There is a vigorous debate within the Judeo-Christian faith traditions abut the person of Jesus (Yeshua in Hebrew). Many Jews call him a heretic, Christians call him both G-d and Son of G-d, an enigma they explain with a concept called the Trinity. And some within a newly emerging branch of Christianity (or is it Judaism?) often called "Hebrew Roots" says while he is NOT G-d, He is the SON of G-d and thus unique and divine. Like Jews and Muslims, they believe that G-d (whom they refer to using various pronunciations of the tetragrammaton YHVH) is ONE and His nature cannot be divided. There have actually long been a segment of Christians called "Non-Trinitarians" or "antitrinitarians" who have rejected the traditional concept of the "Trinity" - or "G-d as three persons." With so much debate among the various sects of Judeo-Christianity it deserves a pause to look at who this person called Jesus of Nazareth was since whoever he was his legacy has impacted our cultures and particularly the most powerful nation in the world for thousands of years. There are many angles we could look at this topic from, but for this journal entry we will look mostly at one angle, who did He say He was, in his own words?
There has been a recent resurgence of interest in the all but forgotten Talmudic discussion of Mashiach ben Yosef or Messiah son of Joseph. Shockingly the ones leading such discussions are most often not Jews who have spent lifetimes combing pages of Talmud as one might expect, but rather Christians who have stumbled upon the Torah and from the common ground of Torah stretched their arms far enough to reach this little-known figure featured in the Talmudic discourses and debates from before the days of the Great Rambam. Before we talk about who Messiah ben Yosef was, we must first understand what a Mashiach is to the Jewish people. Actually, the first thing we are going to point out to kind of BLOW our Christian readers away is that, as the Tanakh records, the first ‘Christ’ already came LONG before Jesus/ Y’shua! This comes as a shock to many Christians, but indeed, it is true. Christ is a Greek loanword; it means ‘anointed one’ and is a translation of the Hebrew word מָשׁיחַ Maschiach, from which we also get the English word Messiah, a transliteration of Maschiach. So, all three words, Christ, Messiah, and Mashiach mean the same thing, Anointed One.
In a recent email thread forwarded on to us by relatives there was a discussion about the benefits versus the potential drawbacks of wearing masks for preventing Coronavirus. I responded with the following brief email and thought to share it here:
I think the best advice for disease control and prevention came from a source much older than the CDC…
“Come, my people, enter thou into thy chambers, and shut thy doors about thee: hide thyself as it were for a little moment, until the indignation be overpast.” Isaiah 26:20
The basis of all modern hygiene measures is first laid down in the Tanakh (Bible) primarily in the book of Leviticus, which is the original collection of hygiene guidelines given by the Most High Himself. It prescribes 7-21 day quarantine protocols for sources of infections and establishes bodily fluids as the source of 'uncleanness and defilement.' Long before science existed as a body of knowledge our Creator taught us what a BIOHAZARD is in the book of Leviticus. It is upon this wisdom that the ancient Jewish sages developed beautiful traditions tied to washing the hands, long before anyone understood the science of germs. In fact, with the exception of Christianity, every major faith tradition prescribes the washing of hands before and after meals as well as before and after toileting and other intimate acts. But it takes the CDC saying so for anyone to take it seriously.... But it is good that entities like the WHO and CDC are slowly starting to acknowledge the wisdom of the Tanakh which condemns things like 'wet markets' and prescribes handwashing all the time, not only for pandemics.
Recently while being confronted with the blaring and still growing death toll numbers from the Coronavirus Pandemic it occurred to me that the number of deaths, while horrific and large doesn't even touch the number of aborted children that are pureed and vaccu-sucked out of the wombs of mostly willing women EVERY YEAR! I ran a quick search and found that the site worldometers.info actually keeps a running total of the number of abortions worldwide.
This is a staggering number especially considering that we are not even halfway through this year! The Tanakh clearly states that there will be an accounting for the shedding of innocent blood, and that even ANIMALS will be called to account if they take a human life (Genesis 9:5)! Those statistics are not just numbers though, they are living souls. They are 15 million pairs of eyes that will never open to see the wonder and the woe of the world we all take for granted. They are 15 million toothless smiles that will never take away the breath of any person lucky enough to be their recipient. They are 15 million first steps that will never be taken, and 15 million first words that will never be uttered. To put this number into perspective, the average NFL stadium seats about 60,000 people so more than 250 football stadiums of tiny human beings each with a distinct fingerprint and iris shade were wiped away silently while a mere 250,000ish people who were previously born died of COVID-19 since January. These people had a first step, a first smile, and a first word. Those unborn never will. While I am most decidedly NOT implying that there is a direct relationship between the two, one cannot help but be reminded, when pondering these numbers, that only last year the New York Senate stood up and clapped and cheered when legislation was passed that removed gestational limits on abortion, making it legal for women to kill their unborn child, even up to birth! Now that is not the reason that New York has the highest death toll in the USA, but it does give one pause. Sadly while the quarter million (and counting) Covid-19 deaths may not have been preventable, these abortions largely are as only a minute fraction of these abortions are medically necessary.
As we pointed out in our earlier post, if the judgements of the Torah were universally upheld in our world we wouldn't have "wet markets" and viruses like this would seldom if ever make the cross species jump from animal to human. If people followed the purity laws it would minimize the spread of such pathogens. But more importantly, if we universally upheld the morals that are laid out in the Torah and thus valued life at inception (See Exodus 21:22) the COVID-19 outbreak would PALE in comparison to the ROEWADE-73 Plague that continues to claim the lives of tens of millions of innocent unborn lives every year around the world!
NOTE TO ALL ORTHODOX JEWISH READERS: THIS POST CONTAINS THE NAME OF HASHEM IN BOTH ENGLISH AND HEBREW: IF YOU WOULD BE OFFENDED TO READ IT PLEASE SKIP THIS ENTRY AS IT IS NEVER OUR INTENTION TO OFFEND!
“In those days Israel had no king; every man did that which was right in his own eyes.”
While it presents itself as championing fairness and equality, Political correctness is a wolf in sheep's clothing. It promotes tolerance and yet is entirely intolerant. It teaches us to tolerate and even promote perversions of all kinds under the guise of freedom of expression, while calling Christians and Jews who adhere to The Most High's moral standards bigots, deplorables, and homophobes. It demands that even terrorists and felons should have a right to vote. It declares that Jews have no sovereign right to exist as a nation in the land that a 3,400 year-old historical text records as belonging to them! Political Correctness encourages the social acceptance of promiscuity, prostitution, infanticide, idolatry, and substance abuse, which are all things the Bible undeniably forbids. Its very premise is antithetical to HaShem and His definition of righteousness.
(NOTE TO ORTHODOX JEWISH READERS: BY CLICKING BELOW YOU WILL OPEN THE ENTIRE ENTRY WHICH CONTAINS THE TETRAGRAMMATON WRITTEN IN ENGLISH CONSONANTS - FOR THOSE WHOM IT MAY OFFEND PLEASE REFRAIN FROM READING FURTHER. THANK YOU!)
“Oh Lucifer, Son of the Morning, how you have fallen from the heavens! You weakening the nations, you are cut down to the ground. For you have said in your heart, I will go up to the Heavens; I will raise my throne above the stars of Elohim, and I will sit on the mountain of appointment, in the sides of the north. I will rise over the heights of the clouds; I will be compared to Elyone” Isaiah 14:12
Believers all agree that HaSatan, or Lucifer, as he is often called, is the enemy of HaShem. Yet few people pause to consider the implications of this fact. The book of Job tell us that HaSatan, which means Accuser in Hebrew, “roams to and fro” looking for souls to accuse and to deceive. He is thus given the fitting title of Deceiver, as well. As obvious as it seems, many believers never pause to consider precisely what he is trying to deceive them about? Satan has declared a rebellion against the authority of The Father, against His commandments, His Law, and His chosen people. He wants to deceive the entire world into joining him in this rebellion, not because he thinks he'll win, but because he doesn't want to go down alone.
The Singular Message of Every Prophet Sent by HaShem
“And now, Israel, what has HaShem, your Elohim asked of you, except to fear HaShem your Elohim, to walk in all His ways, and to love Him, and to serve HaShem, your Elohim with all your heart, and with all your soul; to keep the commandments of HaShem, and His statutes which I am commanding you today, for your good.”
HaSatan (The ACCUSER) has been trying to hide the truth of HaShem from humanity from before the time of the Prophets. There is one Message, a UNITED Message that calls us to look not to our selves, our Pastors or even our Rabbis for direction but to HaShem alone and to His Word! We can recognize His Word because it is always the same, it doesn't change with the times, it needs no revision, and it NEVER contradicts itself!
"To the TORAH! and to the Testimonies!
If they speak not according to this Word it is because there is no light in them!" Isaiah 8:20
“For I am HaShem, I do not change. Because of this, you sons of Jacob are not destroyed.” Malachi 3:6
“The grass withers, the flower fades; but the Word of our Elohim will stand forever!” Isaiah 40:8
“Your Word is settled in heaven forever, O HaShem. Your faithfulness endures from generation to generation; You founded the earth, and it stands.” Psalms 119:89-90
“El is not a man that He should lie, or a son of man that He should repent, Has he said and shall He not do it? And has He spoken, and shall He not make good?” Numbers 23:19
So that leaves a choice for those of us who claim to serve the Elohe of Israel....
A look at the growing movement of Gentile Christians wearing tzitziyot… what is THAT about?
Any observant Jew will tell you what a pleasure it is to see those little tassels peeking out from the hem of a persons shirt, like tiny little banners declaring one’s allegiance to The Most High and His perfect mitzvot. For centuries these beautiful knotted tassels have been like silent calling cards that have invited chance encounters, Shabbat invitations while traveling, and unfortunately even persecution from time to time. These tassels seem peculiar to those unfamiliar with Judaism and they are. In fact, the primary purpose of wearing the tzitziyot is remembrance. It is something like the practice of tying a string around your finger to help you remember something important. In this case that “thing” is actually 613 specific commandments or mitzvot that were commanded to be obeyed with a whole heart by our Elohim. In practice, no person is actually subject to all 613 mitzvot of course, as some apply only to women or priests, others only in eretz Yisrael, etc. In B’midbar (Numbers) 15:38-40 we read,
Forest & Andrea Acker