|This ministry has a distinct kingdom, Messianic vision, identifying with God’s call and plan for the Jewish people and the church. My position is pre-trib! Personally: I was saved in 1976 while working as a war correspondent, journalist, photographer, artist and environmentalist. My calling is to share these great end-time dramas, to stand as a watchman and above all, to glorify my God.|
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●Trump signs into law new “Genocide Prevention Act,” aiming at prevention of anti-Semitic attacks on Israel. It is named the “Elie Wiesel Act” after the Holocaust survivor.
●US troop withdrawal from Syria has begun.
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Shabbat (Sabbath) begins on Fridays at 6pm and ends on Saturdays at 6pm. The purpose is to help the church and Israel become reconciled in Messiah and to identify the rift, and the needed restoration. There is much in the church that needs to change before it can be fully reconciled with the Jew. Likewise, changes in Jewish thinking are also needed.
Edition 75. April 23rd 2011
Israelitis, the disease
●Palestinian leaders have announced that they will declare an independent state within the borders of Israel in September. They say that they will seek UN backing for their new sovereign state. It's unlikely that the UN will oppose such a move.
●As reported in the previous edition, the Palestinians are calling for a new intifada against Israel. They started by using Facebook for this. Thankfully, Facebook took down the page, but the intifada will most probably go ahead.
●Egypt is actively increasing and improving ties with Iran. Saudi Arabia is now moving further away from away from relations with the US.
Almost like a giant jigsaw puzzle the pieces are falling into place one at a time, preparing for the rapid unfolding of Bible prophecy in our generation.
Israelitis, the disease
The disease Israelitis is rampant. It is damaging but It has a cure.
This is simply the error of going overboard on issues relating to Israel, Jerusalem and the Jews. Unfortunately many people have a tendency to go into one of two ditches on either side of the road. The one ditch is to ignore or neglect the Israel issue. The other is to go overboard and get unbalanced.
Both extremes are dangerous error with serious consequences.
When many people discover all the amazing wonderful truths about Israel from a prophetic point of view in the scriptures, they get very excited. Many also get very angry that they've been deceived by erroneous church doctrine of neglect on this subject for so long.
Many have good intentions to start with and want to obey the scriptures, but land up in this excess. Soon the balance gets out of sync with the Spirit of God and the same devil that leads people into neglect or replacement theology, now leads them into the ditch of excess on the other side of the road.
All sorts of odd things have been happening with people infected with Israelitis, from men arriving in Jerusalem and claiming to be one of the two witnesses to gross error. This does nothing to influence the Jews with the gospel.
Jews, can detect when people are authentic in their concern and presentation of the truth.
John 16:13 "When He the Spirit of truth has come He will lead you into all truth...and show you things to come." This verse speaks of the fact that we will be led safely along God's path for us without going into excess if we allow ourselves to be led by the Spirit of God.
There's nothing new about Israelitis. Let's have a look at the first appearance of it in the church.
Acts 15:5 "Some of the sect of the Pharisees who believed rose up saying, "It is necessary to circumcise them, and to command them to keep the law of Moses." This discourse goes on to say that the church leadership had declared that the Gentile believers need not be compelled to adhere to anything more than abstaining from idolatry, things strangled, from blood and sexual immorality.
The book of Galatians is all about the contrast between law, grace and faith. Essentially salvation is based on faith alone and not on the works of the law. We should not be brought under the works of the law in terms of salvation. It is the Judaisers who always want to bring people under the law.
Consider these very important verses of scripture. You may be surprised!
Colossians 2:16-17 "Therefore let no one judge you in food or in drink or regarding a festival or a new moon or Sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Christ."
Romans 14:2-3 "For one believes he may eat all things, but he who is weak eats only vegetables. Let not him who eats despise him who does not eat and let not him who does not eat judge him who eats; for God has received him."
Romans 14:5-6 One person esteems one day above another, another esteems every day alike. Let each be fully convinced in his own mind. He who observes the day observes it to the Lord and he who does not observe the day, to the Lord he does not."
Romans 14:14 "I know and am convinced by the Lord Jesus that there is nothing unclean of itself; but to him who considers anything to be unclean, to him it is unclean. Yet if your brother is grieved because of your food, you are no longer walking in love. Do not destroy with your food the one for who Christ died."
1Corinthians 10:23-24 "All things are lawful for me, but all things are not helpful; all things are lawful for me but all things do not edify. Let no one seek his own, but each one the other's well being. Eat whatever is sold in the meat market." (The only exception is food offered to idols, in verse 28)
1Corinthians 6:12 "All things are lawful for me...but I will not be brought under the power of any."
1Timothy 4:3-5..."Commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving, by those who believe and know the truth. For every creature of God is good and nothing is to be refused if it is received with thanksgiving; for it is sanctified by the word of God."
Galatians 4:9-10 "But now after you have known God, or rather are known by Him, how is it that you turn again to the weak and beggarly elements, to which you desire again to be in bondage? You observe days months seasons and years. I am afraid for you, lest I have laboured in vain."
Galatians 5:1 "Stand fast in the liberty by which Christ has made us free, and do not be entangled again with the yoke of legalism (bondage)"
These verses are amazing indeed and offer deep insight into the issue of legalism.
Some believe that certain foods may not be eaten and days must be observed. Others believe that we don't need to in a legalistic sense. The issue is not to bring the other into bondage. Don't condemn them.
Now what about this: John14:15 "If you love Me keep My commandments."
It really is a tremendous thing to obey our Lord and His word, but we must distinguish between doing things as a result of an inner prompting by the Spirit of God or by doing things in a legalistic manner.
Keeping God's law or word relating to the Sabbath or Passover or the other feasts is not a legalistic requirement for salvation, BUT it brings a big blessing!!! Be careful of throwing the baby out with the bathwater! Keeping laws can't save you but it can bless you abundantly.
Yeshua / Jesus did not do away with the law as revealed in many scriptures. Matthew 5:15-17 is a case in point. He did not come to nullify the law but to fulfil it. So in Christ we have the law fulfilled.
Yeshua / Jesus, Paul and the apostles kept Sabbath and the feats, but not in the manner the Pharisees wanted them to.
Interestingly our Lord and saviour broke the Sabbath law from the point of view of the legalistic Pharisees. He kept Shabbat, but not in the way the Pharisees had decreed. In other words, all the man made do's and don'ts need not be obeyed.
Here's a good way of looking at the overall situation. It really is a blessing to identify with the Saturday Sabbath, the feasts of the Lord, Passover and the like. Do it as a celebration to our Lord. Do it with the Biblical Hebraic flavour. Do it as an issue of identification. But don't get trapped in legalism.
Where to draw the line:
It may seem quite obvious to draw the line at devil worship! You may say; "Of course we wouldn't have anything to do with that."
Yes we need to be careful of legalism, but we also need to be careful of the many traditions which are rooted in the occult.
It is very important to reject the Satanic, occult pagan practises of the church such as Easter, Christmas and the other convocations and traditions born in Babylon and brought into the church by the Catholic church and adopted by the Protestant church.
It's also very important to remember that the way you set up your worship, or institution has huge consequences for the Jews. Our job as revealed in the scriptures, is to "make the Jew jealous". The gospel must go to the "Jew first and then the Gentile". There are other similar portions of scripture. The reason that it's important for salvation to go to the Jew is because the Second coming is completely associated with the salvation of the Jew.
Much was brought into the early church to keep the Jews out.
Be careful throwing out the Sabbath and the feats. There are a number of verses indicating plainly that the Sabbath, and feast of tabernacles will be kept in the millennium age or dispensation.
"We observe Sunday instead of Saturday because the Catholic Church, in the Council of Laodicea (A. D. 336), transferred the solemnity from Saturday to Sunday."- "The Convert's Catechism of Catholic Doctrine,"
Satan tried many times to stamp out the Jews, because he knew that the Messiah would come though the Jews. It's the same thing now. He knows that the salvation of the Jews will see the return of the Lord. So again he tries to prevent this. Unfortunately Satan has used the church very successfully to create an institution foreign and hostile to the Jew.
The Jews were once before in Babylonian captivity, why would they again want to come into an institution characterised by Babylonian paganism?
I know testimonies of many Jews feeling very welcome and comfortable coming into a Messianic fellowship. I also know of many who would spit before walking into a normal church.
The church is by and large a big mess today, but we must understand that it is still the body of Messiah. We need to help it, pray for its restoration and transformation back to the way it was supposed to be.
We don't need to go overboard on these Israel issues, but we do need to get rid of the Satanic elements in the church.
You see, it's all about identification. Unfortunately the traditional church is more identified with Rome and Babylon than Jerusalem and Israel.
Some people go overboard in terms of names. Many with the disease of Israelitis say that you can't use the name Jesus. The name Jesus is an acronym. As long as we are talking about our Jewish Messiah, the one who was crucified and rose again, then we are on the same page. The Bible uses many other acronyms and types for our Lord. I prefer the name Yeshua which means (Yah) God our salvation (shua).
How to diagnose Israelitis:
Those with this disease are easy to spot. They are bound in legalism. Legalism always manifest in judgementalism. People become very judgemental when you don't keep their set of rules or tradition.
In Christ we have been set free from legalism. Yes we still need to obey the rules of society and the rules of the scriptures, but not to make some angry God smile on you. If the Spirit of the living God is in your heart, He will lead you to obey His truth. But it will be from within your heart and not some external set of laws.
The truth is neither neglect of the Israel issues nor in excess. The truth is revealed in the Abrahamic expression of faith, which is to the Jew and the Gentile.
Many Gentile believers who've been trapped all their lives in the bondage of Roman flavoured Christianity, when they discover the wonderful truths in the Bible about Israel and the Jews, they tend to go into the ditch of excess with tunnel vision. Some of them have gone so overboard that they're an embarrassment.
People with Israelitis run around looking for a Jew to convert. "Ah, a Jew, a Jew they say and smother him with "love". But they're actually scaring the poor guy off.
There is of course a much more dangerous issue in the church today and that is replacement theology and the complete rejection of all the prophetic word relating to Israel, Jerusalem and the Jew neglect of Israel. This evil theology replaces Israel with the church in essence, but that's another subject.
The answer is simply to be led by the Spirit of God. "He will lead us into all truth." This "truth" must balance with the entirety of the scriptures and not just a few sections of it.
If we are seeing through the glasses of full Biblical truth, we'll see and have eyes for both the Jew and the Gentile.
The Abrahamic expression of truth and faith is where the full truth is. Abraham was the father of Isaac and Jacob, whose name was changed to Israel. Israel and the Jewish people was line that gave birth to our Messiah.
But Abraham was also the father of many Gentile nations. In fact he was also the father the father of the Arab nations.
We must see and understand that there are sections of scripture, covenants and prophecies that relate distinctly to the Israel, Jerusalem, the Jew, the Arab and the Gentile nations at large. Its only in Christ that we all become one.
The Abrahamic expression is removed from the occult, pagan practises and identity of the church and embraces the Biblical convocations, traditions and practices.
The Abrahamic expression of faith is the true Messianic movement.
It is always worth going God's way...it is blessed and has His favour on it.
We all have a tendency to fall into excess or neglect and get out of sync with our great God and saviour. we need to be on our guard especially in this day.
We must understand that we are heading into perilous times, where a great number will become deceived and fall away. We are also heading into the most exciting times of world history.
Don't give yourself blindly to your leader. Submission is fine, but not without question on these big issues. Truth can withstand being questioned quite easily.
Acts 5:38-39 "Leave these people alone for if this plan or this work is of men it will come to nothing; but if it is of God, you cannot overthow it."
Acts 17:11 "These received the word with readiness and searched the scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so."
Isaiah 40:1 "Comfort yes comfort My people says your God. Speak comfort to Jerusalem..."
Heaven or hell:
Old gentile man with your funny hat...your traditions can't and won't save you. You need to obey the scriptures and be born again. If so, your future is one of great glory. In fact words can't fully describe the glory that is laid up for those who love our Lord and saviour.
Old Jewish rabbi, no amount of study will save you. No amount of law-keeping will save you. You can set your yourself apart from others in your appearance, but are you born of the Spirit of the living God? If not hell will welcome you at your coming.
Here is a painting by Rembrandt done in 1654. It's titled "Old Jewish man."
Kind regards and many blessings...Shalom and grow in grace!