My Thoughts on Torah Portion Kedoshim

Posted on

I’m sharing my thoughts and ponderings on Torah Portion Kedoshim (holy ones), for what they are worth. This is my 5th year reading the Torah Portions each Shabbat and I learn something new each time.I use a different translation each Torah cycle. This cycle I am using Shocken Bible. I have to tell you I DO NOT like the commentary part, but I love the language of the Scriptures. I like having a book to hold, but if you want to read it online, here is a pdf. This time I also pulled out my Onkelos translation. I love Onkelos, because if this translation changes the words of scripture, it tells you and why they changed them. I don’t like that they were changed at all, but I can assure you Every translation changes the words … just Onkelos tells you that he has.

My thoughts about Kedoshim

 

In Leviticus 19:2 we immediately see who is being spoken to… all the congregation. In my translation, it reads the entire community, but either way, it is all those that came out of Egypt, the mixed multitude, the children of Israel, all of them. And then… the words that should scare us all! Words that tell us how we should live…

Lev 19:2  “Speak to all the congregation of the children of Yisra’?l, and say to them, ‘Be set-apart, for I ???? your Elohim am set-apart. The Scriptures 1998

Lev 19:2  Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them: Ye shall be holy; for I the LORD your God am holy. JPS (Jewish Publication Society Bible)

Lev 19:2  Speak unto all the congregation of the children of Israel, and say unto them, Ye shall be holy: for I the LORD your God am holy.

And again in Leviticus 20:7:

Lev 20:7  Sanctify yourselves, therefore, and be holy; for I am the LORD your God.  Lev 20:8  and you shall guard My laws and do them. I am ????, who sets you apart. The Scriptures 1998

Lev 20:7 Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy; for I am the LORD your God. Lev 20:8 And keep ye My statutes, and do them: I am the LORD who sanctify you. JPS (Jewish Publication Society Bible)

Lev 20:7 Sanctify yourselves therefore, and be ye holy: for I am the LORD your God. Lev 20:8 And ye shall keep my statutes, and do them: I am the LORD which sanctify you.

The all say essentially the same thing… we should be set-apart, visibly, distinctly, vastly set-apart and walking a Holy lifestyle. How can we think that Yeshua born to be our Savior changes this in any way? That He came to set us free from living a Holy lifestyle? Really?  That is not logical nor is it scriptural… not in the least.

As we read through Chapters 19 and 20 that make up this portion, it reminds me of Yeshua restating how we are to live in Matthew 5 and 19. He didn’t release us from these laws… he explained them. The beginning of Leviticus 19:17 is almost exactly what Yeshua said…

Lev 19:17  You shall not hate your brother in your heart…

Mat 5:22  But I say to you, that whoever becomes angry with his brother for no reason, is guilty before the court: and whoever should say to his brother, Raca (which means, I spit on you) is guilty before the congregation; and whoever says to his brother, you are a nurse maid, is condemned to hell fire.

And again:

Lev 19:11  You shall not steal; you shall not deal falsely; neither shall you lie to one another.

Lev 19:12  You shall not swear by my name falsely and so profane the name of your God; I am the LORD.

Mat 5:33 Again you have heard it was said to them who were before you, that you shall not lie in your oaths, but entrust your oaths to the Lord.
Mat 5:34 But I say to you, never swear; neither by heaven, because it is God’s throne;
Mat 5:35 Nor by the earth, for it is a stool under his feet; nor by Jerusalem, for it is the city of a great king.
Mat 5:36 Neither shall you swear by your own head, because you cannot create in it a single black or white hair.
Mat 5:37 But let your words be yes, yes, and no, no; for anything which adds to these is a deception.

Mat 19:18  He said to him, Which ones? And Jesus said to him, You shall not kill; You shall not commit adultery; You shall not steal; You shall not bear false witness;

 

And yet again:

Lev 19:3  You must revere every man his father and his mother, and keep my commandments; for I am the LORD your God.

Lev 19:18  You shall not bear any enmity against the children of your own people, but you shall love your neighbor as yourself; I am the LORD.

Mat 19:19  Honor your father and your mother; and, Love your neighbor as yourself.

If you believe that Yeshua did away with the laws and ordinances of the “Old Testament” (Tanakh), I recommend you really pray about this and study the Word of God. Yeshua did not speak too many words for us to understand them. If you are confused by what APPEARS to be inconsistencies in the Brit Chadasha (New Testament), then I recommend you just read Yeshua’s words first. Understand them before you attempt to understand the disciples’ words. Because we know that the disciples could NOT speak against anything Yeshua said. So if you understand what Yeshua said and it appears another chapter and verse go against it…. you have to assume that your understanding of the later is wrong. Yeshua’s words were really easy to understand… there is no ambiguity in them.  Period. Pray about it and really seek wisdom (Scripture) for this answer.

When reading the commentary in Onkelos, I loved what Sforno said about this Torah portion… He essentially said this teaching embodied the concept that God created man “in His image and after His likeness” (Genesis 1:26)… that this Torah portion perfectly displays the requirement to emulate the ways of God.  Can I get an AMEN? That is it… and exactly what I felt as I was reading this.  Set-apart.  Are we a set-apart people, walking out His Words and emulating our Messiah, Yeshua?  If not, we need to examine our theology and our walk!

There is so much more to study in this little portion, but this is where I’ll stop. I pray this is a blessing to you!

Until next time….

Shalom, Shalom!!

Trish

 


Thoughts as I read Yeshua by Dr. Ron Moseley Part Two

Posted on

Well Dr. Moseley stunned me on page one of Chapter One!  I’m sharing this in this article because you can read Chapter 1 on Amazon, so I’m not giving away secrets from the book 🙂

 

Sharing my Thoughts as I read Yeshua by Dr. Ron Moseley

Eusebius documents the first “bishops” of the Church in Jerusalem and shares that the first FIFTEEN were Hebrew, believing Jews!!  Can you believe it? Further, did you know that in AD 117 Jerusalem was seized (and renamed) and Jews were BANNED from entering Jerusalem for one hundred years?  Think that might have prevented them from being the next group of bishops of the Church? So only after the believing Jews were no longer even in the city did Gentiles take that role. The exciled believing Jews that were “led by James and Simeon were still clinging tightly to the Judaic traditions while crouched at Pella.” (Baring Gould, Lost and Hostile History. “Schonfield’s History” 1936 page 35.

NPNF2-01. Eusebius Pamphilius: Church History, Life of Constantine, Oration in Praise of Constantine

Chapter V.—The Bishops of Jerusalem from the Age of our Saviour to the Period under Consideration
1. The chronology of the bishops of Jerusalem I have nowhere found preserved in writing;994 for tradition says that they were all short lived.
2. But I have learned this much from writings,995 that until the siege of the Jews, which took place under Adrian,996 there were fifteen bishops in succession there,997 all of whom are said to have been of Hebrew descent, and to have received the knowledge of Christ in purity, so that they were approved by those who were able to judge of such matters, and were deemed worthy of the episcopate. For their whole church consisted then of believing Hebrews who continued from the days of the apostles until the siege which took place at this time; in which siege the Jews, having again rebelled against the Romans, were conquered after severe battles.
3. But since the bishops of the circumcision ceased at this time, it is proper to give here a list of their names from the beginning. The first, then, was James, the so-called brother of the Lord;998 the second, Symeon;999 the third, Justus;1000 the fourth, Zacchæus;1001 the fifth, Tobias; the sixth, Benjamin; the seventh, John; the eighth, Matthias; the ninth, Philip; the tenth, Seneca;1002 the eleventh, Justus; the twelfth, Levi; the thirteenth, Ephres;1003 the fourteenth, Joseph;1004 and finally, the fifteenth, Judas.
4. These are the bishops of Jerusalem that lived between the age of the apostles and the time referred to, all of them belonging to the circumcision.
5. In the twelfth year of the reign of Adrian, Xystus, having completed the tenth year of
177
his episcopate,1005 was succeeded by Telesphorus,1006 the seventh in succession from the apostles. In the meantime, after the lapse of a year and some months, Eumenes,1007 the sixth in order, succeeded to the leadership of the Alexandrian church, his predecessor having held office eleven years.1008

Herod's Temple

So, the first century Church is still absolutely a sect of Judaism, just as Paul said it was in Acts.

Act 28:17 And it came to pass, that after three days Paul called the chief of the Jews together: and when they were come together, he said unto them, Men and brethren, though I have committed nothing against the people, or customs of our fathers, yet was I delivered prisoner from Jerusalem into the hands of the Romans.
Act 28:18 Who, when they had examined me, would have let me go, because there was no cause of death in me.
Act 28:19 But when the Jews spake against it, I was constrained to appeal unto Caesar; not that I had ought to accuse my nation of.
Act 28:20 For this cause therefore have I called for you, to see you, and to speak with you: because that for the hope of Israel I am bound with this chain.
Act 28:21 And they said unto him, We neither received letters out of Judaea concerning thee, neither any of the brethren that came shewed or spake any harm of thee.
Act 28:22 But we desire to hear of thee what thou thinkest: for as concerning this sect, we know that every where it is spoken against.
Act 28:23 And when they had appointed him a day, there came many to him into his lodging; to whom he expounded and testified the kingdom of God, persuading them concerning Jesus, both out of the law of Moses, and out of the prophets, from morning till evening.

There is just absolutely no doubt that Paul was Jewish and a Pharisee and a believer in Yeshua. THIS is exactly what convinced me that somehow the Church had lost its way … WAY back then to divorce its “Jewishness”. If “Messianic” Judaism was good enough for Yeshua and the Apostles… it’s good enough for me (it was not called Messianic back then, of course).  I have been walking the path of Messianic Judaism now for almost six years and have never looked back. Scripture finally makes sense. If you think anything in the New Testament contradicts anything in the Old Testament then you are calling God a liar, because He said He doesn’t change His mind… Yeshua said throughout His ministry that He came to do His Father’s will… The Bible was divided by a man… not by God. Even the titles of the Books, the Chapters, the verses… ALL of that was added by man. The only Scriptures the apostles had to teach and preach about Yeshua was the “Old Testament”.

disclosure

Reading through Yeshua, there is a lot of information to digest… some information I knew some I didn’t know. The parts I didn’t know, I will not take Dr. Moseley’s word for it. Even the historical aspect, I am confirming as I go. The information about Eusebius at the beginning of this article is an example of me confirming what Dr. Moseley said… I had to research it to be sure it was accurate.

Note… I didn’t discuss every aspect of Chapter one. I have the entire chapter highlighted in my book, so I just picked out the pieces that I identified with and was either shocked by or so identified with that I wanted to share it with you!  I encourage you to read the Scriptures for yourself… We are told to be Bereans and study the Word and test everything you hear and read.

Next time I’ll cover Chapter Two… until next time, Shalom!

Trish

 

 

 

Part one to this series is here.


Thoughts as I read Yeshua by Dr. Ron Moseley Part One

Posted on

So, I’m reading this fantastic book, Yeshua: A Guide to the Real Jesus and the Original Church by Dr. Ron Moseley with a Foreward by Marvin Wilson, Ph.D. and I thought I would come here and share my thoughts on this great book as I read it.

Thoughts and Perspective on Yeshua by Dr. Ron Moseley

I stumbled upon this book when a group of friends had mentioned wanting to read it as part of a book club.  Unfortunately, I just don’t have time to participate in a formal book club these days, but I did purchase the book and have started reading it.

It is rare that I read a Foreward or Preface in a book (I know… it’s a character flaw 🙂 I’m impatient, I want to get to the meat of the matter!)… but I did for this book and I’m glad I did!

The foreward is written by Marvin Wilson, Ph.D., Ockenga Professor of Biblical Theological Studies, Chairman of the Department of Biblical Studies at Gordon College in Wenham, Massachusetts.  I knew I would read this book just based on this one comment…

If one desires to be radically Christian, a thorough understanding of the Jewish origin of the Church is, by no means optional, it is foundational.

I could not agree with him more!!  It is literally the beginning of understanding… You can’t start a book two-thirds through and expect to understand the content without the first portion of the book… which is what so many want to do.

The Preface is written by Dr. Moseley himself.  It’s funny as I sit here to type up my thoughts, I am thumbing back through what I’ve read… I don’t have many books where practically the entire preface had highlighter marks all over it!  I am going to share word-for-word from the Preface, since it is free out there to be read on Amazon (as well as the Foreward and Introduction).

Scholars agree, on the most basic level, that Jesus was a Jew who was born, lived, and died within first-century Judaism. His teaching methods, parables, proverbs, and symbolic style were characteristic of the Judaism of that day. Since both the Old and New Testaments are highly Hebraic, with the background, writers, culture, religion, traditions, and concepts being Hebrew, any analysis should be done from this perspective.

disclosure

 And a final quote from the Preface…

Finally, our study will suggest that the early Church was one of the many sects within first century Judaism, which neither Jesus nor Paul ever tried to leave.  Because the early Church remained within Judaism for the first hundred years, the proto-rabbi and the Hebrew culture are essential to understanding it organizational structure.

In the introduction, Dr. Moseley discusses if Paul and Jesus were rebels  or outcasts of Judaism…. which of course they were NOT.  Research shows that there were over twenty different denominations within first century Judaism – including the Pharisees, Sadducees, Zealots, Essenes, Hellenists, etc. And each of these were considered outside the mainstream at one point or another, yet still firmly welcomed and a part of Judaism.  You can see that Jesus (Yeshua is his Hebraic name) was called rabbi by both Pharisees and his disciples in multiple areas of scripture… here are just a few examples from Scripture…

Joh 1:38  And Jesus turned around and saw them following him, and he said to them, What do you want? They said to him, Rabbi (Teacher), where do you live?

Joh 1:49  Nathanael answered, saying to him, Rabbi, you are the Son of God, you are the King of Israel.

Joh 3:1 THERE was there a man of the Pharisees, named Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews;

Joh 3:2 He came at night to Jesus and said to him, Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher sent from God; for no man can do these miracles that you are doing, except God is with him.

Dr. Moseley set out to delve into five areas that would greatly increase our understanding of Jesus and His Church:

  1. The commonly ignored fact that the Church was totally Jewish, long before it became the Gentile institution of today;
  2. The fuzzy picture of the organizational structure of the early Church, specifically in relation to its synagogue counterpart; 
  3. The nearly complete absence of any knowledge concerning Jewish idioms used by Jesus;
  4. the difficulty understanding the purpose and requirements of the Torah, particularly pertaining to Christians;
  5. and The distorted image many have of the Pharisees.

Well, if this doesn’t whet your appetite to start reading this book with me, nothing will!  I am actually already in Chapter Three, one-third the way into the book. But it is so good and so needed, I decided to stop and write about what I’m reading!  I hope you will pick up a copy and read this book for yourself!  You will see why my book has highlighting almost across the whole page!

Until next time… shalom!

Analyzing Early Church Facebook Cover


Modern Day Pharisees!

Posted on

Weightier Matters

What are these “Weightier Matters” that Yeshua admonished the Pharisees for ignoring? Are we falling into the same trap?

Mat 23:23 “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! Because you tithe the mint and the anise and the cumin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the Torah: the right-ruling and the compassion and the belief. These need to have been done, without neglecting the others.

Luk 11:42 “But woe to you Pharisees, because you tithe the mint and the rue and every plant, and pass by the right-ruling and the love of Elohim. These you should have done, without leaving the others undone.

Let’s be sure we understand the definitions of these words first.

Right-ruling: H6666 tsedâqâh BDB Definition:1) justice, righteousness1a) righteousness (in government)1a1) of judge, ruler, king1a2) of law1a3) of Davidic king Messiah1b) righteousness (of God’s attribute)1c) righteousness (in a case or cause)1d) righteousness, truthfulness1e) righteousness (as ethically right)1f) righteousness (as vindicated), justification, salvation1f1) of God1f2) prosperity (of people)1g) righteous acts (The Delitzsch Hebrew Gospels defines it as: a righteous act; kindness to others; charity) Compassion: H2550 châmal BDB Definition:1) (Qal) to spare, pity, have compassion on

Belief/Faith: H530 ‘?mûnâh BDB Definition:1) firmness, fidelity, steadfastness, steadiness

Love: G26 – agap? Strongs Definition:1) affection, good will, love, benevolence, brotherly love 2) love feasts

I’ll be honest, I don’t see a whole lot of charity, compassion, and benevolence being shown lately. We all seem to have our own version of the “truth” and if others don’t believe exactly as we do, we dismiss them as being lost. We are all very busy correcting people about their pagan holidays, Sabbath, and Greek thinking… but I have to ask, are we sharing this wisdom with love, meekness and humility?

Jas 3:17 But the wisdom from above is first clean, then peaceable, gentle, ready to obey, filled with compassion and good fruits, without partiality and without hypocrisy.
Jas 3:18 And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace by those who make peace.

Pro 15:1 A soft answer turns away wrath, But a harsh word stirs up displeasure.

Have we forgotten when Ya’acov (James) made his ruling in Acts 15 regarding the faith of the new believers in Yeshua, the elders did not hand them a list of 613 commandments with the instructions to “keep all these”? No, he said:

Act 15:19 “Therefore I judge that we should not trouble those from among the gentiles who are turning to Elohim, Act 15:20 but that we write to them to abstain from the defilements of idols, and from whoring, and from what is strangled, and from blood. Act 15:21 “For from ancient generations Mosheh has, in every city, those proclaiming him – being read in the congregations every Sabbath.”

So, it was a walk, a growing into knowledge, wisdom and understanding of Torah. Why then do we feel the need to burden new believers (or even old believers who have a new understanding of the importance of Torah) with our constant berating about how they are not doing some aspect correctly? We cannot open their eyes or ears, only YHWH can and it is on His time table.

Deu 29:4 “But Abba has not given you a heart to know and eyes to see and ears to hear, till this day.

Where is the humbleness that Mosheh and Yeshua displayed?

Num 12:3 And the man Mosheh was very humble, more than all men who were on the face of the earth.

Psa 138:6 Though Abba is exalted, He looks on the humble; But the proud He perceives from a distance.

Pro 11:2 Pride comes, then comes shame; But with the humble is wisdom.

Mat 11:29 “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am meek and humble in heart, and you shall find rest for your beings.

Jas 4:6 But He gives greater favour. Because of this He says, “Elohim resists the proud, but gives favour to the humble.”

Why are we so busy inspecting the walk of others but ignoring our own fruit?

Mat 7:19 “Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.

Gal 5:22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, trustworthiness, Gal 5:23 gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no Torah.

Have we forgotten that Yeshua did not debate and correct the masses? He didn’t even explain the parables to them.

Mat 13:10 And the taught ones came and said to Him, “Why do You speak to them in parables?” Mat 13:11 And He answering, said to them, “Because it has been given to you to know the secrets of the reign of the heavens, but to them it has not been given. Mat 13:12 “For whoever possesses, to him more shall be given, and he shall have overflowingly; but whoever does not possess, even what he possesses shall be taken away from him. Mat 13:13 “Because of this I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand.

Therefore, I would like to challenge us all to think this through, are we ignoring the weightier matters of Torah just like the Pharisees did?

Shalom until next time….