Monthly Archives: September 2018

Shabbat Bible Study for October 6, 2018

Shabbat Bible Study for October 6, 2018

©2018 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Year 3 Sabbath 30

Deuteronomy 9:1-29 – Jeremiah 3:1-2 – Psalm 127 – Ephesians 2:1-36


Devarim 9.1-6 – Moshe begins a litany of Israel’s offenses against Y’hovah over the last 40 years of Wilderness Adventure. He mentions, almost in passing, that Israel is less culpable before him than the Cana’ani they are going to dispossess, but they are not to rely on their national ‘virtue’ to carry them through to victory. If Y’hovah held them to the strict standard the church has always said they had to maintain, they would already also be toast. In fact, there have been numerous occasions when he’d have destroyed the nation to the last man and made Moshe a nation, had it not been for Moshe’s gap-standing intercession on Israel’s behalf and on behalf of Y’hovah’s righteous Name [the latter, Y’hovah’s Name, being the thing he was looking for Moshe to uphold]. On this point of relative righteousness, Schottenstein’s Chumash has a good prefatory comment on vv.4-6 on pp. 62-63. Rashi and Ramban actually agree there, that Israel is NOT all that AND a bag of chips. In fact, they aren’t really even the bag of chips. Both stress that Y’hovah did not favor Israel over the Cana’ani because they were intrinsically better ACTORS than Cana’an or that they were particularly adept at fighting and winning battles. They were favored for Avraham, Yitzchak and Ya’acov’s sakes to whom Y’hovah had PROMISED this land for their family. THIS is STILL why Israel is favored; NOT because they are more righteous than their neighbors, but because Y’hovah PROMISED. Here’s what Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, a Xian resource , says about “Not for” in v.5

Not for: Though the Canaanites were expelled for their wickedness, it does not follow, that the Israelites were established in their room on account of any distinguished virtue, or because they deserved it. On many occasions, it may be seen in the history of the world, that God punishes the wicked by the instrumentality of other men, who are as wicked as themselves. Not the Israelites’ righteousness, but the wickedness of the inhabitants, and the promise of God to their fathers, was the cause of their obtaining Canaan.

We Netzari believers LIKEWISE are not more favored than the wicked people around us because WE are all that and a bag of chips, either. WE are not BETTER than the heathen around us. We are better OFF than they due to our Hebraic style of faith, doing what we say we believe at least some of the time by his gracious provision.

8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: the gift of Eloha: 9 Not of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Mashiyach Yeshua unto good works, which Eloha hath before ordained that we should walk in them. [Eph.2.8-10]

In vv.2-3 Moshe tells Israel that they will destroy the Cana’ani by HIS power, not their own, as Paraoh, Amalek and Amor had been.

11 And the magicians could not stand before Moshe [Ex.9] 

8 Then came Amalek, and fought with Israel in Rephidim. 13 And Joshua discomfited Amalek and his people with the edge of the sword. 14 And Y’hovah said unto Moshe, Write this a memorial in a book, and rehearse in the ears of Joshua: for I will utterly put out the remembrance of Amalek from under heaven. 16 For he said, Because Y’hovah hath sworn Y’hovah to war with Amalek from generation to generation. [Ex.17.8, 13, 14, 16]

And Israel sent messengers unto Sihon king of the Amorites, saying, And Sihon would not suffer Israel to pass through his border: but Sihon gathered all his people together, and went out against Israel into the wilderness: and he came to Jahaz, and fought against Israel. 24 And Israel smote him with the edge of the sword, and possessed his land from Arnon unto Jabbok, even unto the children of Ammon: for the border of the children of Ammon strong. [Num.21.21, 23-24]


Vv.7-29 – Moshe here lists a number of times, not an exhaustive account by any means, that Israel has ‘gone a-whoring’ to their own will and ways. He doesn’t even bring up, except in passing [v.7], Meribah or the other incidents of rebellion between Egypt and Sinai, but only the time AFTER they’d agreed to the Covenant – at LEAST 4 times at the foot of Sinai; 

19.7 And Moshe came and called for the elders of the people, and laid before their faces all these words which Y’hovah commanded him. 8 And all the people answered together [through their representatives – Mark edit], and said, All that Y’hovah hath spoken we will do. And Moshe returned the words of the people unto Y’hovah. 

18 And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightnings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain smoking: and when the people saw, they removed, and stood afar off. 19 And they said unto Moshe, Speak thou with us, and we will hear [shema – Mark edit]: but let not Eloha speak with us, lest we die.

24.3 And Moshe came and told the people all the words of Y’hovah, and all the judgments: and all the people answered with one voice, and said, All the words which Y’hovah hath said will we do. 7 And he took the book of the covenant, and read in the audience of the people: and they said, All that Y’hovah hath said will we do, and be obedient.[Ex.19.7-8, 20.18-19, 24.3, 7]

The use of Chorev [H2722] in v.8 is kinda interesting, since the word means ‘desolation’, which is what happened to Israel in the ‘golden calf’ incident. The nation desolated itself by bowing to the idols and debauching before them. The root verb of Chorev is H2717 charav, which means ‘to parch or lose vitality’, which was the spiritual condition of the Israelite nation as they played the harlot at the foot of Sinai – the very place where they had agreed to do what Y’hovah had commanded them AT LEAST 4 times. 

Now, don’t get all puffed up because YOU would never do such a thing, because you probably have at least once already today. I am sharing this on 6Oct2018, and reviewing it on 30Aug2018, but I know myself well enough to know that I have probably already transgressed Torah today – BOTH days. And in that I have already stood at Chorev TODAY. HalleluYah! that Mashiyach Yeshua intercedes for me because I SOMETIMES have a heart to obey him, even as Moshe stood in the gap for Yisrael and for Y’hovah’s Name before a rightfully angry Y’hovah Tzavaoth. 

Moshe speaks for the rest of this chapter about the events surrounding the golden calf;

  • How he went up on the mountain at Y’hovah’s command and was given the bullet points of the covenant and how Yisrael was to implement their part of it, which he told them first thing upon his return to the foot of Sinai after 40 days and nights – outside of time and space – in Y’hovah’s throneroom. He was so full of life and well rested after his 40 days without food or drink that he stayed up all night to write a hard copy of what he’d told them and then read it to them that morning. Their agreement to do all that Y’hovah had covenanted with them the night before and again that day were the nation’s 3rd and 4th signatures to the covenant, 
  • How he went BACK up the mount for another 40 days and nights to receive the details of the covenant, of which the written record Moshe had just delivered was the outline, 
  • How Israel, and even Aharon and probably the other Levi’im, had had a part in the corruption, KJV’s use of ‘corrupted’ [H7843 shachath שחת, ‘to corrupt or degenerate irreversibly’] is interesting. Here are a couple of other uses;

16 Lest ye corrupt and make you a graven image, the similitude of any figure, the likeness of male or female, [Dt.4.16] 

11 The earth also was corrupt before Eloha, and the earth was filled with violence. 12  And Eloha looked upon the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way upon the earth. [Gen.6.11-12]

– every use of ‘corrupt’ is from H7843, shachath, to degenerate irreversibly.

  • How Y’hovah warned Moshe that he was righteous to wipe Israel out,
  • How Moshe demonstrated Israel’s rebellion by destroying the tables of the testimony,

Again, from TSK on ‘cast them’:

Moses might have done this through distress and anguish of spirit, on beholding their abominable idolatry and dissolute conduct; or probably he did it emblematically, and perhaps by the direction of God; intimating thereby, that as by this act of his the tables were broken in pieces, on which the Law of God was written, so they, by their present conduct, had made a breach in the covenant, and broken the laws of their Maker and Sovereign,

  • How Moshe stood in the gap for Yisrael, for Y’hovah’s Name and for Aharon, whom Y’hovah thought to destroy,
  • How Moshe burnt and ground the image with fire and strewed it over the waters of Rephidim,
  • How Israel transgressed at Massah and Kibroth-hattaavah 
  • and Kadesh-Barnea, and were denied passage into the Land until the whole adult population of Israel [except the 2 Yisraelite spies] died because they would not believe Y’hovah’s Word, but followed the tourist’s word instead,
  • How Moshe stood in the gap for Yisrael’s and the Patriarchs’ sakes, and for the sake of Y’hovah’s Name before the heathen and especially Egypt.


YirmeYahu 3.1-2 – This is a direct reference to 

1 When a man hath taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favour in his eyes, because he hath found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give in her hand, and send her out of his house. 2 And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man’s. 3 And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement, and giveth in her hand, and sendeth her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her his wife; 4 Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that abomination before Y’hovah: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which Y’hovah Elohecha giveth thee an inheritance. [Dt.24.1-4] 

except that Y’hovah Elohenu asks us to return to him,

      … yet return again to me, saith Y’hovah. [v.1] 

He cares very deeply that we went after other gods, but he wants us to return to him. He lived in flesh like ours and knows experientially what we go through and he empathizes/sympathizes with us, so much so that he made a way for us to escape the fate we’d taken on ourselves. He directs us in v.2 to look at and understand what we’ve done against him, and to make our teshuvah, to repent of what we KNEW full well was a transgression of his commandments to us. We very seldom sin against him that we don’t KNOW we are sinning BEFORE we actually do it. He knows we are not stupid. He knows that his commands are simple. But he also knows that in our flesh they are NOT easy; and he empathizes/sympathizes with us. He WANTS us to walk in his ways, and he graciously supplies the power for us to do so by his indwelling Ruach haKodesh, his set-apart Spirit. He tells us in v.2 to look for those things we have NOT corrupted and to fix on THOSE things, not the places where we have failed and then repented, confessed and been forgiven. That doesn’t give us carte blanche to transgress his Word, for we are not being sanctified in areas over which we keep control. But the blood of Yeshua has covered and made restitution for our sins and iniquities. Those things we have been forgiven are also forgotten by Y’hovah’s choice because he no longer looks at us as transgressors, but as his Son’s Bride and as His sons, 

34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know Y’hovah: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith Y’hovah: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. [Jer.31.34]

The sin that Y’hovah has forgiven no longer exists and is as if it never did exist. There are only 2 places the memory of them still exists

  1. in our own minds, and
  2. in haSatan’s mind

In the New Creation, Y’hovah will wipe our minds of the memory of our transgressions and he will have already sent haSatan to the Lake of Fire for utter destruction. 

19 He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their sins into the depths of the sea. [Mic.7.19]

So, we need to be mindful of that truth and not beat ourselves up over sins that have been repented of, confessed and forgiven. And when they DO come to mind, we need to

  1. rebuke haSatan over the memory and then 
  2. Hallel Y’hovah that he has forgiven it and also made us blameless by his stripes and death on the tree.


Tehellim 127   This song of ascent was written FOR Schlomo, not BY him. As you probably know, Schlomo went after multiple wives/concubines, mostly as alliance sealers, but for each of them he built an altar to and worshipped those wives’ deities. He might just as well have bowed to the golden calf at Chorev. [Isn’t it amazing how the Psalm, chosen sequentially, so readily correspond to the Torah parshah? BTW, here comes some MAJOR conjecture.] 

Whoever wrote this song of ascent KNEW Schlomo’s Torah transgression and was herein telling Schlomo to repent and confess his sin and iniquity in disobeying Y’hovah by accumulating wives, horses and chariots. The Temple was still in the building stage when this psalm was delivered to him, so there is that application, as well. Did Y’hovah build Schlomo’s house? He did, but not due to Schlomo’s tzedekah, but David’s. Yehudah didn’t continue for 400 more years because of Schlomo’s righteousness, but David’s. Schlomo was just a regular guy like me and you, but who happened to be born into the house of the king of that part of the world, so he lived quite opulently, perhaps indulgently; spoiled. There is no reference to Schlomo ever engaging in a battle with an enemy. His kingdom’s power was created by David’s military and political prowess, not Schlomo’s. IF my conjecture about Schlomo’s less than Davidic character is correct this psalm is a rebuke to him from Ruach haKodesh, with a blessing attached, depending on a positive response. 

If this conjecture has any legs, Shlomo is being told that unless he turns to Y’hovah’s Way his house will not stand. He is being told in v.1 that he needs to get his hands out of the ‘house building’ business [I don’t think Schlomo ever held a saw or hammer in his hand], presumably because MOST of the ones Schlomo had had built were to foreign elohims. V.2 speaks to the uselessness of watchmen if the city has gone a-whoring and despises or contemns Y’hovah. 

Then he addresses the numerous children Shlomo probably had, what with all those “concu-wives”. Vv.3-5, if the conjecture holds true, is one of the 1st inklings that Y’hovah will be dividing the kingdom, as ‘THEY’, that is, Shlomo’s kids, will not be ashamed and will speak with enemies in his very own gates, as did ChizkiYahu to MerodachBaladan’s officers.

At that time Merodachbaladan, the son of Baladan, king of Babylon, sent letters and a present to ChizkiYahu: for he had heard that he had been sick, and was recovered. [Isa. 39.1]

I would not be surprised to learn that MerodachBaladan was his father’s Director of National Security, like the NSA chief today. Now that might have SEEMED like a blessing to Chizkiyahu, but when YeshaYahu heard about the Babylonian king’s officers’ being in the city, he asked ChizkiYahu what he’d shown them, which was everything, and Y’hovah spoke prophecy through him,

5 Then said Isaiah to ChizkiYahu, Hear the word of Y’hovah of hosts: 6 Behold, the days come, that all in thine house, and which thy fathers have laid up in store until this day shall be carried to Babylon: nothing shall be left, saith Y’hovah. 7 And of thy sons that shall issue from thee, which thou shalt beget, shall they take away; and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon. [Is.39.5-7]

ChananYahu, Mishael, AzarYahu and Daniel were all sons of ChizkiYahu, who told Isaiah it was good that it wasn’t going to happen in his lifetime or his own son’s. I think Shlomo had the same kind of reaction to the news AviYahu brought him about 10 tribes being severed from his son; “Oh, well! At least I won’t see it!” 

The prophetic significance of vv.3-5 is that from Shlomo’s loins would eventually proceed Mashiyach ben David, the ultimate MelchiZedek high priest. Q&C

Ephesians 2-3Eph.2.1-3 – Remember the pronouns, YOU = formerly gentile believers, WE = Yehudim believers in Mashiyach Yeshua, US = all the believers together as one body, THEY/THEM = the Pharisee CCers, whether believers or not. In this sentence that encompasses all of the 1st 3 verses, Sha’ul begins drawing the You’s and the We’s together as Us/We All. He is primarily addressing the former gentiles in vv.1-4. They were drawn naturally to the sins of the flesh, having had no Torah to teach them Y’hovah’s Way. But he also includes himself and his Yehudim brethren in the same boat, because Sha’ul was nothing if not brutally honest. Just as the gentiles were slaves to their lusts according to the directions of the flesh and possibly (though not certainly) with the influence of haSatan, so were the Yehudim. Remember that in Rom.7 Sha’ul said he was made aware of just how covetous he was when he actually thought about the 10th commandment for the first time. 

What shall we say then? Is Torah sin? Eloha forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except Torah had said, Thou shalt not covet. (Romans 7:7)

Do you suppose it was/is the same with most Yehudim? I would be willing to wager, without MUCH chance involved. I don’t think his problem was lusting over OTHER people’s stuff, but lusting for what he already had,

4 Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: 5 Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, the tribe of BenYamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law [oral – M], a Pharisee; 6 Concerning zeal, persecuting the church; touching the righteousness which is in Torah, blameless. 7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Mashiyach. (Phil.3.4-7)

[I think Paul was the rich young man [Matt.19] who coveted his stuff; ^ THIS ^ stuff + his father’s estate.]

Vv.4-7 – “But Eloha” are quite probably the sweetest words in scripture, aren’t they? As wicked as we can be without even knowing it, Y’hovah is knowingly that merciful towards us, full of love for which we are throughly undeserving. He, by his gracious favor, quickened us together with Mashiyach Yeshua when he raised him from death, and seats us in eternity in Mashiyach and through him allows us to inherit in his Kingdom. 

Vv.8-10 – It is by his gracious favor to usward that we are delivered by the faith of Mashiyach. This faith needs to be seen in the Hebraic sense that faith is both mental assent to truth and obedience working out that truth. Remember that it is not OUR faith that secures our deliverance from the law of sin and death, but the finished work of Mashiyach Yeshua on the tree, in the grave and upon his resurrection. 

Even the righteousness of Eloha which is by faith of Yeshua haMashiyach unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference: (Romans 3:22)

Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Yeshua haMashiyach, even we have believed in Yeshua haMashiyach, that we might be justified by the faith of Mashiyach, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law… I am crucified with Mashiyach: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Mashiyach liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of Eloha, who loved me, and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:16, 20)

That the blessing of Abraham might come on the Gentiles through Yeshua haMashiyach; that we might receive the promise of Ruach through faith… But the scripture hath concluded all under sin, that the promise by faith of Yeshua haMashiyach might be given to them that believe. (Galatians 3:14, 22)

12 Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. 13 For it is Eloha which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. [Phil.2.12-13]

My brethren, have not the faith of our Master Yeshua haMashiyach, the Master of glory, with respect of persons. (James 2:1)

And now, we haltingly obey his commandments as we submit to his Ruach haKodesh, who supplies the spiritual power we need to comply and to thereby overcome the wicked one – our/my own fleshly self and, on occasion, haSatan and his hordes. We ARE his workmanship. He has created us IN Mashiyach UNTO obedience. W/o Ruach of Mashiyach, we could not obey. I purposely left out the references of our faith IN Mashiyach, because I didn’t want to confuse the issue. But suffice it to say that our FAITH is IN Mashiyach in exactly the same way that WE are IN Mashiyach. It is not OUR faith in Mashiyach that saves us, but HIS faith, the faith OF Mashiyach that delivers us from death to life IN HIM. We English speakers, who were raised in the deception of the church’s political leadership, think that faith is mere belief, while Hebrew speakers understand that every word is based in ACTION, not merely concept. If you claim to be in Mashiyach and you understand that concept to be true, but your understanding hasn’t affected your life and produced the effect of obedience, your faith is useless; your faith is dead.

Even so faith, if it hath not works, is dead, being alone… For as the body without Ruach is dead, so faith without works is dead also. (James 2:17, 26) 


Vv.11-13 – Here are our pronouns again, and put to good use. YE (former gentiles) WERE afar off; w/o Mashiyach, goyim, gerim, hopeless, w/o Eloha though surrounded by gods; but are NOW brought near by Mashiyach’s blood. He is OUR shalom, having made the two (We and Ye = us) echad. Now; today; in the physical world, we still have 2 houses extant, comprised of Yehudah, who have been conditioned to distrust Xians and will not accept that many are being drawn to Torah by Mashiyach, and Ephraim and full goyim, who have been conditioned to distrust Yehudah by the same anti-Jewish Xian ‘fathers’ who perpetrated the crusades, inquisitions and pogroms that made the Yehudim distrustful of all things that name Yeshua as their Mashiyach. But IN Mashiyach there is no Jew/Greek, no bond/free, no male/female dichotomy. All are echad in him as Y’hovah is echad. 

The middle wall of partition, friends, is the oral traditions that keep us from breaking Torah, while also keeping us from truly obeying Torah. The context of the sentence also shows that that middle wall is the enmity that stands between us. Yeshua abolished that middle wall (passed which, in the 2nd Temple, a gentile could not enter) and the enmity it represents between Yehudi and goyish believer in the same Y’hovah Elohenu by Y’hovah Yeshua’s finished work on the tree. By that work, as we said before, he made of the 2 one body. See that he reconciled us to Eloha – we are one in Eloha, as well as in Mashiyach by Yeshua’s abolition of enmity between goyish and Yehudi believers. The enmity was not just between goy and Yehudi, but also between BOTH human houses and Eloha, between the Shalom Yeshua brings that is BOTH between us 2 human houses AND between both houses and Y’hovah. <<< THIS is why I say that the gospel in a nutshell is, “You can have PEACE with the Creator of the universe.” What better news could there be to a world lost and dying? All we need to do after they see that their problem is enmity with Y’hovah is to show them the delivery vehicle of Yeshua’s death, burial and resurrection. 

And so, we former gentiles are made citizens in the Israelite Commonwealth and members of Eloha’s family, built on the foundation of the sent out prophets [schlichim] of Y’hovah and the cornerstone of Mashiyach.   

The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner. (Psalms 118:22)

In that day shall there be an altar to Y’hovah in the midst of the land of Egypt, and a pillar at the border thereof to Y’hovah. (Isaiah 19:19)

The HEADstone of the corner describes only one stone I can think of – a pyramid’s CAPstone, as it is placed at the head of the pyramid and stands over ALL 4 corners of it. In Mashiyach, all the body, from the 4 corners of the earth will be brought together as echad and in him we will be one as Y’hovah is one – absolute Shalom. Q&C

End of Shabbat Bible Study

Shabbat Bible Study for September 29, 2018

Shabbat Bible Study for September 29, 2018

©2018 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Year 3 Sabbath 29

Deuteronomy 8:1-20 – Jeremiah 9:22-24 – Psalm 126 – Luke 4:1-12


Devarim 8.1-9 – The word that KJV translates as ‘commandments’ is a singular in Hebrew – כל המצוה – chol hamitzvah, the whole commandment. Schottenstein’s Chumash has a very good comment on this on pg. 58. The rabbis say that Israelites are to keep the WHOLE of the Toroth, not pick and choose which are for them. They are ALL for us all to guard to do, either in a positive or negative manner. If the positive commandments apply to us, then we are to guard them by doing them. If the commands do NOT apply to us we are to guard them by NOT doing them. Every command of Torah applies to us all in either a positive or negative sense. We strengthen our own lives, our ETERNAL lives [or deaths], by the proper [or improper] application of the commandments. You do yourself well to observe to DO those commands that apply to you and do yourself dirt by observing to DO what does NOT apply to you. For example, if you are a Levi, you do yourself well to observe to do those commands that apply to the Levi’im; If you are NOT a Levi, you do yourself dirt by arrogating to yourself to observe to do what applies only to Levi’im. Rav Sha’ul tells us pretty much the same thing in 

1 Furthermore then we beseech you, brethren, and exhort by Y’hovah Yeshua, that as ye have received of us how ye ought to walk and to please Eloha, ye would abound more and more. 2 For ye know what commandments we gave you by Y’hovah Yeshua. [1Thess.4.1-2]

I think what I said about Levi’im above also goes for those who call themselves “Messianic Rabbi” when they have not spent the time and done the studies that are required for a rabbi to gain that title in traditional Yehudism. I consider it arrogant, and so do Yehudi rabbis, which is a terrible witness to them. Rabbi [root = Strongs H7227 – rav] means ‘my chief’ or ‘my great one’. A rabbi is the leader of a congregation and got the title by studying Torah and Talmud for a decade or more under the tutelage of senior rabbis. IOW, PLEASE do not call me rabbi, especially in public, unless you really want a public dressing down. 

V.2 sets up the rest of the chapter, as Y’hovah tells Israel through Moshe to זכרת zacharta, thou shalt remember, how Y’hovah led me through the last 40 years to humble and test me so that he could see what was in my heart, to see if I would do what he commanded or not. This command is individual, not corporate. There is not one plural word used in this chapter until v.19. If I remember I’ll comment on that then. Right here he even calls himself Y’hovah Elohecha, thy Eloha. If Israel is listening intently, they are hearing these as personal commandments. 

11 Wherefore remember, that ye in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; 12 That at that time ye were without Mashiyach, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without Eloha in the world: [Eph.2.11-12] remember

14 I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other: for every one that exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be exalted. [Lk.18.14] humble

3 Knowing that the trying of your faith worketh patience. [Yacov 1.3] prove

7 That the trial of your faith, being much more precious than of gold that perisheth, though it be tried with fire, might be found unto praise and honour and glory at the appearing of Yeshua Mashiyach: [1Pe.1.7] try

9  The heart, deceitful above all and desperately wicked: who can know it? 10 I, Y’hovah, search the heart, try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings. [YirmeYahu 17.9-10] know

The rest of the chapter shows Israel just how Y’hovah humbles and tries them, both individually and corporately with the emphasis on the individual.

V.3 begins to show how Y’hovah humbled and tried us, beginning with the provision of the manna when we murmured against him, showing us that our individual lives, physical and spiritual, are sustained by HIS provision, whether we had anything to do with bringing it forth from the ground or not. He also makes the point that they, as well as Moshe and Yehoshua, COULD have been sustained more by attending to the Word of Y’hovah than by attending to the manna. He proved THAT by providing for the Shabbats for forty years on the 6th day so they would not have to go out to gather the manna on Shabbat. He further showed his provision for them [v.4] by not letting their clothing go to tattered rags or their shoes to wear down to nothing for the whole 40 years. Here’s what Treasury of Scripture Knowledge says about this verse;

Many have attempted to give the following meaning to this text – “God so amply provided for them all the necessaries of life, that they never were obliged to wear tattered garments, nor were their feet injured for lack of shoes or sandals.” Now, though the Israelites doubtless brought out of Egypt more raiment than what they had upon them; and they might manufacture the fleeces of their flocks in the wilderness; and also might be favoured by Providence with other supplies from the neighbouring nations or travelling hordes of Arabs; yet, when we consider their immense numbers, their situation and long continuance in the wilderness, and the very strong expressions made use of in the text, why should we question the extraordinary and miraculous interposition of God in this respect, as well as in others, not less stupendous in their nature, or constant in their supply?

5 And I have led you forty years in the wilderness: your clothes are not waxen old upon you, and thy shoe is not waxen old upon thy foot. [Deut.29.5]

In vv.5-6, he tells us not just to remember, but to consider, to know [yada] or to think about how he treated each of them individually as his own beloved children, not as red-haired step-children. 

28 Because he considereth, and turneth away from all his transgressions that he hath committed, he shall surely live, he shall not die. [Yechezkel 18.28]

He corrected them when they needed correction and rewarded them with blessing when they obeyed, and the ultimate blessing is right over the river they are getting ready to cross over [vv.7-9]. Israel’s crossing of Yarden is a shadow picture of our crossing from death [exile] into life [inheritance]. 

13 But now in Mashiyach Yeshua ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Mashiyach. 14 For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition, 15a Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, 15c for to make in himself of twain one new man, 16 And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby: 17 And came and preached peace to you which were afar off, and to them that were nigh. [Eph.2.13-17] 

Vv.10-20 V.10 is where we get the idea that we thank Y’hovah for his provision that has satisfied us AFTER we have eaten, while we bless Y’hovah for his provding that of which we are about to partake. 

19 And he commanded the multitude to sit down on the grass, and took the five loaves, and the two fishes, and looking up to heaven, he blessed, and brake, and gave the loaves to the talmidim, and the talmidim to the multitude. [Matt.14.19]

31For if I by grace be a partaker, why am I evil spoken of for that for which I give thanks? [1Cor.10.31]

We are to remember to bless him both before and after our meal, when we look out at the land that he has given us as an inheritance in fulfillment of his promise to Avinu Avraham and when we harvest the crops and milk our cattle and go up for his feasts to give him back the tithe and in everything that he has provided to us and for us.  

7 Two things have I required of thee; deny me not before I die: 8 Remove far from me vanity and lies: give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with food convenient for me: 9 Lest I be full, and deny and say, Who is Y’hovah? or lest I be poor, and steal, and take the name of my God. [Pro.30.7-9]

How would we bring reproach on Y’hovah’s Name? V.17 tells us, by ascribing the good of our land, crops and cattle to ourselves and not to his provision. Chumash has a good comment on vv.14-17 on pg.61. In the middle of v.19 Y’hovah changes from speaking to the nation as individuals [thee. thou, thy] to speaking to them as a whole [you, ye, your]. I think that when they started thinking as individuals and ascribing their success to themselves and NOT to Y’hovah that he started to bring about the national slide into hedonism and idolatry which eventually led to their being carried off into Assyria and Babylon and after a short return to the land, the Greco-Roman diaspora. 

16 But they mocked the messengers of Eloha, and despised his words, and misused his prophets, until the wrath of Y’hovah arose against His people, till no remedy. 17 Therefore He brought upon them the king of the Chaldees, who slew their young men with the sword in the house of their sanctuary, and had no compassion upon young man or maiden, old man, or him that stooped for age: He gave all into his hand. [2Chron.36.16-17]

Exile prophetically signifies death. We are still in exile, we are still manifesting our rebellion and resultant death. Q&C

YirmeYahu 9.22-24 – What YirmeYahu is commanded to speak to Israel is that, after Y’hovah was faithful to deliver them through all the sh-sh-tuff that he brought them through during the Wilderness Adventure for 40 years, as we rehearsed in the Torah portion, they decided that it really WAS their own merit that brought them through it and that they could thumb their noses at him and do whatever they pleased. HE was inconsequential to their well- being. So Y’hovah was going to have to bring the judgments he’d promised to judge them with in Lev.26 and would remind them of later in the day of our Torah portion’s delivery. 

This was not his first choice, but it was all they were leaving open to him and he was going to do it. It really doesn’t matter what you have done or not done in service to him; if it becomes a source of pride in your life; if you, like Israel, decide that it is your just DUE to have his blessing on your life and that he could not have done those things without you, he will remove that blessing and allow you to deal with the natural consequences of your pride. 

But, HALLELUYAH! This does not HAVE to be! If you will humble yourself, repent, turn from your wicked way and pray to him for his pardon, he SHALL repent of the evil he never wanted to bring against you in the 1st place. After the Temple was completed, 

And Y’hovah appeared to Schlomo by night, and said unto him, I have heard thy prayer, and have chosen this place to myself for an house of sacrifice. 13 If I shut up heaven that there be no rain, or if I command the locusts to devour the land, or if I send pestilence among my people; 14 If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land. 15 Now mine eyes shall be open, and mine ears attent unto the prayer in this place. [2Chron.7.12-15]

Y’hovah is always – ALWAYS – ready to forgive us when we humble ourselves before him. The only reason he brings judgments and cursing against us is that we forget him and his gracious and loving provision. We are really arrogant, I more than anyone, to think that he OWES me anything. He owes me nothing, and I owe him everything.

Steve Green sang a song about 20 years ago or so, whose chorus went like this:

I Repent; making no excuses

I repent, no one else to blame

And I return, to fall in love with Yeshua

I bow down on my knees

And I repent.


Tehellim 126 – And when we remember what Y’hovah has done for us, as he describes to us in our Torah portion today: and when we have succumbed to the all too human tendency to arrogantly ascribe all our good fortune and the wonderful things of life that we enjoy to ourselves instead of to him who is the true source of all our blessings; and when we are brought through our suffering to the TRUE knowledge of where all our blessings derive, as we learned in our haftarah portion today: THEN we rejoice in his lovingkindness; his patience, and his care for us, as did NehemYahu, or Ezra, or their contemporary who wrote this song of ascent, and we gratefully bring our tithe into the Storehouse to which the 42 ascending steps lead. Q&C 

Luke 4.1-14 – Taken from my study in The Life of Yeshua haMashiyach – a Messianic’s Perspective.

48). The temptation of Yeshua – Mat.4.1-11, Mark 1.12-13,  Lk.4.1-13 – In Mark, Yeshua is driven by the Spirit into the wilderness, while in Matthew and Luke, he is led by the Spirit. The whole tone of Mark is different from the other gospels. He shows Yeshua as a tireless servant, at times having no time to eat, working miracle after miracle to prove the divinity claimed by the author in 1.1. Relative to the other gospels, it seems as if the author is just getting the preliminaries out of the way so he can get to his main point. The audience is probably Roman or gentile believers, who would not know the OT prophecies and for whom they would be superfluous. Mark does not refer to anything close to the number of prophecies that Luke, Matthew, or Yochanan do. He is trying to show the suffering Son of Elohim. As usual, any minor differences in the fine points of the narratives are matters of perspective of the author or of the intended audience.

Luke and Matthew both mention the 40-day fast, Mark only that Yeshua was in the wilderness 40 days. All the writers say that he was tempted of Satan for the entire time, Matthew even says the temptation was the reason for his going there. The details are very similar in Matt and Luke. The third last temptation has to do with Yeshua’s hunger for food, his need to feed his body. First Satan questions Yeshua’s divinity, ‘If thou be the Son of Eloha’, as if he could get him with the same ploy with which he’d gotten Chavah. Then he worked on physical weakness, or rather, was depending on it and the lust of the flesh to defeat the Eloha who’d created him. But, as anyone who’s fasted any length of time can tell you, the body may be weak, but the spirit and mind are sharp as a knife at that time. Yeshua answered him with the Word of Eloha, Deut. 8:3, 

“And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by all that proceedeth out of the mouth of Y’hovah doth man live.” 

The lesson for us is obvious. When confronted with sin we should rely on the scriptures to pull us out. Rom.6 says we are dead to sin and alive to Mashiyach. If we reckon ourselves dead to sin we will have an easy time defeating it in our lives. This battle is constant, because our sin nature is and will be still with us until the resurrection. But reckoning ourselves dead to sin must be done every time we are tempted to sin, and, I confess that I often forget this simple way to avoid sin. But Eloha has made provision for us in this as well. 1 Yochanan 2:1, 

“My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Yeshua haMashiyach the righteous (hatzadik):”

The next 2 temptations are given in opposite order in the accounts of Matthew and Luke. The details of the temptations are nearly identical, but the order is switched. Why? Look to the purpose for writing and the intended audiences. Luke first goes to the mountain top to show the kingdoms of the world, and he adds a detail that Matt leaves out. The gospel was written to a gentile government official. ‘Most excellent Theophilus’ was actually the guy who Rome appointed High Priest after Ananias’ term expired, and the appeal to power and glory would be more personal to him. Also Luke points out the fact that haSatan is the prince of this world system in which Theo is a leader. Of course, being the Word of Eloha, Yeshua answers with the word of Eloha – Deut. 10:20, “Thou shalt fear Y’hovah Elohecha; him shalt thou serve, and to him shalt thou cleave, and swear by his name.” 

In order for us to be able to answer the temptations in our lives with the Word of Eloha, we must have it readily available. We can’t safely open a bible and search for a passage while driving on the road, or in any number of circumstances in which we may find ourselves. For this reason we must memorize scripture. It is not that difficult to do. We could try the 3X5 card with a passage written on it, kept in a pocket or on the visor of the car and work on that one until it is solid in memory. Then start another. In this way, it will not be difficult to memorize 1-2 passages a week. It is by the renewing of our minds that we are transformed into the image of Mashiyach. Yeshua said that we speak what we think about. What kind of words escape your mouth on a regular basis? Philip.4:8, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things honest, whatsoever things just, whatsoever things  pure, whatsoever things lovely, whatsoever things of good report; if any virtue, and if any praise, think on these things.” The only source for true, honest, just, pure, lovely things of good report that are virtuous and praiseworthy is the scripture. When you memorize, meditate – think about what you’re memorizing. Ask Eloha to illuminate your mind so that you can see what he wants you to see in that passage. 

Matthew, on the other hand, goes directly to the pinnacle of the temple. He is writing to Yehudim to try to convince them that Yeshua is Mashiyach. HaSatan here quotes a well known Messianic prophecy from

Psalm 91:11-12, “For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. 12They shall bear thee up in hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.”

HaSatan says, “Well, I know the scripture every bit as well as you, better in fact! If you’re the Mashiyach, jump! Eloha has promised to protect you! Don’t you trust Him?” That was a Mark paraphrase, in case you didn’t know. Yeshua did not ‘fall’ for this one either (do you suppose that’s the source of that idiom?). He wanted Yeshua to misapply scripture, just like he wants, and often gets, us to do. But Yeshua knew the CONTEXT of the verse (Ps.91), and that haSatan wrested it, as usual. The Psalm refers to how Eloha will protect us as we walk in him, but the main subject of the Psalm is Mashiyach. Noone else fulfills the description of the one who completely trusts in Eloha. Yeshua wasn’t fooled for a minute, because he knew the scripture. In fact, he IS the scripture.

At times each of us realizes this kind of protection and guidance from Eloha. Though we are always under his wings, we do not always experience, feel the wonder of, his providential protection. He has been protecting us all our lives, to bring us to this day and hour for his service. The better we understand this, the more humble we become. Eloha is my personal protection. No president, no king, no Mafia don has ever had security like we have in Mashiyach. The Secret Service doesn’t know security like Eloha does. He keeps us because we walk with him. And vice-verse.

Did you notice what haSatan left out of the quote? “To keep thee in all thy ways” is prominent by its absence. What more proof do you need that haSatan may know the scriptures, but does not believe them? If he believed them he never would have tried using this passage against Yeshua. For it says, “in all thy ways.” Since Yeshua is the fulfillment of this verse there’s no way he’ll apply it improperly, for ALL his ways are kept, that is guarded, by Elohim. 

HaSatan’s next temptation in Matthew is designed to give the world over to the Mashiyach out of due time. He offers the kingdoms of the world that have been promised to Yeshua, he just offers them a bit early. It’s as if haSatan is saying, “They’re going to be yours soon, anyway. Why not take them now?” Remember Avram and Sarai? Eloha promised that they would have a son, from whom would come a great nation, but they were both old and ‘well stricken in years’. So Abe and Sarai decide to help Eloha out by way of Hagar. Now you don’t suppose haSatan had anything to do with that, do you? Eloha is teaching the lesson of waiting on Y’hovah, and deferring gratification until His time. Yeshua is still waiting for the fulfillment of a bunch of prophecies – more in fact than were fulfilled during his life on earth. But he is waiting on the Almighty’s timing and not on his own, or in the case of this temptation, haSatan’s. You make the application to your own life.  Q&C       End of Midrashic Bible Study 

Shabbat Bible Study for September 23, 2018

Shabbat Bible Study for September 23, 2018

©2018 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

September 26, 2015 – Year 3 Sabbath 28

Devarim 6:1-7:26 – [no prophet] – Tehellim 125 – Matthew 4:1-25


Devarim 6.1-9 Vv.1-3 Moshe begins with a short introduction and then starts explaining the purpose to the rest of the mitzvoth, chukim, and mishpatim that Y’hovah had given to Moshe on the mount back in Exodus 19-32, with a few additions that were not revealed to us in the narrative of the Wilderness Adventure. I will try to mark these as we go. No promises. It seems that the purpose for all the instructions are to give us a healthy fear of Y’hovah. Now this fear is at least 2-fold; 1) abject terror at the FACT of what he can do to us if we disobey, and 2) absolute reverence at the FACT that he has delivered us from bondage even though he knew that we tend more readily toward rebellion than obedience. Schottenstein’s Chumash has excellent notes on all the first 9 verses. Here’s what it says about 1-3 on pg.45; (read the short paragraph)

When he says he will bless us with prolonged days, he isn’t speaking of our individual lives so much as our national life in the land we are going in to possess. Moshe admonishes us to both hear and obey, so that Y’hovah can shower blessings on us and that we stay forever in the land he’s promised father Avraham. He promised that if we would obey, he would bless us with physical multiplicity in every area of our lives in haAretz.

V.4 – The central truth of everything is that Y’hovah is echad. Echad means a lot of things. One is that he is the only Eloha, that all other so-called elohim are not ‘elohim’ but imposters, which are ultimately powerless against Y’hovah and Y’hovah’s. See pp.45-46 of Schottenstein’s Chumash for some very good explanations and illustrations of Y’hovah’s echad nature. 

The adversary, haSatan – who lusts to BE an el in place of Y’hovah, has no power over what belongs to Y’hovah without clear permission from Y’hovah to exert some power.

7 And Y’hovah said unto Satan, Whence comest thou? Then Satan answered Y’hovah, and said, From going to and fro in the earth, and from walking up and down in it. 8 And Y’hovah said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Iyov, that none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth Eloha, and escheweth evil? 9 Then Satan answered Y’hovah, and said, Doth Iyov fear Eloha for nought? 10 Hast not thou made an hedge about him, and about his house, and about all that he hath on every side? thou hast blessed the work of his hands, and his substance is increased in the land. 11 But put forth thine hand now, and touch all that he hath, and he will curse thee to thy face. 12 And Y’hovah said unto Satan, Behold, all that he hath is in thy power; only upon himself put not forth thine hand. (Iyov 1.7-12)

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: (I Peter 5:8)

Did you notice [v.10] that Yah had hedged haSatan away from Iyov. “Hedge’” is derived from the Hebroot 7753, sook שוך, to protect or cover. He places a suk over us and allows haSatan only that influence over our lives that He, Y’hovah, allows. “THIS far and no further…”, says Y’hovah. Even Iyov’s latter end was greater than the former because he was ultimately faithful to Y’hovah. So shall it be with us, regardless the circumstances, if we remain faithful to Him. 

Keep this in mind, as the evil day approaches. There shall be a glorious day to follow and, in remaining faithful, we shall experience Iyov’s end, as well. The 1Pet.5 passage ends with ‘seeking whom he MAY devour.’ There are those whom the Adversary MAY devour, which tells me that there are those whom he may NOT devour. Kefa here refers to Yechezkel 22.25.

23 And the word of Y’hovah came unto me, saying, 24 Son of man, say unto her, Thou art the land that is not cleansed, nor rained upon in the day of indignation. 25  A conspiracy of her prophets in the midst thereof, like a roaring lion ravening the prey; they have devoured souls; they have taken the treasure and precious things; they have made her many widows in the midst thereof. 26 Her priests have violated my law, and have profaned mine holy things: they have put no difference between the holy and profane, neither have they shewed between the unclean and the clean, and have hid their eyes from my sabbaths, and I am profaned among them. 27 Her princes in the midst thereof are like wolves ravening the prey, to shed blood, and to destroy souls, to get dishonest gain. 28 And her prophets have daubed them with untempered morter, seeing vanity, and divining lies unto them, saying, Thus saith Adonai Y’hovah, when Y’hovah hath not spoken. [Eze.22.23-28]

It is prophets of Yisrael who are destroying believers, Yehudim and gentile Yisrael, with false doctrine and Torahlessness.

Another aspect of echad is that Y’hovah is an absolute ONE, there is no changeableness or division in him. 

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. (Yacov 1:17)

Yeshua haMashiyach, the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. (Hebrews 13:8)

For I am Y’hovah, I change not; therefore ye sons of Jacob are not consumed. (Malachi 3:6)

Did you get that? If he could change in the least, he would have wiped us out and started fresh. But his Word is his bond, as ours should be. 

Echad also has the aspect of oneness in plurality, though not a ‘trinity’, per se. We see many attributes and manifestations of Y’hovah, but all are different aspects of his character and power, not separate ‘persons’. W1828 defines ‘godhead’:

1. Godship; deity; divinity; divine nature or essence; applied to the true God, or to pagan deities. 

Every time the KJV uses the term ‘Godhead’ (all 3 uses of the term), it speaks of all the aspects/manifestations of Y’hovah’s character. Pagans saw these manifestations as different elohim, not aspects of the one true Y’hovah:

Forasmuch then as we are the offspring of Eloha, we ought not to think that the Godhead is like unto gold, or silver, or stone, graven by art and man’s device. (Acts 17:29)

Sha’ul speaks of the general revelation of Y’hovah in his creation:

For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: (Romans 1:20),

and specifically of Yeshua’s body being empowered by Y’hovah’s indwelling Ruach haKodesh:

For in him [Yeshua] dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. (Colossians 2:9)

I would not be surprised if there are other ways of understanding the phrase Y’hovah echad that I have not delineated, as he is truly indescribable in human terms. His immortal and infinite nature truly IS unknowable in its essence to our finite mortal minds. Q&C

Vv.5-9V.5 is the subject of the 1st tablet of testimony that Y’hovah gave to Moshe – to love Y’hovah with our whole self. This is ‘the great commandment’ according to Yeshua

34 But when the Pharisees had heard that he had put the Sadducees to silence, they were gathered together. 35 Then one of them, a lawyer, asked, testing [G3985 peiradzo, to test] him, and saying, 36 Master, which is the great commandment in the law? 37 Yeshua said unto him, Thou shalt love Y’hovah Elohecha with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. 38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. 40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets. (Matt.22.34-40)

25 And, behold, a certain lawyer stood up, and tested [ekpeiradzo, to test thoroughly] him, saying, Master, what shall I do to inherit eternal life? 26 He said unto him, What is written in the law? how readest thou? 27 And he answering said, Thou shalt love Y’hovah Elohecha with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself. (Lk.10.25-27)

There is not much else to say, is there? The central truth is that Y’hovah is echad and the most important commandment is to love Y’hovah with everything we’ve got. Y’hovah Yeshua tells us that if we love him, we will keep his commandments;

And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments. (Exodus 20:6)

And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me and keep my commandments. (Deuteronomy 5:10)

If ye love me, keep my commandments. (John 14:15)

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. (Ecclesiastes 12:13)

I could take up another page of notes just searching the words “love, keep, and commandments”, but I don’t think we need to keep beating that dead horse. Anyone who says differently is deceived. We were delivered from the bondage of death so that we could show our love for Y’hovah by obeying his commandments (Eph.2.8-10). 

Vv.6-9 begin to break down the overarching commandment of v.5 into specific commands that we are to observe. We are to teach our children these commandments, not merely by our words, but by our lives. If you LIVE the Word that you preach, it will take root in your family and friends. Our LIVES show forth our true beliefs. This week was Yom Kippur. Did you fast (assuming you are physically ABLE to fast for a whole day without getting ill)? Did you make teshuvah for those sins that you have committed? Did you confess them to Y’hovah?: to those people against whom you’ve sinned? All sins are against Y’hovah: some sins are against our fellows, as well. We need to seek reconciliation with everyone we’ve wronged to manifest the Spirit of echad.

Yea, a man may say, Thou hast faith, and I have works: shew me thy faith without thy works, and I will shew thee my faith by my works. (James 2:18)

If you wish to wear teffilin, there is no sin in it, but the spirit of this commandment is to show forth our faith by doing and thinking according to Y’hovah’s Torah, not by wearing an ornament. Same is true of the mezuzah on our doorposts. To have one is not a sin, but the reality is on the doorposts of our hearts, not the frame of the door to our homes. We ought to model Torah observance to everyone so that they will see our knowledge of Y’hovah (wisdom + understanding).  

3 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. 4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. 5 But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of God perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. (I John 2:3-5)


Vv.10-13 – Y’hovah was about to bless our socks off by giving us a land that literally flowed with milk and honey; that had cities and homesteads that were already established; farms that were already producing, that we only had to go in and take the gift Y’hovah was giving us. He warned us that after we’d received this wonderful gift, had eaten of it and were full, that we not forget the Y’hovah who gave it to us and provided all the plenty without any work beyond conquering the land and dividing its spoil. This is the source of our giving thanks; remembering Y’hovah; for our daily sustenance AFTER we eat and are full. This is one of those that we were NOT told to observe in Ex.20-33 (I remembered!). This is another way by which we show our fear of Y’hovah, by remembering to thank him AFTER we are satisfied, as we blessed him for his provision BEFORE we ate. 

V.13 speaks of ‘swearing by Y’hovah’s Name’. The word xlated ‘swear’, thishaveiah, is from H7650, shavah, meaning to complete or ‘to 7’ oneself. Cf. note in Chumash, pg.48. 

Vv.14-25 – We are to diligently serve Y’hovah and eschew the false elohim of the Canaanite squatters we displaced, or of the other nations whose land was not ours, like Moav, Edom and Egypt. When he says in v.15 that he will destroy us from the face of the earth [land], he means that he will bring us to nought and remove us from the land he was giving us. If he were to ‘destroy’ us in the modern understanding of that word, he would have to renege on his promise to Avraham, Yitzhak and Ya’akov. See above – ‘no shadow of turning.’ Instead, we are to diligently keep his Toroth, doing what is right and good in HIS sight (not our sight) so that he can bless us with all the spiritual (and physical) blessings that he has promised us in our fathers; Abe, Yitzy and Jake: so that he can drive out all the pagans from before us. Then, when our children ask about the Toroth that Y’hovah commanded us, we can tell them that Y’hovah delivered us out of Egypt by his power and NOT our own, that he delivered us through the Wilderness Adventure DESPITE ourselves, and that he could deliver us into this wonderful land full of blessings so that he can delight in our delight at his marvelous provision. And if we diligently keep his Toroth they will be ‘our righteousness’, we will be tzadik, working tzedikah by his grace in us. 

The whole paragraph from v.21 speaks to US who are alive today as if we were there in the Egyptian Exodus, as if we crossed the Red Sea, as if we received the Covenant, and as if we crossed Yarden w/Yehoshua. And, in Mashiyach, we were because every of us is an Yisraelite, a member of the Commonwealth, whether a physical descendant, a spiritual seed of Avraham, Yitzhak and Ya’akov, or both – chol Yisrael in Mashiyach.  Q&C

7.1-5 – Treasury of Scripture Knowledge, a Xian study aid, says this about the 7 nations we were commanded to drive off or destroy from the Land;

With respect to the situation of these nations in the land of Canaan, Calmet remarks, that the Canaanites chiefly inhabited Phoenicia; the Hittites, the mountains south of the promised land; the Hivites, mount Ebal, and Gerizim, and towards Hermon; the Girgashites, beyond Jordan, towards the lake of Gennesareth [Galilee], the Yevusites, about Jerusalem; the Amorites, the mountains west of the Dead Sea, and part of the land of Moab; and that the Perizzites were probably not a distinct nation, but villagers scattered through the country.

We are to have no fellowship with paganism. We are not to marry someone of a different ‘faith’; anyone who does not love both Mashiyach and Torah; as we will have to make some accommodation for the unlike belief or the false god of our spouse. Shlomo either forgot or ignored this command in his desire to enter into political alliances with all his neighbors. He ended up building altars and offering on them with his wives. Y’hovah only kept the nation together for Shlomo’s father’s sake. He rent 10 tribes from Rehoboam shortly after Shlomo’s death. David’s reign over Yehudah began about 1010 BCE; over chol Yisrael began about 1003-2 BCE. Shlomo croaked about 930 BCE. Israel went into Assyrian exile about 721-2 BCE, and Yehudah went into Babylon about 587-6 BCE – roughly 430 years from David’s ascension to the throne of Yehudah to Yehudah’s exile. So, Avraham was promised haAretz about 430 years before Yehoshua took chol Israel across Yarden, and the Davidic Kingdom lasted about 430 years. I just think that is interesting enough to notice. There may be a prophetic or a sod level application there. Had Shlomo NOT taken strange wives and had he modeled Torah before his children (David, too, on this count with Absalom and Shlomo), the Davidic dynasty might still be in power in Israel; there might never have been a loss of Israelite influence in the region, and there might never have been a rise of Moslemism, or even anti-Torah Xianity. 

Notice that there are only 7 nations that need to be moved out of Y’hovah’s land. Avraham was told of 10 Amorite nations that would be dispossessed;

16 But in the fourth generation they shall come hither again: for the iniquity of the Amorites is not yet full…18 In the same day Y’hovah made a covenant with Abram, saying, Unto thy seed have I given this land, from the river of Egypt unto the great river, the river Euphrates: 19 The Kenites, and the Kenizzites, and the Kadmonites, 20 And the Hittites, and the Perizzites, and the Rephaims, 21 And the Amorites, and the Canaanites, and the Girgashites, and the Jebusites. (Gen.15.16, 18-21)

I think the reference to the Amorites in v.16 might be a more general statement of which the 10 nations named in 19-20 are a microcosm. Perhaps the Hivites in Dt.7 are the Rephaims of Gen.15, and the Kenites, Kennizites and Kadmonites were dispossessed by the other 7 nations. This may a foreshadow of the prophecy in Daniel 7

20 And of the ten horns in his head, and the other which came up, and before whom three fell; even that horn that had eyes, and a mouth that spake very great things, whose look more stout than his fellows. 21 I beheld, and the same horn made war with the saints, and prevailed against them; 22 Until the Ancient of days came, and judgment was given to the saints of the most High; and the time came that the saints possessed the kingdom. 23 Thus he said, The fourth beast shall be the fourth kingdom upon earth, which shall be diverse from all kingdoms, and shall devour the whole earth, and shall tread it down, and break it in pieces. 24 And the ten horns out of this kingdom are ten kings that shall arise: and another shall rise after them; and he shall be diverse from the first, and he shall subdue three kings. (Dan.7.20-24)

Let’s see: ISIS, formerly called the Moslem Brohood, has deposed 2 major kings in Moslemland, Mubarak and Khaddafi, and they are STILL in process 6 years later of trying to take down Assad. Will that be it? Will that be enough to consolidate power to the Moslem Brohood Caliphate/ISIS? Is ISIS under the covert authority of the ‘little horn’, and is that Iran’s Imams? Or is that ‘little horn’ actually ‘lightning from the heights’ – Barak Obama? Or is it someone else entirely? Only time will tell; or when someone receives a direct Word from Y’hovah. 

We were to utterly destroy any Canaanite in the land who would not meet our conditions for Shalom; to eschew their false elohim and serve Y’hovah with their whole heart and mind and strength. If the Canaanites would accept the authority of Y’hovah and destroy the carved, graven or cast elohim, they could become members of the Commonwealth. The Canaanites must turn to Y’hovah, not Israel to the false elohim. If the people of any city refused Israel’s offer of Shalom with Y’hovah, they were to be wiped out or driven from the land grant and their altars, images and any accoutrement of paganism destroyed. If any of it were left, the temptation would be there to use those idols and altars ‘in service to Y’hovah.’ This Y’hovah declared to be accursed in ch.12

2 Ye shall utterly destroy all the places, wherein the nations which ye shall possess served their elohim, upon the high mountains, and upon the hills, and under every green tree: 3 And ye shall overthrow their altars, and break their pillars, and burn their groves with fire; and ye shall hew down the graven images of their elohim, and destroy the names of them out of that place. 4 Ye shall not do so unto Y’hovah Elohechem. 5 But unto the place which Y’hovah Elohechem shall choose out of all your tribes to put his name there, unto his habitation shall ye seek, and thither thou shalt come: 6 And thither ye shall bring your burnt offerings, and your sacrifices, and your tithes, and heave offerings of your hand, and your vows, and your freewill offerings, and the firstlings of your herds and of your flocks: 7 And there ye shall eat before Y’hovah Elohechem, and ye shall rejoice in all that ye put your hand unto, ye and your households, wherein Y’hovah Elohecha hath blessed thee… 13 Take heed to thyself that thou offer not thy burnt offerings in every place that thou seest: 14 But in the place which Y’hovah shall choose in one of thy tribes, there thou shalt offer thy burnt offerings, and there thou shalt do all that I command thee… 29 When Y’hovah Elohecha shall cut off the nations from before thee, whither thou goest to possess them, and thou succeedest them, and dwellest in their land; 30 Take heed to thyself that thou be not snared by following them, after that they be destroyed from before thee; and that thou enquire not after their elohim, saying, How did these nations serve their elohim? even so will I do likewise. 31 Thou shalt not do so unto Y’hovah Elohecha: for every abomination to Y’hovah, which he hateth, have they done unto their elohim; for even their sons and their daughters they have burnt in the fire to their elohim. (Deut.12.2-7, 13-14, 29-31)

If you think about it, ISIS is following this commandment, after a fashion, in obedience to the false god that they espouse. The militant Moslemists wipe out all the gods of the foreign areas they conquer. The difference between their god and Y’hovah is that Y’hovah is jealous only for his land, the land grant he promised to Avraham’s seed. He did not expect Israel to conquer the entire earth by force of arms, but by a desire to accrue to themselves the same blessings he would bestow on Israel. And he didn’t command Israel to conquer the world and force the other nations outside of his land grant to convert or die. Moslemism and its RCC mother is a satanic counterfeit of Israel, doing by force what Y’hovah does by blessing his people. Some may not want to see the distinction, but to me, at least, the distinction is stark and bold. Q&C

Vv.6-16 – We were not chosen for our numbers or for our character, but because He keeps His Word. Avraham was chosen because of his openness to the thought that the true Creator of everything that exists is so far beyond our comprehension as to be indescribable in our minds or by our hands. We were chosen because Y’hovah keeps his oaths and because he loves us in Avraham. Because he had promised Avraham, he delivered us from bondage in Egypt by his mighty hand and stretched out arm when we called out to him for his Yeshua. He keeps covenant with them who love him (Avraham) to the 1000th generation, and repays them individually who despise him to their face. Because of this 2-fold purpose of Torah, we need to walk in it. He has promised to keep us in his covenant if we keep his mitzvoth, chukim and mishpatim. If we do, he promises to bless us with both spiritual and physical multiplicity, and freedom from diseases that are common to the nations [this is done largely by following his dietary instructions]. But to have all those blessings, we need to remove the pagan influence from our midst, and to do that we must either utterly drive them out or utterly destroy those who will not meet Y’hovah’s conditions. We are not to show pity to them, for we gave them opportunity for Shalom with Y’hovah and us – reject the false gods and accept Torah and Y’hovah’s yoke, from which Mashiyach bears most of the burden

Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. (Matthew 11:29-30)

Vv.17-26 – if we follow what our eyes tell us, and not what our experience has taught us, we will be defeated – so don’t believe your lying eyes! Y’hovah promises to have our back. REMEMBER what he did to Egypt: remember what he did to Paroh and his army: remember what he did to Amalek at Rephidim: remember what he did to Sihon and Og: remember that we suffered not a hangnail in all those battles because Y’hovah had not just our rear guard, but also the point and both flanks. HE plans the battle: he commands in the field: all we need to do is what he tells us to do. To know what to do we need to study Torah, chol Toroth including nevi’im, kethuvim and the Apostolic texts. His specific instructions will NOT contradict his Word. Those who hate us will be on the receiving end of a lot of painful annoyances (hornets) until they flee or are destroyed by them – or us. 

Speculation Warning!!! Watch for striking lightning!!

He will not allow the people of the nations to flee all at once, but as we approach them, so that the land doesn’t revert to its natural, unorganized state. He is giving us land that is cultivated, tamed and ordered, after a fashion. Do you think the Kingdom will be allowed to go to complete entropy before we take it over under Mashiyach’s headship? Not a chance in my mind. As it was in the Exodus, so it will be in the Kingdom. As he conquered every nation that came against Israel to battle in the Wilderness Adventure, so Y’hovah Yeshua will conquer the armies of the nations who come against him and Zion, but those nations survivors will be there to keep a semblance of order, I think. They will be offered Shalom with Y’hovah Yeshua, and I think most will accept his yoke. Those who will not accept Yeshua’s yoke will be quickly, mercifully, and decisively destroyed. Perhaps THIS is what Ezekiel 39.12-16 alludes to? 

12 And seven months shall the house of Israel be burying of them, that they may cleanse the earth. 13 Yea, all the people of the earth shall bury; and it shall be to them a renown the day that I shall be glorified, saith Adonai Y’hovah. 14 And they shall sever out men of continual employment, passing through the earth to bury with the passengers those that remain upon the face of the earth, to cleanse it: after the end of seven months shall they search. 15 And the passengers pass through the earth, when seeth a man’s bone, then shall he set up a sign by it, till the buriers have buried it in the valley of Hamongog. 16 And also the name of the city Hamonah. Thus shall they cleanse the earth. (Ez.39.12-16)

Every instance of the words ‘land’ or ‘earth’ in that passage is the same, H776, eretz, which can be xlated as land or earth, but the root aratz ארצ, means ‘to solidify basic needs’. 

776 ‘erets eh’-rets = There are 2504 uses of ‘eretz’ in Tanakh. It is translated in KJV- land 1543, earth 712, country 140, ground 98, world 4, way 3, common 1, field 1, nations 1, wilderness+4057 (bamidbar baaretz 1Ki.9.18) 1. 

In the case of the Armageddon fulfillment of Gog uMagog, I think it means the whole earth, so that the Millennial Kingdom will be established in the whole earth within those 7 months (a 13th month in that year, perhaps?). With the Mashiyach coordinating in Yerushalayim and his resurrected saints to command in the field, I imagine it COULD be done even quicker, except that there are going to be LOTS and LOTS of bodies to bury. His resurrected field commanders will offer every nation, city and town Shalom on the same order as we are seeing in todays parsha; “tear down your altars, destroy your idols, worship and obey the King and his Abba and you may live among us. If you refuse, or agree and then renege, you WILL be destroyed.” THIS time, it will be done right and there will be a 1000 year cessation of conflict [but not a cessation of secret rebellion], after which there will be one last battle followed by the GWT. END of speculation warning. HalleluYah! if no lightning has struck.

The last 2 verses describe Achan’s sin at Yericho and its result at Ai. I don’t think we’ll see any of that in the 7 months described above. Q&C 

No Prophet

Tehellim 125 – Why did the KJV translators add the words they added. They do NOTHING to the clarity of the text

1 They that trust in Y’hovah, as mount Zion, cannot be removed; abideth for ever.

As mount Zion cannot be removed; as mount Zion abides forever; so are they who trust in Y’hovah. As the mountains surround Zion, so Y’hovah encircles his people. The wicked branch cannot hold down or control the portion of the tzadikim, or they might be tempted to do what is unlawful. So David tells Y’hovah to do good to the good and upright in heart. And for those who turn from the good to wickedness, Y’hovah will give them the outcome of their unrighteous actions. Y’hovah ALWAYS gives us what we want. If we want iniquity, he will give it to us; if we want to obey him, he will make it easier for us to obey. Y’hovah will NEVER force us to do anything. He watches us and gives us what we truly want. Shalom l’Yisrael! Q&C

Matthew 4.1-25 – What follows is taken from my Bible Study notes on The Life of Yeshua haMashiyach – an Hebraic Perspective, ©2001-2018. 48). The temptation of Yeshua – Mat.4.1-11, Mark 1.12-13, Lk.4.1-13 – In Mark [which some folks think is Shimon Kefa’s gospel and Mark was his amanuensis], Yeshua is driven by the Spirit into the wilderness, while in Matthew and Luke, he is led by the Spirit. The whole tone of Mark is different from the other gospels. He shows Yeshua as a tireless servant, having at times no time to eat, working miracle after miracle to prove the divinity claimed by the author in 1.1. Relative to the other gospels, it seems as if the author is just getting the preliminaries out of the way so he can get to his main point. The audience is probably Roman or gentile believers, who would not know the OT prophecies and for whom they would be superfluous. Mark does not refer to anything close to the number of prophecies that Luke, Matthew, or Yochanan do. He is trying to show the suffering Son of Eloha. As usual, any minor differences in the fine points of the narratives are matters of perspective of the author or of the intended audience.

Luke and Matthew both mention the 40-day fast, Mark only that Yeshua was in the wilderness 40 days, which COULD mean the same thing. All the writers say that he was tempted of HaSatan for the entire time; Matthew even says the temptation was the reason for his going there. The details are very similar in Matt and Luke. The third last temptation has to do with Yeshua’s hunger for food, his need to feed his body. First HaSatan questions Yeshua’s divinity, ‘If thou be the Son of Eloha’, as if he could get him with the same ploy with which he’d gotten Chava. Then he worked on physical weakness, or rather, was depending on it and the lust of the flesh to defeat the Eloha who’d created him. But, as anyone who’s fasted any length of time can tell you, the body may be weak, but the spirit and mind are sharp as a knife at that time. Yeshua answered him with the Word of Eloha [we will look at it next week], 

Deut. 8:3, “And he humbled thee, and suffered thee to hunger, and fed thee with manna, which thou knewest not, neither did thy fathers know; that he might make thee know that man doth not live by bread only, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of Y’hovah doth man live.”

The lesson for us is obvious. When confronted with sin we should rely on the scriptures to pull us out. Rom.6 says we are dead to sin and alive to Mashiyach. If we reckon ourselves dead to sin we will have an easy time defeating it in our lives. This battle is constant, because our sin nature is and will be still with us until the resurrection. But reckoning ourselves dead to sin must be done every time we are tempted to sin, and, I confess that I often forget this simple way to avoid sin. But Eloha has made provision for us in this as well. 

1 Yochanan 2:1, “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Yeshua haMashiyach the righteous (hatzadik):”

The next 2 temptations are given in opposite order in the accounts of Matthew and Luke. The details of the temptations are nearly identical, but the order is switched. Why? Look to the purpose for writing and the intended audiences. Luke first goes to the mountaintop to show the kingdoms of the world, and he adds a detail that Matt leaves out. The gospel was written to the Edomite son of king Herod who was asking for a history of the Netzari sect, ‘most excellent Theophilus’, and the appeal to power and glory would be more personal to him. Also Luke points out the fact that HaSatan is the prince of this world system in which Theophilus is a leader. Of course, being the Word of Eloha, Yeshua answers with the word of Eloha – 

Deut. 10:20, “Thou shalt fear Y’hovah Elohecha; him shalt thou serve, and to him shalt thou cleave, and swear by his name.” 

In order for us to be able to answer the temptations in our lives with the Word of Eloha, we must have it readily available. We can’t safely open a bible and search for a passage while driving on the road, or in any number of circumstances in which we may find ourselves. For this reason we must memorize scripture. It is not that difficult to do. We could try the 3X5 card with a passage written on it, kept in a pocket or on the visor of the car and work on that one until it is solid in memory. Then start another. In this way, it will not be difficult to memorize 1-2 passages a week. It is by the renewing of our minds that we are transformed into the image of Mashiyach. Yeshua said that we speak what we think about. What kinds of words escape your mouth on a regular basis? 

Philip. 4:8, “Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things honest, whatsoever things just, whatsoever things pure, whatsoever things lovely, whatsoever things of good report; if any virtue, and if any praise, think on these things.” 

The only source for true, honest, just, pure, lovely things of good report that are virtuous and praiseworthy is the scripture. When you memorize, meditate – think about what you’re memorizing. Ask Eloha to illuminate your mind so that you can see what he wants you to see in that passage.

Matthew, on the other hand, goes directly to the pinnacle of the temple. He is writing to Jews to try to convince them that Yeshua is the Mashiyach. HaSatan here quotes a well known Messianic prophecy from 

Psalm 91:11-12, “For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. 12They shall bear thee up in hands, lest thou dash thy foot against a stone.” 

HaSatan says (in a Mark paraphrase), “Well, I know the scripture every bit as well as you, better in fact! If you’re the Mashiyach, jump! Eloha has promised to protect you! Don’t you trust Him?” Yeshua did not ‘fall’ for this one either (do you suppose that’s the source of that idiom?). He wanted Yeshua to misapply scripture, just like he wants, and often gets, us to do. But Yeshua knew the CONTEXT of the verse (Ps.91), and that HaSatan wrested it, as usual. The Psalm refers to how Eloha will protect us as we walk in him, but the main subject of the Psalm is Mashiyach. Noone else fulfills the description of the one who completely trusts in Eloha. Yeshua wasn’t fooled for a minute, because he knew the scripture. 

At times each of us realizes this kind of protection and guidance from Eloha. Though we are always under his wings we do not always experience or feel the wonder of his providential protection. He has been protecting us all our lives, to bring us to this day and hour for his service. The better we understand this, the more humble we become. Eloha is my personal protection. No president, no king, no Mafia don has ever had security like we have in Mashiyach. The Secret Service doesn’t know security like Eloha does. He keeps us because we walk with him. And vice-verse.

Did you notice what HaSatan left out of the quote? “To keep thee in all thy ways” is prominent by its absence. What more proof do you need that HaSatan may know the scriptures, but not believe them? If he believed them he never would have tried using this passage against Yeshua. For it says, “in all thy ways.” Since Yeshua is the fulfillment of this verse there’s no way he’ll apply it improperly, for ALL his ways are kept, that is guarded, by Eloha. And it is an admonition to us, as well

In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. (Proverbs 3:6)

HaSatan’s next temptation in Matthew is designed to give the world over to the Mashiyach out of due time. He offers the kingdoms of the world that have been promised to Yeshua, he just offers them a bit early. It’s as if HaSatan is saying, “They’re going to be yours soon, anyway. Why not take them now?” Remember Abram and Sarai? Eloha promised that they would have a son, from whom would come a great nation, but they were both old and ‘well stricken in years’. So Abe and Sarai decide to help Eloha out by way of Hagar. Now you don’t suppose haSatan had anything to do with that, do you? Eloha is teaching the lesson of waiting on Y’hovah, and deferring gratification until his time. Yeshua is still waiting for the fulfillment of a bunch of prophecies that he SHALL fulfill – more in fact than were fulfilled during his life on earth. But he is waiting on the Father’s timing and not on his own, or in the case of this temptation, HaSatan’s. You make that application to your own life. Q&C

Matt.4.13-16  – Yeshua left Judea and went directly to Galilee (Monopoly had yet to be invented, so he neither passed ‘Go!’, nor collected $200). What he did do was to teach in Capernaum every Sabbath for weeks. In fact, Capernaum became his base of operations for the next 2 years. 

The passage in Matt. partially quotes Isaiah 9:1-2,

“Nevertheless the dimness not such as in her vexation, when at the first he lightly afflicted the land of Zebulon and the land of Naphtali, and afterward did more grievously afflict the way of the sea, beyond Jordan, in Galilee of the nations. 2The people that walked in darkness have seen a great light: they that dwell in the land of the shadow of death, upon them hath the light shined. 

They were lightly afflicted when they did not utterly destroy the inhabitants of their land in the time of Joshua and the Judges. They were more grievously afflicted when they worshipped pagan elohim. 

They indeed saw a great light, for Yeshua taught them on the Sabbaths from this time forward, when he was there of course. It says nothing here about teaching in the synagogue, just that he taught them. Perhaps he taught them after the meeting at synagogue in the corner deli. Or it may have been in synagogue, but I doubt it. I don’t think the leaders there would want to buck the rabbis in Jerusalem. One thing is certain. Yeshua taught with authority, not as the rabbis. The word ‘power’ in greek is exousia, which quite literally means out of his own or his self. The rabbis taught with knowledge, which can be dry, but Yeshua taught with his own authority and the people were delighted and amazed. The greek word for astonished, ekplesso, gives the idea of slapping your forehead or cheeks in amazement. OY VEY!!

As an aside, Zebulon and Naphtali were often listed together when it came time to fight the gentiles in Judges. Barak’s army that fought Sisera was entirely made up of Zevulon’s and Naphtali’s people. Of course, if they’d obeyed the Word of Eloha from the mouths of Moses and Joshua and totally annihilated the gentiles in the land, they would never have had to fight Sisera or the Philistines, et al., and all the problems we live with today in that area would have been averted. 

Addendum – The chronology of Thompson’s Chain seems to skip over a couple of important verses in the gospels. But in each of Matthew’s and Mark’s gospels there is one verse left out of the chronology, Mat.4.17 and Mk.1.15. These have to do with the gospel that Yeshua was preaching. It was somewhat different from the gospel we generally preach today. Yeshua was preaching the gospel of the kingdom, which is the gospel to national Yisrael (all twelve tribes), typified in different trees, the fig and the olive. The olive tree typifies believers, while the fig tree typifies unbelievers. The gospel we preach; Mashiyach crucified, buried and resurrected; is to the individual who is then ‘graffed into the olive tree’, as we see in Rom.11.17. To be graffed into the olive tree at this time, one must believe the gospel, which is given in 1Cor.15.3-6. In Yeshua’s day, the gospel was to repent and believe that Yeshua was Mashiyach the King, offering himself to Yisrael as such. These are not actually 2 different gospels, but 2 aspects of the same one. The overarching gospel is summarized in the sentence, “You can have Peace with Y’hovah instead of the enmity you naturally have.” 1Cor.15.1-3 is not the actual gospel, but the means by which it is attained – the death, burial, and resurrection of Y’hovah Yeshua haMashiyach haMelech. He now offers himself to each individual as such, and one day soon he will once again offer himself to chol Yisrael who will say, ‘Baruch haba b’shem Y’hovah.” 

2 Tim. 2:15, “Study to shew thyself approved unto Eloha, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” 

The divisions of the Word of Eloha, the set times, must be taken into account while studying it. The gospel itself hasn’t changed, but the manner in which it was offered has, from corporate to individual (though individuals were always able to trust Y’hovah for their deliverance). I don’t know that the Thompson editors saw that when they compiled the harmony of the gospels. Q&C

63). Mat.4.18-22 – Four disciples called – Actually they are recalled. These four, along with Nathanael, were called while going from Jerusalem to Cana. They must have gone home to provide for their families, for Yeshua finds them working their trade and business, I think at a pre-appointed time. Peter and Andrew were partners with Zebedee and his sons. The fishing season must have just ended. Now it was time for these men to ply their trade in different waters; the sea of humanity. When the master called them, they left everything without hesitation. I think they were waiting for Yeshua’s call, and that their partners knew it. I would imagine that the miracles they’d witnessed and the words of Yeshua were the main points of conversation during null periods at work, and all four were saying on a regular basis, ‘I can’t wait until I see the Master again.’ 

But Thompson’s time line is a bit askew, for the next division (#64), the miraculous catch immediately precedes the recall of Peter. It may be that Peter was having second thoughts about his changing professions and leaving his family for long stretches of time, or perhaps his wife was asking him to stay with his family. 

Where would I get such an idea? Look at Lk.5.1-9. As Yeshua was walking by the Lake Genneseret, another name for the Sea of Galilee, the crowd was pressing upon him. If you’ve ever been in a crowd, you know how uncomfortable the close quarters can be, almost claustrophobic. Well, he saw two boats there, one Pete’s and the other Zebedee’s. Evidently Pete was well to do and had a crew to do the work, for he was in the boat while the fishermen were cleaning the nets. So, after requesting permission to come aboard, Yeshua stepped into Pete’s boat and asked him to let some slack out of the anchor rope and just drift out a few feet. From there he could comfortably teach the crowd. 

What he taught that day we don’t know, but when he was finished teaching he asked Peter to launch out into the deep water for a draught of fish. The workers must have returned while Yeshua was teaching, and having just washed the nets were probably none too pleased at hearing that request. Neither would Peter be, having to pay them for their time to sail out and fish and clean nets once again. Pete even told him, I think he was trying to save money (that would be my reason for saying such a thing), because they’d been unsuccessful at that night’s attempts. But Peter obliged him, knowing who he is. I also think that Zeb and his kids shoved off to stay with Peter and Yeshua and were just far enough away for safe sailing. They were at least watching, for they saw their partner beckoning for help.

When they dropped their nets and inclosed a huge school of fish, enough to sink both boats, Pete knew beyond doubt that Eloha was in his boat. He fell at Yeshua’ knees. Why was Yeshua on his knees? Was he praying, or helping with the catch, or both? But Pete fell at his knees. Fell is from the greek word prospipto, which means to fall prostrate before or towards. Peter asked Yeshua to leave him because he (P) was unworthy to be in his (Y) presence. Astonished is from the greek word periecho which means to get your mind around a concept. They grasped the idea immediately that Yeshua is Eloha. They also got their minds around the idea that they probably wouldn’t have to fish anymore this year. To use the vernacular, they had just ‘cracked the nut’ for this year. There was no necessity to stay to provide for their families. Yeshua had just seen to that. 

Has Yeshua made your way clear financially so that you can serve him? Have you balked at that service for fear that your family would not be provided for? I have and it was sin in my life, the sin of pride, believe it or not, and of failure to trust the promises of Eloha. If I didn’t provide for my family, who would? Eloha has promised that he would take care of me and mine, but I often fail to trust him, even still today. Yeshua removed all their valid arguments to following him with that draught of fish. How has he done the same for you? Have you forsaken all, just left it, to follow him? Q &C

Vv.23-25 – So now, with at least 4 talmidim in tow, Yeshua does the itinerant preacher bit, delivering the gospel of the Kingdom we spoke of earlier. We are not told anything he said, but we are told what he did that taught the gospel of the Kingdom of Eloha without him having to say a word, if his audience knew the sod שוד, ‘to cover with plaster’, of Torah – he healed all manner of sickness and disease among the people. Physical illness is a metaphor for sin, and healing the sick and diseased is a metaphor for taking the sin away. Yeshua was modeling the New Covenant in metaphor

31 Behold, the days come, saith Y’hovah, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: 32 Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith Y’hovah: 33 But this the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith Y’hovah, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their Eloha, and they shall be my people. 34 And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know Y’hovah: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith Y’hovah: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. 35 Thus saith Y’hovah, which giveth the sun for a light by day, the ordinances of the moon and of the stars for a light by night, which divideth the sea when the waves thereof roar; Y’hovah Tzavaoth his name: 36 If those ordinances depart from before me, saith Y’hovah, the seed of Israel also shall cease from being a nation before me ad olam until forever. (Jeremiah 31.31-36)

The people who were being healed and bringing their friends and loved ones for healing may not have understood the metaphor, but the scribes and Pharisees did, whether they publicly acknowledged it or not. And news of a healer definitely got to the Sanhedrin and the political leaders, both secular and religious. 

V.24 gets a bit more specific as to the manner of sickness and disease that he healed. Devil possessed, lunatick, and the palsy, all are types of different sins. Some who were devil possessed (daimonidzomai – demonized, affected by demons) were healed, or rather had the devils driven from them. In Matt. 8.28-34 Yeshua casts out a slew of devils into a herd of swine, which is immediately driven over a cliff into the sea. The swineherds (what a job to have in Yisrael) ran away to tell their bosses, the swine ranchers, what happened. The ranchers came out to see if the wild story their employees told was true, and, upon seeing Yeshua, begged him to leave their coasts. Do you suppose they were more interested in the profit from the swine than the spiritual condition of the devil possessed men who were their neighbors, and possibly acquaintances and relatives? No doubt. Who do you suppose were the swine ranchers? Perhaps Herodians or Sadducees, members of the Sanhedrin? I don’t know, but I wouldn’t doubt it. How many preachers today sell all types of merchandise, including what they know to be corrupt bibles and all sorts of talismans [prayer cloths come readily to mind], to make a profit? The point is that the devil possessed men are cleansed of their tormentors and the ranchers don’t much care; they really just want their pigs back. 

Lunaticks (selenidzomai – affected by the moon) were moon struck, that’s what the greek word means, considered to be crazy. Today they would be called epileptic, believe it or not. In fact, the margin of the Thompson Chain has a reference to Epilepsy here. They weren’t crazy so much as given to seizures of varying degree. When the seizures came on them, they’d do things that were taken for crazy, for no one would do them being in his right mind (cf.Mat17.14-15). The epileptic has no control of himself during a grand mal. And there does seem to be some minor difference in the seriousness of the seizures at different times of the month, according to epileptics I’ve spoken to. Could it be moon phases having a physical effect on the person’s brain, like it does with the tides of the ocean? 

The palsy was a reference to paralysis, the greek word is paralutikos or paralytic. The word literally means to loosen beside and therefore to have no use of muscles in a portion of the body. This could be caused by nerve damage, stroke or any number of things. Yeshua healed all of these things to bring glory to Eloha thereby. He literally fixed severed nerves, repaired portions of the brain affected by stroke and epilepsy, and sent devils packing, never wishing the glory for himself, always giving glory to his Father in heaven. How about you and me? Do we want Eloha to get the glory for what he does through us, or do we want the credit? And this was so amazing to the people that many just followed wherever he went to witness the power of Eloha being sent forth through him. The power that he displayed gave witness to the power of his words in comparison to the rote dogma taught by the rabbis (or pastors). As we said a couple of pages ago, he taught with authority from himself, not just parroting what the teachers, sages and rabbis of blessed memory said. Rote dogma is usually dry and uninteresting. When Yeshua spoke, it was always as fresh to them as newly fallen snow. Q&C

End of Shabbat Bible Study.

Shabbat Bible Study for September 15, 2018

Shabbat Bible Study for September 15, 2018

©2018 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

September 19, 2015 – Year 3 Sabbath 27

Deuteronomy 5:1-33 – [no prophet] – Psalm 124 – Romans 10:1-17


Devarim 5:1-33  – Moshe begins with “Shema, Yisrael et hachukim v’et hamishpatim”. These chukim and Mishpatim are part of the b’rith that he entered into with us at Horeb. He makes it a point to say that this was NOT a covenant that he’d entered into with only “our avoth before us, but with us, even us who are alive this day.” He makes the point that this covenant was with chol Yisrael, all of Yisrael, past, present and future. And then he repeats the 10 Words. 

Vv.6-21 (6-18 in Tanakh) – He starts with the ‘enabling clause’; the reason Y’hovah is able to hold us to this covenant: “I am Y’hovah Elohecha, who brought EACH of you (individually) up out of the land of Egypt.” This is NOT a commandment, but the reason we should obey him. We would never have been able to deliver ourselves, either individually or corporately, from Egypt’s bondage, but he heard our cries and saw our affliction and remembered us; worked to deliver us with mighty signs, and judgments against our bond-masters and their false elohim. Since he did all these wondrous works in our behalf, we ought to obey his eminently reasonable mitzvoth, chukim and mishpatim. 

In v.7 Y’hovah commands us to [1] have no other elohim in his face. This is ANY elohim, not just something we can see, but also those of our own or someone else’s imagination. Any thing that might have more commitment from us than Y’hovah has is an idol. That would include our family, our occupation, our nation (or even worse, our political party); ANYTHING that comes, even momentarily, before Y’hovah in our esteem. Right now, in America, that would include your VOTE: if you are going to exercise your patent, you must use it to vote for a biblically righteous man; one who honours Y’hovah. V.8 commands us to [2] not make any likeness of anything in Creation, as we spoke of last week in some detail. V.9 then forbids us to [3] bow down to any false elohim in Y’hovah’s face, because he will ‘visit our iniquity on our children to the 3rd and 4th generation of those who hate’ Y’hovah. If we idolatrize before Y’hovah, we will pass on a disposition for idolatry to our children. This does not mean they WILL idolatrize; only that they will have a pre-disposition to it. This ‘curse’ can be broken by any who will simply not idolatrize; simple but not easy. V.10 shows the flip side of v.9: Y’hovah will bless those who do not idolatrize with mercy who do love him and guard and obey his commandments. How many generations have there been in human history? If we are approaching the end of our sixth prophetic ‘day’, that would be less than 6,000 years. 6000/30 (could be 20-40 years to a generation) = 200 generations beginning with Adam’s. I will venture a guess that very few people have ever NOT idolatrized before Y’hovah. As we said last week, it is a part of us to be religious critters. We instinctively know that there is something greater than us, even when we have no witness to Y’hovah’s Truth, and we MAKE ourselves, or we make OURSELVES, elohim to serve. Even the man Y’hovah said was ‘after his heart’ – David – idolatrized in the matter of BathSheva and UriYah the Hittite, as well as Avshalom. Therefore, I see v.10 as a prophecy of the New Creation, “wherein dwelleth righteousness”. V.11 forbids us to [4] use Y’hovah’s Name in a way that makes it vain, of no value or holiness to us. Vv.12-15 command us to [5] remember Shabbat and set it apart. We are to work for our living the 1st 6 days of the week, but Shabbat is a day when we rest from our work. As Y’hovah instructed and gave us training in Ex.16, we are to follow his pattern; work the first 6 days of the week and rest the 7th; work 6, rest 1; work 6, rest 1; even as he did in his ex nihilo creation. Not only are WE to rest, but our animals and servants are to rest, as well. To ensure that we get the importance of Shabbat rest, he invokes the enabling clause again: “I brought you out of Egyptian bondage by my power, and you will remember THAT by taking the Shabbat OFF from your regular work.” V.16 commands us to honour our parents. This is the last commandment of the 1st table, which deals with our relationship to Y’hovah. If we fail to honour our parents, whom we can see, how will we ever honour Y’hovah, whom we can’t? Some see this 5th commandment as a part of the 2nd table. That’s OK; it is not a salvational issue. But it is my OPINION that it is a part of the 1st table, which deals with our relationship to Y’hovah, while the 2nd table deals with our interpersonal relationship to our neighbors.

Vv.17-21 (Tanakh vv.17-18) is the writing of the 2nd table, which deals with our relationship with our fellow men. The 1st table relates directly to “Love Y’hovah Elohecha”, while the 2nd relates directly to “Love your neighbor as you love yourself”. These are listed very quickly: v.17 says [6] “no murder”; v.18 says [7] “no adultery”; v.19 says [8] “no stealing”; v.20 says [9] “no false witness”; and v.21 says [10] “no coveting anything”. Chumash has a very good comment on these verses on pg. 42. All of these; murder, adultery, theft, lying and coveting; are actually forms of idolatry, as well. We think that we are smarter and better than Y’hovah when we sin in any way. We are all guilty before him. But Y’hovah has provided a way for us to live before him in HIS righteousness by the merciful and gracious substitutionary atonement of Y’hovah Yeshua on his tree. 

Vv.22-33 – Y’hovah gave the 10 Words to Moshe and wrote them on tables of stone for him to take to Israel. But we were frightened for our lives at the sound of Y’hovah’s voice from the midst of the fire on Sinai, and the darkness. V.22 says the voice was from the fire, while v.23 says it was from the darkness. The word xlated ‘darkness’ is H2822, choshek, from the root H2821, chashak, meaning to withhold, in this case light, to dim. It looks as though they saw the fire but that it did not release any perceptible light. So we had our elders approach Moshe and asked him to speak to Y’hovah for us. We knew that he would not slay us because we heard his voice ourselves, but we couldn’t get our minds around the apparent dichotomy of a fire that seemed to emanate darkness. It seems that we were afraid that direct revelation from Y’hovah would overwhelm us and kill us. So we told Moshe to go speak face to face with Y’hovah and tell us what he required, and that we would both hear (v’shamanu) and do (v’asiynu). 

Y’hovah said that we were right; that the revelation was too much for us to handle, so we should go to our tents and Moshe would be our intercessor, as Yeshua is for us today. He would speak his mitzvoth, his chukim and his mishpatim to Moshe who would then report what Y’hovah said to chol Yisrael. Then Moshe shifted from narrative to admonition, telling us that we should observe the Word of Y’hovah with our whole heart and soul and not turn off even 1° to the right or left; that we should walk in his ways that it might go well with us and our days would be prolonged in the land that he was bringing us in to possess. Q&C

No Prophet

Read from Tanakh Tehellim 124 – David tells us that had it not been for Y’hovah fighting for us, Amalek, Og and Sihon would have wiped us out. As in Ps.123, David repeats himself, perhaps making reference to the deliverance of both houses of Ya’akov from enemies far outnumbering them. If this meant the physical seed of Ya’acov it would make no sense, since the merely physical seed of Ya’acov are as sinful as any other man. But the spiritual seed of Ya’acov has been bought out of bondage to the world with a price 

For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify Eloha in your body, and in your spirit, which are Eloha’s. (I Corinthians 6:20)

Not only that, but he had his own run in with the fledgling (As)Syrian Empire that eventually laid siege to and conquered the 10 tribes of Ephraim/Israel and also laid siege to Yerushalayim in ChizkiYahu’s days, when Y’hovah sent his angel to wipe out 185,000 Assyrian soldiers; “and when they arose early in the morning, behold, they were all dead corpses (Is.37.36, 1Ki.19.35).” But David’s back was up against it when Syria came to challenge his authority over Moav and Edom. His armies were coming back to Yerushalayim tired from major battle. The Syrian/Moabite armies were large and set up a pincer action against Yoav. Yoav had to split his forces, and had Y’hovah not fought on David’s side the battle would likely have gone against Israel. (As)Syria was an up-and-coming power until this battle, and took the better part of 200 years to regain the ascendancy. After this battle, David’s kingdom reached its greatest area of rule or tribute. But David knew full well that had he not been on Y’hovah’s side, Y’hovah could have as easily allowed him to be wiped out BY (As)Syria. They could have overrun Israel like the floods overran the antediluvian race of Noach’s time; or been chewed up and spit out like the beasts of the earth had taken them. Y’hovah destroyed the enemy’s traps and snares, so that David’s forces came out almost as scratchless as Yehoshua’s troops had against Og and Sihon and the Amalekites at Rephidim. We have escaped because Y’hovah is the one who delivers us and in HIS Name we receive our help. Q&C

Romiyah 10.1-18 – While looking at ch.10, let’s remember that the foundational, most basic truth of scripture is the Shema, “Hear Oh Yisrael, Y’hovah our Elohim, Y’hovah is One.” The Shema is seen in the ‘unity of the faith’, that Y’hovah is the Elohim of both the Jews AND the Gentiles (3.29), the echad nature of Y’hovah, all in Mashiyach are one, etc.  It is seen in nature and the nuclear family. The atom has 3 basic particles, neutron, proton and electron. Matter has at least 4 states, solid, liquid, gas and plasma. Time is both past, present and future. The family consists of Father, Mother and Children. The examples are numerous that Y’hovah has pointed to his echad nature in his creation. Echad does not always mean absolute oneness, but unity in and through plurality. The Ruach of Yhwh is a unity, which manifests in various different ways.

Earlier in our study, Sha’ul told us that Elohim is not merely the Eloha of the Jews, but of the Gentiles also (Rom.3.29). He treats all people in the same manner, and he always has. For him to expect different things of different people or to expect different things of the SAME people at different times would be to compromise his echad nature. 

The Jewish mystics see Y’hovah manifested in at least 10 ‘emanations’. They are seen in 3 sublevels, each consisting of 3 attributes, headed by the absolute Truth of Y’hovah that no mere human can really comprehend. You can see allusions to this in Paul’s writings. 

His statement to ‘behold the goodness and the severity of Elohim’ (11.22) is also an allusion to the 10 emanations of Y’hovah. The goodness of Elohim is seen in his mercy to usward. His mercy is an emanation that balances his emanation of severity, which is his absolute justice. The emanation of beauty is the one the binds all his emanations into echadity in the ‘Ain Soph’; the endless, unknowable [to our limited minds] truth of Y’hovah. It is the Ain Soph that we will spend eternity studying and never find an end of discovering and understanding (another emanation of Y’hovah). 

All of that is said to give you just an inkling of the Unity in Plurality of Yah, which is pictured for us in the unity in plurality of his people. We need to bear this in mind as we move into ch.10.

In ALL of Sha’ul’s letters, the pronoun ‘we’ refers to Jewish believers in Mashiyach Yeshua; ‘you’ refers to Gentile believers in Mashiyach Yeshua and ‘us’ refers to all believers in Mashiyach Yeshua – both Jew and Gentile.

Vv.1-3 – Sha’ul addresses his brethren, which context will show is all of the Roman believers, both Jew and Gentile. At various times, he specifically addresses his Jewish brethren and at others the Gentile brethren. The subject is Israel, but the message is for the Gentiles, as well as the Jews.

His desire is the salvation of chol Yisrael. As we’ve seen already in our explanation of 8.29-30, all Yisrael shall be saved. This is the body of the argument Sha’ul started way back then.

Israel has a zeal for Y’hovah, but they are blinded in part (2Cor.3.14 – they can’t or won’t see Mashiyach in the Tanakh), ‘not according to knowledge’. Noone knew this better than Rav Sha’ul, who was very zealous, as he himself testified in Acts 22.1-10. Paul did what we all do when confronted by a new paradigm that shows either we’ve been mistaken, fooled or lied to – he attacked the very truth he was convinced of, but in his pride would not acknowledge. I have been there myself, and so has everyone else who is reading or hearing this study. Once we are convinced of our own mistake or delusion, we need to come to grips with it and stop fighting it. That is what Yeshua said to Paul in Acts 9.5, “I am Yeshua whom thou persecutest; it is hard for thee to kick against the pricks.” The truth that we know but won’t acknowledge keeps pricking us until we repent of our pride and stop kicking.

In Hebrew mysticism, knowledge is the highest level a student of scripture can attain. It connects understanding and wisdom. Israel has an understanding of Torah, but little or none of Mashiyach. The ‘church’ has the wisdom of Mashiyach, but little or none of Torah. Neither has the knowledge that Mashiyach and Torah are one, as Y’hovah is one, as we are told in the Shema. There are those who have some knowledge without either understanding or wisdom. These may actually brand us heretic because we would say that Yeshua is Torah, even though John 1 plainly says that Yeshua is the Word. The last time I checked, Torah was still in the Canon. Q&C

Paul said in v.3 that they have not submitted to the righteousness of Elohim. What is the righteousness of Elohim? Jer.33.16 gives one of the Names of Elohim as “Y’hovah Tzidkenu”, Y’hovah (Yeshua) our righteousness. Deut.6.25 says that our righteousness is in submission to Y’hovah – in obedience to his commands. Can you see that ‘they’ in v.3 means both Jews and Gentiles, who comprise Israel (without the Y)? Jews have not submitted to the righteousness of Elohim … how? I thought they had an understanding of Torah. They do, but they submit to the righteousness of their man-made traditions OVER Torah. That was Yeshua’s main point to them; he was calling them to repentance from tradition and toward Torah. They would not acknowledge that Yeshua is Torah.

Every Christian understands that, but they don’t usually see how THEY have not submitted to the righteousness of Elohim, either. They have accepted Yeshua’s free gift to them, but have not submitted themselves in that they have rejected 2/3 of Y’hovah’s revelation as binding on them. They know that Yeshua is the Word of Y’hovah, but then reject the authority in their lives of 2/3 of his very Words. So, both Jews and Gentiles, which are shown by Sha’ul to be Yisrael in Eph.2.11ff and in Rom.11.5-24, have rejected … what? Both have failed in submission to Y’hovah’s Word.

Now, remember that works of Torah justify noone. Works of Torah naturally follow him who has repented of his sins, trusted in Y’hovah Tzidkenu and studied his Word; for without knowledge of his Word, he cannot know what sin is (Rom.7.7).

In Aramaic, the Word = the Memra. The Memra in Hebraic mystical thought is the Creative force of Y’hovah. Creation is not a one-time thing in an absolute sense. He did finish his creative work in 6 days, but he must be constantly creating to uphold his creation. If he stops speaking, the universe will dissolve (shades of 2Peter3.10-12).

The creation has no intrinsic being; doesn’t exist of itself. If it did, IT would be Y’hovah, like the evolutionists believe it is. Creation is the object that was created by Y’hovah, without whose Spirit’s energizing, it would just stop moving. As an example, a ball is inanimate, it cannot move by itself, it needs an outside source of energy to move it. When something pushes the ball it moves as far as the energy exerted on the ball will move it. Likewise, creation. If Y’hovah had just created it and left it to itself it would be just like our ball. Now, if Y’hovah creates something, but then forgets about it, what will happen to it? It will cease to exist (like our forgiven sins that he decides to not remember, Jer.31.34). He must keep on creating it, keep on speaking it into existence or it will cease to be. His ex nihilo creation was a one time affair, but his sustaining creation will go on until after the GWT judgment when death and hell are thrown into the Lake of Fire, which itself I believe to be the ultimate dissolution of all matter.

Yeshua is the Memra/Word of Y’hovah by whom all that is came into existence, consists and is sustained; 

15 Who [Yeshua] is the image of the invisible Eloha [Ayn Sof], the firstborn of every creature: 16 For by him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by him, and for him: 17 And he is before all things, and by him all things consist. (Col.1.15-17). 

John says it in the first verses of his gospel. 

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with Eloha, and the Word was Eloha. 2 The same was in the beginning with Eloha. 3 All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made… 14 And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us, (and we beheld his glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father,) full of grace and truth. (John 1.1-3, 14)

John understood the concept of the Memra as an emanation of Y’hovah, the very Son of Elohim, Y’hovah Yeshua haMashiyach.  Q&C

V.4 – Here is one of the most misunderstood verses in scripture. It is misunderstood because most in the church see the word ‘end’ to mean ‘doing away with’ or perhaps just to make useless or vain. Yeshua does not make Torah vain. He fulfills another meaning of ‘end’ – he is Torah’s purpose. A Christian friend of mine with whom I have a disagreement about this very subject once said he was going out street preaching. I said, “To what end?” He said to be used in the witness of the Word. He knew the meaning of end, as it is used in this verse, but he assumes through his learning and the teachings of many good men who sincerely had it wrong that it actually means Yeshua = the abolition of Torah. 

In reality, Torah is still in force and has the same dual nature it has always had; it convinces us of death and evil while it brings life and good to those who trust Y’hovah and follow him in obedience (Dt.30.15). If that were not true, he would not go street preaching, for that is HIS (that is, both my street-preaching friend’s and Yeshua’s) end in doing it – to convince folks of the death and curse of disobedience in going their own way and to show them the life and blessing that comes from repentance and obedience to go Elohim’s way. 

Vv5-6V.5 continues the thought in v.4, “For Moshe describeth the righteousness which is of the law, that the man which doeth those things shall live by them.” Does it say that we live eternally BY keeping Torah, or that Torah is the standard by which we live our lives? I think the latter, ‘for by works of law shall no flesh be justified.’ 

V.6 begins with the word ‘but.’ The Grk word is de, which can be translated any of 5 or 6 ways, including and, or, but, also, moreover, now. If the author meant ‘the opposite’, he would probably have used alla as he did in Rom.1.21, ‘neither were thankful, BUT’. It means to go the exact opposite direction to that prescribed. Alla is always negation, while de denotes affirmation. 

So, the ‘righteousness which is of faith’ speaks to the righteousness we perform because we have faith, which according to Eph.2.9 is a gift from Elohim, not of ourselves lest we boast. But what does the righteousness which is of faith say? (Notice the # of the pronoun)

Dt.30.10 If thou shalt hearken unto the voice of Y’hovah Elohecha, to keep his commandments and his statutes which are written in this book of the law, if thou turn unto Y’hovah Elohecha with all thine heart, and with all thy soul. 11 For this commandment, which I command thee this day, it is not hidden from thee, neither is it far off. 12 It is not in heaven, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it? 13 Neither is it beyond the sea, that thou shouldest say, Who shall go over the sea for us, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it? 14 But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart, that thou mayest do it. (Devarim 30.10-14)

Why is the Word nigh unto thee? It is “that thou mayest do it.” James.1.22 “But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves.” The pronouns referring to the hearers are all 2nd person singular. Y’hovah, through Moshe, was speaking to each of us, individually. Notice that when the objects of the verses (thee, thou, thine, etc.) speak, they use the first person plural. Each was looking for a corporate justification, sanctification and glorification, when Y’hovah gives all that to individuals who THEN become parts of his body and corporately receive rights and privileges. We are graffed into the root of Yeshua individually, but the graffing makes us members of an assembly. Each is taken from one group; i.e., the lost, to become a member of another; i.e., the found.

So let me disabuse you of a grievous error of the church; Torah observance was NEVER about salvation. The Hebrews did NOT have to keep Torah perfectly in order to be saved. Had that been true then all those animal sacrifices were just useless cruelty imposed by Y’hovah – a thing that is impossible. A sacrifice was needed to make the offerer blameless before Y’hovah. ‘Blameless’ is the key. The blame was transferred to the offering. Remember that the apostle Sha’ul was blameless according to Torah 

4 Though I might also have confidence in the flesh. If any other man thinketh that he hath whereof he might trust in the flesh, I more: 5 Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews; as touching the law, a Pharisee; 6 Concerning zeal, persecuting the kehal; touching the righteousness which is in the law, blameless. 7 But what things were gain to me, those I counted loss for Mashiyach. (Phil.3.4-7), 

as were Elisheva and Zacharyahu 

5 There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named ZacharYahu, of the course of Aviyahu: and his wife of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisheva. 6 And they were both righteous before Eloha, walking in all the commandments and ordinances of Y’hovah blameless. (Lk.1.5-6). 

Let’s look at the word blameless.

In 1Cor.1.8 (also 1Tim.3.10 and Tit.1.6&7), the Greek word is anengklaytos, unaccusable, irreproachable: literally uncalled out. This implies that we are not always blameless. We are made blameless by the application of 1Jn.1.9 – confession and repentance. In Philippians, the word is amemptos, irreproachable, without fault. In 1Tim.3.2 (also 5.7), the word is anepileptos, from a negation of epilambanomai, literally unarrested, not seized. In 2Pe.3.14, the Greek word is amometos, without censure, unable to discredit. Notice please, nowhere does the word mean innocent. It means that we are unchargeable with any crime or wrongdoing. Our blame has been transferred to another so that we are found ‘Not Guilty’ in Y’hovah’s court. This was the purpose of the animal sacrifices in the Temple. Those of us who are in Mashiyach have no need for the animal sacrifices; in fact, we would be sinning grievously to perform one for a sin offering because we’d be saying that Yeshua’s once for all offering was insufficient in our eyes. Heb.10 says,

26 For if we sin wilfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remaineth no more sacrifice for sins, 27 But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. 28 He that despised Moshe’s law died without mercy under two or three witnesses: 29 Of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who hath trodden under foot the Son of Eloha, and hath counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and hath done despite unto the Spirit of grace?

That was the whole point of the book of Hebrews, for the believing priests in Jerusalem [Acts 6.7] were actually considering going back to the Temple to offer sacrifices for sin. Everything that came before was for the express purpose of getting here, and everything that follows illustrates it. Paul was telling them that the atoning sacrifice in the Temple is so much wasted effort; there is no more sacrifice for sins (v.26). Not only that, but to offer a sin offering when one knows that Yeshua’s offering was sufficient was walking all over him, counting his offering unworthy and thinking the Spirit of grace of no value. If you can find a better definition of blasphemy of the Holy Ghost, I’d love to see it. 

The nation was saved by the blood of the Lamb of the goats at Passover, as are we. They were to shema Torah, that is to hear it and obey it (kill the lamb and spread its blood on the doorposts and lintel) because Y’hovah saved them from physical Egyptian exile, as Yeshua (who is Y’hovah in human flesh) saves us from our spiritual Egyptian exile (in the world), and will do so again physically when the ‘greater Egypt’, the NWO and the Anti-Mashiyach Satanic system, imposes itself on us, demanding our worship. Our salvation and their salvation was, is and always will be by the same means: trusting Y’hovah to deliver on his promises by the instrumentality of his Mashiyach. Yeshua’s ONE offering both saves us and ATONES for us, making us all more than blameless before Avinu. He makes us clean. He reconciles us to Abba. We still need to repent and confess when we sin, but there is no more need for sacrifice to make us blameless. Our reconciliation and propitiation have been made. Q&C

Vv.7-9 – Paul is making another Midrashic point. He is quoting De.30.10-14 and applying it to going after Mashiyach. Mashiyach Yeshua IS Torah, so the application is absolutely valid (as if it needed my endorsement, eh?). The point of the whole passage is that those who were in the wilderness (like us) and about to go into the Promised Land (like us) had Mashiyach right there in their hearts and minds in the form of Torah for the purpose that they (and we) obey it and him. Look at De.30.10 and 14 again. What are we supposed to hearken to? The Voice of Y’hovah – the Memra. What is it that is very nigh? The Word – the Memra. Yeshua is the Memra of Y’hovah, his Word and his Voice. He was right there with them in the Shekinah.

So, in v.9, what is it that we confess? Y’hovah Yeshua haMashiyach, the Memra, the Voice and the Word of Y’hovah. What do we believe? That Elohim has raised Yeshua from the dead. A parallel passage to this is Phil.2.10-11,

10 That at the name of Yeshua every knee should bow, of things in heaven, and things in earth, and things under the earth; 11 And that every tongue should confess that Yeshua haMashiyach is Master, to the glory of יהוה the Father [Ayn Sof].

That is another Midrashic application of Is.45.23 to Yeshua. That passage from Isaiah is also recited every day by the Orthodox Jews in their Aleinu prayer (We shall extol). 

All the world’s inhabitants will recognize and know that to You every knee should bend, every tongue should swear (Isaiah 45:23). Before You, Y’hovah Elohenu, they will bend every knee and cast themselves down and to the glory of Your Name they will render homage and they will all accept upon themselves the yoke of Your kingship that You may reign over them soon and eternally.

For then shall the words be fulfilled, “Y’hovah shall be king forever” (Exodus 15:18) and “Yehovah shall be king over all the earth; on that day shall there be one Y’hovah and His Name one.” (Zechariah 14:9).

Paul is showing the Jews in Rome and in Philippi that Yeshua is the answer to that Aleinu prayer that they had been reciting for about 500 years by the time he wrote his epistles. 

Vv.10-13 – So which is the formula, confess and then believe (v.9) or believe and then confess (v.10)? The answer is … YES! They work in conjunction towards our justification – the one complementing the other, like soup and sandwich, spaghetti and meatballs, cheese and wine, Rowan and Martin, Martin and Lewis, Lewis and Sullivan, Starsky and Hutch, etc.

V.11 quotes Is.28.16, kind of, again. Isaiah says that he that believes shall not make haste. We spoke of this earlier. If we get ahead of Eloha, trying to help him out, like Avraham and Sarah did, we run the risk of messing it all up and Y’hovah will have to deliver us supernaturally, as he did Avraham and Sarah. They believed his promise, but were impatient for his fulfillment. This almost always spells trouble. The verse from Isaiah that Sha’ul misquoted midrashically at the end of ch.9, he misquotes again right here. Paul again makes it clear that Yeshua is the Rock of Offense. The important word in this verse is ‘whosoever’, because Sha’ul defines it in v.12 – No difference between Jew and Greek. Why? There is no difference because they each serve the same Y’hovah who calls them. Both Jew and Gentile are saved by calling on the same Y’hovah. So who calls upon whom? Yes! He calls us to call upon him. Q&C

Vv.14-18 – Paul is still speaking of Israel, his brethren after the flesh. But he is making the case here that ‘they’ are without excuse, which is the reason he is torn up about their having missed Mashiyach Yeshua and the Kingdom that he offered. They were thinking in the pre-conceptions of their rabbis, much like I used to think in the pre-conceptions that I learned in Bible school. I thank Y’hovah every day that he didn’t let me finish and go on to Cemetery, where they add a lot of hardener to the mud. I had an instructor who said, “Gentlemen, your minds are moosh. It shall be my job to form and aggregate them.” He was going to take my soft heart and shape it the way HE wanted and make that form unbreakable, i.e., hard. The rhetorical questions Paul is asking here are not to the Roman Xians whom he is trying to encourage to preach Yeshua to the Jewish unbelievers, though that may also be a valid application. It is to prove that Israel after the flesh KNEW what their calling was and that they failed in it. 

Israel was to be different from the nations in a number of ways to show that they served a different Elohim. The things that made them distinctive were designed to make the nations jealous. If Israel would DO what Y’hovah told them and maintain the distinctions, Y’hovah would bless them beyond reason. The blessings would be so readily apparent that the pagans would naturally want to know why and Israel would be able to do the work of the evangelist: “We serve the Elohim of the universe, not a local deity. We plow the same ground that you plow, but we have a garden and you have a desert because the Elohim we serve blesses us with abundance for no other reason than that we serve him and are called by His Name.” 

Is that what Israel did? Some did I’m sure, but for the most part they were just like you and me – on again, off again. And the more they were off; the harder it was to turn them back on; corrosion on the wires or something. Have you ever tried to start your car when there is a great buildup of corrosion on the cables? Sin corrodes. You have to clean the connection before the juice can flow. When there’s sin on your heart, it needs to be cleaned so the Spirit can move through you. Yeshua cleans the crud. Israel’s pagan neighbors never much heard of Y’hovah because Israel kept the blessing to themselves. Instead of encouraging them to come to assemblies to learn of Y’hovah’s Torah, they shut them out. Do you see a ‘Court of the Gentiles’ anywhere in the blueprints for the Mishkan (tabernacle)? How about the Beit haMikdash (Temple)? Is Elohim the Elohim of the Jews only, Or of the Gentiles also? Yes, of the gentiles also (3.29). 

The idea was that people were to live for Y’hovah and show their distinction in their obedience and the blessings that accrued therefrom. This would engender jealousy and a desire for the same blessings. This would make the called out people of the nations ask. If the pagan comes to you to ask what is reason for the hope that is within you, he already believes that you have a knowledge that he needs and he wants that knowledge. Y’hovah has pre-qualified him for you. So you get to tell your pagan buddy about Y’hovah Yeshua. So you get to teach him Torah so he can go out and preach in the same manner, by his new and distinct lifestyle of obedience to Y’hovah. And the cycle will continue. 

The gospel we are preaching is the simplest thing in the world. Y’hovah has given all mankind a blueprint to follow. It is called Torah – instructions. If we follow the instructions, he blesses us. If we don’t follow the instructions, he curses us. Do all the people who are called by the Name of Y’hovah Yeshua obey? Will every pagan who asks obey? No way. But if they believe what you say about Y’hovah, they will obey; they will have Shalom with Y’hovah, and all the blessings that follow. And that will encourage them to keep on in obedience, which will bring the same blessings and perhaps even more. And that will bring people to them who want to know. And the cycle continues. 

‘Hearing’ in v.17 would be translated into Hebrew as ‘Shema’, which is not just receipt of an auditory message. It includes receipt and acknowledgement of the receipt by doing what the message says. Now Yisrael in v.18 DID Shema. All the earth heard their report. Some believed; some didn’t. When I say the whole earth heard, I mean the whole earth. During the reigns of David and Shlomo, the Israelite/Lebanese navies (Phoenicians) went all over the world. They set up cities in strategic places to keep the world’s treasures to themselves. Carthage was an Israelite garrison, as were Cadiz and Majorca (The Atlantic and Mediterranean sides of the Straits of Gibraltar, respectively). The Carthaginian navy guarded the Straits of Gibraltar to keep other Mediterranean powers IN, and the Atlantic powers OUT. As the Phoenician navy went all over the world, they carried the gospel of Shalom w/Y’hovah with them. Q&C

End of Shabbat Bible Study

Shabbat Bible Study for September 8, 2018

Shabbat Bible Study for September 8, 2018

©2018 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries

Year 3  Sabbath 26

Devarim (Dt.) 4:1-49 – YeshaYahu (Is.) 40:1-25 – Tehellim (Ps.) 123 – Luka 3:1-20


Devarim 4.1-19 – In ch.4 Moshe is giving the preamble to the repetition of Torah to Israel, focusing on the 10 Words. There will be a few Toroth that were not mentioned previously in the recapitulation of the Covenant and the commandments, which doesn’t mean they weren’t known or understood; only that they weren’t mentioned before. ‘Statutes’ is H2706, chukim, decrees from Y’hovah that were not, and may still not be, understood. But we do not need to understand Y’hovah’s decrees, all we need to do is obey them. Judgments are mishpatim, which are decisions of Y’hovah related to his commandments or ordinances that were not specifically mentioned as he gave the covenant. The mishpat to stone the man found gathering sticks on shabbat is a judgment, while the chuk to wear tzitzioth to remind us to observe his covenant commandments are examples of Toroth that were not given in his covenant, b’rithow, of Ex.20-31. Moshe reveals more of these in Deuteronomy. It will be well for us to remember this as Moshe recounts the Toroth to Israel before his death and their crossing Yarden to inherit their promised Land that Y’hovah Elohay avothaychem – ‘Eloha of your (pl.) fathers’ – was giving them. 

I make the point above to say that Y’hovah added his mishpatim and chukim to his mitzvot, as it was necessary but that WE may not add to them. We may form traditions and teach them to our children that make it more or less natural for us and them to observe his commandments, but to give those traditions the same weight as the Toroth themselves is to transgress the very Toroth the traditions were designed to help us observe. This was the source of Y’hovah Yeshua’s indignation (and consequently Yochanan bar ZakharYah’s) at the religious leaders of Israel in his days walking the earth, as we will see in microcosm in Lk.3. 

Moshe reminded them that those who followed the doctrine of Bila’am died in the matter of Ba’al Peor (Num.25), but those who remained faithful to Y’hovah and did not take women of Moav were all there to hear his words this day. He will give us another glimpse into this same type of sin a little later in this chapter. Moshe gave them these chukim and mishpatim so that they could observe them in haAretz. By observing them, they would prove to the nations around them the chochmah and binah, wisdom and understanding, that they had as a result. [If you look at the top level of the Tree of Sefiroth ( you will see that the combination of chochmah and binah imparts da’ath, knowledge, to the tzadik, and makes him fit to wear the Keter, crown. Yeshua is our tzadik who makes us able to become tzadikim, and to wear the crowns he will give us in the Kingdom, when we will reign as co-regents with him.] When the nations see our chochmah and binah they will want it and the Elohim who gave it, as well. They will recognize that we are intrinsically no different than they and that it is only application of the da’ath that Y’hovah Elohenu gives us that makes us different. And they will also want Y’hovah as their Elohim. So we need to be diligent to keep ourselves separate from the works of the pagan/heathen nations around us, which is impossible in our own strength, but by Y’hovah Yeshua’s Spirit in us we can be MORE than conquerors. 

32 He that spared not his own Son, but delivered him up for us all, how shall he not with him also freely give us all things? 33 Who shall lay any thing to the charge of Eloha’s elect? Eloha that justifieth. 34 Who is he that condemneth? Mashiyach that died, yea rather, that is risen again, who is even at the right hand of Eloha, who also maketh intercession for us. 35 Who shall separate us from the love of Mashiyach? shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36 As it is written, For thy sake we are killed all the day long; we are accounted as sheep for the slaughter. 37 Nay, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him that loved us. 38 For I am persuaded, that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come, 39 Nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, shall be able to separate us from the love of Eloha, which is in Mashiyach Yeshua our Master. (Rom.8.32-39)

How do we guard ourselves diligently, if not by knowing his Toroth? For it is transgression of his Toroth that is sin.

4 Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also Torah: for sin is the transgression of Torah. (1Jn.3.4)

Not only that, but when we teach our children the righteousness of Y’hovah in his Toroth, we also teach ourselves. Noone learns as well as when he teaches, because he reinforces what he already knows when his teaching calls to his students minds questions about the subject matter and he is able to make application for the student, as in the case of the man who gathered sticks and the question of how to deal with him. In vv.10-14, Moshe recalls the day or Sinai to their attention again the voice from hashamayim (the heavens), the shaking of the earth, and the fire on the mountain.

If you don’t want your children to hear about images, as they relate to pagan worship and, specifically, pornography, now would be the time to put on your headphones or send them to a different room. I’ll give you a few seconds to remove the young kids, if that is your wish. 

In vv.15-19 he speaks of idolatry, worshipping an image or representation of anything in the whole creation as if it was a god. They had not SEEN Y’hovah Elohenu, so how could they make any representation of him to worship? In v.16, he gets specific about the images that were worshipped by the Canaanites. The Canaanites worshipped the human form, in particular the sex organs, and made images of them to which to bow down. This is the root of our fascination with pornography. When the KJV speaks of an ‘image’ or a ‘pillar’, it speaks of Ba’al worship and the image of the male organ. There are various representation of this seen in the world, but the best known is the ‘obelisk’, which represents an uncircumcised penis. Israel was not to bow down to this, as it is not a god, and it implies a desire to NOT be set-apart to Y’hovah in the manner that he has commanded. This was one reason that Y’hovah held Moshe hostage until Tzipporah CCd their children on the trip back to Egypt from Midian.

24 And it came to pass by the way in the inn, that Y’hovah met him, and sought to kill him. 25 Then Tzipporah took a sharp stone, and cut off the foreskin of her son, and cast it at his feet, and said, Surely a bloody husband art thou to me. 26 So he let him go: then she said, A bloody husband, because of the circumcision. (Ex.4.24-26)

He had not circumcised his sons, I think, in order to keep peace with his wife. I also think that this is why Tzipporah got to do the CCing, and why we don’t hear about her again until Ex.18.2, and never again after that. I think she went home to Yithro’s house and only came to visit when Yithro did; returning again with him, never to see Moshe again. She may not have even stayed as long as Yithro did, because she is not directly mentioned again (though she may have been [and I think was] Moshe’s ‘Ethiopian’ wife that Miriam murmured about in Num.12). Point being that if Moshe did not set-apart his own sons, how could he represent Y’hovah to Paroh and, more importantly, to Israel? 

Almost 38 years ago, I acted out of ignorance of this very thing with my 1stborn son, purposely NOT CCing him out of a literalist view, born of false church doctrine, of

Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of Eloha. (I Corinthians 7:19)

How could I not have seen that CC is a commandment of Y’hovah, so how could the physical act NOT be something? That verse speaks of some tradition, not the commandment to CC a son on the 8th day of his life. I repent of that decision today, and say HalleluYah! that son and his wife took the commandment of Y’hovah to heart and had our own 1stborn grandson CCd. I did not understand at that time that Paul was speaking of the then-present (and STILL-present) practice of CC being the final step of full conversion to Yehudism from another religion. This was the point, also, of the Netzari beit din in Acts 15; whether a man had to make full conversion to Yehudism BEFORE he could be allowed into the Way and hear Torah read in the Temple and synagogues. 

V.16 also speaks about making an image of the female organs, which is what a ‘grove’ was/is (Bohemian Grove included). A grove was a place to worship Ishtar/Ashtoreth/Easter and any other pagan god man desires. All the groves, pillars and high places were worship centers for various and sundry false elohim. Do you see how the pillars, groves and high places where sex was worshipped was diametrically opposed to the Torah of Y’hovah, and quite probably the source of pornography in our day? 

If pornography is a problem in your life, you need to repent of it, turn away from it and to Y’hovah in this area of your life. This applies to any sin in your life or mine. I only speak to pornography specifically because it is VERY prominent in the world and has become AS prominent in the lives of believers as it is in the world. And, in the western world, how can it NOT be? Everywhere you look are advertisements that don’t sell the products they purport to be about, but sex via pornography. In western Europe it’s even worse than America – for now, thanks to some Puritan left-overs in American minds. Change is coming, here too. 

Sin, even the sin of pornography, is not what cuts us off from the Book of Life. But if we continue in the practice of this, or ANY, sin, we get to ‘bear our iniquity’, which means to suffer the physical consequences of our actions. Remember that ALL sin is transgression of Torah, and Paul tells us that the wages of any and every sin is the same in Rom.6.23. A believer who engages in sin may repent of it, confess it to the one who is harmed by it, and be reconciled to that person (ultimately Y’hovah), or he may suffer the physical punishment due for that sin. But a believer who sins is NOT cut off from the master who bought him. If he was, we would all be cut off from him, for there is NOONE who does not sin. 

If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. (I Yochanan 1:8-9)

Forgiveness of a sin against us implies not holding it against the one who transgressed and has been forgiven, as Y’hovah does with our sins

As far as the east is from the west, [THAT] far hath he removed our transgressions from us. (Psalms 103:12)

He will turn again, he will have compassion upon us; he will subdue our iniquities; and thou wilt cast all their [our] sins into the depths of the sea. (Micah 7:19)

I, [even] I, [am] he that blots out your transgressions for my own sake, and will not remember thy sins. (Is. 43:25)

There is no end of ‘from the east to the west’, and I picture the Mariana’s Trench, the deepest depth there is in the oceans, where absolutely no light filters through, so the sin is unseen, blotted out of his memory and forgotten by an act of Y’hovah’s will. 

You can bring the young ‘uns back now, if you’d like. 

But that is not the only form of idolatry there is. Men also make images of created things, animals, angels, plants, rocks and such, as objects of worship. They bow down to celestial bodies, terrestrial bodies, and representations of things in their minds. Man is, at his essence, a religious being. He knows that there is something greater than himself and naturally seeks him. It is OUR job to direct him towards his Creator, Y’hovah Yeshua, and away from created things. We do that primarily by NOT worshipping what is the work of Y’hovah’s hands, and BY worshipping the Y’hovah who did the work. When they see how different we are from the rest of the world, they will react in one of 3 ways; 1) desire for the righteousness they see in our lives, 2) indifference to the difference, or 3) disdain and hatred for us because of the conviction the difference in us engenders in them. Believe it or not, it is the indifferent man who is hardest to reach with the Truth. Q&C

Vv.20-22 – An iron crucible is that which is heated for the purpose of purifying gold. The purpose of the heat of hardship and want is to burn off the impurities in our lives. Had Elohim not put Israel into the hardships of bondage, but allowed them to multiply into a great nation in luxury they would never have accepted the restrictions Torah would place on them. The reason people rebel against Torah is their basic idolatry – refusal to give up the natural and habitual desires of the flesh. We are not given absolute freedom while in this physical, mortal body, for we would spend our time in its baser pursuits. We are given liberty within the strictures of Y’hovah’s Torah to live within its guidelines.

22 But be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving your own selves. 23 For if any be a hearer of the word, and not a doer, he is like unto a man beholding his natural face in a glass: 24 For he beholdeth himself, and goeth his way, and straightway forgetteth what manner of man he was. 25 But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed. (Yakov.1.22-25)

So speak ye, and so do, as they that shall be judged by the law of liberty. (James 2:12)

He brought them through Egypt so that they could learn restraint and that there was but one Y’hovah Eloha, and that there is no other Eloha except him. 

Speculation Warning!!! Moshe once more passes the buck onto Israel: but as we said last week, he said “Y’hovah was angry with me FOR YOUR SAKES”. It may be that, as Y’hovah laid our sins on our tzadik rebbe, Yeshua, FOR OUR SAKES so that we could enter into life, so he laid their sin on Moshe, their tzadik rebbe as a shadow of Yeshua’s work, so that Israel could enter the land. As Yeshua had to die on this side of the border of mortality and immortality for OUR SAKES, so Moshe had to die on his side of Yarden, the border between exile and full redemption for THEIR SAKES – all this done as a type of Yeshua’s death on the tree. 

For ye know the grace of our Master Yeshua haMoshiach, that, though he was rich, yet for your sakes he became poor, that ye through his poverty might be rich. (2Cor.8:9)

End of Warning. Beware the SHTUFF that emerges from this guys mouth, though. Just sayin’.

Vv.23-24 – So, since Moshe is not going over and will not importune Y’hovah about it again, he exhorts them to be careful to not descend into idolatry, which he KNOWS is very easy for men to do, since the worship of ANYTHING other than Y’hovah qualifies, and that Y’hovah is a very jealous Eloha. 

Vv.25-28 – But when they DO descend into idolatry… Moshe prophesied that they WOULD ‘idolatrize’ [a word that I ‘coined’, you may use it – for a fee] and that Y’hovah already had a way of escape for them. All they would need to do was humble themselves, seek his face, turn from their wickedness and ask his forgiveness and that he would hear from heaven, forgive their sin and heal them and their land. Shades of 2Chronicles 7.14, eh? Now Y’hovah’s ‘soon’ (v.26) is not like our soon. He is without time, and ‘soon’ is a term that is wrapped up in time. As it turns out, ‘soon’ in this case actually went almost 800 years for Israel and 950 for Yehudah. It took that long for v.27 to come to pass. Prophetically, that is the same ‘day’ that they went awhoring with other elohim, just like the ‘day’ in which Adam sinned he died. To Adam, it was 950 years from his fall to his death and to Israel it was about 950 years from their idolatrizing to their dispersion into the nations. It was ‘soon’ to Y’hovah, who gave Israel ‘time’ to repent [I think the main purpose for time]. How many religions of the world have a god who will wait a whole prophetic ‘day’ for his people to turn back to him before he sends them the punishment he promised? With that time reference, he was more than twice as quick to fulfill his promised inheritance to Avraham for his faithfulness. We think that his promise must come quickly in OUR frame of reference. That MAY happen, but is not necessarily the case. 

When he finally brings the diaspora, he promises we will serve other elohim, as they served the elohim of Egypt by their forced labors. That service in Egypt may or may not have been voluntary, at first. The same may be true of the service we render to other elohim in the world’s system. Are we not serving other elohim whether wittingly or unwittingly. Our tax systems are a result of our idolatry, are they not? Did we expect the government to provide services that were not originally its to provide. For instance, In 6.4ff, what does Y’hovah command us?

4 Hear, O Israel: Y’hovah our Eloha is one Y’hovah: 5 And thou shalt love Y’hovah Elohecha with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. 6 And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: 7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. (Dt.6.4-7) Notice all 2nd person singular pronouns.

And what does it say about our children’s education in Proverbs?

Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it. (Proverbs 22:6) 

And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of Y’hovah. (Ephesians 6:4)

And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Mashiyach Yeshua. (II Timothy 3:15)

When we put them into a government, or government approved, school are we not giving our children to the elohim of that government? They WILL be taught what the government wants them taught, not necessarily what you want them to know. And they will spend ¼ – ⅓ of their day immersed in that wicked system. Then another ¼ – ⅓ of the day in bed. We can’t EVEN get equal time. Is this not, at least symbolically, like making our children pass through the fire to Molech? That government school’s JOB is to turn your children into pagans. And they do a GREAT job of it. It’s done it to 3 of my nieces (so far) and 2 of my nephews whose parents are at least nominally believers. 2 of the nieces and 1 of the nephews are the children of leaders in their church. One went to a religious school that turned him into an atheist. If you want your children to grow in the nurture and admonition of Y’hovah, do NOT give them to the government schools. Most assuredly don’t PAY the government schools to turn your children against Y’hovah. A child may slip through the cracks of the government’s indoctrination system, but most will be stolen from you while you are looking the other way. You may think it is the government’s place to educate your children, but the Constitution says differently (education is prominent by its omission) and I think I’ve already shown that Y’hovah agrees. 

Vv.29-40 – So, here we are in exile from the land promised to our father Avraham. What does Y’hovah say to us? if we seek him with all our heart and soul he will be found and when we seek him diligently he will hear our cry for deliverance. Not only that, but he will return to us the years of which we were robbed. No nation had ever been taken from the midst of another, but Israel was. No nation ever heard the voice of Y’hovah out of the midst of the fire on the mount Sinai, but Israel did. Moshe reminded them that they had seen the fire on the mountain, heard the voice from the heavens, felt the earth tremble at Y’hovah’s presence at Sinai. 

None had ever heard of or experienced such things as the miraculous deliverance of Israel when Amalek attacked at Rephidim, or the Amorite kings Og and Sihon attacked Israel on the plains east of the Yarden, that they utterly destroyed those kings without receiving so much as a scratch in battle themselves. Because Y’hovah was faithful in all this to Israel, Moshe said that Israel needed to be faithful to Y’hovah. And they were (except Achan at Ai). For that reason, Moshe admonished them to stay true to Y’hovah’s chukim and mitzvoth that their days would be long in the land Y’hovah was giving them forever. The way v.40 reads to me is that even when they idolatrize and are sent to exile, the land is still theirs kal hayamiym – all the days (KJV says forever). 

Vv.41-49 – Moshe separated the cities of refuge on the east side of Yarden, I suppose so that they would be available while the fighting men were off gallivanting on the west side of the Yarden. He also laid out the basic borders of the inheritances on the east side. Q&C

YeshaYahu 40.1-25 – Tanakh tells us that this passage is the turning point between passages of condemnation and retribution to those of comfort for the afflicted people and nation. Most of the prophecies of the first 39 chapters are mostly warnings of suffering to come for an idolatrous nation, while the last 27 chapters are mostly promises that Y’hovah will not utterly forsake Israel and will eventually send the righteous judge and ruler, the righteous high priest and king Mashiyach. 

The chapter opens with a command that the prophets speak double comfort to Yisrael because 1) he was covering both houses’ exiles and 2) both houses of the nation Israel suffered double condemnation. Why would Israel suffer double for her iniquities? The sages of Yehudism had various interpretations, which are given concisely in Tanakh on pp.1020-21. All are salient. Paul intimates why in 

Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine. (I Timothy 5:17)

If the elders that rule well are worthy of double honour, are not those who rule wickedly worthy of double dishonour? And as far as Israel is concerned, she did not ‘rule’ well. She was given the oracles of Y’hovah to share with the rest of the world, to teach Torah to the wicked, but instead she kept it to herself and then didn’t live it out herself. It may have been one thing to not reach out to the wicked and yet live Torah before them, but to not even live it so the wicked could see what a wonderful Elohim Y’hovah is by a witness of his gracious blessings on his obedient children, they actually ASKED for double trouble. They wouldn’t take Torah to the Nations and they wouldn’t witness to the graciousness of Y’hovah by their lifestyle of Torah observance. Do our lives witness Torah to the world? Do our words match our lives? Y’hovah Yeshua’s bride will rule the Millennial Kingdom well as co-regents with him over their areas of authority. 

vv.3-5 – This is the passage that Yochanan bar ZacharYah quoted when the priests and Levites asked him if he was Mashiyach (Jn.1), opening the Messianic aspect of this chapter. NOTICE, please, that the way is opened for Y’hovah that is a straight Way of Elohenu: and that a certified prophet of Y’hovah applied this as referring to Mashiyach: and then he referred to Yeshua as Mashiyach; the one whose shoe latchets Yochanan was not worthy to unloose. If A=C and B=C, then A=B. Mashiyach Yeshua is Y’hovah in the flesh. Here’s the passage from Yochanan 1

19 And this is the record of Yochanan, when the Jews sent priests and Levites from Jerusalem to ask him, Who art thou? 20 And he confessed, and denied not; but confessed, I am not the Mashiyach. 21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elias? And he saith, I am not. Art thou that prophet? And he answered, No. 22 Then said they unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself? 23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of Y’hovah, as said the prophet YeshaYahu. 24 And they which were sent were of the Pharisees. 25 And they asked him, and said unto him, Why baptizest thou then, if thou be not that Mashiyach, nor EliYahu, neither that prophet? 26 Yochanan answered them, saying, I baptize with water: but there standeth one among you, whom ye know not; 27 He it is, who coming after me is preferred before me, whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose. 

Notice, please, that ‘the Jews’ SENT priests and Levites who were Pharisees to inquire (make inquisition) of  Yochanan. ‘The Jews’, then, were not the people of Israel, but the political rulers of the religion in Yerushalayim. PLEASE understand this when reading Yochanan. He does not make any condemnatory statements about beit Ya’acov as a whole, but ONLY the wicked rulers of the religion in Yerushalayim; the very people whom Yeshua also excoriated for their hypocrisy. 

Vv.6-11 – Every valley exalted, every hill brought low, crooked paths made straight; sounds like my younger days on Friday afternoons in the car between Cedarville and my soon to be lovely bride; a 200 mile trip I would make in about 3 hours while the national speed limit was 55 mph. I was almost on a first-name basis with the highway patrol officers. But that isn’t what YeshaYahu meant. He meant something more in line with those who think they’re all that and a bag of chips will be given their come-uppance, and those who are humble will be given leadership, and the truth that’s been twisted and rent from its context will be made very plain (in every sense of the word) so that anyone can understand it. It’s speaking of our ministry of making the truth of Y’hovah plain to the people who will populate Yeshua’s Kingdom. 

All flesh is grass … the grass withers: the goodness of the flesh is a flower … the flower fades before Y’hovah’s Ruach: the Word of Y’hovah stands l’olam. Zion will ascend the High mountain (Temple Mount? the only place on earth to which one can make aliyah from anywhere on the earth – even the summit of Mt. Everest.), Yerushalayim will sing for joy when Master Y’hovah’s Right Arm rules from Zion. He will gather his flock to him; feed, protect and guide them in their work to teach the people his Torah. 

Vv.12-18 – speak of the incomparability of Y’hovah to anything men can even imagine. He is unknowable, the Ayn Soph, beyond our mortal ability to comprehend. We use human terms to try to get our minds around what our Creator has to be, and we fail quite well. We try to convey his greatness by anthropomorphizing him – the cup of one of his hands more than contains all the waters of the earth; the span of one hand contains all the stars of the heavens. And all those stars are insufficient to fill that single span. 

Vv.19-20 – And because we cannot comprehend his omnipotence, omnipresence, and omni-everything, we attempt to make things that we can control and invest them in our own minds with some part of Y’hovah’s attributes. We take some pot-metal, melt it down and cast it into the likeness of some ‘thing’. We take it to a goldsmith and have it electroplated to appear to be made of the most precious stuff we know. But it is base metal, not precious. Mark Call calls it 80/20, the mixture of truth with deception, but he is too kind. We bow down to stuff that is much closer to 1 part truth and 99 deception, as long as the truth is enough to disguise the lie to the casual observer. But electroplate is very thin and will wipe away very quickly: the gold is soft and thin enough that a cheap pot-metal coin will scratch it away, exposing the base. If the idolater can’t afford enough base metal to cast an image, he’ll get the densest wood he can afford and carve himself an idol to bow down to. I think of creation/evolution as a prime example. The deception of evolutionary religion’s hypothesis is obvious to anyone using Newton’s scientific method of observation and cataloguing of data. Idolatry is as idolatry does. It doesn’t matter what is the nature of the false eloha, it is false and impotent. How can idolaters mistake their man-made toys with the omnipotence of the creator that they all KNOW in their hearts is there? Pride? Arrogance? Abject stupidity? That is what all man-made religions engender; evolution, socialism, mercantilism, ‘idolism’; all require blind adherence to lies. 

V.22 speaks of Y’hovah ‘sitting on the circle of the earth.’ We, in our arrogance, think that those who lived millennia ago did not know that the earth is round. This was a myth put out by the churches of western Europe after they drove Yehudism into the background and the dark ages ensued. And that ignorance lasted until some scientists, attempting to know Y’hovah better saw some things that didn’t fit the dogma of the unholy mother church and dared to publish their findings. Once again, falsehood based in man-made religion that was forced on the people by the PTB caused all manner of ignorance to prevail for an entire millennium. They actually taught that the earth is flat when the scripture itself says right here that it is round. I joke that it’s round, like a pizza. It’s FLAT like a pizza, too! But since the church of the dark ages didn’t allow people to read the Light of the Word for themselves, it held control over all power. They taught that ancient mariners didn’t go out to sea far enough to lose sight of the shore for fear of falling off the edge. That was truth for those who wrote books and never ventured out of their villages or cities. And that truth was deception. But it helped the purveyors of deception maintain control over the mushroom patch – keep them in the dark and feed them excrement. Today’s deceivers use a 24-hour news cycle to keep us informed of all the deception they want us to know.   

But, if you keep your mind and heart in the scripture, you will not be so easily deceived. You will know the truth of Y’hovah, who cannot be likened to anything in his creation. 

Tehellim 123 – As servants we look to Y’hovah Elohenu, who stretched out the stars as the span of his right hand and who holds all the water in the hollow of that same hand. I think I’ve placed enough contempt on the idolaters who make the creation their eloha. Q&C

Luka 3.1-20 – The opening verses are a time indicator that places the time of the Pharisees coming out to make inquisition of Yochanan to a certain 3 years, about 28-32 CE. All these tetrarchs, governors and kings were only in power at the same time in those years. The 15th year of Tiberius Caesar was 28-29 CE, according to the Roman calendar, as translated to Gregorian reckoning.  

What follows is a quick look at the ministry of Yochanan bar ZacharYah, haMatbeel. I am going to look at it from the perspective of a harmony of the synoptic gospels. I use the Thompson Chain Reference Bible’s “Tree of Yeshua’ Life” as an outline in my study of the life of Yeshua haMoshiach. This is taken from that work ©2001-2018 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries. I have recently revised it according to new insights into the subject.

The Ministry of Yochanan the Immerser – Mat.3.1-12, Mk.1.1-8, Lk.3.1-18. Here are three different perspectives on the same events in the life of Mashiyach. We’ll see a lot of these from now on. Let’s look at the similarities and the differences in each account. Each account has Yochanan in the wilderness, which shows the fulfillment of Isaiah 40:3, 

“3The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of Yhwh, make straight in the desert a highway for our Elohim.” 

The desert highway spoken of is the holy highway of Isaiah 35:8, 

“And an highway shall be there, and a way, and it shall be called The Way of holiness; the unclean shall not pass over it; but it is for those: the wayfaring men, though fools, shall not err therein.” 

This is a prophecy of the Kingdom age, which Yeshua came to offer to Yisrael. We’ll see throughout the gospel of Matthew that Yeshua proclaimed the Kingdom of heaven and offered himself as King, but the Iuaidoi, “official” Yisrael, rejected him. Yochanan was the forerunner of the kingdom of heaven. Only Matthew’s gospel has Yochanan localized to the wilderness of Judea. This is due to the emphasis laid in Matthew on the King of the Jews. There is no contradiction, just more detail. Each account has him immersing for the remission of sins – that is cancellation of the debt, charge or penalty of our actions. This is not what has come to be known as ‘believer’s baptism’, though many claim it to be. Believer’s baptism is an outward sign of an inward reality. We have been immersed in Ruach haKodesh, and are identifying before men that we are dead to sin and the world and raised to life in Mashiyach. This was a mikvah to fulfill Torah requirements, to remove some defilement that was NOT necessarily a sin: for example, washing one’s body and clothes after one has handled a corpse or the ashes of an offering, such as the red heifer (Num.19). Each passage has the account of Yochanan telling of the one to follow whose shoes he isn’t worthy to touch, who will baptize with fire and the Ruach ha Kodesh, as we shared earlier. Yochanan tells us that water baptism is inferior to the baptism of the Ruach ha Kodesh, of which we are all partakers who know Yeshua as Master Y’hovah and Saviour. Even THAT, though, does not negate the obedience to the Torah for sin offerings and the associated mikvoth. Mashiyach ben David, Y’hovah Yeshua, will do mikvah before he offers animal offerings in the Millennial Temple, not to make atonement, but to make himself able to offer due to minor transgressions of Torah that he MUST do as Kohen haGadol in order to do the service of the Temple. All High Priests performed ‘sin offerings’ every day for their own transgressions of more minor Toroth before he could perform the more major Toroth.

The description of Yochanan is given in two accounts, dressed in camel’s hair with a leather (or skin) girdle about his loins, and eating locusts and wild honey. In Matthew’s and Mark’s accounts he is in the wilderness of Judea and all Judea and Jerusalem came out to him, while in Luke’s he is in the wilderness and people from all around Jordan came to him. Again, the differences are but of degree of detail, as are most so-called ‘problems’ with scripture, and the details are put in for the unique audience of the letter/‘gospel’. 

Matthew and Luke give the account of the ‘generation of vipers.’ In Luke he says it to the ‘multitude’ and in Matthew it is the Pharisees and Sadducees. The fact is that the religious leaders were coming in force to hear what he had to say for himself. Therefore, I think the religious leaders were the multitude to whom he spoke. In the gospel of Yochanan 1.19ff, we see the confrontation from a different angle. He identifies the group as Pharisees, the ‘dispensationalist, pre-trib, pre-mill, fundamentalists’ of the day. They knew Torah and the prophets. He told them that he was not Mashiyach, nor EliYahu, nor THAT Prophet, but that he was the ‘voice crying in the wilderness’ and that they should make straight or prepare the way of Y’hovah. THAT tells me that they were teaching Torah with some dispy twists added. His next words tell them that Mashiyach is coming after him, and that the axe is laid to the roots of the tree. He is warning them that if they don’t truly repent of their sins and the sins of Yisrael’s fathers, which are being visited on them, they will be cut off from the root. They, of course, are too full of pride to recognize their own peril. 

Isn’t it amazing that Yochanan saw the argument they would use against Yeshua in Jn.8.39? “We know who our father is, even Avraham.” They must have used that one a lot. Yochanan says that Elohim could raise up seed unto Avraham from the very rocks. Yeshua said that if the people didn’t praise him the very stones would cry out. Then, not the multitude, but the people ask what they need to do: the Pharisees don’t ask, the people do. Yochanan tells them to follow Torah. Acts of charity, honesty in business, do no hurt, don’t lie about others. These are the things a child of Elohim does. This will be the normal way of acting during the Eternal Age to come. Then it will be natural, now it takes an act of the will.

Vv.19-20 – Herod had married his brother’s wife, which it is definitely NOT lawful. Torah forbids it and Yochanan called him out for it.

Thou shalt not uncover the nakedness of thy brother’ wife: it is thy brother’ nakedness. (Leviticus 18:16)

And if a man shall take his brother’ wife, it is an unclean thing: he hath uncovered his brother’ nakedness; they shall be childless. (Leviticus 20:21)

For Yochanan had said unto Herod, It is not lawful for thee to have thy brother’s wife. (Mark 6:18)

So, Herod had Yochanan arrested and thrown into prison to shut him up. Somehow, I don’t think he succeeded. Eventually Herodias, Herod’s unlawful wife, had Herod deliver Yochanan’s head on a platter, a la the spirit of Yezevel. 

If you uphold Y’hovah’s righteousness, you will suffer persecution.  Q&C

End of Shabbat Bible Study.