Did you know when Jesus / Yeshua read Isaiah 61 in the synagogue on Shabbat (Sabbath/Saturday), which we can read about in Luke 4:16-30), He was reading from that specific week’s “Haftarah” portion? For thousands of years, those of the Judaism faith have read from the Torah and Haftarah. A major part of the Jewish worship service since the days of escaping Babylonian captivity (see books of Ezra & Nehemiah), is the public reading of the Torah.For the Jewish people learned the hard way while under Babylonian captivity to forsake God’s instructions will inevitably lead to physical and spiritual bondage. The Torah is the first five books of the Bible, also known as the Law, or God’s instructions for life. Each week, in today’s congregations of Judaism, Messianic Judaism, and many Hebrew Roots’ congregations read a certain portion of the Torah in their services. So the whole world (of those groups) is studying the same portions in unity. However, many years ago, circa 175 BC, when Antiochus Epiphanes conquered the temple, he outlawed the public reading of the Torah, replaced the holy artifacts with pagan gods within the temple, slaughtered pig, an unclean and abomination according to Leviticus 11, Deut 14, and Isaiah 65-66, as a means to mock God’s ordained sacrificial system, and even tormented and killed Jews for holding to their belief in the one true God and their desire to adhere to His laws. All of this was an “abomination of desolation”, which will happen again according to prophecies found in the Books of Daniel, Matthew, and Revelation. Consequently, the rabbis of those days researched and prescribed related passages of the Torah found in the Prophets to be read each week instead of the Torah during that tumultuous time. This became known as “Haftarah”, which means “conclude”. After that horrific time, the practice of reading from the Prophets stuck so today, passages called portions from the Torah and the Haftarah, which are related are read. In Messianic Judaism (and possibly Hebrew Roots too), related portions from the Brit Chadesha (Renewed/New Covenant) are read as well. This photo captures this week’s. The Torah portion’s title is selected from the first few words of the passage. You will notice all of these passages have to do with sending out (i.e. spies & apostles). I hope you had a peacful, wholesome #Shabbat!
The Holy Scriptures give us a few traits or clues to beware of when discerning the Anti-Messiah or Anti-Christ spirit. As we sojourn the halls of various places of worship, carry on conversations with others, or peruse social media, be on the look out for any of these 5 traits:
- The most obvious clue is anyone who denies the fact that Yeshua/Jesus of Nazareth was/is the Son of YHWH (G-d), died for the sins of the world, and was resurrected on the 3rd day. Anyone who rejects Yeshua as Messiah is a carrier of the Anti-Messiah spirit. 1 John 4:1-3.
- The Anti-Messiah spirit will seem to be culturally “cool”, very likeable, popular, persuasive, and intriguing, even offering people many lucrative incentives, but inwardly he/she/they are infected with a dangerous spirit. Daniel 8:25; 11:21,23,24,25.
- The Anti-Messiah spirit will seek/has already sought to speak against, change and distort G-d’s laws. The Anti-Messiah spirit is even referred to as ‘the lawless one’ (one without Yah’s laws). The Anti-Messiah spirit will proclaim their will, their laws, their way is the correct interpretation verses G-d’s will, laws, and ways written in His word. Essentially, the Anti-Messiah does away with the One True G-d and His will by replacing G-d with a god of their own ideologies. Daniel 7:25; 11:28,36-39; 2 Thessalonians 2:7-12; 2 Peter 3:14-18; Revelation 11:1-2.
- The Anti-Messiah spirit will slander, shun, persecute, torment, and eventually seek to kill those who keep or practice G-d’s holy covenant, namely those who keep G-d’s commandments and believe Yeshua is Messiah. This vile spirit is very anti-semitic/anti-Jew/anti-Israel/anti-Hebrew in all forms conceivable for the Anti-Messiah spirit knows not only was Yeshua a chosen Jew from Israel, but those who are chosen as native Israelites as well as the grafted-in Israelites, who both believe in Yeshua the Messiah and keep their Heavenly Abba(Father)’s commandments, are being a light to the ever-increasing dark world. Isaiah 49:6; Isaiah 51:4,7-8; Daniel 8:24; 11:28,30; Revelation 7:1-8; 12:13-17; 14:1-13.
- Conversely, the Anti-Messiah spirit will reward those who don’t keep G-d’s commands, are against G-d’s temple, and sacrifices, which are a part of G-d’s covenant in the Torah. Daniel 11:30-35; Revelation 11:1-2; 13:4-18; 17:8,15.
Have you discovered your role or office in God’s kingdom? Could you be an apostle, prophet, teacher, pastor, or evangelist (See Ephesians 4:11)? Here is a brief video providing 5 clues you could be an evangelist if…