WATCH – LEST YOU FALL!

23rd of the 6th month 2016/2017

Shalom all,

Kěpha Bět/2 Peter 3:17-18You, then, beloved ones, being forewarned, watch, lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the delusion of the lawless, 18 but grow in the favour and knowledge of our Master and Saviour יהושע Messiah. To Him be the esteem both now and to a day that abides. Aměn.

These were the words that ended the second letter of Kěpha and are words that expressed the urgency of the need to be a watchful people, having been forewarned about the clear fact that just as there came to be false prophets in the past so too shall there be false teachers who shall secretly bring in destructive heresies, and deny the Master who bought them, as we see in the previous chapter:

Kěpha Bět/2 Peter 2:1-3But there also came to be false prophets among the people, as also among you there shall be false teachers, who shall secretly bring in destructive heresies, and deny the Master who bought them, bringing swift destruction on themselves. 2 And many shall follow their destructive ways, because of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of, 3 and in greed, with fabricated words, they shall use you for gain. From of old their judgment does not linger, and their destruction does not slumber.

Kěpha was expressing the urgency of not being led astray by falsehood and warned about many who would come and bring in destructive teachings that go against the Word and he also warned how many would be led astray by the delusion of lawlessness and called for true believers to do their utmost to be found by the Master in peace, spotless and blameless. He warned about many who would twist Sha’ul’s teachings, as they do with other Scriptures, to their own destruction. We do not have to look to hard today to find many destructive heresies and the effects of the power of the delusion of the lawless; and herein we find the clear and urgent call to be sober, alert and watchful as we guard to do all that our Master has commanded us to do; and do our utmost in presenting ourselves approved to Elohim, as workers who do not need to be ashamed, but are rightly handling the Word of Truth. With so many delusional teachings being broadcast and widely spread today we need to be diligent in our proper meditating on the Torah of Elohim so that we can be prosperous in our walk of set-apartness and be able to recognise the falsehood of delusional commands or instructions of men that are being taught as teachings while the commands of Elohim are being cast aside and excused away.

There are many today who claim to be worshipping our Master yet they are clinging to the commands of men that clearly contradict the Word and those who do so are no different to the scribes and Pharisees that the Master called hypocrites when they disputed with Him over the fact that His taught ones did not wash their hands according to the traditions of the elders.

Mattithyahu/Matthew 25:7-9 “Hypocrites! Yeshayahu rightly prophesied about you, saying, 8 ‘This people draw near to Me with their mouth, and respect Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. 9 ‘But in vain do they worship Me, teaching as teachings the commands of men.’

There is certainly the proper place for teaching as teachings the commands of Elohim; by those who the Master has appointed to teach and equip His body unto maturity, yet what the Master is very much against is the teaching as teachings the commands of men that set aside the Torah and commands of Elohim. We see the same account being recorded as follows in:

Marqos/Mark 7:5-8 “Then the Pharisees and scribes asked Him, “Why do Your taught ones not walk according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashed hands?” 6 And He answering, said to them, “Well did Yeshayahu prophesy concerning you hypocrites, as it has been written, ‘This people respect Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me. 7 And in vain do they worship Me, teaching as teachings the commands of men. 8 “Forsaking the command of Elohim, you hold fast the tradition of men.

In this passage He went on to highlight how they had set aside the commands of Elohim to guard their traditions which gave them an assumed right to not have to respect their parents if they simply adhered to a tradition of the elders that gave them an escape clause, so to speak, which they believed cleared them of any possible need to care for their parents in the future.

And there were many such traditions that were taught and held fast to as a means of escaping the need to guard the Word of Elohim in any future tasks that would be deemed necessary according to the Torah. The same thing happens today as there are many such commands or doctrines of man that are taught as teachings that set aside the need to obey the Word of Elohim. Sha’ul and Kěpha warned about this same destructive error that would arise in the last days, as there would be many destructive heresies and false teachings that would twist the Truth and this is why Kěpha ends his second letter by making it clear that, having been forewarned about this, we all need to watch!

It is with this in mind that the title of this brief message I am giving is called, ‘WATCH – LEST YOU FALL!’

The Greek word used in Kěpha Bět/2 Peter 3:17 for ‘watch’ is φυλάσσω  phulassō – Strong’s G5442 which means, to guard, watch, keep, observe, obey and keep orders, which we also see being translated as ‘watching over’, in:

Luqas/Luke 11:28 “But He said, “Blessed rather are those hearing the Word of Elohim and watching over it!

This word φυλάσσω phulassō – Strong’s G5442 is used in the LXX (Septuagint – Greek text of the Tanak – O.T.) in:

Mishlĕ/Proverbs 7:1My son, guard my words, and treasure up my commands with you.

Here it is used for the word that is translated as ‘guard’, which in the Hebrew text is the word שָׁמַר shamar – Strong’s H8104 and carries the meaning, keep watch, observe, perform, protect, pay attention’, and the basic idea of the root of this word isto exercise great care over’.

As we guard His Torah and exercise great care over our need to walk upright, we will be protected against the delusion of the lawless! Why I am highlighting this is make it very clear that in order to properly watch and be on guard against being led astray we need to be properly guarding the Word of Elohim by paying attention to it, as we hear, guard and do what the Word commands!

To watch as we should we need to know the Word, which takes proper study and daily meditation of the Word and those who are not interested in knowing the Word set themselves up to be an easy target for being led astray by the delusion of the lawless. How one watches is important as we also take note of the warning that Kěpha is giving here, saying that if one does not watch properly then the danger of falling away from one’s own steadfastness in very real indeed and sadly we see that there are so many who are not taking this warning seriously enough.

 

DO NOT FALL FROM YOUR STEADFASTNESS!

The idea of falling implies that the one who falls was at one point steadfast and standing upright and the Greek word that is translated here as ‘fall from’ is the word ἐκπίπτω ekpiptō – Strong’s G1601 which means, to fall away, failed, to drop away, to lose, become inefficient, run aground, and comes from the two words: 1) ἐκ ek – Strong’s G1537 which means, from, from out of and is used as a preposition denoting the origin or point from where the action proceeds; and 2) πίπτω piptō – Strong’s G4098 which means, to fall, break down, fail, fallen, be destroyed, and what is interesting to take note of here is that this word is translated in Sha’ul’s letter to the Corinthians as ‘fails’ when he explained what love is and said in Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 13:8 that “Love never fails”!!!

True love never fails as we recognise that true love displays a steadfast position of uprightness that guards the commands of Elohim and does not become inefficient in doing so, for love for Elohim is to guard His commands:

Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 5:2-3By this we know that we love the children of Elohim, when we love Elohim and guard His commands. 3 For this is the love for Elohim, that we guard His commands, and His commands are not heavy

To pursue love for Elohim is to run in the way of His commands, and flee all lawlessness and sin!

 

The Greek word that is translated as ‘steadfastness’ is στηριγμός stērigmos – Strong’s G4740 which means, firm position, steadfastness (of mind), and comes from the word στηρίζω stērizō – Strong’s G4741 which means, to make fast, establish, support, fixed, strengthen, and has the understanding, ‘to set fast (your face). This word is translated as ‘establish’ in:

Ya’aqoḇ/James 5:7-8So, brothers, be patient until the coming of the Master. See, the farmer waits for the precious fruit of the earth, waiting patiently for it until it receives the early and latter rain. 8 You too, be patient. Establish your hearts, for the coming of the Master has drawn near.

In this mini parable Ya’aqoḇ instructs us to have our hearts properly established and strengthened in the Truth in order for us to be steadfast as faithful and trustworthy servants of Elohim!

στηρίζω stērizō – Strong’s G4741 – is used in the LXX (Septuagint) in the following verse:

Tehillah/Psalm 112:8 “His heart is upheld, he is not afraid, while he looks on his adversaries.

Here it is translated as ‘upheld’, and the Hebrew word that is used here comes from the root word סָמַךְ samaḵ – Strong’s H5564 which means, to lean, lay, rest, support, uphold, sustain, and can also carry the meaning, to grab hold of.

This Tehillah/Psalm 112 is a psalm of praise to יהוה for how blessed is the man the man who fears יהוה and has delighted in His commands (verse1). The man who fears יהוה and delights in His commands has an established heart! It is the Word of יהוה that establishes and strengthens us, as we see this word סָמַךְ samaḵ – Strong’s H5564 being translated as ‘support’ in:

Tehillah/Psalm 119:116 “Support me according to Your word, that I might live; and put me not to shame because of my expectation.

It is by the Word of Elohim that we are supported and upheld, that we might live and praise His Mighty Name! We are to ‘grab hold of’ His commands and cling to Him in total trust; in order that we do not fall, and find ourselves leaning on our own understanding!

His Word establishes us and as true ambassadors of His coming reign we are therefore called to establish and make firm His Truth in our lives. The Greek word στηρίζω stērizō – Strong’s G4741 comes from the word is ἵστημι histēmi – Strong’s G2476 which means, to make to stand, to stand firm, be established, stand upright, stand ready and prepared, be of a steadfast mind, to uphold and sustain the authority of something, which is translated as ‘established’ in:

Romiyim/Romans 3:31 “Do we then nullify the Torah through the belief? Let it not be! On the contrary, we establish the Torah.

An established heart establishes the Torah and guards to do all that our Master has commanded us to! Anyone who neglects to meditate upon and walk in the Torah and so easily casts the instructions of Elohim aside does not have an established heart! Anyone who compromises their called for set-apartness does not establish their hearts and will not be able to properly endure and be patient until the return of our King! This sobering reality of how many people today have wavering hearts is seen in how easily they are falling away from their steadfast position in the Master through compromise and sin when the pressures and battles of life become too hard for them to endure, which happens when the soil of their hearts are not keep good.

The Greek word ἵστημι histēmi – Strong’s G2476 is also the word used in Eph’siyim/Ephesians 6 where we are told to ‘stand’ firm in the armour of Elohim; and so we can clearly see that this ‘standing’ dressed in the armour of Elohim is an equipped standing of one who has an established heart. The armour of Elohim is our required dress code of righteousness – which is to guard to do all the commands; and when adhered to correctly in those with established hearts then as a faithful set-apart priesthood they are fully equipped and able to be patient and endure with all that our Master has given us for life and reverence, while holding fast to the full assurance of being able to stand before our High Priest and King, יהושע Messiah, when He comes again!

In light of the times in which we live, we are to take heed that we are not deceived. This means that we need to spend more time getting to know the Word, and by doing this we shall establish our hearts and be properly strengthened to stand amidst the raging battles of life. We know that if we stay in the Word, by guarding to do His Word, then we shall know the truth and the truth shall set us free from being weighed down by worldly distractions that only enslave those who are not awake and watchful!

Coming back to the ending of Kěpha’s second letter we can take note that what we can clearly see from his words is that we need to watch, lest we fall from our own steadfastness, for if we do not keep standing as we should, being properly armed in the Torah of Elohim, then the risk of falling away and being led astray by the delusion of the lawless is extremely high indeed!

DO NOT BE LED AWAY BY THE DELUSION OF THE LAWLESS! How? By being watchful and armed in the Torah of Elohim, standing firm in Him and guarding to do all He commands and being able to rightly handle the Word of Truth so that when any delusion is presented it can be identified as such straight away!

The Greek word that is translated as ‘led away’ is συναπάγω sunapagō – Strong’s G4879 which means, to lead away with, to be carried away with, associate, carried away and can also give us the understanding of experiencing with others the force of that which carries away! In other words, this can give us the understanding of the danger of ‘going with the wrong crowd’, so to speak, as one can be greatly influenced by what the masses are doing in error. This word can also render for us the meaning: to yield or submit one’s self to lowly things, conditions, employments: not to evade their power. The idea that we clearly get form this Greek word is one of being easily influenced by the wrong crowd or circumstance and not even trying to evade its persuasive power!

This word συναπάγω sunapagō – Strong’s G4879 comes from the two words: 1) σύν sun – Strong’s G4862 which is a primary preposition meaning, with, together with (expresses association with), accompany, companion, and 2) ἀπάγω apagō – Strong’s G520 which means, to lead away, led astray.

Being led away takes the influence of the association with the wrong company and this is where we are able to understand Sha’ul’s words, in:

Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 15:33 “Do not be led astray, “Evil company corrupts good habits.”

The company you keep will influence you and if it is evil company that you are associating with then you will be led astray from keeping the good habits of steadfastness! If you are trying to walk in obedience to the Torah yet continually associate yourself with evil company that discards the need to walk according to the Torah then you will be influenced and led astray and be caused to fall away from your steadfastness! This is a sober wake up call for the true believer to be on guard against associating with and following the wrong crowds and wrong teachings that contradict Scripture.

Bringing this a little closer to home we also recognise, in light of the warnings that Kěpha gives us in his letter, that we must be on guard against corrupt teachings and traditions of man that have twisted the Scriptures for their own gain!

The Greek word that is translated as ‘delusion’ comes from the word πλάνη plane – Strong’s G4106 meaning, wandering, deception, error, deluding, deceitful and is simply understood in the Greek as ‘wandering out of the right way’ which is figuratively used to describe being in error! A derivative of this word is πλανάω planaō – Strong’s G4105 which means, to cause to wander, deceive, mislead, misled, led or gone astray, which is translated as ‘led astray’ in:

Galatiyim/Galatians 6:7 “Do not be led astray: Elohim is not mocked, for whatever a man sows, that he shall also reap.

We see this word πλανάω planaō used in the Greek text in the account when, answering the Sadducees over their dispute about the resurrection, יהושע Messiah said to them:

Mattithyahu/Matthew 22:29 “ You go astray, not knowing the Scriptures nor the power of Elohim.

These words are so true for so many today, as they go astray, simply because they do not know the Scriptures, and if they do not know the Scriptures it is impossible for them to know the power of Elohim!!! Because of this sad reality of most people who claim to know Elohim, yet do not know Scripture, we see how so many are easily led astray, misguided and deceived as the wander aimlessly away from the Truth, instead of running in the way of His commands as Dawiḏ declared in:

Tehillah/Psalm 119:32 “I run the way of Your commands, for You enlarge my heart.

We also see this word πλάνη plane – Strong’s G4106 being translated as ‘leading astray’ is:

Eph’siyim/Ephesians 4:11-16 “And He Himself gave some as emissaries, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as shepherds and teachers 12 for the perfecting of the set-apart ones, to the work of service to a building up of the body of the Messiah, 13 until we all come to the unity of the belief and of the knowledge of the Son of Elohim, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the completeness of Messiah, 14 so that we should no longer be children, tossed and borne about by every wind of teaching, by the trickery of men, in cleverness, unto the craftiness of leading astray, 15 but, maintaining the truth in love, we grow up in all respects into Him who is the head, Messiah, 16 from whom the entire body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the working by which each part does its share, causes growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

The reason for me quoting this passage from verse 11-16 is to highlight the clear appointment of the Master, as He has given those who are to equip the body so that they are not being ‘led astray’ by every wind of teaching and the trickery and craftiness of evil men! There are so many today who are being tossed about by every wind of teaching as they are not submitting to the ordered design of the body of Messiah and are not able to rightly discern between that which is set-apart and that which is not as the deceit and craftiness of the delusion of the lawless grips them and leads them away from being properly built up in unity as they fall away from the responsibility and accountability that each one should have toward the other within the body of Messiah, that ought to be built up and knit together in love!

Many are being led astray because they do not know or properly understand the Scriptures and as a result they are being led astray by crafty doctrines of man that do not follow the clear order, pattern and witness of the Word of Elohim. The Greek word that is translated a ‘lawless’ here in Kěpha Bět/2 Peter 3:17 is ἄθεσμος athesmos – Strong’s G133 which means, lawless, unprincipled men, wicked, and is understood as ‘one who breaks through the restraint of law and gratifies his lusts’. This word comes from the two root words: 1) α alpha – Strong’s G1 which is the first letter in the Greek alphabet that is used as a negative prefix, and 2) θεσμός thesmos which means, law, custom and is a derivative of the word τίθημι tithēmi – Strong’s G5087 which means, to lay up, lay aside, appoint, establish’.

Therefore the ‘lawless’ is being described here as one who is against that which has been established and appointed!

This word ἄθεσμος athesmos – Strong’s G133 is used twice in Kěpha’s second letter and the other verse we see it being used in is describing the indecent behaviour of the lawless that Lot was oppressed by:

Kěpha Bět/2 Peter 2:7and rescued righteous Lot, who was oppressed with the indecent behaviour of the lawless

Indecent behaviour of the lawless! The Greek word that is translated as ‘indecent’ is the word ἀσέλγεια aselgeia – Strong’s G766 which means, licentiousness, sensuality. Licentiousness means, lacking legal or moral restraint, disregard sexual restraint, disregard for strict rules of correctness. Sensuality means, gratification of the senses or indulgences of the appetite,  devoted to or preoccupied with the senses or appetites,  deficient in moral, spiritual, or intellectual interests.

Those who are deficient in spiritual or intellectual interests have no regard for the order and instructions of Elohim and they therefore are against the appointed and established order of Elohim and can be easily led astray to doing whatever ‘feels’ right in their own eyes!

Sha’ul warns us of the coming of lawlessness and those who do not receive a love for the truth are handed over the delusion in order for them to believe the lies!

Tas’loniqim Bět/2 Thessalonians 2:9-12The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power and signs and wonders of falsehood, 10 and with all deceit of unrighteousness in those perishing, because they did not receive the love of the truth, in order for them to be saved. 11 And for this reason Elohim sends them a working of delusion, for them to believe the falsehood, 12 in order that all should be judged who did not believe the truth, but have delighted in the unrighteousness.

This is a sober warning against not loving the Truth, as it is Elohim who will send the working of a delusion to those who will not love His Torah and love the guarding of His commands! Delusion is a very powerful thing indeed, for the one who is handed over a working of delusion does not know that they are being led astray! How then can we watch and be on guard? By loving the Truth and guarding the commands of Elohim! Dawiḏ loved the Torah and ran in the way of the commands of Elohim, and so should we, as His beloved Bride!

Tehillah/Psalm 119:97 “O how I love Your Torah! It is my study all day long.

Can you echo the same words of Dawiḏ or is your love for the Torah drowned out by the delusion of being against that which has been established and appointed by Elohim? If one does love the Torah of Elohim then the necessary daily meditation and study will be a pleasure, yet so many today argue that they just cannot find the time to get in to the Word as their lives are so busy with many things! When one loves something then they make sure they have time for it!

Anyone who claims to love יהוה and love His Torah yet does not actually spend time studying it on a daily basis is at risk of falling from their assumed steadfast position! Let us take a quick look at a couple more of the very expressive words of Dawiḏ:

Tehillah/Psalm 119:47-48 “That I might delight myself in Your commands, which I have loved; 48 that I might lift up my hands to Your commands, which I have loved; while I meditate on Your laws.

Tehillah/Psalm 119:112-113 “I have inclined my heart to do Your laws forever, to the end. 113 I have hated doubting thoughts, but I have loved Your Torah.

Tehillah/Psalm 119:126-127 “It is time for יהוה to act! For they have broken Your Torah. 127 Therefore I have loved Your commands more than gold, even fine gold!

Tehillah/Psalm 119:165 “Great peace have those loving Your Torah, and for them there is no stumbling-block.

Tehillah/Psalm 119:167 “My being has guarded Your witnesses, and I love them exceedingly.

These are just a few verses in a powerful Tehillah of praise for the Torah of Elohim and then we take note of the words of Dawiḏ in:

Tehillah/Psalm 1:1-2 “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, 2 but his delight is in the Torah of יהוה, and he meditates in His Torah day and night.

These words highlight for us the blessing of not association with wrong crowds and are therefore not being led astray by evil and wicked company, as the one who watches over and delights in the Torah of Elohim remains steadfast and is able to keep standing and be on guard against falling!

In closing his letter, Kěpha teaches us clearly the way we are able to watch and be steadfast as he reminds us that the way to be on guard against falling is to grow in the favour and knowledge of our Master and Saviour יהושע Messiah

The Greek word that is translated as ‘favour’ is χάρις charis – Strong’s G5485 meaning, grace, kindness, blessing, gift, favour and the Greek word that is translated as ‘knowledge’ is γνῶσις gnōsis– Strong’s G1108 which means, knowledge, understanding the way which comes from the word γινώσκω ginōskō – Strong’s G1097 which means, to perceive, to learn, to come to know, comprehend, understand, recognise, learn to know, get a knowledge of, which is translated as ‘know’ in:

Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 4:8The one who does not love does not know Elohim, for Elohim is love.

As we sit under the instructions of our Creator and Redeemer, we learn to know Him and get a knowledge of who He is and come to know how we are to live in obedience to His clear Torah. There are so many liars out there today who claim to know Elohim, yet they have no knowledge of His Torah at all, as they refuse to sit and learn His Word – how can they know Him!!! It is one thing to claim that you know Him, yet whether we know Him or not is seen in the fruit of our obedience to His commands and our ability to love one another and build one another up in the most set-apart faith; and all will be clearly revealed when He returns – as many will come running claiming they know Him, yet will be rejected!

As we consider the call given by Kěpha to watch lest we fall from steadfastness we must recognise that our ability to keep standing and be sober and watchful will be driven by our love for Elohim and His Torah and this highlights the sobering question for many: ‘how much do you love the Torah of Elohim?’

Loving the Torah and guarding the Word will ensure our ability to stand firm in the belief in all circumstances and we have Scripture to learn from as we also take note of Sha’ul’s words in:

Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 10:11-12 “And all these came upon them as examples, and they were written as a warning to us, on whom the ends of the ages have come, 12 so that he who thinks he stands, let him take heed lest he fall.

The examples he is referring to is the example of those who rebelled and fell due to idolatry and lust that led to whorings and a falling away from steadfastness! The Greek word used here for ‘take heed’ is the word βλέπω blepō – Strong’s G991 which means, to see, to look at, beware, take heed, perceive.

What Sha’ul is warning us against is the danger of one who thinks that they are standing and are steadfast yet are not learning from the examples that have been written for us! In other words he is warning against the delusion of thinking that you are standing when the Torah is not being properly guarded and studied, which so many are doing today as they assume to be in a steadfast position yet their ability to recognise the trickery of deception and the delusion of twisted teachings is severely lacking as they take no interest or delight in the Word of Elohim or they do not have sufficient knowledge of the Text in its original Hebrew and Greek languages, which opens them up to be led astray if not properly equipped by those whom the Master has appointed to teach and equip His Bride unto maturity!

This call to ‘WATCH – LEST YOU FALL’ is one that must be taken very seriously, especially as we consider the depth of deception that is growing at an alarming rate and causing many to be led astray and fall from steadfastness.

In these last days it has become abundantly clear that the delusion of lawlessness is growing and the number of those who are falling away is increasing, which must cause us to be on guard and take great care in our need to grow in the favour and knowledge of our Master and Elohim, יהושע Messiah!

Delusion is a very powerful thing to those who get distracted away from the Truth, even for a brief moment, and we are therefore called to be sober and alert and properly dressed in the Armour of Light and stand, stand and stand, and after having done all, keep standing on the Rock of our Deliverance!

The trickery and craftiness of men is increasing and leading many astray, which must alert us to the need to encourage one another daily and build each other up in the Truth and be on guard against deceitful philosophies that do not line up with the Truth when tested against the Truth of Scripture:

Qolasim/Colossians 2:8 “See to it that no one makes a prey of you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the elementary matters of the world, and not according to Messiah.

There are many teachings that are being widely taught today, yet not all of these teachings line up with the Word of Elohim and sadly many are being led away through the trickery of men that captivate the emotions of many while blinding their ability to properly reason and test the validity of these delusional teachings in a rational and sober manner.

To those who are being easily manipulated and led astray, false teachers will appear to be true in their eyes as the delusion of not needing to follow or submit to the Torah of Elohim and that which our Master has appointed and established blinds their judgement and ability to rightly handle the Truth as they are unable to discern between that which is set-apart and that which is profane.

In order to properly watch implies that we have eyes that are open and are looking at our Master and Chief!

Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12:2looking to the Princely Leader and Perfecter of our belief, יהושע, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the stake, having despised the shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of Elohim.

We are told to be ‘looking’ to Messiah – and as we can see from the verse before this one, is that in order to be able to properly ‘look’ at Messiah, we need to throw off and lay aside every weight and sin that easily entangles us and run with endurance - looking intently at our King as we run faithfully as servants of the Most High Elohim!

Many are trying to run, yet find themselves getting tired and unable to endure the hardships and persecutions that comes as a result of set-apart living amidst a crooked generation! The question that you need to ask yourself as you take an eye test so to speak is, “What are you looking at?” Are you looking at Messiah?

The two words used here for our Messiah are:

Prince’ - ἀρχηγός - archēgos – Strong’s G747 – translates as ‘prince, captain, chief leader and author’ and describes ‘one that takes the lead in anything and thus affords an example, a predecessor in a matter, pioneer’.

Perfecter’ - τελειωτής  - teleiōtēs – Strong’s G5051) – this is the only place this Greek word and denotes a ‘finisher, completer, perfecter’ and describes ‘one who has in his own person raised faith to its perfection and so set before us the highest example of faith. This is a description given only to יהושע Messiah who has become the supreme model for us to follow.

The Greek word for ‘looking’ is ἀφοράω aphorao - Strong’s G872 and means ‘to look/ to turn eyes away from all other things and fix them on something’; and metaphorically speaking it means, ‘to fix the mind upon/ give full attention/ looking intently upon/ to take heed’; and it also means, to consider carefully, attentively look at as it comes from the two Greek words: 1) ἀπό  apo – Strong’s G575 which is a preposition and participle that means, from, away from, at, in, to and 2) ὁράω  horaō – Strong’s G3708 which means, to see, perceive, attend to, take heed, see with the mind, beware, to see as in becoming acquainted with by experience.

We are to look to Messiah and careful consider our ways; and we are at the same time to ensure that are eyes are not looking elsewhere as we ‘take heed’ of the corrupt teachings of man-made dogmas and traditions that lead people astray. We are to also take heed not to get consumed by materialism, as Messiah warns us against these in:

Mattithyahu/Matthew 16:6 “And יהושע said to them, “Mind! And beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and the Sadducees.

Luqas/Luke 12:15 “And He said to them, “Mind, and beware of greed, because one’s life does not consist in the excess of his possessions.

The word ‘mind’ in both these warnings given is the word ὁράω horaō – take heed, be watchful that you do not fall prey to the corruption of man’s rules and regulations regarding a form of worship that runs contrary to the Truth and watch out that you don’t get sucked into the need to gain possessions – because your life does not consist in the excess of possessions! Seeing and watching is what we are to be doing as we are to guard ourselves and take heed not to be led astray and end up falling away under the delusion of the lawless!

This is an urgent call for the remnant Bride of Messiah to WATCH – LEST YOU FALL and in this call is a call to grow in the knowledge of our Master and Elohim and be properly armed in the Truth so that we are able to rightly handle the sword of Spirit (which is His Word); being girded about with the belt of truth and able to lift up the shield of faith while guarding the heart (where the Torah of Elohim should be) with the breastplate of righteousness; and being steadfast in mind with the secure set-apart helmet of deliverance on, because we ‘know’ our Elohim and Saviour, as we are faithfully equipped with the shoes of the peace of our Mighty Elohim and King, always being ready to given an answer for the hope you we in Him!

יהוה bless you and guard you; יהוה make His face shine upon you and give you favour; יהוה lift up His face to you and give you peace!