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Why Baptism Into Yahshua’s Name?

Why Baptism into Yahshua’s Name?

There is no greater commitment and obligation for a believer than for proper baptism. While many assume that baptism into the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit or into the name of Jesus is scripturally acceptable, the Bible shows otherwise.

Besides there being some suspension with the Trinitarian formula found in Matthew 28:19, nowhere is the formula of the “Father, Son, and Holy Spirit” used within the Bible. In several places in Acts, we find the apostles baptizing only into the singular Name of the Messiah. And as we know from scholarship, the name of the Messiah was not Jesus. One reason for this is there is no “j” letter or sound within the Hebrew or Greek languages. The “j” was the last letter to be added to the English alphabet, near the time of Christopher Columbus. It is even missing from the original KJV.

The Name of the Messiah is “Yahshua.” As we explain in the Restoration Study Bible: “The Savior’s name in the Hebrew is ‘Yahshua,’ composed of five Hebrew letters, yod-hey-waw-shin-ayin, incorporating the designation ‘Yah’ of the Father, ‘Yah'(weh), and ‘shua,’ from a Hebrew word meaning ‘salvation.’ Hence its meaning: ‘Salvation of Yah.’ The name ‘Jesus’ lacks any etymological connotation, being a combination of several disparate elements. ‘Jesus’ is Latinized Greek, employing the letter J, the newest letter in the English alphabet. The ‘J’ was nonexistent in any language until the 14th century. The ‘e’ possibly resulted from dissimilation. The Greek has no ‘sh’ sound and employs the simple ‘s’ in rendering the Hebrew ‘sh’ of Yahshua. The ‘us’ ending is the nominative masculine singular ending in the Greek. No scriptural authority allows changing the saving Name Yahshua into a designation that lacks even a semblance of the original pronunciation and meaning.”

The Name of the Messiah is also confirmed from the fact that He came in His Father’s Name, Yahweh (John 5:43). The Name Yahshua means, “Yahweh is Salvation.” Therefore, this is the Name the apostles would have used in the New Testament. For additional information on Yahshua’s Name, see our Q&A: Why do you pronounce the savior’s name Yahshua instead of Yeshua?

How do we know that only one name is acceptable? Many will make the claim that using the Messiah’s actual name is not important.  Apostle Peter in Acts 4:12 stated, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” Peter confirms that salvation is found in only one name, Yahshua. This is why we maintain that proper baptism is only into the Name of Yahshua the Messiah.

What about the hundreds of thousands who are baptized into a different formula or name? Should they be re-baptized? Since Paul in Ephesians 4:5 states that there is only one baptism and Peter confirms that there’s only one name wherein we find salvation, we believe that re-baptism is required for those who were baptized into a different form.

An example of such a scenario is found in the New Testament. “And it came to pass, that, while Apollos was at Corinth, Paul having passed through the upper coasts came to Ephesus: and finding certain disciples, He said unto them, Have ye received the Holy Spirit since ye believed? And they said unto him, We have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Spirit. And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism. Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Messiah Yahshua. When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Sovereign Yahshua. And when Paul had laid his hands upon them, the Holy Spirit came on them; and they spake with tongues, and prophesied,” Acts 19:1-6.

In this example, Paul finds a group of believers who were baptized into John’s baptism, which was a baptism of repentance. Once Paul explained to this group the benefits of Yahshua’s baptism, they were immediately re-baptized into the Name of Yahshua the Messiah. This example is analogous to those baptized into the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit or into the name of Jesus. While it was a baptism of repentance and meaningful in the eyes of Yahweh, it’s not the baptism that binds us to Yahshua.

There are several benefits to baptism into Yahshua’s Name:

  • Only baptism into Yahshua’s Name leads to the remission of sins, Acts 2:38.
  • Only baptism into Yahshua’s Name leads to the receiving of the Holy Spirits, Acts 2:38 and 8:17.
  • Only those baptized into Yahshua’s Name become part of Messiah, Galatians 3:27.
  • Only those baptized into Yahshua’s Name will share in the likeness of His resurrection, Romans 6:5.

For those desiring or contemplating proper baptism, we offer baptism into Yahshua’s Name and the laying on of hands by the presbytery. If you are interested, please contact the Ministry at 844-899-6438 and schedule a time with one of the elders. We can normally provide baptism as part of our Sabbath services, Saturdays between 1:30-4:30 pm, and during the annual Feasts at our home facilities in Holts Summit, Missouri. For a map and additional information regarding our Sabbath worship, visit our Plan a Visit page.

To help prepare, below are our pre-baptismal guidelines. If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact the Ministry. In addition to our toll-free number, you can also email us at

  • I understand that baptism into Yahshua’s Name is necessary for salvation.
  • I understand that proper baptism is into the singular Name of Yahshua the Messiah.
  • I understand that baptism first requires repentance from my sins.
  • I understand that the gift of the Holy Spirit is provided at baptism.
  • I understand that baptism requires a lifelong commitment.
  • I understand that upon baptism I must follow all the commandments of Yahweh’s Word.
  • I understand that marriage is a covenant for life.
  • I have read and agree with YRM’s Statement of Beliefs.
  • I am not currently smoking, drinking alcohol in excess, or taking illegal drugs or substances.
  • I am not currently involved in an immoral situation or a situation that may be viewed as immoral.
  • I have nothing in my personal life that would prevent me from fulfilling the above requirements.

For additional information on Baptism into Yahshua’s name, please see our booklet, “If You Seek Baptism.”


Requirements for Baptism

There is no greater step in our spiritual walk as believers than baptism. Yahshua the Messiah was immersed by John the Baptist as an example for us. Immersion is also the one single act that confirms our discipleship to the Messiah.

Considering the magnitude of baptism, it’s crucial that we get it right. So what does the Bible say about baptism or immersion? What name or names should we be baptized into? Is anything required before we undergo this commitment? Who is qualified to baptize? And what is the consequence if we forego this step or if we are not properly immersed?

Let’s begin the inquiry with some basics.

Defining Baptism

Acts 2:38 is an early account of baptism. Before discussing what Peter reveals here, let’s first consider the events that led up to this pivotal moment. A large group of people just witnessed the outpouring of Yahweh’s Holy Spirit and heard Peter’s dynamic Pentecost message on the death and resurrection of Yahshua the Messiah. As a result, many were pricked in their hearts.

Once the people realized what they had done in putting the Messiah to death, they were in complete remorse for their transgression. They asked Peter what they should do now. Peter replied, “…repent and be baptized.” These are some of the most important words in all of Scripture.

The first step to baptism begins with repentance. Repentance comes from the Greek metanoeo and means “to think differently or afterwards, i.e. reconsider,” Strong’s.

Before entering the waters of baptism we must reconsider our past ways and commit to a new way of life. In essence, repentance is acknowledging that we cannot live as we did before and that we must change our ways and begin living according to Yahweh’s Word.

The word “baptism” comes from the Greek baptizo and means “to immerse, submerge; or to overwhelm (i.e. to be fully wet),” Strong’s. This is why baptism is a full immersion into water and not just a sprinkling. As we’ll see later, baptism also represents a burial.

Baptism first and foremost is for the remission of sins. Baptism is the only way to find forgiveness, i.e. a washing away of our past sins. To be cleansed from our previous sins and be justified we must seek water baptism into Yahshua’s Name.

We also find here that the Holy Spirit is given at baptism with the laying on of hands. Contrary to what many theologians teach, the Holy Spirit is not the third person of a “Holy Trinity.” Instead, it represents the power and influence emanating from our Heavenly Father that guides us into deeper truth.

Yahshua’s Name Alone for Immersion

Based on the biblical record, baptism was done into the singular name of Yahshua the Messiah. This is the only form of baptism used by the apostles in the New Testament. Besides Acts 2:38, there are several more accounts to consider:

“For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Master Yahshua” (Acts 8:16).

“And he commanded them to be baptized in the name of Yahshua. Then prayed they him to tarry certain days” (Acts 10:48).

“When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Sovereign Yahshua” (Acts 19:5).

“Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Yahshua Messiah were baptized into his death?” (Rom. 6:3).

“For as many of you as have been baptized into Messiah have put on Messiah” (Gal. 3:27).

From these passages we find that baptism was always done into the singular Name of Yahshua the Messiah. As Peter relates in Acts 4:12, there is only one name whereby we find salvation, i.e., Yahshua. This is why we exclusively immerse into Yahshua’s Name. This is also the reason we advocate re-baptism for those who were immersed into a different name or form. As Paul states in Ephesians 4:5, there is only “one Master, one faith, one baptism.”

This includes baptism into the Name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, as seen in Matthew 28:19. Besides the fact that this formula was never used by the apostles, there are serious questions regarding this passage’s legitimacy.

As we note in the Restoration Study Bible, “This Trinitarian formula is highly suspect. According to the Jerusalem Bible, ‘It may be that this formula ‘Father…Son…Holy Spirit,’ so far as the fullness of its expression is concerned, is a reflection of the liturgical usage established later in the primitive community.

“It will be remembered that Acts speaks of baptizing ‘in the name of Yahshua only.’ Equally important is Eusebius’ omission of this phrase: ‘The facts are, in summary, that Eusebius quotes Matthew 28:19, 21 times, either omitting everything between “nations” and “teaching,” or in the form “make disciples of all nations in my name,” the latter form being the more frequent’” (Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics).”

Baptism and the Presbytery

Being there is only one baptism, as believers we must ensure that we follow the example of Yahweh’s Word. If not, Yahweh may not honor our baptism. For this reason it’s also important that the baptism be performed by someone who has the authority to immerse.

As we find in Scripture, the presbytery or body of elders was given the sanction to baptize and lay on hands. The only exception is that deacons too can baptize, but they must not lay on hands. As seen in the eighth chapter of Acts, while Deacon Philip was able to baptize, only Peter and John could lay on hands for the Spirit.

“Now when the apostles which were at Jerusalem heard that Samaria had received the word of Elohim, they sent unto them Peter and John: Who, when they were come down, prayed for them, that they might receive the Holy Spirit: (For as yet he was fallen upon none of them: only they were baptized in the name of the Master Yahshua.) Then laid they their hands on them, and they received the Holy Spirit,” Acts 8:14-17.

Peter in Acts 10:45-46 baptized Cornelius and his household (adults only). Also, Paul in Acts 19:5-6 baptized, followed by the laying on of hands. Not only were Peter and Paul apostles, but they were also elders, 1Peter 5:1.

Baptism is also a type of anointing, similar to ordination or praying for the sick. Why is this important? Because in every instance of anointing, whether for a priest or king in the Old Testament or ordaining an elder or deacon in the New Testament, it was always by a member of the priesthood or someone already appointed to the office of minister. For more, see “Authority to Baptize and Anoint” sidebar on p. 9.

Minimum Age for Immersion

A question many ask is, what is the appropriate age for baptism? Assuming the mother or father is in the faith, should we baptize infants or those in their teens or near it? Does the Bible provide any insight to this question?

It does, and that age is 20 years old. We call this the “age of accountability.” Several situations show that this is the age Yahweh determines that a person is answerable for their actions. Consider the following:

  • “When thou takest the sum of the children of Israel after their number, then shall they give every man a ransom for his soul unto Yahweh, when thou numberest them; that there be no plague among them, when thou numberest them. This they shall give, every one that passeth among them that are numbered, half a shekel after the shekel of the sanctuary: (a shekel is twenty gerahs:) an half shekel shall be the offering of Yahweh. Every one that passeth among them that are numbered, from twenty years old and above, shall give an offering unto Yahweh,” Exodus 30:12-14.
  • “Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, When a man shall make a singular vow, the persons shall be for Yahweh by thy estimation. And thy estimation shall be of the male from twenty years old even unto sixty years old, even thy estimation shall be fifty shekels of silver, after the shekel of the sanctuary,” Leviticus 27:2-3.
  • “From twenty years old and upward, all that are able to go forth to war in Israel: thou and Aaron shall number them by their armies,” Numbers 1:3.
  • “This is it that belongeth unto the Levites: from twenty and five years old and upward they shall go in to wait upon the service of the tabernacle of the congregation: And from the age of fifty years they shall cease waiting upon the service thereof, and shall serve no more,” Numbers 8:24-25.
  • “Say unto them, As truly as I live, saith Yahweh, as ye have spoken in mine ears, so will I do to you: Your carcases shall fall in this wilderness; and all that were numbered of you, according to your whole number, from twenty years old and upward, which have murmured against me,” Numbers 14:28-29.
  • “And Yahweh’s anger was kindled the same time, and he sware, saying, Surely none of the men that came up out of Egypt, from twenty years old and upward, shall see the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob; because they have not wholly followed me,” Numbers 32:1-11.
  • “For by the last words of David the Levites were numbered from twenty years old and above: Because their office was to wait on the sons of Aaron for the service of the house of Yahweh, in the courts, and in the chambers, and in the purifying of all holy things, and the work of the service of the house of Elohim,” 1Chronicles 23:27.
  • “Now in the second year of their coming unto the house of Elohim at Jerusalem, in the second month, began Zerubbabel the son of Shealtiel, and Jeshua the son of Jozadak, and the remnant of their brethren the priests and the Levites, and all they that were come out of the captivity unto Jerusalem; and appointed the Levites, from twenty years old and upward, to set forward the work of the house of Yahweh,” Ezra 3:8.

While each one of these accounts is important, perhaps the most notable are those describing Yahweh’s judgment of Israel in the wilderness. Because of their rebellion, all those 20 years and older and considered mature and accountable died in the wilderness!

Repentance is key

Peter in Acts 3:28 told the people first to “repent.” The word repent means to think differently or to reconsider. In essence, it’s recognizing our past sins and committing to live a better way according to Yahweh’s commandments. We also know from the Word that those who backslide from this covenant promise will be judged harshly.

Realizing the awesome gravity and commitment in baptism, it is essential that the person who obligates himself to this crucial step is of a responsible age and accountable for their actions going forward. Scripture unquestionably teaches this age to be 20 years old.

Some might argue that their teenager is ready. While this may be true of a very small portion of teens, most in this stage of life are not experienced enough in life, committed, and mature in heart and mind to grasp such a life-altering promise to Yahweh. They cannot appreciate the profound significance of repentance in our lives.

Once committed to the “burial” water Yahweh will hold the person to their decision for life and there is no turning back; there are no “do-overs” when we pledge our life to Yahweh. Any minister who would baptize an immature youth has no regard for the magnitude of his actions. Consider that Yahshua held off His own baptism and the beginning His ministry until 30 years of age. While we don’t believe this requires us to wait until 30 for baptism, it shows that waiting at least until 20 is minimal, even for the most advanced and mature teen.

Dying A Spiritual Death

Baptism symbolically represents a death of our old nature. Paul in Romans 6:3 states, “Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Yahshua Messiah were baptized into his death?”

Paul explains that baptism represents a type of burial. The death that it represents is something special; it symbolizes the death of Yahshua the Messiah. When we’re immersed into Yahshua’s Name we emblematically take part in His death.

By dying to Him through baptism we put to death our old man and essentially become part of Him. It should be remembered that a sinner cannot enter into Yahweh’s Kingdom, 1Corinthians 6:9-11, and that only those in Messiah will be resurrected at His Second Coming, 1Corinthians 15:23.

Paul goes on to say, “Therefore we are buried with him by baptism into death: that like as Messiah was raised up from the dead by the glory of the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life. For if we have been planted together in the likeness of his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection,” verses 4-5.

Paul confirms here that baptism represents a death; the death of Yahshua the Messiah. He also explains that after baptism we are to walk in newness of life. The word “newness” comes from the Greek kainotes and refers to a “renewal.”

At baptism, we start over as a new person with a new life and aspirations, and goals that make Yahweh and His Word the center of our lives. We become dead to our old man and walk in a new and better way. This is what it means to walk in newness of life.

We find here a third reason that baptism into Yahshua’s Name is necessary for salvation. In verse 5 Paul explains that as we were buried with Yahshua at baptism, we will also be resurrected in His likeness at His coming. Therefore, to be resurrected in Messiah we must first die to Messiah through baptism. Without baptism into Yahshua’s Name we are none of His and cannot partake in His resurrection.

Avoiding Sin

Starting in verse 6, Paul explains the need of removing sin: “Knowing this, that our old man is impaled with him, that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should not serve sin. For he that is dead is freed from sin…. Let not sin therefore reign in your mortal body, that ye should obey it in the lusts thereof. Neither yield ye your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin: but yield yourselves unto Elohim, as those that are alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness unto Elohim,” verses 6-7, 12-13.

Paul stated that at baptism our old man is impaled with Yahshua the Messiah. We impale the flesh so that our carnal, sinful nature might be destroyed. After baptism we can no longer justifiably live a life of sin. This is why Scripture describes baptism as a death to our old person. If something is dead it no longer exists. For example, Scripture says that the dead cannot praise Yahweh.

Baptism works the same way regarding sin. Those immersed into Yahshua’s Name have an obligation to abstain from sin and the breaking of Yahweh’s commandments, 1John 3:4. Have those immersed into Yahshua’s Name become complacent? Do we find ourselves compromising His Word? The commitment that we made at baptism holds as true today as it did the day of our baptism.

In verse 13 Paul says that we should yield our members as instruments of righteousness unto Elohim. The word “righteousness” here comes from the Greek dikaiosune. The Thayer’s Greek Lexicon defines this word: “(1) the doctrine concerning the way in which man may attain a state approved of G-d and (2) integrity, virtue, purity of life, rightness, correctness of thinking feeling, and acting.”

These are the characteristics and values that believers in the Messiah must exhibit in their own lives. How do we measure up? Are we fulfilling the commitment we made when we underwent immersion into Yahshua’s Name? Are we displaying integrity and righteousness in our lives?

If Yahshua returned today, would we have the confidence to stand boldly before Him knowing that we faithfully served Him? If the answer is “yes,” praise Yahweh. However, if we are uncertain or the answer is “no,” then let us better serve Him. Scripture states that we were bought with a price and that we no longer belong to ourselves, but to our Savior. This commitment occurred at baptism.

If you have not yet been immersed into Yahshua’s Name, but desire this crucial step, then we encourage you to contact the Ministry or seek out a congregation following the truths of Scripture, including calling on the Names of Yahweh and Yahshua along with observing the Sabbath and Feast days.

As long as we are committed to our Heavenly Father, Yahweh, and to our Savior, Yahshua the Messiah, then there’s no reason to wait. A person does not need to be perfect for baptism but only possess a resolute faith and a humble heart to faithfully obey the One they worship.

For more information on this subject please check out our free booklet!

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Are those who have been baptized in the common names and titles still in their sins?

     Are those who have been baptized in the common names and titles still in their sins?


    It is conceivable that some have repented of the works of the flesh. Yet they still may be ignorant of the only Name that offers salvation. Scripture says we must seek truth and then walk in all the light we are given, 1John 1:7.

Your question touches on a type of John’s baptism, the baptism unto simple repentance. In Acts 18 is a man named Apollos, an eloquent man “mighty in the Scriptures.” Yet he had still more to learn. Verse 25 says, “This man was instructed in the way of Yahweh; and being fervent in the spirit, he spake and taught diligently the things of Yahweh, knowing only the baptism of John.”

Notice how Aquila and Priscilla furthered his education: “And he began to speak boldly in the synagogue: whom when Aquila and Priscilla had heard, they took him unto them, and expounded unto him the way of Yahweh more perfectly.” (Acts 18:26)

The passage indicates that their instruction included the necessity now to be immersed into Yahshua’s Name.

Then in the next chapter, 19, Paul encounters more disciples who had not heard of baptism into Yahshua’s Name, which is baptism for salvation as well as repentance.

“He said unto them, have you received the Holy Spirit since you believed? And they said unto him, we have not so much as heard whether there be any Holy Spirit. And he said unto them, Unto what then were you baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism. Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Messiah Yahshua. When they heard this, they were baptized in the Name of the Master Yahshua.” No questioning, no arguing, just compliance.

When we repent and are baptized into the salvation that comes only in Yahshua’s Name, we are endowed with Yahweh’s Holy Spirit and begin to grow spiritually.

The common titles or names do not provide His salvation. Acts4:12 says, “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.” “Yahshua” means “Yahweh is salvation.” Only in the specific Name Yahshua do we find everlasting life.

Speaking of the need for proper immersion, the Savior Himself said, “…for thus it becomes us to fulfill all righteousness.”

If a sincere believer and follower of Truth becomes aware of the true Names that he has been ignorant of, then he must accept, not reject, this truth. Nominal worship long ago effectively cut ties with Israel and the promises Yahweh gave exclusively to those who are grafted into the Israelite promise.

One True Baptism

We are told that we are buried with Yahshua the Messiah through baptism to the end that we walk in a new life, Romans 6:4. That means that we undergo a unique transformation. Before you take the important step of immersion, you must understand all its ramifications for your present and future life.

This brochure is written with the hope that you will come to know what baptism means and how serious and permanent a decision it is for your life. Be sure that you are completely ready to commit your life to Yahweh and to be faithful in all things before you submit to the waters of immersion. When a person is called to the Truth, he or she is convicted to do all that Yahweh requires. A desire wells up inside to be obedient in everything that the Scriptures demand.

The question becomes, how necessary is baptism? The New Testament Scriptures teach baptism; the Apostles performed it; Yahshua Himself submitted to baptism to “fulfill all righteousness” (Matt. 3:15) and His example is for us. The Holy Spirit is given as a direct result of baptism, Acts 2:38. Whether or not to submit to baptism into Yahshua’s Name to become a son or daughter of Yahweh Almighty is the most important decision you as a Bible believer will ever make.

To think of immersion as a mere formality or just an outward sign of an inward change is to minimize what is a critical act of salvation for every True Worshiper seeking the Kingdom. Neither is the rite of baptism like some incantation that automatically changes your life. Baptism results from deep faith, sincere repentance, and a total commitment to real change in the life you live by learning and applying Yahweh’s truths.

Baptism is a prerequisite for salvation itself. Therefore, to submit to baptismal waters is no small matter. We read Yahshua’s words in Mark 16:16: “He that believes and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believes not shall be damned.” He also said, “Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of Elohim,” John 3:5.

Are You Willing to Permanently Change?

A principal truth of Yahweh’s Word is the simple fact that Yahweh will bar those from His Kingdom who are still in their natural, sinful condition. We must first be changed in heart to take on the mind of Yahshua. He told a parable of the man who was ejected from the wedding of Yahshua and His chosen bride because he lacked a wedding garment. The spiritual message is that we cannot approach Him unprepared and unchanged in heart (Matt. 22:12-14).

In order to be considered one of Yahweh’s sons or daughters a dynamic transformation in your very thinking must first occur. That change includes the sincere desire to put sin out of your life by leaving behind the old nature in the burial waters of baptism. You come out of the water a new person, a new creation with a different goal in life and a transforming way of living it. See Ezekiel 18:31.

As a result, instead of living to satisfy personal wants and ambitions, you as a converted child of Yahweh desire above all else to obey Him and live for Him for the rest of your life.

What was once important to you as a carnal individual now takes a backseat to pleasing Yahweh in everything. It means nothing less than surrendering your very heart to your Creator. It comes down to saying, “All that you have said in your Word I will do and be obedient.” Paul describes it as “putting on Messiah,” Galatians 3:27.

Yahshua now rules your thoughts and your actions. His life becomes the pattern for your life. Through Yahweh’s Spirit you see the world and look at your life through His eyes. You see your earthly existence as nothing less than training for an everlasting Kingdom.

Before you commit to baptism and submit to the cleansing waters of immersion, you must be absolutely sure of your decision. You must be aware that there are severe consequences if you do not following through in your  new obligations to Yahweh after your baptism. The irrevocable promise you make at immersion includes complete obedience to Yahweh.


No Turning Back

Through immersion you enter into a unique New Covenant promise with Him. You make a commitment to Yahweh to be faithful until death.

A vow in Yahweh’s eyes is a binding pledge that carries an extremely high price for going back on your promise. Ecclesiastes 5:4-5 warns, “When you vow a vow unto Yahweh, defer not to pay it; for He has no pleasure in fools: pay that which you have vowed. Better is it that you should not vow, than that you should vow and not pay.” The language of Numbers 30:2 is very clear: “If a man vow a vow unto Yahweh, or swear an oath to bind his soul with a bond; he shall not break his word, he shall do according to all that proceeds out of his mouth.”

Immediately after Yahshua was immersed by John, He underwent trials from the Adversary, Matthew 4, Luke 4. He was tempted three separate times to be unfaithful to His commitment to Yahweh His Father. Similarly, once you repent and submit to Yahweh through the waters of immersion, you will be tried and tempted in some fashion. Satan never gives up in his unholy efforts because he wants you — Yahweh’s very own son or daughter — as a prize for himself.

In a moment of weakness you may at some point stumble and make a mistake. But Yahshua is our Advocate with the Father and Yahweh will forgive us if we truly, sincerely, and with our whole heart turn back to Him in humble submission, seeking His forgiveness. Yahweh will show mercy to the person who commits sin after immersion and humbly seeks His forgiveness, while promising not to repeat the sin. However, if after you are baptized you turn completely away from the Truth and reject His Word, then you are in dire straits. At that point repentance is no longer acceptable, Hebrews 6:6, Exodus 15:2-3. With no access to forgiveness of his sin, the heretic backslider faces eternal death, James 1:15.  Before you take the irrevocable step of immersion you must ask yourself, am I willing to be obedient in all things for the sake of the Kingdom?

Do I desire with my whole being:

  • to put Yahweh first in my life through my worship, my time, and my tithe and to place Him before my spouse, family, friends and job?
  • to keep all His annual Feasts every year, along with the weekly Sabbath? Am I prepared to find other employment if necessary in order to be faithful to the Feasts and the Fourth Commandment, Saturday Sabbath, obligation?
  • to be an example to others of a True Believer in Yahweh in my actions and behavior each day?
  • to be willing to change when I am shown to be in error?

If your answer to any of these is no, or if you have reservations about any of these questions, then you may not be ready for immersion. Baptism requires a complete change of heart and life. Adhering to the Truth of the Word is all about personal change and walking a different path which leads to salvation.

We are commanded to come out of the world (2Cor. 6:17), and that means to leave error and follow Truth. You must be willing to make permanent changes in the way you live your life so that you will be found worthy of the Kingdom.

Living for Yahweh will entail difficulty at times. Paul wrote, “Which is a manifest token of the righteous judgment of Elohim, that you may be counted worthy of the kingdom of Elohim, for which you also suffer.” (NASV) Nothing worthwhile comes easy. That is especially true of the Kingdom.


Repent and Turn Your Life Around

Every person on the planet has sinned, Romans 3:23, and sin rules in the lives of all unrepentant people. Each has racked up a grave penalty for their sins. Sin must be expunged from our lives if we hope to see the Father. Yahweh’s Spirit can’t live in the same person who has filthy, unrepented sin residing there as well.

The only way to remove the penalty of sin is to partake in the death and resurrection of Yahshua, which is symbolically accomplished through the act of baptism. Colossians 2:12 explains how this works. “Buried with him in baptism, wherein also you are risen with him through the faith of the operation of Elohim, who has raised him from the dead.”

Repentance is central to baptism and the removal of sin. It’s like a soap that cleanses away the stains of sin. A serious introspection of one’s life must occur prior to baptism. John gives us a clear definition of true repentance in Matthew 3. There was nothing about John the Baptist’s message that was warm and fuzzy. It was harsh, it was strong, it was confrontational, and it was devastating because John understood how prone the sinner is to a shallow, superficial repentance that does not stick and will not save.

John knew the depths of repentance that the sinner must have. But at the same time, because he spoke such a clear definition of true repentance, he exposed false repentance, shallow repentance, and non-salvational repentance. “Who hath warned you to flee from the wrath to come? Bring forth therefore fruits meet for repentance…And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Spirit, and with fire: Whose fan is in his hand, and he will thoroughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire” (Matt. 3:7-8; 10-12).

The common term in the Old Testament for repentance is sub. Two requisites of repentance included in sub are “to turn from evil,” and “to turn to the good.” It means turning in submission to Yahweh. Three times Ezekiel included Yahweh’s call to the people of Israel: “Repent! Turn from your idols and renounce all your detestable practices!” (14:6); “Repent! Turn away from all your offenses” (18:30); “Turn! Turn from your evil ways” (33:11).

The Greek Septuagint underlines this idea by usually translating sub by epi (apo-)strepho (to turn about, or to turn away from). To be abandoned are both evil intentions and evil deeds, and both our motives and conduct are to be radically changed. A striking example is found in Isaiah 1:16-17:  “Wash and make yourselves clean. Take your evil deeds out of my sight! Stop doing wrong. Learn to do right.” In Luke 13:3 and 5 Yahshua said, “If you don’t repent, you’ll perish.”

In the New Testament Greek repentance is the noun metanoia and means a real change of mind and attitude toward sin itself and the cause of it, not merely the consequences of it, which affects the whole life and not merely a single act. Yahweh promises that forgiveness will follow true repentance, Ezekiel 18:21-23.

You can’t dabble in the truth. You are either in or you are out. You can’t sit on the fence and be lukewarm. Yahshua said the lukewarm or only partly committed individual is going to be spewed out like a drink of warm water. You either get in the action or you sit on the sidelines where you will be left. John the Baptist said you need to do a search of your heart. You need to turn from your sins. You need to change the dark and the low and the gross and base elements of your life. You need to see the proud nature of your heart and the perverse and crooked things and every other hindrance in your life for what they are…obstacles that keep you from walking rightly with Yahweh. True repentance requires a complete and full admission of one’s sinfulness…in depth and height and length and breadth.

Prayerfully seek Yahweh for guidance. Repent of your sins. And then may the angels in heaven rejoice (Luke 15:10).

Baptism into Yahshua’s Name is necessary for salvation.  Baptism into the true name of Yahshua is the only correct baptism because:

Only baptism into Yahshua’s Name leads to the remission of sins, Acts 2:38.

Only baptism into Yahshua’s Name leads to the receiving of the Holy Spirit, Acts 2:38 and 8:16.

Only those baptized into Yahshua’s Name become part of Messiah, Galatians 3:27.

Only those baptized into Yahshua’s Name will share in the likeness of His resurrection, Romans 6:5.

Past immersions into some other name or into “father, son, and holy spirit” do not fulfill the scriptural mandate and must be redone properly into the singular Name Yahshua.

More information can be found here: Why Baptism into Yahshua’s Name?

Following are the biblical conditions and regulations for baptism:

  • I understand that baptism into Yahshua’s Name is necessary for salvation (John 3:5).
  • I understand that proper baptism is into the singular Name of Yahshua the Messiah; all baptisms in the New Testament were done into the one Name, Yahshua (Acts 2:38; 8:16; 10:48; 19:5; Romans 6:3; Galatians 3:27). The only trinity formula for baptism found in Scripture is in Matthew 28:19. The Jerusalem Bible note says that formula may be “a reflection of the liturgical usage established later in the primitive community.” This is corrobrated in the Harper Collins Study Bible note. The Hebrew version of Matthew omits this triune formula.
  • I understand that baptism first requires repentance of my sins (Acts 2:38) and that repentance means a complete change in my life.
  • I understand that granting of the Holy Spirit is required for salvation, and that the spirit is endowed at baptism only by the laying on of hands of ordained ministers, Romans 8:9, 11; Acts 8:14-18; 1Timothy 4:14.
  • I understand that immersion is the only proper method, which the act of submersing and rising from the water represents the death, burial, and resurrection of Yahshua (Rom. 6:3-4; Colossians 2:12-13; 1Peter 3:21).The word baptize is from the Greek baptizo and means to immerse, submerge.
  • I understand that baptism requires a lifelong commitment.

I understand that upon baptism I must follow all the commandments of Yahweh’s Word for the rest of my natural life.

  • I am not currently smoking, abusing alcohol, or taking illegal drugs or substances.
  • I am not currently involved in any immoral situation or one that may be viewed as immoral.
  • I have nothing in my present, personal life that would prevent me from fulfilling the above requirements and becoming a part of the family of Yahshua in the body of Messiah.
  • I have read and agree with YRM’s Statement of Beliefs.


Who Can Scripturally Baptize?

Proper baptism involves being submerged in water by another qualified individual. In the Scripture that other person was a deacon, apostle, or someone ordained to this aspect of the ministry like John the Baptist. No one ever baptized himself or herself, not even our Savior. He went to John the Baptist for it. Never in the Scriptures did a husband and wife baptize each other.

Because immersion typifies death in burial waters, no one buries  himself and neither can one baptize himself. The laying on of hands to transfer the gift of the Holy Spirit following baptism is performed by one who already has the Spirit, a minister. Self-baptism is unscriptural for these reasons.

We at Yahweh’s Restoration ministry welcome those who have repented of their sins and express a desire to be immersed for the forgiveness of sins.

Baptism Questions Answered

1- What if I don’t get baptized before I die?

Yahshua said in Mark 16:16, “He that believeth and is baptized shall be saved; but he that believeth not shall be judged.” Belief, which implies commitment in the Greek, is a key requirement for salvation, and is in conjunction with baptism, 1Peter 3:21. When we believe, we commit to baptism. The Holy Spirit given at immersion helps us obey the precepts of the Word, Romans 8:9 and Ezekiel 36:27. The Spirit will also resurrect us, Romans 8:11. Why would we not want to be baptized to have the penalties of our sins washed away? There are at times exceptions in the Word because of unusual circumstances. The thief impaled with Yahshua obviously could not be baptized after his confession to Yahshua. Yet Yahshua told him he would be with Him in paradise.  Exceptions aside, each of us needs to be faithful to the Word while we can, and be immersed “to fulfill all righteousness.” The question is not how long can I put it off. The question is, in the words of the Ethiopian to Philip, “…what hinders me to be baptized?”

2- Will you baptize my 12-year-old son? He’s a good boy who loves the Bible.

The Bible shows that there is an age of maturity when we are held accountable for our actions. For at least eight biblical reasons, that age is 20. The most obvious lesson of accountability is when the Israelites who rebelled in the wilderness under Moses and who were at least age 20 at the time and were barred from the Promised Land. Those under 20 were allowed to go in, Numbers 32. Repentance is the first critical step to immersion. No matter how mature a 12-year-old is, he can’t possibly repent scripturally at that age when he hasn’t even experienced life as an adult with all the temptations, pulls, trials, and difficulties adulthood brings. His brain has not matured enough to make an enduring, lifelong commitment that he can’t in reality understand. We find that the minimal age for baptism in Scripture is 20. For more details see:

3- I was previously baptized by sprinkling and I felt the Holy Spirit come on me. Why do I need to be re-baptized?

Some use personal experience to establish their beliefs. Personal experiences are not the standard by which we determine Truth. The Word is. Baptisms that don’t fulfill the requirements are like John the Baptist’s baptism of repentance only. “And he said unto them, Unto what then were ye baptized? And they said, Unto John’s baptism. Then said Paul, John verily baptized with the baptism of repentance, saying unto the people, that they should believe on him which should come after him, that is, on Messiah Yahshua. When they heard this, they were baptized in the name of the Sovereign Yahshua,” Acts 19:3-5. Those who heard Paul’s explanation about the insufficiency of John’s baptism immediately got immersed in the new, correct way. Baptism must be done properly to be legitimate. There is only one proper baptism. Paul wrote in Ephesians 4:4-5, “There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling; One Master, one faith, one baptism.”

4- I am afraid to be baptized because I might sin afterward. If I did sin would I be lost?

Baptism does not require a perfect life. Because we sin is why baptism is necessary and why repentance is a prerequisite. No one lives perfectly, before or after immersion. Yahshua’s mercy is available if one makes a mistake after repentance and will forgive us if we seek Him in sincerity for forgiveness. “My little children, these things write I unto you, that ye sin not. And if any man sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Yahshua Messiah the righteous.” The point is that we must not fall back into our sinful ways before immersion. We read in 2Peter 2:20-21: “For if after they have escaped the pollutions of the world through the knowledge of the Master and Saviour Yahshua Messiah, they are again entangled therein, and overcome, the latter end is worse with them than the beginning. For it had been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than, after they have known it, to turn from the holy commandment delivered unto them.” A mistake is one thing, but a wholesale falling away and leaving the faith is another for which there is no repentance available but only judgment, Hebrew 6:4-6.

5- Do I need to adhere immediately to all Scripture after baptism? Can I still work on the Sabbath and observe holy days occasionally and celebrate holidays like Christmas because my family wants me to?

If you need to ask these questions then you don’t understand repentance and you need more study and prayer before you are ready to turn your life over to Almighty Yahweh. To commit your life to the Truth means that you walk in all the light all the time. Baptism must be taken seriously. Anything that stands in the way must be overcome. That means to call on His true Name Yahweh, to keep the Ten Commandments, weekly Sabbath, annual holy days of Leviticus 23, and clean food laws of Leviticus 11. In addition, Paul says that women are to wear a headcovering during worship, 1Corinthians 11. If a job requires work even occasionally on a Sabbath, then finding a different job is in order. Holidays that are not scriptural like Christmas, Easter, and Halloween must not be celebrated. A Believer must live by every word of Yahweh, Matthew 4:4; Luke 4:4. We must be free from sin and serve righteousness for the rest of our lives, Romans 6:16-23.


A New Person, a Different Walk

Being baptized is not the end of the believer’s walk. It’s just the beginning. Popular is the notion that because I have completed baptism and received the Spirit, my spiritual life is complete and I can sit back and watch the world go by. That idea can’t be more wrong. Baptism opens the possibility for salvation and now a new dimension takes hold in the believer’s life. The stakes will now be even greater. Yahweh expects a life of total commitment and He holds us to a higher standard.

Essential in the new walk are the gifts of the Holy Spirit and the fruits of the Spirit evident in the life of the called-out and transformed individual. The gifts of the Spirit are found in 1Corinthians 12:8-11: “For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will.” These gifts are to be used for the edification and growth of the Body of Messiah. Yahweh may grant one or more gifts at the time of baptism. In some He will enhance and develop in greater ways a natural gift the individual already has.

The fruits of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23 are those characteristics that are evident and expressed in the life of the converted believer. They show a changed life: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law. And they that are Messiah’s have impaled the flesh with the affections and lusts. If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” The carnal actions and reactions of the natural man are no longer evident, replaced by the mind of Messiah.

There is no greater purpose in life than to live for Yahweh, reflecting the life of His Son Yahshua in your life, and preparing for an eternity of rulership in His coming kingdom!

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Born again in the Bible

Born Twice (A look at the Born Again concept)

A rather savvy Pharisee named Nicodemus privately approached the Messiah Yahshua at night to say he was convinced that Yahshua was a teacher sent from Yahweh.

Yahshua used the opportunity to reveal a central fact about the Kingdom. “Yahshua answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of Elohim,”John 3:3.

Confused by Yahshua’s statement, Nicodemus asked how can a person be born when he is old? Can he go back into his mother’s womb and be born all over again?

Then Yahshua detailed what He meant. “Yahshua answered, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of Elohim.”

Yahshua said that being born again for salvation involves two fundamentals: being born of water and the Spirit. Yahshua was talking about a process of conversion. That spiritual transformation that must occur in a Believer’s life leads to a full-fledged, new creation of an individual who no longer continues in his old nature, indulging in the world’s pleasures and sins, but now reflects the very image of Yahweh in thought and action.

A Process Taking Time

Conversion is a life-long development, not an easy and quick confession followed by back to business as usual. To be found worthy of the Kingdom requires a complete, permanent change of mind and heart.

Transforming of the individual from a serial sinner into a spiritually mature individual useful to Yahweh in advancing His Kingdom requires a lifetime of tests and trials. It doesn’t happen with a mere declaration of Yahshua as one’s personal Savior; that’s only the start.

John gave us a crucial element to being born again: “For whatsoever is born of Elohim overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith,” 1John 5:4.

In Revelation 2:26 Yahshua says, “And he that overcomes, and keeps my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations.” Obedience to the Word is how we overcome in this life. It leads to a position of rulership in the next, “To him that overcomes will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne,”Revelation 3:21.

To be born again means overcoming. But what does “overcome” mean? Isn’t a simple confession enough? Not any more than blowing on your hands will wash away grimy dirt.

Overcoming our old nature and the pulls of this world is serious, difficult business. It takes a lifetime.

Windfall Blessings Now?

No wonder people want to believe that being born again (being “saved”) is just a five-second confession! Isaiah tells us what everyone would rather hear: “Which say to the seers, See not; and to the prophets, prophesy not unto us right things, speak unto us smooth things, prophesy deceits,” Isaiah 30:10

Tell everyone that entrance into the Kingdom is easy and effortless and filled with all the worldly blessings imaginable. That’s prophesying (teaching) deceits. That’s today’s popular messages in a nutshell and an amazingly accurate prophecy about them.

The popular doctrine of being born again says it’s all downhill once you accept Yahshua. You are now saved, and you will slide on through completely unscathed. Even better, you will have great health and wealth and prosperity as well.

But where’s the evidence? Which person who has undergone real, authentic conversion has been inundated with health and riches—and no problems from then on? This most popular of sermon themes of nominal worship is fundamentally not just flawed but a lie from the very the lips of haSatan himself.

Nowhere does Yahweh’s Word teach it and nowhere is there any evidence of it in the Word. In fact, the opposite is the truth.

A Tribulation Guarantee

Instead of sunshine, lollypops and roses, many of His true Worshipers will pay the ultimate sacrifice for living for Yahweh. We read of the consequences for some followers in the end times in Revelation 12:11, “And they overcame him [Satan] by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.”

Forget the sugar and spice and everything nice. Forget wealth and health. There’s going to be conflict when you take up the same walk that Yahshua took, which is the only walk that leads to salvation. This is fact and is anything but popular. The world in general has little love of the truth of Yahweh because the truth is convicting. And remember how Yahshua ended up—nailed to a post! Is Yahweh going to give you what He didn’t even give His own son? Are we to have it better than Yahweh’s own, beloved Son had it?

We are told not to be surprised when tested for our faith. Yahshua guaranteed it, “Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword. For I am come to set a man at variance against his father, and the daughter against her mother, and the daughter in law against her mother in law. And a man’s foes [shall be] they of his own household,”Matthew 10:34-36.

This is why the way is called narrow. Salvation comes at a great sacrificial price. Peter wrote, “Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you: But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Messiah’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy,” 1Peter 4:12-13.

If we follow in Yahshua’s footsteps then we will experience the kinds of things He did.

That’s all part of the refining process. Sifting takes out the junk. Heat melts away impurities. What is left is a highly refined product that Yahweh can use. He can’t utilize what is tainted with unrepented sin, 1Corinthians 6:9.

Let’s dig into the ancient language itself and see what “born again” actually means as taught by Yahshua Himself.

The Greek and ‘Born Again’

“Born again” starts with being begotten from above. Let’s look at the two words individually. “Born” is the Greek gennao and in Yahshua’s teaching means the entire birth process – from the beginning at begettal to the ending at birth. Gennao is used inMatthew 1:20, where Joseph is told by the angel that Mary’s conception (gennao , begetting) is by the Holy Spirit.

“Again” is anothen and means: 1) from above, from a higher place; of things which come from heaven or Yahweh; 2) from the first, from the beginning.

We are begotten spiritually by the Word of truth, James 1:8 tells us. Yahshua uses the process of conception and growth of a baby to illustrate the same concept with a babe in the Word. First the conception, then the gestation period, then the actual birth. In that process the newborn undergoes radical change—from a single ovum or egg barely visible to the unaided eye to the birth of a fully developed infant.

When the egg becomes fertilized the begettal occurs. Spiritually for the True Worshiper it starts at baptism, when a part of the Holy Spirit is given by the laying on of hands of the ministry to start the spiritual growth process. Paul said in 1Corinthians 1:22 that we are “…given the earnest of the spirit in our hearts.” He said again in 2Corinthians 5:5: “Now he that hath wrought us for the selfsame thing [is] Elohim, who also hath given unto us the earnest of the Spirit.”

Earnest means down payment, from the Greek arrabon. It is just the initial infusion of His Spirit. So long as the person does not quench the Spirit through sin, it will then develop and grow over time to create a fully developed Believer ready to be delivered by rebirth of that believer. He is at that time “born again.”

John 3:34 reveals that Yahshua is the exception to this. He got the FULL measure of the Spirit at His immersion by John. “For he whom Yahweh hath sent speaketh the words of Yahweh: for Yahweh giveth not the Spirit by measure [unto Him].”

Resurrection by the Spirit

Now we can review what we know so far about Yahshua’s teaching of being born again. From John 3:3 we learn: “Yahshua answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of Elohim.”

Nicodemus needed further clarification, which Yahshua provides in verse 5: “Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and [of] the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of Elohim.”

A man who was once being counseled for immersion said he believed that baptism wasn’t really necessary. Not only did Yahshua contradict that by His own words and by His own example of baptism, but the man was essentially saying he didn’t need the Holy Spirit, either, because at baptism is the very time the Holy Spirit is given through the laying on of hands of the elders.

Simply put, without the Holy Spirit in you, you will not be raised in the coming resurrection. Paul wrote, “But if the Spirit of him that raised up Yahshua from the dead dwell in you, he that raised up the Messiah from the dead shall also quicken your mortal bodies by his Spirit that dwells in you,” Romans 8:11. See also John 6:63 and 2Corinthians 3:6.

The path to salvation begins with repentance from past sins followed by water baptism and laying on of hands for the Holy Spirit. Being born of water is not speaking of the fluid in the amniotic sac, as some have claimed. We all are born that way, and it would be pointless to mention it as something required of the believer when he has no choice in the matter!

To be born again we need power that comes down from above—from Yahweh Himself. And that power is the infusing of His Spirit. If this doesn’t happen, you cannot enter the Kingdom.

Changed By the Spirit

When Yahshua comes back to this earth His people will be drawn to Him by the Holy Spirit they were given at baptism. John 12:32: “And I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all [men] unto me.” Draw is the Greek helko and means to draw by power. The Spirit will act like a magnet, and you must be “magnetized” to be drawn to Yahshua.

This is exactly how Yahshua was resurrected: “For Messiah also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to Elohim, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit” 1Peter 3:18. He was instantly changed and raised by the Holy Spirit.

Now comes the key verse 6: “That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.” What does He mean to be born of the Spirit? Once that seed of the Holy Spirit is given it grows within the mind and heart to produce a mature believer.

Ultimately, and this is the result of the entire process, that person will be physically changed to spirit essence at the resurrection.

Paul had written in 1Thessalonians 4:16-17: “For the Master himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of Elohim: and the dead in Messiah shall rise first: Then we which are alive [and] remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Master in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Savior.”

The process of spiritual maturity that started with repentance and water immersion ends with a miraculous transformation of a mind and heart, and from a physical human being into a spirit being at the return of Yahshua. He will raise His own at that time and reward them with a position in His kingdom.

“Blessed and holy is he that has part in the first resurrection: on such the second death had no power, but they shall be priests of Yahweh and of Messiah, and shall reign with him a thousand years” (Rev. 20:6).

This is the ultimate work of the Holy Spirit and the glorious future that awaits the faithful who keep the commandments and have the faith of Yahshua.

The saints will no longer be flesh and blood but will have spirit energy as do Yahweh and Yahshua.

Like the Wind

Yahshua demonstrated it further. He said in John 3:8, “The wind blows where it lists, and you hear the sound thereof, but cannot tell whence it comes, and where it goes: so is every one that is born of the Spirit.”

Yahshua compares the transformation to spirit essence with the wind. Wind is the Greek pneuma as demonstrated in Acts 2 when the Spirit was given and they heard a mighty sound like wind. Wind is often used in conjunction with the Holy Spirit. It has much the same properties.

Wind blows where Yahweh desires it to blow. He has complete control over it. Wind is invisible, you can’t tell where it comes from and where it goes. Yet it has power. So is the spirit essence of the True Worshiper in his spirit body at the resurrection.

Yahshua in spirit form could appear and disappear at will. Suddenly there He was in a locked room with His disciples. He could present himself to His Father in heaven and be back on earth that same day. How did He do it? With Spirit power. He was spirit. Someday His chosen will have the same. Spirit essence is not limited by time, space or physical restrictions.

One must be begotten before one is born. The process of being “born again” is not a simple conversion experience. Pursuit of a Scriptural way of life must then follow.

Following are some key reasons you cannot be born again and still be a human in a physical body:

Peter explains it clearly in 1Peter 1:23: “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the Word of Elohim, which lives and abides for ever. For all flesh [is] as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withers, and the flower thereof falleth away:”

The spiritual commitment and life-change that is done spiritually ends with an actual spirit body that cannot break down, get sick, die or decay (incorruptible!). It will be immortal. Peter said plainly, being born again means not being physical, not being corruptible but incorruptible. Incorruptible is the Greek aphthartos and means immortal. It is used of Yahweh Himself. Being born again means you are immortal.

Yahshua said in John 3:6, that which is born of the spirit IS spirit, not flesh. Being born again means to be of spirit in form and substance. “Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of Elohim; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption,” 1Corinthians 15:50.

“Born again” is an entire process not just a confession; a declaration of sin is just the start of the spiritual process that results in being reborn.

They No Longer Sin

Now read 1John 3:9, “Whosoever is born of Elohim doth not commit sin; for his seed remains in him: and he cannot sin, because he is born of Elohim.”

Here is another simple test for the “born again” claim. Is the individual now sinless? Can he or she commit sin? The fact is, no human is sinless in this present world, Romans 3:23. Therefore, no one but Yahshua has been born again. He is the only one who was resurrected into spirit essence and the only one who is sinless.

Paul said in Rom. 3:23: “For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of Elohim.” No one is any different from anyone else on that score. John said that if you are born again you cannot sin. The reason is simple. Being born again you are now a spirit being. You’ve made the cut. You are completely transformed in mind and heart as well as in essence.

Being born again you have overcome your sinful, human nature, the world’s obstacles and Satan’s devices. As a spirit being your mind is transformed so you no longer rebel against Yahweh through sin.

“If you know that he is righteous, you know that every one that does righteousness is born of him,” 1John 2:29. Righteousness is sinlessness. Show me a sinless person and I would agree that he or she is born again. I would also agree that they are now spirit beings and no longer flesh and blood.

Spirit Given by Measure

John 3:34 reveals that the Holy Spirit is given in limited fashion. As we grow in grace, knowledge, and obedience, more of the Spirit is given to us. Acts 5:32 says He gives His spirit to those who obey.

With Yahshua it was different. The Spirit was not given to Yahshua in increments, but in whole: “For He whom Elohim has sent speaks the words of Elohim: for Elohim gives not the Spirit by measure unto Him.”

But to us He gives just a small part of the Spirit at first, to see whether we will continue faithful and grow with it. “Who has also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts” (2Cor. 1:22). Earnest is the Greek arrhabon and means a pledge or an advance, like a down payment.

As with Yahshua’s human begettal, the Holy Spirit is given us as a spiritual “begettal.” Then as we grow spiritually more of the Spirit is given, helping us mature into the nature and righteous stature of Yahshua.

Before any spiritual begettal takes place, though, repentance must occur. We find a prime example of repentance in Acts 2. It came following Peter’s explanation to the assembled Jews who came from 15 countries to keep Pentecost, saying that because of their sins and false accusation they themselves were the ones who put Yahshua to death. They were devastated, ashamed, stirred up, and asked Peter, “What shall we do?”

They were humbled and willing to change and do anything they were asked to do. That is the spirit of true repentance.

“Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Yahshua Messiah for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, [even] as many as Yahweh our Elohim shall call” (Acts 2:38-39).

Yahshua likened the Holy Spirit to flowing water, which will cover the earth when the Kingdom comes. His cleansing blood at Passover allowed the Holy Spirit to come and remain on earth. Through the sacrifice of Yahshua we receive the Holy Spirit by baptism in His Name. Our sins are washed away, and once empowered by the Spirit, we keep Yahweh’s laws and strive to stop sinning.

Yahshua Was Born Again

You may be wondering, has anyone ever been born again? Yes indeed. As the firstfruits of many brethren, Yahshua Himself was.

Yahshua was the first to be resurrected with a body changed from flesh and blood to spirit. Those in the first resurrection shall also be changed to a spirit body: “And he is the head of the body, the assembly: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence” (Col. 1:18).

Paul also wrote, “For whom he did foreknow, he also did predestinate [to be] conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many believers” (Rom 8:29).

Yahshua as the firstborn among brethren was “born again.” That occurred when His physical body was changed to spirit essence when He rose from the dead. He was begotten (gennao) of water baptism and of the Spirit and was ultimately born from above (anothen) when He took on spirit form.

Being given the Holy Spirit upon baptism into Yahshua’s saving Name is just the beginning for us.

Work of the Spirit

His indwelling Spirit gives us peace of mind and produces fruits: “But the fruit of the Spirit of love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance: against such there is no law” (Gal. 5:22-23).

But beyond what it does for us now, the portion of the Holy Spirit we receive upon immersion is also a kind of pledge or security toward an inheritance one day of the Kingdom.

Paul writes that we are sealed in Yahshua with the Holy Spirit of promise, Ephesians 1:13. He adds, “Which is the earnest of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory” (Eph. 1:14).

Just as in a legal contract when an earnest deposit is made, there is a period during which the legal system puts everything in order. All necessary groundwork must be laid so that both parties are satisfied that they are getting just what they are bargaining for.

What, then, is expected of us during this early begettal and “spiritual gestation” period prior to being born again?

Our Obligation

Peter writes, “Wherefore laying aside all malice, and all guile, and hypocrisies, and envies, and all evil speaking. As newborn babes, desire the sincere milk of the word, that you may grow thereby: If so be you have tasted that the Savior is gracious” (1Pet. 2:1-3). We must grow in grace and knowledge of the Word, 2Peter 3:18.

This change is imperative.Yahshua said, “Marvel not that I said unto you, You must be born again” (John 3:7). To be different from the natural man with his envies, jealousies, hypocrisies, lies, worldly desires—that is the work the Spirit implanted at baptism.

Most are too busy with their daily lives to focus on their Father in heaven. Only when it is too late will many get serious about how they live.

“Strive to enter in at the strait gate: for many, I say unto you, will seek to enter in, and shall not be able,” Luke 13:24.

His chosen are humble and teachable as little children and they put into practice what the Bible requires. “And said, Verily I say unto you, Except you be converted, and become as little children, you shall not enter into the Kingdom of heaven” (Matt. 18:3).

We develop the character and love of Yahshua our Savior through obedience, just as He did. “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered,” Hebrews 5:8.

Carnal Won’t Enter

Yahshua went on to say that only a few would be willing to pay the price to be in the Kingdom.

We are told plainly in 1Corinthians 6:9-10 that those who practice sin will have no place in the Kingdom, and will not be begotten of His Spirit and born again.

“Know you not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of Yahweh? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, not idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of Yahweh .”

During the spiritual bettal when the Holy Spirit is working in the repentant heart, the old nature gives away to a completely different individual:

“Therefore if any man be in Messiah, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new,”2Corinthians 6:17-18.

A Few Are Called Now

Being “begotten from above” by Yahweh’s Holy Spirit is a fulfillment of the promise made by Yahshua. The Heavenly Father is calling a few select people now to become His sons and daughters and to rule with Him in the Kingdom.

This is all made possible by the death and resurrection of His Son Yahshua, who paid the price for our sins and arose that we might have life. He is now our Advocate as we struggle to overcome the world, Satan, and our carnal nature.

He intercedes for us, and through the Holy Spirit we grow in grace and knowledge of Yahweh, fitting into His design for the faithful. Once our spiritual growth has reached a maturity that Yahweh can use for His Kingdom, then we are ready to be born again.

By: Alan Mansager

salvation; saved; one saved always saved; how to be saved; saved in jesus name; salvation is a free gift; how can a person be saved in christ?; how can I be saved?; what can I do to be saved?

What Must I Do to Be Saved?

Believing in the words of the Scriptures and believing the admonitions given us entail much more than is commonly accepted by certain groups who contend that we are saved by grace.

Certainly we are saved by grace. There is nothing that we could do to merit salvation. Through the gift of Yahweh we are called to salvation. Yahshua’s choosing of those who will become a part of His Body, however, entails considerably more than merely believing that He is the Redeemer of Israel.

The writer of Hebrews says, “Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Messiah, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works,” Hebrews 6:1. Clearly we are to continue on with more than mere repentance and reveling in the grace that we are given to become a part of the Body of Messiah.

Of Fresh and Rotten Fruit

The 15th chapter of John has one main theme  –  growth. Development and progress in Yahweh’s ways are not mere desires or requests made by the Father. They are absolute necessities.

A follower of Yahshua must adhere to certain requirements in order to continue as a believer. Yahshua plainly taught these inJohn 15. We are likened to branches and Yahshua is likened to a vine. Branches can be removed from the vine if necessary by the Father who prunes the vine. The good branch is one that “brings forth fruit.” The branch produces fruit by abiding in the vine (truth). If a branch fails, it withers and is cast away.

Yahweh made His creatures. He is called the husbandman. He can rightfully expect fruit from those that are in the vine. Scripture says, “The husbandman waits for the precious fruit of the earth and has long patience for it,” James 5:7.

Belief Is Not Enough

Believing and trusting in Yahshua the Messiah is the first requirement to becoming a part of the Body of Messiah. Belief is vital. It is the necessary starting point without which no one could be saved. But we cannot stop there. Many have failed to recognize that Yahweh the Father EXPECTS something from man for his part in the covenant.

The salvation of man is not a one-sided affair in either cost or profit. For salvation, a covenant is entered by two individuals  –  Yahweh and man. Each will assume a specific part of the covenant and each is to do his part.

Too many modern clerics portray Yahweh as a great sovereign who without any expectations of man rescues him from a burning hell. They would have us believe that the whole world had potentially been saved since the death of Yahshua the Messiah. On the contrary. To believe in the promises of the Bible requires effort. One has to study and prove to oneself that the Bible is true. The promises offered in the Bible carry with them certain obligations.

Examples of Belief

The Philippian jailer in Acts 16 asked Paul and Silas what he must do to be saved. Paul responded, “Believe on the Savior Yahshua the Messiah and you shall be saved and your house,” verse 32. According to just this statement, belief would not only save the Philippian but also his family. If this man had 10 children, all of these and his wife would have been converts or followers of the Messiah the moment the Philippian jailer believed on the Messiah. This seems logical if we were to select only this passage, isolating it from all other Scriptures.

In establishing any doctrine, how-ever, we are required to incorporate all pertinent Scriptures. The foundation stone of our belief must rest not upon one verse, one chapter or one book of the Bible. Our doctrines and belief in the Scripture must rest upon all Scripture. The entire Bible is given by inspiration of Yahweh, 2Timothy 3:16.

In the time of Yahshua the Messiah some believed on Him but failed to continue to act on that belief. We read in John 12:42, “Nevertheless among the chief rulers also many believed on Him; but because of the Pharisees they did not confess Him, lest they should be put out of the synagogue.” Here were men who were convinced deep down in inside that this was indeed the promised Messiah. Yet they feared what others would say about their belief and therefore did not confess Him before men.

If all the Philippian jailer had to do was to believe, then because all the chief rulers also believed they were saved as well, no matter what they did. But is this conclusion biblical? Even the devils believe, James 2:19.

Yahshua answers in Matthew 10:33, “But whosoever shall deny Me before men, him will I also deny before My Father which is in heaven.” These chief rulers denied Yahshua not because they did not believe on Him, but because they placed a greater value upon the praise of men than upon Yahweh. They were embarrassed to have acknowledged before all men that they believed He was the Messiah.

Rather than risk ridicule, they decided it was better not to make public their belief in Him.

Salvation Is Doing Yahweh’s Will

Believing in Yahshua the Messiah and accepting His Word as truth is not the entire prerequisite expected of Yahweh’s people. Yahshua said in Matthew 7:21-23, “Not everyone that saith unto Me, ‘Rabbi, Rabbi,’ shall enter into the kingdom of heaven, but he that does the will of My Father which is in heaven. Many will say unto Me in that day, ‘Rabbi, Rabbi’ … I will profess unto them, ‘I never knew you.’”

Mere belief does not make us a part of the Body of Messiah. Belief in Yahshua merely opens the door to becoming children of Yahweh. “As many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of Yahweh, even to them that believe on His Name,” John 1:12. There is a great difference in having power to become something and actually becoming it.

When we believe in Yahweh’s Word, we naturally act upon that belief. When we accept His Word as true, then acting on it shows that we do in fact believe it. Paul said he had not yet come to a point at which he felt secure. Notice his words in Philippians 3:12-14, “Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect; but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I was apprehended of Messiah Yahshua. Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended… I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of Yahweh in Messiah Yahshua.”

Paul admitted that he had not yet attained his high calling, but was making every effort to reach it. Further, in 1Corinthians 9:25- 27, Paul says, “Every man that strives for the mastery is temperate in all things. I therefore so run. . . I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” Paul boldly states that the Messiah’s vine and branches  –  believers  –  are to bring forth fruit or be cut off.

He wrote to the Romans, “Know you not that to whom you yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants you are to whom you obey?” Romans 6:16. Paul also pleaded with the believers in Romans 12:1, “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of Yahweh, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto Yahweh which is your reasonable service.”

Very clearly in the eighth chapter of Romans Paul warned that we cannot live a worldly life and expect to be totally acceptable to Yahweh. Notice his terse comment, “They that are in the flesh cannot please Yahweh. If you live after the flesh you shall die,” verses 8 and 13. Paul clearly says that we must live our lives for Yahweh day by day, seven days a week, every week of the year.

John Recognized a Duty

John was the disciple “that Yahshua loved,” Scripture says. He had every reason to believe in the grace Yahweh has for His people. But notice the obligations He mentions in 1 John 2:4, “He that says I know Him and keeps not His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.” In verse 3, John says to know Him is to keep His commandments.

In the first chapter he places the condition for the covering of the blood of Yahshua upon our walk in the light. Notice, “If we walk in the light, as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Yahshua Messiah His Son cleanses us from all sin,” verse 7. Clearly, there is no cleansing by the blood of Yahshua to anyone who fails to walk in the light. We have an obligation and a duty.

Becoming a disciple of Yahshua the Messiah is a lifetime occupation. Living for Him is a constant growth and overcoming effort. We are to become closer followers of Yahshua day by day. We are to bear fruit for the Heavenly Father. By our fruits we are known. The fruits become obvious as physical manifestations of Yahweh’s Spirit work through us.

We find the fruit of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5:22 as “love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance.” All of these require effort and demonstrate Yahweh’s Spirit taking hold of our lives. We must allow His influence to dominate us to the point that our own wills give way to the Spirit of Yahweh’s goodness.

When we have achieved this goal then we can say that our lives are in harmony with Yahshua’s.

your salvation is not assured; once saved always saved

Your Salvation Is NOT Assured Until the End

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The evangelist paces back and forth across the stage like a caged tiger. With neck veins visible and sweat trickling down his cheeks, he shakes his finger at the auditorium ceiling and thunders to his audience, “Will the Father in heaven permit one of His own children, for whom the Savior died on the cross, to ever fall into the depths of hell and become lost? I’m telling you right now — the answer is NEVER! … . Give Him praise and glow-ry!”

Many professed “born-again” evangelicals would respond with a collective “Amen, brother!” to this man’s statement. There is no doubt in their minds that their  salvation is already a certainty.

They believe they are destined for heavenly bliss no matter what they do or how they may sin between now and their last breath. As one evangelical describes it, “It is as if they have boarded a nonstop train bound for heaven. This faith train may pass through dark and perilous places, but it will never discharge a person with a reservation short of his glorious destination.”

The doctrine of eternal security or “once saved, always saved” is a widely believed teaching. Although no such terms exist anywhere in the Bible, what the preacher says about the belief may on first glance sound plausible, but is he right?

A representative passage very popular with those who believe in being forever saved at conversion is John 10:27-29: “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me: And I give unto them eternal life; and they shall never perish, neither shall any man pluck them out of My hand. My Father, which gave them Me, is greater than all; and no man is able to pluck them out of My Father’s hand.”

“See,” they say, “once He saves us we can never perish and no one can separate us from Him. His word is absolute and He cannot lie.”

Their statement cannot be denied. The question is, when does He grant us life everlasting? Are we “saved” immediately at our conversion? Is it ever possible to fall from grace? The issue of timing is the crux of the matter.

A companion verse to John 10:27-29 and a key that unlocks it and similar passages is found in Matthew 25:32-34, speaking of the Savior on the day of judgment: “And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divides his sheep from the goats: And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left. Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, you blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.”

The setting in Yahshua’s statement is the earth at His Second Coming. When He returns he will judge the earth and at that specific time will reward the faithful, both living and dead, with salvation. He confirms this in Revelation 22:12, showing the basis on which He gives rewards: “Behold, I come quickly, and my reward is with me, to give every man according as his work shall be.” Two verses later He adds, “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.”

Doing His commandments — obeying His laws — is what makes us worthy for eternal life, symbolized by the tree of life. The  implied opposite, then, means that if we don’t do His commandments we will not have this special right to everlasting life.

To be judged worthy by adhering to commandments and being rewarded according to works certainly doesn’t square with the popular teaching that salvation is immediate, automatic, and inevitable for the chosen. Unless we understand the truth about when and how we are saved, resting in the false notion that our salvation is forever secure could give us false security and in fact jeopardize our eternal future.

Some Believe They Have No Choice

There are those who take this idea of eternal security even a step further. They believe that because salvation is “all of Yahweh,” you are saved whether you want to be or not! Even though salvation involves both you and Yahweh, even if you decide you don’t want it Yahweh will carry you through anyway because it is His will to do so.

One such proponent explains it this way, “Eternal security, then, is the unbreakable relationship with the integrity of [Elohim]. Neither [Elohim] nor man nor angel can destroy the relationship which begins at salvation. There is no sin we can commit. There is no activity on our part that can neutralize it or destroy it. It is something we have permanently and perfectly both now and forever.”

An even more extreme position, promoted by men like Charles Stanley and Charles Ryrie, says that even if a person becomes an unbeliever, that person will still remain saved. This teaching essentially takes away any free choice from human beings. Yahweh may just as well have created humankind with an inability to sin. The whole idea of freedom to choose right over wrong that Yahweh has granted human beings since Eden is pointless in view of this extreme doctrine. He’ll save you in spite of yourself! But is that really the case?

A Scriptural truth that is not understood by many is that Yahweh does not save us in our sins, He saves us from our sins — from the death penalty that we because of our sins deserve. We cannot continue in sin and still expect Him to redeem us for His Kingdom. In fact, He makes it clear that He will not do so. “The wages of sin is death,” Paul wrote in Romans 6:23. Sins must be repented of and no longer indulged in. If we are in unrepented sin we will not be granted everlasting life. Yahweh does not reward sin. Notice: “Know you not that the unrighteous [lawbreakers] shall not inherit the Kingdom of Elohim? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the Kingdom,” 1Corinthians 6:9-10.

By definition, sin is the breaking of any of Yahweh’s laws, 1John 3:4.

Clearly, it does matter if a person remains true to Yahweh and it matters very much whether he or she indulges in the sin of this world. Paul tells us, “Be not deceived; Elohim is not mocked: for whatsoever a man sows, that shall he also reap. For he that sows to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that sows to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting,” Galatians 6:7-8.

Was Paul Even Sure of His Own Salvation?

Surely a man like the Apostle Paul, who wrote the majority of the New Testament and had direct revelatory teaching  from Yahshua (Gal. 1:11-12 ), would know whether he himself had salvation assured.  If the eternal security doctrine is true, then Paul of all people believed it and  taught it. Right? On the contrary.

Read the Apostle’s own statements about the doubts he entertained about his own life, and what he admonished about persevering and being faithful until the end:

  • “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway,” 1Corinthians 9:27. (Castaway is the Greek adokimos, one disapproved by the judge as not having fairly deserved the prize.)
  • “All I want is to know [Messiah Yahshua] and the power of His resurrection…That is the way I can hope to take my place in the resurrection of the dead. Not that I have become perfect yet: I have not yet won, but I am still running, trying to capture the prize for which [Messiah Yahshua] captured me. I can assure you my brothers, I am far from thinking that I have already won,”Philippians 3:10-13, Jerusalem Bible.
  • “Examine yourselves, whether you be in the faith; prove your own selves…” 2Corinthians 13:5.
  • “For we are made partakers of Messiah, if we hold the beginning of our confidence stedfast unto the end,” Hebrews 3:14.

Knowing exactly when the saints are saved will reveal the error of both the once saved, always saved doctrine and the popular understanding about being “born again” at conversion. Neither teaching is scriptural, based on what the Bible says about how and when salvation occurs.

How Salvation Actually Works

What few today grasp is that saving is a process, which starts with being begotten of the Holy Spirit at baptism and ends with being born again at the resurrection. An analogy about being saved is helpful here.

Let’s say a bush pilot crashes his plane in the cold wilderness of the arctic. Injured, he sends out an SOS, sets off flares, and radios for help. After some days he hears the distant drone of another plane. “I’m saved!” he cries.

But is he really saved? His exact location has not even been pinpointed by the rescuers.

What he means is that he now has the hope of being saved, the same thing Paul said he had in Philippians 3. He is technically not saved until he is safe and recovering in a hospital bed. For all he knows, his rescue plane itself may hit bad weather on the way back and be forced down. The ambulance picking him up at the airport may crash on icy roads. He may succumb to his injuries. All sorts of things could happen between now and the time he is in fact saved and on his way to recovery. As the popular expression goes, “It’s not over till its over.”

Yahshua said that men would hate the truth, “but he that endures to the end shall be saved,” Matthew 10:22. We may have hope of salvation, but it isn’t assured until the “end”— either the end of our lives or the end of this age when Yahshua comes to gather His elect.

Why? Because at any point we could become apostate. We could fall from grace by slipping back into the world through its many sins and temptations. If that happens to us we are in jeopardy, because Yahweh does not save sinners. Rather, he saves those who have repented of sin and turned to walk in His ways. Yahweh said through the prophet, “But if the wicked will turn from all his sins that he has committed, and keep all My statutes, and do that which is lawful and right, he shall surely live, he shall not die,”Ezekiel 18:21.

We learn from 1Corinthians 3:16 that Yahweh will destroy those who once knew the truth but become defiled. “Know you not that you are the temple of Elohim, and that the Spirit of Elohim dwells in you? If any man defile the temple of Elohim, him shall Elohim destroy; for the temple of Elohim is holy, which temple you are. Let no man deceive himself.” Even though the last verse of this passage, 23, says that we are Messiah’s, Paul shows that the possibility still exists that we could fall.

We see abundant evidence in the Scriptures that even though we are called His, we can still become debased through our choice to sin, and therefore jeopardize our eternal reward.

Those that do fall through disobedience will be cut off. “Be not highminded, but fear: For if Elohim spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not you. Behold therefore the goodness and severity of Elohim: on them which fell, severity; but toward you, goodness, if you continue in his goodness: otherwise you also shall be cut off,” Romans 11:21-22. “Goodness” means moral excellence. To fall from moral excellence is to disobey, as verse 30 reveals (“have not believed” means to disobey, see ASV and Rotherham).

Justified and Sanctified: The Key

Most who hold to the eternal security teaching dread what they call “works salvation.” They believe that Yahweh requires nothing of His people but faith alone. Any hint of the necessity of obedience sends them into paroxysms of distress and incredulity.

Certainly we are not saved by our works. The Scriptures are clear on that. We are not justified by keeping the law, Romans 3:20, but by His grace, v. 24. Justification means “just as if” we had not sinned. Nothing we can do will “earn” us righteous standing in His sight because we have all sinned and are nothing but filthy rags, Romans 3:23.

Once we are justified by His grace, however, then we are set apart for a holy purpose, which is called sanctification. Through sanctification Yahweh expects His people to live pure and righteous lives. “Having therefore these promises, dearly beloved, let us cleanse ourselves from all filthiness of the flesh and spirit, perfecting holiness in the fear of Elohim,” 2Corinthians 7:1. Notice the verse does not say, “Let Yahweh cleanse us,” but rather, “let us cleanse ourselves.” Live purely. Overcome the pulls of sin.

In the same vein we are commanded to “work out your own salvation with fear and trembling,” Philippians 2:12. If one is already saved, no fear and trembling would be necessary! Neither would there be a need to work out any salvation.

A sanctified individual not only lives a life apart from sin, but also is obedient to what Yahweh tells Him to do. “For this is the love of Elohim, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous,” 1John 5:3. He has commanded His people to keep His laws, including His Feasts and Sabbaths. They do so not because they are earning their salvation, but because they now live for Him and are in the process of taking on His very nature. We reflect His nature when we do what He would do and follow His direction. He is the Father and we His children. We obey Him just as we obey our earthly parents. We don’t obey our parents for a reward, but because they are our parents and they demand obedience. Our love for them makes us want to obey them.

Backsliders Will Slide on Out

Yahweh is adamant about the failure of those who once accepted Him but now turn back to sin. He will not save them in spite of themselves. He will, in fact, judge them!

The prophet Ezekiel warns, “But when the righteous turns away from his righteousness, and commits iniquity, and does according to all the abominations that the wicked man does, shall he live?  All his righteousness that he has done shall not be mentioned: in his trespass that he has trespassed, and in his sin that he has sinned, in them shall he die,” 18:24.

Does this passage just apply to ancient Israel? Ezekiel and other prophets prophesied not only for their day but also for our day and beyond. Yahweh does not change, Malachi 3:6.  What was true of His people anciently is true of His people today. He has but one standard. Paul said that all that happened in the Old Testament was for our example, 1Corinthians 10:11.

Backsliding is as hazardous to the people of Yahweh today as it was with Israel of old. Read in the New Testament Book of Hebrews, 6:4-6: “For it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted of the heavenly gift, and were made partakers of the Holy Spirit, And have tasted the good word of Elohim, and the powers of the world to come, if they shall fall away, to renew them again unto repentance; seeing they impale to themselves the Son of Elohim afresh, and put him to an open shame.”

Stark and serious words. To throw away the truth once you know it is as grave as it gets. Obviously such a result leaves no room for being eternally saved.

The Bible is filled with assurances that Yahweh will reward His chosen according to their deeds. Both an obedient life and a sinful life will be rewarded accordingly, Romans 2:6-9.The final book of the Bible shows that the saints are those who keep the commandments of Yahweh and have the faith of Yahshua, Revelation 14:12. Faith and obedience go hand in hand Clearly, it is the obedient — who are faithful until the end — who are saved, Hebrews 5:9, and not those who flout His commands and live the life they choose still expecting a Kingdom reward.

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Limited atonement; Total depravity of man; Irresistible grace; preservation of saints; john calvin; TULIP

Unconditional Salvation

One of the most well-known Protestant leaders was John Calvin. In about 1532 Calvin was converted and joined the Protestant movement, otherwise known as the Reformation. Unlike Martin Luther, whose focus was evangelizing the good news of Messiah, Calvin’s focus was developing a formal system of theology. Calvin’s theology was summarized with the acronym “TULIP,” which included five basic beliefs.

T – Total depravity of man, i.e. man inherited Adam’s sin and can do nothing for his own salvation.

U – Unconditional election apart from human merit or divine foreknowledge, i.e. salvation is based on Yahweh’s will and is a dual predestination of some to salvation and others to condemnation.

L – Limited atonement, i.e. Yahshua’s sacrifice is given to only those who are predestined to salvation.

I – Irresistible grace, i.e. the elect can do nothing to prevent salvation for the Holy Spirit irresistibly draws them in.

P – Perseverance or preservation of saints, i.e. the elect, who are saved by the Holy Spirit, will never be lost.

From these five theological points, Calvin believed that man was predestined to be either saved or condemned. He also believed that those who were elected could do nothing to fall from that grace. Question: is salvation something predestined or guaranteed no matter how one may live?

This teaching of Calvin could not be further from the truth. One undeniable fact that is found in Scripture is that salvation is not predestined and is not certain. What’s more, salvation is partially based on works or what we do in life.

The word “works” is taboo to many when it comes to salvation, but the fact is we all have a responsibility to obey when it comes to eternal life. Let’s now look at what the inspired Word says regarding the belief about once saved always saved, and predestination to eternal life or destruction. We will find that this belief is in complete contradiction of Scripture.

Endure to the End

Yahshua said in Matthew 10:22, “And you shall be hated of all men for my name’s sake: but he that endures to the end shall be saved.” Now this certainly does not sound as if He is promoting a

once-saved-always-saved teaching. Ifwe desire salvation we must do as Yahshua says here and endure to the end. But what it does it mean to endure? This word is from the Greek word hupomeno and means to undergo, i.e. bear trials or to have fortitude” (New Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance).

Salvation is not something guaranteed at baptism, but baptism is a prerequisite. Salvation is a gift granted to us if we remain faithful to Yahweh’s Word no matter what trial or persecution we suffer. If we do not have the fortitude to stay strong in our faith then we will not attain the gift of eternal life. To achieve life in Yahweh’s kingdom we must have the faith and devotion to remain strong so that we are never removed from His Word — this is what it means to “endure to the end.”

The writer of Hebrews encourages us to remain steadfast, “Take heed, brethren, lest there be in any of you an evil heart of unbelief, in departing from the living Elohim. But exhort one another daily, while it is called to day; lest any of you be hardened through the deceitfulness of sin. For we are made partakers of Messiah, if we hold the beginning of our confidence steadfast unto the end” (Heb 3:12-14).

We find the same message in this passage as we found in Matthew 10:22. The writer of Hebrews says that we are partakers of the Messiah IF we hold our confidence steadfast unto the end. It is our choice in whether or not to partake in the blessings through Messiah. We as sons and daughters of the Most High have a responsibility to do His will. As we find in this passage, that responsibility is holding our confidence steadfast unto the end.

The word for confidence is from the Greek word hupostasis and conveys the meaning of assurance or faith. It is absolutely imperative when it comes to salvation that our assurance or faith remain fervent unto the end. If we allow our faith to be weakened by tribulation, trial or doubts it is possible that we could fall away from the faith and fall short of salvation.

In addition to what we find in Hebrews, the Apostle Paul also offers a strong admonition to remain firm in this faith, “Moreover, brethren, I declare unto you the good news which I preached unto you, which also you have received, and wherein you stand; By which also you are saved, if you keep in memory what I preached unto you, unless you have believed in vain” (1Cor. 15:1-2).

Notice verse 2, where Paul emphasizes that you are saved IF you keep in memory or hold fast Yahweh’s Word which he preached to you. As we saw in Hebrews, salvation is conditional – it depends on how we live.

Through our own actions we have the ability to accept or reject eternal life in Yahweh’s kingdom. We were created with a free will to choose light or darkness, righteousness or sin. If, as Paul said, we follow in Yahweh’s Word we will conquer death, but if we reject that Word we also reject the hope of salvation and embrace condemnation. Salvation is given to those whose dedication and devotion stays unwavering to the end. It is given to those who allow Yahweh’s Word to mold their lives into His own image.

From the beginning His promise of salvation was conditional. Yahweh told the Israelites that if they would obey that they would be blessed and be called a treasured people unto His own possession (Ex. 19: 5-6). This is the great promise of salvation; those who dedicate their lives to Him now will be saved.

Paul in Philippians 2:12 declares that we all have an obligation to live for the goal of salvation. “Wherefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling.”

This is one of the most important passages in all of Paul’s epistles. From this passage we find two pivotal truths: (1) when it comes to salvation there is work and effort involved, and (2) salvation includes fear and trembling. These points are two of the most misunderstood and ignored truths of Yahweh’s Word. Nowhere do we find that individually we are predestined to salvation. Instead we find that we must stay devoted to the very end and work out our own salvation if we will find eternal life — anything short of this is simply not enough.

 We Have Hope, Not a Guarantee

Besides remaining steadfast in our faith, there are many instances in Scripture showing that we have only the hope of salvation, not a guarantee.

  • “But let us, who are of the day, be sober, putting on the breastplate of faith and love; and for an helmet, the hope of salvation” (1Thess. 5:8).
  • “In hope of eternal life, which Elohim, that cannot lie, promised before the world began” (Titus 1:2).
  • “That being justified by his grace, we should be made heirs according to the hope of eternal life” (Titus 3:7).

In all these examples we find one essential truth – salvation is a hope not a guarantee. The Apostle Paul explained that while Yahweh promises salvation, it is only a hope based on our devotion to our Father in Heaven.

In an astonishing confession, Paul in 1Corinthians 9:27 acknowledges that in the end he himself could have become a castaway. “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.”

Now if anyone could have been certain about his salvation it would have been the Apostle Paul. But according to his own confession, that even after all his efforts to live by and further the truth that it was possible for him to lose his salvation.

Considering Paul’s trials from the many beatings to the times he was rebuked and chastised, it is truly amazing that he in the end could have lost it all. Determined not to become this castaway, we find that Paul worked to keep his body under bondage or subjection. He understood the carnality of the flesh as described in Galatians 5:16-21. Again, if anyone could have been certain of his salvation, it would have been this Apostle.

Is this concept of salvation found only in the New Testament? As with all New Testament beliefs, this one has its roots in the Old Testament. From the beginning salvation has been based on personal devotion. This is no more evident than what is found in the writings of the prophet Ezekiel. “The soul that sins, it shall die. The son shall not bear the iniquity of the father, neither shall the father bear the iniquity of the son: the righteousness of the righteous shall be upon him, and the wickedness of the wicked shall be upon him…For I have no pleasure in the death of him that dies, saith Yahweh Elohim: wherefore turn yourselves, and live” (Ezek. 18:20, 32). From this passage we find that every person will be judged on his or her own works. Yahweh declares that the soul that sins will die, but the soul that lives according to righteousness will live. So once more it is evident that Yahweh does not predestine man to either salvation or condemnation, but allows each person to choose by his or her own free will between life and death. If our Heavenly Father had his choice we find that there would be no death, for as it is written, “I have no pleasure in the death of him that dieth.” However, even with this desire has Yahweh allowed free will to reign over his creation, allowing man to choose between good and evil.

Is Obedience Important?    

Another undeniable truth from Scripture is that to receive the hope of eternal life a person must obey the commandments. In a question presented to the Messiah on how one can receive eternal life, His reply was to obey. “And, behold, one came and said unto Him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And He said unto him, Why callest thou Me good? There is none good but one, that is, Elohim: but if you will enter into life, keep the commandments” (Matt. 19:16-17).

Why did Yahshua say to keep the commandments if salvation was predestined with no way of changing the outcome? Obviously, from what is found in this passage salvation is not assured. There is no example in the Word to even suggest that salvation is predestined with the absence of free will. When it comes to eternal life we have a responsibility to obey Yahweh’s commandments, because in the end salvation is not given based on predestin-ation, but on our devotion and dedication to the One we worship. The only form of predestination spoken of in Scripture pertains to one’s calling, but after a person is called salvation is imparted on personal merit, Romans 9:29-30.

In Acts 5:32 we also find that obedience is required to receive one of the greatest gifts in Scripture, “And we are his witnesses of these things; and so is also the Holy Spirit, whom Elohim has given to them that obey him.”

Can we enter Yahweh’s Kingdom without the Holy Spirit? According to John chapter 3 we must be born of water, which refers to baptism, and receive the Holy Spirit. Is it possible to receive the Spirit apart from obedience? According to Acts 5:32, we cannot. Even though we do not earn salvation from obedience or works, we are called to obey our Father in Heaven as we would our own natural father and mother. As carnal human beings, earning salvation on our own merit is impossible; salvation is a gift (Rom. 6:23), but even with that gift we have an obligation to obey. This is why salvation is partially based on our devotion.

Not only must we obey to receive the gift of the Holy Spirit, but also according to Hebrews, Yahshua is the author of salvation to those who obey. “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered; And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him” (Heb. 5:8-9).

Notice that our Savior learned obedience by his own suffering and tribulation. So obedience was not a foreign concept or unnatural way of life for the Messiah. In addition to Yahshua’s obedience, we find confirmation that Yahshua became the author of salvation to those who obey. It does not say that he became the author of salvation to those who were predestined or to those who were under grace. Obeying is a significant part of salvation. If we were predestined to salvation and believed according to Calvin’s theology we could do nothing to earn or reject salvation, but as we find in this passage, Yahweh is very specific about the responsibility we have if we seek receive everlasting life. Again, while Scripture is clear that salvation is a gift, which we cannot earn on our own merit, we do find that salvation is only offered to those who obey.

While the large majority might believe that profession is enough, we find through Paul’s epistle to Titus that profession is only one step, “They profess that they know Elohim; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate” (Titus 1:16).

From what Paul wrote to Timothy, is it enough to simply confess our devotion? Are works important in our relationship with our Father in Heaven? According to Paul, it is possible to profess devotion to Almighty Yahweh and yet deny Him by our works. Salvation is not about what we say; it is about what we do. If what we do is different from what we say then what we say means absolutely nothing. It is as Solomon said, a chasing after wind. You may fool those around you, but our Heavenly Father will not be deceived. Profession apart from works is like a house without a foundation, it will surely fall.

One of the most compelling Scriptures regarding the importance of works is found in Revelation 20:11-15, “And I saw a great white throne, and him that sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heaven fled away; and there was found no place for them.  And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before Elohim; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works.”

John of Patmos gives a glimpse of what many call the Great White Throne Judgment, otherwise known as the second death. In this account we find that mankind will be judged by their works. Now if man were predestined to eternal salvation or destruction as proposed by John Calvin, why do we find a judgment based on works? After all, why would works matter if we were all predestined and could do nothing to earn or reject salvation? Obviously, if our eternal fate were predestined there would be no need for a judgment on works. The fact that there is a last judgment for mankind, which will be based on works, confirms that not only are we not predestined to salvation, but also that salvation is partially determined by our own works and devotion.

Why is it important that we understand whether or not we are predestined apart from works and obedience? Because this belief leads to the apathy that we find with many Bible believers today. If certain people are predestined with no regard to their behavior and that there is nothing they can do to fall from grace, then there is no motivation for repentance and righteous living. Yahweh’s Word emphatically teaches that mankind is held to a standard of righteousness and when we teach a belief that opposes or degrades that notion then we again remove the motivation to repent and live according to holiness. This is not only a travesty, but it also opposes the very essence of who Yahweh is and what He desires from His people.

Yahweh's Restoration Ministry

Salvation Unveiled – Through the Annual Feasts!

Comparing Yahweh’s Feast days to the world’s holidays is, to use a phrase of Mark Twain, like comparing lightning to the lightning bug. The differences are incalculable.

The Biblical days commanded by the Father for His children are filled with profound meaning, prophetic truth, and great spiritual impact. As Yahweh’s people observe each consecutive Feast commanded in Leviticus 23, they learn yet another key facet of His great salvation plan.

Biblical Feasts are an amazing parallel to the spiritual journey we make as we move away from the world’s ways and follow the path of Scriptural truth.

Our journey begins with the first commanded observance of the year, Passover. At the Passover we learn about and accept the blood of Yahshua that was shed to pay the penalty for our sins. Sin, defined simply and clearly as the breaking of Yahweh’s laws (1John 3:4), will keep us from the Kingdom unless the automatic death penalty, which sin generates, is paid. That penalty was paid by the death of Yahshua at the Passover.

In the Feast of Unleavened Bread that follows we examine our beliefs and doctrines (one meaning of leaven) and see whether they align with Scripture. At the same time we remove the error in our understanding and the behavior that offends, like falsity, hypocrisy and that which leads to sin. All the while we take in unleavened bread, signifying sincerity and truth.

The spiritual picture that is emerging thus far from our observances of Yahweh’s days is of a life of sin forgiven through Passover blood. Following that forgiveness we begin living a life of regeneration through proactive and deliberate decisions to eradicate from our lives all that offends Yahweh. We change our lives and seek His will and direction. This is found in the lessons of Unleavened Bread.

But exactly what is it that Yahweh dislikes in the behavior of the carnal man? Ask the average person this question and he may say that Yahweh hates evil or wickedness. That is true, but how do we know what evil and wickedness are? To overcome them we need to understand exactly what it is that we are overcoming. It is through His law that we discover what He hates. Paul said Yahweh’s law gives us the knowledge of sin, Romans 3:20. Without it we would be knocking around blindly in the dark.

Our heartfelt desire is to please Him. That is done by keeping His laws. He inspired Paul to write: “Know you not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law hath dominion over a man as long as he lives?…Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good” (Romans 7:1, 12).

At the Feast of Weeks or Pentecost Yahweh codified His laws for Israel and for us. Chronologically, it was at the time of this Feast that Israel in their wilderness trek would have come to Mt. Sinai where Moses received the commandments and other laws in written form. We know that the laws were in effect from creation, as even Abraham was obedient to them, Genesis 26:5.

Realizing that it is near impossible for the natural human to obey Him, Yahweh in His wisdom – at this very Feast – provided His Spirit to the early Assembly of True Worshipers gathered to observe the Feast of Weeks  (Acts 2).  Through the strength of His Spirit we are able to obey our Father: “And I will put my spirit within you, and cause you to walk in my statutes, and you shall keep my judgments, and do them,” Ezekiel 36:27.

Yahweh’s Spirit made the New Covenant possible. No longer were Yahweh’s laws to be obeyed in only the physical realm. Now the spiritual intent would be emphasized. Obedience would be driven by an inner compulsion from the heart, which is what Yahweh wanted all along, even for Israel, Deuteronomy 5:29. Yahshua promised that the Spirit would be “in” His followers, not just “with” them. The Spirit is now given at baptism, Acts 2:38.

In the Old Testament Yahweh’s Spirit was given by limited measure (John 3:34) and only to certain people in order to accomplish a particular task. Those in the Old Testament who had the Spirit upon them or were influenced by it included: Joseph (Gen. 41:38); Bazaleel (Ex. 31:1-6); Moses (Num. 11:17); the seventy elders (Num. 11:25-29); Balaam (Num. 24:2); Othniel (Jud. 3:10); Samson (Judg. 14:19; 15:14); Azariah (2Chron. 15:1); David (Ps. 51); and the prophets (2Pet. 1:21).

With the coming of the Feast of Weeks in Acts 2, the Spirit is now available to all who obey Yahweh (Acts 5:32) as an enduring gift. This active force, shared by both Yahweh and His Son Yahshua, is now working in the obedient. Significantly, the resurrection will be by the power of this same Spirit, and those saints who have the Spirit living within will rise from the dead at Yahshua’s return,Romans 8:11.

The Feast of Weeks always falls on a Sunday because it is counted seven weeks and a day (Pentecost means fiftieth) from the weekly Sabbath that falls during the Feast of Unleavened Bread. Today’s Jewish calendar has been manipulated since the days of Hillel II in the 4th century, and it does not correctly count Pentecost from the weekly Sabbath as the Word tells us in Levitcus 23:15-16. Therefore, the feast always falls on Sivan 6 in the Jewish calendar, making the command to count the days to Pentecost unnecessary.

The rest of the annual Feasts that come in the seventh month are prophetic of Yahshua’s return (Trumpets) and the setting up of His Kingdom on earth (Atonement, Tabernacles, and the Great Day of the Feast). Observing the Feasts is a journey in which we give up the ways of the world to follow the way laid down for us in Scripture.

May you also find the blessings and understanding that come with keeping the commanded days of the Word rather than the empty, man-made days of the world.

Yahweh's Restoration Ministry

From Sitting to Serving

The faithful who have been baptized by immersion into Yahshua’s Name and with hands laid upon them have been pressed into a force that will ultimately change the world.

They have responded to Yahweh’s call to obedience and have yielded to the tugging of Yahweh’s Spirit, realizing the life they were living was a dead-end. For the first time the Scriptures make real sense to them as they continue going deeper into His Word and as Yahweh gives them more light—even as they walk in that light.

When we were immersed into Yahshua’s Name each of us was promised a certain spiritual gift to be used in the high calling we have in the Messiah. Those who have been baptized and congregate with others of like faith as a body are to assume a measure of responsibility toward the body of believers.

Yahweh, who produces spiritual gifts through His mighty Power, provides each one with his and her special ability. All of the various gifts are of the same Spirit. Note that Paul goes into detail for his Corinthian converts as well as us, as each of us is now his protege:

“But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; to another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; to another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: But all these work that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will” (1Cor. 12:7-11).

It is surprising to learn that some who seek baptism are unaware that baptism puts them in a special group that belongs to Yahshua and they are then under His care. They serve and sacrifice for His sake. Paul refers to this group as the “body of Messiah.”

“For as we have many members in one body, and all members have not the same office: So we, being many, are one body in the Messiah, and every one members one of another. Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith; or ministry, let us wait on our ministering: or he that teacheth, on teaching; or he that exhorteth, on exhortation: he that giveth, let him do it with simplicity; he that ruleth, with diligence; he that showeth mercy, with cheerfulness. Let love be without dissimulation. Abhor that which is evil; cleave to that which is good. Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honor preferring one another; not slothful in business; fervent in spirit; serving the Sovereign; rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer” (Rom. 12: 4-12).

Paul is adamant that baptism into Yahshua is not an end in itself, but is the beginning of a devoted life dedicated to Yahweh through Yahshua. Those who have been baptized should be acutely aware of what special spiritual gift is theirs and have set their goals to become an active part of the body of Messiah. They are given a charge, which is to use their gift for the benefit of those in the assembly. Paul explained this in his letter to the Ephesians.

“But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of the Messiah. Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things. And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of the Messiah: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of Elohim, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of the Messiah” (Eph 4:7-13).

Any combination of abilities or talents suddenly given or leisurely cultivated may qualify as a spiritual gift if used for Yahweh’s honor and glory and His work in the world. Because none of the lists of spiritual gifts is the same, Paul evidently felt others may have a similar experience as his and would seek to use whatever combination of talents and abilities might be needed for the common good of the Assembly.

Upon being baptized into Yahshua’s saving Name, the brethren are urged by Paul to get involved in the Assembly and participate as the Spirit leads. It is time to get active as a member of that assembly. “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of Elohim, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto Elohim, [which is] your reasonable service. And be not conformed to this world: but be you transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of Elohim” (Rom. 12:1-2).

The following is taken from “The Open Bible” (NASB) study section: “Paul, Peter, and the other apostles learned the secret of developing an eternal perspective in the midst of earthly problems. They were able to live above their circumstances and rejoice even while being persecuted because of their firm grasp on who they were in [Messiah] and where they were going. In spite of his imprisonment, Paul could write, ‘For me to live is [Messiah] and to die is gain’ (Phil 1:21). Are you looking more at ‘the things which are seen’ or at the things which are not seen? The former are temporary, but the latter are eternal” (2Cor. 4: 18).

Rather than to just sit quietly listening to sermons week after week, the audience should also be challenged to represent Yahshua wherever they might be. The early apostles thought of themselves as doing the same work as Yahshua, living and proclaiming Yahweh’s truth wherever possible. The converts shared their knowledge with those they knew, especially among   other Israelites and Judahites. Our task is no different from theirs. We must make the world aware that Bible truth exists and that that Word will one day judge them. Yahweh does not give us this special knowledge only to have us hide it forever out of sight.

“[Even] the mystery which hath been hid from ages and from generations, but now is made manifest to his saints: To whom Yahweh would make known what [is] the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Messiah in you, the hope of glory” (Col 1:26-27). Ours is to be a light and example.

Yahshua’s parable of the talents should be lesson enough for us. We

will each be rewarded in direct proportion to the amount that talent profits and aids others seeking the Word

by Donald Mansager