Messiah and the ‘Crimson Worm’

Joseph F. Dumond

Isa 6:9-12 And He said, Go, and tell this people, You hear indeed, but do not understand; and seeing you see, but do not know. Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their hearts, and turn back, and be healed. Then I said, Lord, how long? And He answered, Until the cities are wasted without inhabitant, and the houses without man, and the land laid waste, a desolation, and until Jehovah has moved men far away, and the desolation in the midst of the land is great.
Published: Oct 30, 2013

News Letter 5849-038
27th day of the 8th month 5849 years after the creation of Adam
The 8th Month in the Fourth year of the third Sabbatical Cycle
The Third Sabbatical Cycle of the 119th Jubilee Cycle
The Sabbatical Cycle of Earthquakes Famines, and Pestilences


November 2, 2013


Shabbat Shalom Family,


As I go to post this weeks News Letter I am including a You Tube teaching. I almost deleted it because I did not have time to watch it. This is an excellent video and extremely revealing about our current societal views and how people will change when they are allowed to think. Please watch it and then share it.

I also would like to share with you that there will be a  Solar Eclipse that can be seen Nov 3 across Africa. You can view it and past blood moons at

It is now the month of November on the Gregorian calendar.  And in a few days time it will be the 9th month of the Biblical calendar. I do hope you all go out and practice looking for the new moon in two days time. Will it be seen on the 29th in Jerusalem or will Yehovah obscure the skies so that it can’t be seen and the month declared a 30 day month. I ask you to practice doing this so that you will understand the Hebraism of the phrase “ no man can know the day or the hour” which Yehshua spoke of about His return. This Hebraism is speaking of the 1st day of the seventh month. That is the Feast of Yom Teruah or The Feast of Trumpets. In order to understand what Yehshua was saying, you need to go out and look for the new crescent moon and see if you can predict when it will be seen. Make a game of it with your family to see who can see it first. This way you will understand why no man can know the day or the hour of the Feast of Trumpets.

I also want to point out to you that the word November is Latin for the 9th month. Just as December is Deca for the 10th month. Octo is 8 for the 8th month of October, and Sept is Latin for the 7th month of September. The rest of the months of the year were all given names after Various Roman Emperors.

The biblical calendar always called each month by the number of the month until after the Jews returned from the Babylonian captivity and then the months had names for each one.

I point this out to you so that you know it and also because there are still Ephramites who are now starting to keep Sukkot on the dark moon (conjunction) of the 9th month. There are Ephramites who keep Sukkot and Passover according to when the moon is dark, some who kept Sukkot in the 8th month, some who use the equinox to start the year and some who keep the day only and others who keep the Lunar Sabbath according to the moon. Each of these false understandings can easily be proven false, but pride and stubbornness and an ante-Semitic stance prevent them from looking at all of the Scriptures to arrive at the truth.

All Jews know the calendar used before the 11th century was the crescent moon calendar. The Hillel calendar first written out in 351 C.E and implemented in the 11th century was done so because of the diaspora and for unification of the Jewish community. And they readily admit that once the Sanhedrin sits again it will reinstate the crescent moon calendar.

With the onset of all these modern day calendars introduced by New Age Messianics only in the last 20 years, it does become very confusing. But you will not find any Jewish groups who kept any of these calendars before the 1990’s. There were only two systems, and it is those same two that used to be argued over right up to the time when the temple was destroyed in 70 C.E. Those two systems were the Sighted Moon and the calculated system.

It is time you all figure this out and know it. Many will say they will stick with the one they are currently on and when Yehshua gets back then He will sort it all out. This is not true! Yehovah has called you to be Kings and Priests in the Kingdom He is now setting up. As such, you must be the one to decide things! You must KNOW and if you cannot figure out the calendar issue and show those in your kingdom how to obey and follow Yehovah then you will not be a King or Priest in His Kingdom.

Why have I been harping on this each week now for the past month? It comes down to this. If you keep the Sabbath on Sunday then we all know this is against Torah and the 4th commandment to keep holy the Sabbath day. It is the exact same thing to keep the Holy Days on the wrong day by keeping the wrong calendar or by postponing the fall holy days as is done in the Hillel calendar or the current Hebrew calendar. And if you study those postponement rules for the Hillel calendar you will learn that the second postponement rule was designed in order so that the new Crescent moon would not be seen in another part of the world before it was seen in Jerusalem. Think about it. The calculated calendar was used to confirm the two witnesses who had come claiming to have sighted the new Crescent Moon.

I have just tonight received a most beautiful written letter from a sister at one of the COG groups. In her research for the truth about the calendar issues she was given a book by Arthur Spier entitled “Comprehensive Hebrew Calendar.”  I have not read it. But this sister tells me it is the book the COG’s use to help set up the Holy Days and yet it is full of quotes proving the sighted moon and the two witnesses were to be confirmed by the calculations and not the other way around as they are now.

So if you keep the Holy Days on the wrong day or in the wrong month, then you are in rebellion against the Most High and you will not be a leader in His kingdom. Period!

The Jews keep the Hillel calendar also known as the Hebrew calendar. They acknowledge the sighted Crescent Moon calendar and it is the one that was kept when the Temple was here and they also admit this is the one that we all will be going back to once the Sanhedrin approves it whenever the Sanhedrin is once again formed. It is this same sighted first Crescent Moon which we at keep each month to begin the month and to count to the Holy Days in the first and 7th month.

It is the same as saying that Saturday is the 7th day Sabbath but we are going to keep Sunday because we always have. How will you justify this before Yehovah when you know which one is right and you do nothing to correct it? You are commanded to guard the Torah, to guard the Sabbath and Holy Days and Sabbatical and Jubilee years. It does not mean to go with the flow because it is easier or convenient. To those of you in the Church of God, each of you needs to stand before Yehovah on your own two feet. Just because your pastor or the leadership above them does not teach this or the Sabbatical Years is no excuse for you not to learn it and to share it with them.

Yehovah is the same yesterday today and forever. He does not change!

Hillel changed the way you keep the Holy Days by changing the calendar system. Yes it was due to the martyrdom that was going on. Even though the days were changed by this new system back in 351 C.E. Yehovah never changed His Holy Days. Something to think about.

At Sukkot this year we had the great pleasure of meeting Chad and Marilyn Wilhelms and sharing some very special times together. Chad has offered us this following article for your edification.


Messiah and the ‘Crimson Worm’


The traditional Haftarah reading for Torah portion ‘Devarim’ is Isaiah 1:1-27. This Haftarah is the last of three Haftarahs read between the 17th day of Tammuz (when the Babylonians breached the city walls of Jerusalem) and the 9th of Av (when the Babylonians razed the Holy Temple). Traditionally these three Haftarahs are known as the ‘three haftarot of affliction (also called the ‘three haftarot of punishment’)’. This Haftarah is read on the Shabbat preceding Tisha b’Av (9th of Av) and, because it begins with the Hebrew word ‘chazon’ (meaning vision), the Shabbat is called ‘Shabbat Chazon’. This Shabbat is also referred to as ‘Black Sabbath’ due to its status as the saddest Shabbat of the year.

Within the Haftarah reading of Isaiah 1:1-27 is a particular verse worth taking note of. In Isaiah 1:18 it is written: Shabbat Shalom Family,

Messiah and the ‘Crimson Worm’

The traditional Haftarah reading for Torah portion ‘Devarim’ is Isaiah 1:1-27. This Haftarah is the last of three Haftarahs read between the 17th day of Tammuz (when the Babylonians breached the city walls of Jerusalem) and the 9th of Av (when the Babylonians razed the Holy Temple). Traditionally these three Haftarahs are known as the ‘three haftarot of affliction (also called the ‘three haftarot of punishment’)’. This Haftarah is read on the Shabbat preceding Tisha b’Av (9th of Av) and, because it begins with the Hebrew word ‘chazon’ (meaning vision), the Shabbat is called ‘Shabbat Chazon’. This Shabbat is also referred to as ‘Black Sabbath’ due to its status as the saddest Shabbat of the year.

Within the Haftarah reading of Isaiah 1:1-27 is a particular verse worth taking note of. In Isaiah 1:18 it is written:

“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD (YHWH): though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” (emphasis mine)

During the day of Yom Kippur in the first and second temple times a miracle would occur. A piece of wool dyed crimson in color would be tied to the scapegoat and another piece dyed crimson would be tied to the entrance of the temple sanctuary for all to see. The sage rabbi Yishmael taught that when the scapegoat reached its destination in the desert this wool would miraculously turn white before the people of Israel and providing a Heavenly sign that the sins of the people had been atoned for (Yoma 6, 8). But after 30 AD, the crimson thread never turned white again for 40 years, till the destruction of the Holy Temple. As recorded in the Babylonian Talmud:

“Our rabbis taught: During the last forty years before the destruction of the Temple the lot [‘For the Lord’] did not come up in the right hand; nor did the crimson-colored strap become white; nor did the western most light shine; and the doors of the Hekel [Temple] would open by themselves” (Soncino version, Yoma 39b).

What ‘vision’ can we see through the Isaiah 1:18 scripture? Take note of the words ‘scarlet’ and ‘crimson’. The Hebrew word (according to the Brown-Driver-Briggs Hebrew and English Lexicon) for ‘scarlet’ is ????pronounced ‘sha-nee’ (H8144) and has the meaning of scarlet (as in color). This scarlet color comes from an insect ‘coccus ilicis’ which looks more like a grub. The dye from the female grub is used to make the red/scarlet dye.  The Hebrew word for ‘crimson’ is ????? pronounced ‘tow-lah’ (H8438) and is defined as: worm, scarlet, crimson, the dye made from the dried body of the female worm ‘coccus ilicis’.  In layman’s terms: a scarlet worm or a crimson worm. This is what was used to dye the wool crimson for the Yom Kippur Temple service!

Digging further one can see the same word ‘tow-lah’ (crimson/ scarlet worm) used in Psalm 22:1-6.

“My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me? why art thou so far from helping me, and from the words of my roaring? O my God, I cry in the daytime, but thou hearest not; and in the night season, and am not silent.  But thou art holy, O thou that inhabitest the praises of Israel. Our fathers trusted in thee: they trusted, and thou didst deliver them. They cried unto thee, and were delivered: they trusted in thee, and were not confounded. But I am a worm, and no man; a reproach of men, and despised of the people. All they that see me laugh me to scorn: they shoot out the lip, they shake the head, saying, He trusted on the LORD that he would deliver him: let him deliver him, seeing he delighted in him.” (emphasis mine)

For many who believe that Messiah came in the Flesh 2,000 years ago, this Psalm (sometimes called the ‘Psalm of the Cross’) speaks of The Messiah who suffered and died on the tree for the sins of those who believe in the death, burial, and resurrection of Him. In the Gospels of Matthew 27:46 and in Mark 15:34, Messiah Yahshua cried out the same words of Psalm 22:1 while hanging on the tree:

“And about the ninth hour (3 pm) Jesus (Yahshua) cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?” (emphasis mine)

Indeed if Psalm 22 is a Psalm concerning Messiah, then what was meant by verse 6: “But I am a worm, and no man.” What is meant here by this saying? Usually in the Bible, the English word for worm comes from the Hebrew word ‘rimmah’ ???? meaning ‘maggot or worm’, but in this particular verse the Hebrew word used is ?????, again meaning a scarlet or crimson worm. This again is the same word used for ‘crimson’ in Isaiah 1:18. Both scarlet and crimson are a deep red color very similar to the color of blood. Let’s take a deeper look into this ‘coccus ilicis’.

According to Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913):

Kermes Ker”mes, n. [Ar. & Per. girmiz. See Crimson, and cf.


1. (Zo[“o]l.) The dried bodies of the females of a scale insect (Coccus ilicis), allied to the cochineal insect, and found on several species of oak near the Mediterranean. They are round, about the size of a pea, contain coloring matter analogous to carmine, and are used in dyeing. They were anciently thought to be of a vegetable nature, and were used in medicine. [Written also


2. (Bot.) A small European evergreen oak (Quercus

coccifera) on which the kermes insect (Coccus ilicis) feeds. –J. Smith (Dict. Econ. Plants).


Other interesting facts regarding this creature include:

•          In ancient days, the dead bodies of the female crimson worms were scraped from a tree, dried, and then ground into a powder that was used to dye their cloth garments red or crimson color. The crimson color dye would also have been used in the fabric of the priestly garments and tabernacle.

•          The crimson worm is found throughout the Mediterranean including Israel.

•          In 2008, the Temple Institute in Jerusalem conducted the first harvest for the tola’at shani (crimson worm) in nearly two thousand years.

•          After three days, the dead mother crimson worm’s body loses its crimson color and turns into a white wax which falls to the ground like snow.

•          The crimson worm does not look like a worm, some people thought they were part of a plant.

•          A female crimson worm will have offspring only once in her lifetime. When she does, she finds a tree or wooden item and attaches her body to it making a hard crimson shell. Once attached, she will be permanently stuck to the wood that the shell cannot be removed without tearing her body apart and killing her. The crimson worm then lays her eggs under her body and protective shell. When the larvae hatch, they stay under the shell. The mother gives protection to the larvae under her hard shell and feeds them as her young will feed on her living body! In a few days, once the larvae are mature enough to take care of themselves, the mother dies. As she dies, she oozes out a crimson color dye which not only stains the wood she is attached to, but also her offspring. Her offspring are colored crimson for the rest of their lives.

Let’s see if we can look at the deeper meaning here. Is there any connection with this worm and Messiah?

Messiah Yahshua came ONCE to pay the atonement for sin, yours and mine. He willfully laid down his life (John 10:18), allowing himself to be ATTACHED to the TREE. He could not be removed without his BODY being TORN. He was CRUSHED in order to pay the redemption price of his people, Israel. When Yahshua DIED on the tree, a Roman soldier pierced his side and BLOOD and water OOZED OUT, STAINING the tree. We who believe in Messiah Yahshua are also washed in HIS BLOOD for forgiveness of sins. After being in the grave for THREE days, our Heavenly Father raised his Son from the dead and later he ascended to the right hand of the Father in heaven. In Revelation, John sees Yahshua and describes him as “…like unto the Son of man, clothed with a garment down to the foot, and girt about the paps with a golden girdle. His head and his hairs were WHITE like wool, as WHITE as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire…” (Rev 1:14-15). We who endure the great tribulation will have our robes washed WHITE in the blood of the Lamb (Rev 7:14)!

Continuing on, the female crimson worm is a rather unattractive grub. As stated earlier, many people in ancient times believed that they were a part of the plant and did not recognize them to be living creatures. Compare that statement with the following verses:

“Behold, my servant shall deal prudently, he shall be exalted and extolled, and be very high. As many were astonied at thee; his visage was so marred more than any man, and his form more than the sons of men: So shall he sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider.” Isaiah 52:13-15 (emphasis mine)

“For he shall grow up before him as a tender plant, and as a root out of a dry ground: he hath no form nor comeliness; and when we shall see him, there is no beauty that we should desire him.” Isaiah 53:2 (emphasis mine)

The above verses are clearly Messianic and the ‘he’ is referring to Messiah Yahshua. Just as the crimson worm could hardly be recognized, the Messiah would be so marred that he could barely be recognized as a man.

Crimson in the following verse equates to the red color of BLOOD (symbolic), scarlet symbolizes sin. Remember Isaiah 1:18 from the Haftarah of Vision (chazon)?

“Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD (YHWH): though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.” Isaiah 1:18

Praise YHWH that we have been redeemed and forgiveness of sins has been atoned for through the blood of Messiah Yahshua, the Lamb of Elohim (God)! Remember the name of this ‘crimson worm’ is called ‘coccus ilicis’? The word ‘ilicis’ in Latin means “it is finished”.

“After Jesus (Yahshua) had taken the wine, he said, “It is finished.” Then he bowed his head and released his spirit.” John 19:30 (emphasis mine)

As mentioned earlier, Psalm 22:6 & Isaiah 1:18 tells of a worm- more specifically, a crimson/scarlet worm (coccus ilicus). How incredible is that for our Heavenly Father to reveal to us Messiah Yahshua- hinted at in a prophecy concerning the life cycle of a female ‘crimson worm’?!  As the Apostle Paul states in Romans 1:19-20:

“Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them. For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and divinity; so that they are without excuse:”  (emphasis mine)

“Moshiach Bo”, Come quickly Messiah Yahshua~ AMEN!

3 1/2 Year Torah Study

We continue this weekend with our regular Triennial Torah Reading Cycle

Gen 8   |   Josh 19-20    |     Ps 18    |   Mat 11-12:21


The Deluge Ends (Genesis 8)

The waters of the Flood remained on the earth unabated for 150 days. At the end of this time we are told that God caused a wind to begin the evaporation process. Also, the fountains of the deep were stopped, indicating that the subterranean aquifers were refilled, perhaps by a reversal of the tectonic forces that originally emptied them. At the end of the 150 days, the waters began to abate. After about 2 1/2 months the waters had substantially declined. After another three months, the water had disappeared from the land, and after another nearly two months the land was suitable for habitation.

The ark, we are told, came to rest upon the mountains of Ararat. Many spectacular claims have been made that a large, box-like, wooden object now rests atop Mount Ararat in eastern Turkey. Several expeditions have been made to the alleged resting place of the ark, and several pieces of worked wood have supposedly been retrieved from the area. Some have claimed to see the ark embedded in ice and snow. For all the curious interest about Mount Ararat, however, Scripture simply does not tell us the precise place where the ark came to rest. It simply says that “the ark rested upon the mountains [plural] of Ararat” (8:4). That leaves a large area of possible locations, for Ararat is simply an ancient name for Armenia, a territory covering much of far eastern Turkey and western Iran. Mount Ararat is only the traditional site. More recently, there has been a great deal of interest in a massive boat-like formation in the hills near Mount Ararat, though some geologists regard it as simply a natural anomaly.


Territory of the Rest of the Tribes (Joshua 19)

Unlike those of Joseph, who protested at not having enough land, the people of Judah had too much (verse 9). So the southern part of their territory was given to Simeon via the second lot. This included Beersheba, an area associated with Abraham and Isaac.

Next came Zebulun, who received a parcel bordering Manasseh to the north. The Bethlehem listed (verse 15) is not Bethlehem-Judah, which was south of Jerusalem in Judah’s territory (compare 1 Samuel 17:12). Gath-hepher, the city Jonah came from, was in Zebulun (2 Kings 14:25). And by the time of the New Testament, the city of Nazareth had been established in this area. As was the case with Ephraim and Manasseh, mentioned earlier, this was not all Zebulun had been promised either. Genesis 49:13 had stated, “Zebulun shall dwell by the haven of the sea; he shall become a haven for ships.” Yet Zebulun’s inheritance in the Promised Land did not border any sea—neither the Mediterranean nor even the inland Sea of Galilee. The fulfillment of this promise, then, would also come in later centuries with the migrations to Northwest Europe.

The fourth lot went to Issachar, who got land north of Manasseh and east of Zebulun, bordering the Jordan. Asher received a coastal strip north of Manasseh and west of Zebulun. It extended all the way to Tyre in southern Lebanon. East of Asher, and north of Zebulun and Issachar, was Naphtali. It stretched from the entire western shore of the Sea of Galilee north to Lebanon. Along with Zebulun, it was known as Galilee (compare 20:7; Matthew 4:15).

Finally, Dan received a portion of land along the coast west of Benjamin and just north of the Philistine territory. This is where the Danite Samson carried out his exploits. But the tribe of Dan wanted more land, so some of its people conquered an additional area north of Naphtali (verse 47; compare Judges 18).

When all the tribes received their inheritances, Joshua himself, an Ephraimite, chose a location within the land assigned to Ephraim to live out his last days.

Cities of Refuge; Levitical Cities (Joshua 20-21)

As instructed, three cities were chosen as cities of refuge: Kedesh in the northern part of Naphtali, Shechem in the land of Ephraim, and Hebron in the land of Judah.

In addition to the cities of refuge, the Levites were given other cities to live in. They were grouped geographically by sub-tribe. The priests received the cities in the southern tribes of Simeon, Judah and Benjamin. The non-priest Kohathites had cities in the next three tribes moving north: Dan, Ephraim and western Manasseh. Gershon had cities in the far northern tribes. And Merari’s cities were split—in the southern part of the eastern tribes, and in Zebulun.

In its note on the end of chapter 21, verses 43-45, The Nelson Study Bible states: “This glorious conclusion to these two chapters and to the entire section (chs. 13-21) celebrates the fact that all came to pass exactly as God promised. [That is, it should be clarified, while there was still more to come, all had so far gone exactly as God had said it would.] What has been visible all along is now said plainly—the God of Israel is a promise-keeping God, who gave Israel the land in accordance with the promises He had made with its ancestors, including Moses and the patriarchs. And in addition to giving them the land, He also granted them rest.”

“The Lord Is My Rock and My Fortress and My Deliverer” (Psalms 18)

We previously read Psalm 18 in conjunction with the other passage in Scripture where this lengthy psalm is found, 2 Samuel 22, which contains nearly identical text. Here David expresses thanks to God for delivering him from trials with all his enemies, including Saul.

In the opening three verses, David compares his strength in God to a rock, fortress, deliverer, shield, horn of salvation and stronghold. Confident in this security, David states, “So shall I be saved from my enemies”—even impending death (verses 3-5). In verses 7-15 David poetically describes the power of God in word pictures recalling God’s description of Himself to Job (Job 38-39). The Nelson Study Bible states: “Underlying these poetic words is the understanding that the Almighty will turn the universe inside out, if necessary, to deliver His servant…. All of the Lord’s fearsome power is used to save the one who worships Him” (notes on Psalm 18:7-9, 15).

This is not to imply that believers will be spared—”saved from”—every painful trial in life, although God undoubtedly holds up His hand against many things that would otherwise batter us. But we can have every confidence that He is working toward our ultimate salvation in the spiritual sense, saving us from perishing forever to instead live in eternal spirit existence.

Verse 10 gives us the imagery of God riding a cherub. In one sense, this recalls the imagery of Ezekiel 1 and 10, where the throne-chariot of God is shown being transported by four cherubim. Yet the riding of a single cherub seems more akin to Revelation 19, where Yeshua is shown returning on a white horse. While white horses are symbolic of victory, this may also represent a literal cherub.

When stating that God intervened “according to my righteousness, according to the cleanness of my hands” (verses 20, 24), David isn’t boasting about any inherent goodness. His righteousness—meaning his pursuit of the right way, God’s way, and his efforts to please God—he contrasts with the goals and activities of the wicked. They turn from godliness to practice evil.

David observes that God deals with people on the terms they themselves set: with the merciful, God is merciful; with the blameless, God shows Himself blameless; with the pure, God shows Himself pure; with the devious, God shows Himself shrewd (as God is never devious Himself). The humble He will save, and the haughty He will bring down (verses 25-27).

David sets up the highest praise: “As for God, His way is perfect…. For who is God, except the Lord? And who is a rock, except our God?” (verses 28-31). In the remainder of the psalm, David recounts the battle victories that allow him to lead without opposition. He was now king over the most powerful nation of his day (verse 43). Yet, as The Nelson Study Bible notes regarding verses 49-50, “David’s victories are prototypes of the victories of the great King to come. The use of the word anointed is appropriate for David, but it points forward to the Savior who is the Anointed One (2:2). The words to David and his descendants forevermore connect the previous promises to the only Son of David who inherited an eternal kingdom, the Savior Jesus (2 Sam.7).”

As noted in the Bible Reading Program comments on 2 Samuel 22, verse 3 of that chapter (also Psalm 18:2) is quoted in Hebrews 2:13, and 2 Samuel 22:50 (Psalm 18:49) is quoted in Romans 15:9 as applying directly to Yeshua.


Matthew 11 – 12:21

11:3 Art thou he that should come, or do we look for another?
As John was well aware that Yeshua was Messiah (i.e., John 1:29, Luke 3:22), one may ask, “Why would he ask such a question at this point?” Note that John is not asking if Yeshua is Messiah, but if there may be “another one.” Among the various opinions in first-century Judaism concerning the Messiah, was the idea of there being two Messiahs. One of these was considered to be the suffering Messiah (Messiah ben-Joseph) and another, the victorious Messiah that would bring Israel to glory (Messiah ben David). The suffering Messiah would fulfill the duties of priest, and would be killed. The triumphant Messiah would fulfill the role of king and live forever. Some teachings had Messiah ben David “avenging the death” of Messiah ben Joseph, and even being involved with raising the latter from the dead.

John is clearly considering that Yeshua may be “Messiah ben Joseph.” (He would not think of Yeshua as the conquering Messiah, the Lion of Judah, as he knows that Yeshua is the Lamb, come to be slain for the sin of the world (John 1:29). By the time of Yeshua, the Essenes (as shown in the Dead Sea Scrolls) were developing a very accurate picture of Messiah, as king and priest being united in one person.

The figure of Melchizadek plays an important role in many of the Qumran writings, with his name being substituted for YHWH’s in certain scrolls:
11Q13 – For this is the time decreed for the year of Melchizadek’s favor and by his might he will judge God’s holy ones and so establish a righteous kingdom, as it is written about him in the songs of David, “A godlike being has taken his place in the council of God; in the midst of the divine beings he holds judgment. Scripture also says about him, Over [it] take your seat in the highest heaven; A divine being will judge his people.

11:4 Go and shew John again those things which ye do hear and see …
Yeshua does not give a straightforward reply. His answer consists of presenting John with certain “evidences” – His miracles. These acts are directly associated with the “Jubilee Release,” a concept related to Messiah returning the world to the way it once was.
There is something very curious in Yeshua’s reply when compared to Isaiah’s prophecy:
Matthew 11:5 – The blind receive their sight, and the lame walk, the lepers are cleansed, and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up, and the poor have the gospel preached to them

Isaiah 35:5-6 – Then the eyes of the blind shall be opened, and the ears of the deaf shall be unstopped. Then shall the lame man leap as an hart, and the tongue of the dumb sing: for in the wilderness shall waters break out, and streams in the desert.
The key difference between these two Scriptures is the issue of “the dead being raised up.” Isaiah does not mention this. Yet, in the scrolls found at Qumran, is one that relates the raising of the dead to the Messiah.

The Qumran Redemption and Resurrection scroll says of the Messiah:
4Q521 – For He will honor the pious upon the throne of His eternal kingdom, setting prisoners free, opening the eyes of the blind, raising up those who are bowed down …
… and the Lord shall do glorious things which have not been done, just as He said. For He shall heal the critically wounded, He shall revive the dead, He shall send good news to the afflicted …
This may suggest that Yeshua and John were communicating, using a mutually-recognized teaching not found in the Tenakh, but known to those who spent time “in the wilderness” (as both Yeshua and John did).
11:7 What did you go out into the desert to see?
The subject of the Messiah first appearing in the wilderness was discussed earlier, in the notes on Matthew 3:3.
11:11 … he that is least in the kingdom of heaven is greater than he
The topic is the offer of the kingdom. Is there a better way to extend an invitation than to say that the least in God’s kingdom is greater than the greatest in the present world?
11:12 the kingdom of heaven suffereth violence, and the violent take it by force.
11:13 For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John.
The Greek text has the word “until” (John). However, the Shem Tobe Hebrew book of Matthew has the term “concerning” (John). The Hebrew spelling of the “concerning” is AYIN LAMED. The term “until” would be spelled AYIN-DALET.
Since Yeshua has just quoted from the prophets about John, it is clear that the prophets prophesied CONCERNING John. It would therefore appear that a translator misread the text. This is quite possible, as the two letters are very similar. If the top of a LAMED was not clear (i.e., flaked off of the manuscript), it could easily be mistaken for a DALET.

11:14 And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come.
The key part to this verse are the first words. If Israel would receive it … What is the “it” in this statement? The topic has not changed – “it” is the Kingdom. What Yeshua is saying here is that IF they as His people, accepted Him and the Kingdom offer, then John would play the role foretold of Elijah.
This remains a difficult text however. John clearly says that he is not Elijah (John 1:21), yet Yeshua says that he is. On the surface, a contradiction.
The first hint as to the answer is found in Luke’s account where we are told John comes in the “spirit and power” of Elijah:

Luke 1:17: And he shall go before him in the spirit and power of Elias, to turn the hearts of the fathers to the children, and the disobedient to the wisdom of the just; to make ready a people prepared for the Lord.

The idea of someone coming “in the spirit” of another is not foreign to Judaism. The prophet Elias asked for a “double helping” of Elijah’s spirit. Neither is the idea of Elijah playing dual roles alien to Jewish writings.
11:19 But wisdom is justified of her children.
This peculiar verse, “wedged in” if it were, in the midst of Yeshua’s argument, is very mystical in its meaning. Our Revelation study will have a discussion on the topic of “Wisdom” later this summer. For the moment, we would suggest that Yeshua is equating Himself with “Wisdom,” and his deeds as “her children.”
11:20 Then began he to upbraid the cities …
Yeshua’s miracles are the Father’s testimony that Yeshua is the Messiah. The people are not condeming Yeshua’s works. Rather, they reject the authority by which He did them and the witness that His miracles attest to. The result of all this is that they are guilty of blasphemy against God’s Holy Spirit as He later tells them (in the next chapter.)
11:25 thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent …
Why does God hide things from people?
Why did Yeshua Himself speak in parables so that only certain ones would understand?
Why did God tell Ezekiel to inform the people that they were to “study the future Temple” that he describes in chapters 40-48 of his book?
Why doesn’t He make things “easier” for everyone?
These are questions that we will deal with as we go forward in all of the studies.

11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me;
As mentioned already — Yeshua’s “yoke” and the Father’s “yoke” are not different. Nor is Yeshua telling them to “learn of Him” in any place they didn’t know where to look. The yoke and the place to learn of Him are the same — the Torah. Unfortunately, many people today view the idea of the “yoke of the Law” (yoke of the Torah) as some kind of “bondage.” This is unfortunate, and is the result of almost two thousand years of non-Jewish understanding of the Bible, God, Messiah and what “faith” is.
12:2 thy disciples do that which is not lawful to do upon the sabbath …
The section from 12:1-12:8 has to do with an accusation made by certain Pharisees regarding some of Yeshua’s disciples, picking and eating grain in a field during the Sabbath. The verses shown above are the key ones in this passage. The Torah does prohibit “work” on Shabbat, and the oral Law of the time would support the Pharisees claim.
Yeshua responds to this in a fourfold manner:
He makes comparison to two accounts from scripture
He tells them that He is greater than the Temple
He reminds about what He told them to learn earlier (Matthew 9:13)
He say that He is Lord of the sabbath day

12:3-5 Have ye not read what David did … have ye not read in the Law
The first Scripture Yeshua quotes is of David eating of the “bread of the Face,” something that was reserved for the priests to eat (from 1 Samuel 21:6), followed by how the Torah allows for priests to do certain type of work on the Sabbath, as part of their Temple service (Leviticus 24:5-9). His point in quoting these, is to establish the principle that within the framework of the Torah is a hierarchy of principles.
The Pharisees recognized this fact, as in the Talmud makes it clear that both the commands of circumcision and Temple sacrificial service, take precedence over the command not to do work on the Sabbath:
12:6 … in this place is one greater than the temple
Having reminded these Pharisees of the recognized oral Torah, he now announced that He is greater than the Temple (therefore the same hierarchy of principles should apply to Him and His disciples). Yeshua was the Temple of God while on earth.
Once again, John’s Gospel (the one) makes the connection for us:

John 2:19-21 – Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. Then said the Jews, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou rear it up in three days? But he spake of the temple of his body.
Yeshua is alluding to what the prophet Isaiah spoke about the relationship between God and His Temple:

Isaiah 66:1 – Thus saith the LORD, The heaven is my throne, and the earth is my footstool: where is the house that ye build unto me? and where is the place of my rest?

The same passage in Isaiah, also says what the Lord is looking for in man. These words mirror those of Hosea 6:6, which Yeshua quotes in verse 7 below:
Isaiah 66:1 – For all those things hath mine hand made, and all those things have been, saith the LORD: but to this man will I look, even to him that is poor and of a contrite spirit, and trembleth at my word.

12:7 but if ye had known what this meaneth, …
Yeshua repeats his quote from Hosea 6:5, that He said earlier in Matthew 9:13. If these Pharisees had truly been seeking God’s righteousness, and not their own, they would have recognized Him as the Messiah. They made themselves “blind” through their legalistic observance of the commands of God, seeking their own righteousness over His (i.e., Romans 10:3).

If they had recognized His as Messiah, then by both the written and oral Torah, they would have no cause to be critical of any work being done by those serving the one who is greater than the Temple.
12:8 For the Son of man is Lord even of the Sabbath day.

Just as the priority was not to fast during Yeshua’s presence on earth (Matthew 9:14-17), so to does this affect other priorities of the Torah (as mentioned above). The Messiah’s presence on earth was not to invalidate any of Torah (Matthew 5:17-21). Any “messiah” that declared an end to Torah would be a false one.

Rather, according to the correct Hebrew understanding of the Scriptures (at that time and now), Messiah is to come and explain the deeper meanings of the Torah. Because of this better understanding He gives, when we study and perform the commands of the Torah (Romans 2:13, James 1:22), we can grow in our relationship with God, enjoying life more abundantly (John 10:10).

The Torah was given to man for a variety of reasons, all of which have to do with the principle of tikkun, (“spiritual repair”). Torah does this by showing us what the meaning of life is, namely:
To be conformed to the image of God
To grow in intimacy in our relationship with Him

Messiah fulfills the same role, as He is the goal of the Torah (Romans 10:4, when properly translated). Isaiah writes that by His suffering and death, Messiah brings spiritual healing (tikkun) between us and God:

Isaiah 53:5-6 – But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed. All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way; and the LORD hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.
The above verse has been misused to by some as having something to do with physical healing. It does not in Isaiah’s context, nor when Peter cites the verse and reiterates that this healing has to do with our being made righteous:

1 Peter 2: 24-25 – Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. For ye were as sheep going astray; but are now returned unto the Shepherd and Bishop of your souls.

12:8 And they asked him, saying, Is it lawful to heal on the sabbath days?
Here is an example of where the true meaning of Sabbath had been lost and the prioritization of God’s commandments placed out of order. The Pharisees had developed a teaching that healing on the Sabbath was “work” and therefore not allowed. Yeshua continues to teach that the purpose of the Sabbath is that of tikkun. Refusing to do good (to heal someone in this case) would not be doing anything to advance the Kingdom of God. For instance, circumcision is an important part of tikkun, and is commanded to be done on the eight day – whether or not this falls on a Sabbath.
12:18 Behold My Servant …

The verses from 18 to 21 are a quotation from Isaiah. Matthew mentions this in relation to Yeshua’s request for the people He healed (in verse 15) not to broadcast to everyone what He was doing. As the people of the day were expecting a powerful vengeful Messiah that would lead Israel to glory (i.e., Messiah ben David) He did not want some violent insurrection to take place with everyone thinking He would be the leader. The quote from Isaiah clearly alludes to a Messiah ben Joseph type — one that would suffer and die for his people.
12:20 … till He send forth judgment into victory
At that time he will play the role of Messiah ben David, the Lion of Judah, and the High Priest anointed unto war.

1 Comment

  1. Ina Horn

    I love this. I have studied a lot and now am just beginning to study the cross. I have never heard the crimson worm but it sounds so much like our Lord Jesus Christ toward the human race. I have never heard about the Crimson Worm until today.


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.