Month 7:7, Week 1:6 (Sheshi/Kippur), Year:Day 5940:184 AM|
TESHUVAH 36/39, 2Exodus 1/40
Gregorian Calendar: Tuesday 30 September 2014
Grace and the Whirlwind
Continued from Part 35
Are You Perplexed?
"For thus says Yahweh,
'I have heard a sound of terror,
Of dread, and there is no shalom (peace).
Ask now, and see,
If a male can give birth.
Why do I see every man
With his hands on his loins, as a woman in childbirth?
And why have all faces turned pale?
Alas! for that day is great,
There is none like it;
And it is the time of Jacob's distress,
But he will be saved from it'"  (Jer.30:5-7, NASB)
Tell me, child of Israel, are you still perplexed and vexed over troubles that do not end? Are you desperate and fearful that those sins which still beset you, and which you repeat again and again without having success in conquering them by emunah (faith), will forever return to torment you, never to be gone? I would be more troubled were you to tell me that you were not troubled by any such matter, for then you would be willfully blind, or indifferent, or stubbornly rebellious, and that is not a good condition to be in during the season of teshuvah (repentance), or indeed at any other time, but especially as you await the Almighty's verdict on your life this year.
The Terrible Scene of Jacob's Trouble
The scene in today's passage is the reaction of normally strong men when they see the calamity that has overtaken their nation and finally begin to grasp the awfulness of it all. Their cities are in ruins, their dead lie on the streets. False nevi'im (prophets) told them they would have shalom (peace) but all they received was distress, just as they are telling the Body not to worry today because as 'teacher's pets' you will all be 'raptured' away.
Like Women in Labour
When the fighting without is over, then these once strong men are compelled to fight the battle of deep and persistent fears within, as they view their utter nakedness and helplessness. And they are so overwhelmed that they react like women in labour: they shake, their faces are pale, as they survey the charred remains of all their forefathers had worked for. Their own inheritance is in ashes and for their children's inheritance there is but dust, because they would not listen to the lone voice of the true navi (prophet) warning them to make teshuvah (repent) and so spare themselves and their loved ones calamity. They cannot escape their pain, no matter where they seek to hide, because it returns in wave after wave of unconsolable grief, until finally the hour of delivery comes.
The Nature of True Repentance
And that, friend, is in the nature of true teshuvah (repentance), for once you have yielded to the judgment of Yahweh, you must bear the pain and see it through until the land within is cleansed. Then comes the simcha (joy) and freedom of forgiveness and cleansing! And though Yahweh is merciful, and extends His grace - His undeserved loving kindness - do not suppose that there is no punishment, for Yahweh Most High says:
Grace Does Not Negate All Punishment
"I will correct you in justice,
And will not let you go altogether unpunished" (Jer.30:11, NKJV).
Do not assume that every trial is a mere 'test' of your emunah (faith), consider that it may be a punishment also, for He does not let us fully off the hook in spite of His grace. And do not suppose either that this punishment is no more than a slap on the wrist - and though this not be the final 'Jacob's Distress' or 'Jacob's Trouble', which comes in the next and last generation, it is yet a very real distress and trouble for the sons of Jacob in this time of judgment:
Are Your Sins Increasing?
"'Your affliction is incurable,
Your wound is severe.
There is no one to plead your cause,
That you may be bound up;
You have no healing medicines.
All your lovers have forgotten you;
They do not seek you;
For I have wounded you with the wound of an enemy,
With the chastisement of a cruel one,
For the multitude of your iniquities,
Because your sins have increased" (Jer.30:12-14, NKJV).
If your sins are increasing, then you are not only not making teshuvah (repenting) but you are rebelling the more; and if you have chosen not to relent, but to plunge ever deeper into darkness, then truly "your affliction is incurable", and you will be brought low, until you understand both what your sin is - how serious it is - and that you cannot possibly heal yourself, but must throw yourself at the feet of the Master and beg for His forgiveness until it is obtained. And if your pride is so great that you will not do this, then I shudder to think what awaits you. As to the question, 'Why?', the answer is straightforward:
Grace is Extended for the Sake of His Name
"'Why do you cry about your affliction?
Your sorrow is incurable.
Because of the multitude of your iniquities,
Because your sins have increased,
I have done these things to you'" (Jer.30:15, NKJV).
The fact that Yahweh consumed the adversaries of His people even when His people remain in rebellion is no comfort from the eternal perspective. even though it is a relief to have that burden of affliction removed in the temporal:
Entitlement or Obligation?
"'Therefore all those who devour you shall be devoured;
And all your adversaries, every one of them, shall go into captivity;
Those who plunder you shall become plunder,
And all who prey upon you I will make a prey.
For I will restore health to you
And heal you of your wounds,' says Yahweh,
'Because they called you an outcast saying:
"This is Zion;
No one seeks her'" (Jer.30:16-17, NKJV).
There is nothing to exult in or boast of here as far as humanity is concerned; it is not because of our righteousness that He delivers, but for His own sake, and for the name and reputation of the collective Bride that is scorned on account of the mocking of Yahweh's enemies, and therefore ultimately for His own Name's sake. Here, men, is an instruction for you, to treat your wives better than they deserve even as Yahweh treats you better than you deserve, for the sake of the name of Zion, for the sake of the Name of Messiah, for the sake of your own name and reputation in heaven and in Zion, "because they called you an outcast" when Yahweh can never cast His nation away - the nation of those who submit to King Yah'shua (Jesus) and who obey the nation's law or Torah.
The restoration is a great and wonderful thing for those who make teshuvah (repent), accept their punishment without complaint, and receive the grace so freely offered:
The Nations and Unbelievers Will Reap the Whirlwind
"'I will cause him (Jacob) to draw near,
And he shall approach Me;
For who is this who pledged his heart to approach Me?' says Yahweh.
You shall be My people,
And I will be your Elohim (God)'" (Jer.30:21-22, NKJV).
As for the nations - as for those believers too who will not make teshuvah (repent) - even while their sins are stacked high into the heavens, this is the Davar Elohim (Word of God) to them, here and now, today, and in the days ahead:
"'Behold, the whirlwind of Yahweh
Goes forth with fury,
A continuing whirlwind;
It will fall violently on the head of the wicked.
The fierce anger of Yahweh will not return until He has done it,
And until He has performed the intents of His heart.
In the latter (last) days you will consider it'" (Jer.30:23-24, NKJV).
"You WILL consider it", says Yahweh, whether you are a believer making teshuvah (repenting), an unbeliever who refuses to make teshuvah (repent), or one of the lords of darkness - the élite - who presently rules - you cannot not consider Yahweh's verdict or His punishment because it will impact you - like the whirlwind. Then you can either make teshuvah (repent), accepting your punishment in sackcloth and ashes, and be saved, receiving salvation and an inheritance in the world to come, or you can - and will - most certainly perish (Lk.13:3,5).
Continued in Part 37
 Kiy-koh 'aamar Yahweh Qowl chªraadaah shaamaa`ªnuw pachad wª'eeyn shaalowm. Sha'ªluw-naa' uwr'uw 'im- yoleed zaakaar Maduwa` raa'iytiy kaal-geber yaadaayw `al- chalaatsaayw kayowleedaah Wªnehepªkuw kaal-paaniym lªyeeraaqown. Howy Kiy gaadowl hayowm hahuw' mee'ayin kaamohuw Wª`eet-tsaaraah hiy' lª-Ya`ªqob uwmimenaah yiwaasheea`