- Reflections on the Messiah in Shemini Atzeret
- The Messiah is the Light of the World
- The Light of Life changes us from the Inside-out:
- Only the mature know the Unspeakable Joy of intimacy with Abba Avinu
- “I AM your Shield and your very Great Reward”
- It takes time to begin experiencing the Limitless Joy of Avinu Shebashamayim:
- Self-vanity is what holds us back from receiving the Gift of Salvation
- Halakha Ha-Ruach and Derekh HaYashar
- The Lawful and the Lawless
- Respecting the great value that the heavenly Father places on every life
- The love of Adonai is directly associated with our love of one another
- The Mitzvah of Hospitality in the Kingdom Of Adonai
- We are not to lord it over others like the pagans do
- Hospitality is how we are going to change the world!
- Abba Avinu’s Gift to us
- The continuing conflict between the Prushim and Ha-Mashiach
- The True and Righteous Witness (Ed HaEmet v’haTzedek)
- The Only Begotten Son (Ben Yachid, the Son of Friendship)
- The Rabbi of all rabbis
- I AM THAT I AM (Ehyeh asher Ehyeh)
- Memra (“The Word”)
- The Truth Will Make Us Free
- When the what we do does not match the “Who We Are”
- When those born free become slaves
- The True and Faithful Son
- The contrast of the Physical-Spiritual Son with the physical son
- Father Abraham is the Father of All-Faith:
- The infertility of the Womb of Heaven
- The fertility of the Womb of Heaven
- All of Abraham’s children must be Justified by Faith
- It is impossible to show any connection between the Messiah and sin
- “He who is of Adonai hears the words of Adonai”
- Before Abraham “I AM”
Reflections on the Messiah in Shemini Atzeret:
וְיֵשׁוּעַ הָלַךְ אֶל־הַר הַזֵּיתִים׃ וַיְהִי בַבֹּקֶר וַיָּבֹא עוֹד אֶל־הַמִּקְדָּשׁ וְכָל־הָעָם בָּאוּ אֵלָיו וַיֵּשֶׁב וַיְלַמְּדֵם׃ וַיֹּסֶף יֵשׁוּעַ וַיְדַבֵּר אֲלֵיהֶם לֵאמֹר אֲנִי אוֹר הָעוֹלָם כָּל־הַהֹלֵךְ אַחֲרַי לֹא יִתְהַלֵּךְ בַּחֲשֵׁכָה כִּי־אוֹר הַחַיִּים יִהְיֶה־לּוֹ׃ וַיֹּאמְרוּ הַפְּרוּשִׁים עַל־נַפְשְׁךָ אַתָּה מֵעִיד עֵדוּתְךָ אֵינֶנָּה נֶאֱמָנָה׃ וַיַּעַן יֵשׁוּעַ וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵיהֶם אַף אִם־אָעִיד עַל־נַפְשִׁי עֵדוּתִי אֱמֶת יַעַן אֲשֶׁר־יָדַעְתִּי מֵאַיִן בָּאתִי וְאָנָה אֲנִי הֹלֵךְ וְאַתֶּם לֹא יְדַעְתֶּם מֵאַיִן בָּאתִי וְאָנָה אֵלֵךְ׃ אַתֶּם לְפִי הַבָּשָׂר תִּשְׁפֹּטוּ וַאֲנִי לֹא אֶשְׁפֹּט אִישׁ׃ וְכִי אֶשְׁפֹּט אָנֹכִי מִשְׁפָּטִי אֶמֱת כִּי לֹא לְבַדִּי אָנִי כִּי אִם־אֲנִי וְהָאָב אֲשֶׁר שְׁלָחָנִי׃ וְגַם בְּתוֹרַתְכֶם כָּתוּב כִּי עֵדוּת שְׁנֵי אֲנָשִׁים נֶאֱמָנָה הִיא׃ אֲנִי הוּא הַמֵּעִיד עָלָי וְגַם־הָאָב אֲשֶׁר שְׁלָחַנִי יְעִידֵנִי׃ וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו אָבִיךָ אַיּוֹ וַיַּעַן יֵשׁוּעַ גַּם־אֹתִי גַּם אֶת־אָבִי לֹא יְדַעְתֶּם וְלוּ יְדַעְתֶּם אֹתִי כִּי עַתָּה גַּם אֶת־אָבִי יְדַעְתֶּם׃ כַּדְבָרִים הָאֵלֶּה דִּבֶּר בְּבֵית הָאוֹצָר בְּלַמְּדוֹ בַמִקְדָּשׁ וְלֹא־תְפָשׂוֹּ אִישׁ כִּי לֹא־בָא עִתּוֹ׃
Early in the morning (on the day of Shemini Atzret and Simchat Torah) the Messiah came again into the temple, and all the people were coming to Him; and He sat down and began to teach them. Then Yeshua (the Salvation of Adonai) again spoke to them, saying, “I am the Light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of life.” So the Prushim said to Him, “You are testifying about Yourself; Your testimony is not true.” Yeshua (the Salvation of Adonai) answered and said to them, “Even if I testify about Myself, My testimony is true, for I know where I came from and where I am going; but you do not know where I come from or where I am going. You judge according to the flesh; I am not judging anyone. But even if I do judge, My judgment is true; for I am not alone in it, but I and the Father who sent Me. Even in your law it has been written that the testimony of two men is true. I am He who testifies about Myself, and the Father who sent Me testifies about Me.” So they were saying to Him, “Where is Your Father?” The Salvation of Adonai (Yeshua) answered, “You know neither Me nor My Father; if you knew Me, you would know My Father also.” These words He spoke in the treasury, as He taught in the temple; and no one seized Him, because His hour had not yet come.
At the conclusion of the seventh day of Sukkot (the Feast of Booths), on the evening of the thirty-third anniversary of Messiah’s circumcision (Tishri 22, Jewish Calenda year 3790), the Master retired to the Mount of Olives to rest. Early the next morning, at the break of day, the Messiah returned from the Mount of Olives to the temple. There on the temple grounds, like waves rapidly arriving upon the shores of the sea, the people were crowding into the location where the Messiah was to speak. He would be teaching this day in the Treasury. It is here that the Teacher of Righteousness (Moreh ha-Tzedek) sat down and began to teach, generously distributing treasures from the Treasury of Heaven to a all who will listen, understand, and obey (cf. Deuteronomy 28:12). When our Rabbi spoke His first words, “I am the Light of the World…” as if right on cue, the blinding light of the Sun began to swiftly rise up, setting ablaze the sky with its early morning fire and just as quickly extinguishing the shadows of darkness that were there just moments before. It was, therefore, at the exact same time when the entire temple precincts began to be bathed in the early morning Light that the Teacher of Righteousness spoke the words:
I am the Light of the World…he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of Life!
The Messiah is the Light of the World:
A major feature of the just completed seven day observance of the Feast of Sukkot (Tishri 15-22, 3790; i.e. fall 29 CE) had been the lighting of the four giant lamps in the Court of the Women, located adjacent to the temple. The wicks used in the four giant lamps were made from the worn-out garments of the priests. The light of the four lamps festively illuminated the entire temple mount area throughout the night. In the glowing warmth of this night Light the people could gather together throughout the evening to sing praises and dance before the Presence of the Holy One. The inviting outdoor Lights of the Temple reminded the Jewish people of how in their wilderness sojourn from Egypt to the Promised Land the Holy One was always with them.
The four Great Lights were a remembrance of how the Father of Lights (אבי האורות-Avi Ha’Orot) manifested Himself to His children by the Presence of His Shekinah-Glory Cloud during the day and by the Presence of His Column of Living Fire at night. The Divine Presence of the Cloud by Day and Fire by Night constantly rested over the children of Israel like a nesting mother eagle protects and nurtures her brood under her wings (cf. Psalm 91; Numbers 9:15-23). How fitting it was, therefore, that on the Eighth day of Extended Assembly, on the day of Shemini Atzeret, the Messiah Yeshua said, “he who follows me…will have (will be protected, preserved, and nurtured by the Presence of the Holy One, Who is) the Light of Life.” Before the appearance on earth of the Messiah, who is the Light of the World, the nations and peoples of the world were lost, alienated from our Father in heaven and enveloped in spiritual darkness (cf. Isaiah 9:1-7):
הָעָם הַהֹלְכִים בַּחֹשֶׁךְ רָאוּ אֹור גָּדֹול יֹשְׁבֵי בְּאֶרֶץ צַלְמָוֶת אֹור נָגַהּ עֲלֵיהֶֽם׃
The people who walk in darkness
Will see a great light (or gadol);
Those who live in a dark land,
The light will shine on them.
כִּי־יֶלֶד יֻלַּד־לָנוּ בֵּן נִתַּן־לָנוּ וַתְּהִי הַמִּשְׂרָה עַל־שִׁכְמֹו וַיִּקְרָא שְׁמֹו פֶּלֶא יֹועֵץ אֵל גִּבֹּור אֲבִיעַד שַׂר־שָׁלֹֽום׃ למרבה הַמִּשְׂרָה וּלְשָׁלֹום אֵֽין־קֵץ עַל־כִּסֵּא דָוִד וְעַל־מַמְלַכְתֹּו לְהָכִין אֹתָהּ וּֽלְסַעֲדָהּ בְּמִשְׁפָּט וּבִצְדָקָה מֵעַתָּה וְעַד־עֹולָם קִנְאַת יְהוָה צְבָאֹות תַּעֲשֶׂה־זֹּֽאת׃
For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;
And the government will rest on His shoulders;
And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor (Peleh Yo’etz), Mighty El (El Gibor),
Eternal Father (Avi’ad), Sar Shalom (Prince of Peace).
There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace,
On the throne of David and over his kingdom,
To establish it and to uphold it with justice and righteousness
From then on and forevermore.
The zeal of Adonai Tseva’ot (the Lord of hosts) will accomplish this.
In the Hebrew Scriptures the night is a symbol of evil and ignorance. In contrast, the light is a symbol of the saving Presence of the Holy One. When the “Light” of the morning Sun suddenly appears at the break of day, rising-up in its superabundant glory, overcoming all of the darkness, this is a symbol of the salvation of the Holy One. The Salvation of Adonai is Yeshua. The Messiah is Or Ha’Olam. He is the Light of the World upon whom all of the Presence of the Holy One dwells forever. He is the only One who possesses the moral authority and power to impart the Indwelling Presence of the Spirit of Holiness to whomever He wishes. By association, whoever believes and obeys the Messiah, such a one is Indwelt forever by the saving Presence of the Holy One.
The Light of Life changes us from the Inside-out:
The Spirit takes up permanent residence in the spirits of those who have been cleansed of their sin through faith in the sacrifice of Messiah. The follower is changed from the Inside-out. First the spirit of the believer is cleansed. Then the Spirit of the Holy One Indwells the believer. Then an internal spiritual war ensues between the new reigning conscious life of the Spirit and the old life that still stubbornly resides embedded in the intellect, will, emotions, and memory of the believer.
The process of replacing the old socially conditioned self-life with the new reigning life of the Spirit is not an easy path.
For the weak there is very little progress in the path of Salvation until death; which involves more than eternal life. Our salvation involves improvements in this life too. The time of the final destruction of our old self-life is the only time when perfection is assured for us. In this life: For the persevering (the strong) there is always visible progress in the Way of Messiah. For the weak (in the faith) there is very little visible progress in the Way of Messiah. However, all of us, strong and weak, who truly follow the Messiah will never “walk in darkness.” This is so because the Light of Adonai Elohim will always be Present with and within us. The Spirit of Holiness will always illuminate our path.
Therefore, perfection is assured for both the strong and weak after death, in the life to come. However, only the strong will become all that Father of Lights (אבי האורות-Avi Ha’Orot) intends for us to be in this mortal phase of life that He has given us. Again, it must be repeated, there is no potential for moral or spiritual perfection in this life. Nor is our variability of maturity a competition between us. There is no competition. There is nothing to prove. This is so because Adonai through His own right arm the Messiah and His own right Hand (the Spirit of Holiness) has already earned our righteousness for us.
We are a corporate body. We are more than just a family of individuals. We are as One Man, one body, with the Messiah as our Head; and the Head of the Messiah is Abba Avinu (Adonai).
However, even though we may not experience moral and spiritual perfection in this life, everyone still possesses the potential for spiritual maturity. In any case, whether mature (spiritual adult) or immature (infant-child) the followers of Messiah will not remain in the realm of evil and ignorance for very long. Eternity will come.
Perfection will come. But what happens now, until then?
In the meantime: we will never be abandoned as orphans. We will never be without the Presence of the Holy One Who always watches over us and intervenes to help us even when we are undeserving of His help. For although in our immaturity we are unfaithful to Him, Abba our Father remains faithful to us because He cannot deny Himself. This Divine declaration of our safety, security, and love means Abba Avinu will never withdraw His preserving protection and nurture from us because He has permanently put the Indwelling Presence of His Spirit in our spirits.
Therefore, it is possible, even likely in the case of those who never undergo a proper training of discipleship, that those of us who are Indwelt by the Holy Spirit might shirk back from growing in the knowledge and wisdom of the Holy One. Such a developmentally young and immature one still forever belongs to the Holy One. For our salvation can never be lost. This is so because our forgiveness and the eternal gift of the Indwelling Presence of the Spirit of Holiness is our irrefutable proof (our unbreakable seal) that we belong forever to the Spirit Who is Love.
Therefore, the Spirit is given to us freely by our Father and this precious gift of His Life is irrevocable. Though the infant-children remain unfaithful, He cannot deny Himself. He will remain faithful to all of His generous promises to all of His adopted children who have humbly come to Him through their faith in Messiah Yeshua, the Salvation of Adonai.
Only the mature know the Unspeakable Joy of intimacy with Abba Avinu:
If our salvation is a free gift acquired only through exercising faith in the Messiah, “Why should one serve Adonai (the Lord) at all?” With eternal life assured, “Why engage in a process of discipleship that will involve certain sacrifice and suffering?” “Why would anyone subordinate their will to Adonai’s will if they don’t have to?”
The simple answer to all three of these questions is “Love!”
What a wasted, futile life this would be if we have not love. We might as well get on with it. Die. Then go to our permanent eternal home. Fortunately, this mortal life is all about Love. First, you don’t have to waste this good (mortal) life that G-d has given you. So don’t waste this good life. Second, understand this our Father in heaven loves you. He loves you and me just as much as He loved (and continues forever to love) father Abraham. Abba our Father will always be your Shield and your very Great Reward too. Do you remember what our Father in Heaven said to father Abraham? Abba Avinu revealed His love for all of us when He said to him, “I am your Shield and your Very Great Reward.” This promise of the Shield and Very Great Reward of Adonai is more than eternal salvation. It is temporal salvation. It is blessedness (ashrei) now!
If you learn in this mortal life to hear, understand and obey Abba our Father with regularity, you are blessed now. However,If you only wish to know Abba Avinu at the child-infant level, as your Father who cleans up your messes, by all means His love gives you that choice. You will still go to heaven and be with our Father in heaven forever. But you will have wasted this good (mortal) life He has given you.
Therefore, before you waste this good (mortal) life, think about this: If you never grow up in this life it will not be just our beautiful Loving-Father who will be cheated. You will be cheated! You will be cheated out of the most amazing, wonderful life imaginable, the unspeakable joy of knowing Abba Avinu in this life; as well as the life to come. And especially be careful to not get all puffed up with fake piety. I am convinced that religious pride is a greater waste of life than an immoral lifestyle.
Love demands humility.
Look at what it took for the prodigal son to learn love. Look at the contrast in lifestyle of the prodigal son’s pious big brother. You tell me which of the two sons ended up becoming the most like their loving-generous-righteous Father. Was it the successful, pious, proud older brother or the humiliated but grateful younger brother? (cf. Messiah in HaBikkurim, chapter 51).
Only those who have been severely humbled by life will ever become strong in the faith. And only the strong in faith will ever break-through into the experience of the unspeakable joy of the Life of Abba Avinu. Nevertheless, it is a true saying that the salvation and eternal life of our Father in heaven comes to us all. This is true whether we are strong (humble) or weak (proud). This is true whether we are sober, persevering and mature or falling down drunk in immaturity and youthful rebellion. This is so because the Salvation of Adonai comes to us all only by His Grace (chesed and chen), at the cost of the life of His own Beloved Son, the Messiah (the atoning sacrifice for Israel and of the whole world).
“I AM your Shield and your very Great Reward”
However, holiness and blessedness in this mortal lifetime is a different matter than eternal salvation. Trust me, the joy of intimacy with the Holy One is worth far more than anything else that you might seek to possess. Intimacy with the Holy One is worth any sacrifice! And sacrifice is required. For intimacy with Abba Avinu is developmental in nature. This necessarily means that without daily sacrifice over the span of our entire lifetime intimacy is not possible.
In this life, to truly know the Holy One and thoroughly enjoy His friendship, one must over time sacrifice everything!
Only after sacrificing everything will the treasure that already Indwells our hearts be clearly evidenced to be dwelling within us. It is true salvation will cost you nothing. It is free to all who believe. All that you need to do is repent and ask in humility for the gift of Life that is freely given (the “water of Life without cost“). Yes you will forfeit your self-life. But what value is our pitiful self-life in comparison to the immeasurable, infinite beauty of the Indwelling Presence of the Holy Spirit of Promise (Ruach HaKodesh ka’sher dibber).
When we accept the water of Life without cost we receive eternal life. However, with the daily sacrifice of our mortal lives, along with the forgiveness of sin, we also receive with the gift of eternal life “intimacy” with the Holy One. Now nothing is better than that!
If you truly wish to grow in faith and experience something of the Perfect Beauty, Goodness, Righteousness, and Truth of the Holy One in this life, and not just the life to come, then you will need to daily follow the Spirit of the Messiah. If you do not wish to waste this good life that Abba Avinu has given you then set your mind to daily follow the Spirit of Messiah.
Yes. You will suffer. Yes you will know pain.
The Father who loves us disciplines us. Yet, through the suffering and pain you will come to know—in this life—Unspeakable Joy! For the great ones like King David, you may be disciplined close to death. The pain of crossing over from your useless self-life into the Promised Land of His Life may even become unbearable for a time. Moses and Elijah, in a temporary transitional time of extreme stress and discipline longed for the Holy One to put an end to their lives. Like these great ones you may feel the same someday.
Don’t quit. Keep going forward. Even in the pain.
The Prophet-KIng David said, “In your Presence is fullness of Joy.” “In your Right Hand are pleasures forever more.” Father David knew the fullness of Joy because he had emptied himself of his self-life. David denied self. He exchanged his ordinary life for the extraordinary life of the Spirit of the Holy One.
It takes time to begin experiencing the Limitless Joy of Avinu Shebashamayim:
It takes time to begin experiencing the Great Joy (שמחה גדולה) of our heavenly Father because it takes considerable time to kill the false self-life that indwells us. Salvation is swift to come. “Ask, then receive.” Holiness and maturation are a different matter. They are slow to come. Be patient. Then will come to overflowing the times of “blessed are you” when you will rejoice and be glad (שִׂמְחוּ וְגִילוּ) for your reward in heaven will be great (כִּי שְׂכַרְכֶם רַב בַּשָּׁמַיִם). For it is written:
הַזֹּרְעִים בְּדִמְעָה בְּרִנָּה יִקְצֹֽרוּ׃ הָלֹוךְ יֵלֵךְ וּבָכֹה נֹשֵׂא מֶֽשֶׁךְ־הַזָּרַע בֹּֽא־יָבֹוא בְרִנָּה נֹשֵׂא אֲלֻמֹּתָֽיו׃
Those who go out sowing their seed in tears will return bearing their sheaves with Shouts of Joy!
As our false self-life dies our Invalid Thinking (our IT) is replaced by the true life of Adonai. Those who experience suffering and self-sacrifice in obedience to the Messiah and the Spirit of Holiness will know the great comfort of Abba Avinu because the love of Abba our Father has been poured out within our hearts. So the mature exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; hope that does not disappoint. So if you accept the suffering that inevitably must come to all who will to do the will of the Father, you will with the suffering one day come to a time of maturity when you will also know His Unspeakable Joy!
Self-vanity is what holds us back from receiving the Gift of Salvation:
Those of us who love the Light, come to the Light. However, there are those who will never come to the Light. For they hate the humbling, convicting truth that the Light brings, therefore, the first century religious leaders said to the Messiah, “You are testifying about Yourself.” “Your testimony is not valid.” In veiled language the religious leaders were saying, “We insist that you testify to us and not Yourself!” The self-appointed Holy Ones (Prushim, Separate Ones) had already replaced the words of the prophets with their own words. Later they would replace the entire priestly institution with their teachings. And at the present moment of the first century, these arrogant-proud ones were blindly, irrationally demanding that the real Messiah, the real King of Israel, bear witness to them and not to the truth.
Insanely, the Prushim (Pharisees) challenged the Messiah King’s claims because they secretly wanted to replace Him with themselves. The forerunners of the succeeding rabbinates believed they should be the rulers over all of the institutions of Israel. They were the self-appointed replacements for Israel’s prophets, priests, and kings. Rabbinic tradition has always rejected the sole-source testimony of the prophets.
These men took over the hearts and minds of our people (Israel) in the past by reinterpreting over-and-over again the Divinely appointed words of the prophets, so that the original meanings that Adonai intended were gradually (over hundreds of years) transformed into the meanings the rabbinates wanted; which was pretty much “do whatever we say or you will be accursed” (cf. the Bramble Bush’s multiple references to the “curse of fire” in Judges 9:15, 20, 49, 52).
Who are the Prushim? How did they fit into the first century religious landscape of Israel?
How did the Prushim eventually become a man-made replacement for all three of the Divinely appointed institutions of Prophet, Priest, and King? The first century Prushim were one of six major schools of thought within the religious community of the Jewish people around the first century. The Prushim and their opponents the Tzedukkim (Sadducees) were two of the earliest groups to emerge in the Second Temple period (536 BCE to 70 CE).
The Prushim are the forerunners of the modern rabbinic movements.
The Tzeddukim (Sadducees, righteous ones) were members of an aristocratic group that was aligned with the priestly sect. The word Prushim (plural) is derived from the root word parush (singular), meaning “separated,” that is, one who is separated for a life of holiness (i.e. the Holy Ones, purity, holiness). The other four schools of Jewish religious and political thought were: the Essenes; the revolutionaries such as the Zealots; the Herodians; and the Messianic Jews who were originally called, “The Way.”
The Essenes were for the most part apolitical. The revolutionary group of the Zealots existed only to resist the occupation of the Roman Empire in Israel. The Herodians existed as a loyalist party to support the continuing rule over Israel of the Herodian dynasty. The fifth and last of the Jewish religious groups was called “Halakha,” “The Way.” These were Messianic Jews who were followers of the Messiah Yeshua. They believed that all of the Divine meanings and intents of the Holy One, as revealed in the Holy Scriptures, the Tanakh, were not fulfilled by complying with the hyper-legalisms of the rabbinical movements or the inexhaustible rituals of the priestly movement (i.e. their halakha and halakhot is very complex). In contrast to the complex halakha of the Orthodox Jews the Messianic Jews followed a very simple Halakha. The followers of Messiah believed in the Halakha Ha-Ruach, The Way of the Spirit…
Halakha Ha-Ruach and Derekh HaYashar:
The Jewish followersof the Messiah believed that once a Yehudi (or Gentile) believed in the redemptive sacrifice of the Korban Pesach (the perfect Individual Messiah, not the failed National Messiah, cf. Isaiah 53), then not only would their sins be cleansed (forgiven) but they would receive, forever, the Gift of the Indwelling Presence of the Spirit of Holiness. The messianic (anointed) belief was and continues to be that the Spirit of the Holy One would lead each person.
This is called the “Walk in the Spirit.”
Therefore, the Messiah said, “call no man Rabbi” (Teacher in the exclusive sense). For we have One Rabbi, in the exclusive sense, Ha-Mashiach Yeshua. Interpreted, the Halakha Ha-Ruach means that no man shall teach us but the Holy Spirit will supernaturally lead us and guide us into all truth. We do not embrace “the Way” (Halakha, Halakhot) of the Prushim. We do not follow the traditions of men according to the dictates of their own man-made collective consciousness. We individually and collectively follow the will of the Holy Spirit as He gives us the grace to understand and obey the will of Abba Avinu, as revealed through our Tzaddik (Righteous One), Ha-Mashiach Yeshua. As the Teacher of Rigteousness has said:
וְרוּחַ הָאֱמֶת בְּבֹאוֹ הוּא יַדְרִיךְ אֶתְכֶם אֶל־הָאֱמֶת כֻּלָּהּ כִּי לֹא יְדַבֵּר מֵעַצְמוֹ כִּי אִם־אֲשֶׁר יִשְׁמַע יְדַבֵּר וְהָאֹתִיּוֹת יַגִּיד לָכֶם׃
When the Spirit of Truth comes He will guide you to the entire truth. For He will not speak from Himself; rather He will speak what He hears and tell you what is to come.
וּבְבוֹא הַפְּרַקְלִיט אֲשֶׁר אֶשְׁלַח לָכֶם מֵאֵת אָבִי רוּחַ הַאֱמֶת הַיּוֹצֵא מֵאֵת אָבִי הוּא יָעִיד עָלָי׃
When the Advocate comes whom I will send to you from My Father, the Spirit of Truth who comes forth from My Father will testify about Me.
Therefore, when Messianic Jews hear, understand, and obey the Halakha of the Spirit we are “walking in the Spirit” (not the commandments of men). The Halakha of the Spirit is the Straight Way (Derekh HaYashar) that leads to fullness of life. In this manner, we Messianic Jews study the Tanakh and the Brit Chadashah, the inspired writings of the chosen first generation of Jewish followers of the Messiah, the writings of His Shlichim (Sent Ones).
The Lawful and the Lawless:
“I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.”
What is the lawlessness in view here? The best way to answer this question is to also ask with it the opposite question, What is the lawfulness that is in view here?
Messiah gives us the answer to both questions when He said: “But when the Son of Man comes in His glory (on an unknown future day of Yom Kippur), and all the angels with Him, then He will sit on His glorious throne (the throne of His ancestor King David). All the nations (of the Gentles) will be gathered before Him; and He will separate them from one another, as the shepherd separates the sheep from the goats; and He will put the sheep on His right, and the goats on the left. “Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father (Avi Shebashamayim), inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’
Then the tzaddikim (righteous ones) will answer Him, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, and feed You, or thirsty, and give You something to drink? And when did we see You a stranger, and invite You in, or naked, and clothe You? When did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ The King will answer and say to them, ‘Amen I say to you, to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me.’
Then He will also say to those on His left, ‘Depart from Me, accursed ones, into the eternal fire which has been prepared for the devil and his angels; for I was hungry, and you gave Me nothing to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me nothing to drink; I was a stranger, and you did not invite Me in; naked, and you did not clothe Me; sick, and in prison, and you did not visit Me.’
Then they themselves also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry, or thirsty, or a stranger, or naked, or sick, or in prison, and did not take care of You?’ Then He will answer them, ‘Amen I say to you, to the extent that you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me.’ These will go away into eternal punishment, but the righteous into eternal life.”
Respecting the great value that the heavenly Father places on every life:
The central issue of this teaching of Messiah is the lawlessness of one despising and turning away from the obligation that all of us have (Jew and Gentile) to always respect the great value that our Father in heaven places on every human being’s life. In the ancient context of the Middle East this practice of respecting the high value that the Holy One places on every human being, especially one who is a Stranger, is called the law of hospitality. Hospitality in Hebrew is “Hachnasat Orchim.” Hospitality (הכנסת אורחים) is one of Adonai’s core principles for creating the kind of caring, compassionate and loving community that He desires all of His children be a part of. Examples of hospitality in the Scriptures:
Hachnasat Orchim #1. Hospitality is what allowed the angels to enter the tent of Abraham to inform Sarah of the promise that she would bear a son in spite of her and Abraham’s advanced years (age 90 and 100 respectively).
Hachnasat Orchim #2. The prophet Ezekiel (chapter 16) tells us that the sin of in-hospitality (maltreatment of the poor and strangers) is what doomed Sodom to destruction.
Hachnasat Orchim #3. The righteous response of Lot, in his protection of the two strangers (angels in disguise), when he begged his neighbors for respectful conduct toward these ‘traveling guests’ of the City of Sodom, is what saved righteous Lot and his daughters from the destruction of Sodom.
Hachnasat Orchim #4. The act of generous hospitality to the prophet Elisha by the woman of Shunam allowed her to bear a child after years of barrenness and it was this child (born out of hospitality) who grew up to become one of the prophets of Israel.
Hachnasat Orchim #5. The prophet Isaiah (“Salvation of Adonai”) in the haftorah which is read on the morning of Yom Kippur speaks of bringing “the downtrodden and bitter poor” into one’s home as guests.
In His just mentioned comments the Messiah is praising those who share food and drink with others for it brings closer to us those who are far distant. This is the ministry of reconciliation that Messiah says will be the benchmark of the kingdom of Adonai…“Then the King will say to those on His right, ‘Come, you who are blessed of My Father (Avi Shebashamayim), inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry, and you gave Me something to eat; I was thirsty, and you gave Me something to drink; I was a stranger, and you invited Me in; naked, and you clothed Me; I was sick, and you visited Me; I was in prison, and you came to Me.’”
We are not speaking any longer about physical distance.
We are not speaking about those who may be from a distant geographical location (another nation), but rather about those who although physically near us are psychologically and spiritually distant from us. Therefore, the Messiah realized the central aspiration of the practice of hospitality was not just mere physical survival but relational and spiritual oneness (unity). In this way our (temporal) hospitality here on earth is a dress rehearsal for the (perfect) oneness that we believe we will one day experience with Adonai in our resurrected, perfected, eternal state.
Hospitality is an offering of kindness to Adonai Himself.
The Hachnasat Orchim will be the Law of the entire international community during the reign of Messiah Yeshua Ben David when He returns to earth to fully restore Israel and to establish the kingdom-rule of Adonai over all of the nations and peoples of the earth. Therefore, kindness not only improves the lives of those we are hospitable to, it improves our lives too. What we do to the least of these we do to Adonai. Every person is an image of Adonai our Creator. How we treat His Image, good or bad, lawful or lawless, is an indication of whether or not we respect and reverence our Father in heaven.
If we abuse just one person it is as if we have abused all humankind.
If we harm one (without justification), we harm all of humanity. And if we harm all of humanity, who is the body, the Image of Adonai, then it as if we have assaulted the Holy One Himself. Messiah knew this truth and He spoke often about this Lawlessness that Abba our Father condemns. Messiah also clearly knew what kind of Lawful behavior the Holy One seeks. In this way hospitality is an act of worship of the One who made us all. The practice of hospitality humanizes us spiritually. It nourishes our own souls.
The love of Adonai is directly associated with our love of one another:
The Voice of Adonai, Rabbeinu Yeshua, taught that the love of Adonai is directly associated with one’s love of neighbor. The Messiah our Righteous Teacher makes it absolutely clear that to fail in the love of Adonai is a failure to love one’s neighbor and to fail in the love of one’s neighbor is a failure to love the Holy One. The two loves are interdependent.
The two loves are an indivisible unity.
All of the Law and the prophets depend on love existing simultaneously in both the vertical domain (love of Adonai) and the horizontal domain (love of neighbor). In short, only being love and doing love fulfills the whole Law (written Torah) and the Prophets. Therefore, it is said that an expert in the Law of Moses asked Rabbi Yeshua a question, testing Him, “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law?” And the Messiah said to him: “‘You shall love Adonai Eloheikha with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.’ This is the great and foremost commandment. The second is like it, ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ On these two commandments depend the whole Law and the Prophets.”
The Mitzvah of Hospitality in the Kingdom of Adonai:
Most central to the proper observance of Sukkot and Shemini Atzeret is the practice of hospitality. Israel is a special place. Israel is the place where (in the time of the messianic age) the only temple in the entire world will be located. The nation of Israel and its Jewish people will be a nation of priests and kings. However, the royal nation and people of Israel will not lord it over others. Such behavior is not royal to the Holy One.
Abba Avinu expects His people to be a Servant-nation.
We are to lead the world into the will of the Holy One by humbly and generously serving others. We are to be the perfect host like our Father in heaven is the perfect Host of All.
We are not to lord it over others like the pagans do:
Lording it over others grieves the Spirit of Holiness. We are to love others more than ourselves. This is so because we love Abba Avinu more than ourselves. The only way we can worship Adonai and show Him that we love Him more than our own self is by how we treat strangers. This is so because this is the manner in which Adonai has directed all of His people to show Him that we love, respect, honor, and reverence Him. Therefore, the Messiah has instructed us to do as follows: “And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words. So do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.” “Pray, then, in this way:
‘Our Father who is in heaven,
Hallowed be Your name.
‘Your kingdom come.
Your will be done,
On earth as it is in heaven.
‘Give us this day our daily bread.
‘And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors.
‘And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen.’
“For if you forgive others for their transgressions, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive others (from the heart), then your Father will not forgive your transgressions.” Therefore, the prayerful practice of Hachnasat Orchim must even include our forgiveness of others. It is only this kind of Hachnasat Orchim that will reawaken the Divine order in the world. In the kingdom of heaven on earth one is expected to love one’s neighbor equal to one’s love of Adonai. This is so because we are all made in the sacred image of Adonai. As such, what we do to the least of these we do to Adonai. How can we say we love the Holy One who we cannot see, when we do not love (or worse yet hate) those who He has made in His Image? This is what father Abraham and the Messiah teache us:
Hospitality is how we are going to change the world!
Persistence in right behavior in this generous manner will ultimately lead a pathway to the whole world coming under messianic rule. It is the law of Hachnasat Orchim that will one day make the world a place of Shalom; a place of such great hospitality of all to all that the world will become like the Garden of Eden in its physical, psychological, and spiritual quality.
Hachnasat Orchim literally means “Bringing in the Guests!”
The “bringing in” means we cause others to come in. “Come in where?” Through the mitzvah of hospitality we are causing others to come into the kingdom of heaven on earth; we are causing others to come into the generous provision of the heavenly Father’s family here on earth; and we are doing our part to persuade our heavenly Father to fulfill His promise to us to one day rule the earth as He already rules heaven.
Therefore, hospitality is G-d’s ultimate test of Israel!
Our prayers for others (in word and action) must be seen as an extension of this law. If we are just saying words to people and the Holy One without practicing Hachnasat Orchim, then we are just saying words… However, if we are telling others about the great truths of the D’var HaShem (the Word of Adonai), while doing the ‘bringing in’ of hospitality, we are being a Divine oracle of the Holy One. We are being a Divine oracle to others when we are speaking the truth in the behavior of love. And that is the only manner of persistent prayer that the Holy One is willing to hear and answer!
Abba Avinu’s Gift to us:
Who will help us in this great endeavor? Just as our imperfect earthly parents want to give us good gifts so our Father in heaven wants to give us the gift of the Holy Spirit. The love of our earthly parents is incapable of delivering us from the power of evil, forgiving us of our sins, regenerating our spirit, transforming us into Adonai’s likeness, raising us from the dead, and giving us the gift of eternal life. However, the generous gift of the Holy Spirit, given to us by our Father in heaven, grants us all these good things.
Therefore, with the gift of the Holy Spirit we are given the answer to how the kingdom of the evil one will inevitably be replaced (supplanted) by the kingdom of Adonai here on earth. The Spirit of the Holy One is Lord. He is the empowering and life-transforming One who will Help us to pursue and fulfill the multiple initiatives of the kingdom prayer of Messiah and to bring about on a global scale the kind of radical hospitality (love of others) and ministry of reconciliation and shalom that our father Abraham constantly practiced (as is illustrated in the parable of the “Friend in Need,” cf. Messiah in HaBikkurim, Chapter 45).
The continuing conflict between the Prushim and Ha-Mashiach
וַיּוֹסֶף יֵשׁוּעַ וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵיהֶם אֲנִי הֹלֵךְ מִזֶּה וּתְבַקְשׁוּנִי וּבְחַטַּאתְכֶם תָּמוּתוּ אֶל־אֲשֶׁר אֲנִי הֹלֵךְ שָׁמָּה אַתֶּם לֹא־תוּכְלוּ לָבוֹא׃ וַיֹּאמְרוּ הַיְּהוּדִים הַיְאַבֵּד עַצְמוֹ כִּי אָמַר אֶל־אֲשֶׁר אֲנִי הוֹלֵךְ שָׁמָּה אַתֶּם לֹא־תוּכְלוּ לָבוֹא׃ וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵיהֶם אַתֶּם הִנְּכֶם מִן־הַתַּחְתּוֹנִים וַאֲנִי מִן־הָעֶלְיוֹנִים אַתֶּם מִן־הָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה וַאֲנִי אֵינֶנִּי מִן־הָעוֹלָם הַזֶּה׃ לָכֵן אָמַרְתִּי לָכֶם כִּי תָמוּתוּ בַּחֲטָאֵיכֶם כִּי אִם־לֹא תַאֲמִינוּ כִּי־אֲנִי הוּא בַּחֲטָאֵיכֶם תָּמוּתוּ׃ וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו מִי־זֶה אָתָּה וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵיהֶם יֵשׁוּעַ אֲשֶׁר גַּם מֵרֹאשׁ דִבַּרְתִּי לָכֶם׃ רַבּוֹת עִמִּי לְדַבֵּר וְלִשְׁפֹּט עֲלֵיכֶם אָכֵן שֹׁלְחִי נֶאֱמָן הוּא וַאֲשֶׁר שָׁמַעְתִּי מִמֶֶּנּוּ אֹתוֹ אֲדַבֵּר אֶל־הָעוֹלָם׃ וְהֵם לֹא הֵבִינוּ כִּי עַל־הָאָב אָמַר אֲלֵיהֶם׃ אָז אָמַר לָהֶם יֵשׁוּעַ בְּעֵת תְּנַשְּׂאוּ אֶת־בֶּן־הָאָדָם וִידַעְתֶּם כִּי־אֲנִי הוּא וְכִי אֵינֶנִּי עֹשֶׂה דָבָר מִנַּפְשִׁי כִּי אִם־כַּאֲשֶׁר לִמְּדַנִי אָבִי אֵלֶּה אֲדַבֵּר׃ וַאֲשֶׁר שָׁלַח אֹתִי הוּא עִמָּדִי הָאָב לֹא עֲזָבַנִי לְבָדָד כִּי אֶת־הַטּוֹב בְּעֵינָיו אֲנִי עֹשֶׂה תָּמִיד׃ וַיְהִי בְּדַבְּרוֹ זֹאת וַיַּאֲמִינוּ בוֹ רַבִּים׃
Once more, Yeshua said to them, “I am going from here. You will seek me, but you will die in your sins. Where I am going, you will not be able to come.” The Yehudim said to him, “Will He destroy himself? For He said, ‘Where I am going, you will not be able to come.'” He said to them, “You are from the lower regions, but I am from the upper regions. You are from this world, but I am not from this world. That is why I have said to you that you will die in your sins. For if you do not believe that I am He, you will die in your sins.” They said to Him, “Who are you?” Yeshua said to them, “I am as I have been telling you from the beginning. I have many things to say and judge against you. Surely the one who sent me is trustworthy. What I have heard from Him I will speak to the world.” They did not understand that He was talking to them about the Father. Then Yeshua said to them, “At the time you lift up the Son of Man you will know that I am He and that I do not do anything of Myself. But as My Father has taught Me, so I speak. The one who sent me is with Me; the Father has not abandoned Me to be alone. For I always do what is good in His eyes.” When He spoke this, many believed in him.
The True and Righteous Witness (Ed HaEmet v’haTzedek):
The Messiah was more than competent to give a true witness of Himself. He possessed a comprehensive supernatural knowledge of His own origin and destiny. In spite of what the religious leaders thought they knew about the Salvation of Adonai (Yeshua), they were ignorant of the heavenly destiny of the Melekh HaYehudim (King of the Jews). These men who possessed no supernatural-prophetic ability were invalid judges of the Messiah. The Messiah is the Great High Priest (HaKohen HaGadol), Prophet (HaNavi), and King (HaMelekh) of Israel and of the whole world.
The Teacher of Righteousness criticized the Prushim rabbinate for “judging by human standards.” This means that the religious officials possessed no supernatural insight. They were limited to their own fallible naturalistic perspectives (human reasonings). The Prushim became preoccupied, therefore, with superficially judging others in regard to their dress, food and drink. The elite religious leaders had become a measuring bowl culture, measuring everything by their obsessive compulsive hyper-legalistic religion (cf. “Three Absurdities,” Messiah in HaBikkurim, Chapter 25). Messiah said of the Prushim rabbinate that these men worried too much about the small things and were not concerned enough about the important matters of life, the weightier provisions of the Torah, justice, mercy and faithfulness.
The Rabbi of rabbis prophetically knew that the successor rabbinate(s) would one day soon come to spiritually rule over the Jewish people. They would hold fast to their inventive religious systems instead of holding fast to the Anointed One, who is the valid ruler of both Israel and of the world. The Separated Ones chose a path of loving their rapidly growing, very inventive religious systems over and above loving Adonai Himself. The rabbinical religious leaders of the Yehudim in the first century were blind guides and hypocrites. In their spiritual blindness they were unable to see the Presence of the Holy One dwelling within Ha-Mashiach. So the blind guides (the Bramble Bush King) misjudged the Messiah, as do the majority of their rabbinate successors, who continue to supplant the work of the Messiah King up to this present day. The Messiah’s judgment is totally unlike that of the ancient and modern rabbinism. Their judging is a product of their own natural intelligence. It is biased and limited. In contrast, the judgment of the Messiah is not His own because of his unique union with the Father. Nor is His witness His alone.
Unlike the religious leaders who oppose Him, the Servant of the Holy One speaks with Divine authority because He has been sent by Adonai Elohim Himself. Messiah’s judgment, in spite of the many misrepresentations of His words, is a judgment mainly of forgiveness and love. Judgment can be condemnation or vindication: “For Adonai did not send the Son (Ben Elyon) into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him. He who believes in Him is not judged; he who does not believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the Yachid Ben Ha-Elohim. This is the judgment, that the Light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the Light, for their deeds were evil. For everyone who does evil hates the Light, and does not come to the Light for fear that his deeds will be exposed. But he who practices the truth comes to the Light, so that his deeds may be manifested as having been wrought in Adonai.”
Messiah was sent into the world so that we would not be condemned on the day of judgment. He came into the world so that we might be declared righteous by His once-in-eternity sacrifice and by our exercising faith in the gracious love and mercy of Abba Avinu. Messiah’s judgment is not like that of His detractors. This is why the Messiah said He will “pass judgment on no one” because our Father in heaven who sent the Messiah is the authoritative source of the testimony.
In Rabbeinui Yeshua’s case only Adonai Himself could authenticate Him. The Holy One sent Yeshua and authenticated Him by the signs (miracles) He performed (cf. Messiah in HaBikkurim, chapter 60). No such miracles were ever performed by any of the rabbinates. Nor had any man from the beginning of time been so wonderfully attested to by the power, signs, and wonders that have been manifested by the Great Rabbi, whose name is like His life, meaning the “Salvation of Adonai” (Yeshua).
The Only Begotten Son (Ben Yachid, the Son of Friendship):
So the religious leaders were saying to the Messiah, “Where is Your Father?” The Salvation of Adonai (Yeshua) answered, “You know neither Me nor Avi (My Father); if you knew Me, you would know Avi also.” The Messiah’s teaching on the Holy One of Abraham (Elohei Avraham) being His Father was unique. The Messiah’s very personal reference to Adonai Elohim as Avi (My Father), as opposed to Avinu (Our Father), was highly unusual. It was highly unorthodox for anyone to refer to the Holy One in this personal way.
The rabbinical leaders were sorely puzzled by the Messiah’s very familiar manner of talking about the heavenly Father. The Prushim (Pharisees) asked the Messiah, “Where is your Father?” Was the unorthodox Rabbi talking about the Most High or of His human father? The lack of perception on the part of the religious leaders regarding who the Messiah was a demonstration of their spiritual ignorance.
The Messiah Ben Joseph (the Suffering Messiah) is numerously referenced and clearly described in the Tanakh. The Salvation of Adonai fit the biblical descriptions of the Jewish Messiah perfectly. Yet, the leaders of the Yehudim refused to acknowledge Him. Why? They failed to acknowledge the Messiah because their deeds were evil and partially because of their ignorance of the writings of the prophets.
The Prushim were so busy studying and giving strict adherence to their errant, made-made oral law that they had become ignorant of the inerrant, Divinely inspired writings of Moses and the Prophets.
Therefore, the Messiah is the visible Revelation of the Father. He is the True and Righteous Witness (Ed HaEmet v’haTzedek) of our Father in heaven. His first coming as the Suffering Messiah Ben Joseph is mentioned over three hundred times in the Tanakh. Additionally, reference to the second coming of the Messiah, as the Conquering Messiah Ben David, occurs over three hundred times in the Tanakh.
No one could seize and arrest the Messiah at this particular time because He was working on the time schedule of Abba Avinu to accomplish His will. However, the Messiah’s time on earth during His first appearance (there will be a second) was rapidly drawing to a close. Less than six months from this time, from Shemini Atzeret to Pesach, the Messiah would be arrested, sentenced to death, executed, on the third day be raised from the dead, and on the fortieth day of Counting the Omer ascend into heaven. His time was short. So the opportunity for the Yehudim to trust in Him was limited. Soon He would go back to His Father and they could not follow Him there. Without His own people exercising faith in Him the Servant of the Holy One lamented, “You will die in your sin.”
The singular “sin” is that of rejecting the One who offers the Salvation of Adonai. As was the case with the Prophet Moses, the self-appointed religious leaders would cause the people who followed them to “die” because they convinced them to follow them instead of the direction of the Holy One ,as revealed through the prophets and the Messiah. Therefore, the people would continue living in the realm of sin, remaining under its power. Physical death would be the Prushim’s prelude to eternal separation from the Holy One of Israel.
The Rabbi of all rabbis:
“So the religious leaders of the Yehudim were saying, “Surely He will not kill Himself, will He, since He says, ‘Where I am going, you cannot come’?” The question of the Prushim was both a gross misunderstanding and an incredibly ironic fulfillment of prophecy. The rabbinical leaders seriously believed that the Messiah might commit suicide before they could execute their plan to kill him. Earlier they thought the Messiah was saying He would leave them and go to the Gentile nations and make talmidim (disciples) of them. The Prushim would have liked that. Their feelings would have been “good riddance, go convert the Gentiles to your brand of religious nonsense, just don’t you ever come back to Judah or we will kill you!”
Apparently, now, it appeared to the religious leaders that Messiah had changed His mind about leaving Israel and due to His awareness of their intention to kill Him He was threatening to commit suicide before they could arrest and execute Him.
How strange this all is. In an incredibly around about way the errant religious leaders remarks were very close to the truth. Although the Messiah did not personally go to the Gentile nations to make disciples His Jewish followers did. And although the Deliverer did not kill Himself (commit suicide), He did voluntarily lay down His own life as a sacrifice for the good of the people of Israel and for the welfare of all of the peoples of the world.
Why were the religious leaders so utterly confused and perplexed by the Messiah? Why were they so hateful toward the Prince of Life and Peace (Sar haChayim v’haShalom) Answer: the Messiah said to the rabbinical leaders (Prushim rabbinate), “You are from below, I am from above; you are of this world, I am not of this world.” The Messiah who is the Rabbi from Heaven pointed out His heavenly origin. The Prushim originated from earth and belonged to the earth. The Messiah, however, was not of the earth He was from heaven and His natural dwelling place was in heaven. After making this critical distinction the Son of the Highest (Ben Elyon) warned His rabbinate opposition that if they did not believe in the redemptive ministry of the Messiah they would die in their sins. The Salvation of Adonai (Yeshua) said twice that the Prushim religious leaders would die in their sins if they rejected Him who is our Sin-Bearer (our Korban Pesach). If the rabbinical leaders rejected the Messiah they would miss their only hope for salvation. Messiah clearly identified Himself as, “I am the One,” which is obviously an affirmation that the Messiah did claim to be more than a man. He was the Perfect-sinless One and the Son of Adonai Elohim. The only One born out of eternity into creation; indwelt with all of the Life of the Holy One.
I AM THAT I AM (Ehyeh asher Ehyeh:
“So the Prushim were saying to Him, “Who are You?” Yeshua said to them, “What have I been saying to you from the beginning?” The previous revelation of the Salvation of Adonai, as He identified Himself with the “I Am,” only confused and provoked the religious leaders. His words about their sins especially angered and infuriated them. “Who are You?” Who are you to speak to Us in this disrespectful, insulting way? They asked. The rabbinical leadership absolutely believed they were the holy ones, the righteous ones, and that the Messiah was not only evil but quite possibly insane for even questioning their moral authority. It was an outrage for any so-called rabbi to publicly call his fellow rabbis sinners and declare that they were in danger of “dying in their sins.” Who is this individual who dares to question Us? We alone are the stewards and administrators of all of the Oral Law. We are the sole custodians of the collective historical-knowledge and applied wisdom of all of the Jewish sages going back to the time of Moses. “Who is he to question Us?” So, the Messiah replied, “Just what I have been claiming all along! I have many things to speak and to judge concerning you, but He (Adonai) who sent Me is true; and the things which I heard from Him (Adonai), these I speak to the world.”
The Message given to the Prushim was certainly true because the source of the Message was the All-Sufficient One (El Shaddai). Unfortunately, the religious leaders and the people (Yehudim) who followed them did not understand that Messiah’s words were sourced in Adonai Elohim. This was so because the Holy One was unknown to them.
Memra (“The Word”):
So the Salvation of Adonai said to the Prushim and the people, “When you lift up the Ben HaAdam (Son of Man), then you will know that I AM, and I do nothing on My own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught Me.” The Messiah was now unknown to them. Only after the Crucifixion, when the Ben HaAdam would be lifted up on the accursed tree (configured in the ancient Hebrew Sign of the TAV), would a remnant of the Jewish people be able to see Rabbi Yeshua for who He really was, is, and always will be, the Salvation of Adonai. Thereafter, the Savior of all Men (HaMoshia l’chol Adam) would reveal who He really was by the power of His resurrection and His ascension into the highest heaven.
Messiah Yeshua is the Memra veiled in human form, “The Word” (HaDavar) become flesh. The Messiah has always been only what the heavenly Father has willed Him to be. Therefore, the Messiah always speaks only the words that the Father gives Him to speak. As the Voice of the Father, the Messiah explained: “He who sent Me is with Me; He has not left Me alone, for I always do the things that are pleasing to Him.” It was only after the Messiah spoke these words that many of the Yehudim believed in Him.
The union of the Messiah with the Father is one of love and continuous obedience. Today the ongoing ministry of Yeshua the Messiah has brought thousands of Yehudim to true faith in Adonai (as well as millions of Gentiles). And in the age to come, all of the restored nation of Israel and its Jewish people will be united as one man in their faith in the Salvation of Adonai. Already, in the twenty-first century, in anticipation of the second coming of Messiah Ben David, more Jews (and Gentiles) are coming to authentically believe in the words of Messiah Yeshua than at any other time in human history. At the present time, there is a revival of the Jewish messianic faith and those of us who are members (yehudim mashiachim) of this movement are undergoing a time of special testing and refinement; especially in this time where hatred of the Hebrew-Jewish race and even calls for our our annihilation is once again growing rapidly throughout the world.
The Truth Will Make You Free:
וַיֹּאמֶר יֵשׁוּעַ אֶל־הַיְּהוּדִים הַמַּאֲמִינִים בּוֹ אִם־תַּעַמְדוּ בִדְבָרִי בֶּאֱמֶת תַּלְמִידִים אַתֶּם לִי׃ וִידַעְתֶּם אֶת הָאֱמֶת וְהָאֱמֶת תּוֹצִיאֲכֶם לְחֵרוּת׃ וַיַּעֲנוּ אֹתוֹ זֶרַע אַבְרָהָם אֲַנַחְנוּ וּמִיָּמֵינוּ לֹא־הָיִינוּ לְאִישׁ לַעֲבָדִים וְאֵיכָה תֹאמַר בְּנֵי חוֹרִין תִּהְיוּ׃
Yeshua said to the Yehudim who believed in him, “If you truly stay in my words, you are my disciples. You will know the truth, and the truth will bring you out to freedom.” They answered him “We are the offspring of Avraham, and in our days we have never been the slave of anyone. Why do you say, ‘You will be free men’?”
Messiah specified that “if” one continued in His Word, “then” such a one would truly be His disciple. Some of the Jewish people had believed in the Messiah without understanding the actual meaning of His words. Later, many of these persons fell away from exercising full-faith in the Messiah. It was possible to “believe” superficially in the Message of repentance and the coming kingdom without exercising an authentic faith in the Messiah personally and in the heavenly Father who sent Him. Continuing in the truth of Messiah’s teaching, which is at its very core a Jewish form of discipleship, is the sign of a true follower and learner (talmid). Many people have come in the Messiah’s name, falsely claiming to be His followers but they are not. For one, how can anyone seriously claim to be a follower of Messiah and hate His people? Such a thing is completely irrational. If anyone truly has grasped the Message, of Ha-Mashiach they would find salvation truth in the love of Israel and His people.
IT IS TRUE: The Messiah declared that He would in the future return as the Messiah Ben David and that He would rule from the throne of David in Israel, while His Jewish family would joyfully live in a restored Israel in a state of complete prosperity and peace. Messiah warned that on the day of His return He would judge all those false believers who claimed to be His followers while persecuting His Jewish “brothers” and “sisters.” So the false followers of the Messiah will one day say to Him, “Lord, when did we see you hungry and not feed you, or thirsty and not give you something to drink?
When did we see you a stranger and not invite you in, or did you need clothes and we did not clothe you?
When did we see you sick or in prison and we did not go to visit you?” The Jewish Messiah, the King of the Nations (Melekh HaGoyim) will reply, “Amen I tell you, whatever you did not do for the least of these Jewish brothers and sisters of Mine, you did not do for Me!” The cumulative betrayal of the Gentile nations and peoples over the last nineteen hundred years toward Messiah Ben Joseph Ben David has been far worse than anything the people of Israel have ever done.
The people of Israel have never done evil in the name of “Yeshua” (i.e. as His false followers have). However, the evil done by the Gentile nations and peoples of the world in the name of “Jesus” has been almost limitless; and tragically, it continues even to this very day. The horrible-disgusting treatment of the Messiah’s own beloved brothers and sisters over the vast span of hundreds of years of time is chief among the many sins committed by the Gentile nations and peoples against the Holy One.
Therefore, it is one thing to claim that one does not believe that Yeshua is the Messiah; as thus far have most of the Messiah’s Jewish “brothers” and “sisters.” It is quite another matter, however, to publicly claim that one believes Yeshua is the Messiah and commit atrocities in His Name and blame these hate crimes on the Spirit of Holiness!
Yet there is still time for all to do repentance (Jew and Gentile) and seek the favor of the Father of Mercies (Avi HaRachamim). It is important that those Gentiles who honestly seek to follow the Messiah Yeshua experience (know) the great Love the Messiah continuously has for all His Jewish family. The Messiah’s love for His Jewish family is even more passionate than the love that the Egyptian ruler Joseph had for all of His father Jacob’s great Household (cf. Genesis 45 and 50:19-21).
Embracing the supernatural love of Messiah for His people will liberate anyone from the bondage of hating His people whom He loves. No one is a wise talmid of Yehsua who says He hates the nation of Messiah and His Jewish people; which will always be His firstborn nation and people among all of the nations and peoples of the world. The Word of Adonai to Abraham, Isaac and Jacob applies to all of the Gentile world today, just as much as it did almost four thousand years ago (cf. Genesis 12:3):
“And I will bless those who bless you,
And the one who curses you I will curse.
And in you all the families of the earth will be blessed.”
In due time the certain, unchanging word of the favor of Abba Avinu toward Israel and the Jewish people will run its course. Eventually all of the prophesies regarding the Messiah will come true. He will gloriously return as the Conquering Messiah Ben David. He will completely put down unregenerate man’s rebellion against Adonai.
The Messiah will continue to supernaturally reveal Himself to His physical brothers and sisters (natural family)—the people of Israel.
He will set up His international rule of the world, the Commonwealth of Israel, in the city of Jerusalem. He will immediately recall all of the Jewish people living in the world to return to the restored land of Israel. Then will the world be transformed into a state of international peace and joy like that of the Garden of Eden! Yet what of the present time we are in? Specifically, what is the response of the Jewish people to the Messiah at this time? For now a lot is happening that has never happened before. For one, a significant number of Gentiles around the world (in the millions) who say they are followers of the Messiah Yeshua are actually acting like they are. These persons are active supporters of Israel and of the Jewish people. To the glory of G-d these Gentile believers in the Messiah do not act hatefully (as their ancestors did) toward the physical brothers and sisters of the Messiah. Rather these twenty-first century Gentile followers of the teachings of the Messiah Yeshua are behaving in a caring and respectful manner toward all Jews. They are true “Friends of Israel.”
When the what we do does not match the “Who we are:”
The Prushim rabbinate answered the Messiah, We are Abraham’s descendants and have never yet been enslaved to anyone; how is it that You say, “You will become free?” The rabbinate’s response indicated that the religious leadership of the first century Israel had not grasped at all the true redemptive meaning of the Messiah’s Message. Even though the leaders were living under the bondage of Roman rule the Prushim insisted that as Abraham’s descendants they were free men. The Messiah’s remarks confused them. The leaders were free because they willed to be free and no Roman occupation could change this fact. How could the One who claimed to be the Messiah not know this basic truth? A truth that was reaffirmed over and over again in the narrative of the Exodus that was recounted every year during the observance of the Seder at Pesach.
The Prushim wanted to know, How could the Messiah free them when they were already free? Most important was not their lack of acknowledgement to their being ruled by the pagan nation and leaders of Rome. Most important was that it had escaped the notice of the religious leaders that they sorely needed liberation from their own bondage to sin. The rabbis of the first century were so confidant in their own self-righteousness that they had no sense whatsoever of their own plight of personal bondage to sin. The Prushim only perceived others to be “sinners” (pagan Gentiles and non-practicing Jews). Never themselves.
וַיַּעַן אֹתָם יֵשׁוּעַ אָמֵן אָמֵן אֲנִי אֹמֵר לָכֶם כָּל־עֹשֶׂה חֵטְא עֶבֶד הוּא לַחֵטְא׃ וְהָעֶבֶד לֹא־יִשְׁכֹּן בַּבַּיִת לְעוֹלָם הַבֵּן יִשְׁכֹּן לְעוֹלָם׃ לָכֵן אִם־הַבֵּן יַעֲשֶׂה אֶתְכֶם בְּנֵי חוֹרִין חָפְשִׁים בֶּאֱמֶת תִּהְיוּ׃ יָדַעְתִּי כִּי־זֶרַע אַבְרָהָם אַתֶּם אֲבָל אַתֶּם מְבַקְשִׁים לַהֲמִיתֵנִי כִּי דְבָרִי לֹא־יִכֹּן בְּתוֹכֲכֶם׃ אֲנִי מְדַבֵּר אֵת אֲשֶׁר רָאִיתִי אֵצֶל אָבִי וְאַתֶּם עֹשִׂים אֵת אֲשֶׁר רְאִיתֶם אֵצֶל אֲבִיכֶם׃
Yeshua answered them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, anyone who commits sin is a slave to sin. Now the slave does not reside in the house forever. The son will reside forever. Thus, if the Son makes you into free men, you will truly be free. I know that you are the offspring of Avraham, but you are seeking to put me to death because my word will not be established among you. I am speaking of what I have seen with My Father, and you do what you have (heard and) seen with your father.”
Three times during His teaching on Shemini Atzeret the Messiah employs the phrase “Amen, amen, I say to you.” (Yochanan 8:34, 51, 58; 10:1, 7. Messiah’s multiple use of the Jewish legal term “Amen, amen” is unique. The Double Amen occurs twenty-five times in the Besorah of Yochanan Ben Zebedee (cf. fourth book of the Brit Chadashah). The Double Amen is used only twice in the Tanakh (Numbers 5:22; Nehemiah 8:6). It is used as a Seal to a wife’s legal assertion that she has been faithful to her husband. The legal assertion is made with a verbal consent to severe Divine-discipline if she is lying. The Amen, amen, is also used as a sincere expression of reverence and submission to Abba Avinu and His Word. It is used to indicate the nation of Israel and its people will be completely faithful to Adonai (her husband) by obeying (fulfilling) His Torah (cf. Messiah in Rosh HaShanah & Yom Teruah, Chapter 27).
What does the Messiah say immediately after He asserts the Double Amen?
He says the very act of committing sin reveals that the one doing the act is under the authority and power of sin. In the context of the Double Amen, such an unfaithful one will become cast out of the Household of Adonai. Unfaithfulness is depicted as idolatry. It is sin. Messiah warned one’s father, mother, spouse, children, brothers, sisters and one’s own self can become an idol. This is so if any one or a combination of these persons replace Adonai as the Ultimate Authority in one’s life.
The Messiah taught that we are not worthy of Abba Avinu if we put others or our own selves before Him. Rabbinism has put their man-made oral law (party line) before the D’var HaShem (Word of Adonai).
The writings of the rabbis have usurped and replaced the sacred and authoritative revelation of the prophets and of the Messiah.
By listening to the idol and following the rules of men the people have accepted the hyper-legalistic collective mind of the rabbinates as a replacement for the revelation of the Mind of Our Heavenly Father (Avinu Shebashamayim). Not hearing, understanding and obeying the Voice of the Righteous Father is the same as leaving the Household and indenturing oneself to the authority of someone else other than the Holy One. Ultimately there are only two possible masters that we can follow ,Adonai and not-adonai. We may live in freedom as a son-daughter in the Household of Abba Avinu or we may leave the Household and live in bondage as a slave to someone or something else and that always means the same thing. We live for Adonai or we live for not-adonai (i.e. the evil one).
For two millennia the Bramble Bush has been substituting his (their) man-made oral law in the place of the written D’var HaShem and the real Oral Law of the Spirit of Holiness. The blind idolatry of the Prushim rabbinate and its successor rabbinates—the worship of the rabbis (i.e. the idolatrous worship of themselves)—has replaced knowing and doing the will of the Holy One.
Therefore, the Messiah defines slavery as infidelity to the will of the Father. In stark contrast, freedom is defined as always doing the will of the Father. Under Messiah’s definition of spiritual legitimacy none of us are free. Who among us always does the will of our Father in heaven? None but the Salvation of Adonai. He alone is the legitimate Son. He in everything has never failed to obey the will of the Righteous Father. We are all slaves to sin. He is the Son who is completely faithful that is rich in Adonai. He is the faithful ruler over all of Abba Avinu’s Household. He is our deliverer-redeemer. He possesses the power to purchase back our lost freedom and return us back to the privileged relationship of our possessing a lot more than just a temporal, physical, ancestral relationship with Adonai. As the legitimate Son, the Messiah possesses all the necessary authority and means to restore us to an eternal, spiritual, son-daughter relationship with Adonai.
Messiah, therefore, depicts sin as a Cruel Overseer inflicting bondage upon all who are faithful to the will of men and unfaithful to the will of the D’var HaShem. Those who leave the Divine guidance of the prophets and Messiah to follow the teachings of men will end up working for the Cruel Overseer. The Messiah who is our Righteous One reminds us that a son who is born a free man of the Household of Abba Avinu can of his own free will lose his natural inheritance and become a slave to the Cruel Overseer (cf. Messiah in HaBikkurim, Chapters 49-51). In such a case the Messiah is the Son who is rich in Adonai. He is the Son who, although His brothers have been faithless, He remains faithful. Like Joseph, the Son is committed to act as a redeemer, a deliverer, to all of His Jewish brothers and sisters. The Son is the benevolent overseer (ruler) over all that Adonai possesses. So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed!
When those born free become slaves:
The religious leaders and the common people who were blindly following them did not understand the words of the Teacher of Righteousness. The Prushim did not understand that due to sin and a lack of faith, their (supernatural) capacity to hear, understand and obey the Holy One had failed. In their spiritual condition of blindness and deafness the religious leaders had sold themselves and all of the people who followed them into a state of slavery. These religious leaders and the Yehudim who followed them had lost their spiritual sight and hearing due to their unfaithfulness to Adonai. They did not follow the D’var HaShem (the legitimate written supernatural Word) but chose to follow the traditions of men (the oral law) instead. The rabbinates corrupted the Divine meanings of the written law by subtly and shrewdly mixing in the chametz of their own man-invented beliefs into the Divine substance of the real Scriptures.
After torturing the Divine Word with man-made revision after revision the original Divine meanings have been repeatedly beaten, killed, and then branded as heresy (the wicked tenants stoned the true servants of Adonai). In short, the rabbinates who would be king have been the ruling sovereign (for almost two millennia) and they have made a complete mess out of the revelation of the Holy One. It is such a mess that it is like a fouled fishing line. Better to cut off all of the fouled line and replace it than waste one more minute trying to fix it.
The True and Faithful Son:
The true son is the Son who always hears, understands and obeys the will of the Father. He is the faithful Son who inherits to His trust all that the Father has. He is the One who remains in the House forever. The Messiah obeyed all of the Divine revelation given by Adonai through Moses and the prophets. This type of obedience is supernatural and requires the exercise of real faith and dependence on the Spirit of Holiness. In contrast to the real supernatural faith of the patriarchs and the prophets, the false faith of the Prushim is naturalistic and requires no real faith or dependence on the D’var HaShem or supernatural agency of the Holy Spirit. The false faith of the Prushim rabbinate and its rabbinate successors only depends on the naturalistic (humanly brilliant), vain, legalistic imaginings of men’s minds.
In short, there is no Divine Presence within the rabbinates because the supernatural will of the Holy One has be usurped and supplanted by the naturalistic will of the men who have lead and continue to lead these movements.
Just as Ishmael, Abraham’s slave son, was cast out of the House of Abraham (Genesis 21:8-21), so are those who follow the teachings of men (Hagar) in danger of losing their spiritual relationship with the Word of Heaven (Sarah). Isaac allegorically is a type of the Free-Son who was born into the world of a miraculous supernatural-birth. Isaac was supernaturally born of Sarah. He was not born naturally as was Ishmael. Every person must make a choice. Are you like Ishmael, a physical son, born of a natural birth only to eventually be cast out of the Household? Or, are you like Isaac, a physical and spiritual son, born of both a natural and supernatural birth, never to be cast out of the Household?
לָכֵן אִם־הַבֵּן יַעֲשֶׂה אֶתְכֶם בְּנֵי חוֹרִין חָפְשִׁים בֶּאֱמֶת תִּהְיוּ׃
So if the Son makes you free, you will be free indeed!
Who is the true liberator of the men, women and children of Israel? In truth only the Messiah can liberate us all from the opposition of evil that opposes the Rule of the Heavenly Father from within us and without us. The Messiah is the true Son and Seed of Abraham (Zera’ Avraham). He remains forever the Ruler over the Household of Adonai. It is not enough to be associated with our Father in heaven by physical inheritance alone (without). We must also become associated with our Righteous Father by spiritual inheritance as well (within). We can become truly free by becoming the spiritual sons of Abba Avinu through our exercising faith in the Messiah, the true Son.
The true Son is a son both spiritually and physically. This is why the Messiah affirmed that the Prushim were His physical brothers but He denied that they were His spiritual brothers.
Therefore the Messiah said to the Prushim: I know that you are Abraham’s descendants; yet you seek to kill Me, because My word (makes no progress) has no place in you. I speak the things which I have seen with My Father (i.e. in His Presence); therefore you also do the things which you have seen and heard from your father. Physically the Prushim rabbinate and the Yehudim who followed them were descendants of Abraham and brothers and sisters of the Messiah. The Messiah never denied this. Nor did the Messiah ever lose His love for His physical relatives. The problem for the Salvation of Adonai was that His relatives had lost connection with their spiritual heritage. The vibrant spiritual life of father Abraham was missing. His passionate personal faith and robust friendship with the Holy One were replaced with a lot of dead religion. A dead religious bureaucracy had taken the place of a living dynamic personal faith. The leaders of this dead religious movement were seeking to kill the Messiah, Abraham’s true Son.
The Messiah is a true son because He does nothing on His own initiative. He is the Voice of the heavenly Father. The Messiah revealed that He is the One who is taught directly by the Father. He speaks only the things the Father has taught Him. The Messiah always does only what pleases the Father. His legitimacy is based on more than just His physical connection to father Abraham. The Messiah is the Rabbi of all rabbis because He is strongly connected to Abraham spiritually; as well as physically. Only those persons of Jewish ancestry who are connected to the Holy One both physically and spiritually are truly free. Therefore, Father Abraham supernaturally (prophetically) saw the day of Messiah and truly rejoiced in it because His personal faith gave Him spiritual eyes to see it. The Prushim had no faith so they saw nothing. In their puffed up self-will they were incapable of spiritually seeing anything.
They were spiritually blind.
The spiritually blind religious leaders could physically see the Messiah Yeshua but they could not recognize Him as the Messiah. The Prushim rabbinate possessed physical (natural reasoning) eyes to see but they were blind in their spiritual (supernatural reasoning) eyes.
The religious leaders were spiritually deaf as well.
They were unable to spiritually hear the Message of the Salvation of Adonai. Therefore, although the religious leaders had eyes to see and ears to hear, they did not “see or hear” (cf. Ezekiel 12:2): “Son of man, you live in the midst of the rebellious house, who have eyes to see but do not see, ears to hear but do not hear; for they are a rebellious house!”
The Messiah spoke about what He had actually spiritually and supernaturally seen in the Father’s Presence. He worshiped the Father, who is Spirit (a being of pure consciousness) and not a creature (one possessing physical characteristics and limitations). The Messiah worshiped Abba Avinu in both Spirit and truth. The Messiah is unique. The Messiah possesses spiritual eyes to see the Father and spiritual ears to hear the Father. No other human being has possessed such abilities. No collective of Jewish scholars possess such a capacity. All of the combined knowledge and wisdom of all of the scholars who have or ever will live can equal the supernatural knowledge and wisdom that the Messiah alone possesses. Just as there is One Father who lives above us, through us and in us and there is One Spirit who calls us to be members of the collective body of the Holy One, so there is One Rabbi who is our Redeemer (HaGo’el) and Mediator (Melitz Echad) who restores us to a right physical-spiritual relationship with Abba Avinu.
The contrast of the Physical-Spiritual Son with the physical son:
What the Messiah sees and hears from the Father in heaven (Avinu Shebashamayim) He does. In contrast, what the rabbinates see and hear from each other they do. Messiah does the will of the Father in heaven. He is from above (heaven). The rabbinates do the will of man, their own will, here on earth. They are from below (earth).
Thus Messiah’s words are the absolute, inerrant, spiritual Voice of Adonai (Personified Eternal Truth). The words of the rabbis are the flawed, ordinary, self-serving proximate truths of man. The members of the proximate truth of man (men living in the ordinary presence of men) have no affinity for the Divine eternal truth embraced by our fathers Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, Aaron, Moses, David and the prophets (men living in the supernatural Presence of the Holy One). The rabbinism replacement of the Divine spiritual words and meanings of the Word of Adonai with their own ordinary mortal human logic of men was, is, and always will be a disaster.
Our rich Jewish supernatural heritage that facilitates true freedom in the Presence of the Holy One was replaced with the dead, cold, naturalistic reasonings of men. The dead presence of men and their vain reasoning has been substituted for the Living Presence of the Holy One and His Divine Reasoning. As stated previously there is an allegory in the Torah regarding this disastrous substitution of man’s ugly-twisted logic for Abba’s Avinu’s beautiful-gracious Divine reasoning. It is found in the story of Abraham and his two competing wives, Sarah and Hagar, and in the conflict between the women’s two sons, Isaac and Jacob (cf. Genesis 21:8-21).
Therefore, it is written that father Abraham had two sons, one by the slave Hagar and one by the free woman Sarah. The son by the slave Hagar, Ishamael, was born according to the flesh, in the ordinary physical way, therefore, by a religious life that is only in accord with ordinary human reasoning and not with what is supernatural. In contrast the son by the free woman Sarah, Isaac, was born by the supernatural Divine power of the Holy One, therefore, by a religious life that is only in accord with the Divine Reasoning and Power of the Holy One. What does this mean to us?
The first covenant of Hagar proceeds from Mount Sinai in Arabia bearing its children, who are solely the physical children of Abraham and not his spiritual children. This covenant is based upon the natural works of man and not the generous supernatural works of our heavenly Father (Avinu Shebashamayim). The covenant of Hagar, who was a young slave woman who possessed a natural fertile womb, employed natural conception, birth in the ordinary way, to give birth to her slave son Ishmael. Those children of humanity who are the offspring of physical birth without spiritual re-birth are represented in Ishmael. These persons represent a group of humanity who are not born in the supernatural way by faith. They are not born from heaven above by the supernatural power of the Holy Spirit. They are born in the ordinary way. These persons are born on earth only by human procreation.
In the case of the Jewish physical family, however, our people are without a doubt the legitimate physical offspring of father Abraham but we are in no way his legitimate spiritual offspring without our believing in the Messiah. Who father Abraham believed in. This means that if my people refuse to receive the gracious help offered by our Father in heaven through the Messiah then we are both physically and spiritually cursed; instead of most blessed. Why is this so? This is so for if we refuse to accept the redemptive help of Messiah who was sent to the Jewish people first, then we will then never be able to fulfill the Law of Moses; which can only be fulfilled through faith in the Messiah! Therefore, if we refuse to accept the redemptive and spiritual help of the Messiah we will never be able to secure for ourselves (and the world at large) the temporal physical blessings promised to us in the first covenant.
Without faith in the Messiah, who was the Deliverer Moses promised we will lose both Adonai’s blessing in this life and in the life to come.
Eternal life is received through the gift of the Father. Without faith in the Mashiach we will never receive the eternal spiritual blessings of the Indwelling Presence of the Spirit of Holiness given to us in the second covenant. In regard to this latter blessing, the Spirit is our necessary Helper who is our Guarantee that we will on the day of resurrection successfully complete our sojourn from this time and place of our imperfection and suffering to the time and place of our eternal perfection and happiness.
IN CONCLUSION: the spiritual children of Ishmael include all of those persons, Jew and Gentile, who are brought into existence on earth only by the will of man. The unbelieving Jewish people are counted among this group only if they have despised their birthright (cf. Esau). Our people are counted among this (spiritual) group only when we reject our natural birthright to be supernaturally born from above by the will of our Father who dwells in heaven.
On the other hand, what if we like Abraham believe in the Messiah?
If we Yehudim believe in the Messiah, who the Holy One sent to us from heaven, then we are most blessed. For being Jewish, we are then both the physical and spiritual heirs of all the blessings that are bestowed by Abba Avinu upon redeemed humankind.
We (believing) Jews are most blessed because through our faith in Messiah we are able to secure all of the physical and spiritual blessings that are uniquely promised solely to us: as both a nation and as a people.
Sarah, the mother of us all, represents more than an earthly people, kingdom, and citizenship.
Sarah also is a symbol of a heavenly people and kingdom. Sarah is a type of those children who are more than the physical children of Abraham. We are more than people of the earth. We are also the spiritual children of Abraham. We are the children born of heaven as well as the earth. We are not just physical beings. We are spiritual beings. We are born supernaturally by the works of Avinu Shebashamayim (our Heavenly Father).
The second covenant of Sarah, who was a ninety-year old free-woman, who possessed an infertile-dead womb, employed a supernatural conception to bring about the birth of her fee-born son, Isaac. From a strictly Torah point of view, we are slaves (Jews as well as Gentile) if we rely solely on our natural physical ancestry and not at all on our spiritual ancestry. Father Abraham is the father of our faith. This dualistic faith involves a Seed (singular-plural) that is both physical and spiritual in nature (Zera’ Avraham and Zera’ Elohim; cf. Genesis 13:15,16; Malachi 2:15).
Father Abraham is the Father of All-Faith:
Father Abraham is not just the father of our Jewish faith. He is the Father of all-faith.
There is only One Almighty-Eternal One and He is Adonai Elohim. No one can truly experientially know the Holy One accept by being born from below and from above (earth below and heaven above). The just shall live by faith. Father Abraham believed in Adonai and it was counted unto Him as righteousness. Isaac was the one born miraculously because of his father’s faith in the Word of the Holy One. Ishmael was born only in the ordinary way, of a temporal natural human-nature. In contrast:
Isaac was born from above, by the miracle conception-to-birth process that can only be administered by the power of the Spirit.
This means that Isaac was born of more than a temporal nature. Isaac, the child of promise, was born with an eternal supernatural nature. Therefore, it is written (cf. Isaiah 54:1-3):
“Rejoice, barren woman who does not bear;
Break forth and shout, you who are not in labor;
For more numerous are the children of the desolate
Than of the one who has a husband…”
The infertility of the Womb of Heaven:
“The barren woman who does not bear,” applies to more than just physical Sarah. “The barren woman who does not bear,” applies to spiritual Sarah too. The unfortunate physical condition of Sarah, who is the physical mother of the Hebrew-Jewish race, prophetically symbolizes what the spiritual circumstance of the mother of us all used to be at one time (i.e. the Jerusalem above, the Womb of Heaven). Due to the sin (s) of Adam and of all the human race, the Jerusalem above was at one time barren and “desolate of children.”
However, due to the birth of the Sinless One, the Messiah our Redeemer, the Womb of Heaven is now very much alive and in time will produce more children who are born from above in the supernatural way than children who are solely born from below in the ordinary way.
Therefore, in the prophetic future, after the messianic kingdom and the Commonwealth of Israel is set up, in the time and place when the supernatural knowledge of the Holy One will fill the entire earth like a great flood, then will there be more of humanity that is born from above than not.
Consequently, after the messianic age has fulfilled its procreative mission, out of the great harvest field of all of the humans who have ever lived, the total number of those born supernaturally from above (Isaac) will be greater than the total number of the human population that will only have been born in the ordinary way (Ishmael).
רָנִּי עֲקָרָה לֹא יָלָדָה פִּצְחִי רִנָּה וְצַהֲלִי לֹא־חָלָה כִּֽי־רַבִּים בְּֽנֵי־שֹׁומֵמָה מִבְּנֵי בְעוּלָה אָמַר יְהוָֽה׃ הַרְחִיבִי מְקֹום אָהֳלֵךְ וִירִיעֹות מִשְׁכְּנֹותַיִךְ יַטּוּ אַל־תַּחְשֹׂכִי הַאֲרִיכִי מֵֽיתָרַיִךְ וִיתֵדֹתַיִךְ חַזֵּֽקִי׃ כִּי־יָמִין וּשְׂמֹאול תִּפְרֹצִי וְזַרְעֵךְ גֹּויִם יִירָשׁ וְעָרִים נְשַׁמֹּות יֹושִֽׁיבוּ׃
“Shout for joy, O barren one, you who have borne no child;
Break forth into joyful shouting and cry aloud, you who have not travailed;
For the sons of the desolate one will be more numerous
Than the sons of the married woman,” says Adonai.
“Enlarge the place of your tent;
Let the curtains of your dwellings stretch out, spare not;
Lengthen your cords
And strengthen your pegs.
“For you will spread abroad to the right and to the left.
And your Seed will possess nations (ki-yamin oosmol tifrotzi vezarech goyim)
And will resettle the desolate cities.”
The fertility of the Womb of Heaven:
This is what it means that “more numerous are the children of the desolate one than of the one who has a husband.” The explanation being before the appearance of Messiah Ben Joseph the eternal Womb of Heaven was barren! Due to Adam’s ingesting the ‘evil impulse’ (yetzer ha-ra), at the eating of the fruit of the knowledge of good and evil, when Abba Avinu clearly ordered him not to eat of it, heaven was left without any human occupants at all. Until Messiah came none of the souls of the righteous, those who were made blameless by their faith in the gracious promises of Adonai, were able (upon death) to enter into heaven. The souls of the righteous (Hebrew and Gentile) remained in an elect holding area in Sheol, in a protected place called Abraham’s Bosom (Chov Avraham).
After Messiah’s sacrifice for the atonement of sin and before His resurrection, He descended into the lower regions of Sheol to lead (exodus) the spirits-souls of those who were made righteous by faith in Adonai (from Adam on to the time of Messiah’s descent) out of Sheol and into their resurrected glorified bodies (at the time-place appointed cf. time travel, Messiah in Rosh HaShanah & Yom Teruah, Chapter 10 ff.).
The reproachful circumstance of the barrenness of heaven (that Messiah put an end to) was due to the crafty fallen angel Satan ‘mixing’ (adding) his evil, parasitical false-torah (his false and deceitful misinterpretations and lies about the D’var HaShem) into the good Torah of the Holy One and beguiling Adam Ben Elohim to ingest this deadly mixture into his living soul. This seduction by the evil one and the act of Adam ingesting the knowledge of evil (mixed-in with the knowledge of good) into his living soul resulted in the human race being infected with the twin realities of sin and death (cf. Message in the Middle, “The Inception,” Messiah in Rosh HaShanah & Yom Teruah, Chapter 4). Therefore, until the appearance, atoning death, life-giving resurrection, and triumphant ascension of Messiah into heaven, the Jerusalem Above (the spiritual mother of us all) remained “barren.”
What does this mean? What does the barren woman symbolize? Does this prophetic passage speak only of physical Sarah and the Jewish people? Or does the prophecy speak also of a Spiritual Sarah, whose redeemed children are drawn from all of the earth?
Obviously the salvation of the Sarah (Jerusalem) above is more than a salvation that is limited to the Jewish race for it is written in the D’var HaShem, “Ki-yamin oosmol tifrotzi vezarech goyim.”
“Your Seed will possess the gentile peoples and nations.”
In this way our Jewish brothers and sisters are called to truly be sons and daughters like Isaac. We are to possess the Seed that is to become a physical and spiritual blessing to the Gentiles as well as ourselves.
We Jews are, therefore, more than heirs of the natural promises but of the supernatural promises too.
But understand this just as the children born in the natural way persecuted their physical brother the Messiah who was born in the supernatural way so will our physical brothers and sisters only born according to the flesh persecute those of us who are born according to the Spirit (Genesis 21:10). For this reason it is said that the rabbinates who reject the Messiah, who is the true Son of Abraham both physically and spiritually, will be cast out of the Household of the heavenly Father (Isaiah 54:1):
“Cast out the bondwoman and her son,
For the son of the slave shall not be an heir with the son of the free woman.”
All of Abraham’s children must be Justified by Faith:
וַיַּעֲנוּ וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו אָבִינוּ הוּא אַבְרָהָם וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵיהֶם יֵשׁוּעַ לוּ הֱיִיתֶם בְּנֵי אַבְרָהָם כְּמַעֲשֵׂי אַבְרָהָם עֲשִׂיתֶם׃ וְעַתָּה אַתֶּם מְבַקְשִׁים לַהֲמִיתֵנִי אֲנִי הַאִישׁ אֲשֶׁר דִבַּרְתִּי אֲלֵיכֶם הָאֱמֶת אֲשֶׁר שָׁמַעְתִּי מֵעִם הָאֱלֹהִים אַבְרָהָם לֹא עָשָׂה כָּזֹאת׃ אֶת־מַעֲשֵׂי אֲבִיכֶם אַתֶּם עֹשִׂים וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו לֹא יַלְדֵי זְנוּנִים אֲנַחְנוּ יֶשׁ־לָנוּ אָב אֶחָד הוּא הָאֱלֹהִים׃ וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵיהֶם יֵשׁוּעַ לוּ הָיָה אֱלֹהִים אֲבִיכֶם כִּי־עַתָּה אֲהַבְְתֶּם אֹתִי כִּי אָנֹכִי יָצָאתִי וּבָאתִי מֵאֵת הָאֱלֹהִים הֵן־לֹא־מִמֶּנִּי בָאתִי אַךְ־הוּא שְׁלָחָנִי׃ מַדּוּעַ לֹא תֵדְעוּ לְשׁוֹנִי יַעַן אֲשֶׁר לֹא־תוּכְלוּן לִשְׁמֹע אֶת־דְּבָרִי׃ אַתֶּם מֵאֵת אֲבִיכֶם הַשָּׂטָן וְלַעֲשׂוֹת אֶת־תַּאֲוֹת אֲבִיכֶם חֲפַצְתֶּם הוּא רוֹצֵחַ הָיָה מֵרֹאשׁ וּבָאֱמֶת לֹא עָמָד כִּי אֱמֶת אֵין־בּוֹ מִדֵּי דַבְּרוֹ שֶׁקֶר יְדַבֵּר מִלִּבּוֹ כִּי־מְשַׁקֵּר הוּא וַאֲבִי הַשָּׁקֶר׃ וַאֲנִי יַעַן דַּבְּרִי הָאֱמֶת לֹא תַאֲמִינוּ לִי׃ מִי בָכֶם עַל־עָוֹן יוֹכִיחֵנִי וְאִם־אֱמֶת דִּבַּרְתִּי מַדּוּעַ לֹא־תַאֲמִינוּ לִי׃ אֲשֶׁר מֵאֵת הָאֱלֹהִים הוּא יִשְׁמַע אֶת־דִּבְרֵי הָאֱלֹהִים וְאַתֶּם לֹא שְׁמַעְתֶּם בַּאֲשֶׁר אֵינְכֶם מֵאֵת הָאֱלֹהִים׃
They answered and said to Him, “Our father is Avraham.” Yeshua said to them, “If you were sons of Avraham, you would have done the deeds of Avraham. But now you are seeking to put Me to death—Me, the man who has spoken the truth to you, which I have heard from Adonai. Avraham did not do this. You are doing the deeds of your father.” They said to Him, “We are not children of immorality. We have One Father, who is Adonai.” Yeshua said to them, “If only the Almighty One were your Father! For then you would love Me, because I have gone forth and come from Adonai. Yes, I did not come from Myself, but He sent Me. Why do you not know My tongue? It is because you are not able to hear My words. You are from your father, the satan, and you desire to carry out your father’s craving. He was a murderer from the beginning, and he has not stood in the truth because he does not have truth in him. Whenever he speaks deception, he speaks from his heart, because he is a deceiver and the father of deception. But since my word is true, you will not believe Me. Who among you will rebuke Me concerning iniquity? If I have spoken the truth, why will you not believe Me? Whoever is from Adonai will hear the words of Adonai. You have not heard because you are not from Adonai.”
The Prushim rabbinate and their followers claimed Abraham was not only their physical father but their spiritual father as well. The Messiah, however, responded by stating that the spiritual descendants of Abraham do what Abraham did, that is, they believe and obey Adonai. Since the religious leaders had failed in this regard they could only claim that they were the physical descendants of Abraham and not his spiritual descendants. For the Prushim to be both the spiritual and physical descendants of father Abraham they would have had to have done the “deeds he did.” Father Abraham by faith supernaturally saw the day of Messiah’s appearance and He loved the Messiah. The Prushim rabbinate and their successors should have done the same. Previously the prophets warned the children of Israel against the danger of relying solely on physical heritage, absent their spiritual heritage. The Messiah repeated this warning of the prophets and His reward for doing so was the religious leaders were plotting to kill Him:
“But as it is, you are seeking to kill Me, a man who has told you the truth, which I heard from Adonai; this Abraham did not do.”
This hateful response on the part of the Prushim rabbinate was in no way the kind of chilly reception father Abraham would have given to the Messiah. The first century rabbinate was rejecting the heavenly Messenger and seeking to kill the One who told them the Word of Adonai. The first century rabbinate was setting themselves and all of their successor rabbinates on a very destructive course that we are only now beginning to turn ourselves around from (i.e. some nineteen centuries later). We must now turn back toward the faith of our Father Abraham. He was obedient to the Holy One’s commands (cf. Genesis 12:1-9; 15:6; 18; 22:1-19). Father Abraham lived by a dynamic faith in Adonai and was the “friend” of the Holy One.
“You are doing the deeds of your father.” They said to Him, “We were not born of fornication; we have one Father: Adonai.”
The spiritual works of the leaders of the Prushim were different than their physical ancestor father Abraham, so their spiritual father must also be different. The source of doing evil is the evil one and not the Holy One. The errant religious leaders attempted to evade the Messiah’s logic by attacking His physical paternity. The leaders did everything they could to avoid addressing the real issue of their spiritual paternity. So, they attempted to divert attention away from their spiritual illegitimacy by casting outrageous and ugly aspersions on the legitimacy of Messiah’s physical birth. Undeterred by the Prushim’s viscious personal attacks on His physical paternity, the Messiah calmly remained focused on the central issue, the issue of the spiritual paternity of the religious leaders: “If Adonai were your Father, you would love Me, for I proceeded forth and have come from Adonai, for I have not even come on My own initiative, but (literally) the One, He sent Me. Why do you not understand My way of speaking? It is because you cannot hear My word.”
“If” the religious leaders really loved the Holy One as their spiritual Father, “then” they would have loved the Salvation of Adonai (Yeshua) because He came from Elohei Avoteinu. The Messiah again strongly affirmed His position as the Representative of the Heavenly Father. This quite clearly meant only one thing, someone was lying. Either the Messiah was deliberately lying or the Prushim were. Therefore the Messiah publicly said: “You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks the lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of it (i.e. lies).”
The evil one is the enemy of truth and life. He is the Father of The Lie. By The Lie the evil one brought spiritual and physical death to mankind. The Lie has to do with who our real Teacher (Rabbi) is…Adonai or someone else. The evil one replaced the Word of Adonai with his words (his lies). When Man ingested the words of the evil one into himself, mixing the evil one’s knowledge of evil with Adonai’s knowledge of good, then sin and the yetzer ha-ra (evil inclination) was instilled into our human existence. This introduced spiritual and physical death into the human race; neither of which is in accord with the active will of Abba Avinu. The evil one continues today to distort the truth with his information age mass-produced lies. There is no truth in him. He is the source of all lies and his lies are the cause of spiritual and physical death. He is Ha-Abaddon (the Destroyer) who constantly seeks to lead people away from the Father of Mercies (Avi HaRachamim). He is the false rabbi of destruction who leads the people away from the protective-nurturing care of the Holy One who is the source of all life and truth.
The Prushim hated the D’var HaChayim, the Messiah who is the Word of Life. Therefore, these false shepherds rejected the truth of Abba Avinu and embraced The Lie. Except this time the evil one did not speak directly to Man. He chose instead to replace the Rabbi of Heaven (heavenly knowledge) with his own personal Absalom (King David’s brilliant, handsome, beloved son who, in his self-vanity, betrayed him). The evil one replaced the D’varim of the Rabbi of Heaven with the traditions of men, the words of the rabbinates (earthly knowledge). Therefore, the Prushim sought to kill the Messiah, blasphemously calling the Spirit of the Holy One who indwells Him, the “spirit of the evil one.” Tragically, the evil one inspired the Prushim rabbinate to blaspheme the Spirit of Holiness and in so doing he was able to form an unthinkable alliance with the elect physical family of Abraham. After this spiritual disaster only a small remnant of the Jewish people have remained faithful to father Abraham’s spiritual heritage, continuing in the supernatural Way of the Spirit of Holiness, which is “The Just shall live by Faith!” For these reasona the Messiah, Who is the Voice of Adonai, spoke these words to the religious leaders of His People: “But because I speak the truth, you do not believe Me. ‘Which one of you convicts Me of sin? If I speak truth, why do you not believe Me?’”
It is impossible to show any connection between the Messiah and sin:
The Messiah stayed on point. He knew that if His detractors were judged solely by their spiritual works and not merely by their physical lineage, the contrast between Himself and them would prove His point: The Messiah was the sinless Righteous One (Tzaddik). “Can any of you prove me guilty of sin?” It is impossible to show any connection between the Messiah and sin. Since this is so, along with the many signs and wonders that the Messiah performed, we can recognize His Divine origin. In contrast, the Prushim were sinners in need of a Savior and no miracles whatsoever were ever performed by them. By their moral misconduct and ineptitude the *Prushim demonstrated that they loved darkness more than light, falsehood more than reality, and self-glorification more than glorification of the Holy One.
This corruption of self-importance was why these elite religious leaders were inattentive to the Word of Adonai spoken through His Holy Servant, the Messiah. Many accusations have been made against the Messiah. They are all shrewd diversions to turn our attention away from the one great fact that the goodness of His Life proves to us all who He really is (not who we His grossly deficient followers are; for at best we are only His unworthy servants who are mercifully fortunate enough to receive His Generous Help. Messiah’s beautiful words and marvelous works only prove who He is: The Messiah of Israel and of the whole World!).
[*No doubt Christian readers will read these words and assume this is an indictment on my people, the Jews. It is not. You Christians are more guilty of these offenses against the Messiah and the Holy One. Our many offenses were never done in the Name of the Messiah. our people have been completely honest about their not believing in the Messiah. In contrast, your offenses have all been done in “His Name.” And because of the gross historical misconduct of avowed Christians the sacred Name of the Salvation of Adonai (Yeshua-Jesus) is blasphemed all the day long! We strongly believe that when the Messiah returns there will be no such thing as Christianity. There will be one calling, one Spirit, one faith, one mikvah, one Lord, and one Father who is above all, in all, and through all.]
“He who is of Adonai hears the words of Adonai:”
The answer to the question, “Why did the Prushim rabbinate (and their succesors) not believe in the Messiah?” is provided in the follow-up statement: “He who is of Adonai hears the words of Adonai; for this reason you do not hear them (i.e. the words of Messiah who is the Voice of Abba Avinu), because you are not of Adonai.” Belonging to the Holy One physically through receiving the physical DNA of Abraham is not enough to guarantee our becoming the permanent-spiritual children of the Holy One. Belonging to the Holy One spiritually through our receiving the gift of His spiritual DNA, the Indwelling Presence of His Spirit, is the only basis for our becoming His spiritual children and after our resurrection, His immortal children.
Only when a person who is physically born into the family of Israel receives the gift of the permanent Indwelling Presence of the Spirit of Holiness will he or she be able to recognize, hear, understand and obey (i.e. shama, shema) the Voice of Adonai. To hear the Voice of our Father in heaven is not just a matter of being able to discern physical audible sounds (physical hearing) or read writings recorded on paper (physical seeing). For us to supernaturally recognize, hear, understand, and obey the heavenly commands we must possess a regenerated heart, a heart of flesh and not of stone (i.e. the Unfailing Heart of the Holy Spirit). Those who do not recognize the words of Messiah for what they are—the words of Adonai spoken through His Holy Servant, Ha-Mashiach—who reject His heavenly commands, they are not rejecting the words of the Messiah. These persons are rejecting the Word of our Father who dwells in heaven. This lack of receptivity is a clear indication that these disobedient ones “are not of Adonai.”
אָז יַעֲנוּ הַיְּהוּדִים וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו הֲלֹא הֵטַבְנוּ אֲשֶׁר דִּבַּרְנוּ כִּי שֹׁמְרוֹנִי אַתָּה וְשֵׁד בָּךְ׃ וַיַּעַן יֵשׁוּעַ שֵׁד אֵין־בִּי רַק אֶת־אָבִי אֲנִי מְכַבֵּד וְאַתֶּם תִּבְזוּנִי׃ אָכֵן לֹא אֶדְרשׁ אֶת־כְּבוֹדִי יֵשׁ אֶחָד אֲשֶׁר יִדְרשׁ וְיִשְׁפֹּט׃ אָמֵן אָמֵן אֲנִי אֹמֵר לָכֶם אִם־יִשְׁמֹר אִישׁ אֶת־דְּבָרִי לֹא יִרְאֶה־מָּוֶת לָנֶצַח׃ הֲגָדוֹל אַתָּה מֵאַבְרָהָם אָבִינוּ אֲשֶׁר מֵת גַּם־הַנְּבִיאִים מֵתוּ מַה־תַּעֲשֶׂה עַצְמֶךָ׃ וַיַּעַן יֵשׁוּעַ אִם־אֲנִי מְכַבֵּד אֶת־נַפְשִׁי כְּבוֹדִי מֵאָיִן אָבִי הוּא הַמְכַבֵּד אֹתִי אֲשֶׁר תֹּאמְרוּ לוֹ הוּא אֱלֹהֵינוּ׃ וְלֹא יְדַעְתֶּם אֹתוֹ וַאֲנִי יָדַעְתִּי וְאִם־אָמַרְתִּי אֵינֶנִּי יוֹדֵעַ אֹתוֹ אֶהְיֶה מְשַׁקֵּר כְּמוֹכֶם אֲבָל יְדַעְתִּיו וְאֶת־דְּבָרוֹ שָׁמָרְתִּי׃ אַבְרָהָם אֲבִיכֶם שָׂשׂ לִרְאוֹת אֶת־יוֹמִי וַיַּרְא וַיִּשְׂמָח׃ וַיֹּאמְרוּ אֵלָיו הַיְּהוּדִים לֹא בֶּן־חֲמִשִּׁים שָׁנָה אָתָּה וְאֶת־אַבְרָהָם רָאִיתָ׃ וַיֹּאמֶר אֲלֵיהֶם יֵשׁוּעַ אָמֵן אָמֵן אֲנִי אֹמֵר לָכֶם בְּטֶרֶם הֱיוֹת אָבְרָהָם אֲנִי הָיִיתִי׃ אָז יָרִימוּ אֲבָנִים לִרְגֹּם אֹתוֹ וְיֵשׁוּעַ הִתְעַלָּם וַיֵּצֵא מִן־הַמִקְדָּשׁ וַיַּעֲבֹר בְּתוֹכָם עָבוֹר וְחָלוֹף׃
Then the (leaders of the) Yehudim answered and said to Him, “Have we done well by saying that you are a Shomroni with a demon in you?” Yeshua answered, “There is no demon in Me. I only bring honor to My Father, but you show contempt for Me. Surely I will not search for My own honor. There is One who will search and judge. Amen, amen, I say to you, if anyone will keep My word, he will never see death.” The Yehudim said to Him, “Now we know that there is a demon in you. See Avraham and the prophets died. What are you making yourself?” Yeshua answered, “If I bring honor to Myself, my honor is nothing. My Father is the One who brings honor to Me, of whom you say, ‘He is our Almighty One.’ But you do not know Him. I do know Him and if I said I do not know Him, I would be a deceiver like you. But I know Him and I have kept His Word. Avraham your father rejoiced to see My day (cf. Genesis 22). He saw it and was glad.” The Yehudim said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old. You have seen Avraham?” Yeshua said to them, “Amen, amen, I say to you, before the existence of Avraham, I was” (“I Am!”). By then they were lifting stones to pelt Him, but Yeshua hid Himself and went out of the Temple. He passed through them, going further and further away.”
The Samaritans were a people of mixed race, many of whom had at least one or more Jewish ancestors, who were considered by the Prushim to be racially inferior because of their Jewish ancestors history of marrying Gentiles. By calling the Salvation of Adonai (Yeshua) a Samaritan the religious leaders were disqualifying Him from preaching and teaching in the name of Adonai. One would have to be a Jew by birth to claim that one was a Rabbi called by the Holy One to instruct His people.
Another ridiculous charge of the Prushim against the Messiah was that He was demon-possessed.
The Prushim claimed the Servant of the Holy One (Eved HaKadosh) was a mentally deranged, unclean, and evil person. These highly insulting personal attacks against the Messiah no doubt were the result of the Messiah’s incendiary twin declaration that the Prushim’s physical father was Abraham but their spiritual father was the Devil. This understandably incensed the religious leaders. If this was just a heated dispute between men there would not be a tragedy here. The tragedy was that this was not just an exchange of verbal assaults between men. This very personal attempt on the part of the Prushim rabbinate to dishonor the Messiah was not just a retaliatory attack on Him but it was a very personal and dangerous attack on the Holy One Himself. For it was Adonai who sent the Messiah to the people of Israel at this time and therefore, since it was Adonai’s Message that they were rejecting, it was in actuality the Holy One Himself Who they were grossly insulting and even blaspheming. Nonetheless, in spite of the public verbal assaults, the Messiah did not divert His focus away from His Message. He continued to speak the Word of Adonai:
Amen, amen, I say to you, if anyone keeps My word he will never see death!
Here the Messiah once again employed the use of the Double Amen to assure His listeners that He was telling the truth. Messiah’s use of the phrase “keeps My Word” indicates that a proper response to His revelation involves an enduring process of discipleship that does not end until the will of Abba Avinu is thoroughly accomplished in our lives (cf. “abiding,” Messiah in HaBikkurim Chapter 69, Part II). The qualifying phrase keeps my word is a similar expression to “hear” My Word and “hold” to My teaching. It means to hear, understand and obey the words of the Messiah. Those who do so are actually keeping, hearing, and holding to the teachings of Adonai. Such a follower is promised that he or she will never see death, that is, he or she will never be eternally separated from Adonai (i.e. experience spiritual death; which is separation from Adonai).
Before Abraham “I AM:”
The foolish religious leaders had nothing of real spiritual substance to say. They just kept up their ridiculous personal attacks. They mocked the words of Messiah. The Prushim at the first claimed that the Messiah’s words were just the absurd claims of a deranged Jewish man. Then they attempted to nullify the Messiah’s status as a Rabbi by labeling Him a heretic and even casting aspersions on His birth; implying that He was born illegitimately and was of mixed-race origin. Finally, the heated verbal assaults of the Prushim escalated up to the blasphemous level when they claimed that the Anointed One was demon-possessed.
This last act of slander was blasphemy of the Spirit of Holiness.
Since Adonai was speaking (prophesying) through the Messiah it was not the words of a man that the people were hearing. It certainly was not the words of a demon or of the devil. It was the words of the Spirit of Adonai Who was speaking directly to them! The Prushim could not hear the sacred Voice of Adonai because they were not indwelt by His Spirit. In their spiritual blindness the rabbinate and the people thought the Messiah was talking about physical death when He was actually talking about spiritual death. They also wrongfully believed that the Messiah was attempting to glorify Himself in the place of the heavenly Father…When the truth was the religious leaders were falsely projecting onto the Messiah their own practice of putting themselves above the Holy One. Therefore, the Messiah answered them:
“If I glorify Myself, My glory is nothing; it is My Father who glorifies Me, of whom you say, ‘He is Eloheinu;’ and you have not come to know Him, but I know Him; and if I say that I do not know Him, I will be a liar like you, but I do know Him and keep His word. Your (physical) father Abraham rejoiced to see My day, and he saw it and was glad.” So the religious leaders of the Yehudim said to Him, “You are not yet fifty years old, and have You seen Abraham?” The Messiah was restating the truth He had always affirmed throughout His earthly ministry, If He honored Himself, His glory would have no value. The whole point of the Messiah’s statement was that the physical and spiritual father of the Jewish nation, father Abraham, looked forward to the Messianic age with great joy, however, the spiritual “seed” of the first century rabbinate refused to believe and rejoice with him. Abraham is the physical father of all the Jewish people whether they believe in Adonai or not. However, Abraham is only the spiritual father of believers who obey the Word of Adonai, not unbelievers who don’t.
In the deepest intimacy the Salavation of Adonai (Yeshua), the Personified Memra become flesh, has always enjoyed a relationship that is in Union with Adonai. The Messiah knows (inherently and intuitively) the heavenly Father, but the Prushim never knew Him. For the Messiah to deny this would be for Him to lie just as the blaspheming religious leaders were lying. The Prushim, therefore, were not Abraham’s descendants spiritually. They were only physically related to him. Father Abraham rejoiced to see the messianic salvation which promised “all the peoples on earth would be blessed” through His descendant the Messiah (cf. Genesis 12:3). Abraham by faith was granted a son Isaac, through whom the Seed (Ha-Mashiach) would come. Specifically how much of the messianic times the Spirit had revealed to his friend Abraham is unknown. But it is clear that he knew of the coming salvation and he rejoiced in knowing about it and expecting it. For this reason the Messiah said: “Amen, amen, I say to you, before the existence of Abraham, I was! [I AM (YHWH]” Therefore they picked up stones to throw at Him, but the Salvation of Adonai (literally) was hidden (from them) and went out of the temple (unharmed).”
Adonai indwells the Messiah. The House is a Man. However, the Spirit that is Indwelling the Man is the Spirit of the Holy One. The man was not claiming to be G-d. He was claiming to be the Servant of the Holy One, the Voice of Adonai. The Messiah clearly affirmed His superiority over the prophets and over even father Abraham. No other man, other than the first Adam, had ever been Indwelt with all of the Spirit of the Holy One. Abraham came into being when he was conceived and born, however, the Spirit of the Rabbi of Heaven declared that He had pre-existed Abraham. He had even pre-existed eternity. The One who speaks from within and through the Messiah is the Father of Eternity (Avi’ad)) cloaked in human form. This was a declaration that He, the Spirit of Adonai dwelling within the Messiah, was, is, and always will be the “I AM” (YHWH). The immediate response of the Prushim showed they in no way understood Who was at the Source of these words:
אָז יָרִימוּ אֲבָנִים לִרְגֹּם אֹתוֹ וְיֵשׁוּעַ הִתְעַלָּם וַיֵּצֵא מִן־הַמִקְדָּשׁ וַיַּעֲבֹר בְּתוֹכָם עָבוֹר וְחָלוֹף׃
“Therefore they picked up stones to throw at Him, but Yeshua (lit.) was hidden (from them) and went out of the temple. He passed through them, going further and further away.” The D’varim of Ha Shem prophesied through Messiah clearly affirm that all of the Spirit of Holiness (Divinity) dwelt bodily within His mind, body, soul, and Spirit. Adonai clearly declared through His Beloved Son that He YHWH (this invisible, ineffable one) had visibly tented among men by sending them His Son! This lack of discernment that Messiah is Bethel (man, the House of G-d) and the Spirit of the Holy One is ELOHIM-Bethel (G-d the Spirit Indwelling His House) had evoked a crisis in the first century (CE) that continues to this present day. The listeners had to decide whether the Messiah was what He claimed to be or He was a blasphemer. They completely failed to discern the Presence of the Holy One, HaAv L’Yeshua HaMashiach, that was speaking directly to them through the human voice of His Most Holy Servant, His Beloved Son—-HaSar HaChayim (the Prince of The Living One). Stoning was the normal punishment for this grossly misperceived sin. The unsuccessful effort to lay hold of the Messiah and stone Him is explained by the words,”Yeshua hid himself.” This refers to a supernatural means of escape. Once again we see that no one could harm the M’shiach Adonai until the exact time that had been appointed by our heavenly Father.