Why did Yahushua the messiah have to die for our sins in order for us to attain salvation and eternal life?
Many believe they know the answer and point to various passages in Scriptures to demonstrate their understanding of Yahweh’s truth.
For instance, a common answer given is that Yahushua, by shedding his blood as the perfect sacrifice, forgives and redeems us from our sins. The messiah now gives us grace or free gift of salvation and eternal life.
The frequently referenced passage of Scriptures is from the book of John, which states:
For the deity so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. (John 3:16)
So it would seem that it is merely sufficient to have faith to be saved.
In The Inheritance & Salvation-Part 1 we discussed the legal mechanism of an inheritance promised to Abraham and his seed (Yahushua the messiah) that is utilized by Yahweh to enable the saved of mankind to gain salvation and eternal life.
We will now direct our focus on discovering the actual promises that are contained in this inheritance. In other words, Just what can we inherit and why is it so valuable?
Promises These promises are specified in the book of Genesis.29 They include the promise to make Abraham a great nation, to make kings of his descendants (thus establishing the great nation as a kingdom), to give a blessing (which is eternal life),30 and to give a great name (i.e., the sacred name Yahweh).31
Most modern-day Christians, together with those who proclaim to be followers of Yahweh, seem to fall short when attempting to understand how the death of Yahushua the messiah enables us to attain salvation and eternal life.
Many point to the basis for their understanding from one passage as given in the book of John:
For the deity so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.(John 3:16)
Numerous individuals understand this to mean that all one has to do is profess a belief or faith that Yahushua (Jesus) was the messiah who was given to mankind by the father and that the messiah has washed us from our sins by dying and shedding his blood for us whereby we can become saved and have eternal life.
In reality, if one were to base all of their faith only on this one verse, it would be obvious to the serious student of Scriptures that this type of faith would be more accurately defined as “blind faith.”
In Circumcision & Passover – Pt 2 our discussion left off with the evidence provided from Scriptures to prove that the Israelites kept the Passover in the wilderness including all uncircumcised males.
We now need to go back and take another look at Exod. 12:48 in context where the command is given for all males to be circumcised in order to partake of the Passover.
And when a stranger shall sojourn with you, and will keep the passover to Yahweh, LET ALL HIS MALES BE CIRCUMCISED, and then let him come near and keep it; AND HE SHALL BE AS ONE THAT IS BORN IN THE LAND: FOR NO UNCIRCUMCISED PERSON SHALL EAT OF IT. (Exod. 12:48)
The reader then has to proceed on to Exod. 13:5 where it states:
And WHEN YAHWEH BRINGS YOU INTO THE LAND of the Canaanites, the Hittites, the Amorites, the Hivites, and the Jeb’usites, which he swore to your fathers to give you, a land flowing with milk and honey, YOU SHALL KEEP THIS SERVICE (the Passover) in this month. (Exod. 13:5)
It is important to now notice what happens as soon as the Israelites do cross over to the west side of the Jordan and enter the land after 40 years in the wilderness:
In Circumcision & Passover – Pt 1 we covered the testimony regarding fleshy circumcision as found in the New Testament. We will now continue on the Trail of Truth to reveal the confirmation of that testimony primarily from the Old Testament.
A close examination of the book of Genesis, for example, reveals that fleshly circumcision was not a legal requirement of the original contract made with Abram (Abraham) in the Abrahamic Covenants of Promise.
Abraham Blessed Before Fleshly Circumcision Before the token of fleshly circumcision was used by Abraham and his household (which did not come into effect until Genesis 17), we read in Genesis 12:
There is a belief among some proclaimed followers of Yahweh that in order for men to partake of the Passover, they must first be circumcised of the flesh.
Fleshy circumcision is also held by some as a proof that Passover is not an actual Festival or Feast Day for the reason that the lack of circumcision would prevent individuals from participating in a required sacred day of Yahweh.
What do Scriptures actually say concerning this issue?
If you are interested in finding out the truth of the matter then it would be advantageous for you to continue with our investigation.
Before we can directly address the issue of circumcision as it relates to Passover we must first determine if Scriptures demand fleshy circumcision in order for men to be saved.
Usually two reasons are given by the advocates of circumcision:
• Abraham was circumcised and he was commanded to circumcise all the males of his household.
• Fleshly circumcision is required in the written Torah of Moses (Old Covenant).
In Part 3 of the “Pork Chop Trilogy” we will attempt to bring all the facts together to arrive at the truth of the matter regarding the issue of the dietary regulations as put forth in Scriptures.
What is extremely important to understand is that the same conditions for salvation apply to both Jews and those of any other nation.
And the deity, which knows the hearts, bare them witness, giving them the sacred ruach, even as he did unto us; AND PUT NO DIFFERENCE BETWEEN US AND THEM, purifying their hearts by trust. Now therefore why do you tempt the deity, to put a yoke upon the neck of the disciples, WHICH NEITHER OUR FATHERS NOR WE WERE ABLE TO BEAR? But we trust that through the grace of the sovereign Yahushua messiah WE SHALL BE SAVED, EVEN AS THEY. (Acts 15: 8-11)
Let us now explore the assertion that we only have the one witness found in Scriptures that makes such a claim, this witness being Gen. 9:3.
The Second Witness Our second witness is Matthew 15:11. Some say that this verse does not refer to literal food but speaks only in a spiritual sense. We will now proceed to prove the fallacy of this assertion by taking a look at the verse in context:
It is not what goes into the mouth that defiles a man, but what comes out of the mouth, this defiles a man. (Matt. 15:11)
Can one actually lose their salvation by scarfing down a pork chop? For many, especially those who claim to be teachers of Yahweh’s word, the answer would be an emphatic “Yes!”
But then again, is this what Scriptures actually profess? Put another way, do Scriptures, in fact, reveal that in order to attain salvation and eternal life, one must adhere to the dietary regulations regarding clean and unclean meat/food as given in the Torah of Moses (the Law, Old Covenant)?
For many, especially among those who assert to be followers of Yahweh, it seems that there exists an unfortunate commonality that runs contrary to what is advanced by Scriptures. This commonality can be labeled “Confusion.” Of course, this should raise a red flag as the following would indicate:
For the deity is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all assemblies of the saints. (1Cor. 14:33)
What does the book of Exodus really say regarding the observance of the Festival of Passover? Also, what about the Festival of Unleavened Bread?
There are two main popular understandings:
• According to the Hasidic Jewish view (System B) the Passover lamb was killed during the afternoon of Abib 14 and the Passover supper took place after sundown on Abib 15.
Abib 14 is a preparation day and not a High Sabbath. Abib 15-21 is the 7-day Festival of Unleavened Bread. Abib 15 and 21 are High Sabbath days. There are 8 days of eating unleavened bread.
• Among the Sacred Name groups of today, most hold to the Modern Hybrid view (System G) whereby, at the Exodus, the Passover lamb was killed at the start of Abib 14 after sundown and the Passover supper eaten that night.
Like the Hasidic Jews holding toSystem B, they consider Abib 14 to be a preparation day and not a High Sabbath. Abib 15-21 is the 7-day Festival of Unleavened Bread. Abib 15 and 21 are High Sabbath days. There are 8 days of eating unleavened bread.
For the seeker of truth, we are only left with the following possibilities.
1. One system is right. 2. Both systems are wrong.
If you have a strange suspicion that the second answer is more correct, then it is suggested that you read on.
When it comes to the issue of determining New Moons by visibility or calculation, there are a number of questions one should consider when trying to ascertain Yahweh’s truth of the matter.
It seems that various religious leaders have convinced many people that not only must one actually see the visible crescent of the new moon but must also determine the greenness of the barley crop for the New Year.
These religious leaders purport to know and understand the true criteria for the determination of Yahweh’s calendar. They also claim their knowledge and understanding comes directly from Scriptures.
In addition, these religious leaders claim that their formula for determining New Moons emanates from Scriptures and is very simple. So simple that Yahweh has provided the means for virtually anyone to determine the beginning of months and years regardless of circumstance.
Well, almost anyone. You might not be so fortunate if you don’t have 20-20 vision or are not a farmer.
So, just how and when did the notion of a Sabbath year beginning with Tishri, the seventh month, get considered and implemented by the Jewish religious leaders? Needless to say, with Part 2 we’re going to find out.
The Transition to the Tishri Year The New Year date of Tishri 1 for the Sabbath year is an offshoot of late Talmudic interpretation. As has been previously noted inPart 1, Scriptures never claim that the seventh month began a regular Sabbath year.
The deduction that Tishri began a Jubilee year was itself a misreading ofLeviticus 25:8-13. The rabbis of the post-Bar Kochba period, in an effort to “build a fence around the Law,”21merely extended their misreading of Leviticus 25:8-13, which dealt only with the year of Jubilee, to the regular Sabbath year.
For those who are interested in observing the Sabbath years it would be very beneficial, at least from Yahweh’s perspective, to know what month actually begins the Sabbath year, Abib or Tishri.
There are many who actually believe that the Sabbath year begins with the seventh month of Tishri and not with the first month of Abib (Nisan).
It has also been extrapolated by many that not only should Sabbath years commence according to a Tishri reckoning but that every year should begin with the seventh month of Tishri.
If one believes that such a notion is found in Scriptures, then it is suggested that one take a closer look at the relevant facts of the matter.
In order to addess this issue we must contend with the concept that the Jews, from the time of their return to Judaea from Babylon in 538 B.C.E. until the end of the Bar Kochba revolt (135 C.E.), officially began their Sabbath years with Tishri 1 (Sep./Oct.) of the sixth year of the Sabbath cycle, as had become their custom sometime after the Bar Kochba war.
Unknown to most followers of Yahweh, there is a remarkable witness that provides evidence for the practice of the 7-day Festival of Passover and Unleavened Bread occurring on Abib 14-20.
This witness comes from an extra-biblical work, the Book of Yashar, also known as Sefer Ha-Yashar.
The present copy of the Book of Yashar is by no means to be assigned the authority of Scriptures. However, what the text says regarding the Passover of the Exodus nevertheless proves quite informative and interesting.
Book of Yashar 81:5 And the children of IsraelTRAVELED FROM EGYPT AND FROM GOSHEN AND FROM RAMESES, AND ENCAMPED IN SUCCOTH ON THE FIFTEENTH DAYof the first month.