Modern EliYahs

Using a metaphor involving a rock, Yahshua promised that there would always be faithful believers who follow and proclaim His ways and teachings. He said in Matthew 16:18: “And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my assembly; and the gates of the grave shall not prevail against it.” The “rock” was Peter’s confession that Yahshua is the Messiah.
There has never been a time when Yahweh did not have His covenant people worshiping Him somewhere on earth.

Yahshua’s assembly didn’t die with those True Believers in Yahshua’s day. The true Body lived on through history, and notably to our day, to us modern EliYahs. Amazingly, what happened in both testaments is still alive and active 2,000 years later. Yahweh never deviates from His salvational plan.

Even during the Great Tribulation when the assembly is taken into wilderness protection for 3½ years, there will still be two witnesses given great, supernatural powers standing on the streets of Jerusalem proclaiming Yahweh’s Name and Truth, Revelation 11.

Just as He had Moses and Aaron and many prophets standing firm against the opposing tide, Yahweh’s representatives will stand against Satan and the Man of Sin.

Being that Yahweh has always had His people somewhere on earth throughout history means no one can use the excuse that the Truth wasn’t here. Ours is to find it and follow it. “Seek first the Kingdom of Yahweh, and His righteousness,” Yahshua said in Matthew 6:33.

The Bible student is aware of the many references to Yahshua’s Second Coming in the New Testament. To be exact, 318 New Testament prophecies relate to the Messiah’s return. In His Olivet prophecy of Matthew 24, Yahshua says in the last days wars will increase as well as famines, diseases, massive earthquakes, and possibly meteor strikes. These events will prove the veracity of the Bible.

He then zeroes in on the character and temperament of modern people, which is the most revealing sign of the end. The moral underpinnings that make a safe and flourishing society are disappearing. Natural restraints that hold back bad behavior are also fading so that we are becoming a culture of unchecked anger, open hostility, and spiritual decay. What we witness now is prophesied in the Word. Christianity is also in a freefall and unable to turn society back to the Scriptures.

It’s All About Self Today
The Apostle Paul warned in 2Timothy 3:2: “This know also, that in the last days perilous [distressing] times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves [“fond of self” in the Greek], covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, without natural affection [inhuman behavior], trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of Elohim.”

People are turning inward; satisfying self is top priority today. In politics they look only for the candidate who says he will give them what they want – gain with no pain.

Sin is at the root of every evil, every crime, all that is immoral, all heartache and suffering, all maliciousness, every hateful attitude, self-obsessions, and all that destroys lives. What we suffer today stems from sin in the human heart. If this doesn’t validate the prophecies of the Bible, what does?

We believers find ourselves standing in the gap, holding to the Scriptures and its fundamental morality that our world needs like oxygen. It is no accident that our message dovetails with end-time prophecy.

Yahshua said in Matthew 24:14:
“And this good news of the kingdom shall be preached in all the world for a witness unto all nations; and then shall the end come.” That the truth of the sacred Name has come to the forefront in the last 40 years also verifies that we are in the last days.

In 2008 the pope banned Catholics from using Yahweh’s Name in liturgy, songs, and prayers. That’s ironic because Yahweh’s Name appears abundantly in the Roman Catholic Jerusalem Bible! No doubt the growing popularity of the Name taught and expounded by True Believers instigated the pope’s censorship action.

Of the many who contact YRM, few question the veracity of Yahweh’s Name. That wasn’t the case only a few decades ago when Yahweh’s Name wasn’t so well known. The outreach of the Sacred Name groups had a big part in taking the Name truth worldwide.

Our nationwide outreach through Discover the Truth TV program in conjunction with one of the largest religious websites on the Internet, in addition to videos exceeding 2 million views worldwide – all have made a significant impact. Also influential are many believers proclaiming the EliYah message “my El is Yah” on social media. We must never give up preaching and teaching the Word, both when convenient and when not, 2Timothy 4:2.

It is not only the holy Names that set us apart from nominal teachings, but also the many truths we follow in the Word.

Jude 1:3 encourages the believer. “Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints.”

Why would Jude bring it up if churchianity were faithfully teaching New Covenant truths? He continues in v. 5, telling how Israel apostatized; how even some angels apostatized, and how Sodom and Gomorrah went off the rails morally. Why would he tell us to go back to the original teachings once delivered if those doctrines were faithfully being carried forward?

Jude says that salvation hinges on the original truths, the faith once delivered. And that is what Yahweh’s people must stand on and proclaim.

Lawbreaking Produces Sin
A key that unlocks what we are about and the message we teach is found in the prophet named EliYah through what he represented and what his mission was. Our ministry today directly mirrors his mission.

Today’s nominal teachings have missed the simplest of truths.

To prove this, ask the person on the street what sin is, according to the Scriptures. What you’ll get are such bromides as sin is:
• not living right
• wrongdoing
• unbelief
• darkness not light
• a falling away

Such generalities don’t help anyone to identify and overcome sin. They are just platitudes and clichés that nibble around the edges, but don’t get to the core of what sin actually is. For most, sin is whatever they decide it is. As a wise general once said, “If you don’t know your enemy you can’t defeat him.”

Yahweh made sure that the enemy sin is very simple to recognize and understand so that we will know exactly how to overcome and avoid it. His straightforward description is found in 1John 3:4: “Whosoever committeth sin transgresses also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” Only seven words are needed to tell us plainly that sin is lawbreaking. Romans 3:23 and 5:12 say everyone has sinned by lawbreaking.

But the law was abolished at the cross, many say. Here’s the paradox: how can every person be a sinner if the standard that defines sin doesn’t exist? If there are no traffic laws I can drive any way I want and not be arrested.

In the Bible’s definition of sin we find truth. We learn how to come to salvation. It tells us to walk in Yahshua’s footsteps and follow His example. It all hinges on our obedience to the Word.
We find in 1John 3:5 that Yahshua had no sin. That means He was a perfect lawkeeper. “But my minister tells me He nailed the law to the cross,” they will say. That is another contradiction as Matthew 5:17 quotes Yahshua saying emphatically: “Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil.”

Fulfill does not mean to abolish. Why? Read the next sentence: “For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled.”
Talk about hyperbolic proof. So long as heaven and earth exist, even the most minute part of the law will still be in full force. What bigger proof can there be?

What is misinterpreted is Colossians 2:14, which says it was the handwriting of ordinances that was nailed to the stake. “Handwriting” of ordinances refers to the statutes written by man; it is from the Greek dogma. It is not describing any commandment of Yahweh.

The Most Violated Commandment
The commandment broken far more often than any other is the very first one: “Thou shalt have no other mighty ones before me.”

“What do you mean?” you ask. “I don’t worship idols.” You don’t have to bow to Buddah, visit Vishnu, or cash in for Kris Kringle – any time you put ANYTHING before Yahweh, you idolize a priority. That includes your job, family, finances, a hobby, entertainment, or an obsession. Any of these can take precedence over living for Yahweh in your life.

Most anything can be an idol. The commandment says not to serve these things. Serve is abad, and as a verb can mean to enslave. We are not to be enslaved by anything that takes us away from serving Yahweh. By anything that robs our time in worshiping Him.

In so many different ways the first commandment is broken every day and many times a day. Every other commandment you violate also breaks the first one. When you break one you really break two because every sin you commit takes you away from Yahweh and puts something in place of your obedience to Him.

EliYah Preparing the Way Today
Let’s return to the prophet and his message. EliYah was the first major prophet to the northern Kingdom of Israel. Those 10 tribes were constantly going off the rails. Every king they had was bad. EliYah (incorrectly, Elijah) is a Hebrew name that means, “my El is Yah.” His name embodies the first commandment and so did his most memorable action.

The EliYah message to be proclaimed at the end of the age is, “Yahweh” is the Mighty One of this universe. He has a personal Name packed full of salvational meaning. He doesn’t have “many names.”

Another crystal clear statement just like the scriptural definition of sin, is in Isaiah 42:8: “I am Yahweh: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.” You cannot mistake that simple declaration; you cannot shoe-horn another name or title into Yahweh’s plain, simple, clear, declarative statement: I am Yahweh, that is my Name.

Yahweh’s Restoration Ministry has dozens of scholarly reference books in our library that verify His Name Yahweh. In my research I have never come across a variant like Yah-havah, Yahovah, Yehovah, Yahoveh, or any other proxy some use for His Name.

To know exactly how YRM fits into the EliYah message, let’s look at the focus of EliYah’s mission. In 1Kings 18:21 the prophet engages false worship at Mt. Carmel.
Israel was playing both sides. Our prophet asks Israel: “How long are you going to vascillate? If Yahweh is Elohim, follow Him, but if Baal, then follow him.” Find out the true One and stick with Him.

We see a direct parallel today with those who mix Yahweh’s Name with common titles.

EliYah cries to them as well: stop straddling the fence. If you claim to worship Yahweh, the Mighty One of the universe, then worship Him, all the way. Don’t equivocate. You don’t honor Him by heathen titles.

When you mix in a title as if it’s His Name, you demean Him. You degrade the holiest Name in the universe. When you use another name or title in worship, you invoke a different worship that identifies with that name. I am Yahweh, He thunders, and I will not honor any other name.

Those who are enlightened swim against the current. That’s to be expected. So did Yahshua. Always remember that salvation is what we are living for and not the approval of the unenlightened majority.

G-O-D represents a category, a class, a molten image, according to the Oxford English Dictionary. Paul said in 1Cor. 8:5: “For though there be that are called gods, whether in heaven or in earth, (as there be gods many, and lords many)…” but he adds in verse 6: “But to us there is but one Elohim, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in him; and one Master, Yahshua, by whom are all things, and we by him.”

Our Savior Yahshua promised that just as John the Baptist came in the power and strength of EliYah, another would come much like John before the Savior’s return to this earth. His message will be the same: Yahweh is the true Mighty One. Call on Him; Be called by Him. And then follow Him. We have no other choice if salvation is our goal.

The EliYah message is summed up in the meaning of the name EliYah: “my Mighty One is Yah.” His message comprises the fact that His people are called by His Name Yahweh.
“If My people which are called by My name shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land,” 2Chronicles 7:14.

Being called by His Name we turn from sin and obey Him. How many deeply honor His Name, use it, and don’t deny its importance no matter what the circumstances? How many take it to the next level and submit in everything to Him in preparation for rulership in the coming millennial Kingdom? Sadly, most are stuck at step one.

A Coming Restoration of all Things
Yahshua told the multitude in Matthew 11:14 that if they would just accept John the Baptist, he would be the EliYah prophesied to come. Later, in Matthew 14:3-10, we read that Herod had John beheaded.

The people did not repent at the preaching of John the Baptist but rejected him as well as his message of repentance and obedience. Yahshua said in Matthew 3:3: “For this is he that was spoken of by the prophet Esaias, saying, the voice of one crying in the wilderness, prepare ye the way of Yahweh, make his paths straight.” John was “crying out” because few were listening.

Yahshua said that John came just as EliYah did, preaching repentance, meaning turn your life around and obey the true Mighty One.

But they failed. He said in Matthew 11:18 that John the Baptist didn’t come eating or drinking, i.e. fellowshiping with others, so they concluded that he must have a demon. The Son of man comes eating and drinking and their accusation was he’s a glutton and a drunk.

Most don’t understand our message either. But Yahshua concluded that the results will ultimately decide: “wisdom is justified of her children.” Wisdom will be justified by its deeds.

After John’s death, Yahshua explained to the gathered disciples, “EliYah is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them,” Mathew 17:12.

Problem no. 2 is that they rejected Yahshua as the Messiah. But wait. There will yet come another EliYah at the end of the age, our age. Note what Yahshua further said in verse 11 about the important mission of this coming prophet revisited, “EliYah truly shall first come, and restore all things.” This was after the death of John the Baptist.

The only possible explanation is that there will be a third EliYah like John the Baptist, preparing the way for Yahshua’s Second Coming, as John did for Yahshua’s first appearance.

Now let’s connect some dots by going to Malachi 4:4-6, a key passage that speaks of us, you and me, as we bring truth to the world in these latter days. First note the context in verse 4:
“Remember ye the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments.”

Just as Eliyah cried out to repent and turn to the true Father in heaven, and as John the Baptist preached repentance, which means to turn from sin and obey the statutes of Yahweh, the prophet Malachi again, at the end time, reminds us of Yahweh’s statutes and judgments handed down at Sinai.

With this in mind, note how Malachi then follows up his warning to obey: “Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of Yahweh.” Yahshua agrees with Malachi. Another EliYah is clearly defined by both. And what is the mission of this latter-day EliYah?

“And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.”

Here comes a third EliYah, preparing the way of Yahshua the second time, just as John the Baptist, a prototype of EliYah, prepared the people for Yahshua’s first coming by preaching repentance and obedience. Same message we have.

The whole context of this 4th chapter of Malachi is about turning back the people in obedience at the end of the age. The prophet begins in verse 1 of this chapter by telling the people to honor the law, the statutes, and judgments given at Sinai. That is pivotal, not only because it is central to the two EliYah messages, but also because obedience to Yahweh’s statutes is the springboard from which he introduces this new EliYah in the latter days.

A key to putting all this together is in the transfiguration of Matt. 17:2, where Yahshua takes Peter, James, and John into a high mountain. There they see a vision (v. 9) of both Moses and Eliyah talking with Yahshua about His coming death. But according to Luke 9:31, Peter, James, and John were so tired that they fell asleep.

When Peter wakes up and sees the vision of Yahshua with Moses and Eliyah, and not knowing what had occurred while he was sleeping, he in typical Peter-esque fashion spouts off the first thing that comes to mind, “It was sure good to have been here, let’s make three tabernacles for Yahshua, Moses, and EliYah.”

This vision with the three individuals validates the unity between Yahshua’s New Testament message with the Law and prophets of the Old Testament.
Yahshua said that there would be an EliYah in these last days preaching and teaching a return to the laws and statutes once delivered to the saints at Sinai, as we read in Jude 1:3.
Malachi 3:1 says this messenger, this EliYah, will prepare the way for the Messiah.

Going Back to the Fathers
So this end-time EliYah, which is clearly those who bring the message of repentance and obedience, will change hearts by returning to the precepts of the fathers, the Old Testament patriarchs, that the children will also honor as their example is given to the descendants by this EliYah.

If this does not happen, the earth itself will be cursed with total destruction.

Obedience is the only path to salvation, and disobedience is the sure route to destruction. Yahshua said if it weren’t for the elect, the world would be toast. Yahweh is giving us a chance to finish the work we must do as His covenant people—to teach the world the Truth first given to the patriarchs. Forget Roman traditions. Turn to the truth first presented by the patriarchs of old. And when things get hot, we can trust Yahweh to step in and save His elect.

The last book of the Old Testament emphasizes that EliYah (and specifically the message of honoring and calling on the true Yahweh) would precede the Second Coming.

We at YRM are fulfilling the EliYah mission. We are the third EliYah that Yahshua spoke of in Matthew 17:11. “And Yahshua answered and said unto them, Eliyah truly shall first come, and restore all things.” This third EliYah will bring back the truth of the Covenant that all must become a part of with all its stipulations. They will accept Yahshua and teach the laws He lived and taught, Revelation 12:17, 14:12, and 22:14: “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city.” (Rev 22:14).

The EliYah at the end of the age and those with him who resist the Beast and his system will also face persecution, as did the first EliYah with Ahab and Jezebel. And as did John the Baptist, the second EliYah, murdered by Herod. Yahshua said that His saints would “be hated of all men for My name’s sake; but he that shall endure unto the end, the same shall be saved,” Mark 13:13, Luke 21:17.

In these last days there must be bold teachings of Yahweh’s laws and His weekly and annual Sabbaths—His way of Life. If not, the rocks would cry out, Luke 19:40. Proclaiming the truth of Yahweh’s Word before the Messiah returns will turn those who are called by Yahweh to seek His ways and completely submit to Him.

The final chapters of the Bible, Revelation 12:17, 14:12, and 22:14, say we must have both Yahshua and obey Yahweh for salvation. They come as a package. Faith and obedience are not mutually exclusive. We will go nowhere without obedience. Yahshua obeyed, and He is our example. He is the key. We do what He did, taught, and lived. Revelation tells us that Yahweh’s people will be sealed with His Name and given protection once they have accepted His sovereignty and taken hold of His Covenant.

Traits of the Modern EliYahs
How does the true worshiper fit the role of the EliYah who is to come?

• Nearly unknown by the world, EliYah suddenly emerged almost covertly as a prophet to steer Israel from the brink of disaster. The believer is relatively unknown to the vast world of Bible believers.
• This man of Yahweh stood alone against 450 prophets of Baal. True teachings stand against many Bible-challenged church traditions.
• The altar that EliYah used had been broken down and abandoned and had to be rebuilt, symbolizing the abandonment of truth and the task the faithful have of re-teaching the faith once delivered.
• EliYah’s challenge to the worshipers of Baal: How long limp you between two different worship practices? 1Kings 18:21. Modern EliYahs ask, how long will compromise with the world be acceptable?
• The transfiguration represented unity among Yahshua, the law, and the Old Testament prophecy (Matt. 17:2). Moses typifies the law and EliYah represents the prophets. We see unity with Yahshua, the law, and the Old Testament, and not His abolishment of it.

Be a rock. Don’t let trials small or great pull you away from Yahweh. He will never leave or forsake His faithful.

Stained-Glass Filters

Church. For most it means stained-glass windows and ministers preaching in monotone. It means sitting for 20 minutes in uncomfortable pews listening to platitudes while dreaming of doing something else.

Too often, passing through church doors automatically trips the mind into neutral where all critical thinking stops.

Is this how it was when the Messiah taught His disciples on the shores of the Galilee 2,000 years ago? Where was the liturgy and the doxology then? Where was the neat packaging of ritual and repetition? How could the Bible be taught in such an unfettered atmosphere?

Two thousand years of syncretizing with foreign mystery religion has today’s churchgoers looking at the truth with apprehension. Keeping the Sabbath, feast days, and the other laws is anything but conventional today. Never mind that the Savior observed and taught them, and His Assemblies in Acts faithfully followed them.

Isn’t it strange how tradition blinds us to other possibilities?

This brings to mind the woman who went back to her corner church because the new spinoff group met in a motel and it “just didn’t feel like church there.”

No doubt meeting by the seashore or on the hills of Galilee would not “feel like church” to most churchgoers. And neither does hearing such words as “law” and “obedience.” But unless we can let the truth of Scripture stand on its own in open sunshine, without centuries of mind-numbing dogma to twist and swallow it up, then our faith is disingenuous.

Yahshua said that until heaven and earth pass away, not even the least letter of the alphabet nor its embellishment would be dropped from the law. Deuteronomy 7:9 says Almighty Yahweh is faithful to keep His covenant with those who keep His commandments “to a thousand generations.” Taken literally, we still have 16,000 more years to keep the law!

A popular magazine claimed that to get gentiles to become Christians, avoiding circumcision and other Jewish laws, Paul had to bring in a new doctrine: salvation outside of the Mosaic law. Obviously this magazine writer had himself been blinded by too much stained glass. Had he only turned to 1Corinthians 7:19, he would have discovered that Paul minimizes physical circumcision in favor of the law!

Imagine how different society could be if even half the churches taught obedience to the moral law. But it is not human nature to want to submit to any authority, and so the “faith alone” bandwagon is packed full.

In a stunningly graphic prophecy, Isaiah describes the nominal world of religion in 2022: “This is a rebellious people, lying children, children that will not hear the law of Yahweh: which say to the seers, ‘See not;’ and to the prophets, ‘Prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits,” 30:9-10.

What about you? Do you see the Scriptures in the pure, white light of truth, or in light filtered through colored glass?

Casting Light on Hanukkah

Christmas is not the only popular observance falling in December. The Feast of Dedication, or Hanukkah, is an eight-day nationalistic observance of the Jews that begins on the 25th of Kislev (December). It celebrates the rededication of Solomon’s temple that had been desecrated by Antiochus Epiphanes, king of Syria, in 165 BCE. Tradition says the observance was instituted by Judah Maccabee and his followers.

Hanukkah and its main features are found in the apocryphal books of first and second Maccabees. The eight days were celebrated with gladness like the Feast of Tabernacles. It is even referred to as Tabernacles (2Maccabees 1:9) or Tabernacles and Fire (1:18) (Encyclopaedia Judaica, Hanukkah. p. 1283).

The Judaica surmises that Tabernacles was not celebrated at the proper time because the Temple had not been cleansed, and therefore “a second Tabernacles (analogous to the Second Passover) was held.”

Unlike Yahweh’s appointed Feast days, Hanukkah with its Christmas-like customs was a work in progress. Its rites evolved over time. The 25th date corresponds to the third anniversary of the proclamation of the edict of Antiochus to offer idolatrous sacrifices on the Temple altar. The date and month trace to the ancient day of sun worship at the winter solstice, and to the related feasts of the Greek god Dionysius.

Historical sources differ in the details of Hanukkah. Various traditions (baraita) in the Jewish oral law, which were not incorporated in the Mishnah, provide differing legends. The most prominent tradition details the rededication of the Temple when a single cruse of oil, enough to light the Temple candelabrum for a day, miraculously provided light for eight days – thus making Hanukkah an eight-day celebration called “Lights.” The historian and priest Josephus, who made no mention of Hanukkah, paired the name Lights with the fire that descended from heaven to the altar not only in the time of Moses, Nehemiah, and Solomon’s Temple, but also in the days of Judah Maccabee (1:18-36: 2:8-12, 14) (Judaica, p. 1283).

As with most extrabiblical observances, the Talmudic tradition of Hanukkah comes with a checkered past. The Judaica notes, “Certain critics conjectured that the origin of Hanukkah was either a festival of the Hellenized Jews or even an idolatrous festival that had occurred on the 25th of Kislev. Antiochus had, therefore, chosen the day to commence the idolatrous worship in the Temple” (ibid).

The parallels with the Christmas celebration are obvious. The Hanukkah bush smacks of the Christmas tree, the greeting cards, gift exchanging, bulbs and lights strung at this time also are clearly a replication of Christmas customs.

Some contend that Yahshua was keeping Hanukkah in John 10:22. The passage says it was during the feast of the dedication when Yahshua is seen walking on Solomon’s porch at the Temple. It does not say He went into the Temple and was sitting in on a Hanukkah service. He typically went wherever crowds gathered. He discussed Scripture with some Jews there who then wanted to stone Him.

Hanukkah celebrates the rededication of a temple that no longer exists. Being that Hanukkah is a man-made tradition with problematic customs and no biblical affirmation, should we not instead focus energy on Feasts that are repeatedly commanded by Yahweh, kept by Yahshua and the apostles, and will be part of the constitutional law governing the Kingdom coming to earth? Man’s traditions don’t set the course for the True Worshiper. Yahweh’s commands do.

Yahweh’s seven annual Feasts are part of the covenant He makes with believers today. These are the observances that have biblical authority. The true worshiper must make them a part of his life now.

Restoration Times Nov – Dec 2022

Restoration Times

In this issue of the Restoration Times we discuss:
• Truths and Myths of Christmas
• Casting Light on Hanukkah
• The Man-made Name Yehovah
• Modern EliYahs
• Stained Glass Filters
• Q&A

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Don’t you know that the full vowels for Yehovah have been found thousands of times in ancient Hebrew manuscripts? Because of these amazing finds the name of Yahweh is not accurate.

Q     Don’t you know that the full vowels for Yehovah have been found thousands of times in ancient Hebrew manuscripts? Because of these amazing finds the name of Yahweh is not accurate.


A     Many who tell us this do not understand Hebrew or the concept of Kativ Qere. Qere and Ketiv are orthographic devices that were used by the Masoretes, i.e., Jewish scribes from the 6-10th centuries. Qere means, “what is read,” and ketiv means, “what is written.” It is found in existing Masoretic manuscripts dating to the 9th and 10th centuries, CE. There are several forms of Qere / Ketiv, including: ordinary, vowel, omitted, added, euphemistic, split, and qere perpetuum. Basically, the scribes would insert the vowels for Adonai or Elohim into the text so the reader would see the vowels for Adonai or Elohim as they came upon the tetragrammaton YHWH and would read either Adonai or Elohim based on the vowels written. See professor William Barrick explain this concept:

Many who push this idea will point to a claim that a certain Karaite Jew found the “full” vowels indicating the name Yehovah. What many do not understand is that in every instance and example of the name Yehovah we also see another name Yehovih. This is because the vowels for Adonai in the tetragrammaton read Yehovah and the vowels for Elohim in the tetragrammaton read Yehovih. Let’s go through some examples. If you do not have a basic concept of biblical Hebrew this may seem a bit complex.

In 1Kings 2:26 we see the full vowels for Elohim in the text with the shewa, holem, and hireq (see above). In this instance the hateph seghol reverts to a simple shewa under the yod exactly as it does with the combination for Yehovah. This hateph vowel reverted to a simple shewa because the compound shewa was not needed under the yod as it is under the guttural aleph. This is the rule, however, there are exceptions. “Gutturals cannot take Vocal Shewa, but do take reduced (Hateph) vowels.” Basics of Biblical Hebrew, Chapter 2L – Hebrew Vowels. This is a rare occurrence, just as the rare occurrence of the full vowels of Adonai with the vocal shewa under the yod that we see in Genesis 3:14. (Pronunciation above: Yehovih with the full vowels for Elohim with the initial vocal shewa under the yod)

In Judges 16:28 we see the full vowels for Elohim but in this case the hateph seghol does not revert to a simple shewa under the yod. This may be due to the fact that the title Adonai precedes the tetragrammaton and could lead to the reader saying Adonai twice, but this isn’t always the rule. (Pronunciation above: Yehovih with the full vowels for Elohim retaining the hateph seghol under the yod)

In Ezekiel 24:24 the tetragrammaton loses the holem and reverts to the shewa just as we see many times with the pointing for Adonai. See Genesis 2:4 for an example of this (יְהוָה) in your interlinear (Pronunciation above: Yehvih with the vowels for Elohim minus the holem above the first heh)

In Genesis 15:2 the holem has been removed and the yod retains the hateph seghol. (Pronunciation above: Yehvih with the yod retaining the hatepeh seghol and the holem removed above the first heh)
These examples above show vowel point combinations for Elohim in every aspect the same as we see with the vowel point combinations for Adonai (Yehovah). There is nothing special about the full vowels written as Yehovah any more than you could say the full vowels written as Yehovi (Yehovi) are indications of the proper name. One could use the same arguments and contend that the name Yehovih is proper. In most cases we see the holem dropped in both with only partial vowels. The scribe’s intent was never to put the proper pronunciation of the name of Yahweh in the text, but simply to use these vowels as code to either speak Elohim or Adonai rather than Yahweh.
One thing is for sure, we don’t see the vowel combination for Yahweh ever used in the text. The reason is simple – the scribes were hiding the name and this is what many today do not understand because of a false narrative to push the erroneous name Jehovah or Yehovah, which has been proven incorrect for decades. If we did see this vowel combination for Yahweh, then we would know instantly that this could not be the proper pronunciation. By simple deduction we can prove the name Yahweh by what “isn’t” in the text.

Conclusion: The name Yehovah (above) was popularized by a narrative that a certain Karaite Jew found the full vowels of Yehovah as he was in the bowels of the Hebrew University, reading the Aleppo codex on 911, at the exact moment the planes were hitting the World trade Center. This narrative was of course to dazzle you into believing that this was a miracle in the making. The proper name has “now” been found by a supernatural event he excitingly proclaimed. Now that narrative is changed from one obscure, amazing find to literally thousands of occurrences. The narrative had to change, because the “full” vowels pointed for Adonai is not completely uncommon. Unfortunately, many do not see the elephant in the room. Was this man ignorant of all these occurrences? Most who follow him do not know Hebrew, although claiming to be in the “Hebrew Roots,” so how can he possibly be fact checked? You can’t have it both ways, it can’t be a scribal error and be everywhere at the same time. Maybe he wasn’t purposely trying to mislead? Maybe he was just ignorant that these vowels were not so obscure after all? Maybe with so many people finding examples of these “full vowels,” he had egg on his face and was forced to change the narrative? Why do his followers not ask these most basic of questions? In only the third chapter in the Bible, Genesis 3:14 in the Masoretic text (Leningrad Codex), we see the full vowels for Adonai (Yehovah) – shewa, holem, and qamets. They have been there for hundreds of years but only on 911 does he find them in the Aleppo codex! Don’t be sold a false bill of goods – a square peg in a round holem.

Note: Every instance above in which the 6th letter “waw” was used, we translated a “v” for consistency to the name Yehovah. In Biblical Hebrew, however, the 6th letter has a “w” sound as taught by every accredited biblical Hebrew class in the world, the foremost being the Hebrew university, Jerusalem. See:

Biblehub Interlinear referenced above is based on the Leningrad Codex, 1008 CE.

Restoration Times Sept-Oct 2022

In this Issue of the Restoration Times we discuss:

• I Must by All Means Keep This Feast
• What the Autumn Feasts Teach Us
• The Law Before Sinai
• Q&A
• Letters

Download PDF  Read on Issuu Read Past Issues

Sabbaticals and Jubilees Part 2

Sabbaticals and Jubilees Part 2

In order to have a proper understanding of a particular doctrine, it is many times necessary to look at most if not all of the Scriptures that apply to the subject.  Yahweh’s Word does not contradict itself.  Therefore, the answer to the question, “When does the Sabbatical begin and end?” should be clear to us if we allow the Scriptures to speak for themselves.

The story of Joseph in Egypt and his interpretation of Pharaoh’s dream in Genesis 41 alludes to the Sabbatical cycle of seven.  However, the first mention of the Sabbatical commandment is found in Exodus 23:10.  “Six years you shall sow your land and gather in its produce, but the seventh year you shall let it rest and lie fallow, that the poor of your people may eat; and what they leave, the beasts of the field may eat. In like manner you shall do with your vineyard and your olive grove”  (All Scriptures are from the NKJV).

Regarding the observance of the Sabbatical cycle and specifically the Sabbatical year, verse 10 shows that the first commanded action to be taken is to sow the land.  The second commanded action was to gather in the land’s produce.  The only information we are given about the Sabbatical cycle is that it begins with sowing and ends with gathering in the produce.

The climate of the Holy Land is such that there are only two seasons, wet and dry.  The wet season begins in the Fall and ends in the Spring.  The dry season begins in the Spring and lasts until the Fall.  The expression “former and latter rains” refers to the first rain in the Fall which must take place before the barley, wheat and other crops could be planted, and the latter rain refers to the last rain in the Spring.

“Be glad then, you children of Zion, And rejoice in Yahweh your Elohim; For He has given you the former rain faithfully,

And He will cause the rain to come down for you – the former rain, and the latter rain in the first month” (Joel 2:23).

Because there are only two seasons, the Holy Land’s agricultural seasons are different from what we are used to in the U.S.  For instance, in the Spring following the wheat harvest there are no crops planted.  This is because it is the dry season; there is not enough moisture to sustain any kind of crop.  For the most part, the only things that are grown are garden vegetables and herbs.  These are watered by hand.

During the dry season a farmer would spend most of his time with his flocks and herds and harvesting any early fruit crops.  He would patiently wait until the Fall of the year for the major harvesting of the olives and grapes.  That process would begin after Feast of Tabernacles and would last until sometime before the rainy season began.  The grapes were either dried to preserve them or they were sent to the winepress and turned into grape juice and wine. The olives were either preserved in salt water or they were sent to the olive press and turned into olive oil.

Prophetically speaking, the gathering of the clusters of grapes (i.e. people at the end of the age) and then casting them into the great winepress of the wrath of Yahweh, takes place at the end of the age of man after the seventh angel sounds his trumpet.

Figuratively, the following passages show that the Sabbatical ends in the Fall, and that that is the time when Yahshua returns and the time when Yahweh’s final judgment takes place. “Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, ‘The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Sovereign and His Messiah and He shall reign forever and ever!’”  (Revelation 11:15)

“Then I looked, and behold, a white cloud, and on the cloud sat One like the Son of Man, having on His head a golden crown, and in His hand a sharp sickle.  And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, ‘Thrust in Your sickle and reap, for the time has come for You to reap, for the harvest of the earth is ripe.’  So He who sat on the cloud thrust in His sickle on the earth, and the earth was reaped.  Then another angel came out of the temple which is in heaven, he also having a sharp sickle.  And another angel came out from the altar, who had power over fire, and he cried with a loud cry to him who had the sharp sickle, saying, ‘Thrust in your sharp sickle and gather the clusters of the vine of the earth, for her grapes are fully ripe.’  So the angel thrust his sickle into the earth and gathered the vine of the earth, and threw it into the great winepress of the wrath of Yahweh.  And the winepress was trampled outside the city, and blood came out of the winepress, up to the horses’ bridles, for one thousand six hundred furlongs.” (Revelation 14:14-20)

These events will not take place in the Spring, but rather in the Fall.  Therefore, the cycles of seven and the Sabbatical year would begin and end in the Fall and not the Spring.

This is contrary to the Sacred year, which begins in the spring.  “Now Yahweh spoke to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, ‘This month shall be your beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to you”  (Exodus 12:1-2).

If the Sabbatical year coincided with the Sacred year, the Israelites would not have sown seed in the Fall.  Why would they sow seed that would bring forth crops that could not be harvested? By beginning the Sabbatical in Abib you would have to add the six months prior because you could not sow crops.  There would be no point in sowing in the Fall, and then because the crops in the fields were obviously not volunteer (that which grows up of itself) you could not harvest any of the crops.

There would be no point in sowing in the Fall if you begin the Sabbatical in the Spring.  Beginning the Sabbatical with Abib would add six months extra to the Sabbatical year.  The Sabbatical must begin with not sowing and then not gathering produce (crops planted).  The only way that this is possible is if the Sabbatical begins in the Fall and not the Spring.

The aspect of first sowing and then gathering is the basis for the Sabbatical cycles.  This is clearly seen in Leviticus 25:2-5.  “Speak to the children of Israel, and say to them: ‘When you come into the land which I give you, then the land shall keep a sabbath to Yahweh.  Six years you shall sow your field, and six years you shall prune your vineyard, and gather its fruit;  but in the seventh year there shall be a sabbath of solemn rest for the land, a sabbath to Yahweh. You shall neither sow your field nor prune your vineyard.  What grows of its own accord of your harvest you shall not reap, nor gather the grapes of your untended vine, for it is a year of rest for the land.’”

The Sabbatical year, like the weekly Sabbath, is the culmination of cycles of seven.  In the case of the weekly Sabbath, we are dealing with days that begin at sundown.  Preparations to keep the Sabbath begin on Sunday and end on Friday.  Preparations to keep the Sabbatical begin the first year of the cycle, and end in the sixth year.  That cycle begins with sowing, and ends with gathering or reaping the harvest.


The Second Coming of Yahshua.

One of the most important reasons for beginning the Sabbatical in the Fall and not in the Spring is because the Sabbatical years (and  Jubilee years) foreshadow Yahshua’s Second Coming. Each of Yahweh’s Feast days has special prophetic significance, and the Feast of Trumpets is no exception; in fact it is the next feast day to have its prophetic fulfillment. Consider Colossians 2:16-17.  “So let no one judge you in food or in drink, or regarding a festival or a new moon or sabbaths, which are a shadow of things to come, but the substance is of Messiah.”

Yahshua applied the fulfillment of the Sabbatical and Jubilee years to Himself as the one who will proclaim a release for the captive, liberty to the oppressed and to proclaim the acceptable year of Yahweh.

“So He came to Nazareth, where He had been brought up. And as His custom was, He went into the synagogue on the Sabbath day, and stood up to read.  And He was handed the book of the prophet Isaiah. And when He had opened the book, He found the place where it was written: ‘The Spirit of Yahweh is upon Me, Because He has anointed Me to preach the good news to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, To proclaim liberty to the captives, And recovery of sight to the blind, To set at liberty those who are oppressed;  To proclaim the acceptable year of Yahweh.’ Then He closed the book, and gave it back to the attendant and sat down. And the eyes of all who were in the synagogue were fixed on Him.  And He began to say to them, ‘Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing’”  (Luke 4:16-21).

We know that Yahweh’s Holy Days individually represent fulfillment of important aspects of the plan of salvation.

For instance, Passover depicts deliverance from sin and a blood covering from the Lamb of Yahweh, Yahshua the Messiah.  The Feast of Weeks represents the Matan Torah and the gift of the Holy Spirit along with obedience to Yahweh’s Covenant.

Yom Teruah represents the sounding of the last trumpet and the second coming of our Savior.  The Day of Atonement points toward the Marriage Supper of the Lamb described in Revelation 19.  Feast of Tabernacles is a type of Yahweh’s Kingdom on this earth.  And the Last Great Day points toward the time when Yahweh’s throne is established  on the earth.

To say that the Sabbatical year begins in the Spring (Abib) does not support the teaching of Yahshua’s second coming.  The scriptures are very clear on the fact that Yahshua has fulfilled the first half of a Sabbatical cycle.  And it is shown that He was cut off in the middle of that cycle of seven.

“And after the sixty-two weeks Messiah shall be cut off, but not for Himself; and the people of the prince who is to come shall destroy the city and the sanctuary. The end of it shall be with a flood, And till the end of the war desolations are determined. Then he shall confirm a covenant with many for one week; but in the middle of the week. He shall bring an end to sacrifice and offering.

And on the wing of abominations shall be one who makes desolate, even until the consummation, which is determined, is poured out on the desolate” (Dan. 9:26-27).

The events depicted here will take place near the end of the final Sabbatical and Jubilee cycles, at the close of the age.  Yahshua will not return in the middle of a Sabbatical because He has already completed half of a Sabbatical cycle.  Instead, He will return at the end when the Last Trumpet sounds.  That being said, the Sabbatical cycle must begin in the fall and not in the Spring.

Consider the following passages which relate to the return of Yahshua.

“Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken.  Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.  And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other”  (Matthew 24:29-31).

“Then the seventh angel sounded: And there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of Yahweh and of His Messiah and He shall reign forever and ever!” (Rev. 11:15).

“Now I saw heaven opened, and behold, a white horse. And He who sat on him was called Faithful and True, and in righteousness He judges and makes war.  His eyes were like a flame of fire, and on His head were many crowns. He had a name written that no one knew except Himself.  He was clothed with a robe dipped in blood, and His name is called The Word of Yahweh.  And the armies in heaven, clothed in fine linen, white and clean, followed Him on white horses.  Now out of His mouth goes a sharp sword, that with it He should strike the nations. And He Himself will rule them with a rod of iron. He Himself treads the winepress of the fierceness and wrath of Almighty Yahweh.  And He has on His robe and on His thigh a name written:  KING OF KINGS AND RULER OF RULERS”  (Revelation 19:11-16).


Sabbatical Year and Gezer Calendar

One of the oldest known Hebrew documents is the Gezer Calendar (see image below).  It was written in the time of David or Solomon (1,000 BCE), some 400 years before the Jews were taken into Babylonian captivity (586 BCE).  This ancient document describes the agricultural year for the land of Israel, and it begins that annual cycle in the Fall and not the Spring.

Leviticus 25 explains that the Sabbatical year begins by NOT sowing your field or pruning your vineyard.  Consider Leviticus 25:3-12,

“Six years you shall sow your field, and six years you shall prune your vineyard, and gather its fruit; but in the seventh year there shall be a sabbath of solemn rest for the land, a sabbath to Yahweh. You shall neither sow your field nor prune your vineyard.  What grows of its own accord of your harvest you shall not reap, nor gather the grapes of your untended vine, for it is a year of rest for the land.  And the sabbath produce of the land shall be food for you: for you, your male and female servants, your hired man, and the stranger who dwells with you, for your livestock and the beasts that are in your land — all its produce shall be for food.  ‘And you shall count seven sabbaths of years for yourself, seven times seven years; and the time of the seven sabbaths of years shall be to you forty-nine years. Then you shall cause the trumpet of the Jubilee to sound on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the Day of Atonement you shall make the trumpet to sound throughout all your land. And you shall consecrate the fiftieth year, and proclaim liberty throughout all the land to all its inhabitants. It shall be a Jubilee for you; and each of you shall return to his possession, and each of you shall return to his family.  That fiftieth year shall be a Jubilee to you; in it you shall neither sow nor reap what grows of its own accord, nor gather the grapes of your untended vine.  For it is the Jubilee; it shall be holy to you; you shall eat its produce from the field.’”

How could the Israelites have been influenced by the Babylonian calendar, as some claim, when that calendar didn’t even exist when this document was in use?

The Gezer Calendar proves that the Sabbatical begins in the Fall.

Leviticus 25 makes it very clear that the Sabbatical follows the seven year cycle which begins and ends in the Fall of each year.  It always mentions sowing your field first and then pruning your vineyard.  Sowing in the Land of Israel always takes place in the Fall after the Feast of Tabernacles. The pruning of the vineyard takes place at the end of the Sabbatical just prior to the sowing of grain in the Fall.


Rewriting the New Testament

Over time myths and legends can be accepted as truth even if they lack a basis in fact. One of these legends says that George Washington threw a silver dollar across the Potomac River, even though silver dollars did not exist at the time and the Potomac was a mile wide.

Paul Revere was supposed to have ridden from Boston to Lexington crying, “The British are coming,” even though at that time most residents of Massachusetts considered themselves British.

Many religious convictions are awash in myths that grew and flourished over the centuries and yet are nowhere in the Word. Knowing how fables involving George Washington and Paul Revere became generally accepted in the course of only a couple hundred years, imagine how facts can be skewed after a couple thousand years when it comes to the Scriptures.

Have you ever wondered why the typical paintings of a Hebrew Messiah show an individual having western European features of a narrow nose, blue eyes and long, golden hair? Illustrations in some Bibles depict ancient Israelites of the Middle East sporting Renaissance garb 1500 miles away and 1500 years into the future.

Ancient tradition and foreign beliefs have seriously altered the way the Bible is portrayed and understood today. Perceptions sometimes stray so far from the truth that for the sake of accuracy we must stop and take a serious look at what we have been told or believe. Debunking traditional error is a key part of the work of Yahweh’s Restoration Ministry.

Coming down this path are many doctrinal disparities that were shaped by cultures and practices of people who came later. As a result, truth suffered substantially. Blinded by faulty teachings, many today don’t adhere to the truth even when it’s pointed out clearly and plainly.

The Bible as a Hebraic Book
Most of society looks at the Bible through Western filters, rather than in the light of its native Hebraic language and culture. This problem has proved so stealthy and persistent through the millennia that most will never question traditional notions. And they also don’t realize what is at risk. Until you understand that the New Testament is an extension of the Old, with only a few key revisions, you will never grasp it properly.

Let’s dispel the first issue we raised regarding the Savior. The Messiah Yahshua (being a Jew with a Hebrew Name) never had His portrait done by an artist or sculptor. Even if some were lurking around Galilee He never would have posed for them. With Him it was never about vanity.

No one today knows what He looked like. Scripture doesn’t offer any description, except to indicate that He was average in appearance without long, blond locks, 1Corinthians 11:14, Ezekiel 44:20. With His beard, Isaiah 50:6, He looked so much like any other Hebrew of His day that He could pass through a crowd of Jews unrecognized.

If the Bible had provided a description of His appearance, many would create and worship His image rather than concentrate on what He said and did. But they do that anyway.

Many also do it in another way, focusing entirely on His person and overlooking His primary teachings about a coming Kingdom and the part the called-out can have in it.

Our Savior was certainly no frail European, but a rugged Hebrew craftsman who worked with wood and stone. Being that His mother was Jewish, he had the typical dark, curly Mid-Eastern hair and features that reflected years of hard work and ministry carried out in the hot sun of the Middle East.

But this is only the tip of the iceberg. Anomalies concerning the simplest biblical facts underscore the work of the Adversary to derail both a correct understanding of Bible truth as well as the proper worship that would naturally flow from it.

To understand the harm in misconstruing both testaments, we first must be open to their thousands of connections.

The Western world looks at the Bible through Western eyes. In actuality, the Bible is a book about Middle Eastern peoples known as Israel and their Hebrew beliefs in an Almighty Creator named Yahweh. This fact applies to the New Testament as well as the Old and is basic to realizing what happened in the first several hundred years of the New Testament.

The fact is, the New Testament body of believers was still Hebraic in thinking and behavior. They had inherited a “Jewish” Messiah and it was their own Hebraic roots that the early church would seek to suppress any way they could. Almost from the beginning the emerging universal church became entrenched in Greco-Roman trappings.

From Hebrew to Greek
To disconnect their worship from its Israelite moorings, another “Sabbath” day was created. Biblical holy days, which were seen as Old Testament obligations meant only for ancient Israel, were replaced by celebrations that would become predominately secular over time.

Passover, the memorial of Yahshua’s death, was morphed into Easter, a brand new celebration for His resurrection. But the Roman church had zero authority from the Scriptures to create a resurrection observance.

New Testament writings of Hebrew men like Matthew, Mark, Paul, and Peter were given a different spin to support an array of new doctrines, some of which reflected the teachings of Greek philosophers. Even their Hebrew names were Grecianized in an obvious makeover.

Paul was given a Westernized face-lift to advocate no-law disobedience in his letters. Peter’s experience was misinterpreted in Acts 10 to say swine and shellfish had been cleansed and were now edible.

Apostolic writings were ripped from their Israelite framework and force-fitted into Greco-Roman mindsets. Over time a vast gulf would develop between original biblical truth and modern beliefs. The pivotal question becomes: Is the New Testament a Hebrew book, a Greek work, a Latin volume, or a hopeless mixture? And does it make any difference for True Worship?
Even Bible students with a basic under-standing of Scripture know that Hebrew is the language of the Old Testament manuscripts. It’s the language found in the text of the Dead Sea Scrolls, the oldest Bible texts in existence.

The common belief is that the New Testament was originally written in Greek simply because Greek is the language of the oldest available manuscripts of the New Testament. By the same reasoning, however, the Greek text also was the oldest available text of the Old Testament until the Dead Sea Scrolls, written in Hebrew, were discovered in 1947. More evidence is coming to light that the New Testament was first composed in Hebrew as well, consistent with being written by Hebrews.

In the minds of reformers the New Testament included Jews who were in the process of switching from their Israelite faith to Grecianized-Romanized beliefs and language.
Along with that was a common belief that Paul, the major New Testament writer, was a Hellenist Jew from Tarsus who wrote his letters specifically to Greek-speaking assemblies in Asia Minor and the Mediterranean region ostensibly to convince them to switch to a new faith.

This has worked to the advantage of those who want to keep the Old and New testaments separated and not viewed as a single continuum of truth.

As we read Philippians 3:5, which is part of Paul’s autobiography, let us ask ourselves whether slicing the New Testament away from the Old is proper or just another tactic of the Adversary to derail correct understanding and worship.

Paul writes of himself, “Circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, an Hebrew of the Hebrews: as touching the law, a Pharisee.” Paul’s expression, “an Hebrew of Hebrews” is a Hebrew idiom that means a Hebrew through and through – in thinking, language, and lifestyle.

Paul, whose actual name was the Hebrew Shaul (the KJV also calls him Saul), was in fact a complete Hebrew. As for his politics, Paul was a Pharisee, a prominent sect of Judaism. Paul also grew up in Jerusalem, which was the center of Pharisaic Judaism.

At this point you might be saying, yes I realize that Paul may have been a Hebrew, but he was educating various Greek-speaking churches through the Greek language.

In reality Scripture reveals that Paul’s letters or epistles were written to various groups of the Jewish dispersion. Each group or assembly he founded contained a core of Jews along with others, including gentiles and Hellenists or Jews who spoke Greek. The Hebrews among them would transmit the biblical message from Paul’s letters to others in their circle.

Note what one authority writes: “ …we must not forget that Christianity grew out of Judaism … The Pauline epistles were letters written by Paul to small [Messianic] congregations in Asia Minor, Greece, and Rome. These early believers were mostly Jews of the dispersion, men and women of Hebrew origin … The Epistles were translated into Greek for the use of converts who spoke Greek” (The Holy Bible from the Peshitta, by George Lamsa).

Just as teachings became Grecianized and Romanized, so were facilities. Greek gods were worshiped by the Greeks in Greek temples. These temples were later re-purposed into Christian churches. Many of the old Roman basilicas, which were public buildings in ancient Rome, were also appropriated for use as churches beginning in the 4th century. The circle of Greek and Roman influence was complete.

Paul Sustains Sabbath Obedience
An example of how the Apostle Paul ministered first to the Hebrew-speaking Jewish element wherever he went is found in Acts 17. Here Paul and Silas come to Thessalonica where there is a synagogue of the Jews. In verse 2 we read: “And Paul, as his manner was, went in unto them, and three Sabbath days reasoned with them out of the Scriptures.”

Why did he go specifically to the synagogue, on three consecutive Sabbaths no less, if he was not interested in teaching the Jews the truth of the Savior?

Paul was a Jew and as a Jew he kept and taught seventh-day worship as well as Yahweh’s seven annual Feast days. He continued doing so even after being instructed and trained by the resurrected Messiah, showing us that nothing there changed with the death of the Savior. The law was still in effect.
Another instance is his letter to the assembly at the Greek city of Corinth in 1Corinthians 10. There Paul talks about “our fathers” who were in the Exodus from Egypt, meaning their Israelite forefathers. Repeatedly we find that Paul went to the synagogue on the Sabbath where both Jews and Gentiles were worshiping. And he never told them to stop doing so. He never explained about any resurrection switch that made Sunday the new day to worship. Both Jew and Gentile still kept the true Sabbath.
Also critical to our understanding is the question, which books did Paul teach from? The only books in existence at the time were what were known as the Scriptures, the Old Testament.
This is highly significant because it is the Apostle Paul who is a preeminent transmitter of the New Testament, after the Savior Himself, of course. He taught from the Old Testament in his letters. The Old Testament was a Hebrew collection of books about Hebrew people, not Greeks or Romans, but Israelites and their faith, which included almost the same covenant we are to make with Yahweh.
Notice what he said in Acts 24:14: “But this I confess unto you that after the way which they call heresy (a sect or party), so worship I the Elohim of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets.” The word “heresy” here refers to men following their own tenets.

By continuing to teach from the Old Testament as a foundation for their New Testament worship, Paul made some people very uncomfortable. Some even went so far as to call his ministry a heresy or in the vernacular, a cult, for teaching from the Law and prophets, which was another way of saying the Old Testament Scriptures.

In addition, Paul included in his ministry and writings what he had learned from the resurrected Messiah Yahshua. Obviously Paul saw no contradiction with combining fundamental Old Testament truth with what Yahshua had revealed for the New Testament worshiper.

Yahshua Himself said in Matthew 5:17 that He did not come to destroy the law or the prophets but to fulfill, or live out the Old Testament Scriptures in obedience to His Father.

But Paul had critics coming at him from the other side too. In Acts 24:5 he is being accused by the religious establishment of being a ringleader of the “sect” of the Nazarenes or the followers of the Savior of Nazareth. So he was getting it from both angles: those who thought the Old Testament was obsolete, and those who could not bear to hear about the New Testament Savior Yahshua.

Clearly, Paul harmonized Old and New testament doctrines in his writings. Being that he was directed to do so by the risen Savior, his approach is proper for us today. In fact, this is what Paul had told the young Timothy in 2Timothy 3:16-17. “ALL Scripture is given by inspiration of Yahweh and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of Yahweh may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.”

“All Scripture” refers here specifically to the Old Testament and only later would include the New Testament once the New Testament was written.

How did it happen that two major but divergent world religions exist, with one supposedly based on the Old Testament and the other ostensibly founded on the New Testament?

If the Old and New testaments teach the same basic truths, why the dichotomy? Is the Bible designed as two separate books, revealing one way of faithful obedience for Hebrews and a different way of simple faith for today’s believer?

Not a Divine Misstep
One fact is crystal clear: Yahweh said in Malachi 3:6 that He doesn’t change. His design for salvation is the same from the beginning. Through command and through His writers, Yahweh instructed His people to obey Him.

Yet, many continue to believe that Yahweh’s laws must have been given to Israel by mistake, an error committed by the Father that Yahshua corrected by purging our lives of Yahweh’s statutes in this age of grace.

Hebrews chapter 11 tells us about law-observant Hebrew patriarchs who will be in the coming Kingdom because of their faithful obedience. So why will Yahweh specifically reward them for their faithfulness to His laws if obedience is unnecessary and irrelevant for salvation?

If Paul in the New Testament were teaching a Grecianized faith, why did he quote from a Hebrew Old Testament? Why did he use lessons about Old Testament Israelites (for example, 1Cor. 10) if today’s worship is under an entirely different system based on faith alone?

In truth, none of the apostles had ever heard of the terms “Old Testament” and “New Testament.” The first use of the term New Testament is by the theologian Tertullian more than a century after the death of the apostles.

The simple truth is that Paul upheld Old Testament obedience. He wrote: “Do we then make void the law through faith? Certainly not: yea, we establish the law” (Rom. 3:31).

The Messiah Taught the Law
Something is clearly amiss if we believe that the New Testament teaches a whole new system of faith and conduct disconnected from the Old. Yahshua Himself upheld and even amplified the necessity to obey His Father Yahweh.

Read Matthew 5:17 to the end of the chapter. In that passage He starts out with, “Think not that I am come to destroy the law or the prophets.”

Yahshua Himself taught from the Old Testament. He quoted the law books, or Torah, some 60 times. There are nearly 700 individual citations from the books of the Old Testament found in the New. If you include references to the Old Testament as well as quotations of it in the New, the number would be over 4,000, according to The Expositor’s Bible Commentary.

The Messiah Yahshua in John 10:35 says Scripture cannot be broken. And yet for 2,000 years persistent efforts have been made to break the New Testament away from the Old Testament. Claiming that the New Testament was written in Greek has had the effect of disconnecting it from its foundational Hebraic roots.

New Testament Is Hebrew Based
An abundance of internal evidence points clearly to the unavoidable conclusion that the New Testament was originally written in the Hebrew language and was translated into Greek only later.
This fact alone provides the essential tie that binds Israelite worship in the Old Testament with the faith of spiritual Israel of the New Testament.

Paul says in Romans 11 that the believer today is grafted into that same Israelite Covenant promise given in the Old Testament. He wrote in Romans 11:25, “For I would not, brethren, that you should be ignorant of this mystery, lest you should be wise in your own conceits: that blindness in part is happened to Israel, until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. And so all Israel shall be saved.” Paul writes that both believing Israelite and believing gentile will receive the reward of salvation, confirming the continuity of the testaments. Now let’s look at the text itself.

Survivals from the Hebrew Originals
If the New Testament writings were originally Greek, then we could reasonably expect to find an occasional Greek word surviving in English from the Greek original.
Instead we find many Hebrew words and expressions in the New Testament that have survived into the English. That’s because the Greek had no word to convey certain Hebrew words and expressions when the Hebrew New Testament text was translated into the Greek and from there into English.

For example, we find in the King James New Testament and other versions the purely Hebrew-Aramaic word “Abba” (which means dearest father); “Messiah” (anointed one); “Sabbath” (repose, desist from exertion); “Eli, eli lama sabachthani” (my El, my El, why have you forsaken me?); “talitha cumi” (meaning maid arise); “mammon” (riches), and “hosanna” (savior we beseech).

If we were translating a book from German to English, would we throw some Russian words into our English translation? Russian words would survive our English version only if the original were translated from Russian. So finding Hebrew words and expressions in supposed Greek manuscripts is powerful evidence that the original was not Greek at all but Hebrew.

Also scattered through the New Testament we find many Hebrew (and Aramaic) idioms, which are expressions that cannot be translated accurately in the Greek so they were left virtually untranslated. They make perfect sense in Hebrew, but not in Greek or in English, for that matter.

Such expressions include: “If your eye is evil” (Matt. 6:23); “let the dead bury the dead” (Matt. 8:22); and “you shall heap coals of fire on his head” (Rom. 12:20).
Many other examples show clear evidence in the text itself that the New Testament was originally a Hebrew work that only later was translated into Greek.

When Yahshua returns, His feet will not touch down on Mount Olympus in Greece, or on one of the seven hills of Rome, but on the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem. He is coming to redeem Israel and those who are faithful to the same covenant that Israel accepted.

We read in Zechariah 14:4: “And His feet shall stand in that day upon the Mount of Olives, which is before Jerusalem on the east, and the mount of Olives shall cleave [split] in the midst thereof.”
Notice what Paul wrote about the believers of the New Testament Assembly. “And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Yahshua the Messiah being the chief corner stone,” Ephesians 2:20.

He mentions both apostles and prophets as establishing the foundation of the New Testament Assembly. We know that the apostles are those who lived in the New Testament era and were with the Messiah Yahshua, but who are the prophets?

Simply defined, “prophets” is a general term used for the Old Testament proponents of Truth. In Luke 16:29 Yahshua the Messiah in His parable implored us to listen to Moses (the law) and the prophets. Interestingly, both are in the Old Testament.

By citing only a few of these facts, and there are many more we could list, we can see a clear harmony between both Old and New testaments.

Hoshana Rabba – The Living Water

On the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles the priests would bring up to the temple a golden container of water from the pool of Siloam in a great ceremonial procession. This water will last all seven days of the Feast. On the seventh day this water libation ceremony reached its apex. Temple priests circled the altar seven times and poured out the water on the altar. For seven days the people would cry out for redemption and salvation while shaking palm branches.

This day is traditionally called Hoshana Rabba. According to the Mishnah (Sukkah 4:5), they would gather willow branches and encircle the altar once a day and stand the branches upright at the sides of the altar, sounding the shofar and reciting: “Hoshiah na! Save us, please!”

Rabba in biblical Hebrew means “master” or “great” and hoshana has the meaning of rescue, save, deliver, or savior. The title Rabbi comes from this term רַב Rab. Yahshua prohibits calling a man Rabbi because only Yahshua Messiah is our “master.” “But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Messiah.” Matthew 23:8. Interesting note: the Assyrians (who spoke Aramaic) called their chief military leader the רַבְשָׁקֵה Rab-shaqeh. The title “rab” is well attested in Aramaic, which Yahshua spoke.

Regarding Hoshanna Rabba The Jewish Virtual Library notes: “In Second Temple times this was a source of controversy between the Boethusians and the Pharisees who gave the ceremony biblical authority even though it is nowhere mentioned in the Bible. They considered it to be halakhah le-Moshe mi-Sinai, i.e., as having been instructed verbally to Moses during his stay on Sinai.” See reference

Although not mentioned by name, this event seems to correlate with the prophetic Messianic Psalm 118:22-26: “I will give you thanks, for you answered me; you have become my salvation. The stone the builders rejected has become the cornerstone; Yahweh has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes. Yahweh has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad. Yahweh, save us Yahweh. (הוֹשִׁ֘יעָ֥ה נָּ֑א Hoshia na – save now) grant us success! Blessed is he who comes in the name of Yahweh. (Prophetic reference to the Messiah who came in Yahweh’s name and is Salvation Yah-shua.) From the house of Yahweh we bless you. Yahweh is our Elohim, and he has made his light shine on us. With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession up to the horns of the altar.”

When we analyze the biblical Hebrew an interesting correlation appears. The word “save” in this verse is from the Hebrew root word יָשַׁע yasha, “to deliver,” the same word origin in the name contraction of Joshua or Yahshua (3091), from YHWH and Yasha (See Yasha Strong’s 3091, Biblehub).

So Yahshua is standing at the Temple on the seventh day of Sukkot as the people cry out for salvation for the coming Messiah to deliver them, as they have traditionally done for hundreds of years. In a prophetic and emotional display, with the crowd waving palm branches, the priests circle the altar seven times, and pour out the water on the altar. And then Yahshua cries back in a loud voice so all the crowd could hear Him: “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink,” John 7:37.

Continuing in verse 40, “When the crowds heard him say this, some of them declared, “Surely this man is the Prophet we’ve been expecting.” Others said, “He is the Messiah.”

Jews believe this day is also a day of judgment similar to Yom Kippur. An interesting note from the Jewish Virtual Library gives this insight: “The celebration of Hoshana Rabba acquired considerable solemnity and religious-mystic significance. In Jerusalem a large gathering took place on the Mount of Olives which was circled seven times … The piyyut (poem) of Hoshana Rabba which opens with the words, ‘the power [or, the truth] of Thy salvation cometh,’ which deals with the splitting open of The Mount of Olives (Zech.14:4) and the resurrection of the dead, probably has its origin in this ceremony.” See reference

Zechariah prophesies: “And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, Which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, From east to west…” “The voice of the herald brings good tidings and proclaims: Your mighty salvation comes! My Beloved is coming! —  the voice heralds. He comes with myriads of regiments of angels to stand on the Mount of Olives! — the voice heralds. He approaches to sound the Shofar, beneath Him the mountain shall split, — the voice heralds,”

Could it be that Tabernacles, as a harvest festival, also signifies the general harvest of the Firstfruits spoken of in Revelation and the return of the Messiah? Yahshua was born during Sukkot, he answers the call of salvation during Sukkot, and His people are gathered  from the world at this time. “Then I looked, and there before me was the Lamb, standing on Mount Zion, and with him 144,000 who had his name and his Father’s name written on their foreheads.  And I heard a sound from heaven like the roar of rushing waters and like a loud peal of thunder.”

The Talmud mentions that during Hoshana Rabba, poems are recited calling upon Yahweh to not only rescue and redeem but also to send seasonal rains.

Water is an important element during Hoshana Rabba. Zechariah 14:17 warns of no rain for those who will not keep this festival after the return of the Messiah: “If the Egyptian people do not go up and take part, they will have no rain. Yahweh will bring on them the plague he inflicts on the nations that do not go up to celebrate the Festival of Tabernacles.”

The importance of keeping Sukkot cannot be overstated. It is a pilgrimage festival which means you are not to stay home to keep this Feast but travel where Yahweh places His name. These Messianic prophecies culminate in a general Harvest of Firstfruit believers gathered as a wave sheaf that Yahshua will offer to Yahweh at His return as our High Priest. Just another important reason to keep the Feast!