This article 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 Movement caught on to this? Why are they still interpreting from a Christian background, using Christian understandings, 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” of 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 no 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.