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News Letter 5851-002

7th day of the 1st month 5851 years after the creation of Adam

The 1st Month in the Sixth year of the Third Sabbatical Cycle

The Third Sabbatical Cycle of the 119th Jubilee Cycle

The Sabbatical Cycle of Earthquakes, Famines and Pestilence

The Year of the Tithe for the Widows, Orphans & Levites

March 28, 2015

The 7th Day of the First Month

With our announcement of the sighting of the New Moon and the beginning of the New Year, I also told you about praying for your families on the 7th day of the First Month of Aviv.

I sent you back to the article I wrote on this in the past years. I want to once again remind you of this commandment that Yehovah gave to Ezekiel. A command to Ezekiel by Yehovah, not some man adding another holiday and telling you to keep it.

This comes from Yehovah Himself.  You can read the article at this link and you can examine the verse here.

18 So says the Lord Jehovah: In the first month, in the first of the month, you shall take a bull without blemish, a son of the herd, and cleanse the sanctuary. 19 And the priest shall take of the blood of the sin offering and put it on the doorposts of the house, and on the four corners of the ledge of the altar, and on the gateposts of the inner court. 20 And so you shall do on the seventh of the month for each man who goes astray, and for the simple. So you shall atone for the house. (Ezekiel 45:18-20)

Clarkes commentary says this;

For him that is simple – That wants understanding to conduct himself properly.

 Darby says the following;

Some details require one or two remarks. The cleansing of the sanctuary commences the year. It is no longer an atonement at the end of seven months to take away the defilements that have been accumulating. The year opens with an already accomplished cleansing. Afterwards, in order that all may have communion with the sufferings of the Paschal Lamb, an offering is made on the seventh day of the month for every one that erreth, and every one that is simple (Eze_45:20). During the feast they offered seven bullocks instead of two. The character of worship will be perfect. The sense of Christ’s acceptance as the burnt-offering will be perfect in that day.

This is the 7th day of the first month. When we compare it to the 7th day of the 7th month, the other month with all the Holy Days in it, we can see that the 7th day of the 7th month many time would be what is known as Shabbat Shuva. Yes I know Shabbat Shuva can be on various days depending on how the calendar rolls out. But sometimes the 7th day is Shabbat Shuva.

Hear oh Israel, return, return and bring the Torah scrolls.

Return to what? Return to Yehovah and bring the laws that will allow you to remain with Him if you keep them. And now we are to pray for those who have erred and gone away from the Torah and from Yehovah.

How awesome is our Yehovah?!

The 3rd & 6th Year Tithe to the Widow & Orphans

As I am preparing this section of the News Letter, I checked my emails and was pleasantly surprised to find one from some people with Yehovah’s heart to help do this work. If my memory serves me correctly they had done a similar thing in the past for The Prophecies of Abraham.

I will share with you their offer now and then my announcement.

Dear Mr. Dumond,

After reading Remembering The Sabbatical Years of 2016, my husband Chris and I would like to give away 50 copies of this book to your readers at no charge (limit one per address).  If you find this acceptable, requests can be sent to Maryamber1991@yahoo.com.  We would like to keep this offer open until April 15th or the first 50 requests – – whichever comes first.
 
Shanah Tovah!
 
Karen

If you would like a soft cover book, Remembering the Sabbatical year of 2016, Karen is going to buy it for you. All you have to do is contact her at the email address above.

May Yehovah bless them for their generosity.

This year is the 6th year of the Sabbatical cycle. It is the year of the tithe for the widow and orphans. Let me state this loud and clear right here.

THIS IS NOT A THIRD TITHE-IT IS THE TITHE OF THE 3RD YEAR.

I will be giving away for the entire year to any widow or any orphan under the age of 18 any of the four e-books we have in our store.

If you want The Prophecies of Abraham, or Remembering the Sabbatical year of 2016, or The 2300 Days of Hell or The Blood Moon then all you have to do is write me. Give me your email address and that is it. I will send you one of each or all four if that is what you want. Just email me.

These are for the e-books only. Unless others would like to help and purchase the other books and make them available, but I am not able to do this by myself at this time.

This offer will expire on Aviv 1 2016. So between now and then please feel free to take advantage of this offer. Thank you for allowing me to serve you in this way.

For those who have not yet watched our very short teaching on the 3rd year tithe and the seriousness with which Yehovah takes this, please watch our teaching on it at this link.  Everyone should be sharing this video with the entire body of believers so they too can help take part in this blessing.

 

This is the end of the first week of this 6th year. Go and find yourself a widow in the faith and help them. They can use the money for whatever they want. If they want to save it and use it towards a trip to Israel then that is fine. If they want to use it to pay for the things the kids need, then fine. If they want to use it to help store up food for the Sabbatical year then awesome, do it. But each of us has a duty to help. Please find excuses to help and not excuses why you can’t or won’t help. Yehovah is the one listening to you and your yeah butttss, not me.

In past years those I sent funds to did not need it. But they knew other widows who did and they helped them with it.

Please watch the video and note the widow at the end of the video only lost her husband at Passover last year.

epa04168934 Hadas Mizrahi (C) the widow of Israeli police officer Baruch Mizrahi, 47, a senior officer of the Israel Police intelligence, mourns with her children during the funeral of her husband at the military cemetery of Mount Herzl in Jerusalem, Israel, 16 April 2014. Baruch Mizrahi was killed by Palestinian militants on 14 April near the West Bank city of Hebron while driving with his wife and young son who was also injured in the attack, as they where on their way for the Passover dinner. EPA/ABIR SULTAN
Arlington National Cemetery Website Photograph: Funeral Services For SSGT Casey Waters, Arlington National Cemetery, 14 July 2009
The Dates for the Spring Holy Days

Now that the New Moon has been sighted we can now determine when each of the Holy Days are. We have already learned that the Barley was Aviv making this the first month of the Sacred Calendar.

The first day of the year was from sunset Saturday March 21 to Sunday March 22 Sunset.

Praying on the 7th Day of the First Month

Friday Sunset to Saturday Sunset March 28, 2015  We are told to pray on the 7th day of Aviv. Here is an article about this.

The Foot Washing Ceremony

Yehshua washed the disciples feet the night before He was killed as the Passover lamb. We read of this in the following scriptures.
1 Cor 11:23 & Matthew 26:26

For those who are new you can read the whole account in this article, in the proper order so you can understand the significance of these events.

The Dates

The Foot Washing takes place Friday April 3, 2015, after sunset. It is a somber time.
Yehshua would be arrested about midnight Friday.
Saturday April 4 (Nisan 14) Yehshua is nailed to the tree at 9 AM.
Saturday April 4 (Nisan 14) Yehshua dies at 3 PM and is hastily placed in the tomb before the High Sabbath of Passover begin.
3 PM Saturday is the time when the Passover Lambs were killed. After they had been killed then the blood was smeared on the doors during the Exodus. And then after that the Passover meal was eaten. The place where Yehshua was killed and his blood spilled today is called the Pillar or Post.

Passover Meal

Saturday Evening April 4 Is when the Passover meal is eaten. You are to eat this meal in haste with your shoes on and your staff in your hand.
Saturday Evening will be the Blood Moon over North America, a warning of the coming war.

First Day of Unleavened Bread

Saturday Evening April 4 and Sunday April 5th is the First day of Unleavened Bread.
You are commanded to eat Unleavened Bread for 7 days. And you are commanded to eat Unleavened Bread with the Passover meal which began Saturday Evening.

Wave Sheaf Day

Sunday April 5th at 9 AM is the wave Sheaf offering. You must have Barley to do this. This is the First Fruit Offering.

This is day one of the Omer count.
Sunday April 5th 9 AM is when Yehshua ascended to Heaven and took those Saints with Him.

Last Day of Unleavened Bread

Friday April 10 after Sunset to Saturday April 11 at Sunset is the last Day of Unleavened Bread. It is also the 7th day of the Counting of the Omer.

In the back of the book Remembering the Sabbatical year of 2016 are the Psalm readings for each of the days as you count the Omer to the 50th day of Pentecost.

Pentecost-Shavuot

Pentecost or Shavuot is then on Sunday May 24th

Another Controversy

Joseph,

Thank you for this response.  This is a tough one for me as I can still see valid points on both sides of the argument.  I wanted to give you another opinion I received from another Messianic teacher.  See his comments below.
“We have the same problem. They are counting the Day of the Passover meal as the Sabbath during Chag HaMatzah, essentially, which is incorrect. By definition, if Chag HaMatzah begins as Shabbat is ending, that Shabbat cannot be counted as the Shabbat during Chag HaMatzah, which means the first day of Chag HaMatzah cannot also be counted as the “day after the Shabbat” that occurs during that week. Thus, First Fruits would properly be on the evening of 4/11-evening of 4/12. It creates a conundrum, but what else is new. I have been asked to be a part of the leadership a Shavuot celebration, which will technically be 1 week premature, based upon what I see in Scripture. Quite the imperfect world we live in….we just have to do what we can.”
 
This is quite the scenario we have this year!  With everything boiled down, we have to decide which is more important; one, does the Wave Offering (First Fruits) occur during the week of Unleavened Bread or, two, does the Sabbath (weekly Sabbath), which precedes First Fruits, occur during the week of Unleavened Bread?
I’m glad we will all be straightened out in the Kingdom!  Haha.
Shalom, Jayson

Shalom Bro!
Hey….Which “morrow after the Sabbath” are we talking about here in Lev 23? The 1st day of the week that falls during the week of unleavened bread? or the Sabbath day that falls during the week of unleavened bread?

And ???? spoke to Mosheh, saying,

10“Speak to the children of Yisra’?l, and you shall say to them, ‘When you come into the land which I give you, and shall reap its harvest, then you shall bring a sheaf of the first-fruits of your harvest to the priest.

11‘And he shall wave the sheaf before ????, for your acceptance. On the morrow after the Sabbath the priest waves it.

12‘And on that day when you wave the sheaf, you shall prepare a male lamb a year old, a perfect one, as a burnt offering to ????,

13and its grain offering: two-tenths of an ?phah of fine flour mixed with oil, an offering made by fire to ????, a sweet fragrance, and its drink offering: one-fourth of a hin of wine.

14‘And you do not eat bread or roasted grain or fresh grain until the same day that you have brought an offering to your Elohim – a law forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.

15‘And from the morrow after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering, you shall count for yourselves: seven completed Sabbaths.

16‘Until the morrow after the seventh Sabbath you count fifty days, then you shall bring a new grain offering to ????.

Lev 23:9-16

And, what does verse 14 mean when He says don’t eat fresh grain until the same day? So what do we eat on the days leading up to the morrow after the Sabbath? Old grain from the year before?

Shalom!
Matthew

This year we have a new controversy that has come up which we had never addressed in the years past.

We had posted Michael Rood’s calendar on our fb page but we did not notice this one mistake he has there. On his calendar Michael is counting the Omer from the day after the 7th day of Unleavened Bread. This of course makes the Feast of Pentecost on May 31, 2015.

Myself and others have started our count of the omer from the Sunday which would have been the first day of Unleavened Bread. We then end up with the date for Pentecost on May 24, 2015, one whole week earlier.

We have said over and over how important it is for all of us to keep the Holy Days at the proper time and not to add to them. We have said this is the reason the Jews have suffered so much over the past 2,000 years, due to postponement rules and the conjunction moon.

So keeping the Holy Days at the proper time is extremely important. Life and death important.

Is Pentecost on May 24 or May 31 this year and how do you prove it so you understand in future years how to determine when to begin your counting of the Omer?

You must be able to determine when the Holy Days are. You, not some other person telling you. If you were on a deserted island with only your bible could you determine when you were to obey Yehovah on His specific days?

Lets look at the scripture.

Lev 23:6  and on the fifteenth day of the same month is the Feast of Unleavened Bread to Jehovah. You must eat unleavened bread seven days.

First of all we are talking about the Feast of Unleavened Bread. It begins on the 15th of this first month of Aviv. It last for 7 days ending on the 21st day of Aviv.

Then we are told to make the wave offering. This wave offering as you know is made from Barley.

Lev 23:10  Speak to the sons of Israel and say to them, When you have come into the land which I give to you, and shall reap the harvest of it, then you shall bring a sheaf of the firstfruits of your harvest to the priest.

Lev 23:11  And he shall wave the sheaf before Jehovah to be received for you. On the next day after the sabbath the priest shall wave it.

Here in this verse 11 we are told to make this offering on the day after the weekly Sabbath. In other words this offering must be done on a Sunday. But which Sunday is it? That is the point in question this year.

This offering is a very specific offering. It must be made with barley and it must be without leaven. To learn this go to Lev 2 to read about the wave and grain offerings.

Lev 2:1  And when anyone will offer a food offering to Jehovah, his offering shall be of fine flour. And he shall pour oil on it and put frankincense on it. 2  And he shall bring it to Aaron’s sons, the priests. And he shall take out of it his handful of flour and its oil, with all its frankincense. And the priest shall burn the memorial of it on the altar, an offering made by fire, of a sweet savor to Jehovah. 3  And the rest of the food offering shall be Aaron’s and his sons’, most holy of the offerings of Jehovah made by fire. 4  And if you bring a sacrifice of a food offering baked in the oven, it shall be unleavened cakes of fine flour mixed with oil, or unleavened wafers anointed with oil. 5  And if your offering is a food offering on the griddle, your offering shall be of fine flour unleavened, mixed with oil. 6  You shall break it in pieces and pour oil on it. It is a food offering. 7  And if your offering is a food offering in the frying pan, it shall be made of fine flour with oil. 8  And you shall bring the food offering that is made of these things to Jehovah. And when it is presented to the priest, he shall bring it to the altar. 9  And the priest shall take from the food offering a memorial of it, and shall burn it on the altar. It is an offering made by fire, of a sweet savor to Jehovah. 10  And that which is left of the food offering shall be Aaron’s and his sons: it is most holy of the offerings of Jehovah made by fire. 11  Any food offering which you shall bring to Jehovah shall not be made with leaven. For you shall burn no leaven, nor any honey, in any offering of Jehovah made by fire.

The wave offering must be without leaven, verse 11. This wave offering takes place during the days of unleavened Bread which are only for 7 days. And those days this year begin on the 15th of Nisan which is a Sunday and goes to the the 21st of Nisan which is a Saturday.

Nothing could be eaten or harvested until this Unleavened barley offering was completed. This is our FIRST FRUITS Offering. And as we have read this was done on the Sunday after the Weekly Sabbath during the days of Unleavened Bread. And it was made with no leaven because it had to be burnt on the altar. So this must take place during those 7 days of Unleavened Bread.

Lev 23:13  And its food offering shall be two-tenths part of fine flour mixed with oil, a fire offering to Jehovah for a sweet savor. And the drink offering of it shall be of wine, the fourth part of a hin. 14  And you shall eat neither bread, nor parched grain, nor green ears, until the same day, until you have brought an offering to your God. It shall be a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings.

You now know it must be during the days of Unleavened Bread. But here is the verse that is troubling you. Let us look at the word for Sabbath.

Lev 23:15  And you shall count to you from the next day after the sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering; seven sabbaths shall be complete.

The word for Sabbath is the weekly sabbath. Saturday.

H7676   shabba^th    shab-bawth’

Intensive from H7673intermission, that is, (specifically) the Sabbath: –  (+ every) sabbath.

We also know that if it was a High Holy Day the word would have been Sabbathon for High Holy Day.

H7677    shabba^tho^n     shab-baw-thone’

From H7676; a sabbatism or special holiday: – rest, sabbath.

So this is not referring to a High Holy Day. It is referring to a weekly Sabbath. The wave offering must be unleavened and barley. So each and every year the only time you can make this offering is when it is on a Sunday. And is during the days of Unleavened Bread.

The commandment says this UNLEAVENED Offering must be made on the 1st day of the week. And that this UNLEAVENED offering must be done during the days of Unleavened Bread. You only have one day during the 7 days of Unleavened Bread which is the 1st day of the week.

This year the first day of Unleavened Bread turns out to be the Sunday. There is no commandment that the Sabbath had to be during the days of Unleavened Bread.

So you must count from the 1st day which falls inside the 7 days of Unleavened Bread to the 50th day of Pentecost to know when Pentecost will be.

If you count from the Sunday AFTER the Feast of Unleavened bread then you would also have to make the wave offering on this same day you began the count which would have been outside the 7 days when you are commanded to eat Unleavened bread.

The Karaites and I have the right day. The wave offering is on the 15th of Nisan this year which is April 5, the Sunday during the Days of Unleavened Bread. Pentecost will be on May 24th.

You eat the old grain until you make the new grain offering during the days of unleavened bread. Until that is done no one is to harvest anything.

Hope that helps to clear it up.

Radio Show

Each week on Tuesday evenings, 9 Central time we are discussing various subjects and addressing questions that you send in to us. This week was another exciting show. Those are the words of people who tune in. They learn so many things. We encourage you to tune in and to tell others to also tune and share this pod cast on your social media page. It could help many others if you would only share it.

We also want to thank those people who helped us get the equipment we needed to make this show possible. Right after we began the broadcasts our equipment broke and it was going to cost about $3,000 to replace it. One person in particular stepped up to help us along with a few others. I personally want to thank them for helping us to be able to share this message. May Yehovah richly bless you for your assistance.

You can listen to the show now at this link or you can tune in to the Archives that we have for you at that same link. We also have these podcast available under our media tab under radio at sightedmoon.com

You can download them and listen to them on your way to work or while you’re out and about. Here is the announcement for last weeks show.

Shalom! This show we discussed how the origins of the Pagan holiday Easter can be traced all the way back to the Flood! Joseph Dumond described what Gopher wood actually is, and how the ark prophetically represents the story of our Messiah. In the second half of the show, we discussed how Yeshua was in the ground 3 days and 3 nights. This was the prophetic fulfillment of the sign of Jonah. We then briefly discuss the 7th of Aviv command that we find in Ezekiel 45. Below we have posted links to two of Joseph Dumond’s articles that apply to our discussion. Thanks for listening and Shalom!

What exactly is Gopher wood?
The Sign of Jonah
The 7th of Aviv

ERIKTOLOGY - ALEPH/BEYT

This week we are looking at the letter Tet – f –the 9th letter of the Aleph Tav. It is also the first letter inside the Mishkan. With the way you use the Aleph Tav, with the way you use the words given to you, is how you will be blessed or cursed.

This shield and sword inside and the Zayin weapon outside the Curtain should cause you to stop and ponder

this deeply. Do you want your basket full, or are you going get bitten for the evil you have done and do? You get to choose. You always get to choose and you can choose to get off the endless circle of misery by turning back to Yehovah and repenting. You choose.

This weeks teaching can be found in part one and here in part two.

ANCIENT HEBREW RESEARCH - Jeff Benner

Jeff’s teaching on Teyt- f is found at this link. The link for the practice sessions are found at this link.

And we have also added Uri Harel’s teachings for you to use as well.

Triennial Torah Portion

We continue this weekend with our regular Triennial Torah reading which can be found at? https://sightedmoon.com/files/TriennialCycleBeginningAviv.pdf

 

28/03/2015      Ex 35   Jeremiah 3-4    Prov 7  Acts 5

No Fire on the Sabbath? (Exodus 35)

Chapter 35 begins with instruction about the weekly Sabbath. God said, “You shall kindle no fire throughout your dwellings on the Sabbath day” (verse 3). A long-held Jewish interpretation is that it is wrong to start any fire on the Sabbath, such as a fire in a fireplace or just lighting a match. On the basis of this verse, some even argue that it is not permissible on the Sabbath to light a stove, turn on an oven or use any electrical device with a heating element, such as a hairdryer. Others go so far as to say that we can’t start a car or even turn on a light switch on God’s weekly Holy Day.

Yet the context here is important. There certainly may be a need to limit personal fire usage—as major fire maintenance can certainly become a violation of the Sabbath if a great deal of obvious work is involved (for example, moving logs and chopping them up or a major gathering of sticks, such as that in Numbers 15:32). However, this passage, occurring at the beginning of Moses’ relaying of the instructions for building the tabernacle, is most likely referring to tabernacle construction. God, it appears, was telling them to not kindle industrial fires on the Sabbath—to melt silver or gold or forge other metals for the construction of the tabernacle. No doubt some minor smelting was done in individual homes, which was also forbidden by this proscription. Instead, all industry was to cease, even the special work of building the tabernacle, so people could give full attention to resting and worshiping God on the Sabbath as He commanded.

God has always wanted His weekly Sabbath day to be a blessing and a delight to us (Isaiah 58:13-14), not an intolerable burden as some would later make it out to be through their focus on overly restrictive rules. However, there are certainly general rules we should follow. For instance, as a general rule we must not be conducting our regular business on the Sabbath or using the Sabbath as a time to plan our regular work. Moreover, the Sabbath is not a time for sports and personal hobbies. Instead, the Sabbath is a time to focus on our relationship with God.

To learn more about God’s Sabbath, download or send for our free booklet Sunset to Sunset: God’s Sabbath Rest.

 

“Return, O Backsliding Children…for I Am Married to You” (Jeremiah 3-4:4)

The law stated in Deuteronomy 24:1-4 that, after a divorce where one spouse then marries another, and the second marriage is terminated by divorce or death, remarriage to the original spouse is forbidden. This is comparable to Israel’s situation—but not exactly the same since Israel did not actually marry other gods (indeed, the false gods Israel has pursued don’t really exist). While God looked upon the idolatry of Israel and Judah as “play[ing] the harlot with many lovers,” He says He will yet take her back if she will but repent (Jeremiah 3:1).

But that is not immediately forthcoming. God remarks, “You have had a harlot’s forehead [never blushing]; you refuse to be ashamed” (verse 3; compare 6:15). Continually acting against one’s conscience leads to a seared conscience (see 1 Timothy 4:2)—repeated immorality leads to amorality. Logically, one would think that Judah would have learned some fear of God when she saw God punish the house of Israel with divorce, destruction, and captivity. But no, “treacherous Judah” sank lower than Israel! Any appearance of returning to God was done “in pretense” (3:8-11).

It is interesting to note that though God says He issued a certificate of divorce to Israel (verse 8), He still claims to be married to the Israelites in verse 14. This is because, though God put away Israel as a whole, He maintained His covenant relationship with a remnant of Israel—in Jeremiah’s day meaning the faithful of Judah. Yet God would also consider individuals of the house of Israel as part of this remnant if they would repent and return to Him (same verse). In verse 12 Jeremiah is told to proclaim the message to the north. This may well have been directed to those Israelites (the Scythians) who came back into the land of the northern kingdom at this time. They are said to be “more righteous” than Judah—which makes sense when we realize that many of these Israelites (perhaps humbled from their captivity) were soon going to help Josiah purge the land of idolatry and observe his great Passover.

Yet, as explained in the highlights for chapter 2, the message was meant for all the families of Israel—meaning this call to repentance is likely intended primarily for the end time. In the last days, much of end-time Israel is still to be found mainly to the north of Judea—northwest that is—prior to and during their final captivity. For those physical Israelites who repent, God will take them as individuals and join them to the faithful remnant of Israel—the remnant according to grace, meaning the Assembly of God (see Romans 11:5). Yet also intended here is the return from captivity of those of the physical remnant of Israel to God at the time of Messiah’s return—when, according to this and many other prophecies, they too collectively repent and become spiritual Israelites according to grace.

Israel and Judah will finally and truly return to God “in those days,” at which time the two houses will be rejoined (verse 18). Notice that Israel and Judah will “come together out of the land of the north” (same verse). This never happened in ancient times following the Assyrian captivity of Israel or the Babylonian captivity of Judah. It is clearly a prophecy of the end time.

Then the actual presence of Yeshua Messiah and the throne of the Lord will make the glory of Israel’s history—when the Ark of the Covenant was merely a type of that throne—unimportant and unmemorable by comparison (verses 16-17). Incidentally, some have speculated that the fact of the ark not being mentioned anymore after Messiah’s return is an indication that it will have had prominent mention just prior to His return—that it may yet be found and play some part in end-time events if it was not destroyed in ancient times (see highlights on Isaiah 17-18). Of course, even an event as stunning and incredible as finding the Ark of the Covenant would be paled into utter insignificance by the return of Yeshua Messiah in power and glory to rule all nations.

At last, Israel and the world will have “shepherds according to My heart,” who will “feed the Israelites with knowledge and understanding” (verse 15). This likely had a forerunner in Jeremiah’s day—meaning Jeremiah, Zephaniah, other contemporary prophets, faithful priests and the faithful king Josiah. They provided spiritual leadership to the Israelites returning back then. Today the shepherds are God’s faithful ministers. And in the coming reign of Messiah, which is apparently the predominant reference, the shepherds will be Messiah, the glorified saints and righteous human leaders.

All Israel will then submit to God and revere Him as Father, no longer turning away from Him (verse 19). The nation will no longer respond in a mere pretense of repentance—for the return to God will be genuine (verses 22-25).

Jeremiah 4, which continues on from the end of chapter 3, begins with a play on words. God tells Israel, “If you will return [from captivity to their homeland]…return to Me [that is, in a spiritual sense—meaning repentance]” (4:1). In verse 3, the message is directed to the people of Judah—perhaps both to those of Jeremiah’s day and to people far in the future. As for God’s instruction to break up the fallow ground and not sowing among thorns, it should be noted that the reference is to “unused soil, not a regularly plowed field. Israel [including Judah] needed a new field in which to sow its seed of faithfulness, a radical departure from its ways of sin and idolatry” (Nelson Study Bible, note on verse 3).

In verse 4, we see that the main purpose of circumcision is to illustrate the need for mankind to remove any hardness of heart and all barriers separating us from God. This repeats what God told the Israelites just before He first brought them in to the Promised Land (see Deuteronomy 10:16). If the people refuse to heed, the consequences will be severe.

 

“The Sound of the Trumpet” (Jeremiah 4:5-31)

Verse 5 of chapter 4 begins a prophecy that continues to the end of chapter 6. It is addressed here at the outset to Judah and Jerusalem. This undoubtedly referred to the Jews of Jeremiah’s day, but could also refer to future inhabitants of the land. Moreover, reference is later made to the recipients of the message being the “house of Israel” or “house of Jacob” as well as Judah (see 5:15, 19). Israel had been taken into captivity long before Jeremiah wrote, so that at least would seem to look to the future.

Still, the message was clearly intended for Jeremiah’s fellow countrymen. Tragically, the people do not yet heed God’s call to repentance (see 4:4). They are therefore instructed to “blow the trumpet” (verse 5), the shofar or ram’s horn, an “alarm of war” (verse 19)—a symbol repeated throughout Scripture. For God will bring “disaster from the north.” As explained in the highlights for chapter 1, this was the course of invasion followed by ancient Babylon and that will yet be followed by end-time Babylon.

The warning is to be raised from Dan to Ephraim (verse 15). These areas were in the northernmost and southernmost parts of the ancient northern kingdom and would have seen a northern threat coming against Judah.

God warns of “watchers” (verse 16), which could indicate advanced scouts of a coming army. However, the term may also be translated “besiegers” (Jamieson, Fausset & Brown’s Commentary, note on verse 16).

All this was rather unsettling to Jeremiah. He was “overwhelmed at what God was about to bring upon Jerusalem. This passage indicates the deep inner struggle Jeremiah faced in his proclamation of the divine message. Jeremiah challenged God’s dealings with His people, claiming that God had deceived the people with a message of peace” (note on Jeremiah 4:10). Remember that in chapter 3 God had just told Jeremiah to convey a message of Israel’s repentance and return under the reign of the Messiah. Now here he was delivering an ominous message of doom—to people he deeply cared about. God well understood Jeremiah’s compassion—and was no doubt merciful to him in his anguished remarks.

Verse 18 declares that the people have brought this on themselves. Just as in today’s world, God said the people are “experts at doing what is evil, but failures at doing what is good” (verse 22, Today’s English Version).

The prophet then sees in vision a destroyed land—employing the same language used in Scripture of the chaotic, desolate planet Earth before man’s creation (verse 23; see Genesis 1:2). It is now the result of the destruction God will bring because of the people’s sins (see verse 26). But thankfully, the land will not be utterly destroyed and not everyone will die (verse 27; 5:18). Yet the consequences will be severe—and, as the people are set in their sinful ways, the punishment is now inevitable (4:28).

If Zion tries to appease, distract and seduce her enemies—like a harlot with seductive clothes and makeup, offering favors—it won’t work (verse 30). Instead, she will soon experience unavoidable pain, as a woman in labor with her first child. And in the end, her lovers will become her murderers (verse 31).

 

Proverbs Chapter 7 (http://www.Messiahnotes.org/commentary)

Chapter Contents

Invitations to learn wisdom. (1-5)

The arts of seducers, with warnings against them. (6-27)

We must lay up God’s commandments safely. Not only, Keep them, and you shall live; but, Keep them as those that cannot live without them. Those that blame strict and careful walking as needless and too precise, consider not that the law is to be kept as the apple of the eye; indeed the law in the heart is the eye of the soul. Let the word of God dwell in us, and so be written where it will be always at hand to be read. Thus we shall be kept from the fatal effects of our own passions, and the snares of Satan. Let God’s word confirm our dread of sin, and resolutions against it.

Commentary on Proverbs 7:6-27

Here is an affecting example of the danger of youthful lusts. It is a history or a parable of the most instructive kind. Will any one dare to venture on temptations that lead to impurity, after Solomon has set before his eyes in so lively and plain a manner, the danger of even going near them? Then is he as the man who would dance on the edge of a lofty rock, when he has just seen another fall headlong from the same place. The misery of self-ruined sinners began in disregard to God’s blessed commands. We ought daily to pray that we may be kept from running into temptation, else we invite the enemies of our souls to spread snares for us. Ever avoid the neighbourhood of vice. Beware of sins which are said to be pleasant sins. They are the more dangerous, because they most easily gain the heart, and close it against repentance. Do nothing till thou hast well considered the end of it. Were a man to live as long as Methuselah, and to spend all his days in the highest delights sin can offer, one hour of the anguish and tribulation that must follow, would far outweigh them.

 

Acts Chapter 5 (http://www.Messiahnotes.org/commentary)

Chapter Contents

The death of Ananias and Sapphira. (1-11) The power which accompanied the preaching of the gospel. (12-16) The apostles imprisoned, but set free by an angel. (17-25) The apostles testify to Messiah before the council. (26-33) The advice of Gamaliel, The council let the apostles go. (34-42)

The sin of Ananias and Sapphira was, that they were ambitious of being thought eminent disciples, when they were not true disciples. Hypocrites may deny themselves, may forego their worldly advantage in one instance, with a prospect of finding their account in something else. They were covetous of the wealth of the world, and distrustful of God and his providence. They thought they might serve both God and mammon. They thought to deceive the apostles. The Spirit of God in Peter discerned the principle of unbelief reigning in the heart of Ananias. But whatever Satan might suggest, he could not have filled the heart of Ananias with this wickedness had he not been consenting. The falsehood was an attempt to deceive the Spirit of truth, who so manifestly spoke and acted by the apostles. The crime of Ananias was not his retaining part of the price of the land; he might have kept it all, had he pleased; but his endeavouring to impose upon the apostles with an awful lie, from a desire to make a vain show, joined with covetousness. But if we think to put a cheat upon God, we shall put a fatal cheat upon our own souls. How sad to see those relations who should quicken one another to that which is good, hardening one another in that which is evil! And this punishment was in reality mercy to vast numbers. It would cause strict self-examination, prayer, and dread of hypocrisy, covetousness, and vain-glory, and it should still do so. It would prevent the increase of false professors. Let us learn hence how hateful falsehood is to the God of truth, and not only shun a direct lie, but all advantages from the use of doubtful expressions, and double meaning in our speech.

The separation of hypocrites by distinguishing judgments, should make the sincere cleave closer to each other and to the gospel ministry. Whatever tends to the purity and reputation of the Assembly/Community, promotes its enlargement; but that power alone which wrought such miracles by the apostles, can rescue sinners from the power of sin and Satan, and add believers to His worshippers. Messiah will work by all his faithful servants; and every one who applies to him shall be healed.

There is no prison so dark, so strong, but God can visit his people in it, and, if he pleases, fetch them out. Recoveries from sickness, releases out of trouble, are granted, not that we may enjoy the comforts of life, but that God may be honoured with the services of our life. It is not for the preachers of the gospel to retire into corners, as long as they can have any opportunity of preaching in the great congregation. They must preach to the lowest, whose souls are as precious to Messiah as the souls of the greatest. Speak to all, for all are concerned. Speak as those who resolve to stand to it, to live and die by it. Speak all the words of this heavenly, divine life, in comparison with which the present earthly life does not deserve the name. These words of life, which the Set Apart Spirit puts into your mouth. The words of the gospel are the words of life; words whereby we may be saved. How wretched are those who are vexed at the success of the gospel! They cannot but see that the word and power of the Almighty are against them; and they tremble for the consequences, yet they will go on.

Many will do an evil thing with daring, yet cannot bear to hear of it afterward, or to have it charged upon them. We cannot expect to be redeemed and healed by Messiah, unless we give up ourselves to be ruled by him. Faith takes the Saviour in all his offices, who came, not to save us in our sins, but to save us from our sins. Had Messiah been exalted to give dominion to Israel, the chief priests would have welcomed him. But repentance and remission of sins are blessings they neither valued nor saw their need of; therefore they, by no means, admitted his doctrine. Wherever repentance is wrought, remission is granted without fail. None are freed from the guilt and punishment of sin, but those who are freed from the power and dominion of sin; who are turned from it, and turned against it. Messiah gives repentance, by his Spirit working with the word, to awaken the conscience, to work sorrow for sin, and an effectual change in the heart and life. The giving of the Spirit of Truth, is plain evidence that it is the will of God that Messiah should be obeyed. And He will surely destroy those who will not have Him to reign over them.

The Almighty still has all hearts in his hands, and sometimes directs the prudence of the worldly wise, so as to restrain the persecutors. Common sense tells us to be cautious, while experience and observation show that the success of frauds in matters of religion has been very short. Reproach for Messiah is true preferment, as it makes us conformable to his pattern, and serviceable to his interest. They rejoiced in it. If we suffer ill for doing well, provided we suffer it well, and as we should, we ought to rejoice in that grace which enabled us so to do. The apostles did not preach themselves, but Messiah. This was the preaching that most offended the priests. But it ought to be the constant business of gospel ministers to preach Messiah: Messiah, and him crucified; Messiah, and him glorified; nothing beside this, but what has reference to it. And whatever is our station or rank in life, we should seek to make Him known, and to glorify his name.