YHVH Is Raising Up John the Baptist–Type Preachers to Prepare the Way for Yeshua

John was no reed shaking in the wind—and neither are those who are now coming in that spirit to prepare the ways for Yeshua the Messiah’s second coming!

The Gospels contain many curious, arcane and cryptic statements by Yeshua that invite the reader to ponder and reflect on in order to fully understand and appreciate them. Matthew 11:7–12 is one such statement.

As they departed, Yeshua began to say to the multitudes concerning John: “What did you go out into the wilderness to see? A reed shaken by the wind? But what did you go out to see? A man clothed in soft garments? Indeed, those who wear soft clothing are in kings’ houses. But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I say to you, and more than a prophet. For this is he of whom it is written: ‘BEHOLD, I SEND MY MESSENGER BEFORE YOUR FACE, WHO WILL PREPARE YOUR WAY BEFORE YOU.’  “Assuredly, I say to you, among those born of women there has not risen one greater than John the Baptist; but he who is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he. And from the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of heaven suffers violence, and the violent take it by force.

This statement of Yeshua is a very telling commentary how he viewed the mainstream religious leaders of his day. This was juxtaposed against his view of John the Baptist, who, though he was of priestly lineage, left the existing religious establishment and went into the wilderness to prepare the way for the coming Messiah. 

In his Matthew chapter eleven statement, Yeshua also predicts that a whole new genre of preachers would arise who, unlike the typical soft-spoken preachers of mainstream religion, would be violent and forceful in their demeanor and approach. Violent in the sense of confronting the religious establishment and the lukewarmness and sin of the people as he forcefully advanced the agendas of the kingdom of heaven against the opposing forces of a reluctant and recalcitrant spiritual environment.

With regard to John, who was a spiritual pioneer and pacesetter for this new breed of preacher, and who would enter the placid and staid religious waters of his day like a hurricane, let us consider the implications of this as well as Yeshua’s  view of John. John’s background is part of the context of this iconoclastic individual, which we will now view under a magnifying lens. 

To start with, John’s father, Zachariah, was of such a priestly status that he was allowed to minister in the inner portions of the temple itself. Yet John left this system to fulfil a ministry mission that was even greater than that of his father. Although John likely did not realize it at the time—for he was simply following the leading of the Spirit—he, by Yeshua’s own declaration, was to become the greatest prophet of all time up until then. To fulfil that divine mission, John had to exit the existing religious system and its status quo into which he was born, and execute that mission from outside of that system. Why? Because the Jewish religious system of the day would not, never did, and still does not recognize Yeshua as the Messiah. In fact, they viewed him as a threat to their religious tradition not to mention their secure positions of power and wealth, and on numerous occasion, they even tried to murder him. Eventually, they finally succeeded. 

YHVH called and raised up John, who was a special vessel, to stir the pot of the religious system of his day in hopes of waking up his few saints who were trapped in that system. It was John’s divine mission to put out a forceful call to those who had ears to hear to exit the Babylonian system of that day in preparation to meet Yeshua the Messiah. (YHVH is doing similar work in our day through similar type people as per the prophecy of Malachi chapter four.)

It was against this backdrop of constant religious antagonism and persecution that John executed his mission to prepare the way for Yeshua the Messiah, which involved clashing with the rich, powerful religious leaders of his day, who were concurrently in league with both the political and economic forces in control of that geographical region. The Truth and light of Messiah was literally confronting the satanic darkness of man’s religious, economic and political agendas. To use a jungle warfare term, John was the point man in this cosmic conflict, thus he took the incoming fire. To be sure, this was no place for a spiritual neophyte or weak-kneed, limp-wristed pansy in the pulpit. This was a struggle to the death—a literal clash with demonic god-like Titans. Therefore, YHVH raised up a man with a powerful background for a tough assignment. John was immersed in the Spirit while still in the womb, and Scripture deems his parents to be spiritually faultless. His father was of high repute as a Levitical priest, plus John was the cousin of Yeshua the Messiah himself. This was no average family even in human terms. No. John was no spiritual lightweight in the boxing ring of religion. Out of the fiery forge and crucible of his familial background come a mighty sword of a man who YHVH raised up to lay a spiritual ax to the root of the religious tree of his day and to the man-made system that was leading people astray and making of none-effect the Word of Elohim by their traditions. John was no pansy, no weak reed shaking in the wind, no well coiffed, tailored suit wearing pastor in the pulpit speaking man-pleasing, flattering and ear-tickling words to pew warmers religious addicts sitting passively and comfortably in padded benches in neat little rows beneath stained glass windows getting their weakly religious fixes. No! YHVH called and commissioned John, who was a rugged man for a rugged job to prepare the way for the Messiah, who himself would carry this battle against the religious system to an unprecedented level in an effort to call out YHVH’s true followers, who would worship Elohim in Spirit and in Truth instead of merely playing religious games.

This now brings us to Yeshua’s cryptic, slightly arcane and even a bit sarcastically-tinged statement about John and those who followed him about a reed shaking in the wind.

What is a reed shaking in the wind anyway? It is a weak blade of grass that moves with the slightest breeze. In human terms, it is someone who puts their finger to the wind to determine its direction and then bends accordingly. Such a person follows the popular currents of thought and the prevailing and popular mores or zeitgeist (or spirit of the age) of the time and accommodates himself and his message accordingly to curry the favor and popularity of the masses. These are the kind of leaders we see in the mainstream Christian church system of our day. They are often well coiffed, well-dressed and wear soft clothing as part of their marketing strategy, and speak soft words so as not to offend “the giving units”. Few, however, preach repentance. Fewer yet preach the gold standard of biblical righteousness, which is YHVH’s Torah-Truth of which Yeshua the Messiah was the living, walking breathing personification and our example to follow.

Yes, John came to lay the ax to the status quo of a religious system of his day that was keeping people in a state of being spiritually obese, comfortable, happy, paying their dues, non-questioningly and spiritually lukewarm.

Yes, John was popular. Many if not most of the inhabitants of Judea made the long, hot and arduous trek down from the Judean mountains to the lowest spot on earth (an apt geographical representation of the current state of the  religious system of that day…and ours) into the Jordan River Valley near the Dead Sea (another apt geographical description of the religious system of John’s day…and our day as well) to hear this goat-skinned clad, locust and honey-eating and wild-eyed preacher man. When they arrived, did he tickle their ears with gentle happy, happy-talk religious platitudes? Did he tell them that “Come to Jesus because he has a wonder plan for your life?” Or, “Come to Jesus and he’ll help improve your self esteem.” Or, “Say a prayer, receive forgiveness and go to church and pay your tithes, and now that you’re once saved always saved, just go and stand on the street corner, while waiting for the rapture bus to take you to heaven before all the you-know-what hits the proverbial fan.” Or “Come to Jesus and if you buy my how-to books and videos, then I’ll show you how he’ll make you healthy and wealthy here and now on demand.” No! This was not even close to John’s message. Rather it was…

[W]hile Annas and Caiaphas were high priests, the word of Elohim came to John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. And he went into all the region around the Jordan, preaching a baptism of repentance for the remission of sins, as it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet, saying: “THE VOICE OF ONE CRYING IN THE WILDERNESS: ‘PREPARE THE WAY OF THE LORD; MAKE HIS PATHS STRAIGHT. EVERY VALLEY SHALL BE FILLED AND EVERY MOUNTAIN AND HILL BROUGHT LOW; THE CROOKED PLACES SHALL BE MADE STRAIGHT AND THE ROUGH WAYS SMOOTH; AND ALL FLESH SHALL SEE THE SALVATION OF ELOHIM.’ “Then he said to the multitudes that came out to be baptized by him, “Brood of vipers! Who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Therefore bear fruits worthy of repentance, and do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I say to you that Elohim is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones. And even now the ax is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore every tree which does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.” (Luke 3:2–9) 

In the last days, prior to Yeshua’s second coming, if we correctly understand the end time prophetic implications of the Book of Malachi chapters three and four, YHVH will raise up John the Baptist–type preachers, who will be coming in the spirit of Elijah, and who will be preaching a hard and unpopular message. They will be warning YHVH’s people to repent of sin, and return to the ancient spiritual paths as taught by the biblical fathers of the Christian faith by getting back to YHVH’s Torah-Truth. This will be the unpopular and disturbing message of, to put it in modern vernacular, “to turn or burn” (see Mal 4:1, 3 and 6b). May those who have ears to hear, and who are children of the light, hear and understand the times and seasons in which we are living (1 Thess 5:1–10).


John the Baptist-Type Preachers Are Preparing the Bride

As prophesied by Isaiah and Malachi the prophets, YHVH is currently raising up John the Baptist-style preachers to prepare the way for Yeshua’s (Jesus’) second coming. They are calling Christians out of the spiritual Babylon of churchianity, which is a mixture of truth and error, good and evil, and to repentance and back to their Torah-based, biblical roots.

These preachers are NOT pansies in the pulpits like the majority of Christian pastors, but are rough-hewn, plain spoken and fearless servant of YHVH Elohim, who are laying the spiritual ax to the tree of the anemic, lukewarm, idol-worshipping, man-pleasing religious system called modern Christianity. Can you handle this, or are you content to play church and remain in your spiritual state of lukewarm complacency?

Watch this video, be challenged to grow up spiritually, so you will be the chaste and righteous bride for which Yeshua the Messiah is coming back to marry.

The Bible is clear: not all Christians will be the bride of Yeshua! The choice is yours.


Are YOU part of the end-times Elijah Generation preparing the way for the Messiah?

Isaiah 40:1–26,

Isaiah the prophet ministered in Judah for about 40 years from 740 to 697 B.C., approximately 100 years before the southern kingdom of Judah fell to the Babylonians in 586 B.C. Judah’s captivity in Babylon would last for 70 years. The Book of Isaiah contains more messianic prophecies than any other book in the Tankah, and many of those prophecies specifically relate to the redemption through the Messiah of the two houses of Israel.

In the Isaiah 40 prophecy, according to rabbinic understanding, Isaiah is prophesying (in verses 3–5) concerning Israel’s deliverance from exile seventy years after her captivity (The Soncino Pentateuch, p. 777). This is not an incorrect interpretation of this prophecy, although it is not necessarily the only one, for we know, as with many of the Scripture’s ancient prophecies, there are sometimes multiple fulfillments. Because the old adage that says, “history repeats itself,” is true, and because human behavior remains unchanged from time immemorial, though the players and costumes change on history’s theatrical stage, many biblical prophetic themes have cyclical patterns. In the present case, where Isaiah speaks in verse three of “a voice crying in the wilderness,” (Isa 40:3) we know that the gospel writers ­applied this to John the Baptist preparing the way for the coming of Yeshua the Messiah (Matt 3:3; Mark 1:3; Luke 3:4; John 1:23). What in this prophecy did the gospel authors see as applying to Yeshua the Redeemer and Savior of Israel? First, Yeshua himself declared John the Baptist to be that messenger who would prepare the way for the Messiah that Malachi prophesied about (cp. Matt 11:10 and Mal 3:1). The messenger of Malachi 3 and 4 seems to be the same individual mentioned in Isaiah 40. Furthermore, Isaiah 40:3 speaks of preparing the way for YHVH and making a highway in the desert for Elohim. Clearly, the gospel writers recognized that Yeshua was YHVH Elohim based not only on his claims to deity, but based on the fact that Isaiah states that the Messiah, the Redeemer of Israel, would not only be YHVH Elohim, but that he was the arm of YHVH (Isa 53:1) making him a manifestation, if you will, of YHVH. 

Not only did the gospel authors see John the Baptist in the Isaiah 40 prophecy (Isa 40:3–4 cp. Matt 3:3; Mark 1:3; Luke 3:4–5; John 1:23) because they recognized who Yeshua was and could see that John had fulfilled the Isaiah 40 passage, but they also likened John to Elijah the prophet who had come to prepare the way for Yeshua (Mal 3:1 cp. Matt 11:10; Mark 1:3). Additionally, we know that an end-time prophet, or prophets, will come to prepare the way for the second coming of Yeshua. This is clear from Malachi 4:5–6 where we find the prophecy concerning Elijah the prophet coming before the great and terrible day of Elohim’s wrath, which is understood to occur just prior to the coming of Messiah. This Elijah-type person, or person(s), coming in the spirit of Elijah (like John the Baptist, see Matt 17:11–13), will effect a great spiritual revival in helping to turn the hearts of the children to their spiritual fathers (Mal 4:6), and in so doing will be preparing Israel to meet their Messiah. So we can link the Isaiah 40 passage with John the Baptist and Elijah the Prophet and with an end-time generation of righteous individuals who will be fulfilling this prophecy; that is, they will be preparing the way of YHVH, exalting the valleys, lowering the mountains, and making the crooked paths straight. What do these poetic expressions mean in concrete spiritual terms?

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John the Baptist: Chop down that tree of religious pride!

And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: every tree therefore which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. (John the Baptist in Luke 3:9)

Luke 3:7–17, John takes an ax to the tree of religious pride. What’s really going on in this exchange between John the Baptist and the religious folks of his day? Let’s step back and look at the bigger picture.

YHVH sent John to prepare the way for Yeshua the Messiah. As if he had a giant ax in his hand (Luke 3:9), his preaching was aimed at chopping down the tree of human pride, misdirected religious zeal and lack of love for one’s neighbor of which these Torah-obedient Judeans were guilty. John spared no words in forcefully commanding them to repent of their sins. 

In our day as we await the second coming of our beloved Messiah, are many of us not guilt of the same sins as those who went out to hear John the Baptist’s preaching? How many of us have unknowingly exchanged our love for Yeshua and his gospel message, and a love for our neighbor for a self-righteous and legalistic Torah-obedience along with a devotion for rituals and traditions of men? How many of us are proud of our obedience, while sneering at those who aren’t walking in the light of Truth that we have? How many of us would rather argue, split and divide over doctrine rather than reach out to a lost and hurting persons regardless of his or her beliefs. What does John have to say about this? Let’s hold up the same mirror of the Word and heart of Elohim into which John forced the people of his day to look to see what we really look like. Then let’s ask ourself the following question: is this the bride that Yeshua the Messiah really wants to come back for?

The multitudes of Jews had to make the long, hot and arduous journey through the Judean mountains down to the Jordan River, which was the lowest spot on earth, to hear John the Baptist, who was the latest fad preacher to come on the scene. However, when they arrived at his lonely wilderness pulpit, instead of stroking their egos by complimenting them for their religious zeal, he excoriates them and calls them a brood of vipers. John confronts them by saying that if they don’t repent, the fires of YHVH’s judgment will consume them (John 3:7–9). John’s preaching pierces their hearts, and lays them low spiritually. In a proper response, they ask him what he expects them to do (John 3:10). John then preaches a message of social justice involving giving to the poor, being fair and honest in one’s business dealings, and if one is a government worker, then treat the citizens one serves with respect (John 3:11–14).

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The radical message of John is still radical

Luke 3:7–17, Then he said to the multitudes. What’s really going on in this exchange between John the Baptist and the religious folks of his day? Let’s step back and look at the bigger picture.

The multitudes of Jews had to make the long, hot and arduous journey through the Judean mountains down to the Jordan River, which was the lowest spot on earth, to hear John the Baptist, who was the latest fad preacher to come on the scene. However, when they arrived at his lonely wilderness pulpit, instead of stroking their egos by complimenting them for their religious zeal, he excoriates them and calls them a brood of vipers. John confronts them by saying that if they don’t repent, the fires of YHVH’s judgment will consume them (John 3:7–9). John’s preaching pierces their hearts, and lays them low spiritually. In a proper response, they ask him what he expects them to do (John 3:10). John then preaches a message of social justice involving giving to the poor, being fair and honest in one’s business dealings, and if one is a government worker, then treat the citizens one serves with respect (John 3:11–14).

Interestingly, he doesn’t instruct these religious Jews in what many consider to be the Continue reading


Do you see and believe, or doubt and mock?

Luke 1:41–45, When Elizabeth heard. During this greeting, Elizabeth had a spiritual encounter that helped her to connect the dots to understand what was going on in YHVH’s divine plan for John and Yeshua.

By now, it is likely that Zechariah would have revealed to her the angel’s previous message (vv. 13–17). Now when the babe leapt in her womb at Mary’s arrival, and she was filled with the Spirit (a visceral experience), and then prophetic words came out of her mouth, this was evidence and confirmation to both Elizabeth and Zechariah of YHVH’s plans for their son.

YHVH has supernatural ways of conveying his divine will to his people, so that only people of faith will see and understand his ways and his plans for their lives. All others, unless confronted with visible signs and empirical evidence (as verified by logic, or observable evidence or experience), will dismiss these spiritual revelations and circumstances as delusion.

Even when signs and miracles occur, it is unlikely that the hard hearted unbeliever will even then believe YHVH. This was often the case with the children of Israel and many who saw the miracles surrounding Yeshua’s ministry.

In the face of supernatural occurrences, sadly and to their own detriment, the unbelievers usually resort to mockery and to scoffing ridicule. Those, on the other hand, who walk by faith and hear the voice of YHVH and know his ways of communication and will remain undeterred, will have their faith strengthened, and will follow Elohim wherever he leads them.


The “Gospel of the Kingdom” Vs. the “Gospel of the Person of Jesus”

Are mainstream Christian Bible teachers and pastors really teaching what Yeshua and his apostles preached?

Recently, I received a letter where the writer asked the following question: Is the  gospel of the kingdom is different than that of the death, burial and resurrection or are the two connected?
Here is my answer to this excellent question:
The phrase, “gospel of the kingdom” is found in Matt 4:23; 9:35; 24:14; Mark 1:14, 15. We also find that the Gospels record that John the Baptist preached the message of repent for the kingdom of heaven is at hand (Matt 3:2). The same words were used to describe the message that Yeshua preached (Matt 4:17). At the same time, both Yeshua and John preached the gospel of the kingdom of heaven as well (Mark 1:14, 14 and Matt 4:23; 9:35). Yeshua’s disciples were to preach the same message to the world (Matt 24:14). Therefore, it is logical to conclude that the message the gospel of the death, burial and resurrection as the apostles taught and the gospel of the kingdom are one in the same. Succinctly, they taught that one cannot enter the the kingdom of Elohim without placing one’s faith in Messiah. Therefore, these two messages are linked, indivisible and two sides of the same coin.
The problem is that the message of the kingdom is foreign to many Christians. They know about Yeshua, but little is taught or known about the kingdom of Elohim, even though this was a core component of the gospel message. This is because, in the minds of most Christians, when you die, your immortal soul “goes back to heaven” period. So what is the relevance of talking about the kingdom of Elohim in this paradigm? Little if any. Yet the kingdom of heaven/Elohim was one of the subjects that Yeshua talked about the most—certainly more than heaven or hell!
Let’s let the data speak for itself. Years ago I cataloged by topic the subjects Yeshua talked about the most in the synoptic Gospels (Matt, Mark and Luke). This is what I discovered:

1 Yeshua Speaking About Himself (316 references)

2 Yeshua Speaking About His Father (184 references)

3 Yeshua Interacting With the Disobedient/Hypocritical Religionists (177 references)

4 Yeshua Speaking About the Kingdom of Elohim (144 references)

5 Yeshua  Talking About the Torah (96 references)

So where does the gospel message that the mainstream church preaches fit into this paradigmatic scenario? Is it really preaching what Yeshua himself preached? Well, from the data above, it seems that that they’ve got the first subject covered quite well, thank you very much. But anyone with any church experience will see that that they’ve missed it big time on subjects two through five! This, in my opinion, is why the gospel of the kingdom, not to mention the subject Torah are such foreign concepts to the average Christian.
After that, Yeshua talked most about these topics:

6 Yeshua Speaking About the  Path of Righteousness (71 references)

7 Yeshua Teaching on Judgment (58 references)

8 Yeshua Speaking About His Death, Burial and Resurrection (54 references)

9 Yeshua Teaching About Obedience/Faithfulness (45 references)

10 Yeshua Speaking About Spiritual Rewards (43 references)

Sadly, the church doesn’t have much to say about most of these subjects as well.
By comparison, some of the things about which many churches teach the most frequently are are near the bottom of the list of what Yeshua preached about if even on the list at all. These include:
  • Money: 3 references (although “the perils of materialism” had 19 references)
  • Blessings: 4 references
  • Miracles and signs: 25 references
  • Physical needs: 2 references
  • Love (brotherly): 10 references
  • Love (of Elohim for man and vice versa): 19 references
The following subjects are not on the list of topics Yeshua discussed despite the fact that they are popular subjects within Christian circles (go to any Christian book store and see what the subjects of the best selling Christian books are!).
  • Financial security
  • Pleasure and entertainment
  • Retirement
  • Sexual pleasure and fulfillment
  • Self esteem
  • Psychology
So when John and Yeshua preached the gospel of the kingdom, and when Yeshua commanded his disciples to do the same (Matt 10:7), while at the same time preaching the basic message of the good news of Yeshua the Messiah (Matt 28:18–20; Mark 16:16; etc.), this is what they did, even though the church, by in large, doesn’t preach half of the gospel message, that is, the kingdom of Elohim and repentance.
Suffice it to say, briefly, the Scriptures teach us that the kingdom of heaven/Elohim was brought to this earth by Yeshua, is currently in force among his people, and will be made universal when Yeshua returns to this earth as King of kings and establishes his millennial kingdom here. Belief and faith in Yeshua along with repentance of sin (violation of the Torah) and obedience to his Torah commands will be requisite to being a part of that kingdom.