Blog Scripture Readings for 4-23 Through 4-29-17

Aside

THIS WEEK’S SCRIPTURE READINGS FOR STUDY AND DISCUSSION:

Parashat Tazria-Metzora — Leviticus 12:1 – 15:33
Haftarah — 2 Kings 7:3-20
Prophets — Isaiah 46:1 – 53:12
Writings — Job 15:1 – 21:34
Testimony — Acts 13:1 – 16:40

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 4/23/17 through 4/29/17.

 

Shabbat Shalom from My Feeder to Yours

This Shabbat let us come together whether in person or through modern digital communications and feed on the the fresh manna of the word of Elohim!

Then they that feared YHVH spake often one to another: and YHVHhearkened, and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before him for them that feared YHVH, and that thought upon his name. (Mal 3:16)

Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Yeshua, by a new and living way, which he hath consecrated for us, through the veil, that is to say, his flesh; and having an high priest over the house of Elohim; let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled from an evil conscience, and our bodies washed with pure water. Let us hold fast the profession of our faith without wavering; (for he is faithful that promised;) and let us consider one another to provoke unto love and to good works:not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some is; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as ye see the day approaching. (Her 10:19–25)

May your Shabbat be a holy of holies experience!

There are no lone rangers in the body of Yeshua/kingdom of Elohim. It’s a family. YOU are not alone.

 

A Better Resurrection? First, Second and ??? Place in the Kingdom?

Hebrews 11:35, A better resurrection. This verse indicates that there is more than one resurrection of the righteous dead, and that there is at least one resurrection that is better than another one.

Likely, the first resurrection will be the best resurrection, since the righteous dead saints and the righteous living saints will be resurrected at that time to meet Yeshua in the air at his second coming.

The resurrection/s that will occur subsequent to that (whether it/they will occur/s during the millennium or at the white throne judgment) will likely be inferior to the first resurrection. Why is this?

Those saints who will be part of the first resurrection are those who endured and overcame the world, the flesh and the devil and remained faithful to Yeshua against such opposition. They are the strongest and most righteous saints, since their mettle, loyalty, faith and endurance was tested under the most trying circumstances, and they still remained faithful to Yeshua. They will likely be those who will be greatest in the kingdom of heaven (Matt 5:19).

Those saints who will be resurrected subsequent to that will have had to go through great refining trials because they are spiritually subpar. This will be because they weren’t faithful in living up to the spiritual light they were given, or because not as much was given to them in the first place, so not as much was required of them (note the Parable of the Talents in Matt 25:14–30; Luke 12:48).

Those who come to faith in the millennium will likely have a lower reward, since their overcoming faith didn’t need to be as strong. This is because they lived during ideal times when evil was suppressed because Yeshua was ruling the world and Satan was imprisoned in the bottomless pit, thus making it easier to be a saint.

All this goes to show that there are levels of rewards in the kingdom of heaven (e.g. Matt 5:19; Matt 25:20–23, 29; Rev 2:23; 2:7, 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21; 20:12), even as there are levels of punishment (e.g. Luke 12:47–48).

Those who are currently lukewarm believers and who turn their lives around now and who open the door of their life to Yeshua (Rev 3:20) becoming red hot for him prior to his first coming (and first resurrection; Rev 3:15) will have a shot at the highest reward in the kingdom; that is, to sit with Yeshua on his throne (Rev 3:21). This  shows the mercy and grace of YHVH in that he can take even lukewarm saints who desire to turn their lives around and to repent and reward them with the highest position in his kingdom.

Lest we get smug in our spiritual complacency, let’s not forget what Peter said, “the righteous are scarcely save” (1 Pet 4:18). Every saint living is lukewarm to one degree or another by YHVH’s highest, righteous spiritual standards. Those who don’t think they are lukewarm are blinded by their own pride and self-righteousness, which is the greatest sin of all! In fact, the Bible teaches that our best righteousness is as filthy rags (Isa 64:6). Yet, at the same time, there is hope for us all to come to the higher spiritual level! This, however, won’t occur without our having to go through the refining fires of trials (Rev 3:18) or, for some, even great tribulation (Rev 7:14) at the end of the age prior to Yeshua’s second coming.

 

Leviticus 12–13 Explained

The Hebrew Terms Relating to This Passage Defined

  • Tzaraas: a skin disease (improperly translated as “leprosy” in some Bibles). This Hebrew word means “to be struck with leprosy (BDB)” or “to smite heavily, to strike, or scourged of Elohim” since the leprosy was viewed as a special divine infliction (Wilson’s Old Testament Word Studies, pp. 248–249) against such sins as jealousy (cf. Miriam, anger, lack of full compliance with Elohim’s commands (cf. King Uzziah), and covetousness (cf. Gehazi, TWOT, p. 777).
  • Niddah: someone who is separated or menstruous
  • Tumah: spiritual impurity
  • Metzora: one with a skin disease; a contraction of the Hebrew word motzi and ra meaning “one who speaks slander”

The Issues Explained

Leviticus 12 and 13 deal with the subject of human contamination and delineates what could seem to be a lot of irrelevant and archaic, if not arcane, regulations relating to childbirth and skin diseases. Why is YHVH so concerned about “human contamination”? What is the larger picture here to help us gain understanding into the Father’s intent and heart behind these Torah-laws? The Jewish sages teach that man must not forget that even the gnats and earthworms preceded him in the creation. This is to teach man humility. But conversely, each stage of Elohim’s creation added something to that which had been created previously and that man was the final, crowning touch that would pull all the creation together to fulfill its purpose of spirituality in the performance of Elohim’s will. Man is therefore the last of the creatures to be created, but the first in significance because he is the purpose of it all and that if man is not worthy of his calling, then he has added nothing of substance to YHVH’s handiwork (The ArtScroll Tanach Series Vayikra, p. 184).

All this is to say that YHVH has a plan to redeem man from his sinful or depraved (animalistic) state. Man can choose to be elevated to this higher spiritual plane or to remain in a state no better than that of a gnat or a worm having added nothing to the creation’s spiritual betterment. The Jewish sages teach, and I think we can all agree, that the creation of human life is the most sublime phenomenon in the universe. Man is the only creature whom YHVH made in his own image. What’s more, when a husband and wife have children, they become partners with Elohim in creation (ibid., p. 185). But this is a mixed blessing, for it creates a blessing and a problem. While one new person is created Continue reading

 

Parshiot Tazria-Metzora Leviticus 12-15


This is a gospel-oriented Torah study. 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.

This Torah study is subdivided in sections by topic in a magazine format thus making it easy to watch at several sittings.

May you be blessed as you watch this video.

For a free, printable adult and youth Torah study guide on this Torah portion (parashah), please go to http://www.hoshanarabbah.org/parshiot.html

 

When It Comes to Prophecy Teachers: Caution, Danger, Warning!

Many if not most Bible prophecy pundits or teachers on the internet are reckless and cavalier in their interpretations of end-times Bible prophecy. They play fast and loose with the Scriptures to come up with eartickling prophetic scenarios that are designed to wow and amaze their audiences!

The methods of biblical interpretation of many of these prophecy teachers are questionable, flawed and are often illogical upon closer analysis. In many cases, they, with self-assertive, over-confidence add two and two and get five, and with bold, and at the same time, boldly, yet recklessly assure their listeners that it is the truth—and, oh, by the way, they quietly slip into their spiel, “buy my video or book on the subject.”

Their ostensible authoritativeness is often bolstered by glib and articulate presentations, high quality videography, top-of-the-line websites, and professionally-designed graphics for book covers and dvd jackets all of which helps to legitimize (in people’s minds, at least) what they’re saying. Despite all this, often their prophetic pronouncements still don’t line up with the whole truth of the Bible.

I’m reminded of the saying, “If you can’t convince your audience with the truth and the facts, then wow, amaze and baffle them with lots of horse puckey.” Most people, sadly, aren’t critical thinkers, but are too trusting and gullible.

The reckless confidence of these guys and gals is often an alluring, but false facade for their own lack of a knowledge of the whole counsel of the Word of Elohim. Many of these teachers are neophytes when it comes to the study and teaching of the Bible. They’ve only been at it for a few years—not for decades, which is what it takes to come to a deeper, more comprehensive understanding of Scripture.

Furthermore, be wary of anyone is claiming to unlock the mysteries of Bible prophecy and has merchandise to peddle out of it!  Many of them are modern snake-oil salesmen.

Yes, we need to study end times Bible prophecy. It’s in the Bible for our admonition and edification, but let’s be cautious about being overly dogmatic about most of it, and certainly, let’s be extremely careful about cobbling together disparate and unrelated biblical passages and then cramming them to fit and painting them to match and ending up with end times scenarios that are in error, thus leading people astray by false teachings as they enrich themselves financially.

Over the decades, I have seen too much of this going on and many prophecy teachers have been proven to look like money-grubbing fools to the rational, biblically astute and Spirit-led person. There is nothing new under the sun, and around the corner is a whole new batch of poor, gullible suckers waiting to be deceived!

Be on guard!