biblical feasts; Why I Keep the Biblical Feasts; why keep the biblical feasts; arn't the feasts done away with?; why you should keep the feast days; feast days vs holidays

Why I keep the Biblical Feasts

Why I Keep the Biblical FeastsJust Old Testament observances for ancient Israel? Hardly. The annual Feasts of Yahweh are the very command of a righteous Father to His very people in ALL generations. Here’s why.    

A young man once called us with a question: “Why do you teach that we must keep the Old Testament Feasts? Weren’t they done away, along with the rest of the laws like sacrifices and other rituals?”

His question was not new. Many have the mistaken belief that what is found in the Old Testament is old and dead and faded away. This common misunderstanding completely loses sight of the Covenant Yahweh made with Israel–and still makes with His people– today’s spiritual Israel.

The Old Testament’s promises and expectations are a part of the overall plan of Yahweh, as are those of the New. There are not two different and separate religious requirements: one for Jews and the other for us. John tells us, “…Scripture cannot be broken” (10:35).

The Feasts, similarly, are not just found in the Old Testament. But that’s getting ahead of ourselves. Several false conclusions are continually drawn concerning the Feast Days:

  • The Feasts were only for ancient Israel.
  • The Feasts are a part of an old, dead ritualistic law.
  • The Feasts were nailed to the torture stake along with all the other laws Yahshua abolished.

Let’s look at each of these allegations one at a time.

Whose Feasts Are They?

Nearly two months before the Old Covenant was ratified and before he scaled Mount Sinai to receive the codified law from Yahweh, Moses was instructed about Passover and the first Feast, Unleavened Bread. Yahweh told Him, “And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and you shall keep [it] a feast to Yahweh throughout your generations; you shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever” (Ex. 12:14).

We learn first of all that it is a Feast “to Yahweh,” Later in Leviticus, a book that details each of the seven annual Feast observances, Yahweh commands Moses, “Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of Yahweh, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts” (Lev. 23:2).

He leaves us with no doubt as to whom these observances belong. They are Yahweh’s, not Israel’s and not Feasts just for Jews.

Lest we wonder whether all the Feasts are Yahweh’s or just some of them, He details each one for us in Leviticus 23:5-43. But carefully note how He prefaces the feasts He is about to list (verse 4):

“These are the feasts of Yahweh, even holy convocations, which you shall proclaim in their seasons” (Lev. 23:4). All the Feasts belong to Yahweh.

At the end of the chapter, after Yahweh finished detailing each of the seven observances, we read, “And Moses declared unto the children of Israel the feasts of Yahweh” (Lev. 23:44).

It didn’t matter whether you were an Israelite or a stranger, you were required to observe these days. Notice what Yahweh says about the first of the Feasts, Unleavened Bread: “Seven days shall there be no leaven found in your houses: for whosoever eats that which is leavened, even that soul shall be cut off from the congregation of Israel, whether he be a stranger, or born in the land” (Ex. 12:19).

These special annual times belong to Yahweh and are given to those who seek to know Him and take hold of His promise–no matter which they are. We’ll now look at the next common argument.

Ritual or Spiritual Law?

“Do you mean you keep the ritual law that leads to so much bondage?” one inquirer asked concerning Feast observance. The mistaken assumption many make is in thinking that all law in the Bible is the same. It is not. In fact, we find five different kinds of law in Scriptures:

  • Spiritual law
  • Commercial-civil law
  • Ceremonial-ritual-sacrificial law
  • Judicial-criminal law
  • Natural law

The Feasts fall into the category of spiritual law, just as the Ten Commandments (which also are judicial). They reveal the spiritual attributes of Yahweh and they transform us spiritually to be more like Yahshua when we observe them.

The change in the law that many mistakenly believe refers to the spiritual and moral law came about in the ceremonial-ritual-sacrificial law. Hebrews 9:9-12 speaks of that change:

“Which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices, that could not make him that did the service perfect, as pertaining to the conscience; Which stood only in meats and drinks, and divers washings, and carnal ordinances, imposed on them until the time of reformation. But Messiah being come an high priest of good things to come, by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this building; Neither by the blood of goats and calves, but by his own blood he entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us.”

These ritualistic ordinances had been added to the law obligation because of Israel’s continued transgressions (Gal. 3:19). It was imperative that Israel learn the important lesson that sin is a serious thing that separates us from Yahweh and requires bloodshedding for atonement.

Now we rely on the Savior as the ultimate sacrifice, and who now intercedes for us as our High Priest. His blood and not the blood of bulls and goats is the only effective antidote to counteract and blot out sin.

This is the change in the law that the Bible speaks of.

We find nothing here or anywhere else in the Scriptures about a change in our responsibility to keep the spiritual law—meaning either the Ten Commandments or the Feast days. That is because neither the Commandments nor these annual observances are part of the ceremonial-ritual-sacrificial law that was changed with the coming of Yahshua and the institution of another priesthood (Melchizedek).

Nailing Down the Change

“But doesn’t Colossians 2:14 say that all of Yahweh’s laws, including the Feasts, were nailed to the stake when Yahshua died?” some may be asking. Let’s read the main verse in question:

“Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to the tree” (Col. 2:14). Here we find that the ordinances that were nailed to the tree were “against us.” Is Yahweh’s law against us? Does not Paul write, “Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good?” (Rom. 7:12).

If the law is against us, why does 1John 5:3 say, “For this is the love of Elohim, that we keep His commandments: and His commandments are not grievous”?

In fact, any law, is intended for the good of the people. The commandments sure are, and so are the Feasts.

Therefore, in Colossians 2:14 the “ordinances” that Paul mentions are dogma and mean man-made rules that the Jews imposed. They are mentioned a few verses latter: “(Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men” (Col. 2:21-22).

An example of these man-made tenets in operation is Mark 7:5, where the Pharisees accused Yahshua of breaking their traditional ordinances: “Then the Pharisees and scribes asked him, why walk not your disciples according to the tradition of the elders, but eat bread with unwashen hands?”

Feasts Now and Forever

Had Yahshua or Paul told us that under the New Covenant we don’t need to observe the seven annual Feasts, then we would not bother. The reality is, no one in the New Testament said such a thing.

In fact, we find a myriad of passages in the New Testament where people intended to keep them, were keeping them, and would keep them in the coming Kingdom. And these included Yahshua Himself. Here are some:

  • “And when he was twelve years old, they went up to Jerusalem after the custom of the feast.” (The Savior’s parents were in the act of keeping Passover and Unleavened Bread in Luke 2:42.)
  • “After this there was a feast of the Jews; and Yahshua went up to Jerusalem.” (Yahshua went to Jerusalem probably to keep Passover and Days of Unleavened Bread, John 5:1.)
  • “You know that after two days is [the feast of] the Passover, and the Son of man is betrayed to be impaled.” (Yahshua was to become the Passover sacrifice in Matt. 26:2.)
  • “Now the first day of the feast of unleavened bread the disciples came to Yahshua, saying unto him, where will you that we prepare for you to eat the passover?” (Yahshua always was planing to keep the Passover, Matt. 26:17.)
  • “Now the Jews’ feast of tabernacles was at hand. But when his brethren were gone up, then went he also up unto the feast, not openly, but as it were in secret. Now about the midst of the feast Yahshua went up into the temple, and taught.” (Here’s proof that Yahshua kept this fall Feast, John 7:2, 10, 14.)
  • “And there were certain Greeks among them that came up to worship at the feast.” (Non-Jews observed Passover in John 12:20.)
  • “But bade them farewell, saying, I must by all means keep this feast that comes in Jerusalem: but I will return again unto you, if Yahweh will. And he sailed from Ephesus.” (Paul in Acts 18:21 was speaking after the Savior’s resurrection about his intentions to observe the Feast.)
  • “Therefore let us keep the feast, not with old leaven, neither with the leaven of malice and wickedness; but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and truth.” (Paul is telling us to observe the Feast of Unleavened Bread with a new emphasis in 1Cor. 5:8.)
  • “But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.” (Our Savior’s statement promises that He would observe Passover in the Kingdom with the faithful, Matt. 26:29.)

Considering Yahweh’s many commandments to keep His Feasts, as well as patriarchs doing just that, what hinders us to fulfill righteousness as well? Clearly the only holidays in the Bible are those kept by Israel and by the Apostles and our Savior as well. All else is man-made.

They Just Keep Going and Going…

In His instructions to Moses and Israel detailing the Passover and Feast that follows, Yahweh made it crystal clear that this was not a one-time ordeal. Nor was it just for Israel at that time. Yahweh thundered, “And this day shall be unto you for a memorial; and you shall keep it a feast to Yahweh throughout your generations; you shall keep it a feast by an ordinance for ever” (Ex. 12:14).

No fewer than four times in Leviticus 23–after mentioning the various Feasts–Yahweh declares the Feasts “a statute forever.” If these days were important only in the lives of ancient Israelites, then why do we find them prominent in prophecy of the coming Kingdom? Isaiah deals with the Millennial Kingdom. We find there that when His Kingdom comes to earth, everyone will come to keep Yahweh’s appointed times: “And it shall come to pass, that from one new moon to another, and from Sabbath to another, shall all flesh come to worship before me, says Yahweh” (Isa. 66:23).

And what if they refuse, as many do today? “And it shall come to pass, that every one that is left of all the nations which came against Jerusalem shall even go up from year to year to worship the King, Yahweh of hosts, and to keep the feast of tabernacles. And it shall be, that whoso will not come up of all the families of the earth unto Jerusalem to worship the King, Yahweh of hosts, even upon them shall be no rain. And if the family of Egypt go not up, and come not, that have no rain; there shall be the plague, wherewith Yahweh will smite the heathen that come not up to keep the feast of tabernacles” (Zech. 14:16-18).

We’ve already read where Yahshua the Messiah promised to keep Passover in the Kingdom with His disciples (Matt. 26:29,Mark 14:25, Luke 22:18, 30). Does it make any sense that Yahweh would command these Feasts forever–and enforce them in the future Millennial Kingdom on pain of plague–and not have them binding today?

The Feast days hold a wealth of lessons and they unlock important truth. They also are keys to prophetic events as they explain the plan and purpose of the Savior’s coming and His role as our King. It is time for all people everywhere to be obedient to what Yahweh established for the good of His people. Get in line with the annual Feasts of Yahweh and your understanding will multiply many times over.

His Feasts were just as much a part of His law as the Ten Commandments. Let us be like the Apostle Paul, who said, “I must by all means keep this feast.”

Yahweh's Restoration Ministry

Are You Preparing to Observe the Feasts?

Many invest in the stock market in hopes of striking it rich and spending the rest of their lives on Easy Street. Some are motivated to save and invest for a secure future for their children. Still others put savings into retirement accounts for the day they can kick back and enjoy a life of leisure and travel.

webarticleimageaug2But how many people have the foresight and desire to plan for what is vastly more important – their everlasting life?

Almighty Yahweh has laid out a plan of salvation that involves obedience to His Word. That obedience includes the observance of special Feast days and Sabbaths that set one apart as His true follower.

He goes to great lengths to tell us exactly when His Holy Days are to be observed and how. So that we are without any excuse, He even includes the necessary financial preparation to ensure we have the resources necessary to assemble at each of His Feasts.

In Deuteronomy 14:23-26 we read about the Feast tithe or second tithe that is commanded of His people.

“And you shall eat before Yahweh your Elohim, in the place which he shall choose to place his name there, the tithe of your corn, of your wine, and of your oil, and the firstlings of your herds and of your flocks; that you may learn to fear Yahweh your Elohim always. And if the way be too long for you, so that you are not able to carry it; or if the place be too far from you, which Yahweh your Elohim shall choose to set his name there, when Yahweh your Elohim has blessed you: Then shall you turn it into money, and bind up the money in your hand, and shall go unto the place which Yahweh your Elohim shall choose: And you shall bestow that money for whatsoever your soul lusts after, for oxen, or for sheep, or for wine, or for strong drink, or for whatsoever thy soul desires: and you shall eat there before Yahweh your Elohim, and you shall rejoice, you, and your household.”

The Feast tithe is to be spent on getting to and enjoying the Feasts. All True Worshipers should be setting aside this tithe nowso that when the Feasts like Tabernacles arrive, you will have the resources not only to observe them but also to enjoy these times Yahweh has set apart as special to Him.

Because Yahweh brought into existence a set of Holy Days for His people, it is only understandable that He would provide a means to observe them. If you have not done so, plan to keep ALL of His annual Sabbaths with us.

May we each be preparing for these days even as we prepare for the coming Kingdom by learning of His ways!

against organized religion

Going Solo

Perhaps you have searched for a group of people who endeavor with all their hearts to remain true to the Bible.

Many will tell you that they are that group. Just check any newspaper “church page” and you will find a plethora of churches advertising themselves as giving, caring, sharing, and Bible-believing. What more could one want? How about … the truth?

The problem with many is that instead of looking into Scripture with an open mind in search of the truth, they seek out a group that is teaching the doctrines they already be­lieve. And those tenets do not necessar­ily need to come from the Bible.

Tradition is the most popular teacher, which is why doctrinal errors like the immortal soul teaching, the rapture, ever-burning hellfire, heaven as the ul­timate reward, worship on the first day – and many more nonBiblical teachings continue to abound. Basing their belief on the fact that they have always be­lieved them, people accept such doc­trines as truth.

Others are not as concerned with the teachings as they are with the group’s prestige, its comfortable sanctuary, gifted choir, handsome minister, or any number of other reasons that have noth­ing to do with what is taught there.

For many, a religious affiliation is a marriage of convenience, a compromise for the sake of the spouse or children. For others it is used to enhance their worldly status.

Just as perilous is the person who believes he or she is justified in worshiping Yahweh alone. Maybe some problem in their former affiliation prompted them to go it alone. They may even pride them­selves with going solo.

Should we reject organized worship when problems arise? Are we given the Scriptural alternative to wor­ship separately from everyone else? Is that the arrangement we find taught in the Bible? What does Scripture reveal about becoming part of a group of worshipers and working with and through the Body of Messiah? Could private worship signal spiritual defeat or does it have Yahweh’s complete blessing?

‘I Will Build My … lndividual’?

Scripture is clear on the subject of wor­ship. It also has much to say about group affiliation. Clearly, the command to assemble is there: “And let us consider one an­other to provoke unto love and to good works: Not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as the manner of some [is]; but exhorting one another: and so much the more, as you see the day approaching,” Hebrews 10:24-25.

We are directed to join in fellow­ship, encouraging and exhorting one another to good works and sacrificial love by word and example. We must se­riously consider the Savior’s words about those called out from the world to be a part of the Body of Messiah. It is obvious that He expected His fol­lowers to become a part of a greater Body of believers who would be close to one another and who would help guide one another.

Yahshua said there would always be a group of True Believers on earth teaching the truths he magnified and brought to light: “And I say also unto you, That you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my assembly; and the gates of [the grave] shall not prevail against it” (Matt. 16: 18). He established an orga­nized worship based on Peter’s confes­sion that Yahshua was the Messiah.

If we seek salvation, we must become a part of that Body. His assembly was to continue until His return, 1Pe­ter 4: 17. Teaching the truth of Scripture, His Body would be the physical repre­sentation of Him on earth. This Body would be the repository of His truth and mirror the example He set.

The writers of the New Testament, and especially Paul, shared the belief that Believers must congregate as a body when­ever possible. Acts 2:42 relates that af­ter Yahshua’s death that the early apostles continued steadfast in fellowship and prayer. The apostles were in constant fellowship with one another throughout the Book of Acts. They were aware that persecution was soon to fall on them and they used every opportunity to en­courage one another and to preach the Word wherever they could.

It is up to all who have been called to proclaim the Good News and encourage others in the truth of the Name, Sabbath, Feasts, clean foods, and other truths neglected for millen­nia. These are the bedrock teachings that must be reintroduced before the Savior returns, Jude 3. Those who have this knowledge are to be teachers and guides of others searching for it, 1Peter 2:9; Romans 2:21.

The only real way to get the message out effectively is through a united effort!

Message Through the Body

For a number of important reasons Yahweh’s people are to congregate to study His Word. The overriding con­cern is to help sinful lives change to lives of righteous obedience. The Book of Acts is filled with examples of con­versions to Messiah. The Apostle Paul himself was struck down on the Dam­ascus road in Acts 9, where he actually heard and spoke to the risen Messiah (vv. 1-6). Although Yahshua spoke to Paul, He did not tell him the entire plan at that time.

Rather, the plan of salvation was to be found in going to the city and letting those in the ekklesia – the Body of believers – tell him what had to be done. Yahshua had given the keys of the Kingdom to His called-out ones, and although He could just as easily have told Paul what to do for others directly, that was the job of the Body. It still is today.

The early assembly was busy show­ing the path to those who were seeking the strait gate and the narrow way. For example, the Ethiopian treasurer was trying hard to understand the Book of Isaiah (Acts 8). Philip explained the Scriptures to him and brought about his conversion and desire for baptism. This is a prime example of Yahweh’s Spirit working through His people to help others find the way of salvation. That truth is lodged in the Body of believers.

Yahweh could just as easily have spoken to, or in some way moved, the people He was dealing with to do His bidding. Instead, He used those who had prepared themselves and were qualified, to help others seeking truth. It is up to the Body of Messiah to preach the Good News of salvation as Yahshua said in Matthew 28: 19.

Although signs, visions, and miracles were used on occasion by Yahweh in the New Testament Assem­bly, the message of salvation was given and expounded to others by those in the ekklesia, the called-out ones.

Shaping the Building Stones

Another reason for the necessity to gather with others of like faith is that all those placed in the Body of Messiah have a particular gift that is to be used to edify and build the Assembly, 1Corinthians 7: 7. That gift is to be used for the ekklesia and is not for personal glorification, 1Corinthians 14:12.

We are placed in the Body of Mes­siah as living stones making up a spiri­tual temple. Each member of the Body has been selected to be a part of that temple and is even in this life being fit­ted for an individual place in Yahweh’s spiritual temple.

The chipping, shaping, and fitting of each of the called-out ones goes on as we live our lives and change according to His Word. Yahshua is the chief cor­nerstone of the entire living, spiritual temple. He is not a lone rock on the sea­shore. We are to be formed collectively into a spiritual house, 1Peter 2:4-7, founded on Yahshua.

Yahweh has a purpose for gathering His people. We are to use whatever gift He has given each of us for the edify­ing of the temple. If we never associate with others of like faith, how can we exercise the gift we have received? Only through interaction with others do we learn to subjugate our own wants and desires as we uplift, edify, and strengthen others in the truth and faith.

“Living stones” that make up the body fit together only once they have been chipped and shaped and smoothed through contact with other living stones. The finished, polished pieces fit into a harmonious building where Yahweh’s Spirit dwells.

As an individual member of the Body of Messiah begins to pattern his life after that of the Messiah, he stops committing acts that he learns are sin­ful and against Yahweh. He starts fol­lowing a course in accord with Yahweh’s way of life.

His mind is stayed on the Messiah. He no longer is taken up with satisfy­ing his flesh and former way of life. He now longs to please the Heavenly Fa­ther and no longer indulges in wicked­ness of the lower nature: “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are [these]; adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lascivious­ness,idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, vari­ance, emulations, wrath, strife, sedi­tions, heresies, envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of Elohim” (Gal. 5: 19-21).

Advantages of Fellowship

Through the Body of Messiah the fruits of Galatians 5:22-23 are grown, nur­tured, and matured: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meek­ness, temperance: against such there is no law.” Examples of the kind of people we are to become should be visible in each assembly.Here we meet with those who are also trying to become more like the Messiah, growing in His like­ness and stature. This is not possible to fulfill alone, which is why it is all the more important that we fellowship with other saints. Regardless, we should always live as if the Messiah were living right here among us no matter where we are.

By fruits is that person known, Matthew 7:20. Just as Yahshua sought fruit from the fig tree (Matt. 21), so we should be bearing fruit not only for Him, but also for the brethren.

Another great advantage of regular fellowship is the mutual understanding one can derive from others. Often we learn of a strange new doctrine that arises from an isolated individual who does not “test out” his idea with others for validity and harmony with the Scrip­tures. How often have we all been cor­rected or redirected by a brother or sis­ter who had more insight on an idea or teaching! We need one another to stay balanced and on track. This is just another advantage of regular fellowship.

Believers Same as Yahshua

While most of us fully recognize the great debt of gratitude we owe Yahshua the Messiah, we often forget the most obvious way we can show our apprecia­tion and love to Him for the price He paid that we might have life.

The Apostle Paul got the message in a big way. Supernaturally struck down on the Damascus road, he heard a voice asking him, “Shaul, Shaul, why do you persecute Me?” Who was this he was hearing? The answer comes: “I am Yahshua whom you persecute,”Acts 9: 1-5.

Suddenly Paul realized the astound­ing fact that Yahshua was so close to His disciples that anything Paul had previously done in persecuting them was the same as attacking the Messiah Himself! That is how important the Body of Messiah is to our Savior, and that is why each person must have a place in it and work through it. To work and worship with the Body is to work and worship with the Savior!

Paul never forgot the lesson. On fre­quent occasions he would mention that he – more than anyone else – needed forgiveness because he had persecuted the Body of believers, and through them Yahshua Himself. Philippians 3:6; Galatians 1: l3, 1Timothy 1: l3.

Yahshua again revealed the deep and intimate feelings He has for His True Worshipers when he spoke of the righteous saints who inherit the King­dom, Matthew 25:34-40. He said that doing good to the saints is the same as reaching out to Yahshua Himself. He likens His spiritual Body to his own body. When we do anything to a fellow believer we are in essence doing the same to Yahshua. When we refuse to fellowship with the Body, we are refus­ing Yahshua.

In verses 41-46 He makes the same point with the wicked who have not shown compassion and love for the Body. He speaks of not having cared for the hungry, thirsty, stranger, naked, sick, and imprisoned.

Some hunger for the Word; we should feed them. Some thirst for the Holy Spirit; they should be taught. Strangers should be taken into the camp and made spiritual Israelites wherever possible. They should be clothed in the robes of righteousness. If they are sick, they need healing and should be made whole. Those in prison should be freed from the captivity of sinful living.

Yahshua identified the group of be­lievers in Matthew 12:48-50 when He stretched forth His hand toward His dis­ciples and said, “Whosoever shall do the will of My Father which is in heaven, the same is My brother, and sis­ter and mother.”

Keeping His words in mind will help us to think of one another in the ekklesia as brothers or sisters. Whatever we do to these followers of the Messiah we also do to Him. He said that the ekklesia was also His Body. He refers to the called-out ones as the spiritual mother of the Body of believers. This is the same thought Paul had when he re­ferred to the spiritual Jerusalem as the “mother of all,” Galatians 4:26.

Strength Through Fellowship

It is quite apparent that Yahshua ex­pected the Body of believers to assem­ble as often as they could. Not associ­ating with the saints leaves much of the development of the spiritual aspects of our lives unfinished. The interaction between the believers is necessary not only to help us become better followers of the Messiah, but also to learn from others who have met and overcome many of the same problems and diffi­culties. It strengthens us as well to see how others have overcome their trials.

Becoming associated with a group of True Believers allows one into a training ground or preparation for the work in the Kingdom. We develop tal­ents or gifts that Yahweh has given us so they become ability. We use that abil­ity to edify and build up the ekklesia.

In interaction with the saints we not only help them be better followers of the Messiah, but we also perfect ourselves. It is difficult or impossible to de­velop and use the spiritual gifts Yahweh gives us if we are alone.

Another purpose for assembling to­gether is to make recommendations and judgments on the qualifications of the brethren. This was true in Acts 15:1-2 when the brethren determined who would go to Jerusalem. It was the breth­ren who decided the candidates for the role of deacon in the early assembly, Acts 6:3-6. In Acts 11:22 it was the ekklesia that sent Barnabas to Antioch. Later (Acts 15:22-23) it was the ekklesia that joined with the apostles and elders to send men they had cho­sen to visit the gentiles.

Cooperation Is Key

All through the New Testament we find that the Assembly played a vital part in the direction of the ministry. Decisions were made by the Body. There is no such term as head elder or directing elder in the New Testament, unless it refers to Yahshua. Examples of a plu­rality of people making the important decisions are found in the following:

Acts 15:25 and 40; 16:1-2; lCorinthians 16:2-3; 2Corinthians 8:19, and Philippians 2:25.

Yahshua established the Assembly (Matt. 16:18), and to make it run He guides it by His Holy Spirit working through His people. It was the apostles or elders who recognized the choice of the brethren in ordaining individuals for the special task of serving the Body.

Most of us can look back on our Bib­lical pursuits and recall that we assimi­lated Bible knowledge by degrees. After we accepted one truth we went on to study deeper knowledge. Significantly, we learned through the help of others. Who can say that he learned all the truth totally without the help and direction of other people guided by Yahweh?

To say that we no longer need the fellowship and help of others in the Body is to reject the blueprint Yahshua established by which the truth is spread to all the earth.

One of the biggest thrills yet to come is when Yahshua returns to set up His Kingdom. It will not be the individual who thought it was “just you and me, Yahshua” who will make up that Kingdom. It will be ALL those who have been faithfully keeping the command­ments and living daily the precepts they have proved true. It will be His entire ekklesia, the firstfruits, that will make up the core of His Kingdom of which there will be no end.

Serving the Body

In any organization, obligations and duties befall some for the good of all. For some, the reluctance to meet with a group is born of the fear of the respon­sibilities involved.

Yet that is exactly what the King­dom will involve … responsibilities! We are in training now to handle the smaller duties of service so that we will be able to take on the much greater re­sponsibilities to befall us in the King­dom. If we shirk the little assignments of service now, how do we think Yah­weh will consider us for the far greater and more demanding ones of ruling in His Kingdom? (Rev. 5:10)

A muscle that goes unused withers away. Yahweh wants involvement from His people. They in turn will grow with the responsibilities, ultimately to be qualified for a greater role to come. No one can presume to be an effective ruler in the Kingdom if he has not learned how to interact with others now.

This is one of the great truths of the Assembly. The ekklesia is a training ground, both for now and also for a more important role in the future. No one can effectively rule in the Kingdom if he has not learned to get along suc­cessfully with others now.

Traits of the True Group

How can we know which is the correct group of True Worshipers? The Bible gives us a clear understanding of the characteristics of truth seekers. Many teach that the law of the Old Testament has been done away. But Revelation 14:12 and many other New Testament verses maintain that Yahweh never changed His mind. His precepts are still binding. Besides boldly teaching the truth of the Word, other significant characteris­tics identify the true Assembly.

Revelation 14:12 tells of the patience of the saints who keep the commandments of Yahweh and have the faith of Yahshua. The saints, then, must be willing to endure situations that may not be pleasant. They must be willing to sacrifice all for the sake of the truth. Conditions will come to pass that will severely test their dedication and resolve to be faithful to the Father they serve. Will they keep the com­mandments? Will they be willing to suf­fer shame for His Name?

Notice specifically in Revelation 14:12 that the True Worshiper keeps the faith OF Yahshua, not the faith IN Yahshua – but the same faith He had. Part of His faith was that He was obe­dient in all things, 1Peter 2:22. He kept all the commandments. All the Feast days. All the Sabbaths. He is our ex­ample, our model, and our goal.

Another characteristic setting apart of True Worshipers is that His people will know and use His Name, Isaiah 52:6. His people will also be hated because of His Name, Matthew 24:9, but they will never deny it, Revelation 3:8.

The way is narrow and the gate is strait that leads to the Kingdom, and few will find it. The closer an organiza­tion follows the truth the fewer there will be in that group.

But seek the Kingdom we must, and with all our determination follow the Savior. This is not just a hobby for the Truth Seeker, it is his and her very rea­son for living.

May you also join with us as we endeavor to fulfill all that the True Assembly means in these final days. Check out our Sabbath Fellowship you don’t have to “Go Solo”!  Also, Check out our live sabbath services every Sabbath at 1:30 (Central time)

Yahweh's Restoration Ministry

Yahweh’s Perfect Law – French

C’est le dimanche matin. Le Ministre Johnson monte sur le podium, se tourne vers Romains 10 : 4, et proclame la bonne nouvelle en annonçant : « Le Sauveur a tout payé. Nous sommes libres de ces régulations issues de l’Ancien Testament et sommes, à présent, sous la grâce par la foi seule ! »

Nombreux dans les divers cultes actuels croient et proclament ce même message : que Yahshua le Messie « a cloué la Loi sur la croix. » Néanmoins, qu’y a-t-il de vrai dans cette croyance ? La Loi a-t-elle été clouée au bois ou la Loi de Yahweh est-elle toujours effective pour Ses croyants du Nouveau Testament ?

Examinons quelques-uns des passages les plus populaires du Nouveau Testament qui sont cités par ceux qui voudraient abolir la Loi Biblique.

Qu’est-ce qui a été rajouté ?

Beaucoup pointent un passage de Colossiens comme preuve que Yahshua mit fin aux Lois de l’Ancien Testament. Paul écrit : « il a effacé l’acte dont les ordonnances nous condamnaient et qui subsistait contre nous, et il l’a détruit en le clouant à la croix »(Colossien 2 : 14).

En comprenant mieux le mot grec « ordonnances » dans ce verset, nous trouvons une autre signification. Le mot grec utilisé ici estdogma (le n° 1378 dans la Concordance Exhaustive Strong). Le dictionnaire grec de la Concordance Exhaustive Strong définitdogma ainsi : « de la base n° 1380 ; une loi (civile, cérémonielle, ou ecclésiastique) : – décret, ordonnance. »Dogma est utilisé sept fois dans le Nouveau Testament et se réfère à des décrets créés par l’homme. Une autorité écrit : « Comme, à Colosses, la forme de l’erreur était largement judaïque, insistant sur la loi cérémonielle juive, la phrase est probablement teintée par ce fait » (Word Studies in the New Testament, p.908).

Ainsi, dogma dans ce cas-ci ne désigne pas la Loi de Yahweh, mais les décrets ou ordonnances créés par l’homme. Paul se référait aux lois ajoutées, que les Juifs ont plaquées sur la Loi de Yahweh. Nous trouvons Paul avertissant Tite concernant ces lois rajoutées dans Tite 1 : 14 : « et qu’ils ne s’attachent pas à des fables judaïques et à des commandements d’hommes qui se détournent de la vérité. »

Yahweh n’était pas toujours heureux de l’addition de ces règles. Yahshua critiqua les Juifs dans Matthieu 15 et Marc 8 pour leurs « commandements d’hommes » qui, dans ce cas-ci, concernaient le fait de manger sans s’être lavé les mains. Les Juifs créèrent de nombreux commandements physiques, mais négligèrent l’aspect spirituel de la Loi de Yahweh, et c’est cela qui déplaisait à Yahshua.

Le telos de la Loi

Dans Romains 10 : 4 nous avons un passage qui est mal compris par une majorité de prédicateurs d’aujourd’hui : « car Christ est la fin de la loi, pour la justification de tous ceux qui croient. »

En surface il peut sembler que Yahshua mit fin à la loi pour tout le monde lorsqu’Il mourut sur le bois.  Cela s’harmonise-t-il néanmoins avec le reste de la Parole de Yahweh ? Vivons-nous sans loi ? Si tel est le cas, alors nous n’avons pas de péché car « le péché n’est pas imputé, quand il n’y a point de loi. » (Romains 5 : 13). Mais il ne peut pas en être ainsi car Paul écrit également :« Car tous ont péché et sont privés de la gloire de Dieu » (Romains 3 : 23).

N’y a-t-il pas, ici, quelque chose que beaucoup ne voient pas ?

Le mot grec pour « fin » dans le passage de Romains 10 :4 est telos, et telos est définit dans le dictionnaire grec Strong ainsi : « définir comme un point ou un but défini, l’objectif comme limite à atteindre » – n°5056.

Ce mot « fin » que l’on trouve dans Romains 10 : 4 peut également être traduit « finalité, but ». Nous trouvons une meilleure traduction de ce verset dans la Bible Chouraqui où nous lisons : « La finalité [le but] de la Tora, c’est le Messie, pour la justification de tous ceux qui adhèrent. »

Ce même mot grec telos est traduit « fin » dans Jacques 5 :11 : « … et vous avez vu la fin [telos] de Yahweh. » (Version Chouraqui) Yahweh est-il arrivé à Sa fin ? Bien sur que non, pas plus que la Loi. Tant Yahweh que la Loi ont des objectifs, pas de fins. Nous allons, à présent, considérer un important objectif de la Loi.

Plus sous un pédagogue

Galates est l’un des livres les plus gênant pour beaucoup dans les cercles religieux actuels. Dans Galates 3 il existe un passage qui a été incompris par la majorité des personnes d’aujourd’hui. «Ainsi la loi a été comme un pédagogue pour nous conduire [au Messie], afin que nous fussions justifiés par la foi. La foi étant venue, nous ne sommes plus sous ce pédagogue » (Galates 3 : 24-25).Ce verset n’est pas difficile à comprendre si nous considérons quelques faits importants.

Nous avons vu dans Romains 10 : 4 que le Messie n’est pas la fin de la Loi, mais le but vers lequel pointe la Loi. Le Messie est l’objet ou la raison de la Loi. Par la Loi seule nous pouvons connaître le Messie, car Yahshua représente littéralement la Loi dans la chair. Il vécut la Loi dans tous ses aspects. Si nous faisons la même chose, nous serons comme le Messie.

Paul dit que par la Loi nous connaissons le Messie, mais que, après être arrivés à la connaissance de Yahshua, nous n’avons plus besoin d’un pédagogue, car la Loi est une part de nous-mêmes, comme l’est le Messie.

Dans la culture grecque un pédagogue était un paidagogos, un esclave de confiance qui avait la garde des garçons de la famille. Ils avaient besoin de lui pour la guidance et l’instruction durant leur jeunesse. Mais après avoir grandi, ils vivaient selon les préceptes qu’il leur avait enseignés. Faire ce qui leur avait été enseigné était devenu une seconde nature. Une fois appris « les règles » ils n’auraient plus besoin d’un pédagogue. C’est là le point de la Loi que Paul expliqua.

Par la foi nous nous soumettons automatiquement à la volonté de Yahweh. Ses préceptes et Ses lois sont à présent une partie de nous-mêmes. Nous n’avons plus besoin d’un stricte pédagogue guidant chacune de nos pensées et actions car faire ce qui est juste est une seconde nature.

L’observance de la Loi dans le Nouveau Testament

Yahshua et beaucoup de Ses fidèles disciples ont non seulement démontré que la Loi N’A PAS ÉTÉ annulée, mais qu’ils lui ont exprimé un profond amour.

Dans Matthieu 5 : 17-19 Yahshua dit que ceux qui gardent et enseignent la Loi de Yahweh auront de grandes récompenses dans le Royaume de Yahweh : « Ne croyez pas que je sois venu pour abolir la loi ou les prophètes; je suis venu non pour abolir, mais pour accomplir. Car, je vous le dis en vérité, tant que le ciel et la terre ne passeront point, il ne disparaîtra pas de la loi un seul iota ou un seul trait de lettre, jusqu’à ce que tout soit arrivé. Celui donc qui supprimera l’un de ces plus petits commandements, et qui enseignera aux hommes à faire de même, sera appelé le plus petit dans le royaume des cieux; mais celui qui les observera, et qui enseignera à les observer, celui-là sera appelé grand dans le royaume des cieux. »

Yahshua n’est pas venu pour détruire la Loi, mais pour l’accomplir ou la compléter, comme l’indique le grec. Yahshua a dit que ceux qui préservent et enseignent la Loi seront bénis de positions honorables dans le Royaume, mais que ceux qui refusent de l’observer et enseignent à d’autres le même mensonge de non-obéissance ne seront pas bénis et n’hériteront d’aucunes positions.

Yahshua n’était pas le seul défenseur de la Loi de Yahweh. Nous trouvons l’apôtre Paul, habituellement cité comme étant opposé à la Loi, promouvant, en fait, l’observance de la Loi dans Romains 3 : 31 : « Anéantissons-nous donc la loi par la foi? Loin de là! Au contraire, nous confirmons la loi. » Paul n’a jamais dit que la Loi de Yahweh était sans importance. Beaucoup diront que tout ce dont nous avons besoin c’est de la foi. Paul dit que nous avons besoin des deux, la foi comme la loi. Nous n’avons pas à rejeter la Loi sous prétexte de la foi, mais comme le dit Paul nous devons établir la Loi dans nos vies.

Dans Romains 7 nous trouvons l’apôtre Paul faisant, à nouveau, la promotion de la Loi de Yahweh : « Ignorez-vous, frères, – car je parle à des gens qui connaissent la loi – que la loi exerce son pouvoir sur l’homme aussi longtemps qu’il vit?… Que dirons-nous donc? La loi est-elle péché? Loin de là! Mais je n’ai connu le péché que par la loi. Car je n’aurais pas connu la convoitise, si la loi n’eût dit: Tu ne convoiteras point… La loi donc est sainte, et le commandement est saint, juste et bon » (Romains 7 : 1, 7, 12).

Paul défend la Loi de l’Ancien Testament

Paul dit que la Loi domine, ou a de l’autorité, sur nous jusqu’à notre mort, tout comme l’alliance de mariage entre deux personnes. Il dit aussi que sans la Loi nous ne connaîtrions pas le péché. Paul conclut ces passages non pas en diminuant la Loi, mais en lui donnant les plus grands honneurs.

Dans un passage du Nouveau Testament nous voyons l’apôtre Paul utilisant la Loi de Moïse pour transmettre son propre message au jeune Timothée. « Car l’Écriture dit : Tu n’emmuselleras point le bœuf quand il foule le grain. Et l’ouvrier mérite son salaire » (1 Timothée 5 : 18). L’utilisation de tels exemples par Paul, indique qu’il enseignait et promouvait les Lois de l’Ancien Testament comme ayant autorité, et comme étant le fondement des enseignements du Nouveau Testament. Ces deux lois peuvent être retrouvées dans la Torah :

« Tu n’emmuselleras point le bœuf, quand il foulera le grain » (Deutéronome 25 : 4).

« Tu ne retiendras point jusqu’au lendemain le salaire du mercenaire » (Lévitique 19 : 13).

Dans Actes 24 Paul se tient debout devant Félix, le gouverneur de Judée. Paul est accusé de suivre et, même, de promouvoir une division parmi les Juifs. En vérité, Paul n’a jamais fait de reproche à l’égard de la Foi juive, mais proclama qu’il suivait tout ce que ses ancêtres avaient enseigné. « Je t’avoue bien que je sers l’Elohim de mes pères selon la voie qu’ils appellent une secte, croyant tout ce qui est écrit dans la loi et dans les prophètes » (Actes 24 : 14).

Lors de la tentative du gouverneur de condamner l’apôtre, Paul non seulement déclare qu’il croit, mais prend résolument la défense de la Loi et des Prophètes. S’il croyait dans la Loi et les Prophètes, il est manifeste qu’il aurait observé les deux. « La Loi », dans ce cas-ci, inclue les cinq livres de la Torah, tandis que « les Prophètes » désignent la collection entière des prophètes de l’Ancien Testament et tout ce qu’ils enseignent concernant la volonté de Yahweh au travers de Sa Loi.

De toute évidence, Paul n’a jamais rejeté la Loi, mais avait un grand respect et un grand amour pour elle. Il en réalisait les bénéfices. Il savait que la seule manière de connaître le bien du mal était par les saintes règles de Yahweh inspirées dans les cinq premiers livres de Sa Parole. Qu’utiliserions-nous pour connaître le bien du mal si la Loi de Yahweh était annulée ?

Un test de droiture

La Loi n’a pas été donnée à l’humanité pour nous sauver, mais simplement pour nous montrer le bien et le mal. Dans Romains 3 :20 nous voyons que sans ces normes nous vivrions dans un monde totalement chaotique. « Car nul ne sera justifié devant lui par les œuvres de la loi, puisque c’est par la loi que vient la connaissance du péché. »

Nous sommes également avertis contre la transgression de la Loi de Moïse dans Hébreux 10 : « Car, si nous péchons volontairement après avoir reçu la connaissance de la vérité, il ne reste plus de sacrifice pour les péchés, mais une attente terrible du jugement et l’ardeur d’un feu qui dévorera les rebelles. Celui qui a violé la loi de Moïse meurt sans miséricorde, sur la déposition de deux ou de trois témoins; de quel pire châtiment pensez-vous que sera jugé digne celui qui aura foulé aux pieds le Fils d’Elohim, qui aura tenu pour profane le sang de l’alliance, par lequel il a été sanctifié, et qui aura outragé l’Esprit de la grâce? Car nous connaissons celui qui a dit : À moi la vengeance, à moi la rétribution ! et encore : Yahweh jugera son peuple » (Hébreux 10 : 26-30).

Notez que l’auteur de l’épître aux Hébreux dit clairement qu’une fois que nous sommes venus à la connaissance de la vérité, il n’y a plus de remède pour les péchés commis par la suite. C’est une pensée effrayante.

L’auteur de l’épître aux Hébreux continue en affirmant que ceux qui transgressent la Loi de Moïse, qui fut reçue de la part de Yahweh, seront jugés plus sévèrement que ceux de l’Ancien Testament. Ceci contredit la notion inventée par l’homme d’un Nouveau Testament basé sur la grâce et la foi seulement. Le salut implique bien plus que la simple proclamation de la foi et de la grâce pour tous ceux qui croient. Le salut requiert une action : l’obéissance.

Nous trouvons ceci confirmé dans Hébreux 5 : 9 : « et qui, après avoir été élevé à la perfection, est devenu pour tous ceux qui lui obéissent l’auteur d’un salut éternel ». Yahshua, l’auteur du salut, n’offre le don du salut qu’à ceux qui obéissent à la Parole de Yahweh. Nous ne pouvons pas uniquement croire et dire que nous avons la foi, mais devons agir par l’obéissance fondée sur la foi.

En observant Sa Loi nous démontrons à Yahweh que nous voulons Lui obéir et Le servir. Dans 1 Jean 5 : 3, nous lisons que si nous aimons Yahweh nous observerons Ses commandements. « Car l’amour d’Elohim consiste à garder ses commandements. Et ses commandements ne sont pas pénibles ».

Ce message est important, car il est bien plus profond que beaucoup l’imaginent. Nous ne montrons pas l’amour seulement par l’observance des commandements de Yahweh, mais nous devons aussi les observer avec un profond désir de Le servir. Ses commandements doivent être si désirables qu’ils ne nous paraissent jamais pénibles.

S’ils nous sont pénibles, alors nous avons rendu nul l’objectif de l’observance de la Torah de Yahweh. La Loi de Yahweh a pour but de nous modeler et de nous former à avoir le caractère même de Yahweh. Tout sentiment négatif à l’égard de Sa Loi revient à résister à ce but. Les normes de Yahweh sont un reflet de Sa propre morale et de Sa propre éthique. Pourquoi ne voudrait-il pas que nous ayons la même nature que Lui ?

La foi seule ne suffit pas

Dans l’épître de Jacques nous pouvons voir que le frère de Yahshua a encouragé l’observance de la Loi pour le peuple de Yahweh.

« Mes frères, que sert-il à quelqu’un de dire qu’il a la foi, s’il n’a pas les œuvres? La foi peut-elle le sauver ? Si un frère ou une sœur sont nus et manquent de la nourriture de chaque jour, et que l’un d’entre vous leur dise: Allez en paix, chauffez-vous et vous rassasiez ! et que vous ne leur donniez pas ce qui est nécessaire au corps, à quoi cela sert-il ? Il en est ainsi de la foi: si elle n’a pas les œuvres, elle est morte en elle-même. Mais quelqu’un dira : Toi, tu as la foi ; et moi, j’ai les œuvres. Montre-moi ta foi sans les œuvres, et moi, je te montrerai la foi par mes œuvres. Tu crois qu’il y a un seul Elohim, tu fais bien; les démons le croient aussi, et ils tremblent » (Jacques 2 : 14-19).

Jacques pose une question cruciale pour tout croyant : en quoi le bien existe-t-il si nous avons la foi mais pas les œuvres ? C’est comme un véhicule sans essence, il ne va nulle part. Notre salut fonctionne de la même manière. Avec la foi et les œuvres le Royaume de Yahweh nous est promis ; toutefois, sans l’une des deux notre salut s’arrête, nous sommes sans essence pour avancer.

Jacques dit également que les démons croient en l’existence de Yahweh et de Yahshua, mais cette simple croyance ne les rend pas digne du Royaume de Yahweh. Ils n’ont ni les œuvres ni un cœur obéissant.

L’obéissance ainsi que la foi

Trois passages intéressant peuvent être trouvés dans le Livre de l’Apocalypse. Le premier est la prophétie de la femme, symbolisant l’Assemblée, transporté dans le désert afin d’être protégée de l’adversaire. « Et le dragon fut irrité contre la femme, et il s’en alla faire la guerre au restes de sa postérité, à ceux qui gardent les commandements d’Elohim et qui ont le témoignage de Yahshua »(Apocalypse 12 : 17).

Considérez ce qui distingue le peuple de Yahweh. Deux caractéristiques définissent les saints de Yahweh : l’observance des commandements de Yahweh, et la foi en Yahshua. Par ces deux caractéristiques sont définies les attentes de Yahweh envers Son peuple.

Nous retrouvons ces deux attributs dans Apocalypse 14 :12 : « C’est ici la persévérance des saints, qui gardent les commandements d’Elohim et la foi de Yahshua. »

Yahweh définit Ses Saints comme étant ceux qui observent Ses commandements et qui ont la foi en Yahshua le Messie. Très simplement, ces deux éléments sont essentiels pour un croyant, car sans eux nous n’aurons pas accès au Royaume de Yahweh.

Dans le dernier chapitre de la Bible, Yahweh nous avertit une nouvelle fois de la nécessité d’observer Ses commandements. « Bénis sont ceux qui font ses commandements, afin d’avoir droit à l’arbre de vie, et d’entrer par les portes dans la ville ! »(Apocalypse 22 : 14, Version King James en français).

Ici, à la fin de la Bible, Yahweh dit clairement qu’observer Ses commandements est une obligation pour entrer dans Son glorieux Royaume. Yahweh n’acceptera que ceux qui ont un cœur obéissant et humble. Un cœur qui ne s’écarte jamais de lui, mais demeure intègre jusqu’à la fin.

Chaque mot de la Bible est pour notre bénéfice. Paul explique cela dans 2 Timothée 3 : 16 : « Toute Écriture est inspirée d’Elohim, et utile pour enseigner, pour convaincre, pour corriger, pour instruire dans la justice. »

Chaque passage que Yahweh a donné est profitable d’une manière ou de l’autre. Que ce soit comme réprimande, comme correction, ou comme instruction, la Parole de Yahweh a une place dans la vie de chacun. Elle nous enseigne l’intégrité, qui est définie comme l’observance de la Loi de Yahweh.

N’oubliez pas la Loi de Yahweh

Dans les livres des prophètes nous pouvons trouver une abondance de prophéties pour le croyant du Nouveau Testament. Un prophète en particulier nous enseigne à propos de la Loi de Moïse. Sa prophétie est une réponse de Yahweh.

Dans Malachie 4, Malachie prophétise sur un avenir lointain. Il parle d’une époque où la terre brûlera comme une fournaise, et le méchant deviendra de la cendre. Le message de Malachie est vital, car le message ne s’arrête pas avec les personnes de l’Ancien Testament, mais continue pour celles des derniers jours.

Il avertit que nous ne devons pas oublier la Loi de Moïse : « Souvenez-vous de la loi de Moïse, mon serviteur, auquel j’ai prescrit en Horeb, pour tout Israël, des préceptes et des ordonnances » (Malachie 4 : 4). Il est important de comprendre ceci. Nous, au XXIesiècle, apprenons ici qu’il est demandé aux saints d’observer TOUTE la Loi, avec les préceptes et les ordonnances.

Nous ne devons rien négliger de la Loi de Yahweh, mais observer chaque commandement inspiré, tel que le souhaite et nous en instruit Yahweh, à nous, Son peuple.

yahweh’s perfect law; yahweh’s law; biblical law; the laws in the bible; is biblical law in effect?, torah, torah law,

Yahweh’s Perfect Law

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It is Sunday morning. Minister Johnson climbs onto the podium, turns to Romans 10:4, and proclaims good news by announcing, “The Savior paid it all. We are free from those Old Testament regulations and now are under grace through faith alone!”

Many in nominal worship today believe and proclaim this same message — that Yahshua the Messiah has “nailed the Law to the cross.” How much of this belief is true, however? Has the Law been nailed to the stake or does Yahweh’s Law remain in effect for His New Testament believers?

Let us examine some popular New Testament passages cited by those who would abolish biblical law.

What Was Added?

Many point to a passage in Colossians as proof that Yahshua did away with the Old Testament Laws. Here Paul writes, “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his stake” (Col. 2:14).

With an understanding of the Greek word “ordinances” in this verse, we find another meaning. The Greek word here is No. 1378, dogma. Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance Greek Dictionary defines dogma as: “from the base 1380; a law (civil, cerem., or eccl.): — decree, ordinance.” Dogma is found seven times in the New Testament and refers to man-made decrees. One authority writes, “As the form of error at Colosse was largely Judaic, insisting on Jewish ceremonial law, the phrase is probably colored by this fact,” Word Studies in the New Testament, p. 908.

Thus, dogma here is not signifying Yahweh’s Law, but man-made decrees or ordinances. Paul was referring to the added law, which the Jews tacked on to Yahweh’s Law. We find the Apostle Paul warning Titus of this added law in Titus 1:14: “Not giving heed to Jewish fables, and commandments of men, that turn from the truth.”

Now read on in Colossians 2. Verse 16 refers to those judging you (with added man-made law that the Pharisees were clearly guilty of in Yahshua’s and Paul’s day) regarding keeping His holy days or clean foods or Sabbaths, “which are a shadow of things to come.” Verse 17 plainly says that these are a “shadow of things to come.” It is certainly not referring to “blotting out” or “doing away” with these important parts of Yahweh’s law, as some may argue. Now to the key that unlocks Paul’s meaning and intent for writing this chapter—verses 21-22: “Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using; after the commandments and doctrines of men.” The Apostle Paul was clearly referring to “dogma,” meaning man-made decrees, not biblical ones.

Yahweh was not always pleased with these added laws. Yahshua chastised the Jews in Matthew 15 and Mark 8 for their “commandments of men,” which here meant eating with unwashed hands. The Jews made many physical commandments, but they neglected the spiritual aspect of Yahweh’s Law, and that is what displeased Yahshua.

The Telos of the Law

In Romans 10:4 we have a passage that is misconstrued by a majority of preachers today. “For Messiah is the end of the law for righteousness to every one that believes.”

On the surface it may appear as if Yahshua ended the law for everyone when He died on the stake. Does that harmonize with the rest of Yahweh’s Word, however? Are we now living lawlessly? If so, then we have no sin because “sin is not imputed when there is no law,” Romans 5:13. But that cannot be, because Paul also wrote, “All have sinned and come short of the glory of Yahweh, ”Romans 3:23. Is something missing here that most don’t see?

The Greek word for “end” in this passage is telos, and telos is defined in Strong’s Greek Dictionary as: “to set out for a definite point or goal, the point aimed at as a limit” — No. 5056.

This word “end” found in Romans 10:4 could also be translated “goal.” We find a better rendition of this verse in the Jewish New Testament, which reads, “For the goal at which the Torah aims is the Messiah who offers righteousness to everyone who trusts.”

The same Greek word telos is translated “end” in James 5:11: “…you have seen the end [telos] of Yahweh.” Has Yahweh come to an end? Of course not, and neither has the law. Both Yahweh and the law have goals, not ending points. We will now look at an important goal of the law.

No Longer Under a Schoolmaster

Galatians is one of the most troublesome books for many in today’s religious circles. In Galatians 3 we have a passage that has been misunderstood by the major populace today. “Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Messiah, that we might be justified by faith. But after that faith is come, we are no longer under a schoolmaster” (Gal. 3:24-25).

This verse is not difficult to understand if we consider some key facts.

We saw in Romans 10:4 that the Messiah is not the end of the Law, but the goal at which the law aims. Messiah is the object or purpose for the Law. Only through the Law can we know Messiah, because Yahshua literally represents the Law in flesh. He lived the law in every aspect. If we do the same, we will be like the Messiah.

Paul is saying that through the Law we know Messiah, but after we have come to the knowledge of Yahshua we no longer need a schoolmaster, because the Law is part of us now, as is the Messiah.

In the Greek culture a schoolmaster was a paidagogos, a trustworthy slave who had the guardianship of the boys of a household. They needed him for guidance and instruction while they were young. But after they grew up, they lived by the precepts he taught them. It became second nature to do what they had been taught. They would no longer need the schoolmaster once they learned “the rules.” This is the point Paul was making with the law.

Through faith we comply with Yahweh’s will automatically. His precepts and laws are now part of us. We no longer need a strict schoolmaster guiding our every thought and action because doing the right thing is second nature.

Lawkeeping in the New Testament

Yahshua and many of His faithful disciples not only show that the Law has NOT been annulled, but they also express for it a deep love.

In Matthew 5:17-19 Yahshua says that those who keep and teach Yahweh’s Law will have great treasures in Yahweh’s Kingdom:“Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfil. For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.”

Yahshua came not to destroy the Law, but to fulfill or complete it, as the Greek indicates. Yahshua said those who uphold and teach the Law will be blessed with honorable positions in the Kingdom, but those who refuse to keep it and teach others the same fallacy of non-obedience will not be blessed and will not inherit any position.

Yahshua was not the only advocate for Yahweh’s Law. We find the Apostle Paul, who is usually cited as being against the law, in Romans 3:31 in fact promoting lawkeeping: “Do we then make void the law through faith? Yahweh forbid: yea, we establish the law.” Paul never said that Yahweh’s Law wasn’t important. Many will say that all we need is faith. Paul says that we need both faith and law. We are not to throw out the Law because of faith, but as Paul says we are to establish it within our lives.

In Romans 7 we find the Apostle Paul again promoting Yahweh’s Law: “Know you not, brethren, (for I speak to them that know the law,) how that the law has dominion over a man as long as he lives?…What shall we say then? is the law sin? Yahweh forbid. Nay, I had not known sin, but by the law: for I had not known lust, except the law had said, Thou shalt not covet…Wherefore the law is holy, and the commandment holy, and just, and good” (Rom. 7:1, 7, 12).

Paul Advocates Old Testament Law

Paul says that the Law has dominion or authority over us till death, just as marriage does between two people. He also says that without the Law we would not know sin. Paul concludes this passages by not diminishing the Law, but by giving it the highest honor.

In one New Testament passage we find the Apostle Paul using the Law of Moses to convey his own message to young Timothy. “For the scripture says, You shall not muzzle the ox that treads out the corn. And, The labourer is worthy of his reward” (1Tim. 5:18). His using such an example indicates that Paul taught and promoted the Old Testament Laws as authority, meaning the basis for New Testament teachings. Both of these laws can be traced back to the Torah:

  • “You shalt not muzzle the ox when he treads out the corn” (Deut. 25:4).
  • “The wages of him that is hired shall not abide with you all night until the morning” (Lev. 19:13).

In Acts 24 Paul is standing before Felix, the governor of Judea. Paul is being accused of following and even promoting a division among the Jews. In truth, Paul never rebuked the Jewish faith, but proclaimed that he followed all that his ancestors taught. “But this I confess unto you, that after the way which they call heresy, so worship I the Elohim of my fathers, believing all things which are written in the law and in the prophets” (Acts 24:14).

In the governor’s attempt to condemn the Apostle, Paul not only says that he believes, but also unmistakably advocates the Law and the Prophets. If he believed in the Law and the Prophets, he clearly would have been observing both. The Law here includes all five books of the Torah, while the Prophets indicates the entire collection of the Old Testament prophets and all that they taught about Yahweh’s will through His law.

Obviously, Paul never uprooted the Law, but had great respect and love for it. He realized its benefits. He knew that the only way to know right from wrong was by Yahweh’s holy standards inspired in the first five books of His Word. What would we use for knowing right from wrong if Yahweh’s Law were annulled?

A Litmus Test for Righteousness

The Law was not given to mankind to save us, but simply to show us right from wrong. In Romans 3:20 we see that without these standards we would live in a world with utter chaos. “Therefore by the deeds of the law there shall no flesh be justified in his sight: for by the law is the knowledge of sin.”

We are also warned of breaking Moses’ Law in Hebrews 10: “For if we sin willfully after that we have received the knowledge of the truth, there remains no more sacrifice for sins, But a certain fearful looking for of judgment and fiery indignation, which shall devour the adversaries. He that despised Moses’ law died without mercy under two or three witnesses: Of how much sorer punishment, suppose you, shall he be thought worthy, who has trodden under foot the Son of Elohim, and has counted the blood of the covenant, wherewith he was sanctified, an unholy thing, and has done despite unto the Spirit of grace? For we know him that has said, Vengeance belongs unto me, I will recompense, says Yahweh. And again, Yahweh shall judge his people” (Heb. 10:26-30).

Notice that the writer of Hebrews very plainly says that once we have come to the knowledge of the truth, there is no more remedy for sins committed thereafter. This is a dreadful thought.

The writer of Hebrews continues by stating that those who break Moses’ Law, which was received through Yahweh, will have a greater judgment than those of the Old Testament. This contradicts the man-made notion of a New Testament based on grace and faith alone. Salvation involves more than a simple proclaiming faith and grace to all those who believe. Salvation requires an action — obedience.

We find this confirmed in Hebrews 5:9: “And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him.” Yahshua, the author of salvation, offers the gift of salvation only to those who obey Yahweh’s Word. We cannot just believe or say that we have faith, but must act on our faith by obedience.

By observing His Law we demonstrate to Yahweh that we want to obey and serve Him. In 1John 5:3 we read that if we love Yahweh we will obey His commandments. “For this is the love of Elohim, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous.”

This passage is important to understand because the message goes much deeper than most realize. We not only show love by keeping Yahweh’s commandments, but we must also keep them out of a deep-down desire to serve Him. His commandments must be so desirable that they never seem grievous to us.

If they are grievous, then we have defeated the purpose of observing Yahweh’s Torah. Yahweh’s Law is to shape and mold us into Yahweh’s own character. Any negative feelings toward His law amount to resistance of that goal. Yahweh’s standards are a reflection of His own morals and ethics. Why should He not want us to have the same nature as He does?

Faith Alone Is Not Enough

In the Book of James we find Yahshua’s brother unequivocally promoting law keeping for Yahweh’s people.

“What does it profit, my brethren, though a man say he has faith, and have not works? can faith save him? If a brother or sister be naked, and destitute of daily food, And one of you say unto them, Depart in peace, be warmed and filled; notwithstanding you give them not those things which are needful to the body; what does it profit? Even so faith, if it has not works, is dead, being alone. Yea, a man may say, You have faith, and I have works: show me your faith without your works, and I will show you my faith by my works. You believe that there is one Elohim; you do well: the devils also believe, and tremble” (James 2:14-19).

James asks a crucial question for any believer: What good is it if we have faith but no works? It’s like a vehicle with no gasoline, it travels nowhere. Our salvation works the same way. With faith and works we are promised Yahweh’s kingdom; however, without either of the two our salvation comes to a halt, with no gasoline to continue.

James also said that even the demons believe in Yahweh’s and Yahshua’s existence, but just having this belief does not make them worthy of Yahweh’s Kingdom. They have neither works nor an obedient heart.

Obedience as Well as Faith

Three noteworthy passages are found in the Book of Revelation. The first is the prophecy of the woman, meaning the Assembly, being taken into the wilderness for protection from the adversary. “And the dragon was wroth with the woman, and went to make war with the remnant of her seed, which keep the commandments of Elohim, and have the testimony of Yahshua the Messiah” (Rev. 12:17).

Notice what distinguishes Yahweh’s people. Two characteristics define Yahweh’s saints: keeping of Yahweh’s commandments, and having faith in Yahshua. By these two characteristics Yahweh’s expectations for His people are defined.

We find these two attributes again in Revelation 14:12. “Here is the patience of the saints: here are they that keep the commandments of Elohim, and the faith of Yahshua.”

Yahweh defines His Saints as those that are keeping His commandments and having a faith in Yahshua the Messiah. Very simply, these two elements are essential for a believer, for without them we will not have access to Yahweh’s Kingdom.

In the last chapter of the Bible Yahweh warns us once again of the need for keeping His commandments. “Blessed are they that do his commandments, that they may have right to the tree of life, and may enter in through the gates into the city” (Rev. 22:14).

Here at the end of the Bible Yahweh clearly says that keeping His commandments is a requirement for entering His glorious Kingdom. Yahweh will only accept those with an obedient and humble heart. A heart that never wavers from Him, but stays true to the end.

Every word in the entire Bible is for our benefit. Paul explains this in 2Timothy 3:16: “All scripture is given by inspiration of Elohim, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness.

Every utterance that Yahweh has given is profitable in some way. Whether it be reproof, correction, or instruction, Yahweh’s Word has a place in each of our lives. It instructs us to righteousness, which is defined by observing Yahweh’s Law.

Forget Not the Law of Yahweh

Within the prophets we can find an abundance of prophecies for the New Testament believer. One prophet specifically educates us concerning the Law of Moses. His prophecy is a reply from Yahweh.

In Malachi chapter 4, Malachi prophesies of the distant future. He tells of a time when the whole earth shall burn like a furnace, and the wicked shall become stubble. Malachi’s message is vital, for the message does not stop with those in the Old Testament, but continues on for those in the latter days.

He warns that we must not forget the Law of Moses: “Remember the law of Moses my servant, which I commanded unto him in Horeb for all Israel, with the statutes and judgments” (Mal. 4:4). This is important to understand. We in the 21st century learn here that the saints are told to keep ALL the Law, with statutes and judgments.

We must not neglect any of Yahweh’s Law, but observe every inspired commandment as Yahweh so wishes and instructs us, His people.

feast days and sabbaths; amazing facts; sabbaths; sabbaths in the bible; should seventh day adventists keep the feasts

Feast Days and Sabbaths Reviewed

A booklet called Feast Days and Sabbaths-Are They Still Binding? published by Amazing Facts was sent to us for our review and comments. The following is the result of that review. The booklet will henceforth be referred to by the first part of its title, Feast Days and Sabbaths.

The writer’s central assumption is that the law of Yahweh or Ten Commandments is different from and longer lasting than the law of Moses. He claims “Moses’ law” included the Feast days and was only temporary and ceremonial – done away at the death of our Savior – while “Yahweh’s law” is the Ten Commandments, which still stand today.

‘Law of Moses’ Applies to All the Law

The simple fact is, references to the “law of Moses” and the Ten Commandments are interchangeable in Scripture. Moses was merely the messenger of Yahweh’s law and the appellation “Moses’ Law” became attached to him as a result. If a friend allows me to drive his car for a while people would refer to it as my car by simple association. Moses handled all the law as emissary of Yahweh to Israel, including the Ten Commandments, Exodus 32:15. In that respect you could call the Ten Commandments Moses’ law, too, as does the Bible.

Moses was the go-between for Yahweh and Israel, as we see in Exodus 19:3, 7-8. This is also clear in 1Kings 8:56, 58: “Blessed be Yahweh, that has given rest unto his people Israel, according to all that he promised: there has not failed one word of all his good promise, which he promised by the hand of Moses his servant.” Additional Scriptures are similar in scope and some include the commandments as well as the statutes and judgments as laws being transmitted by Moses:

Leviticus 26:46:  “These are the statutes and judgments and laws, which Yahweh made between him and the children of Israel in mount Sinai by the hand of Moses.”

Numbers 36:13: “These are the commandments and the judgments, which Yahweh commanded by the hand of Moses unto the children of Israel in the plains of Moab by Jordan near Jericho.”

Judges 3:4: “And they were to prove Israel by them (nations), to know whether they would hearken unto the commandments of Yahweh, which he commanded their fathers by the hand of Moses.”

1Kings 2:3: “And keep the charge of Yahweh your Elohim, to walk in his ways, to keep his statutes, and his commandments, andhis judgments, and his testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses, that you may prosper in all that you do, and whithersoever you turn yourself.”

2Chronicles 35:6:  “So kill the passover, and sanctify yourselves, and prepare your brethren, that they may do according to the word of Yahweh by the hand of Moses.”

Nehemiah 9:13-14: “You came down also upon mount Sinai, and spake with them from heaven, and gave them right judgments, and true laws, good statutes and commandments. And made known unto them your holy sabbath, and commanded them precepts, statutes, and laws, by the hand of Moses your servant.” (Here we note that Moses made known the Fourth Commandment Sabbath day as well as the other laws. The booklet would have us believe that only Yahweh disseminated the Sabbath law, with no contact involving Moses.

Feasts and Ten Commandments Both Part of Yahweh’s Law

The Ten Commandments are listed in Deuteronomy chapter 5. They are called statutes and judgments in Deuteronomy 5:1. Notice who presented these Ten Commandments, statutes and judgments to the people: “These be the words which Moses spake unto all Israel on this side Jordan in the wilderness, in the plain over against the Red sea, between Paran, and Tophel, and Laban, and Hazeroth, and Dizahab” (1:1).

Yahweh does not separate the Ten Commandments from the Feasts, as if He mandated the commandments while Moses was responsible for the Feasts. Yahweh is the lawgiver, not Moses. James 1:12 tells us clearly that there is only one Lawgiver.Isaiah 33:22 says Yahweh is that Lawgiver. Moses was merely the conduit.

The weekly Sabbath and annual Feasts are all combined in Leviticus 23, showing that the Sabbath is considered a Feast and that all are part of Yahweh’s commanded law. The first five verses read, “And Yahweh spake unto Moses, saying, Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of Yahweh, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are my feasts. Six days shall work be done: but the seventh day is the sabbath of rest, an holy convocation; you shall do no work therein: it is the sabbath of Yahweh in all your dwellings. These are the feasts of Yahweh, even holy convocations, which you shall proclaim in their seasons. In the fourteenth day of the first month at even is Yahweh’s passover…”

The writer of Feast Days and Sabbaths rests his argument on a couple of passages, one of which is 2Kings 21:8, claiming that because Yahweh mentions both His law and Moses’ law that there is a distinction between the two. In fact, it is ALL Yahweh’s law. Yahweh spoke it to Moses and Moses gave it to the people because the people feared dying if they faced Yahweh directly,Exodus 20:19. Rather than making a separation between two kinds of law in 2Kings 21:8, Yahweh refers to both His law and Moses’ law in the same breath in order to show their equivalence. They are the same law, as other verses show.

The writer makes this statement: “It is interesting to note that curses and judgments of this law spelled out penalties for transgression which were totally missing from the Ten Commandments,” p. 6. After the commandments are re-listed in the second giving found in Deuteronomy 5, we find the following in Deuteronomy 11:26-28: “Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse; a blessing, if you obey the commandments of Yahweh your Elohim, which I command you this day: And a curse, if you will not obey the commandments of Yahweh your Elohim, but turn aside out of the way which I command you this day, to go after other gods, which you have not known.” The curses for breaking the commandments as well as the statutes and judgments are detailed inDeuteronomy 28:15-68.

Commandments, statutes and judgments constitute what is known as the law, as shown in Deuteronomy 5:1 and 6:1. We are commanded in Deuteronomy 11:1 to “keep his charge, and his statutes, and his judgments, and his commandments, always.” And the Feasts are called “feasts of Yahweh,” Leviticus 23:44.

‘Law of Moses’ A Command of Yahweh

The Scriptures talk of Moses’ law because he handed them down from Yahweh; in fact, the law originated with Yahweh and was mandated by Him for His people.

We read in 1Kings 2:3: “And keep the charge of Yahweh your Elohim, to walk in His ways, to keep His statutes, and Hiscommandments, and His judgments, and His testimonies, as it is written in the law of Moses…” The “law of Moses” included the Ten Commandments.

Further in 2Kings 14:6 we find: “But the children of the murderers he slew not: according unto that which is written in the law of Moses, wherein Yahweh commanded…”

Ezra 7:6 says:  “This Ezra went up from Babylon; and he was a ready scribe in the law of Moses, which Yahweh Elohim of Israel had given.”

Nehemiah 8:1 tells us: “And all the people gathered themselves together as one man into the street that was before the water gate; and they spake unto Ezra the scribe to bring Feast Days and Sabbaths of the law of Moses, which Yahweh had commanded to Israel.”

In Acts 21:24 Paul proved he was a keeper of all the law, not just the Ten Commandments, when he followed James’s instructions to “take and purify yourself with them…that they may know…that you yourself also walk orderly, and keep the law.”

Feasts and Sacrifices Not One and the Same

Feast Days and Sabbaths makes a common, erroneous assumption that the Feasts rise and fall with ceremonial, animal sacrifices. According to this logic, if animal sacrifices have been put in abeyance in the New Covenant, so have the Feasts. If that were true then the Sabbath is also now done away because animal sacrifices were a key part of the weekly Sabbath observance as well, being double the normal daily sacrifices on the Sabbath, Numbers 28:9-10.

Contrary to popular view, the sacrificial shedding of blood has not been abrogated in the New Covenant. The shedding of Yahshua’s perfect, sacrificial blood is still what we rely on now for the remission of our sins, Hebrews 10:9-10. Therefore, the idea of sacrifice was never brought to an end in the New Testament. Neither is circumcision, which is now of the heart, Romans 2:29.

The only change in the law under the New Covenant occurred with a new priesthood (Yahshua) and a different sacrificial system (His own death), Hebrews 9:9-15. The Passover, one of the seven appointed times, is still commanded by direct command of Yahshua Himself in memorial of His death, Luke 22:19. Churchianity even admits to that fact by keeping an imitation of the Passover it calls holy communion.

The Truth About Colossians 2 and Ephesians 2

Feast Days and Sabbaths lumps together sacrifices, human priesthood and feast days all as part of the law that was only a type and shadow and was in fact “against us,” citing Colossians 2:14. Colossians 2:14 specifically says it was the handwriting of ordinances that was against us. “Ordinances” is from the Greek dogma and refers to man-made rules and decrees. The same word is used in Caesar’s tax decree (dogma) of Luke 2:1. It means a man-made rule. The author himself agrees, where on page 15 he says that ordinances is a term “applied to local legal codes which are very narrow and limited.”

Colossians itself in 2:21-22 defines what it means by this “handwriting of ordinances”: “(Touch not; taste not; handle not; Which all are to perish with the using;) after the commandments and doctrines of men.” The Jews of the day added a lot of ritual that served to separate themselves from the Gentile. By His death, Yahshua brought Jew and Gentile together and in doing so He obliterated these man-made dogmas meant to keep them apart.

The booklet also cites verse 16 of Colossians 2, “Let no man therefore judge you in meat, or in drink, or in respect of an holyday, or of the new moon, or of the sabbath days: Which are a shadow of things to come; but the body is of Messiah.” This passage is often used to say one may keep any observances one likes and no one should judge one for it. In fact, it says that Yahweh’s Feasts ARE a shadow of something to come (not WERE shadowy Sabbaths, as the author erroneously argues on page 17, as if they were done away) and that only the body is to judge as to how they should be observed, not an outsider (“is” has been added by translators).

Ephesians 2:15 is also cited in the book. It reads: “Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace.” Verse 14 explains that He broke down the separating wall and made peace between Jew and Gentile and made salvation possible by “one new man,” meaning Himself.

Neither of these passages has anything to do with Yahweh’s Feasts, which is what they are called in Leviticus 23:2, not man’s Feasts or man-made Feasts.

Sabbaths Refers to Feast Days, Which Have High Days

An attempt is made to say that “Sabbaths” in Leviticus 23:38 is distinct from the Feasts in verse 37. Does this mean the weekly Sabbath is a different class of law from the Feasts? As pointed out in the Companion Bible, “Sabbaths” in verse 38 is a reference to the sacrifices offered on the Sabbaths through a linguistic device known as metonymy. This is clearly the case because both the previous verse and the rest of verse 38 discuss meat and burnt offerings, drink offerings, gifts, vows and freewill offerings. To insert weekly Sabbath in a list of offerings would violate the context and not make any sense.

In a contradiction to many of his own attempts to make “Sabbaths” refer only to the weekly Sabbath, the author admits on page 16, “Were there ‘sabbaths’ other than the weekly Sabbaths? Yes, there were yearly Sabbaths…”

Ezekiel 20:24-25 is cited as meaning that Yahweh gave Israel the law of Moses that was not good. This interpretation is unbelievable. Why would Yahweh ever give man laws that aren’t good, and statutes that they were not to live by? Reading further in verse 26 we find the right understanding. This is actually speaking of Israel’s keeping pagan rituals, like burning their children to Moloch. And because of their rebellion Yahweh gave them over to these pagan observances that were not good. Bullinger’s Companion Bible explains that the words “I gave them also statutes” is a Hebrew idiom that means “I suffered others to give them statutes…the verb nathan, to give, is therefore rendered to suffer in this sense.”

Commanded, Not Taken Away

Feast Days and Sabbaths ends its case against the Feasts by saying that Yahshua went up to Jerusalem in John 5:51 to keep a feast. It then says, “This is unquestionably one of the holy days that Paul spoke of as being abolished.” The question that immediately comes to mind is, why would our Savior implore us to follow in His footsteps and do what He did, which included keeping the annual Feasts (John 7:10, 14; 2:23, Mark 14:12) and then abolish those same Feasts as soon as He died? His command to keep the Passover in Luke 22:19 is unmistakable. How can we possibly follow this command if the Passover were done away at His death? Why do churches today still honor “Pentecost Sunday” if the Feasts are no longer in effect?

Why would Paul, whose ministry took place years after the death and resurrection of Yahshua, say, “I must by all means keep this Feast [Tabernacles] that comes to Jerusalem?” (Acts 18:21). Paul was obedient to Yahshua’s [and Yahweh’s] command by keeping the Passover in 1Corinthians 11:24-31, as well as other Feasts (Acts 20:6, 16; 27:9-even 30 years after the Savior’ resurrection). Paul said he was taught by the resurrected Savior Himself, Galatians 1:11-17. That being the case, why was he not told that the Feast days are no longer in effect? He said he declared all the counsel or teachings of Yahweh, Acts 20:27. Then why were the Feasts still part of his teachings if they were abolished by Yahshua’s death long before?

The fact is, not only were the Feast days not done away in the New Covenant, but also they will be kept in the coming millennial Kingdom. Read the revealing prophecies of future Feast observances in Zechariah 14:16-19; Isaiah 66:23; Ezekiel 44:24; 45:21-25;46:3. The people of Yahweh as well as the whole earth will be observing all these days when Yahshua’s government is set up for a thousand years in Jerusalem. The question is, if they will be part of His government under His millennial reign, why would they be abolished for the True Worshiper today?

Back to Bible Basics

Back to the Basics

Suppose you started a new job. How long would you remain employed at that job if you insisted on coming to work only when it was convenient and fit into your schedule?

And what if you told your employer that you would decide your own responsibilities while at work and how much he will be paying you? Additionally, if you didn’t feel like working at all for a year or two, you still expected a paycheck.

Ridiculous? Certainly. Since when does a subordinate call the shots? Everyone knows that the servant does the bidding of the one served. That’s self-evident.

But it is not evident at all to millions of professing Bible believers who make their own rules when it comes to their worship. They decide when and how they will worship; they decide the question of obedience and even decide for themselves what name to call the Supreme Creator of the universe. They don’t consult the Scriptures, but just do what they want, often following others doing what they want. Does that sit well with Almighty Yahweh?

Not on your life. Worship approved of Yahweh means learning and then doing His will, not our own. We cannot make Him in our image and expect His blessings. That is the definition of idolatry.

Worship is not about what we want. Our goal is not to please ourselves. Our desire as True Worshipers is not self-satisfaction but His-satisfaction. Worship that centers on pleasing the worshiper is pointless and useless.

Millions live out their entire lives never knowing who their Creator is, what His actual Name is, and what He requires of them. They have no idea that Yahweh has a purpose for this earth and has a mind-boggling future awaiting those who sincerely seek Him.

He is a Power so infinite that all the trillions of stars in all the billions of galaxies obey His every command according to physical laws He established. Nehemiah 9:6 reads, “Thou hast made heaven, the earth and all things therein, the seas and all things therein and Thou preservest them all.” The only segment of His creation that resists obeying their great Creator is mankind.

Discovering Him starts with obedience. “And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments,” 1John 2:3. The laws that He thundered from Mt. Sinai for all who would worship Him define who He is. Keeping them defines who we are  –  either worshipers or rivals, depending on whether we submit to His will or resist Him.

Only HIS Days Honor Him

The sincere seeker of Yahweh understands the critical importance of aligning his life with Yahweh’s mandates, which includes His commandments, His ordained calendar and His Feasts days. His Feasts are special observances that define His salvation plan. Observing them means being a part of His salvation’s plan here and now.

One particular observance  –  the Feast of Tabernacles  –  is a time Yahweh set aside for learning who He is by spending a week apart from the world and interacting with His chosen people. This Feast is a veritable taste of the Kingdom.

You have the opportunity to taste it now, while the vast majority will remain unenlightened until after the thousand years of millennial rule are over and they are brought up in the second resurrection. (See The Two Resurrections, p. 20)

If you are convicted to keep the Feasts then you are responding to His call and have a desire to know and serve Him in Truth. Let nothing stand in your way of obedience.

Realize that you will need to overcome the obstacles that the Evil One will throw in your path to keep you from being faithful. Above all, haSatan knows that the Bible’s Feasts are of utmost importance to Yahweh and that they clearly separate the earnest believer from the passive one. “Speak unto the children of Israel, and say unto them, Concerning the feasts of Yahweh, which you shall proclaim to be holy convocations, even these are MY FEASTS,” Leviticus 23:2.

Most think that the Bible’s feasts are Jewish, but the Scriptures say they are His feasts! These days are to be taught and observed as unique, solemn, holy gatherings in honor of Yahweh. Man’s days are invented by man, but the Bible’s Feast days are designed and ordained by the Giver of Life.

Discovering Yahweh

All sin stems from ignorance of Yahweh. People sin because they have no fear of Him. If they did they would be fools to defy His direct commands.

Children who obey their parents have a healthy respect for their parents and fear the consequences of rebellion. But those who deliberately break Yahweh’s laws don’t know Yahweh and don’t fear the consequences. “Know ye not, that to whom ye yield yourselves servants to obey, his servants ye are to whom ye obey; whether of sin unto death, or of obedience unto righteousness?” Romans 6:16.

Most are driven by tradition and blindly do what tradition teaches without looking into the facts. For millennia men thought that the sun revolved around a flat earth. Does it make any sense that we should continue this thinking simply because it’s traditional?

Many grew up with a religious affiliation. For the vast majority of them that fact is all that is required to continue holding on to what they grew up believing. They refuse to look into other views. Such rationale keeps hundreds of millions in the dark. “There is a way that seems right unto a man, but the end thereof are the ways of death,” Proverbs16:25.

Deciding on your own which way to go in worship can have serious consequences should you get it wrong.

Yahweh as ruler of our lives decides what is right. How can we be righteous in His sight if we do not do what He directs, and instead follow opposing practices? This includes keeping the seventh-day Sabbath and holy the days that He commands us to observe because He says doing so is His will.

Sin is doing what the Word of Yahweh commands against, such as ignoring His will. Not keeping His Feasts is sin because it transgresses the command of His law, 1John 3:4.

Even the Pagan Understands

There is nothing more basic than pleasing the one you worship. Doing what He wants and not what we may want is the definition of True Worship.

Worship means devotion at all times, day in and day out.

The principle of obeying the one you worship is no mystery to the pagan. The classic trait of a pagan is one who diligently tries to placate his “deity” by doing what he thinks the deity wants. That might include sacrificing children to Molech, burning fires in December to the sun god Mithras or coloring eggs in April in honor of the fertility goddess Astarte.

Each rite constitutes a key part of the heathen’s worship, and he would never think of not conscientiously carrying out his religion’s pagan rites year after year.

If even a heathen can understand the principle of personal duty and obligation in worship, why does today’s nominal worshiper think that he is exempt from anything clearly mandated in the Word for his own worship?

Yahweh repeatedly tells us to obey Him, which doesn’t mean just think nice thoughts about it. Paul asks in Romans 9:21, “Has not the potter power over the clay…”?

A correct understanding of the Bible and what is required of us is unattainable unless we know its author. We cannot worship in truth unless we understand and seek the will of the One who is Truth personified.

The more we understand who Yahweh is, the more we will live and worship correctly according to His will. The less we know about Him, the more likely we will be worshiping in ways He rejects.

If we are not pleasing Him by our lives and worship then we are wasting our time. Our very example and Guide to salvation, Yahshua the Son, said He came to do His Father’s will, John 4:34. That is what we must do  –  live as the Son did by obeying every command of His Father as taught in the Old Testament. He is our model, the pattern for proper worship. “For even hereunto were you called: because Messiah also suffered for us, leaving us an example, that you should follow his steps,” 1Peter 2:21.

Yahshua kept the scriptural Sabbath and observed the clean foods, feast days, and commandments. He never kept Christmas, Easter, Halloween or any other man-made observance. We are to follow His lead, the apostle said.

You can’t grasp a discipline without knowing the basics. The religious establishment today approaches wor-ship backwards. Without providing the fundamentals to proper understanding, clerics introduce the Heavenly Father without instruction as to who He is, what He stands for, or what HE expects of His worshiper. The first of the Ten Commandments establishes the foundation for True worship: “Thou shalt have no other mighty ones before me,” Exodus 20:3.

The wrong question about worship is continually being asked: “What’s in it for me?” The right question is, what is His will for His people, and how can I be a part of it? That is the proper approach to truth and True Worship.

Ignorance Is Not Bliss

Ask the average person what he expects at death. “To go to heaven” he may answer. And what will he do there? He has no idea. Not a clue. And most don’t care even to find out what the salvation plan is! All they know is that they will stumble into it somehow. What foolish thinking.

Perhaps at the root of their desire to remain ignorant is a fear that if they find out too much they may have to do something about it. They may need to change their ways and live life to please the One they purport to worship. Human nature resists making life-altering reforms. The Adversary wants everyone to continue down the slippery slope of obliviousness to insure that no one will become enlightened and turn to Yahweh.

Millions who say they believe the Bible are completely ignorant of its most basic requirements. They hardly know Yahweh or the Bible at all. No wonder He has no influence on their behavior. Yahweh is not taken seriously when commitment to their faith is lacking. Incredibly, in spite of it all they still believe they are saved!

Judah didn’t take Yahweh seriously most of the time, either. The prophet Jeremiah warned that their rebellion would bring consequences. “And though they say, Yahweh liveth; surely they swear falsely. O Yahweh, are not thine eyes upon the truth? thou hast stricken them, but they have not grieved; thou hast consumed them, but they have refused to receive correction: they have made their faces harder than a rock; they have refused to return. Therefore I said, Surely these are poor; they are foolish: for they know not the way of Yahweh, nor the judgment of their Elohim,” Jeremiah 5:2-4.

It is time to learn about the true Father in heaven and what He expects of His people. He has a Name, a family, and a plan to build that family to expand to the ends of the universe itself  –  starting now with called-out and faithful Believers who love Him enough to obey what He tells them. “For this is the love of Yahweh, that we keep his commandments: and his commandments are not grievous,” 1John 5:3.

He Judges Our Behavior

We find in the prayer of Hannah in the writings of the prophet Samuel this warning, “Talk no more so exceeding proudly; let [not] arrogancy come out of your mouth: for Yahweh is an Elohim of knowledge, and by him actions are weighed” (1Sam. 2:3).

Two key phrases are crucial to our relationship with our Heavenly Father. He is “an Elohim of knowledge” and “by Him actions are weighed.” Whose actions? Ours! Here Samuel applies Yahweh’s wisdom, His understanding, His knowledge to OUR actions.

Yahweh says through Hosea in 4:6, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” He adds, “Because you have rejected knowledge, I will reject you, that you shall be no priest to me.”

To know whether we are pleasing Him we need to look at our behavior. Are we eager to please Him through obedience or do we seek loopholes to get out of our obligations?

A reverential respect of Yahweh will lead us to greater knowledge. He promises it.

“The fear of Yahweh is the beginning of wisdom,” the Psalmist wrote, “A good understanding have all they that do his commandments” (Ps. 111:10). The reverse is also true. A person who will not obey and do His commandments will have poor understanding.

This life is training for the Kingdom, according to Revelation 1:6. A Biblical priest is well educated in the office he holds. His life is a proving ground. He knows Yahweh and knows what Yahweh requires.

Pointless Pursuits of Pleasure

We were not put on this planet to seek entertainment. The believer is a temporary resident of this world and has higher goals than to waste life in constant pursuit of pleasure. Yahweh has an incredible purpose for His chosen. And because of that, the Word tells those being called now, “I have heard thee in a time accepted, and in the day of salvation have I succoured thee: behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation,” 2Corinthians 6:2. Now is the time to work out your salvation in preparation for an eternal future serving Yahweh.

Revelation 2:26 says, “And he that overcomes and keeps my works unto the end, to him will I give power over the nations.” Rulership in the Kingdom is promised to those who obey the Scriptures today! The promise is the same now as it was when John received it on Patmos. Yahweh has not changed His mind.

In fact, in Malachi, the last book of the Old Testament, Yahweh says, “I am Yahweh, I change not; therefore you sons of Jacob [Israel] are not consumed.”

There is one body, not many, according to Ephesians 4:4. One Master, one faith, one baptism.

We can learn a great deal about our Heavenly Father by just studying His commandments. What He instructs us to follow reveals His own values, standards, and principles. It is the same as discovering the values of a parent by what that parent expects of his or her children. If a child is taught not to steal, then we safely assume that his parents oppose stealing.

A Command to Study

But this presents a rather difficult problem for some. Many say or think that they do not know the Bible well enough to understand what is truth and what is not. They are unwilling to take the time to study it out for themselves.

Despite their reluctance, the command remains. You can find Yahweh’s inspired words, for example, in 2Timothy 2:15: “Study to show yourself approved unto Elohim, a workman that needs not be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” In order to have the approval of our Creator, then, we are to study His Word. And rightly apply what is there to our lives. Bible study is not just an option, it is a command. We must prove all doctrine from Scripture itself and not take anything or anyone’s word for granted.

We are responsible for our own understanding or lack thereof.

Ignorance can only lead to trouble. Why? Because then we don’t realize the importance of applying what the Word says to our personal lives, behavior and actions for which we will one day be accountable.

From the New Testament, Paul writes, “Prove all things; hold fast that which is good,” 1Thessalonians 5:21. Why? Because what you know you act on, and if what you know is wrong, your worship will be wrong. Your faith will be in vain.

He Responds Accordingly

Many wonder why they are having so many personal problems and trials in their lives and why they are not being blessed. Others pray for health and financial help to no avail. Both could be because they refuse to obey Him and put Him first in their lives. John writes, “Now we know that Yahweh hears not sinners: but if any man be a worshiper of Yahweh, and does His will, him He hears.” Sin is disobedience to His laws and commands, 1John 3:4.

Are you willing to obey your Father in Heaven? Do you do His will? If you do, then He will answer your prayers. He will be your Guide, your help, and your happiness. He will bless you in this life and in the Kingdom to come. But you have to take that first step to answer His call.

The prophet Malachi wrote over 2,000 years ago: “Even from the days of your fathers you have gone away from Mine ordinances, and have not kept them. Return unto Me, and I will return unto you, says Yahweh of hosts.” You must take the first step.

Knowing Means Complying

A True Worshiper has a childlike innocence, willing to do whatever he or she is expected to do. Yahshua said that the Kingdom of Heaven will be given to those with a similar attitude of unquestioning obedience, much the same attitude as innocent children have (Matt. 19:14).

We please the One we worship by doing what He tells us in His Instruction Book. This is not some half-hearted profession about accepting the Messiah as your personal Savior and then forgetting about it, thinking you are now saved.

He will not ac-cept anything less than a real, honest commitment in our everyday lives to walk in the footsteps of Yahshua the Messiah. To obey all that He said to obey. Day in and day out until it becomes second nature.

Yahshua chided Satan, “It is written, man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of Elohim,” Matthew 4:4. “Every word” includes both Old Testament and New.

The Apostle Paul said that even our very thoughts should conform to the obedience of Messiah Yahshua, 2Corinthians 10:5.

To know Yahweh is to know True Worship. We often hear people ask, “Do you know the ‘L-rd’?” Rarely do they explain what they mean by that.

Know Him how? By His revealed, true Name? By what He taught and expects from us? By becoming like Him in every respect? By obedience to the Son as He Himself obeyed His Father?

In fact, doing these things will certainly help us “know” Him. No one knows us better than those who live with us: our spouse and children. They spend time with us, day after day. They do what we do, go where we go. See what we see and see how we respond in all sorts of circumstances. That is how we come to “know” someone.

The Scriptures say that these things are necessary: “And hereby we do know that we know Him, if we keep His commandments. He that says, ‘I know Him,’ and keeps not His commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoso keeps His word, in him verily is the love of Elohim perfected: hereby we know that we are in Him…Brethren I write no new commandment unto you, but an old commandment which you had from the beginning. The old commandment is the word which you have heard from the beginning,” 1John 2:3-5, 7.

Basic to knowing Yahweh is realizing His identity: “Therefore my people shall know my name: therefore they shall know in that day that I am he that does speak: behold it is I,” Isaiah 52:6. The prophet Joel (Heb. “YahEl”) said that whoever calls on the Name of Yahweh will be delivered, 2:32. Knowing Him means calling on His personal Name in worship, not just to say, “Oh, I heard the Name taught once and I know it.” That is not the kind of knowing the Bible talks about.

Faith + Obedience

A fact of life is that each of us has a name. Surely the very One who created us and taught us what names are –telling Adam to name all the animals on earth  –  would Himself have a personal name that identifies Him!

Knowing Yahweh and His Son means obeying them. It is no different from a son who obeys his father because he knows and honors his father and clearly understands what his father expects of him. Yahweh’s own Son tells us, “Not every one that says unto Me, ‘Rabbi, Rabbi’ shall enter into the Kingdom of Heaven; but he that does the will of My Father which is in heaven,” Matthew 7:21.

In Revelation 14:12 the saints are defined as those who “keep the commandments of Yahweh, and have the faith of Yahshua.” Paul writes in 1Corinthians 6:2 that the saints will judge the world in the coming Kingdom. Therefore it is the saints, the obedient ones, who will be in the Kingdom, not the disobedient.

In fact, Paul says clearly in 1Corinthians 6:9 that the un-righteous –  meaning  sinners –  will not inherit the Kingdom. Those who practice sin will be shut out of the Kingdom if they don’t stop it and repent.

Isn’t it time you came to know the One you worship by calling on His revealed Name and following His commands to His people as His own Son did? These are the actions that lead to salvation and the great things in store for those who love Him.