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Monday, April 5, 2021

We Continue on our Study in Revelation: Part 11, A Search For Truth at the end of the Age...

  

©2021, David E. Robinson: At the Gates of Yerushalayim Ministries

Go to Part 10

Go to Part One

Lessons from the Wilderness, Volume 35

 …A Study in Revelation…  Part Eleven

A Search for Truth at the End of the Age  [i] [ii] [iii] [iv] [v]

                                                                               


                We are at a crossroad in our study. I would like to take the first part of our journey and do some review. No doubt, if any of you have “slogged” their way through this series, You have found many definition, many quotes, much discussion about the state of things. One can rightly ask the question “What has been the point? We are eleven (REALLY) long posts into this study, and we have only covered eight verses in the first chapter!”

 Here is where we start, with the understanding that the Book of Revelation carries with it two distinct things – blessing(s) and curse(s).

 First the blessing(s):

 Revelation 1:1–3 (NET)

1:1 The revelation of Jesus Christ,1 which God gave him to show his servants2 what must happen very soon.3 He made it clear4 by sending his angel to his servant5 John, 1:2 who then6 testified to everything that he saw concerning the word of God and the testimony about7 Jesus Christ. 1:3 Blessed is the one who reads the words of this8 prophecy aloud,9 and blessed are10 those who hear and obey11 the things written in it, because the time is near!12 [vi]

 Revelation 22:6–7 (NASB95)

6 And ahe said to me, “bThese words are faithful and true”; and the Lord, the cGod of the spirits of the prophets, dsent His angel to show to His bondservants the things which must soon take place.

7 “And behold, aI am coming quickly. bBlessed is he who 1heeds cthe words of the prophecy of this book.”[vii]

 The Curse(s):

Message to Ephesus

 Revelation 2:4–7 (NET)

2:4 But I have this against you: You have departed12 from your first love! 2:5 Therefore, remember from what high state13 you have fallen and repent! Do14 the deeds you did at the first;15 if not, I will come to you and remove your lampstand from its place—that is, if you do not repent.16 2:6 But you do have this going for you:17 You hate what the Nicolaitans18 practice19—practices I also hate. 2:7 The one who has an ear had better hear what the Spirit says to the churches. To the one who conquers,20 I will permit21 him to eat from the tree of life that is22 in the paradise of God.’23 [viii]

 Message to Pergamum

Revelation 2:14–17 (NASB95)

14 ‘But aI have a few things against you, because you have there some who hold the bteaching of Balaam, who kept teaching Balak to put a stumbling block before the sons of Israel, cto eat things sacrificed to idols and to commit acts of immorality. 15     ‘So you also have some who in the same way hold the teaching of the aNicolaitans. 16 ‘Therefore arepent; or else bI am coming to you quickly, and I will make war against them with cthe sword of My mouth.

17 aHe who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches. aTo him who overcomes, to him I will give some of the hidden bmanna, and I will give him a white stone, and a cnew name written on the stone dwhich no one knows but he who receives it.’[ix]

 Message to Thyatira

 Revelation 2:20–23 (CEV)

†20 But I still have something against you because of that woman Jezebel. s She calls herself a prophet, and you let her teach and mislead my servants to do immoral things and to eat food offered to idols. 21 I gave her a chance to turn from her sins, but she did not want to stop doing these immoral things.

22 I am going to strike down Jezebel. Everyone who does these immoral things with her will also be punished if they do not stop. †23 I will even kill her followers.t Then all the churches will see that I know everyone’s thoughts and feelings. I will treat each of you as you deserve. [x]

 To the Church in Sardis

Revelation 3:1–3 (ESV)

“And to the angel of the church in Sardis write: ‘The words of him iwho has the seven spirits of God and the seven stars. “ ‘I know your works. You have the reputation jof being alive, kbut you are dead. Wake up, and strengthen what remains and is about to die, for I have not found your works lcomplete in the sight of my God. mRemember, then, what you received and heard. Keep it, and repent. If you will not wake up, nI will come olike a thief, and you will not know at what hour I will come against you. [1]

The Letter to Laodicea

Revelation 3:14–19 (HCSB)

14 “Write to the angel of the church in Laodicea:

“The Amen, q the faithful and true Witness, the Originator r s of God’s creation says: 15 I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish that you were cold or hot. 16 So, because you are lukewarm, and neither hot nor cold, I am going to vomit t you out of My mouth. 17 Because you say, ‘I’m rich; I have become wealthy and need nothing,’ u and you do not know that you are wretched, pitiful, poor, blind, and naked, 18 I advise you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire so that you may be rich, v white clothes so that you may be dressed and your shameful nakedness not be exposed, w and ointment to spread on your eyes so that you may see. 19 As many as I love, I rebuke and discipline. x So be committed y and repent. [xi]

Revelation 22:18–19 (NASB95)

            18 I testify to everyone who hears athe words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone badds to them, God will add to him cthe plagues which are written in dthis book; 19    and if anyone atakes away from the bwords of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from cthe tree of life and 1from the holy city, dwhich are written in this book.[xiii]

               Notice that there are no curses against the ekklesia in Smyrna or Philadelphia; they hold fast to the promises and the way of life.  So, what do these have to do with the crossroad mentioned at the beginning of this epistle? Again, this review is to remind you, dear reader, that the positioning of your heart and mind must be on Messiah, for this book reveals Yeshua in all His glory, splendor, and power. Position yourself anywhere else and you will miss the entire meaning of the Book. Blessings and curses await; there is only one line drawn in the sand. Which side do you stand upon?

 

Revelation 1:8 (KJV)
8 I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning, and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty. [xiv]

                 Here in our King James Red-Letter version, we see Messiah saying “…I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending…”  In other red-letter versions we see (as in the NKJV) 8 t“I am the Alpha and the Omega, 4the Beginning and the End,” says the 5Lord, u“who is and who was and who is to come, the vAlmighty.” [xv].  I mention these here to address another problem we have in interpretations. The "Alpha and Omega" or in Hebrew,  "the Aleph and the Tav" have for us theological importance - as long as we interpret them correctly. This is simply a matter of how the translator interpreted the passage in terms of what was said.  Where the differences occur from the original text is: (a) the phrase “…the beginning and the ending…” and (b) “…saith the Lord…”  The first, (a), is not found in the majority of the ancient texts; it is believed to have been a note of explanation about “Alpha and Omega” and over time it found its way into the text.  The second, (b), has in the older mss (manuscripts) according to Gill:

“…saith the Lord; that is, the Lord Messiah Yeshua; the Alexandrian copy, the Complutensian edition, and the Vulgate Latin, Syriac, and Arabic versions, read, "the Lord God"; and the Ethiopic version only God…”[xvi]

                 At what length we could delve into the apparent discrepancies of the English translations versus the original autographs, but we only need to do so if there is a marked difference in the translation; and not so much as in translation, but the way some have taken liberties with the grammer in both the Hebrew and the Greek.  These items are brought out for your information, so that you get a sense of the importance of study for yourself.  At this juncture, our focus must rest at the term “Alpha and Omega”.  The Alpha is symbolized by the Greek letter “a or A”; Omega by the letters “

(W)  or w”.  These correspond to the Hebrew letters ”a” for alef, and “ת “ for tav, the first and the last letters of the Hebraic alphabet. Now some say that there is a hidden message in the Tanakh/Torah if we look for it.  Let us look at one of “special” cases where these letters are used in the Hebrew.  Below is Genesis 1:1 written in Hebrew (remember Hebrew reads right to left):

בראשית      ברא      אלהים        את                 שמים    ואת             הארץ                                  

                                 'erets      shâmayim  shâmeh         (eth)    Elohim     bara    rê'shîyth

                         6the earth      5(and)   4the heavens                   2 Elohim  3He-created  1in beginning,

         (no English equivalent)

                (alef-tav)

                 It may be a little hard to visualize here, but without going into an in-depth study of the Hebrew language, let me point out what it is that they say is revealed here. There are 7 words in the very first sentence in the Bible (there is the number 7 again…).  Six are translated.  The first three refer to Elohim’s power, the power of creation.  (for those who are not aware, Elohim is a plural term for Yahweh, denoting His status not only as One, but more than (He is Father, Son and Holy Spirit).  On the left side of Gen. 1:1, are three more words, denoting what was created.  In between the Creator and the created stands – you guessed it – the Alef-Tav, or as some translate it, the Alpha and Omega.  From the very first sentence in the Holy word of Yahweh they say that Messiah Yeshua is revealed as the one that connects the creation to Yahweh as our mediator.  In the English you would never see this, but in the Hebrew, what Messiah Himself declares that He is, comes to life in the Lashon HaKodesh.  Or does it?  If we are to seriously study the Word of Yahweh, we must take into consideration some points: the alef-tav (pronounced ate or et) is generally used in Hebrew grammar as a marker to point to the word that follows it as being the definite direct object. [xvii] Where some get the notion that the “et” refers to Yeshua is from how John 1:1 is translated in some Hebrew New Testaments..

 

(Joh 1:1)  בראשית  היה  הדבר  והדבר  היה  את  האלהים  וא לה  ים   היה  הדבר׃

 

Elohim ha-ya ha-da-var ve-hoo Elohim-ha et ha-ya ve-ha-da-var ha-da-var ha-ya Be-re-sheet

 

Avram Yehoshua continues his explanation:

 “…Yeshua is definitely the Alpha and the Omega (Rev. 1:8, 17; 21:6; 22:13) which conceptually means He’s the Alef and the Tav. Of this there is no question. Alef and tav are the first and the last letters in the Hebrew alphabet corresponding to the first and last letters of the Greek alphabet, alpha and omega. But note the not insignificant difference in Yeshua being the Alef and the Tav vs. those who present Him as the Alef–Tav of John 1:1. The first is biblical and the second is kabbalistic. Yeshua as the Alef­ and the Tav is also conceptually seen in Yahweh saying that He is the First and the Last (Is. 44:6;(1) [xviii] see also 41:4; 48:12). But there are serious problems with anyone trying to present Yeshua as the Alef–Tav of Gen. 1:1 or John 1:1. Yeshua might have spoken in Hebrew to the Jewish Apostle John on the island of Patmos in Revelation 1:8, etc., but whether He did or not still allows for it to be translated into Hebrew. But with the Alef and the Tav in Hebrew it still does not bring us to any ‘ate’ in Jn. 1:1 because Yeshua does not say in Revelation, ‘I am the Alef–Tav’ but rather, ‘I am the Alef and the Tav.’ The former is three letters of the Hebrew alphabet that come into English as ‘the Alef–Tav’ (האת ha-ate). The latter is made up of eight Hebrew letters that come into English as five words: ‘the Alef and the Tav’ (האלף והתו ha-alef vih-ha-tav)… The word ‘ate’ in Gen. 1:1 is a non–translatable word. It is used in Hebrew grammar as a marker to point to the word that follows it as being the definite direct object. Some kabbalistic Rabbis who loved ‘to play with words’ saw ‘all of creation’ in the ‘ate’ of Gen. 1:1. This is because ‘all the letters’ of the Hebrew alphabet so to speak are ‘in–between’ alef and tav, and God used words (which are made of letters) to make His Creation…”[xix]

 Avram concludes with this:

 “…Looking at ‘ate’ in Genesis, the first verse in Hebrew literally reads, ‘In the Beginning, created God the Heavens and the Earth.’ There are two places where the definite direct object marker ‘ate’ is found in this verse. One is right before ‘the Heavens’ and the other is right before ‘the Earth.’ Putting ‘Yeshua’ where the ate’s are gives us this:

 ‘In the Beginning God created Yeshua the Heavens and Yeshua the Earth.’

This not only makes the sentence incoherent, but it also implies that Yeshua was created, an extremely heretical concept which goes directly against John 1:1 with its, ‘and the Word was God.’ God was never created… neither the Father nor the Son nor the Holy Spirit.

 Teaching that ‘ate’ is Yeshua and therefore that Yeshua is seen twice in the first verse of Genesis displays an ignorance for linguistic as well as theological reality. There is no direct parallel with ‘ate’ and Yeshua in either Gen. 1:1 or John 1:1. But there is much concerning Yeshua as the Light of Gen. 1:3 that, together with His Father (v. 1 ‘God’), and the Spirit of God (v. 2), created everything (vv. 6-31) as John tells us in John 1:1-3, 10.

Biblical commentators strive to find out what the biblical text is saying. That is called exegesis; taking out of the text what is in it. There is another ‘teaching method’ and I use that phrase pejoratively and that is eisegesis; projecting into a text something that is not there but only within one’s mind.(14)

 People who use eisegesis project their false ideas and theology onto the biblical text, using the biblical text to give their erroneous and deceptive doctrines ‘the authority of Scripture.’

                 In the first chapter of John, the Apostle was introducing his readers to someone whom he only first names in 1:17 as Yeshua the Messiah. John points to Him throughout the first chapter with biblically divine conceptual pictures but the Alef–Tav is not one of them:

 

1. Yeshua is the Word (v. 1) that was ‘in the Beginning’ (v. 1). The very first Words of God recorded in Scripture are, ‘Be (come forth) Light!’ Yeshua is literally the Word of Yahweh which became Living Light.

a. Yeshua is the Light of men and the True Light (vv. 4, 9).

2. Yeshua is the Word that is deity (v. 1) and therefore equal with God His Father.

3. Yeshua is the Word that made everything (v. 3) the Co–Creator.

4. Yeshua is Life, and that Life is the Light of Man (v. 4).

5. Yeshua is the One to whom faith produces true sonship with God (v. 12).

6. Yeshua is the Word that became flesh (v. 14) spoken from Mt. Sinai and engraved on Stone Tablets and placed in the Ark of the Covenant.

7. Yeshua is the Glory that was the Holy Spirit Glory Cloud over the Tabernacle (v. 14), God’s visible Presence on Earth.

8. Yeshua is the only begotten Son of God the Father (vv. 14, 18, 34, 49). ‘Only’ should be translated as ‘unique’ or ‘uniquely’ begotten. This is a direct reference to the miraculous son of promise, Isaac as the uniquely begotten son of Abraham.

 

                Abraham had another son before Isaac (Ishmael) and so Isaac could not have been seen as the ‘only’ son of Abraham, but Ishmael came through natural means. Isaac was unique as he was promised by God and the uniqueness was seen in that Sarah was far too old to conceive. This makes Isaac not the ‘only’ son as many English translations inaccurately present in Gen. 22:2 (‘Take now your son, your only son Isaac’) but the unique son of Father Abraham (Rom. 4:12). Gen. 22:2 should be translated, ‘Take now your son, your unique son’. Isaac pictures the miraculous conception of Yeshua in the womb of Miryam and as Isaac’s conception was unique, so too was Yeshua’s for He was the Promised Messiah (Is. 7:14). Jn. 1:18 should read, ‘The uniquely begotten Son’.(15) We are all sons and daughters of God but Yeshua is uniquely God’s Son.

 

  9. Yeshua is the living embodiment of Yahweh’s character and nature (v. 14).

10. Yeshua is the One who existed before John. This speaks of Yeshua’s pre–existence (Micah 5:2).

11. Yeshua is the Chesed (Forgiving–Loving–Kindness) and the Emet (Truth) of God (v. 17), God’s very Being, Character, and actions or deeds toward Israel. (For chesed; Ex. 34:6; Ps. 25:10; 26:3; 31:5, etc. For Truth; Ps. 84:11; Jer. 31:2; Zech. 4:7; 12:10, etc.)

 

                The King James Bible wrongly inserts the conjunction ‘but’ into the translation which denigrates the Law: ‘For the Law was given by Moses but grace and truth came by Messiah Yeshua.’

 John was not contrasting the glorious Law or Words of God reflected on Stone and parchment that was to be a blessing for Israel (Dt. 4:5-8) with Jesus. The Law or Torah is a Book of chesed and e’met revealing God’s glory and love for Israel. On the contrary, John was saying,

 

‘The Torah (the Book of Chesed and Emet) was given through Moses; the Chesed and the Emet (in the Book) came (into being) through Yeshua the Messiah.’

 

God’s character of chesed and emet pervade the Torah. This was seen by John in Yeshua as the next verse says that Yeshua reveals the Father (v. 18). Moses was the faithful mediator or ‘go–between’ revealing Yahweh to Israel. Yeshua embodied what Moses wrote of, further revealing the great chesed and emet of the Father for Israel through the Person and Work, love, compassion, healings, and sacrifice of the Son.

 

12. In Yeshua is the Lord (Yahweh; v. 23) referring to their oneness and Yahweh dwelling within Yeshua. (Yahweh is the name of the God of Israel occurring approximately 7,000 times in the Hebrew Bible. Unfortunately, it is presented in English as a title; the Lord with the o–r–d usually in small capital letters which hides the fact that His Name is Yahweh.

13. Yeshua is the Lamb of God that takes away the sin of the world (vv. 29, 35). Yeshua is the Sacrifice that frees us from sin and Satan’s Kingdom. This is similar to the way the lamb at the first Passover in Egypt saved the firstborn of the Hebrews from death. After that Pharaoh told Israel to leave (from under his authority and kingdom).

14. Yeshua is the Immerser in the Spirit of Yahweh (v. 33).

15. Yeshua is the Rabbi (v. 38) who came to show us and to teach us Who Yahweh is (Jn. 12:45; 14:6-11). As the Rabbi–Teacher He is the Living Example of one who loves God and Man with all His heart and who walks in all the Torah that applies to Him (and He was never legalistic about it). He also shows us the love that our Father has for us in every healing that He does, every blind eye that He opens, every demon He casts out, every sinner He forgives and every person that He raised from the dead. Yeshua truly reveals the power and the compassion of the Father (Jn. 14:8-11).

16. Yeshua is the long-awaited Jewish Messiah (v. 41). There were many ‘Messiahs’ or Messiahs in the ancient pagan world who also offered salvation to people but only Yeshua is the True Savior.

17. Yeshua is the King of Israel (v. 49; Mt. 27:11; Lk. 1:30-33; etc.).

18. Yeshua is the Son of Man (v. 51), Daniel’s heavenly Messiah who receives an eternal dominion or kingdom from the Ancient of Days (the Father) in Daniel 7:9-14. This Son of Man interestingly enough comes on the Clouds of Heaven, the Shekinah Glory Cloud.

 

Another Messianic title is the ‘One who would come on the Glory Clouds.’ This is seen in Yeshua’s trial before the High Priest and Sanhedrin:

 “And the High Priest stood up and said to Him, ‘Do You make no answer?! What is it that these men are testifying against You?!’ But Yeshua kept silent. And the High Priest said to Him, ‘I adjure You by the Living God that You tell us whether You are the Messiah, the Son of God!’ Yeshua said to him, ‘You have said it yourself. Nevertheless, I tell you, hereafter you shall see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power and coming on the (Glory) Clouds of Heaven.’” (Mt. 26:62-63)


19. Yeshua is also presented as the One that Father Jacob saw that day when Jacob went to sleep and saw the ladder where the angels of God were ascending and descending. Yeshua tells them that they too would see those same Heavens opened up and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man. Scripture only uses the phrase ‘ascending and descending’ in two places; one, where it is said that Yaakov (Jacob) saw the angels ascending and descending and in this cite of John’s (1:51).

 

It is not written that the angels were descending from Heaven first and then ascending as one might normally think of the scene with Jacob (Gen. 28:12-13) but that the angels were first ascending and then descending. The English of Gen. 28:13 states that ‘the Lord stood above it’ and we are to understand from most commentators that the Lord stood above the ladder (i.e., that God was in Heaven). But Hebrew grammar reveals that God was on the Earth standing above Jacob. The word for ‘it’ in Hebrew actually means ‘him.’ Translators using ‘it’ to refer to the ladder are grammatically correct but biblically wrong. It is not the ladder that the preposition refers to but Yahweh. The angels of God ascending first show us where God was, standing over Jacob on the ground next to him. If God were above the ladder in Heaven the angels would be described as descending first from Him.

Yeshua was standing over Jacob and the angels were leaving Yeshua, ascending to the Heavens and descending back to Him. And that is what Yeshua speaks of that day to Nathanael. That same parade of angels would be seen by the Apostles as Yeshua Himself says in John 1:51, ascending from Him and descending back down to Him. God in the form of Man was now standing upon the Earth. What Father Yaakov (Jacob) had seen and later called the House of God (i.e., the dwelling place of God, another reference back to the Tabernacle or dwelling place of God), the Apostles would know as Yeshua. No wonder Yeshua says,

 ‘For truly I say to you that many prophets and righteous men desired to see what you see and did not see it, and to hear what you hear and did not hear it’ (Mt. 13:17).

 

As for Yaakov naming the place where he saw Yeshua, Scripture records that,

 “He was afraid and said, ‘How awesome is this place! This is none other than the House of God and this is the Gate of Heaven!’” (Gen. 28:17)

 

The term Gate of Heaven is a designation that Yeshua uses of Himself (John 10:1, 7, 9). A gate, like a door, allows one to come and go from a house or field. Yeshua is the One who acts like a gate, allowing us to come into the Sheepfold of the Father.

 

Finally, to cement for us that Yeshua is referring to Father Yaakov’s experience, we hear Yeshua say that Nathanael is a ‘guileless’ Israeli (v. 47). The name Yaakov means a ‘deceiver and conniver’ for he certainly was, but this is Good News for all of us as we are all born with Yaakov’s nature. Yaakov connived his way to the birthright (Gen. 25:27-34) and deceived his father Isaac out of the blessing that should have gone to his older twin brother Esau (Gen. 27:1-46); but God knew that Yaakov’s heart would bend for Him and God changed his name to Israel.

Israel means one who strives or wrestles with God and man and is blessed. Yeshua calling Nathanael guileless or one in whom there is no deceit (Jn. 1:47) is the first of two references to Yaakov’s (the second being Yeshua saying that they would see the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man; v. 51). God would make Yaakov to be Israel and God would make all Yaakov’s Sons to be like their Father Israel; guileless…without deceit for we all have our spiritual lineage from Abraham, Isaac, and Israel (Ex. 32:13; see also 19:1, 6; 20:22; 24:17; Lv. 25:55, 27:2, 34, etc.). Yeshua was saying that Nathanael was truly a son of Father Israel.

 The Apostle John paints an incredible mosaic of Who Yeshua is in his first chapter by introducing us to at least nineteen titles and concepts of Yeshua found in the Tanach about Him to reveal that Yeshua is no ordinary man but the Word of God in flesh, the Creator, the Light, the Messiah, etc. Nowhere in all these titles and descriptions do we find any mention of Yeshua being the Alef–Tav or even the concept of Yeshua being the First and the Last or the Beginning and the End. It is very strange that if John were alluding to it in a first verse translation (that may or may not have even used ‘ate’ and if it did, it would not be the mystical ‘ate’), that neither he (nor the Holy Spirit who was inspiring him to write his account) ever bring it out in the chapter. The kabbalistic concept of the Alef–Tav is not found in John 1:1.

The issue is not whether Yeshua is the Alef–Tav or the Alef and the Tav. He is both as conceptually they are the same. The issue is that neither Gen. 1:1, Zech. 12:10 nor John 1:1 declare Yeshua to be the Alef–Tav…”[xx]

Now there is more to say on this subject, but the bottom line is this:

 You can see that there are two points of view here, so how do we know which is right?  I do not know. I could be presumptuous and give you my answer, but the best thing for me to do is to present to you the views and let you and the Holy Spirit decide.  Did Yahweh hide messages in His Word? That I can answer with a “yes”. The “how”, I cannot.  All I can do is look at what was written in the original autographs and if questions come to my mind, I have to then seek the guidance of the Holy Spirit to lead me to the Truth.  Is Messiah the Alpha and the Omega, the Alef and the Tav, or is the aleph-tav just a grammatical placeholder in Hebrew grammar and syntax, “את) “et) is used in the Tanakh for 1) the definite direct object marker, 2) a preposition meaning “with,” and 3) the second person feminine singular, and even occasionally the second person masculine singular, pronoun? [xxi] Yes. Moreover, the word את is used in other ancient, non-biblical texts in the languages of Hebrew, Moabite, Edomite, Aramaic, and Ugaritic (Canaanite). In ancient Israel, Hebrew was a living language, and the “את,” with its various vocalizations, has it always been an important component of spoken Hebrew and other Semitic languages?[xxii]  Yes.  The questions abound, and many have sought for answers, but truly I do not present to you an opinion, just a place to start and ask the Spirit for the wisdom to guide you in your search.  Remember though, every man that tries to translate the Holy Word is shadowed by his own experiences and biases; so, we have to be led by Yahweh’s Spirit, or we will get it wrong.  I will not even try to outguess Yahweh; if He wants to hide clues in the text, then so be it.  It is for me to search them out and with His help, come to the truth and Knowledge of Messiah Yeshua.

 The point to all this is to show you how the “why” the early translators made a note concerning “the beginning and the end”…

 For sure, here in the Apocalypse, no matter how we have arrived at the conclusion, we see united the Alef and the Tav, the Alpha and the Omega, and that must once more lead us in the belief that Yahweh is proving the whole of Scripture from Genesis to Revelation is one book, one unshakeable Word, one Holy Yahweh pointing to one Blessed Savior.  Debates will rage on and on till the Savior comes and teaches us  in the perfect.  The one thing we cannot do is dismiss half of the word of Yahweh and say it does not apply to us, because we are of a different covenant; this makes no sense.  There is but one covenant, and that is the one stated in Ephesians:

Ephesians 2:8-22 (NKJV)
8 oFor by grace you have been saved pthrough faith, and that not of yourselves; qit is the gift of God, 9 not of rworks, lest anyone should sboast. 10 For we are tHis workmanship, created in Messiah Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.

11 Therefore remember that you, once Gentiles in the flesh—who are called Uncircumcision by what is called uthe Circumcision made in the flesh by hands— 12 that at that time you were without Messiah, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope and without God in the world. 13 But now in Messiah Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Messiah.

14 For He Himself is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of separation, 15 having abolished in His flesh the enmity, that is, the law of commandments contained in ordinances, so as to create in Himself one vnew man from the two, thus making peace, 16 and that He might wreconcile them both to God in one body through the cross, thereby xputting to death the enmity. 17 And He came and preached peace to you who were afar off and to those who were near. 18 For ythrough Him we both have access zby one Spirit to the Father.

19 Now, therefore, you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints and members of the household of God, 20 having been abuilt bon the foundation of the capostles and prophets, Messiah Yeshua Himself being dthe chief cornerstone, 21 in whom the whole building, being fitted together, grows into ea holy temple in the Lord, 22 fin whom you also are being built together for a gdwelling place of God in the Spirit. [xxiii]

 Yahweh never changes; Messiah Yeshua is the same yesterday, today and forever- and beyond.  What applied then is still valid today as the ultimate sacrifice was paid for.  The Blood of the Lamb has set us free and the two, Jew and Gentile, have become one yet we are still under Torah (rightly defined as instruction).  The devout Jew does not  practice Torah because he believes it saves him; he practices Torah because he loves Yahweh!  This is the reason we should also since we are grafted in and because we also love Him! Messiah was asked in Matt. 22:36:

 36 “Teacher, which is the great commandment in the law?” [xxiv]

Messiah answered him by giving the answer as drawn from Scripture, what is called the sh’ma:

 4 Deuteronomy 6:4-9 (KJV)

4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD: 5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might. 6 And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart: 7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up. 8 And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand, and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. 9 And thou shalt write them upon the posts of thy house, and on thy gates. [xxv]

He also said:

 Matthew 22:38-40 (NKJV)

38 This is the first and great commandment. 39 And the second is like it: y‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ 40 zOn these two commandments hang all the Law and the Prophets.” [xxvi]

 Now, if all of the law and what the prophets said hang upon these two commandments, then why do Christians insist that the Law (Torah) is bondage, is legalism?  If we are not under the Law, then we are not under these commandments, which say we are to walk in love!  “…So, the Law is not about walking in bondage but about loving God and our neighbor.  So, whoever wants to walk in love will walk according to the Law as Yeshua did…”[xxvii]  Without the Law, how would we know how to live?  Yahweh redeemed us first, then gives us His Law, His instructions on how we are to live.  Do we honestly think that we will know how to live by Yahweh’s grace and mercy if we ignore half of what He said?  The use by John here of Scripture, the words Messiah used to announce Himself, unifies His word; there can be no more excuse to ignore the Old Testament, to ignore Yahweh.  The devout Jew lives his life here on earth to please Yahweh; all of what he does is designed to follow the commandments set forth by Yahweh, not to be in bondage, but to show his love and respect for Yahweh and His word by following faithfully what Yahweh said to do.  What did Yahweh say of Abraham? 

Genesis 15:6 (KJV)
6 And he believed in the LORD; and he counted it to him for righteousness. [xxviii]

 Genesis 26:1-5 (NKJV)

26     There was a famine in the land, besides athe first famine that was in the days of Abraham. And Isaac went to bAbimelech king of the Philistines, in Gerar. 2 Then the Lord appeared to him and said: c“Do not go down to Egypt; live in dthe land of which I shall tell you. 3 eDwell in this land, and fI will be with you and gbless you; for to you and your descendants hI give all these lands, and I will perform ithe oath which I swore to Abraham your father. 4 And jI will make your descendants multiply as the stars of heaven; I will give to your descendants all these lands; kand in your seed all the nations of the earth shall be blessed; 5 lbecause Abraham obeyed My voice and kept My charge, My commandments, My statutes, and My laws.” [xxix](…emphasis mine…)

The word “believed” in Gen. 15:6 not only means “believe”, but it also means “faithful”.  “Obeyed” in Gen. 26:5 means also “he heard”.  Believing in Yahweh’s commandments means you hear and obey and are faithful to keep them.  Belief without obedience or the faithfully walking out of the commandments is not belief!  These concepts are so important to learn and to know and do, my beloved!  How can any of us call ourselves believers if we do not do what he says?  Didn’t Messiah even tell us that?

 Luke 6:44-46

44 for every tree is known by its own fruit, for figs are not gathered from thorns, nor grapes vintaged from a bramble. 45 The good man, out of the good treasure of his heart, brings forth good; and the wicked man out of the wicked, brings forth what is wicked: for out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.

46 And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things that I say? [xxx]

Remember who is before us, the One who was, and is, and shall be.  Where is your focus? Is it on just holding on so you can get to heaven (which in itself is a total misreading of Scripture), or are you focused on walking with Yahweh now?  Our true focus should be in finding out what Elohim wants, and then doing that with a passion.  This one small life we live now should be lived with Him in our minds and hearts, in obedience and faithfulness; in doing so, our eternity will be set. 

 “…ὁ ὢν ὁ ἦν ὁ ἐρχόμενος  ho ōn ho ēn ho erchomenos  (ho own ho ane ho er-khom'-enos)…”  The one before us: Who was, is, and shall be.  Defined by Strong as “…the one being and the one that was and the one coming, that is, the Eternal, as a divine epithet of Messiah. (Each “and” … was omitted from the phrase because of limited space.): - which art (is, was), and (which) wast (is, was), and art (is) to come (shalt be)…” what a picture of Him this creates.  This truly is the Hebraic mindset at work.  A word on this…

To explain the Hebraic mindset would take as much space as we have already devoted, but I will try to narrow it down to as simple a concept as I can: time. 

To the Western mind (or the Greek or Hellenized mind), we tend to view things along a linear path, that is, as a concept, a straight line.  Not that anything we do is by nature in a straight path; but rather comes together in a logical or semi-logical, rational sense.  We tend to go from point “a” to point “b” etc., and except where time is concerned, this “logical” way of dealing with issues is rarely strayed from.  Time is the one variable that always seems to be out of sync with our plans.  Take a construction job as an example: the contractor has a schedule to meet.  When he bid the job, he factored into it most of the variables he could - material, manpower, weather and so on - and made a best-guess at how long it would take him to complete the project and the costs involved based upon this reasoned timeline.  All goes smoothly at first; then unexpected delays begin to encroach upon his schedule.  Maybe it is material deliveries, bad engineering, or a shortage of qualified workers.  Maybe it is worse weather than he anticipated; the bottom line is that his timing is thrown off, and his costs escalate, and his profits go down.  His well-planned linear schedule goes out the window, and he has to scramble now to salvage his project.  “A” is now followed by “D” and “B” has to wait on “C”; he has to find time to make it all work out and time is the variable that the western mind has a problem dealing with.  Let us look at a typical timeline:



Figure 14. Timeline depicting BC era.[xxxi]

Time is always seen in a linear progression to the Western or Greek mind.  To the Hebrew mind, time is better expressed as this:

 

The oval represents what time actually means to the Hebrew or semantic mind, that it goes beyond what we consider a beginning and an end.  Time exists within the circle, or oval, yet outside of the constraints of time is Yahweh.  For the Greek mind, the concept of time begins and ends, even if infinity is taken into consideration.  To the Hebrew mind, Yahweh sets the boundary of time, and He alone exists outside of time, seeing the end from the beginning, and able to interact within the scope of time at His will and pleasure.  Yahweh is the measure of time; He is the mindset of the Jew, of the Hebraic mind.  The Greek mindset consists of logic and reason; the Hebraic mind rests on Yahweh…

 Of reason, those whose view consists of a Yahweh view say: 

 “…We do not forgo the use of reason; but we know in our own troubled context that our best reason has around it -- in, with and under it -- gifts of the "otherness" that make for newness. Our technological achievements require and permit us to learn again what the community of faith has known -- and trusted -- from the outset: there is something outside our controlled management of reality which must be heeded. Sometimes that something turns out to be a miracle of new life…”[xxxii]

While we in the west have had a tendency to view the Yahweh of history as one who sits on the side lines, watching but not interacting, the Hebraic mind has a different view of Yahweh.  This mindset of ours, this “side-line Yahweh” has hurt our interpretations and our grasp of the New and Old Testaments.  While each Testament has its own strengths (and possible “weaknesses”, depending on how we choose to view them), it is as Rolf P. Knierim (Professor and Theologian of Old Testament Studies) says:

“…the New Testament’s legacy consists not only of its unsurpassable advantages (in theology) but also (in terms of interpretation of Yahweh’s will and purpose) of the deprivation of the vision of God’s presence and involvement in the totality of reality by neglecting this presence and involvement in God’s indefinitely ongoing old and imperfect world…” (parenthesis mine, DER)[xxxiii]

What Professor Knierim is saying in this essay is that while the New Testament focuses upon what Messiah has done, in the creation of the “new man”; while this has in its message the “…unsurpassable advantages…” it also in the Western mind tends to overshadow the message of the Tanakh, and by doing so, we miss out on the identity and splendor of Yahweh Almighty.  The Western/Greek mindset has seemed to be concerned with the building of the “Church”, and not the building of the “Kingdom of Yahweh”.  And to this end Ravenhill said:

“What God wants is not to fill up empty pews. He is not concerned about filling empty churches, He is concerned about filling empty hearts. And empty lives, and empty eyes that have no vision; Empty hearts that have no passion, And empty wills that have no purpose.”[xxxiv]

So, we see at work the two different views; two views that in reality should be one, as seen through the eyes of Messiah and the Father but clouded by the vision of man.  Yahweh is not linear; He exists outside of all that we know or shall ever know.  How do we, even in an eternity to be spent with Him, how do we come to know the vastness of His riches, of His mercy, of His love?  The Hebraic mindset concerns itself with this problem, by delving deep into the dark things of Yahweh, by plumbing the depths as best as we can, not concerned with the building of a denomination or of congregations, but of a kingdom that rests upon the shoulders of He who was, who is and shall ever be.  This is truly the vision we seek, one outside of what we are comfortable with, one that takes in the glory of Yahweh and His Son.  One more thought on this.  Is the Hebraic mindset superior over the Western mindset?  If we approach it to this end as looking at Scripture through Yahweh’s eyes in the context of the old way, the answer would be “Yes, maybe.”  But know this: all of man’s ways are inferior to that of Yahweh’s.  I know that this is an understatement in its own right, but we must be careful of not holding up one train of thought over the other, at the expense of the commonality that we should be sharing – the love of Yahweh for us and our love for Yahweh, not for a religion or a way of thinking. 

The Hebraic Perspective movement is vitally important in our understanding of Scripture and our Savior, yet we can find ourselves looking through the lens of the Hebraic mind and find ourselves loathing our “Christian” brethren for their alleged blindness, as well as repeating many mistakes of the past and present in our witness to our Jewish brethren.  If we in the Hebraic roots movement are not careful, we are at risk (as some have) of developing an arrogance equal to an elitist mentality, and we then have become no better than the hypocrites that Messiah chastised in His day.  To walk the way of the Master is a fine balancing act, one that calls us to humility first and foremost as we go forth on our journey of discovery and sanctification toward holiness.   We are also at risk of falling in love with being “Jewish” instead of being in love with Messiah; these are all real pitfalls and stumbling blocks that we must walk among on that narrow path that we are commanded to follow, and it is not a Hebraic path or a Christian path.  It is Yahweh’s path – that should be the sum total of our focus.

 Let us go on:

Revelation 1:9 (NABWRNT)

  I, John, your brother, who share with you the distress, the kingdom, and the endurance we have in Jesus, found myself on the island called Patmos because I proclaimed God’s word and gave testimony to Jesus. [xxxv]

Another reading of this verse is:

Revelation 1:9

I John, who also am your brother, and companion in tribulation, and in the kingdom and patience of Messiah Yeshua, was in the isle that is called Patmos, for the word of God, and for the testimony of Messiah Yeshua. [xxxvi]

 John was in trouble; like his brethren, he was persecuted by Domitian, the Roman emperor.  The tribulation that was endured was harsh, yet to what degree was the extent, we do not know.  Even here, there are two camps, one which says “…there may have been a persecution, but we cannot prove it…” and another that says “…there was a persecution, but we can’t prove it…”  What these two camps argue about is the date of the writing of the Revelation; they use the dating to support their individual interpretations of the events of the Apocalypse.  Whatever the reasons they give, or do not give, I will go out on a limb here and speak as a man; both camps are wrong.  For the question is not was there or was there not a persecution; the question is this: is Scripture inspired?  For if the Scripture is inspired, and men wrote as the Holy Spirit gave them guidance, using the experiences and understanding that their lives had been crafted in; it can be presumed then, that the Spirit would not let them lie, for no lie is of the truth.

 John says that he was their companion in tribulation; whether or not it came from the Romans, the Jews or the Gentiles matters not; it happened.  He was banished for the testimony of Messiah Yeshua and for the Word of Yahweh.  You see, the Apocalypse is not about what we think, or the dates we try to set; it is about Messiah Yeshua.  All other arguments are wasted time, time that should be spent in “the kingdom and patience of Jesus the Messiah.”  If only the trouble of John came to us today, trouble that besets us for teaching all of the word of Yahweh, then would there be power in our preaching and Yahweh be willing, sinners would come to Messiah and the kingdom would advance.  Instead, we lock ourselves up in arguments about “Did Yahweh really say that…” and debate endlessly about whose point of view is correct. 

 Now some may say that I do the same with the words I lay out here, that I argue about whose point of view is right… and I have to admit, yes, that is correct.  The difference is that it is not my point of view I am arguing for, it is Yahweh’s.  My opinions matters not, but His are always right and eternal.  You see, I come to the word searching for His intent, His meaning, His revelation.  I am not promoting any opinion of mine own, or at the best I make every effort not too.  When I do give an opinion, I will tell you (that I speak as a man).  It was Yahweh who declared this word, it was Yahweh who preserved it, and it is Yahweh that reveals it, and He tasks us with the obligation to seek out the truth.  If what I say is of my own, discount it!  Take not my word for anything for the words of a man are powerless!  Search the Scriptures to see if these things are true!  If they be from Yahweh, then will what I put down on this paper be shown to be true.  If not then discount it!  This is all I ask, that you search with me for the Truth and be set free.  Jesus gave to John this revelation; if we discount any of it, we run the chance of discounting the Lord.  Let us change our way of seeing, and see with the eyes of the Incarnate Yahweh, the Living Messiah and not argue over whose interpretation is correct – for only His is…

 Revelation 1:10-11 (KJV)

10 I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day, and heard behind me a great voice, as of a trumpet, 11 Saying, I am Alpha and Omega, the first and the last: and, What thou seest, write in a book, and send it unto the seven churches which are in Asia; unto Ephesus, and unto Smyrna, and unto Pergamos, and unto Thyatira, and unto Sardis, and unto Philadelphia, and unto Laodicea. [xxxvii]

 “I was in the Spirit on the Lord’s day..”  much has been said about this section of verse 10, which after all, has two different translations from the Greek, the other (and more correct translation) being “…I came to be, in Spirit, in [on] the Lord’s day…”  As I have stated before, there is the case of the curious Greek that the Revelation was written in, hence the differences in the translation of egenomēn en pneumatic.  The proper sense of this phrase is that John had come into “an ecstatic condition”[xxxviii] (in other words a trance).  Now, the next phrase is the problematic one.  “…on the Lord’s day…” (Greek κυριακηG2960 A-DSF  ημεραG2250) has been almost universally rendered to infer that John was referring to the first day of the week, or Sunday. 

 Much has been written concerning this, but most if not all the scholars that write about this come with a western mindset, the Hellenistic view.  Remember though, that there is the accepted convention that the writer of Revelation was putting Hebraic concepts into the Greek language.  Now, John was a polished writer, as the Greek of his Gospel and subsequent letters attest (we will for now ignore the textural critics that want to assign all of John’s work to anyone but the beloved apostle).  But John was not in his house; John had suffered tribulation with his other brethren, how severe we do not know, but we do know that he was imprisoned on Patmos, a bare, windswept island in the Aegean Sea that the Romans had converted into a penal colony.  Under these harsh conditions our Adonai and Savior gave to John His Revelation.  Most scholars think that John was about the same age as Messiah, but a closer look at the Gospels will reveal to us that most of the apostles were young men, in their 20’s more than likely and John was in all likelihood, the youngest of them all, possibly as young as sixteen to eighteen. 

Going on the common assumption that the Revelation was written about AD 95, John, by then, was well into his 70’s, or older if one wishes to hold to accounts of him being the same age as the other apostles.  Under persecution, exiled to a prison, this old man came, cast in with his brethren, other Jews, and Gentiles.  In situations such as these it could be assumed that one would revert back to their native tongue; hence as these Revelations from Yahweh flowed through him, John would have processed them in Hebrew or Aramaic, as he more than likely received them in the Lashon HaKodesh.  As he was instructed to write them down and send them off to the seven ekklesias in Asia, John would have switched to Greek, the language of the realm, so that he could impact the most souls. Considering the situation, he was in, struggling to put down in words what he had seen, it is no wonder that his Greek was a bit shaky.  And it is no wonder that modern scholars miss the symbolism found in Revelation, for you have to go back into the Tanakh, the Old Testament, and the Torah to understand the Revelation.

“κυριακη ημερα” (koo-ree-ak-os' hay-mer'-ah) or the “Lord’s day” is used nowhere else in the New Testament.  There are similar occurrences of κυριακός kuriakos (koo-ree-ak-os') [Lord], so that we may get the meaning of it “as pertaining to (the Lord)…” yet without any other reference to go by, [now this is my opinion], it is a hard stretch to say that John was referring to Sunday.  No other apostle in their writings ever call the first day of the week “the Lord’s day”; it wasn’t until AD 150 and beyond that the early church fathers even began to make reference to Sunday being called the “Lord’s day”.  So, what do we make of this?  A seemingly inconsequential reference to the first day of the week, or is it something more?  Some think that in John’s original autograph, he might have written down the Greek word denoting “shabot” or “Sabbath”, but we have no proof of that.  Since the western mindset is prevalent in most commentaries and interpretations, seeing the “Lord’s day” as Sunday is understandable, but let us look once again at the proper interpretation of this verse:

 “…I came to be, in Spirit, in [on] the Lord’s day…”

We have to understand and truly comprehend what is being said here.  What is the Revelation about?  It is about Messiah Yeshua, as the glorified Lord, setting forth His righteous and holy judgment of not only His ekklesias and His Bride, but also of the nations of the earth.  Where do these visions occur?  In heaven and on earth.  What is taking place?  Judgment my friends, judgment.  The whole great theme of the Book of Revelation is about that Great and Terrible Day of the Lord, where the Lamb of Yahweh becomes the Lion of Judah and with the two-edged sword that is the Word of Yahweh comes forth to conquer and reign, to take His rightful place as King of kings and Lord of lords.  Here is where I think most make their mistakes in interpreting Revelation: they do not understand the language, they do not let Scripture define the terms, and perhaps they do not understand the relationship of Yahweh’s appointed times (The Feasts of the Lord) with – well - with the first advent of Messiah and with His second coming.  All I can do for you at this moment is touch on these things, so that you will begin to see the bigger picture of what Yahweh is doing.  It is marvelous, it is awesome, and you have probably never been taught this before; I know I hadn’t.  It is vital to understand the relationship between the Testaments, to do away with the concept that they are separate.  There is only one Bible, and it consists of a seamless story.   The only thing that is to be separate is ourselves unto Yahweh, to be holy as He is holy.  That is the meaning of holy, don’t you know?  Holiness is another theme we might get too, but just understand it like this:

 “…The older I grow the more I am convinced that real practical holiness does not receive the attention it deserves, and that there is a most painfully low standard of living among many high professors of religion in the land. But, at the same time, I am increasingly convinced that the zealous efforts of some well–meaning persons to promote a higher standard of spiritual life are often not “according to knowledge” and are really calculated to do more harm than good. Let me explain what I mean.

It is easy to get crowds together for what are called “higher life” and “consecration” meetings. Anyone knows that who has watched human nature and read descriptions of American camp–meetings and studied the curious phenomena of the “religious affections.” Sensational and exciting addresses by strange preachers or by women, loud singing, hot rooms, crowded tents, the constant sight of strong semi–religious feeling in the faces of all around you for several days, late hours, long protracted meetings, public profession of experience—all this kind of thing is very interesting at the time and seems to do good. But is the good real, deeply rooted, solid, lasting? That is the point. And I should like to ask a few questions about it.

 Do those who attend these meetings become more holy, meek, unselfish, kind, good–tempered, self–denying and Messiah–like at home? Do they become more content with their position in life, and more free from restless craving after something different from that which God has given them? Do fathers, mothers, husbands and other relatives and friends find them more pleasant and easy to live with? Can they enjoy a quiet Sunday and quiet means of grace without noise, heat, and excitement? Above all, do they grow in charity, and especially in charity towards those who do not agree with them in every jot and tittle of their religion?

 These are serious and searching questions and deserve serious consideration. I hope I am as anxious to promote real practical holiness in the land as anyone. I admire and willingly acknowledge the zeal and earnestness of many with whom I cannot cooperate who are trying to promote it. But I cannot withhold a growing suspicion that the great “mass–meetings” of the present day, for the ostensible object of promoting spiritual life, do not tend to promote private home religion, private Bible reading, private prayer, private usefulness, and private walking with God. If they are of any real value, they ought to make people better husbands and wives and fathers and mothers and sons and daughters and brothers and sisters and masters and mistresses and servants. But I should like to have clear proofs that they do. I only know it is far easier to be a Christian among singing, praying, sympathizing Christians in a public room, than to be a consistent Christian in a quiet, retired, out–of–the–way, uncongenial home. The first position is one in which there is a deal of nature to help us: the second is one which cannot be well filled without grace. But, alas, many talk nowadays about “consecration,” who seem to be ignorant of the “first principles of the oracles of God” about “conversion.”[xxxix]

 What Ryle is talking about Messiah speaks to in Chapter 2 and 3 in His letters to the ekklesias. We will get there, but first a quick overview of the Father’s timeline and His plan for redemption..


Figure 15.  Yahweh's Timeline - The Feasts of the Lord [xl]

Yahweh has a plan.  It has always been “Plan A”, He doesn’t have a “plan b”.  Plan “A” was always to have His Son come down to earth and save His chosen ones from the snares of sin, death, and hell.  To this end, Yahweh gave us His Word so that we would know and understand the times and seasons and so we could discern what was happening on the prophetic timeline of redemption.  We will look back in Leviticus 23, but here is another overview of the Feasts with accompanying Scriptures and a brief outline of the months and days associated with each Feast:

  

Israel’s Annual Feasts (23:1-44)

Feast

Month of Sacred Year

Day

Corresponding Month

Passover

1 (Ahib or Nissan)   

          14

                                      Mar.–Apr.

Ex. 12:1–14; Lev. 23:5; Num. 9:1–14; 28:16; Deut. 16:1–7

*Unleavened Bread

1 (Ahib/Nissan)

          15–21

                                      Mar.–Apr.

Ex. 12:15–20; 13:3–10; Lev. 23:6–8; Num. 28:17–25; Deut. 16:3, 4, 8

Firstfruits

1 (Ahib) and

16

                          Mar.–Apr.

 

3 (Sivan)

6

                          May–June

Lev. 23:9–14; Num. 28:26

*Weeks

(Harvest of Pentecost)

3 (Sivan)

6 (50 days after barley harvest)

May–June

Ex. 13:16; 34:22; Lev. 23:15–21; Num. 28:26–31; Deut. 16:9–12

Trumpets

Rosh Hashanah

        7 (Tishri)    

         1

Sept.–Oct.

Lev. 23:23–25; Num. 19:1–6

Day of Atonement

         Yom  Kippur    

        7 (Tishri)

          10

Sept.–Oct.

Lev. 16; 23:26–32, Num. 29:7–11

*Tabernacles

           (Booths or ingathering)

       7 (Tishri)

          15–22

Sept.–Oct.

Ex. 23:16; 34:22; lev. 23:33–36, 39–43; Num. 29:12–38; Deut. 16:13–15

*The three major feasts for which all males of Israel were required to travel to the temple in Jerusalem (Ex. 23:14–19).

Figure 16. Dates and Scriptural References to the Feasts of the Lord [xli]

I want you to take notice now of Leviticus 23, verses 1 and 2: 

 Leviticus 23:1-2 (KJV)

1 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts. [xlii]

 There have been many definitions given for the word “convocations” yet only two are truly appropriate for the way Yahweh chose to use this word.  Strong’s Hebrew dictionary defines “convocation” as:

 H4744 מקרא     miqrâ' mik-raw'

From H7121; something called out, that is, a public meeting (the act, the persons, or the palce); also a rehearsal: - assembly, calling, convocation, reading. [xliii]

 It is interesting that “convocation” in the Hebrew has the same meaning as “ekklesia” in the Greek, namely “called out” or “assembly”.  Aside from this, the definition that we are interested in is “rehearsal”.  Look again at Lev. 23:1-2.  Yahweh is calling for His people to observe a holy rehearsal; a rehearsal for what though, and why should believers today be concerned with these “feasts of the Lord?  Look at His answer to this latter question given in Lev.23:2: Yahweh says that they are His feasts.  Time and again, Yahweh says that these feasts, which are His, are to be remembered from generation to generation (Lev. 23:14, 21, 31, 41, and 43).  Now we know that the common understanding is that these are “Jewish feasts”, yet Yahweh clearly says that they are His, that they belong to Him.  The Hebrew word for “feasts “ is (Strong’s #H4150)  מועדה    מעד    מועד  mô‛êd  mô‛êd  mô‛âdâh (mo-ade', mo-ade', mo-aw-daw')[xliv], and is generally translated as “congregation”, but is also translated as season, time, times appointed or rehearsal.  The idea of “appointed time” is given by Gesenius as to be “an appointed sign, a signal”[xlv].  This was understood by the Sages as to mean a “remembrance”.  Matthew Henry says of them this:

 “…They are the feasts of the Lord (my feasts), observed to the honour of his name, and in obedience to his command. 3. They were proclaimed; for they were not to be observed by the priests only that attended the sanctuary, but by all the people…”[xlvi]

 The Feasts then are designed to be a gathering of the called-out ones, the congregation of Yahweh, as a sign and a remembrance of who He is, and what He has done for His people.  These are not Jewish feasts, these are not Christian feasts, these are Yahweh’s feasts, set up by Him for all generations of believers as remembrances, as signs and signals of the times and seasons that He has set into motion throughout the history of the earth and mankind.  We see this in Lev. 23:2 where Yahweh says:

 Leviticus 23:2 (KJV)

2 Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of the LORD, which ye shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are MY FEASTS. [xlvii] (capitals and italics mine: author)

The word used for “proclaim” is Strong’s #H7121, קרא  qârâ' (kaw-raw') which means “…the idea of accosting a person met… to call out to… that is, properly address by name…”[xlviii] The idea that is conveyed here is of an invitation by Yahweh to His people to come to His feasts.  This is the answer for those who ask why they are important to us as believers today.  Yahweh never changes; He is the same today as He was yesterday, as He will be tomorrow.  We are a grafted-in people, joined forever to the house of David, the people of Israel.  What Yahweh commanded them to do and observe bears upon us also.  What the feasts of Yahweh truly represent is His plan for salvation and they serve as a dress rehearsal for what we will be doing in eternity. 

All throughout the Bible are small clues that reveal to us Yahweh’s plan; by examining Scripture we can ascertain the times and seasons of not only Messiah’s return, but also all that was prophesied about Messiah, His first ascent (birth - we can even know His true birthday, the clues are there!), His death and resurrection.  It is all there in Scripture, waiting for us to seek it out.  Now why would we want to miss out on these dress rehearsals for eternity, just because some man said that the Tanakh[xlix] was not relevant to believers today?  We have discarded our Hebraic roots to our own peril, to our own shame.  We know not the things of Yahweh if we cast away half of His holy word because we are not comfortable with the image of Yahweh it presents.  Yahweh preserved His word in the Hebrew and the Greek for a reason.  With prayer and the right tools, the Holy Spirit will open our eyes to the magnificence of His holy Writ, and lead us into all truth, but we must be willing to change our vision, to see through the Jewish eyes of the fathers and prophets, of the apostles and of our Lord.  No more can we as believers rely upon men to interpret Yahweh’s word, we must let Scripture interpret Scripture for only then can we be set free from this Hellenistic mindset that has clouded our sight for so long. 

 So why the Feasts?

 Following is a chart that gives a brief overview of the Feasts, their significance, and some other related information:

  

Passover (Pesach)

...speaks of redemption from Egypt or the world.  The 1st Passover and all the
ensuing dress rehearsals point (forward and backward) to the Messiah who is
the Passover Lamb who has paid the penalty we deserve.

Feast of Unleavened Bread
(Chol Moed)

...speaks of sanctification or being set apart.  Leaven represents the corruption
or sin where we reside (temple, home, body).  Messiah's body did not decay in
the grave.

Feast of Firstfruits
(Yom Bikkerim)

...speaks of resurrection.  Messiah rose triumphantly from the grave on the third
day because the penalty of death had no legal right to hold Him.

Feast of Weeks or Pentecost
(Shavuot)

...speaks of the personal intimacy in a relationship with Him.  God poured out
His Holy Spirit after the ascension of the Living Word (Living Torah) as just as
He did when he gave the written and spoken Word (Torah) on Mt Sinai.

Tisha B'Av (fast day)



(The 9th of Av in these  
tragic years
----------->
were anniversaries of the
10 of 12 spies slander of
God's promise to deliver
Israel; only Caleb and
Joshua defended God.)












(This time ------------------>
is happening right now!



 

This time ------------------->
is SOON coming!




So that we all will see
this ---------------------->)

...speaks of consistency in God's plan from the time of Moses (1312 BCE).  The
10 of 12 spies were slanderous of God's Word and promise because He said He
would go before them, fight their battles, and deliver them into the land.  As a
result, we see this very same day cursed throughout history:  

#2/586 BCE - the 1st Temple was destroyed by Nebuchadnezzar (100,000 Jews
died/Millions exiled);  
#3/70 CE - the 2nd Temple was destroyed by General Titus (2 Million Jews died/1
Million exiled);
#4/135 CE - the Bar Kochba revolt was crushed by the Emperor Hadrian (100,000
Jews slaughtered);
#5/136 CE - General Turnus Rufus leveled Jerusalem, rebuilt it as a pagan city to
be called Aelia Capitolina and forbade Jews to enter;
#6/1095 CE - Pope Urban declared the 1st Crusade (Thousands of Jews died/
many communities obliterated);
#7/1492 CE - Spanish Inquisition & the expulsion of Jews from Spain;
#8/1914 CE - WWI started, stemmed the resentment for the Holocaust;
#9/1935 CE - Hitler enacted a law that propelled the nation toward the infamous
Nuremberg Laws of the Holocaust;
#10/1943 CE - the beginnings of the deportation of the Warsaw Ghetto to
Treblinka.

Jeremiah 31:10-13,  Hear the word of the Lord, O ye nations, and declare it
in the isles afar off, and say, He that scattered Israel will gather him, and
keep him, as a shepherd doth his flock.  For the Lord hath redeemed Jacob,
and ransomed him from the hand of him that was stronger than he
.  

 

Therefore they shall come and sing in the height of Zion, and shall flow together to the goodness of the Lord, for wheat, and for wine, and for oil, and for the young
of the flock and of the herd: and their soul shall be as a watered garden; and
they shall not sorrow any more at all.  Then shall the virgin rejoice in the
dance, both young men and old together
:

 

for I will turn their mourning into joy, and will comfort them, and make them rejoice from their sorrow.

Feast of Trumpets
(Yom Teruah)

...speaks of the peal of trumpets or the Shofar that will sound to announce the
coronation of the King of Kings - the Judge of the World, who's feet will land on
the Mt of Olives. Days of Awe (10 day) preparation begins for the fulfillment of
the Day of Atonement - the closing of the Books, the end of grace.

Day of Atonement (fast day)
(Yom Kippur)

...speaks of that solemn day when Israel and all mankind turns to Messiah in
repentance:  And I will pour upon the house of David, and upon the

inhabitants of Jerusalem, the spirit of grace and of supplications: and they
shall look upon me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for him,
as one mourneth for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for him, as one
that is in bitterness for his firstborn;
Zechariah 12:10. This annual face to face
meeting reviews the past (year), accounting for every minute and revealing
whether we have "loved the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy soul and
all thy mind... and loved thy neighbor as thyself.  On these two commandments
hang all the law and the prophets."  Matthew 22:37-40.

Feast of Tabernacles or
Booths (Succot)

...speaks of that joyous day when the King of Kings sets up the Messianic
Kingdom to rule, reign, and tabernacle among men.

Festival of Light (Hanukkah)

...speaks of the season when the Light of the World was conceived and entered
this physical realm.

Purim

...speaks of the season when once and for all, the iniquity of this world is dealt
with and the earth is made safe again.

Figure 17.  Overview of the Dress Rehearsals, the Feasts of the Lord in Prophecy[l]

 

To answer the question of why the Feasts there are first things we must do to understand the Word of  Yahweh:

 

1.       We must allow His Word and His Spirit to interpret what we read…

2.       We must be on His timetable, His calendar…

3.       We have to get to know Him, His nature and that can only be accomplished by the hearing and doing of the Word, His Torah

4.       We must embrace the Living Torah, Yeshua Ha’Machiach…

 To understand the times and seasons, Yahweh gave us His calendar.  To understand the Revelation, we must understand Yahweh’s plan, which by the previous tables you can see, Yahweh will fulfill all things according to HIS plans, HIS will, HIS timing.  Doesn’t it just make good sense for us as believers to put aside our rebellious attitudes and our insistence that the Yahweh of Heaven and Earth has to mold Himself to our day-planner?  Do you want to know the Truth, or does the lie suffice?  O get angry brethren at the number of years you have been deceived! O weep O Zion you who believe, for the blessings that have been denied you for your unbelief, those stolen from you by the one who seeks to change times and seasons!  O shepherds cry out for mercy from He who sits on the Throne of Heaven, for you have led the flock astray!

                 I speak not to dissuade or condemn anyone for their belief – what you hold onto is between you and Yahweh.  But I would be amiss if I failed to at least tell you that we have to open our hearts and minds to Yeshua and to the very real possibility that we have been led astray by the “church” over the past 1980 years since our Lord was crucified, resurrected, and ascended to His throne.  All of this is pertinent to our search for the Truth at the end of the Age.  That is why I titled this epistle as I did, and why it is not just a study of the Book of Revelation.  We must study more than the words we read, we must also study the leanings of our hearts and be ready for the correction of the Ruach HaKodesh.  What if I am wrong in all ascertains of mine?  Then may it please HaShem to correct me as He sees fit and hold me accountable.  I am open to this.  I understand I must have this attitude so that I do not get “puffed-up” in my “wisdom”, so that I truly remain humble before Him.  Can you say the same, or is your heart and mind hardened to hearing what may be the Truth that finally sets you free?  Freedom is in the Torah, and in and comes through Yeshua alone.

 This has been a long post. Thank you for staying with it.

May the blessed One, the Father and His Son, keep you this day, Amein.





[i]NOTICE OF INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY RIGHTS: Unless otherwise cited, all material found on this blogsite (original text, opinions, conclusions, and other material not related to cited sources remains the collected intellectual property of the author of this site, David E. Robinson, Elder Teacher, and are owned and controlled by myself and are protected by copyright and trademark laws and various other intellectual property rights and unfair competition laws of the United States, foreign jurisdictions, and international conventions. Any errors found within, rest solely upon me; please do not blame the Father for my mistakes. I am teachable and correctable, not infallible. 😊

[ii] FAIR USE DISCLAIMER: This blog site may contain content that is not authorized for use by its owner. All such material will be cited back to its original source. According to Section 107 of the Copyright Act: “…the fair use of a copyrighted work […] for purposes such as criticism, comment, news reporting, teaching (including multiple copies for classroom use), scholarship, or research, is not an infringement of copyright…” I have made and will continue to make every effort to stay within all ethical and moral guidelines in the use of material presented here, and the use of these materials is solely intended for educational purposes only, and all efforts to obtain or sustain fair use of non-owned material will be made.

[iii] Author’s note: This site is for education only and is not affiliated with any institution, organization, or religious group. It is the sole production of its editor. Use of information from Jewish-themed websites (or any other source material) should not be construed as these sites endorsing or confirming any thesis introduced by the author of this epistle. I present the information from their respective sites for instructional purposes only and/or to aid in the readers understanding of the subjects discussed.

[iv] Author’s note:  Throughout this study I will be using the NET Bible® and the NET Notes®: within the notes you will see symbols like this: ( א B Ψ 892* 2427 sys). These are abbreviations used by the NET Bible® for identifying the principal manuscript evidence that they (authors and translators of the NET Bible®) used in translating the New Testament. Please go to https://bible.org/netbible/ and see their section labeled “NET Bible Principals of Translation” for a more complete explanation on these symbols and other items pertinent to the way the NET Bible uses them.

[v] Author’s Note: In these studies, I have used the notes that come along with the passages I cite from the sources that I cite: these need a bit of a disclaimer though. As in all things, not everything that is footnoted is something that I necessarily agree with, especially if it contradicts what I believe pertains to any matters of the Torah or the commandments of God. I give you the notes as they are written by the authors of the material I cite from, so that you can see the information contained within them. It truly is not my place to edit or correct them; if they state anything that is in opposition to what I teach, then so be it. I will address these issues if requested. That is not to say I should not challenge something I believe, in my humble opinion, might contradict the truth of God’s word; that I will do in the main body of my epistles for that is where my gentle dissent belongs. Most (but not all) of the differences will come when I quote from a source that displays a decidedly Western/Greek mindset, as opposed to a Hebraic perspective. I have to be intellectually honest – I am biased toward the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and His son, Yeshua the Messiah. I pray then we all can find common ground as we study the Scriptures.

 i  See ch. 1:4, 16

j  1 Tim. 5:6

k  See Luke 15:24

l  Acts 14:26

m  [2 Tim. 1:13]

n  ch. 2:5

o  ch. 16:15; Matt. 24:43; 1 Thess. 5:2, 4; 2 Pet. 3:10

[1]  The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Re 3:1–3). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.


·         [The following notes are taken from the NET Bible® footnotes, copyright (c) 1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press L.L.C. All rights reserved. Used by permission from www.bible.org, n.d. Numbering system is unique to NET® Notes.]

1  tn The phrase ἀποκάλυψις Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ (ajpokalupsis Iēsou Christou, “the revelation of Jesus Christ”) could be interpreted as either an objective genitive (“the revelation about Jesus Christ”), subjective genitive (“the revelation from Jesus Christ”), or both (M. Zerwick’s “general” genitive [“Biblical Greek”, §§36–39]; D. B. Wallace’s “plenary” genitive [ExSyn 119–21]). In 1:1 and 22:16 it is clear that Jesus has sent his angel to proclaim the message to John; thus the message is from Christ, and this would be a subjective genitive. On a broader scale, though, the revelation is about Christ, so this would be an objective genitive. One important point to note is that the phrase under consideration is best regarded as the title of the book and therefore refers to the whole of the work in all its aspects. This fact favors considering this as a plenary genitive.

2  tn Grk “slaves.” Although this translation frequently renders δοῦλος (doulos) as “slave,” the connotation is often of one who has sold himself into slavery; in a spiritual sense, the idea is that of becoming a slave of God or of Jesus Christ voluntarily. The voluntary notion is not conspicuous here; hence, the translation “servants.” In any case, the word does not bear the connotation of a free individual serving another. BDAG notes that “ ‘servant’ for ‘slave’ is largely confined to Biblical transl. and early American times … in normal usage at the present time the two words are carefully distinguished” (BDAG 260 s.v.). The most accurate translation is “bondservant” (sometimes found in the ASV for δοῦλος), in that it often indicates one who sells himself into slavery to another. But as this is archaic, few today understand its force.

3  tn BDAG 992–93 s.v. τάχος has “quickly, at once, without delay Ac 10:33 D; 12:7; 17:15 D; 22:18; 1 Cl 48:1; 63:4 … soon, in a short time … Rv 1:1; 22:6 … shortly Ac 25:4.”

4  tn Or “He indicated it clearly” (L&N 33.153).

5  tn See the note on the word “servants” earlier in this verse.

6  tn “Then” is not in the Greek text, but is supplied to make the chronological succession clear in the translation.

7  tn The genitive phrase “about Jesus Christ” is taken as an objective genitive.

8  tn The word “this” is used to translate the Greek article τῆς (tēs), bringing out its demonstrative force.

9  tn The word “aloud” has been supplied to indicate that in the original historical setting reading would usually refer to reading out loud in public rather than silently to oneself.

10  tn The words “blessed are” are repeated from the beginning of this verse for stylistic reasons and for clarity.

11  tn Grk “keep.” L&N 36.19 has “to continue to obey orders or commandments—‘to obey, to keep commandments, obedience.’ ”

12  sn The time refers to the time when the things prophesied would happen.

[vi]  Biblical Studies Press. (2005). The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible (Re 1:1–3). Biblical Studies Press.

·         End NET® Bible Notes

·         [The following notes are taken from the NET Bible® footnotes, copyright (c) 1996-2006 by Biblical Studies Press L.L.C. All rights reserved. Used by permission from www.bible.org, n.d. Numbering system is unique to NET® Notes.]

 a  Rev 1:1; 21:9

b  Rev 19:9; 21:5

c  1 Cor 14:32; Heb 12:9

d  Rev 1:1; 22:16

a  Rev 1:3; 3:3, 11; 16:15; 22:12, 20

b  Rev 1:3; 16:15

1  Lit keeps

c  Rev 1:11; 22:9, 10, 18f

[vii]  New American Standard Bible: 1995 update. (1995). (Re 22:6–7). La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation.

12  tn The Greek word translated “departed from” (ἀφίημι, aphiēmi; L&N 15.48) can actually be used of divorce (L&N 34.78), so the imagery here is very strong.

13  tn Grk “from where,” but status is in view rather than physical position. On this term BDAG 838 s.v. πόθεν 1 states, “from what place? from where?… In imagery μνημόνευε πόθεν πέπτωκες remember from what (state) you have fallen Rv 2:5.”

14  tn Grk “and do” (a continuation of the previous sentence in the Greek text). For stylistic reasons in English a new sentence was started here in the translation. The repeated mention of repenting at the end of the verse suggests that the intervening material (“do the deeds you did at first”) specifies how the repentance is to be demonstrated.

15  tn Or “you did formerly.”

16  tn Although the final clause is somewhat awkward, it is typical of the style of Revelation.

17  tn Grk “But you do have this.” The words “going for you” are supplied to complete the English idiom; other phrases like “in your favor” (NIV) or “to your credit” (NRSV) could also be supplied.

18  sn The Nicolaitans were a sect (sometimes associated with Nicolaus, one of the seven original deacons in the church in Jerusalem according to Acts 6:5) that apparently taught that Christians could engage in immoral behavior with impunity.

19  tn The expression τὰ ἔργα τῶν Νικολαϊτῶν (ta erga tōn Nikolaitōn) has been translated as a subjective genitive.

20  tn Or “who is victorious”; traditionally, “who overcomes.” The pendent dative is allowed to stand in the English translation because it is characteristic of the author’s style in Revelation.

21  tn Or “grant.”

22  tn Or “stands.”

23  tc The omission of “my” (μου, mou) after “God” (θεοῦ, theou) is well attested, supported by א A C and the Andreas of Caesarea group of Byzantine mss (𝔐A). Its addition in 1611, the 𝔐K group, latt, and others, seems to be evidence of a purposeful conforming of the text to 3:2 and the four occurrences of “my God” (θεοῦ μου) in 3:12.

[viii]  Biblical Studies Press. (2005). The NET Bible First Edition; Bible. English. NET Bible.; The NET Bible (Re 2:4–7). Biblical Studies Press.

·         End NET® Bible Notes

a  Rev 2:20

b  Num 31:16; 2 Pet 2:15

c  Num 25:1f; Acts 15:29; 1 Cor 10:20; Rev 2:20

a  Rev 2:6

a  Rev 2:5

b  Rev 22:7, 20

c  2 Thess 2:8; Rev 1:16

a  Rev 2:7

a  Rev 2:7

b  Ex 16:33; John 6:49f

c  Is 56:5; 62:2; 65:15

d  Rev 14:3; 19:12

[ix]  New American Standard Bible: 1995 update. (1995). (Re 2:14–17). La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation.

  2.20 1 K 16.31; 2 K 9.22, 30

s  2.20 Jezebel: Nothing else is known about her. This may have been her real name or a name that was given to her because she was like Queen Jezebel, who opposed the Lord (see 1 Kings 19.1, 2; 21.1–26).

  2.23 Ps 7.9; Jr 17.10; Ps 62.12

t  2.23 her followers: Or “her children.”

[x]  The Holy Bible: The Contemporary English Version. (1995). (Re 2:20–23). Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

  The transliteration of a Hebrew word signifying that something is certain, valid, truthful, or faithful; it is often used at the end of biblical songs, hymns, and prayers.

q  3:14 2Co 1:20

r  3:14 Or Ruler, or Source, or Beginning

s  3:14 Mk 10:6; 13:19; Jn 1:1–5; Col 1:18; 2Pt 3:4

t  3:16 Or spit

u  3:17 Hs 12:8; Zch 11:5; 1Co 4:8

v  3:18 Zch 13:9; 1Pt 1:7

w  3:18 Gn 2:25; Is 20:4; Ezk 23:29; Rv 16:15

x  3:19 Heb 12:26

y  3:19 Or be zealous

[xi]  The Holy Bible: Holman Christian standard version. (2009). (Re 3:14–19). Nashville: Holman Bible Publishers.

j  1 Tim. 5:6

k  See Luke 15:24

l  Acts 14:26

m  [2 Tim. 1:13]

n  ch. 2:5

o  ch. 16:15; Matt. 24:43; 1 Thess. 5:2, 4; 2 Pet. 3:10

[xii]  The Holy Bible: English Standard Version. (2016). (Re 3:1–3). Wheaton, IL: Crossway Bibles.

a  Rev 22:7

b  Deut 4:2; 12:32; Prov 30:6

c  Rev 15:6–16:21

d  Rev 22:7

a  Deut 4:2; 12:32; Prov 30:6

b  Rev 22:7

c  Rev 22:2

1  Lit out of

d  Rev 21:10–22:5

[xiii]  New American Standard Bible: 1995 update. (1995). (Re 22:18–19). La Habra, CA: The Lockman Foundation.

[xiv]  The Holy Bible : King James Version. ©1995 (electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version.). Bellingham WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

t  Is. 41:4; Rev. 21:6; 22:13

4  NU, M omit the Beginning and the End

5  NU, M Lord God

u  Rev. 4:8; 11:17

v  Is. 9:6

[xv]  The New King James Version. ©1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[xvi] Exposition of the Old and New Testaments: Revelation, by John Gill, originally published 1731, ©1999 The Baptist Standard Bearer Inc., version 1.0

[xvii] According to Bible Master, a Hebrew software program, the two letters alef–tav occur 7,084 times in the Tanach. Most of them are the sign of the definite direct object and have no ability ‘to connect’ to Messiah. For instance, randomly opening the Torah to Lev. 13:50 ‘et’ (another form of ‘ate’) precedes the phrase ‘the mildew’. In v. 52 it precedes ‘the clothing’ and ‘the knitted’, etc. Again randomly opening the Torah to Ex. 2:15, ‘et’ precedes ‘this thing’ referring to when Pharaoh heard that Moses had killed an Egyptian. (From http://www.seedofabraham.net, the article titled “The Alef-Tav” by Avram Yehoshua.)

[xviii]  The phrase in Hebrew is אֲנִי רִשׁוֹן וַאֲנִי אַחֲרוֹן. Yahweh is saying, ‘I am First and I am Last.’ There is no אֵת (‘ate’) in the verse. (From http://www.seedofabraham.net, the article titled The Alef-Tav by Avram Yehoshua.)

[xix] Gen. 1:3, 6, 9, 11, 14-15, 20, 22, 24, 26, 28-29. (From http://www.seedofabraham.net, the article titled “The Alef-Tav” by Avram Yehoshua.)

[xx] (14.) From Wikipedia at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eisegesis: Eisegesis is ‘the process of interpretation of an existing text in such a way as to introduce one’s own ideas. This is best understood when contrasted with exegesis. While exegesis draws out the meaning from the text, eisegesis occurs when a reader reads his/her interpretation into the text. As a result, exegesis tends to be objective when employed effectively while eisegesis is regarded as highly subjective.

(15.) See Mosaic Sacrifice & Jesus at http://www.seedofabraham.net/mosessac.html for more on the conception of Yeshua in the womb of Miryam. (Quotes and references From http://www.seedofabraham.net, the article titled “The Alef-Tav” by Avram Yehoshua.)

[xxii] Ibid.

o  [2 Tim. 1:9]

p  Rom. 4:16

q  [John 1:12, 13]

r  Rom. 4:4, 5; 11:6

s  Rom. 3:27

t  Is. 19:25

u  [Rom. 2:28; Col. 2:11]

v  Gal. 6:15

w  2 Cor. 5:18; [Col. 1:20–22]

x  [Rom. 6:6]

y  John 10:9

z  1 Cor. 12:13; Eph. 4:4

a  1 Pet. 2:4

b  Matt. 16:18; 1 Cor. 3:10, 11; Rev. 21:14

c  1 Cor. 12:28; Eph. 3:5

d  Ps. 118:22; Luke 20:17

e  1 Cor. 3:16, 17

f  1 Pet. 2:5

g  John 17:23

[xxiii]  The New King James Version. Nashville: Thomas Nelson, 1982.

[xxiv]  The New King James Version. ©1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[xxv]  The Holy Bible : King James Version. electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version. Bellingham WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1995.

y  Lev. 19:18; Matt. 19:19; Mark 12:31; Luke 10:27; [Rom. 13:9; Gal. 5:14; James 2:8]

z  [Matt. 7:12; Rom. 13:10; 1 Tim. 1:5]

[xxvi]  The New King James Version. ©1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[xxvii] Quote from Pastor Mark Biltz, El Shaddai Ministries, Bonney Lake WA, [from Torah Portion Shavuot “The giving of God’s precious gift to mankind: His Instructions/Torah/Wedding” 30 May, 2009]

[xxviii]  The Holy Bible : King James Version. 1995 (electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version.). Bellingham WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

a  Gen. 12:10

b  Gen. 20:1, 2

c  Gen. 12:7; 17:1; 18:1; 35:9

d  Gen. 12:1

e  Gen. 20:1; Ps. 39:12; Heb. 11:9

f  Gen. 28:13, 15

g  Gen. 12:2

h  Gen. 12:7; 13:15; 15:18

i  Gen. 22:16; Ps. 105:9

j  Gen. 15:5; 22:17; Ex. 32:13

k  Gen. 12:3; 22:18; Gal. 3:8

l  Gen. 22:16, 18

[xxix]  The New King James Version. ©1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.

[xxx] Darby, J. N., 1890 Darby Bible, (Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.) ©1995.

[xxxi] Chart by Mike Brown brownm@creation-science-prophecy.com, Copyright © 1998-2009 by Michael Brown all rights reserved

[xxxii] The Power of Dreams in the Bible by Walter Brueggemann, Columbia Theological Seminary; The Christian Century, June 28, 2005, pp.28-31. ©Christian Century Foundation; used by permission.

[xxxiii] Essay, “On Biblical Theology”, by Rolf P. Knierim, reprinted in Reading the Hebrew Bible for a New Millennium, Volume 1, ©2000 by the Institute for Antiquity and Christianity, Trinity Press International

[xxxiv] Revival Lecture, by Leonard Ravenhill, Old Paths Magazine, Edition #10, Greg Gordon editor; magazine archives at: www.oldpathsmag.com

 [9–20] In this first vision, the seer is commanded to write what he sees to the seven churches (Rev 1:9–11). He sees Messiah in glory, whom he depicts in stock apocalyptic imagery (Rev 1:12–16), and hears him describe himself in terms meant to encourage Christians by emphasizing his victory over death (Rev 1:17–20).

 Island called Patmos: one of the Sporades islands in the Aegean Sea, some fifty miles south of Ephesus, used by the Romans as a penal colony. Because I proclaimed God’s word: literally, “on account of God’s word.”

[xxxv]  Confraternity of Christian Doctrine. Board of Trustees, Catholic Church. National Conference of Catholic Bishops, & United States Catholic Conference. Administrative Board. (1996, c1986). The New American Bible : Translated from the original languages with critical use of all the ancient sources and the revised New Testament. Confraternity of Christian Doctrine.

[xxxvi] The King James Version, (Cambridge: Cambridge) 1769.

[xxxvii]  The Holy Bible : King James Version. 1995 (electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version.). Bellingham WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.

[xxxviii] Robertson’s Word Pictures in the New Testament. Nashville, Tennessee: Broadman Publishing, 1960

[xxxix] HOLINESS: IT’S NATURE, HINDRANCES, DIFFICULTIES, AND ROOTS By J.C. RYLE, THE EPHESIANS FOUR GROUP © 1999 (originally published 1879)

[xl] Frame from DVD set “The Feasts of the Lord” by Mark Biltz, El Shaddai Ministries/www.elshaddaiministries.us

[xli] New Geneva Study Bible. electronic ed. Nashville : Thomas Nelson, 1997, c1995, S. Le 23:33

[xlii]  The Holy Bible : King James Version. electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version. Bellingham WA : Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1995

[xliii] Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, by James Strong, (electronic edition), e-Sword®, v. 9.5.1, copyright ©2000-2009 by Rick Myers

[xliv] Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, by James Strong, (electronic edition), e-Sword®, v. 9.5.1, copyright ©2000-2009 by Rick Myers

[xlv] Gesenius’ Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon of the Old Testament (1847 Edition), by Dr. William Gesenius, ©1979 by Baker Book House Company, pg 457

[xlvi] Matthew Henry's Commentary On the whole Bible (electronic ed. of the complete and unabridged edition.) Matthew Henry,  (1996, ©1991).  Peabody: Hendrickson.

[xlvii]  The Holy Bible: King James Version. (electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version} Bellingham WA : Logos Research Systems, Inc., 1995

[xlviii] Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, by James Strong, (electronic edition), e-Sword®, v. 9.5.1, copyright ©2000-2009 by Rick Myers

[xlix] Hebrew for “The Covenant (what Christians are want to call the “Old Testament”) actually an anagram: TaNaKh= Torah(Law)/Neviim (Prophets)/Ketuvim(Writings)

[l] From the Hebrew Calendar Primer, http://www.elshaddaiministries.us/audio/more/calendarprimer.html