17th of the 2nd month 2020/2021.
Shabbat Shalom all,
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 14:26 “In the fear of יהוה is strong trust, and His children have a place of refuge.”
The Hebrew term for ‘strong trust’ is מִבְטַח־עֹז – ‘miḇtaḥ oz’, which comes from two words:
1) עֹז oz – Strong’s H5797 which means, ‘strength, might, fortress, power, stronghold’, and comes from the root verb עָזַז azaz – Strong’s H5810 which means, ‘to be strong, be brazen, prevail, display boldness’, and
2) מִבְטָח miḇtaḥ – Strong’s H4009 which means, ‘confidence, secure, security, whom you trust’, which comes from the root בָּטַח bataḥ – Strong’s H982 which means, ‘to trust, rely on, feel confident and secure’.
When we walk in the fear of יהוה, as we should, then we have the firm assurance of being strengthened in our confidence and trust in Him, and we are therefore strengthened to prevail and stand firm, in complete faith of our Mighty Elohim, knowing that ‘in Him’ we have a secure place of refuge!
The Hebrew word that is used here for ‘refuge’ is מַחְסֶה maḥseh – Strong’s H4268 which means, ‘refuge, shelter’, which comes from the root verb חָסָה ḥasah – Strong’s H2620 which means, ‘to seek refuge, have hope, put trust in (Elohim)’.
Naḥum/Nahum 1:7 “יהוה is good, as a stronghold in the day of distress. And He knows those who take refuge in Him.”
Taking refuge in יהוה expresses a deeper intimate relationship, of one who fully trusts in and fully relies upon יהוה, by holding on to the sure hope of deliverance being made complete, as they work out their deliverance with fear and trembling, by walking wholeheartedly in the clear Torah of Elohim!.
In a short message called, ‘ELOHIM IS OUR REFUGE AND STRENGTH – SELAH!’, I want us to be reminded of this truth, as we put our complete trust in our Mighty Redeemer, Master and Elohim, especially at a time when the fear and panic of destructive and wasting diseases is gripping the masses!
A great psalm and song of praise for our Elohim, who is our refuge and strength, is Tehillah/Psalm 46, where we can see the confirmation of this, giving us the strength to echo this song of praise in our own lives, as we stand firm in our great trust of our Mighty Master and Elohim..
Read Tehillah/Psalm 46.
The introduction, or heading, of this Tehillah/Psalm 46 is written in the Hebrew text as follows:
לַמְנַצֵּחַ לִבְנֵי־קֹרַח עַל־עֲלָמוֹת שִׁיר׃
It is transliterated as follows:
‘lam’natseyaḥ liḇney-qoraḥ al-alamoth shiyr’,
This literally translates as:.
“To the choirmaster of the sons of Qoraḥ upon alamoth. A Song!”.
The term עֲלָמוֹת Alamoth – Strong’s H5961 is only used 6 times in Scripture.
Here, it is used as a title for this song and in Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 15:20, it is used in reference to those who played with harps to Alamoth!
It is also understood to be a musical term and it is the plural of the word עַלְמָה almah – Strong’s H5959 which means, ‘a young woman, virgin, maiden’, which is the feminine of the word עֶלֶם elem – Strong’s H5958 which means, ‘youth, young man’.
It was common in Scripture for maidens to play tambourines along with the singers:
Tehillah/Psalm 68:25 “The singers went in front, the players on instruments after them; among them were the maidens playing tambourines.”
It is also translated as ‘young women’ in:
Shir HaShirim/Song of Songs 1:3 “For fragrance your oils are good. Your name is oil poured forth, therefore the young women love you.”.
As we consider the use of this musical term, in Scripture, which also relates to the image of young maidens playing instruments, in an expression of love songs that were sung, we are able to identify the clear message of love for our Master and Elohim, being expressed in this psalm, as a declaration of love and trust for Him!.
We know, in Scripture, that the account of the rebellion of Qoraḥ in the Wilderness, teaches us a great lesson, on our need to properly submit to our Master and Elohim, as our only True and safe covering.
In Bemiḏbar/Numbers 16 we are given the account of what happened to Qoraḥ and all those with him, as the earth swallowed them up; yet, we are also told in Bemiḏbar/Numbers 26:11 that not all the sons of Qoraḥ died, which clearly shows us that not all of the sons of Qoraḥ were ‘with him’, so to speak, and by this, I mean that it stands to reason that there were some of his sons that were not in agreement with their father’s falsehood, lies and rebellion!
The same is true for us today, who have discovered that our fathers have inherited lies – we have distanced ourselves from the rebellion in which they walked and have separated ourselves from all that represents disobedience to the Torah.
When the congregation was told to get away from the tents of Qoraḥ, some of his sons had the wisdom to listen and move and so, had their lives preserved as they heeded the warning and obeyed the instructions of Elohim, as given through Mosheh!.
This song for the sons of Qoraḥ upon the ‘maidens’, is a powerful lesson for us, in recognising the praise that we are to have for our Elohim, who is our refuge and strength in times of trouble.
The sons of Qoraḥ that did not die in the Wilderness had not joined themselves in the rebellion of their father but sought refuge and help from Elohim!.
This song, therefore, is a song of praise, that is sung in acknowledgement of the clear and true reality that Elohim is our only refuge and strength – no matter what may happen in the earth!
The earth had swallowed up Qoraḥ, and those who were still with him ‘in his tent’, so to speak, yet those who put their trust in יהוה and followed the instructions of Mosheh, to be separated from all the rebellion of Qoraḥ, were delivered from distress!.
Understanding these events, is a clear lesson on not being led astray by the wicked delusion of lawlessness and rebellion, but rather, being separated from all evil and being found to be taking refuge in the Most-High Elohim, יהוה of Hosts, and in doing so, we are to be caused to resound the wondrous love for Elohim, in letting the fragrance of our praise be poured forth, in response to His great love for us, as we guard to keep our lamps filled and lit, as wise maidens, that are offering up continual praise to our Refuge and Strength!.
Let us therefore take a closer look at this song of praise for our Master and Elohim..
In Verse 1 we see the two Hebrew words that I mentioned at the start of this message, being used for refuge and strength, as in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 14:6.
Elohim is our ‘refuge’ – מַחְסֶה maḥseh – Strong’s H4268 and He is our ‘strength’ – עֹז oz – Strong’s H5797 – and we would do well to remember this! Songs have a way of helping us remember things or rather, they have a way of us being able to recite our love for Elohim, thus equipping us to be reminded of His great love for us and our need to put our full trust in Him!.
The Hebrew word that is used for ‘refuge’ – מַחְסֶה maḥseh – Strong’s H4268, and the primitive root from which it is derived – חָסָה ḥasah – Strong’s H2620, is collectively used well over 50 times in Scripture, with the predominant use of these words being found in the Tehillim/Psalms and other poetic and prophetic literature!.
What we are able to recognise with these words, is that the word מַחְסֶה maḥseh – Strong’s H4268 can be used literally, in terms of taking refuge from a rainstorm, as in:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 4:6 “and a booth for shade in the daytime from the heat, for a place of refuge, and for a shelter from storm and rain.”
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 25:4 “For You shall be a refuge to the poor, a refuge to the needy in his distress, a shelter from the storm, a shade from the heat. For the spirit of the ruthless is like a storm against a wall.”.
We also take note that these words are, more often than not, used figuratively, of seeking refuge and therefore, putting complete trust and confidence in Elohim, as we see the root word חָסָה ḥasah – Strong’s H2620 being used in:
Tehillah/Psalm 61:4 “Let me dwell in Your Tent forever, let me take refuge in the shelter of Your wings. Selah.”.
We are able to see, from Scripture, the clear results of taking refuge in Elohim:
1 – When we take refuge in Him, we are blessed:
Tehillah/Psalm 2:12 “Kiss the Son, lest He be enraged, and you perish in the way, for soon His wrath is to be kindled. Blessed are all those taking refuge in Him.”
2 – We are saved by His Right Hand, when we take refuge in Him:
Tehillah/Psalm 97:7 “Let Your kindness be distinguished, You who save by Your right hand those who take refuge From those who rise up.”
3 – We are able to rejoice, when we take refuge in Him:
Tehillah/Psalm 5:11 “But let all who take refuge in You rejoice; let them ever shout for joy, because You shelter them; and let those who love Your Name exult in You.”
4 – We find, and experience, the greatness of the goodness of Elohim, when we take refuge in Him:
Tehillah/Psalm 31:19 “How great is Your goodness, which You have laid up for those fearing You, which You have prepared for those taking refuge in You In the sight of the sons of men!”
5 – We have the sure promise of inheritance and possession, when we take refuge in Him:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 57:13 “When you cry out, let your collection of idols deliver you. But the wind shall bear them all away, a breath take them. But he who takes refuge in Me shall inherit the land, and possess My set-apart mountain.”.
While I could expand further, it becomes very clear that there is a great reward for taking proper refuge in our Master and Elohim, for in doing so, we are equipped to rejoice and find complete comfort and rest from the devastating troubles that storm around us.
Taking refuge in our Master does not guarantee that the storms will go away, but rather, that we are kept secure and safe in the storms, giving us the ability to praise Him through the storms, so to speak!
This imagery of not being affected by the storms, makes me think of the parable that our Master gave regarding the wise and foolish builders!
The wise are those who guard the commands and in doing so, they build on The Rock, which is Messiah, and when the storms comes, they are not struck down, but are equipped to stand firm…. And continue to praise the Rock of our deliverance!.
The idea of taking refuge, may certainly be derived from the experiences of fugitives, or men at war that would find shelter in the hills and find protection against their enemies.
We also know that in Scripture, the term ‘refuge’, is used as an epithet for Elohim!
An epithet is a characterizing word or phrase accompanying or occurring in place of the name of a person or thing.
What Scripture repeatedly reveals to us, is that יהוה, above all, is our Refuge, our Shelter and our Stronghold, and complete trust in Him protects those who take refuge in Him.
Tehillah/Psalm 118:8-9 “It is better to take refuge in יהוה than to trust in man. 9 It is better to take refuge in יהוה than to trust in princes.”
He is a secure shield to those who take refuge in Him:
Tehillah/Psalm 18:30 “The Ěl – His way is perfect; the Word of יהוה is proven; He is a shield to all who take refuge in Him.”
The analogy of taking refuge in יהוה, can also be pictured in Scripture by the proper dwelling in His Tent, which speaks of walking in complete set-apartness before Elohim and staying in Him, by guarding to keep being set-apart, as He is set-apart!.
Tehillah/Psalm 61:4 “Let me dwell in Your Tent forever, let me take refuge in the shelter of Your wings. Selah.”
The Hebrew root word that is used here for ‘tent’ is אֹהֶל ohel – Strong’s H168 which means, ‘tent’ and is symbolic of wilderness life, and this is also the same word used for the Tabernacle.
We see this word אֹהֶל ohel – Strong’s H168 being used in:
Bemiḏbar/Numbers 24:5 “How good are your tents, O Yaʽaqoḇ, your dwellings, O Yisra’ĕl!”
The Hebrew word that is used here for ‘tents’ is the plural of the root word אֹהֶל ohel – Strong’s H168 and the root word used here for ‘dwellings’ comes from the root word מִשְׁכָּן mishkan – Strong’s H4908 which comes from the root word שָׁכַן shaḵan – Strong’s H7931 which means, ‘to settle down, abide, dwell, establish, make or cause to dwell’.
The term מִשְׁכָּן mishkan is used here in the plural, and we take note that this is the same word that is used, in the singular, for ‘The Tabernacle’..
We take note that both these words – אֹהֶל ohel and מִשְׁכָּן mishkan are used for the Tabernacle and there is often the question being raised of whether one represents the inner part of the Tabernacle while the other the outer, yet this cannot be definitively shown.
What we do recognise however, is that in the uses of these two words, that are collectively used for the Tabernacle, we may be able to see that the אֹהֶל ohel is often the place where man/congregation meets with Elohim; whereas the מִשְׁכָּן mishkan may be likened to the expression of Elohim dwelling amidst the nation of Yisra’ĕl..
What we can possibly understand, in these two words, is that the אֹהֶל ohel pictures our sojourning here, as ‘in the tents of Ya’aqoḇ’, and how we have been given the Appointed Times/Feasts of יהוה for us to come and meet with Him, in the Tent of Appointment; whereas the מִשְׁכָּן mishkan pictures for us the fullness of the Dwelling of Elohim in our midst, when He shall come and be with us forever, and we shall be made to dwell with Him forever!.
Why I am mentioning this, is to highlight a clearer understanding if what is means to properly take refuge in Elohim, and from this we can see that a proper keeping of His Sabbaths and Appointed Times is critical to any believer seeking proper refuge in Him!.
This Tehillah/Psalm 46 is a beautifully constructed love song of praise for Elohim, our refuge and strength, as we see it is broken down into 3 sections:
1) verses 1-3;
2) verses 4-7
3) verses 8-11.
You will notice at the end each section, which is verses 3, 7 and 11 that the term ‘selah’ is used..
The Hebrew word סֶלָה selah – Strong’s H5542 means, ‘lift up, exalt’, and is used frequently in the Tehillim/Psalms, as a technical musical term, probably showing accentuation, pause, or interruption, and is often understood as meaning, ‘pause and think about’, or ‘stop for a moment and consider what has just been said’.
In such a short song we see 3 ‘stop and think about it’ pauses being giving, highlighting the need for us to actually take a proper and careful consideration of who our refuge is, so that this song of praise does not just become a recital of the lips, but is a clear reflection of the trust we are to put in our Beloved King, and the words we are singing about Him, causes us to be armed with the confident trust that equips us to stand firm amidst the storms and battles of life!!!.
In the first section, that is: in verses 1-3, we are able to identify with the sure faith that we have in Elohim, as we are able to acknowledge and recognise that He is our help in time of need.
He is not only our help in distress, but He comforts us in times of trouble and delivers us from trouble!
He is our protection and while the waters may rage and the mountains may shake, we need not fear!
How often have you stopped to think about this clear truth?
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘help’ is עֶזְרָה ezrah – Strong’s H5833 which means, ‘help, helper, assistance, support’, which comes from the noun עֵזֶר ezer – Strong’s H5828 which means, ‘a help, helper, one who helps’ and we see this word being used in:
Tehillah/Psalm 121:1-2 “A song of degrees. I lift up my eyes to the hills; where does my help come from? 2 My help comes from יהוה, maker of the heavens and earth.”
This is the same word that is used to describe Ḥawwah, as a ‘helper’ for Aḏam!
Aḏam needed one who would ‘complete’ him and so too do we recognise that we are nothing without Messiah, and we cannot build His Kingdom without Him, yet He has also chosen us to have a role in establishing His Kingdom!
Tehillah/Psalm 124:8 “Our help is in the Name of יהוה, maker of the heavens and earth.”
Our HELP is in the Name of יהוה!!!
Our Husband is our perfect help!
Tehillah/Psalm 146:5 “Blessed is he who has the Ěl of Ya’aqoḇ for his help, whose expectancy is in יהוה his Elohim”
Hoshěa/Hosea 13:9 “You have destroyed yourself, O Yisra’ĕl, but your help is in Me.”.
The noun עֵזֶר ezer – Strong’s H5828 which means, ‘a help, helper, one who helps’, comes from the primitive root verb עָזַר azar – Strong’s H5826 which means, ‘to help, give relief, aid, support’..
What struck me, when looking at these nouns and the root verb for help, is that in the ancient pictographic script, it becomes very clear to us, at who our eyes should be looking at..
The noun עֵזֶר ezer – Strong’s H5828 and the root verb עָזַר azar – Strong’s H5826 both look like this in the ancient pictographic letters:
The noun עֶזְרָה ezrah – Strong’s H5833 has one extra letter and looks like this:
Ayin – עֶ:
The original pictograph for this letter is and represents the idea of ‘seeing and watching’, as well as ‘knowledge’, as the eye is the ‘window of knowledge’ and the clear function of the eye is to look at and observe..
Zayin – זְ:
The ancient pictographic script has this letter pictured as , which is a mattock (a sharp digging tool such as an axe or pick) and carries the meaning of ‘a weapon or tool that cuts, farming instrument’. A mattock would be a tool that was also used to dig up the soil so that seed could be planted. This picture clearly pictures a tool that is used to work and therefore can also render for us the meaning of work or a work that is done!.
Resh – רָ:
The ancient pictographic script has this letter pictured as , which is ‘the head of a man’ and carries the meaning of ‘top, beginning, first, chief’, as in being the top of the body or the head of a tribe and the one who rules; and also speaks of possession or inheritance that is decided by the chief..
Hey – ה:
The ancient script has this letter pictured as , which is ‘a man standing with his arms raised out’. The meaning of the letter is “behold, look, breath, sigh and reveal or revelation”; from the idea of revealing a great sight by pointing it out.
It also carries for us the meaning of surrender, as we lift up our hands and submit to יהוה as we lift our hands in praise, declaring His authority under which we humbly submit! It also declares the surrendered praise to the One who is exalted above all!
As we consider these pictographic letters, that are used to render for us the meaning of ‘help’, and more specifically, who our help is, we can see the following meaning being rendered:
LOOK TO THE WORK OF THE HEAD WHO IS EXALTED
AND IS TO BE PRAISED AND MADE GREAT!.
The clear concept of understanding the true and bold confession that יהוה is our help, can only be fully grasped, if one is actually looking to Him and the work of redemption and deliverance that He has done and brought to us, so that we are able to find His help in distress!.
The Hebrew root word that is used here in Tehillah/Psalm 46:1 for ‘distress’ is צָרָה tsarah – Strong’s H6869 which means, ‘affliction, anguish, distress, trouble, tightness’ and comes from the word, צַר tsar – Strong’s H6862 that can mean, ‘adversary, enemy, foe’ and this word is also often translated as tribulation, which teaches us a vital lesson of realising that in the very distressing times that lay ahead, our help is in our Master and Elohim alone!
It is יהוה of Hosts who fights for us and covers us under the shadow of His wings!
The word צַר tsar – Strong’s H6862 comes from the primitive root verb isצָרַר tsarar – Strong’s H6887 and means, ‘bind up, tie, restrict, be restricted, narrow, cramp, frustrate, distress, trouble’ and is used in:
Tehillah/Psalm 20:1 “יהוה does answer you in the day of distress! The Name of the Elohim of Ya‛aqoḇ does set you on high!”
There is no better encouragement than hearing and knowing that יהוה hears your cry in times of trouble!.
So, as we know, that during the tribulation, and very distressful times, we who are in Messiah have this wonderful promise we can be sure of!
יהוה will defend those who know the Elohim of Ya’aqoḇ and He will cause them to stand in the day of distress, for it is He who strengthens His taught ones in the wisdom, understanding and the proper counsel of our Master and King!.
Why I am highlighting these words is to simply emphasise that in this world we will have trouble, yet we can put our firm trust in our Master and Elohim as we find our refuge and strength in Him.
Our Master tells us that we will have pressure:
Yoḥanan/John 16:33 “These words I have spoken to you, that in Me you might have peace. In the world you have pressure, but take courage, I have overcome the world.”
The Greek word that is translated as ‘pressure’ is θλῖψις thlipsis – Strong’s G2347 which means, ‘tribulation, pressure, affliction, distress, persecution, trouble’, which is used in the LXX in Shemuʼěl Bět/2 Samuel 22:19 and is translated as ‘calamity’:
Shemuʼěl Bět/2 Samuel 22:19 “They confronted me in the day of my calamity, but יהוה was my support.”
The Word of Elohim is what we have, to recognise the True peace we have in our Messiah King; and while we certainly will have much pressure in the world, we are able to be strong and courageous as we stand firm on the Rock of our Salvation and hold fast to the Living Word, aměn!.
The primary reason for me highlighting these words, is to make it abundantly clear, the powerful opening statement that this song declares and one that we would do well to remember, especially as we face distressing times, for amidst the distress we have the firm assurance that our Mighty Elohim is to be found, by those who are earnestly seeking Him!.
We are living in a very distressing time, as we see the world in a state of fear and panic, at the outbreak of wasting diseases, and the danger that many fail to see, is that they are falling into the trap of allowing their eyes to be taken off of the only One true help that we have and is the process of taking their eyes off of our Rock and Refuge, they find themselves looking to various sources of information that.
The Hebrew root word that is translated as ‘soon found’ is מָצָא matsa – Strong’s H4672 which means, ‘to attain, find, locate, discover’.
With the concept of being able to find something reveals that it needs to be sought after.
Not that it is lost but that it needs to be discovered and learnt.
While, in many ways, the Word was lost to us while being right in front of us, we thank יהוה for opening our eyes that we may seek and find!
As we guard the commands and watch over the Torah and do not let loving-commitment and truth be forsaken, we shall find favour and help in times of distress – but we must be seeking!!!
In properly seeking our Elohim of refuge in whom we put our total confidence and trust, we are strengthened in His Word and need not fear what will take place in the earth!
This is very important for us to understand as we recognise that a proper seeking of Elohim and the proper taking of refuge in Him will not breed panic and fear but rather confidence and trust!.
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 7:15 “Therefore I came out to meet you, to earnestly seek your face, and I found you.”
How earnestly are you seeking יהוה?
How many times do you find yourself in a state of running around like a chicken without a head, or going in circles over an issue or situation and do not know what to do?
How earnest is your seeking of יהוה and His Righteousness?
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 8:17 “I love those who love me, and those who earnestly seek me do find me.”
He loves those who love Him – and a major part of loving Him is ‘seeking’ Him; because to love Him is to do what He has instructed us to do!
So how will we know how to love Him if we do not seek out what His instructions are???.
The Hebrew root word that is here for ‘love’ is אֵהָב ahaḇ – Strong’s H157 and as an interesting side note, the numerical value for this word for love is ‘8’ – which speaks of ‘fullness, complete and everlasting’!
We are to give our full attention, to seeking our Elohim with all our heart, soul and mind – anything less would not render true love, but rather, may cause one to end up forsaking Him, rather than loving Him..
This Tehillah/Psalm 46 is rich in imagery and the structure of the images that are given here are clearly enclosed by ‘earth’!
We need not fear, even though the earth changes, or if the earth melts, for we know that יהוה is exalted in the earth and we, who take refuge in Him, need not fear!!!.
The imagery that used in verses 1-3 speaks of the physical world, while the imagery of verses 4-6 forms a clear contrast between the “city of Elohim”, that is blessed by the quiet presence of Elohim, symbolised here as “river” and “streams,” and the noisy instability of the “nations” and “reigns”, that “rage” and “topple”.
The nations and reigns are brought to nothing, as the earth melts, when Elohim speaks.
While this is a very daunting image and a very frightening one to the hearers of the song, we take note of use of verse 7, which is repeated at the end of this song, and is used in order to instil confidence and trust in the one who seeks refuge in Elohim!
The announcement being given here of, “יהוה of Hosts is with us”, instils a confident declaration, and acknowledgement, of who it is who fights for us and who it is that we shall find our refuge!
The wrath of Elohim is coming upon the earth and upon the sons of disobedience, yet all who find refuge in Him are safe and are not guilty!.
Though the earth reels and mountains topple into the seas is a clear image of devastating destruction and we are able to recognise here, that this imagery can also be a clear reference to the things that man has put their trust in, being destroyed and thrown into chaos.
The Hebrew root word that is translated as ‘topple’, in verse 2, is מוֹט mot – Strong’s H4131 which means, ‘removed, to waver, slip, fall, shake, totter’, and this root word is translated as ‘shaken’, in:
Tehillah/Psalm 125:1 “Those who trust in יהוה are like Mount Tsiyon – It is not shaken, it remains forever.”
Can you see the powerful truth being declared here?
We who trust in יהוה are not shaken, for our feet are upon the Rock of our deliverance and His mountain shall not fall, while the ‘mountains of man’ shall topple and be thrown in to chaos, as represented by the image of ‘the heart of the seas’..
The imagery being given in verse 3, continues with the vivid picture of chaos reaching extreme points and the idea of not being shaken by all of this, is what this song is declaring!
Let the waters rage and foam and let the mountains shake!!!
The image being given here, emphasises our need to not get freaked out by the chaos and noise of lawlessness and the destruction that increases as the roaring threats of the enemy increases..
The Hebrew root word that is translated as ‘rage’ is הָמָה hamah – Strong’s H1993 which means, ‘to murmur, growl, roar, be boisterous, noisy, cry out, make a loud noise’.
This root word הָמָה hamah – Strong’s H1993 is translated as ‘brawler’, in:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 20:1 “Wine is a scoffer, strong drink a brawler, and whoever is led astray by it is not wise.”
Can you picture the image of a drunkard brawler?
Well, this is the image of a people who are foolishly drunk on the maddening adulteries of the whore and are spewing out vicious blasphemies and threats, and this root word הָמָה hamah – Strong’s H1993 is also used in:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 17:12 “Woe to the uproar of many people who make a noise like the roar of the seas, and to the rushing of nations that make a rushing like the rushing of mighty waters”
Here, the root word הָמָה hamah – Strong’s H1993 is used twice for emphasis, and here in Yeshayahu we see how Baḇelon, the great whore is linked not only with Baḇelon the city, but also with all the nations that she has made drunk with the wine of her adulteries!
This is the whole world system that unifies in opposition to יהוה when He has declared that His Anointed One is now to reign on the earth.
The whore is noisy and stirs up a great noise against the truth!
So many, in churches today, are being stirred up against the hearing of the clear and undefiled truth! The more that the Truth becomes known and made more available for all to see, the more the whore, and all her false systems of worship, raise their voice in order to drown out the call to come out of her!
Because of the intoxicating strong drink of false theologies of the whore many are very boisterous and cry out against the Truth.
There is a twofold message given here in this parable of Shelomoh.
Firstly, there is the warning against drinking wine and strong drink, and then secondly, we are able to learn from this parable the clear warning against the maddening adulteries of the whore that leads nations astray.
Coming back to Tehillah/Psalm 46, we take note that in our declaration of who our Refuge is, we need not be afraid of the rage of the lawless and lawless system that seeks to destroy the righteous!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘foam’ comes from the word חָמַר ḥamar – Strong’s H2560 which means, ‘to boil or foam up, ferment, greatly troubled, in turmoil’, and highlights the image of the rage of the enemy. Interestingly, we take note that a word that is derived from this root verb, is the noun חֲמוֹר ḥamor – Strong’s H2543 which means, ‘donkey, ass’, which, in a sense, gives us a clear image of the stubbornness and pride of the drunkards..
It is at the end of verse 3 that we are given the first סֶלָה selah – Strong’s H5542, and herein is an extremely valuable lesson, and that is that we are not to be shaken or moved by the rage that is increasing in the earth. This is why I find this song a very fitting song for us to be meditating upon and declaring, as we consider the comfort and strength we have in our refuge, in whom we find great stability and joy, knowing that though the earth goes into a complete destructive rage, we have our refuge and strength, in our Mighty Master and Elohim!
That is certainly something to stop and think about and rejoice in!.
As we consider these words that are being given to us here in this song, how many of you have found that you have not actually been taking the time, amidst the chaos that is happening all around, to consider that we should not be alarmed at all of this.
This is now time to have a ‘Selah’ moment, so to speak, and take stock of the reality of who we are in Messiah, so that we do not allow the roaring chaos to move us from our steadfast position in our great King!
The picture of the raging waters, can also be a picture of the proud waters that seek to destroy the humble. And in Tehillah/Psalm 124, we are given a song which declares the joy of having יהוה on our side and it starts with the clear declaration that if יהוה was not on our side, then we would have been in some serious trouble. Among the things that are mentioned, is the proud waters that would have destroyed us, if יהוה was not on our side!
Tehillah/Psalm 124:4-5 “Then the waters would have overwhelmed us, the stream would have gone over our being; 5 then the proud waters would have gone over our being.”
In verse 4-5 of this Tehillah/Psalm 124 Dawiḏ uses the metaphor of a ‘raging flood’, and the Hebrew root word that is translated here as ‘overwhelmed’ is שָׁטַף shataph – Strong’s H7857 which means, ‘overflow, wash off, engulfed, overwhelming, washed away’.
This word is usually used as a figure of speech, in reference to judgement, and more specifically to Elohim’s judgement on His people.
The ‘positive’ side of this word, is seen in:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 66:12 “For thus said יהוה, “See, I am extending peace to her like a river, and the esteem of the gentiles like a flowing stream. And you shall feed; you shall be carried on the side, and be fondled on her knees.”
If it were not for יהוה who is on our side, we would be overwhelmed, engulfed and washed away in judgement, just as the inhabitants of the earth were, in the days of Noaḥ..
We who have entered His rest, and continue to do so, through loving obedience to His commands, and continue to stay in Him, shall be protected from the overwhelming waters of destruction, and will rather be found to be overwhelmed by His immense blessing upon us!
As we go through the account of the flood, in our Torah reading from Berěshith/Genesis 6:9-11:32, the imagery of flood waters, reminds us of the praise we are to have for our Help, יהוה our Elohim, in whom we find our rest!
Berěshith/genesis 7:18 “And the waters were mighty and greatly increased on the earth, and the ark moved about on the surface of the waters.”
The term/phrase that is translated as ‘moved about’ comes from the root word הָלַךְ halaḵ – Strong’s H1980 which carries the meaning, ‘to walk, to live, manner of life, cause to live’ and it literally speaks of how one lives.
In a manner of speaking, we could render this as, ‘the ark walked on the waters’!
This is a very powerful prophetic shadow picture, of the Ark representing יהושע Messiah, in whom we find our refuge amidst the ‘flooding waters of life’!
When the talmidim of Messiah were being tossed about on the stormy waters, יהושע Messiah went to them, walking on the waters:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 14:24-27 “But the boat was now in the middle of the sea, agitated by the waves, for the wind was against it. 25 And in the fourth watch of the night יהושע went to them, walking on the sea. 26 And when the taught ones saw Him walking on the sea, they were troubled, saying, “It is a phantom!” And from fear they cried. 27 But immediately יהושע spoke to them, saying, “Take courage, it is I, do not be afraid.”
If it were not for יהושע Messiah, who walks on the waters, the disciples would have suffered harm! In יהושע Messiah, all storms and overwhelming waters, have no power to destroy us!.
The Hebrew root word for ‘stream’ is נַחְלָה naḥlah – Strong’s H5158 which means, ‘torrent, torrent valley, wadi, brook, ravine, stream’, and this usually referred to a dry river bed or ravine, which, in rainy season, becomes a raging torrent.
This can also symbolically represent for us the pride of the nations, the strength of the invader and the power of the enemy, which can destroy the parched and dry places..
When we are not being continually nourished in the Truth of the living word, and are not meditating on the Torah so that we are like a tree planted by the waters, we may become like a dry brook that the enemy can flood with his lies and confusion, through ‘mainstream traditions’!.
This root word נַחְלָה naḥlah – Strong’s H5158 is also used, in the positive sense, in describing יהוה’s pleasure over His set-apart ones:
Tehillah/Psalm 36:8 “They are filled from the fatness of Your house, and You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures.”
Here, in Tehillim/Psalm 124, we clearly see why we are able to praise יהוה – because, if it were not for Him, we would be drowning under the power of the enemy that seeks to engulf his prey with fear, worries and doubt!
Have you ever felt so overwhelmed by the onslaught of chaotic circumstances, which causes you feel like you are like a sinking ship and feel like you are drowning?
Well, if it were not for יהוה who in on our side, we would drown.
As we stay in יהושע Messiah, He stays in us and He calms the raging power of the chaotic seas!.
In Tehillah/Psalm 124:5, the Hebrew word for ‘proud’ is זֵידוֹן tseḏon – Strong’s H2121 which means, ‘churning, raging, insolent’ and comes from the root verb זִיד tsiḏ – Strong’s H2102 which means, ‘to boil up, seethe, act proudly or presumptuously or rebelliously’.
The ‘proud waters’ would have gone over our being!
The Hebrew word for ‘being’ is נֶפֶשׁ nephesh – Strong’s H5315 which is ‘a soul, a living being, the inner being of a man’.
If it were not for יהוה, the wickedness of pride and rebellion would have gone over our being.
This is a picture of those who are directly opposing those who are earnestly seeking to do the will of Elohim, and let me tell you, if it were not for יהוה being on our side, the opposition would pass over, or walk all over, our inner man and bring raging destruction; yet, because of our Passover Lamb – יהושע Messiah – we are safe from the raging waters that pass over the wicked, as long as we stay in Him and find refuge in Him and His Name, amidst the distress!.
In Tehillah/psalm 46:7, we are reminded that ‘יהוה of Hosts is with us and the Elohim of Ya’aqoḇ is our refuge’, after which we are given our second סֶלָה selah – Strong’s H5542, which ought to cause us, once again, to have a ‘stop and think about it’ moment, and realise that we, who are in the Master, have nothing to fear!
Just pause for a second and think about this very valid and valuable statement:
יהוה of Hosts is with us!!!
This is a compound title of our Mighty Master and Elohim, which is Hebrew is written as:
יהוה צְבָאוֹת – יהוה tseḇaoth
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘hosts’ comes from the root word צָבָא tsaḇa – Strong’s H6635 which means, ‘army, war, warfare, battle, conflict, host (of organised army)’, which comes from the primitive root verb צָבָא tsaḇa – Strong’s H6633 meaning, ‘to wage war, perform, fight, serve, mustered, gone to war’.
He is not only our Commander and Chief, who fights for us, He is also the One under whom we march and fight the good fight of belief!.
In verses 8-10 the call is given to come and see very clearly who it is who is in control!
In these verses we see the imagery of war, as we see the following terms being used: ‘bows, spears and chariots’!
What is clear here, is that Elohim is the one who will destroy the works of the enemy, here on earth! You will notice that verse 8 ends with ‘earth’ and verse 10 also ends with ‘earth’ and, in terms of the imagery of war, we take note of the clear declaration of the One who is victorious, as it is The I AM who is exalted in the earth, clearly revealing to us that every knee will be bow and every tongue will confess that He is Master and Elohim!!!.
This Psalm ends as it begins, with the clear declaration of “Elohim is our refuge”!!!
The Aleph and Taw – the Beginning and the End – is our refuge!!!
After this repeated statement, we see the third סֶלָה selah – Strong’s H5542 being given to end this powerful song..
As we consider this song, being referenced, or titled, in terms of the sons of Qoraḥ upon the maidens, we can begin to understand the clear song that is to be upon our lips, as represented by the 5 wise maidens who have their lamps filled with oil and are earnestly seeking Elohim with all their heart, which represents for us a clear image of a Bride who is preparing Herself and is diligently watching and waiting for our Master’s return, by guarding His Torah and commands, in compete set-apartness, done so with exceeding joy and a continual resounding praise for His Wondrous Name!!!
This song of Qoraḥ for the maidens, is a lesson on how we have separated ourselves from the rebellion of the inherited lies of our fathers and it declares the only One true refuge, strength and stronghold that we have, as we find our help in Elohim alone, with the full assurance that, as we stay in Him, we need not fear the distress that is coming, and is already taking place, upon the earth!
Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 16:19-21 “O יהוה, my strength and my stronghold and my refuge, in the day of distress the nations shall come to You from the ends of the earth and say, “Our fathers have inherited only falsehood, futility, and there is no value in them.” 20 Would a man make mighty ones for himself, which are not mighty ones? 21 “Therefore see, I am causing them to know, this time I cause them to know My hand and My might. And they shall know that My Name is יהוה!”.
As we consider how crazy the world is getting and how the wickedness of man has reached the levels of the depravity of the days of Noaḥ, we must take courage and comfort in seeking our refuge and strength, in Elohim alone, knowing that, despite the imminent days of distress that shall soon be found, and in many ways is already upon us, we need not fear!
Rather, we are to acknowledge and declare that:
יהוה of Hosts is with us, and the Elohim of Yaʽaqoḇ is our refuge. Selah.
As we stop and think about this clear truth, let me give you a few more verses to meditate on, as you recognise our need to be armed with truth, so that we can give the proper praise and esteem to His Name!
Romiyim/Romans 8:31 “What then shall we say to this? If Elohim is for us, who is against us?”
Tehillah/Psalm 56:4 “In Elohim, whose Word I praise, in Elohim I have trusted; I do not fear; what could flesh do to me?”
Tehillah/Psalm 56:11 “In Elohim I have trusted; I do not fear; what could man do to me?”
Tehillah/Psalm 118:6 “יהוה is on my side; I do not fear what man does to me!”
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 13:5-6 “Let your way of life be without the love of silver, and be satisfied with what you have. For He Himself has said, “I shall never leave you nor forsake you,” 6 so that we boldly say, “ יהוה is my helper, I shall not fear what man shall do to me.”.
I hope that these words remind you who our One True Refuge is – יהוה of Hosts!
Perhaps you have been facing some extremely tough and trying times of late, and perhaps your strength has been weakened, by the worries of this age and by the increasing paranoia and panic that has gripped the world.
Perhaps the present dangers of wasting diseases has caused you to be a bit shaken by the various measures that are being put in place, all across the earth.
In this message, I want you to be reminded who your only true refuge and strength is and take a moment to carefully consider the greatness and power of our Mighty Master and Elohim!.
יהוה of Hosts is with us!
ELOHIM IS OUR REFUGE AND STRENGTH – SELAH!!!
As we enjoy the true ‘selah’ moment, of recognising who it is who fights for us, and in whom we find our strength, let us enjoy the ability that we have, in giving our Mighty Master and Elohim, who is our refuge and strength, the praise that is due to His Name!.
As you consider the words of this wonderful love song of praise for our Master, may you be strengthened to give a true slaughter offering of thanksgiving, as you look to Him and find great comfort and refuge in the shelter of His wings and not be afraid of that which is happening on the earth!!!.
With the clear declaration of who our refuge is, I would like to encourage you to take a ‘selah moment’ and listen to, and sing along with, one of our songs that is called REFUGE:.
After reading these notes, you can listen to the following song, by clicking on the following link and selecting ‘Refuge’, or by going to our site (https://atfotc.com) and going to the music menu and finding this song on the album called ‘True Worship’ :
Below are the words for this song..
REFUGE (PSALM 27).
REFUGE, STRONGHOLD, SHELTER FROM THE STORM
יהוה, SAVIOUR, OF A WOMAN BORN, I SAY (X2)
I CRY ALOUD AND IN YOUR LOVING MERCY YOU ANSWERED ME
I REACH FOR YOU, IN TIMES OF TROUBLE YOU ARE NOT FAR FROM ME
MY LIGHT, MY SONG, YOU LIFT ME UP YOU DO NOT ABANDON ME
YOUR INVITATION COMES TO MY HEART, יהוה
YOU’RE ASKING ME TO SEEK YOUR FACE
I’LL SEEK YOUR FACE WITH ALL THAT I AM, יהוה
COME AND MEET ME IN THIS PLACE
THERE’S ONE THING THAT I ASK OF YOU NOW, יהוה
THE THING THAT I WILL ALWAYS PURSUE
FOREVER JUST TO DWELL IN YOUR HOUSE, יהוה
ETERNALLY TO BE WITH YOU
יהוה bless you and guard you; יהוה make His face shine upon you and show favour to you; יהוה lift up His face upon you and give you shalom!