New Video: Paul on the Feast of Unleavened Bread

If there’s one biblical feast the church should be keeping, it’s the Feast of Unleavened Bread. This is because Paul commands NT believers to do so! Paul gives us some deep spiritual insights into this wonderful celebaton and we explore these in this video.

 

What Is leprosy and what were its causes?

Leviticus 14:3, Plague of leprosy. Some of the English translations of this scripture verse use the word leprosy for the skin disease described in these passages. This is a mistranslation. A better translation would be infectious skin disease.

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The Jewish sages teach that the skin disease described here is a supernaturally caused ailment that falls only on Israelites who are actually living in the land of Israel. They also teach that this is YHVH’s way of identifying the evil sins of gossip and slander (along with haughtiness, selfishness and jealousy) before this sin spreads throughout the land engulfing it like a forest fire from hell. (Read James 3:5–6!) This may explain why Miriam while wandering in the wilderness outside of Israel contracted this skin disease.

The disease would cause the sinner’s face to resemble a red flag for all to see. An afflicted person would be forced to live outside the camp until repentance along with atonement and purification rituals had occurred, and all this occurred under the watchful eye of a priest.

As you read this, you may be wiping your brow with a sigh of relief thankful that Continue reading

 

Dealing With the Fungus Among Us

Overview of Parshiot Tazria-Metzora (Lev 12–13 and 14–15)

Often these two parshiot are combined in the yearly Torah reading cycle depending on how the biblical calendar falls for the year. Their combining is likely due to the fact that each is relatively short and deals with related subjects: namely, the ritual purity laws. As we shall see, the causes of ritual impurity involve sin issues. The Torah prescribes procedures that the afflicted person had to follow in order to be deemed cleansed and thus be readmitted into the camp of Israel after having been temporarily expelled. All the rituals prophetically pointed to Yeshua’s atoning death on the cross.

Sin is like a disease.

Sin is like a disease.

These two parshiot dealing with diseased and unclean persons immediately come after the laws concerning clean and unclean meats (Lev 11). What the Israelites ate as well as the state of their physical bodies was an important aspect of holiness in the eyes of YHVH.

From these two parshiot, we learn that an unclean person could only become clean through the atoning blood of a sacrificed animal or through ritual cleansing of water by which he was reconciled to Elohim and brought back into the camp of Israel. What can we learn from the juxtapositioning of these subjects (i.e., the laws pertaining to unclean meats and unclean people) in the Torah? Simply this. Man can easily become impure and defiled because of his innately depraved, crooked, and wicked heart that is at enmity with the laws of Elohim (Jer 17:9; Rom 8:7). Since the fall of Adam, man has been in a state of impurity from Elohim. Thus, sin separates him from the presence of Elohim and from his fellow Israelites. Only the sin-atoning blood of Yeshua can bring him to a place of purity where he can be reconciled to the Kadosh (Holy) One of Israel, and become part of the camp (i.e., the congregation of the saints or kadosh ones) of YHVH.

Leviticus 12:1–8 deals with the purification of women after childbirth. Adam Clarke in his commentary states that when a woman has to bring a sacrifice after the birth of her child, Elohim keeps up the remembrance of the fact that through woman, sin entered the world. He also keeps up the memorial of sacrifice to show that the state of a sinner, howsoever deplorable, is not hopeless. In every ceremony, we may see both the justice and the mercy of Elohim. Hence, while we have the knowledge of our spiritual impurity, we have also the knowledge of our cure—the sacrifice of an innocent animal, which always points to Yeshua who once and for all, in his sacrificial death, cleansed us from sin’s impurity.

Leviticus 13–14 deals with the disease of tzara. The noun tzaarath means Continue reading

 

What Is Sin & Keys to Overcoming It

What is the Biblical definition of sin? You need to know this, so you will know what to do and what not to do. Most churches don’t teach what sin really is according to the Bible. After you know this, then what are some practical steps to overcoming sin? The answers are in this video.

 

What is sin and how to overcome it

Dealing With the “Leavening” in Our Lives

Throughout Scripture, leavening is a spiritual metaphor for sin, pride, hypocrisy, malice, bitterness and false religious doctrine (Pss 71:4; 73:21; Hos 7:4; Matt 16:6; Mark 8:15; Luke 12:1; 1 Cor 5:8–6; Gal 5:9). Even as a small amount of leavening agents in bread (e.g., yeast and various chemical agents) will quickly permeate bread dough causing it to rise, so a little sin can rapidly infect our lives (or like a quick spread cancer disease) and take us away from Elohim’s path of righteous-living.

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The Scripture teaches us to be overcomers (Rom 12:21; 1 John 2:13–14; 5:4) eradicating the leavening of sin from our lives. We must overcome the world, the flesh and the devil (Jas 3:15). Yeshua admonished each of the seven Messianic assemblies to be overcomers (Rev 2:7,11,17,26; 3:5,12,21; see also Matt 24:13). For those who overcome, there will be great rewards—a spiritual inheritance; they will be sons of Elohim (Rev 21:7).

The Greek word for overcome is nikao (Strong’s G3528) meaning “to conquer, to get the victory, prevail” and is where the word nike comes from.

What Is Sin?

  • Sin is the anything that violates the Torah-instructions/laws of Elohim (1 John 3:4).
  • Sin is unrighteousness (1 John 5:17; YHVH’s Torah commands define what righteousness is, Ps 119:172).
  • Sin is not believing in Yeshua, who is the Torah-Word of Elohim incarnate (John 3:18; 16:9).
  • Sin is failing to do (or not to do) that we which we should be do (or not do) — i.e., sin of ommission (Jas4:17).
  • Sin is putting me-first (my desires, impulses), not YHVH first (his will) in our lives. It is humanism. It is following the lie of the devil: man can have it his way regardless of what YHVH’s Word says, and not suffer any consequences for it. This is the big lie from the serpent in the Garden.
  • Sin is a direct challenge to YHVH’s authority in our lives. It is arrogance and self exaltation against YHVH’s will. It involves lack of belief in his Word. It is putting my will above his Word.

Defining the Types of Sin Spoken of in Isaiah 53

Asham (Strong’s H817/TWOT 180b): means “guilt, offense, guiltiness, sin, trespass, Continue reading

 

Purge out the old leaven, become a new lump of dough

Therefore purge out the old leaven, that you may be a new lump, since you truly are unleavened. For indeed Christ, our Passover, was sacrificed for us. Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, nor with the leaven of malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth. (1 Cor 5:7–8)

1 Corinthians 5:8, Leaven of malice and wickedness. Interestingly in the Torah, there are two Hebrew words used for leaven, which is a biblical metaphor for sin. The first word, chametz refers to the sin of malice (or ill-will, malignity, desire to injure, or bitterness), while seor, the second word, refers to wickedness or sin in general, which the Scriptures refers to as the violation of YHVH’s Torah commands (1 John 3:4). It is likely that Paul had this concept in mind when he wrote this verse.

chametz/ץמח, is a noun (Strong’s H2557) meaning “leaven, that which is leavened, bitter.” Chametz is from the root H2556 chametz/ץמח (a verb) meaning “to be sour, to leaven.” According to The Theological Dictionary of the Old Testament, the root word chametz designates the action and result of yeast, which ferments or sours bread dough. This idea of becoming sour is extended to a person’s negative attitude. For example, in Psalms 71:4 chametz is translated as cruel [and in Ps 73:21 as grieved]. The Torah strongly instructs that anyone eating chametz during Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread will be “cut off” from Israel (Exod 12:19–20). Exodus 12:39 notes that the daily bread the Israelites baked on the day they left Egypt was not leavened because they left Egypt in such haste that there wasn’t enough time for their bread dough to rise. Thus it had the symbolic value of teaching Israel that having been redeemed from Egypt they should leave their old life [and sinful, “sour” carnal nature] behind quickly and set out toward the Promised Land in a sin-free state. Leavened bread was also prohibited in connection with the sacrificial system (Exod 23:18; 34:25). Neither it nor honey could be burned with the meal (Lev 2:11), and it could not be baked with the fire offering (Lev 6:15). But leavened bread could be eaten with the thank offering (Lev 7:13) and with the first fruits offering on Shavuot or Pentecost. In later Jewish thought, leavened bread become a symbol of corruption and impurity, as also in Yeshua’s teachings (Pss 71:4; 73:21; Hos 7:4; Matt 16:2; Mark 8:15) and in one remark by Paul (1 Cor 5:8; TWOT, vol. 1, page 289).

se’or/ראשׂ (Strong’s H7603) means “leaven.” This is the generic term for leavening or leavened bread and is found five times in Scripture (Exod 12:15, 19; 13:7; Lev 2:11; Deut 16:4). In the first four references, se’or is used in parallel construction with chametz. In all places but Leviticus 2:11, it is used in reference to the Feast of Unleavened Bread, while in the former se’or is used in reference to the meal offering.

Paul juxtaposes malice, wickedness and leavening with sincerity, truth and unleavened bread. The former is sinful and unacceptable to Elohim and must be gotten rid of, while the latter is righteous and accepted of Elohim and must be cultivated in the saint’s life. The latter is copacetic to Elohim’s character, and the former is not. If the believer’s life is analogous to a lump of bread dough, then the malice and wickedness, like yeast, infects, sours and brings rottenness and causes the dough to be puffed up. This is Continue reading

 

Passover and the Feast of Unleavened Bread are coming—It’s time to get the leavening out…

Dealing With the “Leavening” in Our Lives

Overcoming Sin!

Throughout Scripture, leavening is a spiritual metaphor for sin, pride, hypocrisy, malice, bitterness and false religious doctrine (Pss 71:4; 73:21; Hos 7:4; Matt 16:6; Mark 8:15; Luke 12:1; 1 Cor 5:8–6; Gal 5:9). Even as a small amount of leavening agents in bread (e.g., yeast and various chemical agents) will quickly permeate bread dough causing it to rise, so a little sin can rapidly infect our lives (or like a quick spread cancer disease) and take us away from Elohim’s path of righteous-living.

Unleavened Bread

The Scripture teaches us to be overcomers (Rom 12:21; 1 John 2:13–14; 5:4) eradicating the leavening of sin from our lives. We must overcome the world, the flesh and the devil (Jas 3:15). Yeshua admonished each of the seven Messianic assemblies to be overcomers (Rev 2:7,11,17,26; 3:5,12,21; see also Matt 24:13). For those who overcome, there will be great rewards—a spiritual inheritance; they will be sons of Elohim (Rev 21:7).

The Greek word for overcome is nikao (Strong’s G3528) meaning “to conquer, to get the victory, prevail” and is where the word nike comes from.

What Is Sin?

  • Sin is anything that violates the Torah-instructions/laws of Elohim (1 John 3:4).
  • Sin is unrighteousness (1 John 5:17; YHVH’s Torah commands define what righteousness is, Ps 119:172).
  • Sin is not believing in Yeshua, who is the Torah-Word of Elohim incarnate (John 3:18; 16:9).
  • Sin is failing to do (or not to do) that we which we should be do (or not do) — i.e., sin of ommission (Jas4:17).
  • Sin is putting me-first (my desires, impulses), not YHVH first (his will) in our lives. It is humanism. It is following the lie of the devil: man can have it his way regardless of what YHVH’s Word says, and not suffer any consequences for it. This is the big lie from the serpent in the Garden.
  • Sin is a direct challenge to YHVH’s authority in our lives. It is arrogance and self exaltation against YHVH’s will. It involves lack of belief in his Word. It is putting my will above his Word.

Defining the Types of Sin Spoken of in Isaiah 53

Asham (Strong’s H817/TWOT 180b): means “guilt, offense, guiltiness, Continue reading