The Compassion of Jesus

What was Jesus moved by during the time he was on the earth and performed his miracles?


There are a lot of people curious about the invisible world and miracles. Including believers. But most people miss the most important fact when it comes to Jesus’ miracles – He was moved by compassion!

People today talk about demons, supernatural phenomena, healings, visions, dreams, prophecies, gold dust and so on. They sell tons of books on these subjects feeding off the curiosity of the masses.

Go ahead and write a book on compassion, let’s see how many you will sell?

Why? Because most people get uncomfortable when they hear about compassion. Why? Because they aren’t sure they know what it is, that they have it and that it’s the most powerful motivating force in their own lives.

In brief, most of us feel convicted.

It’s much easier to reduce Jesus to only a teacher or only a miracle worker. People would even accept that he was moved by compassion giving himself to death on the cross. Because you see, the cross projects weakness, not power.

We’ve been brainwashed to associate compassion with weakness.

But for a strong man or a strong woman to have compassion, not sure about that.

Jesus was a strong man. 100% strong, muscular Jewish carpenter who studied the Torah from the time he was a kid to the time he began to proclaim the Kingdom of God and to demonstrate miracle power.

But most importantly, he was moved by compassion! Not feeling sorry for people! Compassion!

Compassion is a virtue. You can go to the gym and grow muscles on demand. You can study and get good grades in school. You can learn and develop yourself on demand in so many ways.

But compassion isn’t a virtue you can grow like a muscle. It’s something that can only come by confronting our own lack of compassion, our eyes opening to how compassionate God is, and finally, accepting and experiencing His compassion.

We can only give what we have been given. We can only be what we become through the transformative power of Father’s love.

Here are all the verses in the Gospels about compassion (σπλαγχνίζομαι – gr. splagchnizomai). Don’t rush through it. Come back if you need to but read this list of verses slowly.

Amazing 🙏

Mat 9:36
When he saw the crowds, he felt compassion for them, because they were distressed and dejected, like sheep without a shepherd.

Mat 14:14
When he went ashore,fn he saw a large crowd, had compassion on them, and healed their sick.
Mat 15:32
Jesus called his disciples and said, “I have compassion on the crowd, because they’ve already stayed with me three days and have nothing to eat. I don’t want to send them away hungry, otherwise they might collapse on the way.”

Mat 18:27
“Then the master of that servant had compassion, released him, and forgave him the loan.

Mat 20:34
Moved with compassion, Jesus touched their eyes. Immediately they could see, and they followed him.

Mar 1:41
Moved with compassion,fn Jesus reached out his hand and touched him. “I am willing,” he told him. “Be made clean.”

Mar 6:34
When he went ashore, he saw a large crowd and had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd. Then he began to teach them many things.

Mar 8:2
“I have compassion on the crowd, because they’ve already stayed with me three days and have nothing to eat.

Mar 9:22
“And many times it has thrown him into fire or water to destroy him. But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us.”

Luk 7:13
When the Lord saw her, he had compassion on her and said, “Don’t weep.”

Luk 10:33
“But a Samaritan on his journey came up to him, and when he saw the man, he had compassion.

Luk 15:20
So he got up and went to his father. But while the son was still a long way off, his father saw him and was filled with compassion. He ran, threw his arms around his neck, and kissed him.

Knowing God and Self-Awareness

“This above all: to thine own self be true.” Shakespeare, “Hamlet,” Act I, Scene III

How can you be true to yourself if you don’t know yourself?

Let’s analyze a situation from the New Testament showing the importance of loving people but not allowing love to blindside you about the reality of who they are as a culture generally.

One of their very own prophets said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” This testimony is true. For this reason, rebuke them sharply, so that they may be sound in the faith. Titus 1:12-13

Seems to me Paul made a blanket statement about all the people living on the island of Crete. Sounds pretty harsh, but he explicitly says it’s true. Don’t forget, Paul’s ministry began on the island of Crete. He made a man blind for three days there. Pretty controversial way of brining the Good News to the governor of Crete but that’s what happened. Thankfully Luke didn’t suffer from any of today’s woke sensitivities and recorded the history as it happened. Read the second half of chapter 13 in the Book of Acts for the full story.

This is Paul’s first miracle as an apostle. So he knew first hand something about Crete and the culture that shaped the people there. He knew what their poets had to say about their own people. And he agreed with them that it’s true. His faith didn’t blindside his objective perception of other people and cultures. He knew how to love people and gave his life to bring the Gospel to us clueless goyim (non-Jews). But he wasn’t blind to people’s shortcomings either.

He didn’t tell Titus that the Cretans shouldn’t be evangelized. He didn’t develop a theology of dooming the Cretans to damnation. He just had an objective assessment of where these people are at as a culture.

Paul wasn’t blind to his own shortcomings, or those of his companions. He was on a critical mission. He couldn’t afford to live in a mental fog about himself or others, given his mission.

If our lives are mission critical, can we I afford to live without having a good degree of self-awareness?

I ask this question even though the answer should be obvious. Yet we know that huge number of people don’t have much of self-awareness to speak of.

Science today acknowledges self-awareness as a complex and multifaceted aspect of human cognition and consciousness. Researchers from various fields, including neuroscience, psychology, and cognitive science, have been trying to understand better self-awareness. Here are some key insights from current scientific perspectives:

  1. Neuroscience of Self-Awareness: Neuroscientists have identified specific brain regions associated with self-awareness, such as the prefrontal cortex. Studies using brain imaging techniques like fMRI and EEG have provided insights into how the brain processes self-referential information and self-perception.
  2. Mirror Neurons: Mirror neurons, a type of brain cell, are believed to play a role in our ability to understand and empathize with others, contributing to our self-awareness by connecting our experiences to those of others.
  3. Theory of Mind: Psychologists study the development of “theory of mind,” which is the ability to attribute mental states to oneself and others. It plays a crucial role in our capacity for self-awareness and empathy.
  4. Metacognition: Metacognition refers to the ability to think about one’s thinking, and it is closely linked to self-awareness. Research in this area explores how individuals monitor and regulate their thoughts, emotions, and problem-solving strategies.
  5. Developmental Psychology: Studies in developmental psychology examine when and how self-awareness emerges in children and how it evolves throughout a person’s life.
  6. Disorders of Self-Awareness: Scientific research also investigates disorders of self-awareness, such as anosognosia (a lack of awareness of one’s own disabilities). Understanding these conditions helps shed light on the mechanisms of self-awareness in the brain.

I find all of this fascinating! I don’t have time to demonstrate it here but the findings of modern science actually align well with the information we have from the Bible when it comes to self-knowledge and self-awareness.

Much more can be said but let me wrap this up by summarizing my conclusions after 30+ years of first hand participation in Christian ministry all over the world.

I find the traditional Christian formula “Seek to know God only” as severely lacking. Seeking to know well ourselves should go hand in hand with the imperative of seeking to know God. Not knowing ourselves in a narcissistic way but knowing ourselves in the context of being his creation.

Jesus did say THE GREATEST commandment is to love God. But He also added the second “Love your neighbor as yourself”, and said it’s just as important as the first one!

Notice we are to love our neighbor as our own self. How can you love your own self?

True love to your own self is submitting your own self to the Creator and accepting the place He has for you. Accepting the place of being His creation, his child, with all the blessings and responsibilities it comes with. Only then can we love others well.

Only then can we grasp the full meaning of God’s Truth taught by the Torah (The Law) and the Neviim (The Prophets).

Matthew 22:36-40 (CSB) 36 “Teacher, which command in the law is the greatest? ” 37 He said to him, “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind. 38 “This is the greatest and most important command. 39 “The second is like it: Love your neighbor as yourself. 40 “All the Law and the Prophets depend on these two commands.”


David Flusser on the Historical Jesus: An Interview with Roy Blizzard

Dr. Roy Blizzard’s interview with the late Prof. Flusser is of tremendous importance for all who are interested in the authentic origins of our faith. Here is the transcript of this interview for all who want to study it in greater depth. Dr. Blizzard himself is a giant in this field. What an amazing blessing is to have two greats converse and make us part of their world, even if for a short time.

But first, here’s the video itself, followed by the transcript below:

Blizzard: Professor Flusser, of all the many books that you have written, I think my favorite one is the book that you wrote on Jesus, just entitled Jesus. From your many years of research into the life and the words of Jesus, what kind of mental image do you have in your mind of Jesus?

Flusser: I think that the Jewish philosopher [Martin] Buber was right when he said that we can hear from the Gospels Jesus’ own voice when we know how to hear and he made this movement [Flusser puts his hand to his ear] and he said once to me, “And therefore when we read the Gospels then we can hear his voice and recognize his personality.” It is impossible to define Jesus’ personality and Jesus’ claims completely clearly because he is unique in the whole world. But one thing is clear: that he was both a Jewish teacher and a Jewish leader and that he is seen having a special contact between himself and God and that he thought that he will return as the savior. But there is a connection between his teaching and between his person because he is the center of the message of the Kingdom of Heaven. And so I think that, as Buber said, we can hear his voice and we can do it instinctively, but we can also do it in a far better way when we study the Gospels on the Jewish background, or even more when we see Jesus as being a part of Judaism of his days. It is not only important for the understanding of the words of Jesus and of his message and of the meaning of his person, but it is also important to study such Jewish sources which don’t directly explain a special saying of Jesus. It means you have to see Jesus’ person and Jesus’ teaching in the Judaism of his days and as a part of Judaism. Even sometimes it happens that we can, with the help of Jesus’ words, reconstruct Judaism of his days. So there is here a reciprocity.


Blizzard: Now this is interesting: You keep using the term “Judaism,” and I know that you are one of the foremost scholars in the world today in the New Testament. You have an extensive background in the Greek text of the New Testament, and yet you use the term “Judaism” and when I think of Judaism I usually think of the Semitic background, and I know that you have also written extensively about the Semitic background of the Gospels. And that leads me to ask the question, as a Jew in the first century just what language did Jesus speak?


Flusser: It is very improbable—we don’t speak of his omniscience—that he has spoken Greek. I know that there are also, even today, some scholars that think that he has spoken Greek. That is very improbable. He knew both languages of the Land: both Aramaic and Hebrew. But when he taught, he taught clearly only in Hebrew. For instance, the saying Kingdom of Heaven doesn’t exist in Aramaic. All the parables in the rabbinic literature are in Hebrew. And when you have some words in Aramaic in the New Testament they are mostly…they are all as far as I see in Mark. I have my personal doubts if this was not done by Mark himself who was a Jew of the dispersion who wanted to make a kind of couleur locale and put the Aramaic—but even there the Aramaic is always translated. And my experience is that it is impossible to translate some of the words of Jesus into Aramaic. The mistake about the Aramaic background of the New Testament arose in the sixteenth century when for the first time the Syriac translation of the New Testament was brought to Antwerp then they decided—and even today there are such men—that this was the original language of Jesus. Only later another scholar four hundred years ago in Leiden in the Netherlands discovered that the Syriac is not identical with the Aramaic of Eretz Israel or Palestine. But meanwhile, when we study not only the rabbinic literature but even the Dead Sea Scrolls, we see that from the time of the Maccabees the language of the Jews was Hebrew. Also the discovery of the so-called Ecclesiasticus or Ben Sira, one of the apocryphal books: it was written in Hebrew. So we see that even if Jesus said something in his time in Aramaic when he taught, it was evidently at the same moment translated into Hebrew, because from this time we have, with the exception of one man who came from Babylon, as far as I see really no sayings no teaching in Aramaic.


Only later Aramaic became the important language. It is interesting also to see that Delitzch, who translated so well the New Testament into Hebrew with the help of a Jewish scholar, that he thought that the language [of Jesus] was Hebrew. His disciple, the Swedish [Lutheran] Gustaf Dalman, in his Words of Jesus, thought again that it was Aramaic, but most of his examples are in Hebrew. So I know that it is far more agreeable to translate Jesus words in Aramaic [in the eyes] of modern scholars, than to accept the simple fact that Jesus has spoken Hebrew and that his teaching was in Hebrew. It doesn’t mean that when he has gone to buy fish he hasn’t spoken also Aramaic. All the Jewish prayers from his time, with one exception (the Kaddish), all are in Hebrew, and there are not even Aramaic words as in the Talmud the saying that you have to pray in Hebrew because the angels don’t understand Aramaic. And when we find in the…ehhh…today, it is very easy to say that Aramaic was the language of Jesus when you don’t know the sources. You get always churchmen, for instance it is written that Matthew has written his Gospel in Hebrew: when you translate the word Hebrew by Aramaic then by the same way you can translate the word English as being Dutch. This no man would do. I don’t know why they decided the decision.


As I said in the Maccabean time already in the writing of the second century before Christ we read that it is not true that the Jews speak Syriac (it means Aramaic) they speak another language (it means they speak and write in Hebrew) [Flusser refers her to the Letter of Aristeas §11]. That there are parts in Aramaic in the Old Testament: all these parts are from the time before the Maccabean revolt and they chose—because before the Aramaic was the natural language of the Persian empire—and later the Hebrew language was resuscitated and only later, some centuries after Jesus, the Aramaic became prevalent which is probably the con- sequence of the cultural crisis after the destruction of the Temple.


Blizzard: Now I know too that there are a lot of Bible colleges and seminaries in the United States who believe that Jesus actually spoke Greek and the Gospels were written in Greek, the whole New Testament for that matter. How did this Greek theory get started?


Flusser: This Greek theory: it is incomprehensible that it exists until today. I have heard from a Swedish scholar that he thought also that Jesus has spoken Greek. I understand this, because I know that it is not so easy for Gentiles to accept the thorough Jewishness of Jesus. Because then it would mean that they had received a foreign god and not their own ancient pagan gods. So they have to assimilate Jesus to the Greek gods. So they invent the idea that it was less Jewish and the tradition was Greek. It is completely impossible to think in this way especially about the first three Gospels, the so-called Synoptic Gospels. We can easily—more or less easily—discern what is the Hebrew wording behind, and where it was written in Greek. Because our Gospels were written, were composed or translated from Hebrew, and by redactional work were transformed into, for the Greek world. It seems to me to be relevant that when you study the Gospels then you can decide very often where a saying is more original and what was restyled in Greek. And very often you feel far better in the Hebrew form of a saying than in the later rewritten Greek form. And this is important because—it seems to me important—because this makes for the possibility to reach good results in the Quest for the Historical Jesus. Very often—and I dare to say it—very often you see that only in such saying, such forms of a saying, where it is more Greek there is more tension between Jesus and his community and the Gentiles. It means the restoration [?] beginnings of this [?] development is the same thing. As far as you depart from the Hebrew background of the Gospels as far as you go farther from the Jewish origin of the Gospel and of the Jewishness of Jesus by this I would even say you betray Jesus himself.


Blizzard: You were talking about the Greek theory: how it was difficult for you to understand that anybody could come up with it in the first place and am I correct in understanding that the Greek theory basically had its origin in the German school that gave us higher biblical criticism about three hundred years ago?


Flusser: I think that today there is a famous German scholar who exaggerates the Greek influence upon ancient Judaism in order to make ancient Judaism more Greek and today they have their support in the archives of Bar Kochba, of the Jewish pseudo-Messiah, where you have letters in Greek and in Aramaic and in Hebrew and so they think they can renew this strange story. But what I wanted to say is that in order to understand the New Testament and especially the Gospels you have to know thoroughly the Greek spoken in the time of Jesus. Some…because even the Greek is not the Classical Greek it is a kind of lower popular Greek. Both the Jews in the Diaspora and the early Christians have written literary works in such a Greek in which no normal author has spoken, no normal pagan author has written. It shows that it was a very popular Greek. I will give you an example: you know the word ballistics. Ballistics is from the Greek word βάλλω (ballō)—it means “to throw.” But in the Hellenistic lower Greek ballō means “to put.” Therefore when you translate wrongly the word ballō or ballistic not as “to put,” then you misunderstand even the Hebrew background. And as to the Hebrew this will be a task of very extensive scholarship to see…you have to learn the development of the Hebrew in the time of Jesus. Because you have the biblical Hebrew, the Hebrew of the prayers, you have more ancient Hebrew, and for instance the main books written in the rabbinic literature are—even if they are Hebrew—are in a later Hebrew than the Hebrew of Jesus. I can personally recognize a saying of a Jewish rabbi if it is from the first or second century or if it is from the fourth or fifth century. So the study of the Hebrew background of the Gospels helps us also for the study of the language of Jesus time. It is even possible that the Hebrew which is behind the Gospels is a mixture or a kind of synthesis between the biblical Hebrew and the high Hebrew of his days. It means sometimes the rabbinic Hebrew helps, sometimes even the Dead Sea Scrolls help, sometimes the biblical Hebrew helps. So we have here a translation and elaboration of Hebrew documents which were written from the time for which we have not very much material, especially because the Dead Sea…so-called, the famous Dead Sea Scrolls, are written in a pseudo-high Hebrew which was not written normally. So we have here to mobilize all our spiritual forces and all all our knowledge even to reconstruct or to see what is behind a word or two words of Jesus. That in the case of Je- sus it is important to do such a work we know because Jesus’ words are a hidden treasure which you have, therefore, to bring from the earth.


Blizzard: Amen! Let me just ask you this question. Now this reflects my own personal feeling: would you go so far as to say with me that without a knowledge of Greek and that without a knowledge of Hebrew that it’s almost impossible for the individual to understand the words of Jesus as we have them recorded….

Flusser: That is completely clear because, for instance, I remember that once I had only to translate for my Hebrew speaking students a very important saying of Jesus about the Kingdom which is taken by violence as it is very often translated, but in the moment when I translated it I succeeded to see what were the Hebrew…because I had to translate it it hasn’t taken the translation more than two or three seconds because I had not time—half a minute, less than this—I had to say it to my students in Hebrew. In the moment when I re-translated it in Hebrew in order that my students who don’t speak fluently Greek, it is clear not fluently, but I could speak fluently Hebrew because they were born in the Hebrew language as Jesus was, then I translated the saying about the Kingdom of Heaven and it was only after having translated it I could understand what it means and then, only, the research began. I have to warn those who want to work in this field that re-translation doesn’t mean a tentative reconstruction but it means primarily a re-translation that you can only do when you know living Hebrew and when you can be certain between your Hebrew, modern Hebrew, and the Hebrew of the time of Jesus. It doesn’t mean that I reconstruct as an archaeologist a building which is in ruins and then I put up the columns again. I simply translated in Hebrew and I can see [whether] this word can be translated in Hebrew or not. For instance a very small thing of the Gospel of St. John where it is written, about I think Nathaniel, that he is truly an Israelite [John 1:47]. Yes? And I saw that this word “truly,” ἀληθῶς (alēthōs) cannot be Hebrew. But later on I have seen that in the Hebrew of this time לאמיתו (le’amitō), that means “truly,” “to the truth,” that is used as “truly Alexandrian” and so on so I could discover that the saying, “truly Israel,” about Nathaniel is really Hebrew. And so I have to think it over, not to make monkey business to reconstruct, it means to go through the Greek text in order to see what is behind, not to invent a Hebrew text which would be in Hebrew. I met once a very paradoxical case, a scholar, a French scholar I think, occupied himself only with the Dead Sea Scrolls so he “re-translated” the Gospels made in the supposed style of the Dead Sea Scrolls and then he corrected the text and changed the letters and so on, and it was a Hebrew which is both far more impossible than the impossible Hebrew of the men from Qumran. Then I said to him—and he was not clever enough that he recognized that it was an ironical answer—I said, “You are happy you can make the reconstruction of the Gospel from the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls because you know only the Hebrew of the Dead Sea Scrolls.” I’m in the happy situation that I know all the Hebrew of this time. Though it doesn’t mean that you have to reconstruct it, but that you have to re-translate it, to put it in the original place, and this is what I try to do and it means often wrestling with the problem sometimes you can find solutions which you have to correct, as for instance with the “truly Israelite,” and you also to decide you have to know the Greek, but when you find the meaning, when you find the meaning by linguistic analysis, when you find the wording by linguistic analysis, then without your own will the new meaning becomes clear. For instance, you have this saying “poor in spirit.” In Greek it is poor with the dative οἱ πτωχοὶ τῷ πνεύµατι (oi ptōchoi tō pnevmati) or poor hearers [Matt. 5:2]. Now it became clear from the Dead Sea Scrolls that exists as a selfdesignation of the Essenes. Now I knew the Hebrew and I even know from what verse in Isaiah it was taken (I think chapter 60). But then I had to see what it means, then I have understood that it means “the poor who have the gift of the Holy Spirit.” So I have seen, with the help of the Dead Sea Scrolls, so I have seen that there is no contradiction between Luke, who speaks only about the poor, and and the poor in spirit, which means the poor who have the Holy Spirit. Then only later I began to think about the Greek form. What it means that it is in Greek, poor to spirit? Then I learn the popular Greek and I have seen that such Hebrew constructions are translated with the adjective and the substantive in this form of dative.

So for instance, in this case, to make it shorter and to make it more understandable for the poor hearers. It is clear that those who want to make a theology from the Greek ptōchoi pnevmati poor in spirit, are wrong. Because this a way how they translated the Hebrew composed…What is name?…status constructus…very often even in the Greek Bible. Though you cannot say that they became poor by the spirit and so on, or what you would learn from the Greek wording. You have to know that it was verbally translated, then when you know from the Dead Sea Scrolls what this poor in spirit in the Dead Sea Scrolls means, then you can find that the poor in spirit means not the proletariat, but it means those who are poor and have Holy Spirit. This you can do only when you know the Hebrew background. And it is forbidden, as far as I see—especially in the Synoptic Gospels—to make theology from the Greek wording when you cannot recognize the Hebrew wording which is behind it because it is important to know that the sayings of Jesus were translated by equivalence. It means the Hebrew word was always as far it was possible mostly translated by a Greek word and too heavy Greek words were not put there. Therefore when you read for instance the word flesh it is the translation of the Hebrew word רשׂב (basar), then through all the translations the original theological meaning of the Hebrew word starts from the beginning until our King James Version or even, sometimes, in the Revised Standard Version. Therefore, I warn as far as it is permitted to me, the readers [not] to use the New Testament in the New English Bible. These men knew Greek but didn’t know the original language. So they translated the Greek without knowing what is behind it. These were English classical scholars, and I don’t know how they translated the poor in spirit, but I am completely sure that they translated it wrongly because they didn’t thought, the did a verbal translation of this…of a Hebrew saying. What would you do if…when you discovered once the King James Version, the Authorized Version, and you drew consequences from the English of the time of James I and you would interpret King James Version according to the writings of Shakespeare? I think that it would completely….

[Here the tape comes to an end and had to be replaced. The interview resumes with Flusser restating part of the discussion that happened before the tape ended.]

I want to warn the readers [not] to read some of the new translations of the Bible, for instance the New Testament in the New English Bible, where they started from a knowledge of Greek and they didn’t understand the Hebrew background. And so a strange mixture between a modern preacher and an ancient pagan Greek came into existence. For instance, when you see here in this…the beginning of the first beatitude: “How blest are those who know their need of God.” What it means, what is written here, are the poor who have the Holy Spirit, who have a contrite heart, and ask God. What it means to have “the need of God”? Where is the spirit? I think it is a kind of holy forgery that we read here.


Blizzard: Would you say that’s true of many of the English texts, that rather than being translations, they’re more commentaries by someone…?


Flusser: Yes, but commentaries of men who don’t know what is there. As for instance, what I already said, when you read a biblical translation of the King James Version, you would comment it from the contemporary play-writers, then you wouldn’t understand what it is [means]. This is a language of a translation very often and it is done verbally, then you have to see what is behind it. But the most terrible thing is that when a man reads this then he doesn’t know what it is [means]. Then he receives it as the words of God and he feels that he has a need for his pastors but he doesn’t see his need for God. But this happens also…sometimes…once I heard in Germany a passage and I didn’t recognize…in mass…in…on Sunday…I didn’t recognize what it is. Only after the service I asked what they read now as the text of the Gospels. Then only when they indicated to me what it is then I could see the new translation. This means that they have, these men have the key of the knowledge, but doesn’t give to the others to enter into the knowledge.


Blizzard: Let me ask you this Professor: You’ve written many articles that have dealt with rediscovering the Hebrew words of Jesus. Just how can a knowledge of the Hebrew background of the Gospel text help not only to recover the actual words of Jesus in the New Testament, but also assist us in understanding those words, especially those that relate to what Jesus had to say about himself?


Flusser: That is very clear the tendency of sometimes…the tendency, the trend in modern scholarship is to divide between Jesus and Judaism on one side and on the other side…on the other hand to divide Jesus from Christianity. Jesus is for them only from the moment he is dead. And then you study the background…the Hebrew background of the New Testament—of the Gospels— then it is completely, for instance, impossible not to see in the small thanksgiving psalm of Jesus, “I thank you father…” [Luke 10:21] and so on, when he speaks about his sonship, you cannot eliminate from philological and Hebrew points of view, you cannot eliminate this saying from the sayings of Jesus especially when you know in this case the Dead Sea Scrolls where you have very similar language and a very similar self-awareness. And it is not only the Hebrew background, but also the Hebrew thinking of this time that the…Jesus was not the only man who had a high self-awareness, but this could exist in the Judaism of his time and you could rediscover his leading task in the economy of the world. I want to quote a saying of a modest Jewish sage [Hil- lel] who lived before Jesus, and said “If I am here, all is here. If I am not here, what is here?” You would find it in the New Testament, then surely this would be denied from Jesus, it would be explained as the exalted Lord after the crucifixion, or the kind of Johannine theology. But the saying was said by a simple Jewish sage who died some years before the incarnation. So even the study of the Hebrew background of the sayings of Jesus, which means also the study of the Hebrew way, the Jewish way of thinking of this time, it forbids to us to destroy the unity of the…be- tween the high self-awareness of Jesus and his teaching. This makes also on the other hand to us impossible not to see how Jesus expressed his moral and ethical message to others through the forms of the rabbinic exegesis and of the rabbinic thought. Sometimes we…I myself am astonished when I discover a new place where, which can for instance comment the Sermon on the Mount. Jesus himself was not only embedded in Judaism but he had also as all great thinkers— and I don’t want to compare him with anyone, but humanly spoken when I say it—he had the right to chose from the Jewish thought and Jewish sayings from his own time in order to form his own Gospel of Kingdom of Heaven. Once I have written that I could compose a whole Gospel of the sayings of Jews without there would be any saying of Jesus. So near is Jesus to their sayings, but I also said that I could compose this Gospel of non-Jesus material only because I have the Gospel of Jesus. When you study the thinking of Socrates to whom Jesus very often was com- pared you have to know the Greek philosophy of his time. But at the same time you have to know from what material Socrates has built his own philosophy. So it is with the self-awareness of Jesus and his moral teaching. This is very important for our work because in our work all the study is not only a mere philological or linguistic play or theological or historical play. It seems to me, especially for today, that the world is in a great danger. The purified Judaism of Jesus is one of the few hopes…probably the only hope to live in our world.


Blizzard: Very good. Very good. Can we say that Jesus not only gives us a higher ethical standard in his sayings, but that he views himself as having not just an extraordinary mission, but as he uses these terms “Father,” שבשמים אבי (’avi shebashamayim), “My Father which is in heaven,” and various other things he says about himself, that he is declaring to the people, “I am the Messiah of God, follow after me”?


Flusser: I think it is so, I would only no use the word “Messiah,” because he didn’t use it. Also in the Jewish prayers the word “Messiah” doesn’t appear. He had some small difficulties, smaller than the New Testament scholars today, to speak openly about his future dignity before he has fulfilled his task. But one thing is sure, that he saw a special…he saw…his task as a special task, namely the proclamation of the Kingdom of Heaven and the gathering of those who accept his message. In this he is in the center quoting a saying of the same Hillel, that “who doesn’t collect disperses.” Therefore he has seen himself in the center of the message of the realization of the Kingdom of Heaven on earth. He wanted to save Jerusalem from destruction. He has seen himself in a special way as a son of God and, as far as I understand it, he hoped once to be revealed as the savior. And this is clear. You can only when you artificially dissect the Semitic, or Hebrew, background of the Gospel and when you decide completely according to your own pseudo-his- toristic taste…if you dissect it then you can discern between Jesus who was—according to this opinion—a simple…kind of simpleton a postmaster of Capernaum, and between the Lord of the faith. Jesus is the…should be…a cornerstone of the Christian faith, but he is also a stone in the building of Judaism of his time. And it is not a very easy task both for the Jews and for the Gen- tiles to acknowledge this…to…the Jesus of the Church should be the Jesus the Jew. I never want- ed to write about Jesus the Jew because it is a truism. I also don’t like when [I] appear as a Jew- ish expertise [expert] or such thing because I think that you all can learn if you are from Jewish or non-Jewish origin what I have learned. As a child I didn’t know it, but I have learned it. Therefore if you have a good will, an open heart then you can learn it if are you a Jew or non- Jew. I remember that before many years ago I have seen it in New York that you have not to be Jewish to eat Levi’s bread. And I think that also not to be Jewish to discover the Hebrew and Jewish background of the New Testament.


Blizzard: Don’t you think that in doing that that it takes special devotion a devotion to study that Hebrew is the key, study is the key, but our listeners should probably understand something else that has to do with the whole Jewish background of the subject that is at hand, that in Judaism not only in Jesus’ day but to this day study, and especially the study of Torah, or the word of God, was considered to be one of the highest forms of worship.


Flusser: The highest form of the worship. The only possibility to understand when you learn the Torah for its own purpose. This is what you have to do. And it is therefore not…it is therefore comprehensible that I have written now a small study that will be published about the saying of Jesus “When two or three assemble for my own sake, then I am in the midst of them.” This means that the study is…the study with love. In the study of all these things the Hebrew back- ground, the living Judaism the study of this is a work for the Kingdom…for the realization of the Kingdom of Heaven. Therefore you have to…the only obstacles are intellectual. If your heart is open and if you see how important is this task, yes, and then you can do it also yourself. The difficulty is you have to know not only the New Testament, you have not only to know Hebrew, and to know the parallels in the rabbinic literature, but you have to know the whole Judaism of antiquity. That means the study of the Hebrew background of Jesus—and also of Paul and the Book of Revelation—means a renewal of the study of ancient Jewish thought.


Blizzard: Professor, it’s been most enlightening, most enjoyable. It’s been a great honor and I know that our listeners have been blessed, enlightened. Can we leave them with this final word. That the most important thing that they can do for themselves if they really want to understand the Bible, the foundations of their faith, and if they want to understand in particular the words of Jesus is to study.


Flusser: Yes. Yes to study both Judaism and the words of Jesus and it will help to us to bring more peace to the world in the name of the prince of the peace.


Blizzard: Thank you professor, it’s been a great pleasure. A great honor.

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Should the Gentiles circumcise to keep the Torah?

When people begin to take interest in Hebraica Veritas, or the recognition of the Hebrew language, the Jewishness of the Bible, and the history of Israel as the only correct way to understand and interpret the teachings of Moses, Jesus and the apostles, some end up asking themselves if they should circumcise in order to keep the Torah. Dr. Joseph Shulam has posted his thoughts on the subject and I would like to offer below summary, you can watch the full message if you want here.

Hello, my name is Joseph Shulam. I am the retired director of Netivya Bible Instruction Ministry.

There are questions that have come up to Netivya on all kinds of issues. One of the questions was whether Gentiles should be circumcised to keep the Torah.

First, let’s put down some of the most important principles when we deal with the Bible and when we want to understand and deal with God himself. The first axiomatic principle is that God doesn’t make mistakes. If He wanted Michael Jackson to be blonde and blue-eyed, he would have made him a Swede. Michael Jackson didn’t need to bleach himself in order to be white. Similarly, if He wanted me to be African, I would have been black. God doesn’t make mistakes. We are born who we are, and we must not want to be somebody else.

The second principle that’s also an immutable principle is that God is the God of all of humanity and creation. That means He’s the God of the Eskimos, our Arab neighbors and our Jewish neighbors, Vladimir Putin, and Joe Biden. God is the God of all, and that is a Biblical principle from the very beginning of Genesis to the end of Revelation.

The third principle is that what the Bible doesn’t clearly demand, we don’t have to worry about. Why worry about it? Why do you want to think that God wants you to be a Jew? If He wanted you to be a Jew, you would have been born to Jewish parents, raised as a Jew, and did a bar mitzvah and circumcised on the eighth day. This is the most basic and important principle of the whole Bible.

God revealed His will to us through the witnesses that witnessed the events and to the apostles who were called, anointed, and received Revelation from God. They wrote down what we should teach future generations about how to live in this life and inherit eternal life forever.

Let’s talk about the Jews and the Gentiles. One of the problems with most Christian pastors and even professors of theology is that they have never learned how to read Jewish texts, especially Jewish texts written by a Jewish lawyer.

Let’s go to Galatians chapter 5. In order not to make this answer too long, I’ll only read a few verses.

Stand fast, therefore, in the Liberty by which the Messiah Christ has made us free.

Notice he’s writing to you. Then he says us, including here, in my opinion, the Jews. He’s saying, you Gentiles are just like us. We got liberated by the Messiah.

If you don’t keep one of the laws or the Commandments, you’re breaking your own oath. That’s why don’t enter in their law a yoke of bondage. Yeshua said, “my yoke is easy and light,” not a bondage. So Paul in verse 3 of Galatians 5, “I testify again to every man who becomes circumcised” – every man means Jew or Gentile – “that he is a debtor to keep the whole law.”

Because the minute you begin following Judaism, especially as an adult, if you asked all the questions, you asked to commit, you ask to take a vow, and you have to do two things: circumcise and immersion in water. And when you are in the water before you dunk yourself in the water, you take an oath to keep the law and the Commandments. Everybody does it. When you do this, you give up the right to ask for God’s mercy, for God’s grace, because you have made an oath to keep the law and the Commandments.

Paul said, “I testify again to every man who becomes circumcised.” It doesn’t say every baby. He says every man who becomes circumcised is a debtor to keep the whole law. You have become estranged from the Messiah, from Christ. You who attempt to be justified by the Torah, you have fallen from Grace. For we, the Jews, through the spirit, eagerly wait for the hope of the righteousness of faith.

As Jews circumcised on the eighth day we didn’t have to make an oath. But if you as an adult now are going to be converted to Judaism in order to keep the Torah, you make an oath. And when you make an oath, if you don’t keep one of The Commandments, you forfeited God’s grace by your oath. For we, the Jews, through the spirit, eagerly wait for the hope of righteousness of faith. We wait for that day in which we are going to be forgiven from our sins by our faith in Yeshua Mashiach, and he said that in verse 6, “for in Christ Jesus neither circumcision nor uncircumcision means anything but faith working through love is everything.”

In Galatians Paul actually gives a command to all the churches on this topic, and the command is in First Corinthians chapter 7 verse 17 and forward. “But as God has distributed to each one, as the Lord has called each one, let him walk.”

This goes to the first principle that I mentioned before. God doesn’t make mistakes and he gave you what you need and equipped you with what you have in order to achieve the goal and spend eternity with God and the Saints and the prophets and the apostles.

I’m reading verse 17 of chapter 7 of First Corinthians again, “But as God has distributed to each one, as the Lord has called each one, so let him walk,” that means live. And so I command in all the churches, the Jewish churches, and the non-Jewish churches, and the mixed churches, and the “Tutti-Frutti” churches today. We have some of those too. Was anyone called while circumcised? Let him not become uncircumcised. Was anyone called while uncircumcised? Let him not be circumcised.

So to summarize, the key principle that Paul emphasizes in both Galatians and Corinthians is that what matters most to God is keeping His commandments, rather than adhering to external practices like circumcision or non-circumcision. As he says in 1 Corinthians 7:19, “Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but keeping the commandments of God is what matters.”

This is a message that applies to both Jews and Gentiles. For Jews, it means not getting too caught up in the external trappings of the law, but focusing on the underlying principles of love, justice, and righteousness that the law is meant to promote. For Gentiles, it means recognizing that they too are called to live in accordance with God’s moral standards, even if they are not bound by the same covenantal obligations as the Jews.

In short, the message of Galatians and Corinthians is that what matters most to God is not our ethnic or religious identity, but our obedience to His will. Whether we are Jews or Gentiles, circumcised or uncircumcised, we are all called to live lives of faith, hope, and love, and to seek to honor God in all that we do.

Prayers aren’t magic. Money can’t buy happiness.

“Ask, and it will be given you. Seek, and you will find. Knock, and it will be opened for you.

For everyone who asks receives. He who seeks finds. To him who knocks it will be opened.” Jesus, The Gospel of Matthew, Chapter 7, verses 7-8

It sounds so simple. Just ask the Father and he will give us what we ask for.

But will He? Is this an invitation for us to enter some magic realm of saying a prayer and getting anything we want?

Indeed, it would be so nice if I ask him for $1M before I go to bed and when I wake up tomorrow morning, to find a bag full of money on the floor next to my bed. Yay! Early Christmas right? I can quit my job and go do whatever I want!

Can you see where this is going?

Instead of me waking up and pressing in, learning new things so I can succeed in my job or in life in general, I’ll just buy my way into what, happiness?

They say that money can’t buy happiness. I believe that’s true. But have you wondered why?

Could it be because getting to a place of understanding what true happiness means and also getting the insight we need on how to be happy, is a difficult process?

Most people dislike the idea of through a difficult process and enduring a host of challenges, maybe even suffering and loss, in order to consider the issue of happiness at a deep level.

Dennis Prager, author of Happiness Is a Serious Problem, says this about money and happiness in his book:

“Unhappy poor people at least have the fantasy that money will make them happy; unhappy rich people don’t even have that.”

Likewise, I don’t believe that poverty in and of itself can make people more happy, moral or ethical. It’s what many poor people discover about how to survive poverty that makes them stronger and more resilient than spoiled well-to-do people.

Many (not all) people fighting poverty learn the secret of being grateful for the little they have, instead of fretting over what they don’t have. Others, in their struggle to survive, learn the secret of discovering new inner skills they didn’t know they had – physical, intellectual or emotional.

You see, spoiled well-to-do people who aren’t facing imminent existential issues have no reason to dig deeper and discover such resources within them. They are used to using money as a shortcut to achieve whatever they want. And while hiring talented people to get things done for you is by no means an easy job, you can’t hire anyone to make you happy.

Money in and of itself cannot possibly be a shortcut to happiness. In fact, the pursuit of material riches will most likely lead astray even the most prudent and ethical among us.

This is why God, our Heavenly Father cannot and will not grant “magical” wishes sent his way as “prayers”.

The “Ask, and it will be given you” admonition of Jesus is for people who aren’t looking for magical shortcuts. It’s for those who understand we are all here to follow Him. To follow means to go through the process. His process. His calling. His purpose and His timing.

Those are the blessed souls who will live to see the answer to their prayers!

George Bakalov

On mandatory vaccinations: the spiritual act of choosing to reject the godless system!


In the gospel of Matthew chapter 4 and verse 3 Satan challenges the Messiah and tells him “since you are the son of God, command these stones to be turned into bread”.

Obviously, after 40 days and nights of fasting Yeshua is hungry. Being hungry is a human experience that unifies all of mankind, past, present and future. It’s one of the most basic existential needs we all have. We can all identify with someone who is hungry – even though many of us have never experienced the kind of hunger people experience and live with in places where extreme poverty exists.

I have fasted for 3 days, 7 days, 10 days, 21 days, and all the way up to 40 days. And I am extremely grateful for those experiences because they allowed me to experience myself, the world and God in a completely different way. Periodic fasting is a great spiritual practice for all to make a part of their lifestyle.

Back to our desert story: What is the response of the messiah? Why didn’t Jesus turn stones into bread?

Whether you believe in an actual Satan or not, his response is astonishing.

But first, let me point out that this is not God’s recipe for the world to solve chronic hunger. If you think we can tell all the people in the world who experience chronic hunger, “hey, you don’t need food, you should just live on every word that comes from the mouth of God!”, you must be out of your mind! We solve the problem of hunger by feeding the hungry and teaching how to feed themselves.

Furthermore, Jesus didn’t live as a poor man suffering from existential needs, amongst which hunger. He was a rabbi who had a significant following, among which many rich people who provided for his and for the needs of his 12 apostles. So the situation with the desert was in fact an extraordinary situation of hunger, not some ongoing hunger crisis situation.

His response therefore, has to do with something else, not hunger itself.

3 The tempter came and said to him, “If you are the Son of God, command that these stones become bread.” 4 But he answered, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceeds out of the mouth of God.'”

Matthew 4:3-4 (HNV)

He quotes from the Torah. More specifically he quotes from the book of Deuteronomy chapter 8, verse 3.


I believe what the Messiah meant here is that he will remain faithful to God’s commandment not to bow to anything or anyone besides God himself. We all experience situations and pressures that force us to consider meeting our needs in some illegitimate way. Even though the Messiah might have been able to turn stones into bread, that was not the issue at hand. He demonstrated he can turn water into wine, why wouldn’t he be able to turn stones into bread? Of course he would be able to. That was not the point, however. The point here is that Satan was taking control, presenting himself as the one who knows what has to be done to solve the problem. He was just giving instructions to the Messiah and therefore creating an alternative authority besides God himself.

Who was the Messiah going to obey and follow? God the Father, or this new “god” who presents himself as knowing better than the Creator Himself?

This is the issue at hand here I believe. And this is what we all face almost on a daily basis.

The big questions at stake here are: Who are you going to yield to? A disciple of who exactly are you?


Think about the situation in the world today. I just read somewhere that supposedly the majority of people now, over 60%, have been vaccinated with the Covid vaccine here in the United States. The situation around the world is similar. Why are people doing this? Have they lost their minds? When before have you had the governments of this world so concerned about you and your health? Why are they suppressing criticism of these vaccines as if everyone who has questions about it is some kind of an evil person? Why are they forcing chemicals on people and then creating a two-tier society that discriminate based on whether you were vaccinated or not? Why are they going after people like Dr. Malone who is himself one of the inventors of the mRNA vaccine and criticizes the powers that be?

Only a seriously confused person would ignore these and many other legitimate questions we have on this whole issue.

Aside from the most important (for us as believers) fact that tissue from aborted babies has been used in the testing or the production of all major vaccine manufacturers, you have to be truly under the control of the spirit of fear to disregard common sense and rush to accept their forced vaccinations in order to stay protected from a virus has mortality rate close to what the flu has had for some hundred years now.

The situation with the vaccinations conundrum is no different from what the Messiah faced in the desert when he was following the guidance of the Spirit. Should we live by every word that proceeds from the mouth of the Creator, or should we trust the guidance of shady organizations who claim they can turn chemicals into life-saving “bread” as if it were?

The metaphor with the bread becomes even more relevant in light of the fact that people are actually losing their jobs and livelihood because their refusal to bow to the vaccine dictators. Had someone written a novel about a dystopian future in America where this would be happening, it would have been thought of as inconceivable only few years ago. And yet this is our new dystopian reality!


Personally I don’t have negative feelings for friends and family who have accepted to go down the path of following the advise of corrupt governments and corporations. I do worry however, about how these vaccines will affect people in the long term. I do worry about someone even losing their life given the fact these vaccines are causing 225 times more injuries than the usual flu vaccines.

But I don’t despise them for their decision. I just don’t understand them. And I have yet to find someone to can explain it to me and present actual arguments for it.

When it comes to mandatory vaccinations, I choose to reject the godless system of this world. Corrupt governments, the media, Big Tech, the China Communist-controlled WHO, the pharmaceutical corporations and the medical cartels – they are all working together to implement Satan’s agenda for global control. After having spent the last 30 years of my life in defiance against this system in one way or another, I’m not about to start unseeing what I have already seen and what I know to be the Truth.

I choose to live by every instruction (Toràh), wisdom, guidance, concept, value and commandment of He who has created me! I know He truly cares about me and I choose to trust Him, not the “god” of this world and his corrupt proxies!

What about you?

The Lost Art of the Covenant

The Creator Himself chose to relate to mankind within the confines of covenant. With covenant you’re either in or you’re out. Covenants used to be made between rival tribes as a way of ending enmity. The coming together of a man and a woman in order to create a family is also a covenant based on marital fidelity. The Constitution is a covenant between free men and their elected officials.

I wonder how many people today understand the seriousness of making a covenant and the implications of failing to live up to the promises made before God and man?

Now the LORD said to Avram, “Get out of your country, and from your relatives, and from your father’s house, to the land that I will show you. I will make of you a great nation. I will bless you, and make your name great. You will be a blessing. I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who curses you. In you will all of the families of the eretz be blessed.” So Avram went, as the LORD had spoken to him. Gen. 12:1-4

This covenant changed the course of history, it still does, and it will continue to until the last day of planet Earth. It’s a plumb line. All human events are measured against it. Nations rise and fall depending on which side of history they choose to be. Just ask the Hittites, Ebusites, Amorites and Jebusites. They fought Israel and are all gone. Israel and the Jews are still around. Coincidence? I think not.

Covenant means you stick together. Many of today’s post-moderns have no qualms about jumping ship as soon as something doesn’t go their way. Covenant is a contract but it’s much more. Contract can only demand certain things. In covenant we extend loyalty before anything else. Disloyal people can’t demand loyalty.

Is covenant becoming an extinct concept?


Owning up to people before owning up to God

While reading the words of our Lord in Mat. 5:23-24 I was yet once again reminded of one the most neglected and misunderstood elements of God’s Truth Yeshua came to reveal. He didn’t necessarily bring brand new ideas, but rather brought the correct understanding of what’s of greater importance compared to other things. Some might call it ‘bringing order’ to what was already known.

This is seen throughout the entire so called ‘Sermon on the Mount’. Many of things the school of the Prushim (Pharisees) were saying that were of the greatest importance were in fact challenged by the Messiah. However, his confrontation with them should be interpreted within the context of “family quarrel”, not as a blanket denunciation of “the Jews” as replacement theology has been punishing it on us for hundreds of years.

One example is Mat. 5:23-24

It speaks of someone who is about to offer their gift on the altar at the temple. Think about it. Offering a gift in the temple wasn’t a small thing.

To the modern Christian person this is much easier which is why we don’t think much about it.

Our altar is represented by what? To some it’s their local church. To others it’s their prayer room when they kneel before God and pray.

But this is not what Yeshua and his audience had in mind when they talked about “the altar”.

The journey to the temple was long and dangerous. It cost the Israelites a lot of resources, including the missed opportunity to work instead of being gone.

Yeshua teaches that even after someone had gone through all the trouble of making a trip to the temple to offer his sacrifice, if this man remembered at that moment (became aware of it cognitively and on an emotional level) that he had done something against someone, it’s more important for him to leave the lamb, go back to where he came from, meet with the person who had been wronged, own up to them what had done, and only then go back to the temple to offer their sacrifice.

Essentially, Yeshua says what Yeshayahu (Isaiah) declares on behalf of the Lord in his rebuke in Chapter 1: “I take no pleasure in your sacrifices and feasts…” – because they were mistreating each other.

Isaiah 1:11-20 (HNV) 11 “What are the multitude of your sacrifices to me?,” says the LORD. “I have had enough of the burnt offerings of rams, And the fat of fed animals. I don’t delight in the blood of bulls, Or of lambs, Or of male goats. 12 When you come to appear before me, Who has required this at your hand, to trample my courts? 13 Bring no more vain offerings. Incense is an abomination to me; New moons, Shabbatot, and convocations: I can’t bear with evil assemblies. 14 My soul hates your New Moons and your appointed feasts; They are a burden to me. I am weary of bearing them. 15 When you spread forth your hands, I will hide my eyes from you; Yes, when you make many prayers, I will not hear. Your hands are full of blood. 16 Wash yourselves, make yourself clean. Put away the evil of your doings from before my eyes; Cease to do evil. 17 Learn to do well. Seek justice, Relieve the oppressed, Judge the fatherless, Plead for the widow.” 18 “Come now, and let us reason together,” says the LORD: “Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow. Though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool. 19 If you are willing and obedient, You shall eat the good of the land; 20 But if you refuse and rebel, you shall be devoured with the sword; For the mouth of the LORD has spoken it.”

Would most Israelites have accepted the teaching of Yeshua literally? Probably not. I believe he was making a point bringing to light what is of greater importance to the Lord: the condition of our hearts, and the way we actually treat those in our lives.

This is a tough one because it demands of us to be cognizant and aware of what we do to others. Self-awareness is something many, many people lack, some of them completely.

Why didn’t this worshipper own up to what he had to own up before going to the temple?

Why didn’t this worshipper own up to what he had to own up before going to the temple? For Yeshua to take time and teach on this it shows this was something widespread. Do we have the tendency to do the same today?

Maybe he was caught up in the motion of the habit? A religious act of offering a lamb without ‘connecting the dots’ and realizing you can’t expect forgiveness from the Lord if you don’t forgive others, and also if you don’t own up to how you’ve violated others?

And then this worshipper of YHWH goes on his trip, goes through all the trouble of traveling through the heat and the rocky roads on foot – no tennis shoes and asphalt roads either!

Sandals from the time of Jesus discovered in one of the caves of the Judean desert.

But during this process he’s thinking about offering this lamb. Will YHWH accept it?

As we know, the Israelites were well aware of the practice of laying on of hands on the sacrificial animal and confessing/speaking their sins over it (Lev. 16:21). Aaron did this on behalf of all of Israel. It was at this point that the transference of guilt took place.

Yeshua was now reminding the children of Avraham they need to do this in their relationships with their “brother”. The text in Greek uses the word “adelphos”, which is a general term for “whoever you have a relationship with”. Someone who is part of your life, maybe family, maybe the community.

The main point here is that the worshipper who is about to offer his sacrifice, is becoming aware of the wrong he has done through a process of honest reassessment of his own life in light of God’s holiness. Yeshua doesn’t even comment on the role of the priest here. It’s a non-factor. Confessing your sins to the priest makes no difference. It has to be to the one who has been violated.

Was it a land dispute? A fight over whose sheep were grazing in whose field?

Who knows. There are as many variables here as there are human beings and the countless situations we encounter where we violate someone for one reason or another.

But what about those who are shameless?

The lack of shame and guilt in some people is real. It can vary from a more general lack of self-awareness and even consciousness, to pathological levels of what modern science calls psychopathy. Some time in the 70s the term sociopath was introduced and injected into the vernacular, apparently in an attempt to remove the stigma of mental illnesses.

However, sociopath isn’t a medical term. People who commit crimes and have no remorse are fundamentally psychopaths from a clinical point of view. There’s no conclusive research that proves what is the origin of this serious deviation in people. But it’s real.

We don’t know entirely how God handles deviants. At the cross there were two common criminals on either side of Yeshua. One was repenting and asking for mercy, owning up to what he had done in life. The other had no remorse. Was he just a hardened soul who had chosen to be evil? Or was he a psychopath who was unable to repent because he didn’t have any remorse? We don’t know. Some things aren’t ours to know.

What we know is that life is full of people who won’t own up to the wrong they do to others, thus creating unimaginable damage to people and relationships which were meant for good.

One such story is the story of famed motivational speaker David Goggins who tells in detail how his father used to beat him and his mother with a belt. Until one day David and his mother fled the family home. The father never owned up to the damage he had done to his wife or his son and to their entire family. Goggins has an amazing story of escaping a life of poverty that resulted from what the father had done to the family. David went on to become a Navy SEAL, a runner, an author and a motivational speaker.

How many church people need to turn around next Sunday upon approaching their church, go back to those they have violated, and own up to them and God what they had done? We don’t know. Probably a lot.

How many of today’s leaders regularly shine a light into the dark corners of the souls of those who go to their churches, reminding them the right spiritual order Yeshua taught us to have?

Love God and love your neighbor as yourself. On these two the entire Torah rests!

““Rabbi, which of the mitzvot in the Torah is the most important?” He told him, “‘You are to love Adonai your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.’ This is the greatest and most important mitzvah. And a second is similar to it, ‘You are to love your neighbor as yourself.’ All of the Torah and the Prophets are dependent on these two mitzvot.”” Mattityahu (Mat) 22:36-40 CJB

May God help us and May God have mercy on us all!


In 300 Words: Born To Testify Of The Truth

This post is part of my IN 300 WORDS series. In exactly 300 words I highlight a key issue relevant to God-fearing people who seek authentic understanding of the teachings of the Messiah from Nazareth.

Let’s face it, the Christianity of the developed world has failed to win the hearts and the minds of the people of the Western civilization. Only three decades ago the dividing line between what used to be the free world and the rest of the world, was clearly visible and tangibly defined.

We have now come to a place where Western “doctors” are chopping off the breasts of perfectly healthy girls, social media companies are offering 70+ genders at signup, and jihadists are leading the FBI by the nose (Exhibit A: CAIR-MN).

How did we get here, friends?

It’s because of the failure of Western Christianity. We have been reinventing the God of the Bible since the days of Constantine. We made him Roman-Catholic, then Greek-Orthodox, then Protestant.

We invented monasteries, mega-churches and missionaries in his name. Even though none of these are in the Bible.

We’ve created hundreds of translations of the Bible into English while there are thousands of languages still lacking even ONE!

Annually the US spends more money on teen makeup ($120B) and pets ($70B) than the entire western world on humanitarian aid ($152B) in 2019.

But even that’s a joke because most aid money goes to dictators.

What are we to do?

What if I decided to start a movement that honors THE TRUTH more than the lies of the media, politicians, pastors, academics and corporations? How many people would want to be part of such culture of truth?

Can we even know THE TRUTH?

Let’s begin with Jesus himself.

He declared to Pontius Pilate that the very reason He was born into this world was so that he can testify to the TRUTH! (Gospel of John 18:36-38).

And yet we each have our own “truths”?

Something doesn’t add up.

The Challenge Before Us

Does what we call Christianity today represent what its original founders meant? From the very doctrines, ideas, way of thinking to our practices and church culture, how much of what it was meant to be matches what is today?

After the Roman Emperor Constantine made Christianity the official religion of the Roman Empire in the beginning of the 4th century, this is what happened:

“The Church precisely copied the organizational pattern of the Roman Empire, assuring it control and stability.” – Kenneth Sacks, professor of history and classics at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.

How does this have anything to do with what Yeshua and his apostles taught?

It doesn’t.

Do most ordinary (file-and-rank) preachers understand this today?

Most of them don’t. They are mostly busy with doing well what they were told by their tradition. Their desire to be found faithful to God is often misplaced as they equate faithfulness to God with following their respective traditional way of church service.

It’s not easy to change the way people think and live. No matter what great truth one thinks they have, most people don’t like changes because most people don’t like problems and turmoil. Life is a great challenge already so why add to our workload right? That’s how most people think.

Do high-level theologians, influential ministers and denominational leaders know how much Romanism and paganism have corrupted Christianity? Not necessarily but some do. However their careers are too dependent on being successful in the false religious system and this conflict of interest prevents them from exposing the status quo.

Some of them know or at least suspect that today’s Christianity has seriously deviated in substance and in form from what it was meant to be, but don’t know what to do about it. In fact it’s probably safe to say that Christianity as we know it today has become practically a strange new religion using the language of the Torah, the Gospels & the Epistles, but has nothing to do with the essence of what Moses and Yeshua taught.

This is not to say we just throw away everything Christian and return to Judaism. Rabbinic Judaism has also deviated in many ways from the Torah so now for us to relearn the ways of old we need to return to sources and practices that predate any of the modern religious paradigms.

May the Lord raise those who will have the courage and the competence to expose the fallacies we have been fed for too long! May his reformers arise in this nation and call us back to the source of God’s Truth, the Teaching of Moses and Yeshua, not the distortions of fanatical religionists!

May hunger for His Truth prevail so we can return to Him and rediscover life in and through Him!

Only a true spiritual awakening can ensure the future of America and the free world. If we fail in this, the barbaric forces unleashed on us will continue to grow stronger until they divide us and conquer us completely!