Come Out of Darkness

Yeshua spoke again with them and he said: “I AM THE LIVING GOD, The Light of the world. Whoever follows me shall not walk in darkness but shall find the light of life.” John 8:12

Time for Victory

The urge to write came over me this afternoon of April 5, 2023, Hebraically Nissan, the month of Passover and miracles. I began to reflect upon the significance of where we are. We are on the precipice of something huge in the physical world, as well as and more importantly the spiritual realm. All of creation is sensing it as society is failing in every area from insolvency of nations and corrupt leadership to looming wars and scarcity of food. Though war and death are increasing in both natural and spiritual realms, those that know the Living God, Elohim, are able to rejoice because we know the victory is sure. We see the Light and walk therein.

Passover Nisan 5783

Israel is, as I write, celebrating Passover through their ancient liturgy that reminds them of the Exodus, when they placed the blood of a lamb on the doorposts of their dwelling so that the Angel of Death, sent to kill the firstborn of all Egypt, would “pass over” them. The blood of the lamb was the most important element of Passover. Each family consumed the lamb as they remained ready to quickly move in the exodus. After Rome destroyed the Temple in 70 AD sacrificial offering of the lamb began its way to extinction. The focus on the Passover lamb thus relegated to the future of the Mosaic obligation to recall what God had done for His people. They were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt and the Lord God miraculously took them from their bondage with a strong hand and an outstretched arm. He parted the Red Sea such that they could walk on ground and then collapsed it on their pursing enemies. Their Passover is akin to Holy Communion and could also be thought of as resurrection of the people of Israel. Though mentioned, the extraction of the blood of the lamb resulted in a Seder meal, a set order of prayer, and scripted retelling of the Exodus story. The emergence of the “One New Man” is God’s way of saying it is time to acknowledge His Son and become one. Oneness is God and is Christ’s perfect prayer to His Father in John 17.

Resurrection 2023

Tomorrow Christianity will begin a similar recapitulation as we observe the death of the Lamb of God whose precious Blood became an everlasting propitiation for our sin restoring us to Father God and on Sunday celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ forever assuring our own resurrection. Some of the liturgical churches, from which I came, do a splendid job of portraying the rich sacred nature of Holy Week. On Friday they observe Christ’s Passion and reflect upon His agonizing death on the Cross. Celebration of the Resurrection begins in darkness late Saturday evening with the lighting of the new Pascal fire and chanting of the Exultet which announces that the darkness shall not triumph. “Be glad, let earth be glad, as glory floods her.” The ancient song links Passover to Resurrection: “This is the night,” we are told, “when once you led our forbearers, Israel’s children, from slavery in Egypt and made them pass dry-shod through the Red Sea.” And “this is the night when Christ broke the prison-bars of death and rose victorious from the underworld.” Notice the richness of the Jewish Passover in the Exultet showing how inextricable Judaism and Christianity really are. This is God’s desire that we all be one, the “One New Man” that the Apostle Paul speaks of in Ephesians 2:14-16. The Vigil is over at midnight and moves into Resurrection Day Eucharist.

Disconnect Requiring Resolution

The profound connection between physical Israel (Judaism) and spiritual Israel (Christianity), is often not readily apparent to many Christians. This is the liberation from death and promise of life by blood. For both the Jew and Gentile it is the lamb whose blood saves. As I mentioned, the significance of the blood in Passover is somewhat lost to modern Judaism. The Jews would bring lambs to the Temple in Jerusalem for the Passover sacrifice. Our Jewish brothers understand well that life and atonement is in the blood as shown in Leviticus 17:11. In Hebrews 9:11-22 we see that there is redemption only through the blood and that the continual sacrificial act of the Jewish people should have ended with the sacrificial Blood of Christ. Again, the significance and will of God for the “One New Man.”

St. Augustine, who lived 354 to 430 AD, said: “The New Testament is in the Old concealed; the Old is by the New revealed.” Why can’t Judaism and Christianity become the One New Man? I am sure that Satan’s divisiveness is key, but let us not forget that Jesus gave us the keys to the Kingdom. Jesus came not to replace the Law but to fulfill it. The astute Jew knows the scripture. Notice Jeremiah 31:31-34, a Second Coming/Millennial prophesy: “Behold, the days are coming, declares the LORD, when I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and with the house of Judah. It will not be like the covenant I made with their fathers when I took them by the hand to lead them out of the land of Egypt—a covenant they broke, though I was a husband to them, declares the LORD. But this is the covenant I will make with the house of Israel after those days, declares the LORD. I will put My law in their minds and inscribe it on their hearts. And I will be their God, and they will be My people. No longer will each man teach his neighbor or his brother, saying, ‘Know the LORD,’ because they will all know Me, from the least of them to the greatest, declares the LORD. For I will forgive their iniquities and will remember their sins no more.” Consider Deuteronomy 34:10-12 “And there has not arisen a prophet since in Israel like Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face, none like him for all the signs and the wonders that the Lord sent him to do in the land of Egypt, to Pharaoh and to all his servants and to all his land, and for all the mighty power and all the great deeds of terror that Moses did in the sight of all Israel.” The Prophet, Jesus Christ, uncreated, as man, has not only known the Father face to face but through the Incarnation became the Godman to fulfill the scriptures. It was corrupt leadership of the Jewish nation, manipulated by Satan, that led the people astray. John the Baptist knew Him precisely and when Jesus came to be Baptized by him proclaimed: “Behold THE LAMB OF GOD”

The Christian has often taken a narrow view of not caring for or studying the Old Testament believing that the New Testament replaced the Old and became all that is necessary. This perspective leaves a void. Jesus is the context of Holy Writ of the old and new covenant. Psalm 118:19-23 foretells how the chosen people of God will miss the obvious coming manifestation of their Redeemer: “Open to me the gates of righteousness: I will go into them, and I will praise the LORD This gate of the LORD, into which the righteous shall enter. I will praise thee: for thou hast heard me, and art become my salvation. The stone which the builders refused is become the head stone of the corner. This is the LORD’S doing; it is marvelous in our eyes.” Jew or Christian will never solidify in their faith until they realize the entire Bible is the inerrant Word of God. As for the many Jews not recognizing the first coming of Christ, that will rapidly change in the coming days. After all Scripture tells us in Psalms 24:1-2 that the earth is the Lord’s and the fullness thereof and that He created it and set it in motion. We also know that the nations are the inheritance of Jesus Christ and our joint inheritance with Him. The Truth is being revealed to all religions and peoples. All nations and people groups will be exposed to The King of Kings and be given the opportunity to choose Light over darkness.

Significance of the Faith We Share

Isaiah 60 is Millennial prophecy that in my opinion we are going to begin to see grow exponentially as we begin to touch the coming event. A heavy darkness is covering the nations with an intensity unparalleled to any time in history. Examine selected verses 1,2, 11-12 & 14 of Isaiah 60: “Arise, shine; for thy light is come, and the glory of the Lord is risen upon thee. For, behold, the darkness shall cover the earth, and gross darkness the people: but the Lord shall arise upon thee, and His glory shall be seen upon thee…Therefore thy gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night; that men may bring unto thee the forces of the Gentiles, and that their kings may be brought. For the nation and kingdom that will not serve thee shall perish; yea, those nations shall be utterly wasted…The sons also of them that afflicted thee shall come bending unto thee; and all they that despised thee shall bow themselves down at the soles of thy feet; and they shall call thee; The city of the Lord, The Zion of the Holy One of Israel.” Consider the revivals springing up in nations everywhere. I believe this year, 2023 is the beginning to the greatest harvest of souls for the Kingdom. We were not created for darkness and death rather for eternity. Our loving God delivers His people. He unlocks the prison of darkness and destroys the power of death. This is the meaning of Holy Week, the Christian Passover.

A Case for Unity and the One New Man

Psalm 40:7 “Then I said, “Behold, I have come; in the scroll of the book it is written of me.” The Messiah has come as it is written and will return as our Glorious King. In Ephesians 2:14-16 the Apostle Paul explains the One New Man:” For Christ himself has brought peace to us. He united Jews and Gentiles into one people when, in his own body on the cross, he broke down the wall of hostility that separated us. He did this by ending the system of law with its commandments and regulations. He made peace between Jews and Gentiles by creating in himself one new people from the two groups. Together as one body, Christ reconciled both groups to God by means of his death on the cross, and our hostility toward each other was put to death.” And in 1 Corinthians 5: 7-8  Paul becomes very ecumenical stating the case for the One New Man: “Get rid of the old leaven, that you may be a new unleavened batch, as you really are. For Christ, our Passover lamb, has been sacrificed. Therefore, let us keep the feast, not with the old bread, leavened with malice and wickedness, but with the unleavened bread of sincerity and of truth.”

Hebrews 10 is important to digest as a summary. I present it here in its entirety for that reason from The Passion Translation:

Christ’s Eternal Sacrifice

“The old system of living under the law presented us with only a faint shadow, a crude outline of the reality of the wonderful blessings to come. Even with its steady stream of sacrifices offered year after year, there still was nothing that could make our hearts perfect before God. For if animal sacrifices could once and for all eliminate sin, they would have ceased to be offered and the worshipers would have clean consciences. Instead, once was not enough so by the repetitive sacrifices year after year, the worshipers were continually reminded of their sins, with their hearts still impure. For what power does the blood of bulls and goats have to remove sin’s guilt? So when Jesus the Messiah came into the world he said, “Since your ultimate desire was not another animal sacrifice, you have clothed me with a body that I might offer myself instead! Multiple burnt offerings and sin-offerings cannot satisfy your justice. So I said to you, ‘God, I will be the One to go and do your will, to fulfill all that is written of me in your Word!’ ” First he said, “Multiple burnt-offerings and sin-offerings cannot satisfy your justice” (even though the law required them to be offered). And then he said, “God, I will be the One to go and do your will.” So by being the sacrifice that removes sin, he abolishes animal sacrifices and replaces that entire system with the new covenant. By God’s will we have been purified and made holy once and for all through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus, the Messiah! Yet every day priests still serve, ritually offering the same sacrifices again and again—sacrifices that can never take away sin’s guilt. But when this Priest had offered the one supreme sacrifice for sin for all time he sat down on a throne at the right hand of God, waiting until all his whispering enemies are subdued and turn into his footstool. And by his one perfect sacrifice he made us perfectly holy and complete for all time! The Holy Spirit confirms this to us by this Scripture, for the Lord says, “Afterwards, I will give them this covenant: I will embed my laws into their hearts and fasten my Word to their thoughts. ”And then he says, “I will not ever again remember their sins and lawless deeds! ”So if our sins have been forgiven and forgotten, why would we ever need to offer another sacrifice for sin? Our Confidence before God

Our Confidence Before God

And now we are brothers and sisters in God’s family because of the blood of Jesus, and he welcomes us to come into the most holy sanctuary in the heavenly realm—boldly and without hesitation. For he has dedicated a new, life-giving way for us to approach God. For just as the veil was torn in two, Jesus’ body was torn open to give us free and fresh access to him! And since we now have a magnificent High Priest to welcome us into God’s house, we come closer to God and approach him with an open heart, fully convinced that nothing will keep us at a distance from him. For our hearts have been sprinkled with blood to remove impurity, and we have been freed from an accusing conscience. Now we are clean, unstained, and presentable to God inside and out! So now wrap your heart tightly around the hope that lives within us, knowing that God always keeps his promises! Discover creative ways to encourage others and to motivate them toward acts of compassion, doing beautiful works as expressions of love. This is not the time to pull away and neglect meeting together, as some have formed the habit of doing. In fact, we should come together even more frequently, eager to encourage and urge each other onward as we anticipate that day dawning.

A Warning

For if we continue to persist in deliberate sin after we have known and received the truth, there is not another sacrifice for sin to be made for us. But this would qualify one for the certain, terrifying expectation of judgment and the raging fire ready to burn up his enemies! Anyone who disobeyed Moses’ law died without mercy on the simple evidence of two or three witnesses. How much more severely do you suppose a person deserves to be judged who has contempt for God’s Son, and who scorns the blood of the new covenant that made him holy, and has outraged the Spirit of grace? For we know him who said, “I have the right to take revenge and pay them back for their evil!” And also, “The Lord God will judge his own people!” It is the most terrifying thing of all to come under the judgment of the Living God! Don’t you remember those days right after the Light shined in your hearts? You endured a great marathon season of suffering hardships, yet you stood your ground. And at times you were publicly and shamefully mistreated, being persecuted for your faith; then at other times you stood side by side with those who preach the message of hope. You sympathized with those in prison and when all your belongings were confiscated you accepted that violation with joy; convinced that you possess a treasure growing in heaven that could never be taken from you. So don’t lose your bold, courageous faith, for you are destined for a great reward! You need the strength of endurance to reveal the poetry of God’s will and then you receive the promise in full. For soon and very soon, “The One who is appearing will come without delay!” And he also says, “My righteous ones will live from my faith. But if fear holds them back, my soul is not content with them!” But we are certainly not those who are held back by fear and perish; we are among those who have faith and experience true life!”

The Most Important Move You Could Ever Make

If you have not accepted Jesus Christ as Lord of your life, repent of your sins and accept the free gift of eternal life for time is short and your life on earth merely a vapor, here today and gone tomorrow. Choose life. Be blessed and celebrate that you will be with Him in the everlasting joy of eternity. Amen

“For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you to make atonement for your souls upon the altar; for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul.” Leviticus 17:11



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