Narrow Is The Path

Many, if not all, of us have heard the verse about entering the narrow gate, but how much thought have you put into it? Many Christians automatically think the narrow gate is accepting Yeshua (Jesus) as the savior. While Yeshua (G-d) is the savior is that what He meant? Let’s dive in and go a little deeper and see if we can determine what He meant by the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life.
“Enter through the narrow gate; for the gate is wide and the way is broad that leads to destruction, and there are many who enter through it. For the gate is small and the way is narrow that leads to life, and there are few who find it. Matthew 7:13-14

Again, many of us have heard this passage spoken many of times. Have you ever looked into “the way is narrow that leads to life”? What is the way since so few find it? I think it is of the utmost importance to answer this question. Before we get to those questions let’s look at a few more words that Yeshua spoke.
“Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So then, you will know them by their fruits. Matthew 7:15-20
Yeshua says we will know people by their fruit. Good people bear good fruit and bad people bear bad fruit. Jeremiah speaks of one who trusts in the L-rd “for he will be like a tree planted by the water…”.

Psalms 1 speaks of those who yield are like a tree and bear fruit:

How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the path of sinners, nor sit in the seat of scoffers! But his delight is in the Torah of the L-rd and in His law he meditates day and night. He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does, he prospers. The wicked are not so, But they are like chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the assembly of the righteous. For the L-rd knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the wicked will perish. Psalm 1
It is not the wicked who bear the fruit G-d desires, but those who delight in the Torah of the L-rd. Those who delight in the Torah and meditate on it will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water and yields it fruit. G-d knows the way of the righteous, but the wicked, those producing bad fruit will perish. The way. G-d knows the way of the righteous. Those bearing good fruit. Those who bear good fruit are delighting in the Torah and meditating on it. This is the one who prospers.

Just let that sink in for a moment. Stop reading! Let it sink in…think about it. Okay, you might be thinking well Yeshua came and changed that. If that is your thought, then I have a few questions for you. Can G-d’s word come back void or empty (Isaiah 55:11)? Does G-d change his ways (Numbers 23:19 or Malachi 3:6)? One last question before we move on, but picture yourself as a Jew during the 1st century. G-d came and presented the Torah to the Israelites and told them to be a light unto the nations. The Torah is a lamp and the commandments a light (Psalm 119:105). He told them the Torah was forever. There is no indication in the Torah or in the Prophets nor in the writings that G-d was going to put an end to the Torah. You know this because you have studied the Tanakh (Genesis – Malachi) all your life. Then G-d sends Yeshua and ends following of Torah. Wait a minute. All your life, your father’s life, his father’s life, and on and on you were told and you could read that the Torah was forever. Then Yeshua comes and changes everything. How could you place any faith in G-d? How could you place faith in a G-d who said something was forever, but now it is not? How do you know He won’t come again and do the same thing? Now it is no longer placing your faith in Yeshua, but some other way for salvation.

Turning to G-d has always been the way to salvation (Isaiah 45:22). He is the only savior (Isaiah 43:11). Nothing changed in that regard for Yeshua is G-d. Yeshua was very present throughout the Torah and the Prophets (Luke 24:27). Yeshua Himself says that He did not come to abolish the Torah and the Prophets. He continued in Matthew 5 by saying that until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter shall ever pass away from the Torah. As far as I know, I still live on earth, therefore one must conclude the Torah is still valid.

We know from Psalm 1 the wicked do not delight in the Torah and meditate on it. They therefore are full of iniquity. They will perish. Matthew says the same thing in chapter 7: Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. The savior, Yeshua, continued in Matthew 7 saying this:

“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘L-rd, L-rd!’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘L-rd, L-rd, didn’t we prophesy in Your name, and drive out demons in Your name, and perform many miracles in Your name?’ Then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you. Get away from Me, you workers of lawlessness!’” Matthew 7:21-23
Doing work in the L-rd’s name does not mean you have entered into His salvation. He tells these people who are supposedly doing G-d’s work that He never knew you and to get away. You are a worker of lawlessness. Yeshua is quoting Psalm 6:9 when He said get away from me you workers of lawlessness. In other words, their fruit was like the wolves. They may have looked like one who truly trusted in G-d, but they weren’t. Please, let this be clear to you, doing things in G-d’s name is not necessarily bearing good fruit. Bearing good fruit is about following Torah. This is how you know the fruit is good. The Holy Spirit’s purpose is to cause whomever it has entered to follow Torah (Ezekiel 11:19-20 and 36:26-27). Following Torah is about love. This is why John speaks so much about love and following the commandments. The root word of commandment in Hebrew means to connect. The commandments connect us to G-d and to people. They show us how to have a relationship with G-d and with people. The ultimate goal of this connection is about love.
Proverbs 3 tells us the Torah is the Tree of Life.
My son, do not forget my Torah, but let your heart keep my commandments. For length of days and years of life, and shalom they will add to you. Proverbs 3:1
Let kindness and truth never leave you—bind them around your neck, Proverbs 3:3
She is a tree of life to those who embrace her, and blessed will be all who hold firmly to her. Proverbs 3:18
This proverb is about seeking and never letting go Torah. The Torah is a feminine word, it is a she. The Torah is a Tree of life. The Torah is truth (Psalm 119:142, 151, 160). G-d is telling us to don’t let go of the Torah for that is the Tree of Life. When Yeshua said I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life, He was saying I am the Torah, the Torah, and the Torah. Only after you have turned to Him can you receive salvation and then those who truly have turned to Yeshua must start walking out Torah. Don’t think you have to be able to walk out Torah fully immediately. It is not a sprint, but a marathon. It is taking one step and then another.
The way to life is bearing fruit and bearing fruit is following the Torah. This is why the way is so narrow. Few people will enter the gate. Scripture is quite clear on the matter. It is man that has twisted Paul’s letters into saying the Torah does not need to be followed. I am glad you have read to this point. I hope and pray that you ask G-d to show you the truth. Don’t take my word for it, search and ask. If you have any questions please let me know. You can ask in a comment below, or you can PM me. You can call me or send me an email. However you can contact me, please do.

Until next time….kadosh, kadosh, kadosh is Hashem!

Advertisements

Bearing Fruit

It is clear throughout the Gospels and the Epistles that believers should bear fruit. I do not think anyone would disagree with this notion. By in-large, I think most people would agree on loving your neighbor would be bearing fruit. Most people are aware of the fruits of the spirit – love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. So what is the source of the fruit? That is the question I would like to delve into today.

The Messiah, Yeshua, spoke many times on the issue to bear fruit. So did His precursor John. In Matthew 3:8 John said to bear fruit in keeping with repentance. John is telling us we must repent from our sins and we would bear fruit. John could only be speaking about repenting from our sins based on Torah. When we turn from sin and towards G-d and His ways, which is Torah, we bear fruit. If you don’t bear good fruit then you will be cut down and thrown into the fire (v10). Can John come as the precursor to Christ and speak a different way? Absolutely not.

In Matthew 7:15-20 below, Yeshua discusses good fruit and bad fruit. He says “every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.”
“Beware of the false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Grapes are not gathered from thorn bushes nor figs from thistles, are they? So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. So then, you will know them by their fruits.” Matthew 7:15-20
Then Yeshua continues and makes a profound statement:
“Not everyone who says to Me, ‘L-rd, L-rd,’ will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in heaven will enter. Many will say to Me on that day, ‘L-rd, L-rd, did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’ Matthew 7:21-23
As Yeshua finished saying every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire ( I believe a refining fire, but that is another discussion), He states that not everyone will enter the kingdom of heaven even if they did miraculous things in His name. Yeshua then says to them “I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.” Wow. That is quite a statement to make. Yeshua makes it perfectly clear that those who do not practice Torah will not enter the kingdom of heaven. There is only one Torah. The root of the word used for lawlessness per Strong’s dictionary means destitute of (the Mosaic) law.
You might be saying to yourself that all I have to do is believe….have faith in Yeshua. Really? How did Yeshua answer the question of “Teacher, what shall I do to inherit eternal life?” in Luke 10:25? Yeshua answered “What is written in the Torah? How does it read to you?” The man answered “You shall love the L-rd your G-d with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” Yeshua’s response – “You have answered correctly; do this and you will live.”
Notice that Yeshua did not say believe in me. Believing that G-d is G-d is a prerequisite to following Torah. This man, was already in the covenant, he was a Jew. Therefore, Yeshua’s response was the same over and over again. As Yeshua states it in John 14:15 – “If you love Me, you will keep My commandments. Loving G-d and keeping His commandments are throughout the Torah (Ex 20:6, Deut 5:10, 6:5, 7:9, 7:13, 10:12, 11:1, 11:13, 22, 19:9, 30:6, & 16.
Please understand the meaning of following those two commandments. All of the Torah and the Prophets hang on those two commandments (Matt. 22:40). In other words, all the commandments are summarized in those two. The Torah is all about love, it is a covenant of love. Through this love we will be fruit.
But the goal of our instruction is love from a pure heart and a good conscience and a sincere faith. For some men, straying from these things, have turned aside to fruitless discussion, wanting to be teachers of the Torah, even though they do not understand either what they are saying or the matters about which they make confident assertions. But we know that the Torah is good, if one uses it lawfully… 1 Timothy 1:5-8
Paul taught Torah and told Timothy that the instruction of Torah is love with the purest of heart. Some were wanting to be teachers of the Torah, but they do not understand. Just like many people today. They do not understand Torah. They see it as a bunch of rules that were nailed to the cross, yet Scripture never says this. Paul tells Timothy that the Torah is good, but only IF it is used lawfully. In other words, being legalistic with the Torah, teaching that the Torah is what saves is not lawfully sound.
If you are of the flesh, you carry out the desires of the flesh. For the flesh sets its desire against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh so Paul tells us in Galatians 5. We are led by the Spirit and what does the Spirit do?
Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances. Ezekiel 36:26-27
So G-d is going to give us a new heart and put a spirit within you. He will remove the stony heart and give you a heart of flesh. How does one get a stony heart?
But they refused to hearken, and pulled away the shoulder, and stopped their ears, that they should not hear. Yea, they made their hearts as an adamant stone, lest they should hear the Torah, and the words which the L-rd of hosts hath sent in his spirit by the former prophets: therefore came a great wrath from the L-rd of hosts. Zechariah 7:11-12
If you do not remember anything else from this article, please remember this. You get a stony heart by not listening to Torah.
So G-d will remove that heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. He is also going to put His spirit within you and cause you to walk in His statutes and ordinances. On this new heart, G-d is going to write His Torah on your heart (Jer. 31:33). That is the change in the “New Covenant”. G-d is going to write His Torah on your heart, not get rid of it. We are told in Proverbs 11:30 that the fruit of a righteous person is a tree of life. The fruit of one walking in the Spirit, in Torah, bears fruit.
Can G-d’s word return to Him void? No. Then how can the Torah be done away with or fulfilled? Psalm 1 sums it up really nicely for us:
Blessed is the man Who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly, Nor stands in the path of sinners, Nor sits in the seat of the scornful; But his delight is in the Torah of the L-rd, And in His law he meditates day and night. He shall be like a tree Planted by the rivers of water, That brings forth its fruit in its season, Whose leaf also shall not wither; And whatever he does shall prosper.
The ungodly are not so, But are like the chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the ungodly shall not stand in the judgment, Nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.
For the L-rd knows the way of the righteous, But the way of the ungodly shall perish.
If G-d’s word cannot return void then we must still delight in the Torah. We should meditate on it day and night. This picture created here in Psalms is similar to the Revelation 22:1-2:
Then he showed me a river of the water of life, clear as crystal, coming from the throne of G-d and of the Lamb, in the middle of its street. On either side of the river was the tree of life, bearing twelve kinds of fruit, yielding its fruit every month;
The water of life is Torah. Isaiah 2 and Micah 4 both state the Torah will flow from Zion, from Jerusalem in the Millennial Kingdom. With the Torah flowing the fruit will blossom. The tree of life from the Garden of Eden is there. Adam and Eve chose the tree that bore sin instead of choosing the tree of life. If you have not figured out yet what this source of the fruit is please go back and reread the article. The source is Torah. Plain and simple!
Until next time…kadosh, kadosh, kadosh is Hashem!

The Truth In Love

Peter in his 2 epistle stated Paul is difficult to understand. Peter continues saying regarding Paul’s epistles, the untaught and unstable distort, as they do the rest of Scripture, to their own destruction. Many disagree with Peter and state Paul is easy to understand and that he is delivering a message from G-d telling everyone that Yeshua (Jesus) free us from the Torah. A question to keep in mind while reading this is: if keeping Torah is truth would you do it? Would you believe it? If you are unwilling to follow the truth, even if it is confirmed to you to be the truth, then the issue is more about what you want and less about loving G-d. Let’s look into what Peter was saying about those distorting Paul’s epistles and dig into the truth.
just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. You therefore, beloved, knowing this beforehand, be on your guard so that you are not carried away by the error of the wicked and fall from your own steadfastness 2 Peter 3:15b-17
Peter is very clear that Paul is difficult to understand, but who are they who distort them as they do the rest of Scripture? The untaught and unstable. The Greek word used for untaught is only used this one time in Scripture. It means unlearned, ignorant. That is easy to understand. Someone who is untaught in a subject is ignorant of the subject. The word used for unstable is used only one other time and is also within Peter’s epistle. It means…..unstable.
having eyes full of adultery that never cease from sin, enticing unstable souls, having a heart trained in greed, accursed children; 2 Peter 2:14
In this section of Peter’s epistle he is talking about those who are teaching falsely. They are never ceasing from sin. It is critical than to determine what is sin. Sin can be easily defined as going against G-d’s word. Some today think that means only the commandments restated in the Gospels or only the epistles. Some think it is only the ten commandments. The problem with those two understandings of sin is it is the teaching of men. No where in Scripture is sin redefined. G-d’s Torah is the foundation and never changed. In fact, John in his epistle defined sin:
Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness. 1 John 3:4
Anomia is the Greek word translated as lawlessness. Nomia translated as law or the Torah and anomia as without the Torah. One who practices sin is Torahlessness. They are with sin.
Peter warns us in the Scripture above to be on guard so that we are not carried away by the error of the wicked. The wicked are those who break through the restraint of the law and gratifies his lusts. That is the definition of the Greek word translated as wicked. The NIV translates verse 17 like this:
Therefore, dear friends, since you have been forewarned, be on your guard so that you may not be carried away by the error of the lawless and fall from your secure position. 2 Peter 3:17
Be on guard that you are not carried away by the error of the lawless. Those who are without the Torah or those who believe they are under grace and therefore continue sinning. Peter is warning all those who teach something other than the truth. The truth is important. You may think you know the truth, but do you? How does Scripture define truth?
Your righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, And Your law is truth. Psalm 119:142
You are near, O L-rd, And all Your commandments are truth. Psalm 119:151
The sum of Your word is truth, And every one of Your righteous ordinances is everlasting. Psalm 119:160
The Torah, the commandments, the sum of His word is truth. King David could only be referring to the Torah when he stated the sum of Your word is truth. It is critical that one allows Scripture to define Scripture. We cannot bring our own thoughts and philosophies into Scripture and define truth. With this knowledge of what is truth, let’s look at a few verses:
Then that lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will slay with the breath of His mouth and bring to an end by the appearance of His coming; that is, the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan, with all power and signs and false wonders, and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. 2 Thessalonians 2:8-10
Here Paul is telling the Thessalonians that the lawless one will with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish because they did not receive the love of the truth. They did not receive the Torah. You have heard it said that the Torah can be summed up in one commandment, to love. The Torah is love. It expresses love. Following the commandments show love:
And this is love, that we walk according to His commandments. This is the commandment, just as you have heard from the beginning, that you should walk in it. 2 John 1:6
If you say you love G-d but don’t follow the commandments, then you are a liar. Please know these are not my words but John’s:
By this we know that we have come to know Him, if we keep His commandments. The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him; 1 John 2:3-4
The lawless one will come deceiving. The lawless one does not want you to follow the commandments. The Torah gives us a formula to use to determine whether someone is from G-d or not. It is a pretty simple formula that all can follow, if you know the truth:
Whatever I command you, you shall be careful to do; you shall not add to nor take away from it. “If a prophet or a dreamer of dreams arises among you and gives you a sign or a wonder, and the sign or the wonder comes true, concerning which he spoke to you, saying, ‘Let us go after other gods (whom you have not known) and let us serve them,’ you shall not listen to the words of that prophet or that dreamer of dreams; for the Lord your God is testing you to find out if you love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul. You shall follow the Lord your God and fear Him; and you shall keep His commandments, listen to His voice, serve Him, and cling to Him. Deuteronomy 12:32 – 13:4
The formula is if anyone comes claiming to be from G-d and they tell you to not follow G-d and His ways (Torah) then you are not to listen. So, when the lawless deceiver comes, it will be easy for those who know Torah to not be deceived. The truth sanctifies you…it sets you apart, makes you holy.

because G-d has chosen you from the beginning for salvation through sanctification by the Spirit and faith in the truth. 2 Thessalonians 2:13b
Paul makes it clear in Romans 2:8 about obeying the truth:
but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation.
Paul says the truth of Christ is in him in 2 Corinthians 11. Jeremiah speaks of the truth being put in your inward parts and written on your heart:
But this is the covenant which I will make with the house of Israel after those days,” declares the L-rd, “I will put My Torah within them and on their heart I will write it; and I will be their G-d, and they shall be My people. Jeremiah 31:33
This is why John said for those who do not keep the commandments, the truth is not in him. The truth is Torah. The role of the Spirit? Bear fruits of righteousness, which is following Torah. Ezekiel talks about the role of the Spirit:
Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances. Ezekiel 36:26-27
This is G-d’s plan. To give you a new heart, a heart of flesh. He will put the Torah in your inward parts and write it on your heart. The Spirit will then cause you to walk in G-d’s statutes and ordinances. Those are G-d’s commandments.
If you have read this you know the truth. You see what G-d considers truth. Are you willing to start following the truth, Torah? It is not expected of you that you start following ALL the commandments immediately. That would be too overwhelming. Just start walking in them. Start reading the Torah. Start attending a Torah observant synagogue who is centered on Yeshua like Sar Shalom Synagogue. Don’t allow yourself to be deceived. The deception is great and so is the prize. Don’t allow yourself to be swayed by the error of the lawless. Love G-d!
Baruch Hashem…until next time…kadosh, kadosh, kadosh is Hashem!

Why The Law Then

Law, law, law! I am so confused. What is Paul saying in Galatians 3? You could read it and assume every time Paul says law he is speaking of the Torah, the commandments. Unfortunately, that can’t be correct! If you believe that you are wrong! Yes, I am saying that emphatically! How can I be so sure? Let’s take a look at v19 – Why the Law then? It was added because of transgressions, having been ordained through angels by the agency of a mediator, until the seed would come to whom the promise had been made.

If the law came as a result of transgressions (i.e. sins) then it is not possible to sin. You cannot sin if the law did not exist prior to the giving of the law at Mount Sinai by G-d to Israel. Sin is transgression of the law (1 John 4:3), therefore the law (Torah) could not have been added due to transgressions because the Torah needs to exist prior to the sin to sin. You might need to read that a couple times, but one needs to understand the Torah (law) is eternal. It is forever. The law spoken of in v19 cannot be the original commandments given by G-d otherwise there would be no sin before that time period.

Confused? Great. Let’s try and find out what law was added that Paul is referring to in this verse. Initially, all of the sons of Israel were to be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation (Exodus 19:5-6). Something happened though that caused this to change, the golden calf. The golden calf incident changed history forever. No longer were all the tribes going to serve as priests. Now, only the Levites. Prior to the incident HaShem already gave His instructions to the Israelites. Due to the incident new instructions came. The Levitical Priesthood would serve and teach the others. This is the law that was added because of transgressions. This is what Paul is referring to in v19.

Now that the Levitical Priests were setup to lead, for how long were they to lead? What does Paul mean until the seed would come to whom the promise had been made. The promise was to Avraham. Not sure of anyone who would disagree with that. So what does “until the seed would come” mean. Yeshua is the seed. Until Yeshua would come the Levitical Priesthood would serve and teach others. We know from Hebrews 7 that the Levitical priesthood was not perfect. We know they did not fulfill their mission of teaching Israel. When Yeshua came (possibly when He comes again) the priesthood changed. No longer were the Levitical priests going to be the teachers of the people. Who is going to be the teacher?

Jeremiah 31:33 says HaShem will put His Torah within them and write it on the hearts of Israel and Judah. They will no longer be teaching, because all will know Him. Ezekiel 36:26-27 says “Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.”

HaShem is going to be the teacher. His Spirit is going to cause you to walk in His statutes and observe His ordinances. The Levites will still have their place in the Temple. In the Millennial they will be serving up sacrifices, including sin sacrifices. The Levites role of teachers ended though with the coming of the MaShiach.

Does Galatians 3:19 make a little more sense now?   There is some detail still to be written, but for the sake of time that will come later.

Until next time…kadosh, kadosh, kadosh is HaShem

Should Gentiles Keep The Torah?

The article written by Ron Cantor titled Should Gentiles Keep the Torah is well written. It specifically takes verses and uses them to support his viewpoint. He does exactly what he charges those of us who as he calls us the ‘One Law’ movement. I am going to go through the verses he cites for his support and show the other side of the story. Before I do that though, the one thing the author does not do is see things from a bigger perspective. That is what I want to look at first.

The author wants people to believe the (blood) Jews are separate from everyone else. They have different instructions on how to live than any other person who has cleaved to HaShem. So if you are Jewish you follow Torah, but if you are any other designation then you have a different set of rules. I can think of issues with this. Can you imagine a parent having different set of rules for each kid? Or how about a company having different set of rules for each person. That does not work out so well. What if someone is part Jew? Which side do they fall into? Are they more Gentile than Jew and therefore they don’t follow Torah? Or since they have a little bit of Jew they belong in the Jewish group. Should everyone go and take a blood test to determine if they have any amount of Jew DNA? So, there becomes this issue in the beginning if you believe there are different rules for different people.

What happens in a congregation with both Jews and non-Jews when it comes time to eat? In Israel, it is not a big deal about finding kosher food. Kosher food is also not more expensive than non-kosher food as it is elsewhere. In a majority of America kosher meat is not on every corner. In Dallas, I have to drive over 30 minutes to a market that offers a selection of kosher meat. Many congregations have oneg – eating lunch together after service at the synagogue. So a Gentile believer can bring pork and sit next to a Jewish believer who cannot eat pork. That is an issue. What if someone of the pork while being cut flips over to the Jewish person’s plate? Oh man, the ordeal. The Jewish person just lost their lunch. What about if the Gentile person invited the Jewish person over for a meal? What are they to do about meat? The Gentile can’t serve pork or shrimp. How orthodox is the Jew? Should the Gentile be concerned about the plate having had dairy served on it? There are many issues that arise when one considers just the food issue when there are two set of rules.

The covenant spoken of in Jeremiah is a renewal covenant with the House of Israel and the House of Judah. Just like the renewal covenant spoken to Joshua where G-d renewed his covenant with Israel. Is there any difference in this renewal covenant? Yes, the Torah will be placed in one’s inward parts and written on the heart. Why? For this has always been the issue with the Jews. They may follow Torah, but their hearts were uncircumcised. They were following Torah thinking this was their salvation. This never was the case. The Torah does not provide salvation.

With this renewal covenant, just like the previous covenants, Gentiles are grafted into it. Gentiles do not have a birth right into the covenant, like the Jew, but they are still part of this covenant. Assuming the covenant in Jeremiah has started. We know it is not complete based on Jeremiah 31:34. We also know the House of Israel and the House of Judah have not been reconciled. That is a whole other discussion so I digress. Another whole teaching is why Yeshua had to die, to remarry the House of Israel, but that is also another topic.
No matter the covenant that the Gentiles are grafted into they are still children of Avraham. The Gentiles do not have their own covenant. They must graft a covenant to become part of G-d’s people. For that is the promise the Gentiles hold so dear to. Most state the covenant with Avraham is unconditional. I wholeheartedly disagree. For in Genesis 17:1-14 we are told about this covenant. The L-rd said to Avraham “Walk before Me, and be blameless. I will establish My covenant between Me and you, and I will multiply you exceedingly.” In v9 “G-d said further to Avraham, Now as for you, you shall keep My covenant, you and your descendants after you throughout their generations. If the covenant between Avraham and G-d was unconditional, nothing Avraham had to do, then why does G-d say walk before Me and be blameless and you shall keep my covenant? Doesn’t sound so unconditional does it? Then HaShem continues by stating that circumcision is a sign that we are in covenant. Not only his physical descendants, but even his servants. Yeshua was a Jew and He is our master. We are His servants and therefore, we are to be circumcised as well. Not as a factor for salvation, but a sign that one was in covenant with G-d. It was previously established in Genesis that Avraham had faith. According to The Book of Jasher, Avraham lived with Noach many many years. Avraham knew of G-d. He had faith in G-d or he would not have done what G-d had told him to do.

Throughout the Tanakh there are over 300 prophecies about the Messiah. There are many prophecies about the nations coming into Israel and worshipping the One True G-d. There is not one mention of different rules for different people. Not one. In fact, there are several verses that speak of the Gentiles becoming one with Israel. Some will be made into Levites and serve in the Temple even!

I have more to say on this topic, but will wait to address it on one of the passages the author quotes for his support. With that, let’s get into the piece that Mr. Cantor authored.
The first passage that is used as support for different rules for Gentiles and Jews is Acts 15 and the Jerusalem Council. He claims verse 21 which says “For Moses from ancient generations has in every city those who preach him, since he is read in the synagogues every Sabbath”, does not teach Gentiles should grow in their Jewishness over time. Instead he believes the intention was to show the four things that were forbidden to do, were universally immoral ways to worship the one true G-d and says the Torah would back this up.

The author states the four prohibitions addressed how the newcomers could worship. In this I agree. The author continues though and says that obviously they (newcomers) would adhere to other universal laws found in the Old Covenant (Thou shalt not lie, steal, etc). One other point the author states is the letter that went out and is read in v23-29 says the apostles did not state the Gentiles needed to attend the synagogue every week to learn Torah.

The author writes as if certain commandments are universal and others are not universal. Though this distinction is never made anywhere in Torah nor in the Brit Chadasha. Anyone who resided with Israel was required to follow one Torah. Numbers 15:15 – One ordinance shall be both for you of the congregation, and also for the stranger that sojourneth with you, an ordinance for ever in your generations: as ye are, so shall the stranger be before the Lord. Again in Numbers 15:16 –  One law and one manner shall be for you, and for the stranger that sojourneth with you.

Regarding verse 21 which says “For Moses of old time hath in every city them that preach him, being read in the synagogues every Sabbath day” the author states this was given to affirm these four prohibitions. Then says “The Torah, which is read weekly, would affirm this, hence v. 21.” So, the entire Torah is read by Gentiles so they could understand about these four prohibitions that the author contends are all in 2 chapters of the Torah. That does not make a lot of sense. For one the verse reads every Sabbath Moses is read, so it is expected for the Gentiles to be in the synagogue each Sabbath to hear the reading of Moses. The author never addresses why this council was even meeting in the first place which is given to us in the very first verse and says “And certain men which came down from Judaea taught the brethren, and said, Except ye be circumcised after the manner of Moses, ye cannot be saved.”. The entire council meeting was regarding does a Gentile have to be circumcised to be saved. The answer is NO! We cannot earn our way to salvation. A Jew cannot earn his way to salvation. This council is a result of things going on which are written in Galatians. Certain men were teaching works save. The whole book of Galatians is to counter this position. It is and always has been faith. If you do not have faith then no matter what you do there is no salvation. Peter gets up and speaks and talks about the giving of the Holy Spirit to the Gentiles. The Holy Spirit is to cause one to follow G-d’s commandments (Ezekiel 11:19-20 & 36:26-27). Not “universal” ones as the author contends. James (Or Jacob which is his real name) then speaks and quotes from the Tanakh about rebuilding the Tabernacle of David and allowing the Gentiles who are called by His Name. Are we to go to the Tabernacle of G-d and be eating pork? If eating something is an abomination to G-d, it is an abomination. It is that simple.

James continues by giving the four prohibitions. I contend, which cannot be proven, that the four prohibitions were so the pagan coming into relationship with the Jews could associate with each other. There was no way a Jew was going to associate with a Gentile who was doing these four things. So to start the Gentiles off James gives the four prohibitions. Then in v21 starts off with For, which is a continuation word Moses is read in every city who preach him, is read in the synagogue every Sabbath. I contend that James meant for the Gentiles to continue going to synagogue and listen to Moses. Why? To hear what all Moses commanded to the Israelites from G-d. No one needs to listen to the entire Torah to understand what is said in two chapters. Also, if this is Paul’s understanding why is it throughout the rest of Acts and his own epistles does it state each Sabbath and for three Sabbaths in a row, etc. Why wasn’t he teaching the Gentiles on different days? Instead he explicitly shows Gentiles coming every Sabbath. Where else were they going to know who G-d is than hearing the Torah in the synagogue? It is not like a Gentile was able to go and purchase a Torah scroll in that day.

Regarding the letter, the author points out the Gentiles were not told to follow the Sabbath in the letter. Therefore they should not have to attend the synagogue each Sabbath. The Gentiles were not told to love G-d either or to follow any of the other so-called universal laws, so does that mean they do not have to follow them either? Using the author’s logic, you don’t even have to love or have faith in G-d to enter into covenant. This is simply faulty logic.

As if I needed to add to that, Gentiles are told to imitate the MaShiach and Paul says you should imitate him b/c he imitates the MaShiach! Ephesians 5:1 – Therefore be imitators of G-d, as beloved children.         1 Peter 2:21 – For to this you have been called, because Christ also suffered for you, leaving you an example, so that you might follow in his steps. 1 Corinthians 11:1 – Be imitators of me, as I am of Christ. 1 John 2:6 – Whoever says he abides in him ought to walk in the same way in which he walked. 1 Corinthians 4:16 – I urge you, then, be imitators of me. 1 Thessalonians 1:6 – And you became imitators of us and of the Lord, for you received the word in much affliction, with the joy of the Holy Spirit.

So if Gentiles are to be imitators of the MaShiach, how can they do so without following Torah?

The author’s next point of contention is G-d has called Israel to be a separate nation. They are to be a light to the rest of the world. One of the verses he uses for support is Exodus 19:4-5. Which reading it without any other context certainly paints a picture that Israel was to be G-d’s own possession. The issue with this is who all was in front of Mount Sinai at this time? There were many who came from Egypt and who are camped in front of the mountain. They were together with Israel. G-d did not state for them there are different rules. G-d did not state to them they were not called and are not His own possession. Again, in the Millennial Reign we are told Gentiles will be serving as priests and Levites (Isaiah 66:21). Gentiles will be given land in Israel as an inheritance as well (Hebrews 11:8-16, Ezekiel 47-48, Leviticus 25:44-46, Isaiah 13:19-14:2). Jews, whether believers or not, have this same issue of being separate. G-d never said don’t bring others in. In fact, He says the opposite. That is why Avraham tried to bring so many into covenant. This is why he setup his tents along busy intersections. To bring people into covenant with G-d. One covenant for all.

The author’s next point is Paul’s words to the Gentiles. Brings up Ephesians 2:8 which says faith alone, through grace that we are saved. The author says this could not be any clearer regarding the Gentiles being required to keep the law of Moses and quotes Galatians 3:1-3, 5 & 3:10-11. While I absolutely agree that it is faith alone through grace in which we are saved, these verses do not state Gentiles are called to follow Torah. These verses state about faith and faith alone. That is how one obtains salvation, through faith. If you rely upon your works to be saved then you will be cursed. Why? Because you will sin and therefore the penalty for not following Torah is cursing. The point about following Torah is not about salvation, but about obedience. This is why Moses tells the Jews about being circumcised in the heart.   A couple of prophets state the same thing…be circumcised of the heart.   This means accept G-d with faith. Only G-d can circumcise your heart.

If the author would have read a little further in Ephesians it states in v19 – So then you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints, and are of God’s household. Paul is telling the Ephesians you are in the same household as the Jews. We are all one. One tree. One sheep pen.

The next section about why then are Jewish believers commanded to keep the Torah I am going to ignore for now. Little is said and it is not pertinent to this discussion in my opinion.

An analysis of Part 2 will come next week, so stay tuned.

Link to the author’s work:  Ron Cantor – Should Gentiles Keep The Torah

Awaken From Your Sleep

Last time we looked at Romans 13:8-10 and this time we will complete chapter 13.  These verses are not necessarily debated from a Torah perspective, but I wanted to point out what Paul is referring to when he says it is the hour for you to awaken from your sleep.

Do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for you to awaken from sleep; for now salvation is nearer to us than when we believed.  The night is almost gone, and the day is near. Therefore let us lay aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.  Let us behave properly as in the day, not in carousing and drunkenness, not in sexual promiscuity and sensuality, not in strife and jealousy.  But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh in regard to its lusts.  Romans 13:11-14

Paul tells us it is time to awaken from our sleep.  Paul is not speaking about physically sleeping, but about attentiveness towards G-d.  There are many verses about rising from our slumber from Song of Solomon to Isaiah to Peter’s epistles to Revelation, etc.  Our salvation is knocking at the door and many times we are to busy with our daily lives.  Between jobs, kids, house chores, activities, and things like tv, where is the time for G-d?  Where is the time to study His word?  Where is the time to pray?  Where is the time to truly fellowship with other believers?

Paul tells us the night is almost gone…you don’t have much time to turn to the L-rd.  Turn from your ways of seeking your own delight and turn towards the L-rd.  Your ways, the deeds of darkness is sin.  Don’t act as the heathens do as they follow the lusts of the flesh.  Previously in Romans 8, Paul spoke about the lusts of the flesh.  We are not to walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.  We have previously discussed how walking according to the Spirit is defined (See Ezekiel 11:19-20 & 36:26-27).  The Spirit is going to cause you to walk in His commandments.  All people should Shema – hear and do as Yeshua said.  Put on the full armor of light.  Light is Torah.  If you don’t understand, look into light.  Yes it is Yeshua.  Yeshua is the light and He is also the Word made flesh – Torah.

We are to put on Yeshua.  Isaiah 61:10:
I will rejoice greatly in the Lord,
My soul will exult in my God;
For He has clothed me with garments of salvation (Yeshua),
He has wrapped me with a robe of righteousness,
As a bridegroom decks himself with a garland,
And as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.

This is what John was thinking of when He said  Let us rejoice and be glad and give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come and His bride has made herself ready.”  It was given to her to clothe herself in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteous acts of the saints.” in Revelation 19:7-8.

Please arise and seek G-d with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your might!

Until next time…kadosh, kadosh, kadosh is HaShem!

Righteousness Based On Faith

Last time we looked at Romans 8:1-8 and Paul was explaining how the flesh wants to follow things that lead to death while those according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit.  That those walking according to the flesh cannot fulfill the requirement of the Torah, but those walking according to the Spirit will fulfill the requirement of the Torah.   He then says in verse 9 that those who have the Spirit of G-d (Ruach Hakadesh, Holy Spirit) are in the Spirit and not flesh.

I am going to continue in Romans 10.  Remember the objective of these writings is to help others see the verses that many believe state the Torah is no longer to be followed.

For not knowing about God’s righteousness and seeking to establish their own, they did not subject themselves to the righteousness of God. For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes. For Moses writes that the man who practices the righteousness which is based on law shall live by that righteousness. But the righteousness based on faith speaks as follows: “Do not say in your heart, ‘Who will ascend into heaven?’ (that is, to bring Christ down), or ‘Who will descend into the abyss?’ (that is, to bring Christ up from the dead).” But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart”—that is, the word of faith which we are preaching, that if you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved; 10 for with the heart a person believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation. 11 For the Scripture says, “Whoever believes in Him will not be disappointed.” 12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, abounding in riches for all who call on Him; 13 for “Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved.”              Romans 10:3-13

I believe Paul is speaking to the Gentiles here, for he is telling them about the Jews who are zealous for G-d, but through their own efforts.  They are following Torah without a circumcised heart.  Paul writes the goal of Torah is Christ.  Many believe Paul is saying once you have Christ you no longer need Torah, but that is not what he is saying.  For the next few verses is quoting Deuteronomy 30:11-14.

If your mind is set on the Torah being disregarded already then you miss what Paul is saying in these verses. In verse 5 Paul quotes Leviticus 18:5 and makes the point that the Torah points to God’s truth and man can thus be saved via Torah, if he follows it in faith.  In verse 6 you can see a translation bias towards the Torah, for those wanting to get rid of it.  The Greek word used is de and can be translated as but.  It can also be translated for, moreover, furthermore, etc.  For the way of the Torah and the way of HaMashiach (the Messiah) are one in the same.  Now, if your righteousness is through Yeshua HaMashiach then your unrighteousness is seen as righteousness.  Why?  Because you are circumcised in the heart and if circumcised in the heart then the Torah is written on your heart and the Holy Spirit will cause you to walk in His commandments (Jeremiah 31:31-33, Ezekiel 11:19-20 and Ezekiel 36:26-27) through faith.

Hence Paul states the word (Torah) is not too far from you it is in your heart and in your mouth.  Paul is quoting Deuteronomy 30:11-14 – “For this commandment which I command you today is not too difficult for you, nor is it out of reach.  It is not in heaven, that you should say, ‘Who will go up to heaven for us to get it for us and make us hear it, that we may observe it?’  Nor is it beyond the sea, that you should say, ‘Who will cross the sea for us to get it for us and make us hear it, that we may observe it?’  But the word is very near you, in your mouth and in your heart, that you may observe it.  Paul is equating following Yeshua in faith is the same concept as following the Torah in faith.  They are one in the same.  You cannot have one without the other.

There is more to be said, but time has run out.  If you have any questions or thoughts please post!

Until next time…kadosh, kadosh, kadosh is HaShem!

Set Your Mind On Life

What is your mind set on?  The flesh or the spirit?  Paul discuss this and more in our next passage.

Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Hamashiach Yeshua.  For the law of the Spirit of life in Hamashiach Yeshua has set you free from the law of sin and of death.  For what the Torah could not do, weak as it was through the flesh, G-d did: sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, He condemned sin in the flesh, so that the requirement of the Torah might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh but according to the Spirit.  For those who are according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit, the things of the Spirit.  For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace, because the mind set on the flesh is hostile toward G-d; for it does not subject itself to the Torah of G-d, for it is not even able to do so, and those who are in the flesh cannot please G-d.  Romans 8:1-8.

This chapter starts off with a therefore, so you know this section is really a continuation of the previous chapter.  Paul has just said he is serving the law of G-d with his mind (spirit), but the law of sin with his flesh.  Therefore, there is no criticism or disapproval for those in Yeshua.  Why?  For Yeshua set you free from the law of sin and death.  He paid your penalty.  This is what Paul was telling us in Colossians 2:14 – having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which was hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.  The certificate of debt was nailed to the cross and therefore we were made free from the penalty.  Freed from the law of sin and death is not saying freed from Torah.

The Torah could not set you free, because this was never the purpose of Torah.  The Torah’s purpose is to help you in your relationship with G-d.  To help you be holy or set apart or uncommon.  When you don’t follow the commandments you become just like everyone else…common.Now, that your debt is paid for you, you can fulfill the requirement of the Torah by walking according to the Spirit.  What Paul is referencing here is Ezekiel 11:19-20 and 36:26-27.

Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will be careful to observe My ordinances.  Ezekiel 36-26-27

The mind set on the spiritual things, the Torah, will give you life.  In Deuteronomy 30:15 we are told the Torah is life and you can choose it or not.  You can choose to follow your flesh and therefore receive the curses of G-d.  Or, you can choose life and subject yourself to the Torah of  G-d.  The mind set on the flesh is hostile towards G-d and cannot please G-d.  G-d tells us in Deut. 30:19 to choose life.  So choose life today and experience the difference!

Until next time…kadosh, kadosh, kadosh is HaShem!

Part 2…I am the way, the TRUTH, and the life…

Yeshua said “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” What did he mean by I am the way, the truth, and the life? Does Scripture show the way, the truth, and the life? This is the second of a three part series looking at each one of these and how each of these are used throughout Scripture.

If you missed part one: Click Here

The second one: I am…the truth

The Word for truth in Hebrew is emet and is Strong’s 571 meaning firmness, faithfulness, truth.

In the first portion I mentioned the Alef/Tav, the beginning and the end. Emet is spelled Alef Mem Tav. Alef being the first letter in the Hebrew alphabet, the mem is the middle letter and the tav is the last letter. The whole truth is everything from the beginning through the middle and to the end. The truth is Yeshua, who is the beginning and the end.

Is truth defined in Scripture?

Psalm 119:142 – Thy righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and thy law is the truth.

Psalm 119:151 – Thou art near, O Lord; and all thy commandments are truth.

Psalm 119:160 – Thy word is true from the beginning: and every one of thy righteous judgments endureth for ever.

John 17:17 – Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

So David defined truth as the Torah, the commandments, the word. John reconfirms what David said, the word is truth. The only word David and John could be speaking about is Torah!

Do any of the prophets confirm the definition of truth?

Malachi 2:1,6 – And now, O ye priests, this commandment is for you….The Torah of truth was in his mouth, and iniquity was not found in his lips: he walked with me in peace and equity, and did turn many away from iniquity.

Zechariah 8:3 –  Thus saith the Lord; I am returned unto Zion, and will dwell in the midst of Jerusalem: and Jerusalem shall be called a city of truth; and the mountain of the Lord of hosts the holy mountain.

Why would Jerusalem be called a city of truth?

Micah 4:2 – And many nations shall come, and say, Come, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the G-d of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for the Torah shall go forth of Zion, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

Isaiah 2:3 –  And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, to the house of the G-d of Jacob; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the Torah, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem.

For the Torah will go forth from Jerusalem sometime in the future!

Many know that Torah is equal to light:

 Psalm 119:105 – Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path.

Proverbs 6:23 – For the commandment is a lamp; and the law is light; and reproofs of instruction are the way of life

John 3:21 – But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in G-d.

Torah is a lamp to the feet and if you keep (guard) Torah you will come into the light.

If you are not keeping (guarding) the commandments then the truth is not in you.

1 John 2:4 – He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

But if you keep the commandments (assuming salvation is already obtained) then you are in Him:

1 John 2:5 – But whoso keepeth his word, in him verily is the love of G-d perfected: hereby know we that we are in him.

Therefore you will be set free:

John 8:31-32 –  Then said Yeshua to those Jews which believed on him, If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed;  And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.

The Torah sets you free?

Psalm 119:45 – And I will walk at liberty: for I seek thy precepts.

James 1:25 – But whoso looketh into the perfect law of liberty, and continueth therein, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed.

The Holy Spirit is to cause you to follow the truth (commandments):

Ezekiel 11:19-20 –  And I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within you; and I will take the stony heart out of their flesh, and will give them an heart of flesh:  That they may walk in my statutes, and keep mine ordinances, and do them: and they shall be my people, and I will be their G-d.

Ezekiel 36:26-27 – A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.  And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.

John 16:13 – Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.

John 15:26 – But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me

How will the Spirit of truth testify of Yeshua? He testifies for Him by causing those He indwells to follow Torah. Yeshua is the Torah made flesh:

John 1:1 – In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with G-d, and the Word was G-d.

John 1:14 – 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.

Again Word is equal to Torah and the Torah was made flesh.

Walking in the truth and to love is walking in the commandments:

2 John 1:4 – I rejoiced greatly that I found of thy children walking in truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father.

2 John 1:6 – And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as ye have heard from the beginning, ye should walk in it.

3 John 1:3-4 – For I rejoiced greatly, when the brethren came and testified of the truth that is in thee, even as thou walkest in the truth.  I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.

 

John 14:6 – Yeshua saith unto him, I am the way, the TRUTH, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.

Part 1 – …I am the WAY, the truth, and the life…

Yeshua said “…I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” What did He mean by I am the way, the truth, and the life? Does Scripture show the way, the truth, and the life? This is a three part series looking at each one of these and how each of these are used throughout Scripture.

The first one: I am the WAY

The word for way in Hebrew is Derech and is Strong’s 1870 meaning several things but for this study: of course of life, direction, way.

The very first usage of derech is in Bereishit (Genesis) 3:24 and says  So he drove out the man; and he placed at the east of the garden of Eden Cherubims, and a flaming sword which turned every way, to keep (guard) the way of the Tree of Life.

In Hebrew it says lishmor Alef/Tav  derech   Etz HaChayim

to keep Alef Tav   way   tree of life

The Alef/Tav is pointing to the Mashiach – Yeshua. For in Revelation 1:8 were are told in the Greek He is the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the ending. In Hebrew the letters Alef/Tav are the beginning and end of the Hebrew alphabet just as alpha and omega are in the Greek. Revelations 1:8 was quoting Isaiah 41:4, 44:6, & 48:12 that He was the first and the last.   On a side note the Alef/Tav do not translate to anything in the English, it functions as a direct object marker in the Hebrew (or so it is said). Yet it shows the Mashiach active throughout the Tanakh. For instance, the Alef/Tav is before Jacob’s and Esau’s names until Esau gave his birthright to Jacob. From there forward, all 78 times Esau’s name is used the Alef/Tav does not appear before his name. Another example, Rahab, she is mentioned in Joshua 2:2-3, 6:17 and there is no Alef/Tav. In verse 6:23, she is saved and the Alef/Tav appears before her name. These two examples are showing a covenant relationship with Yeshua the Mashiach (Messiah).

So we are told the Messiah is the way to the tree of life. So what is the Tree of Life? It is the Torah.

Proverbs 3:1 – My son, forget not my law; but let thine heart keep my commandments:

Provervs 3:18 – She is a tree of life to them that lay hold upon her: and happy is every one that retaineth her.

Revelation 22:14 –  Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.

Proverbs 11:30 – The fruit of the righteous is a tree of life; and he that winneth souls is wise.

Proverbs 13:12-13 – Hope deferred maketh the heart sick: but when the desire cometh, it is a tree of life. Whoso despiseth the word shall be destroyed: but he that feareth the commandment shall be rewarded.

Revelation 2:7 – He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the tree of life, which is in the midst of the paradise of G-d.

Israel means “one who wrestles/struggles and overcomes”. A true Israelite/Jew (circumcised in the heart) believes that Yeshua is the Messiah and follows Torah. These are the overcomers who are allowed to eat of the tree of life.

Revelation 12:17 – And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of G-d, and have the testimony of Yeshua HaMashiach.

Revelation 14:12 – Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of G-d, and the faith of Yeshua.

So, what is I am the way? Torah.

Exodus 18.20 – And thou shalt teach them ordinances and laws, and shalt shew them THE WAY wherein they must walk, and the work that they must do.

Deuteronomy 5:31 – 33 – But as for thee, stand thou here by me, and I will speak unto thee all the commandments, and the statutes, and the judgments, which thou shalt teach them, that they may do them in the land which I give them to possess it.  Ye shall observe to do therefore as the L-rd your G-d hath commanded you: ye shall not turn aside to the right hand or to the left. Ye shall walk in all THE WAYS which the L-rd your G-d hath commanded you, that ye may live, and that it may be well with you, and that ye may prolong your days in the land which ye shall possess.

Deuteronomy 8:6 – Therefore thou shalt keep the commandments of the L-rd thy G-d, to walk in HIS WAYS, and to fear him.

So per Deut. 8:6 keeping the commandments is walking in His ways. Some other verses just in case:

Deuteronomy 10:12-13 – And now, Israel, what doth the L-rd thy G-d require of thee, but to fear the L-rd thy G-d, to walk in all his WAYS, and to love him, and to serve the L-rd thy G-d with all thy heart and with all thy soul,  To keep the commandments of the L-rd, and his statutes, which I command thee this day for thy good?

Deuteronomy 13:5 – And that prophet, or that dreamer of dreams, shall be put to death; because he hath spoken to turn you away from the L-rd your G-d, which brought you out of the land of Egypt, and redeemed you out of the house of bondage, to thrust thee out of the WAY which the L-rd thy G-d commanded thee to walk in. So shalt thou put the evil away from the midst of thee.

Deuteronomy 26:16-17 – This day the L-rd thy G-d hath commanded thee to do these statutes and judgments: thou shalt therefore keep and do them with all thine heart, and with all thy soul. Thou hast avouched the L-rd this day to be thy G-d, and to walk in his WAYS, and to keep his statutes, and his commandments, and his judgments, and to hearken unto his voice.

Deuteronomy 30:16 –  In that I command thee this day to love the L-rd thy G-d, to walk in his WAYS, and to keep his commandments and his statutes and his judgments, that thou mayest live and multiply: and the L-rd thy G-d shall bless thee in the land whither thou goest to possess it.

Psalm 119:1 – Blessed are the undefiled in the WAY, who walk in the law of the L-rd.

Isaiah 2:3 – And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the L-rd, to the house of the G-d of Jacob; and he will teach us of his WAYS, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the L-rd from Jerusalem.

Not obeying the commandments is to turn aside out of the way…to go after other gods. The cursed are not keeping His ways.

Deuteronomy 11:28 – And a curse, if ye will not obey the commandments of the L-rd your G-d, but turn aside out of the WAY which I command you this day, to go after other gods, which ye have not known.

Deuteronomy 27:18 –  Cursed be he that maketh the blind to wander out of the WAY. And all the people shall say, Amen.

Deuteronomy 31:29 – For I know that after my death ye will utterly corrupt yourselves, and turn aside from the WAY which I have commanded you; and evil will befall you in the latter days; because ye will do evil in the sight of the L-rd, to provoke him to anger through the work of your hands.

Isaiah 42:24 – Who gave Jacob for a spoil, and Israel to the robbers? did not the L-rd, he against whom we have sinned? for they would not walk in his WAYS, neither were they obedient unto his Torah.

Prepare for the way and Yeshua teaches the way:

Matthew 3:3 – For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the WAY of the L-rd, make his paths straight.

Matthew 21:32 – For John came unto you in the WAY of righteousness, and ye believed him not: but the publicans and the harlots believed him: and ye, when ye had seen it, repented not afterward, that ye might believe him.

Matthew 22:16 – And they sent out unto him their disciples with the Herodians, saying, Master, we know that thou art true, and teachest the WAY of G-d in truth, neither carest thou for any man: for thou regardest not the person of men.

The way to righteousness is following the commandments;

2 Peter 2:21 – For it had been better for them not to have known the WAY of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.

This is not through you own efforts…following the commandments. This is after your heart has been circumcised…you have faith in G-d/Yeshua so He will give you the Spirit to cause you to walk in all His ways.

Ezekiel 36:26-27 – A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh.  And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and ye shall keep my judgments, and do them.

John 14:6 – Yeshua saith unto him, I am the WAY, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.