The Awakening - by Carrie Forman
I have been on this beautiful Covenant Journey since 2005 with so many revelations, twists, turns and eye-openers. As I look back, I’m grateful for them all as they have allowed me to “get out of Babylon” and grow closer to Him and His truth. Elatedly, there are others around the world who also are experiencing this awakening. The following prophecies are truly coming to fruition in these last days and right before our very eyes (along with others):
“Oh YHWH, my strength and my stronghold and my refuge, in the day of distress the nations shall come to You from the ends of the earth and say, ‘Our fathers have inherited only falsehood, futility, and there is no value in them.’ Would a man make mighty ones for himself, which are not might ones? Therefore see, I am causing them to know My hand and My might. And they shall know that My Name is YHWH!” – Jeremiah (Yirmeyahu) 16:19-21
“And I shall give them a heart to know Me, that I am YHWH. And they shall be My people and I shall be their Elohim, for they shall turn back to Me with all their heart.” – Jeremiah (Yirmeyahu) 24:7
As a “simple faith” Christian in my past, I was content for many years of believing what I had been taught. The religion of Christianity just fit so comfortably in my American culture and how I was raised. I had no need to look further or dig deeper into my faith as I was satisfied that my beliefs were nothing but the truth.
It was not until a list of tragedies found their way into my comfortable life that the “student appeared” and I was all ears of what the Father wanted to reveal to me. Really, it was my attentive ears that where naturally succeeding my newly attentive heart. My heart had made a huge change.
Through the tragic loss of my 54-year-old father to pancreatic cancer and within months the loss of 2 other loved ones (also cancer), my heart was cut to the core. I realized through that anguishing pain, something in my life was about to shift. My desires, priorities and mindset completely changed from my comfy culture to desiring nothing else than to peel the many layers of the “onion” of religion I had been fed and find out what I was missing.
The deeper I looked, I was perplexed that the “Christian walk” I was living, didn’t match up to the “walk” I read about in the gospels. The disciples must have known something or did something that I didn’t. Why were they able to lay hands on the sick and heal them, but I couldn’t? Was my belief not strong enough? Was there a stumbling block in me that wouldn’t allow the healing?
The subject of healing was such a mystery to me knowing that many in my faith were suffering and dying of diseases, the same diseases that I read about in Scripture, that we are promised to be protected from. After these new revelations it was clear that in my religion, I was misled on “who” these promises were pledged to and the actions necessary to be part of that group.
What was gradually being revealed through the grace of my Father and my diligent need to continually know more, was nothing short of earth shattering. The subject of healing was used to open so many doors of wisdom that I completely overlooked in Scripture before. Incredible critical subjects that determine my very salvation! I had no clue and it was because I never had the need to look. I also realized that these revelations were not just for me personally, but they applied to the majority of those who proudly wave the banner of Christianity.
One of the greatest deceptions from the adversary himself is the hidden and replaced Names of both our Father and His Son (I discuss this further in my book Turn and be Saved). This deception alone should make any person’s jaw drop with shock and disgust! This subject deserves its own book and I highly recommend Todd D Bennett’s book, Names. I will also address this critical topic in a separate blog.
There are just under 100 Scripture verses (that I have found) where YHWH emphasizes the importance of His Name. We should never take this subject lightly as surely, He doesn’t. As I stated above, I will discuss the essential subject of Names in another blog but will currently focus on another imperative missing piece to the puzzle that was revealed to me years ago, obedience. Frankly, implying obedience as a missing “piece” really restrains it. I believe obedience encompasses the full essence or foundation of the puzzle, not a mere piece.
I was taught, to be “saved” I just needed to confess that I was a sinner and believe that “Jesus” would wash me clean. Next, just accept Him into my heart and I’m now “born again.” I would assume that many Christians were told the same and with their whole heart, did exactly as I did. I was a little girl then and truly meant it… in fact, I would recite it often, sitting in the church pew, multiple Sundays a year, just to make sure I was covered.
As the years passed, I could not really grasp what “born again” entailed. Besides now believing Messiah died for me, how different am I now than from before? Okay, so maybe I didn’t party much like I used to… but otherwise, I felt like the same “good person” I thought I was. My culture or life really did not change much except adding an hour of church attendance every Sunday and inserting some gospel music onto my play list. I really did not know what else I should be doing different since I was told that “Jesus” did it all and there is nothing I could do to add to it.
So, okay… there I was… my comfy Christian life. Doing the normal Sunday thing, enjoying the holidays with family (but stay focused on the “true meaning”), and loving my neighbor. Good deal, I can do that… easy peasy!
Many years had passed, then the multiple tragedies occurred to wake me up, get my attention and motivate me to start seeking outside my comfy bubble. I was 33 years old when my awakening occurred… I guess YHWH knew I was finally ready to be a student at 33. My world coming down around me all so suddenly raised my awareness drastically. I longed to understand what it meant to be truly “born again” and I took to heart the verse which says, “test everything” (1 Thess 5:21) and I knew that the word “everything” included my faith, my religion, and my comfy culture/traditions.
I first became an observer… I noticed those preaching “confess your sins” where never truly defining sin. Where is the list? And once I am forgiven, I think I need that list, so I know how to stay on track in the future, don’t I? Otherwise, what is the purpose of being “born again” unless you now live a different (sinless) life from your old self?
Then I found a ministry that focused on bringing the lost to “Christ” and would point people right to the 10 Commandments. They would read off the list of 10, one by one. They asked “Have you ever lied? Stolen? Ever coveted someone else’s belongings? Have you ever brought His Name to naught? Or not set the Sabbath day apart from all other days?”
After hearing them one by one I realized, I too transgressed some of those Commandments! They then shared that everyone has sinned and fallen short of these Commandments (Romans 3:23) and we are all in need of the Messiah to make us clean again.
It made perfect sense. It seemed clear and to the point. Here is the list I have been seeking and now I can see what my Father requires of mankind “Let us hear the conclusion of the matter: Revere Elohim and guard His Commands, for this is to all mankind!” Ecclesiastes 12:13.
What did not add up to me was their lack of teaching the next steps. It seemed only logical that if we confess of breaking His Commands, ask Messiah to cleanse us, now that we are clean shouldn’t we then strive to stay clean? We know we have fallen short of following His Commands, but now being “born again” shouldn’t we start following the very instructions we are asking to be forgiven for breaking?
Sadly, that ministry never encouraged people to “walk” out their faith. To live according to the instructions given to us from the beginning. The very thing we confessed of not following in the first place.
I then realized I needed to read Scripture for myself. What does both YHWH the Father and the Messiah say about after we confess? What does it mean to truly repent? The signs of repentance should be abundantly clear through our walk, our obedience, servitude, living righteous, loving Him, knowing Him, and following Him.
When one decides to humble themselves, roll up their sleeves and truly seek His ways, He promises to be found, period (Jeremiah 29:13; Deut 4:29). Thankfully, it truly came to pass in my life when I decided to seek and love Him with all my heart, mind, and strength (Deut 6:4-9; Matthew 22:37).
With a newly humble heart and ears to hear, the pages of Scripture seemed to appear with big bold highlights like never before! I knew I had read this verse and that verse many times, but clearly, I must have not heard it! Reading a verse and hearing a verse are 2 completely different things!
I started hearing words like “If you love Me, keep My Commands!” – John 14:15 and “If you are my friends, you will DO what I Command!” – John 15:14 and also “If anyone says, ‘I know Him’ and does not keep His Commands, he is a liar, and the truth is not in him!” – 1 John 2:4.
Sadly, most Christians are fed false doctrine regarding His Commands (Ezekiel 22:26) and the majority do not raise a finger or lift an eyebrow to test these doctrines. And for many years, that was me. Many are being led to the slaughter not only with misinterpretations and lies, but also because the implication and significance of His Commands have been overlooked, altered, and even erased.
I will dive deeper into the true depiction of His Torah (Commands, Instructions) further in this blog. But let’s focus first on the two responses I hear most (and used to believe) from Christians and their Pastors regarding His Commands, here is the first.
1. “Those Commandments/Laws aren’t for us, only for the Jews”
As discussed previously, Ecclesiastes states that His instructions were for “all mankind” not for a certain blood line. Even John the Baptist (Yohanan the Immerser) stated “Brood of adders, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Therefore, bear fruit worthy of repentance, and do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I say to you that Elohim is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones. And even now the axe is laid to the root of the trees. Therefore, every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire.” – Luke 3:7-9
Let us also read who His Torah (Law/Commands/Instructions) is for: “There is one Torah for the native born and for the stranger who sojourns among you.” Exodus (Shemot) 12:49 So this verse is saying it is for everyone, that is everyone who sojourns (joins) them.
Believing that it is only for the “Jews” is a clear indication that we have allowed man’s words to creep into our beliefs coupled with the lack of understanding Scripture.
His Torah is for His chosen and His chosen are described as follows: “Thus said YHWH, ‘Guard Right-Ruling, and do righteousness, for near is My deliverance to come, and my righteousness to be revealed. Blessed is the man who does this, and the son of man who lays hold of it, guarding the Sabbath lest he profane it, and guarding his hand from doing any evil. And let not the son of a foreigner who has joined himself to YHWH speak saying ‘YHWH has certainly separated me from His people,’ nor let the eunuch say, ‘Look I am a dry tree.’ “For thus said YHWH, ‘To the eunuchs who guard My Sabbaths and have chosen what pleases Me and hold fast My Covenant: to them I shall give in My house and within My walls a place and a name better than that of sons and daughters – I give them an everlasting name that is not cut off. Also, the sons of the foreigner who join themselves to YHWH, to serve Him, and to love the Name of YHWH, to be His servants, all who guard the Sabbath and not profane it, and hold fast My Covenant – them I shall bring to My set-apart mountain and let them rejoice in My house of prayer. Their burnt offerings and their slaughtering’s are accepted on My alter, for My house is called a house of prayer for all the peoples.” – Isaiah (Yeshayahu) 56:1-7
His Covenant people are clearly defined by the verses in Isaiah 56 (by their actions) and His people are called “Yisra’el”. The term Jew should only refer to anyone who practices the religion of Judaism (derived from the Pharisaic sect), someone who is a direct line from the tribe of Judah (Yahudah) or someone who lives in the region of Judea.
Sadly, the understanding of the identity of Yisra’el has been lost and became a confusion through false doctrine, imposters, mistaken identities, and lack of historical studies.
Yisra’el is not about a blood line or where you live. Yisra’el consist of the 12 tribes and fall under the promised Covenant given to Abraham that flowed through to his sons, Isaac (Yitshaq) and Jacob (Ya’aqob). Ya’aqob’s name was changed to Yisra’el after wrestling with a “Messenger”, desiring to be blessed by Him (Genesis -Bereshith 32:24-30).
As years passed, the people of Yisra’el were exiled after disobeying YHWH’s Torah. They were scattered all over the earth until an appointed time when He will come and gather them from where they have scattered (Ezekiel 20:33-44; Ezekiel 28:25,26; Ezekiel 34:11-17; Isaiah 54:7,8; Jeremiah/Yirmeyahu 50:4-6; Isaiah 10:21,22).
You see, the people of Yisra’el were chosen to be an example or a “model nation” to all other nations around them (Exodus/Shemoth 19:6,5; Deut/Debarim 4:5-9). They were to show others how to live righteously, to walk on the lighted path back to paradise. Ever since the “fall” of mankind in the garden, YHWH has been choosing specific people to help guide the lost back on the righteous path so we can dwell in His presence again.
We must be grafted into Yisra’el to be saved, according to Scripture and that consists of: accepting the blood sacrifice of Messiah Yahushua and then obeying the instructions (Torah) given, which will lead us back to paradise, the New Jerusalem (Yerushalayim) Rev 14:12, 22:14.
Notice in Revelation where John (Yohanan) describes the gates he is shown in a vision of the New Yerushalayim: “and having a great and high wall, having twelve gates, and at the gates twelve messengers, and names written on them, which are those of the twelve tribes of the children of Yisra’el” Rev 21:12. There are only 12 gates, and each gate is assigned to a tribe of Yisra’el. There are not additional gate(s) assigned for Christians, Mormons, Buddhists, Muslims or any other group of people. Only for the 12 tribes of Yisra’el. Likewise, there are no additional gates labeled “miscellaneous” or “all others”, only twelve. Clearly then, we must be part of the Covenant people of Yisra’el to enter.
Yahushua (I choose to use and call upon the Messiah’s true Name) has been mistakenly identified as the One who started Christianity, however He clearly states, “I was not sent except to the lost sheep of the house of Yisra’el.” Matthew 15:24 So, He came to gather (shepherd) Yisra’el, back in the fold, not to start a new religion.
The second most common response:
2. "His Commands are too hard to keep… look at the Israelites, they couldn’t even keep them.”
If we allow Scripture to determine our faith rather than what we have been fed through added “doctrines of men”, then we can undoubtedly see according to His Word that His Torah is not burdensome nor hard to follow (Deut 30:11, Matthew 11:28-30).
Many claim that the Yisra’elites “couldn’t” keep them rather than understanding they “wouldn’t” keep them. There are plenty of His chosen that did obey and we should embrace the stories of the obedient rather than use the stories of the defiant to justify our disobedience.
With closer examination into the lives of the obedient, or in Scriptural terms the “righteous” there seems to be one common denominator, their hearts. They had a love for Him, hence a love to please Him. To please Him is to obey Him. With humility of heart and reverence in His role as Master of our lives, obedience to His instructions shows Him our love, rather than just words.
That reminds me, a few months ago as I was cleaning house and listening to a variety of songs. “More than words” by Extreme came on and as I’m singing at the top of my lungs (I wasn’t gifted with a singing voice but that doesn’t stop me when I’m really feeling a song, lol) all I could imagine is YHWH saying these words to me/us. Imagine Him saying:
Saying I love you
Is not the words I want to hear from you
It's not that I want you not to say it
But if you only knew
How easy it would be to show me how you feel
More than words is all you have to do to make it real
Then you wouldn't have to say that you love me
'Cause I'd already know
What would you do if my heart was torn in two?
More than words to show you feel
That your love for me is real
What would you say if I took those words away?
Then you couldn't make things new
Just by saying I love you
Now that I've tried to talk to you and make you understand
All you have to do is close your eyes
And just reach out your hands and touch me
Hold me close, don't ever let me go
More than words is all I ever needed you to show
Then you wouldn't have to say that you love me
'Cause I'd already know
This beautiful song truly reflects that even humans desire actions of love, more than just words. Like the famous saying, “actions speak louder than words.” I encourage you to listen to that song with this different perspective. It spoke to my heart on a higher level than just human love.
This reminds me of the letter from James (Ya’aqob) to the twelve tribes who are in the dispersion… he describes the absence of works (more than words) from belief.
“But someone might say ‘You have belief, and I have works.’ Show me your belief without your works, and I shall show you my belief by my works. You believe that Elohim is one, you do well. The demons also believe – and shudder! But do you wish to know, O foolish man, that belief without works is dead? Was not Abraham our father declared right by works when he offered Yitshaq his son on the altar? Do you see that the belief was working with his works, and by the works the belief was perfected? And the Scripture was filled which says, ‘Abraham believed Elohim and it was reckoned to him for righteousness’ and he was called, ‘Elohim’s friend.’ You see then that a man is declared right by works, and not by belief alone…For as the body without the spirit is dead, so also the belief is dead without the works.” James (Ya’aqob) 2:18-26
What if we continually tell YHWH “I love you” and He replies, “How do I know?” Shouldn’t it be by our actions? Our relationship with Him needs to be more than words. We need to show Him how we feel by how we live for Him. And thankfully there is no guessing on our part on how to live for Him. He repeatedly tells us how to live for Him and how we show our love for Him in Scripture. It is following YHWH’s Torah, His instructions, His lighted path that will guide us back to Him.
Notice in James 2, he states “even demons believe”. They know YHWH is the Creator of all. They even know that Yahushua is the Messiah (ha’Mashiach), the Son of Elohim (Luke 4:34), however they obviously do not love Him. They show who they pledge their allegiance to, the one whom they serve, that is who they love.
As stated earlier, we should understand His Commands more accurately, or rather “intimately” and what is the intent and purpose of YHWH creating them.
Most mistakenly label them as rules or laws that are impossible to live by, thus it is easier to ignore them and assume they no longer apply. However, the Messiah Yahushua stated “Do not think that I came to destroy the Torah or the Prophets, I did not come to destroy but to complete. For truly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle shall by no means pass from the Torah till all be done.” Matthew (Mattithyahu) 5:17,18
His words in Mattithyahu should help clarify this subject. Heaven and earth are still here, all has not been done yet, so the Torah still applies. A critical English word in that verse that has spearheaded the confusion is “complete”. Other translations say “fulfill”, but both words can lead to significant misunderstanding. Those English words can be misinterpreted as “done away with”. And if we are honest, we can admit that “done away with” is another way of saying “destroy.” However, He clearly says in verse 15 that He "did not come to “destroy”. The Greek word for complete or fulfill is pleroo and in Hebrew is Lekayem, which both should be more accurately translated as “verify, to make full or to fully preach.”
Let’s look at part of that verse again with a more precise translation of the true meaning “Do not think that I came to destroy the Torah or the Prophets, I did not come to destroy but to verify/fully preach.”
This example of just one word which can lead to misinterpretation and false doctrine should raise many eyebrows, as this example is not alone. That is why it is vital that we “seek with all our hearts” in order to find Him and discover truth.
The enemy (ha Shatan) knows Scripture, he quotes Scripture, and he knows how to twist it to turn people onto the path of darkness rather than the path of light (Torah). If we know by reading Mattithyahu 4:6 that he used Scripture to test our Messiah Yahushua, what makes us think he wouldn’t do the same to us?
Identifying the true meaning of the Torah, most commonly referred to as His Commands or Law, should also require closer examination.
When we read the story of Yisra’el being released from slavery and bondage from Mitsrayim (Egypt), it is important to understand the purpose was not only to make YHWH’s Name known and to set His people free from the grips of the heathens, but also so they could be united with YHWH as their Elohim. He would be their husband and they would be His bride.
As they arrived at Mt Sinai, YHWH was preparing to meet His bride and He gave instructions to Mosheh that His bride needed to also be ready. They needed to get cleaned up and stay clean as on the third day, the “ceremony” would take place. (Exodus 19:10,11)
As the day approached and YHWH arrived with His powerful, tremendous, and glorious presence they were overwhelmed to the point of unbearableness. Here is the event described in Exodus:
“And it came to be, on the third day in the morning, that there were thunders and lightnings, and a thick cloud on the mountain. And the sound of the ram’s horn (shofar) was very loud, and all the people who were in the camp trembled. And Mosheh brought the people out of the camp to meet with Elohim, and they stood at the foot of the mountain. And Mt Sinai was in smoke, all of it, because YHWH descended upon it in fire. And its smoke went up like the smoke of a furnace, and all the mountain trembled exceedingly. And when the blast of the shofar sounded long and became very strong, Mosheh spoke, and Elohim answered him by voice.” Exodus 19:15-19
Then YHWH spoke “all these words, saying…” and the 10 Words (sayings) popularly known as The 10 Commandments were proclaimed to His bride (Exodus 20:1-17). After declaring the 10 Words to His bride, Yisra’el responded as follows:
“And the people saw the thunders, the lightning flashes, the sound of the shofar and the mountain smoking. And the people saw it and they trembled and stood at a distance and said to Mosheh, ‘You speak with us, and we hear, but let not Elohim speak with us, lest we die.” Exodus 20:18,19
Because of their tremendous fear of YHWH’s presence, they requested a mediator to convey the Torah. I’ve heard it more precisely described as a “marriage covenant” or Ketubah in Hebrew and I prefer that definition and meaning over the idea that a “dictator” came to lay down the ground rules. Not that He isn’t our Sovereign King, as He surely is! He is all… King, Judge, Ruler, Redeemer, Father, Friend, Husband, etc. He is all that is good, and He has many titles and roles that He performs in our lives.
My point is that sadly, the reasons for giving His instructions are viewed as an autocracy rather than viewing them as loving instructions from a loving Father and Husband that knows what is best for us. He wants to give us liberty and freedom from the bondage of sin into His loving arms. I have come to that conclusion after much study in learning YHWH’s character and His love for His people. It was truly a Ketubah being presented on that wedding day.
To confirm this belief, look at a couple verses that describe YHWH’s relationship with Yisra’el:
“See the days are coming, declares YHWH, when I shall make a renewed Covenant with the house of Yisra’el and with the house of Yahudah, not like the Covenant I made with their fathers in the day when I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Mitsrayim, My Covenant which they broke, though I was a husband to them, declares YHWH, For this is the Covenant I shall make with the house of Yisra’el after those days, declares YHWH, I shall put My Torah in their inward parts, and write it on their hearts. And I shall be their Elohim and they shall be My people.” Jeremiah (Yirmeyahu) 31:31-33
“But indeed, as a wife betrays her husband, so have you betrayed Me, O house of Yisra’el, declares YHWH” Jeremiah (Yirmeyahu) 3:20
Let’s ponder a minute on wedding vows. For those who are happily married, you could quite confidently say that your wedding day was one of the most special and beautiful days of your life. As a woman and finally experiencing cherished love at the age of forty, I yearned for the day when I could walk down that aisle and say “I do” to Victor. That day occurred 2 years after we met, Oct 12, 2014, and it was filled with so many tears of joy, from both of us.
As the vows were read aloud and I’m staring in my love’s eyes, I couldn’t wait to publicly promise and commit to do my part in showing my love for him. To always love and cherish, to be there for him through thick and thin, to pledge our “works” of love until we die. I do not recall my attitude at that moment of “Oh heck no… are you giving me a bunch of rules? These seem too hard… I’m not sure I can keep these.” Such nonsense never crossed either of our minds.
In fact, it did not for Yisra’el either. They gladly said “I do” to their Elohim. “And Mosheh came and related to the people all the Words of YHWH and all the Right-Rulings. And all the people answered with one voice and said, ‘All the Words which YHWH has spoken we will do.” Exodus 24:3
We have a friend and Covenant brother Mike Doughty, who wrote a wonderful detailed blog on the events of Mt Sinai and the giving of the marriage covenant. Here is a glimpse to understand deeper, the love YHWH has for His people:
“Elohim is seeking a relationship with his people here that is much more like a marriage -- He wants His people to be His partner, a trusted partner, and not to share their affections with other elohim ("gods"). The communication here is that this new covenant, for which the Ten Words forms a "proposal", is not a contract of bondage but one of affection, of love, most similar to a marriage covenant. He is seeking a life investment here, not a business arrangement.
We don't describe a happily married couple as "slaves" to each other in any literal sense. Even when spouses go above and beyond for each other, that is an expression of their healthy relationship and acts performed out of mutual affection and mutual benefit. And that kind of love requires more than selflessness -- it requires a binding up together emotionally, or even a strong passion. YHWH seeks something more like a “marriage" than like a strictly contractual obligation and that is the reason that YHWH chose to tell Yisrael that He was a "jealous" or "impassioned" Elohim. He is telling Yisrael that when He loves, He loves passionately. This is also why YHWH later expresses His feelings to disobedient Yisrael in terms of marriage and accusations of adultery via the nabiim (prophets). YHWH calls His agreement that is with Yisrael ultimately a "brit" in Hebrew, or "covenant" in English, but the implication is again more than simply a business arrangement -- this is not about "work" or "business", it's about a relationship. That is the intent of YHWH's statements here. "Brit" is a term used also for marriage covenants, and He is promising here to invest all His love and emotion into the union He is proposing. He expresses here that His love and his fury are both passionate -- He is an impassioned Elohim and His love for His people is passionate.
I've said many times now that the Ten Words form the basis of a "proposal" for the covenant, a marriage in a sense, between YHWH and His people. That is essentially what YHWH was doing when He came down upon the mountain and spoke the Ten Words to Yisrael, and then wrote those same Words down in writing. He had freed Yisrael for free, with no obligations. But He proposed the covenant at Mt. Sinai to begin a real relationship with them, a relationship He wanted to be freely entered and freely enjoyed by both parties.”
Mike’s article/blog titled Shavuot and the 10 Words of Liberty is a great read. I had shared with Mike, moments after reading his blog, that as a woman I wanted to buy a wedding dress, a beautiful bouquet of flowers and commit “my vows” to YHWH all over again!
So clearly our Elohim wants a meaningful, committed, and mutual relationship. Not unlike what any of us would naturally expect from our spouse. However, this is a marriage and love even beyond our human understanding. Meaning, YHWH Elohim is the Creator of all. He created all, knows all and His power is beyond our understanding. “For as the heavens (shamayim) are higher than the earth, so are My ways higher than your ways, and My thoughts than your thoughts” Isaiah (Yeshayahu) 55:9
The English word “ways” in this verse is translated from the word “deh’rek” in Hebrew. Deh’rek is described as a course of life or a journey. YHWH’s course of life is higher than what we can comprehend, hence it would be wise to follow His instructions in order to be the light He asks us to be.
This is where the trust of the Almighty comes in. Do we trust the One who created the very existence of humankind and all that surrounds us, to write our marriage vows (Torah)? Shouldn’t He write the “statement of an expectation of ethics” (as my friend Mike describes it) being that there is no higher ethics than those of YHWH?
In fact, let’s read how David (Dawid) describes YHWH’s Torah:
“The Torah of YHWH is perfect bringing back the being; The Witness of YHWH is trustworthy making wise the simple; The Orders of YHWH are straight, rejoicing the heart; The Command of YHWH is clear, enlightening the eyes; The reverence of YHWH is clean, standing forever; The Right-Rulings of YHWH are true, they are righteous altogether, more desirable than gold; and sweeter than honey and the honeycomb. Also your servant is warned by them, in guarding them there is great reward.” Psalms (Tehillim) 19:7-11
There is also no mistaking the passionate love David had for YHWH and His Torah:
“I run the Way of Your Commands, for You enlarge my heart. Teach me, O YHWH, the Way of Your Laws, and I observe it to the end, make me understand, that I might observe Your Torah, and guard it with all my heart. Make me walk in the path of Your Commands, for I have delighted in it.” Psalms (Tehillim) 119:32-35
I love many of the Psalms, but particularly the entire chapter of Psalms 119. It just so happens to be the longest chapter in the entire collective Scriptures that we have, and I don’t believe it is a coincidence that it’s all about the love of His Torah. I highly suggest everyone read it, and read it again, highlight, underline and embrace the depth of the love of the Torah David displays.
Note how David is viewed in the eyes of YHWH “…He raised up for them David as sovereign, to who also He gave witness and said ‘I have found David the son of Jesse (Yishai), a man after My own heart, who shall do all My desires’… Acts 13:22
Why would something that YHWH created (Torah) which is described as perfect, trustworthy, straight, clear, clean, true, righteous, and more desirable than gold, be destroyed by the will of YHWH? The answer is, it wouldn’t. It has only been “done away with” in the personal lives of those who have been taught false doctrine, those who do not have the love to please Him, or those who choose to justify “grace” as its replacement rather than as its partner.
“To escape the error of salvation by works; we have fallen into the opposite error of salvation without obedience.” A.W.Tozer
The Torah without grace is legalism and grace without the Torah is lawlessness. The Torah and grace are to work beautifully together and you cannot have one without the other, both are required to walk the narrow path.
Well, there is one more response I wanted to cover regarding obedience to His Torah. In my life, this is a response that has newly surfaced, and I feel many Christians grasping onto this one with both hands.
The third most common response:
3, "If I believe my works gives me salvation, then I am believing that I am saving myself rather than the need for the Messiah to save. I would be trying to take the place of Him… therefore I’m being self-righteous.”
The mere thought is absurd. Could it be possible that this line of thinking is more accurately trying to justify the disobedient heart of unrighteousness? In essence, trying to write our own marriage vows, on our terms, instead of His?
Obedience is the fruit of our beliefs and “by their fruit you shall no them.” I, nor anyone I know do not ever claim that because we follow Torah, we are saved only by our works (Torah). We are saved by the grace of Yahushua dying for us and atoning for our past sins. But it is because of His grace that we then, obey. He has made us clean, and we need to commit to staying clean through His instructions. We are now to be a faithful bride.
There is a clear determining factor of those who rely on themselves versus those who rely on YHWH. “And He spoke this parable to some who relied on themselves that they were righteous and looking down on others: “Two men went up to the Miqdash to pray – the one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and began to pray with himself this way, ‘Elohim, I thank You that I am not like the rest of men, swindlers, unrighteous, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. I fast twice a week, I give tithes of all that I possess, but this tax collector standing at the distance would not even raise his eyes to the shamayim (heavens) but was beating his breast saying, ‘Elohim, show favor unto me, a sinner!’ “I say to you, this man went down to his house declared right, rather than the other. For everyone who is exalting himself shall be humbled, and he who is humbling himself shall be exalted.” Luke 18:9-14
They key is the condition of the heart. The Pharisee was arrogant and relied upon himself, hence self-righteous. The sinner however, humbled his heart before Elohim. Obedience should exalt YHWH, not ourselves and that is the distinction between those who live for Him and those who live for themselves.
Would we dare say that Abraham was self-righteous by his obedience? What about Noah? Yahushua’s disciples? They obeyed… would we say they were self-righteous? The mere thought is absurd, and it only pathetically tries to justify the disobedient heart of the unrighteous. They are those who have decided to write their own marriage vows, on their terms, not His.
I read a social media post saying, “If you’re unwilling to live for Him, don’t trick yourself into believing you’re willing to die for Him.” Yikes… that is a hard truth. But I do truly see the desperation from my other Covenant family members “shouting from the rooftops” asking people to repent during these last days. I’ve been seeing that desperation through a shift of choice words. Not as much love, love, love quotes but much more repent, repent, repent! They are trying to wake people up knowing that Yahushua will be coming soon to gather His bride back to the Promised Land. Of course, it is all fueled by their love for others, hence the purpose of “shouting from the rooftops” to begin with. We need to be busy bearing fruit and be found doing the Father’s will when He returns.
Did you know that Yahushua clearly states that those living without the Torah are not His bride? That they will not be invited or allowed in the wedding feast when He returns? Let’s examine His words from two different parables:
“Then the reign of the shamayim (heavens) shall be compared to ten maidens who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish, having taken their lamps, took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their containers with their lamps. Now while the bridegroom took time, they all slumbered and slept. And at midnight a cry was heard, ‘See, the bridegroom is coming, go out to meet Him!’ then all those maidens rose up and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us of your oil, because our lamps are going out.’ But the wise answered, saying ‘No, indeed, there would not be enough for us and you. Instead, go to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.’ And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast, and the door was shut. And later the other maidens also came, saying, ‘Master, Master, open up for us!’ But He answering, said, ‘Truly, I say to you, I do not know you.’ Watch therefore, because you do not know the day nor the hour in which the Son of Adam is coming.” Mattithyahu 25:1-12
There are many who do not understanding the meaning of the oil and lamps in this parable. The Torah is described as light and a lamp. “For the Command is a lamp, and the Torah a light” Proverbs (Mishle) 6:23 and “Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path” Psalms (Tehillim) 119:105. This parable clearly states that we must keep our lamps lit. We must choose to live our life in His perfect plan, thus walking in His light. Those who let that light die, will hear the dreadful words “I do not know you.”
Likewise, another parable regarding the day He comes to collect His remnant gives a similar lesson. “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Master, Master,’ shall enter into the reign of the shamayim, but he who is doing the desire of My Father in the shamayim. Many shall say to me in that day, ‘Master, Master, have we not prophesied in Your Name, and cast out demons in Your Name, and done many might works in Your Name?’ And then I shall declare to them, ‘I never knew you, depart from Me, you who work lawlessness!” Mattithyahu 7:21-23
Notice in both parables, those who were told “I do not know you” refer to Him as Master. So, they are “believers”, if you will and they do believe He is the Son of Elohim. However, the determining factor of those invited in and those that are not, is obedience. The 5 maidens had lit lamps (living in obedience) while the other’s lamps had become darkened. Also notice that in the 2nd parable “many” are busy doing, but they are not doing the desire of the Father.
The word lawlessness in Greek is anomia which is more accurately translated as “without the Torah.” Sadly, those who have rejected the Torah will hear “I never knew you, depart from Me.” That is a very scary setting and I do not want to be part of the “many”, do you?
This then leads to the ultimate question to ask ourselves. Do we want to be a loving and faithful bride? Are our hearts eager to say the vows and to commit to loving Him with our whole heart, mind, and strength?
The Covenant journey begins with this awakening, to allow Him to change our hearts. It is about asking His Spirit (Ruach) to help guide us through His wonderful Words and promises in Scripture while cleaning ourselves up from the false doctrines and traditions we have been practicing. To start walking in His Light, gaining wisdom, embracing, and living the gift of the Torah and growing closer to Him.
The Journey Back Blog page was created in love and obedience to our Father YHWH and His Son Yahushua, to point people back to Him. One day at a time and one step at a time, knowing that our redemption draws near for those who choose to be His bride, to be part of the assembly of Yisra’el.
“Here is the endurance of the set-apart ones, here are those guarding the Commands of YHWH and the belief in Yahushua.” Revelation 14:12
Yahushua is coming soon to gather His bride, let’s show Him our unwavering love for Him. “If you love Me, keep My Commands!” John (Yohanan) 14:15
This is my first blog entry… we will continue to share our journey with you, discuss important subjects and promise to only use His Word as our foundation. May we be found ready as we commit to our journey back to paradise with Him.