Rabbi’s Reflections – Thursday, December 31, 2020


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nCwD4Vqe8ZM go to the 1 hour mark for a talk by Dan Juster.  On December 11th Dan spoke to our sister congregation in Kansas City, Kingdom Living.  Their worship is first.  Dan’s comments begin at about the one hour mark.  He is speaking about the origins of the Messianic movement, which purposes are the same purposes for Shomair Yisrael.  His comments are excellent in a foundational way.

Daily Bread, reading plan by Lars Enarson (https://www.thewatchman.org/)

Thu 31-Dec-2020 16th of Tevet, 5781

Ge 49:19-26 2 Sa 20 Ps 92-93 Lk 12:35-59 (Gal 2)

Week 1

Memory Verse: Hebrews 11:7 By faith Noah, when warned about events not yet seen, in holy fear prepared an ark for the safety of his household. Through faith he condemned the world and became an heir of the righteousness that comes by faith.

1    12/28     Monday:          Genesis 1-2

  12/29     Tuesday:         Genesis 3-4

  12/30     Wednesday:    Genesis 6-7   

* 4  12/31     Thursday:        Genesis 8-9

  1/1         Friday:             Job 1-2

What Time Is It? Part 2 by Dr. Raymond Finney

I continue a two-part RR series on what may be the most important question you will ever consider– “What time is it?”

INTRODUCTION– THE OLIVET DISCOURSE: In Part 1, I discussed a few reasons you should study Bible prophecy. Today, I continue discussion of a few of the many messages Adonai has given to us through prophecies recorded in the Bible. These teachings are but a few of the ones I could choose.

THE DISCIPLES ASKED: I begin with Yeshua’s teachings, as recorded in the Olivet Discourse. [Olivet Discourse = a conversation on the Mount of Olives] The Olivet Discourse is found in Matthew, chapter 24; Mark, chapter 13; and Luke, Chapter 21.

Yeshua and His disciples likely had been worshiping in the Temple (the Second Jewish Temple). As they walked from the Temple, they likely paused on the nearby Mount of Olives to look back at the beautiful temple, as it dazzled in the sunlight. Yeshua prophesied that the Temple would be destroyed, with not one stone left standing upon another (Matthew 24:2, Mark 13:2, and Luke 21:6). 

SIDELIGHT (historical notes, with prophecies fulfilled): Approximately forty years later (that is, a generation later), Yeshua’s words were proven true. The Roman army besieged Jerusalem and (accidentally?) set the Temple on fire. The Jewish nation did not have banks, as we do today. The wealth of the Temple and Jewish citizens was stored in the Temple for safekeeping. The raging fire melted the gold and silver, and molten precious metal flowed between the floor paving stones. After the fire cooled, Roman soldiers pried the stones apart from the charred rubble. (Remember Yeshua said that no stone would be left standing upon another when the Temple was destroyed.) The recovered Jews’ wealth was stolen. Able-bodied Jews who survived the Roman siege were captured and marched as slaves to Rome. Jerusalem and the Temple were destroyed. Understand that the Roman Empire was in turmoil at this time (AD 70), due to high taxes, high unemployment, and other social unrest– conditions similar to those in modern America. The Roman emperor used the stolen Jewish wealth and Jews’ slave labor to build the Colosseum in Rome. Bloody spectacles (gladiator fights, man-wild animal fights, prisoner executions, and so forth) were held daily in the Colosseum. These ”sporting” events caused Roman citizens to forget their discontent. There is a victory arch in Rome– the Arch of Titus– in which is carved a bas-relief sculpture commemorating this victory, showing enslaved Jewish men marched into Rome by Roman soldiers and captured spoils of war, including the Temple menorah. See: illustrations arch of titus at DuckDuckGo . END sidelight.

The disciples, apparently shocked by Yeshua’s prophecy of the destruction of the heart and soul of Judaism (the Temple), asked Him three questions (Matthew 24:3, Mark 13:4, and Luke 21:7):

●-Question 1: When will the end come?

●-Question 2: What will be the sign of Your [Yeshua’s] return?

●-Question 3: What will be the sign of the end of the age? In the preceding RR, I discussed an erroneous translation in the King James Version (KJV) of the Bible. The disciples did not ask, as King James Version translators would have us believe, what is the end of the world (“world” = Greek kosmos). They asked what will be the end of the age, the Age of Grace (“age” = Greek aionos).

Read Yeshua’s answers to the disciples’ questions, as recorded in the Olivet Discourse. I wish we had the time in these RRs to discuss Yeshua’s answers for many weeks to come. Yeshua did give us this much information, and His answers provide a template for the last days. Read the Discourse for yourself.

DECEPTION IN THE LAST DAYS: Yeshua’s first sign of the end is deception. A few warnings about attempts to deceive Believers in the last-days include: Yeshua warned of “many” who would deceive His followers, even falsely claiming to be HaMashiach (Matthew 24:4-5). The Apostle Paul warned of false teachers in the last days (2 Timothy 4:3-4). During the Tribulation, one member of the Unholy Trinity will be the Beast of the Earth, whom we usually call the False Prophet (Revelation 13:11-18). You see (and should easily recognize) false teachers and sham ministries on “Christian” television channels. We have such bastardized religions as Chrislam, a blending of  Christianity and Islam into one faith, worshiping Allah and Yehovah as the same god and reading from the Bible and the Koran as sacred texts of equal authority. 

The antichrist (anti-messiah) SPIRIT flourishes in the world today, as Yeshua warned. The availability of radio, television, the Internet, and cheap printing have spawned numerous strange, contradictory teachings. If two teachings state opposite viewpoints, at least one (perhaps, both?) must be in error. Many teachings are not based on Holy Scriptures, but are based on confused interpretations (and greed). False teachers spread “fables” for their own purposes and deny the simple message of the true Messiah. Only accept those that are based on Holy Scriptures. Yeshua was far more critical of religious leaders (“scribes, Pharisees, hypocrites”) than He was of “ordinary” sinners (prostitutes, thieves, murderers). The reason is simple: “ordinary sinners” may know they are sinners and are willing to consider change; “super religious” people may know they are right and will never change.

In the last days, there will arise THE Antichrist (Revelation, chapter 13 and other sources). The Antichrist and his evil partners (Satan, False Prophet) will form the Unholy Trinity to spread evil among mankind. They will oppose everything the Holy Trinity (God in Three Persons– Father, Son, Holy Spirit) tries to establish for the good of mankind.

“AND YOU WILL HEAR:” Yeshua began the Olivet Discourse by telling of certain things you will hear (Matthew 24:6, Mark 13:7, Luke 21:9). In Yeshua’s time, a person could only know what he/ she actually witnessed or learned from a passing caravan. Now, you have instant access to the world through the Internet, satellite television and radio, and other news sources. This sudden explosion of information coincides with a prophecy of the last days given to Daniel (Daniel 12:4b): [An angel told Daniel about the time of the end] “…  Many will run back and forth and knowledge will increase.” You do not need to be told of the present explosion of knowledge and international/ national travel.

“WARS AND RUMORS OF WARS:” Yeshua told us that the end of time will be marked by wars and threats of wars (Matthew 24:6-7a, Mark 13:7-8, and Luke 21:9-10). The world has been at war or has prepared for the next war every day since the end of World War II (1945). Yeshua used words, which translated from the Greek text, accurately describe today’s conflicts. “Nations,” from the Greek ethnos, means any group of people. “Kingdom,” from the Greek basileia, comes closer to our idea of a sovereign nation. Yeshua told us groups of people will rise up against each other, whether as a terrorist group (Hamas), as political demonstrations (never-ending protests in America), or as unrest in other nations (too many examples to list, here). Yeshua also warned that a nation divided against itself cannot stand.

You likely desire peace, but look at what Yeshua instructed you in this passage:

● You are not to be troubled (frightened) by wars and rumors of wars. You have been forewarned by Jesus of these things. If you have eternal security in Yeshua, there is nothing man can really do to you. Remember that Yeshua, who lives in you, is always stronger than Satan, who lives in the world (1 John 4:4b).

● Wars and rumors of wars must come to pass. Regardless of the efforts of diplomats, God has foreseen that man, with evil in his heart, will follow Satan and rebel against God. Various national governments, the United Nations, and other “peacekeepers” will fail in their diplomatic efforts. Only when Yeshua comes and finally defeats Satan will we have peace. The world is a nuclear weapon powder keg, and some of the world’s craziest and most evil leaders have their fingers on the launch buttons.

FUTURE WARS: I have written RRs about future wars, and I will not repeat myself. Yeshua told us to expect wars to rage throughout the world in the last days. A few of these wars we can expect are:

● The Inner Circle War (the Psalm 83 War);

● The Outer Circle War (the Battle Gog and Magog);

● The Oracle Against Damascus;

● The rise and carnage of the “Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse” (the first four Seal Judgments– unveiling of the Antichrist, worldwide war, famine, pandemics); and

● Tribulation wars, culminating in preparation for the Battle of Armageddon (when Yeshua returns as King of kings and Lord of lords, along with the Army of Heaven).

AND SO FORTH: I could continue at length discussing the magnificent Olivet Discourse, but I am straying too far off topic. I will conclude with an important clue (the Parable of the Fig Tree) given by Yeshua. Yeshua emphasized that no one, save Father God, knows the timing of the end.

SIDELIGHT– QUESTIONS: If Yeshua was an equal member of the Holy Trinity, why did He not know answers to the disciples’ questions? Why did He pray to the Father? Why did He defer to the Father? I suppose each of us has a thought, but I believe while on Earth He was acting as Son of Man, not so much as Son of God. I believe He suspended certain Divine attributes (as Creator) to live among us (the created). He certainly gave up to experience feeling painful attributes suffered by mankind (sadness, perception of pain, etc.). He may have also surrendered the perfect knowledge– past, present, and future– available to God. END sidelight.

Rabbi’s note:  We’ll pick this up tomorrow, on the first day of the new year.  Happy New Year everyone.  End RN.