Thursday, November 27, 2014

It's Time To "Lay Down the Law" - Part 2

I said previously I would not worry about inferences. But, before leaving Matthew, I simply must address this set of verses:

Mat 7:21 "Not everyone who says to Me, 'Lord, Lord,' will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter.
Mat 7:22 "Many will say to Me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?'
Mat 7:23 "And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; DEPART FROM ME, YOU WHO PRACTICE LAWLESSNESS (ANOMIA).'

[Note: The Greek word "anomia" is very significant. The prefix alpha, in Greek, means "without". And "nomia" is of the same root as "nomos". To practice anomia is to transgress and be without TORAH! Folks, this our LORD Jesus saying this! And the Church and it's leaders want me to believe Torah has been done away with? Sorry, I believe God, not man. Please notice, it is he who DOES the will of the Father. What has the Father willed? TORAH! And how many people have heard this set of verses mentioned in a Church? Not many, would be my guess.]

In Part 1 we introduced the Greek word "Nomos" which really should be Torah. The ridiculous thing is that our English translations use the word "Law". It's ridiculous because "Torah" actually means, "Instruction", not "Law"! Of course, there is "Law" in the Tanakh - it's called the Big 10, or, The 10 Commandments, as we refer to them today. Most Christians don't understand that Torah is not a man-made collection of legalistic requirements, but instead, is a list of instructions on how to live a good, healthy, holy (set apart) life. These instructions are also called "commandments", or in Hebrew, "mitzvot". If you love Him, you will keep His mitzvot (commandments) (Read John 14).

People will argue that it's impossible to do everything in Torah, not because it's hard, necessarily, but because there is no Temple, no Aaronic Priesthood, etc. This is true! Many of the mitzvot in Torah only apply to women, some to men, some to animals, some to Priests, etc. The Aaronic Priesthood was suspended and Yeshua was given to us as a Malki-Tzedeck Priest, not Aaronic, partly because He is not a Levite. We also cannot "keep" (a precise legal term) the Feasts properly because we can't all travel to Jerusalem every year and yes, there is no Temple (yet!). Instead, we celebrate the Feasts as a remembrance and as prophecies yet to be fulfilled (there's that word again). We don't need to do sacrifices because Jesus became our propitiation (Romans 3). The blood of animals never cleansed our sins anyway (Hebrews 10)! We also do not live under a Theocracy where we take Adulterers outside the city limits and stone them!

But guess what! During the Millennial Reign ALL of Torah returns! To be enforced, btw, with an iron rod (Psalms 2, Revelation 2, Revelation 19) . The survivors of the horrid Great Tribulation to come must have an animal sacrifice in order to be near the reigning God on earth. I would presume that the "Saints", both Jew and Gentile, who reign with Yeshua, would not need an animal sacrifice.

The real question becomes; which of Torah's instructions do you wish NOT to keep? An "anti-Torah" attitude shows an enmity against Yehovah-Yeshua and His instructions (Romans 8), which we all have. Even the Jews know that none are justified by the works of the law (Romans 3, Galatians 2, Galatians 3)! So, why try to keep Torah if it does no good work for our salvation? We try out of OBEDIENCE and LOVE! (Many biblical references here) For if we love Him, we will obey His commandments (John 14, 1 John 2). If we don't we are LIARS!

Let's continue:

Luk 2:21 And when eight days had passed, before His circumcision, His name was then called Jesus, the name given by the angel before He was conceived in the womb.
Luk_2:22 And when the days for their purification according to the law [Nomos] of Moses were completed, they brought Him up to Jerusalem to present Him to the Lord
Luk_2:23 (as it is written in the Law [Nomos] of the Lord, "EVERY firstborn MALE THAT OPENS THE WOMB SHALL BE CALLED HOLY TO THE LORD"),
Luk_2:24 and to offer a sacrifice according to what was said in the Law [Nomos] of the Lord, "A PAIR OF TURTLEDOVES OR TWO YOUNG PIGEONS."

[Note: "... when eight days had passed". A Hebrew child is not named until 8 days, and then he is circumcised (Leviticus 12, Philippians 3). Please notice how the word "law" is not capitalized when referring to Moses and is when referring to the Lord - yet, it's the same word! This is called translator bias! Also, please notice how care is taken to fulfill the instructions of "Nomos" (Torah).

Now ... is circumcision required for Salvation (meaning for us, not Jesus)? No! Of course not! Later on, a battle takes place over this issue. I will cover that in due time.

However, how do you think Yehovah sees this circumcision instruction? Go read Exodus 4. Yehovah was ready to kill Moshe!

Most Christians teach that there is Mosaic law and God's Law. God's Law being the Big 10 and Moses' law being what he (Moses) was instructed to write down - by God, btw! Then these Christians will then tell you that the 4th Commandment (Sabbath worship) has been changed! They simply don't understand that they have just nullified God's immutable Law AND any inspired "Law" written down by Moshe! Imagine going to Leviticus 23 and reading Yehovah's instructions on keeping the Feasts, but then deciding He really didn't mean it for Christians! This is eisegesis to the extreme, folks! Another issue that arises here is the validity of Manuscript families (which are copies of copies of copies). Manuscript Linguists will tell you that man has altered manuscripts over the years. When you are building a "Church" based on pagan concepts it helps to alter manuscript copies to suit your purpose. This is another one of those subjects that have literally hundreds of books written about it! Btw, which manuscripts are almost 100% accurate throughout history? Why, the ones for the Tanakh, of course! They exist on Torah Scrolls. We owe a great debt to our Jewish Brothers for this!]

... Note - from this point on, "Nomos" will be the Greek word used for "law" and "Law", unless otherwise noted.

Luk_2:27 And he came in the Spirit into the temple; and when the parents brought in the child Jesus, to carry out for Him the custom of the Law,
Luk_2:39 When they had performed everything according to the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee, to their own city of Nazareth.

[Note: Yeshua (w/family) continue to abide by Torah. Please notice, this is referring to the "Nomos of the Lord", the Torah of the Lord. Do you really want to say Torah has been nailed to the Cross?]

Luk_5:17 One day He was teaching; and there were some Pharisees and teachers of the law [see below] sitting there, who had come from every village of Galilee and Judea and from Jerusalem; and the power of the Lord was present for Him to perform healing.
Luk 5:18 And some men were carrying on a bed a man who was paralyzed; and they were trying to bring him in and to set him down in front of Him.
Luk 5:19 But not finding any way to bring him in because of the crowd, they went up on the roof and let him down through the tiles with his stretcher, into the middle of the crowd, in front of Jesus.
Luk 5:20 Seeing their faith, He said, "Friend, your sins are forgiven you."
Luk 5:21 The scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, "Who is this man who speaks blasphemies? Who can forgive sins, but God alone?"
Luk 5:22 But Jesus, aware of their reasonings, answered and said to them, "Why are you reasoning in your hearts?
Luk 5:23 "Which is easier, to say, 'Your sins have been forgiven you,' or to say, 'Get up and walk'?
Luk 5:24 "But, so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins,"--He said to the paralytic--"I say to you, get up, and pick up your stretcher and go home."
Luk 5:25 Immediately he got up before them, and picked up what he had been lying on, and went home glorifying God.
Luk 5:26 They were all struck with astonishment and began glorifying God; and they were filled with fear, saying, "We have seen remarkable things today."

[Note: Additional verses are included here for context. Two very important issues are addressed here. One, it is true that only God can forgive sin (Yehovah-Yeshua), and Two, Jesus had the man clearly disobey Pharisaical Takanot by telling the man to "work" by carrying his bedroll home! (The implication being that this could have been a Sabbath) We will find that Yeshua never denies or breaks Torah, but instead, breaks every man-made rule He can! He is showing man that man's religion is nothing, and that Yehovah's instructions are everything! In the West we think "cot" or "stretcher", but in the Middle East perspective it was most likely a bedroll. The word "law" in verse 17 is actually, "nomodidaskalos", which means teacher of the law, or Rabbi.]

Luk 10:25 And a lawyer [nomikos - an expert in Torah, most likely a Levite]stood up and put Him to the test, saying, "Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?"
Luk 10:26 And He said to him, "What is written in the Law? How does it read to you?"
Luk 10:28 And He said to him, "You have answered correctly; DO THIS AND YOU WILL LIVE."
Luk 10:29 But wishing to justify himself, he said to Jesus, "And who is my neighbor?"
Luk 10:30 Jesus replied and said, "A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell among robbers, and they stripped him and beat him, and went away leaving him half dead.
Luk 10:31 "And by chance a priest was going down on that road, and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side.
Luk 10:32 "Likewise a Levite also, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.
Luk 10:33 "But a Samaritan, who was on a journey, came upon him; and when he saw him, he felt compassion,
Luk 10:34 and came to him and bandaged up his wounds, pouring oil and wine on them; and he put him on his own beast, and brought him to an inn and took care of him.
Luk 10:35 "On the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper and said, 'Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, when I return I will repay you.'
Luk 10:36 "Which of these three do you think proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell into the robbers' hands?"
Luk 10:37 And he said, "The one who showed mercy toward him." Then Jesus said to him, "Go and do the same."

[Note: This parable is a wonderful illustration of legalistically following man's rules versus following Torah. Samaritans were hated by the "Jews" and they were considered to be dogs. Gentiles, or Pagans, were thought to be even worse! Rabbis taught many rules concerning the interaction between the groups. Some of these "rules" exist today, in the Talmud and other writings. So, Yeshua has the good Samaritan living Torah while the Levite does not, thus showing that Torah is something to be lived and done in your daily life - no matter WHO you are! It is my hope that my Christian brothers and sisters notice this!]

I wish everyone to have a wonderful Thanksgiving, if you celebrate the holiday! And the Best to All of You and Yours! - Tiger

The Observer

Thursday, November 13, 2014

It's Time To "Lay Down the Law" - Part 1

In American English, when people say, "it's time to lay down the law", it means it's time to establish the ground rules, time to articulate that "yes" means yes and "no" means no! It DOES NOT mean, "to set something aside".

I will attempt to lay down the law with the New Testament (New Covenant or B'rit Hadashah) textually, as it relates to the word "law". This word is so misused and so mistranslated by mainstream Churchianity that it's time to do this. It will take more than a few blogs, so please bear with me.

When using the NASB, the search tool in e-Sword gives 224 occurrences of the word in 170 verses. Obviously, all 224 do not need to be covered. Some uses involve a "mother-in-law", etc.  So, these uses won't be dealt with, unless it is applicable to the effort - which is to establish when one is speaking in context of Torah (Law), man's rules (law), man's behavior (law), or an academic paradigm (law) that is being used to illustrate or describe an idea or interaction with the "law". What I am not doing, because it would take volumes, is to include inferences to the law. An example would be the use of the word, "righteousness". Righteousness actually means, "Right Standing in Torah" (the Law)!

I will be using Strong's Hebrew and Greek dictionary. Let's get started!

Mat_5:17 "Do not think that I came to abolish the Law [Nomos] or the Prophets; I did not come to abolish but to fulfill.
Mat_5:18 "For truly I say to you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or stroke shall pass from the Law [Nomos] until all is accomplished.

[Note: "Nomos" is the Greek word used here. It means the entirety of what Yehovah has written, what Moses has written, and what Yeshua has spoken/written. It contains the Torah, the totality of the Tanakh, and, of course, the New Testament, because most all of the B'rit Hadashah is a repeat of the Tanakh. In an effort to deny Torah, some have claimed it means only what Moses has declared. The very context of what Yeshua is saying here denies that idea. Also, if one can say Moses was not inspired by God, you may as well toss your Bible in the trash. Here is a short video explaining how the Tanakh and the New Testament are the same. These verses in Matthew are from the fabled Sermon on the Mount, which, when studied and researched, is a declaration by Yeshua of what the Tanakh says! The "smallest letter or stroke", the KJV says "jots and tittles", refers to the ornate calligraphy used in a Torah scroll and ancient biblical script.

"Do not think ..." - Unfortunately the Church has adopted this as their motto. Yeshua is adamantly telling us here, "whatever you do, DO NOT BELIEVE ANYONE who says I have come to DENY Torah or the Prophets!" This declarative statement by Yeshua should have mainstream Christian Pastors and Priests shaking in their boots and wetting their pants! This statement should also be a warning clarion to all pew-sitters listening to their denominations tell them Torah has been nailed to the Cross!

"I did not come to abolish but to fulfill." "Fulfill" is another one of those misused words. The Greek "pleroo" means to completely fill up. In English one can say to "fill full". Imagine a glass of water on a counter, half full. To "fulfill" it is to take a pitcher of water and literally fill the glass to the top - to the point of overflowing! Our Covenant with God (Yeshua) is all about filling up to it's ultimate fullness. This includes Torah, which will ultimately be filled at the end of the millennial reign! Fulfill DOES NOT mean, "to bring to an end"! (Here is a great short video explaining the word)

"... until all is accomplished." When does this happen? Read Jeremiah 31 and you'll discover it's at the end of the millennium! Most Christians don't even realize that The New Covenant is in the process of being fulfilled.

Mat_7:12 "In everything, therefore, treat people the same way you want them to treat you, for this is the Law [Nomos] and the Prophets.

[Note: What sense does it make to acknowledge that Torah is the guide for the proper treatment of your fellow human beings, whilst denying Torah is still applicable today? Interestingly, the verse following this one mentions the "narrow gate" we must take. Did you know - Torah is part of that narrow gate!?!]

Mat_11:13 "For all the prophets and the Law [Nomos] prophesied until John.

[Note: The context here is Jesus speaking of his "messenger sent ahead - to prepare the way" - John. Now would be a good time to illustrate what some folks do with scripture. People have quoted this verse to me and have said, "after John came to proclaim Jesus, the Torah was not needed anymore!" Not only does this sentiment deny scripture but it makes Jesus a liar (who proceeded to live out Torah perfectly). There are two distinct ways of interpreting scripture. One is called, Exegesis. The other is called, Eisegesis. Exegesis is when the reader relies upon the actual annotative meaning of the words presented and does not add to or take away from their meaning. It uses critical thinking. It takes the written words in context. This method is very biblical (see Deut. 4:2). Eisegesis is when the reader adds to the text an interpretation based on his or her own wishes, bias, and ideas. This is NOT biblical! One can easily destroy context by using this method. Most Pastors, Priests, and Rabbis are Eisegesis types.]

Mat_12:5 "Or have you not read in the Law [Nomos], that on the Sabbath the priests in the temple break the Sabbath and are innocent?

[Note: The Pharisees are complaining that Yeshua's followers are breaking man's rules and Yeshua reminds them of the time when David entered the Tabernacle and ate the Showbread and that Priests actually "work" on the Sabbath. Jesus goes on to remind them that He is Lord of the Sabbath. Yeshua always spoke out against man's rules, but not His rules (Torah). Context is everything when reading the Bible and healing a man on the Sabbath is not breaking Torah. Please notice - nowhere does Jesus deny Torah or His Sabbath, yet, man will deny Torah and tell you the Sabbath is on a pagan day - Sunday. Who do you listen to? Man or God?]

Mat_22:36 "Teacher, which is the great commandment in the Law [Nomos]?"
Mat_22:40 "On these two commandments depend the whole Law [Nomos] and the Prophets."

[Note: Yeshua is repeating here what has already been stated in Torah, love the LORD God with all your heart , soul, and mind and love your neighbor as yourself. This declaration DOES NOT make Torah redundant! This is a summation of what Torah represents. To think otherwise is a liberal use of eisegesis and a denial of God's Word.]

Mat_23:23 "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you tithe mint and dill and cummin, and have neglected the weightier provisions of the law [Nomos]: justice and mercy and faithfulness; but these are the things you should have done without neglecting the others.

[Note: Ever notice that Preachers will tell you Torah has been nailed to the Cross - EXCEPT the part where 10% should be given to them! That's what "tithe" means! Once again, Yeshua is condemning man's misuse of Torah, not Torah!]

I'll stop here. The book of Matthew has been gone through. It gets very interesting the deeper we get into it. Please notice that although the manuscripts say "Nomos", which corresponds to Torah, our most beloved translators (sarcasm) chose to use the word "law". This is called bias, folks! Bias against Jews. What they don't realize is that this is bias against God Himself!

I believe wholeheartedly in the inerrant Word of God! I do not believe in the errant translations of men!

The Observer