Torah Commentary – B’har (On Mount Sinai), B’chukotai – The Heart of the Matter – SCRIPTURES FOR May 20, 2017

Torah Commentary
B’har (On Mount Sinai), B’chukotai
Leviticus 25:1-26:2; 26:3-27:34
Jeremiah 32:6-27; 16:19-17:14
2Corinthians 7-13
 The Heart of the Matter
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For our culture, many of the instructions of Leviticus seem quite foreign to us. There is even a debate whether most of these Scriptures pertain only to the time when we have entered the Land. “Buying and selling of crops, allowing the land to rest on the seventh year and redeeming our poor relative from slavery”, you have to admit, are not things most of us spend our waking thoughts pondering today. When it comes to food storage many people consider storing food for the winter. Wrap your head around storing supplies for three years to take your family through the Jubilee. Due to the difference in culture, we can get lost in the relevance of these verses for our day and read through them way to fast. A quick glance may cause us to miss the heart of the Scriptures.
Torah is about relationship with HaShem, family and the people we are called to interact with on a daily basis. The mysteries and wonders of Torah are awesome, but if we miss the theme of relationship, we miss the heart of the matter. Torah is teaching us through practical day-to-day life instructions how to love our Creator and how to treat one another. This principle is brought out again in Leviticus 25:14-17. Here Scripture speaks of selling property to a neighbor while considering the amount of how many years remaining until the Jubilee and the return of said property.  On the surface we do not see the point of the instruction, because in our society when we sell an item to someone, we do not expect him or her to bring it back in seven years. All transactions are typically final.  What can we learn in this instruction? The heart of the instruction is in verse 17, which tells us not to take advantage of one another in our transactions.
Let us put some flesh on this principal. Back in the days when I sold real estate, I did not like to sell property to or for friends. Sadly, more often than not, it turned out to be a disaster. I found that no matter how hard I tried, the “friend” was much harder to work with than a stranger off the street. They usually wanted special favors and in the end could not believe why I did not turn my entire commission over to them and call the transaction a favor based on friendship. This was an example of taking advantage of a friendship, which is what Leviticus warns us against. (Click to Article)

Torah Commentary – Emor (Speak) – “Small Matters” – Day 15, Month 2, 5777; 11 May 2017

Torah Commentary
Emor (Speak)
Leviticus 21:1-24:23
Ezekiel 44:15-31
Matthew 5:38-42
Galatians 3:26-29

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“Small Matters”
The Book of Leviticus is devoted to the subject of what is clean and what is not clean. Simply put, we should desire to live our lives pursuing that which Yah calls clean and stay away from what He calls unclean. In doing so, it is not only so we can live a life of blessing and closeness to Him, but so we may also show forth His holy character to others.
In this Torah portion His name, YH VH, is used 81 times. We see a summary of instructions for His Feasts. We also find something I want to draw attention to. The word profane is used 12 times. We find Webster’s dictionary defines the word profane as “irreverence for that which is sacred.” Strong’s Concordance has many definitions, one of which is to “make common.” These definitions supply descriptions that may differ from what we would normally consider profane to mean.
Consider it this way. For most of us, trees in our living rooms and decorated eggs hidden in the yard are practices that have become distant memories. We would look back to those practices and call them unclean. Now we have the blessing of celebrating Feasts that have been called clean by our King. However, is it possible to observe the Feasts clearly taught in Scripture and make them unclean? Go back to the definition of Webster, “irreverence for that which is sacred.” His Feasts are sacred, if we do not reverence them in Light of Him, we can make them unclean in His sight. Read Amos 5:21“”I hate, I utterly loathe your festivals; I take no pleasure in your solemn assemblies.” The people were “doing” the Feasts, but in such a way that Yah not only said He hated them, but He no longer called them His.
How do we keep from making the same mistakes of our ancestors? Take a moment to reflect on your last Shabbat, Passover, Unleavened Bread, New Moon, the current counting of the Omer. Without looking at a sheet of paper or a calendar, what day is it on the counting? What was the Torah portion for last Shabbat? Do you recall its overall theme? Did you even bother to read it? Are you napping through Leviticus? Can you tell what phase the moon is in right now?
Do I need to go on? Consider your answers to the above questions. Answer truthfully. In the eyes of Yah, was your last Shabbat clean or unclean? Was your celebration of the last New Moon more “common” than sacred? How many days of counting the Omer have you missed?
In Luke 16 we read about faithfulness. Verse 10 says, “Someone who is trustworthy in a small matter is also trustworthy in large ones, and someone who is dishonest in a small matter is also dishonest in large ones. ” How are we doing in the “small matters” like counting the Omer? Is our reverence or lack of reverence in what many would call a small matter affecting the weightier matters? I can only answer for myself on this one. Today we are in the middle of the Counting of the Omer. Though we do not have a place in Jerusalem to take an offering to and perform our daily counting, Scripture still tells us to count. How we do so may be as simple as acknowledging a number or adding Scripture readings and prayer. Question is, “How important is the counting to us?” Is it something we are looking forward to every day or do we let a few days go by and realize we have forgotten? Are we allowing the counting to become common? (Click to Article)

 

Torah Commentary – Acharei Mot(After the Death), K’doshim(Holy Ones) – Searching For Life – Day 8, Month 2, 5777; 4 May 2017

Torah Commentary
Acharei Mot(After the Death), K’doshim(Holy Ones)
Leviticus 16:1-18:30; 19:1-20:27
Ezekiel 22:1-19
Romans 3:19-28; 9:30-10:13
1 Corinthians 5:1-13
2 Corinthians 2:1-11
Galatians 3:10-14
Hebrews 7:23-10:25
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Searching For Life
Life is an interesting word. The dictionary defines it as,”The condition that distinguishes animals and plants from inorganic matter, including the capacity for growth, reproduction, functional activity, and continual change preceding death.” According to this definition life is just going through motions which will allow someone to know if we are an animal, plant or just a rock. Simply put, if it moves, grows and reproduces, it has life, if not, it’s a rock. Another definition for life is, “The period between the birth and death of a living thing.”
As I consider these definitions in light of the words in Leviticus 18:5, which explains we will have life through obedience to Torah, the dictionary definitions appear to pale in comparison of how I feel our Creator desires us to have life. If we throw into the mix the words of Yeshua in John 10:10, “I have come that you may have life, life in its fullest measure,” the definitions really lose value.
What is the difference between the book definitions of life and what most of us desire as the Scriptural definition of life? I believe it comes down to one word, purpose. Consider the word purpose for a moment. Is it possible for us to have life, but never find purpose? We all know the answer is a resounding “yes”!
When we reflect on an example of life without purpose our minds may envision a homeless person on a street corner. He or she wakes up in the morning the same as the rest of us, breathes the same amount of air as we do and in truth goes through many of the same motions to sustain a level of life. Is simply sustaining life all that our Creator intended? Obviously, not! Would you say, when compared to the homeless person on the street corner, we have achieved the Scriptural definition of life in its fullest measure by reading the Torah each week, eating clean and observing the Feasts? I’m not sure I would.
Ask an honest question of yourself. Do you feel you are walking in the Scriptural definition of life? Now I am going to go where only the truly insane go. Comparing your life of Torah today with your life in a church in the past, do you feel you have more life now or just more knowledge? I wish I could get a show of hands here.
If my conversations with people through the years are any indication to the answer of the above question I would say most of us feel we have more knowledge than life. If you are the exception, please do not become offended. Maybe you have found the keys to abundant life and should be the one writing instead of me. For all the rest, please read on.
Leviticus 18 promises we will have life through observing His laws and rulings. Yeshua says we will have abundant life through Him. Is the key to life in joining these two verses together? If so, is there a verse which combines their meaning? Look at Psalm 40:7, “In the scroll of the book it is written about Me.” This verse is our key to the equation. It is all about Him. (Click to Article)

The Fall Feasts of 2017, Revelation 12 and the Rapture

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By Jesse Wanskasmith
March 15th, 2017

In the last issue of The Mountain, I wrote about ‘The Sign of Revelation 12 Occurring in the Skies Above Us.’ This article delves into what some have long understood to be the pre-tribulation Rapture in Revelation 12:5 and how the heavenly sign is just one sign of many that mark the Fall Feasts of 2017 as something extraordinary. Much of this information has been lost to the Church including the importance of the Fall Feasts and how Old Testament law relates to what God has planned for End-Times. Be courageous and read on!

Acts 2:19 (Interlinear) And I will shew wonders in heaven above, and signs in the earth beneath; blood, and fire, and vapour of smoke.

What is the Rapture?

The Rapture is a removal of True Righteous Believers from Earth by God to preserve these Christians from Satan’s wrath during the Great Tribulation (Rev 12:12). It is an unscheduled undisclosed event when Jesus comes half-way to Earth to meet his Church in the air.

1 Thes 4:15 We tell you this directly from the Lord: We who are still living when the Lord returns will not meet him ahead of those who have died. 16 For the Lord himself will come down from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the believers who have died will rise from their graves. 17 Then, together with them, we who are still alive and remain on the earth will be caught up in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. Then we will be with the Lord forever. 18 So encourage each other with these words.

We are told in 1st Corinthians that “in the blink of an eye” we will be transformed from our earthly bodies to our heavenly bodies and be brought up into Heaven.

1 Cor 15:50 What I am saying, dear brothers and sisters, is that our physical bodies cannot inherit the Kingdom of God. These dying bodies cannot inherit what will last forever. 51 But let me reveal to you a wonderful secret. We will not all die, but we will all be transformed! 52 It will happen in a moment, in the blink of an eye, when the last trumpet is blown. For when the trumpet sounds, those who have died will be raised to live forever. And we who are living will also be transformed. 53 For our dying bodies must be transformed into bodies that will never die; our mortal bodies must be transformed into immortal bodies.

Dr. Mike Svigel, an associate professor of Theological Studies at Dallas Theological Seminary, in a 2013 interview on My Digital Seminary, commented on the Revelation 12:5 “Snatched up” reference, “The word in Revelation 12:5 is the word for “rapture,” harpazo, and always means a sudden removal, a snatching. In contrast, for the ascension of Christ, the New Testament uses terms such as “to be lifted up,” epairo (Acts 1:9), “to ascend,” anabaino (John 20:17; Ephesians 4:8-10) and “to take up,” analambano (Mark 16:19; Luke 1:11). These are neutral terms meaning a removal from one place to another.

John 14:3 When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.
Does God plan to have his children live through the Tribulation? 

John 3:18 There is no judgment against anyone who believes in him. But anyone who does not believe in him has already been judged for not believing in God’s one and only Son.

This is hard question to address as it has many interpretations that often divide the Church. Some ministries such as Morning Star ministries are preparing for coming hard times, but are we truly being called to prepare for the judgements described in Revelation? Of all the recorded dreams and prophetic warnings received by believers, the vast majority of them have NOT called for individuals to prepare large quantities of food, shelter, backup power or cords of wood to survive some upcoming global cataclysm. Christian faith has an added value of spiritual protection and God has plans to keep his followers from enduring this judgement as long as they keep the narrow path toward him. Let’s examine this in detail.
There are two trains of thought regarding the Rapture that are discussed here:

  1. The Church will live through part or all of the Tribulation and that Righteous believers will be Raptured sometime after it begins. During this time, a supernatural protection will be granted to those (Rev 7:3). This is the ‘Preservation Through’ theory.
  2. That Righteous Believers will be “snatched away” prior to the Anti-Christ global authority. This is the ‘Rescue-From’ theory. 1st Thes 1:10 and Jer 30:7 both support the argument that God will offer a protection in some form or another from these judgements.

1 Thes 1:10 (NLT) And they speak of how you are looking forward to the coming of God’s Son from heaven—Jesus, whom God raised from the dead. He is the one who has rescued us from the terrors of the coming judgment.
 
1 Thes 1:10 (Last sentence, direct translation) Deliver [Rhoumai #4506] us [Hemas #2248] of separation of a part from the whole [Apo #575] anger, wrath, indignation [Orge #3709].
 
Jeremiah 30:7 (Interlinear) Alas! for that day is great, so that none is like it: it is even the time of Jacob’s trouble; but he shall be saved out of it.

The Jeremiah verse talks about deliverance from this time of Jacobs Trouble. The word saved means Yasha` “to be liberated, be saved, be delivered”, Strongs word #3467.

Dr. Mike Svigel, commented on the judgement in 1st Thes and if that applies to pre-tribulationists theology, “I see a lot of strength in passages that promise rescue from coming wrath tied to the coming of Christ (1 Thes 1:9-10) and in the context of the Rapture (1 Thes 5:9), but also in the promise of being kept from the hour of testing in Revelation 3:10 and Peter’s reminder that, based on God’s past pattern of rescuing his righteous from judgment prior to pouring out his wrath (in the cases of Noah and Lot), He will rescue the godly from trial (2 Peter 2:6).”

It’s important to note that the Tribulation includes wrath attributed to both Satan and God and that both maybe present at any given time. McHyde identifies in a 2010 article, “Would God Allow His Bride to Go Through the Great Tribulation” that after only the 7th Trumpet is when, “God’s wrath picks up where Satan’s wrath let off.” Citing Revelation 15:1 and 1 Cor 15:52, McHyde makes the claim that only immediately prior to God’s wrath, will the Rapture come.

1 Thes 5:9 (HCSB) For God did not appoint us to wrath, but to obtain salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ
Rev 12:12 (interlinear) Therefore rejoice, ye heavens, and ye that dwell in them. Woe to the inhabiters of the earth and of the sea! for the devil is come down unto you, having great wrath, because he knoweth that he hath but a short time.
Revelation 11:18 (NLT) The nations were filled with wrath, but now the time of your wrath has come. It is time to judge the dead and reward your servants the prophets, as well as your holy people, and all who fear your name, from the least to the greatest. It is time to destroy all who have caused destruction on the earth. (Click to Article)

Revelation 12 | What’s Going to Happen on September 23, 2017? Scott Clarke & Derek Gilbert Interview

The Micah Prophecy – The Key to Revelation 12 – January 15, 2015

But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
Though you are little among the thousands of Judah,
Yet out of you shall come forth to Me
The One to be Ruler in Israel,
Whose goings forth are from old,
From everlasting.

Therefore He shall give them up,
Until the time that she who is in labor has given birth;
Then the remnant of His brethren
shall return to the children of Israel.

MICAH 5:2-3


Now a great sign appeared in heaven:
a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet,
and on her head a garland of twelve stars.
Then being with child, she cried out in labor and in pain to give birth.

REVELATION 12:1-2

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On September 23, 2017 a sign forms in the heavens that fits the requirements of Revelation 12.  As far as can be determined from computer models, this is the only time this sign will occur in history. Therefore, this would literally be the Great Sign of Revelation that is to appear in heaven. The woman in heaven is Virgo–the Virgin. The sun is the sun “clothing Virgo” and the moon is actually under her feet. The garland of twelve stars are the nine stars of Leo with three wandering stars that have been situated within Leo at this time to make twelve. Those wandering stars are: Mercury, Mars, and Venus. The last element of the sign is that the Virgin must be with child. The planet or star of the Messiah is Jupiter. Jupiter at this time is in the womb of Virgo.  Again, no replication of this sign has yet to be found.

The problem with this sign is that all to often it is taken only as a symbol for what it represents and is not considered an actual sign placed in the heavens by God. The sign represents the birth of Messiah from the virgin of Israel, but it is to be taken as an actual sign to be seen and thereby understand the time at which a significant event occurs. The problem then is to determine where it occurs within the timeline of the end of days. That is, where does it occur in relation to the 70th Week of Daniel–the final period of seven years before Messiah comes to rule the planet. The solution lies within Micah 5.

In Micah 5 the timeline of the Messiah is given. First he will be born in Bethlehem and he is to be known as the one who will be ruler in Israel. When Jesus came he presented himself as the Prince on Palm Sunday, but then he was later crucified that week on  Passover. He did not become a world ruler from Jerusalem at that time. Micah then says that Messiah will give them up “until the time that she who is in labor has given birth.” Forty days after the resurrection, Jesus ascended into heaven and ten days later the Church began and continues to this day. According to Micah, Israel’s remnant will return to the children of Israel only after she has given birth.

The sign of Revelation 12 is the sign that marks this time. It marks the transition from the Church to Daniel’s 70th Week. This sign appears in the heavens just two days after the Feast of Trumpets and likely the Rapture of the Church in 2017.  All the qualifiers are there from September 23-25, 2017 for this sign, which comes 1,260 days after the first tetrad of April 15, 2014. However, the woman must give birth and Jupiter remains in the womb a few more weeks when it will then emerge. On November 13, 2017, Jupiter emerges and is joined in conjunction with Venus. This day also comes 444 days after their previous conjunction on August 27, 2016 that marks Jupiter’s entry into Virgo.

If November 13, 2017 marks the beginning of the significant spiritual return of Israel, then six days later marks what appears to be the beginning of the 70th Week of Daniel. This is done by counting 2,520 (7 x 360) days back from the Day of Atonement 2024. Now most prophecy students believe Israel signs the covenant with the Antichrist to begin the 70th Week per their understanding of Daniel 9:27. This author instead believes that this is Israel’s Covenant with God, which is strengthened by God himself showing the Israelis that all is back on track. During the transition from the Rapture to the beginning of the 2,520 days would be sixty days and it is believed within that time there is the fulfillment of Psalm 83 and Ezekiel 38-39. Only God rescues Israel from the war and Israel is said to recognize that fact. (Click to Article)

Scientists use mathematical calculations to PROVE the existence of God

SCIENTISTS have ‘confirmed’ the existence of God after proving a mathematician’s theory which suggests that there is a higher power.

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Two computer scientists say they proved that there is a holy supreme force after confirming the equations.

In 1978, mathematician Kurt Gödel died and left behind a long and complex theory based on modal logic.

Dr Gödel’s model uses mathematical equations that are extremely complicated, but the essence is that no greater power than God can be conceived, and if he or she is believed as a concept then he or she can exist in reality.

Or as Dr Gödel put it through his equations: “Ax. 1. {P(φ)∧◻∀x[φ(x)→ψ(x)]} →P(ψ)Ax. 2.P(¬φ)↔¬P(φ)Th. 1.P(φ)→◊∃x[φ(x)]Df. 1.G(x)⟺∀φ[P(φ)→φ(x)]Ax. 3.P(G)Th. 2.◊∃xG(x)Df. 2.φ ess x⟺φ(x)∧∀ψ{ψ(x)→◻∀y[φ(y)→ψ(y)]}Ax. 4.P(φ)→◻P(φ)Th. 3.G(x)→G ess xDf. 3.E(x)⟺∀φ[φ ess x→◻∃yφ(y)]Ax. 5.P(E)Th. 4.◻∃xG(x)”.

You get it, right?

But two computer scientists have used computers to run such complicated which they say confirms that the equation does indeed add up.

The point of the researchers’ argument was that they were not directly trying to prove the existence of God, but rather to showcase the power of computers. (Click to Article)

3 Muslim Testimonies for Christ That Will Blow Your Mind

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Over the past couple of years, the world has watched with alarm as ISIS and other radical Islamic gangs have loosed a reign of terror, oppression and fear across the Middle East and beyond.

As they have murdered, maimed, destroyed and brought chaos wherever they go, these demonically inspired thugs have declared their goal is nothing less than the reemergence of an iron-fisted Islamic caliphate [state] that will, if not stopped, rule the Middle East and influence the entire Muslim world with a religious extremism that has not been witnessed for centuries. As a former radical Muslim who once embraced such an ideological worldview, I can wholly confirm that this is, indeed, the dark vision that burns in the hearts of fanatical Muslim militants bent on creating a world dominated by Islam. And it is just as ominous and threatening as it sounds.

But there is some great news rising up to counter this threat, and it is this: The Middle East is on fire—ablaze with the all-consuming love of Jesus Christ, the only begotten Son of God. Yes, in the midst of the terror and tyranny, the God of the Bible is moving by the power of His Holy Spirit across the Middle East and through the Muslim world. Just as it did in my own heart over 35 years ago, the love of Jesus is ripping apart the veil of darkness that has confined generations of Muslim individuals and families in the bondage of sin, fear and oppression.

The revelation of God’s mercy and love is invading the hearts of untold millions of Muslims, one by one, in a miraculous and spontaneous way, and it’s happening despite the aggressive efforts of religious leaders and Muslim-controlled Middle East governments. It’s not happening through massive evangelistic campaigns sponsored by well-known preachers or through missions groups with million-dollar budgets. Instead, it’s the simple hunger for truth, for freedom—for something more than dead religion and rules that kill—that is causing Muslims across the Middle East and the world to reach beyond despair and hopelessness. And as they reach, God is there, reaching back to touch these precious people with the salvation, healing and hope that can only come through Jesus.  (Click to Article)

Revival in Iran: ‘I Want to Be a Christian’

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CENTRAL TURKEY — When we think of Iran, scenes of mobs shouting “death to America,” blindfolded hostages, and radical leaders demanding nuclear technology come to mind.

But there’s another side of the country: Iranians who love America, Israel, and Jesus Christ.

CBN News Middle East Bureau Chief Chris Mitchell met and talked with some of these Iranian believers outside of their country in central Turkey.

When someone gets baptized in this house church, people clap and cheer like fans at a World Cup match. While they’ve suffered persecution and often fled for their lies, they still possess an infectious and joyous faith like Iranian believer Raizal.

“Growing up I wanted to say I grew up [with] Jesus Christ,” Raizal told CBN News. “Every time, His name was in my mind. And the next moment I started liking Christianity.”

“It was really sweet to me, the feelings, the stories, everything. So by the time I was 15, I believed in Him and I said I want to be a Christian,” he said. (Click to Article)

Torah Commentary -VaVera (He Appeared) Ritual or Relationship -Day 16, Month 8, 5775; 17 November 2016

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Torah Commentary
Gen 18:1-22:24
2Kings 4:1-37
Luke 17:26-37
Romans 9:6-9
Hebrews 6:13-20
Ya’akov 2:14-24

VaVera (He Appeared)

 
Ritual or Relationship
 
This week we begin by looking at two men, Avram and Lot. They are related by physical DNA, but the makeup of the men is worlds apart. These two men who left Ur together have both become rich. Because Lot did not recognize and acknowledge that the reason for his wealth was because he had joined himself to the man of faith, Avram, he began to think life was about himself, his needs, and his desires. This mindset caused Lot to have to make a choice in life which would, in the end, cost him more than he ever dreamed. He would not only lose his riches, but something far greater than wealth, his family and legacy.
 
Abram, on the other hand, would never lose focus on the One who had called him or the destination that calling was taking him to.
 
There is an interesting similarity in these two men which we may read over too quickly. When the messengers came to Avram, the text says he asked Sarai to quickly make cakes of flour. When two of the messengers went to Lot’s house he made for them cakes also. In the Hebrew text the word is matzah, or unleavened bread. Consider that though the Hebrew text does not say it specifically, Avram gave the messengers bread which had been made quickly, unleavened bread. Why does the text lead us to the thought of unleavened bread? Could it be that the messengers came to these men during a time they would only be eating unleavened bread? Could Adam have passed on an instruction regarding an animal slain to give clothing of righteousness? Could all the Feasts including Unleavened Bread have begun in The Garden, in which case Avram and Lot would be continuing in those instructions? (Click to Article)