2nd Peter – Introduction

2Pt 1:1-2
Simon Peter, a bondservant and apostle of Jesus Christ,
To those who have obtained like precious faith with us by the righteousness of our God and Savior Jesus Christ:  Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord

Peter was/is the Apostle to the circumcision; that is, to the Jewish people, especially to those who believe in Yeshua as the Messiah, the Son of God.  In his first epistle he clearly writes that he is writing to the pilgrims or sojourners of the dispersion (diaspora; galut) – to those Messianic Jews not living in the promised land of Israel, who have been chosen to obedience through the foreknowledge of God the Father, through sanctification of the Spirit, and the sprinkling of the blood of Jesus Christ. (1Pt 1:2)   God exiled His people because of the unbelief and disobedience to His covenant and its law.  For those of us who do live here now, we also see that although many Jewish people do live here, the large majority of them are still in spiritual exile, still in disobedience to YHVH, the God of Abraham, of Isaac, and of Jacob.  Continue reading “2nd Peter – Introduction”

New Moon of 7th Month: God Remembers His Covenant With Israel

(Collage by Connor Madison)

Ps 19:1  The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork.
Num 29:1-6

The New Moon celebrations were given by YHVH to Israel to commemorate, both under the Law of Moses and also in the future Millennial Kingdom (Lev 23:24; Num 10:10; 28:11-15; Ezek 46:1-8).  The New Testament tells those who are now believers in Yeshua/Jesus not to make too much of days, months, seasons, years, festivals, New Moons, Sabbaths – all of these things being shadows of things to come, but the substance is Messiah. (Gal 4:9-11; Col 2:16-17)

The Lord has told us that all of the Scriptures are written about Him, and we know that all of the sacrifices and holidays/appointed times are also fulfilled by Jesus in the entirety of His first coming, and in the anticipation of His coming again to fulfill all that is written in the whole of the Bible, which still waits for the Kingdom of God to come.  God has given His set holy-day times to remember who He Is, what He has done, and what He will do.  Even the Lord’s Supper/Communion serves those purposes. (1 Cor 11:26; Mt 26:26-29) Continue reading “New Moon of 7th Month: God Remembers His Covenant With Israel”

The Communion of The New Covenant in Yeshua’s Blood

Mt 26:19-29  “And the disciples did as Jesus had appointed them; and they made ready the Passover.  Now when the evening was come, He sat down with the twelve. And as they did eat, He said, Verily I say unto you, that one of you shall betray me.

And they were exceedingly sorrowful, and began every one of them to say unto Him, Lord, is it I?  And He answered and said, He that dips his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me.

The Son of man goes as it is written of Him: but woe unto that man by whom the Son of Man is betrayed! it had been good for that man if he had not been born.  Then Judas, who betrayed Him, answered and said, my Lord, is it I? He said unto him, You have said.

And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and broke it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.

And He took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it; for this is my blood of the new covenant, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.  But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” Continue reading “The Communion of The New Covenant in Yeshua’s Blood”

God Chose Abraham To Know Him

Gen 18:16-19  And the men rose up from thence, and looked toward Sodom: and Abraham went with them to bring them on the way.  And YHVH said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him?  For I know him, that he will command his children and his household after him, and they shall keep the way of YHVH, to do righteousness and judgment; that YHVH may bring upon Abraham that which he hath spoken of him.

Continue reading “God Chose Abraham To Know Him”

Generational Transference: We and Our Fathers

The righteousness and justice of God:  His ways are not ours; His thoughts not ours.  Repentance begins with agreeing with Him and learning from Him.   The truth sets us free, and humbles us to first judge ourselves of the log in our own eyes, so that we can better help others with their specks.  Glory to our Father in Heaven and the Lord Yeshua the Messiah/Jesus Christ!

Heb 7:8-10  Here men that die receive tithes; but there he receives them, of whom it is witnessed that he lives.  And as I may so say, Levi also, who receives tithes, paid tithes in Abraham, for he was still in the loins of his father when Melchizedek met him.  Continue reading “Generational Transference: We and Our Fathers”

Peter and His Epistles

Peter was one of the 12 Apostles, and he thought he had no fear and could do anything.  Yeshua at least twice rescued him from situations he got himself into because of thinking that he was not afraid of anything:  once, when Peter walked on the water, until he was afraid; second, when he went into the courtyard of the high priest on the night that Yeshua was betrayed and arrested:    Peter was afraid to admit that he was one of Jesus’ disciples, or that he even knew Him.  The Apostle Paul also confronted Peter in his fear:  Peter was more afraid of the Jewish leaders who were still trying to keep the Law, than continuing in the freedom of the gospel in the fear of the Lord.  Peter’s fear of man was at the expense of the truth of the gospel.  Peter humbly accepted Paul’s courageous and necessary rebuke; and he learned from it, commending Paul for the wisdom which God had given him regarding the implications of the gospel. (Gal 2:11-16; 2Pt 3:14-16)

Peter’s over-self-confidence gave him to think that he was able to cope in any situation, and he was usually the first among the apostles to react or respond to a question or a challenge.  Peter was a typical Israeli! Continue reading “Peter and His Epistles”

The State of The State of Israel: The Gospel and The Body of Messiah

(Originally written for Spanish-language Christian newspaper in Guatemala)

What is God doing in Israel? What is the spiritual state of the State of Israel as she celebrates 70 years as a sovereign nation among the nations of the world? Her successes in many fields far surpass the normal expectation of other nations. By the long list of numerous innovations and developments that Israel is known for, God is drawing attention to Himself through His miracle nation! (Is 11:11-12) But how do we assess the whole of Israel by the Word of God? There are many perspectives on Israel and many opinions by believers concerning the current spiritual situation here in the land. One thing is for sure: Israel as a nation is still resistant to the good news of Jesus (Yeshua) being the Messiah. Continue reading “The State of The State of Israel: The Gospel and The Body of Messiah”

Whose Right of Determination? – 17 Apr 2018

Israel remembers tonight all her sons and daughters who have died in the numerous wars and terror attacks since her birth as a nation 70 years ago, according to the Hebrew calendar.  (The Western calendar Independence date is May 14/15.)   Every war and attack against Israel is an existential threat to her existence.  As the Apostle Paul wrote, “Through many tribulations we enter the Kingdom of God!” (Acts 14:22)   There is much suffering, even death, before entering into glory.

YHVH God of Israel called and destined His people to be separate from the Gentile nations, a holy people to Himself, and a priestly nation to the nations.  But in the days of Samuel the prophet, the Children of Israel asked for a king like the Gentiles have, to judge them and lead them in war.  God gave them what they asked for:  He gave them Saul to be their king.  (Shaul in Hebrew, which means, “asked for”.) Continue reading “Whose Right of Determination? – 17 Apr 2018”

Rejoice! And Again I Say, Rejoice!

Rejoicing is the spiritual atmosphere of the Feast of Tabernacles/Booths.

Dt 16:13-15

You shall observe the Feast of Booths seven days, when you have gathered from your threshing floor and from your winepress. And you shall rejoice in your feast, you and your son and your daughter, your male servant and your female servant and the Levite, the stranger and the fatherless and the widow, who are within your gates. Seven days you shall keep a sacred feast to YHVH your God in the place which YHVH chooses, because YHVH your God will bless you in all your produce and in all the work of your hands, so that you will surely rejoice!

Continue reading “Rejoice! And Again I Say, Rejoice!”

Simchat Torah

Simchat Torah (the Joy of the Torah) is the Jewish celebration of the Torah, or the Law of Moses given by YHVH to Israel at Sinai. In the synagogues they not only conclude the reading of the five books of Moses which are read throughout the year, but they also begin to read Genesis again to begin the new cycle as an expression of their joy in the Law of Moses, which for them is more ‘holy’ and authoritative than the other portions of the Old Testament (Tenach).

Yeshua stood and cried out on this last great day of the Feast that all who are thirsty should come unto Him and drink, and out of their hearts would flow rivers of living water. From a Messianic perspective, the Law of Moses leaves one dry and thirsty, and it is the Messiah, YHVH God come in the flesh, the Word of God become flesh, who alone can refresh tired and weary souls incapable of pleasing God by works of the Law. There is a connection between the Gospel and the Word becoming flesh: both words – gospel and flesh – have the same Hebrew root, bet-seen-resh (ב-ש-ר). We have the bread of communion to remind us.

Returning to the uniqueness of Yeshua, He is also the “poretz”, the one who breaks open (or breaks through) of Mic 2:13. He is described in that verse as being the King, who is YHVH! What is significant about all this for Simchat Torah? In some of the Jewish sources since the time of Yeshua, the rabbis have said that the poretz is the Messiah, and that He has the full authority – which only resides in God the Father – to bring renewal to the Torah and to properly define it! Despite all that they say, they obviously remain partially hardened and blinded to the truth of Messiah being Yeshua/Jesus. Anyone but Him! Until . . . the fullness of the Gentiles comes in to the Commonwealth of Israel, and then the full remnant of Israel and the Jewish people see Him whom they have pierced, and their souls are afflicted for all their sinfulness towards God and His covenants with them. (Hos 5:15)

This 8th day celebration marks the end of Succot/the Feast of Booths. May the Jewish people all over the world return back to the God of their fathers through the One who has broken through the heavens and become like unto us for redemption and salvation, and rejoice in Him! Yeshua alone gives peace and satisfies the soul. The Law of Messiah is superior to that of Moses, and the love which is God’s will eternally be lived out in those who love Him! May we see the Lord’s return in our generation!

Please pray:
–for the salvation of the Jewish people
–for Gentile Christian believers to provoke Israel to jealousy, and to show mercy to the nation and people
–for God to bring HIS peace to Jerusalem