Such A Heart

Whether on social media or in person, discussing one’s religious beliefs is often a passionate, heart felt, and worthy topic.

Naturally, if folks are unwilling to set aside what they were told a particular verse of Scripture means as well as unwilling to surrender their own Western mindset, then no amount of discussion, articles and videos I or anyone else post on social media will help one come into a more accurate understanding. Even so, in order to come into any spiritual truth, it truly is a work of the heart crafted by the Holy Spirit

Allowing Scripture to define terminology used in Scripture, reading it within context, understanding the author and audience while not reading into text what we want it to say versus what it is actually saying is certainly an issue plaguing us today.

For me, I have found it fascinating to see believers believe they don’t need to believe in the word of the God they believe in. The irony! Much of the confusion comes in due to the Apostle Paul, a lawful, Jewish Pharisee’s peculiar writings, which he and other apostles forewarn are difficult to understand (Romans 7:1; 2 Peter 3:14-18).

Throughout many of Paul’s writings he compares the law of sin and death, which is the consequence of breaking God’s laws versus having the Spirit of Holiness, whose purpose is to remind us and cause us to want to obey the law of God (Ezekiel 36:27), that which is holy (Romans 7:12) – ***not as a means to salvation***, which Paul rebuked numerous times, particularly in Galatians and the book of Acts (chp 15) due to a denomination or sect called the Circumcision Party telling people they must believe and obey God’s laws IN ORDER TO BE SAVED. Rather, we obey God’s laws BECAUSE we are saved..Because we are grateful and genuinely grieved with a repentant heart for grieving God and His Holy Spirit by rebelling against God’s heart for us defined in His laws of love, we return unto our Father and His ways. A foreign concept I’ve tried to convey over and over again in various posts, articles, video teachings.


**This is important: The desire to obey comes from a pure and secure place full of love for God and His obedient Son, who was so obedient to His Father’s Torah, He died for us, versus a heart motivated by fear or guilt/condemnation trying to secure their salvation .**

In fact, the laws written down later coined as the Mosaic Covenant were given, taught, and encouraged BECAUSE of God’s grace..Because He redeemed them from Egypt…Because of the relationship between God and His people, God provided instructions to avoid going back into bondage AGAIN, back into a culture of sin. Notice the similarities of being set free, having to cross over through a body of water, being cleansed of their former identity as slaves to sin, slaves to Egypt. They were set apart from Egypt and those wanting to bring them back into captivity (not by coincidence the same theme manifests with the tribes of Israel hundreds of years later due to the Assyrian and Babylonian captivities). While in their wilderness journey, which took 40 years due to the Israelites’ ongoing ignorance and rebellion, many never reached the Promised Land. God even provided numerous tangible tools to help as reminders so they would keep His commands by having them create the tzit tzit ( tassels from their garments – see Numbers 15:37-41), celebrate the Passover feast, and adhere to the sacrificial system, etc.

Thousands of years later, God is doing the same thing- giving us His Spirit to help us remember Him and His commands, His love for us, His grace for us, His desire to bless us and dwell with us, as well as tangible reminders like Passover, which some call communion (see Luke 22), as we sojourn our very own wilderness journeys before reaching the Promised Land. Such gifts are to remind us NOT TO GO BACK TO PROVERBIAL EGYPT, a culture, a lifestyle of sin/lawlessness.

May we allow the Holy Spirit to cultivate hearts willing and ready to let go of our idols, our Egypts, and our man-made traditions, while we sojourn this life.


The Spirit cries out,

“Oh, that they had such a heart in them that they would fear Me (respect Me) and always keep all My commandments, that it might be well with with them and with their children forever!” Deuteronomy 5:29

“‘These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.'” Matthew 5:18


Abba Father has always been after our rebellious, stubborn hearts. ❤ Blessings & Shalom.

Carrie R. Turner, 6/19/19

Dear God, Can You Hear Me Now?

Many strive to hear the voice of God for themselves, but haven’t considered the fact that God may not be hearing their voice either.  In order to effectively communicate and produce positive results both parties need to be able to hear one another. In this article, we’ll investigate the possibility that God may not be hearing you and why.

dearGod

Believers are familiar with the famous verse found in James 5:16, which reads:

Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

Notice the Apostle James connects being aware of one’s trespasses and confessing them to others for the prayers of one who is considered ‘righteous’ evidently gets their prayers answered. This verse also speaks to the importance of being sensitive to the Holy Spirit or Spirit of Holiness as He strives to make us holy by revealing to us our offense (trespass/sin). After being made aware of our offense to God, by confessing our trespass/sin/guilt to others, it also helps keep us accountable.

But before we can really dig into what spiritual truth the Apostle James is revealing to us, we must remember, in order to appropriately interpret any Scripture, we need to understand the background of the author and the culture of the author’s intended audience while letting Scripture define Scripture.

http___scrolls4all.org_scrolls_wp-content_uploads_sites_6_2014_09_lithuania.clearJPGSo where did James or any of the Apostles learn these important truths they conveyed to others? What many refer to as the “Old Testament”, was referred to by Jesus, or Yeshua in His actual Hebrew name, and His Apostles as the “Law ” or the “Law and Prophets”(Matthew 5:17-19; Matthew 7:12), which were the only Scriptures they had access to at that time (Romans 15:4; 2 Timothy 3:14-18; 1 John 2:7). After all, the “New Testament” was still in the process of unfolding and being penned through letters much less translated and packaged together for all the world to read like we have it today. So we can see from those verses (Romans 15:4; 2 Timothy 3:14-18; 1 John 2:7), the law and prophets, the Scriptures they had from the beginning, are useful for instruction, reproof, and revealing what is right – also spoken of in the word as “righteousness”.

Now that we know Jesus / Yeshua and His Apostles’ teachings are founded on the law and prophets, or what is labeled today as the “Old Testament”, let’s look at similar verses found throughout the law and prophets, which correspond with James’ statement in James 5:16.

  • “Then they will cry out to the LORD, but He will not hear them; He will even hide His face from them at that time, because they have been evil in their deeds.” Micah 3:4 (NKJV)

Wow, so we see in Micah 3:4, the prophet Micah explains God won’t hear people who cry out to Him in their time of need because of their evil deeds. That sounds like what James was getting out when he encouraged the reader to confess their evil deeds, their guilt, their trespasses to others. Meanwhile, the “righteous” will get their prayers answered.

Check out how the Apostle Paul defines the “righteous”, or those right with God, or put another way, those who do what is right according to God:

  • “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and LAWLESSNESS, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” 2 Corinthians 6:14 (NKJV)

Note the antithesis to being right with God (righteousness) is lawlessness (not obeying God’s laws) or being in the light verses continuing to live in darkness blinded by sin. For 1 John Chapter 3 reveals to us to sin is the same as lawlessness or being without God’s laws, or even more straightforward, those who don’t “practice righteousness” or God’s laws is one and the same as being without God, but rather being of the devil!

  • “Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.” I John 3:4 (NKJV)
  • “Little children, let no one deceive you. He who practices righteousness is righteous, just as He is righteous. He who sins is of the devil..” I John 3:7-8 (NKJV)
  • “In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother.” I John 3:10 (NKJV)

Now that we know to sin or being unrighteous is being without God’s laws or not obeying God’s commands or being in the dark or of the devil, verses a person who practices God’s laws is considered righteous, being in the light, and of God, because they are demonstrating their belief in God and His Son, let’s take a look at some other verses in both the Old and New Testaments that correspond with James message in James 5:16.

  • One who turns away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer is an abomination.” Proverbs 28:9 (NKJV)
  • “But your iniquities (trespasses against God’s laws) have separated you from your God; and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He will not hear.” Isaiah 59:2 (NKJV)
  • “Husbands, likewise, dwell with them with understanding, giving honor to the wife, as to the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life, that your prayers may not be hindered.” 1 Peter 3:7 (NKJV)
  • Let him turn away from evil and do good; let him seek peace and pursue it. For the eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and His ears are open to their prayers; but the face of the LORD is against those who do evil.” 1 Peter 3:11-12 (NKJV)
  • Now we know that God does not hear sinners; but if anyone is a worshiper of God and does His will (His law/His Torah), He hears him.” John 9:31 (NKJV)

http___www.gospelherald.com_data_images_full_5965_the-power-of-prayerMany verses throughout both the “Old Testament” and what was said and scribed by Jesus and His Apostles later collected as the “New Testament” reveal God doesn’t hear the prayers of those who intentionally sin or intentionally break God’s laws. (To learn more about the difference between intentional and unintentional sins, read “Will We Again Perform Sacrifices? If So, Why?”)

Notice, this concept of God not hearing our prayers due to our sins is even after Jesus bled to death on a cross for our lawlessness…even after the cross and after His gift of grace. (For further reading, check out “What Exactly Did You Repent From?”)

Conversely, Scripture reveals God rewards those who hear God’s laws and obeys them. Here are a few examples:

  • “And whatever we ask we receive from Him, because we keep His commandments and do those things that are pleasing in His sight.” I John 3:22 (NKJV)
  • “Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My  name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it. If you love Me, keep my commandments.” John 14:12-15 (NKJV)
  • “If you abide in Me, and My words abide in you, you will ask what you desire, and it shall be done for you.” John 15:7 (NKJV)
  • “Now this is the confidence that we have in Him, that if we ask anything according to His will, He hears us.” 1 John 5:14 (NKJV) {read Romans 2:18; 12:1-2, to discover God’s will …His Torah)
  • Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the ungodly…But his delight is in the law of the LORD and in His law he meditates day and night…and whatever he does shall prosper…For the LORD knows the way of the righteous, but the way of the ungodly shall perish.” Psalm 1:1-6 (NKJV)

In other words, dear believers in Jesus, the spiritual truth we can glean from James 5:16 as well as these other Scriptures listed above is this:

If you say you believe in Jesus / Yeshua and His Father, but refuse to hear and submit to the way and the will (see Romans 2:17-18) of Abba (Father God) found in His commandments, His law, His Torah, which is His Voice (Deuteronomy 30 ; John 10), then you should expect He will not hear your voice either. Rather, be obedient in whatever the Spirit of Holiness is teaching you through His word today and in doing so, may your prayers be heard.

Shalom and Amen,

Carrie R. Turner

4.30.19

What Exactly Did You Repent From?

https___darrellcreswell.files.wordpress.com_2010_10_repent4Many are familiar with the term “repent” particularly us Christians. We’ve heard the term “repent” preached by men behind pulpits or declared from various signs. Many even know repentance means to turn away or to change one’s mind. But what exactly did you repent from, dear Christian?

Those of the Christian faith would proclaim they have repented of their sins. In fact, one classic verse found in the Book of Acts sums up the gospel in one straightforward verse:

“Then Peter said unto them, ‘Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.'”  Acts 2:38 (NKJV)

Likewise, the well-known evangelistic tool, ‘Roman’s Road’, famously outlines verses explaining the need to repent from one’s sins. Several verses found in the Book of Romans essentially state that we all are ‘sinners’ who fall short or miss God’s glorious mark (Romans 3:23). But what is God’s mark and what is this so-called sin we are repenting from in order to experience God’s amazing grace?

What is God’s Mark?

TORAH, which are the first five books of the Bible, in Hebrew means ‘to hit the mark’ or put another way, the ‘instructions’ for life. So to miss the mark is to not honor our Heavenly Father’s instructions found in His Torah. In a different article to come, we can compare God’s mark verse the ‘mark of the Beast’ referred to in the Book of Revelation.

What Is Sin?

According to the inspired word of God, sin is defined as breaking God’s commands…breaking His law…not practicing His ways or being without His laws.

  • “Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness.” I John 3:4 (NKJV)
  • “All unrighteousness is sin, and there is sin not leading to death (unintentional sin).” I John 3:17 (NKJV)
  • “In this the children of God and the children of the devil are manifest: Whoever does not practice righteousness is not of God, nor is he who does not love his brother.” I John 3:10 (NKJV)
  • “Then it will be righteousness for us, if we are careful to observe all these commandments before the LORD our God, as He has commanded us.” Deuteronomy 6:25 (NKJV)
  • “And what other nation is so great as to have such righteous decrees and laws as this body of laws I am setting before you today?” Deuteronomy 4:8 (NIV)

–> Sin = Without God’s Laws // Sin = Lawlessness // Sin = Not Practicing God’s Laws// Sin = Unrighteousness // Righteousness = God’s Laws // Righteousness = Keeping God’s Laws <–

According to Romans 3:20, God’s laws provide us with the knowledge of what is sin. In other words, the laws or commandments of God teach us what is evil. Not that His law is evil, as many have been erroneously led to believe, but breaking His law, His commands is what is evil and likened to rebellion, stubbornness, idolatry and even witchcraft (see 1 Samuel 15:23)! If that isn’t enough to alarm you perhaps the fact that the Anti-Christ or Anti-Messiah is labeled as ‘the lawless one’ will get your attention as to the importance of God’s laws. Also, notice in Matthew 7, believers cried out to the Lord for they prophesied, cast out demons, and did other miracles in His name, and yet the failed to obey God’s laws and were rejected by Jesus. More as to why below…

  • “Therefore by the deeds of the law no flesh will be justified in His sight, for by the law is the knowledge of sin” Romans 3:20 (NKJV).
  • “Rebellion is as sinful as witchcraft, and stubbornness as bad as worshiping idols.So because you have rejected the command of the Lord, He has rejected you as king.” I Samuel 15:23
  • “The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan…that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness (sin/lawlessness).” 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 (NKJV)
  • “Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness.’” -Jesus, Matthew 7:23-24 (NKJV)

http___slideplayer.com_9333856_28_images_24_O.T.+Archery+Terms+Torah+from+Hebrew+word+yareh+which+is+an+archery+term+to+aim+an+arrow+to+hit+a+mark.The following sample of verses tell us God’s laws not only define what God considers evil and those who fail to observe His way/His law as  the lawless or sinners, but the law also teaches us what is good…what is right and is designed for our own benefit.

  • “Therefore, the law is holy, and the commandment holy and just and good.” Romans 7:12
  • “Oh, that they had such a heart in them that they would fear Me and always keep all My commandments, that is might be well with them and with their children forever.” Deuteronomy 5:29 (NKJV)
  • ” ‘And the LORD commanded us to observe all these statutes, to fear the LORD our God, for our good always, that He might preserve us alive, as it is this day. Then it will be righteousness for us, if we are careful to observe all these commandments before the LORD our God, as He has commanded us.’ ” Deuteronomy 6:24-25 (NKJV)

Scripture goes on to tell us God’s laws are not only instructing us as to what is evil verse good, but the laws of God are spiritual whereas mankind is carnal, fleshly, and rebellious to God’s laws. Scripture even defines ‘saints’ as those who not only believe in Jesus, but who keep God’s commandments/laws.

  • “For we know that the law is spiritual, but I am carnal, sold under sin.” Romans 7:14 (NKJV)
  • “and know His will, and approve the things that are excellent, being instructed out of the law..” Romans 2:18 (NKJV)
  • “For I give you good doctrine: Do not forsake my law.” Proverbs 4:2 (NKJV)
  • “Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those, who are in the flesh cannot please God.” Romans 8:7-8 (NKJV)
  • “Here is the patience of the saints; here are those who keep the commandments of God and the faith in Jesus.” Revelation 14:12 (also see Rev.12:17)

So, again, I ask, dear Christian, what exactly did you repent from? If you repented, that is changed your mind and lifestyle by turning from sin, then that would mean you changed your mentality, your heart, soul and consequent lifestyle from breaking God’s law.  HalleluYAH!

The Apostle Paul, the author of the Book of Romans, pens these words:

“Do we, then, nullify the law by this faith? Not at all! Rather, we uphold the law.” Romans 3:31 (NIV)

happypassover (1)Therefore, we can conclude that our faith in Jesus/Yeshua, as the perfect, sinless Passover lamb of God, bled to death on a cross to pay the debt or wages of our lawlessness. As we discovered through various Scriptures, we learn repentance means to stop breaking God’s law…to stop sinning for our circumcised, grateful hearts full of God’s gift of grace will WANT to obey the law, which are God’s commands not suggestions (Deuteronomy 10:12-17; 30:6-10; Romans 2:28-29).

  • “And the LORD your God will circumcise your heart and the heart of your descendants, to love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live…And you will again obey the voice of the LORD and do all His commandments which I command you today.” Deuteronomy 30:6-8 (NKJV)
  • “but he is a Jew who is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the Spirit, not in the letter; whose praise is not from men but from God.” Romans 2:29 (NKJV)
  • “Oh, that they had such a heart in them that they would fear Me and always keep all My commandments, that is might be well with them and with their children forever.” Deuteronomy 5:29 (NKJV)
  • “And now, Israel, what does the LORD your God require of you, but to fear the LORD your God, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, to serve the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul, and to keep the commandments of the LORD and His statutes which I commanded you today for your good? Therefore, circumcise the foreskin of your heart and be stiff-necked no longer.” Deuteronomy 10:12,13,16 (NKJV)

–> Circumcised Heart = To Love God With All Your Heart = Keeping God’s Laws <–

http___3.bp.blogspot.com_-2WIEVeMF7R8_UJhPOfSZoOI_AAAAAAAAGPs_0gMdfZdX96Q_s1600_heart.from+stone+to+flesh.circumcised+heart.gifBut by embracing God’s laws of love found throughout the Torah and repeated in the prophets and demonstrated by Jesus,the lawful one (see Matthew 5:17-19), and later proclaimed by the Apostles, our obedience to Abba Father does not save us or put another way, justify us for we are justified by God’s grace through the gift of His Son’s death and resurrection (Romans 3:24; Ephesians 2:8).

However, our failure to obey, our rebellion, our idolatry, or our witchcraft towards our Heavenly Father’s instructions for life does in fact reveal the condition our diseased hearts. For a heart refusing to cheerfully give of themselves to the mark or way of God by submitting to Abba’s authority found in His Torah (and all of His word) after they have been shown such critical truth, reveals that they have not truly accepted the costly gift of grace or not  comprehended or carried the weight of the authority of God’s grace and justice through the blood stained cross (1 John 3:7,10,24; Matthew 7). Whereas a circumcised, repentant heart in process has not been made aware of such important truths just yet is unintentionally sinning or unknowingly breaking God’s laws (I John 5:16-17; for most of us were not taught such things, but just to say “the sinner’s prayer” and live as before).

Furthermore, upon our heart’s circumcision, or perhaps better described as part of the process of our heart becoming circumcised,  Scripture reveals God will write His Torah, His law on our ever-repentant hearts causing us to WANT to obey Him as His Spirit reveals more and more of His truth.

  • “Behold, the days are coming, says the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah- not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt; because they did not continue in my covenant, and I disregarded them, says the LORD, for this is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the LORD: I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people” Hebrews 8:8-10 (NKJV)

Friends, Jeremiah 31:31-33 says the exact same thing as does Ezekiel 36:27(NKJV):

  • “I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgments and do them.”
  • “that the righteous requirement of the law might be fulfilled in us, who do not walk according to the flesh (sin/lawlesness) but according to the Spirit.” Romans 8:4 (NKJV).
  • “My son, keep my words, and treasure my commands within you. Keep my commands and live, and my law as the apple of your eye. Bind them on your fingers; write them on the tablet of your heart.” Proverbs 7:1-3 (NKJV)
  • “Now he who keeps His commandments abides in Him, and He in him. And by this we know that He abides in us, by the Spirit whom He has given us.” I John 3:24 (NKJV)

–> To Have The Holy Spirit = Spirit of Holiness = Holiness = Righteousness = Torah On Our Hearts = Obeying God’s Laws = Abiding in Him <–

So you see when we have a truly repentant heart and embrace God’s Spirit of Holiness, also commonly known as the Holy Spirit or Spirit of Grace, His Spirit dwelling within us will cause us to keep His holy laws as He makes us more and more aware of His mark , of His truth (John 14:15-18; 1 John 2:24-27). Incidentally, what does God define as ‘truth’?

  • “Your righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and Your law is truth.” Psalm 119:142 (NKJV)
  • All your words are trueall your righteous laws are eternal.” Psalm 119:160 (NIV)
  • “My son, do not forget my law, but let your heart keep my commands; for length of days and long life and peace they will add to you. Let not mercy and truth forsake you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart, and so find favor and high esteem in the sight of God and man. Trust in the LORD with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding…” Proverbs 3:1-5 (NKJV)

–> Truth = God’s Eternal Laws = Righteousness <–

If our heart’s have repented of our lawless, evil deeds, we will indeed turn from breaking God’s heart by rejecting His commands and abusing His grace (Hebrews 10:26-39). Instead, our hearts will be made more and more whole, clean, sanctified as we cooperate with God’s Spirit of Grace (Hebrews 10:29; Zechariah 12:10), His Spirit of Holiness as He longs to blot out our stains, sins, our pain, and suffering with the washing of His Word…His Torah (John 1:1; 17:17; Ephesians 5:26).

In summary, hopefully, we have repented from breaking God’s word, His Torah, for He gave His Living Torah to die for us so we can have the Spirit of Torah, the Spirit of Grace, the Spirit of Holiness scribed in our hearts for all the world to read. If this is the first you are hearing such heart transforming truth, understand it’s a process as He makes all things beautiful in His time. Moreover, Jesus wasn’t interested in making converts; He was, however, interested in making disciples. It’s not too late to repent and more accurately follow Him as He and His Spirit teach you how to hit the mark!

“Bind up the testimony, seal the law among my disciples.” Isaiah 8:16 (NKJV)

“But be doers of the word (Torah), and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. What does it profit, my brethren, if someone says he has faith but does not have works? Can faith save him? Thus also faith by itself, if it does not have works, is dead.” James 1:22; 2:14,17 (NKJV)

Shalom and Amen.

Carrie R Turner,

eve of Passover, 4.18.19

An Important Response

http___www.hebraic-roots.com_wp-content_uploads_2017_01_writings-paul-warningRecently, a Facebook friend posted his opinion on God’s law and another Facebook friend shared it; hence, how I happen to see it in my news feed. Now that I have seen such erroneous thinking/teaching, I am required to speak up (Ezekiel 33:8-9).

I have copied and pasted his post to speak the truth in love as toxic viruses can quickly spread throughout the body of Christ and unfortunately, has been since the 4th Century when the Roman Catholic Church persecuted Messianic Jews and Grafted-In Israelites (former Gentiles) for being worshipers of Spirit AND truth according to God’s whole word.

You will find the Facebook friend’s comments in blue italics and my response in bold red lettering. Until Jesus/Yeshua Himself returns, we will continue to teach and correct one another in love (Hebrews 8:11; 2 Timothy 3:16-17). Then Yeshua teaches us all (Isaiah 2; Micah 4). Amen!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The Facebook Post:

7 Signs that a church may be law minded and not grace minded

They insist you must try your best to keep the Big 10 in order for God to be pleased with you.

A Spirit-led believer or body of believers, who acknowledges the sanctity and holiness of God’s laws/commandments (John 17:17), acknowledges and respects His authority and His omniscience. Those willing to humble themselves by repenting from sin or radically turning away from sin by obeying God’s written word understand that the definition of sin is lawlessness/without God’s laws/rejection and rebellion to God’s authority. “Everyone who practices sin also practices lawlessness; and sin is lawlessness.” I John 3:4

lawlessBreaking God’s law is to sin and the consequence to breaking God’s law is eternal separation from being in covenant with Yahweh. But just as God provided grace over and over again to His people throughout the ages (i.e. parting of the Red Sea, Noah’s Ark, saving of some prophets, etc), He provided the blood of grace and His Ruach HaKodesh / His Holy Spirit or put another way the Spirit of Holiness within our hearts/minds. Yahweh made a way to restore His family. If one indeed believes in the salvation of Yeshua/Jesus,who died for our lawlessness/sins, and if they have received His Spirit of Holiness/Holy Spirit ,and consequently becomes circumcised of the heart (Deut. 10:12-22; 30:6-10; Romans 2:28-29), then the Spirit writes God’s Torah on our hearts and causes us to walk in obedience to God’s ways (Jeremiah 31:31-33; Ezekiel 36:27), which is His will and His written voice – His laws (Deut. 30; John 10). For the Spirit of Holiness brings us into more and more truth (John 14:15-18; 1 John 2:24-27). What is truth? God’s laws…God’s word (Psalm 119:30,42). For YHVH/Yahweh/God does not change nor lie (Malachi 3:6), but culture and man’s doctrines do.

First problem as gentiles ( non Jews ) we were never under the law , so why now? The only covenant that we were ever offered was the new covenant of grace. Ephesians 2:12-13

FALSE. Anyone who aligns themselves with the One True God, Yahweh and His Son, Yeshua, are considered “grafted-in Israelites” (Romans 11), part of the commonwealth of Israel (Ephesians 2:11-13), and of Abraham’s seed (Galatians 3:29). Anyone who sojourned with the natural Israelites were required to submit to the Torah (see verses below). Conversely, those WITHOUT CHRIST, were considered Gentiles//unbelievers//disobedient//sons of disobedience and are NOT apart of Israel and strangers to the covenants of promise (original covenant and renewed covenant). Therefore, they do not inherit the promises of the covenant. See Ephesians 2:11-13; Galatians 3:29. Furthermore, *anyone* who follows Yahweh (and His Son) follow one law: the Torah. The Torah, God’s laws are God’s Kingdom’s constitution. 

  •  “The same law shall apply to the native as to the stranger who sojourns among you.” Exodus 12:49
  •  “There is to be one law and one ordinance for you and for the alien who sojourns with you.” Numbers 15:16
  • “You shall have one law for him who does anything unintentionally, for him who is native among the sons of Israel and for the alien who sojourns among them. ” Numbers 15:29 

In fact, Yahweh frequently tells His chosen people, those in covenant with Him (Deut.7:6-11; 1 Peter 2:9), to not learn the way of the Gentiles (other nations), rather, learn His ways, His will, His truth, His heart: His commandments/His Torah.

  • “not in lustful passion, like the Gentiles who do not know God;” 1 Thessalonians 4:5
  • “And do not pray like the Gentiles…do not be like them..” Matthew 6:7-15
  • “This is what the LORD says: “Do not learn the ways of the nations…” Jeremiah 10:2 (also see Deut. 12:4,29-32; 13:1-8)  
  • “Do not be bound together with unbelievers; for what partnership have righteousness and LAWLESSNESS, or what fellowship has light with darkness?” 2 Corinthians 6:14 {Note the antithesis to being right with God (righteousness) is lawlessness (not obeying God’s laws).}
  • “So this I say, and affirm together with the Lord, that you walk no longer just as the Gentiles also walk, in the futility of their mind, 18 being darkened in their understanding, excluded from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their heart19 and they, having become callous, have given themselves over to sensuality for the practice of every kind of impurity with greediness. 20 But you did not learn Christ in this way, 21 if indeed you have heard Him and have been taught in Him, just as truth is in Jesus, 22 that, in reference to your former manner of life, you lay aside the old self, which is being corrupted in accordance with the lusts of deceit, 23 and that you be renewed in the spirit of your mind, 24 and put on the new self, which in the likeness of God has been created in righteousness and holiness of the truth. ” Ephesians 4:17-24 

Again, if you have accepted God’s grace for your lawless deeds/sin, then you are no longer a disobedient rebellious Gentile, but rather an immigrated citizen of spiritual Israel/ an Israelite GRATEFUL for His grace and therefore, you will not want to take for granted or abuse that grace nor grieve the Spirit of Holiness (Ephesians 4:30) by continuing to defile yourself with the unclean/unholy deeds (sin). Or as James says, don’t just look in the mirror (God’s Torah) and then walk away, but be doers of the word..keep the law!

Second problem . The law is the ministry of death and condemnation. Why would I want to be under that kind of ministry?

2 Corinthians 3:7-9

But if the ministry of death, written and engraved on stones, was glorious, so that the children of Israel could not look steadily at the face of Moses because of the glory of his countenance, which glory was passing away, how will the ministry of the Spirit not be more glorious?

For if the ministry of condemnation had glory, the ministry of righteousness exceeds much more in glory.

Why not be under the ministry of faith righteousness instead of the law? One brings condemnation and death and the other brings peace and greater glory !

When reading 2 Corinthians 3 in it’s entirety, it is repeating what the Prophets all spoke of regarding the new covenant – we will have the Holy Spirit who will cause us to walk in God’s laws for the law in of itself cannot save you – the purpose of the law is to teach us what Abba (Father God) considers holy vs unholy, what is love vs hate, what is good vs evil, what is clean vs unclean. Why does Romans 8:5-9 proclaim that the carnal mind or flesh rejects God’s laws (out of a rebellious hardened heart), but a heart circumcised by the Spirit of Holiness will embrace the spiritual, holy, and good laws of Abba and therefore, need not be in fear of His discipline or wrath for some.

Furthermore, according to Romans 8:15, when we receive His Spirit, our hearts cry out “Abba, Father”. Why? Because we accept His authority as our ultimate Father figure and are in relationship with Him. The parable of prodigal son infers similar sentiments – notice the rebellious-know-it-all son lived an unholy lifestyle even dwelling with swine (an unclean animal forbidden by Yahweh to even touch or handle let alone eat – see Leviticus 11 and Deuteronomy 14 or how Yeshua feels about swine when He returns – see Isaiah 65-66). Upon coming into any father’s house, but especially Abba’s House, we must submit to His household rules // kingdom constitution. Likewise, anytime we enter another nation or kingdom, we must obey that nation’s laws.

It is interesting in 2 Corinthians 3:17, the Spirit is referred to as a Spirit of Liberty for we see these same references to obeying and doing God’s Laws as liberty in James 2:12 and Psalms 119:44-48. Why? Because being Spirit-led, Spirit-empowered children of Yahweh or Bride of Yeshua/Christ betrothed/in covenant with Him, we will want to obey or honor our wedding vows for in doing so, there is true liberty. Torah was meant for our GOOD and not burdensome (Deut 5:29; 6:24-25; 10:12-13; Romans 7:12,14; Matt.5:17-19; 2 Timothy 3:14-17; 1 John 5:3). Rather, disobeying God’s laws is bondage to sin or as us sailors say, stuck in irons (Read my post ‘Sailing in The Spirit’!).

Third problem. The law is an all or nothing deal . It wasn’t try your best and God will understand.

No ! It was Keep it all (613 laws) or be cursed ! Jesus delivered me from the curse of the law .. so why go back to a curse ? Galatians 3:10-13

torahWhile it is true if you break even just one law, you have sinned or missed the mark and therefore, cursed yourself, for the context of all of Scripture is that you would be cursed by various consequences to your rebellion including eternal death or eternal separation from God (see Deut. 30 and pretty much all of Deuteronomy, for example). Afterall, Torah means “to hit the mark” and “instructions for life”.

Grafted-In Israelites do not obey God’s commands/His laws/His written voice/word to EARN their salvation, for Paul explains in Galatians you cannot ever be ‘good-enough’; rather, BECAUSE of His grace, BECAUSE of His shed blood, and out of heart of gratefulness, we WANT to obey God’s instructions for life for He is a good, good Abba, who loves us and does not want to see us suffer unnecessarily by thinking we know best and our ways trumps God’s ways for our lives (Isaiah 55; Genesis 50:20; Romans 8:28).

Also, we know (because we take the time to study and abide in His word) that the Torah is for our own benefit not for our harm and certainly aren’t burdensome (see above references). Rather, the 613 commandments are Laws of Love – each law falls in the category of love God or love others or both (Mark 12:30-31). Most legit believers follow much of the Torah without even trying simply by loving. The Torah teaches us what love is and what love looks like; hence, Yeshua, the Living Torah in the flesh (John 1). This is the fruit Jesus referred to (Matthew 7) for the law is not evil as some have been deceived in believing thanks to the roots of the Roman Catholic Church and ultimately Satan, but the Spirit and truth of the law produce love, joy, peace, patience, etc.

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We believe as the Holy Spirit or Spirit of Holiness guides each of us into more truth of God’s word, we will bear fruit of obedience to God’s ways (word) reflecting our circumcised heart (Deut 30).

 It is a sad day when so-called believers view God’s instructions for reproof and for righteousness as evil and cursed or put another way, fail to believe God is true to His word. Remember, the only Scriptures the Apostles had access to was the Law and Prophets (2 Timothy 3:12-17; 4:2-4; 1 John 2:4-7), which they encouraged one another to continue in.

Moreover, our covenant relationship with Yahweh/Yeshua comes down to a circumcised repentant heart. For if one is truly circumcised of the heart through repentance for their lawless deeds/sins, they will not want to go back to that same sin for that would be intentionally sinning and nullifying God’s saving grace bringing on a worse judgment (see Hebrews 10:26-39). 

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“For if we go on sinning willfully after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins,but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God.” Hebrews 10:26-27 (but please read the rest of the passage as well)

Ponder this: How can you embrace grace while rejecting the law defining what is holy and what is sin? What is right and wrong? You can’t. So to do away with the laws of God, you have nullified your own doctrine. By saying anything before the cross is irrelevant or done away with, then you have made Christ’s testimony, His sacrifice on the cross, and His victory over death, useless – a waste of time, ink and paper, moreover, a waste of perfect flesh and blood. For without God’s holy, spiritual law and the human element of failing to fulfill/uphold/establish/honor it, there is no need for a remedy. No need for a Savior. Bye, bye, grace. It’s all or nothing. 

Fourth problem. The law makes Christ of no affect in my life .. why would I want Christ severed from my life ? Galatians 5:3-5

False. See last paragraph above. When reading Galatians, Romans, and all the epistles, written by a Messianic Jew, within context from a Hebraic mindset verses a Western Greek mentality, Paul distinguishes that there are two primary “laws” he is speaking of the holy, good, and spiritual “law of God” (Romans 7:12,14) and the consequence/curse of breaking God’s laws, which he often refers to as “the law of sin and death” or “the curse” (Romans 7:22-25; Galatians 3). In fact, Paul specifically clarifies, in Romans 3:31 that the law is NOT done away with due to our faith in Yeshua, but rather, we uphold and establish the law. Furthermore, Galatians 3:15 and vs 17 bluntly says you cannot undo a covenant or add to it. If that were the case, then all the covenants would be dismantled – do women still have pain in childbirth (Adamic Covenant), do you have an ark built (Noahide Covenant)? Because if God’s covenants are done away with, by man’s opinion, rather than being built upon for better promises, then the entire world can flood at once.

  • “Do we then nullify the Law through faith? May it never be! On the contrary, we establish the Law. ” Romans 3:31

Yeshua/ Jesus even demonstrated this to us by raising the standard on the adultery commandment saying if you even look at another lustfully you have committed adultery; Yeshua also reprimanded religion for ADDING to God’s laws, something the rabbis over the centuries did through the oral law. Likewise, Scripture and even Jesus/Yeshua rebukes those who take away from God’s word/ God’s laws (see Deut 12:32; Revelation 22:18). Jesus/Yeshua declared not one part of the law will be done away with until there is a new heaven and new earth and anyone who teaches God’s law are irrelevant, done away with, or evil will be considered LEAST in His kingdom (if they even are there in the first place). Have the new heavens and new earth been created yet? Of course not! See Matthew 5:17-19.

In fact, in the millennium reign of Yeshua/Jesus, He TEACHES US the Torah/God’s Laws, see Isaiah 2, Isaiah 51, Micah 4, and notice in Zechariah 14 (after Christ returns), we keep the Feasts of Tabernacles. Ezekiel 36 – 48 corroborates such truth – the laws, the Holy Holidays (feasts of the LORD), and the Sabbath – even the sacrifices are reestablished in the millennium!

So is it possible that God’s word is true when it says over and over again that YHVH doesn’t change nor lie and that His commandments are forever? Not to mention, Amos 3:7 says, God does nothing without telling His servants the prophets first and there is no record of any true prophet of Yahweh/YHVH/God predicting God’s laws will be done away with. However, there is plenty of Scriptures warning of false prophets and false teachers in the latter days deceiving people into thinking God’s laws are done away with while leading others into error and even destruction.

  • 2 Peter 3:15-18 :” Also, regard the patience of our Lord as an opportunity for salvation, just as our dear brother Paul has written to you according to the wisdom given to him. 16 He speaks about these things in all his letters in which there are some matters that are hard to understand. The untaught and unstable twist them to their own destruction, as they also do with the rest of the Scriptures.
  • 17 Therefore, dear friends, since you know this in advance, be on your guard, so that you are not led away by the error of lawless people and fall from your own stability18 But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen.”

Fifth Problem . The law wasn’t t given to help us overcome sin, but it was actually given to help sin overcome us!

The law gives strength to sin not freedom from it . Only grace sets us free from the dominion of sin .. Romans 7:9-11 Romans 6:14

WHAT?! False. The law defines what is good verses evil – breaking God’s law is sin (I John 3:4). Again, totally twisting Scripture and misapplying which law Paul is referring to – context is everything (see previous comments).

The Spirit of Holiness, if one has it and submits to it, will obey what is holy: God’s laws. See above Scriptures provided and below.

Sixth problem .We are suppose to be dead to the law not alive to it! We cannot bear true fruit unless we see ourselves dead to the law and married to Christ.Rom 7:4. Also flirting with Moses is cheating on Jesus !

WOW. Again, false and twisted. This is why Peter warned that people who do not know the law and prophets will twist the word leading people to error. Please study the Books of Isaiah, Jeremiah, Hosea, Ezekiel and actually all the prophets for they **repeatedly** express that cheating on God is not obeying His commandments taught by Moses! In fact, He calls out and even divorces the House of Israel for doing so and disciplines the House of Judah for following in their Big Sister’s mistakes (See Proverbs 1 – 7; Isaiah 50:1; Jeremiah 9:13-16; Jeremiah 11; Book of Hosea; Ezekiel 16,20,22,23). That’s why it is called a new or renewed covenant with the House of Israel for through Jesus/Yeshua paying the penalty of breaking the law by shedding His blood on the cross as the perfect Passover lamb, the woman (House of Israel) can lawfully remarry (and by default, Gentiles/Grafted-In Israelites) can remarry Yahweh/Yeshua and be back in a holy covenant (as the Book of Daniel refers to it as). See Romans 7. Therefore, upon believing Yeshua is the Messiah (Isaiah 53) who died for our lawlessness and therefore, the consequence of said lawlessness, we are considered dead to the law of sin and death aka the curse – freed from the bondage of sin and now given an empowering life or gift called the Holy Spirit who will cause us to obey God’s laws by teaching us them to us and reminding us about them if we are in covenant with Yahweh through Yeshua. Or put another way, if we are betrothed to Yeshua, whichever analogy one prefers, they both convey the same message: relationship.

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See Jeremiah 31:31-33; Ezekiel 36:27; Hebrews 8:8-13.

Furthermore, notice not only is the “renewed/new” covenant NOT with the Gentiles, but only the House of Israel (including us grafted-in Israelites) and House of Judah. Second, notice the job of the Ruach/Spirit (the Holy Spirit) is to write God’s Torah/law on our hearts and minds causing us to obey Him. Otherwise, we walk in a spirit of UNholiness or an UNholy spirit… in bondage.

Seventh problem . The law was given to point us to Christ, but once in Christ then we are are no longer under the law , for we are now in Christ and Christ now lives in us. We are under a new law called the law of the spirit of life in Christ. The law was for the old nature , not the new .

Again, false. The law was given as a tutor..as instructions – all of which points to Christ and our failure to obey, a need for a Savior a need for a solution making a way for us to be in covenant with Yahweh.

Ever since the fall of mankind..ever since Satan twisted God’s word/command making Eve (and Adam, by default) believe in a twisted version of God’s word, much like the false teachers of today do, people have believed God’s commands aren’t to be obeyed and there are no consequences to our rebellion. Thankfully, with the Spirit of Grace, we not only have forgiveness, but true repentant, obedient hearts respectfully want to honor our Heavenly Father..Abba. Not to earn sonship or daughtership, but because we have been graciously adopted in, we want to abide in Him, His House, His Kingdom as His will and word repeatedly speak of. Jesus/Yeshua says to those who think they know Him to depart from Him, you who practice lawlessness (Matthew 7). 1 John 2:4 says if you know Him and don’t keep God’s commands, then you are a liar.

Lastly, consider this:

how-to-know-god_833_460_80_c1Why is the Anti-Christ/Anti-Messiah and THAT spirit referred to as the “lawless one” (2 Thessalonians 2:1-12)? Why does the “lawless one” or beast /harlot system/mentality spoken of in the Books of Daniel, Thessalonians, and Revelation persecute the saints who KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS OF GOD AND HAVE FAITH IN YESHUA (Revelation 12:17 ; 14:12), but don’t mention any other group? Why does the Book of Revelation refer to “saints” as those “who keep God’s commands and have the testimony of Jesus”? Why doesn’t it read the “lawless one” makes war with those who believe in Jesus and only want His grace? Rather, the beast/proverbial Babylon/the proverbial adulterous world (remember cheating on Yahweh/Yeshua above) just want to persecute those saints/those spiritual virgins/those House of Israel/grafted-in Israelites/the spotless Bride of Yeshua who recognize they’ve been saved by grace from lawlessness to a lawful lifestyle of holiness! Because true saints, full of the Spirit of Holiness, have both the Torah and Jesus in their hearts. Because when we are worshipers of Spirit (John 3:3-6) and truth (Psalm 119:30,42), the atmosphere changes..the world is turned upside down for the glory of the One True God, Yahweh, our Abba! The 12 Apostles changed the world because they understood the importance of God’s law and grace..His truth and Spirit transforms people! THAT is the good news and the ultimate true love story. That is what grace is about. 

To learn more, explore the above passages more along with Jim Staley Teachings, Psalm 119 Ministries, and Flip Flop Fellowship’s YouTube channels.

And do yourself a favor, rip out the man-made page that says, “New Testament” for it all is relevant and critical to your soul. 

Shalom.

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Sailing in The Spirit

While sailing, the sailor must be in alignment with the wind or they are stuck in bondage called “in-irons”. Woven along each sail are strings called the “telltales” because they tell if you and thereby your vessel are in alignment with the wind. The telltales will be flowing horizontally when your vessel is in alignment with the wind.

Similarly, when we as followers of Yeshua/Jesus are NOT in alignment with His Holy Spirit/the Spirit of Holiness also known as wind, we too will be stuck “in-irons” or bondage as slaves to sin..slaves to lawlessness. For we know the “telltale” signs or results of being in alignment with Yahweh’s Wind, we will cheerfully and willingly “horizontally” submit unto His Holy Wind… The telltales of our “course” is our obedience unto Him and His directions found in His Holy perfect Word.

Obedience to Abba’s ways..His will..His laws aren’t bondage, but liberty. Rather, rebellion is stuck in-irons to sin.

“Stand fast therefore in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entan gled again with a yoke of bondage.” Galatians 5:1 (Free from the consequence of sin! Avoid the law of sin and death//lawlessness see 1 John 3:4, but embrace the law of God//law of the Spirit of life Romans 7:22-8:10)

“So shall I keep Your law continually, forever and ever. And I will walk (or sail) at liberty, For I seek Your precepts.” Psalm 119:44-45

#holy #law #Spirit #sailing #FlipFlopfellowship #grace #freedom #thankful #obey #gratefulheart #sinisbondage

Boundaries // Don’t Judge Me?

After a difficult week dealing with a problematic pet and while noticing other issues, I share in this teaching video some truths I have come into along my journeys. This week in particular seems to be crying out for such truths! Watch the video or continue reading to learn more!

In our American culture and even the Christian culture, we tend to be confused on the importance of boundaries and what love looks like. We tend to equate love with tolerance and rebel against structure, laws, and boundaries in general not wanting to offend or judge others in matters. Just look at our society today. Look at our churches, our schools, our homes, and our individual lives. We have become chaos and confusion under the guise of peace and safety…under the terms of tolerance and love.

dontjudgemeBoundaries are essentially a defined space, defined rights, responsibilities, or terms providing a healthy environment to genuinely respect and love one another. An illustration of such boundaries and their purpose would be the laws of the road. These laws, such as the speed limit, lines of a lane, red lights, traffic signs, destination signs, etc all are boundaries that when abided by or adhered to or followed allow for each of us to safely and peaceably reach our destination. Other forms of boundaries are fences, walls, doors, gates, usernames and passwords, contracts, lease agreements, and other legal terms. Boundaries define our rights and responsibilities…what is expected of each of us in order to operate in a respectful, loving, safe, and peaceful manner.

torahLikewise, God has boundaries. In fact, He is the original and ultimate author of boundaries. His laws are His ways and His will, which we can find throughout the holy Scriptures, namely throughout the first five books of the Bible: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. The rest of Scripture, including the lives of many before, but especially, Jesus Christ or Yeshua, in His Hebrew name, helped demonstrate the meaning and purpose of God’s boundaries.

Furthermore, without God’s Torah, or boundaries..His written Voice, we would have no understanding of right and wrong, clean and unclean, holy and unholy and so forth (Romans 7:7; 15:14; 1 John 3:4).  We would not even be able to accept God’s grace without God’s definition of sin found in His word. Unfortunately, many have fallen for the great deception that God’s laws no longer apply for we are under grace, twisting Paul’s words to fit their rebellious hearts (2 Peter 3:14-18), but Scriptures reveal *because* of God’s grace and subsequent acceptance of His gift of grace..His promise, which is God’s Holy Spirit (Ephesians 1:13-14; 2:8; Acts 1:4-5; 2:38-39), He will cause us to submit to God’s laws (Ezekiel 36:27; Jeremiah 31:31-33), not do away with them (Matthew 5:17; Romans 7:7,12), which is rebellion, sin, and bluntly speaking, witchcraft (I Samuel 15)!

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Moreover, we have adopted the false notion that we should not discern nor speak out against what God defines as unholy, unclean, unrighteous. In our cowardness and complacency in our freedoms of faith in this country, we have succumbed to remaining silent captive to the deceiving chain of not wanting to judge others. It has been taught to many of us in Christian circles that to judge others is to not demonstrate love. But what does Scripture actually say about judging one another? Could discernment, judgment, and action be a form of love in God’s eyes? Let’s take a look together!

Tough love is a form of true love.

While most of today’s Christian culture eagerly propagates passages and doctrines of God’s abundant love, prosperity, and purpose to serve humans, the Scriptures within context, have a more balanced perspective. While God is a merciful, forgiving, and gracious holy God, who most certainly abundantly loves, He also is just. For without His justice, He could not be Holy, nor forgiving and gracious. Many fail to comprehend that tough love is a required form of true love. In fact, by remaining silent, doing nothing, in the name of grace, only further enables, approves, and reproduces the unholy, unjust sin that circumnavigates our globe readily. In other words, there is a fine line between exhibiting gracious acts and exhibiting grievous acts.

There is a fine line between exhibiting gracious acts and exhibiting grievous acts.

Consider the concept of disciplining your child. Does it benefit your child, their futures, or those who encounter your child now or later in life to squander correcting bad behavior now? Parents who turn the other cheek, so to speak, end up producing a spoiled, entitled monster who terrorizes others (see Proverbs 13:24). By failing to establish and enforce healthy boundaries, whether that be in our children, pets, or other types of relationships, we invite chaos and further harm in our lives and those around us. Additionally, it harms the “boundary buster”. A boundary buster, is a term I created to label those who fail to respect other’s boundaries, whether that be one’s personal boundaries or boundaries defined by God.

stopsignEstablishing and enforcing healthy boundaries could be considered synonyms for judging others. Many Christians and those of the unbelieving world would say, “Don’t judge me!” or “Don’t worry, I’m not judging you..” in fear of what other’s may think, say, or do in response. After all, we are a society of walking on eggshells not wanting to dare offend anyone. When in reality, we have done exactly that: bred a society of the hyper-offended, just as Yeshua/Jesus prophecized (Matthew 24:10-13)!

“And then many will be offended, betray one another. Then many false prophets will rise up and deceive many. And because LAWLESSNESS will abound, the love of many will grow cold.” -Yeshua, Matthew 24:10-13

Many believers have taken Jesus/Yeshua’s words and the Apostle Paul’s words out-of-context stating we should most definitely not judge others for this is not love and thereby, not Christ-like.

But is that what Scripture actually reflects? Let’s investigate a few passages to dig deeper. In Matthew 7, Jesus instructs His listeners to not judge others when you yourself struggle with the same or similar heart issue. Paul expresses similar sentiments in Romans 2. Furthermore, Scripture reveals that we are and in fact WILL BE judging others one day and that these encounters we experience in the here and now are training and testing us for future discernment opportunities. Explore these passages to learn more:

  • Matthew 7:1-6
  • Romans 2
  • 1 Corinthians 5 (Notice Paul says in verse 3 he judges/discerns the matter and in verses 4 and 5, Paul speaks to the importance of tough love for the betterment of the rebellious and disobedient “believer”. In verse 9 and onward, Paul explains to not only judge believers who are blatantly dishonoring God (and His ways), but to essentially shun them, which is a form of discipline and a very clear boundary to be established and enforced. He goes on to clarify, he does not mean to judge and discipline non-believers, for they do not know any better and are still lost, but to to judge and discipline those who claim to accept Yeshua and be in covenant with God/Yahweh. For clearly, if a person is pursuing sexual sin, as an example, they are demonstrating fruit of the flesh and not fruit of the Spirit. Such issues of the heart need to be addressed by speaking the truth in love (boundary) and enforcing it. Always check you own motives though before doing so and do so within the realms or boundaries Yeshua defined for us in Matthew 18:15-20. Furthermore, you cannot judge or discipline a fellow brother or sister in Christ when you yourself are still dealing with the same root issue. For example, if you yourself are a fornicator, adulterer, struggle with pornography, or some other form of sexual lust, who are you to judge and address a fellow believer who may be in a lifestyle of homosexuality? For you yourself are producing fruit with the same root of sexual lust.
  • 1 Corinthians 6 (Notice in verse 2 Paul reminds the Corinth church that believers or saints will be judging the world and even angels -see verse 3).
  • The Book of Jude in verses 14-15 (expresses similar sentiments of the saint will judge the world)
  • Revelation 20:4-6 (also explains the martyred saints will rule and reign and judge the world along with Christ).
  • Ezekiel 44:23-24; Isaiah 2; Micah 2; Zechariah 14 (In the millennium, we see the Levites will judge and instruct others in God’s laws as will Yeshua).

FB_IMG_1528553504768So you see, dear brother and sisters, we need not be afraid nor be ashamed to “judge” or discern matters much less address them in truth and love. Boundaries are established so that we can BE love, as our Heavenly Father and Elohim designed.

Fear not! Rather, love God and love others for tough love is true love. Amen.

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For further reading, consider the book “Boundaries” by Townsend and Cloud. Other than the Bible itself, this faith-based book, along with others in their series, changed my life for the better.