Blog Scripture Readings for 11-27 Through 12-3-16

Aside

THIS WEEK’S SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR STUDY AND DISCUSSION:

Parashat Toldot — Genesis 25:19 – 28:9
Haftarah — Malachi 1:1 – 2:7
Prophets — Judges 12:1 – 18:31
Writings — Psalms 42:1 – 49:20
Testimony — Matthew 25:1 – 27:66

Our new Scripture Reading Schedule for 2016-2017 is available to download!

Most of this week’s blog discussion points will be on these passages. If you have general comments or questions on the weekly Scripture readings not addressed in a blog post, here’s a place for you to post those. Just use the “leave a reply” link below.

The full “Read Through The Scriptures In A Year” schedule, broken down by each day, can be found on the right sidebar under “Helpful Links.” There are 4 sections of scripture to read each day. One each from the Torah, the Prophets, the Writings, and from the Testimony of Yeshua. Each week, the Torah and haftarah readings will follow the traditional one-year reading cycle.

Weekly Blog Scripture Readings for 11/27/16 through 12/03/16.

 

New Covenant? Really?

Matthew 26:28, New testament. (Also see notes at Heb 8:8.) Where did the terms New Testament or New Covenant came from? You will find these phrases in your English versions of the Testimony of Yeshua in exactly nine places (Matt 26:28; Mark 14:24; Luke 22:20; 1 Cor 11:25; 2 Cor 3:6; Heb 8:8, 13; 9:15; 12:24), but does the English translation do justice to the Hebrew and Greek words behind them?

The confusion arises from the fact that English has one word for new, while Greek and Hebrew have more than one word. While English speakers are limited to one word, they nuance the meaning of new by adding qualifiers to the word new (e.g., brand new as opposed to used but it’s new to me) to differentiate between brand new versus new to me, or refurbished or repaired new. 

In the Testimony of Yeshua, there are two Greek for new: neos and kainos and each has a different connotation. Neos more often than not carries the idea of “brand new or numerically new,” while kainos means “renewed, refreshed or Continue reading

 

Isaac was well-off with wells. How is you well-being?

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Genesis 26:1–29, There was a famine in the land. At the well of Lachai-roi (or “the well of the Living One seeing me,” Gen 24:62), Isaac was fruitful. There he met his wife while in communion with YHVH (Gen 24:62–64). Isaac also dwelt there for 20 years, and there he entreated YHVH because of Rebekah’s barrenness (Gen 25:21), and YHVH answered Isaac’s prayer and Rebekah gave birth to twins (Gen 25:22).

But because of famine in the land, Isaac felt compelled to leave Canaan to seek relief in Egypt following the earlier footsteps of his father, Abraham. Is it wise to rely on “Egypt” (a metaphor for the world) for our sustenance instead of trusting YHVH and believing that where he has planted us and blessed us is where we should stay? While en route to Egypt, YHVH gracefully redirected Isaac away from Egypt instructing him rather to sojourn in Gerar (temporarily) where he would continue to bless him and his posterity (Gen 26:2–4). Isaac obeyed YHVH—more or less. Isaac ended up in Gerar located on the border between Canaan and Egypt and dwelt there a long time (not temporarily as YHVH had instructed him, Gen 26:6, 8).

Instead of fully obeying YHVH, it was as if Isaac was hedging his bet between faith and fear, between Canaan, the land of promise, and Egypt, the land of comfort for the flesh man. How often do we halt between two opinions and compromise between YHVH’s will and our own in matters where he has given us clear direction? This place of spiritual indecision and weakness put Isaac in a compromising situation (Gen 26:7). He felt compelled to lie about his wife, thus repeating the sin of his father (Gen 20:1–2).

Compromised obedience puts us in compromising situations where in order to “save our skin” we often have to compromise our values. Though Isaac was out of YHVH’s will, YHVH was still faithful to keep his promises he had made to Isaac earlier (Gen 26:3–4). Isaac was blessed one hundred fold in his wealth (Gen 26:12–14).

Despite YHVH’s blessings, Isaac’s labors were not without difficulty and opposition from an enemy who was intent upon stealing his water wells, which were rightfully his (Gen 26:12–15).

In the arid regions of the Holy Land, wells are essential for survival and prosperity. Wells are a spiritual metaphor for salvation, life, abundance and truth—things the enemy is intent on taking from us (in this light, consider Isa 12:3; 55:1–3; Ps 36:9; John 4:7–14; 7:37–39; 10:10).

Genesis 26:18–22, And Isaac dug again. Isaac redug the wells that belonged to his father in the land YHVH promised to him, yet the world opposed him and stole from him what was rightfully his.

The wells’ names were Contention and Strife. How easy it is to allow fleshly or demonically motivated people to oppose and deter us from our divine destiny. What was Isaac’s response? He took the high road of peace refusing to be embroiled in carnal battles. His faith in YHVH was undaunted and at the third well he found, which he named spaciousness (Heb. Rehoboth) and contained a vast supply of water.

Are you striving and contending with the spiritual Philistines in your life? Are they keeping you from moving onward spiritually into a place of fruitfulness where the river of life from YHVH’s throne flows?

Following the example of Isaac, choose your battles carefully. It is not necessary to engage the enemy at every point of conflict. Sometimes we need to walk away. There is a time to walk away and a time to fight. Be led by the Spirit of Elohim. When you choose to fight, let YHVH fight your battles and you will progress onward and upward in your faith-walk.

Genesis 26:23–25, He went up…to Beersheba. Upon retracing the steps of his father, Abraham, back into the land of promise in redigging the ancient wells ending up in Beer-sheba (well of the covenant or seven-fold oath) did YHVH bless Isaac?

The moment Isaac returned back to the heart of Canaan, the heart and center of YHVH’s will for his life, what happened? (See verse 4.)

Is YHVH calling you back to the ancient wells of salvation? Is he calling you to retrace the steps of your father Abraham, the father of faith, to return to the ancient paths where a special blessing awaits you? (Read Mal 4:4–6 and Jer 6:16, 19; 18:15.)

 

Who is Edom in end times Bible prophecy?

militants

Genesis 25:27–28, Esau vs. Isaac. There are only two types of people on this earth: Esaus and Jacobs. Ponder or discuss this for a moment. Consider, for example, the fact that hanging on either side of Yeshua on the cross, spiritually speaking, there was a “Jacob” and an “Esau.” (Read Luke 23:39–43 and discuss.) We see the same thing in Matthew 24:39–41. (Discuss.)

What type of person was Esau? He was described as a cunning hunter. Nimrod was the only other person in Scripture termed “a hunter.” What kind of person would a hunter have been then compared to a farmer or herdsman? Esau was a man of the field. Field in Scripture is a metaphor for the world (see Matt 13:38). Esau was a profane (unhallowed, worldly, ungodly) man (Heb 12:16). He had no esteem for things of eternal value. That is why he sold his birthright. He lived for the moment and had no eye for, hope in, or faith toward the future. He sought instant gratification of his sensual nature. His god was his belly. He disdained and dishonored his family heritage and those things that were highly esteemed by his father and grandfather. In Gen 26:34–35, we see, to the great grief of his parents, Esau marrying one of the local heathen Canaanite girls. He did not honor his parents or respect their wishes and marry inside the faith.

Do these traits describe some unbelievers that you know, and even some believers? Perhaps you were like this before you were saved. Do we see many Esau-types running around among the younger generation today?

Genesis 25:30, Esau…Edom. Many, if not most of the modern Moslems (especially the Arabs) trace their lineage back if not biologically then spiritually to Continue reading

 

Who are the sheep and goats?

Goats and sheep together

Matthew 25:31–46, The nations will be gathered. 

The Sheep and Goat Nations Judgment

Matthew 25:31–46 describes Yeshua’s judgment of the sheep and goat nations. Some see this event as occurring at the beginning of the Millennium. Others see it as a process culminating at the end of the Millennium with the release of Satan from his bottomless pit prison after which he will tempt the nations to rebel against King Yeshua. The last scenario seems unlikely, since those who follow Satan’s rebellion will receive immediate judgment upon arriving at Jerusalem to confront Yeshua. They will be devoured by fire out of heaven (Rev 20:9). No mention is made in this passage of a judgment between the sheep and goat nations, there is only swift judgment upon Gog and Magog.

It seems likely, therefore, that one of first orders of Yeshua’s official business upon his return to the earth will be to judge between the sheep and goats. Here he will separate the wicked from the righteous who have survived the wrath of Elohim at the end of the age just prior to Yeshua’s second coming. This is like a mop-up operation after a great war. Those who have shown kindness to the saints will be allowed into the kingdom of Elohim during the Millennium, while those who didn’t will be cast into the lake of fire. This appears to be an initial purging of the spiritual wheat from the chaff at the beginning of Yeshua’s millennial reign. Those who are left of the nations (Zech 14:16) are presumably those who didn’t take the mark of the beast and hence won’t be destroyed with those who did (Rev 19:20). They showed their faith by their actions, and King Yeshua’s grace will be extended to them and he will give them an opportunity to receive eternal life. Perhaps these are those who are implied in Revelation 16:2 who refuse to take the mark of the beast and worship him during the wrath of Elohim period.

Some Bible teachers view the judgment of the nations not as a one-time event that occurs at the beginning of Yeshua’s millennial reign, but as an on-going process during his reign. This could be the case, since Yeshua may give the nations time to accept his rule and learn the truth of the gospel little-by-little.

Whether those of the goat nations will be cast immediately into the lake of fire isn’t clear. The lake of fire is mentioned in Revelation 20 at the end of the Millennium and in conjunction with the white throne judgment. Perhaps Yeshua will allow the goats to remain on the earth, and they will be those rebels he will be forced to rule over with his rod of iron, and who will refuse to come up to keep the Feast of Tabernacles in Jerusalem annually (Zech 14:16–21). Perhaps they’re the ones who will eventually be deceived into rebelling against Yeshua at the end of the Millennium when the devil is released from the pit (Rev 20:7–10).

 

Video: Gen 25:19–28:9 Parashat Toldot

This Torah study is subdivided in a magazine format by topics thus making it easy to watch at several sittings. This is a gospel-oriented Torah study guide. Our goal is to connect the good news of Yeshua the Messiah (the gospel message) to its Hebraic, pro-Torah roots or foundations. The information given here is more than head knowledge. Understanding and wisdom (the right application of knowledge that is based on truth) is taught thus making biblical truth practical, relevant and applicable to your daily life. The truths of the Bible not only have the power to transform your life here and now for the better, but eventually to take you past the veil of death and into eternity. May you be blessed as you watch this video.

For adult a free, printable Torah study guide on the parashah, go to http://www.hoshanarabbah.org/pdfs/toldot.pdf.

For a free printable youth Torah study guide on this parashah, go to http://www.hoshanarabbah.org/pdfs/te/te_toldot.pdf.