Sunday, November 10, 2013

The Shema...Time and Treasure, Part Three

… Shema …
…Time and Treasure,  Part III…

Three times a day the Jewish faithful recite the Shema, at 9:00am, 3:00pm and at sunset or just before they go to bed. This isn’t an act of rote prayer, but a heartfelt declaration of their dependence upon God, and a declaration of His majesty. But what does it mean, “Shema”? The basic definition of Shema is “Hear”, yet is there a deeper meaning? How important is this act “to hear”? Let’s see some scripture:

(Rom 10:8-18 MKJV)
But what does it say? "The Word is near you, even in your mouth and in your heart"; that is, the Word of Faith which we proclaim; Because if you confess the Lord Jesus, and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved. For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth one confesses unto salvation. For the Scripture says, "Everyone believing on Him shall not be put to shame." For there is no difference both of Jew and of Greek, for the same Lord over all is rich to all who call on Him. For everyone, "whoever shall call on the name of the Lord will be saved."
How then shall they call on Him in whom they have not believed?
And how shall they believe in Him of whom they have not heard?
And how shall they hear without preaching?
And how shall they preach unless they are sent?
As it is written, "How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the gospel of peace and bring glad tidings of good things!" But they have not all obeyed the gospel.
For Isaiah says, "Lord, who has believed our report?"
 Then faith is of hearing, and hearing by the Word of God.
But I say, Have they not heard? Yes indeed, their voice went out into all the earth, and their words to the end of the world.

Yes indeed, their voice went out unto all the earth, as ones crying in the wilderness. The path of Messiah was laid in the waste lands and the deserts of the Holy Land, by the Patriarchs and the Prophets, yet did they shema? What is this faith of hearing?

The Hebrew word that means “to hear” (and also “the name”) is sh'ma (shema).  In modern Hebrew it is written umv. This word is used hundreds of times in the Old Testament and is one of the crucial Hebrew words in understanding what the scripture is saying to us today. The ancient shape and meaning of the letters show us that hearing happens when we [ע "see" ם שv"the name."[2]

Is the word “shem” which we saw last week as “The Name”, Ha’Shem, a name for God

So Shema means “to see The Name”

(Heb 5:7-14 MKJV)
For Jesus, in the days of His flesh, when He had offered up prayers and supplications with strong cryings and tears to Him who was able to save Him from death, and was heard in that He feared, though being a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things which He suffered. And being perfected, He became the Author of eternal salvation to all those who obey Him, being called by God a high priest after the order of Melchizedek;
of whom we have much to say, and hard to be explained since you are dull of hearing.
For indeed because of the time, you ought to be teachers, you have need that one teach you again what are the first principles of the oracles of God. And you have become in need of milk, and not of solid food. For everyone partaking of milk is unskillful in the Word of Righteousness, for he is an infant.
But solid food belongs to those who are of full age, even those who because of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.

If we are “dull of hearing”, it can also mean that we are unable to see God in what we do or encounter. That is what Paul is speaking of here that we are unable to use our senses to discern right from wrong and good from evil.

(Gal 3:1-5 MKJV)
O foolish Galatians, who bewitched you not to obey the truth, to whom before your eyes Jesus Christ was written among you crucified?
This only I would learn from you:
Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law, or by hearing of faith?
Are you so foolish? Having begun in the Spirit, do you now perfect yourself in the flesh? Did you suffer so many things in vain, if indeed it is even in vain?
Then He supplying the Spirit to you and working powerful works in you,
is it by works of the law, or by hearing of faith?

Here, Sha’ul (Paul) is asking the Galatians why do they think that the “works of the Law” are needed to be saved. This is so misunderstood by almost all commentators today; Sha'ul was not speaking of keeping the commandments of God, except for those that are used to identify a Jew, such as circumcision etc. He was explaining to the Galatians that because of the redeeming sacrifice of Yeshua, they no longer needed to become Jews in order to be saved; the blood did that. What Sha'ul was saying was they were "grafted into" the house of Israel just as they were, but once there, they still needed to learn Torah so that they could walk before God holy. The message was that God had made a way to save all mankind - the Jew first and then the Gentile, but one Law for all people.

That one Law for all is the Torah. If we ignore the Torah, then we are ignoring God Himself and a spiritual hunger ensues, as prophesied by Amos:

(Amos 8:11-12 MKJV)
Behold, the days come, says the Lord Jehovah, that I will send a famine in the land;
not a famine of bread nor a thirst for water,
but of hearing the Words of Jehovah.
And they shall wander from sea to sea, and from the north even to the east; they shall run to and fro to seek the Word of Jehovah, and shall not find it.

A famine of God's word occurs when we choose to ignore all of His counsel - the statues, ordinances and precepts He has given so that we may walk holy before Him. Alas, we see today the results of “dull hearing” in the words spoken by the Prophet Amos. Is it not true today that many wander all over, from church to church, hoping to hear the truth of God’s words yet they are unable to find them in this “emergent” church movement, the “seeker-friendly” church with its watered down message. Think about this:

“…What do you know of God?  What are you taught of God?  What do you know of the following?

 The Solitariness of God
The Decrees of God
The Knowledge of God
The Foreknowledge of God
The Supremacy of God
The Sovereignty of God
The Immutability of God
The Holiness of God
The Power of God
The Faithfulness of God
The Goodness of God
The Patience of God
The Grace of God
The Mercy of God
The Love of God
The Wrath of God
The Contemplation of God [3]

I ask this for a reason.  If the truth be told, God is controversial.  If the truth of the attributes of God were to be taught within most churches today (especially those that concern God’s justice, His wrath, sovereignty, His Supremacy and His Glory), a large part of the church, if I may dare say the majority of it would likely reject those teachings and most would declare: “That’s not my God! I could never love a God like that!”   What a large part of Christianity has grown to love is not the true God or Messiah: they are in love with the image that they have made, with the god that bests fits their lifestyle.  Most want the easy way, the way of the flow, the way that will have a minimal impact on their ambitions, possessions, and their pleasures.  We as a body suffer from the lack of the knowledge of God, the lack of the understanding of the attributes of God.  Instead of a daily diet of repentance, self-sacrifice, carrying our cross and dying to ourselves, instead of a steadfast plan to keep ourselves immersed in the word of God, what do we do?  We work, we worry, we stress, we climb the ladder, we exercise our bodies so that we “look good”, we read all the latest “self-help” books to gain an edge; we covet, we strive, we envy, we gossip…  Because we don’t know God we need all these little tricks of the flesh to fill in the gaps, those deep yawning chasms of emptiness that mark a life that is without the knowledge of God.  Worse of all, we mistake grace for license and the result is rampant sinning!

1 Corinthians 15:34 (KJV)
34 Awake to righteousness, and sin not; for some have not the knowledge of God: I speak this to your shame.[4]

The question we must ask is “Why this lack of the knowledge of the one true God?”  The answer is simple.  We are not taught who God is.  We are told in Ecclesiastes:

Ecclesiastes 11:5 (KJV)
5 As thou knowest not what is the way of the spirit, nor how the bones do grow in the womb of her that is with child: even so thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all. [5]

In Ecclesiastes Solomon tells us in Chapter 11, verses 1-6, four times “…thou knowest not…”  He says in verse 2 “… Give a portion to seven, and also to eight; for thou knowest not what evil shall be upon the earth…” [6]; “…knowest not what is the way of the spirit…” and “…thou knowest not the works of God who maketh all…” in verse 5 [ this is also translated in the Greek Septuagint as “…you shall not know the actions of God, as much as He shall do in all things…”[7]]; and finally in verse 6 he says “…In the morning sow thy seed, and in the evening withhold not thy hand; for thou knowest not which shall prosper, whether this or that, or whether they both shall be alike good…”[8]

Shame be upon us brethren!  I know we cannot know all about Him, (Isaiah 55:8-9 For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith Jehovah. 9For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.)[9]

Psalm 139:1-6
1O Jehovah, thou hast searched me, and known me. 2Thou knowest my downsitting and mine uprising; Thou understandest my thought afar off. 3Thou searchest out my path and my lying down, and art acquainted with all my ways. 4For there is not a word in my tongue, But, lo, O Jehovah, thou knowest it altogether. 5Thou hast beset me behind and before, and laid thy hand upon me.
 6Such knowledge is too wonderful for me; It is high, I cannot attain unto it.[10]

But we must ask ourselves this: why aren’t our lives so entwined with His that we share in His most intimate secrets?  In Amos 3:7 the Word of God states: “…Surely the Lord God does nothing,
Unless dHe reveals His secret to His servants the prophets…”[11]  Yeshua Ha’Machiach addressed this in John’s Gospel:
John 15:15-16 (NKJV)
15 No longer do I call you servants, for a servant does not know what his master is doing; but I have called you friends, sfor all things that I heard from My Father I have made known to you. 16 tYou did not choose Me, but I chose you and uappointed you that you should go and bear fruit, and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father vin My name He may give you. [12]

If this then is the case, why do we “…knowest not…”?  Deuteronomy 29:29 says “…“The secret things belong to the Lord our God, but those things which are revealed belong to us and to our children forever, that we may do all the words of this law…(emphasis mine)” [13]

Bear with me now.   To understand God’s word, we must define the terms.  Let us define “servant”. When looking at the word in Amos 3:7, servant is the Hebrew word (Strong’s #H5650) עבד ‛ebed eh'-bed.  While technically defined as “slave” or “servant”, a broader context of the word is “one chosen and beloved by God”.[14]  In the context of John 15:15, the word for “servant” is (G1401) δοῦλος doulos doo'-los, which carries with it the same general connotation, along with the idea that “…Often the service involved is voluntary, in which a person willingly offers obedience, devotion, and loyalty to another, subordinating his will to him…”[15] I believe we have to look even deeper still to find the more subtle use of the word by Messiah Yeshua.  I deduce this from the new name Yeshua uses to describe them with – the word for “friend” (G5384) φίλος philos.  Yeshua  the Messiah, by His use of this word, has drawn them into a deeper relationship with Him, from one that is subject or bound to Him (even if willingly), to one He associates with, the bridegroom’s friend who on His behalf, asks for the hand of the bride and then renders to Him various services in closing the marriage and then joining in the celebration of the nuptials.[16]

You can see my friends, how we are held in esteem by our Yahvey Adonai.  Think of your friends – who are they to you?  Dare I say that there are few if any you hold close enough for you to send them to the one you love to ask them for their hand in marriage to you, yet this is precisely the distinction Christ holds us in as His “philos.”

O brethren! “…Thou knowest not!” O pastors! Why don’t you teach who God is!  O teach upon His attributes, His infinite Glory; get to know Him!  This is our eternal life!  Eternal life begins not at the gate of heaven: it starts at the regeneration of our heart!  It started before the foundation of the world!  Look at how He trusts His own - are we included in this trust?  We, who by our former natures were at such odds with Him, yet now are held by Him as עבד ‛ebed – one chosen and beloved.  O shame I say again Christian!  That we know not Him so deeply. O how His heart must ache for our closeness, for the familiarity that He desires, that He craves! Yes, Craves!  Our Master longs for our love, our undivided, unfettered love!  How can we be so fickle, so hard hearted as to deny Him this intimacy that He seeks?  What holds you away beloved?  Why thou knowest not? 

Start now!  Study the Bible- get to know Him!  It would be better not to have Sunday morning… Sunday morning is the greatest example of idolatry in America today, because most people are not worshiping the one true God.  People are worshiping the god they have created out of their own minds, out of their own flesh.  The great masses worship satanic devices and worldly intelligence.  They made a god just like themselves and he looks more like Santa Claus than YHVH.  I tell you this; God Almighty is a Holy God! Infinite in power, absolute Sovereign in all He does, says and is.

 Psalm 111:10 (NKJV)
10     kThe fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
A good understanding have all those who do His commandments.
His praise endures forever.[17]
Proverbs 1:7 (KJV)
7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction. [18]

Proverbs 2:5 (KJV)
5 Then shalt thou understand the fear of the LORD, and find the knowledge of God. [19]

There is no fear of God before us today because we have no God before us!  No knowledge.
Woe unto us….” [20]

…Woe, if we do not learn who it is we stand before, and feast on His words…

Let us go on: “…Besides meaning 'to hear' the Hebrew word שםע (sh'ma) also means to understand. It tells us that we do not hear until we understand the nature of what is being said. For instance, if you were to order a thirsty man not to drink from a glass of water, he would have trouble understanding. But what happens when you tell him that the glass is laced with sewage? Now that he sees the name of what is in the glass, understanding comes and his view is changed. Temptation loses its power over him, and he will not drink from that glass. In Hebrew and in life, hearing only occurs when we understand…” [21]

(1Ki 3:5-9 MKJV)
In Gibeon Jehovah appeared to Solomon in a dream by night. And God said, Ask what I shall give you! And Solomon said, You have shown to Your servant David my father great mercy, according as he walked before You in truth and in righteousness and in uprightness of heart with You. And You have kept this great kindness for him, that You have given him a son to sit on his throne, as it is today. And now, O Jehovah my God, You have made Your servant king instead of David my father. And I am a little child; I do not know to go out or come in! And Your servant is in the midst of Your people whom You have chosen, a numerous people who cannot be numbered nor counted for multitude.
And give to Your servant an understanding heart, to judge Your people, to discern between good and bad.
For who is able to judge this, Your great people?

(Job 38:36 MKJV)
Who has put wisdom in the inward parts? Or who has given understanding to the mind?

(Pro 3:5-7 MKJV)
Trust in Jehovah with all your heart, and lean not to your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths.
Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear Jehovah and depart from evil.

The Hebrew word sh'ma that means hear and understand also means to obey. When we see the name so clearly that we understand, it is not a difficult decision to obey. Sh'ma  שםע is
to hear, so clearly
that you understand so well
that you obey naturally!

“…When Solomon prayed for an understanding or a hearing heart, God gave him wisdom. Anyone who hears, understands and obeys God will find the same wisdom. I have often been told that the Christian life would be easy if it wasn't for the 'obeying' part. I disagree, I believe that when you see the truth, obeying is an obvious and natural choice.  How hard is it to quit drinking sewage after you understand what it really is? How hard is it to repent when you understand what it is that you have really
done? How hard is it to praise God when you see Him for who He is? Obedience is not difficult when we see the name.
What we are talking about is faith. Faith that will act, that will obey. The New Testament agrees with the Hebrew word picture when it tells us in Romans 10:17 that "faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of God." A vibrant, obedient, acting faith comes from a hearing that sees the name.”[22]

What would happen if we were to see God as He truly is?
What if we saw and understood that He is the all-wise, all-knowing, all-powerful God who loves
How would we act differently?
What would we do out of obedience because we see the name of God?
What is it that we all need to hear so clearly that we understand, and to understand so totally that we obey?...” [23]

Truly, we need to see Him and love Him, just as it says in the Shema


Hear, O Israel: the  Lord  our  God  is one Lord:  And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.  And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine  heart:  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.  And thou shalt bind them for a sign upon thine hand,
and they shall be as frontlets between thine eyes. 
(Deuteronomy 6:4-8)

And it shall come to pass, if ye shall hearken diligently unto my commandments which I command you this day, to love the Lord your God, and to serve him with all your heart and with all your soul, That I will give you the rain of your land in his due season, the first rain and the latter rain, that thou mayest gather in thy corn, and thy wine, and thine oil. And I will send grass in thy fields for thy cattle, that thou mayest eat and be full. Take heed to yourselves, that your heart be not deceived, and ye turn aside, and
serve other gods, and worship them; And then the Lord's wrath be kindled against you, and he shut up the heaven, that there be no rain, and that the land yield not her fruit; and lest ye perish quickly from off the good land which the Lord giveth you.  Therefore shall ye lay up these my words in your heart and in your soul, and bind them for a sign upon your hand, that they may be as frontlets between your eyes. And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when
thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.
And thou shalt write them upon the door posts of thine house, and upon thy gates:  That your days may be multiplied, and the days of your children, in the land which the Lord sware unto your fathers to give them, as the days of heaven upon the earth.
For if ye shall diligently keep all these commandments which I command you,
to do them, to love the Lord your God, to walk in all his ways, and to cleave unto him;
(Deuteronomy 11:13-22)

And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and bid them that they make them fringes in the borders of their garments throughout their generations, and that they put upon the fringe of the borders a ribband of blue:  And it shall be unto you for a fringe, that ye may look upon it, and remember all the commandments of the Lord, and do them and that ye seek not after your own heart and your own eyes, after which ye use to go a whoring:  That ye may remember, and do all my commandments, and be holy unto your God. 
I am the Lord your God,
which brought you out of the land of Egypt, to be your God:
 I am the Lord your God.
(Numbers 15:37-41)[24]

When we “see”, when we “hear”, when we “understand and obey” the Name above all Names, then we are as Oswald Chambers said of Moses: “…Moses endured, not because he had an ideal of right and duty, but because he had a vision of God. He "endured, as seeing Him Who is invisible." A man with the vision of God is not devoted to a cause or to any particular issue: he is devoted to God Himself…”

What’s your vision today? 20-20? Hind-sight? Fore-sight?

Our vision today must be of time and treasure. We’ve talked about time: how time is needed to be spent in any relationship. Our relationship with God is the most important relationship we will ever have, for it is eternal; Just consider this one truth: when we die or pass from this mortal coil, we do not stop living.

When the word speaks of us as being created in His image, it doesn’t mean this physical body we currently inhabit. It speaks of our spirit. If God is a spirit, and we are created in His image, then the real “us” is that spirit that resides in this “tent” of flesh and blood. This spirit is eternal; don’t get hung up on the things of this earth. Even though we acquire possessions while we are here, they are not to used for us alone; no, these possessions, the gifts of a loving Father are to be used in the service of others. Want a house? Be prepared to open your doors to those that need a place to go; use its walls as teaching aids, gather God’s flock into it to hear His words… Blessed with a paycheck? Use that money to not only care for your family, but pick out another to help also. Give with a cheerful heart so that His Word may go forth into all the land. Use your time wisely; the discipline you learn on this mortal plane will serve you well in the immortal to come.

(Mat 6:19-21 MKJV)
Do not lay up treasures on earth for yourselves, where moth and rust corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal. But lay up treasures in Heaven for yourselves, where neither moth nor rust corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal.
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.

The Master tells us where our treasure is, so shall our heart be. If we understand the true measure of treasure, that it is “strength for trouble”, His strength in our weakness, His guidance, His comfort, His peace, then where can our hearts wander? When we are anxious, when we worry, when we tend to take out our frustrations on those around us, those we love, where’s our treasure? Is it not stored on this earth, where the thieves have broken in and stolen our peace, our comfort? Is it not then corrupt, the rust growing like a cancer upon our souls, allowing a root of bitterness to form? Do you see now how all this ties in with one another, how the true treasure is in seeing The Name, and resting in our “strength for trouble”, “strength for the hooked man”?

One word with so many meanings.
One word that can lead us to the gift of time and the bounty of true treasure.

Today, let us all Shema, so we can see The Name,
hear so clearly,
and understand so well
that we will obey gladly and naturally.

May The Lord Richly Bless You My Beloved, Amein

[1] From “Introduction to the Shema” by Mark Biltz, Copyright © 2004 El Shaddai Ministries. All Rights Reserved.

[2] Sharing the Word, by Dr. Frank T. Seekins, Living Word Pictures, Copyright ©1993,2012 by Frank T. Seekins, All rights Reserved, pg 20.
[3] Contents from “The Attributes of God”, by A. W. Pink, first published in the booklets “Studies in the Scriptures”, published without interruption from 1922 to 1953; Reprints now available from Chapel Library; they may be  contacted at
[4]  The Holy Bible : King James Version. ©1995 (electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version.). Bellingham WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
[5]  The Holy Bible : King James Version. ©1995 (electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version.). Bellingham WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
[6]  Darby, J. N. ©(1996). The Holy Scriptures : A new translation from the original languages. Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.
[7] The Septuagint with Apocrypha: Greek and English, by Sir Lancelot C.L. Brenton, originally published 1851, ©2007 Hendrickson Publishers
[8]  Darby, J. N. ©(1996). The Holy Scriptures : A new translation from the original languages. Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems.
[9]  American Standard Version. 1995 (Electronic edition.). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
[10]  American Standard Version. ©1995 (Electronic edition.). Oak Harbor, WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
d  Gen. 6:13; 18:17; [Jer. 23:22]; Dan. 9:22; [John 15:15]
[11]  The New King James Version. ©1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.
s  Gen. 18:17
t  John 6:70; 13:18; 15:19; 1 John 4:10
u  [Matt. 28:19; Mark 16:15; Col. 1:6]
v  John 14:13; 16:23, 24
[12]  The New King James Version. ©1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.
[13]  The New King James Version. ©1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.
[14] Gesenius’ Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon to the Old Testament Scriptures, translated by Samuel Prideaux Tregelles, LL.D., (first issued 1847) ©1979 Baker Book House Company, Grand Rapids, MI: pp 599.
[15] Hayford, J. W., & Thomas Nelson Publishers. ©(1995). Hayford's Bible handbook. Nashville: Thomas Nelson Publishers.
[16] Thayer’s Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, by Joseph H. Thayer, (published originally 1896), 2007 Hendrickson Publishers, Peabody MA; pp 665.
k  Job 28:28; [Prov. 1:7; 9:10]; Eccl. 12:13
[17]  The New King James Version. 1982. Nashville: Thomas Nelson.
d  the beginning: or, the principal part
[18]  The Holy Bible : King James Version. 1995 (electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version.). Bellingham WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
[19]  The Holy Bible : King James Version. 1995 (electronic ed. of the 1769 edition of the 1611 Authorized Version.). Bellingham WA: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
[20] From “…Before Reformation: 10 Indictments of the Modern Church… An exposition on the sermon of Paul Washer…” by David Robinson. Title taken from a sermon by Paul Washer; see the link at :

[21] Sharing the Word, by Dr. Frank T. Seekins, Living Word Pictures, Copyright ©1993,2012 by Frank T. Seekins, All rights Reserved, pg 20. (Edits by David Robinson)
[22] …Ibid…
[23] Sharing the Word, by Dr. Frank T. Seekins, Living Word Pictures, Copyright ©1993,2012 by Frank T. Seekins, All rights Reserved, pg 21. (Edits by David Robinson)
[24] From “Introduction to the Shema” by Mark Biltz, Copyright © 2004 El Shaddai Ministries. All Rights Reserved.