Messiah in Yom HaBikkurim Chapter 36

Parable #17. Valuable Pearl (Kingdom of Heaven):

  1. Today is Day #17
  2. The Seventeenth Mashal of Messiah
  3. Eight Observations
  4. Interpretation of the Valuable Pearl – 5 Points
  5. Postscript

Today is Day #17:

1. Today is “Day #17” in the forty-nine day Countdown to Shavuot.

2. Today is Seventeen days in the Omer.

Today is seventeen days which are two weeks and three days in the Omer.

היום שבעה עשר יום, שהם שני שבועות ושלושה ימים בעומר. פ

Haiyom shiv’ah asar yom, sheaym shnay shavuot ushloshah yamim ba’omer.

“You shall count for yourselves — from the day after the Shabbat, from the day when you bring the Omer of the waving — seven Shabbats, they shall be complete. Until the day after the seventh sabbath you shall count, fifty days.” (Leviticus). “You shall count for yourselves seven weeks, from when the sickle is first put to the standing crop shall you begin counting seven weeks. Then you will observe the Festival of Shavu’ot for Adonai Eloheinu.” (Deuteronomy).

“Blessed are You, Adonai Eloheinu, King of the universe, Who sanctified us with Your commandments and commanded us to count the Omer.”

ברוך אתה, אדוני אלוהינו, מלך העולם, אשר קדשנו במצוותיו וצוונו על ספירת העומר.פ

Baruch atah, Adonai Eloheinu, melech ha’olam, asher kid’shanu b’mitzvotav v’tzivanu al sefirat ha’omer.

The Seventeenth Mashal of Messiah:

עוֹד דּוֹמָה מַלְכוּת הַשָׁמָיִם לְאִישׁ סֹחֵר הַמְבַקֵּשׁ מַרְגָּלִיּוֹת טֹבוֹת׃ וְכַאֲשֶׁר מָצָא מַרְגָּלִית אַחַת יְקָרָה מְאֹד הָלַךְ וַיִּמְכֹּר אֶת־כָּל־אֲשֶׁר־לוֹ וַיִּקֶן אֹתָהּ׃

עוד דומה מלכות השמים לסוחר המחפש מרגליות יפות. כאשר מצא מרגלית אחת יקרת ערך הלך ומכר את כל אשר לו ויקנה אותה. פ

[Mattai 13:45] “Again, the kingdom of Heaven can be compared to a trader seeking good (fine) pearls. When he found a very precious pearl (of great value), he went and sold everything that he had and bought it.”

Eight Observations:

Observation #1.  The Tanakh clearly depicts the coming kingdom of Adonai (our G-d)—the (near) time of the earthly reign of the (immortal) Messiah—when he returns to Israel as our Messiah-King to sit upon the throne of his father David and reign over Israel and all the nations,peoples, and families of the earth.

Observation #2.  The meshalim (מְשָׁלִים) of the Kingdom (reign) of heaven (מַלְכוּת הַשָׁמָיִם), however, introduces a different form and type of present kingdom rule than the future rule of the Messiah Ben David in the Kingdom of Adonai.

At the present time the Messiah-King only reigns in a very limited form and type.

Faith in the Messiah (hearing, understanding and obeying him) is not yet mandatory. For now it is voluntary. At the present time the kingdom of Heaven is growing as people hear and believe in the Messiah’s Message—his Besorah of the Grace of Adonai. This growth is quite significant. However, this present rule and influence of the Messiah is very small (a mustard seed) in comparison to the absolute power and authority that the Messiah will be exercising in the coming messianic age of the kingdom of Adonai (our Father).

When the Messiah Ben David returns to earth from heaven everyone who chooses to reject his rule will (unlike today) be judged harshly.

In the (near future) kingdom of Adonai (our Father) adherence and obedience to the righteous teachings and lawful rule of the Lion of Judah (האריה משבט יהודה-Ha-Aryei Mishevet Yehudah) will be compulsory. Outright rebellion and disobedience against the rule of Adonai (our G-d) will no longer be tolerated.

Observation #3.  The mysteries of the kingdom are the secrets of G-d (את סודות אלוהים). These are the hidden meanings in the Tanakh that are only revealed by Divine (supernatural) inspiration. In Jewish exegesis (PaRDeS) the revelation of the sodot of G-d is the deepest and most profound level of understanding that can hope to find – while meditating on the D’var HaShem (the Word of G-d).

Observation #4.  In messianic Judaism the revelation of the sodot (סוֹדוֹת) of the Kingdom of heaven (מַלְכוּת הַשָּׁמַיִם) is restricted to the period of time that occurs between the first and second advents of the Messiah. During this period of time the kingdom of Heaven has come to earth but its overall global influence has been seriously limited by at least ninety-percent of the world population refusing to accept the rule of G-d on earth.

The messianic age that immediately follows the second coming of the Anointed One, when He actually physically establishes the rule of G-d over all the nations and the peoples of earth, is associated with a different era of time than the present age of the kingdom of Heaven. The era of the messianic age is called  the Kingdom of Adonai (מַלְכוּת הָאֱלֹהִים). It is during this latter period of time of kingdom of Adonai (our G-d) that the knowledge, and the power, and the blessing, and the glory of Adonai throughout all of the earth will reach its zenith (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12).

If mere profession of faith was all that was required then there would be over 2 billion followers of the Messiah today.

However, the truth be told faith must be exercised from the heart (the spirit) and not just from the mouth (profession). This fact alone makes us believe that at least two-thirds of these professed followers of Messiah and believers in Adonai (our G-d) are followers and G-d-fearers in name only. This means that today the real number of true followers of Messiah (Jew and Gentile) probably is not much more than 500 million people. Still this number of one-half billion sincere followers of the Mashiach Ben Avraham is considerably larger than the 3,120 Jewish men in Jerusalem (plus their families), who during the feast of Shavuot (Jewish year 3790; 30 CE) became the first persons in the world to exercise true faith in our Messiah and receive the Gift of Adonai (Avinu) – the Indwelling Presence of the Spirit of the Holy One  (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14).

Observation #5.  The mysteries (hidden things) of G-d, therefore, refer to those Scriptural messianic truths that are hidden in the depths of the Jewish Scriptures. Some of these truths are referred to as being under the land. These mysteries are directly related to Israel. Other of these truths are depicted as existing under the sea. These mysteries are directly related to the Gentiles. In messianic exegetical (Jewish) thought there are four levels of revelation that exist in the Divinely inspired Hebrew texts (the Tanakh and the Brit HaChadashah). These are:

Level #1Peshat (פְּשָׁט) — “surface” (“straight”) or the literal (direct) meaning.
Level #2.  Remez (רֶמֶז) — “hints” or the deep (allegoric: hidden or symbolic) meaning beyond just the literal sense.
Level #3.  Derash (דְּרַשׁ) — from Hebrew darash: “inquire” (“seek”) — the comparative (midrashic) meaning, as given through similar occurrences.
Level #4Sod (סוֹד) — “secret” (“mystery”) or the esoteric/mystical meaning, as given only through Divinely inspired revelation.

As already stated, the deepest and most profound level of understanding in the Scriptures is called the ‘sod’ (the fourth supernatural level of biblical interpretation). In some cases the sod, literally ‘hidden mystery’ of the Hebrew text, is so wondrous that its contents may not be revealed by the Holy One for a number of generations or even in the ages to come. Therefore, a mystery (secret) of Adonai (our G-d) might not be revealed until hundreds, even thousands of years after the text was first spoken or communicated in writing to our people of Israel.

Observation #6.  The Tanakh is very disclosing about the first and second coming of the Messiah. There are approximately 300 Hebrew scriptures that specifically refer to the first visitation of Messiah Ben Yosef  (the Suffering Messiah) and there are approximately 300 Hebrew scriptures that specifically refer to the second coming of the Messiah Ben David (the Conquering Messiah). However, the prophecy of the Hebrew Scriptures regarding what happens between the time of the departure of the Suffering Messiah and the arrival of the Conquering Messiah is very much veiled. This ”in between” time is described only in the sodim (סודים) deep mystery (secret) passages of the Tanakh.

Observation #7.  Therefore, the mysteries of the kingdom of Heaven deal exclusively with the period of time between the first and second advent of Messiah and not the period of the messianic (millennial) kingdom which will follow the Messiah’s second coming; his supernatural return as the  Conquering Messiah Ben David.

Observation #8. The meshalim (parables) of the Kingdom of heaven have to do with the entire period of the Kingdom in its most mysterious form that is the period of time between the first and second advents of the Messiah. This is the period of time during which the Messiah our King is absent from earth. For the Messiah is presently in heaven awaiting the ‘appointed’ time of His return to earth that has been fixed by the authority of The Father (הָאָב-HaAv).

This large window of time that the Messiah is in heaven awaiting the time Adonai (our G-d) has set for him to return to earth (thus far almost two thousand years in duration) includes the yet future seven year period of time of Jacob’s Trouble (צָרָה גְדוֹלָה-The Great Trouble/Tribulation) that exists between the time of the resurrection and translation of the followers of Messiah into heaven (explained in other parts of this web-site) and the return of the Messiah to Israel.

Interpretation of the Valuable Pearl – 5 Points:

Point #!.  The valuable Pearl (under the sea) represents the redemption of the international followers of Messiah (the Gentiles); rather than the Treasure of Adonai which is a reference to the redemption (salvation) of Israel. Therefore, the Seventeenth Mashal of Messiah is all about the redemption of an international body of people (past, present, and future) whose origins are from the ‘sea;’ which is a symbol of the Gentile peoples and lands.

Point #2.  The Hidden Treasure and the Pearl are acquired from two completely different locations:

The Treasure is acquired from under the Land.
The Pearl is acquired from under the Sea.

As already indicated discerning this symbolic variance of location is quite important. In the symbolism of the Hebrew Scriptures the nation of Israel is always identified as being from the Land and the Gentiles are identified as being from the Sea. We must remember that it was only recently, in the middle of the last century, that our people (Yehudim) were allowed to return to live in the land of Israel.

Point #3.  The most interesting thing about Messiah’s Mashal of the Valuable Pearl, however, is not the revelation of the redemption of the Gentiles; that wonderful fact was already revealed to us previously in our study of the first sixteen meshalim (parables) of Messiah.

What is most interesting to us is the vast amount of value that is assigned to the Pearl itself.

It is also important to see how different the Hidden Treasure and the Valuable Pearl are in terms of how they personally affect the mood of the Messiah: who is the Redeemer (purchaser) of both the Hidden Treasure (Jews, Israel) and the Valuable Pearl (Gentiles, Commonwealth of Israel).

The personal affect upon the Messiah in the discovery of the Hidden Treasure is one of great joy.

However, oddly enough, in the narrative of the Valuable Pearl there is no expression of joy (שִׂמְחָה-simcha). In the Pearl of Great Price the mood of the Mashiach is somber. Even business like. The  uncomfortable, painful central focus of the narrative is the great sacrifice that must be made. Therefore, the central point of the narrative is the incredibly high price that the Merchant (the Messiah) had to pay to purchase the Pearl!

Point #4.  This indicates to us that to truly be Rich in Adonai the Messiah had to sacrifice and suffer greatly so that the saving faith of Adonai might come not just to Israel but also to the lost Gentile nations, peoples, and families of the world. Yet, what of the salvation of Israel? The truth is:

The Joy of Messiah will not be complete until all Israel is saved; when all the promises that Adonai (our G-d) has made to Israel are fulfilled!

This truth that the joy of the Messiah will not be complete until Israel has been restored and the messianic kingdom has been established is clearly attested to in the Messiah’s own words, when He says to His Jewish talmadin (students, disciples, followers):

וַאֲנִי אֹמֵר לָכֶם לֹא אֶשְׁתֶּה מֵעַתָּה מִפְּרִי הַגֶּפֶן הַזֶּה עַד הַיּוֹם הַהוּא אֲשֶׁר אֶשְׁתֶּה אֹתוֹ עִמָּכֶם וְהוּא חָדָשׁ בְּמַלְכוּת אָבִי׃

ואני אומר לכם, מעתה לא אשתה מפרי הגפן הזה עד אותו היום אשר אשתהו חדש עמכם במלכות אבי. פ

“And I (the Messiah) tell you, I will not drink of the fruit of the vine [the fourth cup of the Seder] from now on until that day when I drink it new with you in My Father’s kingdom.”

This means that Adonai (our G-d) does exceedingly care for and place an incredibly great value upon the lives of the Gentiles. He is willing to delay the time of His greatest Joy – His marriage supper with Israel – so that all of the nations, peoples, and families of the world might also experience His forgiveness and His loving-kindness (chesed, grace).

“He went and sold all that He had and bought it the Pearl.”

So Adonai (Avinu) asked the Messiah of His firstborn national son, Israel, to bear the burden and the sacrifice of not just saving His most treasured family of Israel but also of being the Savior of all the world. Therefore, the Joy of G-d our Father and of His Messiah has been delayed until His Message of Salvation has been taken to all of the nations, peoples and families of the world. Therefore, before ascending into heaven the Messiah said to his Jewish followers:

{Classical & Mishnaic Hebrew}

ויגש ישוע וידבר אליהם לאמר נתן-לי כל-שלטן בשמים ובארץ: ואתם לכו אל-כל-הגוים ועשו תלמידים וטבלתם אתם לשם-האב והבן ורוח הקדש: ולמדתם אתם לשמר את-כל-אשר צויתי אתכם והנה אנכי אתכם כל-הימים עד-קץ העולם אמן: פ

{Modern Hebrew}

נתנה לי כל סמכות בשמים ובארץ. על כן לכו ועשו את כל הגויים לתלמידים, הטבילו אותם לשם האב והבן ורוח הקדש ולמדו אותם לשמר את כל מה שצויתי אתכם. הנה אתכם אני כל הימים עד קץ העולם. פ

“All authority in heaven and on earth is given to me. Therefore go [imperative command] and make talmidim of all the nations, immersing them in the name of the Father (Adonai Avinu), and the Son (His Messiah), and the Holy Spirit (His Spirit) and teach them to learn all that I have commanded you. Here I am with you always, until the end of time (the world). “

The Messiah Himself said that “salvation is of the Jews.” It has cost our Messiah, our people, and our nation a great deal of suffering that the Salvation of Adonai (Avinu) might be first offered to the Gentiles; before we might know the joy of the restoration of Israel and the restitution of all things.

The Jewish people have been the most hated and persecuted people on the face of the earth for almost two millennia.

Much of this abuse has come from the hands of gentiles who have claimed to be followers of our Messiah. The horrible irony here is that all of these gentiles who claimed to believe in our Messiah have been dependent on the many sacrifices of our people and nation of Israel as well. For without the people and nation of Israel there would be no Messiah; and without the Messiah one day returning to rule over a revived nation of Israel there would be no Kingdom of Adonai (our G-d).

The fact is that the redemption of the gentiles has cost our Father in heaven everything that He treasures. It has cost Adonai (Avinu) in the sacrifice of His beloved Individual-Son (Ha-Mashiach) and it has cost the sacrifice of His beloved Nation-Son (Am Israel).

All that is precious to Adonai (Avinu) has been sacrificed so that He might bring His Salvation to all of the people of the world!

As messianic Jews we believe all of these sacrifices are necessary. We give thanks to G-d for the salvation of the Gentiles. We give thanks for your joy. But we cannot fully rejoice yet. For our redemption has not yet fully come. Like the Messiah our burden will not be fully lifted and our souls rejoice until He comes—and all Israel is saved!

Point #5.  The Seventeenth Mashal of  Messiah reveals to us The Mystery (הרז) of the salvation of the Gentiles that has been made possible by the Merchant who sold all that He had had to secure the Pearl of Great Price. This most certainly speaks of the Messiah (our Korban Pesach) being sent from Avinu Shebashamayim (our heavenly Father) to make the supreme sacrifice of dying on the accursed tree in order to make it possible for the Salvation of Israel and of the whole world.

HaMoshia l’chol Adam (Messiah, the Savior of all people) remains in heaven until the time that Adonai (his Father, and our Father; his G-d and our G-d) has designated for his return. In the meanwhile the Spirit of the Holy One has gathered together a people to preach and teach His Message (Besorah) of Salvation to all the nations, peoples, and families of the world. This body of messianic believers at present is initially made up of a large number of gentiles (a remnant of the peoples of the Sea-הַיָּם) and a very small but growing number of messianic Jews (the Beach-הַחוֹף; i.e. those of us who are a remnant of the people of the Land; Am Israel).

This international Assembly of Messiah is at present a living organism. It is a living extension of the body of the Messiah whose Head is Adonai (our G-d) and whose Divinely appointed rule is over both the Land and the Sea (all of the world; both Jew and Gentile). We are that international body of believers who are called to proclaim the sacrificial death and redemption of the Messiah until He comes; when the kingdom of Heaven will become the Kingdom of Adonai (our G-d). So that the will of our heavenly Father might be done here on earth as it is already is heard, understood, and obeyed in heaven.

Postscript:

In the meshalim of the Hidden Treasure and the Great Pearl we discover our Father in heaven’s plan to end the division (enmity) that has always existed between Jew and Gentile and to remake of us a new united humanity. For in the messianic kingdom of Adonai there will be:

One universal calling to the Unity of the Spirit (the Shema),
One body,
One Spirit,
One Adon (Lord),
One faith (emunah),
One mikveh (lit. immersion) and
One G-d and Father, Who is above All, through All, and in All!

This ultimate Divine initiative of bringing all of humankind under the one world governance of G-d our Father through the Messiah is the reason for the Spirit of the Holy One establishing the existence of an International Assembly of Messiah made up out of a remnant of Jews and Gentiles, drawn out from under all the nations of the world.

The present day existence of this prototype of the future messianic kingdom, the International Commonwealth of Israel, is one of the twelve great mysteries that are revealed in the Brit HaChadashah (the New International Covenant of Messiah).

This Assembly of Messiah is Adonai (our G-d’s) temporary solution to the problem of the long delay that has occurred due to the people and nation of Israel not as yet acknowledging the Messiah Yeshua Ben Yosef, Ben David as His appointed King of Israel (Melekh Yisra’el) and, therefore, the rightful King of kings (Melekh HaMelakhim) and Lord of lords (Adonei Ha-Adonim) of all ‘His‘ world.

NEXT, PARABLE #18, THE FISH NET (KINGDOM OF HEAVEN)…

Messiah in Yom HaBikkurim Chapter 37 >>