Your Identity In Messiah (Jew – Gentile – Israel?)
As many of us are beginning to see, the adversary has blinded the masses through subtlety and deceit in nearly every corner of life. In addition, he has also successfully veiled the identity of millions of believers across the earth. If your true identity in Messiah is hidden; then deeper theological lies become much easier to perpetrate. However, that time of deception is coming to a close.
Our Heavenly Father is doing something special in these last days. Though the earth’s darkness and evil are increasing, so is His kingdom of light and Truth. Many are being woken up from slumber, hearing the call, “The Bridegroom Comes!” An increasing number of people are being shown the truth — the evil and deception of this world. As a result, many are running to our Messiah with true repentance, and a sincere desire to serve him, even if they don’t fully understand what that entails just yet. When we take that step out of the world and into his arms, we are often faced with the question of who we really are. Today, we would like to share the best understanding we have at this time; our true identity in Messiah.
How HIStory Unfolded
Before we get into the details, let’s recap how arrived to where we are now. We understand that many who are new to the faith will partake in this study. We will retell HIStory as briefly as possible.
Elohim (God) created everything in this world through his Son (the Word/Messiah), including us — the heavens, the earth, the seas and all that is contained within. The fall from perfection started with Adam and Eve who broke the one commandment that they were given. Mankind fell from the Garden of Eden, and were placed into this world. Evil multiplied through the generations until the first end of the world came through the great flood. Noah, his wife, three sons and their wives were saved by listening to Elohim, and building the ark as they were instructed. After the flood subsided, the whole earth repopulated through the three sons of Noah.
Once again, men loved evil rather than good and wickedness increased on the earth. However, Abraham was selected amongst them all to be taken to Elohim (God) as his own possession, he and his descendants forever. This lineage became known as Israel through the his grandson, Jacob. Jacob had twelve sons, who became the twelve tribes of Israel. Due to a famine, they were led into Egypt, and built it up to become the world empire and eventually, they became enslaved in it. Yet, Yahuah (God) in his mercy, raised up Moses and Aaron to deliver his people and bring them out of slavery with a mighty hand — plagues and wonders increased.
After being led out of Egypt, the nation of Israel was taken to Mount Sinai, where they entered into covenant with their creator, likened to a marriage. They were given promises and rules to follow through the ‘Torah’, known as his instructions. After forty years of wandering the desert, the next generation made it into the promised land, as their parents were disobedient and were not allowed to enter, because of their disobedience to the Torah. Israel eventually settles into the promised land, but refused to keep his Torah (laws). For many years, they were plagued by nearby nations as punishment. Between the lessons learned through these hardships that they encountered, and Judges that were raised up to deliver them, they were led back to Yah and his Torah for a time. After some time, they yet again fell into rebellion, as soon as they became comfortable.
A few generations later, David was raised up, a true man after Yah’s heart, who exemplified how to love Him and his people with all his heart, reverencing the Torah (law) of Yah. The kingdom thrived during his reign, and he was promised that one of his descendants would rule on the throne forever, a foreshadow and prophecy of our great Messiah! David died, and Solomon, his son took over, but after him, the nation of Israel was split into two kingdoms, the Northern 10 tribes (known as Israel or Ephraim), and Southern kingdom (Judah, which became known as the Jews). Some of David’s descendant’s who became Kings were good and ruled with the Torah. Some however, were evil, and rebelled against the Elohim and his Torah. The Northern house was overtaken and sent into captivity. The prophet Jeremiah records that they were ‘divorced’.
The southern kingdom fell into massive apostasy, just as the northern had, and were taken into Babylon; held there for 70 years until they were allowed to return. The temple and city were rebuilt, yet they were never really able to shake their polluted ways and rebellion to his Torah. Then came our Messiah, the promised one to come. Our very own creator (the Word) made flesh and walked the earth, healing, teaching and prophesying of greater things to come; The Gospel of the Kingdom. He walked in, and taught faithfully, the Torah (law) of Elohim (God), and showed us how to do it. He demonstrated the difference between; and his disdain for the man-made laws that were added to His Father’s Torah (law), and in some cases elevated above. Ultimately, he was rejected by the Jews, and eventually crucified, the most brutal of executions known to man.
He rose again to eternal life and was revealed to his apostles and others for many days, continuing to reveal the scriptures and Truth. On Pentecost (one of the 7 feast days of Yah), the Apostles were given the Holy Spirit, and power to spread the good news of faith, forgiveness, baptism, repentance, and a newness of life through Messiah Yahusha. The early Assembly (church) consisted of Jews and eventually gentile converts into The Way (a renewed understanding of walking in faith and obedience).
The Apostles and fellow believers continued to be hunted down and killed for their faith and obedience. Rome eventually recognized that this movement wouldn’t go away, so they took over the faith, by mixing their pagan practices with The Way. Those who opposed Rome continued to be rooted out. The Papacy ruled the earth and steered the faith into pure apostasy. Once again, man-made traditions ruled over Yah’s Torah (law). Over the centuries, there were movements that broke away from this ‘Church‘, but man-made traditions still prevailed. That brings us to now, and you. Who are you? Perhaps you were raised a Baptist, Catholic or Lutheran, or any of the 40,000 denominations. Maybe you were raised atheist, but now believe in the Son of Yahuah (God) our Messiah? What if you are of ‘Jewish descent’? Does any of this matter?
What is our Identity in Messiah, once we believe?
We will begin this journey with the promise given to Abraham.
“That in blessing I will bless you, and in multiplying I will multiply your seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and your seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; And in your seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because you have obeyed my voice.”
Abraham was promised, that through one of his future descendants, all the earth would be blessed. This is our Messiah, and through him, we may obtain the blessing and ability to become the children of Yahuah.
“For you are all the children of Elohim by faith in Messiah Yahusha. For as many of you as have been baptized into Messiah have put on Messiah. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for you are all one in Messiah Yahusha. And if ye be Messiah‘s, then are you Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
Paul makes the bold statement, that there is no separation once we come believers. There is no such thing as Jew or Greek (Gentile) for those in the faith. Let’s see the Greek word used here for ‘Greek‘:
This passage can literally be translated like this:
“There is neither Jew nor Gentile, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female: for you are all one in Messiah Yahusha. And if ye be Messiah‘s, then are you Abraham’s seed, and heirs according to the promise.”
Seems pretty clear, it doesn’t matter our background, we become one in Messiah through belief. But, who are we? What/who is Abraham’s Seed?
But you, Israel, are my servant, Jacob whom I have chosen, the seed of Abraham my friend.”
Did you catch that? Israel (Jacob) is synonymous with being The Seed of Abraham. Those who are in Messiah, are the children of Israel, regardless of race or ethnicity. It is also quite interesting Messiah calls Abraham ‘friend’; something echoed in the gospel account:
“You are my friends, if you do whatsoever I command you. Henceforth I call you not servants; for the servant knows not what his master does: but I have called you friends; for all things that I have heard of my Father I have made known unto you. You have not chosen me, but I have chosen you, and ordained you, that you should go and bring forth fruit, and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever you shall ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.”
Paul confirms this same understanding, that those who are in Messiah, are Israel. Let’s take a look at Ephesians 2 for example.
“Wherefore remember, that you being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands;”
Paul just confirmed that you used to be Gentiles in the flesh, and were called such by the Jews.
“That at that time ye were without Messiah, being aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise, having no hope, and without Elohim in the world:”
Before Messiah, you were a foreigner (Gentile) to Israel, having no hope (me too)!
“But now in Messiah Yahusha, you who sometimes were far away are made close by the blood of Messiah.”
Made close to what? The commonwealth of Israel, as it was established in the previous verse.
“For he is our peace, who has made both one, and has broken down the middle wall of partition between us;”
In times past, there was a separation of Jews and Gentiles, but that wall of division was broken down by Messiah!
“Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances (dogma); for to make in himself of two one new man, so making peace;”
Messiah didn’t break down the Law of Yah, but the man-made rules (dogma) that created a separation of people. Now, in him, any who come to him will be accepted into the family of Yah. It was always in his heart that all the nations would turn from their idols and serve him alone. Consider these passages:
- “And if a stranger sojourn with you, or whosoever be among you in your generations, and will offer an offering made by fire, of a sweet savour unto Yahuah; as you do, so he shall do. One ordinance shall be both for you of the congregation, and also for the stranger that sojourns with you, an ordinance for ever in your generations: as ye are, so shall the stranger be before Yahuah. One law and one manner shall be for you, and for the stranger that sojourns with you.”
- “Neither let the son of the stranger, that has joined himself to Yahuah, speak, saying, Yahuah has utterly separated me from his people: neither let the eunuch say, Behold, I am a dry tree. For this is what Yahuah says unto the eunuchs that keep my sabbaths, and choose the things that please me, and take hold of my covenant; Even unto them will I give in my house and within my walls a place and a name better than of sons and of daughters: I will give them an everlasting name, that shall not be cut off. Also the sons of the stranger, that join themselves to Yahuah, to serve him, and to love the name of Yahuah, to be his servants, every one that keeps the sabbath from polluting it, and takes hold of my covenant; Even them will I bring to my holy mountain, and make them joyful in my house of prayer: their burnt offerings and their sacrifices shall be accepted upon mine altar; for mine house shall be called an house of prayer for all people. Yahuah Elohim, which gathers the outcasts of Israel says, Yet will I gather others to him, beside those that are gathered unto him.”
Here, we can see his heart that all would serve him. Remember this verse here, as it will be revealed in Messiah’s ministry a little later in this study.
“Yet will I gather others to him, beside those that are gathered unto him.”
Back to Ephesians 2 and the reconciling of all people into his fold.
“And that he might reconcile both unto Elohim in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:”
The enmity, or hostility that once existed between Jews and Gentiles was severed at the cross!
“And came and preached peace to you which were far away, and to them that were close. For through him we both have access by one Spirit unto the Father. Now therefore you are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of Elohim.”
This household of Elohim, is none other than the assembly of his people; Israel.
Romans 11 & The Olive Tree
What does that mean for people who are not in Messiah? The Jews for example, who to this day reject him as Messiah. Are they still in the family of Yah?
“I ask, then, has Elohim rejected his people? By no means! For I myself am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, a member of the tribe of Benjamin. Elohim has not rejected his people whom he foreknew. Do you not know what the Scripture says of Elijah, how he appeals to Elohim against Israel? “Yahuah, they have killed your prophets, they have demolished your altars, and I alone am left, and they seek my life.” But what is Elohim’s reply to him? “I have kept for myself seven thousand men who have not bowed the knee to Baal.” So too at the present time there is a remnant, chosen by grace.”
Even in Paul’s day, a remnant, or small percentage of the Jews believed Yahusha was the true Messiah, and were preserved. However, the majority rejected him.
“What then? Israel failed to obtain what it was seeking. The elect obtained it, but the rest were hardened, as it is written,“Elohim gave them a spirit of stupor, eyes that would not see and ears that would not hear, down to this very day.”
This remains true even thousands of years later. Most of the Jews still harden their hearts towards Messiah, the Lamb of Elohim.
“So I ask, did they stumble in order that they might fall? By no means! Rather, through their trespass salvation has come to the Gentiles, so as to make Israel jealous. Now if their trespass means riches for the world, and if their failure means riches for the Gentiles, how much more will their full inclusion mean!”
Paul mentions that salvation has been freely offered to all, and how much more so for those who it was originally intended for! Nevertheless, they must unharden their hearts and accept their Messiah to be ‘in’.
“But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, although a wild olive shoot, were grafted in among the others and now share in the nourishing root of the olive tree, do not be arrogant toward the branches. If you are, remember it is not you who support the root, but the root that supports you.”
Jews who rejected Messiah are the branches that were broken off, there is no salvation without him. Let us not gloat over this fact, but mourn for them, hoping that one day they might see their savior.
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned.”
The Jews of old and those in the present that reject Messiah is tragic, and not something to boast or gloat over as Paul rightly says. Nevertheless, the consequence of their rejection must be stated. It’s also worthy to note, that he mentions Gentiles who believed, were grafted into the Olive Tree, which is Israel.
“Yahuah has called you ‘a green olive tree, beautiful with good fruit.’ But with the roar of a great tempest he will set fire to it, and its branches will be consumed. Yahuah Tseba’ot, who planted you, has decreed disaster against you, because of the evil that the house of Israel and the house of Judah have done, provoking me to anger by making offerings to Baal.”
If a Gentile is grafted into the Olive Tree of Israel, they become part of that tree, not some entity that is still foreign (Gentile) to it. Back to Romans 11 and the Olive Tree.
“Then you will say, “Branches were broken off so that I might be grafted in.” That is true. They were broken off because of their unbelief, but you stand fast through faith. So do not become proud, but fear. For if Elohim did not spare the natural branches, neither will he spare you. Note then the kindness and the severity of Elohim: severity toward those who have fallen, but Elohim’s kindness to you, provided you continue in his kindness. Otherwise you too will be cut off. And even they, if they do not continue in their unbelief, will be grafted in, for Elohim has the power to graft them in again. For if you were cut from what is by nature a wild olive tree, and grafted, contrary to nature, into a cultivated olive tree, how much more will these, the natural branches, be grafted back into their own olive tree.”
May Yahuah open the eyes of those who have been broken off, that they may be re grafted in. Until then, they are away from the Olive Tree of Israel. Keep in mind, that there are no Gentiles in this tree. The devil is known for ‘inversion’, or taking the truth and flipping it upside down. If a Jew was broken off from the Olive Tree of Israel, and those who believe are grafted in, then the common understanding of our day is completely backwards. Modern day Jews are the Gentiles (out of covenant, out of the tree) and believers in Messiah are the real members of Israel (in covenant, and in the tree).
Furthermore, there is no gate in New Jerusalem (entering the kingdom) for Gentiles.
“And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the twelve tribes of the children of Israel:”
If you want to enter into the kingdom, it will have to be through one of these twelve gates, being grafted into one of these tribes. Claiming to be a Gentile would not be to one’s advantage when the kingdom arrives.
Parable of the Vineyard
Our Messiah further expounds on this idea; that he would break off those who remained in unbelief (unfruitful), and place in their stead, a fruitful nation. This allegory is known as the Parable of the Vineyard, or Wicked Tenants.
“Hear another parable. There was a master of a house who planted a vineyard and put a fence around it and dug a wine press in it and built a tower and leased it to tenants, and went into another country. When the season for fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the tenants to get his fruit. And the tenants took his servants and beat one, killed another, and stoned another. Again he sent other servants, more than the first. And they did the same to them. Finally he sent his son to them, saying, ‘They will respect my son.’ But when the tenants saw the son, they said to themselves, ‘This is the heir. Come, let us kill him and have his inheritance.’ And they took him and threw him out of the vineyard and killed him. When therefore the owner of the vineyard comes, what will he do to those tenants?” They said to him, “He will put those wretches to a miserable death and let out the vineyard to other tenants who will give him the fruits in their seasons.” Yahusha said to them, “Have you never read in the Scriptures: “‘The stone that the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; this was the Yahuah’s doing, and it is marvelous in our eyes’? Therefore I tell you, the kingdom of Elohim will be taken away from you and given to a people producing its fruits. And the one who falls on this stone will be broken to pieces; and when it falls on anyone, it will crush him.” When the chief priests and the Pharisees heard his parables, they perceived that he was speaking about them. And although they were seeking to arrest him, they feared the crowds, because they held him to be a prophet.”
Those that rejected the Son were kicked out of the vineyard and in their stead, were placed those who believe in Him, and who continue to bring forth fruits. Remember what we read in John 15, those who don’t produce good fruit will be broken back off. Keep in mind, the vineyard remains the same, it is only the people in it who are changed. 2 Esdras (included in the 1611 KJV) further explains this mystery.
“What shall I do to you, O Jacob (Israel)? You would not obey me, O Judah. I will turn to other nations and will give them my name, that they may keep my statutes. Because you have forsaken me, I also will forsake you. When you beg mercy of me, I will show you no mercy. “Thus says El Shaddai: Your house is desolate; I will drive you out as the wind drives straw; and your sons will have no children, because with you they have neglected my commandment and have done what is evil in my sight. I will give your houses to a people that will come, who without having heard me will believe. Those to whom I have shown no signs will do what I have commanded. They have seen no prophets, yet will recall their iniquities. I call to witness the gratitude of the people that is to come, whose children rejoice with gladness; though they do not see me with bodily eyes, yet with the spirit they will believe the things I have said.”
2 Esdras 1:24-25,33-37
The former tenants were taken out, and we are the ones placed in the vineyard now. What are we doing with it? Will we walk contrary to his commandments as the former did, or will we bring forth the fruits he’s always desired of man?
“By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit, and so prove to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you; abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love.”
What we are putting forth today is not to be mixed with, and confused to be ‘Supersessionism’, also known as ‘Replacement Theology’, which takes some elements of what we are discussing now, but adding many falsehoods; creating an easy to destroy straw man argument. What we are deliberating today cannot be boxed in to a modern day theological package; we are sharing the truth of the Word and what it teaches.
It is commonly taught today, that the works of the flesh that Elohim rejects, is obedience to the Torah.
“Now the works of the flesh are evident: sexual immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger, rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness, orgies, and things like these. I warn you, as I warned you before, that those who do such things (law breakers) will not inherit the kingdom of Elohim. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Messiah Yahusha have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.”
So Why Did Messiah Have to Die?
“I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”
Messiah came to redeem his people, and give an open invitation to any who would listen. As we mentioned earlier, Israel was married to Elohim, then divorced. Yet, many questions remain; Was Israel married to the Father, or the Son? Furthermore, why did Messiah have to die? This is the mystery of the Gospel (good news) that we need to understand.
Before we can continue, we need to recognize who was Israel married to, the Father or the Son? This has been debated for centuries. However, we believe the answer to this is revealed in the Aramaic version of the Torah, much older than the standard Masoretic text. Before we get into this, we need to establish who Messiah is.
“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with Elohim, and the Word was Elohim. He was in the beginning with Elohim; all things were made through him, and without him was not anything made that was made. And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.”
Our Messiah is The Word. He was with the Father in the very beginning, and through him, everything was made. For a better understanding of Who Messiah is, please see these two studies:
“He was in the world, and the world was made through him, yet the world did not know him. He came to his own, and his own people did not receive him.”
They should have recognized him, as he was the very one who the Father sent and formed them from the dust. He appeared to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses and many of the prophets throughout history. He was with Israel from the beginning.
“And Abram was the son of ninety and nine years, and Yahuah
𐤄𐤅𐤄𐤉 appeared to Abram, and said to him, I am El Shadai; serve before Me and be perfect in your flesh. And I will set My covenant between My WORD and you, and will multiply you very greatly.”
“And I have established My covenant between My WORD and you, and your sons after you in their generations, for an everlasting covenant, to be an Elohim to you and to your sons after you.”
Echoed in the New Testament:
“The kingdom of heaven is like unto a certain king, which made a marriage for his son,”
It was our Messiah, the Word, who took Israel out of Egypt and made a covenant (marriage) with his people. Jude knew it.
“Now I want to remind you, although you once fully knew it, that Yahusha, who saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe.”
If we were to believe that Israel was once married to the Father, but now with the Son, this would be against his own Torah (law).
“A man shall not take his father’s wife, nor discover his father’s skirt”
But why did Messiah, who was married to Israel have to die? It’s because his own Torah (law) states that he cannot take back a woman whom he divorced and was defiled through adultery.
“When a man has taken a wife, and married her, and it come to pass that she find no favor in his eyes, because he has found some uncleanness in her: then let him write her a bill of divorcement, and give it in her hand, and send her out of his house. And when she is departed out of his house, she may go and be another man’s wife. And if the latter husband hate her, and write her a bill of divorcement, and gives it in her hand, and sends her out of his house; or if the latter husband die, which took her to be his wife; Her former husband, which sent her away, may not take her again to be his wife, after that she is defiled; for that is abomination before Yahuah: and thou shalt not cause the land to sin, which Yahuah your Elohim gives you for an inheritance.”
Here’s a small snippet from Jeremiah:
“And I saw, when for all the causes whereby backsliding Israel committed adultery I had put her away, and given her a bill of divorce; yet her treacherous sister Judah feared not, but went and played the harlot also. And it came to pass through the lightness of her whoredom, that she defiled the land, and committed adultery with stones and with stocks.”
Here is where the ‘mystery of the gospel’ comes into play. How would Messiah be able to take back his whoring ex-wife?
“But Messiah being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us. For if the blood of bulls and of goats, and the ashes of a heifer sprinkling the unclean, sanctifies to the purifying of the flesh: How much more shall the blood of Messiah, who through the eternal Spirit offered himself without spot to Elohim, purge your conscience from dead works to serve the living Elohim? And for this cause he is the mediator of the renewed testament, that by means of death, for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first covenant, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance. For where a covenant is, there must also of necessity be the death of the maker. For a covenant is of force after men are dead: otherwise it is of no strength at all while the maker lives. Whereupon neither the first covenant was dedicated without blood. For when Moses had spoken every precept to all the people according to the Torah (law), he took the blood of calves and of goats, with water, and scarlet wool, and hyssop, and sprinkled both the book, and all the people, Saying, This is the blood of the covenant which Elohim has enjoined unto you. Moreover he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle, and all the vessels of the ministry. And almost all things are by the Torah (law) purged with blood; and without shedding of blood is no remission. It was therefore necessary that the patterns of things in the heavens should be purified with these; but the heavenly things themselves with better sacrifices than these. For Messiah is not entered into the holy places made with hands, which are the figures of the true; but into heaven itself, now to appear in the presence of Elohim for us: Nor yet that he should offer himself often, as the high priest enters into the holy place every year with blood of others; For then must he often have suffered since the foundation of the world: but now once in the end of the age has he appeared to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself. And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: So Messiah was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation.”
He came to renew the covenant with his people by his own blood, taking away sin and redeeming us! While the blood of bulls and goats could offer forgiveness of sins, it never ‘took it away’. The people just kept sinning and slaughtering animals as a way of life.
Through his own death, he was able to renew the covenant, cleanse us inside and out, and betroth his people once again to him, HalleluYah! It’s worthy to note, that some would ask the question of why Yahuah (The Father) would allow ‘human sacrifice’ for sins. A close examination of the sacrifices listed in Leviticus and other books of the Torah, would reveal that nearly all of the offerings were shadows and patterns leading to Messiah’s himself.
Some are easy to spot, such as the perfect Passover lamb; the one without blemish, neither was any his bones to be broken. Some are much deeper and harder to place, such as the cleansing in Leviticus 14, or the red (adama/land) heifer in Numbers 19 and many others. If you would like to study these out, further, we would invite you to study alongside us with our line by line examination of the Torah here:
Nevertheless, his death for sins was announced by the great prophet Isaiah.
“He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not. Surely he has borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of Elohim, and afflicted. But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and Yahuah has laid on him the iniquity of us all. He was oppressed, and he was afflicted, yet he opened not his mouth: he is brought as a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is dumb, so he opens not his mouth. He was taken from prison and from judgment: and who shall declare his generation? for he was cut off out of the land of the living: for the transgression of my people was he stricken. And he made his grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death; because he had done no violence, neither was any deceit in his mouth. Yet it pleased Yahuah to bruise him; he has put him to grief: when you will make his soul an offering for sin, he shall see his seed, he shall prolong his days, and the pleasure of Yahuah shall prosper in his hand. He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities.”
There are some out there who teach Isaiah 53 was not pointing to Messiah, in this video, we test that theory in-depth.
Come Home Lost Sheep
So who are we? His sheep; his people, his assembly, or congregation, commonly called the church — better identified as Israel. Let’s take a look at the Greek word for ‘church’, Ekklesia (strongs concordance link)
Thanks to the Greek Septuagint (Greek version of the Bible), we are able to see how this same word for church was used in the Tanakh, what people call “The Old Testament”.
Furthermore, here we can see the definitions:
‘The Church’, more accurately spoken as congregation, or assembly, is not some new entity. Messiah did not put away Israel and create a church. The congregation (church – Ekklesia) is the Olive Tree of Israel, as we covered earlier.
“What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.”
Regardless of where we came from, what language we speak, what ethnicity, race or color we are. Through him, we have the ability to become the Sons of Yahuah.
“But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of Elohim, even to them that believe on his name:”
He came for his sheep…
“But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel.”
“All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and Yahuah has laid on him the iniquity of us all.”
Again, our origins do not matter!
“I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine. As the Father knows me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.Therefore does my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again.”
“Yet will I gather others to him, beside those that are gathered unto him.”
This again, was that breaking down of the ‘separating wall’. There is no such thing as Jew or Gentile in his fold.
You’re either in, or out.
He laid down his life for us, that he might gather all that will hear and obey him. With this in mind, we will end with this point. Will you hear his voice?
Hearing His Voice
“My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of my hand”
What does it mean to ‘hear his voice’? Modern day Christianity may have many different answers for this question, however, in just a moment, we will see how the Word defines it, as this is a requirement for being His sheep.
As we mentioned at the outset of this study, the Devil is the deceiver, and has triumphantly fooled the people. In the midst of a world full of deceptions, conspiracies and outright lies, there is one that is more subtle than them all. Consequently, this also happens to be the one of the most important. He has successfully hidden the identity of who Israel is today. If the Devil can successfully remove the identity of modern day Israelites, then passages like this, are of no importance or relevance in their eyes:
“Wherefore the children of Israel shall keep the sabbath, to observe the sabbath throughout their generations, for a perpetual covenant. It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever: for in six days Yahuah made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.”
This, is one of the biggest deceptions perpetrated today. If you’re convinced that you’re not Israel, but a ‘Gentile’ believer, then false doctrines pushing the idea that the Torah (law/commandments/instructions) of Yahuah is not for you, but for ‘Jews’, become easy to carry out. However, when clarity of our true status is revealed, verses like these, and the Torah in general, become paramount. Furthermore, Messiah himself said that if we want to be the Seed of Abraham (Israel), we need to do the same things he did.
“If you were Abraham’s children, you would do the works of Abraham.”
Pointing to this passage, to which, Abraham obeyed the voice.
“Because that Abraham obeyed my voice, and kept my charge, my commandments, my statutes, and my Torah (laws).”
“But will you acknowledge, O vain man, that faith without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father justified by works, when he had offered Isaac his son upon the altar? Do you see how faith wrought with his works, and by works was faith made perfect? And the scripture was fulfilled which says, Abraham believed Elohim, and it was imputed unto him for righteousness: and he was called the Friend of Elohim. You see then how that by works a man is justified, and not by faith only.”
Obeying his voice….
Let’s define hearing, or obeying his voice.
“Now therefore, if you will obey my voice indeed, and keep my covenant, then you shall be a peculiar treasure unto me above all people: for all the earth is mine: And you shall be unto me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation. These are the words which you will speak unto the children of Israel.”
“And said, If you will diligently listen to the voice of Yahuah your Elohim, and will do that which is right in his sight, and will give ear to his commandments, and keep all his statutes, I will put none of these diseases upon you, which I have brought upon the Egyptians: for I am Yahuah that heals you.”
“When you shall listen to the voice of Yahuah your Elohim, to keep all his commandments which I command you this day, to do that which is right in the eyes of Yahuah your Elohim.”
“You shall therefore obey the voice of Yahuah your Elohim, and do his commandments and his statutes, which I command thee this day.”
There are many more to share, but this should be enough to get the point. Messiah is the same yesterday and today. He was serious about keeping the commandments then and now. His sheep hear his voice and follow him.
What does it even mean to follow him?
“My little children, these things write I unto you, that you don’t sin. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Yahusha the righteous: And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world. And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keeps not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.But whoso keeps his word, in him verily is the love of Elohim perfected: hereby know we that we are in him. He that says he lives in him ought himself also so to walk, even as he walked.”
1 John 2:1-6
How did he walk? Obedient to the Torah (commandments). Walking in spirit and truth. Some would say he’s talking about new commandments.
“Brethren, I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which you have heard from the beginning.”
1 John 2:7
As we mentioned earlier, Messiah was serious about sin.
“If your right eye causes you to sin, tear it out and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body be thrown into hell. And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. For it is better that you lose one of your members than that your whole body go into hell.”
What is sin?
“Whosoever commits sin transgresses also the Torah (law): for sin is the transgression of the Torah (law).”
1 John 3:4
If we are his sheep, we hear his voice and obey the Torah, just as he did. Will any of us be perfect? Hardly. Especially as we begin in this walk. Have we all broken the commandments, yes. Nevertheless, this is not an excuse to continue in sin.
“What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin that grace may abound? By no means! How can we who died to sin still live in it? Do you not know that all of us who have been baptized into Messiah Yahusha were baptized into his death? We were buried therefore with him by baptism into death, in order that, just as Messiah was raised from the dead by the glory of the Father, we too might walk in newness of life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we shall certainly be united with him in a resurrection like his. We know that our old self was crucified with him in order that the body of sin might be brought to nothing, so that we would no longer be enslaved to sin. For one who has died has been set free from sin. Now if we have died with Messiah, we believe that we will also live with him. We know that Messiah, being raised from the dead, will never die again; death no longer has dominion over him. For the death he died he died to sin, once for all, but the life he lives he lives to Elohim. So you also must consider yourselves dead to sin and alive to Elohim in Messiah Yahusha. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, to make you obey its passions. Do not present your members to sin as instruments for unrighteousness, but present yourselves to Elohim as those who have been brought from death to life, and your members to Elohim as instruments for righteousness.”
Even more simply put:
“Afterward Yahusha found him in the temple, and said to him, Behold, you are made whole: sin no more, lest a worse thing come unto you.”
We have been made whole by our Messiah, HalleluYah! His words remain true for us right now; sin no more, lest a worse thing come upon us! He forewarned us many times that the majority of those who would call him Messiah would be rejected.
“Not every one that says unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that does the will of my Father which is in heaven. Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in your name? and in your name have cast out devils? and in your name done many wonderful works? And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity.”
Let no one deceive you, these people are ‘believers’. Many who call him ‘Lord’, Messiah or Master will be rejected at the door. That may seem harsh, or contrary to the ‘Gospel’ of salvation you’ve heard all your life. Even so, please stay with us, this information is extremely important.
Many sheep are called, few are chosen.
“The kingdom of heaven may be compared to a king who gave a wedding feast for his son, and sent his servants to call those who were invited to the wedding feast, but they would not come. Again he sent other servants, saying, ‘Tell those who are invited, “See, I have prepared my dinner, my oxen and my fat calves have been slaughtered, and everything is ready. Come to the wedding feast.”’ But they paid no attention and went off, one to his farm, another to his business, while the rest seized his servants, treated them shamefully, and killed them. The king was angry, and he sent his troops and destroyed those murderers and burned their city. Then he said to his servants, ‘The wedding feast is ready, but those invited were not worthy. Go therefore to the main roads and invite to the wedding feast as many as you find.’ And those servants went out into the roads and gathered all whom they found, both bad and good. So the wedding hall was filled with guests.”
This parable might sound familiar at this point. It’s another take, or view of the Parable of the Vineyard. Those who were originally called to the wedding were not worthy and were destroyed. Then, the king said that any who heard the message would be invited to the wedding, much like the good news of Messiah is freely available to all right now. Keep in mind this parable clarifies that the marriage intentions has remained the same since the beginning. We are blessed to be living in a time after the first coming of our Messiah, waiting for his return.
“But when the king came in to look at the guests, he saw there a man who had no wedding garment. And he said to him, ‘Friend, how did you get in here without a wedding garment?’ And he was speechless.Then the king said to the attendants, ‘Bind him hand and foot and cast him into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.’ For many are called, but few are chosen.”
This is the reality. Regardless of what is popularized today, anyone can call upon Messiah for salvation, yet not all will make it into the kingdom.
“Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watches, and keeps his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.”
Only those who have faith and obey him will enter.
“Blessed are those who keep the commandments, so that they may have the right to the tree of life and that they may enter the city by the gates. Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and the sexually immoral and murderers and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood.”
We are 100% saved by grace through faith.
Nevertheless, there is trial of testing, just like the Israelites of old had, when they left Egypt. To recap, they were protected (or saved) by the blood of the Passover lamb on the doorpost. Then, they were taken into the wilderness (desert) to be tested.
“And you shall remember the whole way that Yahuah your Elohim has led you these forty years in the wilderness, that he might humble you, testing you to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not.”
The disobedient were not allowed to enter into the land. This pattern remains the same for us today. We are saved by the blood of the lamb (Messiah) and are in the wilderness being tested now, whether we will keep the commandments or not. There will be another gathering and separating of his lambs in the future. The ‘church’ calls it the rapture, yet scripture defines it as the final regathering into the kingdom, commonly referred to the 2nd, or Greater Exodus.
“As I live, declares Yahuah Elohim, surely with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm and with wrath poured out I will be king over you. I will bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you are scattered, with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, and with wrath poured out. And I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there I will enter into judgment with you face to face. As I entered into judgment with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so I will enter into judgment with you, declares Yahuah Elohim. I will make you pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant. I will purge out the rebels from among you, and those who transgress against me. I will bring them out of the land where they sojourn, but they shall not enter the land of Israel. Then you will know that I am Yahuah.”
The choice is ours to be his sheep who hear his voice, or not.
“And he said unto him, Why do you call me good? there is none good but one, that is, Elohim: but if you want to enter into life, keep the commandments.”
Some would say that Messiah replaced the Torah (commandments) with two commandments, loving Elohim, and people. Here are a few resources I’d recommend to you. First, what exactly the ‘law of Christ’ is:
Truly, all the law can be summed up into two; loving Yahuah with all our heart, soul and mind, and loving our neighbor as ourselves! Yet, most people are unaware of what scriptural love even means:
Here’s a snippet:
‘I rejoiced greatly that I found of your children walking in Truth, as we have received a commandment from the Father. And now I beseech you, lady, not as though I wrote a new commandment unto you, but that which we had from the beginning, that we love one another. And this is love, that we walk after his commandments. This is the commandment, That, as you have heard from the beginning, you should walk in it.”
2 John 1:4-6
Lastly, we should earnestly take another look at John chapter 3, where the most popular verse in the world is nestled in — truly understanding the entire message of salvation.
Let’s wrap this study up with one final passage. In Deuteronomy 30, we have the prophesied evidence for knowing we are in the last days, and who his people are, and what they do to enter into the land.
“And when all these things come upon you, the blessing and the curse, which I have set before you, and you call them to mind among all the nations where Yahuah your Elohim has driven you, and return to Yahuah your Elohim, you and your children, and obey his voice in all that I command you today, with all your heart and with all your soul, then Yahuah your Elohim will restore your fortunes and have mercy on you, and he will gather you again from all the peoples where Yahuah your Elohim has scattered you. If your outcasts are in the uttermost parts of heaven, from there Yahuah your Elohim will gather you, and from there he will take you. And Yahuah your Elohim will bring you into the land that your fathers possessed, that you may possess it. And he will make you more prosperous and numerous than your fathers. And Yahuah your Elohim will circumcise your heart and the heart of your offspring, so that you will love Yahuah your Elohim with all your heart and with all your soul, that you may live. And Yahuah your Elohim will put all these curses on your foes and enemies who persecuted you. And you shall again obey the voice of Yahuah and keep all his commandments that I command you today. Yahuah your Elohim will make you abundantly prosperous in all the work of your hand, in the fruit of your womb and in the fruit of your cattle and in the fruit of your ground. For Yahuah will again take delight in prospering you, as he took delight in your fathers, when you obey the voice of Yahuah your Elohim, to keep his commandments and his statutes that are written in this Book of the Torah (Law), when you turn to Yahuah your Elohim with all your heart and with all your soul.”
So who are you? You are no longer a Jew, Gentile, Atheist, or whatever you were. If you’ve called upon the name of Yahusha (Yeshua) for salvation and follow him, you are one of his sheep, a child of Yah — a citizen of Israel.
“And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remains in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem:”
With this new information and correctly understood identity, do not get puffed up, but continue your walk in fear and trembling.
“The meek will he guide in judgment: and the humble will he teach his way.”
“Follow peace with all men and holiness, without which, no man shall see Yahuah.”
Dispensational theology teaches a continued separation between Jews and Gentiles; perpetrating bad doctrine regarding the Political State of Israel. To learn more about the ‘State of Israel’ (not to be confused with the Nation of Israel, Yah’s people), please see this playlist:
For more on the error of dispensationalism, please see this video:
For better understanding of ‘how’ to walk in the Torah (law), see this video:
If you’re new to all this and have many more questions, please see this ‘Basics’ playlist:
May Yahuah bless you and keep you,
Yahuah make his face shine upon you and be gracious to you,
Yahuah lift up his countenance upon you and give you Shalom (peace)!