Whose are these?

December 25th, 2013

The last story in the Book of Bereshiet, or Genesis, concerns the end of the lives of Jacob, and later Joseph, and his blessing of his sons.  Perhaps one of the more intriguing, and I will suggest, prophetic, questions in the Torah comes in Gen. 48:8.  And I’ll argue that his question is not only as vitally important now as it was then, but it might well serve as a summary of much of the history of mankind.

By the time that Yakov, or Jacob, adopts the two sons of his oldest son by his wife Rachel as his own, and then blesses them upon his deathbed, he has lived in the land of Egypt, and known the young men, for 17 years.  And yet, when he “beheld Joseph’s sons,” he said, “Whose are these?”   Because the next verse says that Israel’s “eyes were dim for age,” some will claim that he simply was unable to recognize his grandsons.  And yet that simple explanation falls short of the complete truth, for a number of reasons.  Among them is the Scripture’s use of the name Israel in this context, which often implies a larger truth than can be seen with physical eyes alone.  The subsequent detailed description of his having wittingly exchanged both his hands and the ‘blessing of the firstborn’, by putting the younger of the two sons, Ephraim, in first position, is telling as well.

It is the future history of the sons of Ephraim and Manasseh which shows that Jacob, speaking as Israel, saw far more clearly than what met the eye.  Joshua, who led the children of Israel into the promised land following the death of Moses, was of the tribe of Ephraim.  Following the split of the Northern and Southern Kingdoms, the kings of Israel, beginning with Jeroboam, were also of the house of Ephraim.  And yet Israel, this time meaning the ten northern tribes, turned repeatedly to idolatry, and the worship of the false, pagan gods.  For this, exactly as prophesied, they were sent into exile, and even given the equivalent of a ‘certificate of divorce’ by YHVH.  Even today, they remain “scattered among the heathen,” throughout the world.

Unlike the other patriarchs, Scripture tells us very little about the character of the two sons of Joseph.  They were born of an Egyptian (Mitzraite) mother, and raised in a pagan culture, but by a father who clearly knew and worshipped the One Elohim of his fathers Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.  We also know the meaning of their names, which therefore is key to understanding their prophetic destinies.  Manasseh, the eldest, was given the name associated with the Hebrew word meaning ‘forget’, “for Elohim has made me forget all my toil, and ALL MY FATHER’S HOUSE.”  (Gen. 41:51)  It was the name of the second, Ephraim, which implies “fruitful,”  because, “Elohim has made my fruitful in the LAND of my AFFLICTION.” (v52)

Given that understanding, perhaps it becomes more clear why Jacob placed the importance of bearing fruit ahead of the concept of forgetting “all my Father’s house!”  Indeed, the seed of Joseph DID utterly forget the statutes, judgments, and commandments of all his Father’s house, and suffer the curses of exile as a direct consequence.  But the prophets tell us that Ephraim (and indeed, by prophetic implication, ALL of those who have been scattered, but who choose to “return to Me,” or make t’shuvah) will eventually be regathered as the prophet Jeremiah, (chapter 3) among multiple witnesses, makes clear.

So what DID Israel see as he “beheld Joseph’s sons,” that caused him to ask the insightful question, “Whose are these?”  Could he have been referring to the idols that would eventually replace the God of Israel in the hearts of his childrens’ childrens’ childrens’ children?  Or — more directly — could he have been asking the question which resonates so perfectly today:

Whose are THESE!!?”   Whose people are these?  Do they belong to YHVH, the Creator, the Author of His Word, and Eternal King?  Or to the only alternative…false gods, paganism, the prince of this world?

Can we tell by their fruit?

Every year, as the Xmas season approaches, many lament the “commercialization” of a “holy-day” which NEVER really had anything to do with the True King of Kings, Messiah, and Son of Yah.  Priests and pastors almost all know the truth, but refuse to admit it to their misled flocks:  the ‘Mass’ was fabricated out of whole cloth to mix pagan sun-god traditions of Mithraism and rationalize the pagan celebration of a winter solstice ‘birth’ instead of His.  Depression, suicide, failed expectations, and the inevitable letdown of December 26th tell only part of the story.  The irony of the current “tradition” is lost on them:  there never WAS a true “christ” in “christ-mass”.   Scriptures like Jeremiah chapter 10,  Deuteronomy chapters 7, 12, 13, and many others tell us why.  Yahuah  does not tolerate any other gods “before His face,” and hates such “abomination.”   Since we understand that, “to whom much is given, much is expected,” it should be increasingly obvious why we should examine our own houses, and ask, “Whose are these?”  If we find idols which He says offend Him, they don’t belong there.

But, arguably even more importantly, the question must be asked about ourselves.  I will suggest that Israel was asking the question about ALL of his sons – and that includes each of us!  Many of us, whether we know it or not, are potential descendents of the “lost tribes of Israel,” collectively of the House of Ephraim.  And whether we are or not, or even if we are of Judah, or simply want to be “grafted in” to the coming Kingdom of Israel, as YHVH regathers His people — the lesson remains the same:

Whose are WE?

The choice, and the implications, have never been more important.

Shemot – the Book of Exodus – and modern slavery

December 23rd, 2013

This week’s Torah portion begins the Book of Exodus (aka “Shemot” in the Hebrew).

 

It is a story of deliverance from bondage, and — most importantly — Who does it.

 

Mark’s teaching on the topic, and the connections to what is happening today, and what must be understood about it, is one of the most “NOT Politically-correct”, and most important, that you may hear:

 

MGC Shemot teaching for 21 Dec 2013

 

 

Audio teaching: Parsha Vayishlach – Yakov, Israel, double-mindedness, and…

November 25th, 2013

the BATTLE we face RIGHT NOW!

 

 

Audio link to Parsha Vayishlach, 16 November, 2013.

Why bother with the “OLD” Testament?

November 11th, 2013

 

Recently I was asked a question that sounded so ridiculous that I thought at first it must be a joke.  But then I heard it again – and again – and realized there really ARE a lot of “Christians” who are serious when they ask it:

“WHAT?  Why (oh, why) do you teach from the OLD Testament?”

As if it no longer matters, now that we have something “new”.  And as if the very foundations upon which ALL of Scripture rests don’t matter any more either!

But the more I thought about the question, and realized just how many self-professed “Christians” seem to think that it’s ever-so-reasonable to ASK, the more I realized what be ready always to give an answer to every man that asks you a reason for the hope that is in you really meant.   (I Peter 3:15)  Shouldn’t we able to do that?  As it turns out, it’s not only easy, but so obvious that it is impossible to deny.  And it’s incredibly important, as well.

After all, “If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?”  (Psalm 11:3; old – but still True)  And didn’t the Messiah Himself say that we should build not upon sand, but upon the rock?  How can anyone who professes to believe Him, and His Word, think that He would come “in the flesh” just to do AWAY with everything He Wrote, and all of the very teachings which establish Who He Is?  Just ask any mathematician how credible he would be trying to “prove” some theorem by denying all of the foundational postulates that SUPPORT the proof!  Would you buy a product from a salesman who denies his own product halfway through the sales pitch?

Do we really think the Creator of the Universe and Author of Scripture can’t do at LEAST as well?

So, yes, we SHOULD be able to make a very clear case for His Truth, from Scripture, because that is EXACTLY what His Written Word does for us!  If it is NOT True, and not consistent, then why would ANYONE “believe?”  But that is also exactly what some in the so-called “New Testament Churches” try to push.  If the “God of the Bible” cannot be trusted to tell the Truth until the Book of Matthew, or — worse still — not until John 1:1, then what did Paul mean by “let God be True, but every man a liar“?

The simple fact is that Scripture IS consistent, and that His word IS True, from “Genesis to Maps.”  How can anyone believe that He is the “same, yesterday, today, and forever” (Hebrews 13:8) but deny that YHVH told the prophet Malachi the same thing in the “old” testament?  And, of course, it is the very ESSENCE of what He proved to Moses!

Most people seeking to regain a “first century understanding” of what the Messiah did will remember what He said in His first “public address”, in Matthew 5:17, that He did NOT come to “destroy the torah or the prophets,” and would not change “one yod or tiddle” of it (ie, even the smallest part of His Word — which, at that time, was obviously ONLY the “old” testament!) so long as heaven and earth still existed.  But there is FAR more, just to prove the obvious point.   Why would Yahushua quote those same texts literally dozens of times, saying, “It is Written,” if He didn’t mean that was important?  And how would Peter, or anyone else, have known Who He was, if not for the witness of the “old” Scriptures that they already knew?

The apostle Shaul, or Paul, wrote in his second letter to Timothy  (II Tim 3:16) that “All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness;”  but too many new-testament-ONLY types conveniently overlook the glaring inconsistency of their folly:   Paul was talking about what THEY knew “from childhood” to be the ONLY Scriptures they had when he wrote that letter!  And even if he might have known that SOMEDAY some of his own letters would be called that as well, was he lying then, or only later, if all that “old” stuff is now no LONGER “given by inspiration of God,” and is no longer worthwhile for “doctrine, reproof, correction, or instruction?

And when that same man wrote to convince others of what he knew to be true — that the promised Messiah had come in the flesh, and fulfilled the promises of that “old” testament; when he said “let us reason together,” what text was he reasoning FROM?  Every proof, every evidence, every argument that he, and every other witness, made to that effect was based directly and specifically on the “torah, writings, and the prophets” that constitute that “old” Testament.

Those who claim that “Jesus” somehow “did away with the law” may have a good reason for denying that the “old testament” still matters:  it reveals their lie.  Take a look at Deuteronomy chapter 13, and the warnings against false prophets.  Had He done anything of  the sort, then He could NOT have been Who He WAS!  Furthermore,  Yahushua certainly understood His own Word better than those who claim that it has now been “replaced”.  In John 5:31, He makes that clear:

“If I bear witness of myself, my witness is not true.

Instead, He turned to other witnesses, and — most importantly — to “the Father Himself,  Who sent me, and has borne witness of me.”  …ALL of which was confirmed because “It was Written” in Scripture – in the “old testament”.

Those who would claim that all of that “old” stuff is “done away with,” no longer relevant, and should not be taught, are performing the logical equivalent of taking aim at their own foot, and pulling the trigger.  They shoot out their own legs, and then wonder why they fall over.

What did John confirm that Yahushua advised, then?  “Search the scriptures;  for in them you think you have eternal life; and these are they which testify of Me.  And if THAT wasn’t clear enough, He continued, looking directly to the “Torah of Moses:”
“For if you believed Moses, you would believe Me, for he wrote about Me.”

Why do we teach from the “old” testament?  Why do we begin – as He did – in the Beginning?  Because His Truth has not changed.  Because His Word — ALL of it, FROM the Beginning — is the foundation:
“If the foundations be destroyed, what can the righteous do?”

Indeed, as the “new” testament simply confirms, His torah, His INSTRUCTION, is how we know Who He Is, and what righteousness” is.

WHY the “Law” is NOT “done away with”, nor is “Jesus” the ONLY one who can keep it!

October 30th, 2013

Here is the teaching for Deuteronomy 30 from Mark Call, which answers that particular Big Lie:

 

Deuteronomy 30

Legal standards in the Bible

October 30th, 2013

This week’s Torah portion, entitled “Chayei Sarah,” or “The life of Sarah”  is really about a whole lot of important legal issues, which formed the basis for British and American “common law” – back when we HAD “law”.

 

From contracts, to “agency” and the concept of “power of attorney”, to why no man of Yah in Scripture EVER got a “marriage license” – this is the first major detailed outline of real Law in Scripture:

 Chayei Sarah

 

Yom Kippur 2013 – why we MUST keep His feasts – NOW!

September 16th, 2013

Here is the recorded teaching and news summary from Mark Call for Shabbat Shalom Mesa fellowship on 13 September, 2013:

 

 

Yom Teruah 2013

 

The regular Shabbat teaching for TalkingTorah is also available on-line here as well:

Yom Teruah teaching from Talking Torah

 

Torah Economics and “come out of her” – another update

September 4th, 2013

This author has long argued that the coming worldwide economic meltdown, and the coming world war, are so closely intertwined, both in timing and in cause, that they will ultimately appear to have been almost simultaneous, once the smoke of deception clears.  And it will ultimately be almost impossible for most people to decide “which was the cart, and which was the horse.”

Our Creator hates “dishonest weights and measures,” like the irredeemable, fake, ‘pure fiat’ currencies of the world.  While the Constitution for the United States (back when it still mattered) once declared that “nothing but gold and silver” coin would be minted to serve as “money,” the Word of Yah is no less blunt.   In the Hebrew of the Bible, the word “qesef” just means “silver.”  But it is synonymous with “money”.  And Scripture (Lev. 19:35, Deut. 25:13-15, Proverbs 11:1, 16:11, 20:10,  20:23 and so on) repeatedly calls the corrupt system  of today’s fiat paper currencies an “abomination”.

There has never in history been a fiat currency which has NOT self-destructed.  Generally, the society fails along with the ‘money’.  And as the ultimate demise of the “almighty dollar” draws ever closer, the deceptions and manipulation of formerly-free world markets, from foreign exchange to stocks and bonds to commodities, intensifies.

At the recent Federal Reserve FOMC meeting, the mere suggestion that SOMEDAY, in the unlikely event of economic recovery, the Fed might begin to “taper” its money printing excesses resulted in an immediate worldwide panic in all types of paper assets — from stocks in Asia, Europe, and the US, to government bonds to commodities futures.  If the intent of the “jawboning” was a “beta test” to assess the reaction of investors to even a hint that “easy money” might not flow like cheap booze to winos, the verdict is in.  The “End Of QE” — if it ever happens — will not be pretty.

Analysts who have correctly forecast the continued economic meltdown concluded that the central banks have literally “painted themselves into a corner,” with no escape.  To end the money printing will end the pretense of recovery, and of banking system solvency.  A derivative meltdown and liquidity collapse would follow.  But the alternative, indeed the mathematical certainty, of a debt-based system, is hyperinflation.  Either way, the handwriting is already on the wall.  The final demise of the Almighty Dollar, the world reserve currency, has been “weighed, measured, and divided”.

Indeed, perhaps the most likely scenario at this point is BOTH:  an attempt to “taper” the money-printing extravaganza results in a market panic, followed by a cure of the only “solution” that will be considered — LOTS more money printing.  Hyperinflation is the inevitable result.

Bank accounts in the island nation of Cyprus were recently confiscated in what has now been called a “bail-IN.”  Rather than bailing OUT banksters, the new sham is to force depositors to bail-in, and accept worthless ‘ownership’ of failed financial institutions, via the ruse that they are “creditors” of the bankruptcy.  The nations of Japan and Canada, among others, talk openly now of the option, and having been successfully beta-tested, rest assured that it WILL be used elsewhere, including places that the rubes believe “it could NEVER happen here.”   And remember, they would never tap your phones, either.

As the open and literally “in-your-face” criminality in the world financial system spreads like a cancer, the manipulation of the paper gold and silver markets has become more brazen as well.  In mid-April, over 400 TONS of gold that could not be delivered were “sold” in order to collapse prices and precipitate a liquidation.  Even the most skeptical observers of the sham were forced to admit the obvious.  But as the price of PAPER “gold” and paper “silver” (which exist only in “hypothecated” form as a promise for future delivery which cannot be kept) fell, the supplies of REAL gold and silver coins simply began to dry up, worldwide.  A great “divergence” manifested; “premiums” increased.  Those who wanted to buy real, physical precious metals began to understand that the “price” of the fake stuff in the Crimex and similar manipulated markets had less and less to do with reality.

Watch for a “gold-backed” replacement currency when the dollar and world reserve system implodes.  The problems?  It will be a lie – and you can expect that those who want the PRIVILEGE of “buying and selling” in that new WunderMunny will have to verify their identity somehow.  To prevent crime and money laundering, you will be told.  Think of it as a “mark” — so that the prince of This World knows who serves him.

More and more of the honest economic commentators and advisers are beginning to tell their clients what Revelation 18:4 also counsels:  “Come out of her.”  A system built on lies MUST inevitably collapse.   (And students of the Torah will recognize that indeed this was the function of the “Yovel” or “Jubilee” year:  to RESET the economic system every fifty years, before the burden of compounding debt would otherwise collapse a society.)  When dishonest money fails, the aftermath is never pretty, and generally it includes war.  But when the biggest and most corrupt debt bubble in human history explodes, worldwide, the only way to describe the carnage will be “of Biblical proportions.”

The time to prepare, and to “come out“, so as to NOT participate in the sin, nor partake of the plagues now so clearly on the horizon, is NOW.


Ki Tetsei

August 20th, 2013

Here is the audio file for Mark Call’s most recent teaching from the Shabbat Shalom Mesa online fellowship — one of the most “politically-incorrect” in the Torah:

 

http://markniwot.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/08/SSM-8-16-13-Ki-Tetse-NOT-PC-but-True-Marriage-blessing-divorce-podcast.mp3

The Big Lie

August 7th, 2013

And the “Lies just keep on coming!”

Whether the secret, unconstitutional program was called “Echelon,”  or “Prism,” or “main core,” or any of a dozen other “code-names” designed to keep people from realizing the perfidy of those who consider themselves rulers — but clearly not servants — it is now obvious that the “conspiracy theorists” were right all along.  Power DOES corrupt!  And Big Brother really IS watching, and listening, and spying, and groping, and lying about all of it.  King Solomon was right, too, of course.  There really is “nothing new under the sun,” either.

The Director of the “National Security Agency”, or NSA (once so officially denied even to exist that it was called “No Such Agency”) and the Director of National Intelligence [sic] and the President of the United States have all recently claimed that they are not “bugging” phone calls.  They are not spying on people who were once “presumed innocent” without a lawful warrant.  They are lying.  And they have been caught – repeatedly – and yet are not even ashamed.

The “ends justify the means”, is the common rationale.  After all, the “law” doesn’t matter (remember, ‘the Church’ has participated in that dispensational deception for about 17 centuries; if YHVH Himself cannot be trusted to keep His Word, and the “Law of God” can be done away with, or “nailed to the cross” – why would ANYONE think a mere Constitution or Bill of Rights written by men could possibly fare any better?)

And if we will not allow God or His Word in the Courts – or legislature – or White House – or especially in schools, then why would anyone be able to expect His protection?  Better, we are told, to trust in fallen man — especially when he wears a uniform, and is often the only one allowed to carry a gun.

What is so astounding about all of these recent “revelations” of deceit, and lawlessness, and brazen chutzpah is the sheer boldness of the evil.  Adolf Hitler once famously wrote of “the Big Lie”, repeated ad nauseum, which succeeds in deceiving the masses simply because it IS so bold, so “in your face”.  People, he said, would simply be unwilling to accept that anyone could lie so openly.  Propaganda and peer pressure would do the rest.  Any perusal of the news today reveals that, so far as the princes of this world are concerned, Mein Kampf was correct.  Or at least that most politicians and bureaucrats are reading his playbook, and certainly not the Bible.

And yet Scripture is all about Truth.  It is literally the opposite of the cancerous Big Lies we see exposed worldwide today.  And all that we who have “eyes to see” can observe in the world today was correctly foretold as well.  Yahushua, in Matthew 24, spoke of lies so overwhelming that, “if possible, even the elect,” would be deceived.  “See, I have told you beforehand.”

Shaul, or Paul, spoke several times about the attitudes reflected by such “haters of God“, and called them, among other things, “proud,” filled with unrighteousness, “covenant-breakers” (Romans 1) and predicted that, “in the last days, perilous times will come,” and that men will be headstrong, haughty, traitorous, despisers of good, and ultimately, “having a form of godliness but denying its power.  And from such people turn away!

The true “disconnect” however, is that people who refuse to trust in God, and indeed reject Him completely, even to the point of accepting what He calls “abomination,” would instead trust their lives, and their children’s lives, to the protection of men who have shown they cannot be trusted.

Elected officials in the United States of America — at least ‘once upon a time’ — took an oath before God to defend the Constitution “against all enemies”, including those in positions of power, within the gates.  Now it has become clear that many of those same “public servants” not only lied about their perfidy, but lied before YHVH as well.

Why would we — or ANYONE — “trust” people who clearly cannot even be trusted to keep an OATH before YHVH?

The Biggest Lie of all is that YHVH cannot be trusted to keep His Word, but that somehow, liars who hate Him – can.

From such, turn away.

——————————————-

These six things does YHVH hate: yea, seven are an abomination unto him:

A proud look, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood,

A heart that devises wicked imaginations, feet that are swift in running to mischief,

A false witness that speaks lies, and he that sows discord among brethren.                   [Proverbs 6:16-19]