Many peculiar things manifested this past week in Carrie’s life. From a confirming prophetic word to a freak storm and the explosion at Exxon’s refinery plant, could Abba be trying to communicate something? Could He be burning up things in Carrie’s life having her let go of somethings so He can have her focus on more important matters or take her into new realms in and with Him?
Ironically enough, a section of this week’s Torah portion hints at “kashering by fire” or being purified by fire before entering G-d’s presence or coming into the camp (Numbers 19, Numbers 31, 1 Corinthians 3). Our vessels need to be purified and that is what Abba seems to be doing in His people. Notice the passage of 1st Kings 18 prophecized over Carrie in worship services recently not only confirms what Abba has been prompting Carrie to do ( to “release” or call out false prophets…as well as perhaps “release” more beloved things to the L-rd), but moreover, speaks to being purified or consumed by G-d’s holy fire. When true prophets are purified by His Spirit, G-d grants them the authority to call down fire or put another way, change the atmosphere for G-d’s Spirit of Holiness is about transformation.
Leading others, teaching others, and or operating in true prophetic realms, is a heavy responsibility…Those who dare to do so should expect to be purified by Abba’s fire as He tosses things overboard through His holy wind.
[This photo was taken in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, a land, sea, and people I love. My heart’s prayer is instead on waves of destruction as prophecized, that Carolinians and all of America’s coastlands will come to be refreshed in waves of righteousness rather than waves of destruction due to lack of true repentance.]
Many believers are familiar with our Messiah’s phrase stated in Revelation 1:8, 21:6-7, 22:13, when Jesus, or Yeshua in His original name, states He is the alpha and omega, the beginning and the end. Unfortunately, many have been erroneously taught that God’s word, His commands, His instructions for life, found in His Torah, are no longer applicable after Yeshua / Jesus died on the cross and therefore, many “believers”, ironically, don’t believe in all of God’s word from beginning to end. Many have interpreted various verses penned by the Apostle Paul from a Western Greek perspective rather than a Hebraic mentality, which the Apostle Peter warned the Apostle Paul’s letters are difficult to understand and many would interpret them to lead others into lawlessness or being without Torah..being without God’s laws much to their own demise (2 Peter 3:15-17).
Recently, I learned of another passage, where Jesus / Yeshua is speaking in Isaiah 48 imploring the redeemed to obey God’s commands. It is clear from the beginning of the Bible to the end, the message is: The redeemed obey. Whether you have been redeemed from Egypt, Babylon, or proverbial Babylon, the Spirit of Holiness beckons us to come out of her my people (Rev.18:4)…come out of a lifestyle of lawlessness…a lifestyle of thinking you can live however you want intentionally sinning under the guise of grace…a lifestyle of spiritual adultery…lest you share in her plagues…lest you experience God’s disciplining judgments designed to bring you to true repentance by returning to Abba Father, through Yeshua, and abiding in covenant by submitting to God’s instructions for life found in His Torah and all of His word, from beginning to end! Here in Isaiah 48, we see Yeshua saying the the same thing.
We don’t obey in order to be saved; rather, we obey because it is our heart’s response upon receiving the Spirit of Holiness, the Holy Spirit, the lawful Spirit of Christ, grateful for Him bleeding to death on a cross for breaking Torah (I John 3:4; Romans 3:23, 6:23). Simply stated: The Redeemed Obey.
What is the purpose of the Holy Spirit or Spirit of Holiness? What is sealed on our hearts and minds? If a person claims to believe in Jesus / Yeshua, but refuses to obey Him and Abba Father..doesn’t want to love God the way He defines love in His written word, then that reveals they either don’t have the Holy Spirit dwelling within or they are very young in their faith.
After learning of two major earthquakes in California, Carrie discusses the possibility of a prophecy she gave this time last year manifesting! She also ties in faith of mustard seed and how it is related to prophecy.
If you have been following Flip Flop Fellowship’s YouTube channel, then you know for months I (Carrie) have been seeing the numbers “234” on a regular if not daily basis. When I say seeing those exact numbers everywhere, I mean I see the numbers “234” in the time, in license plates, street signs, highway exit signs, gas stations, Walmart prices, bank account balance, how many views on YouTube, parking space #234 available at the airport, route numbers, 234 comments on social media site, the amount of storage on my phone available, to numbers in my IP address, etc, etc. It is seriously everyday! And while I have had a solid indication of one possible meaning, I seem to have uncovered another. But first, let me explain one way God speaks to His kids.
When I was in the early stages of hearing God and consequently, responding in obedience, learning to trust and obey Him, God did a similar pattern of showing me the numbers “316” on a regular if not daily basis until I finally understood it’s mysterious meaning. Ten years ago, when navigating the tumultuous waters of being in an abusive marriage, Abba Father (God) used the numbers 316 to tell me to get ready to go to my vacant safe house in Pennsylvania, whose street number was 316, when He says to go! At the time, my ex-husband and I were renting an apartment in Maryland, but I owned a house in Pennsylvania. Through that marriage, it not only woke me up to the power of Jesus’ name, but I also learned how to hear God’s Spirit and plan for my life. By doing so, I am convinced it probably saved both the lives of my kids and me. Nevertheless, after getting my kids in safe homes, I had to wait for His Spirit to tell me when to flee for I learned the hard way escaping physical captivity in domestic violence can not only be incredibly destructive, but even fatal. That ordeal was quite an experience, which you can learn more about in my testimony on YouTube, but the point is God patiently worked with me until I noticed and then understood why I kept seeing the numbers “316” everywhere nearly everyday.
Many years later, the same thing is happening except this time with the numbers “234”. I know from Scripture, Abba loves patterns and themes and He most definitely loves details like numbers! In 2016, after being remarried many years later since my divorce in 2009, Abba’s Spirit called my husband and I to sell that home in Pennsylvania and eventually He revealed where He was taking us. You can read more about all that on our “Walk His Way” home page. After listing our home for sale, many months later, His Spirit whispered to me in the wee hours of the morning to go to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. Long story short, that is where we went and lived for 18 months. The beach condo we miraculously purchased in cash was unit #234. Then, after living there for quite some time, I began sensing His Spirit was moving us on to the next destination of this peculiar mobile journey. In His time, He revealed we were to buy a boat and it would seem we would be headed further Southwest. Now, we live aboard a sailboat full time in Kemah, Texas. A few months after living here, I started to see the numbers “234” often, then more often, and now daily.
Meanwhile, all along since 2016, when Abba told us to list our home during the Feast of Tabernacles, which I knew very little about at the time, He has since revealed so much truth to us using the Feast of Tabernacles and incorporated it through each destination He has called us to. For example, did you know when God redeemed the Israelites from their captivity in Egypt, He had them make temporary, mobile housing in the wilderness and they were to cover their tabernacles or booths or tents, if you will, with a myrtle tree branch, a palm tree branch, and a willow tree branch (Leviticus 23:40; Nehemiah 8:13-18)? Interestingly enough, the first place God called us to was Myrtle Beach. Later, Kemah, Texas. Kemah means “tabernacle, tent, camp”. Do you see the connections of the places His Spirit has led us to with the Feast of Tabernacles? I have since realized both Myrtle Beach as well as Kemah have the myrtle tree, palm trees, and willow trees and we indeed are living in temporary housing of sorts in both places. Oh, but it gets better! After confessing on my YouTube channel, I keep seeing the numbers “234”, a subscriber shared with me Leviticus 23:40 which reiterates the very thing I am noticing using the numbers 2-3-4 in the verse itself as well as to describe those three tree branches in the Feast of Tabernacles! How YAHsome is that?!
With all that said, I have been pondering and praying on these last few months, that I suspect since He used “316” to lead me to the 1st place being Pennsylvania, then perhaps the 2-3-4 signifies the amount of places He will lead us to and where we are at in that journey. Myrtle Beach being place #2 and where the #234 first manifested as our condo’s unit number. Kemah, Texas appears to be #3 of the 2-3-4. Each time, the Lord has nudged us and then eventually directly spoke saying things like “List it during the Feast of Tabernalces” when in PA or “List it now” when we were in Myrtle Beach, He gave us a heads up and direction as to where to research ahead of time. It was never way in advance, but advanced enough that we weren’t confused, we simply knew what we needed to do. For example, after listing our home in Pennsylvania on October of 2016, Abba told me the house would sell in April of 2017 and to plan to live tiny and be mobile. So I thought we would be getting an RV. Then after purging most of our belongings, we got a contract and the house did sell (close) in April of 2017. After getting the contract is when He started talking to me about Myrtle Beach, so Jerry and I made an impromptu trip to Myrtle Beach to check it out. Likewise, before He called us to sell our 500 square foot studio beach condo in Myrtle Beach, we got word from a credible prophet, who knew nothing about us, to not get too comfortable because this was just a temporary stopping place on this God-adventure. Later, Abba began to reveal the concept of living tiny and mobile on a sailboat. It was as if God knew we needed to gradually downsize from a large 5 bedroom home to a small 500 sq foot studio condo near the beach to an even smaller sailboat! LOL During all that, He had us research and investigate places we felt He was leading us to.
The last few days, I have sensed an interesting nudge to investigate the Emerald Coast, Panhandle area of Florida. That is the Pensacola, Destin, Niceville area. Jerry and I are trying to make plans to attend a family gathering in Atlanta and so just yesterday, I was looking into potential places we could stay while driving up to Atlanta and back. One such place was to stop in the panhandle of Florida somewhere. The next morning, I woke up to a message from a girlfriend in Niceville, Florida that it has been way too long and we need to spend a couple of days together. I thought to myself perhaps the Lord is confirming the area I need to research. Then today, at Shabbat services at the Messianic Jewish congregation we attend, one of the woman excitedly told me she just got back from Destin, Florida and told me all about it. So there I was thinking surely this is not coincidence that I felt prompted to start researching that area, then hours later my long lost friend reaches out to me to come visit her there, and then a couple of hours later another lady friend goes out of her way to tell me about her trip there that I knew nothing about!
While still at worship services in a Bible study called “Torah Club”, today’s Torah portion was all about the 10 spies who were sent out to research and investigate the Promised Land. Unfortunately, most of them, with the exception of Joshua and Caleb, came back fearful and caused toxic fear to spread among the Israelites instead of choosing faith in God’s plan for them in that new land. I also learned because of the spies’ fear and spreading that fear among God’s people, that generation of Israelites were cursed on the 9th of Av and were caused to wander the wilderness for 40 years to account for the 40 days of their fearful research in the future land. Scholars conclude the spies’ fearful report was presented to Moses on the 9th of Av in the Hebrew calendar because of the agriculture clues, feasts of the LORD, and history reflects major issues manifested for the Jewish people on the 9th of Av due to being cursed by God for the spies’ fear, such as the destruction of Solomon’s temple occurred on that day as well as the 2nd temple’s destruction in 70 A.D. occurred on that date. The 9th of Av falls in early August this year in the Gregorian calendar which is the time frame I was looking to “spy out” or research in person the panhandle of Florida while going to and fro Atlanta. It was then I realized, God must be sending Jerry and I out to “spy” on land #4 of the 2-3-4 right around the 9th of Av! Will we be fearful as we research yet another foreign land to possess or will we be full of faith? Is it a coincidence the LORD has been teaching me about generational curses and how to break them? Surely, operating in faith verses fear is a big part of the cure to curses!
I pray we will be like Caleb (and Joshua), who the Torah says in Number 14:24, “But My servant Caleb, because he has a different spirit in him and has followed Me fully, I will bring into the land where he went, and his descendants shall inherit it.”
While driving home after services this Shabbat, explaining to Jerry and my 15 year old son all that I learned in my class and what the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) seems to be communicating to me about the 2-3-4 meaning we will be eventually going to yet another land in our fascinating Feast of Tabernacles, wilderness journey, I saw not once, but four times the numbers 234! I took that as confirmation. After seeing the infamous “234” several times while driving home, I prayed out loud to Abba to confirm to me we indeed are being sent out to spy out or research the Emerald Coast area of Florida. I asked Him to show me in His word a verse or something related to emeralds or something else blatantly obvious. I did the same thing when He whispered to me about Myrtle Beach. He told me to go to Isaiah 55, which at the end speaks of the myrtle tree! I had no idea, but God knows His own word!
Stay tuned to see what develops with the mystery of 234. Regardless of whether He has us stay here in Texas or calls us to Florida or wherever, I pray we are courageous like the only 2 spies, Caleb and Joshua, who led the next generation into God’s Promised Land!
If you’ve been in the Christian culture, then you have probably heard the expression of being “worshipers of spirit and truth”. But if you are like me, perhaps you have yet to hear a clear explanation as to what Jesus, or Yeshua in His original Hebrew name, meant in John 4 when He says to the Samaritan woman that God is looking for “worshipers of spirit and truth”.
“But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for the Father is seeking such to worship Him. God is Spirit and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:23-24 (NKJV)
Such a statement seems to elude most believers as a mystery. In order to properly interpret anything recorded in the New Testament, one has to understand the only “Scriptures” Yeshua or His Apostles had access to was the Tanakh, or Old Testament; hence, why they often referred to “the law and the prophets” in their teachings. Keep in mind, the Apostle Paul tells us the Tanakh, the only Scripture he and others had at that time, is useful for reproof, correcting, and instruction in righteous and makes us complete.
“But you must continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you have learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by the Inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:14-17 (NKJV)
In other words, the Apostle Paul was writing to Timothy saying what many refer to as the Old Testament, which includes the law of God, the books written by various prophets, the psalms, etc., are an excellent resource if we want to understand the spiritual matters of Abba (‘Abba’ is Hebrew for Father God). So when we seek to interpret the meaning of various things spoken of by Yeshua or matters penned by His followers, all of whom were Jewish, we need to let the Old Testament interpret the New Testament. In other words, let Scripture interpret Scripture. Just as the Holy Spirit will not approve or lead you to that which is UNholy, the New Testament cannot contradict the Old Testament for if truth is truth, then it is absolute and cannot change; otherwise, it wasn’t truth.
With that said, let’s see what Scripture says about spirit and truth.
What Is Spirit?
According to Scripture, the Spirit that Yeshua referred to in that passage, is God’s Spirit (John 4:24 ; Romans 8:9), the Spirit of Holiness, also known as the Holy Spirit (John 3:3-6; Acts 2; 8:14-17; 19:2-6; Romans 1:4), and if you’re willing to go deeper, the Spirit of life (Romans 8:2), the Spirit of adoption (Romans 8:15-17), the Spirit of Jesus/Yeshua (1 Peter 1:11), the Spirit of grace (Hebrews 10:29; Zechariah 12:10), the Spirit of truth (John 14:15-18; 15:26), all of which are the same eternal Spirit (Hebrews 9:14; Romans 8:1-17). In various records of the Tanakh (Old Testament), we learn that God’s Spirit came upon a select few people (Here are a few examples: Numbers 24:2; Judges 6:34; I Samuel 10:6,10; 2 Chronicles 15:1; Ezekiel 11:5) and the Holy Spirit used His prophet, Moses, and signs like a cloud by day and fire by night to lead the Israelites through their wilderness journey (see Isaiah 63:10-14). In the days of the Apostles and today, the Holy Spirit still leads us(Romans 8:14). Interestingly enough, the Holy Spirit also filled Elizabeth, John the Baptist’ mother (see Luke 1:39-45), before it was poured out during the Feast of Shavuot (Pentecost) in Acts 2. As we can see from Scripture, the Holy Spirit has been influencing and communicating the will of God to people and through people for thousands of years. In fact, THAT is the Holy Spirit’s purpose: To influence people to live a lifestyle of holiness for we are called to “Be holy as He is holy” (Leviticus 11:45; 20:26; 1 Peter 1:13-19) and moreover, to do the will of God. Part of the ‘better promises’ (Hebrews 8) prescribed in the New Covenant is that after Jesus’ / Yeshua’s death, resurrection, and ascension to heaven though, the Holy Spirit became prevalent and available to receive that is to anyone (not just a select few) who believes Yeshua is the Messiah, according to Acts 2:38-39, which reads:
During the Feast of Shavuot or Pentecost, which celebrates the giving of God’s laws, the Holy Spirit was poured out on that same day in Acts 2. [As a side note, if the laws of God are irrelevant or done away with since the cross, as many teach today, then why were the disciples celebrating the Feast of Pentecost (Shavuot), a command found in the law (Leviticus 23)? Because God’s commands are still for us today even after the cross.] So both the law of God AND the Holy Spirit were poured out on the same day just thousands of years later! How fascinating!
To those who believe Yeshua / Jesus is the Son of God, the Messiah predicted by prophets of old, the perfect Passover sacrificial lamb of God, who died to pay the debt of our sin, our lawlessness, once and for all, they will at some point receive the Holy Spirit, a promised gift (John 16:5-15; Acts 1:1-8; 2:38-39). Receiving the Holy Spirit is a noticeable and distinct event in a believer’s life (Acts 2; 8:14-17; 9; 19:2-6 as a few examples). Just as the law and Holy Spirit were given quite noticeably, I assure you, you will know when you’ve been baptized in the Spirit, which is the same as receiving the Holy Spirit!
Unfortunately, many have been taught that not only is the Holy Spirit given as if in secret once you believe, but “to believe” means just believe that a guy named Jesus walked the earth, died and rose again and go on living your life like usual. In reality, according to the Bible, to believe is to repent, to turn from your sin, to turn from your lifestyle of being without God and His ways. In other words, in the Hebraic mentality, which is inspired by God, to believe is to do. And yet, we can do nothing lasting apart from God’s Spirit of Holiness! God is tired of a people that only profess Him with their lips but their hearts, their lifestyle is far from Him and His will (Isaiah 29:13; Matthew 15:8), which is why in the New Covenant, He promised to put a Spirit of Holiness within us all the time which will help us know truth and that which is holy (Romans 7:12) causing us to do them! Check out these promises of the New Covenant found in the Tanakh (Old Testament) describing the purpose of God giving us this Spirit of Holiness dwelling inside us.
“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— 32 not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt, My covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them, says the Lord. 33 But this is the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel after those days, says the Lord: I will put My law in their minds, and write it on their hearts; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people.” Jeremiah 31:31-33 (NKJV)
“Then I will give them one heart, and I will put a new spirit within them, and take the stony heart out of their flesh, and give them a heart of flesh, 20 that they may walk in My statutes and keep My judgments and do them; and they shall be My people, and I will be their God. 21 But as for those whose hearts follow the desire for their detestable things and their abominations, I will recompense their deeds on their own heads,” says the Lord God.” Ezekiel 11:19-21 (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.” Ezekiel 36:27 (NKJV)
Now that we know that being a worshiper of Spirit is receiving the Spirit of Holiness within our hearts so that we may lead an empowering lifestyle of holiness, which is obeying the commands of God, let’s see what the Scripture reveals truth is.
What Is Truth?
Truth is God’s word, all of it, including the parts some modern day preachers say is “done away with” or “not relevant” or “barbaric”. Quite specifically, the Tanakh reveals the law of God, His commandments, statutes, or judgments are truth!
“I have chosen the way of truth; Your judgments I have laid before me.” Psalm 119:30 (NKJV)
“Your righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, And Your law is truth.” Psalm 119:142 (NKJV)
“You are near, O Lord, And all Your commandments are truth.” Psalm 119:151 (NKJV)
“The entirety of Your word is truth, And every one of Your righteous judgments endures forever.” Psalm 119:160 (NKJV)
Additionally, truth is Yeshua! In the same chapter where Jesus / Yeshua describes the purpose of the Holy Spirit (see John 14:15-18), He described Himself as The Way, The Truth, and The Life.
“Jesus said to him, ‘I amthe way,the truth, andthe life.No one comes to the Fatherexcept through Me.’ ” John 14:6 NKJV
But did you know upon using those phrases, He essentially was saying He IS the perfect Torah (the law of God, the law of liberty- Psalm 19:7;-9; 119:45; James 1:25)…the Living Torah in the flesh for all the world to read (John 1)? How cool is that?! Here are verses about the way reference:
“He made known His ways to Moses, His acts to the children of Israel.” Psalm 103:7 NKJV
“Blessed are the undefiled in the way, Who walk in the law of the Lord!” Psalm 119:1 NKJV
“Teach me, O Lord, the way of Your statutes, And I shall keep it to the end.” Psalm 119:33 NKJV
“And see if there is any wicked way in me, And lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:24 NKJV
So we’ve seen what truth is as well as what the way is, but what is life?
“I will never forget Your precepts, for by them You have given me life.” Psalm 119:93 NKJV
“and he said to them: ‘Set your hearts on all the words which I testify among you today, which you shall command your children to be careful to observe—all the words of this law.47 For it is not a futile thing for you, because it is your life, and by this word you shall prolong your days in the land which you cross over the Jordan to possess.’ ” Deuteronomy 32:46-27 NKJV
It’s been my experience and something I have witnessed in other believers that first the Holy Spirit woos you unto the Father through the Son and even often goes through great lengths to prove to you God is real and personally knows you and your circumstances. Once you accept such factual, spiritual truths, you then begin to trust and obey Him. At some point, the Holy Spirit is given to those who obey Him (Acts 5:32), which is why Peter preached REPENTANCE because to repent is to obey. In His time, as you submit to truth (Luke 8:18), the Spirit of Holiness reveals to you more and more truth through God’s word as well as through your experiences. The Spirit of Holiness guides you into that which is holy and true, cautioning you, correcting you, and causing you to obey all of God’s word. Out of a grateful, circumcised heart, you will want to follow Yeshua’s example, the Living Torah, so that those around you can also read and understand God’s love language pouring out from the pages of your life!
In summary, we have discovered and decoded to be a worshiper of spirit and truth means to be one who has not only received the Spirit of Holiness (Holy Spirit), but who also is led by the Spirit to live an empowering lifestyle of holiness as defined and described by the truth of God’s written voice, His word. In doing so, we will have lived and loved like Yeshua, like sons and daughters should!
Many 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)
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)
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 <–
But 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 everlastingrighteousness, and Your law is truth.” Psalm 119:142 (NKJV)
“All your words are true; all 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)
It may surprise many Christians, but the fact is various sacrifices will resume and be required of in the millennium reign of Yeshua/Jesus. But if you have missed my previous article answering Why We Don’t Perform Animal Sacrifices Now, click here for that simple answer. In this article we will discuss why animal sacrifices will be reinstated in the millennium reign and quite possibly even before then. Moreover, we will see how all of this is connected even to the Christian faith here and now! The Foundational Basics of The Gathering and The Millennium
When studying the Book of Revelation chapter 20, we see Yeshua/Jesus, The Messiah, returns to Earth, where He rules and reigns for 1,000 years. The Book of Ezekiel, found in the Tanakh/Old Testament, starting in Chapter 36 through the end of the Book, describes the re-gathering of lost sheep of Israel (also see what Jesus/Yeshua said in Matthew 15:24 and Matthew 24:31), which some might refer to as ‘The Rapture’, as well as the resurrection of the dead (Ezekiel 37), and what worship entails during Yeshua’s reign. Furthermore, we read in Ezekiel 37, the initiation of the millennial reign when Yahweh/God unites the House of Israel (lost sheep/the scattered Northern Kingdom & grafted-in Israelites/formerly known as ‘gentiles’-see my post An Important Response) with the House of Judah (of the Jewish tribe/the Southern Kingdom). To read the passages showing the supernatural reunification also described as gathering His elect into one stick, one new man, or one olive tree, see Ezekiel 11-12; 36:27; 37:15-28; Ephesians 2:11-18; Romans 11; Zechariah 4; Isaiah 52-56, 60-66; Jeremiah 29-31; Hebrews 8:7-13; Mark 13:27; Matthew 24:30-31; 1 Corinthians 15:50-58; Revelation 11. Will There Be Sacrifices In The Millennium?
While reading Ezekiel 40-46, we see Scripture reveals in great detail the millennial temple and the various sacrifices performed – some of which even the Messiah/prince cooperates with (Ezekiel 45:22-25). Let’s dig in deeper though as to why. For many of us were led to believe or assumed the sacrifices were done away with upon Christ’s death and resurrection, when it actuality, we learn from the Book of Hebrews and Ezekiel, they were done away with, not because of any changing of commandments, nor because of Christ’s ultimate sacrifice, but rather, because there currently is no temple. Why Will There Be Sacrifices In The Millennium (and most likely even before then)?
First, it is clear, from beginning to end, all of Scripture is about Yeshua HaMaschiah, Jesus The Messiah, our Savior from sin, and all of it points to Him. He is the Alpha and Omega, as it says in Greek, or the Aleph and Tav, in Hebrew. It’s all about Him, always was about Him, and always will be about Him (John 1:1-3; Colossians 1:15-18; Revelation 22:13). Amen.
The sacrifices performed for thousand of years prior to our present day pointed to Yeshua, The Messiah, and will still point to Yeshua in the millennium. But more on that in a bit.
Second, it’s important to understand, no one can nullify or do away with any of God’s covenants for a covenant is a covenant, not a contract to be broken (see Galatians 3:15,17; Isaiah 40:8; Mark 13:31). Rather, each covenant is built upon one another providing as the author of Hebrews says, “better promises” (Hebrews 8:6) : Do women still have pain in childbirth? Why is that if the Old Testament/covenant is done away with? Because the pain in childbirth was part of what Bible scholars refer to as the “Adamic Covenant”. What about the “Noahide Covenant” where Abba (“Father” in Hebrew / Father God) promises never to flood the entire Earth at once again like He did in the flood for the people’s unclean, evil lifestyle (Genesis 6-9)? Afterwards, there was the “Abrahamic Covenant”, where Yahweh promised Abraham that his descendants would be as numerous as the sand and stars while inheriting the land of Israel and that circumcision reflects YHVH’s eternal covenant with Abraham and his seed (Genesis 15-17). Is that too no longer in effect? You see so none of these “new” covenants eradicated the one before, but rather built upon it. Also, notice in all of these covenants, there is shedding of blood (i.e. covering of animals for clothing/blood in childbirth; mankind blood shed in flood; circumcision). With each covenant established, we learn more about the heart and will of God. Furthermore, we know none of His word is made void (Isaiah 55:8-11).
Third, and perhaps of utmost importance, understand that “new” covenant as referred to in Jeremiah 31:31-33 and reiterated in Hebrews 8:7-13, isn’t consummated just yet. Rather, while we are still here on this Earth, all of the foundational covenants still stand (Matthew 5:17-19) while the “new” is yet to be completed or put another way, is in process, or in the que, if you will. Hence, why the elect are referred to as the ‘Bride (of Christ)’ (see Ephesians 5:25-29) not wife, why Yeshua/Jesus says He has to prepare a place (John 14:2-3) just as in Jewish culture the bridegroom left to build an extension of His father’s house after becoming betrothed/engaged to His future bride (2 Corinthians 11:2), but we aren’t physically dwelling with Him yet in His Father’s House (New Jerusalem), and why in Revelation 21, we see when the “New” Heaven and “New” Earth manifests, the “Bride”, known as the “New” Jerusalem appears (Rev.21: 2,9; Hebrews 3:6; Mark 14:25; Isaiah 52:1; 2 Corinthians 5:1). Notice many references to “new” manifest at that time, which corresponds with what Yeshua said in Matthew 5:17-19, when He said not one part of the law (or Mosaic covenant) is done away with until there is a new heaven and new earth, which doesn’t manifest till Revelation 21. We also see in Revelation 21 and 2 Peter 3:13, that there is no uncleanness, no lawlessness, no sin, no pain, no suffering, nothing to defile the New Earth or immortal beings dwelling in the New Earth for “all the nations of those who are saved shall walk in its light..” (vs 24). There also isn’t a need for a temple to make atonement for there is no more curse/consequence to sin (Revelation 22:3) and Yeshua is the Temple in the New Jerusalem/New Earth (Revelation 21:22). We also see in Revelation 19:7-9,
the marriage and marriage supper (wedding reception) of the Lamb is about to take place, but has not yet been consummated. Therefore, it isn’t until the New Heaven, New Earth, and New Jerusalem manifests that the New Covenant is consummated. When is the covenant between a husband and wife consummated? On their wedding night through sexual intercourse. And what manifests when a husband enters his pure virgin wife? The shedding of blood through the breaking of her hymen. Covenant consummated. Our betrothal to Yeshua isn’t consummated yet. Our job at this time is to be His spotless, spiritually pure, virgin Bride (2 Peter 3:14-18). Notice in Rev.19:8, the Bride’s wedding dress of fine linen, clean and bright, is defined as the righteous acts of the saints (obedience).
Furthermore, notice in Hebrews 8:13, the author scribes that the former covenant is “becoming obsolete and growing old is ready to vanish away”, but hasn’t just yet. It also says in Hebrews 8:11 and Jeremiah 31:34 that in the “new” covenant none of us will have to teach each other matters of the LORD for we all will already know Him (again, captured in Revelation 21-22).
And yet we still today are teaching one another and sharing information with believers and non-believers. Likewise, in the millennium, Yeshua teaches us His laws (Isaiah 2, 51; Micah 4) as do His priest, so evidently, even the millennium time frame isn’t when the new covenant is consummated:
“And they shall teach My people the difference between the holy and the unholy, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean. In controversy, they shall stand as judges, and judge it according to My judgments. They shall keep My laws and My statutes in all My appointed meetings, and they shall hallow My Sabbaths.” Ezekiel 44:23-24
So is it possible the stage is set for the “New” Covenant while still living with the promises and boundaries defined in the foundational ones? Since the Adamic, Noahide, and Abrahamic Covenants are still in effect, it is obvious the following Mosaic (law) Covenant is as well. Otherwise, how can one reasonably argue it is permissible to pick and choose which covenants still exist (i.e the Adamic still exists, but not the Mosaic) and which don’t when clearly they all still exist.
Since we have not been reunited with our Bridegroom, Yeshua, just yet, AND in the Father’s House to consummate our marriage (New Jerusalem), it would appear we indeed are betrothed (2 Corinthians 11:2) or engaged to put it in a modern term we can easily understand, but are not married or fully in our new covenant just yet. Hence, why we still have pain in childbirth, why there is no world-wide flood, why Yeshua and the Apostles still instructed us to live a lifestyle of holiness, with the Spirit of Holiness’ help as He guides us into more and more truth, and why we continue to teach one another. They all are still in effect.
In the meantime, we are in the process of being sanctified by His written word (Living Torah/the Torah) as John 17:17 and Hebrews 10:14 indicate…being made a spotless, pure Bride preparing for our wedding day as the Spirit of Holiness illuminates more and more truth to us just like we see in Acts 15.
I call Acts 15, the “Start Here” chapter for it would seem the Holy Spirit always starts with cleaning up sexual immorality and the most glaring sins or uncleanliness in our lives first. When you read, Acts 15, notice the debate amongst the disciples/apostles was about IF obeying the law saves you (vs.1), not if you had to obey the law in general. Rather, we see in Acts 15, the apostles, through the wisdom of the Holy Spirit, provided a priority list for those newly converted non-Jewish/freshly grafted-in Israelites to focus on. Surely, by only listing a couple of commands they weren’t dismissing all the other commands validating it is permissible to murder, dishonor your parents, worship other gods, steal, etc. No! Which is why in vs.21, it says, they have grown to know such truths over time indicating everyone has to start somewhere. The debate was about does obeying the Mosaic law, the instructions for life save you from eternal separation from God (i.e. spiritual death)? No, it does not. Obedience is important for it reflects a circumcised heart, being sanctified by the word (Torah) through His Holy Spirit not to *be saved* or to *earn* salvation, but because of Christ’s shed blood, we will want to avoid sin, which 1st John 3:4 tells us is lawlessness or being without God’s laws. Again, the Spirit of Holiness/Holy Spirit will guide us into more and more truth as we grow up in God. He specializes in disinfecting our hearts and homes. Didn’t Jesus’ Blood Pay For Our Sins? Then Why Still Sacrifices?
Go with me to Numbers 15, notice in verses 37-41, we see YHVH wants the children of Israel to make tassels (tzitzits) at the hem of their garments to remind them of God’s saving grace as He redeemed them from Egypt, but Abba knew even upon being saved by grace we so easily forget the ordeal as it is a lengthy journey getting Egypt (sinful ways) out of us! So He had them make tassels of string to remind them of His commandments – His instructions for life. God loves reminders..memorials..anniversaries. Hence, the Sabbaths, the Feasts of the LORD (see Leviticus 23) commemorating huge events of the past and events to come. We even see, God commanded the Israelites to live in temporary booths/tents/tabernacles during the 7 day Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) to remember His saving grace from Egypt (see Leviticus 23:41-43). Not to mention the giving of the Holy Spirit to help remind us of His truth..His word! Think about this: Does taking communion crucify Christ all over again? Does it save you when you slurp down that tiny glass of grape juice or take a sip of wine? Does getting baptized spiritually make you clean or are these ceremonies to remind us of God’s grace – to help us further identify with Him, His word, and the lifestyle of holiness? Likewise, the various ceremonies within the temple including the sacrifices carry the same symbolism (Hebrews 9:9)- they in of themselves don’t save us (Hebrews 10:4, 11), but they remind us of the seriousness of our sins (Hebrews 10:3) for something/someone must die because of our sinful choices. The sacrifices also remind us of our desperate need for a Savior and His amazing grace until He puts His enemies under His foot forever (Hebrews 10:13).
Let’s dig even deeper though…In Jewish culture, in order for a woman to be betrothed to a man, the father of the man had to pay the dowry debt to the woman’s father. Once the debt has been paid, the man and woman were betrothed and in Jewish culture, considered off the market, but no marriage or consummation occurred just yet for the man/bridegroom had to go build a home for his bride attached to his father’s estate. Hence, Jesus/Yeshua’s comment in John 14:2-3. When Yeshua/Jesus died on the cross we know He did so to pay for our sin, which is the debt or curse of breaking God’s law (I John 3:4; Romans 3:23; 6:23), or as Paul refers to as “the law of sin and death” (Romans 7:22-25) or the dowry for His bride. So just as Colossians 2:13-14 states, the sacrifice of Christ’s death on the cross paid the requirement that was against us, the debt, the curse, the dowry, the law of sin and death, but did not remove the laws of God as previously discussed. Just like if someone graciously paid your speeding ticket fine, it doesn’t nullify the speed limit law, it only pays the debt for breaking that law.
Furthermore, Scripture reveals without the shedding of blood, there is no remission or removal of sin. Hence, why the animal’s blood had to be spilled and why Christ blood had to spill. It has to costs something – the debt of sin is always costly. The wages of sin is death.
“And according to the law almost all things are purified with blood, and without shedding of blood there is no remission.” Hebrews 9:22
” ‘For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul.’ ” Leviticus 17:11
Moreover, the intent of the sacrificial system is to help us understand and remember sin has a high price: It cost God His firstborn to die for you to potentially live. Don’t abuse this grace nor take sin lightly. The Difference Between Unintentional and Intentional Disobedience and What Does That Have To Do With Sacrifices?
Hopefully, upon believing Jesus/Yeshua is the Messiah, God’s son, who perished to take away your sins, you’ll want to cultivate an intimate relationship with Abba (Father) through His Son (and not just be deceived into thinking salvation is a one and done mentality where you can now go live just as before). Many temptations will plague you especially early on trying to thwart your relationship, but be steadfast and strong for all of us have to start somewhere.
As you may recall, from Acts 15, we see the Holy Spirit had the Apostles instruct the new converts with a few basics to start their faith journey or put another way their very own “horribly-amazing-purification-process” a term I’ve used in previous blogs and vlogs! 😉 We see in the various epistles to the body of believers that they too generally had a basic set of instructions, namely ridding themselves of sexual immorality, while Paul beckons them to move on to more deeper aspects of their faith journey (I Corinthians 3:2-3; Hebrews 5:12- 6:2). Let me ask you something: Are you instantly mature in Christ upon believing in His death and resurrection? Do you know all of God’s laws and the ways of God as soon as you believe? Does a baby know how to drive at birth? Or does that baby first learn how to roll over, how to crawl, how to walk, how to run, how to ride a bike, and then eventually, when a bit more mature, how to drive? And even once able to drive, there is still much to learn and be aware of – there are still accidents. Likewise, upon coming into the gospel message of believing Jesus/Yeshua died for us, we cannot possibly know and obey all of God’s ways instantly, but we will gradually learn to do so as we mature in Him and His lifestyle of holiness with the help of His Holy Spirit.
Would you be offended if a driver of another vehicle intentionally ran a red light t-boning your car and possible killing your passenger? Was not the red light designed to protect one another? Would you consider that intentional act breaking the laws of the road? Would it be breaking the laws of the road even if the driver happen to miss the changing of the yellow to the red light? I believe the answer to all of the above is YES. Did you know that God’s laws are designed to protect us, not to harm us for the Torah is for our good (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)? Did you know God views intentional sin, or presumptuous sin, different than unintentional sin? Do you not hold your older children more accountable than your younger children? Why? Because they know better, right? Likewise, the more we know, the more we are held accountable for (Ezekiel 33:8-9; James 3:1; Romans 14:12; Hebrews 13:17; Luke 12:47-48; John 15:22).
You’ll want to especially check out Hebrews 10:26:
“For if we go on sinning willfullyafter 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)
Also, read these serious implications in Hebrews 6:4-8, which matches what Jesus/Yeshua spoke of regarding fruit and lawlessness in Matthew Chapters 7 and 13:
“For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, and have become partakers of the Holy Spirit, and have tasted the good word of God and the powers of the age to come, if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame. For the earth which drinks in the rain that often comes upon it, and bears herbs useful for those by whom it is cultivated, receives blessing from God; but if it bears thorns and briers, it is rejected and near to being cursed, whose end is to be burned.”
Also, read Numbers 15. Notice God recognizes the difference between unintentionally sinning, which required atonement by the priests to make atonement for the body at large (the congregation), or the individual person, while the intentional act of sin has the consequence of being cut off from the people through death in Numbers 15:30-36. As another example, in Numbers 35:9-34, we see Abba sets up ‘sanctuary cities’ for those who unintentionally kill someone (involuntary manslaughter) whereas an intentional murderer must be put to death. Yet another form of grace – even in the Old Testament, or more accurately stated first testament. Grace is not a new concept for God. Hebrews 10:26-39 seems to reiterate the seriousness of our intentional sins. Thereby, destroying the false notion of “once saved, always saved” as does the explanation in the first several chapters of Revelation regarding the significance of being an overcomer in order to inherit the promises of God (also see Exodus 32:33). Because if we are genuinely repentant for a sin, we will not keep practicing that sin; rather, we will run like Joseph did from it (Genesis 39). We will turn from it out of a grateful heart for the shedding of Christ’s blood and a healthy respect for YHVH, our Abba Father.
Intentional sin always leads to death (Hebrews 10:26-39; Numbers 15; Exodus 21:14; Deut.17:12-13; 18:20). In other words, there is no sacrifice set up for intentional sin.
The Book of 1 John states in several places that if anyone claims to believe in the saving grace of Yeshua, but continues to break God’s laws knowingly or intentionally is a liar and he/she didn’t truly repentant in the first place (see I John 1:6; 2:3-15; 2:28-29; 3:4-10; 3:24; 4:20; 5:3; 5:10). What’s Your Motive? Did you “believe” in Jesus for your ticket to heaven, but then believe you can do whatever you want continuing to intentionally sin? You have been grossly misinformed, friend. The truth is, in Hebraic culture, to believe is to do or put another way, trust and obey (Proverbs 3 – read all of Proverbs 3), or put another way, “Faith without works is dead.” Or simple stated, believing in Jesus/Yeshua without obedience is deception, vanity, meaningless and no different than what the demons believe. James Chapter 2:14,17,18,19,24,26:
“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. But someone will say, ‘You have faith, and I have works.’ Show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that there is one God. You do well. Even the demons believe—and tremble! You see then that a man is justified by works, and not by faith only. For as the body without the spirit is dead, so faith without works is dead also.”
You see, so even though obeying the law itself cannot save you, in doing so, upon having a circumcised heart and receiving the Spirit of Holiness (Acts 19:2), you will be a cheerful giver of your life wanting to obey Abba/Yeshua. If you believe in Jesus just to get your ticket to heaven or be raptured out of here with the “to hell with ya’ll” mentality, you’ve already revealed your cards – your motive. Self-centered. Rather, if out of a pure heart motive, grateful for His sacrifice and amazing work He did by cheerfully giving of Himself, then you too will want to cheerfully give of yourself. You will want to serve God and others – not say, “Screw you, I’m saved! You’re doomed to hell!” Rather, you will look for opportunities to bring heaven to earth for His glory. He specializes in softening our hearts.
Tragically, just by looking around us and even within us, we still don’t get the cost of our sin. God, in His omniscience, knows we need as many reminders as possible for Satan is always lurking, tempting us back into being a slave to darkness. Even with having the luxury of God’s word in print readily available in stores, homes, churches and even on our phones now, we still refuse to study it and apply it. Many read it, but few allow it to transform their hearts and eventual lifestyle. Many refuse to accept all of God’s word and therefore, refuse to obey Him and thereby, continue to sin.
Ponder this: The first time, Jesus/Yeshua came, He was the Living Torah, teaching us the laws of love and what they mean, what it should look like while condemning the erroneous doctrines of religion. He then graciously paid the debt for our past sins and future sins if we repent. As we study all of Scripture, we see Yahweh/YHVH/Abba is a holy God, who spends a significant amount of His word, His written voice, from the beginning of the book to the back of the Bible (Revelation 12:17; 14:12; 22:14), explaining to His elect, the difference between holy and unholy, right and wrong, clean and unclean, which are defined in His commandments, His law and that breaking them is sin for as an Israelite or adopted in Israelite, we are called to be a light to the nations.
It’s a huge deal to God to know the difference between light and darkness, clean and unclean, holy and unholy. In fact, this is one reason why Yeshua returns for a second time: to teach us His law/Torah (see Isaiah 2, 51; Micah 4) yet again because we still don’t get it. Also, notice what the primary role of the Levite priests in the millennium will be doing as discussed earlier (see Ezekiel 44:23-24): to help us distinguish between clean and unclean, to teach us God’s laws, to help us uphold the Sabbaths, etc. So contrary to popular beliefs, Christ paid the debt for our sins, but did not wipe out God’s instructions or standards for life. God’s word can never be made void no matter what the modern day religious leaders preach.
Perhaps you’ve been taught that the Old Testament is irrelevant, done away with, no longer applies, etc. Just labeling the first half of the Bible as “old” gives off a certain connotation. But if it no longer applies in the sense of we no longer need to heed God’s voice through it, then why are the humans who survive the great tribulation and wrath of God required to celebrate the Feast of Tabernacles in the millennium (check out Zechariah 14:16-21 and all of Zech. 14)? If they fail to do so, their land will receive no rain thereby hindering the food supply and economy. Likewise, we see in Ezekiel, humans will be celebrating the feasts of the LORD and coming to worship Yahweh in the temple (Ezekiel 45:16-17; 46:3-9). We read about similar sentiments in Isaiah 56 where grafted-in Israelites, formerly Gentiles, or ‘sons of the foreigner’ keep God’s Sabbaths, and make sacrifices and burnt offerings in the temple at Mount Zion (the holy mountain). In Ezekiel 44:4-9, notice in the millennium temple in Mount Zion/Jerusalem, not just anybody can come to the temple to worship, but only those humans circumcised of the heart (Deut. 10:12-22; 30:6-10; Romans 2:28-29) and circumcised of the flesh (again, reflecting none of the previous covenants such as the Abrahamic and Mosaic Covenants are NOT done away with even in the millennium). Note: This human element in the millennium kingdom is also why when Satan is released after the 1,000 years, he is able to deceive humans and create a losing battle against Yeshua and us previously resurrected/gathered now immortal saints (Rev.21:7-10). For everyone has to be tried and tested and everyone must choose this day whom they will serve.
Not only do we see all the former covenants still stand in these passages within the 1,000 year reign, but that we are taught the difference between true and false worship or put another way, how Abba wants to be worshiped. We also see even “the prince”, presumably The Messiah, Jesus/Yeshua, of the line of David, gives offerings, including sin offerings (see Ezekiel 45:-15-17; Ezekiel 37:24). Why is our Messiah making sin offerings -wasn’t His blood enough? Why Is Our Messiah Making Sin Offerings In the Millennium? Wasn’t His Blood Enough?
The Book of Hebrews, most likely written by the Apostle Paul, a Messianic Jew/Hebrew, to Messianic Hebrews/Jews, written in Hebrew, reveals to us that although Yeshua/Jesus, is our Heavenly Melchizedek High Priest (Hebrews 8:1-3), who made atonement for us through His blood (Hebrews 9:28) by reconciling believers to YHVH, and now mediates on our behalf in heaven (Hebrews 4:14-16; 8:6), Yeshua/Jesus does not replace the Levite priestly role here on Earth (only in heaven is He the High Priest).
“Now if He were on earth, He would not be a priest at all, since there are those who offer the gifts according to the Law; who serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things, just as Moses was warned by God when he was about to erect the tabernacle; for, ‘See,’ He says, ‘that you make all things according to the pattern which was shown you on the mountain.’ But now He has obtained a more excellent ministry, by as much as He is also the mediator of a better covenant, which has been enacted on better promises.” Hebrews 8:4-6
Again, this verse, like many others, validates the Mosaic Covenant, God’s laws, aren’t done away with even after Christ’s death. Many scholars believe the Book of Hebrews was penned in 63 AD before the destruction of the temple in 70 AD, which means the sacrifices were still being made at that time. The author reveals even after Christ’s death and resurrection, not only were they still making sacrifices (Hebrews 8:4-6; 10:1-2,11; 13:11), but Yeshua/Jesus, could not be the earthly High Priest; rather, He is the heavenly High Priest mediating a much bigger ministry on our behalf in heaven’s temple. After all, we know the temples that have been here on Earth are merely a replica of heaven’s place of worship.
So why is Yeshua participating in making sacrifices? Why did Yeshua attend Sabbath services and the Feasts the first time He walked the Earth – especially when the Sabbath and Feasts (and the sacrifices) are all about Him anyway? He has a good habit of leading in love, leading by example, and failure to do so would make Himself sin against His Father, for Yeshua knows better. Think, “Honor thy Father and mother..” AVOID SLOPPY AGAPE
According to various passages previously listed above, the penalty for breaking God’s laws intentionally is death – no if’s, and’s, or but’s about it. Rather, only unintentional sin out of ignorance or by accident (i.e. manslaughter) can the priest make atonement for forgiveness (yet another example of God’s ongoing grace even back in the Mosaic Covenant). See Hebrews 9:7:
“But into the second part the high priest went alone once a year, not without blood, which he offered for himself and for the people’s sins committed in ignorance;”
Ezekiel 45:20 states the priest shall do the same in the millennium: “And so you shall do on the seventh day of the month for everyone who has sinned unintentionally or in ignorance. Thus you shall make atonement for the temple.”
Remember Hebrews 10:26-39 as do other passages strongly advise against intentionally breaking God’s laws/committing sins after you know better for “it is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God” (vs 31). Also, see the Book of Jude. Conversely, those “who look into the perfect law of liberty (Torah) and continues in it, and is not forgetful hearer but a doer of the work, this one will be blessed in what he does.” (James 2:25)
What if you yourself are being obedient to what you have been shown in His word, but a friend who also believes in Yeshua/Jesus, isn’t a “doer of the word” (James 2:22)? You can lead in love by interceding in prayer and correction (Matthew 18; Jude 22-23) for that person:
“Brethern, if anyone among you wanders from the truth (what is truth – see Psalm 119:30, 42), and someone turns him back, let him know that he who turns a sinner (one who breaks God’s laws I John 3:4) from the error of his way will SAVE A SOUL FROM DEATH and cover a multitude of sins.” James 5:19-20
“If anyone sees his brother sinning a sin which does not lead to death (aka unintentional sins), he will ask, and He will give him life for those who commit sin not leading to death. There is a sin leading to death (intentional sin). I do not say that he should pray about that. All unrighteousness is sin (both intentional and unintentional), and there is sin not leading to death (unintentional).” 1 John 5:16-17
The good news is if you have been made aware of some Biblical truth (aka one of God’s laws), but you ignore it and therefore, intentionally disobey, REPENT IMMEDIATELY- confess your sin to Abba in Yeshua’s redeeming name while you can for “He is faithful and just to forgive our sins…” I John 1:9.
Overall folks, you need to know, the sacrificial system of the past, present, and future never was designed for intentional sin only unintentional sin. Intentional sin always led to stoning…to death (on the testimony of 2 or 3 witnesses). Instant spiritual and physical death. How much worse do you think it will be for you if you intentionally sin after knowing about the grace of God through the death of His Son, Yeshua/Jesus (Hebrews 10:26-39)? Repentance is serious. Don’t be like a dog that goes back to his vomit “for it would have been better for them not to have know the way of righteousness, than having known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered to them.” (Proverbs 26:11; 2 Peter 2:21-22)
Be a living sacrifice – die to your flesh (Romans 12:1-2) for the flesh is temporary. The Spirit is eternal beckoning your allegiance to Him forevermore. Love God and others the way He wants to be loved. Shalom and Amen.