Luke 14—Insights into Yeshua’s Ministry Modus Operandi

Luke 14:1, House of one of the rulers. Yeshua was invited to a Sabbath meal at the home of a Pharisee who was a ruler (likely a wealthy member of the Sanhedrin). Had Yeshua been a typical man, he would have engaged in the customary small talk of a polite and gracious dinner guest not wanting to offend his host. Yet Yeshua was not there to schmooze—to curry anyone’s favor in an effort to gain personal influence. As he required his own disciples to maintain a salty or spicy demeanor at all times (Matt 5:13; Luke 14:34–35), he was definitely up to the task to lead his disciples by example. The following discussion that Yeshua initiates is what some may consider to be a prime example of how to insult one’s host and the other guests. First Yeshua confronts a controversial issue head on by asking a question, and then by healing one of the other invited guests on the Sabbath, which was a Pharisaical taboo, though not contrary to the Scriptures (Luke 14:2–6). Next, Yeshua takes some of the guests to task who were prideful social climbers and religious status-seekers. He challenges them to humbles themselves and let Elohim exalt them in the eyes of men (Luke 14:7–14). Yeshua raises the discussion around the table to a higher level when he tells the Parable of the Great Supper (Luke 14:15–24). Doubtless, a few of the guests were made to feel awkward, since they likely resembled some of the characters in Yeshua’s story. There was no small talk of sports, the weather, one’s job or tidbits of gossip going on around the table at this dinner party. Yeshua was showing us how to be salt and light wherever we.g. even at the risk of offending one’s hosts, but all for the greater good of expanding the kingdom of Elohim in the lives of men. 

Luke 14:18–24, Make excuses. This passage is a continuation of Yeshua’s previous Continue reading

 

A Treasure Trove of Nuggets from Yeshua in Luke Chapter Nine

Luke 9:1–2, Gave them power. (See also Luke 10:19.) Spiritual power and authority over demons and sickness is manifested in no greater way than when exercised in conjunction with the preaching of the gospel. It is here on the ragged edge between the kingdoms of light and darkness that YHVH wishes to demonstrate his power most through his servants in an effort to draw outsiders into his spiritual kingdom. Healing from sickness and deliverance from demonic powers is a great enticement for those on the outside to become part of YHVH’s kingdom where they will experience freedom resulting in joy,  peace and hope.

Luke 9:28, Eight days. Eight is the biblical number of new beginnings and the symbol for infinity. When Yeshua comes back in power and glory to establish his kingdom universally on this earth of which the transfiguration was a prophetic foreshadow, it will be a new beginning lasting for eternity.

Luke 9:41, Faithless and perverse. Faithlessness and perversity go hand-in-hand with the ability to cast out demons and to heal the sick. To the degree that one is faithful to and Continue reading

 

How Did Yeshua Perfectly Fulfil the Passover?

Exodus 12:1–51, The Passover. 

How did Yeshua the Messiah perfectly fulfil all the types and shadows of the first Passover in Egypt?

According to the laws of statistical probability, what are the chances of an event happening and then fifteen hundred years later another event occurring bearing an uncanny resemblance to the first one? Now suppose that not only did fifteen hundred years separate the two events, but that they occurred in two different countries several hundred miles apart, which in the ancient world may as well have been halfway around the globe. Now suppose that the second event involved the death of a person, and that the events leading up to their death including the manner and timing of that death was beyond the control of the individual dying so that in no way could the person dying stage his death to mirror the first event. In fact, those killing the individual possessed no foreknowledge of the event that had occurred fifteen hundred years earlier. What are the chances of this occurring?

This is not a fictional story! Truth is stranger than fiction. The details of these two events are chronicled in the pages of the Bible. The first event occurred in ancient Egypt and is recorded in the Book of Exodus chapters eleven and twelve. There we find recorded the details of the Continue reading

 

Notes on Luke Chapter One

Luke 1:6, Righteous…blameless. Zachariah and Elizabeth (Heb. Elishevah) were totally Torah-observant to the point of being blameless in YHVH’s eyes. This confirms Moses’ words in Deut 30:11–14 that Torah-obedience isn’t outside the realm of human possibility as some in the church erroneously teach today.

Luke 1:10, Praying … incense. Incense is not only a biblical metaphor for prayer (Ps 141:2; Rev 5:8; 8:3–5), but in the temple, was used while praying. 

Luke 1:19, Gabriel. Beside this reference, Gabriel is only elsewhere mentioned in Daniel (Dan 8:16; 9:21). Gabriel means “strong, mighty man or warrior of El.” Michael is the only other archangel mentioned in the Scriptures (Dan 10:13, 21 12:21; Jude 9; 12:27).

Luke 1:20, Because you did not believe. There is a lesson for us in YHVH muting the mouth of Zachariah for a season. If the spiritual leaders are unable to believe what YHVH has told them already, how can he give them more revelation—more things to speak and teach about? If we’re not hearing new revelation from Elohim, maybe it’s because we haven’t believed what he has already told us.

Luke 1:28, Blessed are you among women. These words of Gabriel were repeated verbatim in Elizabeth’s prophecy concerning Yeshua (verse 42). Doubtless this was a supernatural confirmation to Mary concerning her role as the mother of the Messiah, for how could her cousin have known what the angel had spoken to her previously?

Luke 1:36, Elizabeth your relative. While Mary was of the royal lineage of David through her father, she also was a relative on her mother’s side of Elizabeth, the priest-wife of Zacharias, who was a daughter of Aaron (Luke 1:5).  In Matthew one and Luke three two different genealogies are given for Yeshua, both of which  go back to King David. One is presumed to be that of Joseph and the other is that of Mary. In this way, Yeshua was a direct descendant of David legally through Joseph, his step-father, and genetically through Mary, his mother. Does this mean that Mary was of priestly as well as Davidic lineage. Yes, but not patrilineally, only matrilineally. In the Scriptures, tribal lineage was determined through the father’s family line and not the mother’s. 

In the case of Mary and Elizabeth, they would have shared common grandparents making them cousins. Their grandfather would have been a priest. In the case of Elizabeth, her father—the son of her priestly grandfather—would have carried the priestly line making her a daughter of Aaron (Luke 1:5). In the case of Mary, her mother would have been her priestly grandfather’s daughter meaning that she was of priestly lineage but not her children, unless she married a priest.

It seems that Yeshua would have carried some priestly blood in his genes, but he was not legally a priest through patrilineal descent. To be sure, Yeshua was a priest, but not one of Aaronic lineage but after the order of Melchizedek, which was the priesthood of the firstborn son passed on generationally. Yeshua was the first born son of Elohim eternally, which is why he is presently at the right hand of Elohim acting as our Great High Priest (Heb 1:3 cp. 3:1; 4:4; 8:1).

Therefore, Mary laid claim to a Davidic as well as a priestly lineage (Jesus the Messiah, by Edersheim, p. 105). This means that Yeshua was not only of direct Davidic lineage but was of priestly lineage as well.

Has also conceived…in her old age. Was Mary an older, barren woman like Elizabeth? If not, why the word also?

 

Genesis 49 Prophesies Yeshua the Messiah

I post this article on my blog almost every year at this time, since it’s such a cool prophecy concerning Yeshua the Messiah. I hope you agree after you’ve read it. —Natan

Genesis 49:10–12, The scepter. Below is my commentary on these verses.

The scepter shall not depart from Judah, nor a lawgiver from between his feet, until Shiloh come; and unto him shall the gathering of the people be. Binding his foal unto the vine, and his ass’s colt unto the choice vine; he washed his garments in wine, and his clothes in the blood of grapes: His eyes shall be red with wine, and his teeth white with milk.

This passage is a clear reference to the Messiah and the Messianic Age (the time when Messiah would come to rule the earth) and has been so recognized by the Jewish sages from time immemorial (The ArtScroll Stone Edition Chumash, p. 279). “The general consensus (with few exceptions) of Rabbinic interpretation is that this phrase [Until Shiloh arrives] refers to the coming of the Messiah …” (The ArtScroll Bereishis/Genesis Torah commentary, p. 2152). In fact, Onkelos [a second-century scholar who translated the Torah (Pentateuch) into Aramaic] in his Aramaic version of the Torah translates this version as follows: “Until the Messiah comes, to whom the kingdom belongs” (ibid.). Rashi (b. 1040 and recognized by Jewish scholars as probably the preeminent Torah commentator Continue reading

 

Judah—A Prophetic Antetype of the Lion of the Tribe of Judah

Genesis 44:18, And Judah came near. What is the spiritual prophetic significance of Judah initiating the approaching of Joseph? Remember who the descendants of Judah became? The Jews became the Southern Kingdom of Israel, and Joseph’s sons Ephraim and Manasseh became the Northern Kingdom or house of Israel and eventually the “lost sheep of the house of Israel.”

Prophetically-speaking, who is the most notable descendant of the tribe of Judah? (See Rev 5:5.). Did Yeshua, the Lion of the Tribe of Judah, seek you or did you seek him when you were lost? (See Rom 5:8; Luke 19:10; Matt 18:11.) 

Why is Judah coming near to Joseph (who he does not yet recognize as Joseph)? What were Judah’s heart motives in coming near? (See Gen 44:18–34). Was Yeshua motivated to come near to us out of love for his Father, as well? (See John 8:28; chapter 17.)

Did Judah offer to lay down his life as a ransom for his youngest brother? (See Gen 44:33.) Who does this point to prophetically? Who else freely gave his life as a substitute for his brothers? (See Mark 10:45; Matt 20:28; 1 Tim 2:5; John 10:11, 15, 17–18; 1 John 3:16.)

  • Please note that Judah is an antetype (prophetic forerunner) of Yeshua the Messiah.
  • Both sought to please their fathers.
  • Both acted out of unconditional love for their younger brother.
  • Both stood to gain nothing personally, but rather stood to lose much, if their plan did not work. Judah, a prince, would become a slave in Egypt; Yeshua would become a slave to death and hell, if he sinned.

It is interesting to note that classic Christian commentator Matthew Henry draws a similar analogy between Judah’s actions here and Messiah Yeshua, as well (A Commentary On the Whole Bible, vol. 1, p. 243, by Matthew Henry).

Judah’s love for his father and Benjamin and his willingness to lay down his life as a ransom to become a slave in Egypt to Joseph is analogous to Messiah Yeshua’s love for the lost sheep of the house of Israel to whom he came to reach out and to ransom in order to bring them back into the fold of Israel (John 10:15–16; Matt 10:6; 15:24).

What was the burden on the Apostle Paul’s heart in this regard? (Read Romans 9:1–5.) Who does Paul later go on to talk about and extend his heart burden to in Romans 9:23–24? Remember that the term Gentile simply means “ethnic or people groups, or the people of the nations.” Who is Paul specifically referring to here? Paul had the same intense love for his Jewish brethren as he did for those “people groups of the nations” whom he equates with the lost, adulterous and apostate house of Israel (the Northern Kingdom of the ten tribes of Israel). Compare Romans 9:25 with Hosea 2:23 (the former being a direct quote from the latter) in context with the whole book of Hosea, which is addressed particularly to the apostate house of Israel and who had become “lost” among the nations, of which Joseph in Egypt is a prophetic antetype.

 

Chanukah or Christmas, Neither or Both?

Happy Chanukah/Hanukkah! Tonight begins the first night of the Festival of Lights. Want to know more? Please read on…

John 10:22, The Feast of Dedication [or consecration]. This is a reference to the annual Chanukah (also spelled Hanukkah, and also known as the Festival of Lights) celebration lasting for eight days beginning in the 25th day of Jewish month Chislev (in the middle of our December). This minor Jewish feast was instituted by Judas Maccabaeus (164 BC) in memory of the cleansing of the Jerusalem temple from its desecration by Antiochus Epiphanes, the pagan Greco-Syrian king.

The word Chanukah derives from the Hebrew word KH-N-K meaning “to dedicate.”

While Chanukah isn’t a biblically commanded observance, it is interesting to note that Yeshua happened to be at the temple in Jerusalem at this time as John mentions in his Gospel (John 10:22). Are there any spiritual significances to this? Perhaps.

Chanukah falls in the same time frame as the modern Christian festival of Christmas, which has its roots in the pagan Roman festival of Saturnalia, which culminated on December 25. Saturnalia was a pre-Christian festival held from December 17 to 25 in honor of the sun god characterized by drunken revelries, sexual debauchery, hedonistic indulgences of all sort, and human sacrifices. Saturnalia was a festival of lights in an effort to defeat the forces of darkness at the darkest time of the year and to woo the sun as earth’s life-giver back again thus insuring that the earth wouldn’t become an uninhabitable dark and frozen wasteland.

In the fourth century, Christian leaders “redeemed” Saturnalia by attaching the birth of Jesus Continue reading