10th of the 6th month 2017/2018
The favour of our Master יהושע Messiah be with you.
Tehillah/Psalm 134:1-3 “Come, bless יהוה, all you servants of יהוה, who are standing in the House of יהוה by night! 2 Lift up your hands in the set-apart place, and bless יהוה. 3 יהוה, maker of the heavens and earth, does bless you from Tsiyon!”
The title of this Tehillah/Psalm 134 is – שִׁיר הַמַּעֲלוֹת – ‘shiyr hama’alot’ – which is best translated as ‘A song of degrees’. Tehillim/Psalms 120-134 all have this title in the Hebrew text and is translated as ‘A song of degrees’ or ‘A song of ascents’ and these Tehillim/Psalms are believed by many scholars to have been songs that were sung by those who travelled to Yerushalayim each year to the Feasts of יהוה. The two root words are – שִׁיר shir – Strong’s H7892 which means, ‘song, music, musical’ and מַעֲלָה ma’alah – Strong’s H4609 which means, ‘what comes up, steps, high degree, ascends, stairway’, and comes from the primitive root verb עָלָה alah – Strong’s H5927 meaning, ‘to go up, ascend, climb, approach, go’; and when one also recognises how a derivative of this root verb is the word עֹלָה olah – Strong’s H5930 meaning, ‘whole burnt offering, ascent, staircase, stairway’, then we are able to understand why this collection of Tehillim/Psalms cold be sung by those who journeyed ‘up’ to the Feasts of יהוה. The ‘olah offering’ represents, ‘a giving totally of oneself to יהוה’, and these songs express the true worship of true worshippers of Elohim who confidently place their trust in Him, and offer up their entire lives as a living sacrifice, having the sound of continual songs of praise on their lips, declaring their steadfast trust in יהוה.
This short song of degrees issues a call for the servants of יהוה who re standing in the House of יהוה by night, to come and bless יהוה. This song was either spoken by the worshippers to the priests who were doing their duties or was a call given by the priests to all those who were present, with the full assurance given that יהוה blesses those who exalt Him and serve Him in Spirit and Truth!
The call to come is one that demands the attention those to whom it is given, as we take note that the Hebrew word that is translated as ‘come’ is הִנֵּה hinneh – Strong’s H2009 which means, ‘Lo! Behold! Look! See!’, which is the prolonged form of הֵן hen – Strong’s H2005, and is used as an interjection that demands attention and is mainly used to emphasise the information that follows.
This Tehillah is one that ought to catch our attention, reminding us that we are to be blessing יהוה in all we do and this is something that we all, as called out, set-apart and chosen servants of Elohim, ought to be doing every day. While this may be one of the shortest songs it is certainly packed with a huge reminder of what we are to be doing in our reasonable worship before Elohim. Sha’ul call us to remembrance of this too, as we see in:
Romiyim/Romans 12:1-2 “I call upon you, therefore, brothers, through the compassion of Elohim, to present your bodies a living offering – set-apart, well-pleasing to Elohim – your reasonable worship. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you prove what is that good and well-pleasing and perfect desire of Elohim.”
Our ‘reasonable worship’ that is well-pleasing to Elohim is one that is done in complete set-apartness, as we make sure that it is His Word that is continually renewing our minds as we meditate on His Torah day and night, being sober and awake against the dangers of conforming to worldly standards that are not set-apart but rather profane any attempts at worship that is done contrary to the clear pattern and standards of the Torah of Elohim!
The Hebrew word that is translated in Tehillah/Psalm 134 as ‘bless’ is בָּרֲכוּ – baraḵu which comes from the primitive root verb בָּרַךְ baraḵ – Strong’s H1288 and means, ‘to abundantly bless’ and literally carries the meaning, ‘to kneel or bow down, to show respect, to bring a gift to another while kneeling out of respect’. It is written here in the ‘piel’ verb tense which usually expresses an intensive or intentional action. A life of praise is seen in the respect that we give unto our Elohim, and this word depicts the action of showing true reverence, implying a continual consciousness of the presence of our Master and Elohim, which results in a continual ‘bowing’ in obedience.
Dawiḏ said the following when he was driven from Aḇimeleḵ, after he changed his behaviour:
Tehillah/Psalm 34:1 “I bless יהוה at all times; His praise is continually in my mouth.”
No matter who might be against you, never stop living a life of praise unto our Master and Elohim, and bless Him at all times!
The call to come and bless יהוה is given to all the servants of יהוה who are standing in the House of יהוה by night.
While this may have been directed to those who did evening service in the Temple, this call is still a very clear call that is given to ALL of us today, especially as we recognise some of the wording used here, for in these words given in this call we are able to identify how we, the royal priesthood, are called to stand and bless יהוה ‘at night’.
As we look at these words we can certainly unpack a wealth of encouragement given here, recognising how the Living Word of Elohim calls us to take a firm stand in Him and make sure that our lives express true set-apartness amidst these very darkened days! Sha’ul reminds us that ‘the night’ is far advanced and that we must put on the armour of light:
Romiyim/Romans 13:11-14 “And do this, knowing the time, that it is already the hour for us to wake up from sleep, for now our deliverance is nearer than when we did believe. 12 The night is far advanced, the day has come near. So let us put off the works of darkness, and let us put on the armour of light. 13 Let us walk becomingly, as in the day, not in wild parties and drunkenness, not in living together and indecencies, not in fighting and envy, 14 but put on the Master יהושע Messiah, and make no provision for the lusts of the flesh.”
As we consider the words of Sha’ul, we can certainly see how the call in Tehillah/Psalm 134 can also be a ‘wake-up call’, so to speak, as it calls for true set-apart praise that is in no way compromised by worldly influences and the lusts of the flesh, for our role as a royal priesthood is clear – we are to have set-apart hands that are lifted in service to bless and honour our Master and Elohim!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘all’ is כֹּל kol – Strong’s H3605 which means, ‘whole, all, everything, entire, throughout, wholehearted, perpetual, completely, continually’, and comes from the primitive root verb כָּלַל kalal – Strong’s H3634 which means, ‘to complete, perfect, perfected’. Why I am emphasizing this word for ‘all’ is because it is exactly that – ALL – not just some and not even 99% but ALL! Our duty and call to bless יהוה cannot be done with hearts that not fully committed to serving Him. Many today may claim to bless יהוה and even claim to be servants of Elohim, yet their hands are not lifted up in complete set-apartness and their compromised lifestyles reveals that they simply have flattering lips and a double heart, as they do not live according to the refined Word of Elohim but do whatever is right in their own eyes and expect to be blessed by their half-hearted approach at worship!
True servants are sober and awake and guard righteousness at all times – especially when understanding that we are living at a time where the night is far advanced!
The Hebrew word that is translated here as ‘servants’ is עַבְדֵי – aḇḏey which comes from the root word עֶבֶד eḇeḏ – Strong’s H5650 meaning, ‘servant, slave, bondservant’. It is written here in the plural and highlights for us a clear lesson that the call to bless יהוה with lifted hands that are set-apart is for ALL and not simply for a select few! It also highlights for us the fact that we are to be worshipping and serving or Master together! There is no room for ‘lone rangers’ in the body of Messiah! We are all to serve in unity and perfection and work together and those refuse to submit to the clear pattern and order of the body of Messiah and are doing whatever is right in their own eyes are not true servants!
As children of Yisra’ĕl, which we have become by the Blood of Messiah, we are servants of יהוה:
Wayyiqra/Leviticus 25:55 “Because the children of Yisra’ĕl are servants to Me, they are My servants whom I brought out of the land of Mitsrayim. I am יהוה your Elohim.”
The equivalent Greek word for servant is δοῦλος doulos – Strong’s G1401 and is translated as, ‘slave, servant, bondservant, bondslaves – both men and women’, and is used repeatedly throughout the renewed Writings, as we take note how Sha’ul, Ya’aqoḇ, Kěpha and Yehuḏah called themselves a ‘servant’ (doulos) of יהושע Messiah.
Romiyim/Romans 1:1 “Sha’ul, a servant of יהושע Messiah, a called emissary, separated to the Good News of Elohim”
Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:1 “Ya’aqoḇ, a servant of Elohim and of the Master יהושע Messiah, to the twelve tribes who are in the dispersion: Greetings.”
Kěpha Bět/2 Peter 1:1 “Shimʽon Kěpha, a servant and emissary of יהושע Messiah, to those who have obtained a belief as precious as ours by the righteousness of our Elohim and Saviour יהושע Messiah”
Yehuḏah/Jude 1:1 “Yehuḏah, a servant of יהושע Messiah, and brother of Ya’aqoḇ, to those who are called, set-apart by Elohim the Father, and preserved in יהושע Messiah”
The root word עֶבֶד eḇeḏ – Strong’s H5650 is used 800 times in the Tanak (O.T.) and is used as a noun and comes from the primitive root verb עָבַד aḇaḏ – Strong’s H5647 meaning, ‘to work, serve, observe, do the work, cultivate, worship’ and carries the understanding of ‘expending considerable energy and intensity in performing a task or function’ – in other words – ‘giving it your all’!
A true faithful servant of יהושע Messiah is one who serves with their all and does so in complete set-apartness. Sha’ul told Timotiyos the following:
Timotiyos Bět/2 Timothy 2:3-5 “Suffer hardship with us as a good soldier of יהושע Messiah. 4 No one serving as a soldier gets involved in the affairs of this life, in order to please only him who enlisted him as a soldier. 5 And if anyone competes in a game, he is not crowned unless he competes according to the rules.”
A faithful servant is also a good soldier of יהושע Messiah and seeks to please Him, for our Master has caused us to be enlisted, so to speak, by grafting us into the Covenants of Promise by His Blood. As faithful servants and soldiers we are called to fight to good fight, be strong and courageous and not be afraid of what the enemy can or cannot do, for our Master is with us and He strengthens us and helps us and upholds us in righteousness (as we guard to do all He commands us to).
The reason I am mentioning all this is to make it clear that the ‘call of duty’ that we each have, as servants of Messiah, calls for us to be strong and courageous and not fear. Any soldier that is afraid, when on the battlefield, can weakens others and cause others to lose heart and grow weary!
A true and faithful servant accepts the discipline of the Father, even though it may not be pleasant at the time, as he is assured that he is being treated as a son that is loved!
Those who despise the proper discipline of the Word have ears that refuse to hear and therefore do not respond to the Word of Elohim!
In the ancient pictographic script, the word עֶבֶד eḇeḏ – Strong’s H5650 is pictured as:
Ayin – עֶ
The original pictograph for this letter is which is a picture of ‘an eye’ and represents the idea of ‘seeing and watching’, as well as ‘knowledge’ as the eye is the window of knowledge
Beyt – בֶ:
The ancient script has this letter as , which pictures ‘a tent floor plan’ and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents family and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself.
Dalet – ד
The ancient script has this letter as and is pictured as a ‘tent door’. It can also have the meaning of ‘a back and forth movement’ as one goes back and forth through a tent door and so speaks of an access point. It can also carry the meaning of ‘dangle’ or hanging as the tent door would hang from the roof pole of the tent. It speaks a great deal in terms of understanding the door of the Tent of Appointment as being the only means of access.
When we look at this word in the ancient script for a servant, we can see that it speaks of:
ONE WHO WATCHES AT THE DOOR OF THE HOUSE
And this is what our Master calls us to do; and when we consider that יהושע Messiah is The Door, then we further see our need to continually be looking at Him, guarding to do all His commands and guarding His Sabbaths and Feasts (His Appointed Times) – and this is how we too keep watch over the House/Body of Messiah!
When we look at the word that is used here in Tehillah/Psalm 134 for ‘servants’ – עַבְדֵי – aḇḏey – in the ancient pictographic script, we can be further encouraged by the importance of gathering on His Sabbaths and Feasts, which after all are commanded set-apart gatherings – which highlights again that those who do not gather with others are not serving as they should! The plural word עַבְדֵי – aḇḏey is pictured as follows:
As you will notice, the extra letter added here is the letter:
Yod – י
In the Ancient Pictographic Script, this is the letter ‘yad or yod’ which is pictured as – – which is the picture of an arm and hand and carries the meaning of ‘work, make, throw’ from the primary functions of the arm and hand and can also represent worship or giving thanks in the extending of hands as a gesture of this. This also reveals to us a stretched-out arm and hand.
This can give us the meaning:
ONE WHO WATCHES AT THE DOOR OF THE HOUSE WORKS/SERVES
This highlights for us that true servants are not sitting around and waiting for others to serve them but are busy doing the will of the Master and are obedient in serving as they should, not hiding their talents but working with them, bringing praise and esteem to Elohim!
The Hebrew word translated as ‘standing’ comes from the root word עָמַד amaḏ – Strong’s H5975 which carries the meaning, ‘to take one’s stand, present oneself, abide, appoint, arise, stay, be steadfast, remain, be or become a servant’.
So, when Sha’ul instructs us in Eph’siyim/Ephesians to put on the Armour of Elohim and STAND, STAND and STAND, he is reminding us of the blessing of our responsibility as a priesthood that must be properly dressed in righteousness and SERVE! We are called to stand and serve, which requires an obedient active service that works righteousness!
The Greek word used here for ‘stand’ 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’, and 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’ is an equipped standing, in that the required dress code (that of righteousness – which is to guard to do all the commands) is adhered to and is functional, in us being a faithful set-apart priesthood that is able, as good stewards with that which He has given us, to stand before our High Priest and King – יהושע Messiah! As we stay in Him and He stays in us, we have the full assurance that we shall be able to stand before Him when He comes again, for He who establishes us has sealed us and given us His Spirit in our hearts as a pledge!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘night’ comes from the root word לַיְלָה layelah – Strong’s H3915 which means, ‘night (as opposed to day)’, and is a period of time from the setting of the sun to its rising; and so, carries the focus of ‘lacking light’. Darkness often has the connotation of a period of uncertainly and a time when fear grips one the most, which can be metaphorically understood, especially when there is no light being shed on a situation that has become an intense time of insecurity and fear. Yet, as true servants of Elohim, we take note that both light and darkness are from Elohim, as both darkness and light are His!
Tehillah/Psalm 74:16 “The day is Yours, the night is Yours too, You have established the light and the sun.”
We also take note that the one who dwells in the secret place of the Most-High and abides under the shadow of the Almighty is not afraid of the night or day!
Tehillah/Psalm 91:5-6 “You are not afraid of the dread by night, of the arrow that flies by day, 6 of the pestilence that walks in darkness, of destruction that ravages at midday.”
Why I am mentioning this is to highlight the character of a capable Bride of Messiah, as she is not afraid of the night and can therefore confidently get up and make proper preparations for the day ahead, with complete confidence and no fear of darkness! We need not fear the dark, so to speak, as we know that even darkness is as light, to our Husband and King:
Tehillah/Psalm 139:11-12 “If I say, “Darkness shall cover me,” then night would be light to me; 12 even darkness is not dark for You, but night shines as the day – as is darkness, so is light.”
In a Psalm of praise for the Torah of Elohim we take note how remembering the Name of יהוה in the night will cause one to remember to guard His Torah as a faithful servant!
Tehillah/Psalm 119:55 “I have remembered Your Name in the night, O יהוה, and I guard Your Torah.”
In this Tehillah/Psalm 119:53 the psalmist states that rage had seized him because of the wrong that forsake the Torah of יהוה, and he was possibly being gripped by this rage during the dark hours, so to speak; and then he says in verse 55 that he remembers the Name of יהוה and guards His Torah. In the midst of darkness, he remembers who it is who causes him to be and therefore guards the Torah! This teaches us a vital lesson too, as many seem to discard the need to guard the Torah when things get tough and darkness overtakes them! It is during the ‘dark times’, so to speak, that we are to be on greater guard against the schemes of the enemy and his dark ways, as we remember that it is our Master and Elohim that has made both darkness and light and to Him darkness is as light, giving us the full assurance that, as a capable wife of the Most-High, we can rise up in the darkness and be about our Master’s business, serving Him faithfully as we should, as we take our stand by night and bless His Mighty Name with set-apart hands that are lifted high!
When I ponder on this I am reminded of the call we see in:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 60:1-2 “Arise, shine, for your light has come! And the esteem of יהוה has risen upon you. 2 “For look, darkness covers the earth, and thick darkness the peoples. But יהוה arises over you, and His esteem is seen upon you.”
In Yirmeyahu/Jeremiah 7:2 we see how Yirmeyahu was to ‘Stand in the gate of the House of יהוה, and proclaim the Word of יהוה to all who were entering the gates to bow down to יהוה’. Yirmeyahu was not just told to stand up but rather, more firmly, he was told to take a stand and be steadfast in standing up to speak the Word of Elohim, as he was to confidently take a stand against the hypocrisy of false worship, and ‘proclaim’ the Word of יהוה.
Stand up and speak up – this was what Yirmeyahu was told to do – and as we look at his life we can see that while he was repeatedly told to do this, he was not well received; and in fact, was more often than not hated for the words he had to stand up and speak to a wicked generation. The same was true for Yeḥezqěl – he too was told to stand up and speak!
We need to take great courage from their examples and be steadfast servants of the Word that stand up and speak the Truth!
The Hebrew word for ‘house’ is בַּיִת bayith – Strong’s H1004 meaning, ‘house, home, armoury, building’ and is often pronounced as ‘beit’. As we consider the words of this short song of degrees of Tehillah/Psalm 134 we are able to glean many valuable lessons of standing and serving faithfully as true servants of Elohim, whose dwelling we are! And ‘Standing in His House by night’ can also teach us a great lesson of taking one’s stand in unity as a Bride that is making herself ready, guarding righteousness in darkened times!
In the ancient pictographic script, the word בַּיִת bayith – Strong’s H1004 meaning, ‘house, home, armoury, building’, which looks like this:
Beyt – בַּ:
This is the letter ‘beyt’ (בֵּ), which in the ancient script has this letter as , which pictures a tent floor plan and means, ‘house’ or ‘tent’. It represents family and the importance of those who are inside the tent as opposed to the tent structure itself, and is the Dwelling Place of the Most-High, which we are, as we are as living stones being built up in Messiah.
Yod – יִ:
The ancient script has this letter as which is ‘an arm and hand’ and carries the meaning of ‘work, make, throw’, from the primary functions of the arm and hand, and it also represents worship or giving thanks in the extending of hands as a gesture of this. The work of one’s hands is the basic meaning of this letter!
Taw – ת
The ancient script has this letter as which is pictured as two crossed sticks, and can represent for us ‘seal, covenant, mark or sign’; as this once again points to the complete work of Messiah in the renewal of the Covenant in His Blood that brings the two Houses of Yisra’ĕl and Yehuḏah together in Him, as One, for He is not only the ‘aleph’, but is also the ‘taw’ – the beginning and the end of all creation!
HIS ‘FLOOR PLAN’ FOR HIS CREATION, IS SEALED BY HIS COVENANTS OF PROMISE BY THE WORK AND AUTHORITY OF HIS MIGHTY OUTSTRETCHED ARM AND HAND, AND AS LIVING STONES ARE BEING BUILT UP IN HIM BECOMING HIS DWELLING PLACE!
Eph’siyim/Ephesians 2:19-22 “So then you are no longer strangers and foreigners, but fellow citizens with the set-apart ones and members of the household of Elohim, 20 having been built upon the foundation of the emissaries and prophets, יהושע Messiah Himself being chief corner-stone, 21 in whom all the building, being joined together, grows into a set-apart Dwelling Place in יהוה, 22 in whom you also are being built together into a dwelling of Elohim in the Spirit.”
As true servants that have responded to the call to come and bless יהוה and are faithfully standing dressed in His armour of Light amidst dark times we need to make sure that we have our hands lifted in complete set-apartness, in order to properly bless יהוה as we should!
Lifting up hands in the set-apart place can give us a clear picture of obedient submission to His Word and the lifting up of one’s hands to יהוה is certainly a concept that is understood in Scripture as being one of working unto Him with your all!
The Hebrew word translated as ‘lift up comes from the root verb נָשָׂא nasa – Strong’s H5375 which means ‘lift up, carry, take up, exalt, and accept’. In the Hebraic mind-set, one’s hands are often used as a reference to what one does and therefor represents one’s works or actions and having hands that are lifted up to bless יהוה is a clear picture of one who is showing their belief by their works. It is interesting to note how it is the shield of belief/faith, in the armour of Elohim, that is to be ‘lifted up’, emphasising the clear need that our faith must be seen by what we do and faith/belief without proper works of righteousness is dead! This is exactly what Ya’aqoḇ tells us:
Ya’aqoḇ/James 2:17-18 “So also belief, if it does not have works, is in itself dead. 18 But someone might say, “You have belief, and I have works.” Show me your belief without your works, and I shall show you my belief by my works.”
The Greek word for ‘belief’ is πίστις pistis – Strong’s G4102 which means, ‘faith, faithfulness, pledge, conviction of the Truth’ which comes from the primary root verb πείθω peithō – Strong’s G3982 which means, ‘to persuade, to put confidence in, to follow, have confidence and rely upon’.
He is clearly teaching us is that any works that are done outside of the proper confidence and reliance that we are to have on the Torah of Elohim that teaches, leads, reproves, disciplines and directs us, are simply nothing more than lawless and dead works.
The Greek word that is used here for ‘works’ is ἔργον ergon – Strong’s G2041 which means, ‘works, labour, business, employment, behaviour, deeds’. In Mattithyahu/Matthew 5 our Master יהושע Messiah tells us that we are the light of the world and that we must not hide the light, but that we should shine the light of His Truth in everything we do, and that our light should shine before all men, so that they see our good works and praise our Father who is in the heavens! Guess what the very next words of the Master are, after telling us to let our ‘good works’ be seen by all….:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 5:17 “Do not think that I came to destroy the Torah or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to complete.”
The clarity of His words are made plain in telling us that we shall be unable to let our good works be seen by all if we destroy the Torah and the Prophets! In other words, works done without the perfection of the Torah are not deemed ‘good works’ by our Elohim, no matter how good they may seem in the eyes of the flesh!
Ya’aqoḇ makes it very clear that belief that has no proper works is not a belief that can save a man!
Lifting up hands in the set-apart place identifies our pure worship, for it speaks of having our work of belief being done in set-apartness and therefore render our reasonable worship as pleasing before Elohim!
The Hebrew word for ‘hand’ is יָד yaḏ – Strong’s H3027 and is a primitive root which is translated as, ‘hand, command, authority, power, tenons, side’, and the primary meaning of this noun is “the terminal part of the arm used to perform the functions of a man’s will.”.
It is therefore very clear that we are able to understand, from the Hebraic mind-set, that one’s hand symbolises what one does, or also speaks of one’s ‘works, deeds, actions’!
The Hebrew word for ‘set-apart/set-apartness’, as most of you may know, comes from the noun קֹדֶשׁ qoḏesh – Strong’s H6944 – and it means ‘apartness/ consecrated/ dedicated/ that which is dedicated and separated unto יהוה’. The word is really self-explanatory and carries with it great weight in its identification of truly setting something or someone apart from another with a clear distinction of being marked as separate and apart from the rest. Set-apartness in the Greek is ἁγιασμός hagiasmos – Strong’s G38 – ‘consecration, sanctifying, purification’, and comes from the verb ἁγιάζω hagiazō – Strong’s G37 which means, ‘make set-apart, be set-apart, to separate from profane things and dedicate to Elohim’, which comes from the primitive root ἅγιος hagios – Strong’s G40 and its fundamental idea is one of ‘separation, consecration, and devotion to the service of Elohim’. I think we get the picture! To be set-apart means to be devoted and dedicated to serving Elohim and to do so involves the need to be separated from the profane or common, lest the mixing of the two hinders the ability to distinguish between the set-apart and the profane!
The desire of Elohim is our set-apartness:
Tas’loniqim Aleph/1 Thessalonians 4:3-7 “For this is the desire of Elohim: your set-apartness! – that you should abstain from whoring, 4 that each one of you should know how to possess his own vessel in set-apartness and respect, 5 not in passion of lust, like the gentiles who do not know Elohim, 6 not to overstep and take advantage of his brother in this matter, because the Master is the revenger of all such, as we indeed said to you before and earnestly warned. 7 For Elohim did not call us to uncleanness, but in set-apartness.”
How are you doing in possessing your own vessel, which is your body, in set-apartness? Have you truly separated yourself from the profane and common things or do you find the lines between the set-apart and profane being blurred by compromise and laziness!
Set-apartness certainly takes work, and when one is idle in duty then laziness leads to compromise and the inability to distinguish the difference between what is set-apart and what is common!
The first time we see this word קֹדֶשׁ qoḏesh – Strong’s H6944 being used is in:
Shemoth/Exodus 3:5 “And He said, “Do not come near here. Take your sandals off your feet, for the place on which you are standing is set-apart ground.”
This is the account of where יהוה appeared to Mosheh in a flame of fire from the midst of a bush. Mosheh sees a burning bush that is not being burnt up and turns aside to take a look and as he drew near he was commanded by Elohim to take off his sandals as the place he was now standing on was set-apart ground!
He was now in the presence of the Most-High and in ‘turning aside’ from the way of the world one must also recognise that one’s shoes or sandals can also represent one’s walk and so this commissioning of Mosheh to take off his sandals was a clear call to take off the ‘walk of the world’. This same command was given to Yehoshua:
Yehoshua/Joshua 5:15 “And the Captain of the host of יהוה said to Yehoshua, “Take your sandal off your foot, for the place where you stand is set-apart.” And Yehoshua did so.”
What we must also remember is that in the garments of the High Priest there are no ‘shoes’, and therefore the “shoes of peace” that Sha’ul speaks of in Eph’siyim/Ephesians speaks of walking in the shalom of the Besorah of Messiah and walking according to His commands and not being ‘strapped down’, so to speak, by the customs and traditions of the world! “Shoes fitted with the Good News” is a picture of being completely fitted with pure set-apart garments of Truth and Righteousness. “Feet” in the Hebraic mind-set refers to one’s walk and “feet fitted with the Good News of Peace” speaks of walking in the perfect commands of Elohim as we guard to keep all His Appointed Times, making sure that we do not have our feet soiled with man-made customs and corrupted designs for fleshly comfort, but rather that we have feet that are washed, set-apart and fitted with that which is from Elohim.
In the Tabernacle the priests did not have shoes or sandals and the bronze laver was used to wash their hands and feet before entering into the Set-Apart and Most Set-Apart Place! We know that the bronze laver is a clear picture of the Word of Elohim that washes us, as our Husband washes us through His Word and keeps us clean. This teaches us a vital lesson of how we are to allow the Word to wash us and keep us clean as we walk in complete set-apartness and not be found to be soiled by walking like the nations walk! How is your walk? Is your walk of set-apartness clearly identifiable from the rest of the world or do you blend in and follow in the common walk and ways of the rest of the world that do not serve Elohim?
As a called out, set-apart and royal priesthood, are you distinguishably different to the rest of the world that walks in common ways that profane our Master and Elohim, or do you find that you are conveniently blending in with the common ways of man and give in to compromise to the point where you are unable to actually distinguish the difference?
Are your hands lifted in set-apartness?
Timotiyos Aleph/1 timothy 2:8 “So I resolve that the men pray everywhere, lifting up hands that are set-apart, without wrath and disputing.”
The Greek word that is translated as ‘disputings’ comes from the root word διαλογισμός dialogismos – Strong’s G1261 which means, ‘reasonings, arguments, disputing, speculations’. The Greek word that is translated as ‘without’ comes from the word χωρίς chōris – Strong’s G5565 which means, ‘without, besides, independent, separate, apart’.
Pilipiyim/Philippians 2:14-15 “Do all matters without grumblings and disputings, 15 in order that you be blameless and faultless, children of Elohim without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world”
Sha’ul makes it clear here in his letter to the Philippians that we are to do ALL without grumbling or disputings!!!
Hands that are disputing the clear pattern of the Torah of Elohim are not hands that are being lifted in set-apartness but rather in defiance!
It takes endurance to lift up set-apart hands amidst the dark times! When we consider this image we are able to recognise the picture we have in Scripture through the actions of Mosheh, who held up his hands to Elohim while Yehoshua led Yisra’ěl in battle against Amalěq:
Shemoth/Exodus 17:10-16 “And Yehoshua did as Mosheh said to him, to fight with Amalěq. And Mosheh, Aharon, and Ḥur went up to the top of the hill. 11 And it came to be, when Mosheh held up his hand, that Yisra’ěl prevailed. And when he let down his hand, Amalěq prevailed. 12 But Mosheh’s hands were heavy, so they took a stone and put it under him, and he sat on it. And Aharon and Ḥur supported his hands, one on one side, and the other on the other side. And his hands were steady until the going down of the sun. 13 And Yehoshua defeated Amalěq and his people with the edge of the sword. 14 And יהוה said to Mosheh, “Write this for a remembrance in the book and recite it in the hearing of Yehoshua, that I shall completely blot out the remembrance of Amalěq from under the heavens.” 15 And Mosheh built a slaughter-place and called its name, יהוה Nissi, 16 for he said, “Because a hand is on the throne of Yah, יהוה is to fight against Amalěq, from generation to generation.”
As long as Mosheh held up his hands Yehoshua gained ground on the battlefield and was victorious, however when the hands of Mosheh grew tired, Yehoshua lost ground and so Aharon and Ḥur came and lifted up the hands of Mosheh all day and so spread his hands in support! It was at this event that Mosheh built an altar and called its name – יהוה נִסִּי – יהוה Nissi – Strong’s H3071, which means – יהוה our banner or – יהוה is my banner – a banner speaks of the one under whom you walk and serve and gives the imagery of raised worship.
This compound title is a construct of two words:
1) The Name of יהוה – Strong’s H3068
2) נֵס nes – Strong’s H5251 which means, ‘a standard, ensign, signal, sign, banner, distinguishing mark’, and is the word translated as ‘banner’ in:
Tehillah/Psalm 60:4 “You have given a banner to those who fear You, that it might be lifted up because of the truth. Selah.”
The events that took place here at Rephiḏim remind us how important it is for us to have hands that are lifted up in set-apartness, and by that, I mean hands that are working righteousness in accordance to the Word of Elohim, for then we are able to raise up a proper banner of praise unto our Master and Elohim, making known His Kingdom to all, for they shall be able to see under whose banner we march!
So many today claim to be servants of the Most-High Elohim yet their actions/works do not necessarily bear a proper witness of who our great Master and Elohim is! In all we do, whether in word or deed, we are to shine the light of the presence of our Master and Elohim, יהושע Messiah. Many are sadly rendering a vain lip service as their actions and words do not line up with the clear set-apartness that is called for. There are some who may claim that they are true worshippers and may even keep the Sabbaths and Feasts of Elohim yet the people they work with may not even know what they believe, as their hands are not being lifted in set-apartness at all times as they tend to conform to the pattern of the world rather than raising the banner of our Mighty King, calling many to come out and be separate!
How are your hands being raised?
Hear this urgent call for all the servants of יהוה to lift up their hands in set-apartness and bless Him at all times!
The night is far advanced and it is time to put of all works of darkness and be clothed in the armour of light, lifting up hands that raise a true banner of praise unto our Mighty Saviour and King who fights for us, giving us the full assurance that we can take a bold and firm stand in Him! This is a collective call for all servants as it can get tiring to keep your hands up all alone, just as Mosheh experienced it, and therefore we need each other to keep our hands lifted up and strong, so that the banner of praise for our Mighty Elohim is not dropped for a moment! This is a call for the Bride of Messiah to take Her stand! Will you hear this call to:
LIFT UP YOUR SET-APART HANDS!
While in the wilderness of Yehuḏah, Dawiḏ said the following:
Tehillah/Psalm63:4 “Therefore I bless You while I live; in Your Name I lift up my hands.”
LIFT UP YOUR SET-APART HANDS!
You will be blessed if your do, for יהוה, Maker of the heavens and earth, does bless 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!