave me these answers as I revisited the topic with them: 1. There are factual errors here. The pre-Islamic use of “Allah” was widely used in the polytheistic Arab communities. The reason that “Allah” became a name for the Judeo-Christian Jehovah was that Christian missionaries in the Middle East (late 2nd century-600 A.D.) used the name “El-Ilah” or “Allah” for the Arabs to understand that Jehovah was above their other gods. The use of “Allah” by Arab Christians in the early centuries after Christ ascended is attributable to lax missionary language in their attempt to get the polytheistic Arabs to understand a monotheistic God. Mohammed simply co-opted “El-Ilah” or “Allah” after this to help bring Arab polytheists into monotheism. 2. Yes, Allah was used by pagan, pre-Islamic Arabs to refer to a specific idol, who had three daughters named Al'Lat, Manat, and 'Uzzah (or al-Uzzah). Muslims claim the Allah they worship is the same God that Christians and Jews worship - except in Malaysia, where it is against the law in this Muslim nation for any Christian literature to claim Christians and Muslims worship the same God. There is vague ambiguity among Muslims, because Allah is the name of their God, and it is also a generic name for God. So if you ask them, does Hinduism have thousands of Allahs, they might say no, because there is just one Allah. Then you can ask what about Hinduism having thousands of that they worship? They would say idols. Then what did the pre-Islamic Arabs worship that had three daughters named Al-Lat, Manat, and 'Uzzah? Why did Mohammed never explain to these same pre-Islamic Arabs who Allah was? Mohammed's father was named 'Abdullah meaning "slave of Allah". A tribe of Jews was called 'Abdullah bin Salam in Bukhari vol.5 book 59 ch.13 no.362 p.241 It is true the Christians prior to Mohammed used the named "Allah" for the One True God. It may have come from the Semitic word for El. The people of Ugarit (in northern Phoenicia) also used the word "El" for God, and they used it for a specific deity in their pantheon. Today, many Arabic Bibles use the name "Allah" for God. Other Arabic Bibles do not. Arabic-speaking Christians disagree about the best name to use today for God. Indonesian Bibles also use the word "Allah" for God. So while I would not use the name "Allah" for God in English, I would not get too hung up on whether a particular Arabic-speaking Christian used the word Allah for God or not. However, we need to make it clear that regardless of names, Christians and Muslims do not worship the same God, any more than all religions that worship a Creator worship the same God. Likewise Muslims claim to honor Jesus, but it is a different Jesus than Christians have, not the Son of God. When a Muslims tells me that Christians and Muslims worship the same God, one response I give is as follows: Christians worship the Father. Do Muslims worship the Father. [No] Christians worship Jesus, God the Son. Do Muslims worship Jesus, God the Son. [No] Christians worship the Holy Spirit. Do Muslims worship the Holy Spirit as the third person of the Godhead. [No] Who told you that Christians and Muslims worship the same God? Which part of the Trinity do Christians and Muslims both worship? We Brad, clearly see the error as you do. That it is not correct in a true Christians life to insist on using a name that is primarily used to = the god of Islam when most of the world understands it as such. Why confuse the matter among the unsaved or misguided/misinformed? Certainly seems only to further worship of a false god to me. Hope I have been of some help. See: False and Near Christian Religions God bless you, Pastor Reuben Drebenstedt, director Menorah-Menorah Ministries- ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask To return to ..... Ask Pastor Reuben Biblical Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • Biblical Archaeology Videos | Menorah Ministries

    Biblical Archaeology Videos Sorry some video starting points could not be trimmed. To enlarge above and all pictures, click your mouse right button then magnify. Sodom burned—Zoar did NOT: The full story of the discovery of the Cities of the Plain! HD |Apr 06, 2024. Join Joel as he tells the exciting story of how the Cities of the Plain were discovered, including Lot's Cave, and why it matters. Archaeological Evidence for Giants in the Bible? HD |Jun 10, 2022 by Expedition Bible. The Bible talks about giants, but has any archaeological evidence for giants been found? Genesis refers to the Nephilim. Is this where Jesus was tried by Pontius Pilate? Sep 23, 2022 by Expedition Bible. In the 1970s, excavations of the western side of Jerusalem's Old City uncovered a very large gate that led into Herod the Great's castle. King David's Tomb: Part 1 -- Finding It HD |Jul 01, 2022 by Expedition Bible In 1913, Raymond Weill was the first Jewish archaeologist to excavate the most ancient part of Jerusalem. The Temple Mount--Where it IS. Where it ISN'T. What is it FOR? HD |Oct 27, 2023 by Expedition Bible The Temple Mount has been standing on Jerusalem's holy hill, Mount Moriah, for thousands of years. Search for the Tower of Babel HD |Mar 03, 2023 by Expedition Bible Genesis 11:1-9 tells the story of the Tower of Babel: rebellion, confusion, and scattering. But do we know where that tower stood? Welcome to Hell. The Hinnom Valley Tomb. Joel Kramer, SourceFlix. HD |Dec 04, 2019 by Biblicaltours , does not do conventional tours! This is the most extraordinary location few people will ever see! Bible Evidence Unearthed at Nineveh! HD |Dec 02, 2023 Join Joel as he goes to Nineveh, modern-day Mosul in Iraq, and tells the story of the archaeological discovery unearthed there. Exploring Babylon and the Prophecies Against Her HD |Jun 17, 2022 byExpedition Bible. I recently traveled to Iraq and lived a dream of exploring ancient Babylon. What does the once-glorious city look like today. The 10 Lost Tribes of Israel - Are They Really Lost? HD |May 02, 2022 by Expedition Bible. After Assyria's brutal invasion, the 10 northern tribes of Israel were exiled and scattered among the nations. King David's Tomb: Part 2 - Which Is The Correct Tomb? HD |Jul 08, 2022|by Expedition Bible There are two tombs of King David in Jerusalem. One is in a synagogue where Jews worship and tourists visit today. Masada. Joel Kramer, SourceFlix. HD |Dec 20, 2019 by Biblicaltours Herod the Great built two palaces for himself on the fortified mountain of Masada between 31 and 37 BC Evidence That King David’s Descendants Survived In Exile HD |Sep 09, 2022 by Expedition Bible When Nebuchadnezzar destroyed Jerusalem, it appeared that King David's descendants had not survived. Archaeology of Jacob's Well at Shechem HD |Nov 11, 2022 by Expedition Bible If there is one place where we can know for certain that Jesus was right there, it is at Jacob's Well. How can we know? Searching for The Garden of Eden's Pishon River D |Jan 27, 2024|by Expedition Bible. Genesis chapter 2 describes the location of the Garden of Eden in relationship to four rivers. Three of these rivers are known. PENIEL: Where Jacob saw the Face of God and lived! HD |May 26, 2023byExpedition Bible. Join Joel as he explores the ancient site which Jacob named Peniel. Located in the modern-day country of Jordan. Jesus' Tomb Explained--the evidence & the story! HD |Jul 21, 2023 by Expedition Bible. Join Joel as he travels from Israel to Rome to Turkey, to explain the evidence for and tell the story. MAMRE -- Where God Appeared to Abraham! HD |Aug 18, 2023 by Expedition Bible. It is often said that there is no archaeological proof for Abraham. If that is the case, then what is the explanation? The Exodus Pharaoh EXPLAINED! HD |Apr 28, 2023 by Expedition Bible Who was the Pharaoh of the Exodus? There are various theories. However, by examining evidence found in the Bible, it is possible to determine. Jericho Unearthed: The Archaeology of Jericho Explained HD |Aug 12, 2022 by Expedition Bible The experts agree--the city walls of Jericho fell down. But does archaeology agree with the Biblical account? The Mount of Olives. Ascension and Return of Jesus Christ. Israel. Joel Kramer. HD |Dec 02, 2019 by Biblicaltours Takes us to the 4th century Byzantine Church of Eleona located on the Mount of Olives. Return To How To Find Eternal Life Page Return to Menorahs Web Page

  • Biblical Jesus Is God | Menorah Ministries

    Jesus Christ is God There is only one God Sh'ma, Yisra'el! ADONAI Eloheinu, ADONAI echad [Hear, Isra'el! ADONAI our God, ADONAI is one] D'varim/Deuteronomy 6:4 -Old Testament Passages (Adonai=Ahdohni/Lord God) -Yesha'yahu/Isaiah 7:14 - Therefore Adonai himself will give you people a sign: the young woman will become pregnant, bear a son and name him 'Immanu El [God is with us]. . -Yesha'yahu/Isaiah 9:6 - For a child is born to us, a son is given to us; dominion will rest on his shoulders, and he will be given the name Pele-Yo'etz El Gibbor Avi-'Ad Sar-Shalom [Wonder of a Counselor, Mighty God, Father of Eternity, Prince of Peace], -Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 23:5-6 - "The days are coming," says ADONAI when I will raise a righteous Branch for David. He will reign as king and succeed, he will do what is just and right in the land. In his days Y'hudah will be saved, Isra'el will live in safety, and the name given to him will be ADONAI Tzidkenu [ADONAI our righteousness]. -Mikhah/Micah 5:2 - But you, Beit-Lechem near Efrat, so small among the clans of Y'hudah, out of you will come forth to me the future ruler of Isra'el, whose origins are far in the past, back in ancient times. -Mal'akhi/Malachi 3:1-2 - "Look! I am sending my messenger to clear the way before me; and the Lord, whom you seek, will suddenly come to his temple. Yes, the messenger of the covenant, in whom you take such delight - look! -----Here he comes," says ADONAI-Tzva'ot. But who can endure the day when he comes? Who can stand when he appears? For he will be like a refiner's fire, like the soap maker’s lye. -Tehillah/Psalm 2:11-12- Serve ADONAI with fear; rejoice, but with trembling. Kiss the son, lest he be angry, and you perish along the way, when suddenly his anger blazes. How blessed are all who take refuge in him. -Tehillah/Psalm 45:1, 6-7 - For the leader. Set to "Lilies." By the descendants of Korach. A maskil. A lovesong: My heart is stirred by a noble theme; I address my verses to the king; My tongue is the pen of an expert scribe. ...Your throne, God, will last forever and ever; you rule your kingdom with a scepter of equity. You have loved righteousness and hated wickedness. Therefore God, your God, has anointed you with the oil of joy in preference to your companions. -Tehillah/Psalm 110:1-3 - A psalm of David: ADONAI says to my Lord, "Sit at my right hand, until I make your enemies your footstool." ADONAI will send your powerful scepter out from Tziyon, so that you will rule over your enemies around you. On the day your forces mobilize, your people willingly offer themselves in holy splendors from the womb of the dawn; the dew of your youth is yours. New Testament Passages -Mattityahu/Matthew 1:23- "The virgin will conceive and bear a son, and they will call him `Immanu El."a (The name means, "God is with us.") -Mark 2:5-11- Seeing their trust, Yeshua said to the paralyzed man, "Son, your sins are forgiven." Some Torah-teachers sitting there thought to themselves, "How can this fellow say such a thing? He is blaspheming! Who can forgive sins except God?" But immediately Yeshua, perceiving in his spirit what they were thinking, said to them, "Why are you thinking these things? Which is easier to say to the paralyzed man? `Your sins are forgiven'? or `Get up, pick up your stretcher and walk'? But look! I will prove to you that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins." He then said to the paralytic, "I say to you: get up, pick up your stretcher and go home!" -Luke 5:20-24- When Yeshua saw their trust, he said, "Friend, your sins are forgiven you." The Torah-teachers and the P'rushim began thinking, "Who is this fellow that speaks such blasphemies? Who can forgive sin except God?" But Yeshua, knowing what they were think ing, answered, "Why are you turning over such thoughts in your hearts? Which is easier to say? `Your sins are forgiven you'? or `Get up and walk'? But look! I will prove to you that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins." He then said to the paralytic, "I say to you: get up, pick up your mattress and go home!" -Yochanan/John 1:1-3, 14 - In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. All things came to be through him, and without him nothing made had being. -Yochanan/John 1:18- No one has ever seen God; but the only and unique Son, who is identical with God and is at the Father's side -- he has made him known. -Yochanan/John 5:17-26- But he answered them, "My Father has been working until now, and I too am working." This answer made the Judeans all the more intent on killing him -- not only was he breaking Shabbat; but also, by saying that God was his own Father, he was claiming equality with God. Therefore, Yeshua said this to them: "Yes, indeed! I tell you that the Son cannot do anything on his own, but only what he sees the Father doing; whatever the Father does, the Son does too. For the Father loves the Son and shows him everything he does; and he will show him even greater things than these, so that you will be amazed. Just as the Father raises the dead and makes them alive, so too the Son makes alive anyone he wants. The Father does not judge anyone but has entrusted all judgment to the Son, so that all may honor the Son as they honor the Father. Whoever fails to honor the Son is not honoring the Father who sent him. Yes, indeed! I tell you that whoever hears what I am saying and trusts the One who sent me has eternal life -- that is, he will not come up for judgment but has already crossed over from death to life! Yes, indeed! I tell you that there is coming a time -- in fact, it's already here -- when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who listen will come to life. For just as the Father has life in himself, so he has given the Son life to have in himself. -Yochanan/John 8:57-59- "Why, you're not yet fifty years old," the Judeans replied, "and you have seen Avraham?" Yeshua said to them, "Yes, indeed! Before Avraham came into being, I AM!" At this, they picked up stones to throw at him; but Yeshua was hidden and left the Temple grounds. -Yochanan/John 10:28-39- and I give them eternal life. They will absolutely never be destroyed, and no one will snatch them from my hands. My Father, who gave them to me, is greater than all; and no one can snatch them from the Father's hands. I and the Father are one." Once again the Judeans picked up rocks in order to stone him. Yeshua answered them, "You have seen me do many good deeds that reflect the Father's power; for which one of these deeds are you stoning me?" The Judeans replied, "We are not stoning you for any good deed, but for blasphemy -- because you, who are only a man, are making yourself out to be God [Hebrew: Elohim]." Yeshua answered them, "Isn't it written in your Torah, `I have said, "You people are Elohim' "?h If he called `elohim' the people to whom the word of Elohim was addressed (and the Tanakh cannot be broken), then are you telling the one whom the Father set apart as holy and sent into the world, `You are committing blasphemy,' just because I said, `I am a son of Elohim'? "If I am not doing deeds that reflect my Father's power, don't trust me. But if I am, then, even if you don't trust me, trust the deeds; so that you may understand once and for all that the Father is united with me, and I am united with the Father." One more time they tried to arrest him, but he slipped out of their hands. -Yochanan/John 20:27-28- "Then he said to T'oma, "Put your finger here, look at my hands, take your hand and put it into my side. Don't be lacking in trust, but have trust!" T'oma answered him, "My Lord and my God!" -Romans 9:5- "...the Patriarchs are theirs; and from them, as far as his physical descent is concerned, came the Messiah, who is over all. Praised be ADONAI forever! Amen. Christ came, who is over all, the eternally blessed God. Amen" -Philippians 2:5-8- Let your attitude toward one another be governed by your being in union with the Messiah Yeshua: Though he was in the form of God, he did not regard equality with God something to be possessed by force. On the contrary, he emptied himself, in that he took the form of a slave by becoming like human beings are. And when he appeared as a human being, he humbled himself still more by becoming obedient even to death - death on a stake as a criminal! -Colossians 1:15-16- He is the visible image of the invisible God. He is supreme over all creation, because in connection with him were created all things - in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones, lordships, rulers or authorities - they have all been created through him and for him. -Colossians 2:8-10- Watch out, so that no one will take you captive by means of philosophy and empty deceit, following human tradition which accords with the elemental spirits of the world but does not accord with the Messiah. For in him, bodily, lives the fullness of all that God is. And it is in union with him that you have been made full - he is the head of every rule and authority. -1 Timothy 1:16-17- But this is precisely why I received mercy - so that in me, as the number one sinner, Yeshua the Messiah might demonstrate how very patient he is, as an example to those who would later come to trust in him and thereby have eternal life. So to the King - eternal, imperishable and invisible, the only God there is - let there be honor and glory for ever and ever! Amen. -1 Timothy 2:3-4- This is what God, our Deliverer, regards as good; this is what meets his approval. He wants all humanity to be delivered and come to full knowledge of the truth. -1 Timothy 3:16- Great beyond all question is the formerly hidden truth underlying our faith: He was manifested physically and proved righteous spiritually, seen by angels and proclaimed among the nations, trusted throughout the world and raised up in glory to heaven. -1 Timothy 6:14-16- to obey your commission spotlessly and irreproachably until our Lord Yeshua the Messiah appears. His appearing will be brought about in its own time by the blessed and sole Sovereign, who is King of kings and Lord of lords, who alone is immortal, who dwells in unapproachable light that no human being has ever seen or can see - to him be honor and eternal power. Amen. -Titus 1:3- but made public this word of his in its own season through a proclamation with which I have been entrusted by order of God, our Deliverer. -Titus 2:10- or pilfering. On the contrary, they should demonstrate complete faithfulness always, so that in every way they will make the teaching about God our Deliverer more attractive. -Titus 2:13- while continuing to expect the blessed fulfillment of our certain hope, which is the appearing of the Sh'khinah of our great God and the appearing of our Deliverer, Yeshua the Messiah. -Messianic Jews/Hebrews 1:1-3- In days gone by, God spoke in many and varied ways to the Fathers through the prophets. But now, in the acharit-hayamim, he has spoken to us through his Son, to whom he has given ownership of everything and through whom he created the universe. This Son is the radiance of the Sh'khinah, the very expression of God's essence, upholding all that exists by his powerful word; and after he had, through himself, made purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of HaG'dulah BaM'romim. -Messianic Jews/Hebrews 1:8- but to the Son, he says, "Your throne, O God, will last forever and ever; you rule your Kingdom with a scepter of equity; -Y'hudah/Jude 24-25- Now, to the one who can keep you from falling and set you without defect and full of joy in the presence of his Sh'khinah to God alone, our Deliverer, through Yeshua the Messiah, our Lord be glory, majesty, power and authority before all time, now and forever. Amen -Revelation 21:6-7- And he said to me, "It is done! I am the 'A' and the 'Z,' the Beginning and the End. To anyone who is thirsty I myself will give water free of charge from the Fountain of Life. He who wins the victory will receive these things, and I will be his God, and he will be my son. To Return To: Flag Of Palestine-Israel page To Return To: Understanding Bible Prophecy page To Return To: Israel Tours Detail page To Return To: THE REAL YESHUA/JESUS PAGE To Return To: MENORAH'S HOME PAGE

  • How Catholics May Know They Go To Heaven | Menorah Ministries

    My wife Jane died in 1978. She was born a Roman Catholic and died one. A few months before her death something happened in her life that assured her that when she left this world she would go immediately into the welcoming presence of Jesus. As a result, she departed in great peace. And I was just as certain as she of her destination. It is hoped that in reading this episode, the reader will be moved to profit from Jane's experience. A few years ago, a Catholic bishop was dying of terminal cancer. Each day for a number of months, his chauffeur would drive him about his diocese. After the bishop's death, a statement by that chauffeur appeared in the press which seemed quite significant. He said that the bishop during his illness was constantly worrying about what would happen to him upon his death. He hoped that God would remember that he had devoted his whole life to His service. The bishop, obviously, was not at all sure of his eternal destination. I recall a statement made to me one day by a Catholic priest. He said that he would be satisfied to squeeze into purgatory when he died, and work his way up from there to heaven, presumably by suffering. I wonder how surprised that priest might be one day to discover that there is no purgatory except in man-made tradition. There is no mention of one in the Bible. What the Bible does say in this connection is this: And it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment {Hebrews 9:27). It will then be either victory or defeat. No "overtime" period as in basketball. The term "purgatory" was coined on March 6, 1254 by Pope Innocent IV in a letter to the apostolic delegate in Greece, twelve centuries after the death of Jesus and His apostles. There is nothing in the Bible, the Word of God, that says that a man can improve his spiritual status after death either by suffering in another place, by the prayers and intercession of others or by any other means. We can believe that if these things were possible the Bible would not be so thunderously silent regarding them. The Bible is, after all, the inspired Word of God written for our instruction, admonition and comfort. It is the plenary record of God's dealings with mankind, and we may be quite sure that it does not omit anything important. Indeed, any precept not set forth in the Bible, especially if not even mentioned, is nothing more than a man-made regulation or tradition. And Jesus took a very negative view of man-made regulations and traditions. (See Matthew 15:7,9; Mark 7:13 and Colossians 2:8) It is noteworthy that the news item mentioned above appeared in the bishop's own diocesan newspaper. This would seem to indicate a prevalence of fear and uncertainty regarding death. This should not be! The Bible speaks often and clearly on salvation and eternal life, and how it may be secured here on earth. One can depart this life knowing that he is heaven-bound. Holy Scripture is the voice of God reduced to writing, and the Catholic Church fully recognizes that. Thus, in 1965, when all of the bishops were assembled together at the Vatican II Council, they issued a Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation which contained the following: "Sacred Scripture is the Word of God" and stated that all parts of the Bible, "have God as their author." In 1943, Pope Pius XII in his Encyclical Divino Afflante Spiritu, speaking of the Bible, said that "the faithful.. .have a serious duty to make continual and holy use of this treasure." The church was saying that Catholics are obliged to read the Word of God, as the Bible is commonly called. Earlier Pope Benedict XV had said, "The responsibility of our apostolic office impels me ... to promote the study of Holy Scripture ... We shall ... never desist from urging the faithful to read daily the Gospels, the Acts and the Epistles so as to gather thence food for their souls ... Ignorance of the Bible means ignorance of Christ." The Living Bible paraphrases the Gospel of St. Luke, chapter 11, verse 52, in the following pungent, Significant language: Woe to you experts in religion! For you hide the truth from the people. You won't accept it for yourselves, and you prevent others from having a chance to believe it. Why, then, do such Papal exhortations to read the Bible fail to reach down to the rank and file and evidently go unheeded in seminaries? They apparently do not travel below the bishop. When I became interested in the Bible in 1976 and went to my pastor for counsel, he threw up his hands and said, "I can't help you. They didn't teach us the Bible in seminary." It was quite a surprise. The shepherd of the flock was not taught the Word of God. Yet Jesus said that man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God Luke 4:4. A few years ago while speaking to a patient in a Fort Lauderdale nursing home, I got into conversation with a woman visiting at the next bed. She was an intelligent-looking woman of about 40. I found myself asking her if she read the Bible. Instant indignation ensued. With a touch of anger in her voice she said, "I am a Catholic! I don't read the Bible!" It grieved my spirit. With my Catholic background I was sure that the woman was speaking for many millions of Catholics. But let me get back to our personal history. In 1969, I retired from a New York City law firm, and we moved to Florida to begin a life of leisure and relaxation. A year later, while we were visiting in Washington, D.C., I felt that my life was in need of new direction and that without significant change I was on course to hell. So moved was I that I immediately went to confession to square myself with God. And on that occasion, as best I knew how, I tried to turn my life over to Him with a real commitment of the heart. Indeed I promised God that I would go to Mass and receive communion every day the rest of my life. And for about six years I did just that, faithfully, seven days a week, usually serving the Mass as an acolyte. In the years following this renewed commitment I spent much of my time studying Catholic theology, liturgy, the lives of saints, etc., guided by reading lists obtained from seminaries. But these led me no closer to knowing God. In fact the study only frustrated my search for the real significance of what was needed to change my life. In 1976, I became interested in the Bible for the first time. My initial study of the Bible began to open my eyes. I started to understand what Jesus meant when He told Nicodemus that we have to be born again, and That which is born of the flesh is flesh and that which is born of the (Holy) Spirit is spirit (John 3:6). It was at this time, having understood the truth of God for the first time, that I turned my life over to Him. The Bible told me that in doing this I would be made a new creature in Christ...all things become new(II Corinthians 5:17). I acknowledged God as my Father. I became heaven-bound according to Scripture. I also discovered how very simple and certain it is to achieve eternal life while still on earth, and that it is a free gift from God. Jesus purchased it for us when He died on the cross, The Bible states this truth in Ephesians 2:8,9: For by grace are you saved through faith and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God. Not of works, lest any man should boast. John L. McKenzie, S.J., perhaps one of American Catholicism's ablest biblical scholars, in his Dictionary of the Bible, says it this way: "It is a principle of New Testament theology that the works of man are totally ineffective to achieve the righteousness which saves" (page 942). What the Word of God and Father McKenzie are telling us is that the things we do (going to church, confession, communion, prayer) are works, and that our works were never meant to bring us to God, or get us to heaven. Perhaps my most exciting discovery was that the Bible assures us of our salvation, here and now. As the Apostle John said in his first epistle: These things have I written unto you that believe on the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life I John 5: 13. This verse clearly gives us that assurance. Jane had always been a meticulously loyal Catholic. She never missed a Mass on Sundays or on holy days of obligation, she confessed and communicated often, she read out of her prayer book each day for deceased friends and relatives. She never doubted what she learned from the cradle: that hers was the true church. In the last three years of her life, Jane was partially paralyzed and bedridden. Frequently in the morning we would watch the "700 Club" together on television, and on several occasions we recited the salvation prayer with Pat Robertson, the host. The Bible tells us that if anyone prays such a prayer, from his heart, and confesses that he believes and has accepted Jesus as Lord, he becomes spiritually reborn. He is "born again." The experience is commonly referred to as the new birth. Up to that point, one cannot be considered a Christian by biblical standards no matter how much church-going, or how many so­ called good works he does. Jane repeated the salvation prayer, but seemed reluctant or unable to declare that she had accepted Jesus as her Lord. God gives the faith to believe but He also requires each of us to make a positive response to His offer and that is done by declaring Jesus as our Lord. Presumably she feared that she might be taking herself out of the Catholic Church. One day she volunteered to make the declaration to her son the next time he called. To help her, I wrote out a simple statement of faith and when her son called, I placed the paper on her lap. With no prior explanation, she blurted out, "I have accepted Jesus in my heart as my Lord." And immediately she began to cry. After a few minutes she said, "I can't talk any longer, I'm crying" and hung up. That simple statement of her new faith had so moved her to tears that she was unable to continue her conversation. Most Catholics believe that they merit salvation or God's favor when they receive baptism or confirmation. Like other Catholic children Jane was baptized and confirmed but it obviously did not work a regeneration of her heart. She had to follow the biblical way to salvation, and when she did, she knew that she had experienced the new birth. It was the Word of God, witnessed to by the Holy Spirit, that assured her of God's acceptance through Jesus Christ and that as a result she would go to heaven. The absolute necessity of the new birth is beyond doubt. Jesus said in Chapter 3 verses 3-7 of the Gospel of John: Verily, verily, I say unto you, except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God ... except a man be born of water and of the Spirit (the Holy Spirit) he cannot enter the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh and that which is born of the Spirit (Holy Spirit) is spirit. Marvel not that I said unto you, you must be born again. Jesus' statement is clear. It is unconditional. It admits of no exception or modification. To interpose an alternative is to signify that Jesus didn't mean what He said and it was necessary for men to correct Him. Any church which does not teach the new birth (considered so vital in the New Testament) may well be leading its unsuspecting people into eternal damnation. Jesus warned against ..... making the word of God of none effect through your tradition (church-made laws and regulations) (Mark 7: 13). He also said that those who were teaching for doctrines the commandments of men were hypocrites and they worshiped Him in vain Matthew 15:7,9. How absurd it is to tamper with the Word of God. In Isaiah 40:8 the Holy Spirit moved the prophet to say that the Word of our God shall stand forever. And Jesus said that Heaven and earth shall pass away, but my words shall not pass away (Matthew 24:35). How lacking in wisdom, how foolish, how tragic, to reject God's sure way when eternal life is at stake! The salvation method is set forth in Romans 10:9-10: .. .if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For man believes with his heart and so is justified, and he confesses with his lips and so is saved. (Catholic edition of the Revised -Standard Version). How simple and easy God has made salvation for us. How tragic that so few are being taught to avail themselves of it. How do we obtain this eternal life? By believing in Christ. God so loved the world, that he gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him shall not perish but have everlasting life John 3:16. But what does the New Testament mean by "believing?" It means more than mere mental assent, more than lip service. One must believe in one's heart and without doubt, and one must act upon such-belief by trusting God for salvation. Faith is acting on one's intellectual belief and trusting Christ as one's Savior. As the late Bible teacher E. W. Kenyon put it: "Believing demands action, creates action. Mental assent admires, admits, but does not act." If the airline schedule says your flight goes to Tulsa, you have no doubt about it. You believe it in your heart, you have faith in the schedule, and you act upon that faith by boarding the plane. Thus, one has to do more than just believe in his head. He must trust Christ. Jesus said (John 16:7-9) that after His death the Holy Spirit would convict or convince the world of three things, and one of them was "sin." What sin? The sin of not believing in Jesus. According to the Word of God, it is the sin of unbelief in Christ that sends man to hell. No matter how good and exemplary a life a man may lead, he will still miss heaven if he does not make Jesus the Lord of his life. Let us always remember one vital, all-important truth: Christianity is a belief in and commitment to Christ. It is not a church, it is not a creed, it is not in a religion. Religion is concerned with the outward acts and forms of worship. Christianity is a way of life. It is knowing Jesus and having a personal encounter and relationship with Him. He· is the only way to heaven. The Bible says that He is the only mediator between God and man(I Timothy 2:5). No one else, not even a saint, can fill this role. Jesus made it clear when He said, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man comes unto the Father but by me (John 14::6). If your church doesn't teach the new birth enunciated by Jesus Himself, then it would seem to be incumbent upon you as a rational human being to examine the Scriptures for yourself. It is very clear that baptism and confirmation by themselves do not constitute spiritual rebirth. If you have not committed your life to Christ by believing in Him and confessing Him as Lord, the rituals are meaningless. What a difference it makes when Jesus enters one's life, as so many can testify. In some cases, a wife or husband has observed a change in the other and wants to have what the other has. Empty lives have been filled. Many have discovered that alcohol; drugs, striving for worldly success provide no lasting satisfaction. Jesus has been called the answer to all problems. Indeed one could safely venture to say that there is no man or woman living who has not experienced a void that only Jesus can fill. Are you tempted to think that you are not bad enough to go to hell? That is one of the cleverest and most deceptive thoughts ever planted in the human mind by the devil. But the Bible supplies the correct answer. For Jesus said it will not be He who will judge us on the last day but His Word. In short, if we disobey His precept that we must be born again, there will be no need for Him to judge us. His Word will do the judging and the judgment will of course be automatic. We would be sending ourselves to hell. See John 12:48. And let us remember the warning from Jesus that strait (narrow) is the gate and narrow is the way which leads to life, and few there be that find it (Matthew 7.:14). Should one not be concerned to find that one's own church is not teaching the salvation doctrine which Jesus Christ Himself said was an absolute necessity? And that in the face of warnings in the Word of God such as this one: ... how shall we escape if we neglect such a great salvation? It was declared at first to us by the Lord, and it was attested to us by those who heard him, while God also bore witness by signs and wonders and various miracles .. Hebrews 2:3,4 Can there be any doubt that we are flirting with eternal death when we refuse to prefer the Word of God over the word of men, especially on so important a doctrine as the Gospel message itself which Jesus Christ taught. When God directs us so clearly, dare we follow any other? The foregoing Scriptures are not the words of a man or of a church. The author is God. Incidentally, the reading of this booklet is ample warning to you, if any were needed. You cannot be considered to be in ignorance. The pertinent scriptures have been set before you. Surely you will not let unscriptural, anti-scriptural, tradition take you to hell. In any event, what does one stand to lose by heeding God's Word and making Jesus Lord of one's life? Let me pause here to ask you two important questions: No. 1. Have you come to the place in your spiritual life where you can say you know for certain that if you were to die today you would go to heaven? No. 2. Suppose that you were to die today and stand before God and He were to say to you, 'Why should I let you into my heaven?" What would you say? How did you answer these questions? Especially the second one? What would you say if God asked you that question? If you are not sure of your answer or would like to make a sincere confession of your own sin, stop what you are doing, ask the Lord to forgive you and grant you His gift of eternal life. I invite you to pray to God with these words: God. your Word (Romans 10:13) says that whoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved. Accordingly, I now call upon You in Jesus' name as my Lord and Savior. Your Word states: if you confess with your lips that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved. For man believes with his heart and so is justified. and he confesses with his lips and so is saved Romans 10:9,10. I believe in my heart that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that He died on the cross for my sins and was buried. I believe in my heart that on the third day God raised Him from the dead for my justification. Dear God, I repent of all my sins, and I ask your forgiveness in Jesus' name. And, here and now, I receive and acknowledge Jesus as my personal Savior, and I ask you to come into my heart and be the Lord of my life. Amen. If you have just prayed to the Lord and were sincere in your confession of your sin and desire that Jesus be your Savior and Lord, you have just taken the most important step in your life. However, this first step needs to be followed by other steps. God wants you to grow in your walk with Him. What you have just done means that you have been born again, an event never to be repeated. Your spiritual growth however is a process - the process of becoming the person God has designed you to be. Your spiritual maturity continues until you are fully formed in Jesus Christ. Paul wrote (Philippians 2:12) that we are to continue to work out your salvation with fear and trembling . He was not talking about entering the Kingdom of God by good works. The Bible never tells us that by good works we can work our way into the good graces of God. He does talk about the process through which each of us moves as we grow in Christ. There are several basic steps which you must take to grow as a Christian. 1) Pray daily and pray regularly. This is to be the most basic expression of your life, a conversation with your Heavenly Father. It might not be natural at first, but will become so as you make it a part of your life. 2) Bible reading. This goes hand in hand with your times of personal prayer. Bible reading is absolutely central to our lives. Inasmuch as it is the Word of God, we know that by reading God's Word our faith in Him will grow and, in time, establish the standard for our lives. You can only know of God's desire for your life by reading His Word. 3) Steps one and two will have no meaning unless you begin to put into effect those things about which the Lord speaks to you. The term "in Christ" is used His times in the New Testament. Why so often? The writers of the Bible are telling us that to be in Christ means essentially to "be" with Him, to walk with Him, and perhaps more importantly, to "obey" Him. Living a life of obedience to Him insures our growth as a Christian. Jesus said so in so many words, If you love me, you will obey what I command John 14:15. 4) The three steps outlined above will begin to produce something more. If you are at all faithful in praying, reading your Bible and obeying the words of our Lord, your life will begin to reflect the life of Jesus, your Savior and Lord. In John 15:1 Jesus refers to Himself as the vine and those who follow Him as the branches. If we stay attached we will bear fruit and our lives will be a testimony to those who see and know us. Another word must be added here. As important as it is for you to give witness to your Lord through your actions and behavior, you also need to back up that witness with your conversation. Actions can too easily be misinterpreted. Speaking about Jesus should come as naturally as telling others about a person you love. God will give you the right words and will direct you to the right people as you commit yourself to Him. F i n a l l y, if you are serious about believing in God and identifying yourself as His follower, you will need to begin one of the most difficult parts of a Christian life: trusting God for every detail of your life. This will take some doing because until now you have trusted almost everyone else, including yourself, but not the Lord. The Bible is full of illustrations of people who trusted (or failed to trust) God with their lives. This does not mean that you put your mind into neutral and never think for yourself. It means that since you have placed your life in the hands of your creator, you need to live out that commitment daily by trusting Him with your life and all its details. The Bible contains many examples of how God blesses and helps those who put their trust in Him and who obey His commandments. While we do not earn eternal life through obedience, we please and honor. God by living according to His Word. Growth and obedience are perfect partners in the spiritual maturing experience. These are the basic steps you need to take to begin to grow as a Christian. There is much to learn, and much to enjoy as you start your new life in Christ. Your growth, however, almost presupposes other Christians will help you grow. We're talking about those who know and love Jesus Christ, and are themselves growing. God has made it clear that we need other believers to help us mature. If you are not in such a relationship with other believers, you need to find one. If you have no such friends, ask the Lord to help you and start looking. God answers prayer. May God richly bless you. THE PROLOGUE TO THE GOSPEL OF JOHN In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made by him; and without him was not anything made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men. And the light shineth in the darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not. There was a man sent from God, whose name was John. . He came for a witness, to bear witness of the Light, that all men through him might believe. He was not that Light, but was sent to bear witness of that Light. That was the true Light, which Iighteth every man that cometh into the world. He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not. He came unto his own, and his own received him not. But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name. Which were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God. And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth. About the author: Mr. Monacelli practiced law in New York City until 1969 when he retired and moved to Florida. He now lives in New Jersey. He holds degrees from the University of Norte Dame and from the Georgetown University Law School. He served two terms as president of the Norte Dame Association. Evangelism Explosion International, Inc. P.O. Box 23820 Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33307 ​ Return to Jesus The Center of the Old Testament page ​ Return to Messiah to Be Final Sacrifice page Return to L'Chaim - To Life! Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

  • HowaCatholicMayKnowTheyGoToHeavenSpanish | Menorah Ministries

    Cómo un católico puede SABER que irá al cielo cuando muera Por Albert H. Monacelli How a Catholic may KNOW that He will go to Heaven when He dies (Spanish) Mi esposa Jane murió en 1978. Ella nació una católica romana y se murió así. Unos meses antes de su muerte ocurrió algo en su vida que le aseguró que cuando dejó este mundo irá inmediatamente en la presencia bienvenida de Jesúcristo. Como resultado, salió de este mundo en gran paz. Y fui tan determinado como ella de su destino. Se espera que, después de leer este testimonio, el lector mueva a beneficiarse de la experiencia de Jane. Hacía unos pocos años que un obispo católico murió del cáncer terminal. Cada día por varios meses, su chofer lo conducía acerca de su diócesis. Después de la muerte del obispo, una declaración del chofer apareció en la prensa que parecía bastante significante. Dijo que durante su enfermedad el obispo era constantemente preocupado de lo que le sucedería a él después de su muerte. Confía en que Dios recordara que había dedicado toda su vida a Su servicio. El obispo, obviamente, no estaba seguro su destino eterno. Recuerdo de una declaración que se me la dijo un día por un sacerdote católico. Dijo que él estaría satisfecho a meterse a duras penas en el Purgatorio cuando muriera y trabajar duramente desde allí hacia el cielo, presumiblemente por el sufrimiento. Me pregunto por cúan sorprendido ese sacerdote podría estar un día para descubrir que no hay ningún Purgatorio excepto en la tradición provocada por el hombre. No se menciona del Purgatorio en la Biblia. Lo que dice la Biblia al Purgatorio es el siguiente: “Y de la manera que está establecido á los hombres que mueran una vez, y después el juicio” (Hebreos 9:27). Entonces sería o en la victoria o en la derrota. No va a ser “prórroga” como en el baloncesto. Se empezó a usar el término “purgatorio” en el 6 de marzo de 1254 por el Papa Inocencio IV en una carta a la delegación apostólica en Grecia, doce siglos después de la muerte de Jesúcristo y sus apóstoles. No hay nada en la Biblia, la palabra de Dios, que dice que un hombre puede mejorar su condición espiritual después de la muerte ni por el sufrimiento en otro lugar ni por la oración y la intercesión de otros ni por cualquier otro método. Podemos creer que si estas cosas eran posibles la Biblia no sería tan silenciosa con respecto a ellas. Después de todo, la Biblia es la palabra inspirada de Dios escrita para nuestra instrucción, la amonestación y el consuelo. Es el pleno registro de los tratos de Dios con la humanidad y podemos estar muy seguros de que no omite nada importante. Verdaderamente cualquier precepto no enunciado en la Biblia, especialmente si no está aún mencionado, no es nada más que una regulación creada por el hombre o una tradición humana. También Jesúcristo tenía un punto negativo de vista de las regulaciones y tradiciones humanas (Mateo 15:7, 9; Marcos 7:13; Colosenses 2:8). Es digno de mencionar que la noticia antes mencionada se apareció en el periódico diocesano del obispo. Parece indicaruna prevalencia de temor e incertidumbre con respecto a la muerte. ¡No debe ser! La Biblia habla frecuente y claramente en cuanto a la salvación y la vida eterna y cómo se puede obtenerlas aquí en la tierra. Se puede morir en esta vida sabiendo que está con destino al cielo. Las Sagradas Escrituras son la Voz de Dios por escrito y la Iglesia católica las reconoce así. Así que, en 1965 cuando se ensamblaron todos los obispos juntos en el Consejo de Vaticano II, lanzaron una Constitución dogmática sobre la revelación divina que contiene lo siguiente: “la palabra de Dios es la Sagrada Escritura” y declaró que todas las partes de la Biblia, “tienen Dios como su autor.” En 1943, el Papa Pío XII en su encíclica Espíritu Divino de Afflante, hablando de la Biblia, dijo que “los fieles....tienen un deber serio de usar con una actitud piadosa de este tesoro.” La iglesia decía que se obligaran los católicos a leer la palabra de Dios, como a se le refiere la Biblia. Anteriormente el Papa Benedicto XV dijo, “la responsabilidad de nuestra oficina apostólica...me impulsa a promover el estudio de la Sagrada escritura... deberemos...nunca desistir de exhortar a los fieles para leer diariamente los evangelios, las leyes y las epístolas, a fin de reunir allí alimentos para sus almas...la ignorancia de la Biblia significa la ignorancia de Cristo.” El Evangelio de San Lucas, capítulo 11, versículo 52, dice el siguiente: “¡Ay de vosotros, doctores de la ley! que habéis quitado la llave de la ciencia; vosotros mismos no entrasteis, y á los que entraban impedisteis.” ¿Por qué, entonces, tales exhortaciones papales a leer la Biblia no llegan hacia abajo a la tropa y evidentemente no tienen ningún impacto en los seminarios? Al parecer no viajan a continuación desde el obispo. Cuando me interesé en la Biblia en 1976 y fui a mi pastor por una consulta, tiró la toalla y dijo, “yo no puedo ayudarle. No nos enseñó la Biblia en el seminario.” Me sorpresó mucho. Nadie le enseñó al pastor del rebaño la palabra de Dios. Pero Jesús dijo “Que no con pan solo vivirá el hombre, mas con toda palabra de Dios” (Lucas 4:4). Cuando yo hablaba con una paciente en un asilo de ancianos en Fort Lauderdale desde hacía unos pocos años, empecé una conversación con una mujer visitando a otro paciente en la cama siguiente. Ella era una mujer inteligente y tenía cerca de 40 años. Me encontré a pedirle si ella lee la Biblia. Siguió la indignación instantánea y con un toque de ira en su voz dijo, “¡yo soy católica! ¡No leo la Biblia!" Lloró mi espíritu. Con mi experiencia católica estaba seguro de que la mujer hablaba por parte de millones de católicos. Pero permítame continuar otra vez mi historia personal. En 1969, me jubilé de una firma de abogados en la ciudad de Nueva York, y me mudé a Florida para comenzar una vida de ocio y relajación. Un año después, mientras que nosotros visitábamos en Washington, D.C., me di cuenta que mi vida necesitaba una nueva dirección y que sin un cambio significativo yo estaba en camino al infierno. Me conmovió la experiencia tanto que me fui inmediatamente a la confesión para saldar cuentas con Dios. Y en aquella ocasión, como en la mejor manera que sabía, he intentado entregar mi vida a El con un compromiso real del corazón. De hecho he prometido a Dios que iría a misa y comulgar cada día el resto de mi vida. Y para unos seis años lo hice así fielmente, siete días a la semana, generalmente cumpliendo la misa como un acólito. En los años siguientes de este compromiso renovado pasé gran parte de mi tiempo estudiando teología católica, liturgia, las vidas de Santos, etc., guiado por listas obtenidas de seminarios de lectura. Pero éstas me no llevaron más cerca de conocer a Dios. De hecho, el estudio sólo me frustró la búsqueda de la verdadera importancia de lo que se necesita para cambiar mi vida. En 1976 me puse interesado en la Biblia por la primera vez. Mi estudio inicial de la Biblia empezó a abrirme los ojos. Comencé a entender el sentido de Jesúcristo cuando le dijo a Nicodemo que tenemos que nacer de nuevo y lo que es nacido de la carne, carne es; y lo que es nacido del Espíritu (Santo), espíritu es. (Juan 3:6). Fue en este momento, habiendo entendido la verdad de Dios por primera vez, que le había entregado mi vida a El. La Biblia dice que esta decisión me hizo una nueva criatura en Cristo...De modo que si alguno está en Cristo, nueva criatura es: las cosas viejas pasaron; he aquí todas son hechas nuevas (2 Corintios 5:17). Me acontecí a Dios como mi padre. Vine destinado para el cielo según las escrituras. También he descubierto cómo muy simple y seguro es alcanzar la vida eterna mientras que se vive en la tierra, y que es un regalo de Dios. Jesús la compró para nosotros cuando murió en la cruz. La Biblia afirma esta verdad en Efesios 2:8-9: Porque por gracia sois salvos por la fe; y esto no de vosotros, pues es don de Dios: no por obras, para que nadie se gloríe. John L. McKenzie, S.J., quizás uno de los eruditos bíblicos más hábiles del catolicismo estadounidense, en su diccionario de la Biblia, lo dice así: “Es un principio de teología del Nuevo Testamento que las obras del hombre son totalmente ineficaces para lograr la rectitud que guarda” (página 942). Lo que nos dicen la palabra de Dios y el padre McKenzie es que las cosas que hacemos (asistir la Iglesia, la confesión, la comunión, la oración) son obras, y que nuestras obras nunca se suponen a traernos a Dios ni tampoco llevarnos al cielo. Tal vez mi descubrimiento más interesante fue que la Biblia nos asegura de nuestra salvación de aquí y de ahora. Como el apóstol Juan dice en su primera epístola: Estas cosas he escrito á vosotros que creéis en el nombre del Hijo de Dios, para que sepáis que tenéis vida eterna, y para que creáis en el nombre del Hijo de Dios. (1 Juan 5:13). Este versículo claramente nos da la garantía. Jane siempre ha sido meticulosamente una católica leal. Nunca falló una misa en los domingos ni días santos de obligación. Confesaba y comunicaba a menudo, leía de su libro de oraciones cada día para sus familiares y amigos difuntos. Ella nunca dudaba de lo que aprendió desde la cuna: que la iglesia católica era la verdadera iglesia. En los últimos tres años de su vida, Jane fue parcialmente paralizada y postrada en la cama. Con frecuencia en la mañana veíamos el “700 Club” juntos delante de la televisión, y en varias ocasiones recitábamos la oración de salvación con Pat Robertson, el presentador. La Biblia nos dice que si un individuo reza la oración de su corazón y confiesa que cree y ha aceptado a Jesúcristo como su Señor, es renacido espiritualmente. El es “nacido otra vez.” La experiencia se conoce comúnmente como el nuevo nacimiento. Hasta ese momento, no se considera a un cristiano por normas bíblicas. No importa cuantas veces se asiste la Iglesia ni cuantas obras buenas se hacen. Jane repetía la oración de salvación, pero parecía reticente o no podía declarar que ella había aceptado a Jesús como su Señor. Dios da la fe para creer, pero El también requiere de cada uno de nosotros responda con una respuesta positiva a su oferta y se realice por declarar a Jesúcristo como su Señor. Presumiblemente temía que ella pudiera ser tomada a sí misma de la Iglesia Católica. Un día se determinó a hacer la declaración a su hijo la próxima vez que le llamara. Para ayudarle, escribí a una declaración simple de fe y cuando le llamó su hijo yo puse el documento en su regazo. Sin ninguna explicación previa, ella soltó, “He aceptado a Jesúcristo en mi corazón como mi Señor.” E inmediatamente ella comenzó a llorar. Después de unos minutos, le dijo, “yo no puedo hablar más porque yo estoy llorando” y colgó. Esa declaración simple de su nueva fe le había tan conmovido hasta las lágrimas que ella no pudo continuar su conversación. La mayoría de los católicos creen que merecen la salvación o el favor de Dios cuando reciben el bautismo o confirmación. Como los otros niños católicos Jane fue bautizada y confirmada, pero no crearon obviamente en una regeneración de su corazón. Tenía que seguir en el camino bíblico en cuanto a la salvación y cuando lo hizo, sabía que ella había experimentado el nuevo nacimiento. Es la palabra de Dios, fue testiguado por el Espíritu Santo, que aseguró su aceptación de Dios a través de Jesúcristo; y, como resultado, irá al cielo. La necesidad absoluta del nuevo nacimiento está fuera de duda. Cristo dijo en los versículos 3-7 del capítulo 3 del Evangelio de Juan: Respondió Jesús, y díjole: De cierto, de cierto te digo, que el que no naciere otra vez, no puede ver el reino de Dios. Dícele Nicodemo: ¿Cómo puede el hombre nacer siendo viejo? ¿puede entrar otra vez en el vientre de su madre, y nacer? Respondió Jesús: De cierto, de cierto te digo, que el que no naciere de agua y del Espíritu, no puede entrar en el reino de Dios. Lo que es nacido de la carne, carne es; y lo que es nacido del Espíritu, espíritu es. No te maravilles de que te dije: Os es necesario nacer otra vez. La declaración de Cristo es clara. Es incondicional. No admite ninguna excepción ni modificación. Interponer alternativa es significar que Jesús no quisiera decir lo que dijo y era necesario que los hombres le corrigieran a él. Cualquiera iglesia que no enseña el nuevo nacimiento (considerado tan vital en el Nuevo Testamento) lidera a su pueblo en la condenación eterna. Jesús avisó contra…Invalidando la palabra de Dios con vuestra tradición (leyes y reglas hechas por la iglesia) (Marcos 7:13). También dijo que cualquiera que se enseña de las doctrinas de los mandamientos de los hombres es hipócrita y le adora en vano (Mateo 15:7, 9). Lo absurdo es la manipulación con la palabra de Dios. En Isaías 40:8 el Espíritu Santo se trasladó al profeta para decir la palabra del Dios nuestro permanece para siempre. Y Jesúcristo dijo que el cielo y la tierra pasarán, mas mis palabras no pasarán (Mateo 24:35). ¡Cúan carente de sabiduría, cúan tonto, cúan trágico, de rechazar la forma segura de Dios cuando la vida eterna es en juego! El método de salvación se establece en Romanos 10:9-10: Que si confesares con tu boca al Señor Jesús, y creyeres en tu corazón que Dios le levantó de los muertos, serás salvo. Porque con el corazón se cree para justicia; mas con la boca se hace confesión para salud. Cúan simple y fácilmente Dios nos ha facilitado la salvación. Cúan trágico que tan pocos enseñaban a aprovecharse de él. ¿Cómo obtenemos la vida eterna? Por creer en Cristo. Porque de tal manera amó Dios al mundo, que ha dado á su Hijo unigénito, para que todo aquel que en él cree, no se pierda, mas tenga vida eterna (Juan 3: 16). Pero ¿qué significa el Nuevo Testamento por “creer”? Significa algo más que el mero asentimiento mental, más de la boquilla. Se cree en el corazón sin duda, y se debe actuar en tal creencia por confiar en Dios para la salvación. La fe es actuar en la creencia intelectual y confiar en Cristo como su Salvador. Como el profesor difunto de la Biblia E.W. Kenyon dijo: “el creer exige la acción y crea la acción. El asentimiento mental admira, admite, pero no actúa.” Si la programación de la aerolínea dice que su vuelo va a Tulsa, no tendrá ninguna duda al respecto. Cree Vd. en su corazón, tiene fe en la programación y actúa en esa fe por embarcar en el avión. Por lo tanto, se tiene que hacer más que sólo creer en la mente. Se debe de confiar en Cristo. Jesús dijo (Juan 16:7-9) que después de su muerte, el Espíritu Santo condenaría o convencería al mundo de tres cosas, y una era el “pecado.” ¿Cúal pecado? El pecado de no creer en Jesús. Según la palabra de Dios, es el pecado de la incredulidad en Cristo que envía al hombre al infierno. Por tan buena y ejemplar que sea la vida de un hombre, no puede alcanzar al cielo si él no hace a Jesúcristo el Señor de su vida. Que siempre recordemos una verdad fundamental y de suma importancia: el cristianismo es una creencia en Cristo y es un compromiso a Cristo. No es una iglesia ni es un credo ni es una religión. La religión se refiere a los actos hacia afuera y formas de culto. El cristianismo es un modo de vivir. Es conocer a Jesúcristo y tener un encuentro personal y una relación con él. El es la única manera al cielo. La Biblia dice que él es el único mediador entre Dios y el hombre (1 Timoteo 2:5). Nadie, ni de un Santo, puede realizar este papel. Jesús lo hizo claro cuando dijo, Yo soy el camino, y la verdad, y la vida: nadie viene al Padre, sino por mí. (John 14:6). Si su iglesia no enseña el nuevo nacimiento enunciado por Jesús mismo, parece ser que le incumbe como un ser humano racional para examinar las escrituras por sí mismo. Está muy claro que el bautismo y la confirmación por sí mismos no constituyen el renacimiento espiritual. Si Vd. no le ha cometido su vida a Cristo por creer en él y confesarle como Señor, los rituales no tienen sentido verdadero. Qué diferencia hace cuando Jesús entra en la vida, como tantos pueden testificar. En algunos casos, uno de los esposos ha observado un cambio en el otro y consecuentemente quiere tener lo que el otro tiene. Vidas vacías han sido llenadas. Muchos han descubierto que el alcohol, los toxicómanos, y la búsqueda de éxito mundano no traen ninguna satisfacción duradera. Jesús ha sido llamado la respuesta a todos los problemas. De hecho se puede decir con seguridad que no hay ninguna hombre ni mujer que vive que no ha experimentado una vaciedad que sólo Jesús puede llenar. ¿Está Vd. tentado a pensar que no es suficientemente malo para ir al infierno? Ese es uno de los pensamientos más inteligentes y engañosos que el diablo ha plantado en la mente humana. Pero la Biblia suministra la respuesta correcta. Jesús dijo que él no nos juzgará en el último día, sino su palabra. En pocas palabras, si desobedecemos su precepto que nos debemos de nacer de nuevo, no habrá ninguna necesidad de que él nos juzgue. Su palabra nos juzga y la sentencia va a ser automática. Nos enviaríamos a nosotros mismos al infierno. Leer a Juan 12:48. Que recordemos la advertencia de Jesús que está estrecha es la puerta, y angosto el camino que lleva á la vida, y pocos son los que la hallan (Mateo 7:14). ¿No se consternaría a averiguar que su propia Iglesia no enseña la doctrina de salvación que Jesúcristo mismo dijo que era una necesidad absoluta? ¿Y lo mismo ante las advertencias en la palabra de Dios como ésta: ¿Cómo escaparemos nosotros, si tuviéremos en poco una salud tan grande? La cual, habiendo comenzado á ser publicada por el Señor, ha sido confirmada hasta nosotros por los que oyeron; testificando juntamente con ellos Dios, con señales y milagros, y diversas maravillas, y repartimientos del Espíritu Santo según su voluntad (Hebreos 2:3-4)? Puede haber alguna duda que estemos flirteando con la muerte eterna cuando nos negamos a preferir la palabra de Dios sobre la de los hombres, especialmente en cuanto a una doctrina tan importante como el mismo mensaje del evangelio que Jesúcristo enseñó. ¿Cuando Dios nos dirige tan claramente, atrevemos a seguir cualquier otro? Las escrituras que preceden no son las palabras ni de un hombre ni de una iglesia. El autor es Dios. Por lo demás, la lectura de este folleto es advertencia amplia a usted, si fuera necesario. Usted no puede ser considerado a ser ignorante en cuanto a este asunto. Antes de Vd. se han fijado las escrituras pertinentes. Seguramente Vd. no permitirá que la tradición bíblica, le lleve al infierno. ¿En cualquier caso, cúal posibilidad tiene que perder por atender la palabra de Dios y hacer que Jesús sea el Señor de su vida? Permíteme hacer una pausa aquí para hacerle dos preguntas importantes: 1. ¿Ha llegado Vd. al lugar en tu vida espiritual donde puede decir que sabe con certidumbre que si muriera hoy, iría al cielo? 2. Supongamos que Vd. fuera a morir hoy y se presentaría antes de Dios y él fuera a preguntarle, “¿por qué debo permitir que entre Vd. en mi cielo?” ¿Qué diría Vd.? ¿Cómo respondió Vd. a estas preguntas? ¿Especialmente a la segunda pregunta? ¿Qué diría Vd. si Dios le preguntara? Si no está seguro de su respuesta o le gustaría hacer una confesión sincera de su propio pecado, cesa de lo que está haciendo, pida al Señor que le perdone y El le conceda su regalo de la vida eterna. Le invito a orar a Dios con estas palabras: “Dios, tu Palabra (Romanos 10:13) dice que todo aquel que invocare el nombre del Señor, será salvo. En conformidad, ahora te clamo en el nombre de Jesús como mi Señor y Salvador. Tu Palabra dice: que si confesares con tu boca al Señor Jesús, y creyeres en tu corazón que Dios le levantó de los muertos, serás salvo. Porque con el corazón se cree para justicia; mas con la boca se hace confesión para salud (Romanos 10: 9-10). Creo en mi corazón que Jesúcristo es el hijo de Dios y que él murió en la cruz por mis pecados y fue enterrado. Creo en mi corazón que al tercer día Dios lo resucitó de entre los muertos para mi justificación. Querido Dios, me arrepiento de todos mis pecados, y pido tu perdón en nombre de Jesús. Y, aquí y ahora, recibo y reconozco a Jesús como mi Salvador personal, y pido que él entre en mi corazón y sea el Señor de mi vida. Amen. Si Vd. acaba de orar al Señor y fue sincero en su confesión de su pecado y el deseo de que Jesús sea su Salvador y Señor, acaba de dar el paso más importante en su vida. Sin embargo, este primer paso tiene que ser seguido por otros pasos. Dios quiere que crezca en su andar con él. Lo que usted acaba de hacer significa que hubo nacido de nuevo, un evento que nunca se repite. Sin embargo, su crecimiento espiritual es un proceso—el proceso de convertirse en la persona que Dios ha diseñado que sea. Su madurez espiritual continúa hasta que se forme plenamente en Jesúcristo. Pablo escribió (Filipenses 2:12) que estamos ocupándonos en [nuestra] salvación con temor y temblor. No estaba hablando sobre cómo se entra en el Reino de Dios por buenas obras. La Biblia nunca nos dice por buenas obras que podemos trabajar de nuestra manera en las buenas gracias de Dios. Habla sobre el proceso a través del cual cada uno de nosotros se mueve mientras que crecemos en Cristo. Hay varios pasos básicos que se debe seguir para crecer como un cristiano. 1) Orar diariamente y orar regularmente. Esto va a ser la expresión más básica de su vida, una conversación con su padre celestial. No sería natural en primer lugar, sino que se pondrá más fácil cuando Vd. se haga una parte de su vida. 2) La lectura de la Biblia. Esto va de mano en mano con sus tiempos de oración personal. La lectura de la Biblia es absolutamente fundamental para nuestras vidas. Por cuanto como la medida en que es la palabra de Dios, sabemos que mediante de la lectura de la palabra de Dios nuestra fe en él va creciendo y, en el tiempo, estableciendo el estándar para nuestras vidas. Sólo podrá conocer de la voluntad de Dios para su vida mediante la lectura de su palabra. 3) Los pasos uno y dos no tendrá ningún significado a menos que empiece a poner en práctica esas cosas que pertenecen a lo que le habla el Señor a usted. Se utiliza el término "en Cristo" 87 veces en el Nuevo Testamento. ¿Por qué ha aparecido tan menudo? Los escritores de la Biblia nos dicen que, para estar en Cristo, significa esencialmente “estar” con él, caminar con él y quizás más importante aún, obedecerle. Una vida de obediencia a él asegura nuestro crecimiento como un cristiano. Jesús lo ha dicho las palabras siguientes, si me amáis, guardad mis mandamientos (Juan 14:15). 4) Los tres pasos descritos anteriormente comenzará a producir algo más. Si Vd. es fiel a todo en rezar, leer su Biblia y obedecer las palabras de nuestro Señor, su vida comenzará a reflejar la vida de Jesús, el Salvador y Señor. En Juan 15:1 Jesús se refiere a sí mismo como la vid y los que le siguen como las ramas. Si nos quedamos adjuntos daremos frutos y nuestras vidas serán un testimonio a los que nos ven y nos conocen. Se debe agregar otra palabra aquí. Tan importante como dar testimonio al Señor a través de sus acciones y el comportamiento, también necesita reforzar ese testigo con su conversación. Se puede interpretar mal fácilmente las acciones. Hablar de Jesús debe venir tan naturalmente como contarles a otros sobre la persona que le ama. Dios le dará las palabras adecuadas y le dirigirá a las personas adecuadas como usted le compromete. Finalmente, si está serio de creer en Dios e identificar de sí mismo como su seguidor, tendrá que comenzar una de las partes más difíciles de la vida cristiana: confiar en Dios para todos los detalles de su vida. Esto va a ser un gran quehacer porque hasta ahora ha confiado en casi todo el mundo, incluso a si mismo, pero no el Señor. La Biblia está llena de ilustraciones de personas que se confiaban (o se faltan de confiar) en Dios con sus vidas. Esto no significa que usted pone su mente en punto muerto y nunca piensa por sí mismo sino significa que ya ha puesto su vida en las manos de su creador, es necesario vivir ese compromiso diariamente por confiar en él con su vida y todos sus detalles. La Biblia contiene muchos ejemplos de cómo Dios bendice y ayuda a los que confían en Él y que obedecen sus mandamientos. Mientras no se gana la vida eterna a través de la obediencia, le placemos y le honramos a Dios por la vida según su palabra. El crecimiento y la obediencia son socios perfectos en la experiencia de maduración espiritual. Estos son los pasos básicos que se debe tomar para empezar a crecer como un cristiano. Hay mucho que aprender y mucho que disfrutar como iniciar su vida nueva en Cristo. Sin embargo, su crecimiento supone casi que otros cristianos le ayudarán a crecer. Estamos hablando de los que le conocen y aman a Jesúcristo, y ellos mismos crecen. Dios se hizo claro que necesitamos a otros creyentes que nos ayuden a madurar. Si no tiene tales amigos, necesita encontrar a uno. Si no tiene ni un amigo así, pida al Señor para ayudarle y empiece Vd. a buscar. Dios contesta las oraciones. Que Dios le bendiga ricamente. EL PRÓLOGO DEL EVANGELIO DE JUAN En el principio era el Verbo, y el Verbo era con Dios, y el Verbo era Dios. Este era en el principio con Dios. Todas las cosas por él fueron hechas; y sin él nada de lo que es hecho, fué hecho. En él estaba la vida, y la vida era la luz de los hombres. Y la luz en las tinieblas resplandece; mas las tinieblas no la comprendieron. Fué un hombre enviado de Dios, el cual se llamaba Juan. Este vino por testimonio, para que diese testimonio de la luz, para que todos creyesen por él. No era él la luz, sino para que diese testimonio de la luz. Aquel era la luz verdadera, que alumbra á todo hombre que viene á este mundo. En el mundo estaba, y el mundo fué hecho por él; y el mundo no le conoció. A lo suyo vino, y los suyos no le recibieron. Mas á todos los que le recibieron, dióles potestad de ser hechos hijos de Dios, á los que creen en su nombre: Los cuales no son engendrados de sangre, ni de voluntad de carne, ni de voluntad de varón, mas de Dios. Y aquel Verbo fué hecho carne, y habitó entre nosotros (y vimos su gloria, gloria como del unigénito del Padre), lleno de gracia y de verdad. Sobre el autor: El Sr. Monacelli ejerció la abogacía en Nueva York hasta 1969, cuando se jubiló y se mudó a Florida. Ahora vive en Nueva Jersey. Posee títulos de la Universidad del Notre Dame y de la escuela de derecho de la Universidad de Georgetown. Sirvió dos términos como el Presidente de la Asociación de Notre Dame. Evangelism Explosion International, Inc. P.O. Box 23820 Fort Lauderdale, Florida 33307 Menorá -Los ministerios de Menorá - Teléfono: 303-355-2009 fax: 303-339-0365 Correo electrónico: menorah@menorah.org página: www.menorah.org L’Chaim - para la vida!

  • Book of Enoch | Menorah Ministries

    Ask Re’uben Many people are talking about “The Book of Enoch” Some say it is or should be included in The Bible. I am confused; please help me understand it and what is going on. S H A L O M ! ______ A MESSIANIC JEWISH SCRIPTURAL VIEW ______ Biblical Question: Our Q uestion: ​ Dear Pastor Reuben, ​ Many people are talking about “The Book of Enoch” Some say it is or should be included in The Bible. I am confused; please help me understand it and what is going on. Thanks, D. ​ Pastor Reuben's Answer: ​ Shalom D, Regarding the topic, please review http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Book_of_Enoch ​ I realize this is a lot to look at but it should give you ample ground to see that the book, while appearing to be of real Godly significance, does not meet the qualifications. Certainly it is entertaining and gives a certain air of respectability but adds nothing to or over the Jewish and Christian Bible. Just a nice story at the best, while seemingly off accuracy of history and Biblical relevance. God bless you, and keep you on the path which is narrow and revealed in the Gospel, Pastor Reuben Drebenstedt director MENORAH-Menorah Ministries- ​ Questions are welcome from ALL readers at ALL levels and Forums, from everyone. Questions of general interest will be considered for inclusions in this column. Those of a more personal nature will be keep confidential and we will answer via e-mail; always state your name, email address and your comment/question in as brief & precise manner as possible. ​ To submit a question, etc. please address it to reuben@menorah.org ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask......ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask.....ask To return to ..... Ask Pastor Reuben Biblical Answers To Asked Questions..... To return to To Life L'Chaim Find Eternal Life Page To return to Menorah's Web Page

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