jesus-whip

Declarations

It is mind-boggling to think that a collective group of believers or single believer would dare stand against the will of HASHEM expressed throughout the Scriptures. Who would be so bold to trump Yeshua HaMashiach’s [Jesus the Messiah] Word and the Prophets by denying the unification of Jews and Gentiles serving HASHEM?

Can anyone declare limitations on the call of a Gentile who chooses to serve in the fullness of Scripture in covenant with HASHEM?

I have heard it said “Gentiles are discouraged from being in a Messianic Jewish synagogue. They belong with their own kind in a church.” Also, “Gentiles who say they have converted aren’t really Jewish unless they go through the most intensive conversion system available through a specific group that we acknowledge.” Romans 11:29 tells us: for God’s free gifts and his calling are irrevocable (CJB).

This position of declining participation or not acknowledging a Gentile being fully grafted into the Common-wealth of Israel through faith in Mashiach often manifests from several root issues. Whether it is the blind leading the blind, a self righteous posture, a fear driven agenda of some sort, or the outright sin of pride, it produces separation, not One in Mashiach Yeshua. The fueling undercurrent is almost always sin.

Note particularly the first and the last sins we see in Proverbs 6:16-19 (CJB).

There are six things Adonai  hates, seven which he detests: a haughty look, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that plots wicked schemes, feet swift in running to do evil, a false witness who lies with every breath, and him who sows strife among brothers.

A Gentile or “someone from the nations” comes into faith and covenant with HASHEM through Mashiach Yeshua. Who is to say to what extent said believer may practice this faith as their Mashiach did? Does not a disciple emulate his/her teacher? Did not Yeshua HaMashiach say to His disciples in Matthew 28:19-20 (AENT), "Go therefore, make disciples of all nations and immerse them in the name…and teach them to keep ALL that I have commanded you?

Yeshua HaMashiach is the living Torah. He taught from the Torah and the Prophets; He did not make a new religion. He commented on teachings of His day and even built a few “hedges” around Torah so as to help His followers not to sin. “You have heard that it has been said that you should not commit adultery. But I say to you that all who that looks at a woman as lustfully at once has committed adultery in his heart” (Matthew 5:27-28, AENT). A hedge around the Seventh Commandment.

Glossed over and shocking to some Believers, Mashiach Yeshua instructed His disciples to listen to what the Torah teachers/religious rulers said, only don’t be hypocrites, as “some” weren’t always practicing what they preached. One such way they did this was in adding hedges not to help but specifically to make it difficult for people to live out Torah. We see a couple examples of this in Acts and Galatians where “some” were requiring “circumcision for salvation.”

A Home for the Gentiles

I am interested in what HASHEM says through His Word, spoken through the Prophets and lived out through His Son, Yeshua HaMashaich. I do not discount, but rather value the wisdom of the ancient sages who spoke true insight into the Scriptures -without an agenda- to this end, the bringing together of Israel and those from the nations into the Davidic Reign of the Messianic Kingdom of HASHEM.

The Scriptures speak so well for themselves and so I would like to quote a few passages in context of the surrounding verses.

And Yeshua entered the temple of Elohim and began to drive out those who were   buying and selling in the temple. And He overturned the tables of the money changers, and the seats of those who were selling doves. And He would not let anyone to carry possessions inside the temple. And He would teach and say to them, “Is it not written that my house will be called a House of prayer for all nations? But you have made it a den of robbers!” The chief priests and scribes heard it and were seeking how they might destroy Him. For they were afraid of Him because all the people were astonished at His teaching (Mark 11:15-18, AENT).

The Renewed Covenant was not written when Yeshua HaMashiach spoke these words so let’s look at the context from where He was quoting in Isaiah 56. Looking at verses 1-3 and then 6-8 (Stone Chumash p.1233-1234), it says:

So said HASHEM: observe justice and perform righteousness, for my salvation is at hand to come and my righteousness to be revealed. Praiseworthy is the man who does this and the son of man who grasps it tightly: Whoever guards the Sabbath against desecration and guards his hand against doing any evil.

Let not the alien, who has joined himself to HASHEM, say: “HASHEM will utterly separate me from His people"…and the aliens who join HASHEM to serve Him and to love the name of HASHEM to become His servants, whoever guards the Sabbath against desecration and grasps my covenant tightly— I shall bring them to My holy mountain, and I shall gladden them in My house of prayer, their elevation offerings and their feast offerings will find favor on My Altar, for My House shall be a house of prayer for all the peoples.

The words of my Lord, HASHEM/ELOHIM, Who gathers in the dispersed of Israel, “I shall gather to him even more than those already gathered.”

In verse 7, bolded in the text, we see Yeshua HaMashiach echoing the message of the prophet Isaiah. His House is for all nations/peoples. Make special note that these who were even once aliens have come to love HASHEM observe the Sabbath, hold tightly to His covenant and He accepts their offerings upon “His” altar. They are welcome in His House.

What about His gathering in of more than those already gathered? The French scholar Rashi of the eleventh century comments on verse 8 in the Stone TNK stating: “In addition to the exiled Jews, many Gentile converts will rally to Messiah.”

One Shepherd, One Flock

Jumping forward into the Renewed Covenant, this brings to remembrance something Yeshua HaMashiach said in John 10:14-19 and 27-29 (AENT).

I am the Good Shepherd and I know those who are mine. And those who are mine know me. Just as the Father knows me and I know my Father and I lay down my life for the sake of the flock. And I also have other sheep, those who were not from this sheepfold. And also them, it is necessary for me to bring them and they will hear my voice and all the flocks will become one. And there will be One Shepherd. Because of this, my Father loves me because I lay down my life that I may take it up again. No man takes it from me but I lay it down by my own will. For I have authority to lay it down and I have  authority to take it up again, for this Commandment I have received from my Father. And a division occurred again among the Yehudeans because of these words...

My sheep hear my voice and I know them and they come after me. And I give to them   life that is eternal and they will not perish and no man will ever snatch them from my hands. For my Father who gave them to me is greater than all, and no man is able to snatch them from the hands of my Father. I and the Father are one.

So, we see Yeshua HaMashiach establishing here who His sheep are, who they respond to, who gathers and receives the sheep, who holds the sheep and has ultimate authority over the sheep!

Let’s return to the House of HASHEM where Yeshua HaMashiach turned over tables and kicked people out of the Temple because of their corruption and lack of true worship and reverence. He says they have made His House a den of robbers. Where do we find these words and behavior in the Torah. We also see it in Jeremiah 7. In verses 1-11 (Stone TNK), we read:

The word that came to Jeremiah from HASHEM, saying: Stand in the gateway of the Temple of HASHEM and proclaim this message there. Say: Hear the word of HASHEM, all [people of] Judah who come through these gates to prostrate themselves before HASHEM.

Thus said HASHEM, Master of Legions, God of Israel: improve your ways and your deeds and I will cause you to dwell in this place. Do not trust the false statements that say, ‘The Sanctuary of HASHEM, The Sanctuary of HASHEM, The Sanctuary of HASHEM are they!’ Only if you truly improve your ways and your deeds; if you truly do justice between man and his fellow; do not oppress stranger, orphan and widow; and do not shed innocent blood in this place; and do not go after gods of others, to your own harm – then I will cause you to dwell in this place, in the land that I gave to your Fathers, forever and ever. Behold, you trust the statements that are of no use. Can one steal, murder, commit adultery and swear falsely and burn incense to the Baal and go after the gods of others that you never knew, and then come and stand before Me in this Temple, upon which My Name is proclaimed, and say, ‘We are saved!’ – in order to [continue] committing all these abominations? Has this Temple, upon which My Name is proclaimed, become a cave of criminals [den of robbers] in your eyes? Moreover – behold, I have seen it – the word of HASHEM.

The children of Judah thought nothing could harm them in the Temple. It was theirs. They were “saved” and safe there with all of their abominations and idol worship practices. In other words they were doing things their own way, making up their own rules contrary to Torah, and not worshipping and submitting to HASHEM.

The L-RD sent Jeremiah to warn the people that He would destroy the Temple. The people would be captured and exiled for their unfaithfulness and lack of obedience to His Torah. This is why every prophet has ever come, to turn the people of HASHEM  back to Him and submission to His instruction in His Torah.

Mashiach Yeshua did the same thing in making a whip and turning over tables in the Temple. He was tearing down the corruption in His Father’s House. When questioned for a sign by the Yehudeans at the Temple, he made a play on words. He said in John 2:19 (AENT), “Tear down this temple and after three days I will raise it.” And so He did, a keeper of promises, His body was resurrected in three days.

Yeshua HaMashiach once and for all destroyed the dividing wall, the insurmountable hedges built to keep the Gentiles out of the Jewish community and out of the Mashiach’s Kingdom. In Ephesians 2, Rav Shaul [the Apostle Paul] gives the life changing news of what the coming of the Mashiach means for the Gentile. Let’s highlight a few verses, 11-14 and 18-22 (AENT).

Wherefore be mindful that you formerly were carnal Gentiles; and you were called the uncircumcision by that which is called the circumcision and which is the work of the hands of the flesh. And you were, at that time, without the Mashiyach; and were aliens from the regulations of Israel; and strangers to the covenant of promise; and were without hope and without Elohim in the world. But now, by Yeshua the Mashiyach, you who were before afar off, have been brought near by the blood of Mashiyach. He is Himself our peace, who has made the two (become) one, and has demolished the wall which stood in the midst, and the enmity, by his flesh;…

Because by him there is access for us both, by one Spirit, to the Father. Wherefore you are not strangers nor sojourners, but you are fellow-citizens with the Set Apart believers and of the household of Elohim. And you are built upon the foundations of the Shlichim (Apostles) and the prophets; and Yeshua the Mashiyach has become the head of the corner of the edifice. And in Him all the edifice is framed together and grows into a Set Apart temple in Master YHWH; While you also were built in him for a habitation of Elohim through the Spirit.

The Father’s Will be Done 

Rav Shaul clearly states what Yeshua has already spoken to be the will of the Father, that His House would be a house of prayer for all peoples/nations, a household built of Jews and those from the nations that choose to serve Him and grasp His covenant. Yeshua HaMashiach stated that His “flocks” would become one, under the One Shepherd.

If we liken former seasons within the temples to the present body of Messianic Believers, we too have some corrupt leaders. Those who nullify the Torah and prophets, those who have built walls that Mashaich Yeshua tore down, those who separate Gentiles who seek to follow the Jewish Mashiach Yeshua in the cultural context of His example, and those who make idols of position.

Like "A Din of Robbers,”  there are those who seek to steal the opportunity of Gentiles to worship as the Father wills them to worship, in Spirit and truth in His House and in His Kingdom. No one can follow Yeshua HaMashiach without being obedient to who He is, the Jewish Mashiach, in following Torah. Disobedience is sin.

Who can stand before the Mashiach and say, this faith and all its promises are only for the Jewish people and their identity alone and I don’t like Your plan to let these “other” sheep join the Jewish fold?

Who? Who could dare say such a thing in the presence of the Father? I certainly don’t want to stand before the Father and say I taught anyone not to follow even the least of His commands.

Yeshua HaMashiach has the final word as to who is in His Kingdom and how their walk of obedience should be, not any organization, not any one person selling a bunch of books, not any council, not even a family member or friend. Yeshua has the authority given to Him by the Father and His word trumps every man’s opinion. We are all in submission to serving His will. And may it be so.

 The Time is at Hand 

It is time. It is time to return to Torah in the manner of the walk of Yeshua HaMashiach’s life. It is time for the tables to be turned over and the House to be cleansed. It is the season for returning to the acknowledged Messianic Judaism of the 1st century when Yeshua HaMashiach walked this earth and made the Father’s will clear. Fellow believers, it is time to be humble, to shine a unified light in His love, and remember that HASHEM is the righteous judge and King of His Kingdom, now and forever, Amein.  


Scriptures are quoted from the following texts: Complete Jewish Bible, D. Stern; Stone Tanakh; Stone Chumash; Aramaic English New Testament, A. Roth.