Things to Study, Test, and Consider-
1. The Roman New Year also originally corresponded with the vernal equinox. The early Roman calendar consisted of 10 months and 304 days, with each new year beginning at the vernal equinox. According to tradition, the calendar was created by Romulus, the founder of Rome, in the eighth century B.C. However, over the centuries, the calendar fell out of sync with the sun, and in 46 B.C. the emperor Julius Caesar decided to solve the problem by consulting with the most prominent astronomers and mathematicians of his time. He introduced the Julian calendar, a solar-based calendar which closely resembles the more modern Gregorian calendar that most countries around the world use today.
'New Year's Day, also simply called New Year or New Year's, is observed on January 1, the first day of the year on the modern Gregorian calendar as well as the Julian calendar.In pre-Christian Rome under the Julian calendar, the day was dedicated to Janus, god of gateways and beginnings, for whom January is also named. As a date in the Gregorian calendar of Christendom, New Year's Day liturgically marked the Feast of the Naming and Circumcision of Jesus, which is still observed as such in the Anglican Church and Lutheran Church. The Roman Catholic Church celebrates on this day the Solemnity of Mary, Mother of God.'
2. Romans would celebrate January 1st by offering sacrifices to Janus in the hope of gaining good fortune for the New Year, decorating their homes with laurel branches and attending raucous parties. This day was seen as setting the stage for the next twelve months, and it was common for friends and neighbors to make a positive start to the year by exchanging well wishes and gifts of figs and honey with one another.
'The ancient Babylonians are said to have been the first people to make New Year’s resolutions, some 4,000 years ago. They were also the first to hold recorded celebrations in honor of the new year—though for them the year began not in January but in mid-March, when the crops were planted. During a massive 12-day religious festival known as Akitu, the Babylonians crowned a new king or reaffirmed their loyalty to the reigning king. They also made promises to the gods to pay their debts and return any objects they had borrowed. These promises could be considered the forerunners of our New Year’s resolutions. If the Babylonians kept to their word, their (pagan) gods would bestow favor on them for the coming year. If not, they would fall out of the gods’ favor—a place no one wanted to be.'
- History Channel
3. Though early Christians rebelled against this festival, the Roman Catholic church decided to christianize January 1 by declaring it the "Feast of the Circumcision", considered to be the eighth day of Christ's life counting from December 25th and following the Jewish tradition of circumcision eight days after birth on which the child is formally given his or her name. However, most of us are aware that Dec. 25th was not Christ's birthday but rather the birthday of many false gods through the course of time. His birth and circumcision, most scholars conclude, was most likely occurred in the fall time. Feast of the circumcision is still observed by a few groups today, but at large the Catholic church gave up on it gaining ground in the 60s.
Encyclopaedia Britannica: “By the Roman republican calendar, the year began on March 1; after 153 BC the official date was January 1, and this was confirmed by the Julian calendar (46 BC)…In early medieval times most of Christian Europe regarded March 25 (Annunciation Day) as the beginning of the year, though for Anglo-Saxon England New Year’s Day was Dec. 25.”
4. New Year's is one of the oldest and most universal of all pagan rituals. The custom of celebrating it has remained essentially unchanged for 4,000 years.
"There is scarcely a people, ancient or modern, savage or civilized," writes Theodor H. Gaster, in his definitive book "New Year", "which has not observed it ... in one form or another. Yet no other festival has been celebrated on so many different dates or in so many seemingly different ways."
In ancient Babylon, New Year's festivals were closely bound to the pagan feast that over time has morphed into the modern day Christmas festival.
"Mesopotamia," writes Earl W. Count, "is the very ancient Mother of Civilization. Christmas began there, over 4000 years ago, as the festival which renewed the world for another year. The 'twelve days' of Christmas; the bright fires and probably the Yule log; the giving of presents; the carnivals with their floats, their merrymakings and clownings, the mummers who sing and play from house to house; the feastings; the church processions with their lights and song -- all these and more began there centuries before Christ was born. And they celebrated THE ARRIVAL OF A NEW YEAR!" ("4000 Years of Christmas", pp. 20-21.)
The New Catholic Encyclopedia states: “According to the hypothesis … accepted by most scholars today, the birth of Christ was assigned the date of the winter solstice (December 25 in the Julian [Roman] Calendar, January 6 in the Egyptian), because on this day, as the sun began to return to northern skies, the pagan devotees of Mithra celebrated dies natalis Solis Invicti (birthday of the invincible sun)” (1967, Vol. 3, p. 656).
That is how it began. The celebration of New Year's began in ancient Babylonia in Mesopotamia. It was a pagan custom of ancient sun-worship 2000 years before the birth of Jesus.
It is to be noted that to this day various peoples will celebrate AKITU FESTIVAL (New Years) by re-enacting the ancient pagan festival known today as "New Years" by wearing costumes and participating in the ancient rituals.
5. Much of the symbolism associated with New Year’s celebrations today has very definite pagan origins. Kissing at the moment of transition to the next year is rooted in pagan sexual practice and superstition.
6. The name of the month January is derived from the two-faced Roman god with the Latin name of Janus. The ancient Romans had adopted him as their god of time, doorways, new beginnings, coinage, war and peace. The reason he has two faces is because one face looks back into the past, and the other face forward to the future. This is essentially what happens on New Year’s Eve when you countdown to midnight which is the ending of one year, and the beginning of a brand new year filled with new hopes and dreams. A time to put an end to the past year which is now old, and began fresh with a new year.
7. Helena Blavatsky (an occultist) had said, “His (Janus) temples were built with four equal sides, with a door and three windows on each side. Mythologists explain it as an emblem of the four seasons of the year, and three months in each season, and in all of the twelve months of the year. During the mysteries of Initiation, however, he became the Day-Sun and the NightSun. Hence he is often represented with the number 300 in one hand, and in the other 65, or the number of days of the Solar year.”
8. Theodor H. Gaster writes concerning the familiar "New Year's babe":
"Actually the New Year babe is FAR OLDER than he looks. In ancient Greece, it was customary at the great festival of Dionysus to parade a babe cradled in a winnowing basket. This was taken to symbolize the annual (or periodic) rebirth of that god as the spirit of fertility!" (New Year.) Who was this Dionysus? None other than Bacchus -- the god of wine! In his honor the Greeks held a festival called the "Festival of the Wine-Press" at the time which corresponds to our months of January-February! Today more alcoholic beverages are consumed during the "holiday season" than at any other time of the year! New Year's Eve is noted for its licentious, wild, and wanton partying.
9. Jeremiah 10:2-3: “Learn not the way of the heathen…for the customs of the people are vain.”
10. Revelation 18:4 "And I heard another voice from heaven saying, “Come out of her, my people, lest you share in her sins, and lest you receive of her plagues."
11. Romans 12:2 "And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God."
12. Exodus 12:1-2 Now the LORD spoke to Moses and Aaron in the land of Egypt, saying, “This month [speaking of Abib or Nisan] shall be unto you the beginning of months; it shall be the first month of the year to you."
13. This Pope Gregory, aside from his other faults, was an anti-Semite of the first order. It is an interesting place for this article to be found, but in the U.S. News and World Report, there was an article they ran back in December of 1996 that explains some things about Pope Gregory that I, for one, had never heard.First let me read this sentence: "As Christianity spread, pagan holidays were either incorporated into the Christian calendar or abandoned all together." I read that because I think they are cutting them way too much slack. "Abandoned altogether"? I think they are being very generous. I suspect there were very few pagan holidays that were "abandoned altogether." But according to this article, on New Year's Day, 1577, Pope Gregory decreed that all Roman Jews, under pain of death, must listen attentively to the compulsory Catholic conversion sermon given in Roman synagogues after Friday night services. On New Year's Day, 1578, Gregory signed into law a tax, forcing Jews to pay for support of a house of conversion convert Jews Christianity. On New Year's, 1581, Gregory ordered his troops to confiscate all sacred literature from the Roman Jewish community. Thousands of Jews were murdered in the campaign.
14. Leviticus 18:3 "You shall not do as they do in the land of Egypt, where you once lived, nor shall you do as they do in the land of Canaan, where I am bringing you; do not conform to their customs."
Yes, we live in this world and the Gregorian year of 2020 is upon us. However, we are not of this world. So, while we acknowledge it's a new year and we function by the modern calendar, we choose not to participate in the rituals or festivities of the day. Just like Daniel and his brothers subject to the land of Babylon, we function by the way of our current captivity. However, under no circumstances do we bow to their idols, or eat of their abominations, or break any of God's laws for the sake of our flesh. If the furnace of fire should soon come, we stand with confidence that there will be another in the fire with us ... our King who conquers our enemies. We believe the return of our the Lion of Judah is soon and swift and may we be seeking Him when He comes for us. Choose this day....
Written by Daniel Prinsloo
There are similarities between what happened at Babel and what we see taking place all over the world and sadly within the body of Messiah also.
Genesis 11:1 “Now the entire earth had the same language with the same vocabulary.”
Genesis 11:4 “Then they said, “Come! Let’s build ourselves a city, with a tower whose top reaches into heaven. So let’s make a name for ourselves, or else we will be scattered over the face of the whole land.”
Genesis 11:9 “This is why it is named Babel, because Adonai confused the languages of the entire world there, and from there Adonai scattered them over the face of the entire world.”
As we grow in knowledge it is as if we’ve been united by a new “language” of knowledge, the internet. We seek within it all of the answers to explain our existence and to explain God and His Word therefor opening a doorway for pride to enter into our lives.
We become so distracted and confused as we share information that it is “scattering” us, each in his own direction as every person is seeking his own way in the sea of information and gaining knowledge for prideful pursuits. Brothers and Sisters argue over trivial matters that only add to the confusion. That is what the adversary wants, to sow confusion and in such a way create division and discord.
This is extremely evident within the Messianic and Torah communities. What is supposed to unite us is becoming a divider because we have allowed our focus to be removed from He who brought us together, Yeshua/Jesus.
All the while we as believers are missing the mark that Torah is pointing to and that is to walk in the humility and love of Yeshua/Jesus and upholding His Word and His instructions out of love, not pride. All of Torah was given by God for His children and for us to walk in love and obedience to Him and to always point to His holiness. To walk in Torah is to deny self and to glorify God. Without the love of God within us our knowledge means nothing. We are nothing before His splendor, magnitude and sovereignty.
1 Corinthians 13:1-3 “If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels but have not love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and know all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith so as to remove mountains but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all that I own and if I hand over my body so I might boast but have not love, I gain nothing.”
We become the very thing we were disillusioned by, institutionalized religion and following a set of man made instructions, customs and traditions instead of being focused on walking in the Way of Yeshua and following His Torah. Believers get caught up in trying to know and understand something in a “new” or an “inspired” way more than the next person as the entrapment of self-knowledge becomes attractive and everyone is seeking for a “divine revelation” from the Holy Spirit when all the answers are given plainly and clearly in God’s Word. Pursuits to obtain “spiritual gifts” that aren’t aligned with the Bible leads to deception. The enemy wants this as he knows his time is short and the hour is very late in an ever darkening world.
The author of Hebrews describes it best in what we should pursue, Hebrews 12:14-17 “Therefore, strengthen the hands that are weak and the knees that are feeble! And make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame will not be pulled out of joint but rather be healed. Pursue shalom with everyone, and the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one falls short of the grace of God; and see to it that no bitter root springs up and causes trouble, and by it many be defiled. Also see to it that there is no immoral or godless person—like Esau, who sold his birthright for one meal. For you know that later, when he wanted to inherit the blessing, he was rejected. He found no chance for repentance, though he begged for it with tears.”
Return to the truth and the heart of God’s Word. It’s all about glorifying Him and His Word is a blessing that yields no burdens. In the pursuit of knowledge and being united under one “language” we are becoming “scattered” and disillusioned. We are getting to a point where our pride is creating a world where nobody understands one other and we should be asking ourselves why this is happening.
Have we allowed our pride to become more important than God’s Word and what Yeshua/Jesus came to proclaim? Have we become loveless in the pursuit of “wisdom”? Have we become as the people of Babel in trying to “reach the heavens” with our limited knowledge and understanding chasing after the next “divine revelation”, obtaining a new “spiritual gift” or understanding Torah in a “new” way.
We all have the responsibility to study and seek truth, but we have to do so with humility and not in any way glorifying ourselves. All teaching and sharing of Scripture should be done with focus on glorifying God in love, truth and in humility. When you stand before God, you cannot say, "But I was told by others to do thus or follow that." Or that, "Virtue was not convenient at the time." This will not be acceptable. Remember that you have a responsibility that only you have in your faith walk. It doesn’t matter what we or others think is right, what matters is what God determined to be right from the very beginning of His glorious creation.
Regard the words of acclaimed Christian authors regarding pride:
§ “Pride will always be the longest distance between two people.”
§ “For pride is spiritual cancer: it eats up the very possibility of love, or contentment, or even common sense.”
§ “Pride must die in you, or nothing of heaven can live in you.”
§ “Pride is concerned with who is right. Humility is concerned with what is right.”
Think on these things and ask to be lead in prayer as we live humbly in service to our King, Yeshua HaMasiach/Jesus Christ.
1 John 2:3-6 “Now we know that we have come to know Him by this—if we keep His commandments. The one who says, “I have come to know Him,” and does not keep His commandments is a liar, and the truth is not in him. But whoever keeps His word, in him the love of God is truly made perfect. We know that we are in Him by this-- whoever claims to abide in Him must walk just as He walked.”
Shalom to everyone!
“Now we beseech you, brethren, by the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ, and by our
gathering together unto him, that ye be not soon shaken in mind, or be troubled,
neither by spirit, nor by word, nor by letter as from us, as that the day of Christ is at
hand. Let no man deceive you by any means: for that day shall not come, except
there come a falling away first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition;
who opposeth and exalteth himself above all that is called God, or that is worshipped;
so that he as God sitteth in the temple of God, shewing himself that he is God.
Remember ye not, that, when I was yet with you, I told you these things?”
- 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5
Paul wrote this epistle to the church in Thessalonica to correct them in an error
in thinking. They mistakenly believed the return of Yeshua (Jesus) was extremely
close to being fulfilled and that it may have even already happened. One factor
leading to this misconception is the infiltration of false teachers into the church. Paul
rebukes the Thessalonians for allowing these teachers to lead them astray. Paul
instructs the church in the signs that will lead up the actual return of Messiah. He
tells the church that there must first be a falling away before the return of Yeshua.
I must admit that I have read this passage many times, but for some reason it
resonated within my spirit more vibrantly this day. I was led to hear something that I
had previously overlooked. It seems that most of the time I look at this passage, the
focus of my attention centers on the revealing of the son of perdition. This is
probably due to the dramatic nature of this subject. We all want to know who the bad
guy is and how we can stand against him. It is only human nature to want to know
our enemy in an effort to prepare for the battle ahead. We can also feel within
ourselves that time must be drawing to a close, therefore we seek to inform ourselves
of the tribulation that is written of in Scripture. While these things will come, we are
not to have a spirit of fear but one of victory because we serve a Righteous King
(Deut. 20:4; John 16:33)! Our Lord fights for us and He has overcome, already, all
things that come against those who are His!
The truth that jumped out at me as I read this passage was the falling away of
the church. More accurately my attention fell to verse three, “Let no man deceive you
by any means: for that day shall not come, except there come a falling away first, and
that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.” The return of our Messiah will
come and this son of perdition will be revealed, only when a falling away takes place
within the church. Paul clearly states that Yeshua will not come until there is
The word apostasy come from the Greek ἀποστασία (G646). This word
means a falling away, to forsake or a defection from truth. We can extend this
meaning in view of Scripture as a turning away from truth. Paul instructs the church
in Thessalonica, and us, that before the revealing of this anti-christ figure and before
the ultimate return of our Messiah, there will be an effort to set aside or forsake the
truth of the Word of our Father. Until this unfortunate rejection of His Word takes
place, the Messiah will not return.
The falling away also opens the door for the son of perdition as written in 2
Thessalonians 2:3. The term perdition carries the connotation of being given over to
utter destruction, eternal damnation and to be made obsolete. Those who reject the
salvation offered to us by the shed blood of Messiah, bear the weight of perdition.
They will be given over to the sinful lusts of their hearts and condemned to hell. The
son of perdition will be the one who will exalt himself above God. he will sit in the
temple of God and shew himself to be God (2 Thess 2:4). he will follow the
footsteps of his father the devil as did this abomination declare that he will ascend
above the throne of the Most High God (Isaiah 14). The son of perdition will be the
physical embodiment of the pride of mankind, the antichrist. he is and will be heir to
The son of perdition will be revealed and the Messiah will return when the
church becomes apostate, giving up the truth for the convenience of compromise.
The prophet Zechariah warns of a time when the world will appear to be at peace
(Zechariah 1). It is during this time that the Lord will find the people at ease, though
the world breaks under the weight of sin. The Lord is provoked to anger because the
people add to, they added to the disaster about to befall the earth because of the lack
of fear of the Lord. The church will fall away. But what exactly will the church fall
In the book of Acts chapter 21, we find a cause which contributes to the fall.
In this chapter, Paul returns to Jerusalem to meet with the Elders of the Jerusalem
church. Paul returns to meet with the Elders to discuss the inclusion of Gentiles into
the faith alongside Jewish believers. Paul related to those at this council of Elders all
of the great things the Lord has been doing throughout His missionary journeys (Acts
21:19). Paul gives glory to the Father for the many Gentile’s living in pagan nations
who have come to know salvation. The council then relates to Paul the reality of the
“thousands there are among the Jews of those who have believed, and they are all
zealous for the Law. (Acts 21:20).” The power of the Gospel was opening the eyes
of both Jew and Gentile toward the Saving Grace of Messiah.
In verse 21, we see in the Greek the same use of the word apostasy
ἀποστασία (G646). The writer of the book of Acts (Luke) uses this term to denote
the rejection of the Mosaic Law by some of the Jews who accepted Messiah as their
Savior. Luke writes that there are Jews who are falling away, becoming apostate, from
the Law of the Most High. They are turning from the fullness of truth and rejecting
Now, there is a lot to be said about what is happening in this short group of
verses. It would take an extensive exposition to work through all of the intricacies
that are being spoken of in this context. I do not wish to gloss over the weight of
what is being stated in verse 21, but to truly develop all that is going on would be
beyond the scope of this writing. The point that I am trying to make in this writing is
the connection of the word ἀποστασία (G646), apostasy, in both 2 Thessalonians
and in the book of Acts. I am trying to draw a theological parallel in the use of the
word apostasy. There is a greater truth that is being revealed, and this truth relates to
us this very day. Therefore, we will zero in on only the spiritual connotations
connected to the word apostasy and its impact on the contemporary church.
To reiterate, Luke points out that the Jewish believers in Messiah were
forsaking the Law of the Most High. In the original Greek the word that is translated
as forsake in English, is the word ἀποστασία (G646), apostasy (Acts 21:21). Luke
uses this word to describe the softening of the standard of faith of those Jews who
were living among the Gentiles. They were allowing the culture to draw them away
from the ordinances that distinguished them as set apart. They were becoming
apostate to the things that defined their faith. They were forsaking their covenant
with the Father.
This is where we could enter into the debate of keeping the Law and its
relevance to contemporary believers. But again, delving into this debate would divert
our attention from the weight of the matter set before us concerning apostasy. Thus,
I will again refocus the attention of the reader on the matter at hand in an effort to
draw out the urgency falling upon the modern church. The shadow of apostasy bites
at our heels; the falling away of the church looms in wait for those who give up the
To gather a more rich understanding of the term ἀποστασία (G646), we will
look a little deeper at this word as it is used in other places in Scripture. In the
Gospel of Matthew, the male counterpart of the word apostasy is used. Like many
languages, Greek words carry grammatical gender determined by contextual use. In the
following verses Matthew recounts the teaching of Yeshua regarding marriage.
“Have you not read that He who created them from the beginning made them male
and female, and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be
joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh’? So they are no longer two,
but one flesh. What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate.” They
said to Him, “Why then did Moses command to give her a certificate of divorce and
send her away?” He said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart Moses permitted
you to divorce your wives; but from the beginning it has not been this way. And I say
to you, whoever divorces his wife, except for immorality, and marries another woman
commits adultery (Matthew 19:4-9 NASB).”
The word Matthew uses for our word divorce is ἀποστάσιον (G647). This word is
a male counterpart to the word apostasy used in 2 Thessalonians and Acts. Both of
these words translated apostasy come from the root word ἀφίστημι (G868). This
word means to remove, revolt, desist, depart or fall away. The picture we are to
gather from the use of the word apostasy is one of an active drawing away or
rejection. This is not a passive fall into ignorance, but an intentional choice to revolt.
In the context of the verses in Matthew, Yeshua is teaching that because of the
hardness of the hearts, Moses made provisions for divorce ἀποστάσιον. This
provision of divorce was allowed because of an intentional decision on the part of the
one seeking the divorce. Behaviors and attitudes that were allowed to fester within
the hearts of those seeking divorce enveloped the individual leading them to revolt
against what was once love. The certificate of divorce was a result of the rejection of
fellowship with another.
In the synoptic Gospel of Mark, the same word is used in this account of Jesus
teaching on divorce. Mark 10: 2-5 reads:
“Some Pharisees came up to Jesus, testing Him, and began to question Him whether it
was lawful for a man to divorce a wife. And He answered and said to them, “What
did Moses command you?” They said, “Moses permitted a man to write a certificate
of divorce and send her away.” But Jesus said to them, “Because of your hardness of
heart he wrote you this commandment.”
In Mark’s account he adds that because of the hardness of the heart, the certificate of
divorce allowed a husband to “send her away.” The sending away does not connote a
passive action, but a determined effort to be rid of something that no longer holds a
place of honor. The commitment to grow in love for one another by entering into
the marriage covenant was extinguished and replaced with stubborn revolt as the
heart tuned to stone.
Both the Gospels of Matthew and Mark use the word apostasy in the context
of a discussion of divorce. And in both examples, it is implied that there were
purposed actions taken leading up to the divorce. The husband allowed his heart to
become hard toward his wife which resulted in the falling away, apostacy of the
marriage. We can therefore gather that the Father sees the pursuit of divorce as active
permission to allow the heart to turn to stone.
In the First Testament, our Almighty Father laments over His people who have
turned away from Him. The Most High speaks through the prophet Jeremiah saying:
“Then the Lord said to me in the days of Josiah the king, “Have you seen what
faithless Israel did? She went up on every high hill and under every green tree, and
she was a harlot there. I thought, ‘After she has done all these things she will return
to Me’; but she did not return, and her treacherous sister Judah saw it. And I saw that
for all the adulteries of faithless Israel, I had sent her away and given her a writ of
divorce, yet her treacherous sister Judah did not fear; but she went and was a harlot
also. Because of the lightness of her harlotry, she polluted the land and committed
adultery with stones and trees. Yet in spite of all this her treacherous sister Judah did
not return to Me with all her heart, but rather in deception,” declares the Lord
(Jeremiah 3:6-10 NASB).”
The Northern Kingdom of Israel turned from the Father and allowed the people to
practice idolatry. The Father sees this as harlotry because the people gave their heart
over to the false gods of stone and wood. God then declares that He would divorce
this people because of the harlotry they committed against Him. He gives them over
to their lusts which ultimately brings about their destruction at the hands of the
Assyrian Empire (2 Kings 17). God allowed this to happen because the people of the
Northern Kingdom refused to repent of their sins and turn back to Him. The Father
also allowed this to happen to serve as an example to the Southern Kingdom of
Judah. They too dabbled in idolatry. The Father allowed the Assyrians to overthrow
Israel in the hope that the Kingdom of Judah would realize their sins. But,
unfortunately as written by Jeremiah, the Kingdom of Judah saw the actions of the
Northern Kingdom and they did not fear the Lord. The Kingdom of Judah also
turned to harlotry against the Most High.
In the Hebrew the סֵפֶר (H5608) cepher of כְּרִיתוּת (H3748) of divorce was issued by
the Father because of the hardness of their hearts. The people who were called out,
set apart by the Most High God rejected Him as their God and they turned to
inanimate objects. They were thus, given over to the deceptions of sin and they
eventually were bound in exile.
The apostasy, the falling away, comes when we do not remember. In both
Matthew and Mark, Yeshua tells us of the husbands who did not remember the
covenant of marriage they entered into with their wives. Jeremiah speaks of the
people of God not remembering their deliverance by His grace from slavery in Egypt.
They turned to the lusts of the flesh and fornicated with the fallen gods that bring
death. In the book of Acts, the falling away, the apostacy, became a rejection of a
standard of conduct that set the people apart from other pagan peoples. Some Jews
turning to Messiah, forgot who they were, and they gave up their heritage. Yeshua did
not come to replace the heritage of the Hebrew people, He came to graft them back
into the cultivated olive tree (Romans 11). The Father, in Messiah, was offering them
an opportunity to remember the covenant He declared over them when He promised
Abraham that he would be the father of many nations (Genesis 17:4). It is a covenant
that is written on the hearts of mankind (Jeremiah 31:31-14). This is an everlasting
covenant of life for all people who call upon the true Name of Salvation. The Most
High God did not replace, He restored. All who come to Him in humility will also be
grafted into the Kingdom of the Most High.
Unfortunately, we see in the book of 2 Thessalonians that the apostasy, the
falling away, will return. The perpetual divorce will unleash havoc yet again. This will
be the final, great divorce that allows the son of perdition to boast in his pride. But,
this final apostasy will also be the catalyst that brings forth the return of our KING!
This apostasy will come when the church revolts against the instructions of the
Father. The heart of the church will be hardened to the things of God and the church
will forget the covenant that was written to restore the heritage of the people of the
Most High. The Complete Jewish Bible offers an insightful translation of this great
“But in connection with the coming of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah and our
gathering together to meet him, we ask you, brothers, not to be easily shaken in your
thinking or anxious because of a spirit or a spoken message or a letter supposedly
from us claiming that the Day of the Lord has already come. Don’t let anyone
deceive you in any way.
For the Day will not come until after the Apostasy has come and the man who
separates himself from Torah has been revealed, the one destined for doom. He will
oppose himself to everything that people call a god or make an object of
worship; he will put himself above them all, so that he will sit in the Temple of
God and proclaim that he himself is God.
Don’t you remember that when I was still with you, I used to tell you these things?
And now you know what is restraining, so that he may be revealed in his own time.
For already this separating from Torah is at work secretly, but it will be secretly only
until he who is restraining is out of the way. Then the one who embodies separation
from Torah will be revealed, the one whom the Lord Yeshua will slay with the
breath of his mouth and destroy by the glory of his coming.
When this man who avoids Torah comes, the Adversary will give him the power to
work all kinds of false miracles, signs and wonders. He will enable him to deceive, in
all kinds of wicked ways, those who are headed for destruction because they would
not receive the love of the truth that could have saved them. This is why God is
causing them to go astray, so that they will believe the Lie. The result will be that all
who have not believed the truth, but have taken their pleasure in wickedness, will be
condemned (2 Thessalonians 2:1-12 CJB).”
The son of perdition, the man of lawlessness will set himself up against Torah.
He will set himself up as a god and draw others away, to become apostate to the
Torah of the Most High. In place of the instructions of the Father, this son of
perdition will cause people to be given over to believing in a LIE. The word
translated from the Greek meaning lie is ψεῦδος (pseudos G5574). This word
means to tell a lie but more accurately this word brings forth the connotation of
intentionally creating a falsehood. Again, there will be determined effort to divorce
the truth of God’s Word from the heart of humankind. Those of faith will actively
turn away from the instructions of the Almighty. The apostasy in the church will not
come by accident, it will be voluntary. As Paul tells us in the passage above, because
people turned from the truth of the Father, they were given over to the power of the
LIE. The people rejected the love of the Father resulting in the hardening of the
heart toward the things of His Kingdom. They embraced wickedness falling under
the influence of the lawless one.
What does it mean then to turn from “the love of the truth that could have
saved them (2 Thessalonians 2:10).” In the context of Paul’s epistle, the source of the
truth is found in God’s instructions. From the passage above in the CJB translation
the word Torah is used to determine the truth. In other translations this word Torah, is
sometimes translated simply as the word law. Paul warns us that in the end there will
be a time when the people refuse to hear the Father’s Torah/Law. In other words, the
son of perdition will be revealed when the people will no longer hear the instructions
of the Father. The standard of truth comes from the Father’s instructions, not our
To discuss submission to the Father’s Torah or law, often causes many to be
uncomfortable. We are saved by grace through faith because of the shed blood of our
Savior (Ephesians 2:8-9). Our salvation comes not of our own works but by a
precious gift of God. We can never speak against this gift or attempt to gain salvation
through our own works. The Gospel of Salvation through the death, resurrection and
return of our Messiah is our only hope. Yeshua (Jesus) is divine and He eternally
upholds our Salvation by the strength of His hand (John 10:28-30). Yet, while we
wait for His return, we must seek to glorify Him through our witness (Acts 1:8). We
are to be a Kingdom of Priests representing His Name (Exodus 19:6; 1 Peter 2:9).
We do not function under a democracy, but a theocracy whose authority flows only
from the Almighty throne of the Living God (2 Corinthians 5:10; Revelation 20:11-
15). We must seek to be in compliance with His Kingdom because we will stand
To truly understand the true implications of Torah, and in an attempt to remove
the negative reverberations of suggesting that believers are still subject to the
instruction of the Father, through His Word, we have to examine the word Torah in
the Hebrew. In doing so, we will see that the instructions of the Father are not meant
to be oppressive. He gave us His Torah, as a means to bring light to the path.
In Hebrew the word Torah is spelled תּוֹרָה (towrah H8451). Gesenius’
Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon defines this word as: instruction, doctrine, law. The initial
meaning of this word is one of a Father’s instruction to His children. The Lord gives
us His Torah as a way of communicating His intent for our lives. In early Greek
translations of the Bible, the word Torah has been relegated to simply meaning law,
regardless of the context. This simplified translation carried over into modern
translations. The point I am making is in the fact that giving a blanket definition of
the word Torah as just meaning the law disregards the context in which the word is
being used. In some cases, the word may connote the Father’s instructions (Exodus
13: 9; Romans 7:12). Sometimes the word may be referring to the Ten
Commandments (Exodus 24:12). At other times the word law may be referencing the
law of sin and death (Romans 8:2). In Romans 8:2, the term “law of sin and death” is
used in reference to the penalty of death born in the sin of Adam (Genesis 3:17). We
are all partakers of this sin (Psalm 51:5; Romans 5:12). Because the word Torah is
often simply translated as law, it is then imperative that when interpreting a text, the
entirety of that text is taken into account to avoid misunderstandings. The Father
never intended His instructions to be taken as a burden (1 John 5:3).
In order to draw an even deeper meaning from the word Torah, it is essential
to look at the individual Hebrew letters that make up the word itself. Hebrew is a
pictorial language. Hebrew words obviously carry contextual meaning, but
additionally the letters themselves carry imagery that adds to interpretive meaning.
The word Torah is spelled, from right to left, תּוֹרָה (Tav, Vav, Resh, Hey). Each letter
again carrying its own pictography. The letter תּ, translated our letter T, carries the
imagery of a mark, sign or a monument. The letter ו, our letter V or sometimes W,
means nail, or hook. The letter ר, our letter R, is seen as the head of a man. Finally,
the letter ה, connotes breath often symbolizing the breath of God. The letter Hey
also symbolizes a window. It is through a window that something is revealed or light
is allowed to be cast upon the darkness. The meaning that we can then draw out of
the pictograph is the Torah is meant to be a mark, hooked upon the head of the
children of God imparting upon them His breath/presence. His instructions are a
sign of His covenant with His children. His Word is meant to be a sign of those who
are called out to be His.
But there is more. Most Hebrew words are derived using three letters.
Additional letters are added to these root words to alter tense, gender or to fulfil other
grammatic necessities. The root word from which the word Torah is derived is the
Hebrew word יָרָה (yarah H3384). According to Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon
the word yarah means: to cast, to lay foundations, to sprinkle with water, or to shoot
arrows. We can see then that the root of the Torah, God’s instructions, is built upon
His desire to direct our path by establishing a firm foundation built upon His Word.
Yarah, to cast understanding like the sprinkling of water upon the head. The Father
instructs us to be guided according to His truth so that we can hit the mark.
Looking at the pictograph of the word Yarah, we find additional meaning. I
have already discussed the letters ר (resh) and ה (hey). The Hebrew spelling of yarah
incorporates these letters with the additional letter י, (yod). This is the same letter
Yeshua references in Matthew 5: 18 as He taught on the signs of the end. The letter י
(yod), in pictographic imagery means hand. We can the extrapolate from the word
יָרָה (yarah), that the hand of the Father rests upon our head/mind/thoughts, to bring
us into accord with His Spirit. The Father directs us by His Spirit into the process of
Obviously, the pictographic interpretations cannot be placed on the same level
as Scripture. The symbolic meaning of the Hebrew letters are merely a poetic
metaphor hidden within the language of the Father as He expresses His love for His
children. I gathered much of the information regarding the pictographic imagery
from a book titled “The Wisdom of the Hebrew Alphabet,” written by Rabbi Michael
L. Munk. 1 There are many more resources that discuss the topic of Hebrew
pictographic letters. 2
The pictorial metaphors discussed above reveal that the Father desires for us to
be sanctified by His Word. We can clearly see in Scripture the necessity to allow the
Holy Spirit of the Father to lead us through the process of sanctification. When we
step into the doorway of Salvation in our Messiah, Jesus, we are to continue to allow
the Spirit of the Holy God to wash over us, maturing us as we walk according to our
faith. There are many verses of Scripture that describe the process of sanctification.
The prophet Isaiah:
“Then His people remembered the days of old, of Moses.
Where is He who brought them up out of the sea with the shepherds of His flock?
Where is He who put His Holy Spirit in the midst of them,
12 Who caused His glorious arm to go at the right hand of Moses,
Who divided the waters before them to make for Himself an everlasting name,
13 Who led them through the depths?
Like the horse in the wilderness, they did not stumble;
14 As the cattle which go down into the valley,
The Spirit of the Lord gave them rest.
So You led Your people,
To make for Yourself a glorious name (Isaiah 63:11-14 NASB).”
The Spirit of the Lord is in the midst of the people of God. His Holy Spirit both
guides and brings peace to the people. The Spirit of God makes a path for His people
to find safe passage.
1 Munk, Michael L. [Rabbi] The Wisdom of the Hebrew Alphabet (Mesorah Publications, Brooklyn, NY: 1983).
2 Additional internet resources for Hebraic word studies can be found at: biblicalhebrew.com; elshaddaiministries.us
John the Revelator writes:
“ 13 But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He
will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He
will disclose to you what is to come (John 16:13 NASB).”
The prophet John reveals to us that the Holy Spirit brings to us truth. The work of
the Spirit of the Almighty is to draw us closer in fellowship with the Father as the
Spirit speaks only of the things given by the Father.
The Apostle Paul in the book of Romans writes:
“12 So then, brethren, we are under obligation, not to the flesh, to live according to the
flesh— 13 for if you are living according to the flesh, you must die; but if by the Spirit
you are putting to death the deeds of the body, you will live. 14 For all who are being
led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God. 15 For you have not received a spirit of
slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by
which we cry out, “Abba! Father!” 16 The Spirit Himself testifies with our spirit that we
are children of God, 17 and if children, heirs also, heirs of God and fellow heirs with
Christ, if indeed we suffer with Him so that we may also be glorified with Him
(Romans 8:12-17 NASB).”
The process of sanctification convicts us of sins committed in the flesh and His Spirit
empowers us to turn from the slavery of sin to freedom in Salvation. It is under sin
that we are condemned by the law of sin and death. But upon receiving the Word of
Life, we inherit a Spirit of adoption as children of the Living God.
And finally, the psalmist and once king of God’s Holy City, David writes:
“7 Purify me with hyssop, and I shall be clean;
Wash me, and I shall be whiter than snow.
8 Make me to hear joy and gladness,
Let the bones which You have broken rejoice.
9 Hide Your face from my sins
And blot out all my iniquities.
10 Create in me a clean heart, O God,
And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11 Do not cast me away from Your presence
And do not take Your Holy Spirit from me.
12 Restore to me the joy of Your salvation
And sustain me with a willing spirit.
13 Then I will teach transgressors Your ways,
And sinners will be converted to You (Psalm 51:7-13 NASB).”
It is the work and will of our Father that we are purified unto joy and gladness. It is
His will that our brokenness is restored and we are yet again made whole. It is by His
Spirit that we are sustained in this process of sanctification to bring glory to the
Father as we walk out our faith as a witness to those who are lost.
When we enter into a covenant relationship with Messiah, we enter the process
of sanctification. We are to allow Him to lead us according to His ways, we are to die
to self, allow the presence of Messiah to live and work through us. Yet, we find that
in our “modern” iteration of faith, this definition of sanctification has become quite
blurry. I started this writing talking about the coming apostasy; it is in the denial of
repentance unto sanctification that we find the origin of the falling away. The horror
of apostasy lurks in the rejection of the authority of the Father to draw us along the
path of faith which leads to a closer walk with Him. The apostasy is the divorce of
sanctification. We revolt against the instructions of God. We reject His truth as a
standard of faith. We reject His Word as our heritage. We replace a heritage of
eternal salvation as brothers and sisters in Messiah for a heritage of conformity to the
whims of cultural relevance.
“You have conceived chaff, you will give birth to stubble;
My breath will consume you like a fire (Isaiah 33:11 NASB).”
Oh, how we have conceived chaff and sown discord among the saints. How we have
built a house as straw which is unable to withstand even the slightest breeze of
tribulation. Like a house of cards crumbling under the weight of a pebble, His church
gives itself over to the burden of the voices of conformity.
It is not my intent in this writing to present an exhaustive list of vices within
the church. This list would be far too long to generate. I am also not attempting to
discredit the faith of anyone. The Lord knows your heart. He knows those faithful
followers who truly reciprocate His love and devotion. Nor am I placing myself upon
some self-righteous altar, I am but a sinner saved by faith through the blessed
determination of a humble King. This is our hope and He is the judge. But I do not
think it is difficult to look out upon the landscape of the modern church and notice
the decay of what was once beautiful. Many churches are bowing to the pressure of
the secular culture. Many churches are embracing sin as a viable lifestyle regardless of
the Biblical mandate. The curse of sin is death and the stench of death permeates the
minds of some in the modern church.
The church was never and will never be perfect. The church is made up of
people, thus the church inherits our faults. Yet there was a time when repentance of
sin was preached. There was a time when the Word of God was held up as the
standard of conduct not only within the church but within the culture. There was a
time when we beheld the Holy Name of the Father in Awe and Reverence.
“Help, Lord, for the godly man ceases!
For the faithful disappear from among the sons of men.
2 They speak idly everyone with his neighbor;
With flattering lips and a double heart they speak (Psalm 12:1-2 NKJV).”
Do we bear the Holy Name of the Almighty God in vain? Do we speak words
of affection from our lips but harbor deceit in the depths of our heart? Do we cling
to both the blessing and the curse satiating our desires of the flesh, pious in
proclamations but egotistical in actions? Are we a reflection of His immaculate light
to a world plagued by darkness? There is only One Lord and One faith; only One
who loves us to the fullness of love. He tasted death in our place, taking upon
Himself the wrath directed toward sin.
There is no reconciliation between death and life. Choose therefore LIFE!
Turn back to God. Return to the purity of His instructions. For many have divorced
themselves from their first love (Revelation 2:4). Many have given up the
determination to remain set apart and holy as He is Holy (Leviticus 11:45). He has
delivered us from the slavery of sin, bringing us into the inheritance of His grace.
Like Abraham, we are called out of darkness to walk in His Holy Light. Like
Israel, we are delivered from bondage and reborn into Promise. Let us not fall away.
Let us not become apostate, giving up our heritage in Salvation for a heritage of
separation. For this is the perpetual divorce. The pattern that it too often played out
is this: grace is expressed by God. Grace is received by those who are lost. The
source of the grace is forgotten and trodden under the feet of those whom the Father
expressed His grace to lift up. The unfortunate divorce repeated in the pages of our
Bible as the people of God continually fall away. We also see in the words of
Scripture the veracity of the Father as He pursued His people. He sent prophets and
priests, teachers and kings. Ultimately, He came as Jesus, God in the flesh to bring
the eternal message of Salvation, yet the people divorced themselves from their
The Bible tells us, though we know God, we do not honor Him or give thanks
for the blessings poured out by Him. In futility, the wise are made to be fools
(Romans 1:21-22). We become fools in the falling away of our heritage as the people
of the Almighty God. We are wise in our own deceit and disrespectful irreverence of
the Holiness of The Most High God.
I began this writing by quoting Paul in his letters to Thessalonica. Paul warns
the church of this great apostasy. He warns of a day when the church will reject the
revelation of Salvation and divorce themselves from foundational truth in the Word.
The term apostasy is one that is somewhat abstract to our modern ears. We read of
the apostasy of the church. We speculate as to when this great falling away will occur.
We peer off into the horizon waiting for this terrible day to dawn. My friends, I tell
you, this day has already come. The apostasy written about in Scripture darkens the
doors of the church this very day.
“ 9 The coming of the lawless one is connected to the activity of satan, with all power
and signs and false wonders, 10 and with every kind of wicked deception toward those
who are perishing. They perish because they did not accept the love of the truth so as
to be saved. 11 For this reason God sends them a delusional force, to lead them to
believe what is false, 12 so that they may be judged—all those who did not believe the
truth but delighted in wickedness (2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 TLV).”
A strong delusion is washing over the people who once knew God, but have
slowly been turning away from His Word. The modern church is adopting the
patterns of Israel in the mistake of rejecting the Word of the Lord as the only
foundation for doctrine. The walls that once stood as a fortification for the church
are again being eroded by the corruption of the culture. They are crumbling under
the weight of this great apostasy.
This letter that I am writing is not meant to be a discouragement, though it
bears a somber message. This letter is meant to be a call to action. It is a call to take
back our faith from the one, our enemy, who strives to strip us of our heritage. We
are the children of God, and we are purchased by the precious blood of our Messiah.
Let us not forget who fights for us. Let us not forget that we serve an Almighty,
Omnipotent KING! Therefore, do not lose faith. Do not lose heart even as the day
draws dark. Cling to your hope in He who was and is and is to come (Revelation 1:8).
Be ever watchful and determined to preserve the heritage of God.
“ The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still (Exodus 14:14 NIV).”
Rest in His peace. He is our God. He fights for those who are determined to
be faithful. Do not be distraught, but confident in the Eternal Covenant of Love
poured out for those who will receive.
Blog Post Courtesy of Philia Contributor Corby Shuey @ Becoming Bereans Ministry
Lea from James and Lea D chats all about life as a wife in pursuance of the Father's heart. Follow my faith walk journey and all that it involves. Faith, family, food, and fellowship. Come, relax, and have some tea with Lea. Shalom & Blessings!