Shavuot/Pentecost – Feast of [Seven] Weeks/50 Days

Lev 23:9-22

2Cor 5:13 – 6:2

Tomorrow, Sonday, is the celebration of the Jewish holiday of Shavuot, and the Christian holiday of Pentecost.  They are one and the same, except that the two calendars have diverged.  In this case, the celebration on the Sonday, the 50th day of the seven weeks since the resurrection of the Passover Lamb of God, is in line with the Word of God through Moses to Israel, and to us who believe in Yeshua/Jesus as both Lord and Messiah, our God and Savior.  He is YHVH who came in flesh and blood to redeem us from our sins. Continue reading “Shavuot/Pentecost – Feast of [Seven] Weeks/50 Days”

Yeshua Showed Himself Alive, and Is Coming Again!

Acts 1:1-11 (Lk 24:19-53; Mt 28:5-17; Mk 16; Jn 20:9-31; Jn 21:1-14; 1Cor 15:1-8; 1Jn 1:1-4)

Following the celebrations of the Passover and the Firstfruits – the death and the resurrection of the Messiah and Lord — believers all around the world are rejoicing in the risen Savior, having begun the 50-day (7-week) count till Shavuot/Pentecost. For many people then – 1985 years ago – and now, such a thing as the resurrection is only a rumor, or a myth, idle chatter, or impossible. Even for the closest disciples of Yeshua, the 11 apostles, it was “too good to be true”!

Jesus had told them that He would be crucified, put to death, and that He would rise again and meet them in Galilee. Yet when the event actually took place, their hearts were hardened and would not even believe the testimony of their own friends who had seen Him alive again, talked with Him, touched Him, eaten with Him! Even though He had told them all what was going to happen; even though it was written in the Tanach (Bible)!  Continue reading “Yeshua Showed Himself Alive, and Is Coming Again!”

Evidence of Holy Spirit Baptism

Last week I spoke about repentance which leads to conversion, to real change in our thinking and in our character.  And that this is not only for when we first became believers in Jesus as Lord and Savior.  Some of us have had sudden and dramatic experiences and can give a definite testimony of being born-again, or of being filled with a life-changing revelation from the Word of God by the Spirit of God.  Others, especially those who have grown up in believing families and who have “always believed in God and Jesus” from a very early age, may not be able to pinpoint the day or situation where they knew something had ‘happened’ to them.  Yet without the Holy Spirit working in our life by the grace of God, we cannot do it or know it.  The good fruit of holiness and righteousness in our lives will prove our baptism in the Holy Spirit by the will of God.  So, how we can know if we have been baptized in the Holy Spirit and born-again?  Continue reading “Evidence of Holy Spirit Baptism”

THE FEASTS OF YHVH AND THE FINAL HARVEST

The sacrificial death of Jesus on the cross was the fulfillment of all the sacrifices:  sin, transgression (guilt), peace, etc.  His death in history fulfilled what God had already ‘done’ before time:  the Lamb was slain from the foundation of the world (Rev 13:8)  Therefore, all of the sacrifices given to Israel in the Torah were based upon that eternally ‘efficacious’ once-for-all sacrifice to be. Continue reading “THE FEASTS OF YHVH AND THE FINAL HARVEST”

TWO MIRACLES

Pentecost Sunday
   –Our life – the life of the Church – is based on the resurrection from the dead of Jesus
   –falls on day after the 7th Sabbath following the resurrection of the Lord on the day after the Sabbath during Passover

Miracle(s):  what only God can do, sovereignly and providentially
   –resurrection
   –Holy Spirit indwelling believers; and gift of other tongues given to many
   –God accomplishing His purposes despite satanic and demonic opposition and unbelief of people  Continue reading “TWO MIRACLES”

No Confidence in the Flesh

Philp 3: 3-11 For we are the circumcision, who worship God in the Spirit, rejoice in the Messiah Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh.  If anyone else thinks he may have confidence in the flesh, I more so. . . .  But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Messiah.  Yet indeed I also reckon all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as dung, that I may gain Christ. . . .

Tomorrow is Pentecost, the 50th day of counting the sheaves of wheat, according to the Law of Moses, which Jesus came to fulfill.  The counting does not begin from the day after His death and burial – or even from the time He descended into the lower parts of the Earth to set free the captives – but rather from the day of His resurrection, from the day after the Sabbath.  We who believe in Jesus as Lord and Messiah are a new creation.  We begin with resurrection life in Messiah and then begin to learn what it is to suffer for His sake, to die with Him to ourselves, to live our lives unto God and His will. Continue reading “No Confidence in the Flesh”

GOD’S PLANT: ONE NEW MAN IN MESSIAH

1Tim 1:1-7   not to allow another doctrine (torah; teaching) but gospel truth promoting love from a sincere   heart, a good conscience, and sincere faith

Shavuot is nearing, which marks the beginning of the new phase in God’s plan of redemption to bring the Gentiles into His covenant promises to Israel and the Jewish people.  It was difficult for the Israeli Jewish believers of the early church to accept that God wanted to — could! – relate to the non-Jews/Israelis in the same way as to them who also believed in Yeshua as the Christ, the Anointed One of YHVH.  Then, through the centuries, the situation became reversed:  the Gentile majority of the Body of Messiah could not understand how a Jewish believer in Jesus could be a Christian and still a Jew.  Praise God!  His foolishness is wiser than men!

Today – for some years already – there is movement, a tendency, on both “sides” to separate what God has united.  This is one – and a big one! – of those “other doctrines” which the Apostle Paul was writing to Timothy about, that such a teaching should not be embraced within the Kehila/Ekklesia/Church of God. Continue reading “GOD’S PLANT: ONE NEW MAN IN MESSIAH”

Unity Through Love – 26 May 2004

Jn 17: 11-26

The Scroll of Ruth is read in the synagogues this holiday.  It is a story of love and mercy:  of someone “outside” – even poor and a stranger (זר) – who was brought “inside”.  She was chosen, but she also chose:  to belong to the treasured people of YHVH God, and to place all her future and hopes in their God.  About 1970 years ago, more than 3000 persons who were separated from God because of their unbelief and sins were brought into His Kingdom of light and love.

Our being here today from around the Negev, and even including Jerusalem and Ashkelon, is no mere circumstance.  As believers in Yeshua we were born again when we repented and believed in His death, burial, resurrection, and ascension into Heaven, now seated at the right hand of the Father.  We come into the faith of Messiah who has already come, and who will come again at the time God has set to fix and restore all things (Acts 3:21).  We are joined with those from nearly 2000 years ago – and even before – to God through Messiah. Continue reading “Unity Through Love – 26 May 2004”

The Wall of Separation He’s Broken Down

Lev. 10:3 By those who come near Me I must be regarded as holy, and before all the people I must be honored.

Eph 2:11-12 As we continue to let the Tabernacle in the Desert instruct us of God’s pattern for us to approach Him in prayer, the passage from Ephesians notes “the middle wall of separation”, which separated Israel from the other nations.  God in His wisdom separated the people He had chosen and called to Himself from the surrounding heathen peoples of the world in which they lived.  In spiritual reality, the gentiles then were without Messiah, aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world.  Israel/the Jewish people are in a similar spiritual condition as the gentiles then, but there is a difference:  Israel is still the nation chosen by God, even if there is a willful collective amnesia regarding that and its significance. Continue reading “The Wall of Separation He’s Broken Down”