Tanak Foundations-Concepts in First Chronicles-Part 2

1 Chr 9.1-44 tells us about those who first settled in Jerusalem after they returned from the Babylonian exile. It concludes with the genealogy of Saul, the first king of Israel. 1 Chr 9.1 says, “All Israel was enrolled by genealogies” but we have already seen that two tribes were left off the rolls. Here is an important concept. In some cases, when the Scriptures say “all” it means “many” and is not to be understood as literally “all.” It says they were written in the “Book of the Kings of Israel” and this is not referring to the Book of Kings in the Tanak. This refers to the annals, journals and diaries of each king. They made sure these lists were accurate and used as references for scriptural books as a resource.

The first ones to return were Israelites (common people), priests, Levites and the Netharim (Temple servants). They were common people (Josh 9.27; Ezra 8.20) like the Gibeonites. In addition, others from Judah, Benjamin, Ephraim and Manasseh took advantage of the proclamation of Cyrus (Koresh). These are four classes had existed before the captivity (Israelites, priests, Levites, Netharim). The duties of the Levites (v 14) had been passed down from generation to generation.

Gatekeepers are discussed in the Mishnah, Tamid 1.1, and the priests were stationed in three places. They were at the Beit Avtinas, Beit Ha Nitzotz (the Flame) and the Beit Ha Moked (Hearth). The Levites were stationed in twenty-one places. The “Memunim” (supervisors) were placed over the work of the Avodah (services) and they were the keepers of the threshholds of the tent until the Temple was built.

1 Chr 9.20 says, “Phineas (Pinchas) the son of Eleazar was the ruler over them previously” so this goes back to when they entered the land (Num 3.32). There were 212 gatekeepers and that number was fixed by David. The Levites were enrolled by genealogy in their cities (v 22) and they lived in certain cities and they came to serve in courses, called a Mishmar, from the town they were assigned to, at their assigned times. The gatekeepers were on the four sides (north, south, east and west).

In the Temple, the north was seen as the Beit Ha Moked. The west was seen as Beit Ha Otzrot, the south was seen as Bait Avtinas and the east was seen as Beit Ha Nitzotz. The gatekeepers opened buildings and gates, and the Levites not assigned as musicians or gatekeepers did this. They could not go near the altar because they were not priests. For information on their ministry, go to the tractate “Tamid” in the Mishnah. 1 Chr 9.33 talks about the “singers” and they lived in certain chambers in the Temple (Beit Avtinas) where there were lockers, a bakery, and a chamber for the singers. In the northeast chamber called Beit Ha Nitzotz there was a choir chamber.

1 Chr 9.35-44 is a repetition of the family of Saul. It is placed here to connect the following history of the kings of Judah all the way to the Babylonian Captivity in Second Chronicles. It is also listed to show that God did not wipe out the line of Saul and that his descendants lived in the days of Ezra and the return from exile.

Now, all the previous nine chapters have established the history and genealogies of Israel. Now we are going to get into the history of the Jewish kingdom and what it can teach us spiritually.

1 Chr 10.1-14 begins to tell us about the last battle of King Saul and his death (1 Sam 31.1). He died because he committed a “sin unto death” (Ezra 3.20; Deut 32.39; 1 John 5.16). He did not keep the word of the Lord by not waiting for Samuel and for sparing the Amalekites. He also sought counsel form a medium rather than the Lord. As a result, Yehovah killed him (v 14) and turned the kingdom over to David. Saul was made king so he could save Israel from the Philistines (1 Sam 9.16) and failed. God used the Philistines as a tool when Saul had to die.

1 Chr 11.1-47 tells us about the anointing of David as king on Hebron (“communion”-1 Sam 15.1). Hebron is an idiom for “heaven” in Jewish thought and it is important because the Cave of Machpelah is there. Herod restructured the burial place of Abraham there (called “Abraham’s Bosom”, another idiom for heaven or paradise-Luke 16.22) according to the pattern of the Temple.

After the account of David we have his Givorim (mighty men) and other notable warriors and some of their exploits (v 10-25). We will also pick up three words for a Jewish king in 1 Chr 11.2. We have “king”, “shepherd” and “prince” (Zech 11.4-8, 13.7; Micah 5.5; Ezek 37.24, 44.3). We also have a list of David’s mighty men (Givorim) and some of them were non-Jews who followed the God of Israel, like Ithmah the Moabite and Zelek the Ammonite for instance. Uriah is called a Hittite because he either was a convert to the God of Israel, or he was a Jew who lived among the Hittites. In any case, this alludes to the fact that God has planned to include non-Jewish believers with a Torah based faith in Yeshua in the establishment of his kingdom, led by a descendant of King David.

As we enter 1 Chr 12.1-40 we need to keep in mind that the Messiah, the son of David, will also gather around him a diverse group of people, made up of Jews and non-Jews. 1 Chr 12.1-2 tells us that even the tribal relatives of King Saul came to David, and even among his mighty men. They chose David over their own relative because they knew God was with him.

1 Chr 12.8 gives us the warlike characteristics of the Gadites. These allude to how we should be in our spiritual battles. They were men of valor and courage, and they had the heart of a warrior. They were trained in battle, as we should be. They could handle a shield and a spear (short range weapons) and they had the temperament of a confident warrior. They were also “swift as gazelles” which means they were mobile and ready to move to the next battle.

1 Chr 12.15 says they crossed the Jordan at a very dangerous time, when the Jordan flooded in the spring (Nisan is the first month) to join David. They had a determination and a strong devotion to him, as we should be to our Messiah. We learn in 1 Chr 12.16-22 that David accepts many soldiers who came to him at Ziklag. David went out to meet them, especially the ones from Benjamin and Judah. He said if they came peacefully, he would accept them, but if they came to deceive him, then the Lord would judge them. Amasai, David’s nephew, prophesied and said that these people belonged to David and they knew God helped him, and that is why they came.

Many people defected from King Saul before he died because they knew Yehovah was not with Saul (v 19). This alludes to our decision to leave the false congregations and teachers we were with previously because we finally realized God was not with them either. Day by day men came to him until there was a great army, like “the army of God.”

1 Chr 12.23-37 gives us the numbers of those who were armed and ready for war when David was in Hebron. This alludes to “heaven” and “Abraham’s Bosom” as we have said before. David reigned there for seven years, and Yeshua will reign as king in heaven seven years, gathering his army together in the Naztal (Rapture) and they will go with him when he returns to reign in Jerusalem just like David did. 1 Chr 12.32 tells us something very interesting about the sons of Issachar. It says they “understood the times with knowledge of what Israel should do, their chiefs were two hundred and all their kinsmen were at their command. This verse tells us that they knew the “times and seasons” (1 Thes 5.1) because they studied the Torah. In a spiritual battle you want to be on the right side, even though the leader may be accused of being an “outlaw” (David).

1 Chr 12.38-40 tells us that the soldiers who came to David could “draw up in battle formation” or keep ranks (were well disciplined). They came with a complete heart to Hebron to make David king over all Israel. The people rejoiced together for three days, eating and drinking because the civil war was over and now they were united as one, with one king. It will be the same way when Yeshua is made king and he returns to reign in Jerusalem. Believers will be rejoicing when Yeshua is king over all the earth, and there will be one Lord and his name will be one (Zech 14.9).

1 Chr 13.1-14 deals with the same events already discussed in 2 Sam 6. The Ark is being brought to Jerusalem on a new cart. Evidently, they saw that the Philistines sent the Ark back to Israel on a new cart (1 Sam 6.7) so they thought this was the proper thing to do, but it wasn’t. It was not to be carried by Israel on a cart, but carried by the Levites, from the family of Kohath, with the poles provided. The cart was on rough ground, and when the Ark became unsteady on the cart, Uzzah (man’s strength) put out his hand to steady it and was struck dead. He was the son of Abinadab who had cared for the Ark up to this point (2 Sam 6.3).

Uzzah’s death angered David, but David did not understand what Yehovah was teaching. Man needed a mediator and that could not be accomplished by “man’s strength” (Uzzah). He was also showing that the Ark was a type of the Messiah and does not need man’s help. He was also showing that they were doing things contrary to what the Torah had instructed by bringing the Ark up on a cart. As a result, the Ark remained outside the city in the house of a man named Obed-Edom the Gittite. He was a Levite from the Levitical city of Gath-rimmon (Josh 21.20-25; 1 Chr 16.5, 26.4).

1 Chr 14.1-17 tells us about the message of King Hiram (the father of the Hiram in Solomon’s day), and then tells us about David’s wives and children. It also discusses two battles that David fought with the Philistines and his victories over them. The chapter concludes with the fame of David and how it spread to other nations, and how they were struck with fear on account of him.

1 Chr 15.1-29 is about how David prepared a place for the Ark and how he gathered the Levites and priests to help move it to Jerusalem. This was a cause of great celebration, even though David’s wife Michal (Saul’s daughter) disapproved of how David was acting. David had prepared a tent for the Ark, but this was not the Mishkan. That was in Gibeon (1 Chr 21.29).

David rebuked Michal and basically told her, “If you think my dancing was vile, I plan to be more so.” As a result, Michal, the daughter of Saul, had no child by David to the day of her death. The seed of Saul and the seed of David never mixed. Spiritually, this is what is being taught here.

As we have said before, Saul is a picture of the unbeliever and the first king over the kingdom of God, Adam. David is a picture of the believer and the second Adam, the Messiah, who will be given the kingdom. The seed of the unbeliever can never mix with the seed of the Messiah (Lev 19.19, Gen 3.15). The two kinds of seed (God’s kingdom and Ha Satan’s kingdom) can never mix. However, that hasn’t stopped Ha Satan from trying to mix his seed (corrupt teaching, Replacement Theology, etc) into God’s teaching (the Torah). God’s word is the only good, unmixed seed (Matt 13.1-30; Luke 8.4-15). The parable (aggadah) of the Sower and the Seed teaches this concept.

We will pick up here in 1 Chr 16.1-43 in Part 3.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts in First Chronicles- Part 1

Chronicles is a retelling of Israel’s monarchy in light of the return from Babylonian exile. The message is, after experiencing God’s punishment, Yehovah is still with them after exile. Yehovah is still Israel’s God no matter what happened to their ancestors. It was also written to ascertain the genealogy of the Messiah and to give a larger account of the tribe of Judah.

This book was originally one book and is called “Divrei Ha Yamim” or the “Account of the days.” It is believed by some scholars that Chronicles was written by Ezra dealing with the events already in earlier prophetic books. It is the story of the Jewish people and how history moves towards the coming of the Messiah. Much of the information contained in First and Second Chronicles will be similar to First and Second Kings, so we will not get into as much detail as we did in Kings. However, we are going to point out concepts as we move through the book quickly in our overview. First Chronicles will give a longer account of the tribe of Judah and it also will determine the genealogy of Yeshua as the Messiah. This is to make it clear what tribe and what family the Messiah came through.

The first ten chapters consist of genealogies going back to Adam. Some think that the name “Adam” is taken from the fact that he was taken from the ground, but so were the animals (Gen 1.24). There is more to it than that. In 1 Chron 1.1 in Hebrew, the first letter in Adam is the “aleph” and it is enlarged, indicating he was the first man (aleph is the first letter in the Hebrew alphabet). From him all men descended, including Yeshua, the second Adam. Adam can mean “blood of God” or “first blood” because aleph is the “first” letter of the alphabet and stands for God, and “dam” is blood in Hebrew.

We know that Adam and Chava had at least three sons by name, and many unnamed sons and daughters (Gen 5.4). But, in 1 Chr 1.1, Cain and Abel are not mentioned, only Seth. This is because this genealogy is selective and given for a specific purpose, the Messianic line. The sons of Japheth (Yaphet) founded the people of Europe and northern Asia. Javan founded Greece Ionia; from Gomer came the Cimmerians of the Russian plains; from Maddai came the Medes and the Persians; from Tubal and Meshech came the people of the Turkish plateau. Kittim and Rodanim are Cyprus and Rhodes (1 Chr 1.5-7). Rome is called Kittim in Dan 11.30.

In 1 Chr 1.8-16 we have the descendants of Ham. They populated Africa and the far east. Cush founded Mesopotamia and Babylon, and was the father of Nimrod. Mizraim is a son of Cush and is the name for Egypt in Hebrew. Put refers to Libya in North Africa. Canaan refers to the peoples who were originally in the land of Israel. The Philistines came from Casluhim (Casluh) who were “sea peoples.” The Casluhim were of Egyptian origin, related to the Minoan culture of Caphtor (Crete).

In 1 Chr 1.17-26 we have the descendants of Shem. Elam was the ancestor of the Persians; Asshur was the father of the Assyrians; Lud was the father to the Lydians in Asia Minor; Aram was the father of the Arameans (Syrians) and Arphaxad was the ancestor to Abraham and the Hebrews. Uz was the son of Aram and a region in Arabia was named after him as we learned in the book of Job. Shelah became the father of Eber (the word Hebrew came from this) and was an ancestor of Abraham. Peleg was living when the nations were divided at the Tower of Babel. Terah is the father of Abraham

Now the genealogy begins to narrow down, beginning in 1 Chr 1.27-28. We will learn about the sons of Abraham and their descendants to David. In 1 Chr 1.29-31 we learn about the descendants of Ishmael. God promised to make through him a great nation (Gen 21.18) and would eventually be fulfilled in the Arab peoples. 1 Chr 1.32-33 tells us about the descendants of Abraham through Keturah. She was the second wife of Abraham. 1 Chr 34-42 tells us about the descendants of Abraham through Esau. Israel (Jacob) was the other son of Isaac, and he was chosen to be the heir of the covenant of Abraham.In 1 Chr 1.43-54 we have the kings and chiefs of Edom (Esau). These sons of Esau were important to God’s plan but Messiah would come through Jacob (Israel).

This chapter gives us an overview of God’s interaction with mankind in creation and the redemption. God’s name does not appear but his actions are evident. We see him creating Adam and we see the blessing on Seth, who replaced a murdered Abel. We see Enoch, who walked with God. We see Noah who built the Ark and survived a worldwide flood. We see God dividing the inheritance among these nations, dividing the earth at the time of the Tower of Babel in the days of Peleg.

We see God calling a Babylonian from an idol worshiping family named Abraham and bringing him into Canaan. We also see Isaac, saved from the sacrificial knife on Mount Moriah and how he fathered Jacob, later to be named Israel. He would carry on with the covenant of Abraham as the heir and the promise of the Messiah. We also see Esau and his descendants, fulfilling his promise.

In 1 Chr 2.1-2 we learn more about the Messianic line through the descendants of Abraham. In 1 Chr 2.3-17 we have the descendants of Judah to Jesse, the father of David. His genealogy is listed first because David, the kings and Messiah would come through him. Remember, these genealogies could be easily checked in the time of Yeshua to prove he was a direct descendant of David.

1 Chr 2.18-24 lists other descendants of Judah, separate from the line that led to David. In 1 Chr 2.25-41 we have Jerahmeel, a great grandson of Judah. In 1 Chr 2.42-55 we have the family of Caleb, a great grandson of Judah, and we have the Kenites. They were originally a foreign people (Gen 15.19), some of whom became incorporated into Judah by adoption of marriage. Some believe they were descendants of Jethro (“Yitro”-Judges 1.16, 4.11; Exo 18.9; Num 10.29-32) who came came into Canaan with Israel and lived in tents (1 Sam 15.6; Jer 35.6-7). They were zealous for the Lord (2 Kings 10.15-23).

In 1 Chr 3.1-9 we have the wives and sons of David in two groups. Some were born in Hebron and others in Jerusalem. In 1 Chr 3.10-16 we have the line of David to the time of Judah’s exile, and 1 Chr 3.17-24 gives us the line after the exile of Judah. We have an interesting side note in 1 Chr 3.24 with Anani, meaning “my cloud.” The Targum makes Anani to be the Messiah because the word Anani is connected with a word in Deut 7.13 and translated “clouds.” Messiah is called the “son of the clouds” based on Dan 7.13 and Rev 1.7.

1 Chr 4 through 8 will tell us about the tribes of Israel and their descendants. 1 Chr 4.1-23 lists the descendants of Judah. In 1 Chr 4.9-10 we have a man named Jabez. He said a prayer to Yehovah for a blessing and it was answered. The name “Jabez” means “distress.” A Christian book was written about this prayer so that Christians could pray it and be blessed. It is good to go to the Scriptures and find good prayers to model our prayers after, but let’s look a t this prayer a little closer.

In 1 Chr 4.9 the Targum adds, “And wiser in the Torah than his brothers.” That is the key as to why God answered his prayer. Jabez was Torah observant and did what was right. He walked in the revealed truth of the Torah and the commandments (mitzvot). The context of this prayer is he was praying for his family and about his ancestral border before he began, the expulsion of the Canaanites in his border. He needed and wanted protection from the dangers he was going to be exposed to. God did not answer him because he said the right words or formula, he answered him because he did the right thing, he was Torah observant.

Jabez was a Torah observant Jew who prayed a good prayer. To take his words by non-Torah observant people to get a blessing is going against what God said in the Scriptures (Deut 28.1-14). It borders on “magic” and trying to manipulate God. It would be a waste of time for people who reject the Torah commands (they are lawless) to pray this prayer, thinking they will get blessed. Again, its not because Jabez said the right things, but its because Jabez did the right things (Torah observant).

Replacement Theology Christianity opposes the things of God and actually teaches their people to to disobey the Torah (God’s word). One should not expect to be blessed if they believe the Torah (Law) has been done away with. The book, “The Prayer of Jabez” by Bruce Wilkinson is full of false teachings and assumptions, and this prayer was not meant to be repeated over and over again like a mantra to get a blessing.

So far in this book we have the line from Adam to Abraham, and from there we have the line from Abraham through Isaac, and then to Jacob. Then we have the tribe of Judah and that leads us to the family of David, and that line leads us to the Messiah. 1 Chr 4.24-13 gives us the sons of Simeon and their descendants. The population of this tribe decreased during the wilderness years.

In 1 Chr 5.1-10 we have the tribe of Reuben and they settled on the east side of the Jordan. Reuben was the first born of Jacob, but lost that right as described in verse 1. 1 Chr 5.11-22 describes the tribe of Gad and his descendants. They were also on the east side of the Jordan, along with half the tribe of Manasseh (1 Chr 5.23-26). They made war on the Hagrites, Jetur, Naphish and Nodath (they were Ishmaelites). They did not continue in their godly ways as time went on however. They were distant from the other tribes and their spiritual life weakened, and they were attracted to the gods of the land. They were later deported by Assyria. Bad company corrupts good character (1 Cor 15.33).

1 Chr 6.1-30 describes the tribe of Levi and his descendants, and also Aaron. We have the fathers and the heads of the tribe. Eleazar was the first high priest after Aaron and then it goes down. We see in 1 Chr 6.28 and 33 the name of Samuel the prophet among the families of Kohath. In 1 Chr 6.31-48 we have the ones David appointed over the avodah (service) of the Mishkan until Solomon built the Temple. In 1 Chr 6.49-53 it tells us that the sons of Aaron who officiated at the altar of burnt offering, incense and the work of the Kodesh Ha Kodashim. 1 Chr 6.54-81 tells us about the cities where the priests and the Levites lived.

Then we will have the sons of Issachar in 1 Chr 7.1-5; the sons of Benjamin in 7.6-12; the sons of Naphtali in 7.13. This only one verse, but many families sprung from these mentioned (Num 26.48-50). Then we have the sons of Manasseh in 7.14-19; the sons of Ephraim in 7.20-29 and the sons of Asher in 7.30-40.

In 1 Chr 8.1-40 we have the sons of Benjamin again, along with several principal men and families. For instance, we have Saul and his posterity listed in 1 Chr 8.33-40 with the sons of Jonathan numbering into the thousands. The tribe of Dan is not listed at all, and we know Dan was involved in idolatry and not listed in Rev 7.5-7. Zebulon is at least mentioned in 6.63,77 in the Levitical list of towns, but not listed in genealogical terms. Nobody really knows why Zebulon is not listed. However, both are listed in the Atid Lavo (Messianic Kingdom) land inheritance in Ezek 48.1-2,26.

We will pick up in 1 Chr 9.1-44 in Part 2.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Conclusion

We are coming up to when the Natzal or “gathering” will take place. We know it will happen on a Rosh Ha Shanah but we don’t know when. It may be a year from now, or several years. Until that day, the world will be getting worse and worse, and that includes the United States. There will be more trouble coming, leading up to the Birth-pains and we need to prepare spiritually by being able to hear Yehovah and being able to discern the truth. We will also need to prepare physically in case there are food and other shortages.

Some believe that the wrath of God does not come onto the earth until the mid-point of the Birth-pains, or Tribulation, but that is not true. First, we have the Natzal (Rapture) on the first day of the Day of the Lord called Rosh Ha Shanah. Then a few days later we have the destruction of the USA with tremendous casualties. Many who are American will be out of the country, like tourists, the military, business people and those who have been led by God to leave, etc. Some will align with Europe for the most part while others will go to Israel. Then the Birth-pains begin about Tishri 10.

In the first three years of the Birth-pains we will have a war between Europe and Russia, so there will be many casualties in this war. In the second year, besides the war between Europe and Russia, there will be war in the Middle East. An Arab confederacy will attack Israel. In the third year Russia will attack Israel in the war of Gog and Magog (Russia). They have been winning their war against Europe and feel confident enough to go into the Middle East. The death toll will be very high again, but God intervenes to destroy the Russian armies.

The False Messiah, who leads Europe, who was losing the war with Russia, will take advantage of the Russian defeat and will invade Russia because the Russian army is non-existent, and he defeats what is left and controls the Russians now. So, we have one major war after another in the first three and a half years of the Birth-pains, plus all the other terrible events like disease and famine that will take place. The wrath of God is not just the last three and a half years of the Birth-pains.

So, let’s do a summary of the various events. We have provided some (not all) of the Scriptures that talk about these events already. The Natzal (Rapture, Gathering) will occur on Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6001 from creation. This is very soon. The righteous dead will be resurrected along with the living righteous, called the “apostasia” in 2 Thes 2.3. The 144,000 will see the Natzal and hear the shofar and believe in Yeshua immediately, like Paul. They will be anointed by Yehovah to deliver the Basar (good news) to Israel first during the first half of the Bisth-pains (1260 days), then they will take it the world during the last half of the Birth-pains (1260 days).

The Coronation of the Messiah will take place in heaven, attended by the newly arrived believers in the Natzal. The Wedding of the Messiah will also take place in heaven, also attended by the believers. The Bride and Groom enter into the Chuppah for seven years (a shavuah). This seven years corresponds to the seven years of the Birth-pains on earth. All of these events will take place on Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6001, and the Day of the Lord (1000 years) has begun. This period is also called the Lord’s Day, Millennium, the Atid Lavo or the Messianic Kingdom.

On earth, the Chevlai Shell Mashiach (Birth-pains of the Messiah) will begin ten days later on Tishri 10. Within these ten days the USA will be destroyed. The earth will move out of its current orbit slightly causing the year to be 360 days like before. This is nothing for the Lord and has done it before. He may use the cataclysmic events surrounding the destruction of the North American continent to do this, or just do it himself. Either way, the calendar goes back to a 360 day year and that is scriptural.

The fear and panic from the destruction of the USA brings the False Messiah to power over Europe. He signs a military treaty with Israel. The first 1260 days of the Birth-pains are directed towards Israel. Israel will turn to Yeshua as the Messiah after Yehovah defeats the invasion of God and Magog and her allies. This will be around Yom Kippur going into the fourth year of the Birth-pains. Six months later it will be Nisan 10 and the exact halfway point of the Birth-pains. The Abomination of Desolation has already been set up about 30 days prior, around the festival of Purim.

During the previous six months (Tishri 10 to Nisan 10) the False Messiah has defeated the remnants of the Russian army and has now become the most powerful ruler in the world. On Nisan 10, the exact halfway point of the Birth-pains, the False Messiah will declare himself to be God in the Temple and will kill the Two Witnesses and their bodies will lie in the streets for three and a half days. This brings us up to noon on Passover (Nisan 14), when their bodies will be resurrected before everyone and rise into the heavens. The Jews flee into the Jordanian wilderness for 1260 days, or Yom Kippur, year 6008. They will be protected and provided for there by Yehovah.

The last three and a half years (1260 days) are now directed to the non-Jews in the world. The numbers that have become believers in the entire seven years is innumerable, and this will include Jews and non-Jews. The latter half of the Birth-pains will see the False Messiah pursue the Jews and non-Jews who believe in the wilderness. He will also be persecuting other believers in Yeshua who keep the Torah and elsewhere (Rev 12.17), and making war. Other nations will come against the False Messiah and he will retreat to Israel because he will be losing these battles (Dan 11.40-45). Yeshua returns with the clouds of heaven on Rosh Ha Shanah to Mount Sinai (Deut 33.1-5) and begins to move north to Jerusalem following the same route Moses took when he brought the children of Israel to the land.

Yeshua is joined by the believers who have been surviving in the wilderness, from Mount Sinai in the south to Pella in the north. Yeshua arrives in Jerusalem on Yom Kippur, year 6008. He defeats the False Messiah and the False Prophet, their armies, and those fighting against them. The unrighteous are gathered first from around the world to Jerusalem. The righteous are also gathered from around the world to Jerusalem. This brings the exile to an end. For the next five days there is a judgment.

The False Messiah and the False Prophet are slain, and the unrighteous are slain in the Valley of Decision, also known as the Valley of Yehoshaphat (Yehovah is Judge). This is the Hinnom Valley, also known as “Gei Hinnom” or Gehenna. The birds of the air and the beasts of the field return to consume the corpses of the unrighteous slain. This is called the “Feast of Leviathan.” On Tishri 15, year 6008, the Festival of Sukkot begins and believers gather for the celebration of the Wedding Supper. The parables of Yeshua define the events of the Birth-pains of the Messiah. Now we are going to deal with Matt 7.21-23 as promised.

Matt 7.21-22 says, “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 (Torah observant). Many will say to me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name cast out demons, and in your name perform miracles?'” There are people today who fit this description. People say they believe in prophesying, casting out demons and miracles in the name of Jesus. However, not everything that goes on out there is from God. In fact, truth be known, most of it is not from God.

A believer in Yeshua will not be involved in Replacement Theology of any kind, at least not for very long. The belief that Christianity or any other religion has replaced Israel, or man’s traditions have replaced the Torah, or holidays that have replaced the festivals of God is not from Yehovah. Many congregations out there teach this and if a person is a true believer there will be a voice within them that will tell them, “This isn’t right.” They will feel more and more uncomfortable in a congregation like that and will depart.

If one has a concept that God is finished with the Jewish people or the Torah commands, it isn’t from God. The Jewish people have been created by God through the Fathers, with promises, and the non-Jews have been grafted into the Olive Tree (Israel) and those promises.

Matt 7.23 continues, “And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from me, you who practice lawlessness.'” Yeshua doesn’t say, “I once knew you” but he says he “never” knew them. The people described were never believers. So, let’s look at the word for “lawlessness” or “iniquity” (KJV). The word used for the Torah in Greek is “nomos.” The word or “lawlessness” is the Greek word “anomos” meaning “Torah-less.” In 2 Thes 2 we have the False Messiah described as “the man of lawlessness” in verse 3, and the “lawless one” in verse 8. That is the word “anomos.” The False Messiah is the one who is without the Torah and in the state of “lawlessness” (Torah-less-ness). This doctrine of “without or no Torah” is coming from Ha Satan (2 Thes 2.8-9).

If a person is a true believer (not a head knowledge believer) and you know that you have received eternal life and God has redeemed you, then you have been given the righteousness of God and you know it doesn’t come from being Torah observant.

If one is against the Torah then you are not a true believer according to the Scriptures. Many have been instructed and told that the Torah has been “done away with” and they are “free from the Law” but if they are a true believer, they will realize that isn’t true. For a start, they will begin to move towards the Torah and start observing the Sabbath, learning about God’s festivals and eschatological plan and they will move away from eating what God has forbidden. This goes for Jews as well. They must believe in Yeshua and keep the commandments as they apply, too (1 Cor 7.17-19).

For instance, in Acts 19 we have Jews who believe but they have not received the Ruach Ha Kodesh since they were immersed in John’s baptism (repentance) and awaited the Messiah. The year is 58 A.D. and 28 years after the death and resurrection of Yeshua. When they heard about Yeshua they were immersed again in the name of Yeshua, which means in his authority, with all the benefits of the Kingdom of God that are available to true believer. God sent Paul to Ephesus in order to bring the news of Yeshua to them.

The doctrine of the Natzal (Rapture/Gathering) is throughout the Scriptures and within the context of the Tanak and the biblical festivals of Lev 23. We have made an attempt to go back and put some of these concepts together, so be strong and study what we have presented and rise up to the next level, and be comforted with these words (1 Thes 4.18).

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 34

Now we are going to go to the book of Job. Job may be the oldest book of the Bible and it is believed by some to have been written before the Exodus out of Egypt. The children of Israel were not in Egypt 430 years. That is calculating from Abraham to the time they came out of Egypt (Gen 15.1-18; Exo 12.40). Job is a grandson of Jacob (Gen 46.8-13) and a son of Issachar and may be the Job we are talking about. At some point, he may have left Egypt, possibly as an administrator for Pharaoh (Gen 47.5-6).

There are two main passages in Job that deal with the resurrection. We have already discussed in other teachings how the book of Job is very eschatological. In other words, in the oldest book of the Bible God is already telling us how everything will play out. This book will tell us about the redemption of man, the coming of Messiah, the resurrection of the dead, the Naztal (Rapture/gathering), the False Messiah, the False Prophet, the war with Gog and Magog and the restoration of Israel.

Job 14.7-15 says, “For there is hope for a tree, when it is cut down, that it will sprout again, and its shoots will not fail. Though its roots grow old in the ground and its stump dies in the dry soil, at the scent of water it will flourish and put forth sprigs like a plant. But man dies and lies prostrate. Man expires and where is he? As water evaporates from the sea, and a river becomes parched and dried up, so man lies down and does not rise, until the heavens be no more, he will not awake nor be aroused out of his sleep. Oh, that thou wouldst hide me in Sheol, that you would conceal me until thy wrath (Birth-pains) returns to thee, that you would set a limit for me and remember me! If a man dies, will he live again? All the days of my struggle I will wait, until my change comes (from mortal to immortal-1 Cor 15.51; Isa 13.2, 18.3, 26.19-20; Eph 5.14). You will call (with a shout) and I will answer you; you will long for the work of your hands (his body).” This passage can be directly linked to Rosh Ha Shanah.

In a general resurrection verse, Job 19.23-27 says, “Oh that my words were written! Oh that they were inscribed in a book (and they will be). That with an iron stylus and lead they were engraved in the rock forever. And as for me, I know that my redeemer (the Goel) lives, and at the last (in the latter days, Day of the Lord) he (Messiah) will take his stand on the earth (the banner, the standard, the signal of Isa 11.10, 13.2, 18.3). Even after my skin is destroyed yet from my flesh (he is resurrected) I shall see God; whom I myself shall behold and whom my eyes shall see and not another. My heart (“kilya” or “kidney”) faints (yearns) within me.”

When we started this study we looked at some of the arguments concerning the concept of the Naztal (Rapture) and when it would happen. Does it happen at the beginning, during or after the Birth-pains or “tribulation?” We have shown that most people are not aware of the concept called the Natzal or the Jewish concept of the “gathering.” There are certain questions that come up like, “If the tares are removed first, doesn’t that mean the believers are still here?” Some believe that the Wedding Supper is in heaven during the seven year tribulation, but is that correct? So, let’s answer these two questions.

When Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6001 comes, it will begin what is called the “Day of the Lord” for a thousand years. All the righteous dead will be resurrected, then those who are living will be caught up with them and changed. Then we have the Birth-pains while the kingdom and the believers are in heaven. At the end of the Birth-pains, Yeshua returns and the kingdom moves to the earth and there will be a judgment in Jerusalem, the capital city. It is a Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment) and Yom Kippur. The unrighteous (the tares) who survived the Birth-pains and are living on the earth at the time will be gathered first and brought to Jerusalem for judgment, then the righteous who have believed during the Birth-pains will be gathered to enter into the Messianic Kingdom, pictured by the festival of Sukkot (Matt 13.24-30, 25.31-46).

On the second question, the coronation and wedding of the Messiah will happen in heaven, but the wedding supper takes place on earth as a part of the festival of Sukkot (Isa 25.16; Matt 8.11; Rev 19.7-10). It happens at the end of the bridal week (Birth-pains). The unbelievers are going to another supper called “the Feast of Leviathan” (Ezek 29.3-7, 32.2-8; Rev 19.11-18; Matt 24.27-28; Luke 17.37).

Christianity teaches that the “Church” goes in the “Rapture” and the unbelievers (non-Christians) are “left behind.” We have seen this concept in countless books and movies. First, we are not talking about good guys versus bad guys. We are talking about the righteous and the unrighteous. All of us, compared to God, are bad guys. Our hearts (desires) are wicked and we are the center of our lives (Jer 17.9). That has to change at some point in our lives, and we attain righteousness by “emunah” (confidence) or “faith” in Yeshua.

At the same time, the Torah will be written on our hearts (a desire to keep the Torah, not believe it has been done away with-Jer 31.31-34) and it is what a believer lives by once he believes (1 John 2.3-4, 3.4; Matt 7.21-23; Rom 3.20, 3.31; John 14.15 and there are many more we could show you). The word Torah means the instruction and guidance of God and when we don’t obey it, it is called sin. Paul writes, “Do we make void the Torah through emunah (faith)? God forbid: we establish the Torah (by obeying it-Rom 3.1).”

There are many in religious organizations that are not believers according to the biblical definition. They believe in God, but they are not righteous as a free gift from God. Even Satan and the demons believe in God, but he is not righteous (Jam 2.19). They have a belief “in Jesus” and certain “creeds” so they think they are “born again.” But to be born again means they have been born from above, not the will of the person (John 1.13). But many believe that they are righteous before God with no desire to follow the Torah, and when they die, they will be in the resurrection of the righteous. But that is not what the Scriptures present as a true believer. We will come back to this a little later and look at Matt 7.21-23.

Getting back to the believers, on Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6001, all the righteous at the time will go to be with the Lord. If they have already died, they will be resurrected. If they are alive, they will be changed into glorified bodies and both groups will be with the Lord. After Rosh Ha Shanah, we have the ten days leading up to Yom Kippur and the beginning of the Birth-pains. From this point on to the end of the Birth-pains many will be saved. The righteous ones we see alive when Yeshua returns are the ones saved during the Birth-pains after Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6001 (Rev 7.9-17).

The doctrine of the Natzal (Rapture, gathering) originated with Yehovah and we have shown how this doctrine is entwined with the festival of Rosh Ha Shanah. Some believe that the “Rapture” surfaced in the 1800’s, but we have shown that it is an ancient teaching. Many times God has delivered his people through great trials (Exodus, Philistines, Syrians, Assyrian invasion, etc) and other trials when they weren’t (Babylonians, Romans, World War II and the Holocaust). Many believers in Yeshua got caught up in these events. So, the question is, “Why did they have to go through their trials and tribulations, but the righteous are taken out before the Birth-pains and don’t go through theirs?”

here are three reasons why and we have mentioned these before. First, the righteous are assembled for the coronation of the Messiah which takes place in heaven, so they must be there according to the Word of God. Second, the righteous are being assembled for the wedding of the Messiah, which also takes place in heaven so the righteous must be there according to the Word of God. Third, God has a restraining power in the earth that keeps Ha Satan from revealing his man, the False Messiah. Once all the righteous are taken away to attend these events in heaven, then the False Messiah can be revealed. The righteous will be delivered from all the wrath of the Birth-pains, but it is not because we are so worthy of it on our own. It is because of the events that will be happening according to God’s plan according to his mercy.

As we said, the unrighteous who make it through the Birth-pains will be gathered to Jerusalem for judgment because it is a Yom Ha Din Yom Kippur (Matt 24.26-27; Luke 17.22-37; Joel 3.12-17; Rev 14.14-20, 19.17-18). We have two gatherings. We have the gathering of the righteous dead and the righteous living at the beginning of the Birth-pains. Then we have the seven years of the Birth-pains, giving the living chata’im on earth a chance to turn to God, and many will not.

At the end of the Birth-pains the Messiah comes to Jerusalem on Yom Kippur and it’s “Neilah” or the “closing of the gates” of heaven. There are no more opportunities to turn to the Lord and Yeshua. They can’t say, “Oh, I see him and now I believe!” They must make that decision before he comes. The angels will be sent out and they will gather the unrighteous first and bring them to Jerusalem, then The righteous will be gathered (Matt 13.30).

Now, Jerusalem is shaped like the Hebrew letter “Shin.” This letter represents the name of God (YHVH pronounced Yehovah according to over 2300 Hebrew manuscripts, some of which are the best in the world). There are three valleys in Jerusalem. They are the Hinnom Valley on the west that loops around to the south of the city, then there is the Tyropean Valley in the middle of the city and the Kidron Valley on the east. The three valleys meet to the south of Jerusalem. The word “valley” in Hebrew is “Gei” so the valley to the south of the city is called “Gei Hinnom” and that is where the word “Gehenna” comes from. You can get a topographical map and see how these valleys form the letter Shin.

Where the three valley’s come together is the place called “Tophet” (“accursed place”). It is seen as the most cursed place on earth. It is believed that this is where the “valley of decision” is (Joel 3.9-17). That is where all of the unrighteous who have been gathered on Yom Kippur will be slain. This will take place over several days. Right after the first angels were sent out, another group of angels will be sent out to gather the righteous to Jerusalem. Everyone is being gathered for the festival of Sukkot on Tishri 15-22 and going to a dinner.

The slain will be the dinner (food) for the animals and birds in a meal called “the Feast of Leviathan” in the “valley of decision” (Tophet). Remember, Leviathan is a name for the False Messiah and these are his followers. The unrighteous will be the meal for the vultures (Ezek 29 and 32; Matt 24.27; Luke 17.37). Then the righteous will be going to the wedding supper, which is also a part of the Festival of Sukkot on earth.

The “last trump” is not the last trumpet blown during the “trumpet judgments” in Revelation. It is the trumpet blown at Rosh Ha Shanah at the beginning of the Day of the Lord, Tishri 1, and we have explained how this became an idiom for Rosh Ha Shanah earlier in this study. The trumpet blown on Yom Kippur at the end of the Birth-pains is called the “Shofar Ha Gadol” or the “Great Trumpet” (Matt 24.29-31; Isa 27.13).

In the conclusion, we will pick up here.

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 33

Now we are going to look at something different. We have been over 2 Thes 2, 1 Thes 4 and 1 Thes 5, but we have never been to the book of Ephesians. We believe Eph 5.14-33 was written in the context of Rosh Ha Shanah. We will have the same terms that are associated with that festival. For example, Eph 5.14 says, “Therefore, he says, ‘Awake, you who sleep, arise from the dead, and Messiah will give you light!’ Be careful how you walk, not as unwise men, but as wise, making the most of your time, because the days are evil.” Notice the words “awake” and “arise.” We have the resurrection of the righteous and the Natzal on Rosh Ha Shanah, and this concept can also be seen in an ancient Rosh Ha Shanah prayer from the Temple.

In the Mishneh Torah by Rabbi Moses ben Maimon (Rambam), commonly known as Maimonides, recorded the following, “Arise from your slumber, you who are asleep; wake up from your deep sleep, you who are fast asleep; search your deeds and repent; remember your creator. Those of you who forget the truth because of passing vanities, including throughout the year in the useless things that cannot profit you nor save you, look into your souls, amend your ways and deeds. Let everyone give up his evil way and his bad purposes.” This goes with the passage we just read in Eph 5.14 and it is an ancient Rosh Ha Shanah prayer from the Temple.

One of the concepts associated with Rosh Ha Shanah as we have seen is the Marriage of the Messiah (Psa 45.1-17). Eph 5.14-33 picks up with the concept of a marriage. We have already established that the Coronation of the Messiah occurs at the beginning of the Day of the Lord. This takes place in heaven on Rosh Ha Shanah. But Psa 45 links us to his wedding.

As a result, we believe that the book of Ephesians was written at the season of Rosh Ha Shanah to Yom Kippur (1 Thes 5.1). There are many Rosh Ha Shanah terms in this book as we have just mentioned. Yom Kippur terms and concepts can be seen in Eph 1.13-14, 4.30 and 5.26-27. To “be sealed until the day of redemption” (Yom Pedut) is a Yom Kippur term. Additionally, our passages in 1 Thes 4 and Ephesians reflect what we have seen in Isa 59.9-20 and 60.1.

If we look at the marriage as it is presented in Eph 5.23-33 we see terms relating to both Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Kippur. We have husbands being exhorted to be like the Messiah, and wives are a picture of the Eschatological Kahal. The word “church” is used in English, leaving the impression that Paul is talking about the Christian Church, but he isn’t. That organization did not even exist in the First century. The Hebrew “Kahal” means “assembly and it refers to the righteous eschatological congregation that was expected by the Jewish people in a Torah context, and the term goes back to the Tanak (Deut 9.10, 10.4, 18.16 for instance).

In Eph 5.26-27 we see that the Messiah will sanctify (give a kedusha to) the Kahal because he has cleansed her (a Yom Kippur term) and washed her (another Yom Kippur term). Why does he do this? So that he “might present to himself (another Rosh Ha Shanah term) a kahal in all her glory (at the Natzal or gathering), having no spot or wrinkle or any such thing, but that she should be holy (have a kedusha) and blameless.” This passage is full of Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Kippur terms and concepts.

This is how Chava was in Eden. These terms in Eph 5.26-27 also allude to the priests and the korbanot (offerings), and what our body will be like at the resurrection on Rosh Ha Shanah. Then Eph 5.31 says, “the two shall become one flesh” (echad) and this is in reference to Messiah and the Kahal. This is a great mystery or “sowd” which means something with a “deeper meaning” and not something that could never be understood.

Eph 6.10-17 tells us we should put on the whole armor of God. Where have we see seen this before? That is exactly what we have been told in 1 Thes 5, and that came from Isa 59.17, a passage connected to Rosh Ha Shanah. Isa 26 and 27 are written in what is called a Chiastic Structure and we have gone over that previously in this study. These two chapters give a chronological order of events that will occur during the Birth-pains, so that means it starts out on Rosh Ha Shanah in the first few verses and it ends in the last few verses of Isa 27 on Yom Kippur.

What we are going to do is take Isa 26 and we will open up to Isa 57. Then we are going to compare some concepts presented. What we will be doing is called Midrashic Pearl Stringing, which is laying one verse next to another to pick up meaning. If you are not familiar with this technique it is a good one to learn because it will help you interpret the Scriptures. Open up your Bible to Isa 26 and Isa 57 because then you can flip back and forth.

Isa 26.2 says, “Open the gates (immediately you know its Rosh Ha Shanah) that the righteous nation may enter, the one who remains faithful (“emunim” in Hebrew and related to the word “emunah” meaning “faith”).”. Now go to Isa 57.1 where it says, “The righteous man perishes and no one takes it to heart; the devout men are taken away (the Natzal on Rosh Ha Shanah) while no one understands. For the righteous man is taken away (Hebrew “oseif”) from evil (the Birth-pains).” Notice they are all righteous who are entering the gates and being taken away.

Isa 26.3 says, “The steadfast in mind thou will keep in perfect peace.” Isa 57.2 says, “He enters into peace; they rest in their beds, each one who walked in his upright way (Torah).” The word “peace” (shalom) is a word that is used for the Messianic Kingdom (Atid Lavo), or the “Millennium” which is a time of peace.

Here is a major concept. We have all types of passages in the Tanak where we have the dead resurrected (Job and Isaiah for instance). But in our two passages, we have the righteous who are still living. The righteous “perish” and people are seeing it. People are noticing that they are gone. These are living on the earth and not coming out of the grave so that is why they are noticed.

We can do the same thing with 1 Thes 4.16-17 and 2 Thes 2.3. 1 Thes 4.16-17 talks about the living righteous and how the Lord will descend from heaven with a shout and the trumpet of God, and the dead in Messiah will rise first. Then those who are alive and remain (on earth) will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. 2 Thes 2.3 says that we should not be deceived. The Day of the Lord will not come unless the “apostasia” or “physical departure” comes at the first (“Greek “proton” or beginning of the Day of the Lord on Rosh Ha Shanah, Tishri 1) and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition (the False Messiah).”

Now, remember, we have the concept of the “nes” or standard, banner or signal. We see it in Isa 11.10, 18.3, 62.10 and many other passages. This word “nes” means “lifted up” especially on a high mountain or over the people. All the Rabbinical and Christian commentaries say this is the Messiah. Isa 11.10 says, “Then it will come about in that day (Day of the Lord) that the nations (non-Jews) will resort to the root of Jesse (Yeshua the Messiah) who will stand as a signal (“nes” meaning standard or banner) to the people; and his resting place will be glorious.”

Now, in 1 Thes 4 we learned that we will be caught up together with them in the clouds. In Isa 13 and Isa 18 we are going to see the banner being lifted up on the mountain. Both of these passages are going to be dealing with the resurrection of the living and the dead righteous. We need to look at the terminology carefully because terminology is the key.

In Isa 13.1-2 it says, “The oracle concerning Babylon which Isaiah the son of Amoz saw. ‘Lift up a standard (the Messiah) on a high mountain (we are in the clouds with him), raise your voice to them (remember we have a shout, a teruah, in 1 Thes 4), wave the hand that they may enter the gates of the nobles (the gates are open because it is Rosh Ha Shanah).'” In the Temple on Rosh Ha Shanah, two shofarot (ram’s horns) and one silver trumpet (tzotzrot) was blown. There is a place in the Temple where they blew the trumpets and shofars and they have actually found the stone that said “The Place of Trumpeting.” It was found at the southwest corner of the Temple complex. In truth, trumpets were blown daily to signal different things, but they were also blown before the Sabbath and festivals (Num 10.1-9).

It tells you if they blow one silver trumpet the nobles and heads shall assemble before Yehovah (Num 10.4). On the Sabbath they will blow two silver trumpets (called “tzotzrot”) and one shofar, except for Rosh Ha Shanah. On Rosh Ha Shanah it changes and the emphasis is on the shofar, with two ram’s horns and a silver trumpet (Psa 81.3). In Isa 13.2 we expect that one silver trumpet has been blown to bring the nobles up to Yehovah, and that is done on Rosh Ha Shanah.

Isa 13.3 continues, “I have commanded my consecrated ones (the righteous by faith), I have even called my mighty warriors, my proudly exulting ones, to my anger (literally “nose” which means before the face of Yehovah).” In the Natzal and the catching away of the living righteous, we are brought before Yehovah as a pleasing aroma, like in the ancient Havdalah (“separation”) service with the spices and the havdalah candle. This service separates the Sabbath and certain festivals from the other days of the week and can be seen in Acts 20.7-8. God is separating the Olam Ha Zeh (this present world) from the Atid Lavo (“coming or future age” also known as the Day of the Lord) on Rosh Ha Shanah by bringing the righteous into his presence. God will rule during the Day of the Lord (Atid Lavo) and there will be peace and prosperity. This time period will be nothing when compared to the Olam Haba, the World to Come.

We will pick up here in Part 34.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 32

Now we are going to look at some psalms associated with Rosh Ha Shanah, and some other passages. We will look at the timing of the Natzal (Rapture, Gathering) and then do a summary.

Psalm 27 is read for forty days (Elul 1 to Tishri 10) and it has many phrases that allude to Rosh Ha Shanah. Psa 27.5 says, “For in the time of trouble (the Birth-pains) he (God ) will hide me in his pavilion; in the secret of his tent he shall hide me, he shall set me on a rock.” So we see the Natzal (Gathering) in this passage in particular. A shofar is blown when this psalm is read.

Psa 24 is another Rosh Ha Shanah psalm and it is read in every service. We have references to the coronation, “The earth is the Lord’s and all its fullness, the world and those who dwell therein.” He is being declared the king here. We also have a reference to the Natzal (Rapture), “Who may ascend into the hill of the Lord?” then there is a description of the righteous in 24.4.

In Psa 24.7-10 we have several key phrases. It says, “Lift up your heads, O gates, and be lifted up, O ancient doors, that the King of Glory may come in!” Again, this identifies Rosh Ha Shanah because it is the time when the gates of heaven are opened. This is where the righteous enter in (read Isa 13.1-3). This phrase is mentioned twice here (v 7-8, 9-10).

The next main psalm we are going to look at is Psa 47.1-9. It is a Rosh Ha Shanah psalm because it is a coronation psalm. Psa 47.1 says, “Clap your hands” and this is associated with a coronation and the acclamation of a Jewish king (2 Kings 11.12). Then Psa 47.1 goes on to say, “Shout to God with the voice of triumph!” The word “shout” is “ruah” and it means to “give a blast” or sound on the shofar (Psa 98.6). You see that this word is associated with the word “teruah” (Num 29.1) which is a particular note blown on the shofar, and we will see “shout” or “teruah” later on in verse 5.

Psa 47.2 goes on to use the phrase “a great King” (coronation) and 47.5 says, “God has ascended (to the throne) with a shout (teruah), the Lord (Yehovah) with the sound of a trumpet (shofar.” Both “shout” and “trumpet” can be seen in 1 Thes 4.16, a passage that describes the Natzal and is linked to the coronation of Yeshua on Rosh Ha Shanah. This is a Hebrew parallelism.

Then Psa 47.9 says, “The princes of the people have assembled themselves, the people of the God of Abraham (Isa 13.1-3; Psa 27.5.” We have the word “assembled” (ne’esaphu) here and it is related to the word “asaph” which means “to gather.” Many of the psalms were written by a man named Asaph who was the archivist (gatherer) of the psalms. Asaph is a title for that position as well as a name of a person (1 Chr 6.39; 2 Chr 5.12).

When we associate words together from numerous passages it is called “Midrashic Pearl Stringing.” Passages are joined together by related terms. A passage from Psalms is joined us to a passage from 1 Thes 4 as we have seen already, and will see again soon. Then we will have another passage from Psalms joined to another passage from Ephesians, and then Isaiah. They will tell a story as you move through various passages from different books. That is Midrashic Pearl Stringing, and the Jewish people had teachers who were experts on this.

So, we are going to get into 1 Thes 4 and the book of Ephesians (in Part 33), so watch for these. We will see that these passages will be saying the same thing. We will also answer the question, “Where did the writers of the Gospels and the Epistles get this from?” Paul didn’t just pull these terms out of the air. They will come out of the Tanak. Since most people are never trained in the Tanak or these concepts, these meanings are lost on most people who read the Bible. Then when we find relevant terms we need to find out if they are related to any particular festival. Then we can look into that festival to what it teaches about in God’s eschatological plan.

Isa 59.9-20 is an ancient reading for Rosh Ha Shanah, and this will be the text that Paul will use as a basis for 1 Thes 5.1-5 and Eph 6.10-17. This text goes right into Isa 60.1 where it says, “Rise and shine; for your light has come, and the glory of the Lord has risen upon you.” These are all Rosh Ha Shanah terms.

When we read these passages in Isa 59.9-20 we will see the same terms coming up in 1 Thessalonians and Ephesians. These phrases will include, “And he put on righteousness as a breastplate and a helmet of salvation (Hebrew “yeshua”) on his head.” These are pieces of armor and Isaiah wrote this in the Eighth Century B.C. when the Assyrians were coming to invade Israel. If you go to a Bible bookstore and buy books on Spiritual Warfare, you will see the passages referenced will be Eph 6.10-17 and how a believer has armor. Then the author will say that Paul was comparing the armor of a believer with the armor of a Roman soldier because they were the soldiers of Paul’s time (we’ve seen this). But the author is wrong and he missed it. Paul was using Isa 59.17 as his text and it was not the armor of the Romans he is talking about, but the armor of the Jewish army in the Eighth Century B.C., the time of Isaiah. If you want insight into spiritual warfare, study that.

Other phrases in Isa 59 are, “The Redeemer will come to Zion” (v 20) and then it goes right into Isa 60.1 with the terms “arise and shine” and “your light has come.” These terms are associated with Rosh Ha Shanah. So, it would be good for you to read Isa 59.9-20 and highlight these Rosh Ha Shanah terms.

Now, let’s go to 1 Thes 4.13-18 and the famous “rapture” passage that so many know. It says, “But I do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about those who are asleep (dead), that you may not grieve, as do the rest who have no hope. For if we believe that Yeshua died and rose again, even so God will bring with him those who have fallen asleep (died) in Yeshua (they are believers). For this we say to you by the word of the Lord (in the Tanak like Psa 47.1; Isa 21.5; Zeph 2.1-3; Isa 57.1-2; Isa 13.13; Isa 18.3; Isa 26.19-26; Job 14.7, 11-15; Job 19.25-26) that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord (in the Natzal, Tishri 1, year 6001, Rosh Ha Shanah) shall not precede those who have fallen asleep. For the Lord himself will descend (from heaven) with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and the trumpet of God (see above Scriptures) and the dead in Messiah will rise first (2 Thes 2.3…at the beginning of the Day of the Lord), then we who are alive and remain (on the earth…Isa 18.3) shall be caught up (Greek “harpuzo” and is a synonym for “apostasia” in 2 Thes 2.3, meaning a physical departure) together with them (the Natzal or gathering) in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and thus shall we ever be with the Lord. Therefore, comfort one another with these words.” A believer is expected to be hidden from the wrath of God in the Birth-pains (Zeph 2.1-3; Psa 27.5; Isa 57.1-2; Isa 26.19-20).

Now we are going to move on to 1 Thes 5.1-6 to pick up more Rosh Ha Shanah terms, “But concerning the times (festivals) and the seasons (festival seasons), brethren, you have no need that I should write to you. For you yourselves know perfectly that the Day of the Lord (a term for the last 1000 years called the Messianic Kingdom and Sabbath of God or Lord’s Day, but it is also a term for Rosh Ha Shanah because that is when it begins) so comes as a thief in the night (one who steals or “kleptes” in Greek where we get the word “kleptomaniac”). For when they say, ‘Peace and safety’ then sudden destruction comes upon them, as labor pains upon a pregnant woman (alluding to the Birth-pains); and they shall not escape.”

Notice Paul is using the terms associated with Rosh Ha Shanah. He continues, “But you, brethren, are not in darkness, so that this day (Day of the Lord, beginning on Rosh Ha Shanah) should not overtake you like a thief (a kleptomaniac). You are all sons of light and sons of the day. We are not of the night nor of darkness. Therefore, let us not sleep, as others do, but let us watch and be sober.” Notice we have the same terms found in the Rosh Ha Shanah passages of Psa 27 and Isa 59.

He then continues in 1 Thes 5.7-9, “For those who sleep sleep at night, and those who get drunk are drunk at night. But let us who are of the day be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love, and as a helmet the hope of salvation (you see how he is using Isa 59.17?), for God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Yeshua the Messiah.”

In Part 33 we will pick up here.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 31

In the book “Prophetic Light in the Present World” by Kenneth Wuest, p. 38-41, it says, “The other thing which Paul says must come before the Great Tribulation is a ‘falling away’ (A.V.). The Greek word is ‘apostasia’, and it is preceded by the definite article. The words ‘falling away’ are the translators interpretation of what they thought the Greek text meant here, not the translation of the Greek word itself. The root word ‘aphistemi’ means ‘to cause to withdraw, go away, depart, withdraw from.’ In a context where true and false doctrines are in view, it would mean ‘to fall away from true doctrine’ but the additional idea comes from the context, not the verb. No such specification is attached to the word here. The fact that our word ‘apostasy’ is the transliteration of the Greek word means nothing except that in a context where a departure from the faith is in view, the verb does have reference to an apostasy, and that word apostasy has been invested with that meaning. But that cannot serve as the interpretation of the word in a context where a withdrawal from the true faith is not mentioned. Thus, the A.V. offers an interpretation rather than a translation of the word, and should have allowed the English reader to make his own interpretation in light of the context.”

“The root aphistemi is found fifteen times in the New Testament. It is translated ‘depart’ eleven times. It is used once in connection with departure from the faith (1 Tim 4.1). The very fact that the qualifying words ‘from the faith’ are added shows that in itself the word does not have the idea of a defection from the truth. Eight times it is used of a departure from a person, once in the sense of a departure from a place. In the other places where it is found it is translated ‘fall away’ in the case of those in temptation (Luke 8.13) and ‘drew away’ much people (Acts 5.38). The predominant meaning of this verb in the New Testament, therefore, is that of the act of a person departing from another person or from a place. The neuter noun, ‘apostasion’ is translated in its three occurrences by the word ‘divorcement’ which in itself suggests a withdrawal of one person from another. Thayer translates the word ‘a defection’ of a freeman from his patron, ‘a divorce, a repudiation.'”

So, the word “apostasy” is in 2 Thes 2.3, “unless the falling away comes first.” That is understood today as a falling away from the faith. What Wuest is saying is that it is mistranslated, it does not mean a falling away from the faith unless it says “the faith.” What the word means is “to depart” or “departure.”

With that said, Wuest continues, “The feminine form ‘apostasia’ appears in Acts 21.21 where Paul is charged with teaching ‘all the Jews which are among the Gentiles to forsake Moses’ with ‘forsake’ being the A.V. translation of the word. To ‘forsake’ involves a departure. This word is found only here in our Thessalonians passage.” So, “apostasia” is used twice in that form (feminine) in the New Testament. But the word means “a departure.” It can have another word telling us what they are departing from.

Wuest continues, “Liddell and Scott in their classical lexicon gave as their second meaning of apostasia as ‘a departure, a disappearance.’ Dr. E. Schuyler English, to whom the author is deeply indebted for calling his attention to the word ‘departure’ as the correct rendering of ‘apostasia’ in this context, is authority for the fact that the following understood the Greek to mean a ‘departure’ in this context: Tyndale (1534), Coverdale (1535), The Geneva Bible (1537), Cramer (1539), and Beza (1565), and so used it in their translation. The author is well aware of the fact that ‘apostasia’ was used at times both in Classical and Koine Greek in the sense of a defection, a revolt, in a religious sense, a rebellion against God, and of the act we today call apostasy. Liddell and Scott give the above as the first definitions of the word.” In other words, the earlier translations listed gave the meaning of apostasia as a departure. After 1565, it was put as an apostasy from the faith.

Wuest continues, “Moulton and Milligan quote a papyrus fragment where the word is used of a rebel. But these are acquired meanings of the word from the context in which they are found, not the original, basic, literal meaning, and should not be imposed upon the word where the context does not qualify the word by these meanings with the pure translation of the word before us now, the next step is to ascertain from the context, that to which the departure refers. The Greek text has the definite article. A Greek word is definite in itself, and when the article is used, the exegete must pay particular attention to its syntactical use. The basic function of the article is to point out ‘individual identity.'” Wuest is saying that we need to translate the word “apostasia” literally, which means “to depart.” The only way you can make it “to depart from the faith” is to add the words “from the faith” as in 1 Tim 4.1.

Again from Wuest, “Here the article points out a particular departure defined in the context or by some previous reference to the same thing, or as a departure both to the readers and the writer of this letter. Paul does not specifically define the word by a qualifying phrase. Therefore, the article must point to something mentioned in the immediate context, in a wider context, or assumed to be known by both the readers and the writer of the letter. The Apostle had just referred to the gathering together of the saints to the Lord Jesus at his coming (2.1), which is the departure of the church from the earth. In his previous letter (1 Thes 4.13-18), he had described that event in the words, ‘Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air’ which involves a departure from the earth.”

God is restraining (retaining, to seize, hold fast to) Satan from bringing forth (empowering) the False Messiah until the departure of the true believers from the earth in what is called the Natzal (Rapture) on Rosh Ha Shanah, Tishri 1, year 6001 from creation. After that, Satan can empower his man, who will make a military treaty with Israel about ten days later, on Yom Kippur, Tishri 10, year 6001 from creation (Dan 9.24-27). Wuest is saying the same thing as Paul in 2 Thes 2.3, and what the Talmud says in Sanhedrin 98a. The False Messiah cannot take power until the righteous are removed from the earth, leaving only unbelievers temporarily.

What are some reasons for the gathering of 2 Thes 2.1? The righteous are gathered to allow the False Messiah to take power because the time (the Day of the Lord) of the final reckoning has arrived. The righteous are also gathered so they can attend the coronation and the wedding of the Messiah in heaven. So, let’s talk about these events.

First, the False Messiah cannot take over Europe until the righteous are removed. Why do we have a False Messiah anyway? Because God is bringing everything to judgment. God will not be restraining or holding back Satan from bringing forth the False Messiah, but letting him loose to try to defeat Yehovah. If they can, than they can rule.

Secondly, the righteous are going to the coronation and the wedding of the Messiah in heaven. People will say, “Why should believers expect to escape the Tribulation. Israel went through the exile in Babylon and the slavery in Egypt. There are many examples of trials and tribulations and God did not deliver them out of the way, so why should believers expect to be taken out?” But we have to understand there are three reasons why God delivers believers at this time. So the False Messiah can be revealed, so the believers can be present at the coronation of the Messiah, and so the believers can be a part of the wedding of the Messiah.

So, when the False Messiah comes to power, only the “average people” (the Chata’im or “sinners”) and the wicked (Rashim) will wonder after the beast (Rev 17.8). Where are the righteous (tzaddikim)? They have been “gathered” together in heaven, leaving only the average sinner and the wicked behind on the earth (temporarily) at this time.

We will pick up here in Part 32.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 30

Now we are going to get into 2 Thes 2.1-12 and dissect these verses to see how they relate to the Natzal and find out when the False Messiah appears. Paul begins by saying, “Now we request you, brethren, with regard to the coming of our Lord Yeshua Ha Mashiach, and our gathering together unto him.” Right away we see something important. Notice we have the word “gathering” used here and this refers to the resurrection of the righteous in the Natzal (Rapture). We have seen this in Isa 13.2-3; Isa 18.3 and Isa 27.10, but there are other verses like Neh 8.1; Isa 62.10; Isa 21.5, 57.1; Zeph 2.1-2 and Rev 4.1. This is Rosh Ha Shanah, a Yom Ha Din. The word in Greek for “gathering” here is “episunagoge” and it is a verb (action), meaning to come together. It is also called “Ha Kohelet” in Hebrew meaning to gather or assemble.

In 2 Thes 2.2 he continues, “That you may not be quickly shaken from your composure or be disturbed either by a spirit (prophetic spirit) or a message or letter as if from us, to the effect that the Day of the Lord (an ancient name for Rosh Ha Shanah and the Atid Lavo) has come.” We know that the last one thousand years in God’s seven thousand year plan is called the “Day of the Lord.” We have also established that the festival of Yom Teruah (or Rosh Ha Shanah) was also called “the Day of the Lord.” The word for “betrothal” is “Erusin” and this is seen in the festival of Shavuot (Jer 2.1-3). The second stage of a marriage is seen in the festival of Rosh Ha Shannah and is called “Nisuin” and it means “to elevate, be uplifted or caught up” (1 Thes 4.17). It is another name for the natzal, or rapture. It is also related to the word “nissi” meaning “banner or standard.” It is a name for the Messiah (Isa 11.10, Exo 17.8-16). We know that on Rosh Ha Shanah there will be a resurrection of the righteous (a lifting up) and a wedding (Psa 47) in heaven. Psa 45 talks about a coronation. Both of these psalms are Rosh Ha Shanah psalms in Jewish Eschatology.

2 Thes 2.3 says, “Let no one in any way deceive you for unless the falling away comes first, and the man of lawlessness is revealed, the son of destruction.” So let’s unpack this verse. Where it says “falling away” it is the Greek word “apostasia” and it means “to depart, remove a person from one place to another.” It can also mean “a disappearance, or caught up.” It can also mean a “spiritual departure.” The meaning is determined by the context, and the context in this portion is “the gathering” in verse 1, so this means a person moving from one place to gather in another.

We would like to quote from the book, Rosh Ha Shanah and the Messianic Kingdom To Come” by Joseph Good of Hatikva Ministries. This will give us more insight into this word “apostasia” used in verse 3. Good says on p. 125-127, “Kenneth Wuest, a noted Greek scholar, states in his word studies an interesting point that has much to do with the catching away of the living believers. He states that the phrase ‘falling away’ is a mistranslation of the Greek word apostasia and should rather be translated “departure.”

“The root verb aphistemi is found fifteen times in the New Testament. It is translated ‘depart’ eleven times. Although it is often found translated in similar meanings, ‘the predominant meaning of this verb in the New Testament…is that of the act of a person departing from another person or from a place…Liddel and Scott in their classical lexicon gives as the second meaning of apostasia, ‘a departure, a disappearance.’ Dr E. Schuyler English, to whom the author is deeply indebted for calling his attention to this word ‘departure’ as the correct rendering of apostasia in this context, is authority for that fact that…the Greek word means ‘a departure.'” Wuest further states that apostasia was at times used to denote a defection or revolt; however, this meaning “should not be imposed upon the word where the context does not qualify the word by these meanings.”

“According to Wuest, Rav Shaul (Apostle Paul) refers to “the gathering together of the saints, to the Lord Yeshua at his coming, which is the departure of the congregation from the earth” in 2 Thes 2.1. In Rav Shaul’s previous letter, “he had described that event in the words, ‘Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clods to meet the Lord in the air’ which involves a departure from the earth.”

“Remember that the Greek word harpuzo means to catch away. Harpuzo is the word used in Rav Shaul’s (Apostle Paul) first letter to the Thessalonians. Its Hebrew equivalent is natzal, which in its root form means to deliver. A derivative of natzal is “metzal” which means to pluck away, or a radical departure.”

“Also the Greek word that is used in 2 Thess 2.1 for this gathering is episunagoge, which is the Greek equivalent for asupah and is a derivative of the word asaph and a word meaning congregation of assembly. According to Num 10.1-3, the assembly is gathered together by the blowing of a trumpet. Therefore, those that have received the Messiah and have been made nobles are gathered to the gate of the assembly by the blowing of a trumpet.” As the believers are taken from the earth with the blowing of the shofar, they are in effect hidden from the wrath of God to come in the birth-pains. The Talmudic name Yom Kesseh for this festival (Rosh Ha Shanah) portrays this aspect. The name means ‘The Day of Concealment.’ It received this name from being the only festival that falls at the beginning of the month when the new moon may still be concealed.”

When the earth reaches Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6001 from creation, the shofar will blow and believers will be resurrected and “gathered” to be present for the coronation and wedding of the Messiah. Wuest said that five Greek translations had it this way until about the 1600’s (more detail on that later).

Notice that 2 Thes 2.3 says that this departure happens “first” and this is the Greek word “proton.” But first of what? It is the first, or the beginning, of the Day of the Lord, which begins on the first day of Tishri, a new moon. We know that the name of this day is Rosh Ha Shanah, which is the subject of this chapter. The word “rosh” means “head” (or first), and the “son of destruction” is of course the False Messiah. The Natzal (gathering, rapture) happens first, then the man of destruction (False Messiah) is revealed, which is exactly what we have previously presented.

Tishri 1 comes and we have the natzal (rapture) and then a few days later the USA is destroyed. The Scriptures tell us that Europe is in fear and there is a meeting with ten rulers of Europe. There is pan eleventh person in the room (the little horn that came up among them-Dan 7.7-8) and the ten rulers give their power to act on behalf of their respective nations to the eleventh man, and he is the False Messiah. He will make a military treaty with Israel by Tishri 10 (Yom Kippur), and Tishri 11 begins God’s countdown of 2520 days to the end of the Birth-pains and the coming of Yeshua.

2 Thes 2.4 then says, “who opposes and exalts himself above every so-called god or object of worship so that he takes his seat in the Temple of God, displaying himself as being God.” This will happen at the exact halfway point of the Birth-pains, or Nisan 10. This is the day that Yeshua rode into Jerusalem and entered the Temple displaying that he was the Messiah. The False Messiah is a counterfeiter.

2 Thes 2.5, says, “Do you not remember that while I was still with you I was telling you these things?” He goes on to say in 2 Thes 2.6, “And you know what restrains (meaning to “seize and hold fast to, retain”) him (Ha Satan from empowering) now, so that in his time he (False Messiah) may be revealed.”

2 Thes 2.7 says, “For the mystery (secret) of lawlessness (“anomos” in Greek meaning ‘Torah-less-ness’) is already at work, only he who now restrains (to seize, hold fast to, retain) until out of the midst (of lawlessness or Torah-less-ness) it comes (appears, arises, arrives or becomes born).” The False Messiah will come and be born in the midst of Torah-less-ness (lawlessness).

Then 2 Thes 2.8-12 goes on to say, “and then the lawless one (Torah-less one) will be revealed (arises, arrives, appears, becomes born) whom the Lord will slay with the breath of his mouth (his word) and bring to an end by the appearance of his coming (on Tishri 10, Yom Kippur, year 6008 in Jerusalem-Matt 24.29-31), the one whose coming is in accord with the activity of Satan with all power and signs and wonders (the False Messiah) and with all deception of wickedness for those (those who do not follow the Torah and believe in Yeshua-Rev 12.17) who perish because they did not receive the love of the truth (of the Torah, the word of God) as to be saved. And for this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they might believe what is false in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth (Torah) but took pleasure in wickedness (breaking the Torah and being lawless, or Torah-less).”

The Torah is contrasted with the lie in 2 Thes 2.3-12 and it identifies what the “truth” and the “lie” is. The truth is the Torah and being observant, and the lie is “lawlessness” or “Torah-less-ness.” In other words, this passage is telling us that the recipients of this letter were not to be disturbed over any letter or teacher that says the natzal, or the gathering of verse 1, has already happened. That is because the Day of the Lord (the last 1000 years) will not start until there is a physical departure of the believers in the “gathering” (natzal, rapture) which happens on “the first” (Rosh) day of the “Day of the Lord (Tishri 1 and the beginning of the year or Rosh Ha Shanah meaning head or first of the year). After that, the False Messiah will have been born in the midst of lawlessness (Torah-less-ness) and will be revealed, the son of destruction (Num 24.24; Dan 11.45; Rev 19.20). He will sit in the Temple claiming he is “God” and “Jesus” but he is a counterfeit. He is “lawless” (no Torah because it has been “done away with”) and he will lead others who believe the same thing. This is a deception and a delusion, a “lie” contrasted with “the truth.”

This passage plainly tells us that the gathering (natzal, rapture) happens before the False Messiah can be revealed. The “mystery of lawlessness” (Torah-less-ness) was already in existence at the time of Paul, but the Lord is holding back the revelation of the False Messiah who will be born, appears, arrives and arises out of the midst of that lawlessness. This will be a specific time in the Day of the Lord, after Tishri 1 (the gathering. natzal, rapture) and by Tishri 10, Yom Kippur, year 6001 from creation, when he is revealed by making a military treaty with Israel.

We will pick up here in Part 31.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 29

Let’s look at the Birth-pains briefly, using some of the terms we have learned. In the first three and a half years, we have the beginning of the Day of the Lord on Rosh Ha Shanah, Tishri 1, from creation. We will have a Yom Ha Din, the anointing of the 144,000, the resurrection of the righteous (Natzal) to go to the wedding and coronation of the Messiah. Ten days later, or probably no later than Tishri 8, year 6001, Babylon (USA) will be destroyed by Gog and Magog (Russia) and the False Messiah will take control of Europe.

On Tishri 11, year 6001, the False Messiah makes a military treaty with Israel. Gog and Magog will attack Europe and a conventional war (not nuclear) begins that will last three years. Gog and Magog will be winning. On Tishri 1 (Rosh Ha Shanah), year 6004, Gog and Magog will attack Israel. Russia was behind the attack of Israel on Yom Kippur in 1973, but the army was at home and the synagogues and were easy to recall. If they attacked on Rosh Ha Shanah it would have been harder to call up the reserves and they know that now. They won’t make that mistake again.

But in the Birth-pains the Israeli army will be defeated and the False Messiah will be unable to come to the aid of Israel. On Tishri 10 (Yom Kippur), Yehovah defeats the armies of Gog and Magog (Russia), and Israel turns to Yehovah and believes in Yeshua as the sent Messiah as one nation. Once the Russian army has been defeated the False Messiah will attack the land of Gog and Magog after their armies are defeated in Israel.

Nisan 10 will be the exact halfway point of the Birth-pains leading to the second half of the Birth-pains. The Abomination of Desolation has already been set up in the Temple, and all the services are stopped and the False Messiah comes to Jerusalem. The Two Witnesses are killed. From Nisan 10 to Tishri 10 is 1260 days, 42 months or a time, times and half a time. This equates to three and a half years. This second 1260 years will be the latter half of the Birth-pains.

On Nisan 10, the False Messiah declares himself to be God and Israel will flees into the wilderness. They have been prepared for this by the teaching of the Two Witnesses and the 144,000, so they saw it coming. They will be protected by God, believe in Yeshua and are Torah observant. The Two Witnesses were killed on Nisan 10 and their bodies will lie in the streets of Jerusalem for three and a half days. This brings us to Nisan 14 (Passover) and they will be resurrected from the dead and the world will see it.

In Year 6006 there will be a battle at Megiddo as the False Messiah confronts the Kings of the East, but this will not be the last battle. On Rosh Ha Shannah, year 6008, Yeshua returns to Mount Sinai with all the resurrected believers. He follows the route Moses took to the Promised Land. There is a battle in Jerusalem as Yeshua returns on Yom Kippur, a Yom Ha Din, Tishri 10, year 6008, and the Great Shofar is blown. The False Messiah and the False Prophet are captured and thrown into the Lake of Fire, and the judgment found in Matt 25 begins.

So, with that said, let’s pick up some additional information. The False Messiah will come to power in Europe as we have said. This will happen immediately after the destruction of Babylon (USA). He comes to power as a result of a meeting that only lasts about one hour, and this meeting is apparently a result of the fear and panic that comes from the destruction of Babylon (USA). Eleven men are in that meeting at least, and ten of the men have been given total power and authority to represent their home countries for the one hour meeting. These men will give their power and authority to the eleventh man, who says he has a plan to save them, but they need to give him power to do it. They do not have time to go back to their respective legislatures to ask for permission to do this. They need to act now because time is of the essence. The eleventh man in this meeting is the False Messiah and he will be revealed. He makes a military treaty with Israel within days (Tishri 11) of taking over Europe. He is also revealed by this military treaty.

We are going to go into 2 Thes 2.1-12 with a lot of detail and we need to know when the False Messiah will be revealed, and we have already touched on that by saying that he will be revealed when he becomes the ruler in Europe and when he makes a military treaty with Israel.

In this passage, it is clear that Paul saw this “man of lawlessness (meaning not Torah observant, Torah-less) as the opponent of Yeshua the Messiah. The False Messiah is counterfeit to Yeshua, not just opposed to him. So we are going to dissect 2 Thes 2.1-2 piece by piece which will give us more insight into our main subject of the Natzal (Rapture/Gathering).

There was a doctrine associated with Rosh Ha Shanah called “The Gathering” and we will see this term in 2 Thes 2.1, and it is what Paul is talking about here (Isa 13.2, 18.3; Psa 27.10). In the Jewish Encyclopedia called “Antichrist” it says that the passage in 2 Thes 2.1-12 can be explained “by the aid of rabbinical eschatology.” Sanhedrin 98a of the Talmud teaches that the Messiah will not appear unless mankind is either entirely righteous or entirely wicked. They say that this concept explains “what restrains” of 2.6 and the “who now restrains” of 2.7. This may have some bearing on those verses but there will be more to it as it applies to when the False Messiah appears, but both of the above statements are true to some extent.

The False Messiah cannot rise to power as long as the righteous Kahal (assembly) is on the earth, and we do not mean “the church.” On the contrary, the “church” will contribute to the success of the False Messiah. The Ruach Ha Kodesh (Holy Spirit) restrains Ha Satan (the Satan) from establishing the False Messiah before his time in God’s eschatological plans. In other words, the False Messiah cannot come to the front because the Ruach restrains him until God is ready. When the righteous are removed, the Ruach Ha Kodesh (Holy Spirit) will no longer restrain him from coming to power. So, for a short time, without the righteous in the world, the world is entirely wicked.

At the start of the Birth-pains, the False Messiah must come to power. He will reign for seven biblical years (2520 days). We have established that in Dan 9.24-27 he will be over Europe for three and a half years, then he will try to rule the world for three and a half years. But, he has been given only seven years.

When Yeshua returns at the end of the seven years to Jerusalem, all the unrighteous (wicked) are gathered together and destroyed. This leaves the world for a short time entirely righteous (Luke 17,34-37; Joel 3.12-14; Matt 13.30). The removal of the wicked is called the “Feast of Leviathan” (Matt 24.28; Rev 19.20-21; Ezek 29.1-7, 32.1-8) and the wicked are killed at a place called “Tophet” in the Valley of Hinnom, south of Jerusalem (Jer 7.22-34, 19.1-15). In Hebrew this valley is called “Gey Hinnom” and it is where we get the word “Gehenna.”

So, with that in mind, in Part 30 we will pick up here and get into 2 Thes 2.1-12 and dissect these verses to see if we can find out when the False Messiah appears. We are going to be able to see that with the foundational background that we have learned from this study so far we will be able to interpret passages like this with much more understanding.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, The Temple, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 28

We are going to continue with a summary of the Birth-pains (Tribulation) and we know that Gog and Magog will attack Israel at the end of the third year of the Birth-pains around Rosh Ha Shanah, Tishri 1 (to start the fourth year) and they will devastate Israel. On Yom Kippur, Yehovah defeats the armies of Gog and Magog. Israel has become believers in Yeshua as the Messiah and as a nation they have turned back to Yehovah (Ezek 39.22).

The seven shepherds and eight princely men of Micah 5.5 are the False Messiah and his other rulers. He attacks and defeats the land of Gog and Magog (Russia) making himself the most powerful ruler in the world. His conquest of Gog and Magog takes six months. Now we are at the exact halfway point of the Birth-pains (Nisan 10) and the False Messiah will then enter Jerusalem, right before Passover (Nisan 14) of the fourth year.

The idea of Europe invading Russia has happened before. Napoleon Bonaparte invaded Russia and got caught in the Russian winter and was defeated. Hitler also invaded Russia and got caught in the Russian winter and was defeated. Yehovah will defeat Gog and Magog by Yom Kippur (Tishri 10) and the False Messiah and Europe will invade Russia during the winter (between Tishri and Nisan) and be successful. That’s when he enters Jerusalem on Nisan 10, the same day Yeshua entered Jerusalem in what is called the “Triumphal Entry.” The False Messiah will do the same thing, declaring himself God, but he is a counterfeit.

We also know that the Birth-pains will be 2520 days. It has already been established that Yeshua will arrive in Jerusalem at the end of the Birth-pains on a Yom Kippur. The earth today has a solar cycle of 365 1/4 days a year. A Jewish lunar and solar year is 354 days with an extra month interpolated every third year. When Babylon is destroyed during the first ten days of the Day of the Lord, right before the Birth-pains begin, the earth will move out of its present orbit because it will be a cataclysm, creating a 360 day year again (Isa 13.13, 24.18-20-notice these passages are in chapters dealing with the destruction of Babylon).

From the time the False Messiah signs the military treaty with Israel till the halfway point of the Birth-pains, it is 1260 days, 42 months or a time, times and half a time (three and half years-from Yom Kippur to Nisan 10). From Nisan 10 till the Messiah comes on a Yom Kippur three and a half years later on a Tishri 10, it will be 1260 days, 42 months or a time, times and a half a time. The total number of days will be 2520 days (7 x 360). If we know that the Messiah will be in Jerusalem on a Yom Kippur according to Matt 24.29-31, and the “great trumpet” (Shofar Ha Gadol is only sounded on Yom Kippur), then we can count back 2520 days and we know that the Birth-pains will begin on the day after Yom Kippur (Tishri 11). From there the exact halfway point is Nisan 10, four days before Passover. This is the day Yeshua entered Jerusalem and the Temple and declared the Messiah. The False Messiah is going to do the same thing.

Now, just as Yeshua had a prophet named Yochanon Ha Matvil (John the Baptist) to prepare the way, the False Messiah has a counterpart known as the False Prophet. He arrived in Jerusalem during the month of Adar, one month before Nisan. He commands that an image of the False Messiah be placed in the Temple, and this is what is called the Abomination of Desolation (Dan 9.27).

The false Messiah will kill the Two Witnesses who have come in the spirit and power of Moses and Elijah. They will lie in the streets of Jerusalem after they are killed for three and a half days, which will bring us to mid-day on Passover. Yehovah will resurrect them and they will ascend to heaven. When they are killed and the False Messiah declares himself God, the Jewish people, who are now believers in Yeshua, will flee into the wilderness to be protected by God for the last three and a half years of the Birth-pains (Rev 12.14).

The first three and a half years of the Birth-pains was directed towards the Jewish people. The last three and half years will be directed towards the non-Jews. The False Messiah will have authority for the last three and a half years to persecute those who have come to believe in Yeshua during the Birth-pains (Rev 11.2, 13.5; Dan 7.25, 12.7). He is now the most powerful ruler in the world and nobody can touch him for awhile. However, he will be attacked at the end of the Birth-pains (Dan 11.44).

As we have said, Israel will flee into the Jordanian/Moabite wilderness when the two Witnesses are killed (Rev 11.7, 12.6, 13-17). Israel believes in Yeshua and is persecuted by the False Messiah and they will flee into the wilderness for the last half of the Birth-pains. You will also note that these believers in Yeshua are Torah observant (Rev 12.17). Apparently, the Torah was not done away with as some teach and believe.

One of the concepts that is never taught is that Yeshua will literally come back to the earth on a Rosh Ha Shanah. Yom Kippur is when he literally comes to Jerusalem. He will return from heaven to Mount Sinai with the “clouds of heaven” (believers) and march to Jerusalem on a Yom Kippur. To some, this is shocking concept, but it can be found in Scripture, so where are we coming from on this? We will present the Scriptures for you to research and follow up on.

The Lord is seen progressing north from Mount Sinai. Look up the names of the places and where they are and plot them out on a map and you will see something very interesting. Around Rosh Ha Shanah he is at Mount Sinai in Deut 33.2, and in the wilderness in Isa 40.3, and near Teman, near Sinai, in Hab 3-4. He is in Midian in Hab 3.7-9. On Rosh Ha Shanah he is in Sela (Petra) in Isa 16.1-5 and Isa 42.10-13. He is marching from Seir (Edom) in Judges 5.4-5 and in the south in Zech 9.14. In Isa 63.1-6 he is in Edom and Bozrah. He will come on a Rosh Ha Shanah in Prov 7.20 (he is the husband that has gone away and will come back at the “hidden moon”). He meets the fugitives with bread in Arabia (Isa 21.13-15). He is at the sheepfolds of Bozrah in Mic 2.12-13.

On Yom Kippur he has arrived in Jerusalem in Isa 27.12-13; Zech 14.3-5 and Matt 24.27-31. The great trumpet is blown and the bridegroom and bride have come out of their wedding chamber and are coming back in Joel 2.15-16. In Song 8.5 they are coming to Jerusalem from the wilderness.

So, what happens? Rev 19.19-21 says he makes war with the False Messiah and the nations, and their followers are killed and their bodies put into Tophet in Isa 66.24; Jer 19.1-15 and Rev 19.20-21. Yeshua arrives in Jerusalem, at the Mount of Olives. The Great Shofar blows and the angels are dispatched to gather the unbelievers first, then the believers (Matt 24.29-31; Luke 17.33; Matt 25.31-46. There is an earthquake to Azal (12 miles) and the people flee. The False Messiah and False Prophet are captured and they are cast into the lake of fire (Dead Sea was called the lake of fire), resulting in the judgment of Matt 25. Yeshua is taking the same path Moses took coming north to the land of Israel. He will gather the exiles together, and if you have marked on a map all the places mentioned, you will see how he is moving north.

So, what do we have so far? We have the Natzal (Rapture) on Rosh Ha Shanah (Yom Ha Din), year 6001 from creation. We are in heaven for a coronation and wedding of the Messiah and spend seven years there called the “Shavuah L Chuppah.” On Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6008, Yeshua the Messiah returns to Mount Sinai with the clouds of heaven (believers) and on Yom Kippur, year 6008, Yeshua returns to Jerusalem as the Shofar Ha Gadol (great trumpet) is blown. The in-gathering of the righteous from among the nations begins, along with the unrighteous. They are judged as Yeshua sits on the Mount of Olives.

We will pick up with what happens in the first three and a half years of the Birth-pains in Part 29, as we look into Jewish Eschatology and the Natzal (Rapture).

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 27

After the False Messiah takes control of Europe he enters into a military treaty with Israel, now that the USA is gone (Dan 9.27). Russia has already attacked the USA (nuclear) and later they will attack Europe in a conventional war, not nuclear, because they want Europe intact. This treaty will strengthen his military position also. This treaty will be for a “shavuah” (seven years) but after three and a half years he will turn on Israel, put an end to the korbanot (offerings) and set up the Abomination of Desolation and declare himself God (2 Thes 2).

Now, remember, we talked about the False Messiah being one of the seven, but is himself also an eighth (Rev 17.11). This concept can also be seen in Micah 5.5. When the Assyrian (Russia) invades Israel (Ezek 38-39), Israel will raise against Assyria “seven shepherds and eight princely men.” We started out with ten kings or “shepherds”, but how do we end up with seven kings or shepherds?

The False Messiah has ten rulers with him at the start of the Birth-pains. By the halfway point there are only seven rulers and there are a number of passages that show this. Dan 7.7-8 tells us we had ten horns, then a “little horn” arises among them and three horns are pulled out, leaving seven. If you add the little horn (False Messiah) it gives you eight kings, rulers or shepherds.

Dan 7.19-20 basically tells us the same thing. You have ten horns, then a little horn arises and three horns fall or are subdued, leaving seven. The little horn (False Messiah) gives you eight kings, rulers or shepherds. Dan 7.24 says the same thing. Dan 7.25 tells us about the False Messiah who will speak out against the Lord and he will make changes in “times” (festivals) and “law” (Torah). They (the tzadikim/saints/true believers) will be given into his hands for a time (one year), times (two years) and a half a time (six months), for a total of three and a half years, which is the second half of the Birth-pains. This equals 1260 days or 42 months on the biblical calendar.

The False Messiah will make war with the tzadikim (saints), so who are the “saints?” They are the ones who have become believers since the resurrection of the righteous (Natzal/Rapture) on Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6001 from creation. We have had three and a half years for many to become believers in Yeshua, including the nation of Israel. Many non-Jews will be questioning the False Messiah and start to check everything out. Eventually, the lies of the False Messiah will not be believed by everyone.

So, what happened to the three horns of Dan 7.7-8, 19-20, 24? Zech 11.8 says, “I dismissed the three shepherds (kings) in one month. My soul loathed them and their soul also abhorred me.” In the Peshat (literal) level, this is referring to the removal of some civil or religious authorities, but it alludes to the removal of three rulers who were initially with the False Messiah in the Sowd (secret) level.

Rev 13.1 says, “Then I stood on the sand of the sea and I saw a beast rising out of the sea, having seven heads and ten horns, and on his heads ten crowns, and on his heads a blasphemous name.” In this passage, the ten crowns represent the rulers, and the ten horns represent the country. But when we see the same beast in Rev 12.1-3 there are seven crowns. This is another piece of evidence that Revelation is not written in chronological order. Rev 12.3 says, “And another sign appeared in heaven; behold, a great fiery red dragon having seven heads, and ten horns, and seven crowns on his head.” We have lost three “shepherds” (kings, rulers).

Now, there is an important passage in Mic 5.5-6 that we want to look at. It says, “When the Assyrian comes into our land (this is Gog and Magog), and when he treads in our palaces, then we will raise against him seven shepherds and eight princely men. They will waste with the sword the land of Assyria (Gog and Magog), and the land of Nimrod at its entrances (borders); thus he shall deliver us from the Assyrian when he (God) comes into our land and when he treads within our borders.” As a side note, H.A. Ironside, the head of Moody Bible Institute wrote a book in 1913 identifying Assyria as Gog and Magog.

We see two things here. The False Messiah and Europe will not be allowed to help Israel much when Russia attacks Israel. We will show you why, using an example from ancient history when Assyria invaded Israel. The False Messiah may try to help Israel but will be stopped by Yehovah. Secondly, we see that the False Messiah will attack the land of Gog and Magog (Russia) as seen in our Mic 5.5-6 passage about Assyria, and in Ezek 39.6. In other words, when Gog and Magog (Assyria/Russia) comes into the land, Israel will call on the False Messiah and Europe for help, based on the military treaty they have with them, but Yehovah will not let them help (Dan 9.27).

Isa 30.1-7 tells us that Israel was not to seek help from Egypt (Europe) and Pharaoh (False Messiah) because it is in vain. God will cause Egypt to sit idle. The key to understanding why God will not allow Europe and the False Messiah to help when Russia attacks can be found in a story by Josephus in Antiquities of the Jews, Book 10, Chapter 1.4. It talks about the time when Assyria invaded Israel in the time of Hezekiah and Sennacherib.

Josephus writes, “About the same time also the king of Assyria wrote an epistle to Hezekiah, in which he said he was a foolish man in supposing that he should escape from being his servant, since he had already brought under many and great nations; and he threatened, that, when he took him he would utterly destroy him, unless he now opened the gates, and willingly received his army into Jerusalem. When he had read this epistle, he despised it, on account of the trust that he had in God; but he rolled up the epistle, and laid it up within the Temple; and as he made his further prayers to God for the city, and for the preservation of all the people, the prophet Isaiah said that God had heard his prayer, and that he should not at this time be besieged by the king of Assyria; that for the future he might be secure of not being at all disturbed by him; and that the people might go on peacefully, and without fear, with their husbandry and other affairs; but after a little while, the king of Assyria, when he had failed of his treacherous designs against the Egyptians, returned home without success on the following occasion.”

“He spent a long time in the siege of Pelusium (Greek name for Lachish in the Shephelah Valley-Jer 34.7); and when the banks that he had raised over against the walls were of a great height, and when he was ready to make an immediate assault upon them, but heard that Tirhakah, king of the Ethiopians (or “Cush” of the 25th dynasty) was coming, and bringing great forces to aid the Egyptians, and was resolved to march through the desert, and so to fall directly upon the Assyrians, this king Sennacherib was disturbed at the news; and, as I said before, left Pelusium (Lachish) and returned back without success.”

“Now concerning this Sennacherib, Herodotus also says, in the second book of his histories, now this ‘king came against the Egyptian king, who was a priest of Vulcan’ and that as he was besieging Pelusium (Lachish), Herodotus was mistaken he broke up the siege in the following occasion. This Egyptian priest prayed to God, and God heard his prayer, and sent a judgment on the Arabian king. But in this Herodotus was mistaken when he called this king not of the Assyrians, but of the Arabians; for he said that ‘a multitude of mice gnawed to pieces on one night both the bows and the rest of the armor of the Assyrians; and that was on the account that the king, when he had no bows left, drew his army from Pelusium.'”

In other words, the Assyrians came down to Israel under Sennacherib because Hezekiah tried to overthrow the Assyrian yoke. He forms an alliance with the Egyptian Pharaoh Tirhakah who had joined with the 25th dynasty of Ethiopia. Sennacherib comes down and Hezekiah calls on Egypt and Pharaoh to come for help. So Tirhakah marches out of Egypt and gets to about Beersheba, and the Assyrians have come down to stop him from the Shephelah Valley, and the two armies camp and will fight the next day. During the night a horde of mice come through the Assyrian camp and ate the feathers of the arrows, the bowstrings and the leather slings. The Assyrians wake up to find that their weapons are ruined and it was not the time to fight.

What is strange is the Assyrians could have defeated Tirhakah if they attacked, but Tirhakah made the decision during the night to pull back and return to Egypt. He did not come to the aid of Israel at all, and the question is, “Why?” It is because God was not going to allow Egypt and Pharaoh to help Israel, and so he sent the mice to disturb the Assyrians. God had his own plan about all of this. He was going to destroy the Assyrian army himself, in one night. He did not want Israel to think they were delivered by Egypt and Pharaoh. In the same way, God will not allow the False Messiah and Europe to help Israel when Russia invades. He will destroy Russia himself and Israel will know they were delivered by the hand of God alone (Ezek 39.22). As a result of this defeat, however, God will allow the False Messiah and Europe to exploit the situation and they will attack the land of Russia and subdue them under his authority (Ezek 39.6; Mic 5.6).

We will pick up here in Part 28.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 26

We know that the False Messiah is “himself also an eighth and is one of the seven” (Rev 17.11). The “seven” are Egypt, Babylon, Assyria, Medo-Persia, Greece, Rome and the seventh is Revived Rome. Remember this because we are going to see other references to “the seven shepherds” and so on. These ten horns are not the heads of their countries but they receive authority from their home countries “as kings” with the beast for “one hour” (a short time). Some sort of disaster occurred and these ten representatives are sent to a meeting where the False Messiah is present, but he is not the False Messiah yet. No country does this sort of thing unless there is an extreme emergency.

In the book, “Prophecies in the Book of Esther” by Joseph Good, Hatikva Ministries, p. 86-87, we have some insight into why there are ten kings. They will be related to what is called the “Decem Viri” of ancient Rome, meaning “Ten Men.” Good writes, “Rome was founded and settled around 753 B.C.E. After a few kings, the citizens of Rome grew tired of the tyrants who had ruled. This caused the ancient Romans to form a republic. However, a problem persisted for several years, clashes between the two classes. The Patricians were wealthy and powerful. The Plebians were poor and over taxed. Each group had to serve in the military, but representation from the Plebian caste was limited. This led to a series of disputes between the two classes which lasted many years. During one such dispute, the Plebians withdrew to one of the hills of Rome ans settled, insulating themselves from the Patricians. From this the Plebians formed a group known as the Tribunal. At first the Tribunes were two men, but the Tribunal later grew to include at least ten. After many more disputes with the Patricians, the Plebians commissioned the Decem Viri, ten men, to write a code of laws that would protect their rights and the rights of all Roman citizens.”

“The Decem Viri were not nobles. They represented a society promising to give legal protection that was much needed. The group formed about 450 B.C.E and remained for less than two years. The legal code they compiled was called the Twelve Tablets because the codes were written on twelve separate tablets of clay. The actual tablets have not survived, but the laws written on them have survived centuries. These laws, developed by the Romans, were among the most complete and complex system of laws in the ancient world. The laws have likewise strongly influenced the character of the laws in virtually every nation of Western Europe, with the exception of England.”

“Following the fall of the Roman Empire, and through the Middle Ages, the ancient laws fell into disuse. However, late in the eleventh century, the ancient Roman law was rediscovered and studied by scholars. Today, even the United States has been influenced by this old code. For example, the ancient Tribunes had the power to forbid certain action on part of the Roman Senate, comprised of Patricians. By calling out, “Veto” (I forbid) action could be stopped. The veto has become a powerful part of the legal system of the United States.”

“The Decem Viri provided a service to Rome. However, their corruption and misuse of power forced them from this position less than two years after their commission. This corresponds directly to the False Messiah as described in Daniel and Revelation as having ten kings who direct his empire.” The “ten” can be seen in Dan 7.7-8, 24; Rev 13.1, 17.12. They will have “one purpose and they give their power and authority to the beast” (Rev 17.13). With that in mind, let’s look at a brief overview of the Birth-pains.

The False Messiah comes to power in “one hour” (Rev 17.12) and this panic could only be caused by the fear caused by the destruction of Babylon (USA-Rev 17.10, 15). The ones that destroyed Babylon will also attack Israel three years later, called the invasion of Gog and Magog (Russia and her allies in Ezek 38-39). Europe will enter into a three year war with Gog and Magog (Isa 20.1-6 prophecy-more on this later).

We have seen in the teaching “Is America Babylon” on this site that Babylon is the USA, but there will be other nations represented by ancient terms. Another way of seeing this is the Scriptures have what is called the “Code of Nations.” For example, in Ezek 38.17-18 we are told that this invasion is “in that day” or the Day of the Lord. We are also told, “Are you the one of whom I spoke in former days through my servants the prophets of Israel who prophesied in those days for years that I would bring you against them?”

But now we have a problem. Before this chapter we do not have any Scriptures about Gog and Magog. So, how can God say he has spoken about Gog and Magog for years through the prophets? Where is it? The ancient scholars of Israel asked the same question.

In the book, “Everyman’s Talmud” by Abraham Cohen it says in a comment on Isa 9.7 that “the Holy One wished to make Hezekiah the Messiah and Sennacherib Gog and Magog.” Now, God never wished to make Hezekiah the Messiah, that was rabbinical thought, but it tells us something. The Assyrian king Sennacherib was seen as a picture of Gog and Magog. This concept can also be seen in the Babylonian Talmud, Sanhedrin 94a.

If you compare what is said about Gog and Magog in Ezekiel 38 and 39 and what is said about the invasion of Israel by Assyria in Isaiah, Micah, 2 Kings and 2 Chronicles, you will find that the two match. You can even go to Josephus and find out what happened during the Assyrian invasion with Sennacherib. Everything you need to know about the invasion of Gog and Magog was previously described with the invasion by Assyria, thus giving us insight into Ezek 38.17. Ezekiel only gives us two chapters, but these other books give us many chapters. Eschatologically, Assyria is Russia (Gog and Magog).

So, we have seen that Babylon is the United States, Assyria is Gog and Magog and Egypt will be a picture of Europe and the False Messiah (Leviathan, Rahab, Pharaoh). We have said before that “Cush” could be either Ethiopia or Mesopotamia, depending on the context.

After the destruction of Babylon (USA) there will be survivors who were outside of the country when the attack came. These survivors will join themselves to Europe and the kingdom of the False Messiah (Rev 17.3). eventually, he will turn against these survivors (Rev 17.16). Who are these survivors? They will be the U.S. military and government agents outside of the country, They will be tourists, business people and others who are outside of the country. Once the destruction hits the mainland of the United States, they will have no other place to go. Naturally, they will find refuge and support in Europe because many have European ancestry and they speak English there. The military will come under NATO agreements.

In Isa 20.1-6 we see an Assyrian officer coming from Sargon to Ashdod, and he captures it. Yehovah spoke to Isaiah and told him to go “naked and barefoot.” He then said, “Just as my servant Isaiah has gone naked and barefoot three years as a sign and token against Egypt (Europe) and Cush (Babylon, or the survivors of the attack on the USA), so the King of Assyria will lead away the captives of Egypt and the exiles of Cush, young and old, naked and barefoot with buttocks uncovered to the shame of Egypt. Then they shall be dismayed and ashamed because of Cush their hope and Egypt their boast. So the inhabitants of this coast land will say in that day (the Day of the Lord), ‘Behold, such is our hope, where we fled for help to be delivered from the King of Assyria, and we, how shall we escape?'”

This chapter tells us in the Sowd level (hidden, secret) that the False Messiah and the “exiles” from Cush (USA) will be fighting a three year war with Russia (Assyria/Gog and Magog) and will be losing. We know that Egypt was called the “iron furnace” in Deut 4.20; Jer 11.4 and 1 Kings 8.51. After the Holocaust in Europe and the iron furnaces of the concentration camps, the remaining Jews left for the land of Israel and they called it the “Exodus.” A movie by that name was made with Paul Newman that had this “Exodus” as a theme.

In Psa 74.13-14 we have Leviathan (Rev 13.1) and it will be a picture of the False Messiah. It talks about how Yehovah “broke the heads” (plural) of Leviathan (Pharaoh) at the Red Sea and being delivered from Egypt. What does Pharaoh have on his crown? A “serpent” or cobra. So, we have seen that Babylon is the United States, Egypt is Europe, Assyria is Russia and Gog and Magog, and Israel is Israel.

In Part 27 we will pick up here with more concepts on this.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 25

Isa 18.4-7 says, “For so the Lord said to me, ‘I will take my rest (rest is “M’nuchah” which is also a term for the Messianic Kingdom and the Olam Haba in Heb 4.1-11), and I will look from my dwelling place like a clear heat in sunshine, like a cloud of dew in the heat of harvest.’ For before the harvest, when the bud is perfect and the sour grape is ripening in the flower, he will both cut off the sprigs with pruning hooks and take away and cut down the branches. They will be left together for the mountain birds of prey and for the beasts of the earth; the birds of prey will summer on them, and all the beasts of the earth will winter on them. In that time a present will be brought to the Lord of Hosts from a people tall and smooth, and from a people terrible from their beginning onward, a nation powerful and treading down, whose land the rivers divide (the meaning of Mesopotamia) to the place of the name of the Lord of hosts, to Mount Zion.”

What present is being brought? Some teach this is talking about the Ark of the Covenant being brought from Ethiopia. However, the area being talked about here is “Cush” of Mesopotamia. We don’t believe this at all. We believe the Ark is already in Jerusalem beneath the Temple Mount. We have shown this in another teaching on this website called “Temple 201-Where is the Ark of the Covenant.”

So, again, what is being brought? It is the Basar (gospel) being brought back to the Jewish people. This is the “real gospel” not the Replacement Theology gospel that is being taught today. Most Christians who will read this statement will not have any idea what we are talking about. Why? Because they have been taught this “other gospel” of Replacement Theology and that is all they know.

This true gospel follows the pattern of Yeshua. He ministered in Israel for three and a half years first because he was sent to the “lost sheep of the house of Israel” not to the non-Jew. After he is resurrected he sends out his talmidim into the nations and the non-Jews. Paul said the basar was “to the Jew first, then the non-Jew” (Rom 1.16). We will have the same pattern in the Birth-pains with the 144,000. They will go to Israel first and carry the basar message because they have a double anointing. Paul said he was “born out of time” in 1 Cor 15.8 because he saw that his ministry to the non-Jews was like the 144,000 in the last days.

In the first three and a half years of the Birth-pains Israel is going to have all sorts of things happen and the 144,000 will minster in Israel. At the mid-point Israel has believed in Yeshua for six months, since the defeat of Gog and Magog (Russia). Israel will flee into the wilderness on Nisan 10 when the False Messiah claims to be God and desecrates the Temple. They will be there for the remaining three and a half years and be out of the picture (Rev 12.1-17). Then the 144,000 are sent to the non-Jews in the nations, just like in the first century, but can’t be stopped (Mic 5.7-9). So, we are going to look at another portion of Scripture that alludes to the 144,000 and is directly linked to Rosh Ha Shanah and the timing of the resurrection of the righteous.

In Isa 6.1-13 we will see something very similar to Rev 4, which is a Rosh Ha Shanah passage. We have the Lord high and lifted up and the court is seated, so we know it is Rosh Ha Shanah. Angels take burning coals and Isaiah’s sins are forgiven. He hears the voice of the Lord asking, “Whom shall I send and who will go for us?” He is looking for a shaliach like in Isa 18.2. Isaiah is seeing a vision that alludes to the 144,000 and he volunteers to go. We see what the 144,000 will be doing in this passage (v 9-10). Isaiah asks, “How long” and he is told in Isa 6.11-13. This is a picture of the commission of the 144,000.

The last ten kings of Judah tell us about what happens in the Birth-pains, and we discussed this at the end of our teaching on Second Kings. Isaiah sees this vision just as King Uzziah dies and it is before Uzziah’s son Yotham begins to reign. Uzziah is the last king before the last ten kings of Judah, that means in the eschatological sense, Uzziah is a picture of the days leading up to the Birth-pains, so this vision is right at the beginning of the Day of the Lord (Rosh Ha Shanah) and Isaiah’s commission alludes to the commission of the 144,000 which also occurs at the beginning of the Day of the Lord (Rev 14.4 as “first fruits”).

The rise of the False Messiah is directly linked to the fall of Babylon (USA). The fear caused by the destruction of Babylon (USA) in one hour creates a panic in Europe where it is feared that the same fate will fall on them unless they act immediately. The False Messiah is the one to keep your eye on when it comes to when the Natzal (Rapture) occurs. The Scriptures are full of information about the False Messiah and you can go to our teaching called “Torah and New Testament Foundations-The False Messiah” on this website for more information.

The fall of Babylon is discussed in Rev 18.1-19 and we see fear and panic in verses 9-19. Rev 17.11-12 says, “And the beast that was, and is not, is himself also an eighth, and is one of the seven, and is going into perdition (destruction). The ten horns which you saw are ten kings who have received no kingdom as yet, but they receive authority for one hour as kings with the beast.” The beast is the seven-headed beast of Rev 13.1 of “Leviathan.” We will develop these concepts out later.

Dan 9.26 says, “The people of the prince who is to come” and that “prince” is the False Messiah. He is of the people who destroyed the city of Jerusalem and the Temple. We know that the Romans destroyed Jerusalem and the Temple and Dan 9.27 says, “He (the prince who is to come) shall confirm the covenant with many (Jews) for one week (a shavuah of seven years) and in the midst of the week (1260 days into the Birth-pains, the exact halfway point of Nisan 10) he will cause the sacrifice and the oblation (in the temple) to cease, and on the wing of abominations will come one who makes desolate, even until a complete destruction, one that is decreed is poured out on the one who makes desolate.”

Now, Rome is Europe and we know the False Messiah will come out of Europe. The merchants who were made rich by Babylon in Rev 18.11-19 is seen as Kittim in a book called “The Book of Isaiah” from Judaica Press, Vol 1 on Isa 23.1. Kittim were merchants who dwelt with Babylon, and Kittim was how you said Rome, or “Europe.” This is confirmed in Dan 11.30 where it says, “Ships from Kittim will come against him.” They are talking about Gaius Popillius Laernas who was a Roman ambassador. He was sent to Antiochus Epiphanes IV (a picture of the False Messiah) in ships. Laernas told Antiochus to abort his attack on Alexandria. He drew a circle around Antiochus and told him to decide what he was going to do before he left the circle. Antiochus withdrew but would come back later. This verse confirms that Kittim is Rome (Europe). The fear and panic by the merchants of Europe (Kittim) over the destruction of Babylon (USA) is what catapults the False Messiah into power.

Rev 17.11-13 tells us that the ten horns are not the heads of their countries (v 12), but they will give their power and authority to the beast, not knowing he is the False Messiah. There must be a meeting where the main powers in Europe gather to discuss what to do after the USA is destroyed. The False Messiah is in that meeting and he has a plan, but they must act quickly. So the main powers (ten of them) give him power to confront the crisis because there is no time to go pack to their individual governing assemblies to ratify what he wants. So, they do it and this vaults him into power.

In Part 26 we will pick up here.

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 24

In order to understand how events “play out” we need to go over Jewish eschatology. One of the problems we will have doing this is we will make statements we can’t dissect right away, but they can be dissected. For example, the war of Gog and Magog can be established as to when it happens. It will start on a Rosh Ha Shanah and end on a Yom Kippur at the end of the third year, going into the fourth year, of the Birth-pains. It has to do with the coming of the False Messiah and the Jews fleeing into the Jordanian wilderness six months later.

Because we will not be studying these certain events, we will be making statements related to these events but will not be taking the time to go into each detail exactly. What we want is for you to get the general overview of it and have it in the back of your mind. So what we want to do now is give a brief overview of Jewish eschatology and the seven years of the Birth-pains using Jewish sources and references.

What have we seen so far? We have seen that the “Day of the Lord” will begin on Rosh Ha Shanah, year 6001 from creation. All the righteous will be resurrected and caught up to heaven in the Natzal. These believers are called the “clouds of heaven.” The coronation of Messiah, and wedding of the Messiah and his Bride, will take place at that time, and Messiah and the Bride will enter the Wedding Chamber or “Chuppah” for the start of the Shavuah L’ Chuppah.

On earth, the average people (sinners or Chata’im”) and the wicked (Rashim) are left behind. The 144,000 are anointed witnesses that will be set aside at this time. They are seen in two passages from the book of Revelation alone, but they are also seen in passages in the Tanach. We are going to examine the 144,00 and we will begin to deal with that. From that point we will move forward into an overview of the Birth-pains.

Revelation 6 gives an overview of the entire contents of the “scroll” given to Yeshua at the coronation. Rev 7 begins to give detail. This can be compared to a house being viewed from the outside. After that, you go in and view the rooms one by one. This can be established by the first verses of Rev 6.1-4. Then look at Rev 7.1-3 and the 144,000.

Many believe the Book of Revelation is chronological but you can see right away it is not. In true “apocalyptic style” of the Jewish people shortly before and shortly after Yeshua, they will come in to give the “big picture” and then drop back and begin to examine the big picture piece by piece. That is not chronological. Notice that Rev 6.1-4 had death and war, but Rev 7.1-8 starts out by saying that before any harm can come to the earth, there is the sealing of the 144,00. So, Rev 7.1-8 must happen before Rev 6.1-4.

There are two passages that relate to the 144,000 in Revelation, and they are Rev 7.1-8 and Rev 14.1-8. The 144,000 are the “first fruits” of the new age that has begun called the Atid Lavo (Rev 14.4) and they are the redeemed of the Lord after the resurrection of the righteous has occurred in the Natzal. This is established as they are called the “first fruits” (bikurim). They are redeemed from among men, being first fruits to God and to the Lamb. Also the “new (restored) song” (Messiah has come) is being sung by them. They sing, as it were, a new song before the throne. They have a message to the world, “having the everlasting basar (gospel) to preach to those who dwell on the earth, to every nation, tribe, tongue and people (Rev 14.6).” The destruction of Babylon is the next event and then we will have the rise of the False Messiah. Then we have those who worship him next after that.

Now, everything Yeshua and the first century talmidim taught could be established in the Tanak, so where can we establish the 144,000 from the Tanak? Let’s look for just a few of these. About a thousand years ago, Saadiah Gaon wrote 10 reasons for blowing the shofar on Rosh Ha Shanah. Reason 10 says, “To recall our faith in the future resurrection. As it is said, ‘All inhabitants of the world and dwellers on the earth: when he lifts up a standard on the mountains, you will see it; and when he blows the trumpet you will her it (Isa 18.3).'” In the peshat (literal) level by some commentators, this is talking about the Assyrians and judgment, but we are not going to look at that level right now because there is a deeper level (Sowd) in Isa 18.1-7, and we have just seen allusions to it in our passages in Revelation.

Notice that the phrase “all inhabitants of the world and dwellers (“on/in” is not in the original Hebrew but is implied) the earth” seems redundant. However, in Jewish thought, the inhabitants of the world is the living, and the dwellers in/on earth are the dead, and they are on the look out for the “banner” or “standard” that is to be lifted up and they will see it, a resurrection. The word “banner” is the word “nes” in Hebrew and it is a term used for the Messiah (Isa 5.26, 11.10, 11.12, 13.2). We also see that the “banner” was lifted on a mountain (Isa 13.2, 18.3).

Now, the “heavens” are called “shamayim” in Hebrew and it basically means “there is water.” In Greek there are two words, and one means “outer space” and the other means “the sky” with the clouds we see. This is the phrase that is used for the top of a mountain. When the banner (standard) is on a high mountain it will relate to the resurrection. In Isa 62.10 it says, “Go through, go through the gates (a Rosh Ha Shanah term)! Prepare the way for the people (like Elijah/Yochanon), build up, build up the highway, take out the stones (another reference to Elijah/Yochanon), lift up a banner (nes) for the peoples.” Jer 51.27 deals with the destruction of Babylon (USA), “Set up a banner (nes) in the land. Blow the trumpet among the nations! Prepare the nations against her, call the kingdoms together against her: Ararat, Minni and Ashkenaz. Appoint a general against her; cause the horses to come up like the bristling locusts.”

In these passages the destruction of Babylon is linked with the idea of a resurrection at the blowing of the shofar. Three passages (Isa 13.2, 18.3 and Jer 51.27) are in chapters that deal with the destruction of Babylon. We believe that Babylon is the USA in Bible prophecy and is destroyed within the first 10 days of the Day of the Lord, and this can be shown. So, the question remains, where are the 144,000 in the Tanak?

Isa 18.1-2 says, “Woe to the land shadowed with buzzing wings which is beyond the rivers of Ethiopia (Cush/Mesopotamia) which sends ambassadors (shaliachim/apostles/sent ones) by sea, even in vessels of reed on the waters saying, ‘Go, swift messengers (malakim/angels), to a nation tall and smooth, to a people terrible from their beginning onward, a nation powerful and treading down; whose land the rivers divide (Mesopotamia).'”

Now, Cush can mean Ethiopia but it can also mean Mesopotamia. The father of Nimrod was Cush (Gen 10.8-12), and founded Babylon. Ibn Ezra wrote a commentary on this chapter and he said Isa 18 is talking about the region of Babylon and Assyria. So, in Isa 18.3 we have all the inhabitants of the world and dwellers on the earth, and when the Lord lifts up a banner on the mountains (Messiah), they will see it. When he blows a shofar they will hear it. Notice that at the resurrection of the dead righteous, and the gathering of the living righteous, a shofar is heard and the Natzal is seen.

Now, who else sees and hears this? The ambassadors (shaliachim) and the messengers of Isa 18.2. They are some of the inhabitants of the earth at the time. There is a sign that Elijah gave to Elisha in 2 Kings 2.9-14. If Elisha sees Elijah being taken, then he would have a double anointing. So, the sign is the same with the 144,000 as with Elisha, “If you see them when they go” they will get a double portion of the anointing. We will see this anointing in another 144,000 passage in Mic 5.7-9 later. What makes the 144,000 the first fruits of the Birth-pains and the Atid Lavo? Obviously, they know the Scriptures and follow the Torah and so they have a Scriptural base, but they are not yet believers when the Natzal (Rapture/gathering) happens. They are the first to be saved during the Birth-pains, so they are “first fruits.”

They will see the Natzal and the resurrection and hear the shofar and become believers. They will be anointed to carry the message of God (the Basar/gospel) to the world, and they will be anointed with a double anointing of Elijah, and that is one reason the story of Elijah and Elisha is given to us.

We will pick up here in Part 25.

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 23

There is a second stage of the wedding process called the “Kiddushin” where there is another contract called the “Ketubah.” This contract is where the bride is brought to the groom and they enter into a full marriage. They are already husband and wife at the betrothal, and to dissolve the betrothal would require a divorce called a “Get.” But now they are “married” in its fullest sense. This going to be related to the Messianic Redemption, or “Greater Redemption.”

Psa 45 1-17 is another coronation psalm and part of the ancient Rosh Ha Shanah ceremony according to Sigmund Mowinckel in his book “The Psalms in Israel’s Worship.” Psalm 45 is as follows with our commentary, “To the Chief Musician (of the Temple choir), set to the Shoshanim (lilies shaped like trumpets, a theme of Rosh Ha Shanah). A maskil (instruction) of the sons of Korah. A song of love. My heart overflows with a good theme (the Messiah); I address my verses to the King (Messiah); my tongues is the pen of a ready writer (being moved by the Ruach Ha Kodesh). You (Messiah) art fairer than the sons of men; grace is poured through thy lips; therefore God has blessed thee forever. Gird thy sword (sharp mind in the Torah) on thy thigh (symbolized by the tzitzit that would hang on the thigh-Rev 19.15-16), O Mighty One, in thy splendor and thy majesty! And in thy majesty ride on (Rev 19.11) victoriously (Rev 6.2), for the cause of truth (Torah is the truth) and meekness and righteousness; let thy right hand (skill) teach thee awesome things. Thine arrows (sword, famine, pestilence) are sharp; the peoples fall under thee, thine arrows are in the heart of the King’s enemies.”

“Thy throne, O God (Elohim) is forever and ever (Heb 1.8), a scepter of uprightness is the scepter of thy kingdom. You have loved righteousness, and hated wickedness; therefore God (Father), thy God, has anointed (one of the stages of a coronation of a Jewish king) you (the Messiah) with the oil of joy above thy fellows. All thy garments are fragrant with myrrh (spiritually purified character) and aloes (used in prayer incense) and cassia (spreads in the wind/ruach); out of ivory palaces will be mine that will make me glad (the palaces which are prepared for us in Eden will surpass the finest palaces of ivory here). Kings daughters (believers for the sake of imagery. Just as the king is seen as the “son” his wife is alluded to as his “daughter” and the same as the “queen and bride-1 Chr 28.5-6) are among thy noble ladies, and the queen (Israel, the Kahal as a whole) stands at thy right hand in gold from Ophir. Listen, O daughter, give attention and incline your ear; forget your people and your father’s house (leave the world of unbelief. Messiah is to be preferred above all human relations); then the king will desire your beauty (the righteousness he gives us); because he is your Lord, bow down to him.”

“And the daughter of Tyre (symbolizes the non-Jews Israel will have dominion over in the Messianic Kingdom-Isa 45.14; 66.19-20) will come with a gift; the rich among the people will entreat your favor (of every nation). The King’s daughter (same as the bride and queen) is all glorious within (speaks of her character); her clothing is interwoven (by God) with gold. She will be led to the King in embroidered work (not filthy rags-Isa 61.1-through 62.5); the virgins (non-Jewish believers for the sake of imagery and part of the Kahal), her companions who follow her, will be brought to you (like Chava was brought to Adam-Eph 5.22-32). They will be led forth with gladness and rejoicing (voluntarily and eager); they will enter into the King’s palace (the “mansions” of John 14.1-3, the inner chambers). In place of your fathers will be your sons (born from the marriage-the “elect”); you shall make them princes in the earth (to rule and reign-Rev 20). I will cause thy name to be remembered in all generations; therefore the peoples (non-Jews of all nations will eventually acknowledge his sovereignty) will give you thanks forever and ever.”

On the day of the coronation of the Messiah on Rosh Ha Shanah, it will also be the day of the wedding of the Messiah. We had the betrothal at Mount Sinai on Shavuot (Pentecost) in the first redemption, now we will have the full marriage in the second redemption on Rosh Ha Shanah. A Jewish wedding would last a “shavuah” which means a “seven” and it can be seven days, weeks, months or years. This is known as the “Shavuah L’ Chuppah” or the “Shavuah of the Wedding Canopy.” Gen 29.27-28 says, “Fulfill her week (shavuah), and we will give you this one also for the service which you will serve with me still another seven years. Then Jacob did so and fulfilled her week. So he gave him his daughter Rachel as wife also.”

Joel 2.1 is a Rosh Ha Shanah verse, “Blow a trumpet in Zion, and sound an alarm on my holy mountain.” Joel 2.11 says, “The Day of the Lord is great and indeed awesome, and who can endure it?” The Hebrew word for “awesome” is “nora” and remember that the days between Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Kippur and called the “Yamim Noraim” or “Days of Awe.” This is a picture and another name for the seven year Birth-pains.

Now, Joel 2.15 says, “Blow a trumpet in Zion, consecrate a fast, proclaim a solemn assembly.” When do we have a fast on a solemn assembly? On Yom Kippur. Joel 2.16 says, “Gather the people, sanctify the congregation, assemble the elders, gather the children and the nursing infants. Let the bridegroom (Messiah) come out of his chamber (chedar-in Psa 45.15 he went in), and the bride from her bridal chamber (chuppah).”

Anciently, the chedar and the chuppah was a huge tent and the couple would go in there for seven days after the wedding. They would not need to come out for anything. Everything is right there for them (food, drink, clothes, etc). In this passage the bride and groom are coming out of the chamber. So how long have they been in there? A “shavuah” or a “seven.” So, eschatologically, they have been in there for the seven years of the Birth-pains. We will be able to show this is a Yom Kippur by the next passage.

Joel 2.17 says, “Let the priests, the Lord’s ministers, weep between the porch and the altar, and let them say, ‘Spare the people, O Lord, and do not make thine inheritance a reproach, a byword among the nations. Why should they among the peoples say where is their God?'” There is only one ceremony conducted in the Temple between the porch and the altar in the entire year. That day is Yom Kippur and Yehovah answers this prayer in Zech 14.1-7.

We are able to identify what is happening by the phrases to understand that this is a Yom Kippur. This is another example of how Yeshua will return to Jerusalem on a Yom Kippur. If the bride and the groom come out of the wedding chamber by Yom Kippur, when did they go in? Isa 26.20 says, “Come my people, enter into your chamber (“B’Chederecha”), shut your doors behind you; hide yourself, as it were, for a little while, until the indignation is past.” The “indignation” as we have shown previously is a synonymous term for the Birth-pains. They went in at Rosh Ha Shanah, at the beginning of the Day of the Lord.

We have already gone over Isa 26.1 through 27.13 and we have seen that it covers Rosh Ha Shanah to Yom Kippur. In an overview we have Rosh Ha Shanah and the phrase “open the gates that the righteous nation may enter.” We have “On that day” or the “Day of the Lord” in 26.1-2 and we have the Natzal (Rapture) in 26.20. We also have Leviathan (the False Messiah) in 27.1 and the Shofar Ha Gadol being blown on Yom Kippur, with the return of the Messiah and the exiles in 27.12-13 (see Matt 24.29-31).

In Part 24, we will pick up here.

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 22

Let’s talk about the coronation of a Jewish king because Yeshua will be coronated on Rosh Ha Shanah and we should understand this concept. There is a book called “Ancient Israel” by Roland De Vaux. He was a Jesuit priest and an outstanding scholar. He excavated Qumran and much of this book is good but there are other parts that use the “Wellhausen Theory” that says the Bible wasn’t written by the people whose names are in the title. In other words, the Torah had numerous authors and different periods and we do not agree to that. In the first half of the book he discusses Israel.

In Chapter 5 we have “The Person of the King” and in Section 2 we have “The Coronation Rites.” There are five steps to the coronation of a Jewish king. There was the Investiture with Insignia, the Anointing, the Acclamation, the Enthronement and the Homage of the high officials.

We have two coronation examples for us in Scripture. We have the coronation of Solomon and the coronation of Joash. In 2 Kings 11.1-21 we have the story of Joash and he will be a picture of Yeshua. Joash is hidden away in the Temple for six years (6000 years) and then is coronated as king in the seventh year (Day of the Lord). Athaliah in this story is a picture of the False Messiah who has usurped authority, and she is overthrown and killed in the seventh year.

In 2 Kings 11.12 we have the Investiture with Insignia (crown and testimony), the Anointing and the Acclamation (“Long live the king”). In 2 Kings 11.19-20 we have the final two steps of Enthronement and Homage, and these steps can also be seen in 1 Kings 1.46-47 and Psa 2.12.

We have seen that Rev 4 is a Yom Ha Din and a Rosh Ha Shanah (4.1-2). A throne was set up in heaven, and one sat on the throne, just like in Dan 7.9-10. Now, if we go to Rev 5.1-14 we will see it as a Coronation and Enthronement of a Jewish king, just like in Dan 7.13-14, and that king is Yeshua, who has been anointed already. We have the investiture in Rev 5.7, and the acclamation in verse 9. We have the enthronement in Rev 5.13 and homage in verse 14. We also have a phrase in Rev 5.9 that says, “And they sang a new song.” This expression means “the Messiah has come” in Hebrew thought. Rev 14.3 says, “And they sang a new (meaning restored or renewed) song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders; and no one could learn the song except the 144,000 who had been purchased from the earth.”

Isa 42.10 says, “Sing to Yehovah a new song” and it is “shir chadash” in Hebrew, which is masculine. Usually this term is “shirah chadash” which is feminine, but Messiah has come so it is in the masculine. Psa 96.1 says, “Sing to Yehovah a new song” and it is masculine again, meaning Messiah has come. This psalm is recited at the beginning of the Sabbath, which is a picture of the Day of the Lord. What do they sing at the beginning of the Day of the Lord? A new song! Messiah comes at the beginning of the Day of the Lord on Yom Ha Din Rosh Ha Shanah. Most people have reviewed n Christianity have no concept about this because they have done away with the Sabbath, so these concepts are lost to them and are never taught. Psa 98.1 is also a Sabbath song and it says, “Sing to Yehovah a new song.” The “new song” is a Messianic psalm.

We know that during the acclamation of a Jewish king a shofar is blown (2 Sam 15.10). 2 Kings 11.14 says that trumpets were blown when Joash was coronated. When Solomon was anointed king they blew a trumpet (1 Kings 1.39). In a Rosh Ha Shanah Machzor, after the Shacharit (morning) service, shofarot (ram horns) are blown during the Mussaf (additional) service. You can see this on p. 508-521 in the Rosh Ha Shanah Machzor by Artscroll.

One of the reasons for blowing the shofar is the “Kingship.” In the liturgy for Rosh Ha Shanah, it literally says, “At the start of the Mussaf service: Order of the Shofar Blowing. The following psalm is recited seven times by the entire congregation, ‘Psalm 47, to the chief musician. A Psalm of the sons of Korah. Oh, clap your hands (acclamation) all you peoples, shout to God with the voice of triumph! For the Lord Most High is awesome; he is a great king over all the earth. He will subdue the peoples under us, and the nations under our feet. He will choose our inheritance for us, the excellence of Jacob whom he loves. Selah. God has gone up with a shout (teruah), the Lord with the sound of a trumpet (shofar). Sing praises to God, sing praises! Sing praises to our king, sing praises. For God is the king of all the earth; sing praises with understanding, God reigns over the nations; God sits on his holy throne. The princes of the people have gathered together (we will come back to this when we talk about the Natzal or “rapture”), the people of the God of Abraham. For the shields of the earth belong to God; he is greatly exalted.'”

This is read seven times (number of completion) because the people are to take notice of what is being communicated. It is Rosh Ha Shanah, we have the acclamation of a king (“clap your hands”), we have a shout (teruah is a shofar note) and a shofar (1 Thes 4.16). The princes are being gathered together because there is going to be a coronation.

Now we are going to another coronation psalm (Psa 45), but before we do let’s talk about the two redemptions. As we have said before, the “first redemption” is also the “lesser redemption” and that is when Moses the Shaliach (sent one, apostle, agent) takes the people out of Egypt. If the story stopped there, it would not be the whole story as to why the Exodus happened in the first place. They were freed from Egypt in order to go to Mount Sinai and receive the Torah and the Mishkan. Here is the rest of the story.

A Jewish wedding had two basic stages anciently. There was no ceremony, marriage licenses or a need to have a “rabbi” because those things are relatively new, just a few hundred years old. But there was a “Shitre Erusin” or a “betrothal stage” where the couple was considered married. Then there was also the “full marriage” or “Kiddushin.” Marriage is understood as more of a contract (covenant agreement between two people) than a ceremony. Biblically, it is not like what they do today. It basically consisted of an agreement (covenant) between the two families, negotiated by the fathers usually. The only biblical requirement was that the two parties leave their family and cleave to one another to form a new “house.” If there were no parents, and they were older, it was an agreement between the man and the woman. Abraham had an agreement with Bethuel about Isaac and Rebekah. She agreed and left her home and went to Isaac and when he saw her, he took into his mother’s tent and that was it. No ceremony, no minister. God is entering into a “brit” or “covenant” with Israel at Mount Sinai. He is giving them the Torah as a Shitre Erusin or betrothal covenant. She agrees to it in Exo 24.3-7, and that was it, they were betrothed. We will get to the full marriage later.

The festival of Shavuot celebrates the giving of the Torah to Israel (betrothal). This festival is also known as “Yom Ha Bikurim” when the first fruits of the crops are brought (called the “Sheva Minim” or “seven species”). They are brought in a ceremony to the Lord in the Temple.

Jer 2.1-3 says, “Now the word of the Lord came to me saying, ‘Go and proclaim in the ears of Jerusalem, saying Thus says the Lord, I remember concerning you the devotion of your youth, the love of your betrothals, your following after me in the wilderness, through a land not sown. Israel was holy (had a kedusha) to the Lord, the first of his harvest. All who ate of it (devoured Israel) became guilty; evil came upon them declares the Lord.'” These verses refer to the first Shavuot when God gave the Torah to the people. This was the betrothal contract or Shitre Erusin.

In Part 23 we will begin to deal with the second stage called the “Kiddushin” or “full marriage” where there is another contract called the “Ketubah.” The full marriage is associated with the festival of Rosh Ha Shanah and that is why the wedding of the Messiah is a theme. In the Natzal, we will be going to the coronation of the Messiah, but there will also be a wedding, so we need to understand this concept.

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Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 21

Now we are going to look at Rosh Ha Shanah and its significant laws and prayers. In the Rosh Ha Shanah Machzor (prayer book) by Artscroll in “An Overview-That You Make Me Your King”, p. XVII, it says, “God’s sovereignty is the primary theme of Rosh Ha Shanah and the ten days of judgment it inaugurates. The service of the day is filled with references to God as King and the prayers longing for the day when His mastery will be acknowledged by all human beings. The shofar service of the Mussaf (meaning “additional service” and it is during the Mussaf of the Shacharit or “morning” service that the shofar is blown one hundred times) Amidah (standing prayer, also known as the Shemonah Esrei or Eighteen Benedictions) begins with ten Scriptural verses speaking of God’s Kingship and the Talmud teaches, we recite these verses so that we should proclaim Him as our King.”

Yehovah is seen as being “crowned King” on Rosh Ha Shanah, and that is an important point. The themes of God as king is particularly stressed on Rosh Ha Shanah because of the days’ association with his judgments (Talmud, Berakot 12b). During the prayers of the day it is necessary to recite ten Bible verses which have the theme of God as King (Malkuyot); ten which have the theme of God as he remembers (Zikronot); and ten which have reference to the Shofar (Shofarot-Mishnah, Rosh Ha Shanah 4.5-6).

In the article “Rosh Ha Shanah” in the Encyclopedia Judaica it says, “These are explained as God saying, ‘Recite before me on Rosh Ha Shanah Malkuyot, Zikronot and Shofarot: Malkuyot so that you may proclaim me King over you, Zikronot so that your remembrance may rise favorably before me; and through what? Through the Shofar (Talmud Rosh Ha Shanah 16a). The four names of the festival in Jewish tradition based on the above are: Rosh Ha Shanah, Yom Teruah (‘Day of Blowing the Horn’), Yom Ha Din (‘Day of Judgment’), and Yom Ha Zikaron (‘Day of Remembrance’).”

Now, we know that Yehovah is a spirit and he does not have form or flesh. This is why Yeshua is called “the image of the invisible God (Col 1.15).” Throughout the Tanak it is prophesied that the Messiah would be the “sent one” of Yehovah. In the Gospels Yeshua states that he is the “sent one.” The coronation on Rosh Ha Shanah that we have been referring to is the coronation of the Messiah, the sent one of God.

In Jewish thought, there are two redemptions. These two redemptions are called the redemption out of Egypt, or the “lesser redemption.” The other redemption is called the Messianic Redemption of “greater redemption.” We have Moses as the “shaliach (sent one) of the first redemption (Egyptian)” and we have Yeshua as the “shaliach of the second redemption (Messianic).” The word “shaliach” means “sent one” or “agent.” In Jewish thought the “sent one” is a huge concept, but non-Jews will not think much about it and do not even know how an agent functioned.

In Isa 11.10-12 it tells us about the second redemption. So, let’s look into the concept of the shaliach from the Encyclopedia of the Jewish Religion, p. 15, Adama Books, in the article “Agent.” It says, “AGENT (Heb Shaliah): The main point of the Jewish law of agency is expressed in the dictum ‘a person’s agent is regarded as the person himself’ (Ned. 72b; Kidd 41b). Therefore any act committed by a duly appointed agent is regarded as having been committed by the principal, who therefore bears full responsibility for it with consequent complete absence of liability on the part of the agent.” In other words, Moses and Yeshua are agents of the Father and every word that comes from them is as if the Father himself said it (Deut 18.15).

So, Dan 7.9-10, 13-14, is the coronation of the Messiah on Rosh Ha Shanah. We have gone over this so many times in this teaching that we should be able to say, “That’s Yom Ha Din, that’s Rosh Ha Shanah.” In these passages, the Son of Man is the Messiah, the clouds of heaven are the righteous and the Ancient of Days is the Father. Then to him (Messiah) was given dominion and the glory and a kingdom. This is the start of the Messianic Kingdom and you will also notice this is before the heavenly court, it is not taking place on earth, and it is a Rosh Ha Shanah. God has laid out all these concepts and gave it to the Jewish people like this one. It is a coronation on Rosh Ha Shanah, a Yom Ha Din in heaven before the start of the Messianic Kingdom. Now, let’s develop the concept of the “clouds of heaven.”

Heb 11 is called the “Hall of Fame of Faith.” It goes through and gives examples of those who exhibited the confidence explained in Heb 11.1. They had confidence (faith) and acted upon it. Faith in Hebrew is called “Emunah” and it is related to the word “Amen.” Biblical faith is made up of three components: Da’at (Knowledge of God), Ahav (Love of God), and Mitzvot (Commandments of God). If one of these components is missing, you have a breakdown of biblical faith.

Then we go to Heb 12.1 and it says, “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us.” Yeshua said in Mark 14.62, “I am, and you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming with the clouds of heaven.” Other passages may say he is coming with “many thousands of his holy ones’ (Jude 14) or “from the midst of ten thousand holy ones” (Deut 33.2). These are the resurrected righteous. We have already seen that when Yeshua is coronated the resurrection has already occurred. The clouds of heaven (the righteous) are presented before the Ancient of Days with Yeshua, and to Yeshua the kingdom is given. We also have in Rev 1.7, “Behold, he is coming with clouds, and every eye will see him, even they who pierced him. And all the tribes of the land will mourn because of him. Even so, Amen.”

So, here is a question. How can the Messianic Kingdom begin in heaven? If Yeshua is crowned king on Rosh Ha Shanah, this inaugurates the Messianic Kingdom. Remember, this is the start of the Day of the Lord and Rosh Ha Shanah is an ancient name for the Day of the Lord, or “Lord’s Day.” Here is more to the answer to our question.

Let’s look at the lesson of David. He was crowned king over Judah in Hebron. Hebron was called “Abraham’s Bosom” because he was buried there and it became an idiom for “heaven” and “paradise” and the abode of the righteous. It is believed that the resurrection will begin there, then it will move to Jerusalem and then to the rest of the world. The daily Temple service called the Tamid could not begin until the sun (Messiah) lit up the east as far as Hebron (Mishnah, Tamid 3.2). This alludes to the resurrection beginning in Hebron because remember, waking up every morning is a rehearsal for our resurrection. David ruled for seven years in Hebron, then he came to Jerusalem (1 Chr 29.27). Hebron is a type of heaven, and in Luke 16.22 it says, “So it was that the beggar died, and was carried by the angels to Abraham’s Bosom. The rich man also died and was buried.”

So, spiritually, what does this mean? Messiah will reign from heaven for seven years (in peace), but these same seven years will be a time of war and trouble on earth (the Birth-pains/Tribulation). Then at the end of the seven years, Yeshua will move his throne to Jerusalem (like David) and rule for the remainder of the thousand years (Messianic Kingdom; Millennium; Day of the Lord; Atid Lavo; Sabbath of God; Lord’s Day).

So, the question is, why do some prophecy teachers say we have to have the “Tribulation” before the Messianic Kingdom? Because they don’t believe you can have it during the Day of the Lord because to them it is supposed to be a time of peace. As a result, to them, it doesn’t fit. But its like going into a movie theater to watch two movies that begin at the same time. On one screen you could be watching a love story, but on another screen next to you there is a horror movie going on. In the same way, there are “two theaters” going on at the same time eschatologically. One is in heaven (a love story) and the other one on earth (horror).

In Part 22, we will begin with a teaching about the coronation of a Jewish King.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 20

Here is what we have picked up so far. There are two days in the year that are called Yom Ha Din, the “Day of Judgment.” Those two days are Rosh Ha Shanah on Tishri 1 and Yom Kippur on Tishri 10. There will be two resurrections, the first is on Rosh Ha Shanah at the beginning of the Day of the Lord and the Birth-pains. This is a resurrection of the righteous only. The second resurrection will be on Yom Kippur at the end of the Day of the Lord. This will be for the righteous not yet resurrected who became believers during the Day of the Lord, and a resurrection for the wicked of all time. The righteous are resurrected to rewards and eternal life, and the wicked are resurrected to the Second Death.

We have also seen that there will be three books that are opened on Rosh Ha Shanah. The first book is the Book of the Tzadikim (righteous) or the Book of Life. The second is the Book of the Chata’im (sinners or average people). The third is the Book of the Rashim (wicked). The Tzadikim are resurrected on Rosh Ha Shanah as the gates of heaven open. Those that remain are given seven years to the next Yom Ha Din to turn to Yehovah when the gates of heaven close on Yom Kippur, the day when Messiah Yeshua comes to Jerusalem to reign on earth. So, on Rosh Ha Shanah the gates of heaven are opened and the books are opened. At the end of Yom Kippur the gates of heaven are closed and the books are closed.

Paul stated that the resurrection of the Tzadikim (righteous) will occur at the “last trump” or shofar. The last trump is the shofar of Rosh Ha Shanah. Therefore, the resurrection of the righteous will be on Rosh Ha Shanah, at the beginning of the Day of the Lord. Yeshua said that when he comes to Jerusalem he will send the angels out to gather in the elect with the sound of a “great trumpet” or Shofar Ha Gadol. The Shofar Ha Gadol is the shofar of Yom Kippur. Therefore, Yeshua will come to Jerusalem at his second coming on a Yom Kippur.

On Rosh Ha Shanah all men are judged. Those that are righteous are placed in the Book of the Righteous (Sefer Ha Tzadikim), also known as the Book of Life. Those that are wicked are placed into the the Book of the Wicked (Sefer Ha Rashim), also known as the Book of Perdition. When one is placed in one of the books listed above they are sealed in that book.

To really get a grasp of all this we recommend that you get a Rosh Ha Shanah Machzor (prayer book) and read all the way through it. At the end you will understand much more. Then take a Yom Kippur Machzor and read all the way through that, and you will understand what we have just presented. It will almost be automatic and you will see it all over the Scriptures, where it is repeated over and over again.

Why are there so many contrary views? Well, here is what happened. When Christianity developed after 70 A.D. and the war with the Romans, non-Jews disappeared out of the Torah-based faith as it was, and began to do their own thing. They threw out all the Jewish understandings of all this by 325 A.D. and that is why we have dozens of theories about the “Rapture.” Most are not aware of all this and not following what God had laid down. Yehovah gave these things to the Jewish people so the world could look and see and understand his word and plan (Deut 4.5-8).

There is group known as the Chata’im (sinners) or average people as we have said. On Rosh Ha Shanah these are the ones that have not been deemed a Tzadik (righteous) by Yehovah nor have they been deemed a Rasha (wicked). They are given ten days (from Rosh Ha Shanah to Yom Kippur) to repent and be judged righteous by Yehovah. We call these ten days the “Yamin Noraim” or the “Days of Awe.” We will have the Day of the Lord starting on Rosh Ha Shanah, then ten days later we have the Birth-pains beginning on Yom Kippur.

You can see that anyone who has not been judged righteous on Rosh Ha Shanah has time to repent. But, you are taking a chance once the Birth-pains begin on Yom Kippur because it will be a horrible time. The death toll will be in the billions and you may not make it through the whole seven years according to Yeshua and Revelation. If one is deemed righteous by Yehovah their names are recorded in the Book of the Tzadikim (righteous). If they do not repent by Yom Kippur when Yeshua returns, they are inscribed in the Book of the Rashim (wicked). Those that are wicked are sentenced on Yom Kippur (a Yom Ha Din) in Matt 25.31-46. This judgment is like the Yom Kippur ceremony when two goats are brought before the Lord and separated, one to Yehovah and the other to Azazel.

The earth will be 6001 years old exactly on Tishri 1 (Rosh Ha Shanah), year 6001. The Birth-pains will start on a Yom Kippur, Tishri 10, and will end on a Yom Kippur, Tishri 10, seven years later according to Matt 24.29-31. This will also be a Yovel year (Jubilee) according to Isa 63.1-6.

Remember, Dan 7.9-10 is our original Rosh Ha Shanah and Yom Ha Din passage, and it says, “thrones were put in place and the Ancient of Days is seated; his garment was as white as snow, and the hair of his head was like pure wool, his throne was a fiery flame, its wheels a burning fire; a fiery stream issued and came forth from before him. Thousands and thousands were attending him, and myriads upon myriads were standing before him; the court was seated and the books were opened.” We went through the article in the Jewish Encyclopedia on the Day of Judgment and it identified this passage as being Rosh Ha Shanah.

Dan 7.19-20 says, “Then I wished to know the truth about the fourth beast, which was different from all the others, exceedingly dreadful, with its teeth of iron and its nails of bronze, which devoured, broke in pieces, and trampled what was left with its feet; and about the ten horns that were on its head, and the other horn which came up, before which three of them fell, namely that horn which had eyes and a mouth which spoke pompous words, whose appearance was greater than his fellows.” This is describing the False Messiah.

So, now look at Dan 7.21-22, “I kept looking and that horn was waging war with the saints (tzadikim) and overpowering them until the Ancient of Days came and judgment was passed in favor of the saints (tzadikim) of the Highest One and the time arrived when the saints took possession of the kingdom.” This is Yom Ha Din Yom Kippur at the end of the Birth-pains.

Notice, Dan 7.9-10 is Yom Ha Din Rosh Ha Shanah and the Ancient of Day was seated and the court sat. But now, the Ancient of Days came and judgment was passed. This is after the False Messiah, and the kingdom is now in the possession of the righteous, so this is Yom Ha Din Yom Kippur. So you can see how you determine which Yom Ha Din it is, Rosh Ha Shanah or Yom Kippur. Dan 7.23-28 is a recap of Dan 7.19-22 but with more detail. Now we are going to go to the Encyclopedia Judaica for more information.

We have a book in our library called “The Psalms in Israel’s Worship” by Sigmund Mowinckel. He is quoted in the article on Eschatology in the Encyclopedia Judaica and was a Christian. In the article on Rosh Ha Shanah, Mowinckel is referred to when it says, “More recently, however, S. Mowinckel (The Psalms in Israel’s Worship, 1 (1962, 120FF) has advanced the suggestion that there existed in pre-exilic Israel an autumnal new year festival on which God was “enthroned” as king (analogous to the Babylonian enthronement of Marduk). He claims to have found marked traces in many of the psalms to substantiate his assertion. Although Mowinckel’s thesis has won wide acceptance, it is still the subject of debate.” But everything is going to be the “subject of debate” so keep that in mind.

He says there was an enthronement new year festival in the fall. In the article on the “Day of the Lord” Mowinckel and others said the Day of the Lord was originally a new year festival. So we have this term “Day of the Lord” and we know that is is a thousand year period that some call the Messianic Kingdom, the Millenium, the Atid Lavo, Lord’s Day and the Sabbath of God. But it was also a name for the festival of Rosh Ha Shanah. This is consistent with the teaching that says we have six thousand years and then we go into the Day of the Lord, and the very festival the Day of the Lord starts on is Rosh Ha Shanah, the birthday of the world in Gen 1.2-5, the first day of creation and head (first) of the civil year. This gives us insight into Rev 1.10 where it says, “I was in the Spirit (in tune with) on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet.” The Book of Revelation is all about the Birth-pains and the Messianic Kingdom. Did he see this revelation on a Sabbath, or a Rosh Ha Shanah (also called the “Lord’s Day”) which teaches about the vision he saw? And notice there is a trumpet associated with this.

In Part 21 we will pick up here.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 19

This article in the Jewish Encyclopedia also gives us another source to search out and learn words, phrases, idioms and concepts. The source is called the Targum Yonaton (Jonathan). This is an Aramaic paraphrase of the Scriptures written about the time of Yeshua. Yonaton was believed to be a student of Hillel the Elder. Now with all these sources, why hasn’t Christianity or the Messianic Jewish Movement caught on to this? Why are they still interpreting from a non-Hebraic background when Yehovah has given us a wealth of information in the above sources (in the article)?

The Pharisees taught that on the first day of the civil year (Rosh Ha Shanah) God sits in judgment over the creation and the books of life and death were opened, along with books containing the records of the Tzadikim (righteous) and the Rashim (wicked). Eventually, a third class of people was understood called the Chata’im (sinners). Another name for them was “Benonim” or the “average” people. They weren’t righteous yet (Tzadikim) and they weren’t wicked (Rashim), but they were just average sinners.

Once you are written into the Book of Life you are sealed. Once you are written into the Book of Death you are sealed. But, God is still dealing with the Chata’im (sinners) and some of them will repent. When Yeshua referred to the “sinners” he was referring to this third group. They weren’t righteous yet, and they weren’t the wicked either. They were the average person who still can repent (Matt 9.10-13, 11.9, 26.45; Mark 2.15-17, 14.41; Luke 5.30-32, 6.33-34). In Psa 69.28 we learn of the Book of Life and the living are the “righteous” in the second part of the verse. They are admitted into the Kingdom of God. The wicked cannot enter and they are blotted out of God’s book (Exo 32.32). This concept comes from the citizen register seen in Ezek 13.9; Jer 22.30; Exo 32.30-34.

From the article “Book of Life” in the Jewish Encyclopedia it says, “The life which the righteous participate in is to be understood in a temporal sense. Dan 12.1, however, those who who are found written in the book and who shall escape the troubles preparatory to the coming of the Messianic Kingdom are they who together with the risen martyrs are destined to share in the everlasting life referred to in verse 2. The eternal life is certainly meant in 1 Enoch 47.3, 103.3, 104.1, and frequently in the New Testament (especially in Revelation). The Targum (Isa 4.3; Ezek 13.9) speaks of the ‘Book of Eternal Life.’ Temporal life is apparently prayed for in the liturgical formula: ‘Inscribe us in the Book of Life.’ The Mishnah tells us that the deeds of every human being are recorded in a book (Avot 2.1, 3.16). The ‘Sefer Hasidim’ (Ch 33) pointedly adds that God is in no need of a Book of Records; ‘The Torah speaks the language of men’ (figuratively).”

In the Jewish Encyclopedia article on the “Day of Atonement” it says, “There is, indeed, in heaven a book wherein the deeds of every human being are minutely entered (Avot 2.1, 3.16; A book of record ‘Book of Remembrance’ is alluded to-Mal 3.16). Three books are opened on the first day of the year, says the Talmud (Rosh Ha Shanh 16.b); one for the thoroughly wicked, another for the thoroughly pious, and the third for the large intermediate class. The fate of the thoroughly wicked and the thoroughly pious are determined on the spot; the destiny of the intermediate class is suspended until the Day of Atonement, when the fate of every man is sealed (Rosh Ha Shanha 16a).”

“In the liturgical piece ‘Unetanneh Tokef’ ascribed to R. Ammon of Mayenee (Zunz,’Literaturgesh, P.107), a still weirder sense unfolded: ‘God, seated on his throne to judge the world, at the same time judge, pleader, expert and witness, openeth the Book of Records; it is read, every man’s signature being found therein. The great trumpet sounded; a still, small voice is heard; angels shudder, saying this is the day of judgment; for his very ministers are not pure before God. As a shepherd mustereth his flock, causing them to pass under his rod, so doth God cause every living soul to pass before him to fix the limit of every creature’s life and to foreordain hits destiny. On New Years’s Day the decree is written; on the Day of Atonement it is sealed who shall live and who are to die, etc. But penitence, prayer and charity may avert the evil decree. All depends on whether a man’s merits outweigh the demerits put to his account (Maimonides ‘Yad Teshuvah 3.3).'”

“It is therefore desirable to multiply good deeds before the final account on the Day of Atonement. Those that are found worthy are entered in the Boom of Life (Exo 32.32; Isa 4.3; Psa 69.28; Dan 12.1; see Charles, ‘Book of Enoch” p.131-133). Hence the prayer ‘Enter us in the Book of Life (inscribe us; but ‘seal us’ that is ‘seal our fate’ in the closing prayer on the Day of Atonement).’ Hence, also, the formula of salutation on New Year’s Eve, ‘May you be inscribed (in the Book of Life) for a happy year.’ In letters written between New Year and the Day of Atonement, the writer usually concludes by wishing the recipient that God may seal his fate for happiness. Thus, in late Judaism, features that were originally peculiar to New Year’s Day were transferred to the Day of Atonement.”

So, up to Rosh Ha Shanah, you would have the greeting “Inscribe us for a good year.” But after Yom Kippur you would not say that because that would imply they weren’t righteous. After Rosh Ha Shanah you would say “May you be sealed until the Day of Redemption (Yom Pedut or Yom Kippur).” Rosh Ha Shanh is the day of inscribing and Yom Kippur is the day of sealing. These are eschatological concepts and Paul used the term “sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise” and “sealed for the Day of redemption” in Eph 1.13 and 4.30. He probably wrote Ephesians during Teshuvah or the High Holy days of Rosh Ha Shanah to Yom Kippur. He uses Rosh Ha Shanh and Yom Kippur terms and concepts throughout the book

In Job 1.6-8 we have the concept of a Yom Ha Din presented. There was a day when the sons of God (angels) presented themselves before the Lord. Job was seen as “blameless and upright man, fearing God and turning away from evil.” The Book of Job tells us about the redemption of man, the coming of the Messiah, the resurrection of the dead, the Natzal (Rapture), the False Messiah and False Prophet and the war of Gog and Magog. How many people reading this know that? As a side note, Psa 75.2-3 says, “When I select the appointed time (moed/festival) it is I who judge with equity. The earth and all who dwell in it melt (with fear); it is I who have firmly set its pillars.” This is referring to a Yom Ha Din on Yom Kippur.

According to the Targum, the day of the heavenly session in Job 1.6 was none other than the first of the year. Therefore in Jewish thought the Book of Job begins on a Rosh Ha Shanah. So, let’s look at the eschatology of the book of Job. By doing this we can come back to this at later times and draw information from it.

It is believed that the Book of Job is the first book of the Tanak and predates Moses. In the eschatology of Job we see that the sons of God are the nations appearing before God. Job is Israel and Satan is the accusor. We have the theme of resurrection in Job 14.14-15, Rahab is pride in Job 9.13 and Egypt in Isa 30.7, which symbolizes Europe in prophecy. We have the Tannin or serpent in Job 26.13 and Isa 27.1, and Leviathan, the seven-headed beast that arises out of the sea in Job 41 and Rev 13.1. Leviathan is a picture of the False Messiah. The Behemoth in Job 40.15-24 who arises out of the land (Rev 13.11) is the False Prophet. In addition, Behemoth is a picture of Assyria and Gog and Magog (Russia), and Leviathan is a picture of of Egypt and Europe, from which the False Messiah rises. Let’s look at these words.

Rahab is a word that means “proud” or “harlot.” It also means “broad” because of the thickness of a wall. Harlots would set up shop in the walls of a city. The “Red Light District” in Amsterdam is called “The Broad” because it used to be in the walls that surrounded Amsterdam. But Rahab is also a term for Egypt because Egypt was a very fortified place with broad walls in the fortresses. Why is all this important? As we will see later this word will be associated with the False Messiah.

The second word to keep in mind as we move forward is “Tannin” meaning “serpent.” Job 26.12-13 says, “He quieted the sea with his power, and by his understanding he shattered Rahab. By his breath the heavens are cleared; his hand has pierced the fleeing serpent (tannin).” Now, let’s go to Isa 27.1 where it says, “In that day (Day of the Lord) the Lord will punish Leviathan, the fleeing serpent with his fierce and great and mighty sword, even Leviathan the twisted serpent, and he will kill the dragon (tannin) who lives in the sea.” So, we have the name Leviathan associated with Rahab, the fleeing serpent, the twisted serpent, the dragon who lives in the sea, and Egypt. Rev 13.1 says, “And I stood upon the sand of the sea and saw a beast rise up out of the sea, having seven heads.” This is Leviathan, a picture of the False Messiah. So, who is Leviathan”

In the article “Leviathan” in the Encyclopedia Judaica it says, “The word Leviathan seems to derive from the root LVY ‘to roll’, which is further confirmation of its serpentine form. In the Bible it is used interchangeably with several other sea monsters-Tannin (“dragon”), Rahab and Yam (‘sea’ of which the last named alternates with Neharim ‘flood’ in Hab 3.8)- all of whom are represented as supernatural enemies of God. This hostility directly reflected a myth widely known in pre-Biblical sources of a primordial combat between the creator deity and the forces of the sea, personifying chaos, which the former must overcome to create and control the universe.” Also from the article, “More relevant is a cylinder seal from Tell Asmar of the Twenty-Fourth Century B.C., which pictures two men fighting a seven-headed serpent.” This is exactly what we see in Rev 13.1. In Job 41 we have a whole chapter on Leviathan, a picture of the False Messiah.

So, if Rahab is Egypt (Isa 30.7), then Pharaoh of Egypt is a picture of the False Messiah. What does Pharaoh have on his crown? A serpent! Isa 1.1-4 and Mic 1.1-5 has almost the same terminology, and they are Yom Ha Din passages because they are the words of a court bringing charges against Judah and Samaria. Look for court-type language in these and other passages because it will give us a “heads up” about a Yom Ha Din (Day of Judgment) context.

We will pick up here in Part 20.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament

Tanak Foundations-Concepts on the Natzal (Rapture)-Part 18

Picking up from Part 17, the Jewish Encyclopedia continues, “The book of Jubilees (30.20-22) speaks of two heavenly tablets or books: a book of life for the righteous, and a book of death for those that walk in the paths of impurity and are written down on the heavenly tablets as adversaries (of God). Also, according to 36.10, one who contrives evil against his neighbor will be blotted out of the book of remembrance of men, and will not be written in the book of life, but in the book of perdition.”

The book of Jubilees is part of the Pseudo-pigrapha and not considered Scripture. However, it was a book that was well known and in use in the First Century (time of Yeshua) so it does tell us what some Jews thought and how they interpreted these expressions like the “book of life” or the “book of remembrance” and some words like “perdition.” We will recall that 2 Thes 2.3 talks about the “son of perdition” (KJV) or “destruction” (NASB). Jubilees 30.20-22 and 36.10 also has information on the book of life and the book of those w.ho will be destroyed. The book of the rashim (wicked) is not a book one would want to be written down in.

In Dan 7.10 and 1 Enoch 47.3 the “Ancient of Days” is seen as sitting on his throne with the book of life (living) opened before him. 1 Enoch 104.1 says that the tzadikim (righteous) are written before God and in 1 Enoch 108.3 the rashim (wicked) are blotted out of the book of life and the “books” of the holy ones. So, Enoch says the same thing as Daniel. Remember, a person reading this two thousand years ago would immediately understand that it is talking about Rosh Ha Shanah.

Again, the Jewish Encyclopedia says in the article called “Book of Life” that “this book is mentioned in Hermas (Vision 1.3; Mandate 8; Similtude 2); In Rev 3.5, 7.8, 17.8, 20.12-15, where two books are spoken of as being ‘opened’ before the throne, the book of life and the book of death.” The unrighteous are written into the book of death, along with their evil works, in order to be thrown into the lake of fire. Now compare Dan 7.9-10 and Rev 4.1-11. We have already established that this is Rosh Ha Shanah because “a door was opened.” When Dan 7.9-10 is coupled with Rev 4.1-11 they fit like a glove. Isa 6.1-4 is also similar and considered a Rosh Ha Shanah passage, and we will come back to Isa 6 to pick up some information on the resurrection.

What we need to realize right away is the Bible is full of chapters that are going to deal with festival terms and phrases. That is why Paul could say to the Thessalonians that “as to the times (festivals) and seasons, brethren, you have no need for anything to be written to you.” Even though we cannot keep the festivals outside of Jerusalem and the Temple today, that doesn’t mean we should not study the liturgy, the prayers, the idioms, phrases and concepts associated with them because they will help us rightly divide the word of truth (Scriptures).

In the Bible, everything has been written in a sub-language, and in order to understand what is happening, we need to understand the sub-language. There is a sub-language for the festivals and every other topic in the Bible like the Temple, eschatology,etc, and this is not given by God to be confusing. The Bible should be one of the easiest books to understand that has ever been written. God is the author and he is not the author of confusion. However, a believer will have to seek to understand what he is communicating, and that is the problem.

We are not allowed to interpret the Scriptures on our own. We are not to interpret the Scriptures by asking, “What do you see in this verse” like in most bible studies. We must go back to the phrases, concepts and idioms (the sub-language) of whatever the topic is we are studying. There is a sub-language for doctors, engineers, computer programmers and the military. In the same way, the Bible has a sub-language.

In Rev 13.8 it says, “All who dwell on the earth will worship him, whose names have not been written in the book of life of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.” Who are they worshiping? They are worshiping the False Messiah who is described as a seven-headed beast that rises up out of the sea in Rev 13.1 (remember this).

Rev 20.12-15 says, “And I saw the dead, both small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the book of life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books. The sea gave up the dead who were in it, and death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one according to his works. Then death and Hades were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. And anyone not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” Notice we have both the righteous and the unrighteous being judged here. It is Yom Ha Din Yom Kippur. This is at the end of the Day of the Lord. Remember, you will be able to know what Yom Ha Din it is by the context.

Again, quoting from the Jewish Encyclopedia article called the “Book of Life” it says, “It is the book of life in which the apostle’s names are written in heaven (Luke 10.20), or the fellow workers of Paul (Phil 4.3), and the assembly of the first-born (Heb 12.23; compare with 1 Clement 14). To these books of records, allusion is made also in 1 Enoch 81.4, 89.61-77, 90.17-20, 98.76, 104.7; Apocalypse of Baruch 24.1 ; Ascension of Isaiah 9.20.” All of these last ones are out of the Pseudo-pigrapha. Our primary references should be the Scriptures at all times (Tanak, Gospels and Epistles). After that, we do have the Apocrypha, additions that are not a part of the Scriptures but are valuable resources to us. The original 1611 KJV of the Bible included the Apocrypha. Then we have the Pseudo-pigrapha which are the apocalyptic books written about the same time as the Apocrypha. Then we have the Dead Sea Scrolls and the rabbinical writings.

These contain a tremendous amount of information and every one of these have references to the book of life and the book of death and have commentaries about the language and phrases being used like awake, Ancient of Days, books are opened, the court was seated, the door was opened, etc. These will be little “diving boards” that will tell us what is happening.

So, let’s read from some of the references above from the Pseuodo-pigrapha. 1 Enoch 81.4 says, “And at that time I said: ‘Blessed is the man who dies righteous and good, concerning whom no book of iniquity has been written, and against which no guilt has been found.'” From the Apocalypse of Baruch 24.1, “For behold! The days come and the books shall be opened in which are written the sins of all those who have sinned, and again also the treasuries in which the righteousness of all those who have been righteous in creation is gathered. For it shall come to pass at that time that you shall see-and the many that are with you-the long-suffering of the Most High, which has been throughout all generations, who has been long-suffering towards all who are born (alike), those who sin and those who are righteous! And I answered and said: ‘But behold! O Lord, no one knows the number of those things which are to come.'”

In the Jewish Encyclopedia article on the “Book of Life” it says, “The Eschatological or Annual Roll Call. While the prevailing tendency among apocryphal writers of the Hasidean School was to give the book of life an eschatological meaning-and to this inclines also Targum Yonaton to Isa 4.3 and Ezek 13.9 (compare Targum Yerushalmi to Exo 32.32), the Jewish Liturgy and the Tradition relating to the New Years and Atonement days adhered to the ancient view which took the book of life in its natural meaning, preferring, from a sound practical point of view, the this-worldliness of Judaism to the heavenliness of the Essenes.”

We can see from this article that the book of life was given an eschatological meaning, especially during the time of Yeshua. We know that the book of life is tied into the concept of Yom Ha Din, so that means that it gets tied in with the annual Yom Ha Din. What is important is that we realize that at the time of Yeshua, when the Gospels, Epistles and Revelation was written, that Yom Ha Din was seen as not only an annual day of judgment, but it was also an eschatological Yom Ha Din coming on a Rosh Ha Shanah when the righteous would be judged and the unrighteous will be given time to repent.

In Part 19 we will pick up here.

Posted in All Teachings, Articles, Idioms, Phrases and Concepts, Prophecy/Eschatology, The Feasts of the Lord, The Tanach, Understanding the New Testament