The fourth Invitation to be Called Out and Meet with God is known by many names: the Feast of Weeks, of Sevens, of Sabbaths, of Seven Sabbaths, of Fifty, of Pentecost, of Shabuwa’ (sometimes written Shab’uwah), of Chamisym, and as Shavuot. It is the only Miqra’ which appears to stand alone, apart from God’s pattern of three Spring and three Fall Festivals – although that is actually misleading. Seven Sabbaths is not only observed seven weeks after FirstFruits, causing it to be celebrated in the early summer, it is irrevocably linked to Bikuwrym and does not exist without it.
As has been our pattern, we will contemplate how Yahowah defined this Miqra’ and then investigate how it was fulfilled. Along the way, we will discover why this is the only Feast Christians acknowledge, and why it is the one most Jews ignore. We will also consider the reasons behind Yahowah’s choice of title—Shab’uwah – Sevens.
Opening the book transcribed by Moseh to the heart of the Towrah—to Qara’ / Leviticus—we pick up our reading immediately after the presentation of the FirstFruits wave offering with Yahowah saying:
“Accurately count (saphar – reckon, record, relate, rehearse, and regale) from the day after (mahorath – the next day following) the Shabat (shabat – the day of rest and reflection), from (min) the day (yowm) you came forth and bore (bow’ – arrived with and included) the sheaf of grain (‘omer – bundle of barley prepared for processing and transport) as an ascending wave offering (tanuwpah – a gift of fruit which is lifted up, from nuwph, to elevate and move something which is sprinkled to and fro), a total (hayah – the existence) of seven (sheba’ – signifying a numerical formula and sworn oath) complete (tamym – full, right, true, and perfect) Sabbaths (shabat – weeks).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:15)
The timing was important, as it is throughout Scripture, which is why I am dismayed by Christians who dismiss the vociferous detailed accounting concerning God’s prophetic timeline with a flippant, thoughtless, out of context, and poorly translated “no one knows the hour.” God asked us to accurately count seven Sabbaths from the day after the special Sabbath of Unleavened Bread, and from the wave offering on the Called-Out Assembly of FirstFruits. Not any day would do. We aren’t authorized to change the timing of God’s Feast to another time of our own liking. Yahowah has established a specific meeting appointment, and it is based upon a very well defined, repetitive pattern. Even if He doesn’t expect much from us, there is always a reason for His precision.
Seven Sabbaths from the day after the special Shabat of Matsah represents fifty days. This annual pattern of seven sevens plus one is repeated in Yahowah’s presentation of the redemptive year of Yah’s Lamb, called a “Yowbel” by God, but errantly known as a “Jubilee.” Every fifty years, according to Yahowah’s Yowbel instructions, all debts are to be forgiven and all captive are to be freed. This is not a coincidence in purpose or timing—it’s further evidence of Yah’s plan.
As we shall soon discover, Seven Sevens exists to emphasize all of the truths inherent in the Shabat—which is why the word appears twice in the opening stanza. The essence of the Shabat message is that six days of ordinary human labor lead to a single day of reflective rest with God. The formula demonstrates that we are unable to earn the opportunity to live with our Heavenly Father. Also, the ever-present pattern of man, symbolized by six, in addition to God, who is one, equaling seven, is symbolic of the Scriptural promise to perfect us so that we can campout with Yah.
God’s design is for us to be with Him. As such, these thoughts not only serve as the foundation of Yahowah’s revelation to mankind, this Miqra’ was actually named Shabuwa’—Seven Sabbaths—after His redemptive and prophetic pattern.
Along these lines, Shabuwa’ also provides a perspective from which to view the stage upon which the most significant fulfillments of the seven Invitations to be Called Out and Meet God have and will occur. Seven sevens plus one is central to God’s provision, His plan, and His timing. Everything pertinent to our salvation not only occurs in Yowbel years (also defined as increments of seven sevens plus one), but specifically on intervals of forty (the Scriptural number for the completion of a time of testing) Yowbel (i.e., every 2,000 years).
For example, forty Yowbel after Adam’s expulsion from the Garden of Eden in 3968 BCE, which takes us to 1968 BCE, Abraham affirmed His commitment to the Covenant with Yahowah on Mount Mowryah, foreshadowing what would occur on Passover in the exact same location forty Yowbel later with Yahowsha’ serving as the Sacrificial Lamb in the Yowbel Year of 4000 Yah (33 CE). Moving forward, exactly forty Yowbel from that date is the last Year of Yah’s Lamb remaining within the lifetimes of those who witnessed Yisra’el’s prophetic rebirth as a nation. So if God is consistent, it would be reasonable to conclude that the fulfillment of the last two Miqra’ey, those of Reconciliations and Shelters, will occur in 2033—Year 6,000 Yah on the Creator’s calendar. This timing reflects the conclusion of six days (read millennia) of man’s toil outside of the Garden followed by a seventh day of rest where we reflect on our relationship with God. This time is known as the Millennial Sabbath, where the entire Earth will be like Eden. As such, one of the primary purposes of Seven Sevens is to remind us each year that Yahowah has given us the keys with which the pattern underlying His prophetic plan may be unlocked and understood.
And while this perspective on timing is valuable, it wasn’t the most relevant aspect of Yahowah’s introductory statement regarding Seven Sabbaths. More than anything, God wants us to “saphar – accurately relate to” the fact that without Bikuwrym there is no Shab’uwah. One thing follows another. Chamisym sits in the middle of a path, not at the intersection of the spokes of a wheel. The wave offering associated with FirstFruits, whereby the newly born Spiritual children of God are lifted up, is tangibly manifest during Seven Sabbaths, with these same souls enriched and empowered by the Set-Apart Spirit, preparing them to become more effective witnesses. As a result, the Miqra’ of Shabuwa’ enables two of the Covenant’s promises, while celebrating our relationship with God, none of which would be possible without the specific benefits facilitated by Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym. Collectively then, these days not only prepare and equip us to enter and enjoy God’s company – they equip us to help others do the same.
“Always and forever (‘ad – eternally and into perpetuity), you shall accurately count, reckon, record, relate, rehearse, and regale (saphar) the Day of Fifty (yowm Chamisym), starting from (min) the next day after (mochorath) the seventh (shaby’y) Shabat (shabat – seventh day of the week), and you should choose, without reservation or interruption, to come near and approach (qarab – you should want to, of your own volition, and without hesitation or intermission, to appear before (hiphil perfect consecutive)) the renewing, restoring, and affirming (chadash) gift (minhah – offering given freely as a present without compensation) to approach (la – to move toward) Yahowah ( ).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:16)
As is often the case, the unique nature of Hebrew tenses opens the floodgates of understanding. Written in the perfect conjugation and consecutive form, qarab, must be translated “you should choose, without reservation or interruption, to come near and approach” because the consecutive denotes volition while the perfect depicts a completed action. But it is the hiphil stem which is the most intriguing. It means that we, as the subject of this sentence, cause Yahowah as the object, to respond and participate in the specific action of the verb – which is “approach and come near.” God, therefore, can be found near those who approach Him.
Moving on to the next curious term, “chadash – renew,” those who have read An Introduction to God know that the Covenant has not yet been renewed, and that there is no such thing as a “New Covenant,” much less a “New Testament.” In this light, more times than not, chadash, which is commonly deployed to depict the renewal of the sun’s reflected light on the surface of the moon, is more accurately translated “renew, restore, and reaffirm” than “new,” especially in “recently conceived or different.” There is nothing “new” or “different” about the path provided to walk to Yahowah. None of the seven steps have changed.
In this instruction, Yahowah is speaking of His Covenant’s ability to renew us and of His restoring gift for all mankind – Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym. He is asking us to approach Him by way of the path He has prescribed in the Towrah and laid out through Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits. By walking along this path, we come so close to God that we are enveloped in the Set-Apart Spirit of Shabuwa’. And that is why shabuwa’ (Strong’s 7621) is Yahowah’s “vow or promise which attests to our innocence.”
By stating that this Feast is “Yahowah’s renewing gift,” God is connecting the elements which comprise His plan together for us. He has obliterated the myth that there is a distinction, a difference between His Towrah Instructions and His mercy. Yahowsha’ came to fulfill the Towrah, because Yahowah’s Guidance provides the way home. And that is perhaps why, in this context of a “renewing gift,” God concluded this instruction with “la Yahowah – to approach Yah.”
Later in Dabarym / Deuteronomy, Moseh will tell us that the Miqra’ of Chamisym, the Invitation to be Called Out and Meet God of Fifty, is an all-inclusive affair: men and women, young and old, wealthy and poor, slave and free, Gowym and Yahuwdym. That foreknowledge is required to understand this text—especially in conjunction with the approach of Yahowah’s restoring and renewing gift as it is reflected in Yahowsha’s commentary.
Also interesting, the word which consistently underlies man’s errant choice of “church” in the Greek texts is ekklesia, meaning “called out,” or “called-out assembly.” This is relevant because ekklesia is somewhat synonymous with the miqra’ey. While the Greek is but a pale reflection of the Hebrew, these words are as similar as these different languages allow. There is a direct connection, a causal link if you will, between Yahowah’s Miqra’ey / Called-Out Assemblies and Yahowsha’s ekklesia / called-out assembly.
So while you could say that one leads to the other – in actuality, they are one in the same. Since Yahowsha’ spoke Hebrew, and not Greek, He actually said “Miqra’” and not ekklesia – making our understanding of this Hebrew title especially important.
But as a result of men copyediting and improperly rendering both Hebrew and Greek, not one Christian in a million is aware of this connection, of this association, of this path to a relationship with Yah. So, that begs the question: why did men, who claimed to be serving God and to be trustworthy, alter and blur Yahowah’s message, and in so doing create a politicized and powerful institution based upon their corruption—their counterfeit? What is it that causes the founders of religions like Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Mormonism to claim God’s authority and then to contradict Him?
The answer is obvious. Those who support the religious establishment are coddled by it. Those who expose and condemn it, those who threaten it by revealing the truth, are crucified by it—slandered and often tortured. And while understanding the religious, political, and economic motivations for such corruptions, and assessing blame, is considerably less important than knowing how humankind was duped, with such information we can effectively expose and condemn the behavior which has deceived so many, while at the same time shine a light on the path home.
The message is: nothing is more important than understanding what Yahowah actually said. With this information, we can correct the record and free souls from religious schemes. And toward that end, the linguistic basis for the corrupt human replacement which lies at the very heart of Christendom, “church,” should have either been translated “called-out assembly,” conveying the proper meaning of the word, or should have been transliterated “Miqra’,” appropriately conveying the title upon which the called-out assembly was based. The best thing that can be said for “Church” is that it has no Scriptural basis or meaning, and that it is wrong. At worst, it is derived from the Anglo-Saxon root, circe (pronounced with the hard “ch” sound), rendering “chirch.” Circe was the daughter of Helios—a pagan sun goddess. From her name, we get the English words: circle, circuit, and circus, in addition of course, to church.
Being ignorant of the essential connection between Yahowah’s seven Miqra’ey and the ekklesia, or called-out assembly (as a result of man’s careless and errant translations), comes at a tremendous price—one which hides the true nature of God’s restoring and renewing gift. Yahowah provided a plan, a seven-step path to Him, which remains virtually unknown to the vast preponderance of Christians. And if they don’t know Yah’s Way, they are on the wrong path.
So why would any informed, rational person trust something which changes, even contradicts, the plan meticulously laid out in the very Scriptures the religions of Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Mormonism claim provide their legitimacy and authority? And when someone points out that it is rationally impossible for a religion to be trustworthy if it changes and contradicts its own Scriptures, why do they continue to believe in that which is irrefutably false?
It really is that simple, that logical, that cut and dry. Religions which alter and contradict in any material way the Scriptures upon which they derive their authority, words which they claim were inspired, are a farce. This would include Judaism, Christianity (Catholic, Orthodox, Protestant, and Evangelical varieties), Islam, and Mormonism. And in this case, it doesn’t actually matter whether Yahowah’s Word was inspired by God or not. Because, if the Tanakh was not inspired, the authority of these religions vanishes, as does their credibility, as they claim otherwise. And if Yah’s testimony is true, each of these religions is false because they all change, conceal, corrupt, and counterfeit what God revealed. This is why it is impossible to be an informed and rational practitioner of Judaism, Christianity, Islam, or Mormonism. No amount of rationalization, justification, excuses, explanations, opinions, or feelings changes this reality—nor does tradition, longevity, popularity, or political correctness. It’s simple logic.
So that you are not ignorant of the evidence, nor irrational in your conclusions, understand that “God did not create His church.” God doesn’t have or want a church. The church is man’s invention.
Yahowah established a Covenant on the basis of His relationship with Abraham. This Covenant was codified in the Towrah, which also details how it was lived out in the lives of the Yahuwdym, especially as they were freed from bondage and human oppression. It was affirmed throughout the Prophets and again in the words and deeds of Yahowsha’. The Miqra’ey serve to facilitate its promises.
There aren’t two covenants, just one. Grace didn’t replace the Law because both concepts are wrong. Mercy is derived from the Towrah, which means “Teaching,” and these Instructions remain valid. Yahowah’s renewing gift is a product of the Towrah. The seven Miqra’ey aren’t “Jewish holidays,” but instead the embodiment of the means Yahowah devised to approach Him. The “Church” didn’t replace “Jews” as God’s chosen people, because there is no Scriptural basis for “church,” and Yahowah remains focused on reconciling His relationship with Yahuwdym. They, not Gowym, will be the beneficiaries of Yahowah’s fulfillment of Yowm Kippurym when He uses the Towrah to renew and affirm the Covenant.
By choosing to be born anew by way of our Spiritual Mother on Bikuwrym, following Pesach and Matsah, we are adopted into our Heavenly Father’s family. But that’s not the end of the process, just the beginning. With the Covenant, Yahowah doesn’t just promise to adopt us, but also to perfect us and make us immortal, to enrich us and to empower us. So while the first three Miqra’ey – Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym – enable the first three of these promises, the fourth and fifth benefits are facilitated by Shab’uwah. On this day, God’s children are enriched and empowered. This insight is found beneath the mistranslation of ‘isarown as “tithe” in the next instruction...
“You all shall come bringing (bow’) out of (min) your homes (mowshab – your dwelling places where you live, your houses and households, and your assemblies) two (samaym) loaves of bread (lechem) as an ascending wave offering (tanuwphah), a double portion (shanaym shanaym) for a tenfold enrichment and empowerment (‘isarown – a compound of ‘eser – ten and tenfold and ‘asar – to enrich with ‘own – empowerment and growth).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:17)
Since the Shab’uwah attendees would be comprised of people from all races, genders, and classes of people, in addition to bringing bread for themselves, Yahuwdym would be serving Gowym, which is one of the reasons for two loaves. Additionally, since the Yahuwdym would ultimately provide the Bread of Life – the Ma’aseyah (meaning the Set-Apart Implement Serving Yah) – they were symbolically being asked to bring a second loaf representing Yahowsha’. (While some may be bothered by the idea of associating a “yeasted loaf” with Yahowsha’, since our redemption is dependent upon our sin being associated with Him, the bread which was broken, and thus separated from God, on Matsah, was corrupted.)
Before we consider the meaning of ‘isarown, please understand that the Hebrew verb “to tithe” is ‘asar, not ‘isarown (although ‘asar also speaks of being enriched tenfold). Also please note that if a “tithe” was intended, it was food not money. Paying pastors and priests is a human invention – one conceived and promoted by Paul – as is the Christian interpretation of a monetary tithe.
But this context isn’t conducive to the notion of a tithe, because it is a “double portion” and not a “tenth.” So we are compelled to search another potential meaning for ‘isarown. And when we do so, the first thing we learn is that while ‘isarown may share an association with “‘esar – ten,” it is also a compound of “‘asar – being enriched” and “‘own – being empowered.” These gifts are not-so-coincidently two of the five benefits of the Covenant, along with becoming immortal and perfect en route to being adopted into our Heavenly Father’s family. But even more specifically, the very purpose of Seven Sabbaths is to “‘isarown – enlighten and empower” the children born on FirstFruits. And from this perspective, providing food, shelter, and warmth is typical of the “‘isarown – tithe,” because it is focused on providing the very things which enrich a family, helping it grow.
While most wouldn’t equate “enrich” with “enlighten,” I would because Yahowah does. The moment He returns and affirms and renews the Covenant, the first thing He does is write a copy of His Towrah inside His children, thereby enriching them with His enlightenment. The single most valuable thing in the universe is the Towrah. It introduces us to God, reveals how to form a relationship with Him, and provides the means to our adoption into His family, to being enriched, empowered, immortal, and perfected. The Towrah is therefore the most enlightening document ever revealed. Yah even calls His Towrah “light,” the epitome of enlightenment especially when one realizes that towrah means “teaching.”
This passage is therefore telling us that our willingness to answer Yahowah’s invitation to meet with Him on this day, and act upon His instructions to bring the loaves of bread, will nourish us and our guests, providing a tenfold increase in our enrichment, enlightenment, and empowerment, preparing us to enter and enjoy God’s company.
You’ll also notice that this grain offering was unlike that of the Miqra’ of Matsah, where sin, represented by the yeast fungus, was excluded. This time, the flour was to be corrupted because the Feast of Seven Sabbaths is a come-as-you-are party which is not designed to remove anything from us – including our sin. That mission was accomplished during Matsah – two steps prior to this one.
Here, those who have already availed themselves of Passover’s promise of eternal life, Unleavened Bread’s promise of perfection, and FirstFruits’ promise of adoption into God’s family, are “‘isarown – enriched, enlightened, and empowered” by the Set-Apart Spirit to become more effective witnesses.
Therefore, speaking of the “lechem – loaves of bread,” this time: “They shall exist as (hayah) flour (coleth – fine ground grains with the hulls removed) baked (‘aphah) with yeast (chamets – soured, fermented, oppressed, grieved, cruel, ruthless, embittered, and puffed up by a leavening fungus), FirstFruits (Bikuwrym – an initial harvest which is gathered in; from bakar – speaking of firstborn children with a privileged inheritance) to approach (la – according to and to move toward) Yahowah ( ).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:17)
Our Heavenly Father is in the business of harvesting flawed souls—but not before He perfects and purifies, empowers and enriches them. His FirstFruits are souls gathered unto Him after they have been born anew and cleansed by the Set-Apart Spirit. The resulting gift is a privileged inheritance. We become God’s sons and daughters—gaining access to all that is His.
This is what “bikuwrym – firstborn children with a privileged inheritance” conveys. It is why it is so important that we understand the meaning behind the words, titles, and names Yahowah has chosen to enable us to know Him and engage in a relationship with Him.
More telling still, this is why those whose first step toward God is Pentecost, which is seen by Christians as the “birth of their church,” get nothing out of Seven Sabbaths other than a good meal and a stern lecture. Those who benefit from the Miqra’ of Shabuwa’ have already answered Yahowah’s invitations to meet with Him on Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym. It is they who are enlightened and empowered to speak truthfully to those who are still estranged from God.
As an interesting aside, Yahowah has an affinity for flawed people. Abraham, Moseh, and Dowd did and said many undesirable things. But yet, they serve as models for us; not by their actions, but instead by how Yah was able to work with them. They knew Yahowah, loved their Heavenly Father, and they relied upon Him. And that was enough, because God did the rest.
Since the souls invited to this party would be corrupted by sin, since the bread the Yisra’elites as God’s messengers were instructed to bring was soured and fermented by the yeast fungus, they would require the sacrifice of a perfect lamb.
“In addition to (‘al – above and beyond) the loaves of bread (lechem), you should choose without reservation to without hesitation come near and approach with (qarab – bring and draw nigh with (hiphil perfect consecutive)) seven (sheba’) one-year-old (sanah) lamb (kebes) sons (ben), entirely without defect or blemish (tamym – complete and sound, unimpaired and innocent, blameless and perfect) ” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:18)
In addition to emphasizing the importance of the number itself, seven perfect lambs represent the seven Miqra’ey, the seven steps in Yahowah’s plan of reconciliation. It’s the formula by which flawed souls come to have a relationship with God. It is the title Yah selected for this appointment.
Further, it is the substitute death of the body of the perfect Passover Lamb which opens the Door to life. And it is the substitute ransom paid by the soul of the perfect Unleavened Bread, broken and thus separated for us, which prepares us to approach God. This enables God to adopt us as His “ben – children,” because we are now “tamym – perfect and unblemished, indeed, innocent and unimpaired.”
As we dive further into this passage, the first intriguing word is the verb qarab, which because it bore the same stem, conjugation, and form, was translated “you should choose without reservation to without hesitation come near and approach.” But beyond this, qarab conveys the idea of “draw near, of coming into someone’s presence in response to a summons.” It speaks of “entering into the midst of something—becoming part of it or them.”
And yet, some Hebrew dictionaries, in an effort to support existing translations and religious rituals, suggest, without regard to the word’s etymology, that qarab (or qareb) could convey “present an offering.” But, there is no suggestion of “presenting anything” or of “making an offering” in the word, nor any such connotations in its root. Therefore, this unsupported “definition” is most likely the result of rabbis not understanding God’s instructions, and of Christian publishers being more comfortable conforming to previous religious interpretations than being accurate. After all, the basis of marketing is: familiarity sells.
As added evidence for this conclusion, there are many Hebrew words for “make,” none of which are remotely related to qarab. The primary Hebrew term for “present,” especially in the sense of making an offering or providing a gift, is minchah. And since minchah is also the most commonly used Hebrew word for “offering,” it’s the term Yahowah would have chosen in this context if He wanted to convey “present an offering” rather than “qarab—draw near and approach.” And if God wanted to convey the notion of a “sacrificial offering,” He would have used tanuwpah or terumah, not qarab.
We have wrestled with qarab previously, and we will be confronted with qarab again. The next time will be with regard to “appearing before and approaching the feminine manifestation of God’s light, our adoptive Mother who enlightens and elevates unto Yahowah” in the Qara’ / Leviticus 23:27 presentation of Yowm Kippurym, the Day of Reconciliations. There, we will once again seek to understand why a word which clearly means “to come near, to approach, and to enter into the presence of someone” was altered to convey: “present an offering.” Because in that context, responding appropriately is a life or death decision.
Returning to this passage, qarab tells us that we were asked to approach Yahowah with seven perfect lambs. While there is but one perfect Lamb of God, there are seven steps which we must take with Him if we want to come into Yah’s presence: Pesach, Matsah, Bikuwrym, Shabuwa’, Taruw’ah, Kippurym, and Sukah. We do this by relying upon what Yahowsha’ has and will do for us in conjunction with the Set-Apart Spirit on these seven days. Both manifestations of Yah work together to save our flawed souls, one paying the ransom needed for redemption, the other adorning us in a Garment of Light which purifies our imperfections, making us appear perfect in Yah’s eyes. These concepts are essential to our admission into heaven.
The reason Yahowah gave us our nesamah, or conscience, is because He wants us to be discerning. We must use this unique human capacity to reason and exercise sound judgment if we want to understand the message He is conveying in this verse. I say that because there is no such thing as an animal “without defect or blemish.” And it’s senseless to call an animal “innocent, blameless, or perfect.” Further, the Yisra’elites didn’t use “ben / son” to describe the offspring of livestock, because it was unnecessary to denote masculinity with nouns like kebes, which already convey gender. So by using “son” and “perfection,” Yahowah was painting a prophetic picture of Yahowsha’, and of the role He would play in the redemption of humankind.
Additional insights regarding Yahowsha’ as the perfect embodiment of the Towrah can be derived from the next word, tamym. It is a derivative of tamam, a term which conveys one of the ways the Covenant is enabled. Yahowsha’, as the Lamb of God, “put an end to” the need for us to offer animal sacrifices (at least prior to their reenactment during the Millennial Sabbath). By “fulfilling” the Miqra’ey requirements “perfectly,” and by “completing” His redemptive mission, by “finishing the job,” God “accomplished all that was necessary” to make us “whole, complete, and upright”—forever. The Miqra’ey sacrifices point toward Yahowsha’s sacrifice which we observe by answering God’s invitation to meet with Him on these days. These Festival Feasts served as a “record,” as a “rehearsal,” designed to “regale” the seven most-important dates in mankind’s redemptive history.
And speaking of perfection, Yahowah requested seven lambs to remind this corrupted gathering of Yahuwdym and Gowym, men and women, young and old, rich and poor, that seven is the number of perfection. Only those who are perfected by the Son and the Spirit can enter the Creator’s presence. To fully appreciate Yahowah’s plan, we must come to understand the prevalence and pertinence of seven.
Returning to the menu for the Feast of Seven Sevens, we have two polluted loaves and seven perfect lambs. But there is more
“ and (wa) one (‘echad) bull (par – male cow from parar, that which is broken and frustrated, divided and split apart, violated and ineffectual), a son (ben) from the herd to reflect upon (baqar – to consider along with the offspring of cattle), and two (shamaym) rams representing the upright pillar and doorway (‘ayil – the Mighty One who leads by way of the door posts and upright timber)...” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:18)
Bull, or par, is derived from a word which describes fallen man apart from God. It conveys the idea that without the benefit of “Yahowah having laid upon the Lamb the iniquity of us all” we are “broken, split apart, and divided” from Him. Having “violated” the Towrah, our feeble attempts to save ourselves are “ineffectual.”
Secondarily, the bull and the sun are Satan’s most enduring symbols. So while baqar can mean “cattle, herd, or oxen,” the same three Hebrew consonants vocalized boqer mean “daybreak and rising sun.” Satan’s name, Halal ben Shachar (also written Heylel ben Shachar), means the “Arrogant Son of the Morning or Rising Star.” Along those lines, baqaq conveys “empty and void, laid waste, and devastated.” And that may be why Yahowah wants us to baqar, “to consider and reflect upon,” our condition as a consequence of having confused His instructions with the devil’s counterfeits in the religions of Judaism, Christianity, Hinduism, Mormonism, and Islam. Even Secular Humanism, with its celebration of the sun, its fixation on renewable energy, and devotion to mother earth in the form of environmentalism, is giving the more overt religions competition when it comes to false worship.
‘Ayil, the word translated “rams representing the upright pillar,” is the opposite of baqar. Its every nuance points to Yahowsha’. ‘Ayil is the “Ram” whose “horns of light” served as the sacrificial replacement for Yitschaq on Mount Mowryah. ‘Ayil is the “Lamb” who was sacrificed to bear our sins during Passover. ‘Ayil is “the Upright Pillar” representing Yahowah’s presence with the Children of Yisra’el during their exodus. ‘Ayil is the “Mighty One” who diminished a portion of Himself as a man to save men at the end of the fourth millennium. ‘Ayil is the Good Shepherd, “the leader of the flock,” the one who shepherds His sheep to the Promised Land. ‘Ayil is “the tree or timber, the upright pillar of wood” upon which the Passover Lamb was affixed. ‘Ayil represents the “door posts and lintel” upon which the blood of this same Lamb was smeared during the first Passover. And ‘ayil is “the doorway” to our hearts and to heaven, by which Yahowsha’ stands and knocks, hoping that we will respond.
So while there is only one God, the Savior and Spirit were both set apart from Yahowah to serve and save man. That is why “two” ‘ayil were required. More on this in a moment
So far, so good, but our Heavenly Father wasn’t finished. Still describing the ‘ayil, He spoke of it: “ existing as (hayah) an ascending way (‘olah – an elevated ramp and offering by whose steps one can rise) to approach (la) Yahowah ( ), which is offered as a gift (minchah – a sacrificial present, an apportionment bestowed, an offering given without compensation), the feminine and maternal manifestation of God’s light, (‘iseh/‘isah – our adoptive Mother who enlightens, purifies, and elevates) poured out (necek / nacak – an offered freely) to approach (la – to move toward and be in accord with) Yahowah ( ), creating the pleasing Spirit (ruyach – forming a pleasant aroma; from ruwach, the Spirit) of reconciliation (nychowach – of restoration and relationship, of appeasement and conciliation, of tranquility and harmonious fellowship, from nuwach, to rest in peace).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:18)
If you harbored any doubts that these Invitations to be Called Out and Meet with God were descriptive of the gift of life promised by the Covenant, or that it encapsulates the concept of mercy leading to salvation, those concerns should have evaporated. Contrary to theological explanations, the Towrah doesn’t portray a legalized, works-based, path to God. Mercy leading to salvation and to being born anew lie at the heart of the Miqra’ey, which in turn form the heart of the Towrah.
Digging ever deeper, we find that the primary meaning of nychowach is “conciliation which reconciles parties engaged in a relationship.” Nychowach is from nuwach, meaning “that which brings rest and allows someone to settle and remain.” This “resting place,” this “place of tranquility,” is heaven. And our arrival is predicated upon embracing the “ruyach—the pleasing Spirit” of Yahowah.
The Hebrew word, ‘iseh /‘isah, depending upon how the letters are vocalized, can be translated either “feminine manifestation of God’s light” or “adoptive mother who enlightens, purifies, and elevates,” because the word conveys: “woman, wife, female, adoptive mother, and fire.” As we will discover in the “Taruw’ah” chapter, and again in “Yowm Kippurym,” ‘iseh is almost always translated “burnt offering” or “an offering made by fire,” because it is indistinguishable in the text from the feminine noun for fire, ‘eseh. However, there is no reference to “offering” or “made” in the word’s etymology. These meanings and roots acknowledged, neither “feminine fire” nor “woman and wife” make sense as the primary definition within the context of this passage—or the others.
Throughout Scripture, however, ‘esh / fire is used as a symbol of Yahowah’s presence and especially His light. ‘Esh serves as a metaphor for judgment, for burning off impurities and thus for purification, for the separation of good from bad, for light and enlightenment, for warmth and comfort, and often as something which elevates and uplifts—a reference to the primary direction a fire’s smoke and energy travel. And yet while these are all important salvation-related concepts, based upon the three Hebrew letters found in the text, the word Yahowah selected could just as easily have been ‘isah, meaning “female individual, wife, woman, and non-biological adoptive mother.”
In that their alphabetic compositions are identical, there is no way to distinguish between ‘eseh,‘iseh, or ‘isah (אִשֶּׁה Aleph-Shin-Heh) in Yah’s revelation. Rabbis, called Masoretes, wouldn’t point and vocalize this text for more than 2,400 years after it was originally transcribed, and our oldest extant copy of such vocalizations, called the Masoretic Text, dates to the 11th century CE. And sadly, the more I study the Word, the less I trust their opinions.
In this particular verse, the more traditional portrayal of ‘iseh as “a burnt offering,” or the more linguistically accurate and demonstrative connotation “an offering which separates and rises” are permissible, albeit they are not ideal choices in that the passage concludes with “the pleasing Spirit of reconciliation.” That aside, since there is no reference to “making an offering” in the Hebrew word itself, and since we will soon discover that the definition “burnt offering” becomes senseless in the presentation of the Miqra’ of Yowm Kippurym (also described in same section of Qara’ / Leviticus), we are compelled to consider other options. After all, it is God’s custom that when there are many potential renderings of a term, multiple meanings are intended, widening and deepening the instruction being offered.
Upon studying every nuance of what these three letters can convey, it becomes evident that the rendering of ‘eseh,‘iseh, ‘isah, which encapsulates the full potential of these terms, and which consistently works within the context of the story being told, is either “feminine manifestation of God’s light” or “adoptive mother who enlightens, purifies, and elevates,” because the word conveys these specific ideas. And as we have come to learn, there is an aspect of Yahowah’s nature which “purifies, separating good from bad, which covers us in light and enlightens us, which provides warmth and comfort, and which elevates and uplifts souls, incorporating every aspect of ‘eseh. Moreover, according to the Word, the Spirit adorns us in a Garment of Light, She nurtures us, comforts us, enlightens us, protects us, empowers us, and acts as our advocate before God, embodying every metaphor associated with fire in the Word.
Likewise, there is “a female individual and a non-biological adoptive mother,” who, not only represents God, but also encapsulates every aspect of ‘isah. She is the Set-Apart Spirit, our Spiritual Mother, the feminine manifestation of God’s light through whom our souls are redeemed and renewed, reborn into eternal life. Our Spiritual Mother envelops us in “Yahowah’s pleasing Spirit of reconciliation,” pouring out Her Garment of Light upon us, rendering us perfect and eternal.
If you are troubled by Yahowah having a feminine and maternal nature in addition to His role as Father and Son, I invite you to consider that those who are saved are born anew—a maternal function. While Evangelical Christians acknowledge the need to be “born again,” to be “born of water and of spirit,” they don’t pause long enough to recognize that we are not born of fathers—but instead to mothers.
Reinforcing these thoughts, the Hebrew word for Spirit, ruwach, is feminine, and all of the responsibilities described in Scripture which are associated with the Set-Apart Spirit are maternal. And by way of further confirmation, the feminine ‘isah also means: “to make relations friendly”—the principle function of the Spirit and a central ingredient to reconciliation.
For those who may still be uncomfortable with Yahowah having a paternal and a maternal nature, contemplate why He said: “So God created ‘Adam in His image (tselem – resemblance, pattern, and model), in the image of God He created him. Male and female, He created them.” (Bare’syth / In the Beginning / Genesis 1:27)
Before we leave the 18th verse of Qara’ 23, let’s at least consider a more traditional rendering, one which communicates by way of metaphors. “ and two rams (‘ayl – Mighty Ones representing the upright pillar and the doorway) existing as (hayah) a burnt offering (‘olah – an ascending way) to (la) Yahowah ( ), offered as a sacrifice (minchah – a gift given without compensation), a drink offered and served (necek / nacak – a libation poured out), an offering made by fire (‘iseh /‘isah – by the adoptive Mother who enlightens, purifies, and elevates) unto (la) Yahowah ( ), creating the pleasant aroma (ruyach – as the pleasing Spirit) of reconciliation (nychowach – of restoration and appeasement).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:18) This is not necessarily inaccurate, but it isn’t nearly as enlightening.
Moving on, Yahowah’s recipe for Shabuwa’ wasn’t yet complete. Still speaking of the “all-are-welcome and come-as-you-are party,” God said:
“You should choose to engage (‘asah – you should act to provide (qal perfect consecutive)) one (‘echad) satyr goat (sa’yr ‘ez – a hairy male, often used to depict demon-possessed beings, even swine; from sa’ar, a horrible, tempestuous whirlwind and dreaded storm which swirls and sweeps away) for going astray (chata’ah – as a result of the guilt associated with going the wrong way, for having incurred the penalty of becoming unclean, for having missed the path), and two (samaym) year-old (sanah) lamb (kebes) sons (ben) as a sacrifice (zebach) to reconcile the relationship (shelem from shalem whose root is shalowm – for that which completes and finishes, rendering the payment in full; that which brings peace, prosperity, and well-being; that which represents a voluntary sacrifice to repay a debt, reestablishing an alliance of friendship; that which perfects and makes whole, rendering the beneficiary unharmed and at peace; that which provides compensation, recompensing damage incurred; that which restores and makes amends, reinstituting the fellowship, providing salvation).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:19)
The “satyr” represents all that is wrong with us and the world. It is symbolic of Satan, “the goat who is possessed, the demonic swine, and the dreaded and horrid whirlwind whose circular reasoning sweeps people away” from God. The satyr’s beguiling influence is one of the reasons we have “gone astray and have incurred guilt, have become unclean, and have gone down the wrong path.” So, to solve the problem of satanically-inspired misdirection, Yahowah has offered the Savior and the Spirit. No matter how one vocalizes slm, it spells “reconciliation.”
The purpose of the Feast of Seven Sabbaths is to enlighten God’s children, empowering us to become effective witnesses, so that we properly present using the right words and symbols, the means Yahowah has provided to enable the Covenant. It is about inviting others to rise up to Yahowah and live in His presence. Therefore
“The one who officiates by mediating (kohen – the priestly intermediary) should choose to wave (nowph – to elevate) them with (‘eth) the bread (lechem – the grain) of FirstFruits (Bikuwrym – the initial harvest gathered in of the firstborn with privileged inheritances) as an offering which elevates (tanuwphah) before and in the presence of Yahowah ( ) in accordance with (‘al – on the basis of) the two (shanaym – the double portion of) lambs (kebes – male lambs or rams). They shall exist (hayah) set apart (qodesh) to approach (la – as an extension of, by means of, on behalf of, and to move toward) Yahowah ( ).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:20)
The Spirit and the Savior “exist as an extension of, by means of, and on behalf of” Yahowah. They are responsible for elevating us into the presence of God. This is a perfect portrayal of what it means to be “set apart.” The two lambs convey the concept that the Spirit and Son are diminished manifestations of Yah, set apart and extended from Him and by Him to serve us – taking us to Him.
The inclusion of Bikuwrym in this passage has caused religious types to tout Shabuwa’ as being one of three religious festivals which commemorate harvests. This in turn is used to associate Yahowah with countless crop and solar deities. And while there is a harvest suggested here, the context and symbolism reveal that purified souls are being reaped, not crops.
Also, while we are on the subject of religious gerrymandering, the rabbinical insistence that Shabuwa’, which they call Shavuot, commemorates the “handing down of the Towrah” is speculation, because it isn’t implicit in Scripture. Moreover, rabbis have long since discarded the authority of the Towrah, replacing it with their Talmud, mooting the notion should it by chance be true. Christians, of course, are no better, as they take Pentecost completely out of its Towrah lineage—insisting that this very same “Towrah was nailed to the cross.”
While the religious world remains oblivious to Yahowah’s plan, it isn’t God’s fault. He not only invited us to meet with Him on this day, He told us twice.
“And (wa) you should choose to call out without hesitation offering an invitation to meet, a welcoming summons (qara’ – you should of your own volition make an announcement, proclaiming and publishing, reading and reciting, the means to be called out) in association with (ba) this essential (‘etsem – substantive and foundational) day (yowm). This (zeh) exists as (hayah – was, is, and forever will be) a set apart (qodesh) Miqra’, an Invitation to be Called Out and Meet (miqra’ – a summons to a rehearsal meeting which brings us together, encouraging us to meet and then read and recite the written Word, proclaiming it and publicly while engaging) for you to approach (la).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:21)
It isn’t by accident that the root of miqra’, qara’, was included in the passage. By using it, Yah is explaining the purpose of this essential day. Qara’ reminds us that we are being “invited to be called out,” “summoned to meet,” and “called to encounter” God. We have been “given the opportunity to engage in something which is important to remember.” Qara’ reveals that we are being “welcomed into the presence” of God. It conveys the notion that we are being “called by name,” and that we are to “proclaim and announce publicly that other guests are also being received hospitably.” Qara’ even explains that we are “to read aloud something which has been written down,” reciting the Towrah.
Miqra’ simply adds the concepts of “togetherness and assembly,” and of “people being asked to gather for a particular purpose.” That purpose, of course, is then defined by qara’—“an invitation to be called out and meet with” God.
This suggests that we are being encouraged to observe the Miqra’ of Shabuwa’ by answering God’s invitation, gathering together in recognition that this day builds upon the benefits of Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits, adding enlightenment and empowerment to becoming eternal and perfect children of God. So there is a lot to celebrate, a great deal to share.
And there is no better way to celebrate this day than to read and recite the Word of God, to proclaim its redemptive truth, and to invite the estranged to seek Yahowah. We are being encouraged to use this day to share Yahowah’s seven-step plan of reconciliation.
There is something, however, which we are asked to refrain from on this essential day: no business as usual—especially religious business. The Miqra’ of Shabuwa’ depicts the Spirit’s work in addition to the Son’s. And since they are both manifestations of Yahowah, we are being instructed not to do His job or Hers:
“You should not (lo’) do (‘asah – effect, produce, or institute) any of (kol) the work (‘abodah – labor) of the heavenly messenger’s service (mala’kah – the task of God’s envoy and representative) on it as an eternal (‘owlam – everlasting) prescription for living (chuqah – clearly communicated and inscribed instruction regarding being cut into the covenant relationship) for all generations throughout time (dowr) in all your settlements, homes, assemblies, situations, and travels (mowshab).” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23:21) The Festival of Sevens is an appointment with God which is to be observed and proclaimed forever, throughout time, no matter where we live.
Since Yahowah had so much to say about the Miqra’ of Shabuwa’, let’s review His instructions, this time uninterrupted by my explanations and commentary. God begins:
“Accurately count from the day after the Shabat, from the day you came forth and bore the sheaf of grain as an ascending wave offering the existence of seven complete Sabbaths.
Always and forever, you shall accurately count, reckon, record, relate, rehearse, and regale the Day of Fifty, starting from the next day after the seventh Shabat, and you should choose, without reservation or interruption, to come near and approach the renewing, restoring, and affirming gift to approach Yahowah.
You all shall come bringing out of your homes two loaves of bread as an ascending wave offering, a double portion as a tenfold means to empowerment and enlightenment. They shall exist as flour baked with yeast, FirstFruits to approach Yahowah.
In addition to the loaves of bread, you should choose without reservation to without hesitation come near and approach with seven one-year-old lamb sons, entirely without defect or blemish, and one bull, a son from the herd to reflect upon, and two rams representing the upright pillar and doorway, existing as an ascending stairway to Yahowah which is offered as a gift, the feminine manifestation of God’s light poured out to approach Yahowah, creating the pleasing Spirit of reconciliation.
You should choose to engage one satyr goat for going astray, and two year-old lamb sons as a sacrifice to reconcile the relationship.
The one who officiates by mediating should choose to wave them with the bread of FirstFruits as an offering which elevates before and in the presence of Yahowah in accordance with the two lambs. They shall exist set apart to approach Yahowah.
And you should choose to call out without hesitation, offering an invitation to meet, a welcoming summons in association with this essential day. This exists as a set-apart Miqra’, an Invitation to be Called Out and Meet with you and for you.
You should not do any of the work of the heavenly messenger’s service on it as an eternal prescription for living, as a clearly communicated and inscribed instruction regarding being cut into the covenant relationship, for all generations throughout time in all your settlements, homes, assemblies, situations, and travels.” (Qara’ 23:15-21)
There is a unique aspect of this Festival Feast which was only hinted at in the Qara’ presentation. But since Moseh expounded upon the purpose of the Miqra’, affirming the all-inclusive nature of the Feast of Fifty in Dabarym / Deuteronomy, let’s turn to it now and examine the connection between promise and fulfillment.
In context, remember that this instruction follows Yahowah’s presentation of Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym...
“You shall consistently accurately count (saphar – reckon, record, relate, rehearse, and regale) seven (sheba’) sevens (shabuwa’ – weeks and an oath which promises innocence) for yourself (la) from (min) beginning to (halal) bring a sickle (chermesh) against (ba) the standing grain (qamah – from quwm, to stand upright and rise). Begin (halal) to count (saphar) seven (sheba’) sevens (shabuwa’ – weeks).” (Dabarym / Words / Deuteronomy 16:9)
Yahowah reminds us that this, like all seven Miqra’ey (plural of Miqra’), are for us, not for Him. And by starting the countdown to this Festival with the Bikuwrym Harvest, we discover that Shabuwa’ isn’t an isolated affair. The path to God is straightforward, one step following another. The seven Feasts work together as a cohesive whole, accomplishing a singular purpose.
The secret to understanding sheba’ and its derivative, shabuwa’, is that in addition to meaning “seven,” they convey “to make a binding promise and solemn oath.” With the Miqra’ey, Yahowah is making a solemn promise: if you follow His seven-step plan you will end up in heaven camping out with God.
There is an interesting play on words in this presentation of Sheba’ Shabuwa’—the only Miqra’ where sin’s symbols are included. Representing our revolt against Yahowah, we find halal, whose primary meaning isn’t “to begin,” but instead “to defile, profane, pollute, treat with contempt, desecrate, and dishonor so as to achieve a lower status and diminished state.” Along these lines, halal also means “to be seen as impure, to be in violation of the covenant, to degrade the proud for doing that which is reprehensible, to pierce, and to slay.”
Qamah, translated “standing grain,” represents human souls, who apart from Yahowah’s plan of salvation, would have been cut down, halal-ed, if you will. Apart from the beneficial influence of the first four days of God’s plan, they would be seen as impure, in violation of the Covenant, and thus desecrated, dishonored, and cast down—ultimately having their souls diminished to nothingness upon their mortal demise. But thankfully, qamah is based upon quwm—which is the premise and the promise of the Miqra’ey—conveying that the purpose of Yah’s seven Invitations to be Called Out and Meet is that God stood up for us so that we would be able to stand with Him.
Therefore, there is more to this instruction regarding the Miqra’ of Sheba’ Shabuwa’ than just asking us to observe it on the right day. While the formula which underlies God’s plan of salvation is based upon six (man) in addition to one (God) creates perfection (Seven), the foundation is quwm—God stood up for us so that we could stand with Him. And that is why shabuwa’ (Strong’s 7621) is Yahowah’s “vow, His promise, attesting to our innocence.”
In this next verse, Yahowah tells us that one way to acknowledge His charity is to show some ourselves. Yet, He wants it to be our choice and voluntary.
“You should of your own volition, choose to genuinely engage and without hesitation or interruption actually participate in (‘asah – you should want to literally attend to and celebrate the totality of (qal stem, perfect conjugation, consecutive form)) the Festival Feast (chag – Party) of Shab’uwah (Shab’uwah – Sevens, Sabbaths, Weeks, and Promises; a vow which establishes innocence) to approach (la) Yahowah ( ), your God (‘elohym), with a sufficient (micah – an appropriately affordable portion; from macac, an ultimately insignificant and essentially worthless) voluntary offering (nadabah – freewill contribution and noncompulsory donation) from your hand (yad), which by association (‘asher – fortuitously and beneficially) you can actually and consistently give (natan – you may genuinely bestow, deliver, and continually entrust (qal imperfect)) when compared to (ka – according to, relative to, compared to, and consistent with) how in this relationship (‘asher) Yahowah ( ), your God (‘elohym), continues to bless and adore you (barak – kneels down and favors (piel stem which says that God directly influences us, changing us, with these blessing and imperfect conjugation which speaks of the ongoing influence of Yah’s love).” (Dabarym / Words / Deuteronomy 16:10)
As is the case with any “invitation” offered under the auspices of freewill, the recipient has the option to accept it, ignore it, or reject it. And that is why “‘asah – engage and act” was scribed in the consecutive form which conveys volition. There are many things we need to “‘asah – do” to participate in the Covenant and approach God, but no one is holding a gun to our head, forcing us, compelling us, or even commanding us, to act upon Yahowah’s guidance. These are not commands, but instead requests. There is no penalty associated with ignoring any of them.
But there is a consequence, both of accepting and rejecting these Invitations to be Called Out and Meet with God. Those who engage and walk to Yahowah along the path He has provided will live forever as His children in His home. And those who decline these invitations out of apathy or antipathy will not.
Never forget that God’s purpose isn’t to save us, but instead to adopt us. Yahowah wants to be our Father, raising us as His children, helping us grow. The goal is therefore a family-oriented relationship – the Covenant. This seven-step path to His home simply makes that possible. And as is the case with all meaningful, loving and caring relationships, each party must engage and participate for the union to have merit.
Shab’uwah is a “chag – festival feast,” a “party” where we are offered the opportunity to “celebrate” our relationship with God. It is a time for good friends to gather and share, to eat and drink, to dance and sing, to laugh and smile. Everything Yah has said and done has been designed to achieve this simple, yet remarkable, enjoyable state of affairs.
There are perhaps a hundred acceptable ways to translate the preposition la. The simplest of these is to render it “to or toward.” It speaks of “a spatial movement toward a goal,” which more succinctly means “to approach.” But that is not to say that la cannot be translated “into, on, among, in order to, so that, by, concerning, on behalf of, according to, or for. And yet there is no reason to use the twelfth definition of la, “for,” when the primary connotation, “to approach,” makes more sense. Therefore, these instructions, like most everything associated with the Miqra’ey, are designed to prepare us to “la – to approach” Yahowah.
This known, our good deeds will not save us. But that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t strive to reflect our Creator’s nature and be charitable. You cannot go wrong following Yahowah’s guidance or Yahowsha’s example.
This “freewill offering” is predicated upon past—not future—blessings from God. And based upon the Qara’ presentation of this same event, I suspect that it is directly associated with Yahowah’s “‘isarown – tenfold enrichment and empowerment” on this day. After all, Yahowah just said that our voluntary offering, while insignificant, should be compared to Yahowah’s blessings – two of which are to enrich and empower us.
Most all religions promote sacrifices to, in essence, “bribe” their deity, either appeasing him or her, or encouraging their god to “bless” future harvests. There is none of that in Yahowah’s Scriptures. Neither God’s blessings nor paradise can be purchased.
The Scriptural presentation of the Yowbel, or Redemptive Years of Yah’s Lamb, is found in the 25th chapter of Qara’, just two chapters removed from the Qara’ presentation of the Miqra’ey. This proximity suggests that they are related, just as the preceding verse in Dabarym serves to tie Shab’uwah and the Yowbel together. Both are about giving, about forgiving debts and setting people free regardless of their obligations. The connection is greater than just the pattern of Seven Sevens.
There is yet another relevant consideration. Our freewill offering is to be “ka – similar, comparable, and related to” the way Yahowah has blessed us. So since this was written to God’s children, those who have accepted the terms of the Covenant and have acted upon the first four invitations to meet with God, we should review the gifts Yahowah has given us to determine which of these we can reasonably off Him in return. Fortunately, with the benefits of Shab’uwah added to the gifts associated with Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym, the Miqra’ey’s offerings now match the Beryth’s.
God has made us immortal, which while great, isn’t something we can reciprocate. It’s not like we are in a position to say, “Here God is one of my days. Take it and add it to one of your own.”
God has made us perfect. But since Yahowah is what He has made us, we surely aren’t being asked to exonerate Him. And yet, since God’s idea of perfection is “man in addition to God (6 + 1 = 7),” there may be something we can do in this regard.
God has adopted us into His family, making us His spiritual children. So since Yahowah is our Father and since He is already Spirit, our only meaningful way to make a contribution here would be to join Him and participate in His family.
God has empowered us, making us greater than we are. So since power flows from Him to us, it would be counterproductive to contravene this process. Besides, there is nothing we can do, much less offer, which would make Yah more powerful than He already is.
God has enriched us, and we can enrich Him. This is something which works on both sides of the family equation. You see, just as a father enriches his children with his love, his guidance, his food, his shelter, his influence, and his support, thereby helping his children grow, his children enrich him through the experiences they share. By observing our Heavenly Father’s Towrah Guidance, and by coming to know Him and understand it by doing so, we bring great joy to God, just as a son does when he follows in his father’s footsteps and comes to love many of the same things. Dowd / David is a perfect example. His affinity for the Towrah, his devotion to leaning what it teaches, and his enthusiastic response to what God was offering won Yah’s heart, making Dowd the most loved of men.
So, when we are wondering what small thing we can offer God that reflects what He has done for us, especially on this day, on Seven Sabbaths, when we are enriched by the Set-Apart Spirit, bringing a copy of the Towrah to read and consider, would be a great start. As is the case with most relationships, when we show a genuine interest in what interests those we love, their love for us grows.
Moving on, we are reminded that Yahowah likes to celebrate, and everyone is invited to this party. The Festival Feast of Seven Sabbaths is a gala for all who want to “rejoice and be glad”—a homecoming which includes men and women, rich and poor, young and old, Yahuwdym and Gowym, common workers and Lowy mediators, the fatherless and the forsaken, those who have settled down and those who are just passing through.
“You should choose to totally and genuinely rejoice and be glad (samach – you should want to express your complete joy and actual happiness) in the presence of (paneh – before) Yahowah ( ), your God (‘elohym), you, and your sons and daughters, your male and female servants, the Lowy (lowy – the uniters who join us together), those in your communities (sa’ar – within your gates, cities, and assemblies), strangers, travelers and newcomers (ger – foreigners from different racial, geographic, and cultural groups), orphans (yatowm – fatherless children) and widows (‘alman – the forsaken whose spouses have passed away) who beneficially (‘asher) are in (ba) your midst (qereb), standing up at the place (maqowm – being upright at the home) where (‘asher) Yahowah ( ), your God, chooses (bachar – selects, decides, and desires is best) for His personal and proper name (shem – designation, reputation, and glory) to tabernacle (campout) and reside (shakan – to abide and dwell, to settle in and call home).” (Dabarym / Words / Deuteronomy 16:11)
Most people want to be saved by God, but that isn’t God’s goal. He wants us to enjoy being with Him. Those who do and are, He will save.
The place of Yahowah’s choosing during the Exodus was the Tabernacle. When the Yisra’elites settled down, it became the Temple on Mount Mowryah. When they moved away from God, His earthly residence became Yahowsha’. And now, thanks to the outreach of His Covenant, Yahowah has many additional homes where His name resides. We are called Yahuwdym—those who relate to and who are related to Yah. Yahowah’s name resides in us.
Also notice that Yahowah introduced the all-inclusive nature of this party with a phrase most associate with Yahowsha’—“rejoice and be glad.” I find it particularly poignant that the same passage culminates with a reference to “standing up at the place where Yahowah, your God, chooses .” Yahowah bowed down and entered our world so that He could stand up for us on Mount Mowryah, ultimately enabling us to stand with Him—camping out, residing, abiding, and dwelling with our Heavenly Father for all eternity.
Apart from the persistent Islamic persecution of Christians and Jews, there aren’t many slaves currently in Egypt, but this Scriptural message is timeless and universal. At one time or another, we have all been besieged by the Adversary.
“Remember (zakar – always be mindful) that indeed (ky) you once existed as (hayah – you were) a slave (‘ebed – one who works and serves subject to another) in Egypt (Mitsraym – the crucible; plural of matsowr, meaning you were hostilely besieged by a foe and were confined by the adversary). Act upon (‘asah – engage, aware of, profiting from and celebrating) this reality (‘el-leh), carefully observing (shamar – closely examining and thoughtfully considering, focusing upon) the prescribed inscriptions for living (chaqaq – the clearly communicated written instructions regarding being cut into the relationship).” (Dabarym / Words / Deuteronomy 16:12)
The Miqra’ey are “clearly communicated written prescriptions” for us to observe and act upon.” They are the way to God—the path to life. And they provide the roadmap to unfurling prophecy, past, present and future. They exist for all time, so that every generation comes to know Yahowah, and comes to understand and rely upon the seven-step path which leads to His home.
The Miqra’ey are not to be replaced by ceremonies and rituals conceived by man. Those who observe Easter Sunday, Rosh Hashanah, Christmas, Lent, All-Hallow’s Eve, St. Valentine’s Day, Ashura Day, Ramadan, the Summer Solstice, May Day, Janus’ New Year’s Day, or any other man-made poligious (political/religious) scheme, contribute to the deception and add to the fog which separates mankind from God.
As mentioned in part previously, rabbis, uncomfortable with the ecumenical nature of Shabuwa’, as well as its focus on Yahowah personally empowering and enriching His Covenant children, now claim that it commemorates the time when Moseh received the Towrah on Mount Horeb. While that is subject to some speculation, I suspect that it is true. And if it is, this would serve to reinforce the idea that this day celebrates our enrichment through the gift of the Towrah. But of this there can be no doubt: Seven Sabbaths is the fourth of seven steps we are invited to walk from our world to God’s home.
It is also worth noting, that some Christian denominations acknowledge Shabuwa’—the only Miqra’ so honored. Unfortunately, they don’t know its proper name, or the significance of that title, and they celebrate it on the wrong day, choosing “Whitsun,” known as “Wisdom Sunday.” None of Shabuwa’s redemptive metaphors or prophetic insights are conveyed to their congregations. For them, it’s all about the beginning of the “Church Age,” and of them replacing Jews as God’s instruments. No thought is ever given to this being the fourth stride toward living with God, or that it is the midpoint in Yahowah’s seven-step plan of salvation. They even fail to see how Seven Sabbaths serves as a central plank in the unfolding of God’s redemptive timeline, providing the very framework or skeleton upon which Yah’s schedule hangs.
In the “Bikuwrym” chapter, Yahowah spoke of His Miqra’ey as if they were a cohesive whole, played out in three acts. So to establish the proper context for what follows, and by way of review, remember that God said: “Three times a year you should stand before Me (walk along side and set foot in My presence) consistently celebrating a festival feast with Me. You should consistently observe (focus on, examine, and consider) the Festival Feast of Unleavened Bread.
Seven days you should consistently eat unleavened bread as I instructed, at the time appointed in the month of ‘Abyb, for in it you came forth from the crucible of Egypt.
Do not appear before Me (never be seen in my presence) as an empty vessel (void, with an unfilled space, without a marker demonstrating the relationship).
So enjoy the Festival Feast of the harvest (the time of reaping that which was sown, of gathering in the crop of), the initial gathering of grain and the first fruit ready to be picked and gathered of your labors which you sow in the field, and enjoy the Festival Feast of ingathering at the end of the year, when you gather in (receive and accept) what you have accomplished out of the field.
Three times a year everyone should consistently remember to be seen (be inspected and considered) before (in the presence of) Yahowah.” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 23:14-17)
This passage affirms that a harvest of souls is an essential component of the Spring, Summer, and Fall Festival Feasts, and that we should enjoy reaping what we have sown. In the Spring, this ingathering of souls is Bikuwrym or FirstFruits—as the name implies, where the immortal, redeemed, and adopted beneficiaries of Pesach and Matsah are called home on Bikuwrym. In the Fall, Yahowah’s ingathering begins with the proclamation of the approaching harvest on Taruw’ah. On Yowm Kippurym, our relationship with our Heavenly Father is reconciled, preparing us to be gathered into God’s home on Sukah. So then in the Summer, between these dates, the spiritual enrichment and empowerment of God’s family results in another, bountiful harvest of souls, making Shabuwa’ Mother’s Day.
The common thread in these harvests is the presence of the Set-Apart Spirit—our Spiritual Mother. Her Spirit fills the void in our souls, and purifies us, making it possible for us to live in Yahowah’s presence. The role the Spirit plays during these Invitations to be Called Out and Meet with God is essential. FirstFruits celebrates the union of soul and Spirit. Seven Sabbaths solves the mandate of: “none shall appear before Me as an empty vessel,” with its fulfillment focused entirely upon the Set-Apart Spirit filling us with Her light on this day, enlightening, empowering, enriching, uplifting, counseling, nourishing, and indeed clothing us. This means that the Day of Reconciliations serves humankind’s last opportunity to be equipped to enter God’s home. Those who answer Yahowah’s invitation to appear in the presence of our Spiritual Mother will find Her facilitating our acceptance into our Heavenly Father’s family.
In the heart of this message, God revealed one of the most important, and least appreciated, prophecies in the whole of Scripture. In the context of this sweeping presentation of the three harvests of the seven Miqra’ey, Yahowah promised that He would send out a Messenger, representing Himself, one who would bear His name and save His people, by showing them the way home.
“Behold (look and see), I will send out (extend Myself to dispatch) a Messenger representing Me (an authorized spiritual and heavenly envoy, a supernatural representative who serves as My ambassador, a servant who proclaims My message and fulfills My mission, a theophany—the visible manifestation of Myself) before you (in your presence, to appear as a person face to face) to carefully watch over, protect, and be concerned about you (to care for and guard you and for you to revere and cling to) with regard to the Way, and to bring you to (carry and transport you to, gather you in and harvest you, to cause you to arrive at and be included in) the standing place and home (the upright abode, the household of the Source, and the dwelling of the Upright One) which by way of this relationship I have established (prepared, made ready, and arranged).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 23:20)
“Be especially observant and stay focused because My presence is on Him. Attentively listen to (receive, pay attention to, and highly regard) His voice. Do not be rebellious or contentious toward Him because if you are, He will not pardon you, lift you up, or carry you away from (support and sustain you, remove your guilt and forgive you, or take away and bear) your revolt and rebellion (your crimes, sins, offences, and faults) since (because indeed) My personal and proper name is upon Him.” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 23:21)
Yahowah made good on this promise, fulfilling the Miqra’ey, and thereby saving those who would listen to Yahowsha’. But as religions old and new are wont to do, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam concealed the Way to God, ignoring this direct connection between Yahowah and Yahowsha’, between the Towrah and Yahowsha’, between the Miqra’ey and Yahowsha’, between Yahowah’s Witness and Yahowsha’s Testimony. A pity.
Instead, the founders of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam did the very thing Yahowah asked them not to do. “You shall not bow down (prostrate yourself in worship before, associate with, or show allegiance) to the Canaanite gods nor serve (be submissive to) them, nor engage, acting on things associated with (similar or related to) their practices and customs (traditions and patterns of behavior).
Rather instead, you shall tear them down and demolish them (topple, oust and utterly destroy them, removing them from their lofty positions), breaking (shattering), crippling, and crushing (pulverizing, disfiguring and destroying) their sacred memorial stones, pillars, and altars (religious monuments, obelisks, and idolatrous statues).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 23:24)
And yet, the spurned rabbi Paul, the acclaimed rabbi Akiba, emperor Constantine, and the wannabe prophet Muhammad did the opposite. Pagan customs were redefined to facilitate new religions. The Babylonian Rosh Hashanah replaced Taruw’ah. The Babylonian Easter Sunday replaced Bikuwrym. And the Babylonian Asherah Day replaced Shabuwa’—to name but a few putrid examples. God’s Way was replaced by man’s way, and as a result, man has lost his way.
Humankind has not only suffered needlessly, many have sought to blame the very God they ignored and rebuffed for their misery, saying that “a loving God would never have allowed such anguish.” And yet God said: “You should choose of your own volition and without hesitation or interruption to actually engage, acting and serving (‘abad – genuinely expending considerable energy and intensity doing things (qal perfect consecutive)) with (‘eth – alongside and next to) Yahowah ( ), your God (‘elohym), and He will choose to completely kneel down and totally bless (barak – He will want to adore, invoking divine favor for (piel perfect consecutive)) that which is associated with (’eth) your bread and water (lechem wa maym – nourishment and source of life). And He will come to remove (suwr) the disease which weakens (machalah – that which sickens) from your midst (min qereb).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 23:25)
By ignoring Yahowah’s Towrah instructions, mankind, especially religious devotees, have brought disease which weakens souls upon themselves. When a child dies prematurely, when cancer riddles a child’s body, it isn’t God’s plan, nor is it the most sickening outcome. A far more lamentable fate is the destruction of that child’s soul because his or her parents failed to share Yahowah’s Covenant with them.
In the Bikuwrym chapter, we plotted a new course after considering the twenty-fifth verse of the twenty-third chapter of Shemowth, moving on to the presentation of the FirstFruits Harvest in Qara’. This time, remaining cognizant of the context of the Miqra’ey’s three ingatherings of souls, of Yahowsha’ providing the Way, and of religions representing the adversary, I’d like to venture deeper into the Shemowth instruction.
The beguiled and beguiling mind of man provides the impetus for religious monuments such as cathedrals and mosques, obelisks to sun gods like those found in the Vatican and Washington, D.C., idolatrous statues like those erected to Mary, “Mother of God and Queen of Heaven,” and for pagan religious practices such as Lent, Weeping for Tammuz, Christmas, New Year’s Day, and Ramadan. To rid a place of them, and to rid an area of the disease and suffering they cause, one has to rid one’s realm of their host—religious practitioners. In direct opposition to the means Catholicism, and indeed Christianity, has used to assimilate people into their religion, Yahowah said:
“You shall not (lo’) cut an agreement (karat – make a covenant) with (la – on behalf or in accord with) them (hemah – speaking to the Canaanites), nor a Covenant (beryth – a relationship, alliance, treaty, league, promise, or pledge) with (la) their gods (‘elohym).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 23:32)
And while rabbis, priests, and imams have done this very thing, none have been as bold as Roman Catholics, who based their “New Covenant” upon the myths and traditions of the Babylonians, Assyrians, Egyptians, Greeks, and Romans—allegedly to lure pagans away from the very traditions the Church was emulating. These are but a few examples of the putrid pagan pontifications found in the Christian swamp of religious poison: Imperial Rome’s and Janus’ New Year’s Day (also known as the Octave of Christmas and Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God), the Epiphany, St. Valentine’s Day, St Patrick’s Day, Lent, Ash Wednesday, Palm Sunday, Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, Easter Sunday, the Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, the Nativity of St. John, Halloween (All Saints Day), the Advent, the Feast of the Immaculate Conception of the Mother of God, and Christmas (the Nativity of our Lord), Sunday Worship (as the Lord’s Day), the Eucharist, Communion, the Sacrifice of the Mass, acknowledging Saints, Prayers to and for the Dead, the Rosary, Priestly Confession, Purgatory, Statues and Prayers to the Madonna and Child, the Cross, Sign of the Cross, Crucifixes, Religious Relics and Icons, Halos, Steeples, Obelisks, Holy Water, Infant Baptism, Wax Candles, Justification by Works, Indulgences, a Monetary Tithe, a Paid Clergy, a Clerical Hierarchy, a Sovereign Pontiff or Pope, Cardinals, Celibate Priests as Fathers, Monks, Nuns, and calling God “Lord,” . (You’ll notice, not one of Yahowah’s seven Invitations to be Called Out and Meet with God made the Christian list.) And then there is the Babylonian Christmas Tree and its lights and decorations, the Babylonian Yule Log, Wreaths, and Santa, the Babylonian Easter Bunny and Dyed Eggs, the Babylonian Easter Ham and Hot Cross Buns.
In direct violation of Yahowah’s instructions, rabbis have instituted the pagan celebrations of the Babylonian Head of the Year, called Rosh HaShanah, Tzom Gedaliah, Rosh Chodesh Iyar, Yom HaAtzmaut, LaqBaOmer, Simchat Towrah, Chanukah, Asarah B’Tevet, the Celebration of the Month of Tammuz, the Fast of Esther, the Fast of Tammuz, Purim, the Three Weeks of Tammuz, the Fast of Tisha B’Av, Rosh Chodesh Elul, and Sefirat HaOmer, to name but a few extracurricular religious holidays. And it should be noted, that on Hebcal, the most popular rabbinical calendar, Matsah, Bikuwrym, and Taruw’ah aren’t ever listed. Moreover, Shabuwa’ is always set on the wrong day, and Yowm Kippurym’s is routinely moved to keep its special Sabbath from falling on a Muslim or Christian holy day.
God isn’t Politically Correct. He isn’t a proponent of Multiculturalism. Tolerance isn’t a Divine virtue. Simply stated, the edicts of Socialist Secular Humanism are in direct opposition to Yahowah’s instructions for one very important reason.
“They should not (lo’) live (yasab – dwell, settle, or marry) in (ba) your land (‘erets – realm and region, country and territory) lest (pen – otherwise, implying apprehension regarding a negative outcome) they cause you to miss the way (chata’ ‘eth – they lead you astray from the path) to approach Me (la – to move toward).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 23:33)
Scriptural critics, especially those opposed to the Towrah, are quick to remove the conquest verses from their context, and then declare that “the God of the ‘Old Testament’ was violent and unmerciful.” They never ponder, even for a moment, the reason God wanted the pagans out of a handful of specific villages in the Promised Land in the fourteenth-century BCE. Simply stated: it was the most merciful and intelligent thing to do.
If there is a God, if He created the universe and life, and if that God provided a means for His creation to know Him, and to live with Him, then the most compassionate, moral, and rational thing to do was and is to eliminate and diminish the influence of those who, and things which, convolute His message and plan. Chief among these things are religions, and those who profess them.
Since Yahowah knows that He exists, knows that He is responsible for the universe and all life in it, knows that He has revealed Scriptures which enable us to recognize Him, and knows that He articulated and then facilitated a plan of salvation, teaching His people to be tolerant and accepting of dogmas and people which are hostile to Him would be akin to inviting someone with a contagious form of leprosy into your home—knowing that they would infect and kill your children.
This unwillingness to accommodate and tolerate deceitful, destructive, deadly, and damning doctrines is not a freewill or choice issue. God doesn’t care what religious people do in their homes or in their countries. But the Promised Land is God’s home; Yisra’el is His country. And more than anyone, our Heavenly Father and Creator understands the deadly consequences which occur when His children are corrupted by societies infected with religious schemes—by associating with those who worship false gods. Such relationships inevitably lead to myths and misconceptions. Religions prevail specifically because they are enticing.
But their lure is a trap, one that ensnares souls in Satan’s noose. “Because (ky) serving (‘abad – working for, being reduced to servitude and being enslaved by) their gods (‘elohym) will indeed (ky) be (hayah – exist as) a snare (mowqes – trap or noose, that which lures, entices, incapacitates, and injures) to you (la).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 23:33)
No rational, loving parent would encourage his or her children to work and live among thieves, among those infected with lethal diseases, among perpetual liars, or among religious terrorists. And if that were the only place to work and live, a loving and rational parent would do whatever they could to clean up that community, ridding it of its bad influences for the sake of their children.
When we contemplate Scripture from the perspective of family relationships, from beyth–household and beryth–covenant, everything makes since. God wants to rid His home and His neighborhood of negative influences, because that’s what is in the best interest of His children.
Speaking of how infectious religions begin, and of the enticements that are used to perpetrate them, the founders of the Jewish religion, Rabbis Akiba and Maimonides, taught that the seventy elders of Israel received their Oral Law at the same time Moseh received the Towrah from Yahowah. But, in the very next verse, God says otherwise:
“And then (wa) God (‘el) said to (‘amar) Moseh (Moseh – one who draws out), be lifted up (‘alah – ascend and rise up) to (‘el) Yahowah ( ), you (‘athah), ‘Aharown (‘aharown – one who brings light and choice (i.e., informed freewill), Nadab (nadab – one who volunteers, giving freely), and ‘Abyhuw’ (‘abyhuw’ – from huw’, he and his, and ‘ab, father). But (wa) the seventy (shibi’ym) from (min) the elders (zaqen – old people) of Yisra’el (yisra’el – individuals who strive with God), you will choose to act independently, influencing yourselves with your interpretations and verbal communication (chawah – you will be informed and make your pronouncements (hishtafel perfect consecutive)) from (min) a distance (rahowq – from afar, distanced and removed, separated and alienated, being absent and remote).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:1)
So five people were invited to ascend the mountain at this time – all named and handpicked by God. The elders of Yisra’el “chose to act independently, influencing themselves with their own interpretations and verbal pronouncements, conversing among themselves” while distanced from God. We know this because the hishtafel stem, used only 170 times in the whole of the Tanakh, tells us that the subject, which is the “elders,” would influence themselves with their interpretive oral testimony. Scribed in the perfect, their Talmud corruptions would be completely their own. And in the consecutive, they would choose to act this way.
However, while “verbal interpretive communication” is precisely indicative of the Rabbinical “Oral Law,” and reflects the primary connotation of chawah, prophetically describing exactly what religious Jews would do and claim, there is a second definition worth considering. Chawah also means “bow down, prostrating oneself in religious worship.” The Rabbis would choose to do these things as well.
Those who choose to engage in a relationship with Yahowah are asked to listen to Him and to walk out of their political and religious realms, standing upright with Him. Those who oppose Him, those who are being judged by Him, are shown in the opposite position, clinging to religion and bowing down before Him. But, those who are separated and remote are not bowing down in worship, as some would suggest. They would be judged for their crimes against God’s people.
This verse is as clear as words allow. The “old men of Israel,” those who are credited with the Talmud, were “distanced and removed, separated and alienated, absent and remote” from Yahowah, while the other four men were invited to “rise up” toward Yah. The elders would create their own instructions, choosing to impose them on themselves.
The proper conclusion is: Yahowah’s Towrah leads to a Familial Covenant of Relationship with God and religious traditions lead to alienation and separation from God. Those who are with Yahowah are seen upright, standing side by side with their Creator and walking alongside their Heavenly Father. Those who are alien to God, are depicted bowing down before Him in judgment.
The Word is the Way. Without it, no one can approach Yah. “Then Moseh alone (wa Moseh la bad – and Moseh by himself) wanted to totally approach and be personally present (nagas – to come near (niphal perfect consecutive)), moving toward (la) Yahowah ( ), God (‘el). And (wa) the others (hem) they did not approach and were not present (lo’ nagas). Also (wa), the people (‘am) they did not ascend (lo’ ‘alah – they were not lifted up) with him (‘im) (huw’).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:2) Moseh had received the Word. He had listened to God. He had fully embraced and acted upon Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym. And now He was prepared to be enriched, enlightened, and empowered by the Spirit of Shabuwa’. Perhaps the others weren’t as ready.
But that condition wouldn’t last long, at least for those who came to rely upon Yahowah’s Towrah as opposed to the people’s Talmud.
“Moseh came (bow’) and accurately recounted (saphar – carefully related a written inscription which had been recorded using a precise accounting) to (la) the people (‘am – family) all of (kol) the words (dabar – statements, message, and communication) of Yahowah’s ( ) and all of (kol) the means to justly resolve disputes (mishpat – the means to exercise good judgment, make decisions, reach sound verdicts, and reveal the prescriptions for resolution; from shaphat – to condemn or vindicate).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:3)
Of paramount importance to us in this passage is the use of saphar, “to accurately and carefully record in writing, using a precise accounting.” God purposely selected saphar rather than any of the many other ordinary Hebrew words for verbal communication for a reason. The Towrah isn’t hearsay; it is a transcription of Yahowah’s testimony. It is comprised of His words. And it is complete. All means all, that is all all means.
Since God is ascribing a sense of precision to His terminology, it seems reasonable we do the same. We ought not feel at liberty to change His words to those we prefer, just because men and women have become more accustomed to hearing religious terms. For example, if Yahowah wrote “set-apart,” we shouldn’t replace this concept with “holy.” If God wrote “Yahowah,” those who replace His name with “the Lord” are copyeditors rather than translators. If towrah means “teaching,” changing it to “law” is both errant and dishonest. It would be akin to changing the name of the corporeal manifestation of the Word from the Ma’aseyah Yahowsha’ to “Jesus Christ.”
More telling still, saphar is identical in its letter composition to seper, which is “written communication,” a “document, book, or scroll.” That is not to say, however, that the entire Towrah was transcribed at this juncture, but only that everything God had said so far was accurately and completely recorded. There would be yet another, more comprehensive installment.
What’s also intriguing here is the use of mishpat, almost as a conclusion or summary of what was revealed, because “all of the words of Yahowah” would have been sufficient to convey that Moseh had been a reliable scribe. And all of Yahowah’s words would have included His “means to achieve justice and resolve disputes,” in addition to His “judgments, decisions, verdicts, proclamations, plans, and prescriptions.” But with a little investigation, we quickly discover that there are two reasons mishpat was added.
First, mishpat is based upon shaphat, which tells us four things: Yahowah alone is our “Judge,” and the Towrah is the Constitution of His “government.” Yahowah is the source of “vindication” as well as “condemnation,” not rabbis, priests, or any other human institution.
The second reason for adding mishpat is that it provides an insight into that which Yahowah would ultimately condemn. This word became synonymous with the Jewish religion, and thus served as a warning to those who would try to usurp God’s authority and ability. Mishpat has been religiously transliterated mitzvot. Then, two-thousand five-hundred years after Moseh inscribed Yahowah’s mishpat, Moshe Maimonides developed 613 mitzvot, or rabbinical regulations, customs, and traditions which now serve as the foundation of Judaism. Most of these were concocted and compiled by the Rambam (an acronym based upon Rabbi Moshe ben Maimon) and then came to be included in what’s called “Halakah,” meaning “to walk,” but known as “Jewish Religious Law.” This misguided rabbi claimed that there were 613 regulations listed in the Towrah, something which is not true, and that his mitzvot were all based upon the Towrah, something which is not true, and that the number was equal to the number of seeds in a pomegranate and number of bones in the human body, neither of which is true.
But this is true: Rabbi Maimonides was born in Cordoba, Spain in 1135 CE, within two centuries of the time the once Christian nation was conquered by the Islamic Moors. Then, following the fundamentalist Islamic Almohades conquest of Muslim Moorish Spain in 1148, Maimonides’ father, unhappy with the Islamic ultimatum: “surrender to Allah and Muhammad and become a Muslim, or die,” moved the family, like most all Spanish Jews, into exile in Fez, Morocco (the place whose streets ran red with Christian blood during the Islamic conquests of the eighth century).
During this time, the young Maimonides studied under Abdul Arab Ibn Muwashah, at which was, the most influential Islamic religious institution, the University and Mosque of Al-Qarawyin. There, the Rambam was known to have read from, pondered and pontificated upon Islam’s holy books. These would have included Allah’s Qur’an, Ishaq’s Sira (Biography of Muhammad), Tabari’s Tarikh (History of Islam), and Bukhari’s Hadith (Oral Traditions and Law from Muhammad’s Companions)—the last of which served to significantly influence Maimonides view of the Talmud, or Jewish Oral Law, which itself had served as the basis of Allah’s Qur’anic recital.
Known by the Islamic name Abu Imran Mussa (the name of the Qur’an’s caricature of Moseh / Moses) bin (son of) Maimun ibn Abdallah (slave-to-Allah), the Rambam relocated to Egypt to serve Sultan Saladin—the second most acclaimed Muslim of all time, and the general who led the Islamic opposition to the Crusaders. There, he collaborated with the Muslim sage Averroes to promote and develop the philosophical tradition of Aristotle—who in addition to being a philosopher and educator, was a pagan immersed in the sun-god religion of ancient Greece. Consistent with the Qur’an (which claims to confirm that which it contradicts), and central to Maimonide’s religion, the Islamic and Greek advocate advanced the arrogant and irrational notion that “it is impossible for the truths arrived at by human intellect to contradict those revealed by God,” in spite of the fact that the foundation of his religion was little more than a contradiction of Yahowah’s Scripture. And so it would be that the Jewish religion which had given birth to Islam in Yathrib (today’s Medina), was now rooted in the religion it had conceived. The Rabbi’s fourteen-volume Mishneh Torah remains canonical in its authority, especially as it codifies of the Babylonian Talmud. It even served to inspire one of the most acclaimed Roman Catholic philosophers and theologians, Saint Thomas Aquinas, who a century later, revealed in the writings of Abu Imran Mussa bin Maimun ibn Abdallah, a.k.a., the Rambam, Maimonides.
His mitzvot, like all things rabbinical, were man-made religious regulations designed to empower the kind of people Yahowah wanted removed from the Promised Land. As stated earlier, the basis of the word is saphat, meaning “to judge, to govern, to vindicate, and to condemn.” With Yahowah as the universal Judge, the only one who could vindicate and condemn, and with the Towrah serving as the constitution of His government, there was no room for a religion, much less rabbis. So, rabbis claimed this authority for themselves, condemning tens of millions of Jewish souls in the process.
There is, of course, no record of their precious Oral Law existing prior to the emergence of the egotistical and self-serving religious cast of rabbis, themselves, some one thousand three hundred years after the Towrah was meticulously transcribed and read to the people. Like most things religious, Jewish Oral Law is a myth, one which no informed, rational person would believe. These religious regulations would not be “accurately recounted in writing” until the production of the Babylonian Talmud, circa 200 to 500 CE and the Mishneh, circa 200 and 1180 CE, depending upon which version one accepts.
Unlike their present day infatuation with the Talmud, on this day, the Children of Yisra’el listened to the Towrah. “And all (kol) the people (‘am – family) answered (‘anah – and responded) in one (‘echad) voice (qowl), saying (‘amar), ‘All (kol) the words (dabar – statements) which beneficially (‘asher) Yahowah ( ) has spoken (dabar – words Yahowah has communicated), we will act upon (‘asah – we will engage and profit from, accomplish and celebrate).’” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:3)
Unfortunately, as this drama unfolds, we soon discover that the Children of Yisra’el didn’t follow Yahowah’s instructions, but instead, they opted to share the Promised Land with religious and political aficionados of every persuasion. As a result, they served false gods and became history’s most infamous bad example. Fortunately, however, even in the wake of another ten million Jews succumbing to racial hatred over the next score of years, one third will return to God and “in one voice, saying, ‘All the words which beneficially Yahowah has spoken, we will act upon.” Mark your calendars. This collective roar from the last generation of Yahuwdym will resonate at sunset, 6:22 PM, Jerusalem time, at the dawn of Yowm Kippurym, on October 2nd, 2033.
Providing what should have been a death blow to the religions of Christianity, Judaism, and Islam, 1400, 1500, 2,000, and 2500 years before they were born under Paul, Akiba, Muhammad, and Maimonides, Yahowah revealed: “And (wa) Moseh wrote down (katab – engraved and inscribed using an alphabet, used a pen, ink, and parchment or papyrus, to record as a scribe) all (kol) the words (dabar) of Yahowah ( ).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:4)
If this is true, Judaism, Christianity, and Islam are false, as is Secular Humanism. If the Towrah was accurately transcribed, the religious corruptions, concealments, and counterfeits of God’s foundational message to humankind aren’t trustworthy or reliable. And as such, for the sake of many, these religions must be exposed and condemned.
This verse is particularly caustic to Judaism, because it provides no possibility of an Oral Law. If Moseh wrote down everything Yahowah said, the religion’s foundation is rotten. And if these words cannot be trusted, if Moseh didn’t do what Yahowah said he did, then Judaism cannot be relied upon because it would then have drawn its authority from twisting the words of an unreliable God and errant text.
This verse is especially caustic to Christianity, because it means that the religion’s festivals, symbols, and teachings are wrong, as they are in conflict with the Testimony of God as transcribed by Moseh. Mutually exclusive and diametrically opposing concepts, such as the massive discrepancies which exist between the Towrah and the Church, cannot both be right. If the Called-Out Assemblies and Sabbath are from God, Christmas, Easter, and Sunday worship are not.
This verse is overwhelmingly caustic to Islam, because Allah claims that his Qur’an “confirms the Towrah,” when in actuality, the Qur’an is the antithesis of Yahowah’s Word. Therefore, if the Towrah is reliable, and Moseh did what it says he did, then Muhammad and his Qur’anic recital are rubbish, as its diatribe consistently contradicts that which it claims to affirm. And even if the Towrah is false, so is Allah as he claims to have revealed it.
The forth verse of the twenty-fourth chapter of Shemowth goes on to describe an altar Moseh constructed at the base of Mount Horeb, replete with twelve columns for the twelve tribes of Yisra’el. I mention this because if you search for “Jabal al-Lawz, Saudi Arabia, on Google Maps, you can actually see the remains of the altar, as well as the burned summit of the mountain, even the rock from which water flowed forth.
“Then (wa), the young men (na’ar) of the sons (ben – male children) of Yisra’el (yisra’el – individuals who engage and endure with God) were sent out (salah) to lift up (‘alah) burnt offerings (‘olah – that which elevates) and sacrifices (zabah)— fellowship offerings which complete and fulfill (shelem – a consent agreement to completely restore by way of paying a ransom to make full restitution, and thereby facilitating salvation), sacrificing (zabah) bulls (par) accordingly to approach (la) Yahowah ( ).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:5)
So we have yet another correlation between the Miqra’ of Shab’uwah and the revelation of the Towrah beyond the enrichment and enlightenment of Sevens emanating from Yah’s Teaching. The reason “par – bulls” were being sent to ceremonial ‘olah barbeque, was that they were on this Miqra’s menu.
Also relevant, the written Word was revealed and fulfilled in the flesh. Just as circumcision in the spirit and the flesh serves as the sign and signature of the Covenant, for it to be in full effect, Yahowsha’ would have to walk down this road before us, paying the toll along the way.
Our sinful nature, and resulting imperfections, preclude us from living in the presence of a perfect God—which is why Moseh alone was permitted on the Mount. So, to solve this problem, and enlarge His family, Yahowah delineated a plan and then enabled it. This process is known as the Miqra’ey which are Invitations to be Called Out and Meet with God. Their delineation is found in the Towrah. The enabler is Yahowsha’. And collectively, they enable each of the Covenant’s benefits.
At this seminal moment in the history of our reconciliation, Yahowah asked Moseh to read the playbook He had provided. And in so doing, he disclosed the ultimate truth: the Towrah and Covenant are one. The Towrah was revealed to guide us to this relationship.
“He grasped hold of (laqah – received, accepted, and obtained) the precisely written documentation (seper – the scroll with accurate and exacting physically recorded inscriptions on it) of the (ha) Covenant (beryth – familial relationship agreement based upon mutual binding oaths and promises, a marriage vow, from beyth, family, home, and household (singular and absolute)) and (wa) he read it out loud, offering an invitation to meet (qara’ – he offered a summons to be called out, to be welcomed, proclaiming, announcing, and reciting it) in (ba) a hearing (‘ozen – a time for listening) for the family (ha ‘am – for people).
And they said (‘amar – they responded verbally by promising and affirming), ‘All (kol) that (‘asher – which relationally) Yahowah ( ) has spoken (dabar – communicated in words), we will listen to, paying close attention (shama’ – we will hear, proclaim, comprehend) and act upon (‘asah – engage in, acknowledge, profit from, and celebrate).’” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:7)
First among the many insights embedded in this verse is that the Towrah is “the precisely written documentation of the Covenant.” It provides the purpose and plan of God. Those who wish to enjoy the benefits of the Covenant, and want to form a family-oriented relationship with Yahowah, must do as Moseh has done—recite the words of the Towrah. Yahowah’s revelation has been meticulously recorded so that we might come to know Yahowah and understand what He is offering, thereby enabling us to trust and rely upon Him.
The term Yahowah selected to convey “read it out loud, offering an invitation to meet” was qara’, the basis of miqra’. Its primary definition is “to call out” “inviting and summoning” someone, “welcoming them to meet” with you. Collectively, these ideas define the purpose of the Towrah and the Covenant. Yahowah is not only calling us to Him, He is calling us out of this world to His set-apart realm. He is inviting us into His family. He is summoning us to meet with Him. And we answer and respond by walking along the seven-step path He has provided to His home. The Towrah is the Way. The Covenant is the result. The Miqra’ is the path.
In this passage, Yahowah documented an additional clause in the Yisra’elite response. They would not only engage and act upon what God had prescribed, and thus observe the Towrah and attend the Miqra’ey, they promised to listen to what Yah had to say, striving to comprehend and understand His teaching, so that they would be able to benefit from His instructions. It is what we all should be doing.
What happens next is a foreshadowing of Yahowsha’s sacrifice—of the fulfillment of the Towrah. “Moseh took some (laqah – obtained and received a portion) of the blood (dam) [of a sacrificial animal which had been slain] and sprinkled it (zaraq – used his fingertips to collect and disperse drops) on (‘al – and over) the family (‘am – people). He said (‘amar), ‘Behold (hineh – look now and see, pay attention to) the blood (dam) of the Familial Covenant Relationship (beryth – marriage agreement for family unity, household alliance and binding promise) which, by way of relationship (‘asher) Yahowah ( ) has cut (karat – formed as a solemn agreement between separate parties with stipulations and responsibilities for their mutual benefit and unity) with (‘im) you all (‘athim) concerning (‘al) all (kol) of these (‘eleh) words (dabar).’” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:8)
By way of the Word, and this foreshadowing prophetic symbolism, the Children of Yisra’el were prepared, albeit only temporarily, to meet their Maker. “And so (wa) Moseh (moseh – one who draws out), ‘Aharown (‘Aharown – one who brings light and choice (i.e., informed freewill), Nadab (Nadab – one who volunteers, freely giving of himself), ‘Abyhuw’ (‘Abyhuw’ – He is the father and the father is his), and the seventy (shibi’ym) elders (zaqen – old men) of Yisra’el (yisra’el – those who are empowered by God), approached (‘eth) and saw (ra’ah – looked upon) the God (‘elohym – the Mighty Ones) of Yisra’el (yisra’el – individuals who strive with God)...” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:9-10)
It is interesting to report that the names of the participants in the order they are presented, tell us something about the Savior: the one who draws us out, the one who brings enlightenment and freewill, the one who voluntarily gives of himself—He is the father and the father is his.
The passage goes on to reveal that this manifestation of God was corporeal, that is to say, He had hands and feet, and He enjoyed a good meal. As such, Yahowah stood upon the mountain as Yahowsha’. And in the process of doing this, Yahowah destroyed the religion Maimonides would later conceive, because the Rambam claimed “God is incorporeal—incapable of assuming human form.”
An important aspect of this meeting on the mountain is that unlike the elders who “prostrated themselves estranged from God while devising their own interpretations,” no one was on their knees. They were partying with Yah, not groveling at His feet.
“Yahowah ( ) said to Moseh, ‘Ascend (‘alah) to Me, and come to exist (hayah) here (sam) on the mountain (har) and I will give (natan – produce and bestow for) you the Stone (‘eben – from banah, rebuilding and reestablishing) Tablets (luwah – finished surface for inscribing words) and (wa) the Towrah (towrah – the teachings, instructions, guidance, direction), even (wa) the terms and conditions of the relationship (mitswah – authoritative directions which serve as prescriptions and codicils of the Covenant) which (‘asher – by way of relationship) I will write (katab – communicate by way of words using an alphabet) to (la) teach and guide them (yarah hem – to direct and instruct them).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:12)
The Hebrew word towrah defines the purpose of the book. It serves as an instruction manual for human existence, including as it should, our Creator’s prescriptions for productive living. In it, we discover God’s guidance, so that we have access to the right set of instructions. The Towrah conveys Yahowah’s directions for humankind. It provides the proper teaching through which to understand our purpose and His plan.
Moseh’s encounters with Yahowah were not always by way of Yahowsha’, the diminished, corporeal, manifestation of God. He, like few before him or after him, experienced God’s glory. “And Moseh ascended the cloud (‘anan – water vapor) covered (kasha – adorned, clothed, and concealed) mountain (har). And the manifestation of power and the glorious presence (kabowd – glory and splendor, honor and reverence, person, reputation, and abundance, the tremendous significance) of Yahowah ( ) came to dwell (sakan – live and abide, tabernacle, inhabit, remain, and settle) on (‘al) Mount (har) Synay (synay), and the cloud (‘anan – water vapor) clothed and adorned (kasha – covered and concealed) him / Him (huw’) for six (shes) days (yowm). And on (ba – in) the seventh (shaby’y) day (yowm), He summoned (qara’ – called out) to (‘el) Moseh from (min) the midst (tawek – middle or center) of the cloud (‘anan – obscuring accumulation of water vapor).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:15-16)
In the process of trying to ascertain the meaning of synay, I came upon something interesting. Sywan, which means “their covering,” is also the title of the third month of the Scriptural year, and thus corresponds to the Miqra’ of Shabuwa’ in May or June—seven sevens from Bikuwrym. The Feast of Sevens, like the Mountain during Moseh’s ascent, is all about being “covered, adorned, and clothed” in “Yahowah’s glorious presence.” Also interesting, this correlation between Synay and Sywan (as the third month) suggests that the first installation of the Towrah did in fact correspond with Shab’uwah, and thus what this day’s source of enrichment, enlightenment, and empowerement.
But let’s not forget the “covering” aspect of sywan either. The purpose of the Set-Apart Spirit’s Garment of Light is to adorn us in Yahowah’s glory, and thereby conceal our sin, making us appear perfect in God’s eyes. The spiritual rebirth which facilitates this transformation is often equated with water, as it has been here on Mount Synay, because we are born of water, and because water cleanses and purifies. This is the reason baptism became the outward symbol of our spiritual rebirth.
God is light, and as such, He was seen as light. “The appearance of (mar’eh – sight and vision, spectacle and phenomenon of) the manifestation of power and the glorious presence (kabowd – splendor, honor, reverence, person, reputation, and abundance, the tremendous significance and massiveness) of Yahowah ( ) was similar to (ka – could be compared to) fire (‘esh – flames of radiant energy and a source of light) on (ba) the summit (ro’sh – top) of the mountain (har) from the point of view (la) and perspective (‘ayn – eyesight and capacity to understand, the perceptions) of the Children of Yisra’el.” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:17)
Kabowd, is based upon kabad, the operative term of the Second of Seven Instructions listed on the Second of Two Tablets, and thus it provides an important insight into the real identity of the Father and Mother we are to “honor and revere, to view as tremendously significant, even glorious.” After all, in the twelfth verse of Shemowth / Exodus 24, we were introduced to these very Statements.
You’ll also notice that the “fire” wasn’t coming from a “burning bush,” but instead from the summit of this rocky and barren mountain. This provides additional credibility to the previous translation of sanah as “a high rocky place” in the “Salah – Freedom” chapter. Moreover, the summit of Mount Synay, known today as Jabal al-Lawz, still reveals the consequence of God’s presence.
“Moseh came (bow’ – pursued and was included) into (ba) the midst (tawek) of the water vapor (‘anan – cloud and mist) and ascended (‘alah – rose and was lifted up) the mountain (har). And Moseh came to exist (hayah) on the mountain for forty (‘arba’ym – to be square) days (yowm) and nights (laylah).” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 24:18)
Either Scripture contains useless information, or there is a reason God has revealed this story using His favorite numbers and formula. Three men accompanied Moseh. There were seventy elders. Moseh stayed on the mountain for six days, the number designating man, before He was invited to campout with God on the seventh day. And the duration of his visit was forty days.
The Miqra’ey follow this same formula: six steps toward God are followed by the opportunity to campout with Him on the seventh. God’s stone tablets given to Moseh during this visit reveal three statements which pertain to our interactions with God, one instruction which quantifies His formula, followed by six terms and conditions which tell how we should live our lives.
Similarly, the Covenant is played out over the course of three sets of forty Yowbel, Redemptive Years of Yah’s Lamb (following the seven sevens plus one formula of Shabuwa’). The story of our reconciliation is based upon a clearly articulated and consistent plan.
At the conclusion of our Exodus study, I’d like to share seven thoughts about the lead character. While Moseh was invited to be the scribe for this plan, He was not allowed to enter the Promised Land at the conclusion of the Exodus—although he is there now, a beneficiary of the FirstFruits Harvest. Moseh was 120 years old at the conclusion of his mortal existence. He had enjoyed three lives—one as a prince in Egypt, one as a prince in Arabia, and one as Yahowah’s messenger. It was an extraordinary life.
While it would be foolish to feel sorry for Moseh, there are reasons why he departed this mortal realm within eyesight of the goal. The Towrah, given as it was through Moseh, just points the way to the Promised Land. Yahowsha’ is responsible for getting us there. And that is why Yahowsha’, the son of Nun (the Infinite), took over for Moseh as Yah’s children crossed the Jordan River and entered Yisra’el. Had Yahowsha’ not fulfilled Passover, Unleavened Bread, FirstFruits, and Seven Sabbaths, the Way would have been a dead end.
The Towrah provides the foundation upon which we gain the proper perspective to view God and ourselves—the very purpose of life. This instruction enables us to see the way to the Promised Land from our wilderness, just as it did for Moseh.
And once we reach our Heavenly Father’s home, we still have to have Passover’s door opened for us. And that is where we find Yahowsha’, waiting for us.
While salvation is a gift, that doesn’t mean that Yahowah wants us to ignore, or more importantly, change, His instructions. Moseh did, striking the stone he was asked to instruct, and there was a consequence. It is a message Christian and Jewish clerics the world over still don’t understand.
Yahowsha’, the Rock of our Salvation, the Cistern of Living Waters, spoke to us, explaining the way out of mankind’s wilderness and into the Promised Land. He did not strike us. He instead was stricken, with blows which resulted from human instructions, not God’s.
Because words are more powerful than any weapon, the Word was made flesh and prevailed. So the message is, when it comes to God’s Word, it’s very important that we get them right, lest we too be stricken with death and separation.
Lastly, in the life of Moseh, we see Yah’s timeline emerge once again. There were three periods of 40 years, just as three sets of 40 Yowbel timeframes take us from the expulsion from the Garden of Eden to the Millennial Sabbath—to the time we get to campout with God in the Promised Land. In his life, we see the foundation of Yahowah’s plan of salvation.
Before we leave this instruction from Yahowah, I’d like you to consider a final thought. This passage on the Miqra’ey, Towrah, and Covenant, confirms that these things have nothing to do with the Jewish religion, but instead form the essence of the familial relationship Yahowah established with Abraham and affirmed through Moseh. There is but one path to God, one set of instructions, and one family.
Now that we have considered the empowering and enriching prophecies contained in the Towrah presentation of the Invitation to be Called Out and Meet with God of Seven Sabbaths, let’s consider Shim’own’s (“Peter’s”) testimony, the Disciple of Yahowsha’, and examine how the Miqra’ of Shabuw’ah was fulfilled.
As we shall see, this transformation occurred because the first Followers of the Way answered Yahowah’s summons. They were so close to the action, they had witnessed Yahowsha’s fulfillment of Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym, and were therefore the beneficiaries of their blessings. They were now immortal, redeemed and perfected, children of Yahowah, ready to observe the Miqra’ of Shab’uwah. Because they were in the right place, for the right reason, at the right time, rightly prepared, with the right expectations, the Set-Apart Spirit set them apart for service. The beneficiaries of Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits would soon receive the rewards of the Festival Feast of Seven Sabbaths. They would be enriched by the Covenant, enlightened by the Towrah, and empowered by the Spirit, making them more effective witnesses.
In the opening line of the second chapter of book of Acts, we see that the Miqra’ of Shabuwa’, like the three preceding it, was fulfilled in accordance with God’s instructions. In fact, when one considers that Acts is a sequel to Luke, and that Luke concludes with the Bikuwrym discussion between Yahowsha’ and the men on the road to Emmaus, one Invitation to Meet God simply follows the other.
These things known, understand that Acts is not Scripture. Nor was the book of Luke for that matter. They were not inspired by God. But as historical documents scribed within the lifetimes of the eyewitnesses to the events they chronicle, both books have merit – at least up to a point. Also, since the first seven chapters of Acts convey the testimony of Yahowsha’s Disciples, and most especially Shim’own Kephas, whom we have come to know as “Peter,” these chapters are worth of our consideration.
From this perspective, the second chapter of Acts begins...“Indeed (kai – and then also, this should be emphasized), on (en – with regard to and during) the Day (hemera – period of time reckoned from sunset to sunset) of Fifty (Pentekoste – feminine form of pentekonta, meaning fifty), it was completely fulfilled (sumpleroo – was fully completed in association with someone and something, was entirely realized by way of relationship) ” (Acts 2:1)
This introductory statement conveys two equally important thoughts. The Miqra’ of Shabuwa’ was observed by the first to follow Yahowsha’s example on the date specified by God. And also, every aspect of the Miqra’, as described in the Towrah, was satisfied. As such, this is the fourth of four Miqra’ey which were fulfilled by Yahowsha’ and the Spirit, in the correct order, in the right way, on the appropriate day, and in a Yowbel Year of Yah’s Lamb—all as part of the Towrah’s unfolding plan of reconciliation. Do you suppose this is a coincidence or a pattern? Said a different way, is God’s behavior random, or does He have a plan?
Sumpleroo, in the above verse, is a compound of sun, meaning “with the help of, and by way of a close connection, association, or relationship with someone or something,” and pleroo, meaning “to make full, to cause to abound and to furnish liberally, to complete and to consummate, to accomplish and fulfill, and to bring to realization.” As such, it tells us that the promises of Seven Sabbaths were “realized, accomplished, and fulfilled, causing those in close association and relationship to be furnished liberally so as to be lacking in nothing.”
It is worth noting that there is also an immersion aspect of the Greek word sumpleroo. It speaks of a liquid filling something to the brim. As a result, it was used by sailors when their ship completely filled with water, becoming swamped as a result of a storm. Therefore, we can make the connection between our spiritual anointing, which is symbolized by baptismal immersion, and this day, whereby the Set-Apart Spirit fills us, thereby enriching, enlightening, and empowering us so that we grow from children to accomplished witnesses.
“It came to exist (eimi – to happen and take place in a manner corresponding identically) that all assembled together in harmony (pas homou – everyone was like-minded, like-natured, and unified in an assembly) in the presence of (epi – in contact with, concerning, and before) it (auto – [a reference to the Set-Apart Spirit]).” (Acts 2:1)
Auto is a neuter, singular pronoun because unlike Hebrew, where Ruwach / Spirit is a feminine noun, the Greek pneuma, is neuter. And while it sounds odd to our ear to refer to our Spiritual Mother as “it,” rather than “She,” or “Her,” such is the liability of Greek as compared to Hebrew with regard to spiritual understanding.
Whether the conclusion of Acts 2:1 is translated that all of those who trusted Yahowsha’ were all of like mind and thus were together observing the Miqra’ of Shabuwa’, or that in addition to this, they were also in the presence of the Spirit, the overriding sentiment is that by answering Yahowah’s invitation to meet with Him, and by gathering together on this day, the first followers of the Way were unified in their understanding of the Word.
The Towrah’s message was not corrupted until the Scriptures were misrepresented, rendering the Hebrew Miqra’, “Convocation,” and then the Greek ekklesia, “Church” (after the sun goddess “Circe,” pronounced “chirch,” from whom we derive “circle” and “circus”), instead of accurately translating both “Invitations to be Called Out to a Meeting.” Clerics thereby severed an essential connection. Few things have been as devastating to our understanding of the Towrah, the Covenant, or the Invitations to Meet with God.
“And immediately (aphno – suddenly, and yet in a welcoming manner, putting people at ease) there came into existence (ginomai – became recognized, known and acknowledged, arose and appeared publicly for the purpose of creation, birth, and marriage) out of (ek – from and by means of) heaven (ouranos – the abode of God) the sound of information and news (echos – of a spoken report) exactly like (hosper – corresponding to and connected to, a manifestation for comparison to) a compelling and mighty force (biaias – an empowering, strong, singular, and active feminine source of energy), moving inwardly and upholding (pheromai – guiding, sustaining, accepting, and bearing) the breath of spiritual life (pnoe – feminine derivative of pneuma Spirit), and filling (pleroo – liberally and abundantly supplying and perfecting) the whole (holos – entirely completing all who were in the) house (oikon – household and home) where (ou) they were residing.” (Acts 2:2)
The disciples had a job to do—to communicate God’s plan of reconciliation as it was presented, promised, and predicted in Yahowah’s Towrah. The means to accomplish this was being advanced in the very Invitation to be Called Out and Meet with God they were observing. Their mission was to share the fulfillment of the Towrah’s Teaching with people the world over. And the Set-Apart Spirit of Yahowah, our Spiritual Mother, gave them the tools they would need to do it.
Dissecting this passage word by word, we discover that the adjective (biaias) used to describe the nature of the heavenly “compelling force,” like pnoe, “the breath of spiritual life,” is feminine and singular, as is our Spiritual Mother. Further, there is a “vehement” connotation of biaias, making the Spirit “impassioned and fervid,” even “eager and deeply emotional.” Moreover, biaias is related to bios, meaning “life,” and is derived from bia, meaning “strong and vital.” After death, there is no life apart from the Spirit.
At its most fundamental level, pheromai, translated “moving inwardly and upholding,” means “to carry or bring something from one place to another, including carrying away a burden.” Etymologists say pheromai means “to lead, to guide, or to convey.” Homer used pheromai to mean “to bring forth and express the word.” The classical author used it to “facilitate the bearing and removal of burdens which are carried away.” In the Iliad, pheromai is used to “show favor” and “to produce fruit.” It conveyed “the presentation of a gift that upholds, enabling the beneficiary to endure.” These benefits describe the enrichment of the Spirit.
Pnoe, as a feminine noun, means both “breath and wind.” As such, it is a blend between the Greek and Hebrew words for “soul,” from breath, and “spirit,” from wind. Yahowsha’, as the human manifestation of Yahowah, actually had a soul which is probably why this unique term was chosen. In one of His last conversations with His disciples, Yahowsha’ told them that they would recognize and know the Comforter because He and the Spirit were one and the same. The Son and the Spirit are diminished manifestations of Yahowah, set apart from Him to serve us. As such, in substance, they are identical. They only differ in form.
Pleroo suggests that the Spirit “proclaimed completely,” and “provided fully,” completing the promise of the Miqra’. She supplied the beneficiaries of Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits with everything they needed to grow, to enter and enjoy God’s company, and to become effective witnesses. Pleroo conveys the concepts of “fulfillment, filling up, completion, making complete, and realization—making a promise come true and proclaiming that accomplishment.” As Yahowsha’ consistently taught, His testimony is only understood when it is seen through the lens of the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms.
Lastly, oikon is a “home, a place where families live.” Adopting us into Yahowah’s family, inviting us into God’s home, enabling us to live forever with our Heavenly Father, is the reason Yah sent His Son and Spirit to earth.
Yahowah has a specific plan that He wants the whole world to understand. The best way to accomplish this is to deploy the principal tool used in the acquisition of knowledge, in thought, causation, creation, and in the formation of relationships—language. For people of different races and places to come to know Yahowah and understand His Towrah Teaching, those who had already come to know and understand Him would have to share His Towrah with those who were unfamiliar with Hebrew.
“And languages (glossa – the various tongues and dialects of human speech) became apparent to them (horao – they came to know and understand them), like a fire burning (pyros) in them. And they were distributed (diamerizo – divided, dispersed, spread out) conferred and appointed (kathizo – coming down to rest) upon (epi) each and every one (hekastos) of them (autos – used as a masculine, plural pronoun). And they were all individually (pas) filled with (pimplamai – swelling with the involvement and breath of) the Set-Apart (hagion – gender neuter of hagios, purifying and upright) ΠΝΣ (placeholder for Spirit based upon Ruwach using a contraction of pneuma), and began (archomai) to speak (laleo – talk in) other (heteros – different) languages (glossa – tongues and dialect), just as (kathos – inasmuch as, when and in the manner that) the ΠΝΑ (Spirit, Ruwach) gave (didomi – allowed and granted) them the ability to enlighten through the spoken word (apophtheggomai – the ability to pronounce words and hold a dignified and enlightened discourse using them).” (Acts 2:3-4) The whole world needed to know and understand what the Towrah Teaches. That could only be accomplished with words.
The public proclamation and communication aspect of what was occurring is inherent in the title Yahowah chose to describe His annual meetings: Miqra’ey—“Invitations to be Called Out to Meet, a summons to a rehearsal which brings us together, a welcoming greeting which encourages us to read and recite the Word, proclaiming it publicly.” Based upon qara’, it conveys “calling out” to everyone and “inviting” them to come into Yah’s presence. And so while it is neither a title nor an inspired term, the beneficiaries of this calling out were described using a Greek word which conveys some very similar thoughts—ekklesia.
If it were not for the popularity of the Pentecostal movement, where “speaking in tongues” is interpreted to be “praising God in a heavenly language,” I wouldn’t be required to state the obvious. The Spirit of Sevens empowered those who observed Shabuwa’ to enlighten others by speaking their language, not God’s. If an audible (as in producing and detecting sound waves in a gas or fluid) language is spoken in heaven, the dialect is assuredly Hebrew. The notion of “speaking in the tongues of angels” is to mutter incomprehensible gibberish – making a complete fool of oneself.
By way of review, and bringing this all together, Shim’own Kephas, a participant and eyewitness, affirmed: “Indeed (this should be emphasized), on (with regard to and during) the Day (period of time reckoned from sunset to sunset) of Fifty (Pentekoste), it was completely fulfilled (was fully completed and was entirely realized by way of relationship). And it came to exist that all assembled together in harmony (everyone was like-minded, like-natured, and unified in an assembly) in the presence of it (a reference to the Set-Apart Spirit).” (Acts 2:1)
And immediately there came into existence (became recognized, known and acknowledged) out of heaven the sound of information and news exactly like a compelling and mighty force (an empowering, strong, singular, and active feminine source of energy), moving inwardly and upholding (guiding, sustaining, accepting, and bearing) the breath of the Spirit, filling (liberally and abundantly supplying and perfecting) the whole house (household and home) where they were residing. (Acts 2:2)
And languages (various tongues and dialects of human speech) became apparent to them (they came to know and understand them), like a fire burning in them. And they were distributed (divided, dispersed, spread out) conferred and appointed (coming down to rest) upon each and every one of them. And they were all individually filled with (swelling with the involvement and breath of) the Set-Apart (purifying and upright) Spirit, and began to speak other (different) languages, just as (inasmuch as) the Spirit gave (allowed and granted) them the ability to enlighten through the spoken word.” (Acts 2:3-4)
Therefore, Yahowah fulfilled the Miqra’ of Shab’uwah by dispatching the Set-Apart Spirit from heaven with His Towrah to enrich, inform, and enlighten His children, spiritually empowering them to convey His Word in the languages of men. God was doing what He had promised.
Continuing on, we discover that there is nothing overtly religious folks detest more than being confronted with the idea of God bypassing them, and working through others whom they see as inferior...
“And now (de) existing (eimi) inside (eis) Yaruwshalaim (Ierousalem – a transliteration of Yaruwshalaim, meaning the source of salvation), resided (katoikeo – settled and lived) Yahuwdym (Ioudaios – a transliteration of Yahuwdym, meaning related to Yah), overtly pious (eulabes – devout and religious, carried away by goodness, from eu, good and prosperous, and lambano, taken by, and affiliated with) men (andros) from (apo) every (pas) nation (ethnos – cultural and geographic) under (hypo) heaven (ouranos).
And so now when (de) this (houtos – feminine singular) voice (phone – feminine singular noun for sound, language, and audible speech) came to exist (ginomai – was received, acquired, experienced, and became known, appearing in public) in large assemblies of people (plethos – in a large congregation and crowd), they were confused (sygcheo – baffled and consternated, bewildered and disturbed, in an uproar, dismayed), because (hoti) each and every one (hekastos heis) heard (akouo – was endowed with the faculty for hearing) what was spoken (laleo – talking) in his (autos) own (idios – individually distinct) language (dialektos – dialect or tongue).” (Acts 2:5-6)
“This singular feminine voice” they heard emanating from the rather large called-out assembly on the Called-Out Assembly of Sevens was that of our Spiritual Mother, which had to be particularly troubling to these pompous and chauvinistic religious types. Our Heavenly Father’s ways confound men who prefer their own ways. In a society oppressed and deceived by Rabbinical Judaism, God bypassed those who sought rank and power, who considered themselves superior, who were overtly religious. He conveyed the path home, the means to join His family, in a maternal voice broadcast by enriching and empowering otherwise lowly members of the community. What a horror it must have been for those skilled in language, academics, and theology—to those in positions of influence to witness God thumbing His nose at them.
So those who were proud of their human credentials and status, were befuddled and incensed. “And (kai) besides (de), they were out of their minds (existemi – were nearly driven insane and out of their senses, displaced from their established positions, confused and astounded), and they were surprised (thaumazo – astonished and amazed, demonstrating a typical human response to a divine revelation), saying (lego), ‘Look (idou – behold), are not (ou) the entirety (hapas – the whole and all) of them who are (eimi) speaking (laleo – talking) Galileans (Galilaios – from Galylah, those who roll away)?’” (Acts 2:7)
Existemi is a compound of ek, meaning “out of and away from,” and histemi, “meaning to stand upright and to be established.” The pious were the opposite of what God intended. Rather than standing with Him, as the ekklesia/called-out assembly had done on the Miqra’ / Called-Out Assembly Meeting of Sevens, their little religious minds were blown by God. The Spirit of Enlightenment bewildered those who professed to be wise.
Galilee is used as a pejorative, much the same way as a Los Angelean would say, “He’s from Watts,” or a New Yorker would lament, “He’s from Harlem.” It was a swampy, mosquito-infested lowland, several days walk and several thousand feet below Jerusalem. Galilee was a place, pious religious folks avoided like the plague—which is why Yahowsha’ loved it there. The name itself, based as it is upon galal, “to roll away,” is symbolic of Gilgal, the place where Yahowah “rolled away the reproach of the crucible,” in Joshua / Yahowsha’ 5:9. And like Gilgal, it is directly related to Golgotha, the very place Yahowsha’ rolled the iniquity away from all mankind.
While the pious religious types were irritated at having been bypassed by the Spirit, there was no denying the message She was communicating. They were witnessing the power of the Word—God’s greatest miracle.
“Somehow (pos), each and every one (hekastos) hears them speak (akouo) in the distinct (idios – individual and unique) language and dialect (dialektos) of their birth (gennnao): Parthians, Medes, Elamites, and those who live in Mesopotamia, Yahuwdah (Ioudaia), Cappadocia, Pontus, and Asia, Phrygia, Pamphylia, Egypt (Aigyptos), parts of Libya toward Cyrene, and visitors from Rome (Rhomaios), not only Yahuwdym (Ioudaios – a transliteration of the Hebrew) and newcomers (proselutos – visitors from other nations), Cretans and Arabs (Araps), listening to (akouo – receiving the news and hearing) them speak (laleo – talk) in their own tongue (glossa – language and dialect) the magnificent things and powerful works (megaleios – the great deeds and miracles) of ΘΥ (placeholder for Yahowah based upon ‘elohym God using a contraction of theou).” (Acts 2:8-11)
The ecumenical nature of the fulfillment of Seven Sevens depicted here in Acts, paralleled the Towrah’s prophecy where another inclusive list appears. Everything happened precisely as it had been predicted, and it had occurred right on God’s schedule.
In this passage, the Greek word, proselutos, which means “foreign visitor,” is contrasted with Yahuwdym, conveying “Related to Yah,” but usually translated “Jews.” Proselutos is derived from proserchomai, which means “to come to, to approach, and to draw near.” Proserchomai in turn is a compound of pro, meaning “to take advantage and to draw near,” and erchomai, “to come from one place to another.” Therefore, the contrast is between those Yahuwdym who have already come to know Yahowah through Yahowsha’s exacting fulfillment of the Miqra’ey as foretold in the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms, and the Gowym who have taken advantage of the all-inclusive promise of Shabuwa’. These proselutos / foreign visitors had been adopted into our Heavenly Father’s family on Bikuwrym and now they were being enriched, empowered, and enlightened by the Ruwach Qodesh. The proselutos had left the Babylonian-inspired religious culture of their birth to walk with God.
And yet, proselutos is transliterated in most English Bibles as “proselytes.” Then, those who aided and abetted the errant transliterations, erroneously defined that word as “converts to Judaism,” and thereby miscommunicated Yahowah’s intent. This day marked neither the birth of the Church nor the beginning of Christianity as Catholics and Protestants profess. The beneficiaries of Passover and Unleavened Bread had been born anew from above, becoming spiritual children, adopted into Yah’s family, fully seven Shabat days ago. Now they were growing up, being enriched, enlightened, and empowered by the Towrah’s promises.
The concept here is that the Children of the Covenant were now as Yahowah had promised Abraham in Bare’syth / Genesis and as Moseh had predicted in Dabarym / Deuteronomy. It was comprised of Yahuwdym and Gowym. There were no religious converts to be found here; only empowered and enriched relationships. From this moment to this present day, the Word of God has been carried to all peoples of the world by spirit-filled men and women. Yahowah’s family is inclusive of people from different races and places. Everyone is welcome. And all arrive the same way—by embracing the Covenant and observing its Invitations to Meet with God.
Let’s pause a moment and ponder what Yahowah has done. In Acts, Yahowsha’s Disciple Shim’own Kephas has just confirmed that the Towrah’s promise regarding the Fourth Festival Feast has just been fulfilled—producing “the magnificent things and powerful works of God.” God’s children became effective witnesses.
The Miqra’ of Chamisym / Invitation to be Called Out and Meet of Fifty is qodesh / set apart, a special day for us to reveal the magnificent work performed by Yahowah through the Set-Apart Spirit. It is an annual party where those who are related to Yah invite their friends to celebrate the good news—that a path home has been laid out and built at great cost, its toll paid by God, so that we might journey free. This day of growth and enrichment will endure for all time, for all people, and in all places, serving as a rehearsal of what was to come and now has been done.
The Feast of Seven Sevens follows FirstFruits by seven weeks. The pattern is seven Sabbath’s plus one day after the special Sabbath of Unleavened Bread—the most essential day on the road to our redemption. As we have discovered, this Called-Out Assembly is a time to communicate Yahowah’s Word, open to all people, free and slave, Yahuwdym and Gowym, men and women, young and old, to all sinners no matter how unclean. We know this because it is the only Miqra’ey where leavened bread is sanctioned—and because God has said so. Unlike the Catholic Eucharist which is limited to their converts, this Festival comes with an open invitation. Shabuwa’ is the day which unites the promise with its purpose, making them one.
Luke, the author of Acts, quoting Yahowsha’s Disciple Shim’own Kephas, provided a historian’s view of the fulfillment of the Miqra’ of Shabuw’ah. And since his testimony confirms that the initial Followers of the Way observed the Called-Out Assembly in accordance with the Towrah, it is only reasonable that we follow their example—keeping this appointment with God.
Upon examining the letter and spirit of this day, one comes to understand that the best way to broadcast its message and celebrate its inheritance is to host a grand party replete with a medley of foods, including a variety of libations, and most especially breads and desserts baked with yeast. Invite everyone who is interested in knowing God, whether they are engaged in a relationship with Him, mired in a religious swamp, or deluded by a secular mirage. After a time of casual conversation and music, stand before the guests and share what you have come to know about the path home our Heavenly Father has provided. Explain how on this day, those who rely upon Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits, will be immersed in Yahowah’s Set-Apart Spirit, causing them to grow, enriched by the Covenant, enlightened by the Towrah, empowered by the Spirit. Most of all, have fun. Radiate the light which comes from knowing Yah and express the joy loving families experience as their children grow.
Each Miqra’ has been designed to memorialize an important event in the life of Yisra’el and to be prophetic of even more important events in the unfolding of Yahowah’s redemptive plan. They speak poignantly of the Ma’aseyah’s role in the salvation of mankind, with detail after detail pointing directly and unambiguously toward Yahowah. Thus far, each has been fulfilled in order, and on the very day of its mandated celebration. That fact alone makes the odds against their coincidental fulfillment over sixteen billion to one. The lesson is: pay attention to dates and numbers—they’re important to our Creator.
As interesting as all this is, it becomes downright earthshaking when you realize that there are three more annual feasts yet to be fulfilled. They all take place in the autumn, in Tishri, the seventh and final month of Yahowah’s redemptive calendar. Each predicts a strategically essential event in the Grand Plan. And more to the point, they complete the picture God is painting.
The spring Feasts have come to pass; the fall Feasts are yet to come. Yahowah has given us carefully drawn prophetic word pictures to teach us the most important lessons we can possibly learn.
While it is trivial by comparison, there is a sinister religious proclamation which ultimately arose as a direct result of Shabuwa’—one which poisons one-and-a-half billion souls. To share Yahowah’s message of salvation in the language of the Araps/Arabs (in Acts 2:8-11), an alphabet was required, as Arabs had none at this time. So written Arabic, the language of the Qur’an, was actually created by Syrian Gowym and Yahuwdym who were Followers of the Way for the express purpose of witnessing to the miracle of this day. The resulting “Christian Syriac” alphabet and vocabulary, derived from Aramaic, Hebrew, and Greek in the fifth or sixth century CE, ultimately became the tool Satan would use in his most acclaimed recital: the Islamic Qur’an.
Of particular interest in this regard is the fact that most all of the Qur’an’s essential religious terms are actually Greek and Hebrew—not Arabic. And yet, Muslims the world over, unaware of the foreign source of their language, claim that those who don’t read paleo-Arabic (which would include all but a few hundred people worldwide), can’t understand Allah’s message. And yet, the best way to understand the Qur’an (besides reordering it chronologically and setting it into the context of Muhammad’s life as it is revealed in the Hadith/Oral Reports) is to understand the meaning of the Hebrew and Greek words which comprise the Qur’anic message.
The basis of Allah’s claim, and the foundation of Islam, is the false notion that Allah, not Yahowah, was the God of Adam, Abraham, Moseh, Dowd, the prophets, and Yahowsha’ (whom Allah calls Issa, Arabic for Esau). Allah protests that “his Qur’an confirms the Torah, Prophets, and Gospels,” when in fact, Allah’s Qur’anic recital is the antithesis of Yahowah’s Word. Muhammad, for example, as Allah’s lone messenger, violated and negated all of the Ten Statements Yahowah etched in stone. Allah even says that “his Qur’an, written in pure Arabic” was “inscribed on tablets before the world was created,” and that the reason that the “Torah, Prophets, and Gospels” no longer convey the same message, is that seventh-century CE Jews living in Yathrib, today’s Medina, “changed and corrupted their Scriptures to foil Muhammad.”
Therefore, the existence of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the seventy first-, second-, and third-century manuscripts of the Greek texts, prove that the Islamic god was lying. But more than this, it’s unconscionable that the advocates of Islam, a religion which inverts and repudiates Yahowah’s message, claim that the Arabic of the Qur’an is proof of its superiority and to its understanding, when in fact, the means to convey its message was developed by the very people Allah orders Muslims “to wipe out to the last.”
These things known, had rabbis, priests, and Christian theologians not removed Yahowah’s name from His Scriptures, Islam would have been stillborn. Even a fool would have been able to recognize that Allah is not Yahowah.
There is still much we can learn from this historical portrayal of what happened on Seven Sabbaths in the year of its fulfillment. “But (de) also (kai), all (pas) were astonished (existemi – astounded and amazed beyond comprehension), even (kai) perplexed and puzzled (diaporeo – embarrassed and in doubt, at a loss without sufficient information and understanding to render a rational conclusion), with different people (allos) saying (lego) to (pros) others (allos), ‘What (tis) is (eimi) the purpose of (thelo – the intent and thinking behind) this (houtos)?’” (Acts 2:12)
When it comes to knowing the mind of God there are several paths a person can take. Some simply ignore the quest, preoccupied with their mortal existence or overconfident that man is the highest form of life. Others, like those depicted in this passage, don’t know enough to draw an informed conclusion. And while both of these roads lead to death, and to the destruction of one’s soul upon the completion of their brief mortal existence, there is a far worse fate awaiting those who promote the false notion that “Pentecost celebrates the birth of the Church.” There is no “Church” in Scripture, only the Beryth and its Miqra’ey. We have been called out of man’s world and into God’s realm, away from religion and into a familial relationship.
Even today, the secular and the sectarian ridicule the Called-Out Assemblies, belittling them, concealing them, corrupting them, or counterfeiting them. It is why the narrow path to God remains unpopular.
“Others (heteros – different people), now (de) poked fun, scoffing, sneering, and mocking (diachleuazo – derided and ridiculed, flapping their lips and running their mouths), saying (legos), ‘It is because they are (hoti eimi) exceptionally full (mestoo – bulging) with sweet wine (gleukos – new wine which is still fermenting).’” (Acts 2:13)
In the midst of the Spirit’s defining moment, those tainted by this world, accused those now of another realm, of being inebriated with cheap wine. But alas, the wine which made this gala possible, was as precious as life itself.
Throughout Scripture, we are constantly reminded that we are called to confront lies, exposing and condemning them. We are never asked to be tolerant of deception. And that is why...
“But now (de) the Rock (Petros) stood up (histemi – made a stand so as to enable others to stand) with (syn) the eleven; he raised (epairomai) his voice (phone) and he spoke to them (apophthengomai – he addressed them), ‘Yahuwdym (Ioudaios – a transliteration of Yahuwdym, related to Yah) men (andros) and all (pas) who dwell in (katoikeo) Yaruwshalaim (Ierousalem – a transliteration of Yaruwshalaim, the source of restoration), listen carefully to (enotizomai – receive and pay attention to) my words (rhema – voice and message), and let this (houtos) be (eimi) known (gnostos – learned, perceived, and understood as a result of acquiring knowledge) to you ” (Acts 2:14)
There is more to exposing lies advanced by clerical types than condemning the errant dogmas. While Shim’own refuted their accusations, essentially calling it senseless, he was prepared to explain what was actually occurring. He understood, as few Christians do, that this Spiritual empowerment had been promised in the Towrah and in the Prophets. “ because (gar) they are not (ou) drunk (methuo – intoxicated) in the manner (hos) you suppose (hypolambano – are willing to accept and promote, receive and advance), for indeed (gar) it is (eimi) the third (tritos) hour (hora) of the day (hemera). To the contrary (alla – instead and moreover) this (houtos) exists as (eimi – exactly represents, stands for, and is identical to) the pronouncement (eipon – saying and speech) of (dia) the prophet (prophetes – one who makes something known before it happens) Yow’el (Ioel – a transliteration of Yow’el, a contraction of Yahowah and ‘el, meaning Yahowah is God, but improperly transliterated Joel):” (Acts 2:15-16)
There are forty Hebrew names, including Yow’el (Yahowah is God), Yownah (Yahowah is the Dove), Yowbel (Yahowah is the Lamb), and Yowceph (Yahowah has Joined and Increased), whereby Yahowah was contracted to Yahow and then to Yow over time. And that is why virtually every lexicon affirms the connection between “Yow,” “Yahow,” and ultimately with “Yahowah.”
At this point, Shim’own actually quoted Yow’el from memory, which reveals a great deal in and of itself. Verses 2:17 through 21 of Acts, cite Joel 2:28 through 32 (also referenced as Joel 3:1-5). But recognizing that Kephas didn’t deliver his rebuttal in Greek, but instead in Hebrew or Aramaic, to accurately render what the prophet and disciple said, we will need to reconstruct this Greek translation of the Hebrew Scriptures, using the original language of revelation. And by comparing the texts, we will also become better adept at properly rendering other verses found in the ancient Greek manuscripts.
However, since context is an essential element of understanding, before we juxtapose the Hebrew and Greek, it’s appropriate to thumb back a page or two, and then review the Covenant prophecy within the context in which it was delivered. The cited portion of Yow’el / Joel pertains to the events of the last days and to these miracles during Shab’uwah, ushering in the final Yowbel. So then speaking of Yahowah’s return, we read:
“Yahowah ( ) grants (natan – gives, bestows, and provides) a voice (qowl) to Him (huw’)—to (la) the presence (paneh) of His Mighty One (hayl – singular masculine for vital and powerful force, strong, capable, and vigorous One).
Indeed (ky), enormous (ma’od – exceedingly abundant) is His encampment (machaneh – place where His people campout).
Indeed (ky), mighty (‘asuwm – vast and powerful, enormously capable) is He who carries out and fulfills (‘asah – fashions and accomplishes) the Word (dabar).
For indeed (ky), great (gadowl – important and intense, massive in magnitude and extent) is the day (yowm – time period) of Yahowah ( ).
To the greatest extent possible (ma’od – exceedingly and abundantly), revere (yare’ – venerate and show profound respect for) Him (huw’) who (mah) bears your burdens, lifts you up and carries you away (nasa’).
And now (‘atah – at this moment in time) also (gam – surely), declares (ne’um – prophetically affirms) Yahowah ( ). Return (suwb – come back to, change your thinking and be restored) to Me forever (‘ad ‘any) with (ba) all your heart (lebab) in fasting (tsuwm – abstinence of food), in weeping (beky – sorrow), and in mourning (misped).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:11-12)
First some bookkeeping: with regard to the One we are encouraged to revere, the Masoretic has “He who kuwl – endures, grasps hold of, bears the burdens of others, comforts, protects, and provides the sustenance necessary to survive” rather than nasa’, which is found on the Qumran Scrolls, meaning He who “bears your burdens, lifts you up, and carries you away.”
God wants His people to return to Him by way of His fulfillment of the Word so that we can campout with Him forever. He wanted the Yahuwdym who were mocking the words of the Set-Apart Spirit on Shabuwa’ to know that the Ma’aseyah they had rejected, still endured and would return.
The reference to a limited diet is suggestive of the famines which will ravage the world at this time. Weeping is evocative of the travails of Yaruwshalaim as Armageddon approaches. And mourning is in reference to the Day of Mourning, known to Yahuwdym as Yowm Kippurym—the great day of Yah’s return.
And while Yahowah does not designate Yowm Kippurym as a “fast,” it is the lone Miqra’ where the menu is not designated. And while there is no instruction to “mourn” associated with the Day of Reconciliations either, our reunification with God was facilitated by His suffering on our behalf. Moreover, our breach of the Covenant has broken Yahowah’s heart.
God would continue to plead with His people, using words which would haunt their souls nearly 900 years after they were inscribed: “Tear open (qara’) your hearts (labab) and not (‘al) your garments (begged).
Return to Yahowah ( ), your God (‘elohym – Mighty One), because indeed (ky) He is merciful (chanuwn – compassionate) and shows favoritism (rahuwm – for the sake of relationship forgives those who deserve to be punished). He is slow to anger (‘arek ‘ap – patient and long-suffering) and great (rab – extensive and abundant) in faithful and steadfast love and affection (chesed – unfailing kindness, mercy, and favor).
Change your attitude and thinking (naham – relent and show regret) over (‘al – concerning and regarding) your wickedness and wrongdoing (ra’ah – disagreeable malignancy, injury, evil and harm). Who (my) knows (yada’ – recognizes and is aware of) the return (suwb – the time of restoration)?
Change your attitude and thinking (naham – be sorry and regret what you’ve thought, said, and done, relent) and remain (sa’ar – survive and be spared) thereafter (‘achar – enduring to the end), speaking favorably of and praising (barakah) the gift (minah – offering) and libation (nesek) of (la) Yahowah ( ) your Mighty One (‘elohym – God).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:13-14)
In times like these, the overtly religious Jews who were ridiculing those whom the Set-Apart Spirit had empowered on Shabuwa’, would have been scouring the Word for an explanation of what was occurring. So by quoting a subsequent passage in Yow’el, Shim’own Kephas recognized that his audience would make the same connections I’m going to share with you. The “tear open your hearts, not your garments” was a reference to the rabbis who judged Yahowsha’. Rather than accepting Him as the corporeal manifestation of Yahowah, they ripped their robes as the Talmud required when Yahowsha’ cited Yahowah’s name at His trial.
Unlike religious men, God wants even the religious to know that He is merciful, and that while these rabbis deserved to be punished for the great evil they had done, He would forgive them—so long as they changed their attitude and thinking. And that is why Yahowah used rab, meaning “great,” in this context. He knew that the religious Jews who were assailing His called-out assembly would one day claim the title of rabbi for themselves. And Yah was telling them, and through them us, that the path from religion to relationship is predicated upon changing one’s attitude, one’s thinking, one’s words and deeds.
Yahowah communicated that they not only needed to regret the fact that they had murdered the Ma’aseyah, but also alerted them to the reality that they were equally clueless as to when He would return. So, once again, God encouraged them to change their perspective so that they might be spared, enjoying the hereafter with the very God they had sought to kill. It would indeed be a radical reversal, one which many Yahuwdym actually made on Shabuwa’ in 33 CE, and many more will make forty Yowbel thereafter.
In His parting salvo, Yahowah wanted His accusers to know that the Spirit they were inferring was wine, was actually God’s gift and blessing, the means to His Covenant’s power and riches. These were sobering, heart-piercing words, powerful prophetic statements that would surely awaken all but the most stubborn.
In the 18th verse of the second chapter of Yow’el, God explains that He won’t sit idly by as His Land is ravaged by the Magog Federation of Islamic nations: “Yahowah ( ) is jealous and zealous for (qana’ – desires exclusivity and is devoted to) His Land (‘erets) and will show mercy to (chamal – spare and deliver) His family (‘am).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:18)
Then speaking of saved souls (symbolized by grain and thus Matsah), new life (attested to by wine and thus Pesach), and the work of the Spirit (represented by oil and thus addressing Bikuwrym), we read: “Yahowah ( ) will answer (‘anah – reply and respond), saying (‘amar) to His family (‘am), ‘Look and see (hineh – behold, pay attention to this), I (‘any) am sending out (salah – dispatching, reaching out and setting apart) to you grain ready for harvest (dagan), new wine (tyrowsh – freshly pressed wine), and olive oil (yishar). You will be completely satisfied (saba’ – be filled and enriched, be completed and fulfilled in abundance) with (‘eth) them.’” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:19)
Yahowah’s solution for humankind’s revolt includes the three things which must be crushed before they are useful. And that is because He sacrificed Himself for our benefit. The “grain and new wine” represent the body and blood of Yahowsha’, broken and spilled for us on Passover. “Olive oil” is symbolic of the Spirit, who was reunited with Yahowsha’ on FirstFruits, and who plays the starring role in Shabuwa’ and Yowm Kippurym.
After telling us that He, Himself, will annihilate those who came to destroy Yisra’el and Yahuwdym, God reveals: “Eat and be satisfied (saba’). Shout with joy and extol the greatness of (halal – praise and cheer, crying aloud) the personal and proper name (shem) of Yahowah ( ), your Mighty One (‘elohym – God) who performs (‘asah – extends considerable effort to bring about) and fulfills these amazing feats (pala’ – does these astounding and extraordinary things). My family (‘am) will not (lo’) be ashamed (bows – be emotionally distressed and humiliated, be disgraced and frustrated, be disappointed and disillusioned, be confounded and confused, even be damned and separated) forever (‘owlam).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:26)
The crime rabbinical Jews have perpetrated on their own people under penalty of death, the very crime to which these egotistic and self-serving deceivers sentenced Yahowsha’ to die, that of saying Yahowah’s name, will be so thoroughly repudiated, God’s family will shout in unison: “Yahowah,” finally giving God credit for all He has done for them. And this simple realization will finally bring the Diaspora to an end. The message is: God requires everything of Himself and very little of us. A little recognition will go a long way.
“Know (yada’ – become aware of, acknowledge, and respect, become familiar with and teach) that indeed (ky) I am (‘any) in (ba) the midst (qereb) of Yisra’el (yisra’el – individuals who strive with, live with, endure with, and are empowered by God). And I (‘any), Yahowah ( ) am your God (‘elohym – Mighty One). There is no (‘ayn) other (‘uwd).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:27)
Just as God had come to dwell within His called out on the Invitation to be Called Out and Meet of Seven Sabbaths, He can always be found in the midst of those individuals who live with and who are empowered by Him—Yisra’el.
It is within this context that Shim’own cited the prophet Yow’el, quoting a man whose very name embodied the declaration which ultimately saved the Chosen People: “Yahowah is God.” In the Greek we read that the pouring out of the Spirit the world witnessed on Shabuwa’ had been predicted centuries before:
“And it shall come to be (eimi – exist in an identical fashion, happen, and come to pass) in (en) the final (eschatos – last in a series (the theological term eschatology is derived from this word) days (hemera), ΘΣ (placeholder for God, the Mighty One as manifest in ‘elohym as opposed to theos) says (lego – affirms and communicates), ‘I will pour out (ekcheomai – shed and bestow, spill and distribute liberally, set forth and give in abundance so as to be fully experienced) from (apo) Me, My (ego) ΠΝΣ (placeholder for Spirit as in ruwach as opposed to pneuma) upon (epi – among) all (pasa) flesh (sarx – physical bodies, on the corporeal mortal nature of humankind). Your sons (huios) and your daughters (thygater) will speak inspired utterances (propheteuo – proclaim what God wants known). Your young men (neaniskos – used of males between twenty-four and forty-years old) shall see visions (horasis – from horao, see with their own eyes, become acquainted with and experience, use their perspective to perceive and understand), and your elders (presbyteros – old men and ranking individuals) will experience supernatural communication from God (enypnion enupniazomai – experience revelations while dreaming).’” (Acts 2:17)
This same passage in the original language of revelation, conveys: “And (wa) it shall come to be (hayah – exist and happen) afterward (‘ahar – next, sometime later, and at another time), therefore (ken), I will pour out (sapak – shed and spill forth) My Spirit (ruwach – a feminine noun which speaks of the divine power, identity, and acceptance of Yahowah) on (‘al) all (kol) human flesh (basar – creatures generally and the physical bodies of mortal mankind specifically), and your sons (wa ben) and your daughters (wa bath) shall choose to speak completely under the influence of the Spirit (naba’ – shall elect to prophesy, communicating an inspired message to foretell the future (niphal perfect consecutive)), and your elders (wa zaqen – aged and prominent individuals) shall become aware of revelations (chalowm – gain insights while dreaming) during inspired dreams (halam), your young men seeing and beholding inspired communications from God (bahuwr chizayown).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:28 or 3:1)
The message is the same save three glaring exceptions. First, in the Hebrew text, Yahowah was speaking in first person, and used “I,” something Shim’own was uncomfortable doing in the first line he cited, recognizing that it might be confusing. That is why the Disciple said “God” or “Mighty One” in either Hebrew or Aramaic.
Second, ruwach, unlike the neuter noun pneuma, is definitely feminine, and thus represents the maternal aspects of God. And that essential distinction is why Spirit is always represented by a placeholder in all Greek manuscripts predating Constantine (as ΠΝΑ, ΠΝΣ, or ΠΝΙ with a horizontal line over the capitalized letters)—telling us where to go to obtain the unvarnished truth. This means that every time we read “Spirit” in an English translation of the Greek, we should be aware that the basis of the word was never written out as pneuma, but rather a placeholder was always used telling us that we must turn to the Scriptures for answers.
Third, this pouring out of the Spirit of God was predicted to occur “afterward, at a later date” in the Hebrew text as opposed to in “the last days” in Greek. This difference is considerable. And it means that either Shim’own misquoted and misinterpreted the verse or that Luke misquoted and misinterpreted Shim’own. So while this is a fine passage to cite in relation to Shabuwa’, albeit not among the best, the discrepancy in terminology and its resulting misinterpretation of Yah’s timeline tell us that Shim’own was attempting to do what we are doing and that he was equally prone to error.
Here, once again, is the next line in the Greek translation of Kephas’s Hebrew or Aramaic recital of the Hebrew Scriptures: “Indeed (ge – really and truly), upon (epi) My male servants (doulos – masculine plural denoting the same sense of belonging and relationship as Yahuwdym – those who belong to and are related to Yah) and also upon My female servants (doule – feminine plural denoting a same sense of belonging and relationship). In (en) those (ekeinos) days (hemera – period of time) I will pour out (ekcheomai – shed and bestow, spill and distribute liberally, set forth and give in abundance so as to be fully experienced) from (apo) Me, My (ego) ΠΝΑ (placeholder for Spirit as in ruwach as opposed to pneuma) upon (epi – among) them and they will speak inspired utterances (propheteuo – proclaim what God wants known).” (Acts 2:18)
Since the only difference between the Greek and Hebrew in this verse (Yow’el/Joel 2:29 or 3:2) is “ruwach / Spirit” is written out in Yow’el and pneuma / Spirit is represented by a placeholder in Acts, we can conclude that the Hebrew term is definitive here and throughout the Greek texts. This known, this divine revelation tells us that the Set-Apart Spirit, our Spiritual Mother, is the source of inspired Godly insights. She accomplishes this by helping us understand Yah’s Towrah.
Moving on to the next sentence Kephas recited to those who were criticizing the called-out assembly on the Called-Out Assembly of Seven Sabbaths, the Greek reads: “And (kai) I will allow and produce (didomi – bestow and permit) wonders and miracles which foreshadow significant upcoming events (teras – omens, marvels, and signs which serve as portent, predicting the future prophetically, things so unusual, they arouse attention and close observation) in (en) the sky (ouranos – atmosphere and universe) above (ano) and signs (semeion – miraculous signals and unusual occurrences which transcend the common course of nature) upon (epi) the earth (ge – land) below (kato): blood (haima), fire (pyr), and (kai) rising clouds of (atmis – steam, billowing vapor, from aer, air and atmospheric) smoke (kapnos).” (Acts 2:19) With these prophetic words we have returned to the realm of the last days—to the Tribulation itself. These signs foreshadow Yahowsha’s return.
In comparing the Greek and Hebrew, didomi and natan convey the same range of meanings, indicating that some of these signs God will “produce,” and others He will “allow.” Considering the number of natural disasters and adverse consequences errantly attributed to “acts of god,” such distinctions are important.
The only other difference is that atmis, translated “rising clouds of” in reference to smoke, is timarah, “columns or pillars” of smoke in Hebrew. When I visualize “rising clouds and columns of smoke” I think of the mushroom clouds associated with nuclear bombs and of volcanic eruptions. During the last days, both will occur, negatively altering our planet and its atmosphere.
Shim’own, reciting from memory the words of Yow’el, said as much: “The sun (helios) will be changed (metastrepho – turned) to (eis) darkness (skotos – darkened and obscured, made gloomy, from skia, have its light intercepted as in a shadow), and the moon (selene) to (eis) blood (haima) before (prin) the coming (erchomai – arrival and appearance) of the (ho) great (megas – massively important and enormously sizable in all respects) and brilliant, shining, visible manifestation (epiphanies – wonderful, glorious, radiant, illustrious, and notable appearance in clear and full view shining forth as light, from epiphaino, to show oneself, become known, appear, and become visible like a star) day (hemera – time) of ΚΩ (placeholder for Yahowah, using a contraction of kurios – the Sovereign Authority to whom everything belongs, based upon kuros, conveying total supremacy, but most always conveyed as “LORD”).” (Acts 2:20)
The Hebrew is significantly different, and more revealing, in this verse: “The sun (shemes) will be overwhelmed (hapak – will be changed, disturbed, weakened, overturned and proven unreliable) by (la) darkness (hosek – obscured and darkened, dimmed and concealed) and the moon (yareh) to (la) blood (dam) before (paneh – in the presence and appearance of) the coming (bow’ – approaching), great (gadowl – massively important and enormously sizable in magnitude and extent), reverent, and frightening (yare’ – profoundly respectful and awesomely dreadful) day (yowm) of Yahowah ( ).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:31 or 3:4)
There are three glaring differences between the Greek translation and the Hebrew original. First, rather than using the common Hebrew words for “change,” muwr or shanah, or even shub, naham, tamuwrah, halaph, or halyphah, Yow’el wrote: hapak when predicting what will happen to the sun. It invokes the idea that the sun, as Satan’s most popular guise, will be “overturned and be proven unreliable” in the last days. Its illumination, as well as its influence, will be “dimmed and obscured” by the arrival of the Greater Light—Yahowsha’. As such, it will be the last hurrah for “Allahu Akbar!”—Allah is the Greatest.
Just as the sun isn’t going to be extinguished, merely darkened in the aftermath of nuclear holocaust, an asteroid strike, and the billowing smoke which will rise from the torching of the Middle East’s oil fields at the conclusion of the Magog War, the moon won’t turn into blood, but rather will reflect a diminished reddish-brown aura. If you have ever seen the moon during a full eclipse, or viewed it through air saturated with smoke, you’ll recognize this depiction. And it is an important one, because if the light reflected off of the moon’s surface is diminished by global atmospheric pollution of this magnitude, observing a new moon, especially in the seventh month of the seventh year of the Tribulation, will be impossible. The first emerging crescent is already hard to see, as it occurs briefly just before sunset, low on the horizon through the greatest density of air, and it is always in competition with the source of its light—the sun. Therefore, for those who survive long enough to witness the fulfillment of Yowm Kippurym with Yahowah’s return, and then the Miqra’ of Sukah, and the initiation of the Millennial Sabbath, they won’t be able to actually see the first crescent of the new moon which not only designates Taruw’ah, but also determines the arrival of the Day of Reconciliations ten days later, followed by the final and seventh Invitation to be Called Out and Meet with God on Shelters, which is celebrated on the fifteenth day of the month. This gives new meaning to “no one knows the day or the hour.”
The second significant difference between the Greek and Hebrew text is that while both renditions agree with the fact that Yahowah’s Yowm Kippurym return will be “great” as in “megas and gadowl – massively important and enormously sizable in all respects, both in magnitude and extent,” they differ considerably with regard to what follows. The Greek suggests that this day will be distinguished because God will be undiminished, and will arrive as “a brilliant shining visible manifestation, a wonderful, glorious, radiant, and illustrious appearance in clear and full view shining forth as light, becoming visible like a star.” And no doubt, that will be true, as He will return closer to His natural state. The result of which will be to instantly vaporize those anywhere near Him who are not protected by the Set-Apart Spirit’s Garment of Light. And as such, the Yowm Kippurym warning that those who don’t accept Yahowah’s summons to approach our Spiritual Mother on this day will be annihilated, takes on an added significance.
The Hebrew, however, uses one of Scripture’s most mistranslated and least understood terms to paint the scene from a different perspective. Yare’ can mean “revere” or “fear.” And that means for some, for those who have followed Yahowah’s seven-step path home, and who have received the Set-Apart Spirit in the spirit of Seven Sabbaths, they will view the Day of Reconciliations with all of the “reverence” it deserves, “profoundly respectful” of their Heavenly Father and the work He has done to bring them into His family.
But, those who have come to destroy Yisra’el, and to kill Yahuwdym, the sudden, unexpected, and brilliant appearance of Yahowah will be “awesomely dreadful,” literally “frightening” them to death.
In the end, all of us will come to see God in one of two ways. Some will respect and revere Him, and for those who do, He will reciprocate, moving over on His throne so that they can sit beside Him. For those secular humanists who reject God, and religious devotees who have been taught to fear Him, they will find their judgment before God to be a dreadful affair. Yare’ defines both conditions, which is why its shadings are perfectly suited to describe the varying perspectives souls will surely have on this extraordinary day.
Speaking of this time, it is not “the great and awesome day of the LORD,” as your KJV, NASB, or NIV protest. The Greek word kurios cannot be found in the text of any first-, second-, or third-century manuscripts, Shim’own didn’t speak Greek, and Yahowah’s name is clearly evident in the Hebrew verse the Apostle was quoting. At issue here is that God has but one name, Yahowah, a name He wants us to know and use because it alone can be relied upon for salvation. Moreover, Yahowah hates being called “Lord” because that title is Satan’s, as it defines the Adversary’s ambitions, not God’s.
In that there are few things more important than avoiding replacing Yahowah’s name with the title “the LORD,” I want to pause a moment and ponder Yahowah’s pained words to His people in Hosea. Speaking of Yisra’el, God begins: “Let her therefore turn away from (suwr – change direction, move on a different path, be removed from, forsake, reject, and abolish) illicit relationships with a false deities (zenunym – religious infidelity, adultery, and especially idolatry,) away from her [Yisra’el’s] presence.” (Howsha’ / Salvation / Hosea 2:2-3)
Speaking of the Whore of Babylon’s influence on the Children of Yisra’el, Yahowah revealed: “Their mother wantonly committed adultery and idolatry (zanah – was a harlot and a whore). She who conceived them made a serious mistake (bowsh – did something wrong and lost hope by acting shamefully). She said, ‘I will go after my lovers that provide my bread, my water, my wool, my linen, my oil, and my drink.’” (Howsha’ / Salvation / Hosea 2:4-5)
As a result of following Satan’s and man’s religious path, rather than Yahowah’s Way, God said: “Therefore, behold (hineh – I call your attention to this change of scene, emphasizing it) I will hedge up (suk – fence in, erect a restraining barrier, and block) your path (derek – pattern of life) with thorns, closing it off so that she shall not find or attain her way (natyb – path of life conceived by men).” (Hosea 2:6) Because: “She did not discern (da’ah – acknowledge information that requires wisdom) that I gave long lasting grain, and new wine, and olive oil, and increased her silver and gold, which they assigned to Lord Ba’al.” (Howsha’ / Salvation / Hosea 2:8)
If you turn to the “Azab – Abandonment” chapter of the Going Astray volume of Yada Yah, you will find a long discussion on the origins and nature of Lord Ba’al, and thereby more fully appreciate why Yahowah consistently used the term to define the Adversary and his satanically-inspired religions.
Divorcing His Chosen People for their infidelity, Yahowah warned that upon His redemptive advent (His sixth of seven, and the one in which religious Jews elected to crucify their Ma’aseyah): “Therefore, I will return and take away My grain at the occasion of change, and my new wine at the appointed time (mowed), and spare my wool and linen that would have kept her nakedness hidden.” (Howsha’ / Salvation / Hosea 2:9)
Then speaking of the Babylonian-inspired Ba’alym religious celebrations which had crept into the Jewish calendar, and His people’s infidelity with regard to the Covenant, Yahowah predicted: “And now will I reveal her lewdness and shame in the sight of her lovers (ahab – those with whom she has formed a relationship) and none shall save (nasal – deliver or rescue) her out of My hand (yad – power or authority). I shall cause a cessation of all her celebrations, her religious feasts, her new moon religious festivals, and her Sabbaths, and all her appointed assemblies.” (Howsha’ / Salvation / Hosea 2:10-11) God isn’t tolerant of religious observances—especially when they conceal, corrupt, or counterfeit His Miqra’ey / Called-Out Assemblies as most Jewish and Christian religious festivals do.
The Familial Relationship predicated upon marriage and home, and known as the “Covenant,” required fidelity to yield blessings. So there was a consequence of cavorting with Lord Ba’al: “I will destroy (shamem – leave desolate, lay waste and ravage, ruin and abandon) her vines and her fig trees, whereof she has said, ‘These are my gratuities (etenal – payments for being a prostitute, the quid pro quo rewards) associated with loving people (ahab – coveting things and bribes) given to me.’ But I intend to turn them into a thicket, and the beasts of the field shall devour them.” (Howsha’ / Salvation / Hosea 2:12) And so it would be. The Temple was torn down in 70 CE, and the Land was salted and destroyed by the Romans between 133 and 135 as a result of Jews rejecting the Covenant.
While this is a warning to the Jews, predicting the nearly 2,000-year Diaspora, it should be equally disturbing to Christians: “I will take an inventory of (peqad – recount) her days in association with (‘asher) Lords (Ba’alym – false gods), wherein she caused incense and sacrifices to rise up in smoke, and she went on the prowl in search of prey in a beguiling way with her loop earrings (nezem – ornamental rings and circles which separate) and her jewelry associated with harlotry, and she went out after (halak ahar – walked with, followed, and joined) her lovers (ahab – formed a relationship with others, desiring objects and coveting things). And she forgot Me, becoming lame and crippled, says Yahowah ( ).” (Howsha’ / Salvation / Hosea 2:13)
But divorced was not forgotten. Verses 14 through 16 describe a doorway and path from the wilderness back home to the Promised Land which Yahowah promised to leave open, knowing that His Chosen People would one day return. Speaking of that day, God said: “And it shall be at that day, declares Yahowah ( ), that you shall call Me husband (ishi – extant, present, in existence, the Mighty One); and shall call Me (qara – summon Me as and read aloud) My Lord (ba’ali) never again (halo owd – no more and no longer). For I will remove and reject the names of the Lords (Ba’alym – false gods) out of her mouth, and they shall be proclaimed (zakar – remembered, recalled, and mentioned) by their name no more.” (Howsha’ / Salvation / Hosea 2:16-17)
So at the time of reconciliation, on the Day of Reconciliations, at the terminus of the intermission, on the day Yisra’el’s long divorce is reconciled, at the reestablishment of the Covenant, and upon God’s long-awaited return to Earth, Yahuwdym will call Yahowah “Ishi – Husband.” The bride will have returned from her flirtations with Lord Ba’al. This means that the Jews who survive the Tribulation will acknowledge that Yahowah manifest Himself as a man—as the Ma’aseyah Yahowsha’—to save them. It means that they will come to recognize that God exists and that His name is Yahowah—not “Lord.” They will become reacquainted, so to speak. And it means that Yahowah and His Yahuwdym will be remarried—signaling the resumption of the olam beryth—the eternal covenant.
And while this glorious and magnificent chorus is the doorway to salvation, what follows is so sad it makes me want to cry and scream all at the same time. At this great celebration of reconciliation, upon His glorious return, the thing Yahowah cherishes most is never being called “Lord” again. That means when the rabbis, priests and pastors scratched His name out of His Scripture 7,000 times, replacing it with “LORD,” God was and remains in agony. Yahowah longs for the time that “Lord” will never again be spoken, remembered, or read.
Returning to the Acts of the Apostles and Spirit, one of the most important parts of Shim’own’s recital of Yow’el is contained in what comes next. As we discovered in Yow’el 2:26, nothing is more essential to our salvation than boldly proclaiming Yahowah’s name. “And it shall come to pass (eimi – be that) all (pas – everyone) who (hos), and as many as (an – used as a preposition to present a possibility), call upon (epikaleomai – ask for help in and bear) the (ho) personal and proper name (onoma) of ΚΩ (Yahowah) will be saved (sozo – rescued, delivered, restored, and healed).” (Acts 2:20)
In Hebrew, this essential passage reads: “And (wa) it shall come to be (hayah – exist) that everyone (kol – all) who relationally (‘asher) calls out (qara’ – summons and proclaims, reads aloud and recites) in (ba) the personal and proper name (shem) Yahowah ( ), shall be saved (malat – be rescued and delivered, be spared and slip away, escaping from harm, their life preserved) ” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:32 or 3:5)
It is so obvious, it’s a wonder that theologians, clerics, and scholars have dumbfounded so many for so long. “Lord” is a title, not a “personal and proper name,” and thus cannot be used in this context. Not only isn’t the definite article “the” included in the Greek text, eliminating the possibility that the ΚΩ placeholder stood for “the Lord,” by design, a name, the name, is all that fits.
Eimi and pas are appropriate translations of hayah and kol, albeit, hayah, not eimi, forms the basis of Yahowah’s name as it defines His nature. Hos, however, is an inadequate translation of ‘asher, in that the Hebrew term is “relational,” and thereby adds an essential insight excluded from the Greek. And I suppose, that is why Kephas included the prepositional an in his citation, inferring that salvation was conditional, and that something had to be done, namely a relationship formed, before the possibility became a reality.
“Call upon” in Greek adds an accurate additional nuance in that it speaks of “asking for help using a particular name.” Further, epikaleomai conveys a “desire to bear the name,” because those who call upon Yahowah become Yahuwdym.
In Hebrew, two words are used to describe the means to salvation: qara’ ba, meaning to “call out in” the name Yahowah. Qara’, as we have become aware, forms the basis of Miqra’, designating the Called-Out Assembly being celebrated this day as the Spirit came upon the ekklesia.
Additionally, qara’ tells us that we are to “summon and proclaim” Yahowah’s name, “reading it aloud and reciting” it if we want to be saved. And that’s hard to do when you don’t know it, and when it has been removed 7,000 times from the very Scriptures which provide the path to salvation.
While Shim’own had concluded his citation of Yow’el, Yahowah wasn’t finished “ because indeed (ky) on (ba) Mount (har) Tsyown (tsyown – the signpost on the way) and in (ba) Yaruwshalaim (yaruwshalaim – the source of salvation) deliverance (paleytah – the escape for the remnant and remainder, the survivors from oppression and captivity) will be (hayah) equated to (ka – and be in accord with) relationally (‘asher) saying (‘amar – answering and claiming, calling and declaring, speaking and requesting) Yahowah ( ). The remaining survivors (saryd – the remnant) relationally (‘asher) call out to (qara’ – summon and proclaim, read aloud and recite) Yahowah ( ).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 2:32 or 3:5)
What follows, ties Yahowah’s return and the restoration of His people together: “Look and see (hineh – pay attention), because indeed (ky) in (ba) that day (yowm), and during (ba) that particular time (‘eth – that specific and definite point), relationally (‘asher) I will return and restore (suwb – come back to the place I had previously left to renew) the fortunes (sebuwt – freeing people from oppression, suppression, and captivity), for Yahuwdah (Yahuwdah – those who relate to and are related to Yah who bear His name) and Yaruwshalaim (Yaruwshalaim – the source of salvation).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 3:1 or 4:1)
The rest of Yow’el goes on to describe Armageddon, referring to the gathering of militants and their weapons as “an abundance of riches, rumbling, commotion, tumult, uproar and confusion from a multitude of troops (hamon hamon) in the valley (‘emeq – low geographical area) of decision (harus), for the day of Yahowah ( ) is near in the valley (‘emeq) of the decision (harus – of making a choice to be on one side of a sharp divide or the other, to be cut free, and to be judged and punished).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 3:14 or 4:14)
For most of man’s existence, mortal souls were free to select one of three fates. Those who chose to rely upon Yahowah would live forever with Him. Those who sided with Satan, as those in the valley of decision had done, would endure forever in the Abyss with the Adversary. And while most souls would simply cease to exist at the end of their mortal lives, that option will not being afforded to the rumbling, tumultuous, and confused multitude who had come to annihilate Yahowah’s Chosen People. It was decision time, and they had all expressed theirs by way of the company they had chosen and the mission they had engaged upon.
Scripture paints Yahowah as patient, always waiting until the last possible moment, giving people every opportunity to change before usurping their freewill, and demonstrably intervening as He eventually must in human affairs. But to fulfill the final two Miqra’ey, and to save a remnant of Yahuwdym from having the Adversary and his associates destroy the Promised Land, and all life on Earth, He will arrive a heartbeat before we annihilate ourselves and the planet to save the day. Because of the damage we have done...
“The sun (shemes) and moon (yareh) will grow dark (qadar – have their light obscured) and stars (kokab) will withdraw (‘asap – experience a gathering in or harvest of) their brightness (nagah – splendor and radiance), and Yahowah ( ) will shout (sa’ag – roar) from (min) Tsyown (tsyown – the signpost on the way) and from (min) Yaruwshalaim (Yaruwshalaim – the source of restoration) deploying (natan – producing, giving, and bestowing) His voice (qowl), shaking (ra’as) the heavens (samaym) and the earth (‘erets – land).
Then (wa) Yahowah ( ) will be a shelter (mahseh – refuge of safety from danger) for (la) His (huw’) family (‘am), protecting (ma’oz – sheltering my means of an enclosed encampment) the Children (ben) of Yisra’el (yisra’el – those who strive with and are empowered by God).
And you will know (yada’ – recognize and acknowledge, respect and understand, realize and become familiar with, be aware and discover) that indeed (ky – surely and truly) I (‘any), Yahowah ( ), your God (‘elohym), live (sakan – dwell, remain, settle, and camp) in (ba) Tsyown, My (‘any) set-apart (qodesh – purifying and cleansing) mountain (har), and I will continue to exist (hayah) in the set-apart and cleansed (qodesh) Yaruwshalaim. Unauthorized and illegitimate strangers (zar – foreigners and aliens, children born of another mother and father) shall not (lo’) pass over (‘abar) into (ba) her (huw’).” (Yow’el / Yah is God / Joel 3:15-16 or 4:15-16)
In this passage, Yahowah has transitioned from themes of reconciliation upon His return on the Day of Reconciliations, to providing shelter on Sukah / Shelters, because one Miqra’ flows to the next, one leading to the other. Just as the first four Invitations to Meet with God have been fulfilled in the right way, on the right day, and in the right order, the final three Miqra’ey will also be fulfilled, restoring the Children of Yisra’el as they begin the Millennial Sabbath, camping out with God for one thousand years.
The whole story has been brought to its conclusion. Everyone who has survived His glorious return will yada’ Yahowah, they will “know, recognize and acknowledge, respect and understand, realize and discover” that “being qodesh/set apart unto God and cleansed” was the purpose of Shabuwa’. From this time forward, only those whose mother and father are our Spiritual Mother and Heavenly Father will be afforded the opportunity to campout on the set-apart mountain and set-apart city. Those who did not avail themselves of Passover when they had the opportunity, will be excluded as strangers.
Shim’own continued to give the religious zealots who were mocking the work of the Set-Apart Spirit on Shabuwa’ an earful, intermixing Scriptural citations with sound conclusions. It is the example we should follow on this Miqra’ as well as on all others.
After having connected the pouring forth of the Set-Apart Spirit upon those gathered together on the Called-Out Assembly of Sevens with the prediction that it would occur in Yow’el / Joel, Shim’own told his audience that the prophecies pertaining to Yahowah’s return indicated not only that He had been here before, but that Yahowsha’ embodied the manifestation they had witnessed.
During this process, the disciple told those who made saying Yahowah’s name a crime punishable by death that God actually said the opposite: “And it shall come to pass that everyone who calls upon the name of Yahowah shall be saved.” And it was along these lines that He pressed forward with this analysis: “Yisra’elite (Israelites – a transliteration of Yisra’elite) men (andros), pay attention to and understand (akouo – hear what I have to say and receive) these words (logos – statements, treatise, and reasoning): ΙΝΥ (placeholder for Yahowsha’, meaning Yah Saves) the Nazarene (Nazoraios – a transliteration of natsyr, meaning preserved, netser, branch (a Messianic symbol from Isaiah 11:1), and nazar, to separate and set apart), is a man (andros) who publicly demonstrated (apodeiknymi – showed, attested, and proved, using sound arguments to expose and demonstrate) to (eis) you (sy) that He is from (apo) ΘΣ (placeholder for Yahowah, our God) using supernatural powers and abilities (dynamis – an inherent capacity) to perform extraordinary miracles with prophetic significance (teras – wonders which foreshadow that which is to come and are so unusual, they arouse close observation). These are signs (semeion – nonverbal means of communication, distinguishing omens portending remarkable events which transcend the common course of nature and authenticate the individual) which (hos) ΘΣ (placeholder for our God, Yahowah) performed (poieomai – assigned and worked) through (dia) Him (autos) in your midst (mesos) as (kathos) you know (oida – possess sufficient information to comprehend and understand).” (Acts 2:22)
Yahowsha’ not only performed countless miracles, many of which were extraordinary, they all served to convey aspects of His nature and purpose. Moreover, each time He did something no other person had ever done, He demonstrated that He was indeed God. And since Yahowah clearly said that He would be “returning,” Yahowsha’ represents the lone credible candidate for the preceding advent. And that is why this conclusion followed the Yow’el citation.
What’s more, Yahowsha’ was the only individual in human history who even attempted to fulfill the prophetic plan Yahowah had so carefully delineated. “He was appointed to (horizo – determined, set, decreed, and foreordained to fulfill) the pre-arranged and prophetic (prognosis – the predestined and previously revealed and known) plan and purpose (boule) of ΘΣ (placeholder for Yahowah, our God) ” (Acts 2:23) Then man now known as Kephas has just articulated the thesis statement of Yada Yah. God designed and disclosed His plan and purpose in the Towrah—the salvation of humankind—and Yahowsha’ fulfilled and facilitated that plan.
With Calvinism on the rise in the West, I’d like to make an important distinction here. Yahowah’s response to man, even Yahowsha’s words and deeds, were predetermined—inscribed in stone and unchangeable—before the universe was created. Man’s response to God, and our words and deeds, are always subject to freewill. Each and every one of us has the opportunity to ignore God’s plan, serve a god of man’s making, accept Yahowah, or reject Him.
Within the realm of prophecy, there are certain things which Yahowah has preordained—the fulfillment of the Miqra’ey for example. The things which God has promised to do, will be accomplished on the stage of human history in complete accord with Scripture, in order, and on the predetermined day, regardless of mankind’s response. Yahowah is committed in this regard, and no longer has any option.
Other prophecies simply report that which mankind will do with the continued exercise of freewill. In such cases, Yahowah has been to our future and is reporting back to us what He has seen, so that when it happens as He witnessed it, we will trust His witness. So, while Yahowah was certain that Yahuwdym would return to Yisra’el in the last days as a result of the Holocaust, He had no hand in those horrific events. Individual men and women made poor decisions, squandering the gift of freewill, and the consequences where devastating. Such will continue to be the case over the next two-dozen years. Just because Yahowah knows the future as it relates to mankind, it doesn’t mean that we are predestined to act badly.
What follows is as brilliantly worded, as is that which preceded it. “ He was betrayed and given over (ekdotos – delivered and handed over) to (dia) the hand (cheir – power, influence, authority, and control) of Towrahless heathens (anomos – those without the Towrah) who chose to take control and lift Him up (anaireo – to do away with and destroy, from haireomai, to choose to control), affixing Him (prospegnumi).” (Acts 2:23)
While prospegnumi is most always translated “crucify,” this Greek word, unlike stauroo, “to be nailed to an upright pole,” simply means to “affix and to fasten.” The lifting up aspect of what occurred was communicated by anaireo. Shim’own evidently wanted to make the same distinction I did—that men had a choice even though God didn’t. The actions of those who on Shabuwa’ were scoffing at the Spirit, and who fifty-one days earlier on Pesach had mocked the Ma’aseyah, becoming accessories to His crucifixion, were not to be excused or condoned as if they were predestined to reject God.
As an interesting aside, it is worth noting that the preponderance of Catholic sculptures and paintings depict Yahowsha’ in one of two ways, attached to His mother as an infant, or helplessly attached to a cross. It is as if the Catholic hierarchy has chosen to control Him in that way. They are quietly saying: if He cannot take care of Himself, why would you trust Him to take care of you?” And that leads to: “Trust us instead with your soul.”
“ΘΩ (placeholder for Yahowah) restored Him to life, caused Him to stand up, and raised Him (anistamai), releasing and dismissing Him (lou – loosening Him and setting Him free) from the suffering and pain (odin – agony and labor pangs) of death and separation (thanatos – the separation of the soul from the body and from God) because (kathoti) it was not (ou) possible (dynatos) for Him to exist (eimi) held and influenced (krateo – seized) by (hypo – under) these things.” (Acts 2:23)
There are few things in Scripture more complicated or insightful than what actually transpired on Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits as it relates to Yahowsha’s body, soul, and Spirit. And since an entire volume of Yada Yah (Salvation) is devoted to this topic, suffice it to say for now: the Set-Apart Spirit returned to Yahowah just prior to the death of Yahowsha’s body. Yahowsha’s body was then sacrificed as the Passover Lamb. That very same night His physical body ceased to exist in accordance with Yahowah’s instructions. Then during Unleavened Bread, a Sabbath in 33 CE, Yahowsha’s soul descended into the place of separation, called She’owl, to redeem us, keeping us from being separated from God. Having paid our penalty, Yahowsha’s soul was freed, retrieved, and reunited with the Spirit on FirstFruits. And these are the things that Shim’own is summarizing here.
The Apostle’s Shabuwa’ soliloquy was advanced by way of a second Tanakh citation, this time from the 16th Mizmowr / Psalm. But so as to better understand why he selected it, let’s begin our examination by studying the entire Song from which the excerpt was taken. Shim’own Kephas didn’t cite it in a vacuum so we shouldn’t approach it out of context either.
It begins: “A written psalm (miktam – an inscribed poem and prayer) of Dowd (dowd – love and beloved): Keep watch over and protect me (shamar ‘any – revere and care for me, guard me, cling to, and preserve me) God (‘el) because (ky – for the reason that) I trust in and rely upon You (hasah ba ‘antah – I seek shelter and take refuge, trusting in You). I say (‘amar – promise and declare) to (la) Yahowah ( ), my (‘any) Upright One (‘eden / ‘edon – my foundation and the established and firm pillar of my tabernacle, and the base upon which I stand), You (‘atath) are good to (tabah – kind and generous to) me (‘any) because of You, not me (bal ‘al’atath – not because of who I am, but because of who You are).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:1-2)
Another way to phrase the last line would be: “I have no goodness besides You.” In other words, Dowd is correctly stating that his righteousness isn’t his doing, but God’s. This known, there are two essential insights in this passage. First, Dowd is depending upon Yahowah protecting Him for no other reason than he is trusting and relying upon God to do so. And that is always sufficient.
Second, while the NASB begins the second verse with “I said to the LORD, ‘Thou art my LORD,’” ‘adonay, one of two Hebrew words for “lord,” doesn’t actually appear in the text—not even in the lord-loving Masoretic. While the first “LORD” comes by way of the standard replacement of Yahowah’s name perpetrated by scholars and publishers, the second insertion is a unique travesty. In this case the Masoretes actually pointed ‘edon correctly, clearly conveying that Dowd was referring to Yahowah as the “Upright One”—one of the most insightful titles attributed to God in the whole of Scripture. It conveys that Yahowah is the “foundation upon which we are established.” He is the reliable and firm pillar of our tabernacle.” God is “the base upon which we stand.” He is the one who stood up for us so that we could stand with Him.
This realization is especially significant with regard to the incessant insertions of “Lord” in the Greek texts where it does not belong. Based upon this verse, and many others, to be consistent and accurate, we are compelled to replace the ΚΣ, ΚΥ, and ΚΩ placeholders when they appear in the text with either “Yahowah” or “Upright One,” depending upon which better suits the context of the discussion. And for this reason alone, our review of the Psalm based upon Shim’own’s Shabuwa’ quotation of it, has borne valuable fruit.
“Concerning (la) the set apart (qodesh – cleansed and purified) who are (‘asher) in (ba) the Land (‘erets – realm and world), they (hem) are all (kol) majestic (‘adyr – illustrious, glorious, noble, and magnificent), and I delight (hepes – take pleasure and enjoyment associating) with (ba) them.” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:3)
Dowd is not so egotistical that he thinks that he is the lone apple of Yahowah’s eye, but knows that all of God’s children are beautiful. While we may be flawed, and while every good thing we possess is of God, because of what He has done, we are all “illustrious, glorious, and magnificent” from our Heavenly Father’s perspective. And since this is Shabuwa’, it is important to note that we must credit our Spiritual Mother, and Her Garment of Light, for our spiritual glow.
“The sufferings and anxieties (‘asebeth – sorrows and grief, anguish and pain, and the unfavorable circumstances) will be numerous and substantial (rabah – great) for those (hem) who impetuously chase after (mahar – rashly and hurriedly, energetically without thought or reason pursue) another (‘aher). I will not (bal) pour their drink offerings (nasak) of blood (dam) and will not (bal) lift up (nasa’ – respect or honor, exalt or bear) their names (shem) on (‘al) my lips (sapah).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:4)
What’s particularly profound here, especially in this context, is that ‘adonay, the rabbinic replacement for ‘edon, is the name of a pagan god—in this case “Adonis.” Moreover, ba’al, the other Hebrew word for “Lord,” is Satan’s Scriptural title because it defines his ambition. Therefore, we ought not respect or honor the title “Lord.” In fact, other than to criticize and condemn its use, the name and title “Lord” ought never cross our lips.
“Yahowah ( ) allots and provides (menath – assigns and gives, prepares and apportions) my share, fate, and inheritance (heleq – reward), my crucible (kuwr – source of purification). You uphold and secure (tamak – personally take hold of and control, you accept and receive) my fate (goral – lot as in casting black and white stones to determine an outcome, recompense and retribution).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:5)
With the required cultural baggage buried under a few thousand years of debris, most miss the significance of this passage. A goral was a lot, something which was cast to determine one’s fate. Usually comprised of black and white pebbles, white was indicative of a favorable outcome. So by using this phrase, Dowd was saying three things. First, Yahowah was “upholding and securing” his destiny.
Second, Yahowah was accepting and receiving Dowd’s recompense and retribution, which is to say, He was redeeming him by accepting his punishment. Such is the message of Passover and Unleavened Bread.
Third, by saying that Yahowah would personally take hold of Dowd’s lot—his white stone—the psalmist is telling us that God is going to intervene to assure our salvation. Yahowsha’ said this very thing in His open prophetic letter to the Assembly in Pergamos—the seat of Satan. Of issue with Pergamos was that they were a “place where the control and power of the doctrines and teachings (public religious instructions) of Balaam (a transliteration of the name of the false and demonic Babylonian prophet known as “the Lord”) are taught (delivered as a discourse from an official teacher, preacher, or politician).” But, for the Philadelphians who avoided and disdained this religious rhetoric, and who relied upon Yahowah instead of Lord Ba’al, Yahowsha’ said: And I will give to (grant and bestow, furnish and deliver to) him a light (that which is white, bright and brilliant) acquittal stone and invitation (a white rock which was used in courts to designate a favorable verdict).” (Revelation 2:17)
Returning to the Psalm, while there is no mention of a tent or ship in what follows, Dowd has resumed using poetic terminology which requires the addition of some words to convey his intent. In the lingo of a sailor or explorer, he is saying that the wind and sun have always been at his back and that his destinations have been divine. “The cords of my tent and the rigging of my ship (hebel – ropes, cords, and lines) have fallen (naphal) for (la) me in (ba) beautiful and pleasant places (na’ym – favorable and acceptable circumstances), so surely (‘ap – therefore too) my inheritance (nahalah) will be pleasing and delightful (sapar – thoroughly enjoyable glistening, bright, and beautiful) for me.” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:6) Dowd is expecting paradise to be pleasant, especially since our inheritance comes from God.
“I am blessed (barak) by (‘eth) Yahowah ( ) who relationally (‘asher) advises me (ya’as – provides counsel), yea also (‘aph – even) instructs (yasar – teaches and disciplines, corrects and trains) my innermost being (kilyah – my emotions and attitude) during times of darkness (laylah – the night).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:7) This is a reference to our Spiritual Counselor and Advisor, the Set-Apart Spirit—Shabuwa’s star attraction.
This brings us to the beginning of Shim’own’s second Seven Sevens quotation in defense of the work of the Spirit. “I continually (tamyd – consistently and perpetually) set (sawah – place and thereby come to resemble) Yahowah ( ) before (neged – beside and nearby) me, because (ky) at (min) His right side (yamyn – right hand) I will not (bal) stagger or fall (mowt – be shaken, deviate from the right path, or be separated from Him).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:8) This is great advice for all of us. It explains why this passionate, albeit flawed, rascal was so loved by God, and how he was able to accomplish great things in difficult times.
Luke’s Greek translation of Kephas’s Aramaic rendition of the Hebrew passage reads as follows: “For (gar – because) ΔΔ (placeholder for Dowd, meaning love, using the Greek transliteration Dauid) said (lego – declared and affirmed) of (eis) Him (autos), ‘I foresee (proorao) ΚΩ (placeholder for Yahowah using kurios, the Supreme Authority and the Upright One) in front of (enopion – and before) me (ego) always (pas) on my behalf (dia) because (hoti) from (ek – out of and because of) His right hand (dexios – authority) I will not be (me eimi) shaken or swayed (saleuomai – be overthrown or distressed).” (Acts 2:25) This translation of Mizmowr 16:8 provides yet another undeniable confirmation that many, if not most, of the placeholders for kurios are only correctly represented when they are replaced with Yahowah’s name.
While we are on this topic, the irrational explanation scholars use to dismiss the ubiquitous existence of placeholders throughout all seventy of the pre-Constantine first-, second-, and third-century Greek manuscripts is similar to their justification for replacing Yahowah’s name 7,000 times with “Lord” in the Tanakh (an acronym for Torah, Prophets, and Psalms in Hebrew). They claim that the scribes had so much respect for the names and titles Yahowah, Yahowsha’, Spirit, Father, Son, Ma’aseyah, and Lord, that they devised a scheme of placeholders to dignify their Divine status. But if that were so, then why was “Dowd” conveyed using the same system? After all, Shim’own’s whole point was that Dowd wasn’t Divine, which meant that he was speaking of Yahowsha’. And more telling still, if the notion of “Divine respect” were God’s idea, why did He see to it that all of these names and titles were written out without exception, tens-of-thousands of times in the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms?
There is only one, informed, rational, and consistent conclusion which can be drawn regarding the use of placeholders throughout the Greek writings: God prefers His Hebrew names and titles because they each convey an essential message which is lost in the conversion to another language. Dowd means “love and beloved,” and as such gives considerable meaning to the nature of his kingdom from God’s perspective. His name helps us understand why Yahowah was so enamored with him.
Dowd proclaimed: “Therefore (ken), my heart (leb) is elated (samah – is joyous), rejoicing (gyl – jubilant and delighting) at my glorious reward (kabowd – abundance and splendor as in the manifestation of power and respect). My flesh (basar) also (‘ap) is abiding (sakan – remaining, living, and dwelling) by means of (la) trust and reliance (batch – in security and safety), ” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:9) We should all be appreciative of the reward Yahowah is offering those who choose to trust and rely upon Him. In our perfected state, our existence will be akin to Yahowsha’s—a spiritual being reunited with our consciousness/soul.
The Greek translation is reasonably similar: “Therefore (dia), my heart (kardia) rejoices (euphrainomai – celebrates), and my tongue (glossa – language and speech) delights (agalliao) that also (eti) my flesh (sarkos) will abide and endure (kataskenoo – live) as a result of (epi) a confident and trusting expectation (elpis), .” (Acts 2:26)
Before we consider the next verse Kephas quoted, be aware that there are two sections of She’owl, Abraham’s bosom, which is where those who have chosen the Covenant will reside, and the section which serves as a holding facility for those souls who are awaiting judgment. Dowd would have dwelled in Abraham’s section of She’owl from the time he died, to the time he was gathered into heaven during the FirstFruits Harvest following Yahowsha’s fulfillment of Bikuwrym. So, the first part of this next passage is accurate as it relates to the king, in that his soul was not abandoned, but instead retrieved by God.
However, Dowd was not always “loyal and faithful,” and his body most assuredly “decomposed” in his grave. So the second portion of this verse could not possibly pertain to him—and that was Shim’own’s point. Only Yahowsha’, the “Set-Apart and Godly One who was loyal and faithful,” experienced death without the resulting “decay” which naturally occurs over time in a grave. But His body was incinerated that night in a burst of energy, consistent with Yahowah’s Passover instructions. And while the Ma’aseyah’s soul experienced She’owl, going there on Matsah to redeem us, it was retrieved by God on Bikuwrym.
In this light, please consider: “ because (ky) my soul (nepesh – consciousness) will not (lo’) be abandoned and be left behind (‘azab – be separated and deserted, rejected and forsaken) to (la) She’owl (She’owl – the realm of the dead and place of questioning). You will not (lo’) give (natan – place and assign) Your loyal and faithful (chasid / chesed – Set-Apart and Godly One) to see (ra’ah – or experience) decay (sahat – decomposition in the grave), ” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:10)
Luke’s Greek translation of Shim’own’s Hebrew recital of this verse adds an interesting confirmation: “ because (hoti) my soul (psyche – consciousness) will not (ou) be utterly forsaken and totally abandoned (egkataleipo – be left behind and deserted) in Hades (hades – the abode of the dead). Neither (oude) will Your Set-Apart and Dedicated One (hosios – loyal and faithful, undefiled and pure) be allowed (didomi) to see (horao – experience) decay and decomposition (diaphthora).” (Acts 2:27)
Only Yahowsha’ was “undefiled and pure,” making it clear that the Set-Apart and Dedicated One was and is the Ma’aseyah. Additionally, while the Hebrew word sahat can mean “pit or grave” in addition to “decay and decomposition,” diaphthora is unequivocal, reinforcing the reason Shim’own selected this text.
Yahowsha’s disciple completed the 16th Mizmowr in his Shabuwa’ defense, letting us know that Dowd wrote: “Make me aware and enable me to understand (yada’ – to know, respect, and acknowledge) the way (‘orah – path) of abundant (soba’ – full, contented) and joyous (simhah – pleasurable and genuinely happy) life (hay) in (‘eth – proximity with) your presence (paneh), experiencing a favorable acceptance, contentment, and pleasure (na’ym) at (ba) your right side (yamyn) forever (nesah).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 16:11) Yahowsha’ is the way and the life. He came that we might have life, and experience it abundantly.
The Greek rendition concludes: “Reveal and make known to (gnorizo – provide the information needed to understand and thereby expose to) me (ego) the way (hodos – path, road, and journey) to a complete and fulfilling (pleroo – full and abundant) life (zoe) of joy and gladness (euphrosyne – cheerfulness and gratitude) in proximity to (meta – in association with) Your presence (prosopon).” (Acts 2: 28)
One of the reasons that I love Shim’own’s Shabuwa’ rebuttal against the religious establishment is the way he weaves his arguments. His foundation, the facts in this case, are quotations from the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms—the only unassailable source of evidence with regard to spiritual matters. He explains how past and current events can best be understood when they are viewed from the perspective of Scripture. Then he helps his audience make the necessary connections—which is the essence of rational thinking. But more than this, Kephas steps back from the current work of the Spirit on Shabuwa’, to the events which made this day possible, so that his audience would come to appreciate the interrelationship between the Miqra’ey, and see how Passover led to Sevens. He recognized that the best way to establish the identity and purpose of the Set-Apart Spirit on Shabuwa’, was to establish the identity and purpose of Yahowsha’ on Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym.
Yes, his rebuttal was long, and I’m sure that his audience thinned as he pressed his case. Today, in our sound bite world, where our attention span is that of a flea, his ratings would have been so low, he would have been canceled during this, his premier. And such is the case with Yada Yah, where chapters are the length of books. It, like Shim’own, is out of step with the crowd. But he makes no apology, nor does God. While most don’t care enough to learn what is required to understand, there are some who are willing to invest the time. And for them, Kephas continued, as shall we.
While some might argue that long, complex arguments deter and confuse the simple-minded, it is worth noting that the man defending the Spirit on the Called-Out Assembly of Seven Sabbaths had no formal education. He had been a lowly fisherman just a few years prior. So, with an open mind, a soft heart, and calloused hands, he lectured Jerusalem’s religious and political establishment: “Gentlemen (andros), brothers (adelphos), it is possible (exesti – permissible and obligatory, reasonable and rational) after all to say (eipon – indeed, based on this account to communicate) to you with boldness, confidence, and frankness (parresia – in open public discourse, enjoying freedom of speech, courageously, without any concern or fear) with regard to (pros – according to) and concerning (peri) the patriarch (patriaches – founder and forefather) ΔΔ (Dowd, meaning love, using the Greek transliteration Dauid), that (hoti) he both died (teleutao – his life is finished and has come to a close) and was buried (thapto), and his tomb (mnema – grave and memorial sepulcher) exists (eimi – and can be identified) among (en) us, even until (achri) this (houtos) day (hemera – time).” (Acts 2:29)
The argument he was making is that for Scripture to be accurate and reliable, and for Dowd to be dead and buried, the prophecy regarding a corpse not decomposing, must be speaking about someone else—Yahowsha’ perhaps. “Being (hyparcho) therefore (oun) a prophet (prophetes – one who discloses the future before it occurs), and knowing (oida – comprehending, understanding, remembering, and acknowledging) that (hoti) ΘΣ (Yahowah, who is God) swore (omnuo – professed) an oath (horkos – and promised) that from out (ek) of the fruit (darpos – the productive source and harvest) of his loins (osphys), [a descendant] would sit (kathizo) upon (epi) His (autos) throne (thronos), he foresaw (proorao) and spoke (laleo) about (peri) the rising up and standing upright (anastasis) of the ΧΡΝ (Ma’aseyah, the anointed implement of Yah), because namely (hoti), He was not (oute) left behind and abandoned so as to remain (egkataleipo – forsaken and deserted) at (eis – inside and within) Hades (hades – the abode of the dead), nor (oute) did His flesh (sarx – physical human body) see (horao – experience) decay and decomposition (diaphthora – corruption).” (Acts 2:30-31)
This fisherman selected his words very carefully. Had he said that the Ma’aseyah had not been “aphorize/separated,” “choris/separated and set apart,” or especially “krino/separated, judged, and put asunder,” he would have contradicted God and nullified our salvation by disavowing the sacrifice Yahowsha’ made on Unleavened Bread, whereby His soul was separated from God in She’owl so that we wouldn’t have to endure this same punishment. God’s soul went there for us, but, as a result of the FirstFruits Harvest, His soul was not eternally forsaken there. Egkataleipo says as much as it is based upon kataleipo, meaning “to be left behind and to remain abandoned.” It speaks of being forsaken to be sure, but not of permanent separation, so that the Ma’aseyah’s soul could be temporarily separated in She’owl, fulfilling Matsah, but also be reunited with the Spirit, fulfilling Bikuwrym.
Moreover, by saying that “nor did His flesh experience decomposition,” Shim’own didn’t contradict Passover or other Messianic prophecies by suggesting that Yahowsha’s mortal body didn’t die or wasn’t buried. The body which had served as the Passover Lamb had been consumed in a burst of energy.
“This ΙΝ (placeholder for Yahowsha’) whom ΘΣ (placeholder for Yahowah) raised up (anistamai – caused to be restored to life and stand upright so as to enable us to stand), which all (pas) of us exist as (eimi) witnesses (martyros – spectators and observers who can testify based upon their experience), therefore (oun) is the right hand (dexia – the authority and power) of ΘΥ (Yahowah), lifted up and exalted (hypsoo – dignified and honored). He also (te – by way of close relationship and making a connection) promised (epangelia – provided an assurance and agreement by way of an announcement) the Set-Apart (hagion – purifying) ΠΝΣ (placeholder for Spirit based upon an understanding of ruwach, from pneuma) who is received and acquired (lambano – obtained, possessed, and experienced, adorning others) from (para) the ΠΡΣ (placeholder for Father based upon the Hebrew ‘ab using the Greek pater), which (hos) you all (sou) have also (kai) seen (blepo) and heard (akouo).” (Acts 2:32-33)
The political and religious scoffers in Shim’own’s Shabuwa’ audience had indeed witnessed the fulfillment of Bikuwrym, exactly seven-sevens, or forty-nine days ago. And now, they not only knew where Yahowsha’ had gone, and that He had indeed fulfilled the prophecies made about Him, but that the Set-Apart Spirit had been promised as well. The source of the uncommon power and unfamiliar languages they were witnessing was “received and acquired from the Father,” something which was “obtained and experienced” as part of a promise He had made. And this Set-Apart Spirit actually came to “possess” those She “adorned.” With this argument, Kephas had made the transition from Yahowsha’ to the Spirit, from Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits, to what was happening on Sevens. These were the steps God had made and wanted us to follow.
Speaking of “Set-Apart,” hagion is an adjective used to convey that the Spirit is set-apart from God and that She exists to set us apart from man’s defiled world and unto God’s realm. As a verb, hagiazo, means “to render and acknowledge that something or someone is separated unto God, purified and cleansed, upright and moral.” As such, it is the perfect adjective to describe the Spirit and define Her mission.
Unfortunately, however, hagion is either translated “Holy” when defining the Spirit, as “saints,” when used of men, or “sacred” when associated with an object throughout the eyewitness accounts despite the fact that its primary meaning is “set apart,” and its secondary meaning is “to purify and cleanse.” “Holy” then is defined in most dictionaries as something quite different: “exalted and worthy of complete devotion, one perfect in goodness and righteousness.” This suggests that there is another, besides Yahowah who is to be exalted and who is worthy of our complete devotion. But since the Set-Apart Spirit is simply a manifestation of Yahowah, set-apart from Him to serve us, exalting the Spirit is akin to elevating the heart above the head as if the heart were viable distinct from the body.
Dictionaries go on to say that “holy” means: “divine,” which while true of the Spirit, (albeit not of “saints”) isn’t part of the definition of the word God chose, or even its Hebrew counterpart, qodesh. And they all equate “holy” with those things which are “religious,” conveying the inverse of Yahowah’s intent.
The notion of being “set-apart” is central to the Covenant, and essential to our understanding of the nature and purpose of the Spirit as well as Ma’aseyah. At best, “holy” conceals and corrupts this message, and it replaces God’s terminology with man’s. Worse, it applies attributes to saints, objects, and the Spirit which are completely inaccurate.
But the story gets darker, because holy has a satanic past. It was derived from the Old English word halig, meaning “whole,” which is the opposite of what God is communicating. According to the Oxford English Dictionary, “holy” was “originally used to venerate heathen deities in Old Norse.” In the Dictionary of Mythology, Folklore and Symbols, “holy in practically all languages was derived from the divinely honored sun.” Forlong’s Encyclopedia of Religions says: “Holi is the Great Hindu spring festival held in honor of Krishna as the spring sun-god and a personified woman called Holi.”
Heilei, which is the German pronunciation of holy, means “sun’s ray” and “halo”—combining the religious and scientific symbols for the sun-god and man. It’s then little wonder religious types are wont to place these pagan symbols over the heads of their “saints.” As confirmation of this, J.C. Cooper in his Illustrated Encyclopedia of Traditional Symbols, writes: “Nimbus (a halo around a saint’s head replete with a sunburst), Halo, and Aureole (a heavenly crown of radiant light or corona worn by saints) were originally indicative of solar power and of the sun’s disk, and hence display an attribute of sun-gods.”
Since so many of our religious words, such as “church,” which is an adaptation of Circe (pronounced similarly to church, representing the sun goddess who was the daughter of Helios), come from Germanic sources, it is instructive to know that heilei and heilig, the German equivalent of holy, were derived from Heil. In Bell’s New Pantheon, “Heil was a Saxon (Prussian and North Germanic) idol.” So it is safe to say that at best, “holy” is wrong in that it misses the point, and at worst, “holy” leads us in the wrong direction.
“For (gar - indeed) ΔΔ (placeholder for Dowd, meaning love, using the Greek transliteration Dauid), did not (ou) ascend (anabaino – rise and go up) to (eis) heaven (ouranos), but (de) himself (autos) said (lego – affirmed) ” (Acts 2:34) Before we open the 110th Psalm and read what Dowd said, it’s important to note that with the exception of Enoch and Elijah, no one had gone directly to heaven without dying first. Dowd wasn’t raised until the FirstFruits Harvest, along with folks like Adam, Noah, Abraham, Yitschaq, Ya’aqob, Yowb, and even Moseh.
Dowd’s next ode to Yahowah begins: “A psalm (mizmowr – a poetic song with melody and words) of (la) Dowd (dowd – love and beloved): Yahowah ( ) prophetically declares (na’um – predicts) concerning (la) My Upright One (‘eden / ‘edon – My foundation and the established and firm pillar of My Tabernacle, the base upon which I stand): You will live, sit, and remain (yasab – dwell, abide, restore, and be renewed) at (la) My right side (yamyn – right hand of power and authority) forever (‘ad – into perpetuity). I will place (syth – set) Your enemies (‘ayab – foes who are openly hostile) as (la) your foot (regel) stool (hadom).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 110:1)
This is one of many examples where vocalizing ‘eden/Upright One as ‘adon/Lord, or kurios/Lord as the Textus Receptus’ Greek rendering of this passage is wont to do, renders the verse absurd. Who, pray tell is Yahowah’s “Lord?” The concept is so laughable, it’s amazing that such nonsense has made its way into modern English translations.
In Acts 2:34, we find a somewhat tortured rendition of this Psalm: “ ‘Said (eipon) ΚΣ (placeholder for Yahowah, using a contraction of kurios): My (ego) ΚΩ (placeholder for Upright One based upon a contraction of kurios representing ‘edon, the Foundation and Upright Pillar of My Tabernacle) sits and resides (kathemai – lives and remains) by means of (ek – out of, because of, and set-apart from) My (ego) right side (dexios – right hand of power and authority) until (hoes) I put (tithemi – place, deposit, cause, and make) your enemies (echthros – foes who are hostile, hatful, and odious) as a footstool (hypopodion) for your feet (podos).” (Acts 2:34-5)
While this was the beginning and end of Shim’own’s third Tanakh citation, its continued context helps identify the nature of the “Upright One.” Speaking prophetically of Him, God said: “Your mighty and powerful (‘oz – protective and sheltering) staff and ruling scepter (mateh – branch (as in the Ma’aseyah)), Yahowah ( ) sends out (salah – dispatches and sends away, reaches and stretches out) from (min) Tsyown (tsyown – the signpost to show the way) to trample, subdue, and chastise (radah – subjugating) the foes (‘ayab – those who are openly hostile) in your midst (qereb).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 110:2)
The question of identity has been solved. There is but one individual who was predicted to be a “branch,” whose “mighty and powerful, protective and sheltering, staff and ruling scepter” would “subdue and chastise” His “foes,” and also “live, sit, and remain, at [Yahowah’s] right hand, forever, renewing and restoring into perpetuity.”
The Apostle and Disciple who bore the Hebrew name Shim’own, meaning “one who listens,” and who became Kephas, meaning “stone” or “rock” in Aramaic, had his new moniker translated to Petros in Greek, which was then transliterated to Peter in English. He said in defense of the Spirit of Shabuwa’: “Therefore (oun – accordingly and consequently, these things being so), let every (pas) family and household (oikos) in Yisra’el (Israel – a transliteration of yisra’el, meaning individuals who strive with God) know (ginosko – learn, recognize, understand, and acknowledge) with certainty (asphalos – beyond any doubt) that (hoti) ΚΝ (placeholder for Yahowah using a contraction of kurion, meaning the Supreme Authority) made (poieomai – performed what was required to cause and designate) Him (autos) the (tov) ΧΡΝ (placeholder for Ma’aseyah, the Anointed Implement of Yah using a contraction of Christon) and ΘΣ (placeholder for God, based upon ‘elohym, meaning Mighty One, using a contraction of theos), this (houtos) ΙHΝ (placeholder for Yahowsha’, meaning Yah Saves) whom (hos) you ΕΣΡΩΣΑΤΕ (placeholder for aorist active tense of the verb stauroo based upon the noun stauros – affixed to an upright stake, crucified, nailing Him to a pillar, driving it down into the ground so as to make the pole upright, based on histemi, meaning to stand upright so as to enable others to stand).” (Acts 2:36)
In Shim’own’s mind, and in the mind of any informed, rational person, there is no doubt; Yahowah was responsible for Yahowsha’ being both the Ma’aseyah, Yah’s Anointed Implement, and God. And someday, just over a score of years from now, the apostle’s wish will come true: “every family and household in Yisra’el will know for certain” as well. On Yowm Kippurym, the Day of Reconciliations, every remaining Yahuwdym will “recognize Him, understand Him, and acknowledge” that it was Yahowah “whom they pierced” on Passover.
Even on this day, the Miqra’ of Shabuwa’ in 33 CE, seven sevens after the most important three days in human history, “Now when (de) they heard this (akouo – paid attention and received this news, comprehending this message), they were pierced through (datanyssomai) the heart (kardia).” (Acts 2:37) This is so compelling, so dramatic, it almost takes your breath away. Imagine this happening today; witnessing an overtly religious and political audience being swayed by the power of Scripture and reason, moving from scoffing skeptics to conviction.
“They said (eipon) to Petros (petros, meaning stone or rock), and to (pros) the rest (loipos – remaining) of the apostles (apostolos – those who are properly informed and equipped as messengers and envoys who are set apart and sent away for a specific purpose, based upon apo, separation, and stello, prepared and equipped), ‘Brethren (adelphos – bothers and fellow countrymen), what (tis) is a man (andros) to do (poieomai)?’” (Acts 2:37)
The reason Shim’own / Kephas / Petros / Peter prevailed, beyond his preparation, the efficacy of the Spirit, and his approach, is that his audience was much better informed than our politicians and religious leaders are today. They knew the Hebrew Scriptures and its prophecies, and they were well versed in the Miqra’ey. They had actually witnessed Yahowsha’ fulfill predictions small and large. Moreover, while their religious and political schemes were all headed in the wrong direction, this audience had not yet become corrupted by a millennium of polluted terminologies and Babylonian rituals. I dare say, similar success in our time would be far less likely.
Along these lines, it’s a travesty that so many revealing Scriptural words have been transliterated. Apostolos is a prime example. As a transliterated title, the term adds nothing to our understanding. But when it is translated, as all words should be, we come to appreciate the fact it was inappropriate to limit “apostle” to a group of eleven men. God expects all of us to study His Word so that we are properly informed. He wants all of us to capitalize on the Spirit of Shabuwa’, so that we are properly equipped. And then, and only then, He wants us all to go out into the world as messengers, ready to do what Shim’own Kephas was doing—combining the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms with reasoned analysis to effectively confront the religious and political establishment.
The pious religious leaders and political types who had openly accused Shabuwa’s newly formed ekklesia/called-out assembly of being intoxicated lowlifes, had come to recognize that they were wrong. And that in any political and religious culture, is always the first step toward understanding and salvation. The seeds of truth will not grow amongst the weeds of a manure pile. While it is considered intolerant and hateful in today’s politically correct climate to assail someone’s religion, until the lies upon which people cling are exposed and condemned, until the audience is willing to acknowledge that they have been misled, until they seek answers, a witness’ message will fall on deaf ears.
Way back some twenty verses ago, Shim’own began his defense of Shabuwa’ by telling his audience that they were wrong (Acts 2:15-16). And now that they had admitted it based upon their body language, and had asked for assistance, Kephas was prepared to help: “And now (de), accordingly (pros), Petros (petros – meaning stone or rock) told (phemi – instructed) them, ‘Change your thinking and attitude (metanoeo – after you have come to recognize that which is false, change your perspective and obtain a proper understanding of what is true before it is too late to avoid the consequences) ” (Acts 2:38)
Metanoeo literally means “perceive afterward.” It is a compound of meta, meaning “with, later, and after, denoting a change of place, perspective, or condition,” and noeo, which means “to perceive using your mind, to ponder, think, consider, and understand.” Noeo is in turn derived from nous, which is “the mind, our faculty of intellectually judging and determining, deciding and discriminating.” There isn’t a hint of anything behavioral in metanoeo, and yet it is almost always translated using the religious term “repent.” And if you look up “repent” in your favorite dictionary, you find: “to turn from sin and dedicate oneself to the amendment of one’s life, to feel remorse and regret.” These are behavioral and emotional concepts, which completely miss the intent of metanoeo entirely.
God recognizes that we must think our way to knowing, to trust and reliance, and thus to salvation. And to think clearly and effectively, we must do so from the proper foundation and perspective—that being the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms.
Religious institutions know that they are doomed the moment their victims begin to think on their own, which is why metanoeo is always mistranslated. They prevail when they make their audiences feel guilty, like they must bring their behavior in line with the institution’s standards, or roast in hell. To promote this myth, theological tomes all associate “repentance” with “religious conversion,” insisting that a person must convert to survive.
It is little wonder so many are lost under the spell of religious jargon. The very source upon which they must rely for direction has been polluted by those who are deluding them.
Once again, in the beginning of this passage, theologians concealed another word’s meaning by transliterating baptizo rather than translating it: “ and also (kai) be immersed and cleansed (baptizo – dipped, washed, and purified) each and every one (hekastos) of you by (epi – before and by means of) the personal and proper name (onoma) of ΧΥ ΙΥ (placeholders for the Ma’aseyah Yahowsha’) in order to (eis) be pardoned, set free, and to be set apart (aphesis – to be liberated and released, having one’s debt cancelled, from apo, set-apart and aphiemi, to be sent to stand upright) from your sin and guilt (hamartia – being mistaken and wandering off the path), and then (kai) receive (lambano – grasp hold of and acquire, select and experience) the gift (dorea – free and unearned benefit) of the Set-Apart (hagios) ΠΝΣ (placeholder for Spirit and ruwach).” (Acts 2:38)
Shim’own’s advice was direct and simple: 1) Change your perspective and thinking. 2) Be immersed and cleansed in the name of the Ma’aseyah Yahowsha’ in order to be pardoned and set apart from your guilt. 3) Choose to receive the gift of the Set-Apart Spirit.
And as clear as that is, it’s hard to do when the instructions are garbled. Virtually every English Bible errs in the translation of this essential verse with their inclusion of: “repent, baptized, Jesus, Christ, forgiveness, and Holy.” Since we have already covered the inappropriateness of “repent,” and have already addressed the debate between “holy” and “set-apart,” let’s consider “baptized” next. Here, the dictionary definition isn’t the problem, because Webster defines it as “to purify or cleanse spiritually.” So the issue is that the transliterated term has become synonymous with a religious act and with a religious denomination. Moreover, the emphasis on water, rather than spiritual cleansing, causes religious practitioners to miss the point and believe that having water dribbled on one’s head or jumping in a stream achieves a desired result. Water is irrelevant. We are spiritually cleansed and purified by the Set-Apart Spirit based upon what Yahowsha’ did for us on Passover and Unleavened Bread. Water is simply symbolic, as is the act of baptism. And while we are on the subject, infant baptism, as is practiced in Catholicism, is purely Babylonian, and is entirely inappropriate.
Moving deeper into the passage, there is no Scriptural justification for “Jesus,” “Christ,” or “Jesus Christ.” On 77 occasions, the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms tell us that the Savior’s name is Yahowsha’. His name means “Yah Saves.” Since Scripture dictates that the Savior will and has come in His Father’s name, and since the Father has but one name—Yahowah—“Jesus” must be the wrong name. There is absolutely no association between “Jesus” and “Yahowah” of any kind. There is however, an association between “Jesus” and “Gesus”—the “Horned One” of the Druid religion.
Recognizing that all names should be transliterated, it is useful to know that there is no “J” sound or letter in Hebrew, Aramaic, or Greek. And even if there were, Shim’own delivered his defense of the Spirit of Shabuwa’ in Hebrew and Aramaic. Therefore, he could neither have pronounced a name with a “J” sound, nor could the Savior’s name begin with this letter, period.
Iesou, Iesous, and Iesoun, upon which “Jesus” was derived, wasn’t written on any page of any pre-Constantinian (read Catholic), first-, second-, or third-century manuscript of the eyewitness accounts. Therefore, its very foundation does not exist. Jerome, who created the Latin Vulgate on behalf of the Catholic Church, would have had access to these early manuscripts and therefore would have known about the existence of the placeholders—and yet he chose to ignore them. As a result, a dozen centuries later, a hundred years after the initial appearance of the “J” in English, and in the third edition of the King James Version, men decided to give the Savior a new name: “Jesus.”
To add insult to injury, Yahowsha’s title is “Ma’aseyah,” not “Christ.” The Hebrew term means “anointed implement of Yah.” Scripturally, it is only used as a title in two places, both times in Daniel, prophecies Yahowsha’ fulfilled. The audience most every time it was used in the Greek was comprised of Yahuwdym, those who were awaiting, would have used, and would have recognized the most important title in their country: “Ma’aseyah.”
“Christ,” is a transliteration of Christos, Christou, Christo, and Christon. It only means “anointed” in relation to “the application of drugs.” Otherwise, it means “whitewashed.” Like the name Yahowsha’, the title Christos wasn’t written on any page of any pre-Catholic, first- through third-century manuscript. Therefore, its foundation also does not exist.
Titles, like names, can be transliterated, meaning that it is appropriate to write and say: “Ma’aseyah.” But unlike proper names, titles can also be translated, meaning that it is appropriate to write and say: “Anointed Implement of Yah.” Therefore, those who wish to be accurate can call Yahowsha’ either “the Ma’aseyah,” or the “Anointed Implement of Yah,” but not “Christ.”
“Jesus Christ,” as if “Christ” were His last name, is wrong on all accounts. “Christ” isn’t a name, it’s a title like “President, King, General, or Lord.” And just as it is absurd to say “Washington President,” instead of “President Washington,” “George King,” rather than “King George,” or “Patton General,” rather than “General Patton,” it’s inaccurate to say “Yahowsha’ Ma’aseyah,” rather than “Ma’aseyah Yahowsha’,” and thus “Jesus Christ” is inverted and convoluted.
If you were speaking Hebrew or Greek, it’s appropriate to have adjectives follow names and nouns, but not in English. By way of confirmation, in this same passage, hagios follows the placeholder for Spirit, just as qodesh follows ruwach in Hebrew. But, when we translate something, we are required to follow the rules of grammar in the translated language. So, ruwach/spirit qodesh/set-apart becomes “Set-Apart Spirit.” Knowing this, why was “Jesus Christ” left backwards?
It should be noted also, that Luke, in his biography of Yahowsha’, never once connects His name and His title, although he uses both individually as in “the Ma’aseyah,” and “Yahowsha’,” but never “the Ma’aseyah Yahowsha’.” The name and title are set side by side only once in Mark, and twice each in Matthew and John. The call of Christendom therefore, is poorly attested, poorly conceived, poorly transliterated, poorly translated, and poorly arranged.
Before we leave this essential passage, let’s review it once again, simplified this time: “Now when they heard this, they were pierced through the heart. They said to Petros, and to the rest of those who were properly informed and equipped as messengers, ‘Brethren, what is a man to do?’” (Acts 2:37) “And now, accordingly, Petros told them, ‘Change your thinking and attitude and also be immersed and cleansed each and every one of you by means of the personal and proper name of the Ma’aseyah Yahowsha’ in order to be pardoned, set free, and to be set apart from your sin and guilt, and then receive the gift of the Set-Apart Spirit.” (Acts 2:38)
Please take note, on the day Catholics allege their “Church” was born, Shim’own, the man they have renamed and now claim was the first Pope, did not say any of the following when his audience asked him what they should do: join my church, become a Catholic, convert to Christianity, make a profession of faith, promote me to pope, kiss my ring, pay me an indulgence to minimize your time in purgatory, have your children baptized and confirmed, attend Mass, go to confession, stay clear of the seven deadly sins, do a bunch of good works, become celibate, observe Lent and celebrate Christmas and Easter, perform the sign of the cross, buy some prayer beads and perform three Hail Maries, worship the Lord, bow down in prayer, tithe, trust me because I am the rock upon which the Church will be built, or don’t worry because I hold the keys to heaven. And that would be that for the claims of Catholicism.
While there is no “Church” in Scripture, the Called-Out Assembly of Seven Sabbaths does come with an open invitation, whereby young and old, neighbors and foreigners alike are summoned to accept the gift of the Set-Apart Spirit. “For indeed (gar – because) the announced promise (epangelia – consent approval (read: Covenant) exists (eimi – was, is, and will be) for you, your children (teknon – your offspring including sons and daughters), everyone (pas) who is a great distance away (makran – far off, remote and distant (read: outside Yisra’el and lost), and for as many (hosos) as ΚΣ (placeholder for Yahowah, the Supreme Authority) our ΘΣ (placeholder for God, based upon ‘elohym) calls to Himself (proskaleomai – calls out to, invites, and summons (read: those who answer the summons to His Called-Out Assemblies).” (Acts 2:39)
There are seven invitations on Yahowah’s calendar each year, seven days upon which we are summoned by our Heavenly Father to celebrate our salvation and adoption into His family. Shabuwa’ is Mother’s Day, the fourth step along the Way, a time which assures eternal life in heaven to all of those who answer God’s call.
The question for all of us is: are we prepared, are we equipped, and are we willing to do what Kephas did? And if not, why not? “And with many more (pleion – an increasing quantity of appropriate and fitting), yet different (heteros – additional) words (logos), He admonished and testified (diamartyromai – bore witness to, and used them to warn, assert, affirm, declare, and emphatically state) to earnestly encourage and summon (parakaleo – call, invite, and urge, instruct, admonish, and exhort) them, ‘Become saved and be set apart from (sozo apo – become rescued from the dangers of, be delivered from the destruction of, become healed from the sickness of, and be preserved, set-apart from the separation of) this crooked and corrupt (skolios – unscrupulous, dishonest, and twisted) generation (genea – age and race).” (Acts 2:40) This verse is as vital and compelling today as it was when it was first spoken over 1900 years ago. Very little has changed.
Well, that isn’t entirely true. It should be noted that the KJV and NIV altered the second half of this passage to read: “Save yourselves from ” And yet, none of the Greek words for the pronouns “you, your, yours, yourself, or yourselves” sy, sou, soi, se, humin, humeis, and humeteros, appear in the text. And that is because we cannot save ourselves—it is a gift of God, the result of the seven Called-Out Assemblies, and Yahowsha’s and the Spirit’s fulfillment of them.
The portion of Shim’own / Kephas’ witness we are privy to was based exclusively upon explaining how Yahowsha’ and the Spirit fulfilled the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms. He used this evidence to “admonish and warn” his audience, in addition to “encouraging and summoning” them. I bring this to your attention, because Christians and Jews have wrongly been led to believe that it is inappropriate to point out the flaws in people’s beliefs.
Kephas exhorted his overtly religious and political audience “to become set apart from a crooked and corrupt, twisted and dishonest generation.” Distancing oneself from man’s oppressive and deceptive schemes, and approaching Yah by way of His seven-step plan, is the central message of Scripture. Mankind’s religions are “dangerous,” they are unscrupulous and corrupt.” And especially telling in this regard is the word Shim’own is translated as having selected to convey “crooked,” skolios, which literally conveys “curved and windy, serpentine and bent, twisted and meandering,” as opposed to straight. It is based upon skello, which describes the bends in our leg, from our hip to our toes, inclusive of knees and ankles. Men have twisted and shaped God’s Word, message, and plan to suit their own agenda—one which leads to spiritual sickness, and to the destruction of the soul. And sadly, Jews are masters at this scheme, which is why genea means “race” in addition to generation.
Luke, in documenting the fulfillment of the Miqra’ of Shabuwa’, quantified the results so that we might obtain a better perspective on what transpired. “Indeed (men), therefore (oun – as a result), approximately (hosei) three thousand (trischilioi) souls (psyche) received and accepted (apodechomai – welcomed and grasped hold of, recognized and acknowledged the truth and validity of) His (autos – His (as in Yahowah’s/Yahowsha’s) Word (legos – Word as in the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms). They were immersed and cleansed (baptizo – dipped, washed, and purified) and were added (prostithemai – were granted and given favorable access to gather together with, join and associate in fellowship with, and set in the right place) during (en – and in) that one (ekeinos) day (hemera).” (Acts 2:41)
Based upon what we have read, and based upon the content of this sentence, it is obvious that the “legos/Word,” singular, these fortunate souls received and accepted, was both Yahowsha’, the Word made flesh, and Yahowah’s Word in the Torah, Prophets, and Psalms. Yahowsha’ had fulfilled the Miqra’ey, becoming the living embodiment of the Word.
The number three thousand is significant in that Yahowah’s plan unfolds over three two-thousand year (forty Yowbel) increments of time. And while that number represents a significant quantity of people, three-thousand souls was a tiny fraction of the world’s population at the time. Far more people reject Yah’s Word than receive it. Such has always been, and will always be, the case. Truth has never been popular, and the way is narrow which leads to life.
To be added to our Heavenly Father’s family, we must first be freed of the consequence of our sin, which is death. This occurred on Passover. We must be rescued from the penalty of our revolt against God, which is separation from Him. This was made possible by the Called-Out Assembly of Unleavened Bread. Those who choose to avail themselves of these remedies are adopted and accepted by Yah on FirstFruits. And as a result of these three days, we have the opportunity to grow as God’s children, empowered and enlightened by of our Spiritual Mother, the Set-Apart Spirit, on Seven Sevens.
Now that four of the seven Invitations to Meet with God have been fulfilled, we have learned enough to look back and celebrate the gift of life, redemption, adoption, and enrichment, reveling in what God has done for us. And we know enough now to look forward with eager and vigilant anticipation to the next three being fulfilled on time and on schedule. It is a marvelous plan with a wonderful result.