Sermons Series 3:23, 4 February 2006
The Garden of Yahweh
The Deadly "If" and a Sense of Humour
Today I have in mind to share with you two aspects of the Gospel which at first sight might appear to be either at best totally disconnected or at worst mutually antagonistic, and I will start by sharing with you a couple of scriptures to illustrate the dual themes I have in mind. The first is a proverb:
"A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones" (Prov.17:22, NIV).
The second is an historical event from the Gospels and a longer quotation:
"The tempter came to [Yah'shua] and said, 'If you are the Son of Elohim, tell these stones to become bread.' Yah'shua answered, 'It is written: 'Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of Elohim.'' Then the devil took him to the holy city and had Him stand on the highest point of the temple. 'If you are the Son of Elohim,' he said, 'throw yourself down. For it is written: 'He will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone.'' Yah'shua answered him, 'It is also written: 'Do not put Yahweh your Elohim to the test.''" (Matt.4:3-7, NIV).
I have highlighted the word IF in this last passage of Scripture and have made it the title of my sermon to you today. As it is the longer of the two passages I would like to start with it to day to show you a sure way to become miserable.
"If you are the Son of Elohim", challenged Satan. Now this is not the sort of challenge that you and I are likely to ever hear since I know of few people - apart from some demonised crackpots - who think they are the reincarnated Messiah. However, how many times have you heard the statement - directly or implied: "If you love me or Yahweh ..." Or "If you really cared about me or Yahweh ... you would do this or that for me or Yahweh"? How many times have people said that to you and how many times have you said it to others? And how many of you react negatively to such a challenge or expectation? How many times have you felt obliged to fulfil someone's expectation and felt unable to refuse it because of guilt? And what is the correct approach to this kind of challenge?
"IF you are the Son of Elohim ..." and "IF you love me ..." are of the same satanic spirit, and that spirit is demonic because it is based on doubt and not faith. Now Yah'shua may, of course say it, because He is shining a light on us to help us see our sinfulness, repent, and receive our blessings, not because He wants to send us on some punitive guilt trip. Thus He has every right to say: "If you love me, you will obey what I command" (John 14:15, NIV) because His motive was to give and not to get.
Satan, on the other hand, had another agenda and wished Yah'shua to doubt Himself, and laid before Him three temptations. The first appealed to his hunger, for He was fasting in the desert. The second attempted to persuade Him to abuse Yahweh's promises by twisting them to fit a personal agenda out of His will. And the last, which I did not quote, was an appeal to greed through temporal power when Satan offered him all the kingdoms of this world if He would but bow down and worship him. Yah'shua's response was resolute and final, causing Satan great offence. You shall not live by bread alone but by every word from Yahweh's mouth, you shall not test Elohim, and - after the third temptation - you shall only worship and serve Elohim.
Our love for people, and our expectations of them, if they draw us away from Yahweh, are satanic. We all need bread. We all need food. We all need human love. All of us. But when our demand for these things exceeds that which is legitimate - when our demands compete with, and challenge, the demands placed on us by Yahweh, then what is good and necessary can suddenly become counterproductive and sometimes even evil. If Yahweh tells me: "Go to this man and minister to him", and if then another man cries out: "Come and minister to me!" and I disobey Yahweh, then my love for the second man is born of evil, because the love is impure - I have set this man up before Yahweh. If the second man subsequently says, after I hesitate or refuse: "If you do not come to me and meet my need, it proves that you do not love me," or "this proves you love the other man more than me" then this man is operating under the spirit of the devil. Does he have a need? Possibly - possibly not. But that is not the issue. The issue is obedience since I cannot be in two places at the same time and I must obey Yahweh before man (Ac.5:29).
Years ago when we lived in Oslo a woman rang us up in distress and asked us to come and visit her. It was in the middle of the night. I asked Yahweh if we should go and He said, no. Stay where you are. She is not sincere. When we said we could not come, she replied: "If you were truly a Christian, you would come, because if you loved me, you would not refuse." You see, she had the spirit of Satan in her. She was trying to emotionally blackmail and manipulate me by making me feel guilty if I did not come. But Yahweh told me not to. It was His will. He knew that her motives were not pure. She just wished to use us. However, what we have to realise, brethren and sisters, is that we do not own ourselves - we are owned by Yahweh, to do as He bids. And when we place His will above the will of others, we soon see what spirit is in the people who make demands of us. If the Spirit of Christ - the Ruach haMashiach - is in them, then they will humbly accept Yahweh's will and not complain. If it is not, then they will accuse His servants of being selfish, uncaring, unjust, or whatever, because the spirit of accusation is always of the devil. As it is written:
"Now have come the salvation and the power and the kingdom of our Elohim, and the authority of his Messiah. For the accuser of our brothers, who accuses them before our Elohim day and night, has been hurled down" (Rev.12:10, NIV).
Satan accuses day and night. He cannot let go. He cannot forgive, he won't forgive, because there is no light or love in his heart. Therefore he accuses and manipulates. He hates without a just cause just as the Judeans hated Yah'shua (Jn.15:25). Moreover, he tricks us into believing that we can legitimately act in this way in order to get love when all it does is provoke, hurt or drive people away. We are to be servants to those who own us and no one else, and our ultimate Owner is Yahweh. We go where He directs. Love does not set preconditions, keep an account book of what is 'owed' to us in return, or accuse when expectations are not fulfilled. That is not true love - it is counterfeit love, carnal love, impure love - the love that imprisons, not liberates. It's really a form of hate.
How many people do you know who try to micro manage the lives of others? I know a woman who phones her son up many times day, constantly checking on him, but in reality craving attention, but in the wrong way. Such are on the lookout for every wrong word or action and leap to accuse. They are people most miserable for in allowing themselves to be driven by this demonic spirit they quench all the life out of their lives. They are never satisfied, always spiritually hungry, always thirsty, full of bitterness and recrimination of others and of themselves. They are trapped by satanic lies that would make them either craven or arrogant, depending on the situation, depending whether they feel they are in a lose or win situation.
There is a much, much better way, and a key to know whether you have found it is to be found in the passage of scripture I first quoted: "A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones". The people of Yahweh have always been a cheerful people. They are able to laugh and have fun, but not as the world does because the world's humour is usually at someone else's expense. True humour elevates, does not knock a person down.
At the beginning of this month something truly extraordinary and unexpected happened in the Garden. I had gathered together about 15-20 people in the Garden and taken them down to the lake. Two of my daughters, who have very clear vision of the Garden, described what they saw and experienced. One of them had recently discovered she was multiple and was in need of some attention. Yah'shua called her to Him. He was standing on the water of the lake as He did during His mortal ministry on the Sea of Galilee and called Peter over. Only this time the water was calm. He called the daughter over to Him on the water and after she had plucked up the courage started walking on it. Two of us and a small child joined her on the water. At this point we started cracking jokes about the way the surface of the lake felt to stand on - it was like a squelchy rubber - I have experienced this once before in my life, some years ago, in a prophetic dream in which I was by the sea shore and walked on the water out to sea. There I picked up a fish and walked back to the shore and gave it to a tall Scandinavian man who ate it. I still remember how it felt walking on those waves. Little did I know that the symbolism of the this dream matches exactly what happens in the Garden for often people are given fish which they swallow. They do not kill them and what happens is that the fish then reappears in the pond or lake in their own garden.
But anyway, we were laughing and having fun like small children as my daughter tried to approach Yah'shua. She was by this time in peels of laughter as we ran around on the surface enjoying ourselves and we were all having a wonderful time. Before long Yah'shua was actually playing with us and challenging us to catch Him. So we ran around the lake trying to do that - we never did, but He was smiling and laughing. It was a wonderful experience and we all felt younger and refreshed after it. "Suffer the little children to come unto Me, and forbid them not", He said in mortality (Mk.10:14, KJV). And like all children, they must have run up to Him without a care in the world. Well, brethren and sisters, He expects us to do the same, and continued saying: "for of such is the Kingdom of Elohim". That is how we approach Him.
Now looking at some Christians you would think that Christianity is a most miserable religion. Philip Yancey in his book, Finding God in Unexpected Places, tells the story of a series of public debates between G.K.Chesterton, the psychologist Sigmund Freud, the atheistic and Darwinist writer H.G.Wells, and the socialist-atheist philosopher George Bernard Shaw. This is what he said:
"Shaw, seeing history as a struggle between the classes, proposed a remedy of socialist utopianism. Wells interpreted the past as an evolutionary march toward progress and enlightenment (a view which the rest of the century would do much to refute). Freud held up a vision of humanity free of repression and the bondage of the subconscious."
"Ironically, all three of these progressives held in common a rather stern countenance. With furrowed brows and dark, haunted eyes they would expostulate on their optimistic visions of the future. Meanwhile, with a twinkle in his eye, laughing at his own jokes, Chesterton would cheerfully defend original sin and the Last Judgement. In the public debates, typically he would charm the audience over to his side, then celebrate by hosting his chastened opponent at the nearest pub. Chesterson seemed to sense instinctively that a stern prophet will rarely break through to a society full of religion's 'cultured despisers' : he preferred the roll of jester."
Now I take the view, like Chesterton, which Paul voiced when he wrote: "If Yahweh is for us, who can be against us?" (Rom.8:31, NIV). We do not need to put on airs and graces to defend the truth. We can present it as little children. We can enjoy ourselves, relax and have fun. We can have as our philosophy: "Don't worry - be happy!"
A Christian woman once asked this very relevant question: "Why - if the Bible says a cheerful heart is good medicine - are most Christians so grumpy all the time?" Once of the answers she got was as follows:
"Christians aren't immune to the blues, but you can keep your sense of humour, keeping in mind the comedy of the Gospels. Clearly Christ gives His followers a satiric sense of the world, of its transitory values, that should make a Christian feel buoyant and cheerful. On the other hand, most of what has been written on the topic of Christian humour is pretty earnest and dreadful stuff."
These are the facts we need to know in order to maintain a balanced sense of humour: the world is temporary and Yahweh has already won! Should we deny the reality around us? Certainly not. We are at war, but even in war one can be cheerful. Life can be tough but we don't need to be dragged down by it. There is, as Solomon reminds us, "a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance" (Eccl.3:4, NIV). There is much to be sober about. And it is true that there are times not to laugh. To the double-minded who are playing games and avoiding the real issues of life like repentance, salvation and holiness, He says: "Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded. Grieve, mourn and wail. Change your laughter to mourning and your joy to gloom. Humble yourselves before Yahweh, and He will lift you up" (James 4:8-10, NIV). I have no time for those who are frivolous and who are cracking jokes in order to avoid the real issues of life. There are most certainly things we need to be serious about - very serious. Neither do I have any time for those who irreverently treat Yahweh as a Sugar Daddy and call Him 'Dad', 'Pops' or think He is their pal. This is no way to treat the Creator of the Universe. On the other hand, He has manifested Himself as a man in the person of Yah'shua the Messiah who knows us in every respect and has shared in both our sufferings and joys. He knows us, He is one of us. He laughs and sorrows with us. He plays and is serious. He wants us to be cheerful and happy but out of a right perspective.
Personally I have little time for people who are cracking jokes 24 hours a day. They are usually using humour as a mask but I do believe most definitely that there is a right time and place for cheerfulness and a good laugh. Our experience in the Garden proves it. And we have often seen Him smile and join in a light joke - He sees the humorous side of human nature and wants us to as well.
If this life of pain and suffering is temporary - as we know it is - and if Yah'shua has already won on the Cross, then, as Greg Hartman says, why are we so gloomy sometimes? You see, the Bible is a comedy in the classic literary sense: a story with a happy ending. It is also, you might be surprised to learn, full of humour.
I suspect one reason we have come to think of Yah'shua as having no sense of humour is because of some of the accounts of Him by people like Publius Lentulus, Pontius Pilate's successor, make him appear like an American rock star - earnest and dreadful - or some sort of Terminator. If you think Yah'shua was like that, how come He gave His disciples playful, semi-insulting nicknames? Yah'shua follows in the vein of the Old Testament. You mean to say the Old Testament is humorous? Sure it is! Have you never read about Balaam, the hotshot prophet, who misses seeing an angel, even though his donkey sees him, and sees no significance in the fact that his donkey can talk? (Num.22:18-29) Do you remember when the priests of Baal were summonsed by Elijah on Mount Carmel, he wonders out aloud if the reason Baal can't hear them is because he is busy going to the bathroom? (1 Ki.18:26-27) Isaiah chuckles as the stupidity of a carpenter bowing down before an idol he has just made, which replies back: "You made me" (Isa.45:15-19). What of Yah'shua? Don't you remember His plank-eyed speck inspectors, camel-swallowing gnat-strainers, and the slave who owed his master billions of dollars and promised to pay it all back? Or the business manager who praises his accountant for embezzlement? We miss the humour because we are looking for something else. We come thinking Yah'shua is always sombre and gloomy and then scratch our heads over some of the outlandish things He said. The answer, brethren, is that He had a sense of humour and was following the counsel of Proverbs.
So what possible use could humour have in the Gospel? Well, Greg Hartman has pointed out some interesting things. Firstly, we can use humour to disarm our opponents - the sword of truth can hurt less - yet cut deeper - when we temper it with humour. When you can laugh hard at yourself at the stupidity of some of the carnal things you do, you barely feel the condemnation and the Gospel suddenly becomes a lot more enjoyable. Humour is also, as we know, good for our health and it also builds bridges between people. Humour allows us not to take ourselves or others like Wells, Freud and Shaw too seriously. I am sure most of you feel the same way about politicians. Humour can also serve to warn us - when Yah'shua upbraided the Pharisees for their hypocrisy by comparing splints with logs in the eye, I am sure many laughed. This was not some Aramaic figure of speech - He was being humorous. A modern equivalent might be not taking a aircraft carrier out of your bowl of soup before pointing out the fly in your friend's.
Some people, as a pastor once said, have "the gift of being offended too easily" and humour is a good remedy. Often people are too serious because they lack backbone. If we can't bring ourselves to face the possibility of offending someone, we will never be able to consistently speak the truth. Thus Solomon said: "Better is open rebuke than hidden love" (Prov.27:5, NIV). But to be a satirist as the prophets were and Yah'shua was, does need some guts. We not only have the right but the obligation to warn others of Yahweh's judgement against sin. You have no idea how much hate mail I have received because I do this but somebody has to do it. If our spiritual walk is inconsistent we will only add to the perception that Christians and Messianics are hypocrites (Rom.2:23-24).
It is so easy to get caught up in self-idolatry when we take ourselves too seriously. Having a too high opinion of ourselves is not healthy as Paul warned: "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 judgement, in accordance with the measure of faith Yahweh has given you" (Rom.12:3, NIV). We can be too sober and this can lead to much evil.
Now a powerful tool like humour can also be used destructively so we must wield it with great care. Most of the humour in the world today is cruel, blasphemous and dirty. We are to have nothing to do with that. "Like the crackling of thorns under the pot, so is the laughter of fools" (Eccl.7:6, NIV), said Solomon. So measure your humour carefully. Get the right content and the right balance.
Who then, should we use humour against? Does the bible tell us? Absolutely. We only have to follow Yah'shua's example. Yah'shua used it against those who used the Bible as a political weapon and those who want to treat Yah'shua as a modern celebrity. Who did Yah'shua use satire against? Well, the zealots (Jn.6:15) for one. I think of modern-day vegetarian-only people for another. Have you ever read the Gospel of the Holy Twelve? It purports to be the 'correct' Gospel found in Tibet but was received by demon channelling. There it says Yah'shua and the apostles were vegetarians. Instead of being fishermen the author claims they were melon farmers. Can you imagine Yah'shua telling them to quit their trade and then calling them to be 'melon-pickers of men' (cp. Mt.4:19)? When I met proponents of this false Gospel I used to make light of all the silliness in this Gospel. What on earth was He supposed to have eaten at Passover? A fried turnip?
The second type of person Yah'shua satirised were the people who play at intellectualism until it forces them into hypocrisy such as the Scribes and Pharisees (Mt.9:34). And finally there are those who don't want Christianity to be true - they are not interested in the truth and if they study the Bible at all it is only to nit-pick and not to learn. Are there examples of such people in the Bible? Oh yes, and Yah'shua made fun of them big time especially those who tried to trap Him into violating Torah (Mt.22:15-22; Jn.8:3-7). I think we can legitimately use satire against our modern so-called 'free thinkers' who are somehow free to think of nothing else but atheism, and all those many 'Bible-contradiction collectors'.
Brethren and sisters, there is legitimate and illegitimate humour in the Gospel. We only have to follow the examples of the prophets, the prophets and the Saviour. Paul even advised some legalists to go and castrate themselves because they got so hung up on circumcision as necessary for salvation (Gal.5:12). Though this was sarcastic - which is rightly considered the lowest form of wit - I think he had justification for using it in this one instance. I wouldn't use it too often.
I like a good laugh. There is always laughter in my home even in bad times. Yes, we are sober too, and must be. Deliverance ministry is sober but we not only crack jokes to lighten client's pain from time to time but actually make sport of demons who have for so long had the upper hand on people who have believed their lies and suffered so long. Indeed there was one occasion when one of by daughters was being tortured by a demon. When the demon was cut loose I kicked it up the rear end and drove it out of the Garden. She was in hysterics as she watched this scene - a wonderful release after all the pain she had suffered. And on another occasion a demon was trying to terrorise one of my other daughters but boasting how strong and powerful it was. When she saw how small it was she literally trod on its head - we had a good laugh at the demon's expense. But the funniest scene I have seen in a long time was a Pentecostal Pastor in Oslo sitting in the boot (trunk) of a hutchback car in his best suit being driven to Church in the only spot available - he tried to be so serious and dignified and could not see the humour of his situation.
"A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones". I can think of nothing more crushing than being manipulated into being made to 'love' someone by constantly having to prove one's worthiness. That's not love and it isn't funny. It's crippling. And many of us know the hell that that is. Let us instead love freely without expectations and enjoy ourselves in the bargain. Remember, this life is short and Yahweh wins. Amen.
- Greg Hartman, The Laughing Messiah in The Plain Truth (Nov-Dec 2004)
|Glossary of MLT Hebraic, Greek and English Terms |
For other terms and full details please see the Micropedia
AGlossary Copyright ©2007 Mishpachah Lev-Tsiyon (MLT) - All Rights Reserved
Adon(ai) = Master, a pagan fertility god, Adonis; used by many Messianics but not MLT
(a)eon(ian) = 7 dispensation- or age-long time periods, not forever (see le-olam-va-ed)
Alef-Tav = Alpha-Omega, A-Z, first and last letters of the Hebrew alphabet = Yah'shua
Amen = truly, let it be so, written Amein by some Messianics
Apocrypha = Hebraic Scriptures not a part of the Protestant canon (e.g. Baruch)
Anti-Messiah = Hebraic term for the end-time Antichrist or anyone opposed to the Messiah
antinomian = lawless Christian who disregards all or part of Torah/commandments
Ashkenazi Jew = East European Jew descended from the Turkic-Japhethite Khazars
Assembly = church, congregation, ekklesia, community, fellowship, koinonia, gathering
Azazel = the Yom Kippur scapegoat
Baal, Ba'al = any other master than Yahweh, usually demonic in MLT terminology
Bachor(im) = firstborn son(s)
Bar/Bat Mitzvah = Son/Daughter of Commandment, covenant to obey Torah at age 12
being = soul, the whole person (spirit and body), e.g. "my whole being"
Beit, bet, beth = house, e.g. Beit Yisrael (House of Israel), Beth Lechem (House of Bread)
Beit haMikdash = Yahweh's Temple in Yerushalayim
B'rit Chadashah = the New Covenant; B'rit Chadashah Scriptures = New Testament
B'rit Milah = circumcision - abolished in the B'rit Chadashah, replaced by Mikvah
canon = authoritative Scripture (Heb. qaneh, Gk. kanŰn = measuring instrument)
Catechumen = a serious, covenanted investigator seeking Mikvah or Baptism in MLT
Chag haMatzah = Feast of Unleavened Bread, second of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Chavurat Bekorot = MLT's Priesthood Order, Holy Order and Assembly of the Firstborn
Cohen = priest; Cohen Gadol = High Priest (also spelled Kohen)
Council of Yah's elohim = the heavenly Assembly of the Firstborn or Chavurat Bekorot
demon = fallen malek or angel in rebellion against Yahweh (Heb. shad; see l-Shaddai)
derech = the Way, Path or Road - Yah'shua and the Gospel are the Way
Drash = moral or homiletic interpretation of Scripture - see PaRDeS
Echad = One, Union of two or more in one (as opposed to Yachid) - see Elohim
Echad Godhead Doctrine = Father Yahweh, Son Yah'shua and Sevenfold Ruach (Mother)
Êl, Eloah, Elah = God the Father, Yahweh
Êl-Elyon = Most High God, Yahweh
Êl-Shaddai = Master/Lord over all shads or demons
Elohim = God, the Godhead (Father, Son & Holy Spirit), lit. 'Mighty One(s)', 'Ruler(s)'
elohim = Israelite judges, rulers, angels or gods (false deities, idols, demons)
emunah = faith, actively trusting, clinging or adhering to (especially Yahweh or Yah'shua)
emet = truth, Yah'shua is the Emet
Ephraimite = descendant of the patriarch Ephraim and head of Messsianic Israel
Feasts of Yahweh = the 7 annual Moedim (Pesach, Chag haMatzah, Yom haBikkurim, Shavu'ot, Yom Teruah, Yom Kippur and Sukkot)
Gan-Eden = Garden of Eden, Paradise and state of the purified heart in Messiah
goy(im) = nation(s), Israelites or gentiles not born in or converted to the Covenant
hallelu-Yah = praise Yah(weh)!
Heylel = proper name of Satan or haSatan = the Adversary, the devil
Sabbath = Yom Shabbat (Friday to Saturday sunset, add 1 day in IDL Zone)
Hochmah = Wisdom, title of the 7-fold Ruach haQodesh
IDL = International Date Line, false man-made time division in Pacific Ocean
IDL Zone = Area between the true Divine Date Line (Lake Van/Eden) and the false one
Israeli = citizen of the modern Edomite-Khazar Republic of Israel (not Biblical Israel)
Israelite = citizen of biblical state of Israel or a modern follower of the Messiah
Jew = post-biblical term describing descendants of Edomite and Khazar converts to Judaism
Johannine = pertaining to the Apostle Yochanan (e.g. Gospel of John)
Josephite = descendant of the patriarch Joseph, the head of Messianic Israel
Judahite = a person in direct descent from the patriarch Judah, forefather of the Messiah
Judaism = a Talmudic-based religion rejecting Yah'shua the Messiah
Judean = a citizen of the Kingdom or Province of Judah until the 2nd Century diaspora
Kadosh la Yahweh = set-apart or dedicated to Yahweh, 'Holiness to the Lord', MLT motto
Karaites = Jews (from 700 AD) who reject the Talmud and accept only the Tanakh
kashrut = keeping kosher, food laws of Yahweh and correspinding lifestyle
Ketuvim = Writings or Hagiographa of the Tanakh
Khazar = a Turkic convert to Judaism ~700 AD forming the Ashkenazi Jewish community
kosher = clean foods authorised by Yahweh for human consumption
Lashon Hara = evil-speaking, gossip or slander
legalism = false route to salvation through works (self-salvation)
le-olam-va-ed = dispensation- or age-long, aeonian, not eternal, forever or for eternity
Lev = heart, as in Lev-Tsiyon = heart of Zion
Lev-Tsiyon = Heart of the Fortress [of Yahweh], Hebrew name of MLT's founder
Master = Lord, Sir, Adon(ai) - (one in authority, a ruler - a king, husband, prophet, judge)
Malak(im) = Angel(s), heavenly supernatural messenger(s)
manna = wafers of honey, bread from heaven (lit. 'what is this?')
matzah = unleavened bread, see Chag haMatzah
Menorah = 7-armed candlearbra = the 7 annual Moedim and 7-fold Ruach haQodesh
Messiah = Christ; Anti-Messiah = Antichrist
Messianic Community = Body of Christ, sum total of all true believers; all true fellowships
Messianic Israel = all who worship Yahweh, trust in Yah'shua, obey Torah and overcome
Messianic Jew = Messianic convert from Judaism still clinging to Talmudic traditions
Midrash = aggadic interpretation of scripture vi‚ Drash, a scriptural discussion
Mikvah = baptism by immersion of convert into Yah'shua or of wife into husband
Mishpachah = family: nuclear, congregational, tribal or the whole of Messianic Israel
MLT = Mishpachah Lev-Tsiyon = family of the heart of the fortress [of Yahweh]
Mishpat = right-ruling or judgement
mitzvah/mitzvot = commandment(s)
moed(im) = appointment(s) of Yahweh, 7 Annual Feasts, Sabbath and Rosh Chodesh
Nefilim, Nephilim = giant offspring of materialised demons and human women
Nevi'im = prophetic writings of the Old Testament or Tanakh
New Birth = spiritual conversion in the Ruach haRishon, being 'born again' with new heart
Nidah = a woman's menstruation period during which no intercourse is permitted
Olive Branch = collection of revelations, prophecies and visions published by MLT
Paraclete = Comforter, Advocate (NEB), Counsellor, Ruach haQodesh (Gk. paraklÍtos)
PaRDeS = method of textual interpretation (homiletics) - see P'shat, Remez, Drash, Sod
Patriarch = a father who is head of his family, clan or tribe (lit. 'father-ruler')
Pentateuch = first five books of the Tanakh (Genesis-Deuteronomy), also called Torah
peribolaion = headcovering worn by daughters/wives in submission to fathers/husbands
Pesach = Passover, first of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Peshitta = an Aramaic version of the Bible
Prototrinitarianism = early, simplified MLT formulation of the Echad Godhead Doctrine
Prush(im) = Pharisee(s)
Pseudepigrapha = Non-canonical Hebrew writings additional to the Apocrypha
P'shat = literal, contextual, philological, exoteric, outer meaning of Scripture - see PaRDeS
Qadosh Qadoshim = Holy of Holies, most sacred set-apart room of the Beit haMikdash
Qodesh, Kodesh = set-apart, holy (see Ruach haQodesh)
Rabbi = Teacher, term used by Messianic Jews and some Messianic Israelites = Pastor
Refuge, the 12 Cities of = divinely protected MLT fortresses during the 7-year Tribulation
Remez = hint or allegorical level of Hebraic understanding of Scripture - see PaRDeS
Rosh Chodesh = monthly New Moon appointment of Yahweh
ruach = spirit of a person (lit.'breath')
Ruach Elohim = Spirit of God (the Spirit of the collective Godhead or Elohim)
Ruach haChamashee = 5th Ruach presides over Yom Teruah and Yom Chamashee
Ruach haQodesh = the Sevenfold Holy Spirit or Holy Ghost (lit. 'Set-Apart Breath')
Ruach haRevee = 4th Ruach presides over Shavu'ot, Yom Revee and Bar Mitzvah
Ruach haRishon = 1st Ruach presides over Pesach, Yom Rishon and the New Birth
Ruach haShanee = 2nd Ruach presides over Chag haMatzah and Yom Shanee
Ruach haSheshi = 6th Ruach presides over Yom Kippur and Yom Sheshi
Ruach haShleshi = 3rd Ruach presides over Yom haBikkurim, Yom Shleshi and Mikvah
Sabbath = Yom Shabbat (Friday to Saturday sunset, add 1 day in IDL Zone)
Satan = rebel archangel Heylel, father of lies, devil, chief demon (lit.'Adversary')
Sephardic Jew = West European Jew of mixed blood containing many Judahites
Septuagint = Greek translation of the Tanakh, LXX
Shegal haShabbat = 7th Ruach (Sabbath Queen) presides over Sukkot and Yom Shabbat
Shekinah = Divine Presence and Glory of Yahweh-Elohim
Set-apart = holy, sanctified, consecrated, dedicated, separated (to and by Yahweh)
Shabbat-Shabbaton = High Sabbath (e.g. Yom Kippur)
Shalom = heavenly peace, standard Hebraic greeting invoking Yahweh's peace
Shamash(im) = servant(s), deacon(s), attendant(s)
Shavu'ot = Pentecost or Weeks, fourth of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Sheol = grave or pit, euphamism for Hades or hell - also see Tartarus
shofar = ram's horn, blown during Yahweh's Moedim
simcha = joy, keynote of Sukkot
Sod = mystical, anagogic, inner or esoteric understanding of Scripture - see PaRDeS
Sukkot = Tabernacles or Booths, seventh of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Synagogue = Greek word used by Jews and Messianics (but not MLT) for a meeting house
talmid(a) = male/female disciple or student
Talmud = scriptures, teachings and commentaries belonging to non-Messianic Judaism
Tanakh = acronym for Old Testament Scriptures - Torah, Nevi'im & Ketuvim
Tartarus = place of imprisonment under the earth for rebellious angels and Nephilim
teshuvah = repentance, remorse and contrition leading back to Torah obedience
Torah = Yahweh's teachings or Law; New Covenant Torah includes Yah'shua's teachings
Tribulation, the Great = the final 7 years of the present aeon when Anti-Messiah rules
Trinity = Catholic Godhead formula - see Echad Godhead Doctrine and Prototrinitarianism
Tsiyon = Zion, a fortress, a name of Jerusalem and a prominent hill
Tzitzit/Tizitziyot = tassel(s) worn by men in remembrance of Torah
Universalism = salvation of all at the cosmic Yovel, with different rewards and punishments
Yachid = one, single person or item, as opposed to Echad (many in one, unity)
Yah'shua the Messiah = Jesus Christ (the Son)
Yahudah = Judah - see Judahite
Yahweh, Yah, YHWH = the true Name of our Heavenly Father, also carried by Yah'shua
Yahweh-Elohim = LORD God (the Father, Yahweh as Head of the Godhead or Elohim)
Yahweh haQatan = the sent Yahweh = Yah(weh)'shua, Malak of Yahweh's Presence
Yam Suf = Sea of Reeds, the true Israelite Exodus water crossing, not the Red Sea
Yarden = Jordan River (lit. 'meanderer')
Yerushalayim = Jerusalem
Yisrael = Israel (lit. 'ruling with l') = true believers under the New Covenant
Yom Chamashee = 5th day of the week (Thursday, Friday in IDL Zone)
Yom Din, Yom haDin = (the) Day of Judgement
Yom haBikkurim = Feast of Firstfruits, third of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Yom Revee = 4th day of the week (Wednesday, Thursday in IDL Zone)
Yom Rishon = 1st day of the week (Sunday, Monday in IDL Zone)
Yom Kippur = Day of Atonement, sixth of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Yom Shabbat = 7th day of the week and Sabbath Rest (Saturday, Sunday in IDL Zone)
Yom Shanee = 2nd day of the week (Monday, Tuesday in IDL Zone)
Yom Sheshi = 6th day of the week (Friday, Saturday in IDL Zone)
Yom Shleshi = 3rd day of the week (Tuesday, Wednesday in IDL Zone)
Yom Teruah = Day of Trumpets, fifth of the annual feasts of Yahweh
Yosef = Joseph - see Josephite
Yovel = Jubilee or Year of Jubilee
Zaqen(im) = elder(s) of an assembly or congregation, or senior members of a community
ZoŽ Life = Greek term for spiritual life in the Messiah
Commonly Used MLT Abbreviations
For additional abbreviations and explanations,
please see the Micropedia
Amp.V(er). = Amplified Version of the Bible
Aram. = Aramaic
AV = Authorised Version of the Bible - see KJV
BCAY = B'rit Chadashah Assembly of Yahweh - see NCCG
BoA = Books of Abraham (e.g. 1Abr., 2Abr., etc.)
cp, cf = compare with
CB(Q) = Chavurat Bekorot
CEV = Contemporary English Version of the Bible
ch. = chapter
CJB = Complete Jewish Bible
CLNT = Concordant Literal New Testament
CYe = Council of Yah's elohim
Eng. = English
ff. = and onwards/forwards
fn = footnote
Gk. = Greek
GNB = Good News Bible - see TEV
Heb. = Hebrew, Hebraic
HEM = Holy Echad Marriage, eternal marriage
HO = Holy Order - see Chavurat Bekorot
HOC = Holy Order Collection of revelations - see OB
HRV = Hebraic-Roots Version of the Bible
ibid. = ibidem (lit. 'in the same place'), referring to a book previously cited
ICJC = Independent Church of Jesus Christ, earlier name of NCCF
ISRV = Institute for Scripture Research Version of the Bible
JB = Jerusalem Bible
JBP/Phillips = J.B.Phillips translation of the New Testament
JNT = Jewish New Testament
KJV = King James Version of the Bible - see AV
LB = Living Bible
lit. = literally or literature
LXX = Septuagint, Greek translation of the OT
MLT = Mishpachah Lev-Tsiyon
Moff. = Moffatt translation of the Bible
MRC = Messianic Renewed Covenant Version of the NT
MS(S) = Manuscript(s)
NASB, NASV = New American Standard Bible/Version
NC&C = New Covenants & Commandments - see OB
NCCF = New Covenant Christian Fellowship, earlier name of NCCG
NCCG = New Covenant Church of God, earlier name of MLT - see BCAY
NCP = New Covenant Press, publishing arm of MLT
NCW = New Covenant Witness, MLT magazine
NEB = New English Bible
NIV = New International Version of the Bible
NKJV = New King James Version of the Bible
Nor. = Norwegian
NT = New Testament, B'rit Chadashah
NWT = New World Translation of the Bible, unreliable Jehovah's Witness version
OB = Olive Branch - see NC&C
op.cit. = opere citato (lit. in the work cited)
OT = Old Testament, Tanakh
p(p). = page(s)
pl. = plural - see s.
PWNC = Prophetic Words of the New Covenant, revelation cataloging system - see OB
QED = quod erat demonstrandum (lit. which was shown to be proved)
RCF = Restoration Christian Fellowship, earlier name of ICJC
RhQ = Ruach haQodesh, Holy Spirit
RSTNE = Restoration Scriptures True Name Edition of the Bible
RSV = Revised Standard Version of the Bible
RV = Revised Version of the Bible
s. = singular - see pl.
S&G = Smith & Goodspeed Version of the Bible
TEV = Today's English Version of the Bible - see GNB
Vulg. = Biblia Vulgata, Latin Vulgate translation of the Bible
WEB = World English Bible
This page was first created on 7 March 2007
Last updated on 7 March 2007
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