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Showing posts from July, 2015

Motives

"And if I have PROPHETIC POWERS (the gift of interpreting the divine will and purpose), and understand all the secret truths and mysteries and possess ALL KNOWLEDGE, and if I have [sufficient] FAITH so that I can remove mountains, but have not love (God’s love in me) I am NOTHING (a useless nobody)." (1Corinthians 13:2 Amp, emphasis mine)

There is a story, found in the book of Numbers, chapters 22-24, of a man supposedly having ‘prophetic powers’ (as what is spoken of in our opening verse), yet finding it impossible to curse YHWH’s people.  Balaam tried; he had the promise of GREAT wealth and reputation held out to him as a reward, but he could not curse what YHWH had commanded him to bless.  Needless to say, his motive was in the wrong ballpark.
Centuries ago, the Greek people were a nation famous for their great speaking skills and intellect; in today’s language, they would have been called smooth talkers.  But it was all natural, human knowledge and talent, of which they we…

Anxious About NOTHING

“DO NOT FRET OR HAVE ANY ANXIETY ABOUT ANYTHING, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God.” (Philippians 4:6 Amp, emphasis mine)

In the 1980’s, a video arcade game was introduced that made history: Pac-Man.  Almost an overnight success, it is still popular today, and has many variations on the original theme that first came out almost 30 years ago.  YHWH has used this little ‘critter’ to teach me several important lessons in my walk with Him, and I owe a ‘thank you’ to the inventor of Pac-Man for that reason.  I want to share one of those lessons with you. 
In THIS most memorable lesson, ‘anxiety’ is the name of this variation of Pac-Man played.  It eats away, like corrosion, at one’s faith and trust in YHWH.  The more that it feeds, the stronger it gets, until it reaches the place where there are no longer any of the ‘little dots’ left that represent faith in YAH, belief in His …

How GREAT is our Elohim!

"You give me Your shield, which is salvation, Your right hand holds me up, Your humility makes me great.”  (Psalm 18:35 CJB)

As with much of our YHWH’s Word, the richness of this verse is difficult to see until we look at the original Hebrew text.  English translations have only skimmed the surface of what King David was trying to convey when he first wrote these words, thousands of years ago.
The word ‘shield’ used here is from the Hebrew word ‘māgēn’ (Strong’s #H4043), and metaphorically speaking, it refers to YHWH Himself as a shield, such as a shield of refuge (see Psalm 3:3; Psalm 18:2).  David is acknowledging that YHWH Elohim has been his shield, and that he (David) humbly and willingly recognizes this.
This shield is ‘salvation’ – the word here is the Hebrew ‘yēshả’ (Strong’s #H3468), a derivative of the name “Yeshua”, the Hebrew name of our Messiah.  Therefore, the ‘shield’ that David is acknowledging, and recognizing, is Messiah Yeshua!  He is the ONLY one who brings salva…

Boasting

“Love … is not boastful or vainglorious …” (1Corinthians 13:4 Amp)

Of whom do you boast?  Of what do you boast?  If it has anything to do with you, or your own achievements, your own possessions, there is a serpent in the garden (“you will be LIKE God”, see Gen 3:5).
Noah Webster defines boast as “to brag; to make a VAIN DISPLAY, in speech, of one’s own worth, property, or actions; to glory; to exalt one’s self; to speak of with pride, vanity or exultation, with a view to SELF-COMMENDATION (praise); expression of pride” (American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, emphasis mine).  Boasting has its root in pride and vanity, which serves the god of “I”– self-centeredness, self-worship, self-exaltation.
The Word of God tells us that YHWH Elohim will share His glory with NO ONE (Isaiah 42:8; 48:11); we need to meditate on why.  There is no selfishness or vanity IN Him; on the contrary.  Our ABBA Father is a kind and generous parent, giving, caring, with our best interest…

His Treasured Possession

“Then they that feared YHWH spoke one with another; and YHWH hearkened, and heard, and a book of remembrance was written before Him, for them that feared YHWH, and that thought upon His name.  And they shall be MINE, says YHWH Tzva’ot, in the day that I do make, even MY OWN TREASURE; and I will spare them, as a man spares his own son that serves him. Then shall you again discern between the righteous and the wicked, between him that serves Elohim and him that serves Him not.”  (Malachi 3:16-18 HRV, emphasis mine)

When there are those of us gathered together in fellowship, speaking of things concerning YHWH Elohim, it comes as no surprise that He hears and notes everything that we say and discuss.  And when we are careful to show Him all of the love, reverence, and honor that is due Him for WHO He is, He is just as careful to make note of it.  But to realize, however, that a record book is being kept of these discussions is something that bears further meditation.
Therefore, as these day…

A Psalm of David

Psalm 139


“O YAHWEH, You have searched me and KNOWN me. You KNOW my sitting down, and my rising up; You understand my thought from afar off. You sift my path and my lying down, and are acquainted with all my ways. For not a word is on my tongue, but, lo, O YAHWEH, You KNOW it all. You have closed me in behind, and in front, and Your hand is laid on me. Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; it is set on high; I am not able to reach it.
"Where shall I go from Your Spirit? Or where shall I flee from Your face? If I go up to Heaven, You are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, behold, You are there! If I take the wings of the morning, dwelling in the uttermost part of the sea, even there Your hand shall lead me; and Your right hand shall seize me. If I say: Surely the darkness shall cover me; even the night shall be light around me. Even the darkness will not be dark from You, but the night shines as the day; as is the darkness, so is the light.
"For You have possessed my inward p…

Come Away

And behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind tore into the mountains and broke the rocks in pieces before the Lord, but the Lord was not in the wind; and after the wind an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake; and after the earthquake a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire; and after the fire a STILL SMALL VOICE.  (1Kings 19: 11-12 NKJV, emphasis mine)

There is some speculation that the cave in which YHWH appeared to Elijah (1Kings 19:9) is the same ‘cleft in the rock’ where YAH had also appeared to Moses centuries before (Exodus 33:22) – only the El-Shaddai, the ALL-Mighty God, would know for sure.  Both of these men, Elijah and Moses, possessed an intense hunger for YHWH, for His TORAH, His ways, His righteousness, more of HIM in their lives.  One way for them to achieve this goal was to spend quality time with Him, to travel up the ‘mountain of God’, and hide themselves away from the rest of the world:  ALONE with YHWH Elohim, their God and Father.  Be…

Integrity

The Lord rewarded me according to my righteousness (MY CONSCIOUS INTEGRITY and sincerity with Him); according to the cleanness of my hands has He recompensed me.  (Psalm 18:20 Amp, emphasis mine)

One of the definitions of ‘integrity’, according to the dictionary, is “the quality or state of being of sound moral principle; uprightness, honesty, and sincerity”(Webster’s New World Dictionary, 3rd College Edition, 1991).  Basically, in common sense language, integrity means doing what is right when no one is around to watch, because it is the RIGHT thing to do.  It does not necessarily mean perfection, but it does mean striving, trying, and setting a standard for yourself that you refuse to compromise on. 
David was a person who lived a life of integrity, even before he became king.  While being hunted down and driven from town to town, David had several opportunities to take matters into his own hands, and get even with the one who was ultimately hunting him.  King Saul’s desire was to se…

Give

Give, and you will receive. A large quantity, pressed together, shaken down, and running over will be put into your pocket. THE STANDARDS YOU USE FOR OTHERS WILL BE APPLIED TO YOU.” (Luke 6:38 GWT, emphasis mine)

Years ago, a principal was commonly taught, first in the home, but also in the schools, known as “The Golden Rule”.  Simply put, this principal was based upon the Word of YHWH, doing unto others as you would have them do unto you, and loving your neighbor as yourself (Mark 12:28-31).  Ancient Jewish Wisdom also teaches something similar:  ‘What you hate, do to no one’.  By applying these principals to our lives, we learn to turn our focus OFF of ourselves, and ON to those around us, insuring that we die to the ‘self’ that continually tries to rise up in importance.
Our present society has, for the most part, lost sight of these principals.  It is all about ‘ME’, ‘MINE’ and ‘MY’, and the world functions on a cut-throat mentality.  The majority of people are out for ‘Number One’

Faithful

“Yet the Lord is FAITHFUL, and He will strengthen [you] and set you on a firm foundation and guard you from the evil [one].”  (2Thessalonians 3:3 Amp, emphasis mine)

It has been several years since I read a statement informing me that there are over 7700 promises found within the Word of God.  However, in the 30 some years that I have acknowledged Yeshua as MY Messiah, I have come to understand that these promises are conditional.  As long as I am striving with everything IN me to live according to HIS mitzvah, His commandments, His TORAH, all of these promises are mine to stand upon, and receive by FAITH.
I know that YHWH Elohim watches over His Word, to see that it is performed and fulfilled (Jeremiah 1:12).  I know that His Word is living, and powerful, and sharper that any (and every) double-edged sword, cutting through the thick of things to the intents and motives of the heart (Hebrews 4:12).  I know that His Word will not return back to Him without achieving and accomplishing the…

WAIT ...

“’YHWH is my portion’, says my soul; ‘Therefore will I hope in Him.’ YHWH is good unto them that WAIT for Him, to the soul that seeks Him.  It is good that a man should QUIETLY WAIT for the salvation of YHWH.” (Lamentations 3:24-26 HRVS, emphasis mine)

We presently live in what is commonly called a “microwave society”.  Most everything is accomplished at speeds we do not try to measure; we complain when our computers run slow, and signal is poor for our cell phones.  The U.S. Postal Service verifies that postal patrons usually only receive hand written, personal correspondence ONCE in a two week period – the days of letter writing (certainly by hand) are long gone. 
However, ABBA Father, the Elohim who created not only we frail humans, but the world we live in, is NOT on our time-table, and never will be.  He cannot be coerced or manipulated into operating on our schedule.  All too often we forget who holds the reins of the universe in His hands …
“The earth is YHWH's, and the fuln…

Walk Humbly

“He has shown you, O man, what is good; and WHAT DOES THE LORD REQUIRE OF YOU but to do justly, to love mercy, and to WALK HUMBLY with your god?” (Micah 6:8 NKJV, emphasis mine)

There is a story in the Bible concerning a King Nebuchadnezzar, the ruler of Babylon, who was the instrument YHWH used to destroy Jerusalem, capture the Israelite people, and bring discipline and correction to them.  Nebuchadnezzar, by all of his many victories and conquests, had succeeded in making the Babylonian empire one of the greatest of the then known world.  And the King was VERY PROUD of his accomplishments.  However, because of his immense self -righteousness and pride, YHWH, who will not share His glory with anyone, humiliated this king and brought him down to nothing.  King Nebuchadnezzar lost all sense of reason and understanding, made his home with the wild animals, and fed on herbs and grasses for an extended period of time (see Daniel 4:16-29).  The Bible tells us that at the end of this ‘season…

Love Mercy

“He has shown you, O man, what is good; and WHAT DOES THE LORD REQUIRE OF YOU but to do justly, TO LOVE MERCY …” (Micah 6:8 NKJV, emphasis mine)

The Bible story of Joshua and the walls of Jericho is one most of us are familiar with; many of us can recite the story of the two spies, sent by Joshua into Jericho, and how Rahab, a prostitute of that city, first concealed them, and then aided them in their escape. Rahab and her family had HEARD of the Israelites, KNEW of the Elohim of the Israelites, and suspected who would be victorious in the coming battle.  She appealed to the “mercy”, or kindness (as some translations will read) of the spies, and to the “mercy” of their God, that she and her family would be saved (see Joshua 2, especially verses 12-13).  Because of her faith in the “Elohim Chayim”, the LIVING God, Rahab’s name is found in the genealogy of our Messiah Yeshua (Matthew 1:5). 
The word in Joshua 2:12 translated “kindness” is the same word translated into “mercy” in our open…

DO justly

“He has shown you, O man, WHAT IS GOOD; and what does the Lord require of you but to DO JUSTLY…” (Micah 6:8 NKJV, emphasis mine)

King Solomon had a reputation for ‘great’ wisdom – YHWH-given, anointed, wisdom – that he might “judge” the people of Israel with wisdom and understanding (see 1Kings 3:6-15).  There is recorded for us the story of two women that came to Solomon with an infant, disputing over whose child it was, and who was the true mother of the baby.  Solomon, by the power of YAH, was able to “DO justly”, and was given the understanding to discern who the real mother to the infant was – doing what was right and pleasing in the eyes of Elohim(see 1Kings 3:16-28).
The Hebrew word translated in the opening verse as “do justly” is the word “mishpt” (mish-PAWT’, Strong’s #H4941), and is the same word found in 1Kings 3:11 and 1Kings 3:28, in reference to King Solomon.  It is a legal term, and involves DOING what is right, and making decisions based on what IS right.  “Mishpt” re…

NEVER Gives Up

{LOVE’S} … hopes are fadeless under all circumstances, and it endures everything [without weakening].”  (1Corinthians 13:7 Amp, insert mine)

In Genesis, chapter 22, we are given the account of Abraham’s greatest test of faith:  the command to offer up his promised, and cherished, son Isaac as a sacrifice to YHWH.  Not only is Abraham’s love for YHWH evident in his quick and attentive response (“Here I am”, verse 1), but the Word also bears witness of his love for Isaac (“Take thy son, the beloved one, whom thou hast loved-Isaac”, verse 2).  There is no hesitation revealed to us by Abraham, no doubting, just a complete and total trust that the God who had called him, was in control.  Even as Abraham placed Isaac on the wood, and raised the knife to offer him to Adonai Elohim, he ‘never gave up’, not understanding, but KNOWING, YAH was in command.
There are several similarities to be found between Abraham’s ordeal, and that which Messiah Yeshua endured.  The journey lasted three days, th…

Offended

“If, then, you bring your gift to the altar, and there remember that your brother holds whatever against you,  leave your gift there before the altar, and GO, FIRST make peace with your brother, and THEN come and offer your gift..” (Matthew 5:23-24 ISR, emphasis mine)
"Moreover, if your brother commits a sin against YOU, GO and show him his fault — BUT PRIVATELY, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won back your brother.”  (Matthew 18:15 CJB, emphasis mine)

In Matthew 15:12, the Greek word that has been translated ‘offended is the word ‘skandalizō’ (Strong’s #G4624), and it is ‘kin’ to the root of OUR words ‘scandal’ and ‘scandalize’.  The meaning to this word paints a picture of a trap, or snare, hidden in a type of ambush, such as a pit covered by limbs or tree branches.  ‘Skandalizō’ will generally refer to the conduct, or actions, of the person who is ambushed, or trapped.  Messiah Yeshua told us emphatically that offenses would come (see Matthew 18:7);…

Judgment

“The thing that has been--it is what will be again, and that which has been done is that which will be done again; and there is nothing new under the sun.”  (Ecclesiastes 1:9 Amp)

I have been disturbed for several years by many of the comments I continue to hear concerning the subject of judgment, tribulation and persecution.  Many of the people making these comments, those who profess to have an intimate relationship with our risen Savior, Messiah Yeshua, believe that America is, for the most part, exempt from any of the above three mentioned.  Even the more frequent ‘natural’ disasters that are taking place are reported to be “just” part of a cycle that we are going through.  I am extremely concerned for those who are misled and deceived into believing this sugar-coated fairy tale, for it is not the Word of God.
Elijah the Tishbite was considered one of the greatest prophets of YHWH to have lived, yet he lived under one of the worst kings of Israel.  Because of the unbelievable wicked…

I Called

“The hangman’s noose was tight at my throat; devil waters rushed over me. Hell’s ropes cinched me tight; death traps barred every exit.” (Psalm 18:4-5 MB)

I have never suffered from an anxiety or panic attack; I understand it is a tremendous blessing to be free from these afflictions.  I do have close friends who deal with such attacks, and my heart goes out to them.  A panic attack puts a whole new meaning on the phrase ‘frozen with fear’.
Researchers and scientists recognize that anxiety and panic originate within a form of fear, which is something that the Word of God confirms, in that we know that “fear has torment” (1John 4:18).  A person in the tight grips of a panic attack generally has breathing difficulties (see our opening verse), and many bodily functions just ‘shut down’.  Beloved, this has never been our Father’s plan, or desire, for our lives.
We know that fear does not come from our Father; He is the Author and Originator of love (1John 4:8-10), and our Messiah is also kno…

Code of Conduct

“Only be sure as citizens so to CONDUCT YOURSELVES [that] your manner of life [will be] worthy of the good news (the Gospel) of Christ …” (Philippians 1:27 Amp, emphasis mine)
“For you are a set-apart people to יהוה your Elohim. יהוה your Elohim has CHOSEN YOU to be a people for Himself, a treasured possession above all the peoples on the face of the earth.”  (Deuteronomy 7:6 ISR, emphasis mine)


From the very beginning, the instructions set forth in the TORAH – Divine instructions for righteous and moral living – would mark YHWH’s people as “different”.  In the 3500 some years since the giving of the TORAH at Mount Sinai, the Hebrew nation has been the most misunderstood nation in existence, yet they are also the most recognizable, by their strict allegiance to this code called “TORAH”.
Would that we, as born-again believers in the Jewish Messiah, Yeshua of Nazareth, were that recognizable.  We are called to be citizens of a NEW country, with a NEW King as leader, and it is by His laws t…

Endurance

“Possess your lives by your endurance!”  (Luke 21:19 ISR)

Noah Webster defines ‘endurance’ as “continuance; a state of lasting or duration; lastingness; a bearing or suffering; a continuing under pain or distress without resistance, or WITHOUT SINKING OR YIELDING TO THE PRESSURE; sufferance; patience” (American Dictionary of the English Language, Noah Webster, 1828, emphasis mine). Unfortunately, it is a quality that is, for the most part, sadly lacking in our world today, for it involves a commitment to ‘seeing things through to the end’ that many are not interested in pursuing.  Without endurance, you will never have patience, and without patience, you will never have endurance.  And without either one, the Word of God says we are not complete.
“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let {ALLOW} patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”(James 1:2-4 NKJV…