Tuesday, August 24, 2010


Neḥemyah/Nehemiah 8

Sermon preached on Erev Shabbat - 10th of the 6th Month (20 August 2010)
Shabbat Shalom, YHWH bless you all. I hope that you all have enjoyed a joy-filled week and now we can come and rest and be refreshed in His presence by the washing of His Word, Amein! How we respond to the Word has a major impact on our lives; and we are able to visibly see in people’s lives if they respond to and how they respond to the Word. That means that your life too is in visible sight of others for they will be able to see how you respond to the Word of Elohim. More importantly, as we are all aware, it is how we respond to the instructions written in the Word and my message tonight is called, “Responding to the Torah”. The question is are you responding and what is your response, does it result in disobedience or obedience? As always the Word is useful for teaching us, rebuking us, correcting us and training us in righteousness, and so I would like us to read tonight from Neḥemyah/Nehemiah 8 and let us learn how we ought to respond to the Torah of YHWH. (Read)
Who knows what day it is? Yes we all know it is ‘Friday 20th 2010’ according to the world’s Gregorian calendar, but what day is it in YHWH’s calendar? The New Moon of the sixth Month was seen on the 11th August 2010, so tonight it is the beginning of the 10th of the 6th Month! This is very exciting for us… why? Because next month, the 7th month we have what is known as the ‘fall feasts’ of YHWH. The 1st of the 7th month is the Feast of Trumpets, the 10th of the 7th month is the Day of Atonement and the 15th of the 7th month, for 7 days, is the Feast of Sukkoth or Tabernacles. We are expecting the New Moon to appear on the 9th of September 2010 and so be alert and ready to come and celebrate Amein!

It is with this in mind that we pick up from our reading tonight –Chapter 8 starts by telling us what took place on the Day of Trumpets after the construction of the temple had been completed and family lines been established. This chapter once again stirred me with great excitement for the up and coming feasts and so it is with great passion that I want to stir you tonight in ‘responding to the Torah’ with joy as we get ready to celebrate His feasts as He has commanded us to. Why do we want to respond to the Torah in the correct way? Well when the people of YHWH get away from loving, reading and obeying the very Words He has given them, they very quickly find that they lose the blessing of Elohim. According to Psalm 1:1-3 – as we read last week – tells us that if we want to be fruitful then we are to ‘delight’ in the Torah! Unpacking this passage tonight it speaks of 3 ways that we are to respond to the Torah and speaks of lovingly responding with your all:
What do I mean by understanding the Torah, as half the time most don’t understand it at first and figure that because they don’t understand they don’t have to do? What this is speaking of is an application of the mind, using the very intellect and ability He has given us to be available to hear and receive the Word. The term understand is used 6 times in this chapter and in Yahshua’s Parable of the Sower, the emphasis is on understanding – in other words how prepared is your heart to receive his Truth? What attitude do you have toward His Torah? Understanding and receiving can be compared to the planting of a seed in soil where it takes root and bears much fruit! Here the people assembled at the Water Gate with great anticipation. And we know that often in the Scriptures that water for washing is a picture of the Word of YHWH, and drinking water is a picture of being filled with the very Ruach HaQodesh (Holy Spirit), so they were assembled to be refreshed and cleansed through the hearing of the Word. It is when we come to drink of the Living Water – that is the very Torah of Yah that we allow the Ruach to work in and through our lives. It is the very Word that restores, refreshes and rejuvenates one’s life. Understanding implies the application of the mind, and we are told not to conform to the pattern of the world but be transformed by the renewing of the mind through the Word, and so understanding the Torah begins with being available to hear the Torah and giving attention to the Torah! How many of you when you went to a class at school and were present in body yet you paid no attention to what was being taught and later found yourself complaining because you didn’t understand that ‘worthless’ subject? I fear that the same is true today – for many may be present at a meeting where the Word is being read, yet their minds are elsewhere, or many are making themselves available yet the Torah is not being taught, others are simply choosing to be absent minded to the Truth and so defend their stance with great pride, yet complain that they are confused and are not interested in hearing what the Torah has to say, purely out of ignorance of understanding! This was the first time in years that the people of Yisra’ĕl had actually gathered to hear the Torah that Ezra read. It was Yom Teru’ah and they were hungry for the Word. I sent out a short email this week asking that very question to most of you – how hungry are you?
Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. The term ‘be filled’ gives the meaning of being filled according to one’s hunger. If you are only peckish for a little snack, then that is what you will get, nothing more. Many want the benefit of the whole buffet, yet they come with the hunger for a snack. These guys were here to eat and nobody watched their time!!!
Tehillim/Psalm 19:10 in speaking about YHWH’s Torah says that His Right Rulings are, “more desirable than gold, than much fine gold; And sweeter than honey and the honeycomb.
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 27:7 “One satisfied loathes the honeycomb, but to a hungry one any bitter food is sweet.
You see, if you are so full of what the world and religion and the traditions of men has to offer, then even the sweetness of the Torah will loathsome to you! And His Torah is more desirable than anything the world or traditions or doctrines of man has to offer, Amein!
The people of Yisra’ĕl came to ‘soak’ in the hearing of the Word, that their faith would be filled and moved to action as they would go out and do what the Word says, in total obedience. As one makes themselves available to come and pay attention and soak in the Torah then the application of what is received can begin. The understanding comes in the doing, doing what you hear, and acting out your faith. Hear and do = understanding, it is the application of loving YHWH with your mind, giving full attention to the hearing of His Word! When Ezra opened the Book, they all stood up, there was a reverence for the Word, and after Ezra blessed YHWH, while lifting up their hands said Amein, Amein and then bowed their heads and worshipped YHWH with their faces to the ground. This for me is an awesome picture of total reverence – they were here to pay attention. This is the kind of application of the mind we need today toward His Torah – total reverence for YHWH! That says that in total reverence I am here and make myself available to listen and to pay attention to the Word of Elohim! Now you have to also remember that Ezra read for 6 hours and these people kept their attention on hearing – their minds were so focused as what was taught was made clear and they could apprehend the Word – that is the right response to understanding Torah! How do you respond with your mind – do you give up after 20 minutes? The world has a way of teaching us that you lose your concentration span after 40 minutes and need to rest etc. Well here they listened for 6 hours straight – and they did not lose their attention – they listened and paid attention and ate up the Words of the Torah!
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 15:16 “Your words were found, and I ate them, and Your word was to me the joy and rejoicing of my heart. For Your Name is called on me, O YHWH Elohim of hosts.
How many of you can echo this verse? When you eat His Word, is it to you the joy and rejoicing of your heart? As Ezra read, the initial response was grief and conviction, which is often the case when we read the Word and it cuts real deep, especially when an area of disobedience is sharply highlighted, as the light of the Torah exposes some dark, hidden and almost forgotten areas. Yisra’ĕl mourned over their sins, for it is through the Torah that we become conscious of our sins. The reason today that so many are blocked by delusion is simply due to the lack of understanding of Torah; in other words they do not make themselves available to hear and do His very living and good instructions, and so have a seared conscious – they are unaware of their shortcomings. Here Yisra’ĕl heard the Torah for the first time in years, for many it would have been the very first time, and it cut deep as they came face to face with their disobedience to YHWH’s ways. The Scriptures tell us in Yeḥezqĕl/Ezekiel 20:43 that Yisra’ĕl, which is us today as we are grafted in, that we would loathe ourselves in our own sight because of the evils that we have done! If we just think of how we worshipped in vain under the lies that were inherited over the ages, but praise be to YHWH our Elohim, who by grace through faith in Yahshua Messiah, we can rejoice. Obedience to Torah doesn’t save you, that is a gift, but as we walk out that salvation, there is a call to obedience. His Torah constantly draws us back to Him.
Galatians 3:24 “Therefore the Torah became our trainer unto Messiah, in order to be declared right by belief.
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 16:19 tells us that in the ‘day of distress’, speaking of the end days, the nations would come and say that they had inherited from their fathers, lies and futility which have no value. We can’t sit around and moan about it, it was not our fault that is true; however all we can do is repent and begin to walk in the Truth of His Word. I was weeping the other day as I began to think of how so many are being taught lies, and many of those teaching the lies do not even know they are teaching lies, which is no excuse as we have the Torah available to us all!
We are to rejoice, for we have His Word!
Tehillim/Psalm 19:8 “The orders of YHWH are straight, rejoicing the heart.
This was not a time of mourning, it was a Feast of YHWH, a time to rejoice and Neḥemyah and the Levites encouraged the nation in the Word and the Word tells us that YHWH will turn our sorrow into joy. YHWH looks at our hearts; He sees the inside; that which man cannot see. How do you respond to the Torah in your heart? Does it cause you to rejoice? Is it a joy for you to be in fellowship in His Word, or is it a hassle as it clashes with your schedule? How hungry are you to draw near to YHWH?
Yaʽaqoḇ/James 4:8-10 “Draw near to Elohim and He shall draw near to you. Cleanse hands, sinners. And cleanse the hearts, you double-minded! 9 Lament and mourn and weep! Let your laughter be turned to mourning and your joy to dejection. 10 Humble yourselves in the sight of the Master, and He shall lift you up.
Here the nation had humbled themselves and the Word of YHWH and they could now be strengthened in the joy of YHWH, for His joy is our strength. The same Word that wounds is the same Word that heals!!!
Here there sorrow was turned into joy, they were told not to weep, it was a set-apart day unto YHWH and they were to rejoice. How relieved do you think they were? To know that YHWH desires and commands that we rejoice should energise us straight away! Faith that is not based on the Word is not faith at all, their faith had been built up through the hearing of the Word; and joy that is not a result of faith (which comes by hearing the Word) is not true joy at all, but only a ‘good feeling’ which does not satisfy. We cannot life on ‘feelings’ alone. Faith based and produced from the hearing of the Word will produce joy that will weather the storms of life. It is not enough to just read the Word – we must rejoice in the Word! We must respond to the Torah with a faith filled heart, strengthened by His joy!
There is so much treasure hidden in His Word and we are to diligently dig for these as we read, pray and meditate and rejoice and give thanks in all we do!
To simply study and read the Word out of a sense of legalistic duty will never reveal the true treasures that are sitting in the Word waiting to be found by us. But as one rejoices in the Word and delights to read and study it day by day, then we discover that it is not just a bunch of ‘manna’ and ‘quail’, but that it is so rich in great delicacies of Truth that will refresh and strengthen you to praise His Name!
Responding to the Torah with the right mind and the right heart will cause you to be filled with great joy that you can truly rejoice in Him.
Do you delight in the Torah of YHWH? Is it a joy for you to get in to His Torah? If it is not, then perhaps you have not yet discovered how to understand – that is to actually make yourself available to hear and then do, for that is understanding as the ‘understanding comes in the doing’, but you have to make yourself available to hear, to pay attention that you may do it diligently – for then it will be a joy to get in to His Torah and eat of Him! Or would you rather eat of the world, or simply ‘sleep’ your way through this life YHWH has given you? Yahshua said that we are children of the day and not of the night so we are to be awake and not asleep! Would you rather rejoice in the chasing after wealth and things that fade or do you rejoice in that which never fades?
Delighting and rejoicing in His Torah will result in YHWH delighting in you, and singing over you, and pouring out His favour and blessing upon you! Rejoice – it is a heart thing! I was reading this week in 1 Chronicles about David when he took a census that he shouldn’t have and as a result 70,000 people were killed. He took a military census that was not called for by YHWH. David was near the end of his life and this account is a great lesson on not looking at numbers, but to keep our eyes on Yahshua our Messiah. Do not look at you bank balance or rather imbalance, and begin to worry, look at Yahshua, the author of our faith and be filled with great joy. David went on to buy the threshing floor of Ornan for which he paid full price as he would not offer to YHWH that which cost him nothing, he built a slaughter place and presented offerings to YHWH. He then proceeded to gather materials for the preparations of the house of YHWH. He gave billions and billions worth of silver, gold, bronze etc and passed on the instructions to Shelomoh, his son, who would build the Temple of YHWH. Why am I telling you all this? What has this got to do with rejoicing? Well David asked the nation who would be willing to fill his hand today for YHWH, in other words who would fill up their hands with what they have and come and give fully of what they have to offer fully to YHWH – and all the leaders volunteered and gave much and in
1 Chronicles 29:9 it says, “And the people rejoiced, for they had given voluntarily, because with a perfect heart they had given voluntarily to YHWH. And David the sovereign also rejoiced greatly.
David gave from the heart and rejoiced; the nation gave perfectly from the heart and rejoiced. How perfect is your heart in your giving with rejoicing to YHWH? If you cannot rejoice in Torah, you will never rejoice in giving of anything in obedience to YHWH, be it you time, your gifts, your tithes, your freewill offerings, your whole heart!!!
3 – OBEYING THE TORAH (WILL – 8:13-18)
We need to ‘pledge our allegiance’ to the Torah, to His Word, to His Loving instructions!
Obligation and appreciation are strong motives for serving YHWH, but celebration is even stronger. Is serving YHWH a celebration to you? Is obeying His Torah a great delight and celebration for you? When we obey because we rejoice in Him then our serving is a delight and not a burden.
I want to briefly share with you the difference between obedience and legalism:
• Obedience:
Obedience – ‘an act or instance of obeying’, ‘the quality or state of being obedient
Obedient – ‘submissive to the will of another’, ‘compliance with the demands or requests of one in authority

So, for obedience to be due to a person, they must have:
A – A right to command
B – Be able to make known his requirements

Therefore, man’s duty to obey his Maker presupposes:
A – YHWH’s authority – He has a right to command
B – His Revelation – He has made known to us His requirements – His Torah, Yahshua is the Living Torah revealed in the flesh

In Hebrew the term obey , which is ‘shamar’ means to ‘keep watch’, ‘observe’, ‘perform’, ‘protect’, ‘pay attention’, and the basic idea of the root of this word is ‘to exercise great care over’. We are to exercise great care over His Torah!

• Legalism
What is legalism? ‘Strict, literal, or excessive conformity to the law (any law that is) or strict, literal, or excessive conformity to a religious or moral code (that is an institutionalised legalism that restricts free choice). You just have to look at over 4000 different denominations today - all with their strict religious and moral codes that have been enforced on members - that is legalism!

It is very clear that YHWH has given us a choice, either to follow Him or not. Legalism on the other hand restricts your free choice. If you choose to obey YHWH then it is clear that you choose to comply by His revealed requirements and choose to accept his authority, which in turns stresses that TRUE obedience to Torah CANNOT be legalism. Legalism, on the other hand, is the conformity to the strict traditions and instructions and doctrines of men!
I like how Michael Rood puts it. He says that the next time somebody comes along and tells you that you are just being ‘legalistic’ in keeping the Torah tell them, “No, moron, I am not being legalistic, I am being obedient! You are the one who is legalistic conforming to the strict traditions and doctrines of man!” Now I am not saying you go and tell others they are morons, let them figure that out for themselves!!!
Without joy in a person’s life, obedience will seem like it is a punishment and legalism, but to the joyful, happy, faith-filled believer, the will of YHWH is nourishment, the Torah is a delight to learn and obey!
It is not enough for us to simply just hear the Torah, but with the hearing comes the responsibility of obedience in doing the Torah. Here in Neḥemyah, Yisra’ĕl after hearing the Word for the first time, enjoyed such great gladness in obeying. What were they obeying? The Torah! It was the 7th month, and when they heard in the Torah that they were to keep the Feast of Sukkoth, they obeyed! Hear and do! They went and fetched branches from the mountains and made booths, celebrating the Feasts of YHWH. They chose to obey the Word and it was a delight!
This was a time for looking back and remembering the nations 40 years of wilderness wandering, and it was also a time for looking around at the harvest blessings from the hand of YHWH. YHWH had given them good land and they were never to forget the Giver as they enjoyed the gifts. It was also a festival time of looking ahead to the glorious kingdom YHWH had promised when He would come and tabernacle with them. This celebrating was not only for enjoyment, but also four encouragement and enrichment; for the joy of the YHWH is our strength, Amein!
The feast of Tabernacles/Sukkoth, which they were celebrating, was also a time for bringing offerings to YHWH – those required as well as freewill offerings. They had found joy in hearing the Word and also in sharing the blessings of YHWH with each other. Day by day they rejoiced and celebrated as instructed in the Torah, as they heard the Torah being read every day, they were strengthened with great joy.

It is with this kind of passion that we are to embrace the Torah in our lives daily, celebrating His unfailing love over us and celebrating His Appointed Feasts. It is with the 7th month that is coming up that I knew that this is a timely word in preparing us to respond to the Torah. The 1st of the 7th month should be on the 9th of September 2010, depending upon the sighting of the first sliver of the Moon, hence the words of Yahshua when He said that no man knows the day or the hour of His return; for He is coming on the Day of Trumpets/Yom Teru‘ah, and we are commanded to have a set-apart gathering, which we will - so keep your cell phones on for when we sms you that it is the first!!! We will then have a day of fasting and prayer on the 10th of the 7th month which is Yom haKippurim/Day of Atonement and on the 15th we will celebrate Sukkoth/Tabernacles for 7 days. We will share details in the days to come; I just want to prepare your mind, hearts and will to respond to the Torah. It is celebration time and we are commanded to keep His Feasts. We are not to do as the pagans do, celebrating the pagan feasts of sun-worship; we are to respond in obedience, joy and understanding which comes in the doing of Torah!

It is an awesome time for us to celebrate what YHWH is doing in our midst, and the challenge is for us all to dig into His presence and His Word and allow the Ruach HaQodesh to give us wisdom and understanding. As we look at where YHWH has taken each of us over the last year, individually and corporately, we can but only rejoice in the fact that we serve the Living EL which must give us the strength to continue steadfast in Him daily as we obey His commands which all come down to loving YHWH with all our heart, soul and mind and loving one another.
Deuteronomy 6:4-6 “Hear, O Yisra’ĕl: YHWH our Elohim, YHWH is one! 5 And you shall love YHWH your Elohim with all your heart, and with all your being, and with all your might. 6 And these words which I am commanding you today shall be in your heart.

I would like to read Leviticus 23:23-44 speaking of the Feasts of the 7th Month and I want you to hear and respond to Torah, Amein. (Read)

How do your respond to the Torah? Will you cry aloud for understanding, will you rejoice in Him and obey His every Word?
We are a people belonging to YHWH, let us bear His Name with joy and respond obediently to His Torah every day, and as we look forward to His Appointed Feasts may we truly celebrate together with our all!
Perhaps your response to the Torah has left you short of engaging your intellect to the fullest, and you have not found yourself rejoicing in His Torah, or you have lacked obedience, even in the ‘little’ things!

Hear the Word of YHWH today, let your hunger for His righteousness grow and see how He will fill you with the delicacies and treasures of His Truth as you experience the joy of responding to the Torah with your mind, heart and will. Tomorrow we will be going through this week’s portion from Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 21:10-25:19 –When you go out! All are welcome. Let us be determined to ‘respond to the Torah’ correctly!

YHWH bless you and guard you, YHWH make His face shine upon you and show favour to you, YHWH lift up His face upon you and give you peace!

Sunday, August 15, 2010


1 Chronicles 13

sermon preached on erev Shabbat 13 August 2010
Shabbat Shalom to you all as we come together to fellowship in the presence of YHWH our Elohim.
Illustration: On October 31, 1983, Korean Airlines Flight 007 departed from Anchorage, Alaska, for a direct flight to Seoul, Korea. Unknown to the crew, however, the computer engaging the flight navigation system contained a 1 ½ degree routing error. At the point of departure, the mistake was unnoticeable. One hundred miles out, the deviation was still so small as to be undetectable, but as the giant 747 continued across the Aleutian Islands and out over the Pacific, the plane increasingly strayed from its proper course. Eventually it was flying over Soviet air space. Russian radar picked up the error, and fighter jets scrambled to intercept Flight 007. A short time later the jet was shot out of the sky over mainland Russia and the lives of everyone onboard was lost, all because of a 1 ½ degree routing error!

How many people today in their worship unto YHWH may be on a walk that is only 1 ½ degrees out? Perhaps this is the picture that many may find themselves on. In our walk with YHWH there is only one way and that is laid out for us clearly in His Word. How many have departed from an intimate relationship with YHWH and are heading straight for a destination that is offensive and far removed from Him? Perhaps you have been there or know of someone who is on a destructive path that in a sense started out with such a tiny compromise yet has or is leading them far from the reality of living a holy life. Many start out with great passion and zeal and end up in what could be called a moral chaos, and why is that? The Scriptures are clear, we are called to be holy or set apart, and Deḇarim tells us that we are to be perfect, and yet very often many find themselves sort of ease into disobedience in such subtle ways, that at first barely seem to affect them at all. Yet over a long period of time when no attempt has been made to repent or seek YHWH anew, they only discover that they are sinning in ways that they never thought possible only a short time before. Tonight I want us to talk a little about compromise and the effect it has in our called walk of holiness. In fact true holiness has no room for compromise. My message tonight is called ‘Holiness without compromise.’
Please turn with me to 1 Chronicles 13 (Read)
Before we get into the details of this passage, let me just run through the background leading up to these events that we have just read. Many years before while Yisra’ĕl was camped at Eḇen Ha‘ĕzer in battle against the Philistines and had just lost 4000 men in battle, the elders cried out and sent for the Ark of the Covenant of YHWH to be brought up from Shiloh so that YHWH would be in their midst and save them from the Philistines. The Ark of YHWH was brought up and the Israelites began to celebrate and raised a shout to YHWH that sent fear into the Philistine camp, yet they encouraged themselves to stand up and fight against the Israelites and that day 30,000 foot soldiers of Yisra’ĕl fell on the battlefield. The Ark of YHWH was captured and that day Ḥophni and Pineḥas, the sons of Eli died. When news of the Ark being captured got back to Eli, he, an old man fell of his chair and broke his neck and died. When his daughter in law had heard all of what had gone on – the Ark captured, Eli dead and her husband dead she went into labour and gave birth, calling her child Iḵaḇod saying that Elohim had departed from Yisra’ĕl and she died. Quite tragic events! The Philistines took the Ark of YHWH to Ashdod and set it next to the statue of Dagon in their temple for Dagon their ‘god’ who was half man, half fish. When they came the next day they saw that Dagon had fallen over and so they put him back up and the next day he had fallen over and both his head and hands were cut off. YHWH also began to strike the Philistine camp with tumours and they decided to get the Ark away from Ashdod and sent it to another Philistine camp called Gath and the same thing happened – an outbreak of tumours etc, so they sent the Ark of YHWH to Eqron another Philistine city and again YHWH sent destruction wherever they had taken the Ark of YHWH which had been in the Philistine field for 7 months, after which they decided to send it back to the Israelites. They put the Ark on a newly built ox cart and took two mother cows that had never been yoked and who had just given birth to calves – took their calves away from them, hitched them up to the cart and sent them on their way.
If the cows would go in the direction of Bĕyth Shemesh then they would be doing the right thing, and the cows did exactly that – they went straight to Bĕyth Shemesh. When the Israelites saw the Ark of YHWH coming to them they rejoiced and in the field of Yehoshua they celebrated with offerings unto YHWH, using the cart as wood and sacrificed the two cows as a sacrificial offering to YHWH. At that point some were foolish and looked into the Ark and died, in fact 70 died that day. They then sent for the people of Qiryath Yeʽarim to take the Ark and put it in the house of Aḇinaḏab which was a few kilometres from Jerusalem. The Ark of YHWH remained there for around 60 years for Saul was not interested in checking in on the Ark or bringing it back to Jerusalem at all.
Years later is where we come to our story today, where David the new king decided to bring the Ark back to Jerusalem.
As great as his intentions were, the results were disastrous. Having neglected much of YHWH’s instructions regarding the transportation of the Ark of the Covenant, the Levites failed to follow the strict commands of YHWH and suffered the anger of YHWH as a result.
There are some today who feel that Uzzah was treated harshly and it was unfair for YHWH to kill him, but this is not the case. YHWH did not give us this passage so that we can begin to question His justice, but rather this passage is given to us to remind us of the reverence we must have for His Holiness and that we are to obey His Word without compromising His ways in the least.
This weeks Torah portion is called ‘Shoftim’ and means judges or right rulings. We are to submit under the right rulings and ordinances of YHWH as given to us through His Torah and not compromise His standards for holiness in any way, and that is what we are looking at tonight – the effects of compromise.

Everything about the Ark of YHWH was ultimately meant to communicate something about the character of YHWH. From the precision in the way it was built, to what it contained and how it was to be transported or carried; and so YHWH was using His Ark as an illustration of His absolute Holiness. If He had allowed the Israelites to compromise his character in any way, by failing to carry out His instructions regarding the Ark of YHWH, then they would have foolishly began to treat Him as something common and deny Him His rightful glory and honour! YHWH demanded that they obey Him completely in every way, even in the seemingly ‘little things’.
It is the same today, YHWH has not changed, He calls for total obedience regarding the carrying of His presence and we are His Temple and carry His commands written on our hearts, and we therefore must take heed not to compromise in any way.
Learning from this passage let us look at 3 effects of compromising our walk of holiness:
Firstly what is compromise? One dictionary definition says that it is “a settlement of differences by mutual concession”.
Now as nice as this sounds; this is something that YHWH never wants us to do when it comes to His Word, His will and His ways! His Word is the final Authority on all matters. He is not there to come to a mutual concession with us on differences we may have in regard to understanding His Word – He demands total obedience. His commands and instructions are clear for us and we cannot by some differences think we can compromise His standards in any way. Now we know from history that the Israelites made many compromises and paid dearly for that, and I am sure many of us can relate in our own lives how compromising any standards always has negative effects and outcomes.
Here in this account the Israelites made at least 2 compromises in regards to the handling of the Ark of YHWH, that at first glance seems pretty harmless:
A – Failure to transport it – it was clear that according to the Word the sons of Kohath, the sons of Levi was to carry it;
Bemidbar / Numbers 4:15“And when Aharon and his sons have finished covering the set-apart objects and all the furnishings of the Set-apart Place at the breaking of camp, then the sons of Qehath shall come to lift them, but let them not touch that which is set-apart, lest they die. These matters are the burden of the sons of Qehath in the Tent of Meeting.
Clear instructions here in the Torah were given as to how the were to carry it using poles that looped through rings that were attached to the Ark and that no holy or set apart thing was to be touched. The Levites here followed the example of the Philistines and placed it on a new cart. You got to ask yourself why would they do that – but the same is true today – many believers are following the practices of pagan religions in their attempt in ‘carrying’ the presence of the Almighty!!
Just look at how multitudes are following pagan feasts and holidays as opposed to keeping the feasts of YHWH! And we all have done this, and it is time to realise how compromising in any way shows total disrespect for the Word of YHWH.
Why is it that YHWH showed anger toward Uzzah for touching the Ark, and yet did nothing to the others who were transporting it wrongly, as that was also a compromise of His instructions? Well, it seems clear that YHWH never said he would put to death those who failed in their duty to transport the Ark in the proper way – in fact the reason they were to carry it in the prescribed manner was to prevent anyone from touching it, but as we read from Numbers – touching it would result in death! We serve a Holy El and He demands our reverence.
What is important to note is that the first compromise had led to the second, which is referred to in 1 Samuel 6:7 as the ‘fault’, which the Hebrew word ‘shal’, which is an act in transgression of the will of Elohim, or better termed as an irreverent act – showing no reverence toward YHWH.
Because they disobeyed the instructions in carrying the Ark, the Ark began to move when the cows stumbled and Uzzah reached out his hand to prevent it from falling and as a result failed to show proper reverence and respect for YHWH. Even though it was done with good intentions, it was done in disobedience to the Holy standards of YHWH and was punished accordingly! Let me remind you that ‘small’ compromises lead to bigger ones! Here Uzzah thought he was doing the right thing, yet they started all wrong, and besides do you not think that YHWH can take care of His own Ark – it didn’t fall off the cart when it came from the Philistines!!! Small compromises lead to bigger ones! Look at David in 2 Samuel 11for example: When the kings all went off to war, David stayed in Jerusalem – COMPROMISE NO. 1 – Then one night while walking on his palace roof he spots a woman bathing down below and instead of ‘bouncing his eyes he set his desire on Bathsheba – COMPROMISE NO. 2 (Exodus 20:17 – do not covet your neighbour’s wife...) – Later he orchestrated a sexual relationship with her while knowing she was married – COMPROMISE NO. 3 (Exodus 20:14 – do not commit adultery…) – She then got pregnant and David had Uriah, her husband, killed – COMPROMISE NO.4 (Exodus 20:13 – do not commit murder…).
From neglect to lust to adultery to murder, a clear picture of how David drifted from YHWH in to moral chaos. If it could happen to a man after YHWH’s heart, then it can happen to anyone who gives in to compromising the Word in any way. Compromise disrespects His Word and will lead only to destruction!
It may seem a little harsh as we have said when we consider how Uzzah’s actions cost him his life, but it is important to consider his background that will certainly shed some light on understanding the outcome of his actions:
A – Firstly, Uzzah was the son of Aḇinaḏab who lived in Qiryath Yeʽarim.
B – The Ark was kept at his home for around 60 years before David attempted to move it to Jerusalem and it is safe to say that Uzzah knew it was there.
C – Uzzah would have listened over the years to his father talking about the Ark of YHWH, Israel’s most holy object of worship.
D – As we read in Number 4:15 there were clear instructions how the Ark was to be carried and that it was only to be carried by the sons of Qehath and if touched would result in death, But what happens – Uzzah and Ahio his brother get the responsibility for the big move – maybe because the Ark had been in their home? Uzzah should have known better as he would have been clearly taught all about the Ark. In what is seemingly an apparent disregard for the holiness of YHWH and His instructions, he felt obliged to perform the task and with his brother in front and him at the back, he took it upon himself to reach out and touch the Ark as opposed to trusting YHWH to care for it. This caused great distress for David, who quickly moved from being filled with joy to being angry and then fear as he too realised his contribution in Uzzah’s death through poor leadership.
How many times have your compromises with the Truth, compromises in carrying His presence correctly, led to some serious circumstances and devastating results, not only for ourselves but also for others? Compromise with the Word devastates your life as well as others around you!
David at this point refused to press on in fear of further effects of compromised actions and having witnessed the very anger of YHWH decided to take the Ark into the house of Oḇĕḏ-Eḏom, where it stayed for 3 months. He was one of the Levites who were appointed to care for the Ark and later became a doorkeeper in the house of YHWH, forsaking all to be in the presence of YHWH. The result of the Ark being in the house of Oḇĕḏ-Eḏom was a overflow of blessings. YHWH blessed his home, his crops, his family – all he had was blessed. A bump in the road beside the house of Oḇĕḏ-Eḏom led to great blessings that after 3 months David went back to fetch the Ark and bring it back to Jerusalem in the right way.
Doing things the right way, in complete obedience to YHWH resulted in YHWH pouring out His blessing on His servants.
We all desire the blessings of YHWH, don’t we? Then it is very clear that we are to live according to His Word, being careful how we live, not allowing any form of compromise to creep harmlessly in at any point, but rather keeping our lives in line with His Word:
To obey is better than sacrifice and the account if Uzzah is a warning to us against what we could term ‘familiarity’ with YHWH. He is the Almighty, and not as some would say down under, the all-matey! YHWH is not our buddy, He is our Elohim and we must learn to reverence Him walking in holiness as we carry His presence correctly and not by some makeshift lazy approach to worshipping Him, compromising his standards to suit our preferences. Uzzah took YHWH and His holiness for granted and paid the price – familiarity breeds contempt.
We are called to be holy, we are chosen and we are His treasured possession, His royal priesthood who must lead the way for others to follow as we follow Him.
We can learn from David’s wrong approach to worship in this event:
1 – (13:1,4) – David consulted the people, the leaders and the whole assembly, yet never consulted YHWH on bringing back the Ark – we must always consult YHWH - all too often people will listen to others over the Word! We are to pray always and seek YHWH on all matters. There is nothing wrong with consulting others and getting great advice and insight but it must never be that we neglect to seek YHWH!
2 – (13:2,4) – David did what was right in the eyes of the people. We must be careful that we are not trying to please people over YHWH. Doing what is right in others eyes may not be right in YHWH’s eyes.
3 – (13:7) – David copied the way of the Philistines by making a new cart for the Ark – we must not copy the pagan practices of worship in any way.
4 – (13:7) – David allowed Uzzah and Ahio to ‘drive’ the presence of YHWH – we must be led by the Ruach haQodesh (Holy Spirit) not the other way round – us trying to direct the Spirit our way. We cannot orchestrate and manipulate the Spirit of Elohim to fit into our planned schedules and events; we are to be led by the Spirit and Truth!
5 – (13:8) – David failed to keep YHWH’ standards – It was the Levites who were supposed to be the musicians and here all the assembly were playing instruments etc. It sounds harsh but this was the standard – today we are a kingdom of priests so we can all play instruments and make music to YHWH – but there is still His order that must be adhered to and followed. We must not do as everyone sees fit in their own eyes, we must follow and worship according to how YHWH has told us in His Word, and He is an El of order, therefore let us be careful not to be out of order in our attempt at worship!
6 – (13:9) – David allowed flesh to touch the presence of YHWH. We are to worship in Spirit and in Truth, not in the flesh. We cannot manufacture a worship that suits our flesh, we worship His way and His way is in Spirit and in Truth. In the flesh will only lead to a show that attracts the shallow!

We see how David was angry and then he feared YHWH. If only he had feared YHWH from the beginning he would have got it right the first time. The Fear of YHWH is the beginning of wisdom!
Now we can learn from this – David certainly learned many lessons in his life and his life reveals a great picture of YHWH’s grace – David was a man after the heart of YHWH – he messed up and learned the hard way. The real value of life is truly having the fullness of the presence of YHWH in every way, not just a form but the fullness of His presence that He fills as we walk a life of no compromise. There are many who have the form of godliness, but we want His fullness, amen!
2 Timothy 3:1-5 “But know this, that in the last days hard times shall come. For men shall be lovers of self, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, thankless, wrong-doers, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, fierce, haters of good, betrayers, reckless, puffed up, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of Elohim, having a form of reverence but denying its power. And turn away from these!
We don’t just want a form of reverence with no power we want the fullness of His presence and this is the call to live in holiness without compromise.
The context of this passage today is reverence for YHWH and His Torah and how we carry His Presence. When you carry the presence of the Almighty correctly you will be blessed, when you compromise – then danger is lurking at the door!
Psalm 1:1-3 “Blessed is the man who shall not walk in the counsel of the wrong, and shall not stand in the path of sinners, and shall not sit in the seat of scoffers, But his delight is in the Torah of יהוה, and he meditates in His Torah day and night. For he shall be as a tree Planted by the rivers of water, that yields its fruit in its season, and whose leaf does not wither, and whatever he does prospers.
Let us be an uncompromised people walking wholeheartedly in joyful obedience to the Word of YHWH our Elohim.
Perhaps you have found yourself lost from the presence of YHWH – and you are trying to bring His presence, His right rulings, His standards back – do not compromise in the least. May we learn to distinguish between the holy and the common, the clean and the unclean and come out of all that is unclean! I believe that for many of us who have come from a form of worship that had the appearance of power yet was compromised in disobedience, have now by His grace received the freedom to carry His glorious presence and we must take heed not to treat any of His instructions in a compromised manner that we may truly shine His presence and live His Truth for others to follow.
Let this passage in 1 Chronicles remind us that we are to always walk in reverence of our Awesome and Mighty Maker, that it is not who live for we have died to the flesh and things of the world but that it is Messiah who lives in us as we carry His very Spirit in the prescribed obedient manner.

I thank YHWH that he has not struck me down like Uzzah when I have not carried Him appropriately in my life and acted in the flesh, let us not take his grace lightly or as a license to do as we please but let us truly walk in the blessing of an obedient walk rejoicing in Him. Compromise only disrespects, devastates and deflects all YHWH has freely given us; let us not be out by 1 ½ degree routing error but let us live in Holiness without compromise.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010


Isaiah 55 / overview of Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 11:26-16:17 (Re’eh)
Message preached on erev Shabbat - 06 August 2010

Shabbat Shalom everyone, it is always good for us to be together in fellowship as we celebrate the Goodness of YHWH our Elohim. You know we have all been invited – to what you may ask! No it is not a ‘braai’ or rugby match! It is to a wedding, in fact we have not only been invited, we have been sought out and proposed to – to be His Bride. And those who choose to accept this offer of marriage have in fact entered in to the marriage contract, which is now forever sealed in the Blood of the Bridegroom Himself, Yahshua Messiah. We have been invited to the Wedding Feast of all weddings, and I ask you all – ‘Have you given your RSVP?’ In other words have you accepted or declined? It is all about choices and it begins with a single choice. My message tonight is called ‘Thirsty choices’ and I would like us to look at our need to have our thirst satisfied in that alone which satisfies. Please turn with me to Isaiah 55. (Read)
I love this passage, this is an invitation to the thirsty – a call to anyone who thirsts. Now we know that we all thirst and when you are thirsty you go and drink something to try and quench your thirst, right! In actual fact it has been said that if you in fact get to the stage of being thirsty then you have already been too long without water and let yourself begin to dehydrate which is very unhealthy! But we all know that the thirst that is being spoken of here is more than just physical, it is speaking of a spiritual thirst. Today many people do not think or realise that they are spiritually thirsty simply because they have filled their lives up with so many false wells so to speak, keeping them so busy that they get consumed by a sense of satisfaction that is indeed false. When preparing this word, the song title of a Rolling Stone song, satisfaction, came to mind where Mick Jagger, the lead singer, sings, “I cant get no…satisfaction”. I am not sure of the rest and no I do not listen to the rolling stones!!! I find that the words of this song typify what the world is in reality singing along to, not realising the truth of what they are saying. They can have all the wealth, success and status the world loves to give yet still be thirsty!!! It is clear that Mick Jagger has never had his thirst quenched with what truly satisfies for the worldly things cannot satisfy the spiritual man.
Why is it that so many seek to satisfy that which is dying – the flesh? In the process of filling up the flesh with what does not satisfy, one is in serious danger of sentencing one’s spirit, as a result of wrong choices, to eternal death!!! You see everything we do is a result of a choice and so often we may ask ourselves, “Why am I doing this…?”, or “Why am I doing that…?”, when in fact we need to be looking behind our actions and ask, “What choice did I make?”
If you are thirsty, come and drink is the invitation! For most of us, and I like to believe that for all, there comes a time or various key moments in our lives where we recognise that there has got to be more to what and how we are living, in other words we recognise a thirst. All too often through the desire to satisfy that thirst, wrong choices are born, either, out of peer pressure, the culture or traditions we have been brought up in or even by the way a wrong choice has been commercialised or advertised. In today’s consumer driven world, people find that they just can’t get enough and so they devour food, pleasure, work, entertainment and even relationships as fast as they can just to get something out of it and then seek more, never being satisfied as they are constantly driven by a wanting, a needing , a longing and a thirsting! For what though?
We are all created with an appetite, and that is an appetite for Elohim. He has made us to praise Him – to hunger and thirst for Him.
Isaiah 43:19-21 “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland. 20 The wild animals honour me, the jackals and the owls, because I provide water in the desert and streams in the wasteland, to give drink to my people, my chosen, 21 the people I formed for myself that they may proclaim my praise.
You see it is YHWH who provides for us His Living water to equip us to praise Him!!!
Yahshua Himself, said in His sermon on the mount, that we are blessed when we hunger and thirst after righteousness, for we will be filled – He promises us that! He is in essence saying that you will be blessed when you truly make the choice to seek and follow that which you were designed to, for everything else is a counterfeit that will only drain you and not fill you.
The term thirsty is used frequently in Scriptures and is a metaphor for spiritual longing. We all want a sense of belonging and we know that the only thing that satisfies is from above. I would like to read a passage from the Book of Enoch for this helped me understand more clearly what Yahshua was telling us when we are to hunger and thirst for righteousness.
I encourage you all to read the Book of Enoch; it is freely available on the net. This Book was in fact part of the canonized Scriptures up until around the 7th century C.E. and ‘disappeared’ for about 1000 years having been ‘rediscovered’ in the 17th century C.E. It gives greater detail on the accounts that we read of in Berěshith/Genesis 6.
Enoch 15:8-12 “And now, the giants, who are produced from the spirits and flesh, shall be called evil spirits upon the earth, and on the earth shall be their dwelling. Evil spirits have proceeded from their bodies; because they are born from men and from the holy Watchers is their beginning and primal origin; they shall be evil spirits on earth, and evil spirits shall they be called. [As for the spirits of heaven, in heaven shall be their dwelling, but as for the spirits of the earth which were born upon the earth, on the earth shall be their dwelling.] And the spirits of the giants afflict, oppress, destroy, attack, do battle, and work destruction on the earth, and cause trouble: they take no food, but nevertheless hunger and thirst, and cause offences. And these spirits shall rise up against the children of men and against the women, because they have proceeded from them.
What is this passage saying? Without going too much into Enoch right now, the fact is that when the sons of Elohim came down and had sexual relations with the daughters of men, giants were born, the Nephilim – the cast out ones, half breeds if you will. This was a great abomination before YHWH, and as they began to rule and reign over the earth, YHWH declared HE was going to wipe out all mankind and that which has come from abominable acts. The Spirits from the heavens were bound up and Jude clearly gives us reference as quoting from Enoch that they are bound up until the Day of Judgment.
Yehuḏah/Jude 6 “And the messengers who did not keep their own principality, but left their own dwelling, He has kept in everlasting shackles under darkness for the judgment of the great day.
Why am I telling you this? Well the messengers who came down have been bound until the Day of Judgment, but the spirits of the offspring of the messengers and the daughters of men are the evil spirits that roam the earth, the demons in other words. And the curse that YHWH pronounced over them was that they would cause offenses, cause trouble, afflict etc, but also that they would hunger and thirst, but never eat or drink!!! Think for a moment what that must be like to always be hungry and thirsty and never be able to eat or drink anything! That is why in Hindu temples and other pagan religions food will be put out for the ‘gods’, and the next day the food will still be there. When you ask why they put food out you will be told it is to appease the ‘gods’ for they want food, yet as we see they can never eat!!! This is the curse of abominable practices before YHWH!!!
Now when we see passages like what we are reading tonight, that carries an invitation to the thirsty, it is for me a wonderful declaration of the work of our Saviour, Yahshua Messiah, in that we through His work have access to the living waters of Life that we never have to thirst again!!!
This is exactly what Yahshua told the woman at the well in John 4.
You see once we taste of the Living Water, we will know our source and never have to look anywhere else and streams of living water will flow from within that we may offer it to others. The question is simply have we truly tasted the Living Water and if so then, are we drinking daily? Do you realise the privilege we have to come and drink!!!
In this chapter in Yeshayahu/Isaiah and flowing in to chapter 56 we see a threefold invitation: and that is – Come SeekWorship!
Come – the invitation that is extended to all who will call upon the Name of Yahweh. Isaiah was addressing a people who really had to work hard to dig wells, care for their flocks and plant seed and tend to their vineyards and it may be these verses that Yahshua had in mind after feeding the five thousand when he said in:
John 6:27 “Do not labour for the food that is perishing, but for the food that is remaining to everlasting life, which the Son of Aḏam shall give you, for the Father, Elohim, has set His seal on Him.
This does not mean we are not to work, but rather we must not manifest anxiety over worldly things and make them the main or supreme object of our desire. The food of the flesh perishes and the strength you get from it soon disappears, but the food that supplies your spiritual needs, that is the Word, nourishes and strengthens your soul and does not waste away but endures, nourishing the soul to everlasting life! Yahshua offers everything that they were labouring so hard for – and it is free! It is a matter of us simply coming to Him and listening to His Word. In fact if people would but just listen to His Word they would be inclined to come, and so we who have His Word have the responsibility of making it known, making it heard that others would bee inclined to come, and there are many thirsty people out there, who are spiritually dehydrated!
YHWH draws sinners unto Himself through his Word and we who carry His very Word are to sow the seeds and water through love and prayer. There is an emphasis here on listening or hearing, why? Because faith comes by hearing! We need to hear and eat what is good for us and delight in the fatness of the Word. I love this expression, ‘the fatness’ for it clearly speaks that as we discover the richness of the Word, there is a feast that is greater than any worldly expression could offer. We have an all access pass to a buffet of the richest of delicacies that never spoils, and one of the results of the choice to come and eat and drink is that we get to delight in His Good Food! For this abundant food will lead us in all truth, bringing peace and rest to our soul, and deliverance from the stress of trying to satisfy a thirst that we cannot do by means of the flesh!
Seek - Seek Him while He may be found! Verse 6 is a plea to Israel to seek YHWH with urgency and without delay, for the opportunity may pass. We cannot sit around saying, “Oh I’ll get to it some time soon!” That may be too late. All too often most are seeking their own ways and desires and trying to accomplish their goals before attending to the need of making YHWH and His Word priority in their lives. Yahshua tells us not to worry about tomorrow, not to worry about what we will eat, what we will drink or what we will wear, for that is what the pagans run after; we are to seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be added to us as well! Hunger and thirst for righteousness and we will be filled.
Part of seeking Him is the ability to forsake that which is of no value. Verse 7 says it clearly – let the wrong forsake his way, and the unrighteous his thoughts – what does this mean? We need to learn to forsake our ways and forsake our thoughts for His, let us look at these two:
1 - Forsake your way –
This weeks Torah portion that is from Deḇarim/ Deuteronomy 11:26-16:17 has the meaning or title ‘re’eh’ which means ‘look’ or ‘see’, for it starts with the words,
See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse.” - Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 11:26
We are going to go through this portion together tomorrow in more depth, and in essence it is all about choices and so tonight I am hoping to stir your hearts to allow the Torah portion for this week to test you, encourage you and equip you and train you in righteousness, amen! So the question is, “How do wee ‘see’ His Word?” Do we see it His way or do we see it our way or another?
Often you will hear the expressions and may even have used them yourself, “This is the way I ‘see’ it”, or “I don’t ‘see’ it that way”, and we easily get led into living our lives solely by the way “we” ‘see’ things, which sounds pretty normal, but is it?
Firstly we must be open to acknowledge that we may not always be right and this is not that easy for most! The action of choosing to come to Yahshua and to drink of His Living Water is the acceptance to hear His Word and ‘see’ things His way. His Word is very clear – His ways are higher than our ways, and we must be willing to forsake our way, no matter how sincere it may be for we can be sincerely wrong and so we must choose His way as He has given us in His Word. As high as the heavens are above the earth, so are His ways higher and far better for us. His Word always accomplishes what He has sent if for and never returns to Him empty.
Much of our man made ways accomplish absolutely nothing, and all too often so much energy and time and effort is wasted for nothing! If we have to think just how man has changed YHWH’s ways and substituted it with other ways, we can clearly see the effect it has and the loss of intimacy and growth it has in walking in a fruitful relationship with YHWH. Changing His ways to another becomes fruitless, even though it may have the appearance of fruit.
Sabbath is a prime example; so much has been lost as a result of man following his own ways as opposed to simply being obedient to the way of YHWH, and it all has to do with choice – will we forsake our way and follow His?
The more we begin to hear His Word the more we will realise that our ways or rather man’s ways are wrong and if we want to walk in the fullness of His goodness and blessings of an abundant spirit filled life we must choose the only way that satisfies – and that is to hear, and do His Torah, that is to obey and follow Yahshua our Messiah.
2 - Forsake our unrighteous thoughts
What is righteousness? Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 6:25 is fast becoming one of my favourite verses. It says clearly that it is righteousness for us when we guard to do all that YHWH has commanded us! So clearly then righteousness is to guard and do, listen and obey. Abraham listened and obeyed and it was credited to him as righteousness. In other words, he acted on the Word of Elohim (that which he heard, that which was spoken to him and given to him as instruction by the Almighty) that brought faith that was acted upon – that is righteousness – faith in action – responding correctly to the given instruction. So what is unrighteousness? It is the opposite – well that is not difficult to figure out!!! So if righteousness is the expression of obedience then unrighteousness is clearly the expression of disobedience – or better termed as lawlessness which we are warned about in many of the Renewed Covenant writings! Kepha/Peter warns us not to be led away by the teaching of lawlessness! And Sha’ul/Paul tells us in writing to the Thessalonians that the man of lawlessness was already at work among them back then – that means he is still very much at work today! Those who practice unrighteousness (that is to walk in disobedience to the instructions or Torah of Elohim) must forsake their thoughts in coming to Yahshua, why? Because we know that the Scripture tells us that as a man thinks so he is – we live out what we think, so what we think or what fills our minds and thought is of vital importance, because whatever we fill our minds with will shape our thinking and so determine our walk. That is why we are told not to set out eyes on any ‘vile’ thing. Listen if you set your eyes on pornographic material, you will end up engaging in lustful practices and sexual sin. If you set your eyes on junk you will end up living out that junk which you have filled your thoughts with! Have any of you noticed at how when you started filling your mind with the Word and more specifically with His Torah, that your walk has changed and many have much to say about it? Do not worry what others say; be filled with what matters, amen! If we fill our minds with all kinds of junk and lawless teaching – that is to say we do not have to walk in Torah or that YHWH’s commands have been done away with, then we will end up walking in unrighteousness which is a destructive path. It is of vital importance that we forsake any thought pattern of man that is in contradiction to his Word and must not be conformed to a worldly system that rots but rather be transformed daily by renewing our thought life, renewing our minds through His very life giving Word. His Word must saturate our thoughts which will indeed cause us to hear His voice and return to Him who pardons us for trying to satisfy our thirst in places that simply do not.
His Word becomes Bread for the eater and seed for the sower to sow. As sower’s of His seed we cannot be dehydrated or thirsty for we will faint and lose heart, but if we drink and eat that which satisfies we will be strengthened with His joy that will cause us to go out and be brought back in peace.
What I am trying to point out tonight is that Yahshua has opened up His fountain of Living Water for us to freely drink from – that is His Word, and we need to understand the reality of the choices we make in response to His Word. If we choose the way YHWH sees it then we will walk in the right way – His way. If we choose the way we see it, we may just find ourselves on an unrighteous path. There is only One Good way, whereas there are many evil ways.
The outline of this weeks Torah reading, is about choices and I just briefly want to highlight 5 areas which we need to make very clear choices in, which we will look at in more depth tomorrow, but briefly let us look at what choices we are to make based on how we see His Word - they are:
Worship – 5 choices sums up our worship
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 12 speaks clearly about choosing who will be your Elohim. Yehoshua/Joshua made it very clear to the nation when he addressed them in his last speech that they were choose whom they would serve, but as for him and his house they serve – not that they would but they do – they always have and would continue to. It is a clear cut choice that all need to make. It is interesting to note that the Ten Commandments begin clearly with YHWH declaring to a people who said they would obey, that He is their Elohim! This has to be a clear cut choice for us. Your behaviour in following YHWH must not be after the pattern of what other men have said and done but after what YHWH has said in His Word. This is hard for some for when confronted with the truth they may say things like, “But that is not the way we did it there!” Moses says to the Israelites that they were not to do as they were doing then – each one doing whatever is right in his own eyes, but were to follow YHWH’s ways. Each denomination may have different ways and often hear things like, “The Methodists do it this way” or “the Baptists do it this way” etc. We are to do it YHWH’s way, amen If any way is contradictory to YHWH’s way do not follow it. YHWH tells us He wants us to do it His way, which may be difficult, especially if you have been accustomed to man’s ways of worship, but choosing YHWH’s way is good for you! Many do not want to hear that the way they have been doing things is wrong, “Are you telling me that what I have been doing is wrong?” they may often burst out with and simply the answer is, “No, I am not telling you, YHWH is telling you through His Word!” Will you choose the way YHWH says or the way man has said? It is a very hard choice but it needs to be made. Changing from Sunday observance to Sabbath keeping is one of those hard choices, and in fact it is not about Sabbath – it is about what YHWH says – and He says remember His Sabbath, so then the question comes down to, “what are you going to do?” - listen to YHWH or listen to man!!! Who is going to be your Elohim, who will you listen to?
YHWH has set before us His way, and it is there for us to choose - His way or another! Choices will cost you – especially when you choose to faithfully follow His way, because let us be honest here, in most cases His way contradicts the way man chooses to live!
Deḇarim/ Deuteronomy 13 speaks about making a choice about others. Once we make the choice to serve and follow Yahweh and declare Him to be our Elohim, other choices follow, and that relates to others we engage with in our daily lives. There are basically 3 types of people who will have an effect on your life:
1 – Religious/Spiritual – Who do you choose to allow speaking in to your life and walking with in regards to equipping you spiritually with the Word? Chapter 13 is clear that we must be careful of the hype of signs and wonders. Loads of people followed Yahshua, especially when there were great miracles, yet only 120 were in the upper room who received the Ruach HaQodesh (Holy Spirit). Many follow the manifestations, which if not tested may be a false prophet. Yes true prophets perform signs and wonders, but the key we need to ask ourselves in making the choice on who we follow or listen to is simply about where they are leading you to – is it to the Torah or away from the Torah? If a leader in any way leads you away from YHWH and His Word in any way – do not follow, now matter how charismatic and great is his abilities to hold a crowd! So how do you know what to look for in a spiritual leader that is not leading you away from the Truth? Ask at least these 7 questions: Does he teach and do the following:
A – Love YHWH – How? John tells us that if you love Him you will obey his commands and they are not burdensome – So do those that you receive your instruction from love YHWH? Do they obey His Commands and teach other to do so?
B – Follow YHWH – Secondly, do they follow Him. 1 John2:6 tells us that whoever claims to live in Him (that is in Messiah) then they must walk as He (Yahshua) did! How did Yahshua walk? In total obedience to the Torah!!! Does the leaders you follow, follow Yahshua? Sha’ul said clearly to those he wrote, to follow him as he followed Messiah. This is very important because you do not want to be led down the wrong road – are they following the Word and teaching others to do so?
C – Fear YHWH – Do those you listen to fear YHWH? The fear of YHWH is the beginning of wisdom! Do they have a reverence for YHWH and to they teach the fear of YHWH and what it means?
D – Keep His Commandments (Big factor) – as you will notice – all of these check points or questions simply lead to his Torah – His instructions – does the one is instructing you keep and do the Commands of Elohim, and teach obedience?
E – Listen to His voice – the very voice that spoke on Mount Sinai – what was spoken there? The Ten Commandments! Often you will hear people say that they struggle to hear the voice of the Almighty. In effect they might as well be saying that they do not know or listen to His commands!
F – Serve YHWH – is the one who is leading you – serving or waiting to be served. When Yahshua washed His disciple’s feet at the last supper, He was giving them a great lesson. Their feet must have been tired and smelly!!! Imagine all the guys sitting around after walking all over and now resting and reclining and all there feet in those leather sandals must have been as bad if not worse than an army bungalow after a root march and all boots come off – for those who have been to the army would know what I am talking about!!! Yahshua gets up, takes off His outer garments, wraps a towel around Himself and gest some water and washes all their stinky feet!!! They did not understand at first what He was doing but He told them that He did not come to be served but to serve. What does this act symbolise for us today? Many have ‘washed feet’ before an audience trying to show their humility but it is so much more than trying to re-enact this very act. What this could mean fro us today is service, no matter your position. In a large congregation, do you think that the senior pastor would go and clean the dirty toilet if and when it was needed to be done? Probably not, it would be above them – and this is what Yahshua was teaching – don’t let anything become too low for you to do – if it needs to be done – you be the first to do it – and serve with gladness!!! Do those you are listening to serve and teach service?
G – Cling to YHWH – Are they living in wholehearted devotion to YHWH? You will know them by their fruit – so see the outcome of their lives and see if they in fact do cling to YHWH – even when the going gets tough!
If he doesn’t do these things do not follow him! If a saviour is being portrayed as one who is leading you away from the Word in that you do not have to follow the Torah, then he is against Scripture and is a false prophet! Yahshua did not teach and do what was contrary to the Word but fulfilled it in every way and now we too, as we walk in Him, must be perfect as YHWH is perfect as we walk in His Torah! Make a choice where you get your spiritual instruction from
2 – Family – what if your family are against you serving YHWH His way? Now that you keep Sabbath and forsake pagan festivals and keep YHWH appointed feasts, will you choose to stand up for the Word or back down in compromise because they are on your case – it is a choice, and yes a very hard one at that, but unless you stand up for the truth, how will they ever be able to be witnessed to? Let your testimony in choosing YHWH be clear – stand up for the Truth of His way, the way He sees it and not the way they see it! Yahshua said that unless you hate your mother or brother or sister you are not worthy of being His disciple! Now Yahshua is certainly not saying we hate our family, but in contrast to the devotion of choosing to follow Him there can be no question in choosing Him over your family!
3 – Community – what if all those around you choose to follow the customs and traditions of the world and you are the only one that wants to choose His way? What choice will you make? Even if an entire church does not choose to obey YHWH’s Word by keeping all His commands – what will you do? Choose the way of Truth! Quit fooling around, get out – even if there are good things going on there, yet they are opposed to seeing His Commands His way – then don’t hang around – get out lest you be ensnared by their profane worship! The whole world can be against you, yet if YHWH is for you who can be against you – with Him you are the majority and remember just how BIG is YHWH – so with Him on your side you are the majority!
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 14 speaks about what is food acceptable to eat and what is not, and here we are once again presented a choice on our diet – will it be His way or the way I choose or the way I see it. If the way you see it is contrary to the Word then change your view and see it His way – it is that simple. So many people get so hung up over a pig! I mean it is crazy, the Scripture is clear not to eat detestable things and to eat pig is detestable to YHWH! If you were back in the days of the Temple, do you think you could even take your pig, on a leash, into the Temple with you – absolutely not, well it is the same today – why then would you want to lead pig into His temple today? Do you not now you are the Temple of the Holy Spirit! Some think that Yahshua did away with all dietary laws and now it is a free for all! It is about choice – you can eat whatever you choose – but the question is will you choose His way and his dietary instructions or your own way or some false doctrine that has suddenly called food that which never was nor ever will be in the eyes of YHWH? When Kepha/Peter had the vision of all the unclean animals coming down on a tallit, it was not about what you may or may not eat – it was a clear way of YHWH showing Kepha/Peter that he was not to call any man unclean who YHWH makes clean and so he obediently responded to this vision and went to the house of Cornelius, the first gentile to get saved, 15 years after Shavuot/Pentecost! YHWH is the same forever, He has not changed His mind on food and many need to realise that – it is a choice – His way or another way!
Some think ‘detestables’ are ‘delicacies’. Listen what is detestable does not become a delicacy just because you spice it up – it remains detestable! Choosing to see it His way and walk in it is good for us, good for our health and well being! A choice must be made – choose what is clean for you – for you are chosen, royal and set apart for service unto Him – keep the temple clean! Choice in food has many that are thirsty and are not drinking from the Living Water but trying to satisfy their thirst in this regard their way – how about you? I know we have spoken a lot about food lately and I want you to realise – it is a choice!
Wow, I actually thought money would be possibly the hardest choice to make in seeing things YHWH’s way, but perhaps the bacon issue has many gripped in a real thirsty choice!!! Money… what we must see, is to see it His way and His way is clear – there are 3 areas that are spoken of in this week’s portion: In terms of tithes an offerings and vows etc, are for the common storehouse for public worship, the Levite – that is the one who teaches you the Word and the widows, orphans. The heart is that as a fellowshipping community the needs are to be met in all areas! In fact Scripture in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy makes it clear not to neglect our brothers that are in need – it clearly states that our hands are to open to them and not closed – and only when they say they have sufficient then we can take back our open hand! We will discuss this more tomorrow, but it comes down to a choice of stewarding the way YHWH has set it out or the way we choose to when we feel like it!
In caring for community His way we must be willing to forgive and release the debts of our brothers, and the parable of the unmerciful servant is a good lesson in this regard. Scripture is clear that our hands must be open to help a brother in need. Often YHWH’s ways on finances do not make sense in the world to day – but remember His ways are higher than ours – who’s ways will we follow? It is a choice on stewardship.
The fifth area that speaks of making clear choice is our worship, which in essence sums up all the choices on how and who we worship – but how will we worship – will it be the way He has set forth or the way we choose for ourselves? This choice is a choice of how we practice our faith. He has given us His appointed feasts and we must choose how we will worship Him – will we follow a paganised system of worship and follow the world or follow His detailed instructions on worship? Making this choice is critical – because we can also ask why we are here tonight. Why do we keep Shabbat and all the feasts – is it to tick of a ‘to do’ list and yearly planner or is it to see it His way and truly come to worship YHWH with all our heart. Many people are simply following the crowd and do not understand or see that keeping His feasts is a time to rest in Him and rejoice together in Him celebrating His appointed times as we rehearse His created order of time and not just a routine we fall into but one we live and love walking in as pure devoted worship to Him. In Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 16:16-17 it ends this weeks portion with the instruction not to come empty handed before YHWH but to come and give to Him in proportion to the way He has blessed you! Here the phrase ‘empty hand’ also carries with it the meaning ‘empty heart’ for it is out of your heart that you give Him your worship. Empty hand means an empty heart – it is all about a choice – do I come to worship in order to criticize and find fault and find the splinter in another’s eye to steer away from the fact that there is a log in my own eye, or is my heart filled with a desire to worship Him! Sha’ul/Paul did not change the teaching on giving or do away with tithes and offerings, he was teaching Torah – that you give according to your heart and not under compulsion. The outward action reveals the heart and an empty heart represents a life where no definite choice to follow and worship YHWH has been made.

As we hear the call of YHWH telling us to Come and drink, Come and eat, may we choose His way of seeing things. Choose Him as our Elohim whom we will serve, Choose to stand up for Him and follow His ways over the choices others have made that are contrary to His Word, Choose to eat what He says is clean and so keep His temple clean, Choose to steward well what He has blessed you with His way and finally Choose to rejoice and celebrate His love in wholehearted worship.

Where are you at today? Are there some thirsty choices to be made? Perhaps you have made your choices and have chosen His way – great keep doing it everyday. Maybe some areas you quite haven’t made the right choice for you simply have not seen it His way – allow the Word to open your eyes and see His Truth and choose wisely. If there are areas that you have been thirsting in – come and drink from the Living Water and allow His Springs of Living Water to begin to well up to overflowing in you that others may taste and see that YHWH is Good.
Thirsty choices – do you have any to make – choose that which will satisfy – drinking His way!

May YHWH Bless you and guard you, May YHWH make His face shine upon you, and show favour to you, YHWH lift up His face upon you and give you peace and may His Name be upon you!

Wednesday, August 04, 2010


Deḇarim / Deuteronomy 7

Sabbath Service Message on 30 July 2010
Praise Yahweh, all you servants of Yahweh, praise His Holy Name! Shabbat Shalom to you all, may the favour and peace of Yahweh our Elohim be upon us as we fellowship in His presence – HalleluYah!
As I reflect back on the messages we have been going through over the last few weeks, I am amazed at how YHWH is so in control and leading us forward into great promises and victories in Yahshua Messiah. The last few weeks we have been looking at the words we speak, turning trials into triumphs, and rising up to take a stand, the responsibilities of possessing our inheritance, assessing before possessing and last week – get up, lift up and be not afraid! All messages that clearly are about our ability to fully walk in Him and taking possession of the abundant life He has freely blessed us with. Tonight I want us to continue in that line of thought as we look at Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 7 as part of this weeks Torah reading, with a message called, “Entering in calls for a driving out!” As we read together let us be encouraged once again by the words of Moshe (Moses) in his instruction to the Israelites on what they are to do upon entering in to the Promised Land, giving us courage and strength today to heed the same instructions as we enter in to His Promises for us in our daily lives. Turn with me to Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 7 and let’s read together:

In this passage Moshe (Moses) is clearly given some valuable instructions to the Israelites that they were to adhere to if they were going to successfully inhabit the Land YHWH had prepared and given for them. This passage gives us such great insight that one evening is certainly not sufficient to unpack all these pearls of great wisdom, however I want to just highlight some basic principles being taught here for you to go and test and think upon as you meditate on the Word.
As we begin to enter and walk in His promises, there are responsibilities that we must embrace in order that we fully engage in the fruit filled blessed life He has given us and so here Moshe (Moses) begins in this chapter a theme that is carried through the next few chapters and that is the dangers to recognise and avoid in entering the Promised Land.
5 Dangers to recognise and avoid are:
1 – Compromise with the enemy (7:1-16)
2 – Fear of the enemy (7:17-26)
3 – Spirit of independence (8)
4 – Pride (9:1-10:11)
5 – Deliberate disobedience (10:12-11:32)
Tonight we will look at compromise with the enemy and fear of the enemy, and tomorrow as we read this weeks portion we will discuss the others as well.
Deuteronomy 10:12-13 sums up what YHWH asks of us – it sums up our responsibility: “And now, Yisra’ĕl, what is YHWH your Elohim asking of you, but to fear YHWH your Elohim, to walk in all His ways and to love Him, and to serve YHWH your Elohim with all your heart and with all your being, 13 to guard the commands of YHWH and His laws which I command you today for your good?”
It is for our good when we hear and obey His commands – for our good – it is crazy to not do what is good for us!!! So what was Moshe (Moses) telling the Israelites?
Well they were about to enter the Promised Land, Canaan and YHWH was going to clear away the 7 pagan nations from before Israel and was calling them to destroy them. YHWH would deliver them up before Israel, Israel was to destroy them! They had a part to play – obedience in destroying the evil in the land! As YHWH leads us in His promises, He warns us to utterly destroy any form of pagan worship and not compromise in the slightest! The word used in verse two for ‘under the ban’ or ‘destroy’ is the Hebrew word ‘cha-ram’ which can mean the following: To devote to YHWH – give exclusively to Him, which once given must then be destroyed so that there will be no human use made of it. It also means to prohibit for common use, to exterminate, annihilate or dedicate to destruction! Ok, so you get the picture! They were to utterly annihilate the enemy! There are valid reasons for this –
Firstly, all false worship is wicked and is ripe for judgement and if left untouched would cause them to sin! Often people will remark that the Elohim of the O.T. was cruel and wicked to destroy nations! Let us be constantly reminded that YHWH is the same yesterday, today and forever – He does not change! The Elohim who hated sin back then, hates sin today! If you could understand just how wicked and sinful these pagan nations were and how they resisted YHWH, then these critics of today would instead be very grateful that Israel wiped them out!
These pagan nations deserved to die for their sin – studies of their religion, literature and archaeological remains reveal that they were the most morally depraved culture on the earth at the time and their roots of worship traced back to sun-god worship of Nimrod, son of Cush and nephew of Canaan, great grandson of Noah who cursed Canaan after Ham had exposed his father’s nakedness.
Secondly, they persisted in their hatred toward Elohim, and had they repented YHWH would have spared them as He spared the Ninevites who repented at the preaching of Jonah. We know that Nineveh was built by Nimrod. It was obvious that repentance was out of the question for these people, who for over 400 years had hated YHWH and were so steeped in pagan sun-god worship of Ba’al (Nimrod) and Semiramis (Nimrod’s wife who called herself the Queen of Heaven and later known as Ishtar or Easter) that there was no turning back!
Thirdly, The Canaanites constituted a moral cancer, and if even one of them was left alive would have the potential of introducing an idolatry and immorality which would spread rapidly among the Israelites, bringing about their destruction, and a defiled Israel could never give the world YHWH’s Word and YHWH’s Son.
What we must understand is that there is no contradiction between the El of the O.T. and the El of the N.T. – YHWH is One – He is a righteous and loving Elohim! There is a lesson is this for us as believers today – and that is to be as ruthless with sin in our lives as Israel was commanded to be and should have been against the Canaanites. As we know from history, Israel did not utterly destroy all the inhabitants and paid the price later when they were sent into captivity! May we heed these instructions to utterly destroy sin and idol worship in our lives, giving no room for any yeast to form!
Inter marriage was certainly not an option and Sha’ul stated this principle well in 1 Corinthians 5:6 when he said that a little leaven leavens the entire lump! Marriage to an unbelieving Canaanite meant disaster to Israel’s faith, and Moshe (Moses) reminded them that the righteous sword of YHWH cuts both ways – “If you marry them then you will be joined to their wickedness and therefore join in their judgement.” Listen if you want to mess around with pagan practices and joining in with those who do and in a sense marrying their practices into your lifestyle then there is but the same judgment coming to you as to them!!! That is why everything – even the Canaanite objects which may have aroused curiosity about false worship was to totally be destroyed!!!
The sacred stones or ‘massebot’ were stone pillars that were set up at pagan worship centres, and were phallic symbols that were linked to cult fertility worship, as well as Asherah poles that bore the name of the pagan goddess, constructed in her image our of wood. The practice of erecting stone pillars is still very much in effect today and mostly they are found at ‘worship centres’, that claim to be worshipping YHWH, yet we see from Scripture that these things He hates. How many steeples and pillars do you see outside many a churches today! This is nothing more than pagan practices that are being intermarried with an attempt to worship the True Living Elohim and the sad reality is that by intermarriage with these things that have enticed many into bowing down to will meet their judgement unless they too repent and tear down and smash all pagan symbols.
The basis for these commands to destroy the Canaanites and all their pillars, altars and images was that Israel was Elohim’s elect – they were chosen which is the Hebrew word ‘bachor’ and literally means ‘to be chosen for a task or a vocation’. Israel was chosen as His means to sanctify the earth with His presence and righteous standards. They were therefore ‘holy’ or I prefer the term ‘set apart’ for to me it carries greater meaning. It is the Hebrew word ‘qadosh’ which means ‘free from defilement of crimes, idolatry and other unclean and profane things’, it means ‘consecrated, sacred, holy’, in other words, ‘consecrated for service unto YHWH’. YHWH is holy, He is set apart and we as His chosen are to be set apart unto Him for His special use, for we are His treasured possession, which is the Hebrew word ‘segullah’, which carries the meaning of ‘valued personal property’ in other words what is ‘owned by someone and which the owner has a special affection for’ and ‘holds special value’. Those who fear YHWH become His treasured possession that He will never forget!
The Canaanites were polluting the earth and they either had to repent or be eliminated, and as I said they had refused to repent for over 400 years – they were now to be eliminated! Because where YHWH’s ‘chosen, holy and treasured possession’ must live there cannot be anything that would defile them and stop them form being the light to the nations!
Israel was reminded that YHWH had chosen her and redeemed her from bondage; not because of her goodness but solely because YHWH loves her and is faithful to His oaths given to their father’s Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He is the Elohim of Abraham, the Elohim of Yaʽaqoḇ and the Elohim of Yitzhak. Elohim can mean the Mighty One of oaths’ where the ‘im’ being the plural for ‘oaths’. He is the ‘Mighty One of oaths’ of Abraham, Yaʽaqoḇ and Yitzhak, and He does not break His oaths. Israel having been redeemed and delivered was now to reflect the holiness of YHWH and live out His commands as they would reflect his standards in a life of wholehearted compliance with the terms of the covenant made at Mount Sinai and their renewed covenant at the entrance to Canaan. As we live out His commands, His Torah, in a life of wholehearted obedience then we would reflect His standards and be the reflection of His letters written on our hearts that Sha’ul speaks of to the Corinthians – for what is written on our hearts? The Torah, by His Spirit and we get to reflect that out before the world in how we hear, guard and do His Word! It was these very qualities that Kepha (Peter) wrote to us about in
1 Peter 2:9 “But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a set apart nation, a people for a possession that you should proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvellous light.
His election must never become a source of pride, and know that YHWH guards those who guard His commands! We are to guard, then Hebrew word ‘shamar’ which means to keep, to watch, to guard, to preserve, to observe for oneself, to do something carefully, to observe an order and to stick to an agreement! You get the picture? We are to ‘shamar’ His commands, all of them!!!
Terms that you will find often in Deḇarim/Deuteronomy are ‘hear and do’ or ‘guard and do’. In verse we see the concept of hear, guard and do and this is how it works – faith comes by hearing and in the hearing one is called to be careful and keep them in doing it – faith applied in action! When we hear, guard and do His word YHWH will guard us, and for this obedience He promises us the blessing of fertility of human, animal and plant life. Israel did not need to and were commanded not to worship false pagan fertility ‘gods’ for YHWH is the Living El who causes them to be and gives life. In following Him they would be free of the diseases they had come to know in Egypt. And so the obligation of entering in to the Promised Land was to destroy all the peoples in Canaan, for if they didn’t they would be ensnared by them and as a result would not experience the blessings that were mentioned.

Now the Israelites, like us, needed encouragement. Moshe (Moses) knew their hearts, in facts 40 years earlier their hearts had melted in fear of the giants of Canaan, and here Moshe (Moses) is speaking to them about setting their battles in proper perspective. They were not to concentrate on the strengths of the enemies, but rather on the greatness of YHWH! They had witnessed how YHWH had defeated Pharaoh and with His Mighty Hand and Outstretched Arm had delivered them from Egypt and from the kings in the Wilderness and they could now expect to see history repeat itself in the destruction of the Canaanites! Here Moshe (Moses) reaffirms their faith in verse 19 telling them that YHWH will do the same as what He had done, to all the peoples of whom they were afraid. Be not afraid as a commandment is not so much an emotion as it is a failure to act, which simply results from the assumption that the enemy threat is greater than YHWH.
We must always remember to remember – remember what once had held us captive and how He has brought us up out of the captivity! The assumption that what we face is too big for us must now cause us to simply not act, but rather go forward in faith knowing and trusting in the One we serve.
In walking in His promises we are to be set apart. Sadly today there are too many people who profess to be believers yet their lives are so intermingled with the world that it has become really difficult to tell who really belongs to the Messiah! We have been called out of the world that we might be a light and testimony to the world, and so worldly believers hinder the work of Elohim! But why is it that many get so mixed up in the world that they cannot even distinguish between the holy and the common? Well I believe that it comes down to obedience – and to be obedient you first have to hear then guard then do! Most ‘Christians’ today have simply adopted the pagan worship principles of the world and you cannot tell them apart from the world. But why is this? Why the compromise?
Moshe (Moses) warned the Israelites to not fear the enemy for fear ultimately leads to compromise! What happens is that when fear grips a person so much they tend to ‘give in’ in an attempt to protect themselves from exposing a weakness. Moshe (Moses) warned the people not to be afraid for YHWH was with them and He would give them victory. After all, did he not deliver them from Egypt and from the enemy kings in the Wilderness? Then He would certainly give them victory in Canaan. Victory would come in stages, as He would drive out the enemy little by little so that they could possess the land safely. I find that they same is true for us today – YHWH drives out the enemies before us bit by bit that we may fully possess the joy of our inheritance in every area of our lives. He delivers them up before you and then you must destroy them. Have you noticed that He didn’t show you some areas that needed to be dealt with in your life till later? That is what He does – he is continually leading us to perfection, and it is our job to destroy that which he delivers up before us. As he delivers up before us areas that need to be dealt with and sin destroyed, we must do it quickly and speedily so that it will not entrap us again!
2 Corinthians 7:1 “Having, then these promises, beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all defilement of the flesh and spirit, perfecting set-apartness in the fear of Elohim.
Let me make one thing clear – you cannot be involved in false or profane worship for that is spiritual defilement!
Romans 13:14 “But put on the Master Yahshua Messiah, and make no provision for the lusts of the flesh.
James tells us that clean and undefiled religion is to care for widows and orphans and to keep oneself unstained from the world!
Keeping your house clean:
Verse 25 and 26 speak about keeping our houses clean, keeping our lives free from anything that can pollute our worship unto YHWH. Keeping oneself unstained from the world. Today, too many are still worshipping things of the world – they will worship gold even though it may not be shaped in to a recognisable idol.
These verses are something all should heed very carefully. Just as the Israelites were warned about not destroying everything in Canaan as it was an abomination to YHWH – so they same is for us today. We are to have nothing that has any resemblance or meaning of idol worship before the face of YHWH. Do not bring an abomination into your house! We must not covet or invite any images, gods, idols or any other pagan artefact into our homes. Just as they are detestable to YHWH, they should be detestable to us. Some will say about idols they may have in their home that it is ok because they do not worship it, it is just a nice to have thing! The Word says clearly that we are not to have any idols before Him, and it doesn’t matter what we think about it – if it is detestable to YHWH – then it must be detestable to us!!! We have a great teaching series in Afrikaans called, ‘maak skoon jou huis’ and will open up your eyes to some of the things we allow in our homes and the implications of the meanings behind the objects or items that so many of us treasure. There are also many symbols and designs that are linked with freemasonry and the occult that one often finds in a home and the people are unaware of it.
We bought two books for Catherine (our daughter) from CUM Books (a ‘Christian’ bookstore) a few months back that we recently discovered how full of ‘Masonic’ symbolism was just on its cover!!! Some may say, “so what, what does freemasonry have to do with me?’ It has a lot to do with us when we begin to realise how deep rooted freemasonry is in our country, in our churches and worship practices! The ‘church’ today is so intermarried with sun-god worship tracing back to Babylon and most of the pew warmers are unaware!

Spiritually though many of us can often find ourselves having idols and images formed in our hearts; by eating what YHWH forbids, by tolerating wrong associations, by even taking on a workaholic lifestyle or even self seeking a lifestyle that is contrary to the Word. We are ti keep the altar of our hearts clean and pure through repentance. As YHWH delivers up something before us, something we were not aware of, we are to destroy it! So often we allow detestable abominations into our home by buying that nice souvenir to remind us of a holiday and even buy gifts for our friends without knowing the implication of bringing these idols into our homes and so we have ‘covered them with gold’ by paying for then and we need to destroy them and more often than not this is where people get angry and stubborn in cleaning house, for it becomes a problem to destroy something they paid so much for! Do not covet the gold (the worth of it) and get rid of it!!!
How about when going to visit those nice monuments and sites for an afternoon picnic etc and end up bowing to them unknowingly!
We have repented of such outings, for being exposed to the idols that have been set up, in total disobedience to the Word. Places like the Fransshoek Huguenot Museum that is so littered with sun worship and Masonic symbols. The Taal monument in Paarl, museums in Stellenbosch and many more that are filled with symbols of sun worship and masonry. Many Theological Seminaries and schools, here in S.A and across the world, are founded by Masons and can be seen in the architecture and symbolisms that we then have to ask ourselves, ‘under what spirit are the people being trained?’
You see it is so easy for us to not be aware of what is detestable that we can find our lives so wrapped up in worldly pagan worship without knowing it and wonder why we struggle in many areas of our lives! YHWH has called us to purity and to rid ourselves of all idol worship. What are some of the things that many of us have brought into our homes and never thought anything of it? I am not talking about in your face satanic worship, but rather what the world at large has approved:
Christmas trees – which is the modern day Asherah pole of phallic symbol of Nimrod decorated with silver and gold balls as described in Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 10:3-4. How about Easter eggs and hot cross buns (cakes baked to the Queen of heaven – Ishtar) which I have spoken on before. How about little angelic figures, or dream catchers or occult books and movies like Harry Potter – just to name a few and there is hordes more! People we need to become aware of what is going on in the world and be separated from these things for we are called to be holy, undefiled in order to be a light to the nations – sadly the world is dimming many believers lights and we need to take heed of these warnings. Yahshua said that the meek shall inherit the earth – the earth is ours and we need to take back territory and destroy all forms of idolatry.

In order for us to enter in to His promises there needs to be a driving out – a cleaning house so to speak. But what are we to drive out, if we do not know what to drive out? It starts with getting back to Torah and following the Truth of His Word, Yahshua Messiah. For then we will be able to rightly divide the truth and present ourselves before YHWH as workman approved. The sad reality is that many ‘worshippers’ today are not worshipping in Spirit and in Truth and have been sold a lie!!! Much of what we see happening in charismatic churches today is not a manifestation of the Ruach HaQodesh (the true Holy Spirit) but a counterfeit called ‘kundalini’ where we see the same manifestations as you would in a Hindu temple.
It is time for the body of Messiah to wake up and come out of Babylon and clean up their house so to speak, if we are to live a set apart, holy life unto YHWH.

In this chapter we can see 6 privileges of living a holy life:
1 – We are distinguished from the rest – set apart, chosen and a treasured possession (7:6)
2 – We are Redeemed – By the Blood of Yahshua we have been bought at a price and set free (7:8)
3 – We are Highly Preferred – blessed above all peoples (7:14)
4 – We are Shielded and Protected – (7:15)
5 – We are Esteemed – we have YHWH our Elohim in our midst (7:21)
6 – We are Mighty in Him – If He is for us who can be against us (7:24)

That is the privileges for living a holy life, but there responsibilities too and they are:
1 – Do not compromise with the enemy – have no association with any form of sin and idolatry. Sin is sin, no matter how it may appear in just being a custom that everyone is doing – if it is sin do not do it – don’t compromise! We must walk in the Torah, for when we do the world’s ways will become strange to us!
Rachel came home with a note from school for us to sign giving permission for her to go on a class outing to a place called ‘magic academy’, where they train up wannabe magicians in the art of magic and we said no! She may be the only one in her class not going, but we are called not to compromise no matter what!!!
2 – Do not participate in false worship – we see it happening in our churches today – ripe with elements of Baal worship and freemasonry! Come out of her My people is the cry from Revelations 18:4 and we need to help those we know out of this system of false worship that has been called church. Much of what is going on in many western church worship today is evident of a clear practice of pagan worship in that the church is worshipping pagan holidays and feasts such as ‘Easter’ and ‘Christmas’, which have no root in Scripture at all but are founded on ancient sun worship from Babylon! The foundation of much of this country has been built upon Masonic worship, clearly seen in art, politics, religion, finance and education. For an in depth teaching on this you can get DVD series on sun-worship and freemasonry by Eben Swart from Trumpet Call Ministries, which we can give you details of, and learn just how steeped in freemasonry much of what we see today is! For instance the ‘Moederkerk’ in Cape Town – the first church is South Africa was built by the freemasons. Why am I mentioning this, what has this got to do with any of us? Everything!!! Our system of worship in this country has been founded and birthed by the ‘mysteries’ of Babylon through Masonry and the Roman Catholic Church, which is clearly the whore of Babylon as described in revelation.
It is time to come out and flee Babylonian system of sun-worship and bowing down to its rules and regulations set up by man and turn to the Living Word and live out the Torah of YHWH. You cannot engage in sun-day worship and call it ‘Sabbath’ and think it is worship unto YHWH – it is false worship that is going on.
3 – Do not depart from His divine commands – We are to live Torah, to live and walk in His instructions – do not depart from them for Yahshua, the Living Torah, is the Way and we are to walk in Him not turning to the left or the right, even if the world does so and calls it worship! Do not add or take away from his commands, for if you do you open yourself up for defilement! One way in which the church at large has departed from His commands is through not remembering to keep Sabbath holy and have ‘changed’ it to ‘Sun-day’, totally against the fourth commandment. The church at large has also broken the third commandment by bringing the name of YHWH to nought and exchanging for titles that are also associated with false pagan deities such as ‘lord’ and ‘god’ which are not the Name of the Almighty. YHWH (Yahweh) is His Name and the Name of our Saviour is Yahshua (Yahweh is our Salvation). One other command that most believers and the church at large has departed from is not to have idols in any form before Him. We see monuments erected in idol Masonic worship, we see church emblems and buildings carrying many Masonic symbolisms and most do not even realise it. It is time to turn back to the Word and follow wholeheartedly the Commands of Elohim!!!
4 – Do not fear men – We are to fear YHWH and walk in His ways – don’t worry what others will say when you obey YHWH! Do not worry about the comments that come from those who are involved in a intermarried Babylonian system of worship, labelling it as worship unto ‘God’ – mixed worship is pagan worship and we have been called to purity!
5 – Do not go after the riches of the world – Our blessing come from our obedience to His Word!

What we can take from this passage tonight is simply this – Every promise in the Word is yes and amen in Messiah, and for us to walk in the fullness of them we must drive out that which does not belong, lest it causes us to stumble in our worship.
What things in your life still need to be driven out? What ‘enemy’ has YHWH delivered up before you that HE is calling you to destroy? Perhaps you need to clean up house – both physically – that is where you live and spiritually that which is living in your heart! Know and be reminded of how He has delivered you in the past and do not be afraid to tackle and destroy those enemies that lie before you – He is with you – you are His treasured possession, chosen and set apart fro service unto Him. As you ask Him daily to deliver you from all evil, will you destroy that evil giving it no room that you may truly enter in and enjoy the promises He has freely given you?
YHWH will no longer wink at ignorance for He is calling everyone everywhere to repent – He is calling His children to purity, and that means we are to act and live according to His Word and destroy all that is not of Him, even if it has been an inherited tradition that is not in line with His Word, as we enter in to His promises!

Entering In calls for a Driving Out!!!