Psalm 77—Victory Over End Times Evil in the Inner Sanctum

Psalm 77:1–6, I cried out to Elohim. This is the expression of frustration, despair and anguish on the part of the troubled saint, who is crying out to heaven for help, comfort, understanding in the midst of his trying circumstances of life.

Psalm 77:4, You hold my eyelids open. From the perspective of the anguish-ridden saint, he feels that YHVH is partially to blame for the his condition.

Psalm 77:5, I consider the days of old. In the midst of anguish and a troubled soul, it is constructive to reflect over one’s past history. What lessons can be learned from history? It is impossible to learn lessons from the future, since it has not happened yet, so one can only go back in history to seek wisdom and understanding.

Psalm 77:6, Song in the night. Night is a biblical metaphor or Hebraism for evil, distress, obscurity, and uncertainty about the future. Even in such times, joy is to be found if one looks for it. 

Meditate within my heart. In the midst of this anguish, the saint goes inward or inside himself (into his personal spirit to hear the still small voice of YHVH from within in search of answers to his woes. Meditation in the eastern religious and new age sense involves, among other things, “becoming mindful” via deep breathing, relaxation or various bodily exercises and configurations, while focusing one’s mind intently on some object, a sound or mental image, or by blanking out the mind totally, so to speak, thus opening up one’s inner being, so that revelation can come from the outside through some supernatural source. This is a slick but perverse counterfeit of biblical meditation. Yes, biblical meditation involves quieting down one’s soul (the furtive anxiousness and easily distracted tendencies of one’s mind, will and emotions; see Ps 131:2), but this is so that one can hear from the Spirit of Elohim free of outside distractions. True biblical meditation involves, “breathing in” the Spirit of Elohim, who will then give one divine revelation (John 16:7–14). Whereas the Hindus and Buddhist relax themselves and focus on breathing to receive “divine revelation,” the saint relaxes himself (often deep breathing can help in this process), and then focuses on the Word of Elohim and “breathes in” or invites the Spirit of Elohim to give oneself true divine revelation.

My spirit. In difficult times, it is time to search deeply for answers and direction. One goes upward by going inward­—into the spirit and then up to the Spirit of Elohim to which one’s spirit is connected.

Psalm 77:7–10, Will YHVH cast off forever? The psalmist expresses more anguish and despair concerning his situation.

Psalm 77:10–11, My anguish…I will remember.In times of personal anguish when YHVH, the Most High or Elyon seems far away and that he has turned a deaf ear to one’s cries, this is the time to encourage oneself by remembering his mighty right hand works that he has performed for us in past and how he has answered blessed and delivered us by answering our prayers, intervened in our lives amazing and supernatural ways.

Psalm 77:12, Meditate on all your works. The psalmist spends more time meditating on the goodness and greatness of Elohim. This is guaranteed to elevate one’s soul out of the psycho-emotional pit in which one finds oneself.

Psalm 77:13, Your way O Elohim is in the sanctuary [Heb. kodesh].This is a reference to the holy place of Tabernacle of Moses, which reveals the seven steps in YHVH’s plan of salvation for mankind, and to bring us to the Father through Yeshua the Messiah, which is the basic good news, gospel message. The tabernacle is literally a three-dimensional gospel tract designed to engage and inspire people physically, emotionally, mentally and spiritually to step onto the path and begin the journey that leads us to our Father in heaven. By studying the Tabernacle of Moses we learn the glorious mysteries of heaven’s plan of salvation, the wonder of the gospel message and the central that Yeshua the Messiah plays in the process of redeeming mankind and uniting him with the Elohim.

This can be referring to the sanctuary or holy place of the Tabernacle of Moses where Moses encountered the divine presence and received instructions from Elohim. However, since Scripture now views the saint as the temple of the Holy Spirit, and since the temple in Jerusalem is long gone, the term sanctuary can also refer to going into the inner sanctum of one’s personal spirit through biblical meditation, listening prayer and studying the written word from Elohim. When we commune with Elohim on this deep and intimate level, he reveals himself to us in powerful ways and confirms to us that he is an Elohim who performs wonders on behalf of his people, even in times of distress, anguish and despair.

Psalm 77:14–20, Your arm redeemed your people. YHVH redeems his people from the hands of their enemies as he did with the children of Israel at the Red Sea. When the floods of the evil one are about to overtake the saints, YHVH will deliver them miraculously one way or another. The people of YHVH must never lose sight of this. Even as YHVH delivered his people from Pharaoh’s armies and the water floods of the Red Sea before, so he will do so again in the end times (see Rev 12:13–17). Yeshua the Messiah is the arm of YHVH Elohim that has redeemed his people in the past, and continues to do so.

 

What Is the Second Exodus and When Does It Occur?

A Look at End-Times Bible Prophecies Relating to the Second Exodus

By Ya’acov Natan Lawrence
Waters in the Wilderness, A Teaching Ministry of Hoshana Rabbah Biblical Discipleship Resources

The Issue in People’s Hearts

The Bible clearly teaches that the ten tribes of the ancient northern kingdom of Israel (known biblically by various names such as the house of Israel, Samaria or Ephraim) were exiled among the nations of the world because of sin. At the same time, the biblical prophets and Jewish sages over the past 2000 years have predicted that in the end times (at the coming of the Messiah), through a series of supernatural events, these tribes will be regathered and return to the land of Israel to be reunited with their Jewish brethren who are descended from the southern kingdom of Judah. Furthermore, there is clear biblical and historical evidence that the ten northern tribes of Israel collectively known as Ephraim are largely to be found among the Christian peoples scattered across the earth. I have attempted to prove this point from biblical, linguistic, archeological, historical and rabbinic Jewish sources in a previous work .

In these last days before Messiah’s second coming, more and more redeemed believers in Yeshua (the Hebrew name for Jesus) are discovering a new-found love for the Jewish people and the land of Israel. At the same time, they are awakening to the need to return to the Hebrew roots of the Christian faith by adhering to a more Torah-centered lifestyle and spiritual walk. It then follows that some are coming to the fundamental truth taught numerous places in the Testimony of Yeshua (the more biblically accurate name for the “New Testament”) that born-again believers are actually redeemed Israelites and are either the literal biological or are the “grafted in” descendants of Abraham. As such, many are beginning to see that the numerous promises YHVH (the LORD) made to Abraham and his descendants apply to them—especially the promises that the land of Israel is an important aspect of their promised future inheritance. With these revelations often comes a new-found zeal and enthusiasm about returning to the land of Israel. For many, it is a question of not if, but “when do we return?”

This is the question I will grapple with in the following study in attempting to determine the timing of the return of Ephraim to the land of Israel, often referred to as the second or greater exodus. This is a difficult and complex subject and many factors need to be considered. No one has all the answers and neither do I, but hopefully the presentation you are about to read will provoke thought and discourse that will move us all toward a greater understanding of this subject.

In this work, I will cover much ground in a panoramic manner without delving into the fine details of any one biblical passage. If my overall analysis is correct, then it is my hope that other biblical researchers will look at the evidence presented here and synergistically we can fine-tune the details and elucidate this subject.

Since there is no direct place in the Scriptures that tells us the exact year or date when Ephraim will be regathered and return to the land of Israel (although, many believe that the process will begin on a jubilee year), we must examine many prophecies and prophetic scenarios in order to extrapolate from them the answer to our question. Before we take the plunge, let’s review some fundamental biblical truths.

Ephraim’s Return to the Land of Israel Is a Fundamental Truth of the Torah

As the very words of YHVH Elohim (the LORD God) dictated to and written down by Moses, the Torah (the biblical books of Genesis through Deuteronomy) is the bedrock of biblical truth upon which the rest of biblical revelation is founded. This is the place to begin when discussing the timing of Ephraim’s return.

In Jewish thought, Deuteronomy 30:1–10 is the embryo from which all the other scriptures discussing Ephraim’s return are birthed. Here YHVH promises to gather Israel from all the nations where he has scattered them (because of spiritual apostasy), and he promises to return them to the land of Israel. This prophecy has not yet been fulfilled, and nor is it referring to the Jewish captives who returned from their 70 years exile in Babylonian, since the term “all nations” is used in this prophecy. The ancient empire of Babylon is not “all nations”!

Here is the prophecy in its entirety:

And it shall come to pass, when all these things are come upon you, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before you, and you shall call them to mind among all the nations, whither YHVH your Elohim has driven you, and shall return unto YHVH your Elohim, and shall obey his voice according to all that I command you this day, you and your children, with all your heart, and with all your soul; that then YHVH your Elohim will bring you back from captivity, and have compassion upon you, and will return and gather you from all the nations, wherever YHVH your Elohim has scattered you. If any of you be driven out unto the outmost parts of heaven, from thence will YHVH your Elohim gather you, and from thence will he fetch you: and YHVH your Elohim will bring you into the land which your fathers possessed, and you shall possess it; and he will do you good, and multiply you above your fathers. And YHVH your Elohim will circumcise your heart, and the heart of your seed, to love YHVH your Elohim with all your heart, and with all your soul, that you may live. And YHVH your Elohim will put all these curses upon your enemies, and on them that hate you, which persecuted you. And you shall return and obey the voice of YHVH, and do all his commandments which I command you this day. And YHVH your Elohim will make you plenteous in every work of your hand, in the fruit of your body, and in the fruit of your cattle, and in the fruit of your land, for good: for YHVH will again rejoice over you for good, as he rejoiced over your fathers: if you shall hearken unto the voice of YHVH your Elohim, to keep his commandments and his statutes which are written in this book of the law, and if you turn unto YHVH your Elohim with all your heart, and with all your soul. (emphasis added)

The Jewish Sages Affirm That Ephraim Will Return

The biblical prophets predicted that all the tribes of Israel (including the ten tribes of the northern kingdom or Ephraim) would be scattered to other lands outside of Israel, and that YHVH would regather them in the last days and return them to the land of Israel. This has also been the dominant belief of the Jewish sages as recorded in their writings and in their oral traditions including the Talmud. For example, the Scriptures tells us about the scattering of the twelve tribes,

And YHVH rooted them out of their land in anger, and in wrath, and in great indignation, and cast them into another land [eretz acheret], as it is this day.” (Deut 29:28)

The Babylonian Talmud, in Yevamot 17a (written ca. A.D. 500, The Soncino Talmud) confirms this when it states,

“[T]hey had declared them [i.e., the ten tribes of Israel, see rabbinic footnote below]19 to be perfect heathens [or gentiles]; as it is said in the Scriptures, ‘They have dealt treacherously against YHVH, for they have begotten strange children.’” A rabbinic footnote on this passage states, (19) ‘The ten tribes; (20) Hos 5:7.’”

The ArtScroll Tanach Series Bereishis/Genesis (an Orthodox Jewish commentary on Genesis) states, regarding Genesis 48:19, quoting Orthodox Jewish sage of the Middle Ages, Ibn Ezra:

Many nations will descend from him [Ephraim]. That is, the word, fullness, melo, connotes ‘abundance,’ the phrase meaning: ‘and his seed will become the abundance of the nations’ (Neter; Karnei Or, p. 2121).

According to Radak’s (R. Dovid Kimchi, a Torah scholar in the Middle Ages) commentary on the same verse,

This refers to the Exile when the lands of others will be filled with his scattered descendants. See also Hoshea 7:8: Ephraim shall be mingled among the nations (Ibid.).

Pertaining to the end-time regathering of the twelve tribes, the late well-known orthodox Jewish leader, Menachem Schneerson stated that the future King Messiah (Messiah Ben [Son of] David) will not only redeem the Jews from exile, but will restore the observance of the Torah-commandments to its complete state, which will only be possible when the Israelites are living in the land of Israel. At this same time, Schneerson who is quoting the notable rabbinic sage of the Middle Ages, Moses Maimonides also known as the Rambam, says,

[T]here will be an ingathering of the dispersed remnant of Israel. This will make it possible for the Davidic dynasty to be reinstated and for the observance of the Torah and its mitsvot to be restored in its totality. (emphasis added)

According to Jacob Immanual Schochet, the ten tribes of the northern kingdom of Israel will also return (as substantiation for his claim, he cites b. Talmud, Sandhedrin 110b) to serve YHVH (he also cites Ezek 20:32–37, 40–42).

Furthermore, The ArtScroll Bereishis, vol. 1(b) states in its commentary on Genesis 48:19 regarding Ephraim,

R. Munk explains: 

“[W]hile it is true that the dispersion [of the descendants of Ephraim and Manasseh] was caused by the unfaithfulness and sinfulness of Ephraim’s descendants (Hos 7:8ff), Jacob’s ­blessing was not in vain for ‘they will return to [Elohim]’ and will have their share in the world to come ([Talmud] Sanhedrin 110b).” And R. Eliezer adds: “Even the darkness in which the Ten Tribes were lost will one day become as radiant as the day’ (according to the version of Avos d’Rabbi Nosson 36). And in the perspective of history, did not these exiled children of the Patriarchs enlighten the nations among whom they were scattered? They did so by teaching their conquerors the fundamental ideas of the knowledge and love of [Elohim], ideals they had never forsaken. Hence they too have a messianic vocation and their Messiah the Mashiach ben Yosef, Messiah son of Joseph (Succah 52a), also called Messiah son of Ephraim (Targum Yonasan on Exodus 40:11), will play an essential role in humanity’s redemption, for he will be the precursor of the Mashiach ben David, Messiah Son of David. It is therefore not surprising to find that the prophet Jeremiah (3:12) speaks affectionately of Ephraim. In this light, Jacob’s words, ‘his offspring will fill the nations,’ assume the significance of blessing.”

Continue reading
 

Bechukotai—Curses Upon the Disobedient: Terror, Pestilence & Famine

It’s time to wake up and face reality! When we obey the Creator’s laws we are blessed, and when we disobey his commandments we are cursed. The rise of national and global terrorism, rampant diseases and the threat of famines, even in the first world nations, is the consequence of our sinning against the Creator, of breaking his laws, and is a fulfillment of end time biblical prophecy. There is no need to be confused, frightened or alarmed by the crazy events going on around us if we are living righteously. In this video, we identify the problem, its root cause and the solution.

 

Spiritual Community—The Key to Enduring the End Times?

Psalm 27

Psalm 27:1–14, The Jews traditionally read this psalm during the month of Elul (the sixth month) just before the fall biblical feasts of the seventh month, since they are alluded to therein. These allusions include

  • Verse 5: Pavillion is the Hebrew word suk, the root word for sukkah (relating to Sukkot or the Feast of Tabernacles).
  • Verse 5: The Hebrew ohel means “tabernacle” (also relating to Sukkot or the Feast of Tabernacles).
  • Verse 6: Sacrifice [of joy] refers to joy are the thanksgiving, love and peace offerings made to YHVH during the biblical pilgrimage feasts to the tabernacle of Elohim (ohel, v. 5; this refers to all the fall feast of Atonement, Trumpets, Tabernacles and the Eighth Day).
  • Verse 6: Joy is the Hebrew word teruah, which directly refers to Yom Teruah or the Day of Trumpets and indirectly to the other fall feasts—a time period referred to in Jewish though as “the season of our joy.”

In the context of the fall biblical feasts, let us not forget that they are prophetic of the end time events that will occur immediately prior to and after the second coming of Yeshua. Therefore, this psalms, is a prophetic remez or hint at how the saints are to cope with the times of duress that will come upon them during the end times global beast system.

Psalm 27:1, My light…salvation…fear…strength of my life. What more does a person need? The saint has the light of Yeshua and the Word of Elohim (these are synonymous) to guide him in the gross or thick spiritual darkness of this satanic world. He also has the divine promise of salvation or deliverance from any and every enemy that would come against him to kill, steal and destroy including death, which is the ultimate enemy. Finally he has the divine strength or power of the Creator at work in his life through the indwelling presence of the Spirit of Elohim. Beyond this, there is nothing to fear in this life. In fact, many times I have quoted this verse and applied it to a particular part of my body that needed healing, and I have received divine healing. For example, while writing this, I humbly, yet boldly declared this promise over a pain in my back, and I was instantly healed. Now I now don’t have to go to the chiropractor. HalleluYah!

Psalm 27:2, Enemies…foes. Too often when reading scriptures that contains these words, we assign a person or name to them. But consider this: Our foe or enemy may be a situation or condition (e.g., a health condition, emotional distress, financial problems, difficult life circumstances [e.g., flood, fire, drought, weather conditions, physical privation, sickness and disease, tribulation or persecution]), or demonic spiritual entities that are behind a person or situation that is our enemy. Moreover, our enemy may, in fact, be our own sinful condition or wrong attitudes, and we are now reaping the deleterious consequences thereof. So before automatically blaming someone else for our problems and the consequences thereof in our lives, let’s rethink who or what our enemies may really be.

Psalm 27:4, Dwell in the house of YHVH. How does one dwell in the house of YHVH all the days of one’s life? Is this merely hyperbolic, fanciful thinking and rhetoric on the part of the psalmist, or is it actually possible to do? Obviously as physical humans, we are confined to life on this earth while living in the earth suit of our physical bodies. At the same time, Scripture declares that we are seated with Yeshua in heavenly places (Eph 2:6), and that our affections must be set on heavenly things (Col 3:2); therefore, we exist in two realities or dimensions at the same time: an earthly physical dimension and a heavenly or spiritual dimension. How? Simply this: We are a tripartite being of spirit, soul and body (1 Thess 5:23). Although the body part of us is confined to this earth, our soul (mind, will and emotions) and spirit can operate from and in the spiritual dimension of heaven through our relationship with Elohim through Yeshua and through the power of his word and Spirit. We can allow the Spirit to operate through us and direct and guide everything that we do, say and think. In so doing, we are dwelling in the house or family (Heb. bayith) of YHVH, while, in a sense, temporarily living abroad (in the foreign country of this physical existence) on this earth and away from the real home of our Father’s heavenly house, which in due time, at the end of this age, is coming to this earth. Amein and halleluYah!

House [Heb. bayith]. The Hebrew word bayith not only means a physical “house” but also “family or household.” When we understand that bayith signifies more than a simple physical structure, the implications are enormous. The psalmist is telling us that the beauty or delightfulness of YHVH is to be found within the household or family of Elohim or the household faith, that is, in spiritual community or the family of Elohim comprising of his saints who love him and adhere to his ways and way of life.

To behold. Literally to see as a prophetic seer in an ecstatic state, to perceive by experience or with intelligence. (Also see Ps 63:12.) There is more than one way to come into contact with the beauty, favor, delightfulness or pleasantries of YHVH. 

To inquire in his temple. The psalmist talks about going into the tabernacle to encounter YHVH. Since there is no longer a physical tabernacle in which the saints can go to seek YHVH, where do they now go? 

The saint is the tabernacle or temple of the Spirit of Elohim (1 Cor 3:16; 2 Cor 6:16), and the Spirit dwells in one’s personal spirit. This means that one must go inside himself to seek and behold beauty of YHVH. Perhaps this is “the secret [or the covered, private, hidden or protected] place” to which the writer makes reference in v. 5.

Psalm 27:5, In the time of trouble. The house of YHVH (as discussed in my commentary on the previous verse) is the place where YHVH will hide his saints in the time of trouble. If one fails to make the house of YHVH a place of refuge during trouble-free times, how can one expect to know anything about this secret place of YHVH much less go there or rely on it during troublesome times?

Finding refuge in the context of spiritual community may be a main way by which YHVH will protect and provide for his people during the perilous and turbulent end times.

Set me high upon a rock. In the secret place of YHVH (which in other places I refer to as my “God-bubble” or “the spiritual force field” that surrounds me, or which the psalmist elsewhere refers to as taking refuge under the wings of the Almighty), we will find a mighty and solid rock on which to stand during times of trouble. That Rock is Yeshua our Savior, the Written and Living Word of Elohim.

Psalm 27:6, The sacrifices of joy…praises. See notes at Ps 116:17.

Psalm 27:4, 8, Inquire…seek. Literally this means “to look for, consider or reflect.” Such an effort takes time and energy, and to accomplish, one must quiet down the rambunctiousness of the soul (one’s mind, will and emotions), so that one’s inner man or personal spirit can rise up and speak as it is informed and directed by the Spirit of Elohim.