Shilo ben Hod released new Hebrew worship songs recently, and these are some of my favourites: the Rock of Israel and Yeshua, Saviour. The second song called Yeshua, Saviour is based on Psalm 121. I hope you enjoy these and remember Yeshua’s words in Matthew 5:11 – 20:
11 “How blessed you are when people insult you and persecute you and tell all kinds of vicious lies about you because you follow me! 12 Rejoice, be glad, because your reward in heaven is great — they persecuted the prophets before you in the same way. 13 “You are salt for the Land. But if salt becomes tasteless, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything except being thrown out for people to trample on. 14 “You are light for the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Likewise, when people light a lamp, they don’t cover it with a bowl but put it on a lampstand, so that it shines for everyone in the house. 16 In the same way, let your light shine before people, so that they may see the good things you do and praise your Father in heaven. 17 “Don’t think that I have come to abolish the Torah or the Prophets. I have come not to abolish but to complete. 18Yes indeed! I tell you that until heaven and earth pass away, not so much as a yud or a stroke will pass from the Torah — not until everything that must happen has happened. 19 So whoever disobeys the least of these mitzvot and teaches others to do so will be called the least in the Kingdom of Heaven. But whoever obeys them and so teaches will be called great in the Kingdom of Heaven. 20 For I tell you that unless your righteousness is far greater than that of the Torah-teachers and P’rushim, you will certainly not enter the Kingdom of Heaven!
Is this the end? With everything that is going on in the world and America, is this really the end? It’s almost been a year since the first Covid-19 cases were reported and even with vaccines being rolled out in various countries, the death toll increases every day. I’m not an American, but there is a political change of power in America which is worrying combined with other superpower nations around the world increasingly becoming aggressive such as China and Iran. What did Yeshua say about these events? A couple of weeks ago, Pastor Peter Tsukahira uploaded this video below on the birth pains that Yeshua spoken about in Matthew 24.
“But whoever holds out till the end will be delivered.” Matthew 24: 13
Shalom friends, I’ve been following this highly recommended channel on Youtube called “Sergio and Rhoda in Israel” for a number of years and I would like to share this channel with you. Due to corona virus restrictions in various parts of the world (including Israel), international travel is either restricted or unavailable. However, one could still “travel” by watching videos such a these produced by Sergio and Rhoda. They are believers in Yeshua living in Nazareth, Israel and they produce videos about places of interest in Israel with a biblical perspective. I’ve included 2 of their videos and visit the Youtube channel to view more.
I hope you are doing well, under the circumstances of coronavirus, social distancing and self isolation measures imposed by various governments all over the planet. I saw a thought provoking video by Chaim Goldman where he discusses the 2 crowns of 2 Jewish Messiahs (Mashiach ben yosef / משיח בן־יוסף and Mashiach ben David / משיח בן דוד ) which we believe the roles Yeshua the Messiah has fulfilled as the suffering Servant (Isaiah Chapter 53) and will fulfill when he returns which I believe will be sooner rather than later, [and not because of the current pandemic].
May ADONAI, the God of Israel in the name of Yeshua / ישוע Mashiach continue to bless and protect you and your family during these times.
If you are interested in finding out more about the origins of Rabbinical Judaism and why [some*] Jews don’t believe in Yeshua. [I had to write the word “some” as I’m a Jewish believer in Yeshua, I was born Jewish and I didn’t believe in Yeshua growing up, but later accepted Him as my Jewish Messiah and I’m still and always will be Jewish]. The discussion on Rabbinical Judaism starts around 16’50.
Evangelical communities in the United States have largely supported the nation of Israel and for good reason. Years of antisemitism and persecution have skewed the Jewish perception of their Christian counterparts, and has painted a false image of the very Jewish Jesus. Pastor John Hagee runs CUFI (Christians United for Israel) out of Texas, and over the years it has become one of the largest pro-Israel organizations in America. The Hebrew Roots movement and rise in Messianic Judaism may contribute to the fairly recent explosive support for the Holy Land.
Growing up as a reform Jew, my religion and ethnicity were so intertwined that Zionism was just as much of a religious virtue as say, tzedakah (charity) and mitzvoth (commandments and good deeds). I looked in awe at scenic laminated photos of the Western Wall and the Jerusalem skyline proudly displayed after a group from synagogue returned from a trip. Twice a week at Hebrew school the American and Israeli national anthems were sung and the flags were brought down together to the bimah (raised platform in the synagogue from which the Torah is read and services are held). Before Jesus found me and completed my Jewish identity in him, I was spiritually lost and wondered why I needed to travel across the world to experience God in a more powerful way. Since God created the heavens and the earth, it didn’t make sense to me that I was ‘less of a Jew’ if I hadn’t yet taken up my birthright trip or had tourist photos taken in a Middle Eastern desert.
As a thirteen year old studying for my bat-mitzvah, my knowledge of the Torah wasn’t extensive, but the various questions I had weren’t taken too seriously by my tutor. My portion was Korach, and after inquiring about the possibility of a man getting swallowed by the earth and how that could possibly relate to Jewish life here and now, he replied “Who knows if any of this sh*t is real”. (this is an example of a ‘flashbulb memory’. I don’t remember much else from bat mitzvah study at 13 but those words were so utterly shocking (and funny at the time) that they never left me and probably never will)). I figured that my religious confusion would be wiped away once I made it to that patch of land and that God would solidify my Jewish pride as I touched the wall. This wasn’t exactly the case. I visited Israel with my local church last summer as a hoopla after finally, through Jesus, achieving the assurance of an authentic relationship with God that I had always been searching for. I got the touristy desert photo & everything!
The potential drawback of this thinking is putting religious piety before humanity and care for the lowly. This is exactly what we’re told not to do (Isaiah 2:12, Isaiah 23:9, James 4:6, James 4:10, Philippians 4:3, Proverbs 8:13, Proverbs 27:2, Proverbs 29:23, Luke 14:11, Matthew 23:12, etc..). The word ‘humble’ occurs 71 times in the Bible, not including the variances ‘humility’ and ‘contrite’. That would give us an even 100. We know that the fullness of God’s plan will unfold regardless of our human attempts to assist, and Jesus makes it clear that our job is to simply obey and draw those from every tribe, nation, and tongue into his kingdom so they too can experience his peace. I will not put myself with one camp or the other, because labels don’t help us to actually understand people. Jesus ministered to individuals as well as to groups, and the need to assimilate can draw us away from our unique, God given identity and into a watered down form of spirituality. This conflict is more complicated than meets the eye, and Christians need to be a light and safe haven for the Jewish and Muslim communities pitted against each other. At the end of the day, we want every people group to notice something different about us. I’ve been called a pacifist, but knowing that Christ is the ultimate authority over every world power gives us the peace to walk confidently through tumultuous situations and show unconditional kindness to those who seem strange or unfamiliar.
Jesus replied, “Do what you came for, friend.” Then the men came forward, seized Jesus, and arrested him. With that, one of Jesus’ companions reaches for his sword, drew it out and struck the servant of the high priest, cutting off his ear. “Put your sword back in its’ place,” Jesus said to him,”For all who draw the sword will die by the sword.” ~Matthew 26:50-52 (NIV)
During this holiday season my hope & prayer is that we focus on our similarities rather than our differences. Reversal of fortunes is a common theme weaved through God’s story, and it’s a call to us to treat our ‘enemies’ as his sons and daughters with infinite potential, marked with his fingerprint. As the wise Martin Luther King said,
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”
Antisemitism across Europe has been increasing over the past couple of years. This week, a number of UK Labour Members of Parliament broke away from the UK Labour Party due to antisemitism within the party (and their Brexit policies). In France, there have been numerous incidents including the murder of Jews. As a result of the most recent incidents this week, Israeli Immigration Minister Yoav Galant, called for French Jews to move to Israel. The message is clear: Come home!
I’ve included a documentary from Vice news and the news reports about Yoav Galant and UK Labour MPs resigning below:
Minister Galant says vandalism of French Jewish cemetery “reminiscent of dark days in the history of the Jewish people.”
Minister and Cabinet member Yoav Galant on Tuesday condemned anti-Semitism in France in the wake of the vandalism discovered at a Jewish cemetery, calling on French Jews to “come home” to Israel.
Earlier on Tuesday, swastikas were found sprayed on some 80 graves in a Jewish cemetery in the village of Quatzenheim, close to the border with Germany in the Alsace region.
The vandalism was discovered ahead of planned rallies in Paris and other French cities to denounce a spate of anti-Semitic incidents in the country, culminating with the harassment of Jewish philosopher Alain Finkielkraut at a “yellow vest” protest on Saturday.
Galant tweeted that the vandalism at the Jewish cemetery was “reminiscent of dark days in the history of the Jewish people.”
“Last week I visited the French Jewish community, which faces anti-Semitic attacks and a process of assimilation.
“The State of Israel is the protected national home for the Jews of the world. I strongly condemn the anti-Semitism in France and call on [its] Jews – come home, immigrate to Israel.”
Labour’s deputy leader Tom Watson, in a video message on Facebook, urged the “hard left” to stop celebrating the departure of the seven MPs, saying it was “a moment for regret and reflection not for a mood of anger or a tone of triumph”.
“Betrayal narratives and shouting insults at the departed might make some feel better briefly but it does nothing to address the reasons that good colleagues might want to leave,” said Mr Watson.
He said Luciana Berger’s decision to quit was a “wake-up call for the Labour Party” over anti-Semitism, saying: “We were slow to acknowledge we had a problem and even slower to deal with it.”
Labour had to “broaden out” and become more tolerant, he said, adding: “I love this party. But sometimes I no longer recognise it, that is why I do not regard those who have resigned today as traitors.”
What is the new group trying to do?
The seven MPs, who all back a further EU referendum, are not launching a new political party – they will sit in Parliament as the Independent Group.
But Chuka Umunna said they had “taken the first step” and urged other Labour MPs – and members of other parties – to join them in “building a new politics”.
“It is time we dumped this country’s old-fashioned politics and created an alternative that does justice to who we are today and gives this country a politics fit for the here and now – the 21st Century,” he said at a launch event in central London.
Psalm 23 is probably one of the most famous psalms. Written by King David, this psalm has inspired painters and even composers such as Johnn Sebastian bach to compose music to the words. But have you heard the words in Hebrew?
Israeli Band, Miqedem has recently released a new album called “Vol II” and
Psalm 23 is one of the featured songs. Enjoy! The other songs from Vol II are also amazing!
I’ve found this interesting article and I’d wanted to share it.
In the final paragraph the writer notes the following:
“And I can tell you as an eye-witness here that the ayin is returning to Israel and the Jewish people as never before. Through visions dreams, study of the prophets and testimonies, many Jewish people are joyously discovering the Messiah, King of the Jews. That final letter is now being grafted back onto Yeshu and becoming Yeshua, the Hebrew word for salvation, and eyes are opening to see Him who is our very Jewish brother and King.”
All I could say is that I’m also an example of someone who was secular and found Yeshua Mashiach (or actually Yeshua Mashiach found me!) 16 years ago. When I became a believer, I only knew 1 other Jewish believer in Yeshua, but during the last year or so, I’ve “met” many believers over social media. In my opinion, there is a great messianic awakening happening!
I was speaking in Hebrew to a friendly middle-aged Israeli woman about Yeshua and was very surprised that she agreed with everything I said. Finally I felt there was something not quite right, so I asked her if she understood about whom I was speaking. She said yes, Yehoshua ben-Nun. So I clarified and said, “Yeshu.” Then and there she screamed at me and said, get away from me, missionary! and she left in a huff.
“Yeshu” is the abbreviation of the name Yeshua as found in the rabbinic writings. It is the removal of the last letter of the name, which is the letter ayin, or ein. Ayin is also the word for eye, but is also the word for a spring of water, as in Ein Gedi- the Goat Spring. The use of the same word for eye and spring define the spiritual nature of the eye, which is like a spring of water. A good eye, or spring, puts out much good water, and a bad spring, or eye, is one who is not generous, which is the biblical and common expression, ayin rah – evil eye – meaning stingy, as opposed to generous – ayin tova – good eye (see Deuteronomy 15:9, Matthew 6:21-24).
By removing the ayin from the name Yeshua, one removes the eye, causing blindness. The Hebrew for blind is eiver, also beginning with the letter ayin. As Paul writes in Romans 11:25, ‘For I would not, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fullness of the Gentiles be come in‘, and Isaiah wrote, “Who is blind but my servant…” (Isaiah 42:19). Some even construe the name Yeshu to be a curse, which indeed it is.
As there are no numbers in Hebrew, the letters define numbers- the first letter alef being one, beit, two, etc. The letter ayin is the number seventy. According to biblical exegesis, seventy is the number of the nations, the Gentiles, the goyim, based on the scripture, “When the Most High gave the nations their inheritance, when He separated the sons of man, he set the boundaries of the peoples according to the number of the sons of
Israel” (Deuteronomy 32:8), which is seventy Hebrews that went down to Egypt with Jacob (Genesis 46:27). That ayin, or eye, which is given for vision, and the spring of living waters, has gone out to give that vision to the nations, and that yeshuah, which is the Hebrew word for salvation, has gone out from Israel to the world, now for nearly two millennia, to either be accepted or rejected by the Gentiles.
Now, in these latter days, Israel has been re-gathered back to the Promised Land of Israel, a phenomenon unprecedented in history, and seen before the eyes of all the nations. Both Yeshua and Paul inform us that Israel shall be set apart until the time and fullness of the nations be come in (Luke 21:24; Romans 11:25-32), and then all Israel will be saved.
And I can tell you as an eye-witness here that the ayin is returning to Israel and the Jewish people as never before. Through visions dreams, study of the prophets and testimonies, many Jewish people are joyously discovering the Messiah, King of the Jews. That final letter is now being grafted back onto Yeshu and becoming Yeshua, the Hebrew word for salvation, and eyes are opening to see Him who is our very Jewish brother and King.
The song “Jerusalem” from the first album of Uzia Zadok ‘Shomer Israel’
Words: From the sources and Sharon Abilach
Music: Sharon Abilhak
Adaptation and musical production: Doron Elimelech
May peace be in your army, peace in your palaces,
Deep in your heart, your memory is engraved and the tears are flowing by themselves,
For the sake of my brother and my companion I shall speak peace to you,
We will always be with you, together forever.
Today our feet stand at your gates, Jerusalem, Jerusalem,
We have not stopped hoping, we want you, Jerusalem, Jerusalem.
Jerusalem raised mountains around her and the Lord around his people,
Wherever we go, we will continue to read on your behalf, and in the streets of the city to walk.
Christian Doctrine The WORD from Heaven as Read by the Angels in Heaven. "The woman fled into the wilderness, where God had prepared a place for her to be nourished for 1,260 days" (Revelation 12:6) "Then let those who are in Judea flee to the mountains, let those in the city get out, and let those in the country stay out of the city" (Luke 21:21)