An alternative view of Biblical Prophecy
August 11, 2013Posted by on
We have come to realize that there is quite a bit here that really is not prophecy strictly speaking. So there are now 4 blogs we are dividing everything into
The Prophecy is going to
Those of you who have been reading this blog from the beginning will remember that there used to be a cartoon running down the left side of the page. Is was made using widgets and very hard to make look good. OK it looked tacky. But now WordPress has a template for comic panels. So the rapture sheep are back on their own blog.
Then there is a lot of things that are only of interest to the Messianic/HebrewRoots community. This is all moving to
And all the stuff that is about walking in faith, being the bride of Christ etc is going to
The Great Move has begun. This blog will slowly be deleted.
The Great MOVE has begun!
August 8, 2013Posted by on
December 29, 2012Posted by on
SIR ISSAC NEWTON 1642 – 1727
“ The folly of Interpreters has been, to foretell times and things by this Prophecy, as if God designed to make them Prophets. By this rashness they have not only exposed themselves, but brought the Prophecy also into contempt. The design of God was much otherwise. He gave this and the Prophecies of the Old Testament, not to gratify men’s curiosities by enabling them to foreknow things, but that after they were fulfilled they might be interpreted by the event, and his own Providence, not the Interpreters, be then manifested thereby to the world. For the event of things predicted many ages before, will then be a convincing argument that the world is governed by providence.” pg. 251
“For understanding the Prophecies, we are, in the first place, to acquaint ourselves with the figurative language of the Prophets. This language is taken from the analogy between the world natural, and an empire or kingdom considered as a world politic.” pg. 16
“And if you say in your heart, ‘How may we know the word which the LORD has not spoken?’when a prophet speaks in the name of the LORD, if the word does not come to pass or come true, that is a word which the LORD has not spoken; the prophet has spoken it presumptuously, you need not be afraid of him.”Deut 18:21-22 RSV
Or THE INTERPRETATION OF PROPHECY
There are four main schemes of interpretation regarding the book of The Revelation:
(1) the spiritual — the events described are only symbols of spiritual realities and struggles without any literal or historical application; (2) the preterit — everything has already been fulfilled; (3) the futurist — all predictions are in the future; (4) the historical — the predictions are in the process of fulfillment.
These four interpretations fall under three hermeneutical (science of interpretation) schools of thought.
I Covenant Theology Interprets all scripture from the point of view that there are only two
covenants. This came from Gal 4:22-31. There are several names for these two covenant, but no matter what the individual author may call them there are only two, the Covenant of Law and the Covenant of Grace. This view spiritualize nearly all prophecy making The Revelation to be about the churches struggle with apostasy. All the promises God made to the Jews are for the church either literally or figuratively. The doctrine of election is emphasized.
A Spiritualist The book of The Revelation represents the battle between good and evil
in which good ultimately wins over evil. Nothing is literal or historical. This interpretation takes a mystical or allegorical approach to most of the book. Because of this spiritualization they of necessity do not hold to a literal millennium. Clement of Alexandria, Origen, and later Augustine and Jerome followed this viewpoint. Recent interpreters who accept this view finds the book dealing primarily with the general struggle between the church and evil throughout the entire age, thereby giving encouragement to tested saints.
Such an interpretation, however, fails to expound the book meaningfully, and practically ignores the claims to its prophetic nature (Rev 1:3; 10:11; 22:7; 10; 18-19). It fails to recognize the interpretive key to the book (Rev 1:19) and focus on the second advent, including the climactic events which follow (Rev 1:7; 3:11; 16:15; 22:7; 12).
B Preterit All or most of The Revelation is fulfilled. Promulgated by a Spanish Jesuit
Monk by the name of Alcazar around the close of the 16th century, this was a Roman Catholic view, with the Pope as Christ on earth; making the dark ages the millennium. This view maintains that the prophecy was fulfilled with the defeat of the Jews, the enemies of the early church. Nero is considered the antichrist. The last half of The Revelation being vaguely future. From the 17th century on, preterits have held that the church’s conflict with Judaism is represented in Rev 4-11 and the churches conflict with paganism is depicted in chapters 12-19. Chapters 20 thru 22 describe her present triumph.
This position ignores the interpretive key of Rev 1:19, “Now write what you see, what is and what is to take place hereafter” (RSV). It gives arbitrary meanings to the symbols found in the book, and fails to account for the indications of a short span of time covering the events of ch. 4 thru 10 preceding the second advent. Variations of this view are used by many modern day cults who claim their leader is Christ on earth and they are about to enter their millennium.
II Dispensationalism A modern interpretation that views scripture through seven dispensations
of covenants corresponding to human history.Although there are numerous views of salvation the redemption of Jews, distinctive from that of gentiles, is a primary feature. Promoted by John Nelson Darby, Edward Irving and C.I. Scofield, the foundations originated with 16th century Jesuit Priest Ribera.
Ribera’s writings were a Roman Catholic rebuttal to the Reformers view of the office of Pope as the “antichrist”. The Futurist view of a secretrapture was first taught in England by Presbyterian Minister Irving. He translated another Jesuit Priest’s futurist writings, which followed the same distinctives. Irving’s preaching upon them eventually led to his dismissal from the church. A series of ecstatic utterances breaking out in his and other London churches disseminated the revelation of a future yet seven year tribulation.
Dispensationalists, in stark contrast to the Reformers, hold to the following positions:
- Covenantal promises to Israel will be restored, including a Temple to be built and animal sacrifices reinstated.
- Jews are God’s chosen people; gentiles are distinctive and experience redemption apart from Jews.
- All Jews will be saved.
- The Church age is a gap (before the 70th week of Dan 9:24-27) occurring between Israel’s rejection of Christ and national restoration.
- Christ’s present Kingship has no relationship to the fulfillment of the Davidic Covenant and His Messianic rule; and the Church has no relationship to the Kingdom of God on earth.
- Hyper-literal interpretation of symbolism in prophecy which allows little figure of speech, typology or foreshadowing of the Church as the mystery made manifest.
A Futurist See nearly everything as being yet future. The most popular view, in modern evangelical circles holds to various dispensations regarding salvation, and gaps in the prophetic scriptures.
- There is a gap between verse one and two of Genesis.
- There is a gap between the 69th and 70th weeks of Daniel 9.
- Many groups have a gap between the rapture and the Second Coming of Christ.
- There is a gap between chapters 3 and 4 of The Revelation, making the bulk of that book apply to a short period of 7 years at the end of this age.
There are many variations in this viewpoint. Interestingly enough, the theory was first presented by a Jesuit Priest Rebera who lived near the end of the 16th century. Originally it was a 3 1/2 year tribulation, but by the time it came into the Protestant church it had grown to 7 years. It was introduced to Protestants in the 1820’s, from ecstatic visions claimed by Margret MacDonald, then to the Darbyites (Plymouth Brethren), followed by Scofield who incorporated the view into the Scofield Reference Bible.
III Progressive Revelation God reveals himself to man in a series of Progressive Revelation. These revelations have been made though His work: Ps. 19:1, Rom 1:18-23, His Word: Jn 1:1-5, and His Son: Heb 1:1-4ff. A fourth revelation of God, His Glory: fuller and more perfect than any other, is yet given Rev 22:4.
Progressive revelation is like an artist painting a picture. He knows what His painting will look like when finished, however the onlookers see the work as it progresses. “One stroke” or revelation at a time, the Lord brings into sharper focus the final image or a fuller understanding of prophetic events.
One example of fulfilled revelation is in the Messianic prophecies:
A Gen 3:15 Enmity between the woman’s seed and the serpent’s.
B Gen 9:25-27 Blessed be Shem.
C Gen 12:3 By you all the families of the earth shall bless themselves.
D Gen 49:10 The scepter will not depart from Judah.
E Deut 32:18 The Rock that begot you.
F Ps 118:22 The rejected cornerstone.
G Isa 7:14 Virgin birth.
H Isa 11:1 Coming from Jesse.
I Isa 42:2-3 A willing sacrifice.
J Isa 53:4-6 Our iniquity fell upon Him.
K Isa 55:3-5 He will come from David.
L Isa 59:20 He comes to Zion as Redeemer.
M Dan 9:24-27 Daniel revels the timing of the Messiah.
N Hos 11:1 Messiah comes out of Egypt.
O Zech 9:9 Describes the triumphal entry into Jerusalem.
It is not surprising that in all of Israel there were only two people (Simeon and Anna Lk 2:25-38) waiting in the Temple when Jesus arrived to be circumcised. If you had only these prophetic artist’s strokes, could you have recognized the complete picture and been waiting with Simeon and Anna?
A HistoricistThe Historical or Historicist view interprets the book of The Revelation as symbolic and in the process of fulfillment. It sees the fulfillment of prophesies in the history of the church beginning in John’s day thru this present age of time. The view has been popular since the time of Berengaud (9th cen.), and Joachim (12th cen.). Wycliffe, Luther, Joseph Mede, John Foxe, John Bunyan, Sir. Isaac Newton, Bengel, Barnes, Rev. Edward Bishop Elliott A.M., H. Grattan Guinness, F.R.G.S. and others held to it. Most would agree that the Bishop of Rome is the “Antichrist” and that “Babylon the Great” is the Roman Catholic church. This way of understanding the book was held by every commentator who wrote upon it until the end of the sixteenth century.
“Jerusalem will be trodden down by the Gentiles, until the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled” Luke 21:24
The Historicist views the prophecies of Daniel and The Revelation as the interpretation to Nebuchadnezzar’s dream of a great, metallic statue. The image symbolically portrays four gentile empires beginning with Babylon, each empire giving way to the next, progressively unfolding without gaps in time. God’s sovereignty over human history is chronicled in amazing detail. The great image of gold, silver, brass, iron and iron and clay was interpreted by Daniel to be the “image of the beast” kingdoms of Babylon, Medio-Persia and Greece. The fourth “terrifying” beast of iron is generally accepted as Rome. The feet of iron and clay would rule until the “stone not made of human hands” would crush the empires and our Lord’s kingdom begins to fill the earth. These gentile kingdoms are assigned a duration of seven times or 2520 years and are referred to as The Full Times of the Gentiles.
Daniel’s prophecies are chillingly accurate and are told from the perspective of the nation of Israel. Several prophecies, most notably the “Seventy Weeks” are written to the Jews specifically. From Babylon to the “fatal wound” of the fourth beast, Rome, the time designated is called time, times and half a time, or 1260 years. Daniel is told at the end of his prophecies to “seal up the scroll”. Further explanation of the Full Times of the Gentiles was concealed until the time of the end. In the book of The Revelation, John is taken to the throne room and sees the “Lamb that had been slain” “unseal the scroll”. What follows is the remainder of the prophecy of the gentile kingdoms.
The book of The Revelation opens with a special message to seven churches, the Israel of God, fixing the remainder of the times within the Church age. John describes the beast out of the sea, the beast of iron, in similar manner as is found in the book of Daniel, and therefore makes the connection to the Full Times of the Gentiles. It is John’s visions however, that provide the identity of the beast out of the earth, or the clay, in the feet of iron and clay. The majority of the prophecy of The Revelation concentrates on the 10 kingdoms, the little horn out of Rome, and the whore of Babylon which appear after the fall of Rome. The “beast out of the earth” makes war against the saints for a “time, times, and half a time”, or 1260 years.
PROPHETIC DAY PUT FOR A YEAR
Moses forewarned the Israelites that because of breaking covenants, especially the Sabbaths, sudden terror (The Babylonian Captivity) would come upon them. When they returned, if idolatry continued, the punishment would be seven times [Lev 26]. Ezekiel is told the punishment will be for 360 years; given as a day put for a year. Israel’s subjection to the gentile kingdoms is assigned chronological limits of seven times 360 years of punishment or 2520 years. Prophetic language of this gentile rule is mentioned in the book of Daniel as time, times, and half a time, 1290 days, 1335 days, and 2300 evenings and mornings. In The Revelation it is written as 1260 days, 42 months or time, times and half a time. The most convincing evidence for this is the historical record itself. It must be remembered that we are looking at possibilities. While God is precise, we lack all the knowledge, especially the conclusion of the prophecy fulfilled to make a precise declaration of the Full Times of the Gentiles.
Time, Times and half a time: Time, times and half a time:
Captivity Era 1260 Lunar Years 2520 Lunar Years
747 BC ——————————- 476 AD —————————- 1699 AD
The first possibility of a time frame for the Full Times of the Gentiles is the initial date of the captivity era of Israel and Judah in 747BC with Nabonassar, the first king of Babylon. Twelve hundred sixty lunar years (1222 1/2 solar years) forward brings us to the fall of the Roman Empire and the rise of the apostate Roman Church, the whore of Babylon!
From the fall of Rome in 476AD to the Treaty of Ryswick in 1699AD is the last half of the time, times and half a time. Another period of 1260 lunar years from the rise of the apostate church, the Church of Rome, brings us to the beginning of the termination of the power and authority of the papacy. the Treaty of Ryswick, 1697AD politically established the Protestant religion.
The final possibility of a time frame for the Full Times of the Gentiles is the last dating of the captivity era of Israel and Judah in 587BC.
587BC——————————– 637AD——————————– 1860AD
The last dating of the captivity era in 587BC was the final fall of Jerusalem under Nebuchadnezzar. Time, times, and half a time or 1260 lunar years (1222 1/2 solar years) forward leads us to the eastern empire and a date connected to the rise of Mohammedan power in 637AD Omar, a Caliph, took Jerusalem and by 691AD had built the Dome of the Rock that stands on the Temple site to this day.
From the rise of the eastern Mohammedan powers over the land of Israel in 637AD, to 1260 lunar years forward we arrive at a date of 1860AD. The Peace of Carlowitz stripped the Ottomans of much of their power and territory in the Middle East. In addition, the formation of the Universal Israelite Alliance marked the beginning stages of the Jewish renaissance and return to her homeland as predicted in Ezekiel’s vision of the dry bones.
When these times end, an unspecified stretch of time leads to the Jew’s regathering to Israel, repentance, acceptance of their Messiah, and His (second) coming restores all things. At the end of this epoch, the “sanctuary” or the place where Messiah himself will reign from will be (becoming) cleansed. These time periods only indirectly imply a soon return of Messiah after the close of the full times of the gentiles.
Nebuchadnezzar’s dream of the statue kingdoms are ultimately destroyed by “the stone, not made of human hands” that crushes the feet and cause all the kingdoms of the world to fall.
It must be remembered throughout the study of this prophecy: the 2520 years is the time of the gentile’s domination over Israel, not a prediction of the second coming of Jesus Christ. While it is tempting to speculate as to what the future will bring, prophecy is clearest when fulfilled. Date setting is fraught with many difficulties; chief among them is seemingly discrediting the Word of God.
We hope to show in the following study of Daniel and The Revelation, the historical fulfillment of the majority of the Full Times of the Gentiles.
THE FOLLOWING CONCLUSIONS
1 That in symbolic prophecy a “day” is put for a year and a “time” of 360 years.
2 That Daniel’s prophetic vision of the fourfold metallic image and of the four beasts have been fulfilled in the histories of the Babylonian, Persian, Grecian and Roman Empires.
3 That “Babylon the Great” in Rev 17 is the Roman Catholic Church.
4 That the little horn of Daniel 7 represents the Papal dynasty, and the little horn of Chapter 8 is, as to its final form, the Mohammedan power, the one arising out of the Roman Empire, and ruling in Western Europe; the other arising out of one of the divisions of the Greek empire, and ruling in Eastern Europe and in Asia.
out of Light for the Last Days pg 17
by H. Grattan Guinness in 1887
We Do Not Believe:
1 In a 7 year tribulation at the end of the Church age and preceding the millennium. Therefore, there is no separation between Daniel’s 69th and 70th week.
2 That the “abomination of desolation” will be fulfilled in a future antichrist who declares himself god in a rebuilt temple.
3 That most of the book of The Revelation is future, yet to come.
4 In wild speculation concerning future events, dates, etc.
Or HOW TO INTERPRET THE BIBLE
The Bible is an ancient book with languages and customs unlike our own. It is essential to the understanding of the reader to be acquainted with basic rules of interpretation (hermeneutics) and recognized resources which aid in study.
I General Principles:
A Context: All passages must be read in their full context. The Bible as a whole is unified in its teachings and any part must support the doctrine of the whole.
B Normal usage of words requires:
- Understanding of cultural idioms (Hebrew, Aramaic, Greek)
- Type of literature: poetry, history, parable, literal, symbolic, etc.
C Understanding the history and geography of the writer as well as cultural and religious contexts.
II Literary devices:
A Similes; a figure of speech comparing one thing, often with as or like, to something of a different kind or quality.
B Metaphors; a word or phrase denoting on the kind of object or idea used in place of another suggesting a likeness between the two.
C Hyperbole; extravagant exaggeration of statement; a statement exaggerated fancifully, as for effect.
D Rhetoric; skillful or artistic use of speech.
E Paradox; an assertion or sentiment seemingly contradictory, or opposed to common sense, but that yet may be true in fact.
II Special Interpretation:
Prophecy like science has its own peculiar language: “for understanding the prophecies, therefore”, as Sir Isaac Newton justly observes, “we are in the first place to acquaint ourselves with the figurative language of the prophets.”
A Promises and warnings are often told through the use of prophetic language.
- The Lord gives prophecy through dreams, visions and direct communications to His prophets
- The next historical event which appears to fulfill the prophecy is most likely the fulfillment.
- In all cases prophecy has specific meaning intended for our understanding.
- The prophecy is often hidden from the unsaved (see Jesus explanation of why He spoke in parables – Matt13:9-17; Rev 13:10-17; Daniel 12:10 :none of the wicked will understand”).
- Apocryphal language (such as in Revelation) contains a sense of unusual word combinations or unusual phenomenon.
B Most prophecy contains literal and symbolic language:
- Narrative is generally non-mythological and is historical:
- Who: name(s) of individuals or nation(s)
- What: event(s) foretold
- Where: geography described
- When: time references
2 Figurative or veiled language is truth told through symbolic speech, in which one object is representative of another.
- Symbols have a generalized definition that is consistent throughout scripture.
- The immediate context surrounding the symbol can help determine a specific meaning but must fall within the general definition.
- Symbolic language uses imagery of the natural world; i.e. beasts representing real kingdoms as in Daniel 7.
- Symbols can have an heavenly manifestation ( Rev. 1:20 stars = angels) or an earthly manifestation (Rev. 1:20 lampstands = churches)
3 Symbolic language is often interpreted by scripture:
- A prophet may ask for understanding and receive it as in Daniel 9:1-3.
- A prophet may be given interpretation within the prophecy as in Rev 1:20.
- Symbols may be defined elsewhere in scripture.
4 Consistent use of figurative language is essential:
- Literal interpretation of figurative language and visa-versa will lead to faulty conclusions.
- If a symbol is used in a passage, the other events in that same passage most likely will also be symbolic.
- The Lord has done unusual things to natural phenomenon, but has never created unnatural phenomenon. Scripture is not a” science fiction movie”.
- Parallel accounts of the same prophecy may exist in scripture but allegory (Gal. 4: 24-31) and types (Heb. 8:5, 1Cor. 10:6) must be used carefully and not as strict parallels.
III Typology: Sometimes called Double Prophecy
Excessive dependence on typology can lead one to neglect the plain meaning of the text.
1 Definition of Type:
The Greek term ”tupos”, occurs 16 times in the New Testament. [Jn 20:25; Acts 7:43; 7:44; 23:25; Ro 5:14; 6:17; 1 Cor 10:6,11; Phil 3:17; 1 Thess 1:7; 2 Thess 3:9; 1 Tim 4:12; Tit 2:7; Heb 8:5; 1 Pet 5:3]. A person, event or thing resembling another; they are called type and antitype; and the link which binds them together is their similarity. You might say that Types are pictures or object-lessons, by which God taught His people concerning His grace and saving power. The first [type] is usually physical and the second [antitype] is usually spiritual.
- The rejecting of Joseph by his brothers is the type [physical] to the Jews antitype rejection of The Messiah kingdom [spiritual].
- The sacrifice of Isaac is the type [physical] of Christ death on the cross as the Ultimate Sacrifice, antitype [spiritual].
- Isaiah’s son Immanuel/ Mahershalalhashbaz [Isa 7:14; 8:3] is the physical type of a boy born to an Almeh [virgin/ young woman]; antitype being The Messiah’s birth.
Next Chapter: Daniel Chapter 2
November 27, 2012Posted by on
1 “Then the kingdom of heaven shall be compared to ten maidens who took their lamps and went to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise. 3 For when the foolish took their lamps, they took no oil with them; 4 but the wise took flasks of oil with their lamps. 5 As the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept. 6 But at midnight there was a cry, ‘Behold, the bridegroom! Come out to meet him.’ 7 Then all those maidens rose and trimmed their lamps. 8 And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ 9 But the wise replied, ‘Perhaps there will not be enough for us and for you; go rather to the dealers and buy for yourselves.’ 10 And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast; and the door was shut. 11 Afterward the other maidens came also, saying, ‘Lord, lord, open to us.’ 12 But he replied, ‘Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.’ 13 Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour. Matt. 25: 1-13
Many an evangelist have preached on this passage, telling crowd after crowd that the oil is salvation and if you don’t have any you will be left out of the kingdom. However this just does not hold up. They are all virgins and half of them have run out of oil. It is not like they never had any extra. Throughout the Scriptures nowhere is oil a symbol of salvation. It is however symbolic of the religion established by the first five books of the Bible, or the Torah, and how well the people were applying it to their civilization and culture.
In the Scripture Israel is symbolized by an olive tree [Jer 11:16; Rom 11:17]. It is they that are the source of the olive oil that is burned in the lamps of these virgins [Zech 4:1-14 and Rev 1:20; Rev 11: 4-13]. Israel’s great commission was to keep The Law [Is 42:6; 49:6]. In keeping The Law they manufacture the oil needed to fuel the fires of truth. However, with out a light the fuel is only oil and of no useful purpose. Israel missed the spark that would light their lamps and bring light to the whole earth when they missed the Messiah. Instead of becoming a light to the world, they have progressively separated themselves from the world.
The church has often burned brightly [Matt 5:14-16], but only for a short time. Over time, not wanting to be encumbered with The Law, the Church has had little oil to burn. She easily falls into apostasy without The Law to guide her. Others have simply left The Law behind altogether and no longer have any oil.
There is no Grace without the Law, for it tells us we need Grace.
For Christ is the goal of the law, that every one who has faith may be justified. Rom. 10:4
As we have stated several time Matthew was originally written in Hebrew then translated into Greek very early, alas all Hebrew copies have been lost. So that being said, this word “virgins” or “maidens” would have been in the Hebrew “Alamot”. A special class of women who served the LORD while looking for His Messiah. These special women are mentioned 7 times in the Old Testament. (see our sister blog about, the Almeh or Alamot)
One of the chief jobs of Alamot is to dance at weddings [Psa. 68:25]. This is still true today through out the Middle east. One simply can not have a wedding without dancing Alamot. Even though the Alamot have degenerated into nothing more than prostitutes. The memory of what they were is still enough that one must have them.
FYI: And they always danced to the same tune at all the weddings, the Al-Zaffah, one of the oldest tunes in the history of music. It is not just centuries old, it is millennia old.
They have been seeking “the seed of woman” for all this time. That is why so many of them attached themselves to Solomon [Song 6:8]. They suspected that the redeemer would come through the line of David.
The alamot in this parable are waiting for the bridegroom. These are educated learned women. They are those that have dedicated their lives to look for and assist the Messiah in any way they can. So the teaching that this is about salvation is ludicrous. They are those that are watching for the Bridegroom.
Unlike our modern wedding where the Father of the Bride brings the bride to the bridegroom. This is like the wedding in the Song of Solomon [Song 3]. When the preparations are ready for the wedding, a crier is sent out to call the people [Matt. 22:3]. Then Bridegroom starts out from His home and walks through town and is joined by His friends and the Alamot. The crowd gets larger and larger as they approach the brides home. When they arrive, the shofar is blown to call her forth [1Th. 4:16].
But some have been foolish in their long wait, they have not expected the delay to be this long. In the intervening years their lamps have dried out, and they do not have extra. There is nothing in their lamps to burn. The text calls them foolish not fools. They have not said in their hearts there is not God [Psa. 14:1]. But they think God will do things the way and in the time they expect. They do not believe that they will need extra oil. Their faith is dependent on others. Someone else will provide the oil they need.
As MACBETH put it, their lives are:—
a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing.
Unfortunately many have turn their souls over to the teachings of the empty vessels.
We need the commandments and the statutes, and ordinances. This are the oil that is the Torah. With out this oil how can we:—
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and give glory to your Father who is in heaven. Matt. 5:16
The empty vessels have been teaching that the law has passed away for far too long. The Scripture state just the opposite.
“Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fully fill them up. Matt. 5:17
Do we then overthrow the law by this faith? By no means! On the contrary, we uphold the law. Rom. 3:31
Gentile believers can not just throw away the Law. Yes all the ceremonial laws of the temple are gone, and if someone didn’t get that message from the book of Hebrews, in 70 A.D., Messiah Himself sent the Roman Army to destroy it [Matt. 24:2]. There is no more need for sacrifices as Messiah has paid that price. But the rest of the Law, the Moral Code, stands. And It will stand for all eternity.
Here is a call for the endurance of the saints, those who keep the commandments of God and the faith of Jesus. Rev. 14:12
And they sing the song of Moses, the servant of God, and the song of the Lamb, saying,
“Great and wonderful are thy deeds, O Lord God the Almighty! Just and true are thy ways, O King of the ages! Rev. 15:3
The Gentile believers have been busy singing the song of the Lamb, but many have neglected to keep the faith of Jesus. They no longer even know that Messiah presented Himself as a first century Jewish Rabbi. They have instead fabricated a Christian deity out of whole cloth. Because of this neglect the gospels are now hard to understand because they have been divorced from the Torah, from which Messiah was commenting. Messiah kept the law. He celebrated the feast days. Yet those who claim to be His followers know nothing of them. They don’t know what He knew. They don’t do what He did. They don’t live the way He lived. They continue to call themselves Christians, but they no longer follow the first century Jewish Rabbi, who presented Himself as the Christ or Messiah. They just parrot over and over that, “The Law has passed away.”
We must not neglect to sing the song of Moses, as well as keep the commandments of God. For His ways are just and true. Without this song of Moses, we would just be doing what is right in our own eyes.
All slumbered and slept
The surprising thing about the parable is that even the wise are asleep. We are no longer attentively listening for the criers cry. We are unaware of the approaching bridegroom. Both the wise and the foolish have nodded off to the soothing sounds of three croaking frogs. Try as we might we can not wake ourselves. But our confidence is that:—
Behold, he who keeps Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. Psa. 121:4
We should be about our master’s business.
Since you are going therefore make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, to the close of the age.” Matt. 28:19-20
This was not to be the job of professional spiritual leaders. It was suppose to be all our jobs. But long ago we turned out spiritual authority over to professionals. We pay them to get the job done. However this job and this work was left to us all. Not some professional`.
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, that you may declare the wonderful deeds of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. 1 Pet. 2:9
February 11, 2012Posted by on
We all been told that moving mountains is about faith, and it is. However the context is not some literal mountain. The “This Mountain”, has to do with demonic activity.
And when they came to the crowd, a man came up to him and kneeling before him said, 15 “Lord, have mercy on my son, for he is an epileptic and he suffers terribly; for often he falls into the fire, and often into the water. 16 And I brought him to your disciples, and they could not heal him.” 17 And Jesus answered, “O faithless and perverse generation, how long am I to be with you? How long am I to bear with you? Bring him here to me.” 18 And Jesus rebuked him, and the demon came out of him, and the boy was cured instantly. 19 Then the disciples came to Jesus privately and said, “Why could we not cast it out?” 20 He said to them, “Because of your little faith. For truly, I say to you, if you have faith as a grain of mustard seed, you will say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move; and nothing will be impossible to you.” Matt. 17:14 -20
FYI: In the symbolic language of prphecy, “mountains” represents nations or countries. e.g. Is. 13:4; Jer. 4:24; Jer. 51:25; Ezek. 36:1; Hab. 3:6; Zech. 4:7; Rev. 16:20.
The context of a similar passage, is the Withered Fig Tree. In other passages in the Bible the fig tree symbolizes Israel’s national/political conditions [Hos. 9:10; Mt 24:32-35; Mk 13:28-31; Luke 21:30 ] So it is Israel’s national/political condition was about to be cast aside.
And seeing in the distance a fig tree in leaf, he went to see if he could find anything on it. When he came to it, he found nothing but leaves, for it was not the season for figs. And he said to it, “May no one ever eat fruit from you again.” And his disciples heard it. . . . . Mark 11:13-14
As they passed by in the morning, they saw the fig tree withered away to its roots. 21 And Peter remembered and said to him, “Master, look! The fig tree which you cursed has withered.” 22 And Jesus answered them, “Have faith in God. 23 Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and cast into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him. 24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. 25 And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against any one; so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.” Mark 11:20-24
We don’t have to look far to find in the Bible, some national/political condition that is also demonic. For even though it may look like we are fighting against wicked nations and peoples. Our fight is with spiritual rulers of this present darkness. They seem to us as an immovable mountain, an invincible foe. They move people and nations to hate, persecute, and kill God’s people.
For we are not contending against flesh and blood, but against the principalities, against the powers, against the world rulers of this present darkness, against the spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places. Eph. 6:12
Long have we recognized that the ultimate ruler of this present darkness is Satan, So much so that we have nick named him the prince of darkness. He is ruler of the nations, the Great Red Dragon in the book of The Revelation.
And the great dragon was thrown down, that ancient serpent, who is called the Devil and Satan, the deceiver of the whole world — he was thrown down to the earth, and his angels were thrown down with him. Rev. 12:9
The Great Red Dragon i.e. Satan hold sway over these imperial powers. We are told that he has given his authority to this beast. (This composite beast is made up of all the bestial empires that are named in Dan 7. The lion was Babylon, the bear was Persia, the leopard was Greece, and together they became the terrible beast that was Rome.)
And the beast that I saw was like a leopard, its feet were like a bears, and its mouth was like a lion’s mouth. And to it the dragon gave his power and his throne and great authority. Rev. 13:2
This mountain we are suppose to be able to move are the imperial powers of this present age. The kingdoms under Satan’s control. We believers have not moved one of these mountain since 476 A.D. when our faith brought down the Roman Empire. Now we must pray and bring down the little nations that empire broke into. Then a Great Nation will grow in their place.
When this mountain moves it will be replaced by one that shall never be moved.
And in the days of those kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed, nor shall its sovereignty be left to another people. It shall break in pieces all these kingdoms and bring them to an end, and it shall stand for ever; just as you saw that a stone was cut from a mountain by no human hand, and that it broke in pieces the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, and the gold. A great God has made known to the king what shall be hereafter. The dream is certain, and its interpretation sure.” Dan. 2:44-45
One hundred years ago we were singing songs like “Onward Christian Soldier”. Many taught and many more believed that we were going to bring in the millennium. We were going to convert the world by persuasion alone. Since then, we have lost our faith, our authority, and our power. We are now luke warm. The three frogs of Evolution, Socialism, and Papal Authority, have lulled us all to sleep. They constantly croak their lies. Many of us think or feel we are the ones who are the ignorant fools.
I have said this to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.” John 16:33
Every valley shall be lifted up, and every mountain and hill be made low; the uneven ground shall become level, and the rough places a plain. Is. 40:4
We are about to receive the victory. All it takes is faith the size of a mustard seed.
Let angels prostrate fall;
bring forth the royal diadem,
and crown him Lord of all.
Bring forth the royal diadem,
and crown him Lord of all.
March 19, 2011Posted by on
In the Messianic Community there is often a problem with envy or pride, concerning Jewish bloodlines, neither of which are acceptable. So to with the regular churches, that can often be taken up with a nationalist pride. This is not suppose to happen. We are not suppose to divide. We are no longer Jews or Gentiles. But we humans are vain creatures and we like to think that we are special, we like to think we are important. National pride is everywhere to see. So naturally we assume that God’s chosen people are special and important, so many want to all be Jews. There are people who teach that the church replaces the descendants of Abraham, and therefore the church gets all the promises God made to Abraham’s children in the Old Testament. There are others that teach that all believers are some how, lost in the mist of time, possess at least a drop of Abraham’s blood and as such are children of Abraham, and replace the people who are called Jews. Making the church the real Jews and the Jews fake Jews. There are others who teach that they are somehow descended from the twelve lost tribes, or that all gentile believers are of these lost tribes. On the other side of things, there are people who teach that Jews when they become Christian give up being Jews. Did I get them all? If you can think of another goofy group let me know, I’ll add them in. The reality is that the children of Israel were never a pure blood people. A mixed multitude also went up with them, and very many cattle, both flocks and herds Ex. 12:38. It doesn’t matter who your father was, or what your national origins might be. What matters is, do you have the faith of Abraham? Do you live and believe as Abraham did? Is he your father, spiritually?
For thou art our Father, though Abraham does not know us and Israel does not acknowledge us; thou, O LORD, art our Father, our Redeemer from of old is thy name. Is. 63:16
That is why it depends on faith, in order that the promise may rest on grace and be guaranteed to all his descendants — not only to the adherents of the law but also to those who share the faith of Abraham, for he is the father of us all, Rom. 4:16
Thus Abraham “believed God, and it was reckoned to him as righteousness.” So you see that it is men of faith who are the sons of Abraham. And the scripture, foreseeing that God would justify the Gentiles by faith, preached the gospel beforehand to Abraham, saying, “In you shall all the nations be blessed.” Gal. 3:6-8.
that is, how the Gentiles are fellow heirs, members of the same body, and partakers of the promise in Christ Jesus through the gospel. Eph. 3:6
Remember Abraham was not a Jew. The name Jew comes from the Southern kingdom of Judah, which was made up of Judah, Simeon, Benjamin, and some of Levi. Abraham was an Armenian.
“And you shall make response before the LORD your God, ‘A wandering Aramean was my father; and he went down into Egypt and sojourned there, few in number; and there he became a nation, great, mighty, and populous. Deut. 26:5
It really doesn’t matter what our backgrounds are. God does not care about anyone’s national heritage. We are the stones that cry out, that have been raised up raised up to be descendants of Abraham.
But when he saw many of the Pharisees and Sadducees coming for baptism, he said to them, “You brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bear fruit that befits repentance, Matt. 3:7-9
and do not presume to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father’; for I tell you, God is able from these stones to raise up children to Abraham. c.f. Luke 3:7-9
They answered him, “Abraham is our father.” Jesus said to them, “If you were Abraham’s children, you would do what Abraham did, but now you seek to kill me, a man who has told you the truth which I heard from God; this is not what Abraham did. John 8:39 -40
saying, “Blessed is the King who comes in the name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory in the highest!” And some of the Pharisees in the multitude said to him, “Teacher, rebuke your disciples.” He answered, “I tell you, if these were silent, the very stones would cry out.” Luke 19:38-40
From Abraham to Moses there was no tabernacle and no temple. Just the head of the family building a simple altar of uncut stones. Why uncut? Because we are all individuals. We are not like the Babylonians, who made their tower out of mud bricks, that were all interchangeable and all the same. In his “Genesis Journeys: Tower of Power” Rabbi Daniel Lapin explains this.
And if you make me an altar of stone, you shall not build it of hewn stones; for if you wield your tool upon it you profane it. Ex. 20:25
a people who provoke me to my face continually, sacrificing in gardens and burning incense upon bricks; Is. 65:3
It is these individual stones that now make up the temple of the Holy Spirit. A temple not made with bricks and mortar.
Do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, which you have from God? You are not your own; 1Cor. 6:19
Come to him, to that living stone, rejected by men but in God’s sight chosen and precious; and like living stones be yourselves built into a spiritual house, to be a holy priesthood, to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. For it stands in scripture: “Behold, I am laying in Zion a stone, a cornerstone chosen and precious, and he who believes in him will not be put to shame.” To you therefore who believe, he is precious, but for those who do not believe, “The very stone which the builders rejected has become the head of the corner,” and “A stone that will make men stumble, a rock that will make them fall”; for they stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do.
But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s own people, that you may declare the wonderful deeds of him who called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Once you were no people but now you are God’s people; once you had not received mercy but now you have received mercy. 1 Pet. 2:4 -10
Our Messiah is a stone, and we are stones. There is no longer a physical building to look to. We are always in the temple, for we are this temple. Our sacrifices are spiritual not literal. Our Messiah was rejected and we are often rejected by those who are not of this temple, the pretenders, liars, and those that fear us. In this new spiritual temple, Where it is always the Day of Atonement. We stand before the throne. We are God’s people, we have received this mercy.
Puvah says, “Now we know why Tola is so hard headed. She has embraced her stoniness.”
Dodo, “That’s good.”
Tola, “Ha Ha.”
- Point 1. The New Jerusalem is not as the hyper literal dispensationalist would have it, some kind of weird space ship that is either a cube, sphere, pyramid, planet, or asteroid, it is like everything else in this book a symbol, in this case of the bride [Rev 21]. We are the stones of the city.
- Point 2. First a disclaimer, all the members of Issachar 5 are Pre Millennialist. The prophecy in Daniel 2 says that the nations that make up the metal man image are ground to dust by a stone not cut by human hands. Now as Pre Millennialist, we believe that Messiah is this stone. However the Amillenniaist, and the Post Millennialist believe that the people of God are this grinding stone. We all agree that we are about to find out who is right.
March 12, 2011Posted by on
While reading Ezekiel for the other blog, Tola ran into a interesting detail she had never noticed before. Evidently judgment comes in fours. Examples: There are four Empires in Dan 2 & 7. There are four locusts in Joel. And of course there are the four horseman of the apocalypse. There are probably more, these are just the ones that came to mind at the time.
There is no conclusion to the post. We have no idea at this point, what this might or might not mean. We just thought it was interesting. If you find anymore, please send them to Tola’s Facebook page under the name of Tola Ben Issachar, and they will be added to this list. Maybe we can figure this out together.
“I will appoint over them four kinds of destroyers, says the LORD: the sword to slay, the dogs to tear, and the birds of the air and the beasts of the earth to devour and destroy. Jer. 15:3
“For thus says the Lord GOD: How much more when I send upon Jerusalem my four sore acts of judgment, sword, famine, evil beasts, and pestilence, to cut off from it man and beast! Ezek. 14:21
Dan 2 the four metal of the metal statue.
“This was the dream; now we will tell the king its interpretation. You, O king, the king of kings, to whom the God of heaven has given the kingdom, the power, and the might, and the glory, and into whose hand he has given, wherever they dwell, the sons of men, the beasts of the field, and the birds of the air, making you rule over them all — you are the head of gold. After you shall arise another kingdom inferior to you, and yet a third kingdom of bronze, which shall rule over all the earth. And there shall be a fourth kingdom, strong as iron, because iron breaks to pieces and shatters all things; and like iron which crushes, it shall break and crush all these. Dan. 2:36 -40
Dan 7 the four beast.
And four great beasts came up out of the sea, different from one another. Dan. 7:3
The four locust of Joel.
What the cutting locust left, the swarming locust has eaten. What the swarming locust left, the hopping locust has eaten, and what the hopping locust left, the destroying locust has eaten. Joel 1:4
Rev 6 the four horseman of the apocalypse.
Now I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures say, as with a voice of thunder, “Come!” And I saw, and behold, a white horse, and its rider had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer.
When he opened the second seal, I heard the second living creature say, “Come!” And out came another horse, bright red; its rider was permitted to take peace from the earth, so that men should slay one another; and he was given a great sword.
When he opened the third seal, I heard the third living creature say, “Come!” And I saw, and behold, a black horse, and its rider had a balance in his hand; and I heard what seemed to be a voice in the midst of the four living creatures saying, “A quart of wheat for a denarius, and three quarts of barley for a denarius; but do not harm oil and wine!”
When he opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth living creature say, “Come!” And I saw, and behold, a pale horse, and its rider’s name was Death, and Hades followed him; and they were given power over a fourth of the earth, to kill with sword and with famine and with pestilence and by wild beasts of the earth.
When he opened the fifth seal, I saw under the altar the souls of those who had been slain for the word of God and for the witness they had borne; Rev. 6:1 -9
February 19, 2011Posted by on
Recently someone searched into this blog by writing out this verse. We don’t know why a search engine would bring this search to our blog, but we will deal with it as if it were a question. What does this verse mean?
By faith we understand that the world was created by the word of God, so that what is seen was made out of things which do not appear. Heb. 11:3
Wow! that is an odd verse. So Tola looked at the Greek. Now Tola does not read Greek, but can look it up, and right away noticed a big problem. The word “world” is not in the Greek. So naturally she turned to Dodo who does read Greek, and asked simply, “what was created?” Long pause, answer, “it’s not clear”. When this happens one must always fall back on the standard rules of grammar. When the object of the verb is not in the sentence in question, one must look for it in the greater context of the whole passage to figure out what the object of the verb is. The word “world” is not here at all. It is not even hinted at.
Now the curiosity of it, has our attention.
The greater context of this verse is that it is in the introduction to the great “Faith Chapter” in Hebrews 11. The Chapter goes on to give short biographies of all the men of faith in the Old Testement. The preseding verses are—
Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen. For by it the men of old received divine approval. Heb. 11:1 -2
The contexts is “elders or men of old, who were appoved”. It is these great men who were created. Our elders, were created that we might see or rather understand, things that do not appear.
We don’t know if this searcher will ever come back to see the answer to his question. But we had fun looking it up.
January 29, 2011Posted by on
Marcionism (named after Marcion of Sinope) in about the year 144 AD, which taught that the wrathful Hebrew God was a separate and lower entity than the all-forgiving God of the New Testament. Marcion developed a canon consisting of an edited Luke and ten Pauline epistles, with all references to the Old Testament removed. Nothing of Marcion’s writings have survived. The largest source of his teaching were is in Tertullian’s, Adversus Marcionem, a five-book treatise which denounced Marcion’s teachings, written about 208 AD.
This heresy has evolved and been redesigned by the modern church. But in essence it remains the same. The teaching that God has changed from the Old Testament to the New Testament. Sometime it is styled that He has matured over the eons, others that He has become more understanding and loving, and still others that Messiah is a separate deity from the God of the Old Testament.
These neo-Marcionist teach that Jesus gave us a new religion, that Christianity is apart and completely different from Judaism. This is just utter nonsense. Christianity and Judaism are children of a common mother. That common mother was the Biblical Faith given to Abraham, later given structure at the time of Moses. If the Church had remained faithful to the Biblical holy days they would never have been susceptible to such absurd teaching.
[FYI. contrary to popular opinion, Christianity is the OLDER sister, Rabbinic Judaism is about a century younger. Christianity came into being, when followers of Messiah were denied access to the Temple. It was from that time on that the Way was no longer considered a sect of the Jews, but rather a separate people and religion. Rabbinic Judaism was founded by Rabbi Akiva ben Joseph during the Bar Kokhba rebellion or The Second Jewish revolt 132 – 135 A.D. It was during this struggle that Akiva created the Rabbinic Judaism that we know today; a Judaism without a temple. It’s chief tenet is that Jesus of Nazareth is not the promised Messiah of Israel. This new religion was created to hold the Jewish community together after the destruction of the Temple, 70 AD. The military leader of this last resistance against the Romans, was Bar Kokhba named Simon ben Kosiba surnamed Simon bar Kokhba, “son of the star”. At the beginning of this revolt about one third of Bar Kokhba’s forces were Christian Jews. As the revolt progressed Akiva named Bar Kokhba as the Jewish Messiah. This caused a conflict among the Jewish Christians who then left his army because they knew that he was not the Messiah. About half of those that left joined the Romans, so as to put down this false Messiah. The resulting loss to the Romans was blamed on the Christian Jews who left Bar Kokhba. Since then it is considered that those Jews who convert to Christianity are traitors and no longer Jews.]
The idea that God changes or that Jesus brought a new religion is against all that the Scripture says. Messiah said he came to fulfill the Law not change it.
“Think not that I have come to abolish the law and the prophets; I have come not to abolish them but to fulfil them. Matt. 5:17
This misreading of all the texts, is simply bad hermeneutics (how one interprets scripture). It is based on the “I think, I feel, I believe I’m right, as I make it up as I go”, hermeneutic. To believe that Jesus came to give us a whole new religion, is a preposterous assertion. It is antithetical to His stated Mission. He answered, “I was sent only to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.” Matt. 15:24 This false teaching points to a lawbreaker, rather than the divine Redeemer. This absurdity means that He was a rebellious renegade, and not the one stating.
I and the Father are one.” John 10:30
For whoever does the will of my Father in heaven is my brother, and sister, and mother.” Matt. 12:50
The hermeneutic of Progressive Revelation teaches that God reveals himself to us in a series of progressive revelations. Each one giving us a fuller light to God’s plans and purposes. These revelations have been made though—
His work: Ps. 19:1, Rom 1:18-23,
His Word: John 1:1-5, and
His Son: Heb 1:1-4ff.
A fourth revelation of God, His Glory: a yet fuller and more perfect than those that have come before, is yet to be given Rev 22:4.
As an example lets just look at the promises of a coming redeemer. It is like an artist painting a picture. He knows what His painting will look like when finished, however the onlookers see the work as it progresses. “One stroke” or revelation at a time, the Lord brings into sharper focus of the final image or a fuller understanding of prophetic events.
A Gen 3:15 Enmity between the woman’s seed and the serpent’s.
B Gen 9:25-27 Blessed be Shem.
C Gen 12:3 By you all the families of the earth shall bless themselves.
D Gen 49:10 The scepter will not depart from Judah.
E Deut 32:18 The Rock that begot you.
F Ps 118:22 The rejected cornerstone.
G Isa 7:14 Virgin birth.
H Isa 11:1 Coming from Jesse.
I Isa 42:2-3 A willing sacrifice.
J Isa 53:4-6 Our iniquity fell upon Him.
K Isa 55:3-5 He will come from David.
L Isa 59:20 He comes to Zion as Redeemer.
N Hos 11:1 Messiah comes out of Egypt.
O Zech 9:9 Describes the triumphal entry into Jerusalem.
Even though all Israel was waiting. The exact year was given in Dan 9, however only a few shepherds and Magi were invited to the party, and there were only two people (Simeon and Anna Lk 2:25-38) waiting in the Temple when The Messiah arrived to be circumcised. If you had only these prophetic artist’s strokes, could you have recognized the complete picture and been waiting with Simeon and Anna?
So it is not God who has matured or changed. It is just that He has given us a fuller picture of who and what He is. What His plans and Purposes are. But if and only if you avail yourself of the information.
October 30, 2010Posted by on
We get this question all the time. The simple answer is NONE. They all have huge problems. Sometimes their problems are with a difficult section in the original language and sometimes the problem of the translators is their own preconceived notions or prejudices.
Maybe someday I will get Dodo to write about the New Testament, but for now let me speak to the Old Testament. Biblical Hebrew is a simple language, quite easy to learn. But once you learn your Alephbet, and learn that all words have gender, it become obvious that it is the verb tense which does not translate easily into English. In English verb tense is either past, present, or future, with the consequences that English speaking people are obsessed with the order of events. We construct time lines, and charts, so we can can get everything in the right order . It is the English that established the time zones for every position on earth relative the time in Greenwich England. Our language structure demands this level of organization. Nothing in Hebrew is even remotely similar. Consequently, the Hebrew ideas are hard to express in English
Hebrew tenses are most concerned as to who is responsible for the action, and/or whether that action is finished or continuing. In Genesis 1, the words that indicate that God “created, made or formed”, are all in the Qal Perfect tense, or complete action. Meaning that it happened once and will not happen again. It is complete. It is the most common tense in the Bible, and is always translated with a past tense verb in English. Qal Imperfect, or incomplete action, or action that is continuing. Imperfect verbs are usually translated as future tense, but may also be modified with may, might, would, could, can, and should.
The rest of the tenses are varying degrees of causation, Frankly the subtleties of these are lost to the English speaker and thinker. To us if someone caused something, they caused it, there is no “sort of” caused it. One is either responsible or not. But in Hebrew there are 6 layers of causation. From Piel, which caused, to Hithpael, which is passive caused. All of them are Piel, Niphel, Pual, Hiphil, Hophel, Hithpael. All of these also come in Perfect and Imperfect forms. Oh, and to the actual Hebrew scholar who may have stumbled upon this blog, yes I know I have over simplified this.
The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt, they do abominable deeds, there is none that does good. Psa. 14:1
The fool “says” is in the Qal perfect. It is completed action. Where “corruption, and abominable” are Hiphil perfect. They are caused to be in these conditions.
If a man returns evil for good, evil will not depart from his house. Prov. 17:13
The word “return” is in the Hiphil, ‘causes evil”. The word “depart” is in the Hebrew doubled, once in the Hiphil and again in the Qal, and both are imperfect. Hebrew doubles a word when it is meaning much or many. The evil not “departing” will not be caused FOREVER.
Hidden word play:
Hebrew loves word play in ways that don’t always make since in English. The English reader hates to read the same word over and over again in the same paragraph. To our ears it is redundant. If one were to write a paragraph in for instance on cars, we would call them autos, vehicles or automobiles to avoid the redundant use of the word car. However, Hebrew often has an important or hidden teaching revealed by using a word 3 or 7 times in a passage.
In Lev 26 the term “sevenfold” or “seven times” is used 3 times. For full explanation see The Prophetic Calendar
In Num 32:16-34 in the agreement between Ruben, Gad, and the half-tribe of Manasseh, with the rest of Israel in the taking of the Land, God’s name is called upon 7 times.
Every name in the Bible has meaning. Some like Isaac and Jacob’s 12 boys, are given in the text as they are named, but others you must know Hebrew or look them up. Translators usually just transliterate them, i.e. substitute English letters for the Hebrew ones. Not giving the meanings. Melchizedek king of Salem is the “King of Righteousness, King of Peace”. Abimelech means “my father is king”, which is why he is around for so long, it is not a person but rather a title. One of Saul’s sons and later his grandson by Jonathan, were named Mephibosheth. This demonstrates one of the odd habits that Hebrew scribes had, that of changing names whose meaning were not to their liking. Bosheth is Hebrew for “shame”. There are quite a few names that end in this bosheth. Originally the Mephibosheth was Meri-baal, “beloved of Baal”. At some point either at the writing or sometime latter these names were changed, because it was believed that the name of a pagan god like Baal or Ashtaroth should not appeared in so important a text, so it was changed to Mephibosheth, “exterminator of the shameful one”.
Then there are the one I can not figure out. Caleb, why would anyone name their child “dog”? Or Amos, why would anyone name a child burden? But I digress.
This is suppose to be a blog on prophecy, so lets look at something that made perfect since to the author and the immediate readers, but time and culture have made it nonsense to us, and therefore hard to translate, if you don’t know that a pagan god is hidden in the text.
“Then from his presence the hand was sent, and this writing was inscribed. And this is the writing that was inscribed: MENE, MENE, TEKEL, and PARSIN. This is the interpretation of the matter: MENE, God has numbered the days of your kingdom and brought it to an end; TEKEL, you have been weighed in the balances and found wanting; PERES, your kingdom is divided and given to the Medes and Persians.” Dan. 5:24 -28
Every Sunday School child know the story of The Writing on the Wall [Dan 5]. And they were all told that the meaning of the strange words was that Belshazzar’s kingdom did not measure up and would be over thrown. But why does it mean this? What are these strange words?
Mene or Meni, is the Babylonian moon god. In a culture where idolatry and astronomy were intimately combined, the moon was more than just the numberer of the months, he was the god that weighed ones soul against a feather to see whether or not one could go to the Babylonian version of heaven. (If you are familiar with the fraudulent teachings of the Church of Rome, you will recognize that this pagan idea of soul weighing has been commandeered and assigned to Michael the Archangel.) God is using something Belshazzar and all living in that culture would have understood. He wants to make a point to them. Meni didn’t write on that wall, Meni is not the one that weighs men’s souls, judgment belongs to the one true God and Him alone. Tekel is a specific weight of silver, or money. Coin money had not yet been created. Parsin is an even smaller amount of silver. So instead of a soul needing to be lighter than a feather, God is weighing Belshazzar’s against some thing quite heavy, the love of which is the root of all evil [1 Tim. 6:10].
Meni also makes an appearance in Isaiah.
But you who forsake the LORD, who forget my holy mountain, who set a table for Gad and fill cups of mixed wine for Meni ; Is. 65:11
Your translation may say Fortune and Destiny, because the translators were trying to explain rather than give a wooden translation Gad is the name of the Babylonian Sun god.
Without a knowledge of Hebrew Aramaic and Greek, you are forever at the mercy of the translators. Some passages are very difficult. Especially prophecy. If you don’t know what it is suppose to mean, unless one is told later in scripture that this or that passage is fulfilled, it can be quite difficult to translate it. Some of these translators are or were great men of God, but no one is perfect, and we all have preconceived notions.
It used to be that all preachers and teachers were trained in the Bible languages. Your grandmother could trust that the preacher could answer her questions. Or at least have a book that had the answers. This is no longer the case. These modern day preachers are taught that what is important is how they feel about what they have read. But feelings are not truth.
The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately corrupt; who can understand it? Jer. 17:9
You must take this study on for yourselves. Otherwise you are a the mercy of these impostors. Your eternal soul is at stake.
Thus says the LORD of hosts: “Do not listen to the words of the prophets who prophesy to you, filling you with vain hopes; they speak visions of their own minds, not from the mouth of the LORD. Jer. 23:16