Your Creator and Redeemer
Your Savior's Ancient Existence
Ever since the episode in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve partook of the forbidden fruit, mankind has been under a curse for his actions. The earth is no longer fruitful as it should be, and thorns and weeds are commonplace. Sin rules our world and society. For 6,000 years man has been allowed to go his way and to whatever he wishes with a minimum of interference from Yahweh. The record that he will leave in his quest to rule himself will be a public account for all to view and know in the ages to come.
The promise of a Redeemer was given first to Adam and Eve (Genesis 3:15), then to a few chosen people down through history, with Abraham and his descendants selected to carry the message of redemption to the world. Ancient Israel was to live His laws and become an example of the blessings that would accrue when a nation followed Yahweh's way of life and obeyed Him. Israel was to be a model for all other nations to follow. Blessings would be given for obedience.
But instead of being a good example, Israel began to follow the pagan ways of peoples around them. The history of Israel is one of commandment breaking and disobedience, sparked by worship of pagan deities of the world.
The Old Testament sacrificial laws were given to cover the sins of the people. Yahweh Himself described the mode of sacrifice and gave details on how He wanted these sacrifices made. The Book of Leviticus is almost a verbatim statement of the very words of Yahweh. Each of the sacrifices mentioned in Levities is a picture of the atoning work that would later be accomplished by the Messiah. There are five main offerings listed in Leviticus in addition to the feast days and other regulations of worship.
It was possible, therefore, to have sins covered by animal sacrifices enjoined by Yahweh, because these sacrifices pointed to the true redemption that would come in the promised Redeemer. The animal chosen for sacrifices was to be without blemish, typifying the purity and sinless character of the One who would bear the sins of the world. It is impossible for an animal to sin because brute beasts act with instinct. But animal life is not as precious as that of a sinless, holy being.
The Angel Who Was Yahweh
In the pages of the Old Testament there appear references and allusions to Beings who are more than human. Although they have the appearance of humans, they are of a higher form. One of these is called malak in Hebrew, translated angel in English. It means messenger. The bible speaks of angels, and the Messiah acknowledged that there were such celestial beings, Matthew 26:53.
These angelic beings are evidently invisible to the human eye. They are not of a material essence but are composed of spirit, which can't be seen by humans. The Messiah likened the spirit realm to wind, John 3:8. It can also be similar to gravity, electricity, magnetism, etc., all of which are forces or energy we cannot see. We can see the results of their activity, however. So is the spirit realm. It is not something we can taste, smell, feel or hear with our senses. Angelic beings can appear to humans as men if they desire, however. They can talk and reason and carry on common human activities. Or they can remain in the spirit realm and be unseen. Hebrews 13:2 says, "Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares."
A most interesting figure that appeared to a number of Old Testament people was "the Angel of Yahweh," found first in Genesis 16:7. This celestial Being is no ordinary angel in the Old Testament. He first appears to Hagar after Sarai has afflicted her and she is fleeing. The Angel of Yahweh tells her to return to her mistress and submit to her. He prophesies that he will "multiply thy seed exceedingly, that it shall not be numbered for multitude." He then tells Hagar that the son she will bear shall be named Ishmael, because Yahweh has heard her affliction, Verse 11. Verse 13 shows that this "Angel of Yahweh" is referred to as Yahweh Himself. The sense of the statement, "Have I also looked after Him that sees me," is better translated, "Do I still live after seeing El?"
Yahshua as Yahweh
"Then Yahweh rained upon Sodom and upon Gomorrah brimstone and fire from Yahweh out of heaven," Gen. 19:24. Yahweh who dealt with man in the Old Testament was Yahshua Himself.
Genesis 18 tells of three celestial beings who visit Abraham in the plains of Mamre. Yahweh had spoken to Abraham directly in the 17th chapter. It is not surprising then to see that Abraham recognizes Yahweh in Verse 3 and prepares a meal for the three visitors. It is obvious that in this chapter, Abraham is speaking to Yahweh of the Old Testament. Not only does He promise that Abraham would be the father of a mighty nation, but also that the world will be blessed through Abraham's progeny. Additionally, Abraham pleads for the sparing of the city of Sodom if there were but 10 righteous.
Another appearance of the Angel of Yahweh takes place when Abraham is about to slay his son Isaac on Mount Moriah. Just before plunging the knife into his son, Abraham hears "the Angel of Yahweh" call to him, telling him not to harm Isaac: "Now I know that you fear Elohim, seeing you have not withheld your son, your only son from Me," Genesis 22:12. This "Angel of Yahweh" equates himself with Elohim by stating that Abraham had not withheld the life of Isaac from Him. Abraham's willingness to sacrifice Isaac proved to the Angel that he was willing to obey Yahweh in all things.
Notice in Genesis 22:15-18 that the Angel of Yahweh called to Abraham the second time and said, "By Myself have I sworn, says Yahweh...." In no uncertain terms the Angel makes Himself known as Yahweh. He is called the messenger of Yahweh, but then in turn calls Himself Yahweh.
Notice in Judges 6:11 an Angel of Yahweh comes to Gideon and gives him reassurance that something might be done to save Israel from the Midianites (verses 12-14). In Verse 14, He is called Yahweh. In Verse 16 is the reassurance that Yahweh will be with Gideon. In Verse 20, the Angel of Yahweh again appears and touches the cakes and flesh with His rod and fire consumes them. The Angel of Yahweh then departs and Gideon is terrified that he has seen an Angel of Yahweh face-to-face. Understand that Verses 23 and 24 refer to Yahweh. Gideon is afraid because he has seen Yahweh face-to-face, and fears for his life.
Moses also wanted to see the face of Yahweh in its full glory and asked to do so in Exodus 33:18. His request is refused, but Moses is told that he will be able to see Yahweh's backside as He hides Moses in the cleft of the rock, Verse 22. However, no human is able to look upon the full shekinah glory of Yahweh and live, Verse 20. It is this fear that took hold of Gideon and some of the others who knew they had seen Yahweh of the Old Testament and they fully expected to die.
The covenant Yahweh made with Israel is in Exodus Chapters 20-23, and is read to the people and ratified in Chapter 24, Verses 1-8. Chapter 23 of Exodus is especially noteworthy because it says the people should keep the Sabbatical year, Verses 10-11; the weekly Sabbath, Verse 12; and not mention the names of pagan deities, Verse 13. The holy days are then mentioned.
Verses 20-23 tell of the Angel that Yahweh is planning to send with the children of Israel to bring them across the Jordan. Israel is cautioned to obey Him and not rebel, because Yahweh's Name is in Him. It is this Angel of Yahweh that carries Yahweh's Name. He is the one that Israel saw and heard. He was the pillar of cloud in the day and a pillar of fire at night. This angel the Jews called the Metatron, the chief executive officer who carried out all the directives of Yahweh Himself.
Notice the account of the burning bush in Exodus where the Angel of Yahweh appeared to Moses in the bush. Scripture says "Yahweh" noticed when Moses turned aside to see the bush that was not consumed, Verse 3. And it was "Elohim" that called to him out of the midst of the bush, Verse 4. First it's the Angel of Yahweh, then it is Elohim who calls out of the bush. This is no ordinary Angel! In the conversation between Moses and Elohim (Verse 5 to the end of the Chapter), Elohim promises that He will deliver the children of Israel from the bondage of the Egyptians. The Angel was Yahweh.
When Moses is told that he must go to Pharaoh and ask him to release Israel, Moses feels inadequate and is given reassurance that Elohim will go with him. But Moses asks what he should tell the Israelites is the Name of the One who will deliver Israel. In Verse 14, Yahweh reveals His Name to Moses and says He is the Mighty One of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. He says that is His Name forever unto all generations, Verse 15.
This Being that appeared in the Old Testament as the Angel of Yahweh was actually Yahweh Himself who made Himself visible to the people. He is the One Israel heard thunder the Ten Commandments from Mount Sinai. He is the One who physically created the heavens and the earth. He is the Yahweh of the Old Testament.
Manoah Told Yahweh's Name "Wonderful"
Manoah and his wife, who were later to become the parents of Samson, were visited by an angel, Judges 13. Verse 3 tells us that it was the Angel of Yahweh who appeared to the woman and promised that she would bear a son, warning her not to drink wine or strong drink nor to eat anything unclean, Verses 4-5. The Angel looked like a man but had an awe-inspiring appearance, Verses 6-7. She told the account to Manoah who in turn prayed that the Man of Elohim would come again and confirm the promise, Verse 8. Verses 9-11 tell of the appearance of the Angel again, and when Manoah asked Him whether He was the Man who spoke to his wife, the answer was "I am."
Manoah asked what His Name might be so that when the expected Samson is born they might give Him the honor, Verse 17. Take special note of the Angel's answer in Verse 18. "Why do you ask thus after My Name seeing it is secret?" The Hebrew "pilyi" is here translated secret, but it is the same word translated "wonderful" in Isaiah 9:6. The verse in Isaiah refers to the Messiah: Wonderful, Counselor, the Mighty El, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace are all appellatives of the promised Messiah.
After ascending in the flame of the altar, the Angel of Yahweh no longer appeared to Manoah and his wife. Manoah feared for his life because he knew that he had seen Elohim. But his wife reassured him that the Angel could have killed him earlier, but chose to accept the burnt offering, Verse 19-23. In all these specific instances, the Angel of Yahweh appears as a man and is often mistaken for a man.
The use of the plural "Elohim" and "us" of Genesis 1:1 and 26
in connection with the creation shows that Yahshua was with
Yahweh primevally and with Him created the universe.
Yahshua in the Old Testament
In Genesis 19:24 we read of the Yahweh on earth raining down brimstone and fire from the Yahweh in the heavens. This is difficult for some to understand, but the One who appeared to men in the Old Testament as Yahweh was also the One who created the universe.
The Yahweh who was seen and heard was none other than Yahshua Himself before He came to this earth at Bethlehem. The Yahweh who rained brimstone and fire on Sodom was Yahshua before He came as a babe to Bethlehem. He received His power and authority to destroy Sodom and Gomorrah from the invisible Father Yahweh who has always stayed in the spirit realm. It was Yahshua who was the Yahweh of the Old Testament and who appeared to Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden. He it was who drove them out after providing them with proper coverings for their nakedness.
This may sound confusing, but if we remember that Genesis 19:24 speaks of two Yahwehs--one on earth and one in heaven--and recall that an Angel is to have Yahweh's Name to guide Israel here on earth, it is clearer. The Heavenly Father Yahweh Himself has never been seen at any time. He has always stayed in the spirit realm, never coming down to the physical realm where mankind lives. He has provided a way for us to come to His level through Yahshua.
Lesson 3-B - Study Questions
Yahshua in Both Old and New Testaments
1. Was there more than one individual acting in the Old Testament? Genesis 1:26. Notice the word "Us" also in 3:22, 11:7; Isaiah 6:8.
2. What is the King James word (noun) describing who collaborated in the creation in Genesis 1:1: "In the beginning...."?
NOTE: Look up the word in Strong's Exhaustive Concordance, where you will find it is No. 430 in the Hebrew Dictionary. It is the plural of Eloah and means more than one--Mighty Ones.
3. Who was it that did the actual creating of the universe? John 1:1-3. The Word is Yahshua Himself who came to earth in the flesh, John 1:14. What does Paul say about the One who did the creating in Colossians 1:15-17? Did the writer of Hebrews say the same thing? Hebrews 1:1-3 (especially verse 2) and 2:10.
4. Who is called the Rock? 1 Corinthians 10:4.
NOTE: Moses struck the rock, Exodus 17:6. In Numbers 20:7-13, he struck it in a fit of anger when he was only to speak to it. For that offense, Moses was not allowed to enter the Promised Land with the Israelites. Deuteronomy 32:49-52. His action typifies deliberately sinning after we have repented and been forgiven. Yahshua will die for sins only once, Hebrews 9:14, 25-28; 10:10; Isaiah 53:4-5, Zechariah 12:10.
5. Is the song of Moses referring to Yahshua as a Rock in Deuteronomy 32:15? (See also verses 4, 18, 31, 37.) What did David refer to upon his deliverance form the hands of Saul? 2 Samuel 22:2-3, 47. Note David's words in Psalm 62:6-7.
6. Did Paul say the Messiah pre-existed? Philippians 2:5-8.
NOTE: "Equal" according to John Lightfoot's New Testament Commentary, means to be in the same plane of existence. He did not look upon this as a prize that must not slip from His grasp. Rather, He divested Himself (emptied Himself) and took the form of a slave. See Paul's statement in 2 Corinthians 8:9. The writer of Hebrews uses the same thought in 2:14, where the Messiah "partook of flesh and blood." See John 1:14.
7. Did Yahshua Himself state that He had existed with the Father? John 17:5. Did He say that Yahweh the Father had sent Him into the world? Verse 18.
8. From where did Yahshua say He had come to do the Father's will? John 6:38. Did He further state that He had existed in the days of Abraham? John 8:56-58.
Has Anyone See the Father?
1. Does the Bible say that the two beings identified as Yahweh were united in purpose? Deuteronomy 6:4.
NOTE: The Shema (Deuteronomy 6:4-9) uses the Hebrew "echad," which means a compound unity, one made up of many. It is not "yahid," which means unique or a single one.
2. What did Yahshua Himself say about the relationship between Himself and the Father? John 8:19; 10:30.
3. What did John say about seeing the Father? John 1:18. Note the words "at any time." What did he say in 1 John 4:12?
4. What did Yahshua say about seeing or hearing the Father? John 5:37; 6:46. Therefore, the Yahweh that was heard and seen in the Old Testament was not the Father. It was the Word, or the Spokesman.
5. In 1 Timothy 1:17 Paul said the Father has a special characteristic. What is it?
NOTE: The word "invisible" is "aoratos." Paul also mentions the King of Kings, 6:15. He describes "shekinah" glory as a bright, blinding light that human beings cannot approach. What does Paul say about His being visible? Verse 16. What else does Paul say about Yahshua as the image of Yahweh? Colossians 1:15. The Rotherham translation uses "unseen." Knox says, "we cannot see."
6. Did Moses realize that the Heavenly Father was invisible? Hebrews 11:27.
NOTE: It is clear from both the Old and the New Testaments that no one has seen the Heavenly Father at any time, neither has anyone heard Him speak. It was the spokesman, Yahshua, who had appeared to the Israelites in the Old Testament. At times He came as a man (Genesis 32:24-30; 18:1-14), sometimes as an angel (Exodus 23:21), and again in His shekinah glory (Exodus 33:18-23). Here it was none other than Yahshua before He came to earth as a man.
7. What was one of the signs that would be given of the coming Redeemer? Isaiah 7:14.
NOTE: Intellectual critics have attempted to use this verse to show that the Messiah was not born of a virgin. Isaiah 7:14 uses the Hebrew "almah," meaning "young woman" (a young woman may or may not be a virgin). "Bethulah" is the Hebrew word for virgin, which is not used here. However, the Greek word used in Matthew 1:23 is "parthenos," meaning virgin. Therefore, the King James is correct in translating the Hebrew "almah" as virgin because the Greek verifies the usage.
8. What are some of the other titles to be given the Savior? Isaiah 9:6.
NOTE: Some translations give "Father of Eternity," meaning the One Who gives eternal life. This is in accord with the New Testament teaching that it is through Yahshua that we are given eternal life, as in Hebrews 2:10; 5:8-9; Acts 4:12; 2 Thessalonians 2:16; 2 Timothy 2:10; 1 John 5:20, Jude 21.
It should now be clear that the One who gave His life for the sins of the world was not an ordinary man. He was the One who existed with the Father and was the actual Creator of this planet and the universe. The price paid for your redemption was the life of the One who gave you life through creation, and now offers eternal life if you obey Him, Hebrews 5:9. He was willing to die for you while you were yet a sinner.
Death Penalty Paid By One Who Gave Life
The Yahweh on earth was the Mighty One of the Old Testament who paid the price for your redemption. It was He who had created all things, and now He was to offer Himself as a redemption price for the creation that had turned from righteousness to the way that seems right to man. Many had rejected the good way and followed the way of the Adversary. Therefore, all mankind was doomed, for all had sinned and come short of the glory of Yahweh. It was now up to the One who had created the physical realm to redeem it. The price that was paid for the sin of man was the life of One who had created life.
The one life that was given for the sins of the world was the most precious life that could be offered. He gave us all physical life, and now He has died and risen again and gives us an opportunity to have life on a higher plane than the physical; we are offered life in the spirit realm.
In the physical realm, the law that life depends upon life holds firm when we examine the food we eat. Whether it is vegetables or steak, nuts or fruit, food must come from the living creation around us.
More important, the life that we have forfeited through sin must be redeemed by the life of another. Hebrews 9:22 tells us, "Without the shedding of blood there is no remission." This is based on Leviticus 4:20, 26, 35; 5:10, 12, 18.
The plan of redemption was in the foreknowledge of Yahweh and we see glimpses of it in Genesis 3:15 and 21. But the blood of an animal could not purify the conscience, nor could it wash away a moral offense. It could do nothing to maintain the justice of Yahweh. Neither could it make the heart pure. But it was in the body of Messiah, which Yahweh had prepared for an earthly life, that we find fullness and complete sacrifice, Hebrews 10:5.
The Birth of Yahshua
The world celebrates the birth of the Messiah in December every year. But we are nowhere told to remember or observe the date of His birth. He probably was not even born anywhere near December 25, as many encyclopedias freely admit. More likely He was born in early October.
His exact birth date was blurred and dimmed because Yahweh does not command us to remember Yahshua's birth. We are told to remember His death, which we do every year at Passover.
1. Did Isaiah foretell the coming of Yahweh's Salvation? Isaiah 7:14; 9:6-7. Was it fulfilled? Matthew 1:21, Luke 1:26-35.
NOTE: Immanuel or Emmanuel is a title of the prophesied Messiah that was to renew Davidic promises to Yahweh's people. It means "El with us."
2. When did His birth occur? Although the year is not specifically mentioned, it is tied to prophesied events and many in Israel were awaiting the coming of the Messiah in his time.
John the Baptist was six months older than Yahshua. By determining John the Baptist's birth date, we can arrive at Yahshua's time of birth. An angel appeared to John the Baptist's father, Zechariah (Luke 1:13), and made the announcement of Elizabeth's pregnancy. Zechariah was a priest executing his office "in the order of his course," Luke 1:8-12. It is called the "course of Abia," the eighth of 24 courses, 1 Chronicles 24:10. Each course was one week, twice a year, except for the High Sabbaths when all courses were present. The eighth course would be about a week after Pentecost (Shavuoth), around the first week in June. Luke 1:23 tells us that Zechariah went home after his ministering was completed, and Verse 24 shows Yahweh keeping His promise, for Elizabeth became pregnant when Zechariah was home at this time.
Nine months later bring us to about March, the time when John the Baptist was born. Verse 26 shows that in the sixth month of Elizabeth's pregnancy (December) Yahshua was conceived by Mary. John the Baptist was born about the third week in March. Yahshua, who was six months younger, would then be born the latter part of September, or early October, corresponding to the seventh Hebrew month Tishri.
3. Was the weather mild enough to remain outdoors at this time? Luke 2:8. December would be the cold, rainy season--the ninth Hebrew month--Ezra 10:9, 13 and Songs of Solomon 2:11. What did Yahshua say about the harsh Palestinian winters? Matthew 24:20. It would hardly be the same time flocks were in the fields.
4. What did Caesar Augustus do? Luke 2:1-3. Did Joseph and Miriam comply? Luke 2:4-5. Was this when Yahshua was born? Verses 6-7. What else would the Hebrew nation be doing in the seventh month? Leviticus 23:23-24.
NOTE: As shown, it was the seventh Hebrew month, the best time to tax an agricultural nation, when the fall harvest was completed. In addition, the people were busy attending the feasts, especially the Feast of Tabernacles, where they would be in a joyful mood and thankful for the harvest. Travel to their birthplace would be relatively easy.
His Inspired Name Corrupted
1. What was Joseph told to call the child of Mary (Miriam)? Matthew 1:21.
NOTE: The King James should have listed His name as the Hebrew "Yahshua." (For more proof, read our booklet, "The Missing J.").
2. What was Miriam told by the angel? Luke 1:31. The first occurrence of this title connected to redemption occurs in Exodus 15:2, where the short form "YAH" is used in the original text: "And He has become my salvation."
3. What did Moses call Oshea (Numbers 13:8) the son of Nun? Numbers 13:16.
NOTE: Upon Israel's return from Babylonian captivity, the shortened form of the name Joshua was dominant. There is no doubt that "Jesus" is the Greek form of the Hebrew name Yahshua, which had been borne by two illustrious individuals in former periods of Israelite history. One was the successor of Moses and the introducer of Israel into the Promised Land, Exodus 24:13. The other was the high priest who, along with Zerubbabel (Zechariah 3;1), took an active part in the reestablishment of the civil and religious polity of the Jews. By contraction the name became Joshua (then Jeshua). When transferred into Greek, by taking the termination characteristics of the language, it assumed the form Jesus as it came through the Latin. Unlike English, which uses corresponding suffixes in personal pronouns, most languages have special endings on nouns showing the gender, number and case. The "us" ending indicates masculine nominative.
4. Andrew said something to Simon Peter, his brother, in John 1:41. What?
NOTE: Two brothers, Andrew and Simon, who both speak the Semitic Aramaic language, refer to Yahshua as "the Messiah." But notice that the translators added "which is, being interpreted, the Christ." Obviously, the Hebrews would know what "Messiah" meant. It was the promise of Daniel 9:25-26.
More properly, the notation should have been, "Which, being interpreted, is the anointed." Why would a Hebrew-speaking people use a Greek term to explain a Hebrew word? They wouldn't. The translators did.
The Catholic Encyclopedia, Vol. 8, p. 374, explains: "the word Christ, the Greek equivalent of the Hebrew word Messiah, means 'anointed.' According to the Old Law, priests (Exodus 29:29, Leviticus 4:3), kings...and prophets (Isaiah 61:1) were supposed to be anointed for the respective offices; now the Christ, or the Messias, combined this threefold dignity in His person. It is not surprising, therefore, that for centuries the Jews had referred to their expected Deliverer as 'the Anointed.' Perhaps this designation alludes to Isaiah 61:1 and Daniel 9:24-26, or even to Psalm 2:2; 19:7; 44:8. Thus the term Christ or Messias was a title rather than a proper name.... Only after the resurrection did the title gradually pass into a proper name, and the expression Jesus Christ or Christ Jesus became only one designation."
Christ is from the Greek Chrio meaning "to anoint." An adjective, not a noun, it is a translation from the Hebrew "Messiah." Vincent's Word Studies in the New Testament says, "The king and spiritual ruler from David's race, promised under that name in the Old Testament (Psalm 2:2; Daniel 9:25-26). To us [Messiah] has become a proper name, and is therefore written without the definite article; but, in the body of the gospel narratives, since the identity of [Yahshua] with the promised Messiah is still in question with the people, the article is habitually used, and the name should therefore be translated "The [Messiah]." After the resurrection when the recognition of [Yahshua] as Messiah has become general, we find the word beginning to be used as a proper name, with or without the article."
Anointing was applied to kings, prophets, and to priests at their inauguration. "Yahweh's anointed" was a common title of a king. Yahshua was "Yahweh's anointed" and united in Himself the offices of king, prophet and priest.
The Savior's Death and Resurrection
1. How was the promised King to travel to Jerusalem? Zechariah 9:9 (compare Isaiah 62:11). Did Yahshua fulfill this? Matthew 21:4-5; Mark 11:1-7; Luke 19:30-35; John 12:12-15.
2. Under which name did Yahshua teach? John 10:25; 12:13. When did the Scribes and Pharisees complete their plans to kill Yahshua? Matthew 26:1-5; Mark 14:1-2; Luke 22:1-2.
NOTE: It was two days before Passover. The Passover was held on the 14th of Abib (sometimes called Nisan). Two days before would be the 12th of Nisan. Their main concern was to put Yahshua to death before the feast day, that is, the 15th of Nisan, which is a High Sabbath and the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread (Lev. 23:4-8). The two events, Passover and Unleavened Bread, had in the new Testament become merged together. It is important, therefore, to understand that the 15th of Nisan begins the Feast of Unleavened Bread and is an annual holy day, a Sabbath, and can occur on any day of the week.
3. The Passover, Nisan 14, was now approaching. Were Yahshua's disciples eager to prepare for Passover? Matthew 26:17-19 ("day" is not in the original); Mark 14:12-16; Luke 22:7-13. They hurriedly made arrangements for Passover. Wasn't it later that same evening that they held their last Passover with Yahshua? Luke 22:14-15; Mark 14:17; Matthew 26:20; John 13:1. Does Yahshua call this the Passover? Luke 22:15. What does Yahshua do at the beginning of the evening? John 13:1-17. Does Judas now fully commit to betray Him? John 13:18-27; Matthew 26:21-29; Mark 14:18-21; Luke 22:21-23. Did the disciples understand what Yahshua said to Judas? John 13:26-30.
NOTE: The fact that some of the disciples thought that Yahshua was sending out Judas to PURCHASE items for the Feast (of Unleavened Bread) is a strong indication that this was the night before the first high Sabbath. No buying or selling was permitted on any Sabbath day. Was Yahshua betrayed and taken that night? Matthew 26:30-31, 45-56; Mark 14:26-52; Luke 22:39-53; John 18:1-12.
4. What kind of treatment did Yahshua the Messiah receive at the hands of the priests and Romans? Matthew 26:67-68; 27:27-31; Mark 14:65; 15:16-20; Luke 22:63-65; John 18:22-23; 19:1-3; Isaiah 52:13-15.
5. Was Yahshua impaled that day? Matthew 27:31-50; Mark 15:6; Luke 23:24-46; John 19:13-37.
6. Was the day after Yahshua's death a High Sabbath, the 15th, the first day of the Feast? John 19:31-32; Luke 23:50-54; Mark 15:42-46.
7. What did the women do at this time? Luke 23:55; Matthew 27:61. Did the women return to purchase burial spices? Mark 16:1. Didn't they also have to prepare them? Luke 23:56, first part.
NOTE: Remember, they were not allowed to work, buy or sell on any weekly or High Sabbath. There were two Sabbaths within that week. The 15th was a High Sabbath, and the 17th, the weekly Sabbath. Therefore, they buying and preparing spices took place on Friday, the 16th. Did the women then rest on the weekly Sabbath, according to the Fourth Commandment? Luke 23:56.
3 Days in "Hell"
Many believe that Yahshua went to hell when He died to preach to anguished souls, and they cite passages like Acts 2:31: "He, seeing this before, spake of the resurrection of the Messiah, that His soul was not left in hell, neither did His flesh see corruption." The Greek word for hell here and in other similar passages, is "hades," which literally means grave. He thus fulfilled His own prophecy of Matthew 12:40--that He would be in the grave three days and nights.
How Long Yahshua Was in the Grave
1. Did Yahshua say the sign of His Messiahship would be the length of time He spent in the grave? Matthew 12:39-40.
NOTE: Yahshua died on the afternoon of the 14th of Nisan and was buried just before sunset on the 14th. Counting from the time He was buried--sunset--forward three days brings us to sunset on the 17th of Nisan, which was a weekly Sabbath. This means that Yahshua was impaled on a Wednesday. Popular teaching is that Yahshua died Friday and rose Sunday morning. It is not possible to get three full days and three full nights between a Friday afternoon impalement and a Sunday morning resurrection, as Scripture specifies.
2. Does Daniel's prophecy indicate that He would be cut off in the middle of the week? Daniel 9:26-27. Does "cut off" mean die? Isaiah 53:8, 12.
NOTE: Please read all of Isaiah 53. It gives an excellent account of what our Savior had to endure for us. If Yahshua did not fulfill the prophesies of Daniel 9, Isaiah 53 and Jonah 1:17, as well as His own in Matthew 12:39, 40, then He cannot be the Savior!
But there are impostors. John, the disciple whom Yahshua loved, wrote about these deceivers (even as Yahshua had warned in Matthew 24) in 1 John 2:18: "Little children, it is the last time: and as you have heard that antimessiah shall come, even now there are many antimessiahs; whereby we know that it is the last time."
The false ministers "appear" to be Yahshua's ministers but are not. Listen to the warning the Apostle Paul gives in 2 Corinthians 11:13-15. "For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Messiah, and no marvel: for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his [Satan's] ministers be transformed as the ministers of righteousness: whose end shall be according to their works."
It most definitely does make a difference who you approach for knowledge concerning your eternal life. If you do not "search the Scriptures" and "prove all things" then you will be easily deceived by the many counterfeits and share their fate. And two of the most important facts are the only signs of His Messiahship: the length of time in the grave--3 days and 3 nights--and His Name, Yahshua, meaning "Yahweh is Salvation."
3. When did the women return to the tomb after it was sealed? Matthew 28:1-8 and John 20:1 show that Mary Magdalene came to see the sepulchre, but not to anoint. When she arrived the tomb was open and the Messiah was gone! That same night the Messiah came and said, "touch Me not" (John 20:17).
Later that night (which was the first day of the week), He went to the Father to be accepted by Him. In Mark 16:2 and Luke 24:1, the women came with the spices to anoint, just as the sun was rising on the first day of the week, and found the empty tomb. Remember that scriptural days run from sunset to sunset. Yahshua was resurrected at about sunset the previous evening. He was already gone, and the angels said, "He is risen." Not rising, but risen--already gone.
4. Does the writer of Acts confirm Yahshua's resurrection? Acts 1:3.
5. What did the Apostle Paul teach? 1 Corinthians 15:1-8.
6. Is this the primary message taught? Luke 24:44-48; Acts 13:14-44.
NOTE: Paul clearly shows that Psalm 2 (Verse 7)--"thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee"--refers to Yahshua's resurrection from the dead. This occurred at a specific instant in time. Because He is the Creator of all things, He is also the Creator of time, and is before it. Therefore, "this day" being within time must be seen as a prophecy of the spiritual birth of Messiah from the dead. Romans 1:1-4 confirms this: "Paul, a servant of Yahshua the Messiah, called to be an apostle, separated unto the good news of Yahweh (which he had promised afore by his prophets in the holy scriptures), concerning his Son Yahshua the Messiah our Savior, which was made of the seed of David according to the flesh; and declared to be the son of Yahweh with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by the resurrection from the dead."
Our High Priest
1. Did Isaiah prophesy that the Redeemer of Israel would live a sinless life? Isaiah 53:9. Peter quoted from this verse, and added that He did no sin, 1 Peter 2:22. See also Luke 23:41; John 8:46; 2 Corinthians 5:21; Hebrews 4:15, 7:26.
2. The Messiah was three days and three nights in the tomb, Matthew 12:40. He was impaled on a Wednesday, and died that afternoon. Placed in the tomb shortly before sunset, He arose late Sabbath afternoon--exactly three days and three nights later. How did He rise from the dead? Acts 2:24, 32. The Father is the One who raised Him from the dead. He did not arise by Himself.
3, After the Messiah was resurrected, He appeared to many believers who witnessed that He was alive, Matthew 27:53; Mark 16:9-14; Luke 24:39. After He ascended, where did He go and what is He doing now? Ephesians 1:20.
NOTE: The right hand of power is symbolic of a favored position. He is exalted above every creature, Hebrews 1:13; Philippians 2:9.
4. What specific job or task is the Messiah engaged in now that He is ascended to the Father? Hebrews 3:1; 8:1-2.
NOTE: In Hebrews 4:14-16 we are told that the Messiah has become our High Priest and is so only because he was tested as a human being. Even though He was tested as we are, we know that He has passed every trial and became the perfect sacrifice because he has lived the life that was perfect, a pattern for us (1 Peter 2:21-22). Yahshua is now at the right hand of the Father, interceding for us and taking our case much like a mediator, Hebrews 9:15. He is the only way to approach the Father, John 14:6.
Truly, we have a loving and understanding Savior who has lived as a human and knows full well the problems, tests, and trials that we face daily. He has been there! But the very One who created this world also gave His life for His creation. Those who heed the call to salvation will not only be redeemed from death, but will be given life in a higher realm. He died for our sins, but arose that we might have life.
Have you repented of your sinful life, asking humbly that Yahshua will make you a new person in righteousness? He gave His life that you might be redeemed from everlasting death. Come out of sin and find true happiness in Yahshua's way of life!
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