Posts Tagged ‘netzer’

Parashah 36: B’ha’alotkha (When you set up)

Numbers 8:1-12:16

“Adonai said to Moshe, ‘Tell Aharon, When you set up the lamps, the seven lamps are to cast their light forward, in front of the menorah’” (Numbers 8:1-2).

The Branch

The seven lamps of the Menorah were to cast their light forward. Where the Menorah sat in the Holy Place, the light would shine eastward lighting the Holy Place (Matthew 24:27). Adonai reminds the people that the Menorah was made from hammered gold from its base to its branches to its flowers following the pattern that Moshe saw on the mountain.

The Hebrew word for ‘branch’ is netzer and literally means a ‘shoot or a sprout,’ as in Isaiah 11:1, “But a branch will emerge from the trunk of Yishai, a shoot will grow from his roots.” This verse prophesies that the Messiah would come from the lineage of Jesse, the father of King David. Netzer is the root of ‘Nazareth’ where Joseph and Miryam lived and raised Yeshua. This is why he is referred to as Yeshua of Nazareth and his early followers were known as Nazarenes or ‘branchites’ because they followed the Branch.

Josephus describes the first-century Nazarene movement as being made up of mostly Jewish followers of Yeshua who were concentrated in the area known as Palestine and surrounding regions. They were led by James, the older brother of Yeshua, and flourished between the years 30-80 CE. They were zealous for the Torah and continued to walk in all the mitzvot as enlightened by their Rabbi and Teacher, but accepted gentiles in accordance with some Noachide Laws. In Acts 24:5, Sha’ul is considered the ‘ringleader’ of the Netzarim movement. The term ‘Christian,’ first used in Greek speaking areas for the movement, actually is an attempt to translate the term Nazarene and means ‘Messianist.’

Hebrew Word Pictures
Branch or netzer – נצר – nun, tzade, resh
– life draws near the highest authority

Nazareth or natzrat – נצרת – nun, tzade, resh, tav
– life pulls toward the highest authority of the covenant

The Levite Wave Offering

Levite men served in the Tabernacle between the ages of 25 and 50. After 50, they assisted and purified themselves as part of the calling to the priesthood, but did no work. Each man shaved their entire body with a razor, washed their clothes, cleansed their bodies, and were sprinkled with purification water. Once cleansed, they were presented in front of the Mishkan before the whole nation of Isra’el. The people laid hands on the priests while Aaron offered them to Adonai as a wave offering, set-apart for service in the Tabernacle.  The priests laid their hands on the bulls –– a burnt offering and a sin offering –– while Aaron made atonement for them.

“‘Come out from them and be separate,’ says the Lord. ‘Touch no unclean thing, and I will receive you.’ And, ‘I will be a Father to you, and you will be my sons and daughters, says the Lord Almighty.’ Therefore, since we have these promises, dear friends, let us purify ourselves from everything that contaminates body and spirit, perfecting holiness out of reverence for God” (2 Corinthians 6:17-7).

Purifying ourselves like the Levite priests is an essential part of our calling as followers of Messiah if we want to be called sons and daughters of El Elyon. Second Corinthians set our family on the walk of faith that we have today. We had never been taught the difference between ‘clean’ and ‘unclean’ or what defiled our body and our spirit.  We assumed that we were holy and pure because we believed in Jesus.  Yet, James says “even demons believe in him … and shudder” (James 2:19).   We are called to more than a belief system, we are called to be part of the family of Adonai. We are instructed to purify ourselves from defilement because the Father has allowed us to be called His sons and daughters. As His children, He wants us to be pure, reverence Him, and bring honor to His family.

Another Year Begins … Pesach

“Adonai spoke to Moshe in the Sinai Desert in the first month of the second after they had left the land of Egypt. ‘Let the people of Isra’el observe Pesach at its designated time.  On the fourteenth day of this month, at dusk, you are to observe it – at its appointed time’” (Numbers 9:1-3).

Two years have passed since the Israelites left Egypt. They have received Adonai’s commandments and spent an entire year making His Mishkan. It’s now time to begin the annual cycle of His ‘appointed times.’ The Israelites were to eat the Pesach lamb, breaking none of its bones, with matzah (unleavened bread), and maror (bitter herbs). Nothing was to remain until morning.

According to His grace and mercy, Adonai added an instruction for Pesach. If anyone had become ‘unclean’ from touching a dead body or had to travel at Passover, they were allowed to observe it on the fourteenth day of the second month. However, anyone who was ‘clean’ or not traveling and failed to observe Pesach at its ‘appointed time’ would bear the consequence of their sin. This same rule applied to the foreigner as well as the native born as the ‘appointed time’ is not only for Isra’el, but for everyone who join with them in worshiping the Elohim of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

The Sukkah of Elohim

“A cloud covered the tabernacle, that is, the tent of the testimony; and in the evening over the tabernacle was what appeared to be fire, which remained until morning” (Numbers 9:15).

While the Israelites camped in the wilderness, Exodus chapter 16 records that they had tents, but they were also covered by the sukkah of Elohim. His cloud covering kept them cool during the day and His fire warmed them at night. Whenever the cloud of His sukkah lifted, the Israelites would pack up and travel. When the cloud of His sukkah over them stopped, they stopped. If the cloud of His sukkah continued both day and night, they would travel days, weeks or months until it stopped. This cloud and fire sukkah allude to the Millennial Kingdom in Jerusalem and Mount Tziyon.

“Adonai will create over the whole site of Mount Tziyon and over those who assemble there a smoking cloud by day and a shining, flaming fire by night; for the Glory will be over everything like a huppah. A sukkah will give shade by day from the heat; it will also provide refuge and cover from storm and rain” (Isaiah 4:5-6).

A huppah or ‘chuppah’ is a bridal canopy symbolizing Elohim’s presence at a wedding. It is said the Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh hovers above it sanctifying the space below. A huppah is made of a square cloth of satin or velvet; sometimes even a large talit or prayer shawl is used. It is supported by four wooden posts held by four men. The wedding ceremony is conducted under the huppah representing the new ‘home’ being established, and after the wedding ceremony, some rabbis invite couples to stand inside to recall their own weddings.

According to the first-century Rabbi Akiva, the Israelites did not actually build and live in sukkot made of wood and vegetation. Rather they resided in sukkot made of the supernatural ‘clouds of glory.’ The observance of sukkot today remembers, but does not reenact, this dimension of the Exodus. The sukkot constructed and inhabited today symbolize a very different kind of sukkah that sheltered our ancestors in the desert.

According to Rabbi Eliezer, a sage of the first and second centuries, if our annual dwelling in sukkot reenacts the real sukkot (booths) in which the Israelites resided in the wilderness, then the conception of the commandment and its experience works differently. A real sukkah is a fragile and impermanent structure, a ‘temporary dwelling’ as rabbinic halacha would later define it. The Israelites, in this view, were vulnerable and insecure throughout the years of wandering, exposed to the elements and susceptible to attack. On Sukkot, we move out of our solid and enduring houses to reenact this experience of vulnerability and instability [needing to put our complete trust in HaShem].

“We know that when the tent which houses us here on earth is torn down, we have a permanent building from God, a building not made by human hands, to house us in heaven” (2 Corinthians 5:1).

Silver Trumpets

“Make two trumpets; make them of hammered silver.  Use them for summoning the community and for sounding the call to break camp and move on” (Numbers 10:1).

For an Israelite, the blowing of the silver trumpets was important. The sound let them know if they, as a nation, were to assemble at the Tabernacle or only the leaders were to come. When it was time to move camp, the sounding of the trumpet would let each tribal group know when to set out. When there was war, the trumpet sounded the alarm so ‘I Am’ would remember them and save them from their enemies.

The same holds true for the ‘blowing’ at the Yom Teruah. Each of the four blasts of the trumpet or shofar has a purpose and meaning.

Tekiah means to ‘blow or blast.’ It is a medium length blast with a low to high pitch transition having a hard, short push on low pitch, slight sustain on high pitch, sometimes ended with a short, pushing higher pitched burst.  This tekiah is used to gather Adonai’s people together. It was probably the sound used in Joshua 6:5 when the Israelites assembled at Jericho.

Shevarim means ‘broken.’ It consists of three blasts each low-to-high pitch sounded three in a row. The shevarim is a call to repentance. This was probably the blast used in Isaiah 58:1 because the ‘brokenness’ of the blasts signified the need for ‘brokenness’ in the hearts of the children of Isra’el.

Teruah is the battle warning or alarm blast. It consists nine or more rapid one-second pitch bursts like stacatto. The teruah is probably the sound heard when Gideon attacked the Midianites in Judges 7:22. It is most likely the trumpet sound that will begin the ‘Day of Adonai’ as prophesied in Joel 2:1-2.

Tekiah Gadolah is the long, great blast or the Great Shofar. It is similar to the tekiah, only the high note at the end is sustained for the longest possible breath ending with a violent, short, pushed-out breath of an even higher-pitched note. The tekiah gaolah is the blast of resurrection hope prophesied in Isaiah 26:19 and 1 Corinthians 15:53-54.

The Travels Begin

From the time the Israelites left Egypt until they arrived in the Promised Land 40 years later, they made numerous stops. They stopped at Ramses in Egypt, Sukkoth near the Egyptian border, Etham on the edge of the desert, Pi-Hahiroth near the Red Sea, Marah where the water was bitter, Elim where they had wells and palm trees, the desert of Sin where they received manna and quail, Rephidim where Moshe strikes the ‘Rock’ and water gushes out, and the Sinai Desert where they received the commandments of Adonai.

After the Pesach, the Israelites packed their tents to set out on their first journey, moving out in their tribal units as directed by Elohim. The lead group was Judah, Issachar, and Zebulun. The Tabernacle was taken down and Gershon and Merari carried it. They were followed by Reuben, Simeon, and Gad. The descendants of Kohath packed and moved the sanctuary so the Tabernacle could be set up when they arrived. Ephraim, Manasseh and, Benjamin followed the Kohathites. Dan, Asher, and Naftali brought up the rear. Each tribe was under their own banner and chosen leader.

The Ark of the Covenant went ahead searching for a place for them to stop. Before it moved, Moshe would speak these words: “‘Arise Aonai!  May your enemies be scattered! Let those who hate you flee before you!’ Whenever the Ark stopped he said: ‘Return, Adonai of the many, many thousands of Isra’el!’” (Numbers 10:35)

“Let God arise, let his enemies be scattered; let those who hate him flee from his presence. Drive them away as smoke is driven away; like wax melting in the presence of a fire, let the wicked perish in the presence of God. But let the righteous rejoice and be glad in God’s presence; yes, let them exult and rejoice” (Psalm 68:1-3).

Selah
The Ark of the Covenant searched for a place for them to stop.

Tav’erah – The Place of Burning

“Do everything without grumbling or arguing,  so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a warped and crooked generation. Then you will shine among them like stars in the sky as you hold firmly to the word of life” (Philippians 2:14-16).

After a three-day walk, the people began complaining. Imagine traveling through a wilderness and having to carry every belonging, including the Tabernacle and all its gold accessories and heavy furnishings. It wouldn’t take long for the reality of the desolation to kick in. There may have been some excitement anticipating the journey to the Promised Land, but the inconveniences would begin to make any normal person whine.

The Egyptians who joined the Hebrews when they left Egypt became greedy for an easier life. They had not been slaves and life in the wilderness was not what they expected. They remembered the supply of meat, fruits, and vegetables. The mixed crowd of Israelites and foreigners had not counted the cost to follow Moshe.

However, they forgot one important detail; they were not ordinary people trekking through the desert. Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh was keeping them cool during the day with His sukkah cloud, warming them at night with His fire and quenching their thirst from the ‘Rock’. Even the manna continued to appear on the ground in the morning dew. They gathered it and ground it in mills or pounded it into paste with a mortar and pestle. They cooked it in pots and made loaves that tasted like honey cakes. In spite of this, they kevetched. They came to the entrance to the Tabernacle, family after family, and whined to Moshe.

The complaining made Elohim angry –– so angry that His fire broke out against them and consumed the outskirts of their camp.  The fire that had been their warmth and protection suddenly became a curse. Moshe cried out to Adonai to release him from the burden of so many people. He was not their ‘father,’ and could not provide what they needed.

A Portion of Elohim’s Spirit

As a prophet of El Elyon, Moshe had been given a portion of Adonai’s Ruach. The Ruach Elohim enabled him to stand before Pharaoh, lead the children of Isra’el through the Red Sea, and build the Tabernacle. Yet, Moshe is miserable when dealing with the Israelites and “carrying them like a father in his arms or as a nurse carries a baby” (Numbers 11:12).  

“Adonai came down in the cloud, spoke to him [Moshe], took some of the Spirit that was on him and put it on the seventy leaders.  When the Spirit came to rest on them, they prophesied – then but not afterwards” (Numbers 11:25).

Adonai instructed Moshe to choose 70 men that he considered leaders in Isra’el.   Moshe gathered the men and placed them around the Tent of Meeting. The Ruach Elohim came down on those who appeared at the Tabernacle, along with two men, Eldad and Medad, who should have gone to the Tabernacle, but did not.  All 70 prophesied in the camp. Joshua asks Moshe to stop Eldad and Medad from prophesying, but Moshe replied, “Are you so zealous to protect me?  I wish all of Adonai’s people were prophets!  I wish Adonai would put his Spirit on all of them!” (Numbers 11:29)

Moshe’s words prophesy to the new covenant. According to Ezekiel and Sha’ul, Isra’el and all nations who join with her will be filled with the Ruach Elohim.

“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh.  And I will put my Spirit in you and move you to follow my decrees and be careful to keep my laws. Then you will live in the land I gave your ancestors; you will be my people, and I will be your God” (Ezekiel 24:26-28).

“For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. Therefore, anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you his Holy Spirit” (1 Thessalonians 4:7-8).

This group of 70 leaders became the foundation for the Sanhedrin or Bet Din HaGadol –– ‘The Great Court.’  After Moshe laid hands (semicha) on Joshua passing the leadership of Isra’el on to him, the Sanhedrin had its official beginning. As men within ‘The Great Court’ passed away or became unfit for service, new leaders were ordained. The ordinations continued from Joshua to the elders to prophets like Ezra and Nehemiah to ‘The Great Assembly’ to the sages. It was not until several hundred years after the destruction of the Temple in 70 CE that the Sanhedrin dissolved.

“The chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin were looking for false evidence against Yeshua so that they could put him to death” (Matthew 26:59).

“The apostles were brought in and made to appear before the Sanhedrin to be questioned by the high priest” (Acts 5:27).

During the days of Yeshua, the Sanhedrin still made legal decisions for Isra’el. The high priest ruled over the court system, but had become corrupt.

Kivrot HaTa’avah – Graves of the Greedy

“Has Adonai’s arm grown short?  Now you will see whether what I said will happen or not”
(Numbers 11:23).

When Moshe and the 70 returned to camp, the Israelites cried out for meat. Moshe felt inadequate and could not imagine how much meat would be enough to satisfy their greedy hearts.

Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh sent a wind that brought quail from the sea and let them fall near the camp. He sent so much quail they covered the ground three feet high and were about one day’s trip from each edge of the camp. The Israelites were surrounded by quail. They went out and gathered quail for days. The least amount that anyone gathered was ten heaps. While the meat was still in their mouths, before they had even chewed it up, ‘I Am’ struck the people with a plague. Many people died and were buried in the place named ‘Graves of the Greedy.’

In Hebrew the word for ‘quail’ is selav. A variation of shalah means ‘prosper’ which holds the idea of the wicked prospering even though they are careless, thoughtless, and go astray (Psalm 94:3).

Hebrew Word Pictures
Quail or selav – שלו – shin, lamed, vav
– consume and draw near the binding

Prosper or shalah – שלה – shin, lamed, hey
– consume and draw near, revealed

Hatzerot – The Camp of ‘Sorry’

“Now this man Moshe was very humble, more so than anyone on earth” (Numbers 12:3).

After the burden of the Israelites’ problems became lighter, Moshe’s family begins to attack him. Aaron and Miryam began criticizing his marriage to an Ethiopian woman. They became jealous and demand to know why Moshe was given the highest authority when Elohim had also spoken with them.

The word ‘humble’ is defined as ‘lower in dignity and importance.’ The Hebrew word is anav meaning ‘meek.’ Moshe knew and understood his place as merely a man in the presence of Adonai. He had stood on holy ground at the burning bush and had prostrated himself. He knew he was not worthy of the position given him, but had been chosen by Adonai and empowered to accomplish His will. He was nothing more than an earthen vessel used by Elohim to achieve His plan with His chosen nation.

Adonai would not allow Moshe to be attacked by anyone, especially his own siblings. He lets Aaron and Miryam know that His relationship with Moshe is different from any other man, woman, prophet or prophetess. There would never be another prophet to whom He would speak panim el panim so that their face would become so radiant that it had to be veiled. Moshe was the only faithful person in Adonai’s entire household. 

“‘Listen to what I say: when there is a prophet among you, I, Adonai, make myself known to him in a vision, I speak with him in a dream.  But it isn’t that way with my servant Moshe. He is the only one who is faithful in my entire household.  With him I speak face to face and clearly, not in riddles; he sees the image of Adonai. So why weren’t you afraid to criticize my servant Moshe?’ The anger of Adonai flared up against them, and he left” (Numbers 12:6-9).

When the cloud lifted, Miryam had tzara’at. Her skin was whiter than snow. Moshe and Aaron begged Adonai to heal their sister, but Miryam had iniquity in her heart that needed to be resolved. Adonai healed her, but she had to live outside the camp for seven days for purification. Elohim wanted the Israelites to understand that no one should ever challenge Him regarding His chosen servant and prophet, Moshe.

“God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble” (James 4:6).

“For by the grace given me I say to every one of you: Do not think of yourself more highly than you ought, but rather think of yourself with sober judgment, in accordance with the faith God has distributed to each of you” (Romans 12:3).

Yeshua of Natzeret

“However, when he heard that Archelaus had succeeded his father Herod as king of Y’hudah, he was afraid to go there. Warned in a dream, he withdrew to the Galil and settled in a town called Natzeret, so that what had been spoken by the prophets might be fulfilled, that he will be called a Natzrati” (Matthew 2:22-23).

“When he entered Yerushalayim, the whole city was stirred. ‘Who is this’ they asked. And the crowds answered, ‘This is Yeshua, the prophet from Natzeret in the Galil’” (Matthew 21:10-11).

“In their synagogue just then was a man with an unclean spirit in him, who shouted, ‘What do you want with us, Yeshua from Natzeret? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are — the Holy One of God!’ But Yeshua rebuked the unclean spirit, ‘Be quiet and come out of him!’” (Mark 1:23-25)

“But he said, ‘Don’t be so surprised! You’re looking for Yeshua from Natzeret, who was executed on the stake. He has risen, he’s not here! Look at the place where they laid him’” (Mark 16:6).

“Now when he went to Natzeret, where he had been brought up, on Shabbat he went to the synagogue as usual. He stood up to read, and he was given the scroll of the prophet Yesha’yahu”
(Luke 4:16-17).

“‘What things?’ he asked them. They said to him, ‘The things about Yeshua from Natzeret. He was a prophet and proved it by the things he did and said before God and all the people’” (Luke 24:19).

“There they nailed him to the stake along with two others, one on either side, with Yeshua in the middle. Pilate also had a notice written and posted on the stake; it read, YESHUA FROM NATZERET, THE KING OF THE JEWS” (John 19:18-19).

“Kefa said, ‘I don’t have silver, and I don’t have gold, but what I do have I give to you: in the name of the Messiah, Yeshua of Natzeret, walk!’” (Acts 3:6)

©2018 Tentstake Ministries Publishing, all rights reserved.  No copying or reproducing of this article without crediting the author or Tentstake Ministries Publishing. For a hard copy of this Torah portion, the weekly readings of the Prophets and New Testament, Study Helps, and springboard for midrash, please purchase Open My Eyes: Wonders of Torah.

Revelation Chapter 11 – Two Witnesses

 “I was given a measuring rod like a stick and told, “Get up, and measure the Temple of God and the altar, and count how many people are worshiping there! But the court outside the Temple, leave that out; don’t measure it; because it has been given to the Goyim, and they will trample over the holy city for forty-two months” (Revelation 11:1-2).

Yochanan is giving a measuring stick and told to measure the Millennial Temple and the Altar. Specific measurements for the Temple are revealed by the prophet Ezekiel. He measures the thickness of the walls, the gates, the gate entrances, the guard rooms, the courtyard, and the sanctuary, and the Most Holy Place (Ezekiel 42). He is also given the dimensions of the Altar:

“These are the measurements of the altar in cubits (a cubit here is defined as a normal cubit [eighteen inches] plus a handbreadth [three inches]): the base, one cubit [twenty-one inches] deep and one cubit wide; with the molding surrounding it at its rim about a hand-span [nine inches] in width. The height of the altar is thus: from the base on the ground to the lower ledge, three-and-a-half feet, with the width twenty-one inches; from the lower ledge to the upper ledge, seven feet, with the width again twenty-one inches. The hearth measures seven feet [high], with four horns on top of the hearth. The hearth is a square twenty-one feet on each of its four sides. The ledge measures a square twenty-four-and-a-half feet on each of its four sides; the molding around it ten-and-a-half inches [across]; and its base twenty-one inches [larger than the rest, all the way] around. Its steps face east” (Ezekiel 43:13-17).

Many believe, contrary to Biblical evidence, the sacrifices ended when Yeshua died on the cross. Many years after Yeshua’s resurrection, Sha’ul took a Nazarite vow that included a Temple offering (Acts 21:26). The sacrifices and offerings ended when the Temple was destroyed in 70 CE. When any Temple is rebuilt, the offerings and sacrifices will resume.

There will be people at the Altar worshiping Adonai in this manner. Ezekiel is also told to count the number of people worshiping in the area.

The courtyard outside the Millennial Temple will not be measured because the goyim will trample it for 42 months or 3 1/2 years. Goyim is translated into gentiles, however, the word can also mean pagans. The Hebrew word ‘trample’ is ramas and means ‘oppression.’

During the 42 months, the gentiles will oppress the outer court. According to Webster’s Dictionary, ‘oppress’ means ‘to spiritually burden, to crush by abuse of power or authority.’ During the second Temple period, the women of Isra’el gathered in the outer court. Whether or not the outer court will be the gathering place for the nations or women of Isra’el, it will be an oppressive place and pagans will destroy it (Ezekiel 44:9).

“Also I will give power to my two witnesses; and they will prophesy for 1,260 days, dressed in sackcloth.” These are the two olive trees and the two menorahs standing before the Lord of the earth. If anyone tries to do them harm, fire comes out of their mouth and consumes their enemies — yes, if anyone tries to harm them, that is how he must die. They have the authority to shut up the sky, so that no rain falls during the period of their prophesying; also they have the authority to turn the waters into blood and to strike the earth with every kind of plague as often as they want” (Revelation 11:3-6).

There are several thoughts on the identity of the two witnesses. Some believe the two witnesses cannot be individual people because it seems impossible that they could affect the entire world with their life and death. With technology, a global government, religion, and economic system could focus on two individuals who challenge their authority. They suggest a corporate witness of Jew and Gentile, the ‘one new man,’ but the two witnesses wear sackcloth. The modern-day ‘seal’ for the State of Isra’el is a Menorah with an olive tree on each side which could represent the Jews, but according to the ‘signs in the heavens,’ Isra’el will be in the desert during the days of the witnesses.

The two witnesses are identified by the prophet Zechariah as ‘two olive trees’ and ‘two menorahs’ that stand before Adonai (Zechariah 4:14). Zechariah asks about the two olive trees on the right and left of the menorah that poured gold-colored oil through two gold spouts. An angel explains that these are two witnesses, highly anointed individuals, who have a direct spiritual connection to the ‘Lord of all the land.’ Their power comes from Adonai and fire comes from their mouths consuming their enemies. they have the power to stop rain; they can turn water into blood; they can strike the world with plagues.

Elijah had the power to stop rain from falling on Isra’el alluding to one of the witnesses being Elijah. Elijah never died but was taken to heaven in a fiery chariot (Hebrews 9:27).

Moshe had the power to turn water into blood and to bring forth plagues upon Egypt. Though Moshe died and was buried in Moab, his grave has never been revealed by Elohim.

Moshe and Elijah were with Yeshua on the Mount of Transfiguration. At that time, the disciples believed that Yeshua was restoring the Kingdom and asked if they could put up sukkot for each of them (Matthew 17:1-9). The fact that these two men appeared with Yeshua may suggest that they are the two witnesses who prophesy for 1,260 days.

Enoch like Elijah didn’t die. He was so righteous that he walked with Elohim until He took Him into the heavens (Genesis 5:24). Enoch lived before the flood and would have a testimony of a pre-flood earth while Elijah prophesied in a post-flood earth and Israel.

Translating the Hebrew from Zechariah 4:14, the words read, “these are two sons of fresh oil.” ‘Fresh oil’ was used to anoint high priests and kings. The high priest referred to in Zechariah is Yoshua and the the prince is Zerubbabel.

Yoshua was the first high priest after the Jewish exiles returned from Persia. He descended from the priestly lineage of Levi and Aaron. In Zechariah chapter 3, he stands before the angel of Elohim (Yeshua), and the Accuser. Yoshua represents the filthiness of Isra’el’s guilt. Yeshua removes Yoshua’s dung-soiled clothes and replaces them with a clean turban and rich garments. A stone is placed before him representing ‘the Branch’ that has ‘seven eyes’ or the seven-branched menorah. In Hebrew, the word ‘branch’ is netzer. From netzer comes Nazareth and Nazarene.

“This message from Adonai came to me: ‘The hands of Z’rubavel have laid the foundation of this house, and his hands will also finish it’ (Zechariah 4:8-9).

Zerrubabel returned from Persia with Yoshua. His grandfather, Shealtiel, was the last king of Judah before the Jews were exiled. Zerubbabel became the first king of the re-established city of Jerusalem and the province of Judea. As a descendant of Judah, he was of royal lineage like King David. The name Zerubbabel means ‘pressed out like an olive of Babel.’ Haggai prophesies about ‘the Day’ when Zerubbabel will be Adonai’s ‘signet ring’ and his authority will be ‘not by might, nor by power, but by the Spirit of Adonai (Haggai 2:23).

These two witnesses representing the High Priest and King of Judah always occur together in Scripture. If they are the two witnesses during the first 3 1/2 years of Tribulation, they will be stand prophesying about the filthiness and guilt of Isra’el as they worship in a false Temple, with a false messiah, and a false prophet who performs ‘miracles.’

“When they finish their witnessing, the beast coming up out of the Abyss will fight against them, overcome them and kill them; and their dead bodies will lie in the main street of the great city whose name, to reflect its spiritual condition, is “S’dom” and “Egypt” — the city where their Lord was executed on a stake. Some from the nations, tribes, languages and peoples see their bodies for three-and-a-half days and do not permit the corpses to be placed in a tomb. The people living in the Land rejoice over them, they celebrate and send each other gifts, because these two prophets tormented them so” (Revelation 11:7-10).

When the two witnesses finish their ordained time of judgment, the ‘beast’ comes up out of the Abyss and fights against them. He is given power to overcome them and kill them. Their dead bodies will lie on the main street of Jerusalem. Because of the spiritual condition of Jerusalem, it is referred to as Sodom and Egypt.

Sodom was known for its blatant sin of sexual immorality –– homosexuality –– in the days of Abraham and Lot. The prophet Ezekiel expounded on the crimes of Sodom: pride, gluttony, and arrogance. She and her ‘daughters’ were careless and complacent; they did nothing to help the poor and needy (Ezekiel 16:49). This will be the spiritual condition of Jerusalem: rampant homosexuality, pride, excess in eating and drinking, and an offensive display of superiority.

Egypt held Isra’el enslaved for hundreds of years. Through the mighty Hand of Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh, He sent judgment plagues against false gods to humble Egypt. Only after the ‘death of the firstborn’ were the Hebrews set free to become His treasured possession.

The bodies of the two witnesses lay in the street for 3 1/2 days, and no one allows their bodies to be buried. The nations, tribes, and tongues will see the dead bodies via some technology that may or may not exist now.

There are two places to ‘dwell’ in Scripture. One can ‘dwell’ in the Kingdom of Elohim or one can ‘dwell’ on earth. A ‘Kingdom-dweller’ focuses on the spiritual things of Elohim, walking in the Spirit and Truth. ‘Kingdom-dwellers’ are in the world, but not of the world. ‘Earth-dwellers’ are carnal people who focus on their fleshly desires – lust of the flesh, lust of the eyes, and pride of life – and what is happening in their earth world. They are not just in the world; they are of the world (1 John 2:15-16).

The earth-dwellers rejoice over the death of these two witnesses. They will be so happy and relieved that they will exchange gifts. As ‘earth dwellers,’ I have often ‘wondered’ that perhaps this gift-giving celebration will happen around Saturnalia. As Isra’el continues to accept ‘freedom of religion’ in the Land, multiple religions with their idolatrous practices have the liberty to worship whatever gods they choose.

From the reaction of Isra’el and the world, these two witnesses did not preach a message of political correctness or social justice. The ‘earth-dwellers’ wanted these prophets dead. They didn’t just annoy, they tormented people: spiritually and emotionally. The Greek word for ‘torment’ means ‘torture’ or ‘vex with grievous pains.’ After 3 1/2 years of their endless vexing, the two witnesses are killed by the ‘beast’ that comes up from the Abyss, and the people celebrate.

“But after the three-and-a-half days a breath of life from God entered them, they stood up on their feet, and great fear fell on those who saw them. Then the two heard a loud voice from heaven saying to them, “Come up here!” And they went up into heaven in a cloud, while their enemies watched them. In that hour there was a great earthquake, and a tenth of the city collapsed. Seven thousand people were killed in the earthquake, and the rest were awestruck and gave glory to the God of heaven.”

The celebration parties go on for 3 1/2 days, but after 3 1/2 days, the two witnesses stand up on their feet. They are resurrected from the dead. This astounding event elicits great fear to those who watch the breath of Adonai bring these two men back to life. Then, a loud voice from heaven calls to them and they rise up to the heavens in a cloud –– in the sight of all of their enemies.

When Yeshua ascended into heaven, he was enveloped in a cloud (Acts 1:9). Forty days earlier at Yeshua’s death, many holy people were resurrected and wandered around Jerusalem (Matthew 27:53). These faithful men and women, the firstfruits, who attained the goal of the resurrection of the dead became the great ‘cloud’ of witnesses (Hebrews 12:1). This great cloud of faithful redeemed envelops these two men carrying them into glory.

“The second woe has passed; see, the third woe is coming quickly” (Revelation 11:14).

The second woe has passed. The Hebrew word for ‘woe’ is oy and means ‘an impassioned expression of grief and despair.’ For the earth-dwellers, a third ‘expression of grief and despair’ will come quickly.

The seventh angel sounded his shofar; and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdom of the world has become the Kingdom of our Lord and his Messiah, and he will rule forever and ever! (Revelation 11:15).

The seventh messenger sounds his shofar and loud voices proclaim that the kingdom of the world has become the Kingdom of Yeshua –– the Messianic Era has arrived. The Tribulation is either the last seven years of this world kingdom or the beginning seven years of Yeshua’s reign. If the later, he must come to cleanup the world before taking his throne in Jerusalem. The Kingdom of Messiah arrives before the third ‘woe.’

“The twenty-four elders sitting on their thrones in God’s presence fell on their faces and worshiped God, saying, “We thank you, Adonai, God of heaven’s armies, the One who is and was, that you have taken your power and have begun to rule. The Goyim raged. But now your rage has come, the time for the dead to be judged, the time for rewarding your servants the prophets and your holy people, those who stand in awe of your name, both small and great. It is also the time for destroying those who destroy the earth(Revelation 11:16-18).

The twenty-four elders, the leaders of the priestly orders, sit on their thrones in the heavenly Sanctuary. They fall on their faces and worship the One who is and was. They thank Adonai, the Elohim of heaven’s armies for taking His power back so He could begin to rule and reign again on earth.

The nations raged.

“Why are the nations in an uproar, the peoples grumbling in vain? The earth’s kings are taking positions, leaders conspiring together, against Adonai and his anointed. They cry, “Let’s break their fetters! Let’s throw off their chains!”

Yeshua rages.

He who sits in heaven laughs; Adonai looks at them in derision. Then in his anger he rebukes them, terrifies them in his fury. I myself have installed my king on Tziyon, my holy mountain” (Psalm 2:1-6).

The time has come to destroy those who destroy the earth. The time has come for Yeshua to judge the dead and reward the prophets and his holy people who stand in awe of his name –– both small and great people. The Greek word for ‘awe’ is phobeo and means ‘to terrify’ and ‘to frighten.’ In Hebrew the word means ‘to love and fear.’ The name of Adonai when revealed in its fullness will be loved and feared by those who serve Him.

King Solomon asks: “Do you know His name and the name of His son?” (Proverb 30:4).

For many millennia, the spoken name of yod-hey-vav-hey has remained a mystery. The Levitical priesthood decided that the name of ‘I Am’ should only be spoken on Yom Kippur and then only by the High Priest. After the destruction of two Temples in Jerusalem, the pronunciation of the name of Elohim has been lost, created, perverted, and changed. Yet, yod-hey-vav-hey is His Memorial Name forever.

Hebrew Word Pictures

Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh – יהוה

י Yod – A Closed Hand means ‘finished work.’

ה Hey – A Window means ‘reveal’ or ‘behold.’

ו Vav – A Nail means ‘binding.’

ה Hey – A Window means ‘reveal’ or ‘behold.’

The Hebrew Word Picture for yod-hey-vav-hey/yahweh: finished work revealed in the binding nails, behold.

The name of Adonai’s Son has also been changed from the Hebrew name given to Miriam and Yosef to an Anglicized form of Latin that is spoken in English. The ‘name above all names’ has lost its Jewish identity, culture, and language. Standing in ‘awe of His name’ means to know His name.

Yeshua – ישוע

י Yod – A Closed Hand means ‘finished work.’

ש Shin – A Tooth means ‘consume’ or ‘destroy.’

ו Vav – A Nail means ‘binding.’

ע Ayin – An Eye means ‘see’ or ‘understand.’

The Hebrew Word Picture for yeshua: finished work destroys the binding, see and understand.

Then the Temple of God in heaven was opened, and the Ark of the Covenant was seen in his Temple; and there were flashes of lightning, voices, peals of thunder, an earthquake and violent hail” (Revelation 11:19).

When Moshe was given the design for the Menorah, he was told to make it from what he saw on the mountain because everything in the earthly Tabernacle was a shadow of the Heavenly Sanctuary. The Ark of the Covenant, the Throne of Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh is seen. Flashes of lightning, voices, thunder, violent hail and an earthquake accompanies the revealing of the Ark of Adonai’s Throne.

When Adonai wanted to meet with the Israelites, He descended on the mountain with thunder, lightning, smoke, and the blast of the shofar. The people standing at the bottom of the mountain only received a glimpse at the heavenly Throne and it caused them to tremble (Exodus 19:16, 20:15). Lightning is released with the thundering of ‘I Am’s’ majestic voices that sounds like a roar –– the roar of the Lion of Y’hudah (Job 37:4).

“The lion has roared. Who will not fear? Adonai, God, has spoken. Who will not prophesy?” (Amos 3:8).

Chapter 12 – The Birth and The Dragon

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