Towards Unity of the Spirit in The Bond of Peace

I returned home on Friday night from one week in Kenya. I was invited to be part of a small team for a diplomatic mission, speaking with senior church leaders about reconciliation of Gentile Christians — and church “positions” — with Jewish believers in Jesus/Yeshua, with a conference being planned in two years. For my part, my Jewish identity is not conflicted with my faith in Jesus and being also identified as a Christian, along with other believers and followers of the Messiah. But this is also something that might not necessarily have been so just a couple of hundred years ago, and even lingering until today in many quarters. Continue reading “Towards Unity of the Spirit in The Bond of Peace”

Chosen People, or Myth?

Those who would make the Creation account given in Gen 1 and 2 (and even the history thru ch. 11) in the Hebrew Bible a myth open the door for those who say that it is a myth that the Jewish people are God’s chosen people:  the Jews created their own God and myth to compete with, and separate from, the other gods and myths of pagan nations.  (What a powerful myth!) They would be in agreement — knowingly or not — with those who claim that there is no God who intervenes in human affairs, no center of the universe or of this spherical Earth, and that there is no “specialness” of any thing, not even human beings, whom God uniquely created in His image and in His likeness.  God has a plan and a purpose for His creation, and redemption to accomplish it is at the heart of it from before the beginning. Continue reading “Chosen People, or Myth?”

The Gap Between Believing God’s Word _______ and Human Wisdom

We are influenced by the world we are born into much more than we realize. Young children today have an intuitive grasp of some modern technology than many adults who are their parents and grandparents. The current generation is also entering and growing up in a world that is increasingly ignorant of the true God and of His Word, of His covenants, and with an evolutionary mindset and world-view that has displaced a general consensus of the fundamental truths of morality expressed in the Bible, even within the household of faith (at least in the western, Christianized, gospelized world). We have a natural tendency to subject God’s word to the teachings of men – or to the lies of the devil – rather than to subject all things to the Word of God. If we do not believe what God says about the beginning, we may not believe what He also actually says about the ending. If we twist His words at first, we will probably continue to twist them at last. Continue reading “The Gap Between Believing God’s Word _______ and Human Wisdom”

2Pt 3: The Day of YHVH Is Coming

2Pt 3:1-18

Peter begins this chapter by reminding his brothers and sisters in the faith of what both the prophets during the Old Testament and also the Apostles of the Lord and Savior in the New Testament have spoken: “knowing this first”, that scoffers [among even the people of God] will come in the last days, living according to their own lusts, and saying that there are no indications/signs that the Lord is coming; nothing has changed since the creation of the world. If Christians and Jews do not believe in their heart that the Lord and Judge is coming, why should we expect others to take the matter seriously?! If believers are not praying the last prayer of the Bible – “Even so, come, Lord Jesus”! – why should we expect Israel to say “Blessed are you, Lord Jesus/Yeshua, who comes in the name of YHVH!”?  Continue reading “2Pt 3: The Day of YHVH Is Coming”

2Pt 2 — False Teachers and Heresies

2Pt 1:19-21 We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto you do well that you take heed, as unto a light that shines in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts: Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation. For the prophecy came not in old time by the will of man: but holy men of God spoke as they were moved by the Holy Spirit.

2Pt 2:1-3 But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who secretly shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with deceptive words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingers not, and their damnation slumbers not.

Continue reading “2Pt 2 — False Teachers and Heresies”

Messiah Has Come!

What joy and hope this gave to those who heard the good news/glad tidings when the angels sang, and the Israeli Jewish shepherds in the field heard the joy of the Father in Heaven over the birth of His only-begotten Son, Yeshua, the King of Israel!  And what comfort and expectation it gave to those who were waiting for the long-anticipated Messiah whom God first spoke of to our first father and mother in the Garden of Eden!  In the sovereign wisdom of God, this expectation and hope were not fully fulfilled at the birth of the Lord, or even during His life and death and resurrection; no, that fullness of the Law and the Prophets waits for the return of this same Yeshua/Jesus to return in great power and glory, to be Lord of every man, and to whom all must confess that He is YHVH!  What a glorious day that will be, and the new song to be sung by the saints and the angels!  Continue reading “Messiah Has Come!”

2nd Peter – Introduction

2Pt 1:1-2
Simon Peter, a bondservant and apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who have obtained like precious faith with us by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:  Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord

Peter was/is the Apostle to the circumcision; that is, to the Jewish people, especially to those who believe in Yeshua as the Messiah, the Son of God.  In his first epistle he clearly writes that he is writing to the pilgrims or sojourners of the dispersion (diaspora; galut) – to those Messianic Jews not living in the promised land of Israel, who have been chosen to obedience through the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, and the sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ. (1Pt 1:2)   God exiled His people because of the unbelief and disobedience to His covenant and its law.  For those of us who do live here now, we also see that although many Jewish people do live here, the large majority of them are still in spiritual exile, still in disobedience to YHVH, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob.  Continue reading “2nd Peter – Introduction”

New Moon of 7th Month: God Remembers His Covenant With Israel

(Collage by Connor Madison)

Ps 19:1  The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork.
Num 29:1-6

The New Moon celebrations were given by YHVH to Israel to commemorate, both under the Law of Moses and also in the future Millennial Kingdom (Lev 23:24; Num 10:10; 28:11-15; Ezek 46:1-8).  The New Testament tells those who are now believers in Yeshua/Jesus not to make too much of days, months, seasons, years, festivals, New Moons, Sabbaths – all of these things being shadows of things to come, but the substance is Messiah. (Gal 4:9-11; Col 2:16-17)

The Lord has told us that all of the Scriptures are written about Him, and we know that all of the sacrifices and holidays/appointed times are also fulfilled by Jesus in the entirety of His first coming, and in the anticipation of His coming again to fulfill all that is written in the whole of the Bible, which still waits for the Kingdom of God to come.  God has given His set holy-day times to remember who He Is, what He has done, and what He will do.  Even the Lord’s Supper/Communion serves those purposes. (1 Cor 11:26; Mt 26:26-29) Continue reading “New Moon of 7th Month: God Remembers His Covenant With Israel”

The Communion of The New Covenant in Yeshua’s Blood

Mt 26:19-29  “And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the Passover.  Now when the evening was come, He sat down with the twelve. And as they did eat, He said, Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.

And they were exceedingly sorrowful, and began every one of them to say unto Him, Lord, is it I?  And He answered and said, He that dips his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me.

The Son of man goes as it is written of Him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.  Then Judas, who betrayed Him, answered and said, my Lord, is it I? He said unto him, You have said.

And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.

And He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is my blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.  But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” Continue reading “The Communion of The New Covenant in Yeshua’s Blood”

God Chose Abraham To Know Him

Gen 18:16-19  And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way.  And YHVH said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?  For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of YHVH, to do righteousness and judgment; that YHVH may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

Continue reading “God Chose Abraham To Know Him”