What Is Holy and What Is Not…Who Determines It?

Some things are holy and some things are not.

Leviticus 8:12, Anointing oil … consecrates [Heb. kadash]. 

The Hebrew word kadash signifies the state of something that belongs to the realm of the sacred, and which is set-apart for divine use and has been separated from the sphere of the secular, common or profane. The Bible often uses the term holy (meaning “set-apart”) to signify this state of being. The word of Elohim designate many things as set-apart:

  • The ground upon which YHVH is standing (Exod 3:5; Josh 5:15)
  • The people of Israel (Exod 19:6; Deut 14:21; 26:19)
  • The Sabbath (Exod 16:23; 20:8)
  • The Tabernacle of Moses (Exod 26:33)
  • The garments worn by the high priest (Exod 28:2)
  • The altar of sacrifice (Exod 40:10)
  • The offerings made on the altar (Lev 6:18)
  • YHVH’s feast days (Lev 23:2)
  • The camp of Israel (Deut 23:14)
  • Heaven as the abode of Elohim (Deut 26:15)
  • YHVH Elohim (Job 6:10; Pss 22:3; 78:4; 99:5)
  • Zion and Jerusalem (Ps 2:6; Matt 27:53; Rev 22:19)
  • The Spirit of Elohim (Matt 1:20)
  • The angels (Matt 25:31)
  • The servants of Elohim (Mark 6:20)
  • The name of YHVH (Luke 1:49)
  • Yeshua (Acts 2:27; 3:14)
  • YHVH’s prophets (Acts 3:21)
  • The saints (1 Pet 2:9; Rev 22:11)
  • The Torah (2 Pet 3:21) 

The people, times and items listed on this listed are holy because Elohim has designated them as such. Only Elohim has the power and authority to determine what is holy and what is not. Just because men and religious institutions designate or sanctify something as being holy or set apart to Elohim doesn’t mean that it is. The proclamations of men stating that something is holy may or may not agree with Elohim and his Word as to what is holy. If it doesn’t, then it is not holy regardless of the labels that men may put on it. Examples of this would be manmade holidays and times of worship, places and items. Men’s attempt to elevated something that is otherwise of the world, the flesh or the devil to a state of supposed holiness is nothing more than a ruse to fool people into thinking that something is what it is not. Usually behind these efforts on the part of men to attempt to delude the unwary and unsuspecting masses is the quest for money, power and fame. As Paul notes in 2 Corinthians 11:13–15, there are many religious deceivers who appropriate to themselves religious titles, but who, in reality, are tools of Satan, the arch-deceiver who transforms himself into an angel of light. The devil and his humans agents are masters at counterfeiting Elohim’s truth and taking that which is holy and profaning or polluting it, again usually for money, power and fame.

Here is a short list of things that the Bible doesn’t designate as holy, but some people do. 

  • The holy cross
  • Holy water
  • Mary, the holy mother of Yeshua
  • Sunday
  • Christian holidays 
  • The holy trinity
  • The holy sepulchre of Christ
  • Holy relics
  • The Vatican (i.e. the Holy See)
  • The Pope (i.e. the holy father)
  • Holy Week
  • Holy mass
  • Holy cities (e.g. Rome, Mecca, Medina)
  • The holy grail
  • Holy moly
  • Holy guacamole
  • Holy cow

And the list goes on of the things that humans have designated as holy but aren’t holy according to Elohim.

YHVH’s people must learn to make a difference between that which he designates as being kadash (holy) andthat which is profane (Lev 10:10; Ezek 44:23). In order to do this, one must know what YHVH defines as set-apart in his Written Word and then align their thinking and lifestyle with that. Again, what the Bible calls holy and what religious call holy may or may not be in agreement.

The act of consecrating someone (or something, e.g. Exod 30:26), as occurs in Leviticus 8:12, often involves the ritual of pouring olive oil on them to signify their being set-apart for a special work or service. This is called anointing (see Exod 28:41; 29:7; 1 Sam 16:12; 1 Kgs 1:34; Isa 61:1; 2 Cor 1:21). 

Yeshua’s title is Messiah (Heb. Mashiach) literally meaning, “one who is anointed, smeared or consecrated with (olive) oil.” The English word Christ derives from the Greek word Christos, which is the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew word mashhiach. In biblical thought, the Messiah would be One coming from heaven who would possess a super-anointing of the Spirit of Elohim (Isa 11:1–10; 42:1–21; 61:1–3; John 3:34) to accomplish the purposes of Elohim on earth.

Have you placed your trusting faith in Yeshua the Messiah, the Anointed One from heaven? He is the only one who can take away the shame, guilt and penalty of your sin, and the only one who defeated death and the grave and can lead you past the veil of death and into immortality.

 

Are Humans Created Equal?

Exodus 30:15, Rich…poor. 

This passage teaches the equality of all believers. In YHVH’s eyes, each redeemed Israelite saints are equal. To the Creator of all things and who owns everything, no one is worth more than a half-shekel, and no one is worth less than a half shekel. The rich aren’t better than the poor and vice versa. This is also the moral of Yeshua’s Parable of Lazurus and the Rich Man (Luke 16:19–21). Contrary to what many Christians have been taught, this parable isn’t a doctrinal statement about the state of the dead and the afterlife. To many people, including the rich Scribes and Pharisees of Yeshua’s day, material success denotes superiority and even divine favor. The Bible dispels this false notion. YHVH looks at the heart and character of a person and the righteous fruits of their lives, and not at the outward, physical trappings—the proverbial cover of the book. The Scriptures address this issue in several places:

Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment. (John 7:24)

A good tree cannot bring forth evil fruit, neither can a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.

Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. (Matt 7:19–20)

But YHVH said unto Samuel, Look not on his countenance, or on the height of his stature; because I have refused him: for YHVH seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but YHVH looketh on the heart. (1 Sam 16:7)

Now the Torah and the rest of the Scriptures teach that all the saints are equal. But what about the rest of humanity? Are all humans created equal?

There are many ways to look at this equality issue. But let’s see what the Bible teaches.

The Bible states in several places that all humans are created in the image of Elohim. This implies equality among all humans.

The Bible also states that all humans are sinners, that all deserve death and that none are righteous of themselves. This also implies equality.

The Bible states that Elohim so loved all the world that he sent his Son to die for all humanity. This implies equality among humans.

The Bible also state that Elohim loved us while we were still sinners. This implies equality among all humans.

Elohim desires all humans to be saved. This also implies equality among humans.

The Bible furthermore states that Elohim isn’t a respecter of persons. This implies equality among humans.

The Bible teaches that there is one Torah-law standard of righteousness for all people—Israelites and non-Israelites. This implies equality.

Moreover, the Bible states that Elohim will judge all humans by that law. All humans will come before his judgment seat. Thus all are equal before the law and before the Judge of the universe.

Conversely, there is no question that the Bible teaches that Elohim favors those who love and serve him. He favors them with a special love and enters into a personal relationship with them. He blesses then in a special way (salvation, healing, answered prayers, special protection, guidance, wisdom the Set-Apart Spirit, etc.) and eventually will reward them with eternal life, glorification and inclusion into his eternal kingdom as his adopted children. So in this sense, Elohim starts out loving and treating everyone equally, but those who choose to love and obey him he favors them and extends his grace to them. In this case, not everyone is treated equally. But this is not based on favoritism on YHVH’s part, but upon the choices that humans make with regard to his initial equal treatment of all. In the end, all humans will reap what they sow. If they obey Elohim they will be blessed with immortality. If they disobey him, with eternal death.

Even though all humans are created equal by Elohim and will stand equal before him, the Bible in no way promotes the idea of economic equality among humans as socialism advocates. But this is another discussion for another time.

 

Thank you for your comments and pushback!

I want to take this opportunity to thank  all  who have commented on this forum in the last few days, whether they have agreed or disagreed with me, regarding the comments I made on several news articles I recently posted on this blog.

It is critically important that we as Bible believers address the issues pertaining to the current events (e.g. immigration, border walls, abortion, morality) happening in our society, and do so from a logical and reason-based biblical perspective.

On many of these issues, I have waited for weeks or even months to make public comment, while, at the same time, seeking the Father’s heart based on his Written Word, the Bible, as to what my response should be.

When I have finally sensed a release in my spirit to post my views, at the same time, I expected and welcomed civil and respectful pushback from my readers. This is the proverbial iron sharpening iron process about which the book of Proverbs speaks. This is not only constructive but appreciated, and, hopefully, will serve to bring us all more in line with biblical truth, thus helping to unify us in the face of opposition from an ungodly, neo-Baalistic world.

It’s imperative that the saints refine their understandings of and responses to the current issues facing our society in light of biblical truth. This is how we will be salt and light to the ungodly world. This can be accomplished by giving those around us a more biblical perspective on these current issues as we point them to the eternal values of divinely revealed biblical truth, as opposed to the society’s general approach of blowing with the winds of situational ethics or moral relativism where the ends justify the means and immutable truth is nowhere to be found, and is even considered a passé concept and not even open for discussion.

As followers of Yeshua and his word, we must discuss these issues, and, behind the scenes out of the public view, we must work out what our responses will be to society’s problems, and determine how to bring the light of biblical truth to bear on the problems facing us. This is one way the gospel is preached and the kingdom of Elohim is expanded.


 

The Importance of Using the Biblical Names of Elohim

Exodus 3:14–15, I AM THAT I AM. The name YHVH is Elohim’s memorial name forever. It reflects that fact that he is; that he is undefinable in human terms, and that he has always existed. This is the name by which he is to be remembered (not forgotten as is the case with the ineffable name concept of the rabbinic Jews whereby the names of deity are forbidden to be used).

The Scriptures clearly teach us that YHVH wants his people to use his Hebrew names and titles (e.g. YHVH, Yah, El, Elohim, Adonai and Yeshua). If not, than why is “YHVH,” the personal name of the biblical deity, found in the Tanakh (or Old Testament) almost 7000 times?

Despite the proliferation of the name YHVH in the Bible, men are not to use his name carelessly as the third commandments teaches us (Exod 20:7).

The problem is that YHVH’s people have forgotten YHVH’s Hebrew names and worshipped pagan gods instead (Ps 44:20; Jer 23:27). Interesting, it’s a fact that most of our common English substitutes for the Hebrew names of Elohim derive from the names of pagan deities (e.g. God, Lord, Holy, Christ, Jesus). At the same time, the Scriptures prophesy that YHVH’s name will be restored and used again (Jer 23:6; 31:23; Ezek 39:7).

Interestingly, Satan’s name has never been changed down through the millennia from one language to another. The names of significant Hebrew biblical personalities along with Greek and Roman notable historical figures remain essentially unchanged to our day. However, the Hebrew names of Elohim and his Messiah not only have been changed, but often masked under the names of pre-exisiting pagan deities. Doesn’t this sound like a Continue reading


 

Building a Foundation Over a Black Hole…

I received this email today, and decided to share it with you. The writer succinctly expresses one of the main purposes of our ministry.

I also want to say thank you for the opportunity you give others to ask you questions and for all the information you provide!!! In the very beginning when I started to see that scriptures say something else than we were being taught I lost the “foundation” and underneath me was a big black hole. It was a very difficult time. While searching for the truth I found your video on YouTube on the book of romans and ever since I have gotten so much useful and valuable information from Hoshana Rabbah and it has helped me to slowly build up a new ground under my feet – this time a stable one. I just wanted you to know what a huge blessing it is and I thank our Father for it! — From KR


 

Mexican Riviera Cruise 2016—Natan & Sandi Lawrence

Relish the wonders of YHVH Elohim’s creation as you see humpback whales, underwater video of tropical fish, exotic marine and exotic wildlife, the paradise of a white sand beaches, stunning sunsets, live Mexican music, a visit to a gorgeous cathedral, a tour of the Queen Mary cruise ship and more. Enjoy!


 

Do you want Natan to talk to your group via Skype?

If anyone has a home  fellowship or a Bible study group that meets on Shabbat and you would like me to talk to your group via Skype, let me know. All you need is a computer with a camera in it and a Skype account, which you can download for free. After that, get your Skype name/password and you’re ready to go.

Email may me the suggested time of our meeting and I will confirm if that works with my schedule or not. If so, we’ll arrange a predesignated time to make the Skype connection from my computer to yours. Give me your Skype name/password and I’ll call you at the prearranged time. That’s all there is to it. It’s totally free to use Skype!

I would be  happy to talk with your group on any Biblical subject, answer any biblical questions anyone may have, or just to speak an encouraging, prophetic word over your group, or to pray over people.

You can contact me by email at hoshanarabbah@earthlink.net.