Jerusalem in Snow 2015
Enjoy the video and pictures. It is cold and beautiful!
Consider this…it is an important key in the Lord’s Prayer which has been lost in translation.
Have we totally misunderstood? Praying for provision comes before praying for relationships and holiness!
We are to pray heaven to earth in three areas of our life:
1. Provision; “…give us this day our daily (not a correct translation of this word)bread…”
2. Relationships; “…forgive us our sins as we forgive others…”
3. Holiness; “… lead us not into temptation but deliver us from evil…”
Avner, Omri, Yahav and I at the Western Wall today
1. “And it shall be to you as a sign upon your hand and as a memorial between your eyes so that the Tora of YHWH may be in your mouth because with a strong hand YHWH brought you out of Egypt.” (Exod. 13:9)
2. “And it shall be to you as a sign upon your hand and as frontlets between your eyes because with a strong hand YHWH brought us out of Egypt.” (Exod. 13:16)
3. “And you shall bind them as a sign upon your hand and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.” (Deut. 6:8)
4. “And you shall place these words upon your hearts and upon your souls and you shall bind them as a sign upon your hands and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.” (Deut. 11:18)
(Note: Exod. 13:9 has zikkaron, “memorial”, instead of “frontlets”.)
Thus both the head and hand phylacteries contain four passages from Scripture which include these verses: Exod. 13:1-10, 11-16; Deut. 6:4- 9; 11:13-21
We are commanded to wear them. Why? and is the commandment to wear them applicable today? What can it teach us today? In coming lessons and blogs.
Our New Year is coming up on the 4th of September. In the New Covenant, it is called “The Feast of Trumpets”. From this day, we have 10 days of repentance before Yom Kippur.
This feast day is never called “New Year” in the bible and never “The Feast of Trumpets”. How confusing!
Translated literally in Hebrew the name of the feast doesn’t make sense in English.
Let thy hand be upon the man of thy right hand, upon the man whom you adopted (Hebrew translation)
Who is at the right hand of the Father? Yeshua
Who are we in? Yeshua
Ibn Ezra developed an explanation as to why God speaks in plural form in several places in the bible, most rabbis have accepted his view.
They say that the use of the plural form in reference to God is the ‘plural of majesty’, which kings and noblemen were accustomed to use in speech. This is called “pluralis majestatis).
Have Faith in God – Feed on Faithfulness!
A precious insight lost in translation:
Because the New Covenant text was most likely translated from Aramaic to Greek, and then to English, we often lose the connection to the Old Testament.
Often, Yeshua is actually quoting an Old Testament scripture and we don’t know it.
Here is a good example:
“Have faith in God” comes from Mark 11:20. It should be translated “Feed on faithfulness,” a quote which comes from Psalm 37:3.
In this case, by going back to the original language, and making the connection to the book of Psalms, we not only have a commandment to ‘have faith’, but we will learn how to have faith.
Have a glance at the different translations in English for this verse in the Psalms:
“…dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.” (NIV);
“…dwell in the land, and verily thou shalt be fed.” (KJV)
Here, again, is the correct translation;
“Trust in the Lord, and do good; dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness.”(NKJV)
“Feed on faithfulness”
Faith and faithfulness are the same words in Hebrew and Greek. Also, the verb “believe” comes from these words. This means we can’t have faith without being a faithful person.’Feed on faithfulness’ means to cultivate faithfulness in our lives.
“Have faith in God (feed on faithfulness) for verily I say unto you, that whosoever shall say unto this mountain, be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.” Mark 11:20
If we want faith that can move mountains, Psalm 37 teaches we must also be faithful.
This is what Yeshua is saying: Cultivate being faithful in all areas of your life and meditate on God’s faithfulness.
Why did Yeshua curse the fig tree? (The context of our quotation from Mark11:20) The fig tree is a symbol of Israel.
Israel, at the time of Yeshua, was unfaithful, and was about to go into a 2,000 year exile. Israel was not faithful (without faith and faithfulness) and was left withered like the fig tree that Yeshua cursed.
It was when Yeshua and His disciples were gazing on this dry, cursed tree that he gave us this lesson, “feed on faithfulness”
God’s faithfulness is also demonstrated in the nation Israel, even in Israel’s unfaithfulness.
After 2,000 years, in 1948, the fig tree, which had been cursed, was revived to life, with leaves and buds for fruit. God’s calling is irrevocable!
There is no better way to understand and to cultivate God’s faithfulness than to study His dealings and promises to the nation of Israel.
“Dwell in the land and feed on faithfulness” Psalm 37
You ‘dwell in the land’ by being faithful and having faith.
Look at this amazing connection: Yeshua curses the fig tree.
The next morning Peter notices it dried at the roots and reminds Yeshua.
Yeshua’s immediate response was “Feed on faithfulness”
The disciples would have known this reference to Psalm 37, having learned this Psalm off by heart and hearing it recited many, many times, so the other half of this verse; “Dwell in the Land feeding on faithfulness” (my translation) would have been an immediate connection and very meaningful to them. They would have known He was talking about the nation’s need to be faithful and that their right to dwell in the Land depended on that faithfulness.
God’s faithfulness is also demonstrated in the nation Israel, even in Israel’s unfaithfulness. After 2,000 years, in 1948, the fig tree that was cursed was revived to life.
“When his branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is nigh”
God’s calling is irrevocable. Israel is destined to be head of the nations. The rejection of the Messiah only postponed this calling, it did not cancel it.
There is no better way to understand and to cultivate God’s faithfulness than to study His dealings and promises to the nation of Israel.
What are some practical outworkings of faithfulness?
Here are only some I can think of, as an example:
Obviously, faithfulness to God and His word is paramount.
Then, there is the consideration of others:
Immediate friends; bearing one another’s burdens, praying together for each other’s needs – Yeshua’s prayer, what we call The Lord’s Prayer, is corporate, not individual.
“… give us our needs, forgive our sins, lead us not…”etc.
Are you praying the Lord’s prayer for yourself; for both yourself and your immediate friends; or not at all?
Priorities; being a reliable worker, and keeping integrity with your word(not idle words but words that are sustained).
Part 2 of this study is to follow – “The connection between the words ‘faithfulness‘ and ‘believe‘ in Hebrew.
Amazing report from Safe house
We are thrilled that Miriam has made such a turnaround. She sat for a full hour writing out a repentance to God for what her life has been. She asked Netanel to put it into the Western Wall for her. (I’m sure you know that the Jews write out requests to God, roll them up, and put them in the cracks between the stones).
She is truly wanting to have a relationship with YHVH. She also wants to learn English and Elisheva is teaching her through the Bible, telling her about Yeshua, at the same time.
She had some US dollars and she gave them to Elisheva (in spite of Elisheva’s protests), saying that she knew God would bless her in return. The amazing, and wonderful, thing is that she now has been given a job at the Western Wall! With her new clothes, new outlook, and new job, she is living life again.
This is a great testimony. Praise God.
Just last Friday, one of the homeless men that we knew at the Western Wall, was shot dead by a security guard.
The women sleeping outside are at high risk and have no protection.
Here is a photo of another homeless who is my friend. His name is Oriel (My light is God). He is what I call “my happy homeless.” He is quite happy living outside and he doesn’t want to be housed. The ladies sleeping outside often get very sick but Oriel never gets sick.
Risa was homeless for over a year. At one time she was sleeping in Abu Gosh, in an Arab house with no roof and chickens running around.
Risa being a homeless herself is helping me to understand homeless. Every individual is different and complex and there can be a thousand reasons why they don’t want to be helped at times. Risa is 26 years of age and is putting me in contact with other homeless her own age in the new city of Jerusalem. Risa also is familiar as to how to get governmental help.
It took a lot of love, prayer, faithfulness and dedication to bring Risa through. Like other homeless Risa came from a very dysfunctional family. She was very bitter and she needed much healing. She now has a job and a flat.
I am still working to house Orthodox. It is three years since we had the last safe house which was closed because of tremendous need and lack of funds. It seems to me that many in the church are indifferent and love has grown cold. Many are bogged down in their own problems and own world and help and labourers are hard to find. There are those who do care. I refuse to get discouraged and indifferent, I refuse to judge and become embittered when help doesn’t come. I refuse to let my love grow cold. I will keep doing my part. I will keep my eyes not on the empty half of the cup but on what we do have. There are still powerful committed followers of Yeshua on this earth who are our family.
Risa was at our home for a Shabbat meal.
We have been sharing Yeshua (Jesus) with Boaz. Boaz is very hungry to know the truth. He so much wants to feel God’s love.
He has been angry at God that his standard is too high and he can’t reach the required holiness to be able to enjoy God.
We are explaining to him that in the New Covenant, God comes down to us. We don’t need to make ourselves good enough to meet Him.
This photo was taken today as I was talking to him. Also Ruken (A follower of Yeshua from Turkey) shared with Boaz scriptures. It was a team effort!
Saturday night they did n’t get a good nights sleep because the men in the synagogue next door were up praying very loudly and blowing the shofar
Bat Zion (on the left) was very distressed as another homeless and taken her corner where she usually sleeps. Also they got very little sleep. We were very concerned for Bat Zion we thought she was loosing her mind. We thought of taking her to the city council for help but we feared that might put her into a mental hospital.
We prayed earnestly and thankfully Bat Zion had a better nights sleep last night.
We are praying we can rent a flat in the old city.
The 8 ladies keep hidden; they have lost all trust in humanity. They have lost trust in the Rabbis and Judaism; in social workers and what there is of the social welfare system in Israel.
They hide in corners, they wait in a dark area of the synagogue patiently until everyone leaves, which is usually around 2 AM, all the time hoping that no one will see them and kick them out. If they do get thrown out, they have the toilets or outside next to the wall itself. All of the ladies disappear during the day.
One of the ladies ( Miriam) is quite sick from spending the nights outside and needs medical attention.
Hila is the only one that keeps clean. She is Ultra-orthodox and wears wigs. Even young Ultra-Orthodox woman have to shave their hair and wear wigs because their natural hair is considered to attract men and stir up wrong desires. Even a married women can’t be seen by her husband with her natural hair.
We think Hila is involved in prostitution. She is the only one who has cloths, the only one that showers, but we don’t know where. We think she chooses the toilets to sleep in because she feels so defiled by her occupation, is full of shame and has a verylow self-esteem. Since Hila is Orthodox and wears wigs, her customers must be Rabbis or Orthodox. She desperately wants a home to live in. I do mean desperately! Please pray that she feels safe and opens her heart.
I will write about Bat Zion soon.
Why the western wall?
It’s a strange phenomenon why these ladies prefer the western wall. They would rather fall sick and die than sleep in a shelter, which is 30 minutes by car from the old city.
Although they have lost all hope in humanity and are like wounded animals, trusting no one, I believe there is left, in their dark despair, a spark of hope that maybe there is a God and are drawn to this source. This, I think, is the reason they are drawn to the western wall.
Here is the power of love. In the last update I told the story about Miriam who hadn’t been hugged in years and was hugged for around 20 minutes by Eli Sheva and another lady?
She has now had a shower and has new cloths and was smiling feeling so good about herself.
Bat Zion hasn’t had a shower year as she won’t have one until we buy her some underclothes, which we are in the process of doing.
We are looking to rent (we are believing to buy) a house or a flat in the Old City.
Extra money we receive will to towards renting a house or a flat in the Old City of Jerusalem. Even if the flat was not in use we could rent. We are putting a monthly statement every new moon stating income and expenditure for this project.
Locals and those who frequently visit Jerusalem are unaware of the homeless.
A friend of mine makes food packs consisting of bread, cheese of humus, chocolate bar and an item of fruit. you can see the bags we give out in the pictures above.
We carry the food backs in packs on our back. We visit the homeless one by one. Many of them are waiting for us.
HERE IS A TESTIMONY FROM MY FRIEND WHO HAS BEEN GIVING OUT FOOD FOR YEARS
Last Monday after finishing food deliveries to the homeless/poor on Jerusalem’s downtown streets, I stopped at Noah’s sidewalk cafe for a coffee – which is something of a tradition when the food delivery is complete, for us and for volunteers who may help out. As I sat there in the sunshine, a gentleman approached me and said, “Excuse me – you’re a Christian, aren’t you”, his Russian-accented words being more of a statement than a question. (Note: It is illegal for Christians to identify themselves as such, or to mention Jesus/Yeshua, while actually handing out food, as to do so can be deemed proselytizing, with the food being the inducement for people to listen. In this case, however, I was no longer handing out food and was simply answering a question.)
“Yes,” I answered. This rather well-kept gentleman then said, “I was sure you were. Do you remember me?” he asked, as he removed his sunglasses. “You do look familiar…” I answered, trying to place him. “You and your wife used to feed me and my friends. I was one of the Russian drunks you used to feed in front of the department store on King George Street.”
Then I remembered him. About 40 years of age, he was always either intoxicated or passed out on the sidewalk, usually with a bottle of liquor nearby. I hadn’t seen him in well over a year, and I had wondered if the booze might have killed him. It was hard to believe this was the same fellow we had known: he was now neatly attired, as clean-cut as a man could look, looking more like a college professor than a drunk: what a transformation!
“What happened to you!” I almost demanded.
“Almost two years ago, I had an unbelievable revelation of Jesus Christ,” he said. “All of a sudden I knew that people had been praying for me – you and your wife were probably two of them – but there were many others who had prayed for me, and the Lord made it clear to me that He was answering those prayers. I had nothing to do with any of this – nothing. It was completely Him, as if He grabbed me and said, ‘Enough,’ and then He started the change.”
Yuri, a Russian Jew who made aliyah some time ago, brought his heavy addiction to vodka with him from Moscow. He went on to explain that at the very moment of his amazing revelation of the Lord Jesus Christ, he knew his alcoholism was over. He started attending a Russian church – which is also a Christian rehab center – in neighboring Talpiyot, and is being guided in his Christian walk by the church’s pastor. I came home and told Lesley about my divine encounter with Yuri, and we spent some time in a prayer of gratitude to the Lord for this almost unbelievable miracle.
I “accidentally” ran into Yuri again two days later. It was wonderful to hear him quoting from the Scriptures as he asked me questions about spiritual warfare. From events he described to me, he has obviously been experiencing some warfare since he invited Christ to be Lord of his life. I was able to gently give him some advice, with a suggestion that he enlist as much prayer as possible at his fellowship.