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28th of the 3rd month 2022/2023.
Luqas/Luke 21:28 “And when these matters begin to take place, look up and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near.”
These were some of the words that our Master spoke to His taught ones, when He shared with them what would take place, before all shall see Him coming in a cloud, with power and much esteem. .
As one reads through Luqas/Luke 21, Mattithyahu/Matthew 24 and Marqos/Mark 13, in regards to what will take place before our Master returns, we can certainly see how much of what our Master describes, in these chapters, is already clearly evident in these last days, and He tells us that when we see these things, that we are to see to it that we are not troubled by these things that have to take place and that we must possess our lives by endurance.
Here in the account of Luqas/Luke, we take note that our Master tells us that when these matters begin to take place, that we are to ‘look up’ and lift up our heads!.
In a brief message called, ‘LOOK UP, LOOK IN… and LOOKOUT! WE ARE CREATED TO WORSHIP!’ I want us to be encouraged to be keeping our eyes fixed on the Prince and Perfecter of our belief, as we faithfully possess our lives by endurance. .
In this message, we will take a closer look at Yeshayahu/Isaiah 6, as well as Ḥazon/Revelation 4 & 5, in order to glean some powerful insight and illustration of our need to ‘look up, in and out’, as I find it a very fitting passage in terms of our Master’s call, to look up, amidst a time where depravity and lawlessness is increasing, at a rapid rate, on a daily basis..
Before we look at Yeshayahu/Isaiah 6, I first want us to take a look at the Greek word that is used here in Luqas/Luke 21:28 and translated as ‘look up’, which is the root word ἀνακύπτω anakuptō – Strong’s G352 which means, ‘straighten up, stand upright, lift oneself up, look up (as a person in hope)’.
The call of our Master here is clear – straighten up and hold fast to the hope we have in Him and stand upright and firm in the belief!
This is also a kind of a military type instruction that is given by our Commander to us, His troops, with the call to lift ourselves up from any despair and stand upright, being ready and armed in His Truth.
We can only do this if our eyes are fixed on Him!
Iḇ’rim/Hebrews 12:1-2 “We too, then, having so great a cloud of witnesses all around us, let us lay aside every weight and the sin which so easily entangles us, and let us run with endurance the race set before us, 2 looking 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.”
The Greek word that is translated here as ‘looking’ is ἀφοράω – aphorao – Strong’s G872 which means ‘to look/ to turn eyes away from all other things and fix them on something’.
Metaphorically speaking, it means ‘to fix the mind upon/ give full attention/ looking intently upon/ to take heed’, and it can also carry the meaning, ‘to consider carefully, attentively look at’.
This word 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) the word 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’..
The two words that are used here for our Messiah, are the following:
1) PRINCE – this is from the Greek word ἀρχηγός – archēgos – Strong’s G747 which means, ‘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’.
2) PERFECTER – this is from the Greek word τελειωτής – teleiōtēs – Strong’s G5051 – this is the only place in Scripture that this Greek word is found 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..
We are told to be ‘looking’ to Messiah – and what 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, by 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 come as a result of trying to be set-apart 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?.
We are to look to Messiah and careful consider our ways; and we are, at the same time, to make sure that our eyes are not looking elsewhere, as we ‘take heed’ of the dangers of the corrupt teachings of man-made dogmas and traditions that lead people astray.
If we are not looking to our Master, Saviour, Elohim and King then our eyes may be dangerously looking at that which cannot save us!
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 31:1 “Woe to those who go down to Mitsrayim for help, and rely on horses, who trust in chariots because they are many, and in horsemen because they are very strong, but who do not look to the Set-apart One of Yisra’ĕl, nor seek יהוה!”
This is a severe woe that is given to those who are not looking to יהוה, the Set-Apart One of Yisra’ĕl!.
The prophet Miḵah prophesied about 20 years prior to the House of Yisra’ĕl’s divorce and he prophesied from the southern kingdom of Yehuḏah, in the face of the northern kingdom’s impending dispersion.
Despite the clear depravity and corrupt worship practices that were taking place this prophet made it clear who he looked to:
Miḵah/Micah 7:7 “As for me, I look to יהוה, I wait for the Elohim of my deliverance, my Elohim does hear me.”
The Hebrew word that is translated here in Miḵah/Micah 7:7 as ‘look’ is the primitive root verb צָפָה tsaphah – Strong’s H6822 which means, ‘to look out, watchman, keep watch’.
This prophet made it clear where His eyes were looking and in doing so recognises his need to be a true watchman of יהוה, hence his urgency in speaking the Truth!.
Yehuḏah/Jude 1:20-21 “But you, beloved ones, building yourselves up on your most set-apart belief, praying in the Set-apart Spirit, 21 keep yourselves in the love of Elohim, looking for the compassion of our Master יהושע Messiah unto everlasting life.”
The Greek word that is translated here as ‘looking’ is προσδέχομαι prosdechomai – Strong’s G4327 which means, ‘look for, wait for, expect: the fulfilment of promises’ and is constructed from two words:
1) – πρός pros – Strong’s G4314 which is a primary preposition meaning, ‘advantageous for, at (denotes local proximity), toward (denotes motion toward a place)’, and
2) – δέχομαι dechomai – Strong’s G1209 which means, ‘to receive, accept, welcomed’.
This word προσδέχομαι prosdechomai can be understood as ‘going toward that which is to be received and welcomed’, and is used in:
Titos/Titus 2:11-14 “For the saving Gift of Elohim has appeared to all men, 12 instructing us to renounce wickedness and worldly lusts, and to live sensibly, righteously, and reverently in the present age, 13 looking for the blessed expectation and esteemed appearance of the great Elohim and our Saviour יהושע Messiah, 14 who gave Himself for us, to redeem us from all lawlessness and to cleanse for Himself a people, His own possession, ardent for good works.”
How do we ‘wait expectantly’?
By renouncing wickedness and worldly lusts and live set-apart lives in complete reverence of Elohim, for we recognise that Messiah has redeemed us from all lawlessness!
We wait expectantly…. by guarding His laws!!!.
As we consider our need to be looking to our Master’s esteemed appearance and His compassion, we must recognise the urgency in our need to be diligent in keeping our eyes on Him and not be led astray by things that can cause us to lose sight or focus of walking in and staying in Him and living set-apart lives in complete reverence before our Mighty Elohim and King!.
With that in mind I would like us to look at the experience that Yeshayahu had, when he ‘looked up’ and saw the Master’s esteem! .
please read Yeshayahu/Isaiah 6 .
In the first verse, we take note that Yeshayahu looked up and saw the esteem of יהוה, in the year that the Uzziyahu, the king of Yehuḏah, had died.
I find the introduction of these events that took place, very fitting, in teaching us a great lesson on how we are to look up to our Master, who is seated in the heavens! .
The Hebrew name עֻזִּיָּהוּ Uzziyahu –Strong’s H5818 means ‘my strength is Yah’ or ‘Yah is my strength’.
Uzziyahu was certainly one of the most successful, and powerful, kings in Yehuḏah’s history and his reign lasted 52 years and had started out very well as he humbly recognised that he could do nothing without יהוה. .
Sadly though, we take note that once he had experienced success, he forgot that it was יהוה who had helped him and strengthened him and he then became very proud and ignored the instructions of יהוה and even went into the Hěḵal of יהוה to burn incense, which he was not allowed to do, because he was not a priest.
He was chased out by Azaryahu and 80 other priests, which made Uzziyahu mad and he immediately became leprous and remained a leper until he died. .
What we can see, from the first 5 chapters of Yeshayahu/Isaiah, is that Yisra’ĕl and Yehuḏah had become extremely leprous, so to speak, as the apostasy and depravity of the people was clearly evident and Yeshayahu was called to speak up against the rebellion and lawlessness that was happening. .
With this account in Chapter 6, happening in the year that Uzziyahu had died, we take note that, in many ways, the strength of the people had died too, or rather, that the people were not being strengthened by יהוה, as worship had become so corrupt that it did not bring esteem to יהוה at all.
Yeshayahu certainly felt the frustrations, of people not listening to the call to repent and get cleaned up, and at a time when there may have seemed to be no strength left in Yisra’ĕl and Yehuḏah, this prophet is given a clear opening of his sight, to see יהוה enthroned in His Hěḵal!.
A once great king may have died and had left his throne on earth, yet Yeshayahu looked up and saw the King of kings, seated on His throne in the Heavenly Temple!
What a magnificent sight this must have been for this courageous prophet, who was called to speak to an apostate Bride. .
When he looked up, who did he see?
He saw יהוה seated on His throne!!!
Yoḥanan/John 12:41 “Yeshayahu said this when he saw His esteem and spoke of Him.”.
What did Yeshayahu say, when he saw the esteem of יהוה?
In Yoḥanan/John 12 our Master tells us, in verse 38, that Yeshayahu said,
“יהוה, who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of יהוה been revealed?”
And then again in verse 40, our Master tells us that Yeshayahu said:
“He has blinded their eyes and hardened their heart, so that they should not see with their eyes and understand with their heart, and turn, and I should heal them.”.
The people, to whom the arm of יהוה had not been revealed, due to apostasy, remained veiled and hardened, and were unable to see, and understand, who יהוה is!.
Yeshayahu saw the arm of יהוה!
He saw the esteem of יהוה!
He saw יהושע Messiah seated on the throne!
He saw our Mighty King and Saviour, and his eyes had been opened to see our Master and Elohim. .
Many people today, still have a veil over their eyes and have hardened hearts, as they fail to acknowledge that יהושע Messiah is Master and Elohim and that He is seated on the throne as King, while at the same time, He is before the throne and interceding for us, as High Priest!....
Sha’ul tells us in:
Qorintiyim Bět/2 Corinthians 3:15-18 “But to this day, when Mosheh is being read, a veil lies on their heart. 16 And when one turns to the Master, the veil is taken away. 17 Now יהוה is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of יהוה is, there is freedom. 18 And we all, as with unveiled face we see as in a mirror the esteem of יהוה, are being transformed into the same likeness from esteem to esteem, as from יהוה, the Spirit.”
This text is so true for so many people today, who may even be going through the weekly Torah readings and deny that יהושע is יהוה our Saviour who came in the flesh, as their eyes and hearts remains veiled, when looking into the mirror of the Word, that clearly reveals to us the powerful revelation of how יהושע our Saviour is our only One True Master and Elohim!.
Yeshayahu ‘looked up’ and saw יהוה our Saviour!
Can you picture the scene for a moment!
As one reads the first 5 chapters of Yeshayahu/Isaiah, things do not look good at all, as I have already mentioned, and this unique moment, where this prophet is given the opportunity at seeing יהוה seated on His Throne, was certainly a very extraordinary and powerful moment!
A prophet, who, by all accounts, only had ears and eyes for the Word of Elohim, now had a clear revelation of Elohim!.
Yeshayahu saw the Arm of יהוה seated on the Throne!
In a manner of speaking, he saw the Hand of יהוה that is on the Throne, giving us a reminder of the assurance that, because a hand is on the throne of Yah, יהוה is to fight against Amalěq, from generation to generation – the very words that Mosheh said after he built a slaughter-place to יהוה and called it יהוה Nissi, after Yehoshua had defeated Amalěq in the valley of Rephiḏim (Shemoth/Exodus 17)..
The picture of a hand on the throne of Yah, highlights a secure sovereignty of our Master and the assurance that we have a Mighty Elohim and King of Hosts, who fights for us and defeats our enemies!
Amidst a depraved time, in Yisra’ĕl’s history, Yeshayahu would be greatly comforted by this revelation and vision he was given, having the assurance and hope being made abundantly clear that the rulership of יהוה is intact and everlasting, ready to destroy the enemies of His throne! He saw the Word of Elohim, seated on the Throne!.
When you look intently into the Word, who do you see?
Especially as we consider the times that we are living in, when it seems as though the strength of so many is being diminished by the chaos of this world? .
‘LOOKING UP’, can be a metaphor, or picture, of having a proper expectation and longing for our Master and Elohim, accompanied by the proper belief that works out one’s deliverance, with fear and trembling.
It can also represent for us a picture of humility and a proper submission, as we look up to our Master and Elohim for direction and protection! .
The opposite of looking up, is ‘LOOKING DOWN’!
The question I ask is simply this, ‘Are you looking up or looking down?
‘LOOKING DOWN’, can be a metaphor for depression and anxiety, where one’s eyes are drooped down, without any expectation or hope, and it can also picture for us pride, in the sense of when someone ‘looks down’ on another, without showing a proper respect or regard for them!
Have you ever had someone ask you, ‘why are you looking down?’? .
LOOKING DOWN, in that sense, can picture for us a loss of hope and a position of being anxious and afraid and having no help, or rather, not finding help and feeling hopeless and in despair.
When we are ‘looking up’, on the other hand, we are exercising true faith and seeking our Master and Elohim as we seek first His Reign and His righteousness, amidst what may certainly be desperate and worrisome times, where the strength of so many has failed!.
Tehillah/Psalm 121:1 “I lift up my eyes to the hills; where does my help come from?”
Tehillah/Psalm 123:1 “I shall lift up my eyes unto You who dwell in the heavens.”
In both of these Psalms, we see the psalmist making it abundantly clear where and who His eyes were being fixed upon!
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘lift up comes from the root verb נָשָׂא nasa – Strong’s H5375 which means ‘lift up, carry, take up, exalt, and accept’.
This word, we also see being used, in describing Dawiḏ’s ability of lifting up his being to יהוה:
Tehillah/Psalm 25:1 “A psalm of Dawiḏ. To You, O יהוה, I lift up my being.”
The Hebrew word translated as ‘being’ is נֶפֶשׁ nephesh – Strong’s H5315 which is ‘a soul, a living being, the inner being of a man’.
The clear image we are given here, is that Dawiḏ lifted up his whole being unto Elohim, revealing that he was intentionally turning his thoughts, emotions, desires, cares, anxieties, doubts and fears over to יהוה, by ‘looking up’ and fixing his eyes on יהוה and the Truth of His Word!
Despite the torrid threats and the intense dangers that Dawiḏ faced, he focused his attention on seeking and praising the Most–High, יהוה of Hosts!
When you are going through some rough times, do you find yourself intentionally seeking יהוה and earnestly give Him the due praise, or do you find that your eyes are so fixed on the distress and difficult circumstances you might be going through, that you become so blinded by pressures that you fail to see the Truth and stand firm in our Mighty Elohim and Saviour?.
When you look around at the depravity and corruption of the world, which we are to be faithful sojourners in, are you looking up and fixing your eyes upon our Master and Elohim or are you falling prey to the panic of increasing conspiracies and threats that are crippling the belief of many?.
When Yeshayahu LOOKED UP, and saw יהוה, he also saw the seraphim that stood above the throne.
The Hebrew word שְׂרָפִים seraphim is the plural of the word שָׂרָף saraph – Strong’s H8314 which means, ‘fiery, fiery serpent’, and comes from the root word שָׂרַף seraph – Strong’s H8313 which means, ‘to burn, burn up completely’.
The vision of these ‘burning, fiery’ creatures, relates a clear picture of the consuming set-apartness of Elohim, as they continue to cry out:
Yeshayahu/Isaiah 6:2 “And one cried to another and said, ‘Set-apart, set-apart, set-apart is יהוה of hosts; all the earth is filled with His esteem!”.
We see a similar picture being given to us, with the vision that Yoḥanan had, as seen in:
Ḥazon/Revelation 4:8 “And the four living creatures, each having six wings, were covered with eyes around and within. And they do not cease, day or night, saying, “Set-apart, set-apart, set-apart, יהוה Ěl Shaddai, who was, and who is, and who is coming!”
At the sound of the declaration, of the set-apartness of יהוה Ěl Shaddai, there was a great shaking and the House was filled with smoke and the declaration that was made clear, is that the earth is filled with the esteem of Elohim!.
I would like to expand a little on Ḥazon/Revelation 4 & 5, in terms of that which Yoḥanan saw, in the revelation/vision he was given, as we can be greatly encouraged by this too, when considering both of these accounts that Yeshayahu and Yoḥanan had.
Many people, for some strange reason, don’t like to read Ḥazon/Revelation, which is totally crazy, as I want to tell you that this book is amazing, and is written as an encouragement to the set-apart ones of Elohim, while giving us a clear revelation of our Mighty Redeemer, Master and Elohim, יהושע Messiah, who is to be worshipped in spirit and truth!.
Read Ḥazon/Revelation 4-5
These two chapters of Ḥazon/Revelation 4-5 deal primarily with worship, and so, I would like us to take a brief glimpse at what Yoḥanan was shown in the Spirit.
True spiritual worship is one of the greatest needs in our lives, as individuals and as an assembly together; and we find today, that a lot of emphasis is placed on witnessing for Messiah and working for Messiah, which is of vital importance; but little emphasis is placed on worshipping Messiah. .
Now, to “worship” means “to ascribe worth”.
It means to use all that we have, and are, to praise Elohim for all that He is and does. .
We will worship Him forever and ever, and therefore, it makes clear sense that I ought to do what I am made to do, and that is worship our Creator and Redeemer, right here, right now on a continual basis! .
Ḥazon/Revelation 4 and 5 helps us better understand the ‘how’ and ‘why’ we worship Elohim, and give Him all the esteem He is due.
Here, Yoḥanan is given a glimpse, or a taste if you will, of the purity of praise that takes place, day and night, before the throne of our Master, reminding us that our praise should never cease, as we offer up our bodies as a living sacrifice, day and night!.
You will notice, that these events take place after the messages were given to the 7 assemblies, as he says, “After this…”.
It was after he had heard the clear messages of encouragement, rebuke and reproof, being given, that Yoḥanan is taken up into the heavens, in order to see, what is possibly the most amazing site anyone could ever see, and that was the brilliance of this worship that shall happen before Elohim and the splendour of this imagery, causes us to recognise the joy we are able to share, in understanding the clear and great revelation of who it is that we are to worship, in spirit and truth. .
Yoḥanan’s vision allowed him to give us a picture of the esteem of the presence of יהוה our Elohim, together with a picture of the amazing sound of praise that he had heard.
We can learn a great deal from these chapters, as we are presented with two aspects of worship, clearly given to us for our instruction and imitation. .
Let us therefore, take a look at these two aspects of the purity of worship that Yoḥanan saw in the heaven, before the One who sat on the throne: .
In Chapter 4, we are able to see the theme of a worship unto Elohim, our Creator; and this progresses in revelation, as we go into Chapter 5, where we see the clear theme of the worship that is being given, is unto Elohim, our Redeemer. ..
The worship that is being given to our Creator and Redeemer, is what is being revealed before us here, in these two chapters and in this truly amazing description, of this heavenly scene of praise, we are able to grasp the reality, of our need to be continually worshipping our Might Creator and Redeemer, יהושע Messiah, having our eyes fixed on Him, The prince and Perfecter of our belief!.
ḤAZON/REVELATION 4 –
WE WORSHIP THE CREATOR WHO SITS ON THE THRONE!
In these two chapters of Ḥazon/Revelation, the Greek word that is translated as ‘throne’ is θρόνος thronos – Strong’s G2362 which means, ‘throne, seat’, and speaks of the position of royalty and kingly power, and is primarily used in referring to the seat of Authority of Elohim.
This word is used 61 times in the Renewed Writings (N.T.), while in Ḥazon/Revelation it is used 46 times, and here, in these two chapters, it is used 19 times.
This therefore, clearly shows us the emphasis, or theme, of these 2 chapters, in revealing to us the One who is seated on the highest seat of Authority that is over all creation! .
The emphases on the throne, declares to us that no matter what happens on earth, Elohim is on His throne and is in complete control!
This we are to be constantly reminded of, in order to gain the proper perspective of recognising the One who we are to be looking to and giving proper thanks and praise, in all!.
In this powerful book of the revelation of Messiah, Yoḥanan emphasises the esteem and sovereignty of the One who sits on the Throne, which was a great encouragement to those who were suffering and being persecuted for righteousness’s sake, in Yoḥanan’s day, and these words are still very much alive and are a great encouragement for us today!
This book was written to encourage us in the Master.
As we look at the throne, as a central key aspect, in chapter 4, it will help us to understand the wonderful arrangement of this section. .
Let us therefore look at 6 aspects of the throne, being described here:.
1 – Who is on the Throne?
Almighty Elohim (verses 2-3)
The first voice that Yoḥanan heard, was like a trumpet speaking to him, and this can also remind us of Yom Teruah, which will be the sound of the awakening blast of what is to come, and Yoḥanan is then taken forward in time, to be shown what will take place after the trumpet blast!
While there may not be sufficient words to describe the splendour and majesty of what Yoḥanan saw, he tells us very clearly that he saw a throne (1 throne) and One, who sat of the throne!
This is very important to understand, in terms of the revelation of Messiah, as we take note that Elohim is One and there is One throne – not 2 or three, but One… and there is only One who sits on the Throne!.
There is no possible way for human words to fully describe what Elohim is like, in His essence. Yoḥanan however, uses some amazing words to describe Elohim’s completeness.
He describes the One who sat on the throne, as being like a jasper and ruby in appearance..
The Greek word that is translated as ‘jasper’ is ἴασπις iaspis – Strong’s G2393, and is a precious stone of various colours, and is a clear translucent gem, which pictures for us something that is clear and free from disguise or falseness!
This stone is described in Ḥazon/Rev 21:11 as being as clear as crystal!
The appearance that Yoḥanan was seeing was clear and crystal!!! .
The Greek word translated as ‘ruby’ is σάρδιον sardion/sardius – Strong’s G4556 which is red or ruby colour.
Amazingly, these two stones were the first and last of the twelve stones on the breastplate of the high priest, as described in Shemoth/Exodus 28:17-21. .
The first stone represented the tribe of Re’uḇĕn, the first born and, in Hebrew, is the word אֹדֶם oḏem – Strong’s H124 which comes from the word אָדֹם aḏom – Strong’s H119 which means, ‘to be red, ruddy’, from which we get the name אָדָם aḏam – Strong’s H120 which means, ‘man, mankind, human, person’. .
The last stone on the Breastplate of the High Priest, which represented Binyamin, was a ‘jasper’ stone, which in the Hebrew, is the word יָֽשְׁפֶה yashepheh – Strong’s H3471. .
Even the breastplate of the high priest represented Elohim Almighty, for He is the first and the last, the Aleph and Taw.
What is interesting to take note of here, is the change of order of these stones!
On the Breastplate, the first and last would be represented by the ruby and jasper, while here, in Ḥazon, Yoḥanan describes the One who is seated on the throne, as having the appearance of a jasper and ruby. .
Re’uḇĕn who was the first born and lost his first-born status because he defiled his father’s bed, can also represent for us the first Aḏam who sinned, as represented by the ruby stone.
By the redeeming work of Messiah, the last Aḏam, who became the life-giving spirit, is now being described here by Yoḥanan as being a jasper first and then a ruby, which pictures for us the complete work of redemption, having been done by the blood of Messiah.
In other words, the One who Yoḥanan saw seated on the throne, is our Master and Elohim, יהושע Messiah, the Aleph and the Taw!
The Greek word that is translated as ‘appearance’ is ὅρασις horasis – Strong’s G3706 which means, ‘vision, sight, act of seeing, appearance or visible form’!!!
Can you grasp what Yoḥanan saw?
He saw the visible appearance of our Master and Elohim – and it was יהושע Messiah!.
2 – AROUND THE THRONE
A RAINBOW (verse 3)
This rainbow was not an arc, as we have been accustomed to seeing, but was a full completed circle, that encircled the throne; for herein, we see the complete picture of the completed covenant that יהוה made with all creation! .
The rainbow reminds us of Elohim’s covenant with Noaḥ; His covenant was not just with Noaḥ, but with all creation. .
Berěshith/Genesis 9:13-17 “I shall set My rainbow in the cloud, and it shall be for the sign of the covenant between Me and the earth. 14 And it shall be, when I bring a cloud over the earth, that the rainbow shall be seen in the cloud, 15 and I shall remember My covenant which is between Me and you and every living being of all flesh, and never again let the waters become a flood to destroy all flesh. 16 And the rainbow shall be in the cloud, and I shall see it, to remember the everlasting covenant between Elohim and every living being of all flesh that is on the earth.” 17 And Elohim said to Noaḥ, “This is the sign of the covenant which I have established between Me and all flesh that is on the earth.””
The Hebrew root word used here for ‘rainbow’ is קֶשֶׁת qesheth – Strong’s H7198 which means, ‘bow, archer, arrows’ and comes from the primitive root קָשָׁה qashah – Strong’s H7185 which means, ‘to be hard, severe or fierce, stiffened’ in the original sense of the primitive root word קוּשׁ qosh – Strong’s H6983 meaning, ‘to lay bait, ensnare’. .
The Hebrew word that is translated here as ‘set’ is נָתַתִּי nathati, which comes from the root word נָתַן Nathan – Strong’s H5414 and is written in the ‘qal active’ tense, which can render the meaning of, ‘to give, put, set, ascribe, entrust, give over, deliver up, constitute’. .
From this understanding, we see a wonderful picture of the great mercy of יהוה, who has basically ‘put’ His fierce and severe arrow in the cloud; and so, we need to realise that Noaḥ and his sons had never seen a rain cloud that did not bring destruction and here, by the sign of His bow being set in the clouds to never bring destruction upon the earth in that way again, was a powerful picture of His mercy toward His faithful remnant seed, in that His mighty bow will not strike them.
The rainbow would forever be a sign for us, that His mercy endures forever and we who follow after Him and walk in Messiah need never fear His bow or arrow that has been drawn for those appointed for destruction:
Tehillah/Psalm 7:12-13 “If one does not repent! He sharpens His sword, He bends His bow and makes it ready, 13 And He has prepared for Himself instruments of death, He makes His arrows hot for pursuers.”.
The sign He has set in the heavens is therefore a two-fold sign – it is a witness of His loving-commitment toward the righteous who are hidden from His wrath, while at the same time a witness and warning against the wicked – that His bow is ready for the day of His wrath!
It is also a great sign for us who are ‘in’ Messiah that no matter how big or strong the bow of the enemy may seem, and no matter how many arrows the enemy tries to shoot at us – the enemies bow and arrows cannot match that of our Supreme Master and King – יהוה of Hosts!.
The rainbow is also there as a remembrance to יהוה Himself, of His covenant never to destroy all flesh again!
Listen, if יהוה drew an arrow back in His bow toward the earth, it would be doomed and so, He set it in the heavens to remind us, and Himself, of His Covenant and He never breaks Covenant!
Clouds are often spoken of in Scripture as the symbol of the presence of יהוה and His care and protection over His people, and therefore this ‘bow’ in the clouds is a sign of that protection!.
Yeḥezqěl speaks of this ‘presence of יהוה’ that he saw in the visions of Elohim:
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 1:28 “As the appearance of a rainbow in a cloud on a rainy day, so was the appearance of the brightness all around it. This was the appearance of the likeness of the esteem of יהוה. And when I saw it, I fell on my face, and I heard a voice of One speaking.”.
Next time you see a rainbow in the sky, be reminded of the Everlasting Covenant Promise of salvation between יהוה and Yisra’ĕl!.
3 – AROUND THE THRONE –
ELDERS AND LIVING CREATURES (verses 3-4, 6-7)
This powerful picture of the 24 elders, who sat around the throne, is a very comforting and intriguing vision, as it can represent for us the purity of appointed worship before the Creator and Redeemer.
In many ways, this number of 24 can represent for us the completeness of the Body of Messiah, as pictured by the 12 tribes of Yisra’ĕl, as well as the 12 Emissaries/Apostles.
In Dani’ěl we are able to read about his vision, where the thrones were empty, or rather, they were being set up:
Dani’ěl/Daniel 7:9 “I was looking until thrones were set up, and the Ancient of Days was seated. His garment was white as snow, and the hair of His head was like clean wool, His throne was flames of fire, its wheels burning fire.”
And now here, in Ḥazon/Revelation, we are told that Yoḥanan sees them filled, representing an authority that had now firmly been set up and established to rule and reign all of creation, under the Headship of the One who sits on the Throne!
I also see another powerful picture being represented here, in this number of 24 elders that were seated around the throne.
We are able to get a glimpse or shadow picture of this magnificent scene of worship, by what we see when Dawiḏ divided and appointed to service of the priesthood, for coming into the House of יהוה, as seen in Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 24. .
In this chapter 24 of Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles, we are given the allotted appointments that were divided into 24 divisions of service, and when one looks at these 24 names, we are able to glean some great revelation of the mighty work of our Creator and Redeemer, our Beloved King, יהושע Messiah.
I would briefly like to run through these names, and then you will understand why, I can see a parallel between this passage and the picture of pure worship that Yoḥanan saw.
Please note that I am not saying that these 24 appointed ones of Dawiḏ were the ones that Yoḥanan saw, but rather, I am simply highlighting the clear image and representation of the fullness of worship that is ascribed and appointed unto our Great and Mighty Elohim and Redeemer!.
24 names of the division of the sons of Aharon in Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 24:7-18:
1 – יְהוֹיָרִיב Yehoyariḇ – Strong’s H3080 which means, ‘יהוה contends, strives’
2 – יְדַעְיָה Yeḏayah – Strong’s H3048 which means, ‘יהוה has known’
3 – חָרִם Ḥarim – Strong’s H2766 which means, ‘dedicated’
4 – שְׂעֹרִים Se’orim – Strong’s H8188 which means, ‘barley’
5 – מַלְכִּיָּה Malkiyyah – Strong’s H4441 which means, ‘my king is יהוה’
6 – מִיָּמִן Miyyamin – Strong’s H4326 which means, ‘from the right hand’
7 – הַקּוֹץ Haqqots – Strong’s H6976 which means, ‘the thorn’
8 – אֲבִיָּה Aḇiyah – Strong’s H29 which means, ‘Yah is my father’
9 – יֵשׁוּעַ Yĕshua –Strong’s H3442 which means, ‘saved, deliverance’
10 – שְׁכַנְיָה Sheḵanyah – Strong’s H7935 which means, ‘dweller with Yah, Yah has taken up His dwelling’
11 – אֶלְיָשִׁיב Elyashiḇ – Strong’s H475 which means, ‘El restores’
12 – יָקִים Yaqim – Strong’s H3356 which means, ‘He will raise’
13 – חֻפָּה Ḥuppah – Strong’s H2647 which means, ‘canopy’
14 – יֶֽשֶׁבְאָב Yesheḇaḇ – Strong’s H3428 which means, ‘dwelling of the father’
15 – בִּלְגָּה Bilgah – Strong’s H1083 which means, ‘cheerfulness, with a smile’
16 – אִמֵּר Immĕr – Strong’s H564 which means, ‘he has said’
17 – חֵזִיר Ḥĕzir – Strong’s H2387 which means, ‘swine’
18 – הַפִּצֵּץ Happitstsĕts – Strong’s H6483 which means, ‘to break, that is broken or shattered’
19 – פְּתַחְיָה Pethaḥyah – Strong’s H6611 which means, ‘freed by Yah’
20 – יְחֶזְקֵאל Yeḥezqěl – Strong’s H3618 which means, ‘El strengthens’
21 – יָכִין Yaḵin – Strong’s H3199 which means, ‘He will establish’
22 – גָּמוּל Gamul – Strong’s H1577 which means, ‘weaned’
23 – דְּלָיָהוּ Delayahu – Strong’s H1806 which means, ‘Yah has drawn’
24 – מַעַזְיָה Maʽazyah – Strong’s H4590 which means, consolation of יהוה’.
As we consider these names, as representing the priesthood who were appointed to the office in their service for coming into the House of יהוה, and recognising that we enter into His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise, we are able to see the fullness of the purity of worship being given to the Creator and Redeemer, who sits on the Throne! .
As we consider the order of these names, and relate their meanings, we are able to also identify the work of Messiah, which causes us to realise the due praise that we are to bring unto Him, as a royal and set-apart priesthood, that has been given access, by His Blood, to come to the throne of favour!!!.
The 24 names could render for us the following:
It is יהוה who contends, strives or fights for us, for יהוה has known, and has dedicated the barley, by which we can declare that ‘my King is יהוה’, who, from the Right Hand, took the thorn, for Yah is our Father who saves and delivers those who dwell, and remain in Him. Elohim restores and He will raise a canopy, a dwelling of the Father, with great cheerfulness. He has said that the swine shall be broken and shattered; and those who are freed by יהוה, Elohim strengthens, for He will establish the weaned ones that יהוה has drawn unto Himself, for this is the consolation and comfort of יהוה for His appointed priesthood!.
While being dead in our trespasses, we were made alive in Messiah, and it is by favour that we have been delivered and have been raised up and made to sit together in the heavenlies, in Messiah, unto whom we give all praise and esteem, forever and ever! (Eph’siyim/Ephesians 2).
These image of the 24 elders around the throne, also gives us 3 significant pictures that represent us as Elohim’s chosen and elect priesthood:
1) They were seated
This speaks of an entering into His rest and being content and completely satisfied in Him!
And we continue to enter Elohim’s rest, as symbolised by our proper guarding of the Sabbath, each and every week, as we work out His completed work in us and are able to diligently walk as joyful overcomers that are victorious in Messiah, having been seated, with Him, in heavenly places!.
2) They were dressed in white robes
We know that Scripture is very clear on the white robes representing righteousness, which is our continued obedience to the guarding of His commands – for we have become the righteousness of Elohim in Messiah, and we are therefore required to keep our garments clean as we worship Him in Spirit and Truth!.
The Greek word that is translated as ‘dressed’ here in Ḥazon/Revelation 4:4 is περιβάλλω periballō – Strong’s G4016 which means, ‘put on, clothe, wrap around, throw around’, and this word is also translated as ‘dressed’ in the following verses:
Ḥazon/Revelation 3:5 “He who overcomes shall be dressed in white robes, and I shall by no means blot out his name from the Book of Life, but I shall confess his name before My Father and before His messengers.”
This was to the assembly in Sardis, who were told to ‘wake up and repent’..
Ḥazon/Revelation 7:9 “After this I looked and saw a great crowd which no one was able to count, out of all nations and tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, dressed in white robes, and palm branches in their hands”.
Ḥazon/Revelation 19:8 “And to her it was given to be dressed in fine linen, clean and bright, for the fine linen is the righteousnesses of the set-apart ones.”.
In speaking of a wife/bride of noble character, in Mishlĕ/Proverbs 31, we are told in verse 22 how she is dressed:
Mishlĕ/Proverbs 31:22 “She shall make tapestry for herself; she is dressed in fine linen and purple.”
The Hebrew word used here for ‘dressed’ is לְבוּשׁ leḇush – Strong’s H3830 which means, ‘garment, clothing, apparel, raiment, put on’ and the Hebrew word used here for ‘fine linen’ is שֵׁשׁ shesh – Strong’s H8336
The Greek word that is used in the LXX (Septuagint) for ‘fine linen’ is the noun βύσσος bussos – Strong’s G1040 and from this word we get the adjective βύσσινος bussinos – Strong’s G1039 which is used in reference to the ‘fine linen’ that the Bride of the Lamb is given to be dressed in..
The Hebrew root word לָבַשׁ laḇash – Strong’s H3847 and its derivatives show three levels of usage in Scripture: 1) being clothed, 2) being clothed as a sign of rank, status, or character, and 3) as poetic figures likening abstract qualities to clothing.
In addition to putting on clothes we also take note that the clothes that a person puts on may reveal something about the wearer.
He has clothed us in righteousness and as we stay in Him, we are equipped to walk in the authority of His Word and guard righteousness as we do all He commands!.
In the ancient pictographic text this word לְבוּשׁ leḇush – Strong’s H3830 which means, ‘garment, clothing, apparel, raiment, put on’ looks like this:.
Lamed – לְ:
The ancient script has this letter as , and is pictured as a ‘shepherd’s staff’, can give the meaning of ‘to or toward’ and can represent that which pushes or pulls a flock in a direction, and can speak of authority or a yoke that is used to lead and guide, as well as the ability to bring back by Authority..
Bet – ב:
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..
Waw/Vav – וּ:
The ancient script has this letter pictured as , which is a ‘peg or tent peg’, which was used for securing or tying the tent or other items. The possibility of it having a Y-shape is to show that it prevents the rope from slipping off. The root meaning of this letter is ‘to add, secure or hook’.
Shin – שׁ:
This is the letter ‘sin/shin’ which in the ancient script is pictured as: , which is ‘two front teeth’ and carries the meaning of ‘sharp or press, chew or devour’; which is what the teeth do, and also speaks of the sharpened word that comes forth from the mouth, as the teeth ‘chew’ or ‘meditate’ on the Truth, making what comes forth pure and sharp! It also carries the understanding of consuming or destroying – as teeth do to food. This can give us the meaning of WORD or Words..
As one looks at this pictographic rendering of this word לְבוּשׁ leḇush – Strong’s H3830, when speaking of the garments of righteousness that we have been clothed in through the Blood of the Lamb, we take note of the following meaning:.
THE AUTHORITY OF THE HOUSE
IS MADE SECURE IN THE WORD.
What this clearly shows us, is that to be properly clothed in Truth, we must guard the Word and submit to the authority of our Master and Elohim, for He has given us all we need to sustain us and be built up in Him, as His House, which He has secured in His own Blood. .
We must make sure that we do not defile the garments that The Lamb has provided us with, as we guard the rules of the House by guarding His Torah and commands!.
3) They wore crowns
This speaks of ruling and reigning, with our King! We are a royal priesthood that shall rule and reign with Messiah, for which we are now trustworthy ambassadors of, as we are to be proclaiming the coming reign, and living according to that reign in our individual lives, as a pure fragrance of a sweet continual offering of our bodies as a living sacrifice. .
For the faithful, there remains the reward of receiving this crown (fullness) of righteousness, in the Master, when our deliverance is made complete at His return!
Timotiyos Bet/2 Timothy 4:8 “For the rest, there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Master, the righteous Judge, shall give to me on that Day, and not to me only but also to all those loving His appearing.”.
To the believers in Smurna, we see the following words being spoken:
Ḥazon/Revelation 2:10 “Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. See, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, in order to try you, and you shall have pressure ten days. Be trustworthy until death, and I shall give you the crown of life.”.
What is interesting for us to consider here is that the Greek word for ‘crown’ is στέφανος Stephanos – Strong’s G4735 which means, ‘to encircle, that which surrounds, crown, wreath’, and is the same as the name of Στέφανος Stephanos – Strong’s G4736, the first recorded taught one who was killed for the Name of יהושע Messiah, as seen in Ma’asei/Acts 7! .
Stephanos endured unto death!
Those who endure and overcome will by no means go out but will rather enter in to the reign of our Master and be given the crown of everlasting life!
Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:12 “Blessed is the man who does endure trial, for when he has been proved, he shall receive the crown of life which the Master has promised to those who love Him.”.
Around the throne were also 4 living creatures, who were in the centre, closer to Elohim, and they resemble both the keruḇim that Yeḥezqěl saw, as well as the seraphim of Yeshayahu/Isaiah 6. Interestingly, the number of the earth, or creation, is understood as being 4, and so these special creatures may, in one sense, symbolise Elohim’s creation and be related to His covenant with Noaḥ. .
The 4 faces, parallel the covenant statement we read, just now in Berěshith/Genesis 9:13, with Noaḥ paralleled with the face of a man; the birds with the face of an eagle, the livestock with the face of an ox and the wild animals with the face of a lion.
These creatures were full of eyes, signifying the wisdom of Elohim; and they proclaim His set-apartness. They are also heavenly reminders that Elohim has a covenant with His creation and that He rules His creation from His throne. .
The image of the rainbow, as discussed, enhances this imagery and thought.
We can be sure to know, that no matter what happens or what terrible judgements will fall on the earth, Elohim is, and will always be, faithful to keep His Word, aměn!.
Other studies of the four faces, have been described as the fourfold picture of יהושע Messiah, as given to us in the Besorah accounts.
Mattithyahu/Matthew is seen as the royal message of the King, as illustrated by a lion. Marqos/Mark emphasises the strength and servant aspect of the Master’s ministry, illustrated by the ox.
Luqas/Luke presents Messiah as the compassionate Son of man (the face of a man). Yoḥanan/John magnifies the deity of Messiah, the Son of Elohim and is illustrated as an eagle that sours above all, seeing all. .
Another study has also further described these faces as symbolically representing the character of יהושע Messiah: .
a) Full of eyes – speaks of His wisdom and knowledge,
b) Lion – speaks of His royalty and headship,
c) Ox – speaks of His strength and service,
d) Man – speaks of His intelligence,
e) Eagle – His speed and swiftness – in His service..
4 – OUT OF THE THRONE
STORM SIGNALS (verse 5)
These flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder, are indications that a storm is coming and is an awesome reminder of Elohim’s power.
We see, later in Ḥazon/Revelation, that these signals are repeated during judgement and always proceed from the throne of Elohim. .
Today, many people often only look at the rainbow and don’t like to think of Elohim as an Elohim of judgement; as they neglect to see the rainbow and the storm signals coming from His throne. Yes, Elohim is most certainly an Elohim of favour, but as Romiyim/Romans 5:21 says, His favour reigns through righteousness.
Righteousness and Justice are the foundation of His throne, and it is in righteousness and justice that He rules and reigns! .
Those who disregard the need to walk in righteousness and neglect His Torah and do not worship in spirit and truth, will certainly be on the wrong side of the fierce storm that shall arise from His throne!.
5 – BEFORE THE THRONE
LAMPS AND A SEA (verses 5-6)
The seven lamps are the seven spirits or sevenfold spirit, which conveys to us completeness and is the Set-Apart Spirit of Elohim.
The pure sea of crystal symbolises Elohim’s Set-Apartness.
The crystal firmament described in Yeḥezqěl’s vision, in Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 1:22, is similar and is described as being awesome, and this is the foundation of Elohim’s throne – His Set-Apartness.
The Sea of glass also pictures for us the completeness of His Word, upon which we are to stand, having been washed and cleansed as a ready Bride!
The sea of glass also represents stability, purity and clarity that His Word brings in refining us as a set-apart priesthood. .
The chaos of sin has been calmed and in Him we are now able to stand and remain standing amidst the battles of life, and give Him the due praise!..
6 – PRAISE TO THE THRONE!
Ḥazon/Revelation is filled with hymns of praise and, in essence, is the emphasis of the Book, when you consider that Yoḥanan wrote this book in order to encourage people who were going through suffering and persecution, and here, in these two chapters, we see an amazing display and example for us of praise. .
In Chapter 4, Elohim The Creator is praised and in Chapter 5, Elohim The Redeemer. Acknowledging who the Creator is, is the first step toward trusting the Redeemer.
Romiyim/Romans tells us that sinful man tends to worship created things instead of the Creator and that is idolatry. .
We need to worship the Creator, Aměn!
As we worship the Creator in spirit and truth, we are equipped to be bold in our declaration of who our Redeemer is!
This worship of our Creator and Redeemer is critical for us, His treasured possession and royal, set-apart priesthood, and here, in verse 11, we are given a wonderful revelation into who the Creator is! .
The song of the 24 elders proclaims the following,
“You are worthy O יהוה,
to receive esteem and respect and power,
for You have created all…”.
The Greek text has the term κύριος Kurios – Strong’s G2962 which means, ‘Master’, which the Scriptures has translated correctly as יהוה, as the clear reference is being made here to the account where Dawiḏ is proclaiming praise unto יהוה, as seen in:.
Diḇre haYamim Aleph/1 Chronicles 29:11 “Yours, O יהוה, is the greatness, the power and the comeliness, the pre-eminence and the excellency, because of all that is in the heavens and in the earth. Yours is the reign, O יהוה, and You are exalted as head above all.”
The Greek text continued to discard the Name of יהוה, as they followed the Rabbinic influence of not speaking the Name, and in their translations, they used the term Kurios as a substitute where יהוה would have been clearly used, based on the evidence of the clear references made to the Tanak (O.T.). .
The Aramaic text however, does give us an even better translation here and expands on this brilliant revelation of Messiah! .
In the Aramaic text, the phrase is rendered, in Aramaic-English New Testament, as ‘our Master (Y’shua) and Elohim’, which is transliterated from the Aramaic as:
‘our Master and our Elohim’..
Why this is important for us to take note of here, is that we are able to see a clear reminder of the confession of T’oma, after the resurrection of our Master, when He saw יהושע Messiah:
Yoḥanan/John 20:27-28 “Then He said to T’oma, “Bring your finger here, and see My hands. And bring your hand and put it into My side – and do not be unbelieving, but believing.” 28 And T’oma answered and said to Him, “My Master and my Elohim!” .
In the Greek text, the two words ‘Kurios’ (Master) and ‘Theos’ (Elohim) is used, and in the Aramaic-English New Testament T’oma’s declaration is written as:
“My Master and My Elohim”.
From these texts, we are able to further confirm that the One Yoḥanan saw on the throne and the One who the elders worshipped, is our Master and our Elohim – and is to say that this is יהושע Messiah! .
With the worship being given to יהוה, by the four living creatures who proclaim His set-apartness day and night, and with the elders who bow and praise our Master and Elohim, who is clearly identified as יהושע Messiah, we have here a wonderful revelation in Ḥazon/Revelation, that clearly highlights for us that יהוה and יהושע are One – The One True Master and Elohim, who sits on the Throne!!!
Further proof of this worship, being given to יהושע, as Master and Elohim, is in the type of worship that the elders bring. .
In verse 10 we are told that the 24 elders fall down before Him who sits on the throne and bow before Him who lives forever!.
The Greek word that is translated as ‘bow’ is προσκυνέω proskuneō – Strong’s G4352 which means ‘to kneel down before as an act of reverence’ and comes from two words:
1) πρός pros – Strong’s G4314 ‘to, at, toward, unto’ and
2) κυνέω kuneō which means ‘to kiss’ and so, the word προσκυνέω proskuneō – Strong’s G4352 literally means, ‘to kiss toward someone, to throw a kiss in token of respect or homage’.
The idea, or picture, that one gets, is to kiss the hand, as the word κυνέω kuneō is a probable derivative of κύων kuōn – Strong’s G2695 which means ‘dog’, with the more expanded meaning of, ‘to kiss, like a dog licking his master’s hand’. .
This image really struck me, as we see the attempt that the enemy has done at gaining the worship of the masses. Just think about how so many are enslaved into having to bow before the ‘Pope’s’, or any catholic priests, extended hand and kiss (lick) the hand of their assumed ‘master’!
Or how about the millions that ‘kiss’ the toe of the statue of ‘St. Peter’, which is in fact the pagan image of a pagan mighty one called Jupiter! .
We are to worship only One – and that is יהוה – not any man, woman, image or any other false mighty one!
We are not to ‘kiss the hand’, so to speak, of another, in subjection to enslavement – but we are to humble ourselves and show respect and reverence toward יהושע our Master – and we are to worship Him Alone!.
The appointment of Yosĕph, as ruler in Mitsrayim, is a picture of Messiah, whose hand we kiss!
Berěshith/Exodus 41:40 “Be over my house, you yourself, and at your mouth all my people shall kiss – only in the throne I am greater than you.”
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘kiss’ is נָשַׁק nashaq – Strong’s H5401 and means, ‘to kiss, do homage, show respect and affection for, acknowledge’ and this word can have the understanding of ‘fastening together, be in array (dressed accordingly)’..
To ‘kiss’ here, clearly speaks of that which we submit under and show respect to, as being the proper authority under which we walk and obey.
In Hoshěa/Hosea 13 there is a clear rebuke for those who engage in idolatrous worship
Hoshěa/Hosea 13:2 “And now they sin more and more, and make for themselves moulded images from their silver, idols according to their skill, all of them the work of craftsmen. They say of them, “Let the men who slaughter kiss the calves!”
The rebuke here, in Hoshěa, for the men who slaughter must kiss the calves, is a very clear message to a rebellious and backsliding people – as the message is clear to those who will not trust in יהוה, but will rather walk in their own reasoning, must go ahead and kiss their calves – see if that will help you!!!.
We are not to ‘kiss the calves’ and be fastened together to abominable images or practices of false worship, but we are to rather ‘kiss the Son’ and pay homage and proper respect to our Redeemer and King, as we are dressed in His Torah, and find our refuge in Him.
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.”.
The wrath of the Son is the wrath of the Father, and our refuge is in Elohim – who is ONE!
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.”.
ḤAZON/REVELATION 5 –
WE WORSHIP THE REDEEMER.
The focus of worshipping the Creator shifts to worshipping the Redeemer and here, in Chapter 5, we see a seven sealed scroll that could not be read until opened by the One who is worthy.
יהושע Messiah alone is worthy and able to open the scroll, because He has triumphed over sin and death, aměn! .
Yoḥanan wept because there was no one who could open the seals and this meant that Elohim’s redemption plan for mankind could not be completed; and then, an elder came and told him not to weep; and he was, in essence, told to TO LOOK UP and see the One who is worthy.
The Greek word that is translated as ‘see’ is ἰδού idou – Strong’s G2400 which means, ‘look, behold, see’..
Through יהושע Messiah’s earthly life, death and resurrection, we are now able to enter into true worship, which is being wonderfully described here in this book – and that is: to worship at the throne of Elohim, having being made a kingdom of priests, in His Blood.
Yoḥanan look up to see the Lion of the Tribe of Yehuḏah and when he looks, he sees The Lamb who was slain. .
What was being revealed here, in this vision, was the clear knowledge of who the Redeemer is – The Redeemer is the Creator – and The One who sits on the throne is the Lamb.
Three tiles are given to יהושע Messiah here:
1) The Lion of the tribe of Yehuḏah – which speaks of His Authority and Royalty.
2) The root of Dawiḏ – which means He brought Dawiḏ and his line into existence. .
As far as humanity is concerned, יהושע had his roots in Dawiḏ, but as far as His deity is concerned, יהושע is the root of Dawiḏ.
How יהושע could both be Dawiḏ’s Master and son was a problem many couldn’t fathom and this dilemma of not understanding this, is what יהושע presented to the Pharisees and they could not answer Him.
3) the Lamb – as I mentioned, Yoḥanan turns to see the Lion and he sees the Lamb!
Interestingly, יהושע is described as a Lamb at least 28 times in Ḥazon/Revelation.
The choirs sing “Worthy is the Lamb”, and the assembly (that is the two Houses of Yisra’ĕl and Yehuḏah together as one) is called the Bride of the Lamb.
This Lamb has 7 horns, symbolising perfect strength and power, and the perfect sacrifice that brings redemption! .
The Lamb is a picture of His first coming to us, as Saviour and Redeemer in humble submission, who alone was worthy to stand up and pay the redemption price for our sin; and the Lion is a picture of His second coming, as Judge and King in His mighty power.
As we consider what Yoḥanan saw and wrote for us, we are able to understand our need to be praising our Mighty Creator and Redeemer, for that is what we were created for!
There are over 20 different songs in the Book of Ḥazon/Revelation, and this is a book that is filled with more about worship than any other book in the Renewed Writings (N.T.)! .
We are to worship Him in spirit and in truth, for He alone is worthy to be worshipped, in song and service – let us learn from what Yoḥanan saw in heaven – and be ever praising our Master and Elohim, here and now!.
We are made to worship – if your worship has been slack – determine today to make it better – choose each day to worship Him, as you walk with Him and witness for Him.
I encourage you all to stay in the Word daily and worship Him with your all, with your whole life forever. .
From Berěshith/Genesis to Ḥazon/Revelation we see our Creator and Redeemer as The Lamb, The Lion and our Master and Elohim, Aměn!
And as we are equipped in His righteousness, to join in with the declaration of the set-apartness of our Creator and Redeemer, we must recognise our need to be set-apart, as He is set-apart!.
If we want to be able to sing the following words, then we need to make sure that our lives reflect that which we sing and reflect who it is that we are worshipping, in spirit and truth:.
“Set-apart, set-apart, set-apart is יהוה of hosts;
all the earth is filled with His esteem!”.
The Hebrew word for ‘set-apart’ is קָדוֹשׁ qaḏosh – Strong’s H6918 which means, ‘consecrated, set-apart’ which comes from the root קָדַשׁ qaḏash – Strong’s H6942 which means, ‘set-apart, consecrated, dedicated’ – and that is what we have been called to be!!!.
Wayyiqra/Leviticus 11:44-45 “For I am יהוה your Elohim, and you shall set yourselves apart. And you shall be set-apart, for I am set-apart. And do not defile yourselves with any swarming creature – the one creeping on the earth. 45 ‘For I am יהוה who is bringing you up out of the land of Mitsrayim, to be your Elohim. And you shall be set-apart, for I am set-apart.”.
Wayyiqra/Leviticus 19:2 “Speak to all the congregation of the children of Yisra’ěl, and say to them, ‘Be set-apart, for I יהוה your Elohim am set-apart.”.
Wayyiqra/Leviticus 20:26 “And you shall be set-apart to Me, for I יהוה am set-apart, and have separated you from the peoples to be Mine.”.
Wayyiqra/Leviticus 21:8 “And you shall set him apart, for he brings the bread of your Elohim, he is set-apart to you. For I, יהוה, setting you apart, am set-apart.”.
Kěpha Aleph/1 Peter 1:13-16 “ Therefore, having girded up the loins of your mind, being sober, set your expectation perfectly upon the favour that is to be brought to you at the revelation of יהושע Messiah, 14 as obedient children, not conforming yourselves to the former lusts in your ignorance, 15 instead, as the One who called you is set-apart, so you also should become set-apart in all behaviour, 16 because it has been written, “Be set-apart, for I am set-apart.””.
I have quoted the above verses, in order to highlight the clear call, we are given in Scripture, from our Set-Apart Elohim: and that is we are to be set-apart, because He is set-apart!.
The Hebrew word קֹדֶשׁ qoḏesh – Strong’s H6944 which means ‘apartness/ consecrated/ dedicated/ that which is dedicated and separated unto יהוה’, is rendered as follows in the ancient pictographic letter/symbols:
Quph – קֹ:
This is the letter ‘quph’, which is pictured as , and is a ‘horizon’ and depicts the elements of ‘time’, as it pictures the sun in its rising and setting. It therefore carries the meaning of ‘circle’ or ‘to go around’, representing for us both, appointed cycles or times as well as eternity and speaks of continual adherence to the Appointed Times.
Dalet – דֶ:
This is the letter ‘dalet’ which is pictured as , which is 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 the only means of access. And we also know that Messiah is ‘The Door’, for we only are able to have access into the Kingdom through Him!
The commands are also to be written on the doorposts teaching us to remember to guard the commands of Elohim as we go out and come in, so that our going out and coming is in peace!.
Shin – שׁ:
This is the letter ‘shin’ which in the ancient script is pictured as, , which is ‘two front teeth’ and carries the meaning of ‘sharp or press, chew or devour’; which is what the teeth do, and also speaks of the sharpened word that comes forth from the mouth as the teeth ‘chew’ or ‘meditate’ on the Truth, making what comes forth pure and sharp! It also carries the understanding of consuming or destroying – as teeth do to food.
Looking at the rendering of the Hebrew noun קֹדֶשׁ qoḏesh – Strong’s H6944 and verb קָדַשׁ qaḏash – Strong’s H6942 in the pictographic form that renders set-apartness or to be set-apart, we are able to see what this clearly implies as we take note that these words can render for us the following meaning: .
TO THE DOOR OF APPOINTMENT
TO MEDITATE ON THE WORD!.
Our ability to be properly set-apart involves our ability to properly meditate on the Word on a daily basis as well as making sure that we do not neglect the set-apart Appointed Times that are clearly commanded as ‘set-apart gatherings’, which are All the Appointed Times of יהוה, as outlined and instructed in Wayyiqra/Leviticus 23, which includes the weekly Sabbath!.
Set-apartness, in the Greek, is ἁγιασμός hagiasmos – Strong’s G38 – ‘consecration, sanctifying’.
In English, to ‘consecrate’ means ‘to make or declare to be set-apart and be devoted to a purpose with the deepest irrevocable dedication’. .
We, as a chosen, set-apart and royal priesthood unto Elohim, declare and make our lives solely devoted to the purpose of serving and worshipping יהוה our Elohim; and as we have certainly learnt through the Torah portions of ‘drawing near’ to Elohim, we can only do so by the Blood of Messiah and as we are continually being set-apart in Him through an on-going process of being sanctified as a people for a possession..
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.”.
Being set-apart requires the ability to be a people who judge themselves according to יהוה’s standard and being able to discern between the clean and the unclean, the set-apart and the common.
Our ability in being ready to hear from יהוה, we must recognise that our minds must be renewed daily, as we set things apart in our minds as well, no longer being conformed to the standards of the world – for now, we live according to the highest standard – that is יהוה’s set-apartness, for set-apartness befits His House forever! .
Those who refuse to judge themselves, or be judged by the Word, can, by definition, never be set apart, as it is clear that their ears are not open to hear and are as Yeshayahu says – hearing yet not perceiving! .
Mattithyahu/Matthew 5:48 “Therefore, be perfect, as your Father in the heavens is perfect.”
The Greek word that is translated here as ‘perfect’ is τέλειος teleios – Strong’s G5046 which means, ‘having reached its end, complete, perfect, mature’ and is used in the following verse in regards to the body of Messiah being equipped unto maturity:
Eph’siyim/Ephesians 4:13 “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”.
This word τέλειος teleios – Strong’s G5046 is also used in:
Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:25 “But he that looked into the perfect Torah, that of freedom, and continues in it, not becoming a hearer that forgets, but a doer of work, this one shall be blessed in his doing of the Torah.”
Looking into the ‘perfect’ Torah and continuing in it – that is, to be one who guards to do what is instructed in it – shall be blessed – for it is the Perfect Torah that perfects our set-apartness!.
The idea or concept of being perfect is often misunderstood by so many, due to a lack of proper understanding in what this word entails and what our Master, Elohim and Saviour demands of us.
Many may deem it impossible to be perfect and therefore, relegate themselves to finding vain excuses for their compromised lifestyles as they find that the expectation of being perfect is a task too hard to achieve.
To think as such, simply reveals a level of gross immaturity that refuses to endure the necessary discipline required of a true follower and taught one of Messiah!.
Deḇarim/Deuteronomy 18:13 “Be perfect before יהוה your Elohim”
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘perfect’ is the adjective תָּמִים tamiym – Strong’s H8549 which means, ‘complete, whole, sound, perfect, without blemish, blameless’, and this word comes from the primitive root verb תָּמַם tamam – Strong’s H8552 which mean, ‘to be complete, to be finished, be at an end’..
This Hebrew word carries with it the more expanded meaning of being mature, whole and complete and emphasises the need to be one who is earnestly seeking to learn the Truth, and abide in it, and walk according to the Spirit, rather than being childish and chasing after the feeble matters of the fleshly attractions, that a wicked and corrupt world has to offer as an alternative. .
What becomes clear, as we grow in the knowledge of our Master, is that we all have a choice to make, each and every day; and that is, to either be set-apart and perfect before Elohim and serve Him in Spirit and Truth, or fall away to the ways of the world and run after the things of the flesh that can never satisfy the spirit of a man!.
The Hebraic understanding, or concept, of being perfect before Elohim, entails one being fully committed to Elohim with their all, having their heart and mind in the right place, exercising true belief through works of righteousness and not being double-minded and unstable! .
In other words, to be properly perfect before Elohim, means being loyal to Him, while living in the midst of an unstable and wicked world that presents many corrupt ‘alternative options’ for people to follow, through compromising standards that are abominable before the face of our Mighty Elohim, יהוה of Hosts!..
I have expanded on our need to be set-apart and perfect, for good reason, especially as we consider this account of Yeshayahu hearing the words of the seraphim declaring the set-apartness of יהוה of Hosts!.
What we take note of here, is that, despite the depravity of man, and the fact that Uzziyahu the king had died, and much of what was happening looked very bleak from Yeshayahu’s view on earth, we take note, that from heaven’s point of view, the whole earth is filled with the esteem of יהוה of Hosts!!! .
This teaches us a clear lesson and vital truth of what we must acknowledge and that is, that יהוה is in control and He rules from on high, highlighting for us that there is absolutely no excuse for us not be perfecta and set-apart! .
When things look terrible from our earthly perspective, we need to recognise our need to ‘look up’, so to speak, as we look intently into His Word and find great comfort in our Righteous King who reigns! .
Having said that, we also take note that He is יהוה Ěl Shaddai and therefore recognise that He is the One who can destroy.
The Hebrew word שַׁדַּי Shaddai – Strong’s H7706 means, ‘the Almighty’, and comes from the root verb שָׁדַד shaḏaḏ – Strong’s H7703 which means, ‘to deal violently with, despoil, devastate, completely destroy’. .
When שַׁדַּי Shaddai is collectively used with אֵל Ěl – Strong’s H410 it becomes a compound title that is used for יהוה Elohim!
He is Ěl Shaddai which means that He is Ěl Almighty – The Mighty One who is Almighty!
He is the One who can completely destroy, and the One who deals violently with those who do not know Him, while being The All-Powerful One, who protects His own that are known by Him!
יהוה Ěl Shaddai/ יהוה of Hosts!.
The compound title יהוה צְבָאוֹת – ‘יהוה tseḇaoth’ means, ‘יהוה of Hosts’ and 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! And the call/question becomes very clear: .
“who is standing up and being counted in Messiah, our Head and Chief?”.
In seeing the esteem of יהוה of Hosts, sitting on His throne, and seeing and hearing the fiery creatures declaring His set-apartness, Yeshayahu is gripped internally and declares a severe woe over himself!.
After having LOOKED UP, Yeshayahu then ‘LOOKED IN’, so to speak, as this was the natural response to the true set-apart presence of the Almighty Elohim of Hosts!
The perfect mirror of His set-apartness will highlight the imperfections of the sinful flesh in us! .
At the sound of the declaration of the set-apartness of יהוה of Hosts, the posts were shaken and the house was filled with smoke!
This would have certainly been a trembling experience for this prophet!.
As we consider this moment, I am remined of the similar image that we see in:
Ḥazon/Revelation 15:8 “And the Dwelling Place was filled with smoke from the esteem of Elohim and from His power, and no one was able to enter the Dwelling Place until the seven plagues of the seven messengers were ended.”.
When the smoke of the esteem of Elohim filled the place, Yeshayahu would have clearly reminded that יהוה of Hosts is a consuming fire and by the sight of the House of Elohim being filled with smoke, it certainly got Yeshayahu trembling!.
The set-apart presence of יהוה highlights our depravity, and Yeshayahu was greatly convicted within, and all he could do was say, ‘woe is me’ and confess that he was a man of unclean lips!.
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘woe’, in Yeshayahu/Isaiah 6:6, is אוֹי oy – Strong’s H188 which means, ‘woe’ and is an interjection that highlights a passionate cry of grief and despair!
We often hear the expression ‘hoy vey’ or ‘oy vey’ which, in essence, expresses a cry of grief or sorrow and declares, ‘woe is me!’
In the face of a perfect and set-apart Elohim of Hosts, Yeshayahu could only respond with a cry of grief for his own depravity! .
We have all sinned and fallen short of the esteem of Elohim, and the sooner we realise that, the sooner we can allow the Word of Elohim to cleanse us, as we look up and look intently into the mirror of the Word!.
The natural man, when looking at one’s life from a fleshly perspective, is unable to understand, or receive, the spiritual matters of Elohim, as Sha’ul tells us in:
Qorintiyim Aleph/1 Corinthians 2:14 “But the natural man does not receive the matters of the Spirit of Elohim, for they are foolishness to him, and he is unable to know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”.
Why I am mentioning this, is to highlight the fact that when one walks according to the flesh, then the ability to see that which needs to be corrected in one’s life, does not happen and the one walking according to the flesh, is, for the most part, very well contented with himself.
He does not deal much in self-scrutiny, and is often not troubled by the twinges of his conscience.
If at any time he has any faults, he compares himself with others, and readily persuades himself that he is quite as good, if not better than his neighbour and reckons that he is in no need of any change. It is seldom that he wakes up to true conviction of sin until, in some way or another, there is revealed to him some “vision of Elohim” and some conception of the true nature of that Pure and Set-Apart Creator who made all and rules all..
When one’s eyes are truly opened to the perfect and pure set-apartness of Elohim, and who He is, then one cannot but be driven by the total contrast, to recognise one’s own weakness, wickedness, impurity, unrighteousness and deeply engrained sinfulness, in the face of a perfect and set-apart Elohim. .
A conviction of sin flashes upon the one whose eyes are opened, and it is a good thing, if that conviction hits deep enough, in order to bring him to the point of confession, before an Almighty Saviour and King!.
Yeshayahu’s confession, in the sight of The Set-Apart One, led to his cleansing, and we take note of what Yoḥanan tells us in:
Yoḥanan Aleph/1 John 1:8-10 “If we say that we have no sin, we are misleading ourselves, and the truth is not in us. 9 If we confess our sins, He is trustworthy and righteous to forgive us the sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 10 If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us.”.
Yeshayahu cried out, to be cleansed inwardly, and Elohim heard his cry and met his need for cleansing.
Like Yeshayahu, many of the great heroes of the belief saw themselves as they are, in the sight of an Almighty Elohim and humbled themselves before יהוה: .
Let’s take a look at some of them:
Berěshith/Genesis 18:27 “And Aḇraham answered and said, “Look, please, I who am but dust and ashes have taken it upon myself to speak to יהוה”.
Berěshith/Genesis 32:10 “I do not deserve the least of all the kind acts and all the truth which You have shown Your servant, for I passed over this Yardĕn with my staff, and now I have become two groups.”.
Iyoḇ /Job 40:4 “See, I am insignificant, what would I answer You? I lay my hand over my mouth.”.
Shemu’ĕl Bět/2 Samuel 7:18 “And Sovereign Dawiḏ went in and sat before יהוה and he said, “Who am I, O Master יהוה? And what is my house, that You have brought me this far?”.
Timotiyos Aleph/1 Timothy 1:15 “Trustworthy is the word and worthy of all acceptance, that Messiah יהושע came into the world to save sinners, of whom I am foremost.”.
Luqas/Luke 5:8-11: “And when Shim’on Kěpha saw it, he fell down at the knees of יהושע, saying, “Depart from me, for I am a man, a sinner, O Master!” 9 For astonishment had seized him and all those with him, at the catch of fish which they took, 10 so too were Yaʽaqoḇ and Yoḥanan, the sons of Zaḇdai, who were partners with Shim’on. Then יהושע said to Shim’on, “Do not fear, from now on you shall catch men.” 11 And having brought the boats to land, they left all and followed Him.”.
When we look intently into the mirror of the Word, we must not forget what we look like and we must make sure that we are true doers of the Word and not hearers only!
Ya’aqoḇ/James 1:23-25 “Because if anyone is a hearer of the Word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks at his natural face in a mirror, 24 for he looks at himself, and goes away, and immediately forgets what he was like. 25 But he that looked into the perfect Torah, that of freedom, and continues in it, not becoming a hearer that forgets, but a doer of work, this one shall be blessed in his doing of the Torah.”.
What we must never lose sight of, as king Uzziyahu did, is that we need a Saviour/Deliverer to continually lead, guide and teach us, in the Way of set-apartness!
When we have sight and can ‘see’ our Master, through His Living Word, and can understand who He is, and make the bold confession before many witnesses, then we are enabled to have the proper ability to look in at our own lives and measure it up against the plumb-line of the Truth of our Elohim!.
As we LOOK UP, and are then enabled to properly LOOK IN, and do what the Word instructs, then we can be properly cleansed through the Word, and are further enabled to LOOK OUT and see the need for the reign to be boldly proclaimed, as we call many sinners to repentance!.
Yeshayahu’s unclean lips were cleansed and his crookedness was taken away, as he received the refining fire of deliverance, straight from a live coal that was taken from the slaughter place, which shadow pictures the sacrifice of our Master, who entered into the Most Set-Apart Place in the heavens with His own blood, having obtained an everlasting redemption, and by His sacrifice, He can restore unto those who draw near and confess, a clean lip!
By His Blood, we are able to have our conscience cleansed from dead works, in order to serve the living Elohim! .
With Yeshayahu having his unclean lips cleansed we are also able to see a powerful shadow picture of our Master restoring a clean lip unto the peoples, so that they can call upon His Name and serve Him perfectly:
Tsephanyah/Zephaniah 3:8-9 “Therefore wait for Me,” declares יהוה, “until the day I rise up for plunder. For My judgment is to gather nations, to assemble reigns, to pour out on them My rage, all My burning wrath. For by the fire of My jealousy all the earth shall be consumed. 9 “For then I shall turn unto the peoples a clean lip, so that they all call on the Name of יהוה, to serve Him with one shoulder.”.
His lips were cleansed and his crookedness was taken away!
This is a powerful picture of a proper cleansing of our Master, who cleanses us from all unrighteousness, when we confess our sin and crookedness to Him!.
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘crookedness’ comes from the root word עָוֹן avon – Strong’s H5771 which means, ‘iniquity, guilt, punishment for iniquity, blame, perversity, depravity’, which comes from the root verb עָוָה avah – Strong’s H5753 which means, ‘to twist, bend, distort, make crooked, pervert’.
Yeḥezqěl/Ezekiel 18:30 “Therefore I judge you, O house of Yisra’ĕl, every one according to his ways,” declares the Master יהוה. “Repent, and turn back from all your transgressions, and let not crookedness be a stumbling-block to you.”
The stumbling block of crookedness is a big stumbling block for so many and herein lies the awakening call to return to יהוה.
This was a call to repent and not let crookedness be a stumbling block, showing us that the clear call was to guard loving-commitment and truth in order that their crookedness could be pardoned!.
It is a blessing when crookedness no longer becomes a stumbling block in one’s path! By that I mean that it is truly a blessing to walk in the Truth and not have the stumbling blocks of twisted and perverse teachings of man that seek only to nullify the commands of Elohim!.
In another Tehillah we see the psalmist declaring the following:
Tehillah/Psalm 130:3-4 “O Yah, if You should watch crookednesses, O יהוה, who would stand? 4 But with You there is forgiveness, that You might be feared.”
It is a blessing to receive the forgiveness for our perverted crooked ways and therefore must recognise how important it is to guard righteousness and have no crookedness imputed/reckoned to us!
Tehillah/Psalm 103:1-5 “Bless יהוה, O my being, and all that is within me, bless His set-apart Name! 2 Bless יהוה, O my being, and do not forget all His dealings, 3 who forgives all your crookednesses, who heals all your diseases, 4 who redeems your life from destruction, who crowns you with kindness and compassion, 5 who satisfies your desire with the good, your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.”
The Hebrew word that is translated as ‘forgives’ is סָלַח salaḥ – Strong’s H5545 which means, ‘to forgive, pardon, spare’, which is the same root word used in Tehillah/Psalm 25:11 for ‘pardon’!
Tehillah/Psalm 25:11 “For Your Name’s sake, O יהוה, You shall pardon my crookedness, though it is great.”.
Sha’ul understood this blessing being declared here in this contemplative poem:
Romiyim/Romans 4:7-8 “Blessed are those whose lawlessnesses are forgiven, and whose sins are covered, 8 blessed is the man to whom יהוה shall by no means reckon sin.”
Lawlessnesses forgiven, sins covered and no sin reckoned – what a blessing!!! .
Our Master redeemed us from lawlessness, as Sha’ul writes, in:
Titos/Titus 2:11-14 “For the saving Gift of Elohim has appeared to all men, 12 instructing us to renounce wickedness and worldly lusts, and to live sensibly, righteously, and reverently in the present age, 13 looking for the blessed expectation and esteemed appearance of the great Elohim and our Saviour יהושע Messiah, 14 who gave Himself for us, to redeem us from all lawlessness and to cleanse for Himself a people, His own possession, ardent for good works.”
We have been redeemed from ALL lawlessness and have been cleansed so that we are now equipped and enabled to walk in the Torah, not continue in lawlessness!!!.
When we truly recognise and acknowledge that we have stumbled in our crookednesses and have been led astray, through the twisted and corrupt teachings of lawlessness, we are then equipped to understand the mighty redeeming work of our Master and what He has done for us. .
When we fully grasp the forgiveness that our Master extends to us, then we should be urgent in our return to Him, as we turn completely away from every stumbling block of crookedness!.
Yeshayahu was now cleansed and ready to serve!
After having looked up, and looked in, he responded in humility, with an honest confession and was cleansed from crookedness and was now equipped to serve with a clean lip!
A cleansed servant becomes a willing servant!
Yeshayahu jumped at the opportunity to be the one whom יהוה would send! .
What we can learn from this, is that when one is reluctant to speak up and proclaim the Truth, it may be a sign that there is some uncleanness that still needs to be dealt with, which calls for a proper ability to ‘look up’, and by that, I mean looking intently into the Word and seeking our Master and Elohim, after which, the proper ability to ‘look in’ will be done, with humility and honesty, by looking intently into the mirror of the Word and doing what the word commands, without compromise or excuse!.
The harvest is ripe and the workers are few!
Our Master said that we should pray that the Master of the harvest send out more workers!
What we need are more people that will look up, look in and then look out!
Because … We are created to worship!.
In my title of this message, I said ‘lookout’, as one word and not two, in order to bring in a play on words, so to speak, as we take note of a two–fold responsibility of a true cleansed servant, that looks up and in and worships in spirit and truth! .
Firstly, we are to ‘look out’ and see the need for the Truth to be proclaimed, without compromise and that we are to ‘look out’ for each other and encourage each other daily in the Word, yet, secondly, we are also called to be on the ‘lookout’, and by that, I mean that we are to be watchmen on the walls, so to speak! .
When we understand that we are living stones, being built up in the Master, then we who are watchmen on the walls are to watch out for each other and warn each other, when an attack is coming, or when we see something that is not right!
As part of us being called to go and make taught ones of the nations, we too recognise that we are to go and speak to a people who will most likely not hear the Truth, nor see what has been clearly revealed to us.
Do not let this stop you, for we take note that the question of how long he should make the heart of the people fat, their ears heavy and shut their eyes, he was told, ‘until the cities are laid waste and without inhabitant’.
This means that we are to proclaim the reign until our Master comes!.
Today, we can learn a lot from this amazing experience that Yeshayahu had with our Master.
The outlook was bleak, so he LOOKED UP!
Which in turn, caused him to look inwardly at his own sinfulness, in contrast to a pure and set-apart Elohim; and in the process, he could do nothing but recognise his depravity and repent of his sin before יהוה and receive a complete cleansing and forgiveness from יהוה our Saviour and Redeemer. .
The ability to see, as יהוה sees, was clearer and he was now not simply looking at the bleak outlook, but rather, he recognised the need, and that יהוה wanted to use Him, despite the negative reaction that would come, for Yeshayahu knew the truth! .
Yeshayahu had seen יהוה on His throne and the esteem of יהוה had been revealed to him, which had now made him responsible to be a watchman and speak up, calling a hard–hearted and blind people to repentance!.
For all of us, who have turned to the Master, have had the veil of traditions and falsehood removed, in order for us to know our Mighty Elohim and draw near to Him, in complete humility and reverent fear, in order that we can serve Him and be His ambassadors, amidst a wicked and crooked generation!.
There are many lessons that we can take from this account, as well as that of Yoḥanan, of which one of the most important ones is simply to recognise the set-apartness of our Mighty Elohim, for He calls us to be set-apart, as He is set-apart.
If anyone struggles at being set-apart, then it is because they do not understand, nor know, the set-apartness of Elohim, which may be the result of not properly seeking Him and meditating on His Word day and night!.
When people struggle with being set-apart, by allowing too much compromise to still be prevalent in their lives, then it can be a sure sign that they are not ‘seeking first His kingdom and His righteousness’!.
Our Master encourages us to not worry as the nations do, but make sure we are seeking Him and His righteousness:
Mattithyahu/Matthew 6:33 “But seek first the reign of Elohim, and His righteousness, and all these shall be added to you.”
The Greek word that is used for ‘seek’ is ζητέω zēteō – Strong’s G2212 and means, ‘to seek, inquire, try to obtain, strive after, to aim at, crave for, and to seek in order to find out by thinking, meditating and reasoning’.
Qolasim/Colossians 3:1-2 “If, then, you were raised with Messiah, seek the matters which are above, where Messiah is, seated at the right hand of Elohim. 2 Mind the matters above, not those on the earth.”.
To ‘seek’ takes diligent effort; and to ‘seek His kingdom and His righteousness’ speaks of diligently seeking and meditating on Him and His instructions (Torah) – something that is severely lacking in a great way today!.
The question remains, ‘what are you seeking?’
Whatever you are seeking will take time and effort and what everyone needs to assess is whether they are seeking their own interests or whether they are seeking first the reign of Elohim and His righteousness!.
For more on intently seeking יהוה and His righteousness, please see the notes of a message called, “AWAKE YOURSELF, LOOK UP AND LISTEN! (Isaiah 51)” which can be found on our site (https://atfotc.com) under the sermons 2018/2019 menu or by simply clicking on or using the flowing link:
As we consider the times that we are living in, and how many have hardened their hearts to the truth, and shut their ears to the hearing of the Torah, we must recognise the responsibility that we have, with what the Master has given us, and be bold in our confession and declaration of who He is, and proclaim His reign that is coming. .
Perhaps circumstances that have not been as favourable as you would like them to be, has caused you to stop ‘LOOKING UP’ and, in the process, your ‘LOOKING IN’ has been destructive, rather than constructive, as you have fallen prey to the pity party of doubts and fears that silence your confession, and as a result, has made you weak in your walk, which, in the process, has caused you to point fingers at others, causing your ability to ‘LOOK OUT’ to be a slanderous, one as opposed to a ‘LOOKOUT’ that builds and encourages..
We know that the Hebrew name יְשַׁעְיָהוּ Yeshayahu – Strong’s H3470 means ‘salvation of Yah/ Yahweh saves/Yah is He who saves’, and I want to remind you today, that our Saviour and Elohim reigns and the earth is filled with His esteem. .
Knowing this, should cause us to be urgent in our need to be looking to the Prince and Perfecter of our belief, as we ‘LOOK UP’ and lift our heads, for our redemption draws near!.
What we must also be prepared for, is the cleansing power of His Word that washes us from all that stains and defiles, and we must allow His Word to do that, without kicking against the called for set-apartness and perfection.
When we can properly look up, and look in, then we will be fully equipped to look out, and be unhindered in our walk of faith, as we lift the banner of praise to Him who reigns!.
We are the Dwelling Place of Elohim, and we take note of what Tehillah/Psalm 95:5 tells us:
Tehillah/Psalm 93:5 “Your witnesses have been very trustworthy. Set-apartness befits Your house, O יהוה, forever.”
Set-apartness befits His House!
The term ‘befits’, is translated from the Hebrew root word נָאָה na’ah – Strong’s H4998 which means, ‘to be comely or befitting, lovely, be beautiful’.
This verb denotes the state of being beautiful or suitable, and is only used 3 times in Scripture.
It is applied in Shir HaShirim/Song of Songs 1:10 to the cheeks of a beautiful woman, and then in Yeshayahu/Isaiah 52:7 to the ‘pleasant’ feet of him who brings good news, who proclaims peace, who proclaims deliverance, and who says to Tsiyon, “Your Elohim reigns!” .
We are to be proclaiming the reign of our Elohim, and we do so with great beauty as we guard His Word and keep His Feasts, as we recognise that ‘feet’ in Hebrew is often a term that relates to the guarding of the Feasts of יהוה, and the only way to keep His Feasts, is to do them as He has commanded us to, in complete set-apartness without compromise! .
Sadly, we find many people today who claim to proclaim the reign, yet do not guard His Feasts as commanded, as they try to take shortcuts and excuse their way out of simply doing what is commanded, and think that their actions are deemed acceptable, when we are clearly told that it is only set-apartness that befits His House!
Any deviation from the clear plumb-line of the Word of Elohim is not set-apartness, and this we need to be clearly reminded of. .
Anyone who claims to walk in our Master and Elohim, yet fails to keep His Sabbaths and Feasts, as they should, are clearly not living set-apart lives and are therefore, in severe danger of not being built up as living stones, into the Dwelling Place of Elohim, and risk the reality of being thrown out into outer darkness as worthless servants, and there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth!.
For those who guard righteousness and walk in set-apartness, worshipping the Father in spirit and in truth and possess their lives with endurance, shall receive the crown of life!.
As we consider the set-apartness of our Mighty Elohim and that which befits His House, may we be a people that are fervent in our love for Him and urgent in our need to look up, look in and look out!
While most have shut their eyes and closed their ears … let us hear the words of our Master, who makes it clear in His Word that which is required of us, and then declares to us…
“He who has ears let him hear”!!!.
How is your vision?
If it has been impaired in any way – let Messiah give you a recovery of sight and maintain the 20/20 functional eyes that יהוה has made, and be equipped in Him to:.
LOOK UP, LOOK IN… AND LOOKOUT!
WE ARE CREATED TO WORSHIP!.
יהוה bless your 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