September 20, 2014 Shabbat Bible Study
©2014 Mark Pitrone and Fulfilling Torah Ministries
Leviticus 1:1- 2:16 – Isaiah 43:21, Jeremiah 31:19, Micah 6:9-7:8 – Psalm 70 – 1 Corinthians 3:1-23
Links for this week:
Vayikra 1.1-2.16 – After the transgression of Ex.32, only about 40-50 days transpired until work began on the Mishkan/tabernacle and its furnishings, about 100 day out of Goshen. Leviticus COULD have been given to Moshe and recorded while the tabernacle was being built. But Leviticus and the sacrifices were not given until AFTER the transgression of the Covenant. Therefore, I think that Y’hovah never MEANT it to be given; that he’d acted as if Israel would be true to its word until she proved otherwise. The only blood offerings were supposed to be freewill and sin offerings and the daily oblations, not trespass or atoning sacrifices. The sacrifices outlined in Leviticus are, therefore, ‘the law that was added for transgressions’ that Rav Sha’ul peaks of in
19 What purpose then does the Torah serve? It was added because of transgressions,15 until the Zera should come to whom the promise was made; and heavenly malachim through the hands of a Mediator ordained it.16 [Gal.3.19 Restoration].
In the entire covenant that Moshe received from Y’hovah in Ex.24-32 there was not one trespass offering; I think because Y’hovah took Israel at its word to abide by the 10 Commandments, at least until they actually transgressed them. It is possible that Sha’ul was thinking in terms of the morning and evening offerings when he wrote “I die daily”.
Last week we left Moshe standing outside the Tent of Meeting (Ohel haMoayd) because the Kavod of Y’hovah was filling the tent so that even Moshe could not enter it. There is no break in the narrative action. Vayikra 1 immediately follows Shemoth 40 with barely time to take a breath.
35 And Moshe was not able to enter into the tent of the congregation, because the cloud abode thereon, and the glory of Y’hovah filled the tabernacle … 1 And Y’hovah called unto Moshe, … (Ex.40.35 – Lev.1.1; the ellipse replaces some details, not narrative.)
There were no burnt offerings that were acceptable to Y’hovah unless they were animals of the flock or herd – sheep, goats or cows. All whole burnt offerings were to be males of the first year, and ‘without blemish’, no obvious abnormality
15 And they shall not profane the holy things of the children of Israel, which they offer unto Y’hovah; 16 Or suffer them to bear the iniquity of trespass, when they eat their holy things: for I Y’hovah do sanctify them. 17 And Y’hovah spake unto Moshe, saying, 18 Speak unto Aaron, and to his sons, and unto all the children of Israel, and say unto them, Whatsoever of the house of Israel, or of the strangers in Israel, that will offer his oblation for all his vows, and for all his freewill offerings, which they will offer unto Y’hovah for a burnt offering; 19 at your own will a male without blemish, of the beeves, of the sheep, or of the goats. 20 Whatsoever hath a blemish, shall ye not offer: for it shall not be acceptable for you. 21 And whosoever offereth a sacrifice of peace offerings unto Y’hovah to accomplish vow, or a freewill offering in beeves or sheep, it shall be perfect to be accepted; there shall be no blemish therein. 22 Blind, or broken, or maimed, or having a wen, or scurvy, or scabbed, ye shall not offer these unto Y’hovah, nor make an offering by fire of them upon the altar unto Y’hovah. (Lev.22.17-25).
If the offering was a bullock (steer) it was killed between the laver and the Tent. The head, fat and parts to be offered were laid on the wood of the altar and burnt, while the innards and legs were washed in the laver before being placed on the altar to be burnt. If the offering was a sheep or goat it was killed to the north side of the altar, the head and fat placed on the wood for the fire and the innards and legs washed in water and then placed on the fire and burnt like the bullock. Why the different places for the different types of animals, flock or herd? Was the place of the flock offering the ‘sides of the north’ seen in Is.14.13, or Ex.24.35? The butchering itself seems to be identical, except for the size of the animal and the place where it was offered. The only thing I can think of is that the blood of the goats or sheep was not as profuse as the steer’s and any loss in transit may render the offering invalid. That is PURELY speculation. That the one offering the animal, and NOT the priest, was the one to butcher it must have driven home the seriousness that the sin had in Y’hovah’s eyes. This offering was done before Y’hovah with the back to the rising sun and facing toward the Kodesh Kadashim.
If the one who offered the animal could afford to bring a steer, that was preferable. But if he could not afford an animal like that, he could bring a sheep or goat. If he couldn’t even afford a goat, he could bring a dove. The sense I get from this is that Y’hovah never forces us to do what we are unable to do, but he EXPECTS us to do what we CAN do to the best of our abilities. Whether herd, flock or dove, the sincere offering has a sweet ‘smell’ to Yah.
Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin. (James 4:17)
2.1-16 – KJV has ‘meat offering’, but there is no flesh offered in it. The Hebrew word is minchah, and means to apportion or bestow – it’s usually a freewill offering and is bloodless, though there is often a stipulation to a burnt offering that it be accompanied by a minchah, as well. I assume that this is a kind of firstfruits offering, where a ‘portion’ of the harvest is brought as a thanksgiving offering to Y’hovah for his abundance to us. It is not specified how much flour or whatever is brought, only that a handful is burnt and that the rest is the priests’ for their own use without leaven.
14 And this the law of the meat offering: the sons of Aaron shall offer it before Y’hovah, before the altar. 15 And he shall take of it his handful, of the flour of the meat offering, and of the oil thereof, and all the frankincense upon the meat offering, and shall burn upon the altar a sweet savour, the memorial of it, unto Y’hovah. 16 And the remainder thereof shall Aaron and his sons eat: with unleavened bread shall it be eaten in the holy place; in the court of the tabernacle of the congregation they shall eat it. 17 It shall not be baken with leaven. I have given it their portion of my offerings made by fire; most holy, as the sin offering, and as the trespass offering. 18 All the males among the children of Aaron shall eat of it; a statute for ever in your generations concerning the offerings of Y’hovah made by fire: every one that toucheth them shall be holy. (Leviticus 6.14-18)
Possibly, this is a portion of the tithe set aside for orphans, widows and Levites and the amount of that tithe brought to the priests is a matter of what Y’hovah lays on the individual heart. The ‘handful’ according to Stone’s Chumash, is what fits in 3 fingers. The minutia of Talmud is pretty awe inspiring, and not always in a good way.
If the offering is something oven-baked, it MUST be unleavened and either have oil and frankincense mixed into the cakes’ dough or rubbed on the finished ‘wafer’ (tortilla?) product. Home-made tortillas is what we use for our unleavened bread for the Feast week, especially after we use up the leftover matzoth from Pesach. V. 6 says the pan-baked wafers (tortillas) are to have oil poured on them – no specifics on the amount. I wonder if I can add spices, like you get with the bread at Carrabba’s? YUMM-IE!
The reason Y’hovah gives in v.11 for not adding leaven is that NO burnt offing is to have any leaven or honey in it. Leavened bread and honey are acceptable first-fruits offerings in v.12, but those are not to be burnt. I think leaven represents sin, and therefore, imperfection or blemish, like a blemish on an animal. The freewill offering must be as set-apart as the animal offering, the best that the Israelite has to offer. Every meal offering is to be made with salt, as well. The Ramban has an interesting application of this on pg.553 of Stone’s Chumash (top of the left commentary column).
Vv.14-16 speak of the Omer offering to be offered on Hag haBikkurim, which I believe is the 1st day of the week following the weekly Shabbat during the Feast of Unleavened Bread (based on the Feast of Shavuoth occurring on the day after the weekly Shabbat 7 weeks later, cf. Lev.23). The ears are to be aviv, or ‘ripe’. These aviv ears of barley are roasted slightly to dry them sufficiently to grind them. Therefore, the Karaites seem to have this particular part right, as they will not declare the New Year unless the barley is in the state where it can be ‘parched’ with fire to be ground to flour. The rabbinic interpolated calendar is usually pretty darned close and sometimes right on the money, but since it doesn’t rely on actual observation of the barley crop, it can be wrong IMO. The same goes, to my mind, to all the other calendrical systems in use today by well-meaning Messianics. I think this scripture should end debate, but I doubt that it will. Q&C
Isaiah 43:21 – This deals with Israel’s commonwealth (Eph.2.11ff), not just the physical nation of Israel. It includes both houses of Israel, Yehudah and Ephraim, and also the ‘whosoevers’ who have no blood tie to Israel, but who are ‘the called according to his purpose’;
And we know that all things work together for good to them that love Elohim, to them who are the called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:28)
In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will: (Ephesians 1:11)
Who hath saved us, and called us with an holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Messiah Yeshua before the world began, (II Timothy 1:9)
21 This people have I formed for myself; they shall shew forth my praise. (Is.43.21)
Only the One who knows the end from the beginning, the Almighty Y’hovah, could have predestinated us and called us according to his purpose before the world began.
Jeremiah 31:19 – This passage actually begins in v.18
18 I have surely heard Ephraim bemoaning himself; “Thou hast chastised me, and I was chastised, as a bullock unaccustomed: turn thou me, and I shall be turned; for thou Y’hovah Elohai. 19 Surely after that I was turned, I repented; and after that I was instructed, I smote upon my thigh: I was ashamed, yea, even confounded, because I did bear the reproach of my youth.” 20 Ephraim my dear son? a pleasant child? for since I spake against him [3.7-9 below], I do earnestly remember him still: therefore my bowels are troubled for him; I will surely have mercy upon him, saith Y’hovah. (Jeremiah 31.18-20)
6 Y’hovah said also to me in the days of Yoshiyahu the melech, Have you seen that which backsliding Yisrael has done? She is gone up to every high mountain and under every green eytz, and there has played the harlot. 7 And I said after she had done all these things, Teshuvah to Me. But she made no teshuvah. And her perverted sister Yahudah saw it. 8 And I saw, that for all the reasons which backsliding Yisrael committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a Get of divorce; yet her perverted sister Yahudah feared not, but went and played the harlot also. [Jer.3.7-9]
A bullock unaccustomed to the yoke is one that hasn’t been trained in that by which he is kept in close proximity to Messiah Yeshua, and through which he carries our load.
28 Come unto me, all that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke easy, and my burden is light. (Matthew 11.28-29)
The whole context of that Matthew passage is repentance and returning to Torah from the traditions of men. Yeshua’s yoke is Torah. Torah is that by which he carries our burden, for it is HE who carries us in it. It is a Torah commandment (Dt.22.10) to not plow with a donkey and an ox together. Why? Because of the inefficiency of it – the little donkey is going to either get in the ox’s way and be trampled by him or be hanged by him. It is a similar picture to Yeshua being yoked to you or me except that Yeshua is carrying all the weight, including ours, in the same way that he carried the ark and the priests who put their shoulders to it believing that he would supply the ability. The yoke of man’s traditions is a heavy burden, like the donkey trying to carry the ox. The yoke of the Word of Y’hovah is light. Yeshua made this point when he said
1 Then spake Yeshua to the multitude, and to his disciples, 2 Saying, The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moshe’ seat: 3 All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe; observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not. 4 For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay on men’s shoulders; but they will not move them with one of their fingers. 5 But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, 6 And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, 7 And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi… Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. (Matthew 23.1-7, 15)
It was the traditions of the rabbis that were the heavy burden, not the Word of Y’hovah. We need to become accustomed to Yeshua’s yoke – his Torah, and get away from the yoke of tradition, whether of rabbinic or Xian origin.
In our Jeremiah passage, Ephraim was chastised because he had the Torah, but he refused to follow it, going instead after the doctrines of the kings of 10-Israel. They went up to Dan for the feasts instead of J’lem, because it was both economically and politically expedient for the kings of Israel to keep the people away from there for fear that they would STAY in J’lem, either physically of in their hearts. It is the same in much of today’s evangelical Xianity. It is at the very LEAST economically better to continue the misapplication of scripture to keep the people in the pews ignorant of Torah for fear that they will do it and be blessed in their deeds (Jms.1.25) and then continue therein, in stead of what Xianity tells them.
Micah 6:9-7:8 – The idea carries on here in Micah 6, using the metaphor of unjust weights and measures. If we come to knowledge of truth and do not live in it, we will reap the harvest of our evil deeds.
Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin. (James 4:17)
And, once again, in this passage they were going after the yoke of Israel’s kings and not the yoke of Y’hovah. The imprecations here are very reminiscent of those in Dt.28.15ff. If you know what you’re supposed to do, how you are supposed to live, and you don’t do it, those curses will come upon you with the purpose of getting you to examine yourself and repent of the evil.
Ch.7 seems to be the continuation from ch.6, where we have seen our condition and come to understand that we are being chastised and are now lamenting our sin and repenting of it. We are at the bottom, we have been cultivating the grapes, but someone has come before us and harvested that on which we worked all year. While we were living in sin, the world got worse and worse. It is to the point where there is little we can do to right it. The description in vv.1-2 surely sound like our day and age, or what certainly looks to be on the verge of realization. V.3 sounds like our ‘criminal’ court system – willing to find for he who pays the larger bribe. The best man in government is a crook. But, in v.4, the day their watchmen warned them of and the visitation he told them was coming is on them. In this day in v.5, it is very unwise to trust any man, but to keep your counsel close. Your own family will sell you out for a morsel of bread in v.6, so it is best in v.7 to just keep your trust and life in the hands of Yeshua. The enemy may seem to get the better of you, to take you down and exile you. But it would be better for them to NOT rejoice over your calamities, for Y’hovah will hear your cries and recompense judgment on them. While we may fall, Y’hovah will raise us up; when we sit in the darkness (of exile), He will be our light. Q&C
Tehellim 70 – The Psalm follows the same path as Micah. David is in affliction, makes his need known to the Almighty, expecting the source of his trouble to be stopped and his deliverance assured by the Almighty’s hand. V.1 makes is pretty plain that Elohim and Y’hovah are one and the same Almighty, does it not? David tells each aspect of the Almighty to help him quickly. He knows in v.2 that he can’t defeat his enemies in his own strength, that they are too powerful for him in the physical. So in v.3 he adjures the Almighty to confound them and shame those who want his life or to see him hurt. They are looking for anything that can be twisted to look bad for him so they can accuse him of sin where there is none and he wants their efforts to redouble against them. Then he blesses all whose hearts are after the Almighty’s so that they may have the desires of their heart and magnify and exalt the Almighty therein. (I assume he sees himself among this group.) He then acknowledges his inability to affect his deliverance from the mighty men who are against him and that he expects Y’hovah to deliver him from them without delay.
David made no requests of Y’hovah in this Psalm. He gave 8 directives to the Almighty. Q&C
I think that we need to understand, as I have often explained before, that understanding the pronouns is very important in all of Sha’ul’s writing to the kehalim in the nations. Paul is writing to the kahal in Corinth, which was a very ‘worldly’ city in Greece, and I think he uses pronouns here in the same way he did with the Ephesians, Romans and Galatians [at least]. When he uses a 2nd person plural pronoun [you/ye], he is addressing the Ephraimites to whom his mission is, to gather them/us from the 4 corners of the earth. When he uses the 1st person plural nominative case [we], he is almost invariably referring to Yehudah; and when he uses the 1st person plural objective case [us], he is usually referring to both groups together as the corporate body of Moshiach.
Beginning in 2.7, Rav Sha’ul contrasts the things of Ruach haKodesh with the things of the ruach of man or of the world system, and it is important for us to see this context, so here it is [KJV – w/Mark edits for clarity and ‘proper divine titling’, IM(not so)HO]:
1Co 2:7 But we speak the wisdom of Elohim in a mystery, the hidden [that is, sod] which Elohim ordained before the world unto our glory: 8 Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known they would not have crucified the Master of glory. 9 But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which Elohim hath prepared for them that love him. [YeshaYahu 64.4] 10 But Elohim hath revealed unto us by his Ruach: for Ruach searcheth all things, yea, the deep [sod – ‘mystical’] things of Elohim. 11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of Elohim knoweth no man, but the Spirit of Elohim.
1Co 2:12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of Elohim; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of Elohim. 13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which Ruach haKodesh teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual.
14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of Ruach of Elohim: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know because they are spiritually discerned. 15 But he that is spiritual judgeth all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. 16 For who hath known the mind of Y’hovah, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Moshiach.
The Corinthians were surrounded by man’s wisdom; indeed Corinth was a SEAT of natural, worldly wisdom and that needed to be overcome by Y’hovah’s Wisdom in Torah [say thank you, Rico]. Paul had just told them that the world’s wisdom was not a thing to be grasped because it contained no ‘real’ life. Now, “Chock Fulla’Nuts” may be heavenly coffee, but Y’hovah’s chochmah is chock full of life. In the contrast between the world’s wisdom and Y’hovah’s, Sha’ul is telling the Corinthians they need to abandon what is, at best, a counterfeit wisdom that makes one THINK he has knowledge, but is ultimately useless. The pashat is as far as the ‘natural’ man can see. Milk is as much as he can digest. With that background, let us move to our portion.
1 Corinthians 3:1-23 – The believers in Corinth were just that, but they were not walking according to the Word of Y’hovah, which is
All scripture given by inspiration of Elohim, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: that the man of Elohim may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works. (II Timothy 3:16-17)
What are those ‘good works’ if not the righteousness of which scripture instructs us? It doesn’t just tell us proper doctrine. It also reproves us (shows us our guilt and where we fall short), corrects and instructs us in righteousness (shows us how we are supposed to live), for the purpose of completing us and giving us the ability to do what we’ve been saved to do in
For we are his workmanship, created in Moshiach Yeshua unto good works, which Elohim hath before ordained that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:10)
We aren’t OUR workmanship, but his. And we are saved for the PURPOSE of doing good works – living in Torah.
The Corinthians were carnal; they wanted the position of righteousness, but also freedom to live their own way. They wanted life like in the time of the judges of Israel, when every man did what was right in his own eyes. That kind of freedom is not what we were saved to. If we want to live according to the flesh, we have no need of the Ruach haKodesh, which gives us the POWER to live according to the Spirit of Y’hovah’s Word.
We have LIBERTY in Messiah, not so much freedom. Liberty is freedom that is self-constrained, not controlled by a despot or human authority. We constrain our freedom to the limits HE has set and, when we do, we are at liberty. In the original political, Constitutional meaning, liberty was freedom to act according to the dictates of the Word of Y’hovah. Our Constitution, according to John Adams, was designed for “a good and godly people; it is wholly inadequate to govern any other.” That is the meaning of liberty.
But whoso looketh into the perfect Torah of liberty, and continueth, he being not a forgetful hearer, but a doer of the work, this man shall be blessed in his deed. (James 1:25)
That word translated ‘continueth’ is Grk parameno ‘to abide near’ or ‘to stand in’. So when we look into and live in the ‘perfect Torah of Liberty’, we are not forgetful hearers of the Word, but doers of the Word. The Corinthians weren’t living in the Word, but were forgetful hearers.
They are full of envy, strife, divisions in v. 3 … you know … Messianic. All through this letter Sha’ul emphasizes the Sh’ma – unity in the body. And this is not his emphasis in 1Corinthians alone, but in most of his letters. It is Y’hovah’s desire that we come to full unity.
I therefore, the prisoner of Y’hovah, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called, 2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love; 3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace… 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of Elohim, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Messiah: 14 That we be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; 15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, Messiah: 16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love. (Ephesians 4:1-3, 13-16)
The body is supposed to edify itself in love, not destroy itself by ending fellowship over ‘doubtful disputations,’ which are defined as stuff that is interpreted or inferred from Torah, not what is expressly laid out in Torah. Let’s agree on the peshat and allow our brethren to (or acknowledge that we can) be wrong on the remez or sod, and still have fellowship in love of Moshiach. When we separate ourselves from brethren over carnal things, we are showing ourselves to be carnal and not after the Spirit of Elohim.
Paul goes into the “I am of Paul”, and “I am of Apollos” thing. So you are after a fallen MAN, and thereby do injury to the body of Messiah?! And you think you are spiritual? We are all ministers of the Kingdom of Elohim; ambassadors to the world system. So why are we at odds over stupid stuff? Why do some stop fellowship with other believers over stuff that is of no consequence, like the calendar we use, which is a doubtful disputation. These are things we can agree to disagree over and then sit down and break bread, for it is not a condition of my salvation whether I keep the intercalated calendar or the Karaite or the equinoctial or whatever. Is your heart to do as you believe Y’hovah wants you to do? Then, by all means do it. Do you have something you can teach me about Torah? Teach me. Do I have to hold to everything you teach, or you to me? No. We are allowed to disagree, IF we can love each other through it.
THAT is what Paul is saying in this passage. (UH! OH! Now I’m in trouble with someone because I called him Paul!) Sha’ul’s understanding of the Sh’ma comes out in vv.6 – “I have planted, Apollos watered and Elohim gave the increase.” He goes on to say that neither he nor Apollos was anything, but that Ruach haKodesh did the REAL work of salvation. As Y’hovah manifests himself in different ways and in different times by different people (Heb.1.1), so does he use ALL vessels that are sold to HIS use. For example, Jeff Gilbert and I are of different opinions on certain issues, but each of us is following Y’hovah as he has shown himself to us, and we genuinely love one another. We are fellow-laborers with our King.
[As an aside – when my son Daniel went back to Colorado after coming to my side when I had the ‘ordeal’ with the tree, the next Shabbat he went to synagogue and who walks up to him but Jeff Gilbert. Jeff tapped Daniel on the shoulder and said, “Did you hear what happened to Mark Pitrone?” I had met Jeff at Monte’s Sukkoth in 08 and I truly did not remember him from Adam. But he remembered me and had his fellowship and everyone he knew in the world praying for me. When Daniel said, “Well, yeah. He’s my dad,” there was a time of joy and fellowship like Daniel had not had with a ‘stranger’ in a long time. Jeff got the whole scoop from Daniel and Hannah (my daughter). And Jeff has commented on a number of occasions how impressed he is with my children. They are chips off the ol’ block – and they have got him snowed!] Q&C
Vv.10-15 – A wise ‘master builder’ always sets a firm, level and square foundation before he starts erecting the body of the building. Without that kind of foundation, the body will never be right. Once the foundation is set, it is up to the individual subcontractors to ensure a fit frame and finish. I pray that the frame and finish I provide here is fit to the Master’s use and that I adequately prepare the body to go out and make disciples for Yeshua. The foundation is Messiah Yeshua, the living Word of Elohim, the living Torah. As far as the written Word of Elohim goes, Torah is the foundation and it is level, square and plumb. To start with a foundation of Revelation is as backward as it can be, but many do this. Without a proper understanding of the books of Moshe, nothing will make biblical sense and we’ll be “tossed by every wind of doctrine” (Eph.4.14), especially when it comes to prophecy, since biblical history IS prophecy of the end of days. If we build on the foundation with ‘good works’ the building will be fit; if we build with ‘evil works’ the building will fall apart. Our works will be tried by fire – tribulation. If it stands the trial, the building was properly built. Since the foundation of Messiah and his Word was good, any deficiency in the building is the fault of the subcontractor – in this case, me.
If you think you won’t go through tribulation, think again. Yeshua PROMISED you that you would see tribulation. But he also PROMISED that he would carry you through it, if you trust in HIM and not in yourself. Are you prepared to go through the fire? Will your works be tempered and made more pure by that fire, or will your works be burnt up? Do you remember the Torah portion for today? The burnt offerings of flesh and unleavened bread? Do you see the connection? Those offerings had to be perfect and without spot, or unleavened with sin. These are the final days of the 6th biblical month that ends with Yom Teruah – probably this coming Thursday evening, possibly not until erev Shabbat. Are you ready for the shofar blast that signifies the ‘last trump’ according to many Messianic teachers? If THIS Yom Teruah is Resurrection Day, will you be taken to the protection Messiah has for his faithful, or will you get to try and survive the 10 days of awe in your own strength? I do not think this is the last Yom Teruah. In fact, I am relatively certain we have at least 4 years before that time, since there is no Temple and the 144K and the 2 witnesses have yet to be anointed and the man of sin is not yet revealed. But this is the time when we are to be examining our lives and making sure we are right with our Elohim. If this Thursday IS the Last Trump, will you be found faithful? If you are a house of wood, hay and stubble, built on the foundation of Messiah, you will be delivered to life eternal, yet as by fire. Don’t let yourself be caught napping. Build your structure of good works – gold, silver and precious stones – on the firm foundation of Messiah and his Word.
Vv.16- – Notice the number of the pronouns – they are telling. Ye = 2nd person plural. The recipients are the Temple of Elohim and the Spirit of Elohim dwells in them – one Spirit indwelling the whole ‘building’, as the Kavod of Y’hovah completely filled the Mishkan in last week’s Torah portion. This is a corporate indwelling, as in
For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them. (Matthew 18:20)
There is also a personal indwelling of the Spirit.
What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of Elohim, and ye are not your own? (I Corinthians 6:19)
The point of this passage is that any single man that defiles the congregation, he will answer to Elohim himself. The destruction could be temporal or spiritual, complete or partial. Don’t trust in men; not yourself, not me, not any mortal man; because we are all imperfect and will disappoint you. Trust only in Y’hovah, the Elohim of Avraham, Yitzhak and Ya’acov. He is steadfast. He is trustworthy. He will never disappoint you. Y’hovah knows our thoughts, that all our thoughts are vain. So let’s get the division of men-pleasers and man-following right out of our thought process. Keep your eyes on Messiah Yeshua and Avinu. Neither Paul, nor Mark, nor Kefa, nor Apollos paid your ransom. Yeshua did. Trust in him, for he is the one who bought you with a price
For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify Elohim in your body, and in your spirit, which are Elohim’s. (I Corinthians 6:20)
End of Shabbat Bible Study