Elohim’s Fiery Judgment Upon Nadab and Abihu—A Lesson for the End Time Saints

Leviticus 10:1–7, Nadab and Abihu…profane fire. 

Nadab and Abihu were executed by the fire of YHVH for not following his commandments. This disobedience was induced by the consumption of alcohol, which impaired their ability to follow YHVH’s protocols for the tabernacle service (Lev 10:9). What can we learn from this tragic story of the disobedience of YHVH’s servants who should have known better, and how will this story repeat itself at the end of this present age upon some of YHVH’s unfaithful servants? We will now discuss the prophetic implications of this story and how history will repeat itself shortly. 

Nadab and Abihu, the sons of Aaron the high priest, were unfaithful to Elohim in that they neglected to take his commandments seriously. Perhaps they thought that his instructions in righteousness did not apply to them but to someone else, or that his laws were done away with, or that YHVH Elohim simply did not really mean what he said. Whatever the case, while executing the ministerial role as Levitical priests in the tabernacle, they became lukewarm and careless in their duties and profaned the holy things of Elohim through their excessive use of alcohol and careless indifference to the Word of Elohim. Because they were in leadership positions as priests, their example of unrighteousness like a spiritual contagion could have infected the children of Israel and destroyed that new nation at its inception. Therefore, YHVH Elohim had to deal quickly and forcefully with these erring and rebellious sons of Aaron. In answer to their sin of not obeying YHVH’s laws, the holy fire of Elohim, like a bolt of lightning out of heaven, came out (presumably from the tabernacle—a picture of Elohim’s heavenly tabernacle and throne room) and fatally struck Nadab and Abihu then and there. 

What are the lessons that we can learn from this horrific story, and what are the end time prophetic implications of it? 

We learn from the book of Revelation that at end of the Messianic Age (or Millennium) that YHVH Elohim will execute unrepentant sinners fire by casting them into the lake of fire (Rev 20:15). This is because they have been made drunk by the false religious teachings of the whore system of religious spiritual Babylon and Satan (Rev 18:3–4). Even many of YHVH’s own people will fall prey to the Antichirst worldwide political-religious-economic system and fail to heed his warning to “come out of her my people” (Rev 18:4). Many will even take the mark of the beast thus forfeiting their possible salvation (Rev 14:9; 15:2; 20:4).

We are now living in an age where, thankfully, most of our sinful actions are not met with instant divine judgment (the case of Ananias and Sapphira who lied to the Holy Spirit in the book of Acts is a notable exception). Does knowing that YHVH will not instantly “zap” us with his proverbial lightning bolt from heaven when we sin cause us to become lax and even calloused toward sin in our lives? Do we truly walk in the fear of YHVH? Do we fear the consequences of sin even though the results may not be immediate? For many, the answer is yes. Therefore, the rest of us need to ask ourselves some serious questions lest we too slip into a state of careless indifference toward YHVH and his commandments as did Nadab and Abihu and, later, Annais and Sapphira. How loose is your spiritual walk? How many hidden sins that no one knows about do you have that you are failing to deal with that could lead down the proverbial slippery slope and away from Elohim? 

One thing is certain. As one progresses in their faith walk, the path of righteousness becomes narrower and ­narrower, and fewer people are on that straight and rigourous path. Moreover, there are levels of rewards in Yeshua’s kingdom. Not everyone will be “the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.” Some will be the least, and many will not even be there at all (Matt 5:19 cp. 1 Pet 4:18). Remember that the tares (i.e. those masquerading as saints of Yeshua) that were mixed in with the wheat (i.e. the true saints or converts of Yeshua) were culled out and burned (Matt 13:24–30). This is a picture of the true versus false converts coexisting in the spiritual body of Yeshua or the church to the very end! Let us not forget that the saints in Laodicean church were secure in their state of spiritual lassitude, yet YHVH had some harsh words for them. If they failed to repent and amend their ways, he promised to reject them.

It is time for the people of Elohim to wake up from their spiritual lethargic and drunken stupor, repent of their sin of taking a careless and even indifferent view of YHVH’s commandments.

“And to the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write, ‘These things says the Amen, the Faithful and True Witness, the Beginning of the creation of Elohim: I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I could wish you were cold or hot. So then, because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of My mouth. Because you say, ‘I am rich, have become wealthy, and have need of nothing’—and do not know that you are wretched, miserable, poor, blind, and naked—I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see. As many as I love, I rebuke and chasten. Therefore be zealous and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me. (Rev 3:14–20)

And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues.” (Rev 18:4)

Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. (1 Cor 10:12)

 

What Is Truth? (Explaining the difference between Truth and truth)

This is an important question that has dangerous implications. Why? Because truth is like a sharp sword that cuts. It separates good from evil, light from darkness, sin from righteousness; it differentiates between those who are of Elohim and those who are of the world, the flesh and devil; that is, those who are of the kingdom of the god of this world—Satan the devil. Oooh, that hurts! But the fact remains: we are either in Elohim’s kingdom or the devil’s kingdom. To ignore or renounce the former is to acquiesce knowingly or unknowingly, it makes no difference, to the latter. For these reasons, most people flee from answering the question “What is truth.” This is because their deeds are evil and they do not want the glorious light of YHVH’s Truth to shine into their lives and to expose their evil deeds as John declared about Yeshua in John 3:18–21.

He who believes in [Yeshua] is not condemned; but he who does not believe is condemned already, because he has not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of Elohim. And this is the condemnation, that the light has come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. For everyone practicing evil hates the light and does not come to the light, lest his deeds should be exposed. But he who does the truth comes to the light, that his deeds may be clearly seen, that they have been done in Elohim.”

Not only that, let us not forget an important fact: there are two kinds of truth. Truth with a capital T and truth with a small t. The former is divinely revealed Truth, while the latter is truth at a physical level (e.g. 2 + 2 = 4 or the law of gravity). To acknowledge the former means that one has to accept not only the idea of divine revelation, but a Divine Revealer. If so, then there is a Divine Judge who determines right and wrong. If this is true, then that Judge will bless those who live up to that divine Truth, and curse those who do not.

To acknowledge the existence of divinely revealed Truth carries with it serious implications regarding one’s lifestyle. That is why most humans choose the downward path (call Baalism or feeding from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil) of sin and succumb to the notion that God is dead or irrelevant. Not only that, they attack those who believe in Elohim (the Jews and the Christians), they attack the Bible—the Word of Elohim, they attack the Holy Land where Elohim placed his name, and they attack anything that remotely represents any of these things (e.g. morality, marriage, the family, church, male and female genders and so on). This is the spirit of Antichrist, which we see rising up like a tidal wave of evil in these last days all over the world. But the reality is that these are only the death throes of Satan and his kingdom of darkness, for he knows that his time as the ruler and god of this world is short, and that King Yeshua is coming soon to dethrone him. That is why the devil is pulling out the all the proverbial organ stops in a vain attempt to prevent the inevitable and inexorable march of Truth!

For these reasons, it is important that you understand the answer to the question, “What is Truth?”


John 18:38, What is truth? 

In this age of moral relativism or situational ethics, it is unpopular to believe in, much less purport, that there is one single truth. Most humans live under the notion that every person can determine their own truth for themselves. The problem with this delusion is that when your truth conflicts with my truth there will inevitably be conflict. Ultimately, there will be a breakdown in law and order leading to anarchy resulting in unending theft, murder and wars. This was the case in primeval and medieval societies like Europe before strong central governments evolved to enforce law and order. The history of British Isles alone before there was a strong king in London was one series of blood baths after another by various raping and pillaging parties.

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Leviticus Chapters 1 to 7—What Was the Purpose of the Sacrificial System?

The concept of animal sacrifices may be a hard for modern people to comprehend—especially for those who are squeamish when it comes to death and blood. This ancient ritual, rooted in the nomadic lifestyles of the inhabitants of the Middle East, carried more symbolic significance for a people whose daily existence was tied to the earth and who were dependent on domestic animals for their survival. It is out of this cultural background that the biblical narrative springs and with it the ritual symbols with which the ancient people described therein could relate. With these things in mind, the following is a list showing the main reasons for YHVH’s establishment of an animal sacrificial system as a means to help man to understand spiritual lessons far beyond the actual sacrifice itself.

  • The laws pertaining to the sacrificial system were added to the rest of the Torah because of sin, and were in force until the time of Yeshua the promised Seed (Gal 3:19). When and why did YHVH add them making this system incumbent upon the Israelites? This occurred after and because of the sin of the golden calf. It was then that YHVH established the Levitical priesthood and subsequently gave Israel the sacrificial system to not only show them the seriousness and grave consequences of sins, but to guide them forward on the path toward redemption and salvation.
  • The Levitical system foreshadowed and pointed to the Messiah’s ultimate sacrifice (Heb 9:11–12).
  • The tabernacle offerings were specifically designed to spiritually draw the offerer near to Elohim through the sacrifice of a prescribed animal (Ps 51:16–17; 50:12–15 cp. 1 Pet 2:21).
  • Elohim commanded offerings to assist the offerer to better understand himself; his attitude, and his personal relationship with Elohim (e.g. Gen 3:21; 4:3–5; 8:20; 22:1–2 cp. 1 Cor 11:28).
  • Altars were erected by the patriarchs in order to honor Elohim through sacrifice after having had direct contact with him (Gen 12:6–8; 13:18; 26:24–25; 35:1; 35:2–4; Exod 17:13–16; cp. Exod 20:12).
  • Proper and regular sacrificial offerings kept the children of Israel in direct contact with the Elohim of the patriarchs (Exod 5:3; 10:25; cp. 1 Tim 2:5).
  • To make the offerer holy (set-apart) so that he would be allowed to approach and commune with the Set-Apart Elohim of Israel (Isa 43:15; 57:15; Lev 19:2 cp. 2 Cor 6:16–18).
  • Under certain circumstances, blood, as used in the Levitical system, could serve as a purification agent for both people and objects (Heb 9:18–23 cp. Luke 2:22–24).
  • The blood of the animal sacrifices served to cover the offerer’s sins, thereby allowing him to draw near to the Set-Apart Elohim of Israel. However, the offerer could only be forgiven for specific sins through full repentance and by returning to Elohim’s way of life as outlined in the Torah (Lev 1:4; 4:35; 23:27–28; Heb 10:3–4; cp. Rom 4:7–8).
  • The purpose of the animals offered by the Levitical priesthood served as a shadow of the blood of Messiah, which does not merely cover our sins, but removes all of the sins of the person who accepts Yeshua’s offering of himself for that sinner (Heb 9:11–12, 24–28; 1 Pet 1:18–19; Eph 5:25–27; Lev 25:47–49; Rom 5:11; John 1:29 cp. Heb 13:10–13).

Words and Definitions

(These words are the Hebrew words behind the English words offering and sacrifice as translated in the KJV):

  • Asham: (Strong’s H817/TWOT 180b) meaning “guilt, offense, sin, guiltiness, trespass, fault, compensation (for offense), trespass or sin offering.” 
  • Chag: (Strong’s H2282/TWOT 602a) meaning “festival, feast, pilgrim-feast, festival-gathering, festival sacrifice.”
  • Chatah: (Strong’s H2403/TWOT 638e) meaning “sin, sinful, sin offering, condition of sin, guilt of sin, punishment for sin, purification from sins of ceremonial uncleanness, sinner.”
  • Ishshah: (Strong’s H801/TWOT 172a) meaning “burnt offering, offering made by fire, fire offering.”
  • Korbawn: (Strong’s H7133/TWOT 2065e) meaning “offering, oblation, sacrifice.” 
  • Minchah: (Strong’s H4503/TWOT 1214a) meaning “to apportion, to bestow, gift, tribute, offering, present, oblation, sacrifice, meat or grain offering (Gen 4:3–5).”
  • Necek: (Strong’s H5262/TWOT 1375a) meaning “drink offering, libation, molten image, something poured out (Gen 35:14).”
  • Nedabah: (Strong’s H5071/TWOT 1299a) meaning “voluntary, free-will offering.”
  • Olah: (Strong’s H5930/TWOT 1624c,d) meaning “whole burnt offering/sacrifice, ascent, stairway, steps, to go up (Gen 8:20; 22:2,3,6,7,8,13).”
  • Qatar: (Strong’s H6999/TWOT 2011,2011e,g) meaning “to sacrifice, burn incense, burn sacrifices, make sacrifices smoke, incense, incense altar.”
  • Shelem: (Strong’s H8002/TWOT 2401b) meaning “peace offering, requital, sacrifice of alliance or friendship, voluntary sacrifice of thanks.”
  • Tenuwphah🙁Strong’s H8573/TWOT 1330b) meaning “swinging, waving, wave offering, shaking.”
  • Terumah,: (Strong’s H8641/TWOT 2131i) meaning “a heave offering, any offering; an offering of grain or money, etc.; contribution, oblation.”
  • Zebach: (Strong’s H2077/TWOT 525a) meaning “sacrifices of righteousness, sacrifices of strife, sacrifices of dead things, the covenant sacrifice, the Passover, annual sacrifice, thank offering.”
  • Zabach: (Strong’s H2076/TWOT 525) meaning “to slaughter, kill sacrifice, slaughter for sacrifice”(Gen. 31:54; 46:1).

YHVH instituted the basic sacrificial system after the fall of man, and it served to point the way to the coming of Yeshua the Messiah, the eventual Redeemer and Savior of mankind. Later on, YHVH established a more elaborate sacrificial system and appointed the Levites to administer it. This occurred after the golden calf incident in Exodus 32 and in conjunction with the establishment of the Tabernacle of Moses. Paul makes reference to this “added law” in Galatians 3:19.

Depending on how one understands the scripture passages recording the vision of Ezekiel’s Temple (Ezek 40–48), there may or may not be a reinstitution of part of or the whole sacrificial system during the millennium. Some believe that Ezekiel’s Temple is only an allegorical picture of Yeshua’s atoning death on the cross and speaks to YHVH’s plan of salvation and therefore will never be built. Others feel that it is yet to be built.

After the fall of man, YHVH made Adam and Eve coats or garments of skins or leather (Gen 3:21). Though the Scriptures don’t tell us, we can guess these were made of leather from a kosher animal such as a cow, sheep or goat. In other words, YHVH probably sacrificed a kosher animal like a lamb to cover their physical and spiritual nakedness. This would have marked the beginning of the sacrificial system and thus pointed to Yeshua’s atoning death on the cross through his shed blood — the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world.

The next occurrence of a sacrifice was that of righteous Abel in Genesis chapter four. After that, animal sacrifices become a common occurrence with the male head of each family acting as the officiant or priest for his family. It was not until the golden calf incident (Exod 32) that the responsibility of the male head of the family to perform sacrifices passed to the Levites, thus, initiating the Levitical priesthood with its sacrificial system.

Sacrifices are no longer necessary, since Yeshua our Messiah offered his body as the ultimate sacrifice for our sins, once and for all, forever (Heb 10:10–21).

 

Salvation—What Is It and Do You Have It? (explained simply as YOU have never heard it before)

YOU need to read this article to understand what the Bible really says about salvation in it full Hebraic context. This will insure that YOU are truly saved and not just an unsaved false convert or a spiritual tare that will end up being cast into the lake of fire on Judgment Day.

The following information will also insure that you do not make false converts as you share the gospel messages with others.

This information is important to know because many Christian churches DO NOT preach the full Truth about salvation, but teach the unbiblical traditions of men, thus making millions if not billions of false converts who think they are saved but who are not saved according to biblical standards.


What is Salvation?

The dictionary defines the word salvation as “the deliverance from the power and effects of sin.” In a generic sense, salvation is “the preservation from harm, ruin or loss.” Relating the first definition, which is biblical in nature, to the second definition, which is generic in nature, we see that salvation is the deliverance or preservation from the power of sin, which causes harm, ruin or loss. Salvation and redemption are synonymous terms in biblical Hebraic thought. We will discuss the idea of redemption below. In the mean time, let us explore the ramifications and implications of salvation as it relates to the deliverance from the power of sin in a person’s life and how this relates to you.

So what is sin that it causes harm, ruin or loss, and what is being harmed or being lost such that each person needs deliverance? Very simply, Scripture (the Bible) defines sin as the violation of YHVH Elohim’s (the LORD God’s) commandments or his Torah-laws (1 John 3:4). What is YHVH Elohim’s Torah-law? Specifically it is the instructions, precepts or teaching of YHVH as found in the first five books of the Bible, which can then be expanded to include the entire Bible or Word of YHVH from Genesis to Revelation. The Word of Elohim commands all humans to live by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Creator as found in Scripture (Deut 8:3; Matt 4:4). Man is to hear and do the Words of YHVH (Deut 6:4), place YHVH’s words in his heart (Deut 6:6), teach them to his children (Deut 6:7), and to make them the basis for all that he does and thinks (Deut 6:8). The words or laws of YHVH Elohim can be summed up as loving YHVH and loving one’s neighbor (Deut 6:5; Lev 19:18; Mark 12:30; John 14:15). Love is the fulfilling of YHVH’s commandments or laws (Rom 12:8–10). The cornerstone of all of YHVH’s laws is the famous ten commandments as found in Exodus 20. They are:

  • I am YHVH your Elohim.
  • You shall have no other gods before me and you shall not worship idols.
  • You shall not take my name in vain.
  • Remember the Sabbath day to keep it set-apart or holy. 
  • Honor you father and mother.
  • You shall not murder.
  • You shall not commit adultery
  • You shall not steal.
  • You shall not lie.
  • You shall not covet your that which belongs to your neighbor.

The first five statements constitute loving YHVH Elohim, while the last five constitute loving one’s fellow man. These ten statements are but the beginning of YHVH’s laws as outlined in Scripture, which if man break, man is guilty of sin (1 John 3:4). There are 613 such laws in the Tanakh (Old Testament) and more than 1050 in the Testimony of Yeshua (New Testament). This may seem like a lot of laws for man to have to follow, but in reality, it is a small number of laws compared to the hundreds of law books that constitute the laws of most nations on earth. Whole law libraries are established to contain the laws of men!

Law and order or the rule of law form the basis of all areas of authority in the cosmos. There are five such realms of authority as outlined in Paul’s Epistle to the Ephesians. They are: divine, family or parental, church, civil or governmental and that of employers. As civil governments have established laws to maintain order among the inhabitants of a society, and as all societies impose penalties upon its citizens for breaking those laws, the same is true of YHVH’s divine laws. The violation of all laws brings a consequence or penalty of one sort or another. Some penalties are serious than others. The punishment should fit the crime. If one violates the law of gravity, for example, and jumps off a cliff, the result is death. If one drinks poison or has an unhealthy lifestyle, the result will be sickness or a premature death. If one violates a speeding law, the penalty may be a fine. If an employee violates a company policy, he may get fired from his job. If child disobeys a parent, the child will be disciplined. If one mistreats one’s fellow man, there are negative relational consequences. If one murders someone, imprisonment or the death penalty will occur. Similarly, Scripture teaches that if one violates divine law (i.e. sin) the penalty is death (Ezek 18:4; Rom 6:23). 

The Bible also teaches that all humans have sinned (Rom 3:23). YHVH has imposed a death sentence upon everyone because sin results in harm, ruin or loss in one way or another. As a result, all humans need deliverance, redemption or salvation from the consequences of their sin. The Bible teaches that salvation is deliverance from that death, and that those who are saved will be granted eternal life or immortality because the death penalty has been lifted from them. Therefore, those who are saved from death, the result of sin, will be given immortality (Rom 6:23).

How can each person receive salvation from the wages or penalty of their own sin, which is death? Let’s now explore this concept.

Steps to Salvation

The Bible states that man has a sin problem (read Romans chapters 1 through 3), and that each person must take certain spiritual steps to rectify this problem. We  will now explore these steps.

One can have their past sins forgiven by placing their faith in the death, burial and resurrection of Yeshua the Messiah (Jesus Christ), the son of Elohim who took man’s sins upon himself and died in each person’s place to satisfy the divine and legal judgment against each person because of sin (i.e. the violation of the Creator’s laws), so that man could pass from death to life (John 3:16). What is sin? We sin when we break YHVH’s commandments as revealed in the Bible, the Word of Elohim (1 John 3:4; Rom 3:20). When a person turns away from committing sin and places their faith in Yeshua, Scripture promises that the person will experience forgiveness resulting in a glorious spiritual relationship with our Father in heaven leading to eternal or everlasting life (Rom 3:21–5; 6:23). 

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Divine Healing and Sickness—When and Why?

Exodus 15:26, I will put none of the diseases.Some Bible teachers quote this verse to mean that a Christian is immune from all sickness and disease. Is this what this verse is really saying?

On the contrary, the Bible teaches us that sometimes YHVH puts judgments upon people to either (a) bring them to repentance, or (b) because they are so evil, reprobate and past redemption, to impose the death penalty upon them. 

Other times, people put judgments such as sickness upon them because of their own wrong choices. Such judgments are the consequences of their own actions; it is a function of the laws cause and effect. 

Sometimes sickness comes upon people because YHVH takes his hand of protection away from people and they are left open as victims of the consequences of their own wrong doings, of other people (trials and persecution) or of Satan (spiritual attack). 

Finally, according to the Scriptures and the laws of biology, every person will eventually die , for it is appointed for every one to die. Sometimes healthy people simply die quietly in their sleep. Most times, people die of sickness or disease as their body grows old, runs down and finally wears out.

What this verse is saying is that YHVH will not put diseases upon people as a judgment against sin if they obey his commandments. However, if they obey him, but have an unhealthy diet, live an unhealthy life, have a negative attitude, make foolish life decisions that open them up to suffering the negative consequence (or curses) brought on by their own foolish decisions, this is not YHVH putting the consequences of their action on them, but the people doing so to themselves.

I am YHVH that heals you. This is the first place in the Scriptures where YHVH promises to heal his people of sickness. Here is a list of other biblical verses containing similar promises: Deut 7:12 and 15; Pss 30:2–4; 34:18–19; 41:1;91 (entire chapter); 103 (entire chapter); Isa 40:28–31; 53:4–5; Jer 17:13–14; Mal 4:2; Mark 11:23–24; Luke 10:19; John 14:13; 15:7; 15:16; 16:23–24; Rom 8:31; 8:37; Phil 4:13; Jas 5:14–16; 1 Pet 2:24. Read these Scriptures when you are sick and believe YHVH’s promises for your divine healing.

Notice the stipulations that YHVH makes for his promise of healing to be fulfilled upon his people. His people must “diligently heed [Heb. shema meaning “to hear and to do”] the voice of YHVH by doing what is upright [Heb. yashar meaning “right, righteous, correct, straight] in his sight by obeying his Torah.

Is There a Connection Between Sin and Sickness?

What if any is the connection between the sins we commit and the sicknesses and diseases that come upon us? Much, as the Bible teaches.

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YHVH’s General Versus Salvational Pardon of Sin

Numbers 14:20–24, I have pardoned. This Bible passages teaches us that there is a general pardon of sin of which all humans are the recipient, and a salvational pardon of sin that only a few receive. How is this?

YHVH pardoned Israel for the sin of disobedient unbelief, but forgiveness in this case only meant that YHVH’s judgment would not come upon them for this particular sin. This pardon did not expiate them of all their sin resulting in eternal life of which entering into the Promised Land was a prophetic antetype.

This is the same genre of pardon that YHVH extended to Adam and Eve after they sinned by eating of the forbidden fruit. They did not die immediately, but were able to live out their lives under that pardon, but it did not guarantee them eternal life.

Later we read that in verse 23 that YHVH would not allow this unbelieving generation of Israelites see the Promised Land because they had rejected Elohim and refused to obey him. This was in contradistinction to Joshua and Caleb who had a different spirit in them and fully obeyed YHVH (v. 24). 

What can we learn from this? In general sense, YHVH pardons all humans for the sins they commit. If he did not, his judgment would come upon them immediately, for the wages of sin is death, and they would be no more. But humans keep sinning, rejecting Elohim, and yet he graciously, in most cases, allows them to live out their physical lives, but this does not mean that they will have eternal life. This is YHVH pardoning them momentarily, but not saving them or granting them eternal life. Only those, like Caleb and Joshua, who have a different spirit (i.e. the Holy Spirit) and a personal spirit or heart that is inclined to fully obey him will be rewarded with eternal life in the Promised Land of YHVH’s eternal kingdom.

 

Judgment for the Wicked, Rewards for the Righteous—Meditations on Psalm 50

This psalm presents several fundamental biblical truths that should ignite the fires of hope for the saints of YHVH Elohim. First, YHVH, the Mighty One or El, is coming to judge the earth and the wicked thereon with the fires his judgment. Second, out of this, he will deliver his saints from that fire and will gather those who are in a covenant relationship and who glorify him through the sacrifices of praise and who walk righteously. Wherever his saints may be, whether in heaven or on (or in) the earth, he will show them salvation.

Psalm 50:0, A Psalm of Asaph. Asaph is mentioned in 1 Chronicles 16:5. He also wrote Psalms 73–83.

Psalm 50:4–6, heavens…earth…gather my saints. This verse declares that YHVH will gather together his saints from the heavens and from the earth that he may judge them (see also Deut 32). This is referring to the last days’ judgment seat at Yeshua’s second coming when the righteous saints, both the living and the dead, will be transformed into immortality. What is interesting to note here is that these verses indicate that two things. First, when YHVH comes to gather his saints, some saints will be in heaven and some will be on this earth (1 Thess 4:15–17). Second, of those saints who are dead, Scripture elsewhere indicates that a part of them (i.e. the body and soul which is their mind, will and emotions) is dead and buried in the grave, while another part of them is in heaven (i.e. their spirit). Elsewhere Scripture informs us that when a person dies physically, their body along with their soul dies (Ezek 18:4, 20; i.e. the soul is not immortal), but that their spirit returns to YHVH (Eccl 3:21; 12:7 cp. Ps 90:10; Luke 23:46; Deut 30:4). So whether dead or alive, and wherever they may be, this verse succinctly states one of the fundamental and elementary biblical doctrines of the gospel message, namely, that of the of the resurrection of the dead (Heb 6:1–3). For YHVH as the righteous Judge of the universe will gather his saints (that is, those who are in covenant with him, as verse 5 states) together before his judgment seat, where we learn elsewhere in Scripture that he will grant them rewards in his eternal kingdom based on their good works that they did while alive in their bodies (Matt 5:19; 2 Cor 5:10).

Psalm 50:5, Made [or cut] a covenant…by sacrifice. This refers to the method by which covenants were made in ancient times between two parties. This same ritual occurred when YHVH made (or cut) a covenant with Abraham in Genesis chapter 15 except in that instance YHVH took all the responsibilities for fulfilling the covenant upon himself, for Abraham was asleep when this covenant was cut (Gen 15:9–10, 12). 

What is the lesson in this for us? Simply this: this is the model for salvation. All Abraham had to do was to have faith in YHVH and all the blessings of the Abrahamic Covenant would fall upon him (Gen 15:6). We know from Paul’s discussion in Romans chapter four that the Abrahamic Covenant is the original biblical model for how an individual can receive salvation from Elohim. We know from Paul’s discussion in Romans chapter four that the Abrahamic Covenant is the original biblical model for how an individual can receive salvation from Elohim. 

We also know that when YHVH made his covenant with Abraham, the vision Abraham had while he was asleep prophetically pointed to Yeshua’s death on the cross and his initiating the new or renewed covenant as prophesied in the Tanakh (e.g. Jer 31:31–33; also see my notes at Gen 15:12–21). 

Moreover, Yeshua at his last supper and subsequent crucifixion fulfilled this ancient prophecy as well as the spiritual types and shadows discussed in Psalm 50:7 and Genesis 15:9–21. At his last supper, Yeshua made a new covenant with his disciples through his body (the bread) and blood (the wine), which redeemed believers now commemorate when they take communion. 

And as they were eating, Yeshua took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body. And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins. (Matt 26:26–28)

And when he had given thanks, he brake it, and said, Take, eat: this is my body, which is broken for you: this do in remembrance of me. (1 Cor 11:24)

Prior to his death on the cross, Yeshua’s predictively explained the significance of his broken body and spilled blood as it relates to covenantal agreement between him and those who would place their faith in him (as Abraham did in Gen 15).

35And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.…47 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me hath everlasting life.…50 This is the bread which cometh down from heaven, that a man may eat thereof, and not die.53 Then Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except ye eat the flesh of the Son of man, and drink his blood, ye have no life in you.…58This is that bread which came down from heaven: not as your fathers did eat manna, and are dead: he that eateth of this bread shall live for ever. (John 6:35, 47, 50, 53, 58)

In the context of the Passover service when the saints through the ritual of communion annually commemorate Yeshua’s “cutting” the new covenant with his saints and then ratifying that covenant through his death, Paul has the following to say about the significance of Yeshua’s body:

For as often as ye eat this bread, and drink this cup, ye do shew the Lord’s death till he come. Wherefore whosoever shall eat this bread, and drink this cup of the Lord, unworthily, shall be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of that bread, and drink of that cup. For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. (1 Cor 11:26–29)

Those who carelessly take communion are literally disrespecting not only the high value of the covenant that was made (or cut), but the tremendous price of making a covenant with Elohim (i.e. it cost Yeshua his life, and the believer must also die to himself as he accepts, unconditionally, Yeshua as his Lord and Master). Moreover, careless partakers of communion are not only underestimating the cost of their salvation, but the value and the benefits of that salvation, which is spiritual rewards including eternal life. Elohim is not only not duty bound to give immortality to such people, but would be foolish to immortalize people who don’t sufficiently recognize and appreciate the cost and value of covenantal agreement. In doing so, he would risk having another rebellion on his hand at some point in the future.

So when Yeshua died on the cross, he become the sacrifice that was cut (i.e. his body was brutally mutilated prior to and during his crucifixion) to which this verse in this Psalm 50 makes allusion. 

Moreover, Abraham not only had faith in YHVH, but he had to walk out that faith the rest of his life, for faith without works is dead (Jas 2:14–26). Similarly, those who place their faith in Yeshua must also back up that faith by doing his words (John 5:24), doing good (John 5:29; 3:21), loving him and keeping his commandments (John 14:15), coming to the light of Elohim’s truth (John 3:20–21), and showing that they are overcoming the word, the flesh and the devil resulting in eternal life and great spiritual rewards in the world to come (Rev 2:7, 11, 17, 26; 3:5, 12, 21). 

At the same time, those who don’t place their trust in Yeshua by accepting the covenant he “cut” through his death on the cross and then by backing that faith up with good deeds, or those who have “accepted” Yeshua, but lightly esteem him, will have a terrible price to pay.

For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord’s body. For this cause many are weak and sickly among you, and many sleep. (1 Cor 11:29–30)

Marvel not at this: for the hour is coming, in the which all that are in the graves shall hear his voice, and shall come forth; they that have done good, unto the resurrection of life; and they that have done evil, unto the resurrection of damnation. (John 5:28–29)

He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. (John 3:18)

Psalm 50:8, Continually before me. Yeshua the Great High Priest is continually before the throne of Elohim interceding on behalf of his people (Rev 7:9, 10, 17).

Psalm 50:12, The world is mine. The earth belongs to YHVH, but the cosmos (the kingdoms of this world and their man-made systems) belong to Satan (Matt 4:8–9).