The Nitty Gritty Details Of Matthew 18

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This teaching follows Separating Sinners From The Bride. Please read and/or listen to that. It has information that will not be presented here but that you need in order to understand this segment.

YHVH’s people are in a war between righteousness and unrighteousness; between obedience and disobedience; loyalty and rebellion. The separation of the Bride, her preparation time, has already begun. The woman’s flight to the wilderness found in Revelation 12:6 is the final stage of separation and preparation, not the beginning of it. I believe to qualify for that final preparatory stage, we must have already begun preparing ourselves. Let me show you why.

Matthew 25:1 “Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be like ten virgins, who took their lamps, and went out to meet the bridegroom.

These virgins are all betrothed to the Kingdom of Heaven and there are certain requirements for them to fulfill their betrothal vows.

When did they go out? When it was time to flee to the wilderness. See, they were already supposed to have their stuff ready to go by now.

Matthew 25:2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise.
Matthew 25:3 Those who were foolish, when they took their lamps, took no oil with them,

The oil is understanding. They lacked understanding of what it takes to be Yeshua’s Kingdom Bride.

Matthew 25:4  but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.

These understand what it takes to be Yeshua’s Kingdom Bride.

Matthew 25:5 Now while the bridegroom delayed, they all slumbered and slept.

They were safe in the wilderness.

Matthew 25:6 But at midnight there was a cry, ‘Behold! The bridegroom is coming! Come out to meet him!’
Matthew 25:7 Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps.
Matthew 25:8 The foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’
Matthew 25:9 But the wise answered, saying, ‘What if there isn’t enough for us and you? You go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.’

All of this takes time, as you know.

Matthew 25:10  While they went away to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the marriage feast, and the door was shut.

The foolish virgins were separated from the wise ones because of their need to get oil, the Ruach of YHVH, through which His understanding comes. Ezekiel 20 describes YHVH putting His people under the rod and separating the rebels from obedient in the wilderness. The rebels have no oil, no Ruach of YHVH. The obedient have the oil, the Ruach of YHVH. It may be that the rebels will use whatever time they have from that 3.5 years to try to “get” their oil, their understanding, but it will be too late then. They need to have done this preparation beforehand.

The closer we get to Yeshua’s arrival, the worse this war will get and the more the Bride will need to separate herself in preparation. Last week, I said it is our job as the people of YHVH to clean ourselves up and that the way to do this is found in Deuteronomy 17:8-13 and Matthew 18:15-17.

It is important for us to understand that we are to do our own cleaning up. It seems that some have the idea that YHVH will clean us up to make us fit to be His Bride but that is not the case. Brides always do their own cleaning up before a wedding. The groom doesn’t come in to give her a bath and dress her and fix her hair. We are to do this ourselves and the most important way for us to get this done is to submit to each other when others see sins in us. In others words, the righteous help prepare each other since no one can see all of his own mistakes.

Revelation 19:7 Let’s rejoice and be exceedingly glad, and let’s give the glory to him. For the marriage of the Lamb has come, and his wife has made herself ready.”

Matthew 25:1 “Then the Kingdom of Heaven will be like ten virgins, who took their lamps, and went out to meet the bridegroom.
Matthew 25:2 Five of them were foolish, and five were wise.
Matthew 25:3 Those who were foolish, when they took their lamps, took no oil with them,
Matthew 25:4 but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps.

Taking the Ruach (oil) is preparation. The wise virgins were prepared; the foolish ones were not prepared.

Exodus 19:10 Yahweh said to Moses, “Go to the people, and sanctify them today and tomorrow, and let them wash their garments,
Exodus 19:11 and be ready against the third day; for on the third day Yahweh will come down in the sight of all the people on Mount Sinai.

The people prepared themselves the first time Biblical Israel was established. YHVH’s patterns and instructions do not change. Therefore, we must prepare ourselves. How do we do that?

Revelation 7:14 And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation [these are the virgins form the wilderness who came through the Tribulation], and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

Who washed their robes? The people did it; the Bride did it.

Who made their robes white in the blood of the Lamb? The people did it; the Bride did it.

The problem is that we don’t know how to clean ourselves up because, for the most part, our Israelite ancestors did not clean themselves up and did not teach their descendants how to do that. So, here we are 3500 years later with a last generation that must now bear the brunt of 3500 years of iniquity against our God and King, Yeshua.

Getting cleaned up means that we not only check others but we check ourselves. We are not just to check for sins in our lives but we have to check whether we are even in the faith. Did you know that you can be a church-goer and someone with the appearance of being in the faith but actually not be?

Paul, in 2 Corinthians 12 and 13 discusses the various sins being committed by individuals in that congregation, then in 2 Corinthians 13:5 Paul tells us to examine whether we are even in the faith.

2 Corinthians 13:5 Examine your own selves, whether you are in the faith. Test your own selves. Or don’t you know as to your own selves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you are disqualified. -WEB

Examine, checking to see if we have been disqualified from entering the Kingdom. What does that mean? It means you’ve been sinning and either no one has had the courage to come to you (which is a sin for that person) or they have come to you but nothing was ever done if you refused to repent. The process of Matthew 18 was never followed to completion. No, they simply said “love covers a multitude of sins” and “forgave” you without your repentance. There is no forgiveness from YHVH without your repentance no matter how many times some mortal says you are forgiven.

Furthermore, not sentencing sinners and carrying out the sentence in Matthew 18:17 leads to a congregation full of sinners, a congregation full of people who YHVH thinks are not in the faith! And you know what? I believe YHVH is right! (And yes, that is a facetious tongue-in-cheek statement). He made the rules by which we are to live if we want to live in His House.

Congregations, worldwide, are full of sinners – people who are not in the faith! The faithful are not necessarily without sin. However, they repent when their sin is pointed out to them and they do not continue in sin. Congregations which take the course of not allowing people to judge each other righteously, who do not teach righteous judging, but teach that all judging is wicked will necessarily be full of sinners who do not know their own condition. Sinners continuing in sin is regarded by YHVH as not being faithful, they are not in the faith.

YHVH has given us power to do something about our sins through people who are in the faith and who are willing to act on His behalf through the instructions in Deuteronomy 17:8-13 and Matthew 18:15-17. This is the system set up by YHVH to keep His people clean and in the faith!

Here is what happens when we do not clean ourselves up or allow others to help clean us up:

Ezekiel 18:24 “But when the righteous turns away from his righteousness, and commits iniquity, and does according to all the abominations that the wicked man does, should he live? None of his righteous deeds that he has done will be remembered. In his trespass that he has trespassed, and in his sin that he has sinned, in them he shall die.

There is a price to pay for not checking ourselves and submitting to others’ righteous judgments. One of those is that we lose all rewards for what was done when we were acting righteously. We go back to zero. If we repent after this backsliding, we start all over again. With this in mind, let’s get to some more of the details of Deuteronomy 17 and Matthew 18.

Deuteronomy 17:8 If there arises a matter too hard for you in judgment, between blood and blood, between plea and plea, and between stroke and stroke, being matters of controversy within your gates; then you shall arise, and go up to the place which Yahweh your God chooses.

Matthew 18:15 “If your brother sins against you, go, show him his fault between you and him alone. If he listens to you, you have gained back your brother.

Deuteronomy 17:9 You shall come to the priests who are Levites, and to the judge who shall be in those days. You shall inquire, and they shall give you the verdict.

Matthew 18:16 But if he doesn’t listen, take one or two more with you, that at the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.

Matthew 18:17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the assembly. If he refuses to hear the assembly also, let him be to you as a Gentile or a tax collector.

Deuteronomy 17:10 You shall do according to the decisions of the verdict which they shall give you from that place which Yahweh chooses. You shall observe to do according to all that they shall teach you:
Deuteronomy 17:11 according to the decisions of the law which they shall teach you, and according to the judgment which they shall tell you, you shall do. You shall not turn away from the sentence which they shall show you, to the right hand, nor to the left.

Matthew 18:18 Most certainly I tell you, whatever things you bind on earth will have been bound in heaven, and whatever things you release on earth will have been released in heaven.

Deuteronomy 17:12 The man who does presumptuously, in not listening to the priest who stands to minister there before Yahweh your God, or to the judge, even that man shall die. You shall put away the evil from Israel.
Deuteronomy 17:13 All the people shall hear, and fear, and do no more presumptuously.

Matthew 18:19 Again, assuredly I tell you, that if two of you will agree on earth concerning anything that they will ask, it will be done for them by my Father who is in heaven.
Matthew 18:20 For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there I am in the middle of them.”

The Matthew 18:15-17 process comes straight out of Deuteronomy 17:8-13. It is the same judicial process now in the hands of the renewed Biblical Israel starting with the 12 Disciples then extending through time and geography to the entire global “new man”. This authority was never removed from that time to now.

Last week, I talked about the importance and process of righteous judgment with each other. This week, we need to move into Matthew 18:18-20, into what happens after the sentencing in Matthew 18:17.

Verse 17’s sentence of all sinners is limited to converting them from being Israelite to being a traitor (a publican) and a Gentile. Literally, the sentence means that person is no longer part of the congregation, the “new man”, not just your own little congregation but YHVH’s Heavenly congregation. The reason for this new status is found in verse 18.

Matthew 18:18 Most certainly I tell you, whatever things you bind on earth will have been bound in heaven, and whatever things you release on earth will have been released in heaven.

What happens to a decree made by the priests and judge in Deuteronomy 17? It becomes law. What happens to decrees made by the congregation in Matthew 18:17 regarding the sinner? Those become law bound in Heaven.

Believers are used to using the terms “binding” and “loosing” but few understand that these are legal terms that create a reality about the sinner in YHVH’s Heaven.

The word “bind” is a legal term, not philosophical or a religious one. It means to ‘impose legal obligations or duties upon a person or party to an agreement’. The Greek word for “bind” is ‘deo’.

Matthew 18:15-17 has parties to an agreement (we will discuss this agreement in a minute), the alleged sinner, the individual who has to go to his brother to tell the brother he has sinned; the 1 or 2 more people he may have to take with him as witnesses to talk with the sinning brother and the congregation. These are the parties to and agreement.

But what agreement binds these people together? What are they in agreement with? The Law of Moses. These are people who agree to serve YHVH’s Kingdom under the edicts, the decrees, of YHVH. The Law of Moses governs our legal system. It sets out Israel’s laws of justice toward YHVH (between us individually and YHVH and as a congregation and YHVH) and between individuals (to each other individually and each individual to the entire congregation). We agree to be “bound” – there’s that word again – when we accept the responsibility of being Israelite. You know, when we converted from being Gentile to being Israelite. Here’s some food for thought because most Christian congregations don’t tell people they converted to being Israelite but that they converted to being Christian. Sorry – there is no Christian nation in scripture just like there is no Jewish nation in scripture. There is only Israel from Genesis to Revelation but most Christians and Jews do not understand this.

What have we agreed to be bound by? The Law of Moses.

Exodus 19:5 Now therefore, if you will indeed obey my voice, and keep my covenant, then you shall be my own possession from among all peoples; for all the earth is mine;
Exodus 19:6 and you shall be to me a kingdom of priests, and a holy nation.’ These are the words which you shall speak to the children of Israel.”
Exodus 19:7 Moses came and called for the elders of the people, and set before them all these words which Yahweh commanded him.
Exodus 19:8 All the people answered together, and said, “All that Yahweh has spoken we will do.” Moses reported the words of the people to Yahweh.

The Law agreed to by our ancestors is the Law that will be enforced in the coming Millennium and beyond in Heaven and on the earth. It did not get replaced with any other law or with no law at all. Citizenship in the Kingdom has required its citizens to follow the Law of Moses from the ordination of the nation of Israel at Mount Sinai forward. In fact Abraham kept this same law as did Noah and so forth going back in time all the way to Adam. The Law of YHVH has never changed for those who are citizens of His realm.

Now, in the history of Israel since Mount Sinai, upholding YHVH’s laws was never done. The entirety of the scriptures has to do with YHVH’s struggles with Israel getting them to do His will instead of what they wanted to do!

What are we binding when we have one of these “court hearings” in our midst? We are determining whether or not the alleged sinner has really committed the sin he is accused of. The congregation hears all the testimony. The sinner brings his own witnesses, as well. The congregation goes through this arduous process because it is very important. This last step is not to be arrived at nonchalantly. The congregation will render a verdict of guilt or innocence by voting just as the Sanhedrin did. The decree that comes forth “binds” the sinner to his iniquity or “looses” (or releases) him from it.

The process in the congregational setting is the same as in the ancient and Biblical Sanhedrin that existed from Moses’ time. Seventy one representatives from each of the 12 tribes originally constituted the Sanhedrin. They heard all the testimony and deliberated, making statements to the other members within the walls of the courtroom, until such time as a vote was taken. We are familiar with the process through the way laws are enacted with testimony, deliberations and voting of the members of Congress. In the case of the Sanhedrin, laws were not enacted. YHVH is the only lawgiver in scripture. The job of the Sanhedrin was to determine guilt or innocence of an alleged sinner using the Law of Moses. The process is the same in each congregation across the globe.

What happens if everyone in the congregation does not agree with the outcome? What if some vote guilty and others vote not guilty?

Deuteronomy 17:10 You shall do according to the decisions of the verdict which they shall give you from that place which Yahweh chooses. You shall observe to do according to all that they shall teach you:
Deuteronomy 17:11 according to the decisions of the law which they shall teach you, and according to the judgment which they shall tell you, you shall do. You shall not turn away from the sentence which they shall show you, to the right hand, nor to the left.
Deuteronomy 17:12 The man who does presumptuously, in not listening to the priest who stands to minister there before Yahweh your God, or to the judge, even that man shall die. You shall put away the evil from Israel.
Deuteronomy 17:13 All the people shall hear, and fear, and do no more presumptuously.

The 71 men of the Sanhedrin almost never agreed 100% but they were required to follow the decree made by the majority. So, let’s do a scenario. Let’s say that your congregation has 72 people in it and 1 is accused of stealing. The process has been followed by the brother who had his item stolen going to the brother who stole it. The alleged thief says he didn’t steal the item so the one alleging the crime brings 1 or 2 more people as witnesses. Still the alleged thief claims he did not steal the item. Now the entire congregation of 71 will hear from both sides through witnesses and will determine whether the alleged thief is truly a thief or not.

If he is found guilty by a majority vote, he becomes a traitor no one will receive in their midst and a Gentile who is not allowed to darken the door of the congregation.

I will return to some things I said last week but in a different way. Matthew 18:17 is Yeshua’s command to treat an unrepentant sinner as a Publican. How were Publicans treated? Like traitors. They were shunned! Totally separated from the congregation through 1st, 2nd and 3rd-hand relationships. A word that can replace “Publican” in our day is the word “traitor”. We all know what that means!

What does it mean for that person to be a Gentile? He literally becomes “not an Israelite” any longer. We don’t understand that conversion goes both ways. The House of Israel was divorced from the nation of Israel by YHVH. What did they become? Gentiles! Conversion runs both ways. A Gentile can convert to being an Israelite and an Israelite can be forcibly converted by authoritative decree of YHVH or His vested congregation to being Gentile! We don’t worship with Gentiles.

A Gentile can convert to being Israelite through repentance. It is this step that the decreed sinner must take in order to return to the Kingdom. This is not about just the little congregation we attend each week. No! This is a Kingdom issue and an issue for the Bride! This is what I am trying to explain. The decreed sinner becomes a Gentile, one who is no longer in the Kingdom!

If the decree releases the alleged sinner, nothing more need be done. He is free to continue fellowshipping and remains an Israelite. What’s on the line is whether this man or woman is an Israelite or a Gentile.

The process is simple but often the details are complex. Nonetheless, this process is designed to put the evil away from the congregation, to stop the congregation from continuing being defiled.

Sin is rampant in our congregations. We must make sure that we are not letting an actual sinner off the hook but we must also not punish someone who is innocent. This is why it is so important to do this right and is likely the reason so few congregations go through this process with congregants. It is difficult and we do not want to make mistakes. There must be irrefutable proof of the sin(s) committed.

Sinners often go to other congregations or fellowships. What can or should we do about this? If we know where that person has gone, we must report it to that congregation. Most often people in the other congregation will say they know nothing of the situation and will let the sinner come in. What should happen is that there should be a meeting between the sinner’s new congregation and his old one in which testimony can be given about his sin. This almost never happens. And the people who refuse to take a stand against such a sinner are now themselves sinning because there is a law bound in Heaven regarding this person.

We are not separate congregations as it appears with our eyes. Geographic distance means nothing to YHVH. Until this sinner repents, he is not to be allowed among people who are calling themselves “Bride” if they know he has been convicted. In fact, the sinner being totally shunned wherever he goes is YHVH’s way of getting him to repent.

WHY DID YESHUA VEST THIS AUTHORITY IN HIS PEOPLE?

It is because the authority was already vested in His people in the beginning. The Sanhedrin (the court given to Israel in Exodus 18 which was formalized in Deuteronomy 17) was only a representative court. It represented the legal interests of the entire nation of people. We read throughout the Torah that it was the congregation that put the evil away from Israel, not the priests and the Judge. More on that in a minute.

The Sanhedrin had lost its authority over punishing capital crimes under the Romans in 30AD just prior to Yeshua’s ministry. It was necessary for there to continue being authority on earth over YHVH’s people which is the reason for Yeshua giving the Matthew 18 similar instruction found in Deuteronomy 17. Similar but different in a very important way. The loss of authority to execute sinners to death. It won’t be until Yeshua returns and Israel once again reigns over the entire world that Israel’s authority in capital punishment will return. In exile, we lose all authority except what Yeshua gave to the congregation to keep sin out. We are commanded to remove the evil from among us.

Remember that Deuteronomy refers legal authority to either the priests or the judge. As I said last week, we are the judge(s). It was that way from the beginning. YHVH made His entire congregation responsible for getting the evil out of His congregation which is why He said once a decree is made everyone must follow it. Yeshua made no change in the Law nor did He do away with it.

THE DIFFICULTY

This is a very simple thing to do but it is also very important. The problem the Bride now contends with is the lack of obedience of those around her. The Bride understands that all the Laws of Moses are still in force and to be obeyed to the best of our ability. We cannot perform those laws that require sacrificing and performing capital punishment but we can do everything else. The problem is that most believers do not agree on the definitions of the various sins.

YHVH’s people are engaged with sins that they don’t even see. Making, having, using images from the list of prohibited images YHVH’s provided in Deuteronomy 4:15-19 is such a stronghold in people’s lives that they cannot understand this concept at all. From the imagery prohibition in the second commandment, Exodus 20:4-6 which is defined in Deuteronomy 4:15-19 and expanded on throughout the scripture, to where YHVH finally YHVH calls the people “whores” for admiring portraits of Assyrian soldiers painted on the Assyrian walls in Ezekiel 23:14, then to where He describes another account of image worship separate from the original golden calf image worship in the Book of Daniel to YHVH letting us all know that one of our final tests will be whether or not to worship the image of a beast made by the people (just like with the golden calf) in Revelation 13:15. These should be clues that we need to stay away from images, get them out of our lives. But people give me the same worn out arguments: This only applies to statues and paintings intended for worship. YHVH used images in the Temple…

Let me quickly address these. The people in Ezekiel 23, Aholah (the House of Israel) and Aholibah (House of Judah) were not worshiping the images that YHVH brought to their attention to in this chapter. These images were simply portraits that Ezekiel said they were admiring, lusting – ‘agab’ in Hebrew – after. These portraits painted in vermillion on the walls of buildings in Assyria of the fine-looking Assyrian military men lured the Israelites into fornication. These images, which were not used for worship in Assyria – they were for the purpose of portraying military victories – led the Israelites into idolatry, worshiping other gods through images, standing stones and obelisks.

Do you think it’s possible that YHVH has a reason for wanting to stop His people from making images and having possession of images by telling them to not make them and to tear down both the idols and the images throughout Israel? YHVH’s definition of image-worship begins with making, goes to admiring paintings on walls and ends with worshiping them. Worship – attributing authority to manmade created things that belongs only to Him!

Well, people say, YHVH used images in the Tabernacle so why can’t we use them? Because He owns the copyright of the things He created. He can do whatever He want swith the things He creates. We are not permitted to anything we like with what He owns! Actually, when it comes right down to it, making images of things YHVH owns without His express permission – and He did give permission for the use of images such as the bronze serpent on the pole which was later used for worship – is stealing! It’s breaking another commandment, too! But our people don’t understand, they don’t see it, and they feel oppressed by this prohibition. YHVH’s images prohibition is actually an elevation of Israel above all others by giving us access to Him that the heathen do not have, whose only method of worship is through images. Israel is not only a step above heathens in that they get to have direct contact with YHVH, but that we are miles above the heathen in this way. Our direct contact with YHVH, though, has a price which is to stop having images in our lives whether they are for worship or not because they always lead to worship of other gods or, in the end of days, worshiping the image of the beast!

YHVH’s definition of the prohibition of images is don’t make, don’t serve, don’t worship and destroy images when you find them.

Another stronghold among YHVH’s people has to do with the Feasts being only authorized in Jerusalem. Teachers in the Hebrew Roots Movement teach people to do YHVH’s celebrations everywhere but Jerusalem. They say with their mouth that the Feasts are to be done 3 times a year in Jerusalem but they schedule their own Feasts anywhere they choose. This is happening all over the earth.

There is an occult trend within Christianity with the New Age philosophies and occult arts that now permeate and defile Christian congregations. These practices have found their way into Hebrew Roots via Kabbalism and Talmud teachings. The occult is based on the twisted heathenish practices of our ancient ancestors. Before there ever was a nation of Israel, there were occult practices among the heathen. These same practices were learned by the Israelites against YHVH’s express commands. Israelites took their occult practices with them wherever they went. These occult ideas are latent within Christianity and Judaism as codified under Kabbalism. Yes, Kabbalistic practices and thought exist within Christianity which is why the coming deception will trap Christians!

What is occult practice? Idolatry! The occult is the heathen’s way to practice spirituality but this spirituality is bereft of YHVH. He is not in it at all! The heathen’s way spiritualizes everything and this spiritualization permeates Christian thought so that nothing in scripture is concrete or applicable the way YHVH meant it to be, such things as the Law of Moses, for instance.

Divination is a cancer throughout the body of Christians, Hebrew Roots and Messianic Jews, and divination is the foundation of Kabbalah! People are so used to divining – foretelling the future in all kinds of ways – that the practices go unnoticed. One of the better known forms of divination in Judaism is Bible coding. Christians rarely involve themselves in Bible coding but do another form of divination – date setting. They set specific dates for the Rapture (which is a false doctrine to begin with), dates for the start of the Tribulation, dates for Yeshua’s return, dates for when the stock market will crash (usually September 23rd). I know a wicked woman who foretells people’s death date using Bible Codes! Date setting is divination, foretelling the future. Israelites are not permitted to foretell the future. We are only to watch for the times and seasons.

YHVH never set a date when prophesying through any prophet from the beginning to the end of the Bible. The Disciples were told by Yeshua that the day and the time of His return was known only to the Father and that they should get about the business of just doing His will.

One problem we have is that our people want to interpret the Law of Moses. The Law is not there for us to interpret. It is there for us to obey or disobey. The stop sign at the intersection is “truth” just like YHVH’s Law is “truth”. They are not “THE truth”. Adding “the” in front of “truth” makes the “truth” relative and subjective from individual to individual. The stop sign governs everyone alike. It is just there without your approval or your vote and no one needs your opinion about it. The same with YHVH’s Law!

Revelation 22:14 Blessed are those who DO his commandments [not interpret them properly], that they may have the right to the tree of life, and may enter in by the gates into the city.

Interpreting the Law of Moses is how people find ways to get out of doing certain things that don’t appeal to their flesh.

We don’t understand how YHVH defines sin, so how can we adjudicate properly to put the evil away from the congregation, from the Kingdom? This is a Kingdom issue. It is not just an issue in all the little assemblies around the world and now it is up to those who desire to be called “Bride” to change her ways.

Repentance and obedience are such small prices to pay in exchange for not losing your citizenship in the Kingdom.

LOVE – THE LOVE OF THE BRIDE

Aren’t we just supposed to “love” one another? Isn’t that what Yeshua said? Didn’t He distill the entire Torah down to just “love” in the New Testament? No. The requirement of loving YHVH and others is not new in the New Testament. Love is the foundation of the Torah. And because “God is love”, He cannot be anywhere near sin. Sin is opposite of love.

Why is this? Because sin is disobedience and rebellion and love is obedience and loyalty. “Love” in scripture is not affection in most cases. It is loyalty and it is action, and it is loyalty and action according to the expectations of our King, Yeshua who is YHVH, not according to how we want to do it. Sin is not stopped by allowing it to continue which is most believers’ idea of “love”, an idea that means “working with” the sinner instead of putting him out of the congregation. For those who view confronting sin as “not love”, putting a sinner out is abhorrent.

We also fail to understand that the group of people called the Bride is in an arranged marriage. This is not a romantic relationship so “love” in our modern romantic idea does not apply. I am not saying The Bride does not experience the emotion of deep abiding affection toward Yeshua. I am saying, however, that this affection is not the basis of our relationship with Him. Loyalty to Him and His Laws are the basis of the relationship. If we squander that, there is no amount of affection that will help us on Judgment Day. The Bride of Yeshua is bound to Him first by duty, then by affection. Remember, breaking one commandment breaks them all.

Yeshua did not romance the Hebrews that came out of Egypt. He came, He took them to Mount Sinai and then once He had them there, He asked “are you willing to live by MY rules”? Really, that’s all! The first duty of the Bride is obedience! Affection comes because of obedience, not despite it! Affection is not true affection if it does not seek to please the husband.

This is an arranged marriage because no one comes to Yeshua except the Father calls them which means we ought to be grateful that we have been called and do the obedience thing.

John 6:44 No one can come to me unless the Father who sent me draws him, and I will raise him up in the last day.

In Genesis 24, we have the account of Isaac’s arranged marriage as our example of the marriage between Yeshua and His Bride.

The Bride is now, and will be in the future, in service to the entire Kingdom. She has to be up to many tasks and she must be so equally yoked and in tune with her Husband that He will trust her to run His entire “House”, His Kingdom, as it were. Proverbs 31 describes Yeshua’s Bride. Unless the Bride is in full agreement through loyalty and the DOING of the Law, she will be unfit to rule Yeshua’s Kingdom this way.

The Bride’s love, her loyalty, for her husband, to do things His way, is paramount and her loyalty requires unquestioning obedience, blind obedience, doing what the plain sense, the basic understanding and face value of the Law says (because these are the Laws of the House she hopes to inhabit). And sometimes it takes doing without understanding “why”. I have found that understanding comes with doing.

One of my own examples has to do with keeping the celebrations, the Feasts, only in Jerusalem. I, like other teachers, said the Feasts were to be done in Jerusalem but then proceeded to set up Passover, Shavuot and Sukkot somewhere else.

YHVH told me in August 2014 to be in Jerusalem for Sukkot in 2015. The story of how I got there is amazing but long so I will save it for another time. At Sukkot in 2015, as I stood praying at the Western Wall, I began to get an inkling of understanding but the full understanding took going back to Jerusalem for the following Passover. I “got it” like a ton of bricks! Standing at the Western Wall praying, I understood through the experience of being there something I cannot express. The Feasts are like chocolate. Just try to explain to someone who refuses to eat chocolate what a wonderful thing it is. It can’t be done. There are some things that only experience can explain. But I will say this. That experience anchored me to Jerusalem. Who can remove me from Yeshua? No one! Who can remove me from Jerusalem? No one!

YHVH’s people are the method He uses to clean up the congregation. That is the way it will be in the wilderness. That’s the way it has always been supposed to be and the way it will always remain. We are a self-cleaning Kingdom!

There is a war going on between two opposing forces of people in the Kingdom both who claim to know YHVH – the righteous and the unrighteous. It is the unenviable, but honorable, job of the righteous and faithful congregation to separate the unrighteous and unfaithful people from the Kingdom. And we need to get this done because He is coming soon!

Email me with your questions. And be sure to go to Beast Watch News for details on how the prophecies are being fulfilled every day!

Be blessed!
Kimberly Rogers-Brown
beastwatchnews@gmail.com
09-18-2020

Separating Sinners From The Bride

LISTEN TO THE AUDIO HERE

Let’s talk about a very difficult subject – judging others and separating sinners from our congregations. This is something we are scared to death of – judging others and separating sinners from us. We are all highly sensitive to our own sins and fearful of the judgment that could come upon us from YHVH by separating ourselves from sinners because we have been taught that this looks like “not love”. To us humans, all separation is evil even when YHVH requires it.

WHY DOES YHVH REQUIRE SEPARATING SINNERS FROM HIS HOLY CONGREGATION?

To understand that, we need to understand that YHVH Elohim is more concerned about the congregation than the individual. The congregation of the Kingdom must be comprised of the creme de ‘la crème of all humanity and there are standards set forth by YHVH as quality control measures to bring this about. YHVH cares about individuals in the congregation because of their place in the congregation but He requires a certain level of enthusiasm and patriotism of the heart for His Kingdom, akin to that of peoples’ national patriotism, that brings forth the fruit of a high standard of conduct.

YHVH’s standards requires the removal of the defective, the blemished, the defiled members of the congregation. Leaving the defective, blemished and defiled members within the congregation defiles the entire congregation. Thus, YHVH requires that His people clean His House and He tells us how to do that. Well-trained children know how to clean their parents’ house. Only a congregation with non-defective people, righteous people, can be called a holy congregation. And someone can be righteous but still imperfect the way man looks at imperfection. This is why YHVH gave His people His justice system. His justice system is how He expects us to keep His House clean and it is His justice system that keeps individuals clean.

A righteous person wants to stay righteous. But sometimes things happen that the righteous person does not know about but which cause him to have a blemish, a defect, as it were. We were given YHVH’s justice system so that all the individual sheep of the congregation can check out all the other individual sheep to see if everyone is in compliance with YHVH’s high standards.

To this end, YHVH’s people are called to be judges and to separate the defective people from among us. Every offeror of a sacrifice must go through his flock or herd separating out the defective animals. He must judge the animals and their conditions. This agricultural object lesson applies in every way to how people are to judge each other for defects. There is coming a day when Yeshua will judge and separate His flock based on blemishes and defects. But for now, He expects us to learn how to properly identify defects and judge them according to His laws of what is acceptable in the congregation and what is not acceptable in the congregation just as a sheep herder would for his flock.

We learned in church that judging others is evil and self-serving and separating someone from a congregation is abominable to YHVH. That’s Christianity. Let’s see what YHVH actually says about judging and separating the defective – the sinful people – from the righteous congregation.

Every nation on earth has a police force except the Kingdom of Israel. We are the Israelite police. Individuals within the congregation always have their eyes open for defects in themselves and others in order to protect the integrity of YHVH’s congregation and His Name. Spiritual and behavioral defects and lack of care for YHVH’s standards result in profaning His Name.

In our duty as police, fighting sin in the congregation takes constant judging, constant watching. When you know someone is sinning you are required to act. How do you act? You bring the offense to the attention of the sinner.

The unrighteous will say they don’t want to be constantly under people’s scrutiny. The righteous will be glad for it because when the Biblical policeman comes calling the righteous person will be ready to repent to keep his life in line with the Word. Besides, we are all under people’s scrutiny all the time which is why we must also avoid even the appearance of evil. The problem is, though, the judgments coming forth from people most of the time are from their personal Torah. These are criticisms with no foundation in YHVH’s expectations of us. These criticisms only point out our lack of suitability to the person making the criticism but to YHVH. I will talk about this later because this is what we must avoid while learning to do right judgment.

We are told from the start to rebuke our brother. Well, we cannot rebuke if we cannot make righteous judgments.

Leviticus 19:17 You shall not hate your brother in your heart: you shall in any wise rebuke your neighbor, and not suffer sin upon him.

WHY ARE WE TO JUDGE?

We are to put evil away from YHVH’s congregation which protects all of the individuals in the congregation.

Deuteronomy 17:12 And the man that will do presumptuously, and will not heed the priest that stands to minister there before the LORD your God, or to the judge, that man shall die: and you shall put away the evil from Israel.

Israel is the congregation.

Deuteronomy 22:22 If a man is found lying with a woman married to a husband, then they shall both die, both the man that lay with the woman, and the woman: so shall you put away evil from Israel.

Judges 20:13 Now therefore deliver us the men, the children of Belial, which are in Gibeah, that we may put them to death, and put away evil from Israel. But the children of Benjamin would not listen to the voice of their brethren the children of Israel:

The Benjamites protected their brothers who had raped and murdered a Levite man’s concubine. This resulted in a war between the other 11 tribes and Benjamin with heavy casualties on both sides. The Benjamites were wicked because they would not separate the sinners from the congregation and thus were left with only 1,000 of their men by the time the war was over. It all but decimated them. For us, it is a lesson of what YHVH allows to happen to a congregation that will not separate sinners from its midst.

1 Corinthians 5 is a chapter dealing only with one issue – sin in the congregation. Paul indicts the congregation more than the man who is sinning.
1 Corinthians 5:1 It is actually reported that there is sexual immorality among you, and such sexual immorality as is not even named among the Gentiles, that one has his father’s wife.
1 Corinthians 5:2  You are arrogant, and didn’t mourn instead, that he who had done this deed might be removed from among you.
1 Corinthians 5:3  For I most certainly, as being absent in body but present in spirit, have already, as though I were present, judged him who has done this thing.
1 Corinthians 5:4  In the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, you being gathered together, and my spirit, with the power of our Lord Jesus Christ,
1 Corinthians 5:5  are to deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh, that the spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.

The man was sinning and the congregation was refusing to put him out of the congregation. Paul says this attitude, this unwillingness to put him out, is being “puffed up”, or arrogant. The Greek word for “puffed up” is ‘fooseeo’ and it means arrogant. Arrogance is one of the 7 things that YHVH hates and says is an abomination to Him in Proverbs 6:16-19. This whole congregation was arrogant for not judging the man and separating him from among them, thus putting the evil away from them.

What is the purpose of putting the evil away from the congregation? That we may be holy as YHVH is holy.

Leviticus 11:45 For I am the LORD that brought you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God: you shall therefore be holy, for I am holy.

Why is it so important for YHVH’s congregation to be holy?

Ephesians 5:27 That He might present it to Himself a glorious congregation, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

This is talking about the Bride, folks. No one with sin – blemishes, defects – will be a part of the Bride.

There is a great separation coming in the wilderness where “the woman” of Revelation 12:6 will flee to that I will talk about later on. Separating rebels away from the congregation will be done and will be necessary for Yeshua to have an unblemished and equally-yoked-with-Him Bride that He can bring into His city, Jerusalem.

BUT WE DON’T WANT TO JUDGE

No one said righteous judging was easy. It has to be done in the right way and for the right the reason. A person judging unrighteously, in the wrong way and for the wrong reason is also guilty of sinning. So, when we judge, we must be sure that our motives are Kingdom-oriented and intended to put the evil out of the Kingdom and not for the purpose of getting some sense of personal satisfaction or simply to cause trouble for the person. The accused really must have committed a Torah sin for judgment to be judgment and not malice.

The first place people go regarding judgment is…

Matthew 7:1 Judge not, that ye be not judged.

They stop there but they should continue reading.

Matthew 7:2 For with whatever judgment you judge, you will be judged; and with whatever measure you measure, it will be measured to you.

This has to do with manmade laws and personal preferences, a person’s personal Torah that we measure others with but that we do not measure ourselves with. This is not referencing righteous judgment but man’s judgment.

Yeshua said:

John 7:24 Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment.

We have this Kingdom mandate from the beginning. We have the mandate to judge. In fact, we must all submit to judgment, as well. None of us can see our own defects and blemishes. Again, the righteous desire to have their defects and blemishes known in order to get this fixed because they can be fixed through repentance. Unlike a sheep with a physical defect that cannot be changed, humans can have their spiritual and behavioral defects changed by someone noticing and caring enough to say something for the purpose of helping the person to repent.

I am not talking here about personality issues but real sins that another person can point to in the Torah with scripture to show what the sin is.

Let me add right here that when we don’t bring our brethren’s defects, his sis, to his attention, we are not loving him as we do ourselves. In fact, we are hating him as it says in:

Leviticus 19:17 You shall not hate your brother in your heart: you shall rebuke your neighbor, and not suffer sin upon him.

It is interesting, don’t you think, that YHVH thinks His people have this duty and right but His people think any such rebuke is evil? Just mention that someone won’t meet face to face with you to work out a sin between you, and he won’t take the advice of the 1 or 2 other people that have been asked to assist in the situation and now we have to go to the next step in both Deuteronomy and Matthew and see what happens. The accusation against the one trying to work through a problem of sin with another will be accused of dividing the congregation when the whole congregation is called to do its congregational duty as given by YHVH from the beginning!

Is YHVH wrong in His thinking and in His commandments for His people to judge each other? Maybe YHVH just doesn’t know what He’s doing! Right? Wrong! We are Israel’s judges according to YHVH, for as far as we can take a matter up to the point of going before the entire congregation. The reason for the priests and the judge being appointed in Deuteronomy 17 is because they represent the entire congregation of Israel! Logistically, as the Kingdom grew in population, it would not be possible for every single case that is too hard for the two individuals wrangling over an issue to come before the entire congregation. So YHVH created offices to represent His congregation in these matters – priests and the judge – when no judgment could be reached locally, that is within the local congregation.

Leviticus 19:17 has a strange combination – not hating your brother in your heart coupled with a command to rebuke him. Literally, what it is saying is we hate our brother if we refuse to rebuke him. Why? Because, first, it suffers sin on him by not showing him how he sinned in case he doesn’t realize he has sinned, and second by letting him know his sin is not secret. If he sinned and knew he was sinning (which is deliberate sin), he may also think no one knows about it or those who do know won’t care. But now, here you come to show that either he is not aware of his sin or that his sin has found him out. Oh boy… what will the reaction be? The deliberate sinner, the unrepentant kind, will lash out at you and cause a scandal wherein you are the center of attention and at fault.

HOW ARE WE TO JUDGE?

We just by following the steps.

Let’s go to Deuteronomy 17:8.

Deuteronomy 17:8 If there arise a matter too hard for you in judgment, between blood and blood, between plea and plea, and between stroke and stroke, being matters of controversy within your gates: then shall you arise, and get you up into the place which the LORD your God shall choose;

Let’s go to Matthew 18.

Matthew 18:15 Moreover if your brother trespasses against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone: if he shall hear you, you have gained your brother.
Matthew 18:16 But if he will not hear you, then take with you one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established.
Matthew 18:17 And if he shall refuse to hear them, tell it to the congregation: but if he refuses to hear the congregation, let him be to you as a Gentile and a Publican.

Yeshua said anyone has not only the right but the authority but also the mandate to approach a person he knows is sinning to rebuke him, to reason with him from the Torah’s laws to bring that person to repentance. If that person is unrepentant and we do not separate that person away from us, we will be guilty of binding their sins in heaven, tying their sins to God. That is what the scripture says in the next verse. Let’s take a look at that.

Matthew 18:18 Most certainly I tell you, whatever things you bind on earth will have been bound in heaven, and whatever things you release on earth will have been released in heaven.

Yeshua said this right after, and in reference to, putting a sinner away from the congregation. What this means is that our allowing the sin to remain tied to our congregation causes it to be tied to Heaven. This is why YHVH has such a bad reputation through His people! It is why nonbelievers reject Him. Our testimony when we just overlook the sins of people in our congregation is that we tie YHVH’s reputation as a sinning “God” to our own sinning reputation!

I know you have not heard this before. “Binding” means to tie or knit something together. Yeshua just told us to put a sinner away from us and then goes directly to “whatever we knit together in our congregation here on earth will be knit together in Heaven”! Is it any wonder that YHVH is coming to punish His people? We are literally tying or knitting sin into His congregation and right into His heavenly abode! Israel has been doing this for the last 3500 years. Yeshua was teaching the Disciples to not do this. We are expected to not do this.

BACK TO WHY ARE WE TO JUDGE?

If we don’t judge others and learn how to do it righteously and execute the judgments we will not be fit to rule and reign with our King. Being capable of making righteous decisions in the upcoming Kingdom of Yeshua during the Millennium requires learning how to do it during the lifetime we were given whether that be now or anytime within the last 3500 years. Do you think Yeshua, the King, will want those who do not judge sin at all, do not judge sin righteously or those who judge improperly being Priests and Kings ruling with Him?

Psalms 1:5 Therefore the wicked shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous.

HOW TO SENTENCE A REBELLIOUS BROTHER

We get disturbed and confused about Matthew 18:17, the part that says if our brother won’t heed us even when we come with one or two more people to establish the truth, that we are to treat him like a tax collector (Publican) and a Gentile.

Matthew 18:17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the congregation. If he refuses to hear the congregation also, let him be to you (collectively as a congregation) as a Gentile or a tax collector.

We don’t know the cultural context of that today so let me explain.

A Publican and a tax collector are two terms for the same kind of person. Publicans earned a living by cooperating with the occupying Roman empire and some of them lined their pockets by stealing additional money from people through extortion. A stereotype was created in that day that meant in the Jewish culture that if you were a Publican, a tax collector, you were automatically ostracized from Jewish society.

We all know what a Gentile is – someone who is not part of YHVH’s Kingdom.

How were these people treated? Apparently, Yeshua did not disagree with some aspects of treating tax collectors and Gentiles in a certain way. So how were they treated that made Yeshua, our King, treat the unrepentant like that? After all, didn’t Yeshua preach only love and mercy and blessings on our enemies? No. That’s what Christian “mercy-naries” tout because they also teach that the God of the Old Testament is a wrathful God. They do that because they don’t understand that the God of the New Testament is the same as the God of the Old Testament. Those who understand the Kingdom know better.

So how were Publicans and Gentiles treated that Yeshua agreed with? They were treated like you would treat a stranger, someone you do not personally know and someone whom you don’t want to get to know. You don’t hang out with them; you don’t eat with them; you don’t do business with them; you don’t invite them to your home or go to their home. This is how tax collectors and Gentiles were treated in Jewish culture. They were separated completely away from the Jewish congregation. In other words, they were marked as non-Jewish. In the context of the 12-tribed Kingdom, a sinner put out of the congregation this is way is marked as “not Israelite” and becomes a Gentile. That is the mark Paul spoke about in Romans 16:17.

Romans 16:17 Now I beg you, brothers, mark those who cause discord and obstacles contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and turn away from them.

Some confusion comes in because we read that Yeshua had Publicans and sinners (no Gentiles) in His House.

Matthew 9:10 And it came to pass, as Jesus sat eating in the house, behold, many Publicans and sinners came and sat down with Him and His disciples.

These Publicans and sinners are people in need of Yeshua’s forgiveness. Being ostracized is the best way to make a person see his need to repent. Notice that Yeshua did not regularly seek out Publicans and sinners or Gentiles (Matthew was the exception). Notice that THEY, the Publicans and sinners, came to join Him and the Disciples in Matthew’s house without Him calling them! This is the Ruach drawing them to Him without the help of people.

There’s the difference and the point! When we ostracize people and separate them from us because they refuse to repent of proven sins because we went through YHVH’s Deuteronomy 17 and Matthew 18 process, He can work with them. He can draw them to His House for repentance. But if we won’t put them away from us, separate them from us, we are keeping YHVH’s judgment in our own hands, tying up His authority in that person’s life and defiling the congregation with that person’s sin and our own sin. What sin is ours? The sin of not doing YHVH’s justice system YHVH’s way. When we stand with the sinner, we become guilty of that person’s sin. That is simply a principle of law even throughout the nations worldwide today. A person who aids a criminal is liable for aiding and abetting the criminal.

We are to remove sin from the congregation and remove ourselves from the presence of sinners. Keeping an unrepentant sinner as personal friend and/or a member of our congregation does 2 things: 1) It puts us in agreement with their sin thus lowering the reputation of the entire congregation, and 2) prevent them from getting cleaned up spiritually by sending the message that there is nothing sinful about the sins they are committing. So you get defiled by the sinner and the sinner keeps on believing they are right with YHVH!

How can we say we love someone if we won’t turn their soul over to YHVH for judgment and their bodies over to Satan for the destruction of their flesh?

THE LAST GENERATION’S TIME OF TESTING

Here is the problem we face as we head into our time of cleansing as the Bride of Yeshua. Our ancestors in the first generation in the wilderness failed the test of not separating sinners from the congregation. They whined after Korah, Abiram and Dathan were killed by YHVH  for their sins! They complained when the wicked spies returned from reconnoitering the Land and they were punished for their sins. The entire congregation were punished for disagreeing with YHVH (like people do today who refuse to judge sinners because it’s not loving and merciful). But even before these incidents, the people had celebrated being a newly ordained nation by sinning with the golden calf. The Levites earned their position in YHVH’s service because they stood against the sin and killed those involved thus putting away the evil away from the congregation.

Later, the people in the wilderness did not stop their young men from going to fornicate with the Midianite and Moabite women. They brought on themselves Balaam’s curse because they refused to keep the congregation free of sin.

I said earlier that Yeshua will not use those who refuse to learn how to judge correctly and then be willing to execute the sentence of separation as someone who will rule and reign with Him. But it goes even further than that. Not being willing to separate from sin and sinners is rebellion, in YHVH’s eyes.

Ezekiel 20:33 As I live, says the Lord Yahweh, surely with a mighty hand, with an outstretched arm, and with wrath poured out, I will be king over you.
Ezekiel 20:34 I will bring you out from the peoples, and will gather you out of the countries in which you are scattered with a mighty hand, with an outstretched arm, and with wrath poured out.
Ezekiel 20:35 I will bring you into the wilderness of the peoples, and there I will enter into judgment with you face to face.

That’s how we’re supposed to deal with our brethren. By the way, that wrath that will be poured out is not on the world, but on YHVH’s own people.

Ezekiel 20:36 Just as I entered into judgment with your fathers in the wilderness of the land of Egypt, so I will enter into judgment with you,” says the Lord Yahweh.
Ezekiel 20:37 “I will cause you to pass under the rod, and I will bring you into the bond of the covenant.
Ezekiel 20:38 I will purge out from among you the rebels and those who disobey me. I will bring them out of the land where they live, but they shall not enter into the land of Israel. Then you will know that I am Yahweh.”

I guarantee that if anyone stands in the way of YHVH’s justice in this coming wilderness he, too, will be put out.

Do not confuse separating a sinner from among yourselves with being unforgiving. As soon as the person repents, take him back! Quickly!

2 Corinthians 2:5 But if any has caused sorrow, he has caused sorrow, not to me, but in part (that I not press too heavily) to you all.
2 Corinthians 2:6 This punishment which was inflicted by the many is sufficient for such a one;
2 Corinthians 2:7 so that on the contrary you should rather forgive him and comfort him, lest by any means such a one should be swallowed up with his excessive sorrow.
2 Corinthians 2:8 Therefore I beg you to confirm your love toward him.

Who is Paul talking about? The sinner that he exhorted them to separate from the congregation in 1 Corinthians 5 that has now been sorrowful and repentant. As soon as the sinner repents, he is to be restored to the congregation.

God can’t do His mercy until we stop doing our “mercy”. Our mercy never heals the person. Only YHVH’s mercy does. Our mercy only serves to keep the sin and the sinner among us defiling us. Our mercy is perverted and harmful to others. No matter how much we believe we are helping the sinner to change, the fact is that no one comes to repentance except he is called by God. It simply requires us to do our job so YHVH can do His. And our job is to get out of the way.

THE POST-CONFLICT SITUATION

Inevitably, separating a sinner from the congregation results in the loss of other people, friends and even family. Disagreements over whether or not the sinner actually sinned (even though proven through scripture and witness testimony) and differences in approach, i.e. whether the person should be kept within the congregation where he can be “helped” and even disagreements over people maintaining relationships with allies of the sinner, second- and third-hand relationships to the sinner, outside the congregation will arise.

The question to ask is whether it is wise to allow any connection to the sinner through second- and third-hand relationships? Don’t such relationships constitute an inroad for continued contamination of the congregation?

Psalms 1:1 Blessed is the man who doesn’t walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand on the path of sinners, nor sit in the seat of scoffers;

Remember that when people sit with sinners, they are themselves sinners. Maintaining an ongoing relationship with those people who are allies of the separated sinner now makes you a sinner, as well. These are the people who counsel the wicked, separated person, that you’re hanging out with. These are those who reject YHVH’s justice system. Your friendship with the allies of the separated sinner makes you one of them by association.

1 Corinthians 15:33 Stop being deceived: “Wicked friends lead to evil ends.”

1 Corinthians 5:11 But as it is, I wrote to you not to associate with anyone who is called a brother who is a sexual sinner (fornicator), or covetous, or an idolater, or a slanderer, or a drunkard, or an extortionist. Don’t even eat with such a person.

It is unwise for any member of the congregation who has separated a sinner from its midst to allow members to continue relations with friends of the sinner. I have shown you that those who refuse to put the sin away from them are guilty of the same sin; they are standing with the sinner. Therefore, anyone who maintains friendship with people who are friends with the sinner is opening the door for problems to enter.

James 4:4 You adulterous people! Do you not know that friendship with the world is enmity with God? Therefore whoever wishes to be a friend of the world makes himself an enemy of God.

John 17:14 I have given them your word. The world hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world.

David (2 Samuel 15:12), Jeremiah (Jeremiah 11:18) and Yeshua (Matthew 26:14) were recipients of conspirators within their close circle of brothers and friends. It is dangerous for connections between the marked sinner and a congregation to remain no matter how innocent those second- and third-hand relationships seem to be.

I spoke earlier of doing good to those who are outside YHVH’s of will.

Deuteronomy 7:9 Know therefore that Yahweh your God himself is God, the faithful God, who keeps covenant and loving kindness with them who love him and keep his commandments to a thousand generations,
Deuteronomy 7:10 and repays those who hate him to their face, to destroy them. He will not be slack to him who hates him. He will repay him to his face.

It is difficult for us to be wise in regard to former relationships. Once we let go and change the status of our relationship with sinners and those who stand with sinners from “friend” or “brother” to just another person, YHVH can deal with them. If we keep our hands in YHVH’s pie, He cannot deal with them. God can be prevented from doing His work in peoples’ lives.

Mark 6:1  He went out from there. He came into his own country, and his disciples followed him.
Mark 6:2  When the Sabbath had come, he began to teach in the synagogue, and many hearing him were astonished, saying, “Where did this man get these things?” and, “What is the wisdom that is given to this man, that such mighty works come about by his hands?
Mark 6:3  Isn’t this the carpenter, the son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judah, and Simon? Aren’t his sisters here with us?” They were offended at him.
Mark 6:4  Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor, except in his own country, and among his own relatives, and in his own house.”
Mark 6:5  He could do no mighty work there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people, and healed them.
Mark 6:6  He marveled because of their unbelief. He went around the villages teaching.

It wasn’t that Yeshua could not do miracles there. It was that He would not because He would not give His pearls in front of scoffers and unbelievers. Neither are we to give of our precious pearls, the benefit of our approval of sinners and their friends even though they may be mutual friends.

Earlier I said, “Notice that Yeshua did not regularly seek out Publicans and sinners or Gentiles (Matthew was the exception). Notice that THEY, the Publicans and sinners, came to join Him and the Disciples in Matthew’s house without Him calling them”. When the Ruach draws a sinner without our intervention it creates an entirely different kind of connection to YHVH for that person. This connection is more intimate and stronger than before they committed the sin. I know this from personal experience after having left the church for over 20 years. I came back because YHVH called me, not because people kept “loving” me or witnessing to me or trying to “help” me. I was not capable of hearing them, anyway. My heart after returning to YHVH because His Ruach called me is toward the Kingdom and my mind seeks His mind and my heart desires only His will in a way that was not the case in the 15 years that I walked in the faith before walking away from the faith.

The hardest thing to do is stand back and get out of the way. There is nothing you can do once the sinner is separated. The Ruach has to draw them to Yeshua without your help. The only kind of help you can give is the fleeting moment of love that a believer would show to a stranger in need. Those fleeting moments are reminders to the sinner of what once was but now is not.

We can hinder YHVH from bringing a sinner to repentance by continuing our friendship with him or by continuing to run in his circle of friends. Hindering YHVH trying to bring someone to repentance while we are still hanging out with him or with his friends means that we are standing in the way, but YHVH can go around us to get to that person. But it is more likely that our former relationship with him will never be restored as it would have if we had changed his status to “Gentile” and treated him with only the kind of love afforded to Gentiles but which brothers do not receive. We must decide which is better: That we keep those relationships as they are or that we let them go so God can bring them back with new understanding about their sins after repentance.

How are we to love these people? We are commanded to love them but what does that mean? Pray for them. Be polite and kind to former friends who are now marked as Gentiles. If you see one of them struggling, in danger or in position of dying, needing food or water, help them (Luke 6:32, Matthew 5:44) as you would a Gentile but don’t seek their closeness in your life. These loving actions can help a former sinner see that real love is righteous love and righteous love is available to everyone in need. YHVH does not give His abiding presence to the rebellious yet He allows them to live and often thrive. Jeremiah expressed exasperation to YHVH over the success and happiness of the wicked (Jeremiah 12:1). A kindness performed while withholding friendship and brotherhood may make the sinner finally have remorse over his loss, the loss of you, and bring him to repentance so your relationship with him can be restored.

Proverbs 12:1 Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.

Proverbs 10:17 Whoever heeds instruction is on the path to life, but he who rejects reproof leads others astray.

Proverbs 27:5 Better is open rebuke than hidden love.

Jeremiah 12:5 “If you have run with the footmen, and they have wearied you, then how can you contend with horses? Though in a land of peace you are secure, yet how will you do in the pride of the Jordan?

Jeremiah 12:6 For even your brothers, and the house of your father, even they have dealt treacherously with you! Even they have cried aloud after you! Don’t believe them, though they speak beautiful words to you.

Let us begin to clean up our congregations now before the coming Tribulation gets in full force because it will be during that time that friends and brothers will become betrayers. That kind of betrayal could cost an entire congregation their lives if we don’t separate sinners away from us along with our mutual friends!

Email me with your questions. And be sure to go to Beast Watch News for details on how the prophecies are being fulfilled every day!

Be blessed!
Kimberly Rogers-Brown
beastwatchnews@gmail.com
09-11-2020

BETRAYED BY THE SECRET RAPTURE

LISTEN TO THE AUDIO HERE

The Reformation of the 16th century did more than split the Catholic Church. It resulted in the creation of an insidious false doctrine that will cause the deaths of countless Believers during the end times. It will be just as if the Crusades and the Inquisition are reaching their evil deeds forward into the present.

The 16th century reformers Luther, Calvin, Knox, Tyndale and Wycliffe taught something about the Catholic Church that almost destroyed it. Along with the teaching that salvation comes by repentance and faith, not by purchasing a papal pardon, they taught that the Papacy was the Antichrist, Mystery Babylon, the Beast and the little horn of Daniel rolled into one entity. These Reformers so despised the Catholic Church, the Papacy and the filling of Church coffers by selling pardons for sin, that they were not only uninterested in reforming the Church – they wanted to destroy it.

They called on people to protest false doctrine by leaving the Church. One of the scriptures used to rally the masses away from the Catholic Church was:

Revelation 18:4 And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues.

5 For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities.

The Reformers’ call to “come out of her” worked. The Catholic Church witnessed a stream of people away from Catholic pews into Protestant pews. The Papacy needed a way to stop the flow. It needed to prove the Reformers wrong, so the Vatican employed the well-educated Jesuit Priest, Luis De Alcazar, to write a book called “Investigation of the Hidden Sense of the Apocalypse”. This book denied the claims of the Protestant Reformers saying the Catholic Church could not possibly be the fulfillment of Revelation 18:4 & 5 based on Alcazar’s new and improved eschatology called “Preterism”.

Preterism postulated that all scripture was already fulfilled by the time of the Reformation. But no matter how well Alcazar twisted his convoluted theory, no one was buying it. Believers continued to pour away from Catholicism in favor of Protestantism. But help would arrive from Edwin Irving (1792 -1834), a charismatic Scottish minister associated with the origins of the ‘Catholic Apostolic Church’, part of the beginnings of the Pentecostal Movement.  Edwin discovered an important book called The Coming of Messiah in Glory and Majesty that he translated into English.

The doctrine of The Coming of Messiah in Glory and Majesty was called Future Dispensationalism. It was written by Emmanuel Lacunza (1731-1801), a Roman Catholic and Jesuit Priest who used the pseudonym of Rabbi Ben-Ezra to portray himself as a converted Jewish Rabbi. His book postulated that Yeshua/Jesus returns not once, but twice. At the ‘first stage’ of His return, He ‘raptures‘, or removes, His Church so they can escape the reign of the future Antichrist. At the end of the Great Tribulation, the Church returns with Yeshua/Jesus on clouds of glory.

Lacunza’s book was banned by the Vatican because it taught against Catholic Replacement Theology. Banned or not, the book found its way into the library of the Archbishop of Canterbury. In 1826, Dr Maitland, the Archbishop’s librarian, came upon it and read it. He believed it was the answer to the Catholics’ attendance problem and convinced the Archbishop of it. The Archbishop subsequently issued a series of pamphlets with this new view of prophecy. The new doctrine found immediate acceptance in the Anglo-Catholic Ritualist movement in the National Church of England. Soon after, it tainted the very heart of European Protestantism.

The Future Dispensationalist view effectively removed the scent of the Antichrist from the Pope and onto a nebulous future figure whose name added up to 666 because it redefined and pushed the appearance of the Antichrist into the end times. Believers now had something new to investigate. That is the preoccupation with changing the letters of men’s names to numbers to discover the identity of the end times Antichrist.

Reverend Edwin Irving introduced his fledgling Catholic Apostolic flock to the new doctrine. He began to teach the doctrine in conjunction with some ecstatic prophecies of a young parishioner, Margaret McDonald. Starting in 1830, she began to experience trances that produced visions. Edwin believed her prophecies validated the secret two-stage rapture doctrine. She also prophesied that the Secret Rapture would occur in her lifetime. Margaret’s credibility as a prophet was destroyed upon her death, but the Secret Rapture theory lived on.

John Nelson Darby (1800-1882) played an active role in the development of the Secret Rapture theory in America. He made at least 5 missionary journeys to North America between 1862 and 1877 to teach this new doctrine in America’s Bible Colleges.

Darby, the author of his own Bible translation which is still in use today and can even be read online, was ever the fisher of proof texts trying to adjust his prophetic view to fit the Pre-Trib Rapture theory. It is known that he did not believe in Church Pastorship. He believed the Old Testament was irrelevant to Christians and that not even all of the New Testament was relevant. John was also a proponent of Replacement Theology. According to Darby, any Jews who come to believe in Christ become part of the Church, the heavenly people, and are no longer part of Israel, the earthly people.

In just a few short years, the work of Edwin Irving and John Nelson Darby produced the results for the Catholic Church that the Catholic Church itself had not been able to attain. Protestant Christians were once again in step with Catholic doctrine.

This new doctrine was further ingrained into Protestantism by the works of Cyrus Scofield who created the well-known Scofield Bible. He incorporated the Secret Rapture doctrine in the notes of his Bible. Cyrus claimed to be a Bible scholar and often purported himself as “Dr. Scofield”. Later, it came to light that Cyrus Scofield had no seminary training and no knowledge of the Hebrew or Greek languages. Yet, his reference Bible is still so popular that it can still be purchased in Christian bookstores and on Amazon.com today.

The history of Future Dispensationalism is as convoluted as the doctrine itself. In recent years, the Secret Rapture doctrine has found friends and been given a simple rendering in the fictional books of Tim LaHaye and Hal Lindsey. The problem with the Left Behind and The Late Great Planet Earth series is that its authoritative veneer parades as Biblical fact rather than fiction. Believers buy and read these novels as if they were “gospel truth” when in fact there is no basis in scripture for the Secret Rapture at all.

The result is that today the Protestant Christian Church is in the grip of a false doctrine promulgated by the Catholic Church, broadened by false prophets and maintained by fiction novels. Secret Rapture doctrine produces shallow spiritual growth and nonchalance about world events. Believers often ask why they should care about what is going to happen during the Tribulation when they know they will not be here? This is why so many modern Believers are fine attending an average, lukewarm church where the members are not really committed to each other or to the Lord.

The Secret Rapture doctrine is the most anti-semitic of all Christian doctrines. More so than Replacement Theology because it is more subtle. It teaches that God prefers Christians over Jews so much that He will remove Christians from the world during the time of Jacob’s Trouble leaving the Jews to face it alone as punishment for having crucified Yeshua/Jesus.

Few Believers know that the word ‘rapture’ or the phrase ‘Secret Rapture’ do not appear anywhere in the Bible. It depends on whom you listen to whether you believe Yeshua/Jesus will come prior to the Tribulation (Pre-Trib), during the Tribulation about halfway through (Mid-Trib) or at the end of the Tribulation (Post-Trib). These timelines have caused many Church difficulties because Believers cannot reach agreement.

Both the Pre-Trib and Mid-Trib Secret Rapture requires Yeshua/Jesus to return three times – not twice as stated in scripture. The Bible clearly states He will only return once more, after the blast of the last Trumpet, yet Believers still cling to the idea of His return that will whisk them away from the time of trouble, only to have Him return again when He sets up His Kingdom on earth.

Secret Rapturists teach that during the Tribulation the Holy Spirit will be removed from the world because all Believers will be gone. It is during this time, when the Jews are facing the Tribulation alone, that one hundred forty four thousand of them get saved, become evangelists and bring more people to God than was brought to salvation during the entire two thousand years when the Holy Spirit was on earth.

This is quite miraculous, indeed, given that people come to salvation only after being called by the Holy Spirit. Yet, Secret Rapturists would have people believe that the Holy Spirit’s presence on earth is not required for the Jewish people to accept their Messiah and bring others to salvation.

During the tribulation, these new Believers – without benefit of the indwelling Holy Spirit’s presence – will refuse the Mark of the Beast and willingly be persecuted and martyred for their faith. All without benefit of the Holy Spirit’s presence. I have personally heard this taught from the pulpit.

God has a plan that He laid out in plain sight in His Word. He reveals His secrets to us just as He did to Daniel.

Daniel 2:22 He revealeth the deep and secret things: he knoweth what is in the darkness, and the light dwelleth with him.

Our God has never left His people unprepared. He wants us to know His plans for us. God wants us to know that it is the righteous who will be left on earth and that it is the wicked who will be removed!

Isaiah 4:2 In that day shall the branch of the LORD be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel.

3 And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem:

Verse two is about those of Israel who have escaped something. It talks about how beautiful and glorious it is. But notice verse three where is speaks of those who are left in Zion and remain in Jerusalem. Those who are left are called holy, not wicked. The wicked are gone – the holy are left. This verse does not say that the holy have returned – no, they are left.

Revelation 7:9 After this I beheld, and, lo, a great multitude, which no man could number, of all nations, and kindreds, and people, and tongues, stood before the throne, and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, and palms in their hands;

10 And cried with a loud voice, saying, Salvation to our God which sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb.

11 And all the angels stood round about the throne, and about the elders and the four beasts, and fell before the throne on their faces, and worshipped God,

12 Saying, Amen: Blessing, and glory, and wisdom, and thanksgiving, and honour, and power, and might, be unto our God for ever and ever. Amen.

13 And one of the elders answered, saying unto me, What are these which are arrayed in white robes? and whence came they?

14 And I said unto him, Sir, thou knowest. And he said to me, These are they which came out of great tribulation, and have washed their robes, and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

Revelations shows us there will be a great multitude of people who have come OUT OF great Tribulation. It does not say that they died or were martyred. It says they came OUT of the Tribulation. When you come OUT of something, that means you have been through it – you have experienced it.

They came OUT OF the Tribulation – or THROUGH – and washed their garments in the Blood of the Lamb despite the Tribulation. This is the multitude’s claim to holiness. They went through the Tribulation and still came out clean on the other side.

THROUGH and OUT OF are very important words. THROUGH means that you didn’t miss it. OUT OF means the same thing. You had to be IN something in order to come OUT OF it.

God provides specific instruction about what to do when trials, temptations and tribulations come our way. Seeking to leave is never one of His instructions.

James 1:2 My brethren, count it all joy when ye fall into divers temptations;3 Knowing this, that the trying of your faith worketh patience.

We are to count it all joy when we fall into temptations. There is no place in the Bible that tells us to wait to be removed FROM or even to try to avoid temptations. If early Believers had not understood the need to stand firm and let the joy of the Lord be their strength it is doubtful that we would have a Christian Church today.

Those prior generations of Believers were tortured – beaten, thrown to the lions, burned at the stake, beheaded, bruised and bloodied for their faith. None of them were removed, nor sought to be removed, from their tribulations.

Furthermore, the end times tribulation is not the only period of Tribulation mentioned in the Bible. Deuteronomy mentions tribulation, then there are 21 other times that the word appears in the Bible, 19 of them in the NT where Paul talks about the tribulations he endured and expected to endure in his future. He discusses tribulation with Believers to buttress them for the times that he saw coming. And Paul was right – Believers in subsequent centuries paid dearly for their beliefs. Paul paid for his belief with his life.

If Believers are supposed to wait to be taken OUT OF their troubles, why does God spend so much time teaching His people to rejoice while going THROUGH trouble?

1 Peter 1:6 Wherein ye greatly rejoice, though now for a season, if need be, ye are in heaviness through manifold temptations:

We are to stand back and watch God’s hand of salvation in these end times just like the Children of Israel did during the Exodus.

Exodus 14:13 And Moses said unto the people, Fear ye not, stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which he will shew to you to day: for the Egyptians whom ye have seen to day, ye shall see them again no more for ever.

Nehemiah recounts how God delivered all of Israel THROUGH the waters of the Red Sea.

Nehemiah 9:9 And didst see the affliction of our fathers in Egypt, and heardest their cry by the Red sea;

11 And thou didst divide the sea before them, so that they went through the midst of the sea on the dry land; and their persecutors thou threwest into the deeps, as a stone into the mighty waters.

It was their persecutors who were thrown into the deeps to be destroyed. God has a pattern that He never changes. This pattern really started with Noah whose family went THROUGH – or came OUT OF – the flood with his family in tact.

Matthew 24:38 For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark,

39 And knew not until the flood came, and took them all away; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.

Yeshua/Jesus teaches us the rescue pattern of God in Matthew 24. First, we see that people were so indifferent to the coming apocalypse of Noah’s time that they carried on as usual. These indifferent people are also known as wicked people. In the next verse, we see it is the wicked and indifferent people who are taken away. Yeshua/Jesus said His return would be like that.

What does this mean? In verse 40, two people are working together in the field. One is taken away and the other left. The one that is taken away is the indifferent, wicked person just as in the days of Noah.

Matthew 24:40 Then shall two be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

41 Two women shall be grinding at the mill; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

Another group of people to be rescued by God was the mixed multitude that fled Egypt. This is the prime pattern for how God delivers His people. God saves His people from destruction while they are still on the earth. He takes them THROUGH the time of trouble. Who was destroyed in the Exodus story? It was Pharoah and his army.

Why does God choose to save His people while they are still on earth rather than whisk them away into the heavens until the danger passes? The answer is so He can show His might, get all the glory and praise, and draw unbelievers to Him.

Psalms 66:6 He turned the sea into dry land: they went through the flood on foot: there did we rejoice in him.

10 For thou, O God, hast proved us: thou hast tried us, as silver is tried.

12 Thou hast caused men to ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water: but thou broughtest us out into a wealthy place.

Israel rejoiced because of the way God brought them THROUGH their Tribulation. The Psalmist sang about the people coming through the Red Sea on dry land. This has been a source of rejoicing for over three thousand five hundred years! The result of God saving His people THROUGH their Tribulations is praise and rejoicing to God. He does the most difficult thing right before our eyes so that we will know that He is God! He did not remove the people in order to save them, He took them THROUGH their troubles in order to save them. God swept away the enemies. He did NOT rapture the Children of Israel away.

Psalms 106:8 Nevertheless he saved them for his name’s sake, that he might make his mighty power to be known.

The Psalmist understood that God did things this way so that His power and might should be known. It is much more difficult to save millions of people in the midst of their trouble than it is to remove them temporarily.

The Book of Daniel teaches us how God is with us IN our troubles. Meshach, Shadrach and Abednigo were not removed. They were taken THROUGH their situation. And the Son of God was with them in the fiery furnace. Daniel was not removed. He went THROUGH his situation and was delivered by a miracle of God. Unlike what God does for Believers, at the time of Judgment He does not deliver sinners, He destroys them.

Isaiah 13:9 Behold, the day of the LORD cometh, cruel both with wrath and fierce anger, to lay the land desolate: and he shall destroy the sinners thereof out of it.

Isaiah clearly teaches that God will destroy, or remove, sinners – not His own people. We are going to inherit His land. He will use us to glorify Him by taking us THROUGH the troubles of the end times – not by removing us. It is the sinners that get removed.

Yeshua/Jesus taught using stories so that we would be sure to not miss the point. The parable of the wheat and the tares illustrates very well who will remain and who will be removed.

Matthew 13:24 Another parable put he forth unto them, saying, The kingdom of heaven is likened unto a man which sowed good seed in his field:

25 But while men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares among the wheat, and went his way.

26 But when the blade was sprung up, and brought forth fruit, then appeared the tares also.

27 So the servants of the householder came and said unto him, Sir, didst not thou sow good seed in thy field? from whence then hath it tares?

28 He said unto them, An enemy hath done this. The servants said unto him, Wilt thou then that we go and gather them up?

29 But he said, Nay; lest while ye gather up the tares, ye root up also the wheat with them.

30 Let both grow together until the harvest: and in the time of harvest I will say to the reapers, Gather ye together first the tares, and bind them in bundles to burn them: but gather the wheat into my barn.

The tares are removed, not the wheat – not the good plants. The tares are gathered and burned. The gathering of the wheat into the barn is symbolic of gathering God’s people into His Kingdom that He is going to set up on earth. The purpose of removing people is to pass judgment on them and to destroy them.

Matthew 13:47 Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a net, that was cast into the sea, and gathered of every kind:

48 Which, when it was full, they drew to shore, and sat down, and gathered the good into vessels, but cast the bad away.

49 So shall it be at the end of the world: the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just,

Again, we see Yeshua/Jesus teaching the same pattern. The people are gathered. A sorting process occurs. The bad people are cast away – they are removed. The good people are left behind. Tim LaHaye and Hal Lindsey got it backwards.

John 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have Tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

Yeshua/Jesus says we will have great tribulation, but we are to be cheerful because He has overcome the world. Tim LaHaye and Hal Lindsey do not give credit to Yeshua/Jesus for having accomplished what He came for – the overcoming of the world. The Secret Rapture theory removes Yeshua/Jesus’ triumph because it suggests that He has NOT overcome the world since He has to do the lesser thing which is to remove His people in order to save them.

This is not what God will do in these end times. He is making the way for His people to glorify Him and those who are not His will know with certainty that He is God. The Secret Rapture removes this glory from God by downplaying His power to deliver His people as He has throughout history.

Yeshua/Jesus prayed that God would not take us out of the world, but that the Father should keep us from the evil of the world.

John 17:15 I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil.

Yeshua/Jesus prayed that God would leave us IN the world and keep us from evil. This is opposite of the Secret Rapture. The Rapture keeps us from evil, but only after removing us from the earth – the exact opposite of Yeshua/Jesus’ prayer.

The apostles knew that entering the Kingdom comes only by tribulations.

 

Acts 14:22 Confirming the souls of the disciples, and exhorting them to continue in the faith, and that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God.

Those who seek to miss the Tribulation by sneaking out via the Secret Rapture are like those who sneak into the fold by the back door.

John 10:1 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that entereth not by the door into the sheepfold, but climbeth up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber.

God provided us armor. The armor has the purpose of getting us through tribulations, temptations and trials.

Ephesians 6:10 Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord, and in the power of his might.

11 Put on the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.

12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

13 Wherefore take unto you the whole armour of God, that ye may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

14 Stand therefore, having your loins girt about with truth, and having on the breastplate of righteousness;

15 And your feet shod with the preparation of the gospel of peace;

16 Above all, taking the shield of faith, wherewith ye shall be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked.

17 And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God:

18 Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, and watching thereunto with all perseverance and supplication for all saints;

Why would God go to so much trouble to armor us if we were not going to face tribulation? One might say that the armor was for those who had to live before the time when everyone will be Raptured away. But this doesn’t make sense, does it? God doesn’t change His patterns. He doesn’t change His rules. What applies to one always applies to all others.

The Secret Rapture has fostered a Church full of foolish virgins. They not only do not care about what is going to happen on earth during the Tribulation, but they will not be prepared for it when they find themselves in the midst of it. The first preparation for the Tribulation, as well as the fate of evildoers, is given in Psalms 37.

Psalms 37:7 Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.

8 Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not thyself in any wise to do evil.

9 For evildoers shall be cut off: but those that wait upon the LORD, they shall inherit the earth.

It is evildoers who are cut off and the righteous who inherit the earth. Yet, the Secret Rapture doctrine teaches that God removes His people and literally turns His world, HIS earth, over to the devil for a short period of time. God has not ever, nor will He ever, turn His creation over to Satan. Revelation reveals how Satan tries to control the earth, but nowhere does the Bible say that God will ever turn His Kingdom – the earth – over to Satan.

The earth is for God’s glory and God’s people. The wicked are not going to inherit, be given or gain complete control of the earth even for a short time.

Psalms 37:28 For the LORD loveth judgment, and forsaketh not his saints; they are preserved for ever: but the seed of the wicked shall be cut off.

29 The righteous shall inherit the land, and dwell therein for ever.

Throughout the Bible, God teaches it will be His people who inherit the earth. He even tells us the wicked person will pass away. The Psalmist even prophesies that the wicked person will be sought and not found!

Psalms 37:34 Wait on the LORD, and keep his way, and he shall exalt thee to inherit the land: when the wicked are cut off, thou shalt see it.

35 I have seen the wicked in great power, and spreading himself like a green bay tree.

36 Yet he passed away, and, lo, he was not: yea, I sought him, but he could not be found.

But the righteous will be found in the earth!

Proverbs 2:21 For the upright shall dwell in the land, and the perfect shall remain in it.

22 But the wicked shall be cut off from the earth, and the transgressors shall be rooted out of it.

The  wicked will be cut off and removed from the earth!

Proverbs 10:29 The way of the LORD is strength to the upright: but destruction shall be to the workers of iniquity.

30 The righteous shall never be removed: but the wicked shall not inhabit the earth.

The righteous will NEVER be removed! How much more clear can it be?

Luke 17:36 two men shall be in the field; the one shall be taken, and the other left.

37 And they answered and said unto him, Where, Lord? And he said unto them, Wheresoever the body is, thither will the eagles be gathered together.

This scenario ends in the devouring of the body by eagles. God said that he will give evil peoples’ bodies to the birds to eat.

Ezekiel 39:4 Thou shalt fall upon the mountains of Israel, thou, and all thy bands, and the people that is with thee: I will give thee unto the ravenous birds of every sort, and to the beasts of the field to be devoured.

God is going to remove evil, wickedness and sin from the earth. He will never remove righteousness, goodness and holiness from the earth. This is why the Secret Rapture doctrine is not only a false doctrine, but is from the pit of hell!

The Secret Rapture is an insult to earlier martyrs and anti-Semitic to the Jewish people. It teaches Believers that they are so special that God will do for them what He has never done before – He spares them any and all trouble just because of who they are! God is not a respecter of persons. He does not care who you are, but what you do. What an insult to teach that God is going to take Christians and leave the Jews, who are the apple of God’s eye, to face all the Tribulation without the presence of God! Know this: Nowhere does the Bible say that God will ever abandon His people, Jewish or Christian.

Dispensationalism and Replacement Theology, though created 1,600 years apart, are actually sister doctrines. Both curse the Jewish people. Both set Christians above the Jewish people. Neither have any scriptural basis. They are both the result of what I call “Doctrine by Extrapolation”. Extrapolate a little bit of scripture out of context here and a little bit out of context there and it is possible to make the scriptures say exactly what they do not mean.

Yeshua/Jesus would not even allow Himself to be “caught up”. No, He faced His moment. We are to be like Him. We are not above Him. So, we WILL face the Tribulation in the end times. Some will come through it alive and others will die, but in the end we, the righteous, will inherit the earth which is God’s Kingdom.

Is God just or is He not? The Secret Rapture theory is definitely unjust. While today’s spoiled American generation gets to fly away before their troubles start, God’s saints of past times did not get this option. One hundred million people have died in Russia as martyrs just since Communism began. Thousands of people are martyred worldwide every year. The Chinese Christian Church experienced a huge falling away when Mao Tse Tung became their leader because they were taught that they would be removed from the earth before their Tribulation began. Yet, millions of Chinese Christians were martyred. Not one of them was Raptured out. Not even Paul was not Raptured out. Polycarp and hundreds of millions of Believers were not Raptured out. The proponents of this evil doctrine look to Matt 24:43-44 to substantiate their claim.

Matthew 24:43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.

44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.

They say Yeshua/Jesus comes as a thief in the night, which to them means quietly and secretly. These two scriptures are at the head of the “snatch and disappear” theory. Yet, 1 Thessalonians contradicts Matthew when read in this light. The Bible is a book of harmony – not discrepancies.

1 Thessalonians 4:16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:

Clearly, there is going to be a lot of commotion when Yeshua/Jesus returns. No thief in his right mind would come into a house shouting and loudly blowing a shofar to announce His presence. Then Matthew 24:43-44 must have a different meaning than the twisted one that most Christians believe. The meaning of this scripture has to do with timing, not method.

Revelation 1:7 Behold, he cometh with clouds; and every eye shall see him, and they also which pierced him: and all kindreds of the earth shall wail because of him. Even so, Amen.

Yeshua/Jesus is seen when He comes. Thieves hope to not be seen when they come. They hope to slip in, steal something and leave without being caught. But our God comes on the clouds in the daylight so that every eye can see Him! This is His method. The scripture in Matthew 24 is all about timing, meaning that He comes when He is least expected by the wicked! Believers should have a fairly good idea about the timing of His arrival. After all, He spent al lot of time detailing what to look for so we would know.

Revelation 3:3 Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.

Revelation 16:15 Behold, I come as a thief. Blessed is he that watcheth, and keepeth his garments, lest he walk naked, and they see his shame.

Again, it is about the timing, not that He is coming quietly. We are to watch, stay dressed and ready to go because of His timing. Now, having saved the best of these scriptures for last, let us see what happens when our Lord arrives as a thief in the night.

2 Peter 3:10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.

Now you see it! His timing is as a thief in the night, but his method is with great noise and lots of commotion. As He returns, the heavens pass away with a great noise and the elements melt with fervent heat. Does this seem like a quiet, secretive entry into the earth?

This scripture written by Peter coincides with Isaiah and John’s Revelation about what is going to occur at that moment.

Isaiah 34:4 And all the host of heaven shall be dissolved, and the heavens shall be rolled together as a scroll: and all their host shall fall down, as the leaf falleth off from the vine, and as a falling fig from the fig tree.

Revelation 6:14 And the heaven departed as a scroll when it is rolled together; and every mountain and island were moved out of their places.

At this point, no one has any reason to continue believing that Yeshua/Jesus is going to be secretive and sneaky when He returns. He is not going to “steal” people off of the earth because our Savior is not a thief.

Beside the teaching that Yeshua/Jesus comes in a secretive, sneaky way to snatch His people off the earth and those who are left behind endure 3 ½ or 7 years of tribulation, depending on who you listen to, now, there is an additional twist to this doctrine. They say the Antichrist is revealed after the Rapture. This is backward.

2 Thessalonians 2:2 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.

3 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 son of perdition has to be revealed BEFORE Yeshua/Jesus’ return. For now, let us forget what the Apostolic writers taught. Let us turn to Yeshua/Jesus’ own words.

Matthew 24:29 Immediately AFTER the tribulation of those days shall the sun be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light, and the stars shall fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens shall be shaken:

30 And then shall appear the sign of the Son of man in heaven: and then shall all the tribes of the earth mourn, and they shall see the Son of man coming in the clouds of heaven with power and great glory.

AFTER the tribulation, He comes. How much clearer can He say this?

Mark 13:24 But in those days, AFTER that tribulation, the sun shall be darkened, and the moon shall not give her light,

25 And the stars of heaven shall fall, and the powers that are in heaven shall be shaken.

26 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in the clouds with great power and glory.

27 And then shall he send his angels, and shall gather together his elect from the four winds, from the uttermost part of the earth to the uttermost part of heaven.

1 Thessalonians 4:17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.

We will meet Him in the air AFTER the tribulation.

Another last ploy of the Secret Rapture crowd is this verse:

Jude 1:14 And Enoch also, the seventh from Adam, prophesied of these, saying, Behold, the Lord cometh with ten thousands of his saints,

Now don’t get all excited because you think finally here is a scripture that clearly shows there is a Rapture because “lookie-lookie” He is coming with His raptured saints. The Greek word for saints in this verse is ‘hagios’. It means “holy”, “most holy thing” or “saint” depending on the context. And “context” is the issue with this faulty translation.

In Matthew 25:31, this same word is translated as ‘holy’. It is in this verse that Yeshua/Jesus explains who it is that accompanies Him upon His return to earth.

Matthew 25:31 When the Son of man shall come in his glory, and all the HOLY ANGELS with him, then shall he sit upon the throne of his glory:

Whereas in Jude 1:14 the word ‘hagios’ is mistranslated as ‘saints’, in Matthew 25:31 it is correctly translated as ‘holy’. The translator was inconsistent or failed to correlate these two scriptures. It is clear from Yeshua/Jesus’ words that ‘holy angels’ will come with Him to the earth, not raptured human saints.

Some Believers point to the taking of Enoch and Elijah as proof that God “raptures” people and that God has a pattern of “rapturing” people. The taking of Enoch and Elijah are not examples of rapture. According to the doctrine of Dispensational Pretierism, AKA the Pre-Trib Rapture, it is a means to escape tribulation. Enoch was taken because he walked with God, not because he faced tribulation. The same can be said of Elijah, one of God’s most powerful prophets.

These two men are called “my two witnesses” by God.

Revelation 11:3 And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth.

The “I” and “my” of Revelation 11:3 is Yeshua/Jesus – God. Yeshua/Jesus spoke of two witnesses elsewhere.

Deuteronomy 17:6 At the mouth of two witnesses, or three witnesses, shall he that is worthy of death be put to death; but at the mouth of one witness he shall not be put to death.

Deuteronomy 19:15 One witness shall not rise up against a man for any iniquity, or for any sin, in any sin that he sinneth: at the mouth of two witnesses, or at the mouth of three witnesses, shall the matter be established.

Anytime there is going to be Judgment, there must be a minimum of two witnesses. God took these two holy men to Heaven from where they have been watching everything that has happened on the earth from the time they were taken. At the appointed time, they will be sent to earth to give final warning to mankind.

Enoch and Elijah have never died. Of Enoch, Paul wrote:

Hebrews 11:5 By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because God had translated him: for before his translation he had this testimony, that he pleased God.

The Greek word for ‘translated’ is ‘metatithemi’. This is Strong’s number 3326. It has several related meanings: to transpose (two things, one of which is put in place of the other); to transfer; to change; to transfer one’s self or suffer one’s self to be transferred; to go or pass over; to fall away or desert from one person or thing to another. Enoch and Elijah can be said to have both transferred and to have passed over to another place – i.e. they simply went somewhere else.

Enoch was transferred or transported to another place so that he would not experience death at the end of his normal lifespan (Hebrews 11:5). He is alive in Heaven with Elijah. Enoch and Elijah did not die at their appointed times, but they will die in the future. God said that sin causes death. All men sin, so all men experience death. Since God or His Word does not change and God does not make exceptions (even His own Son who was sinless died), the conclusion must be reached that both Enoch and Elijah will die because they are sinful men like everyone else. God will not make an exception for them.

Hebrews 9:27 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:

Enoch and Elijah’s bodies will lie in the streets of Jerusalem. They will die because they have not yet fulfilled their own human destiny of death.

Some claim that the story of Enoch and Elijah are examples of how some people are spared the fate of death. This supposedly supports the ‘rapture’ theory. According to scripture, Enoch and Elijah’s bodies were not changed or transformed in the way that Believers’ bodies will be changed/transformed when we meet Yeshua/Jesus in the air.

1 Corinthians 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

We shall all be changed when we meet Yeshua/Jesus in the air. The Greek word for ‘change’ in 1 Corinthians 15:52 is ‘allasso’. Strong’s number is 236. It has only one meaning: to transform. We will be transformed – an occurrence that Enoch and Elijah have not yet experienced. They will only experience the transformation of a corrupt body into an incorrupt body at the time of their own resurrections.

The stories of Enoch and Elijah do not point to a “rapture before tribulation” pattern. These were two individuals, not two entire populations of people. They were taken by God for a specific purpose to be revealed at a later time.

There will be no Pre-Tribulation Rapture. We must prepare to go through the tribulation. Ten years ago, we could see the end times coming. People have seen the end times coming since the Apostles were alive. But, now we are starting into the end times. The end time is no longer to be expected – the end time is not “coming” or on its way – the end time is here. We no longer have the luxury of setting aside discussion or the liberty of learning to get this right later on. Those who fail to get this correct will perish.

Hosea 4:6 My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge: because thou hast rejected knowledge, I will also reject thee, that thou shalt be no priest to me: seeing thou hast forgotten the law of thy God, I will also forget thy children.

The Tribulation confronts us NOW. Events and situations are falling into place daily! The birth pangs of the Tribulation are coming closer and closer together. Only ten years ago, the spectre of the Tribulation was yet far into the future. We could afford to disagree over “Pre-Trib, Mid-Trib or Post-Trib”. We no longer have that luxury because world events are shaping up precisely as prophesied throughout the Bible. It is imperative that Believers come to the realization that they will be going through the Tribulation, not be raptured from it.

Why is this so important? Can a Believer lose his salvation if he does not believe he will go through the Tribulation? No. But he will very likely lose his life and cause his loved ones to lose theirs, as well. It is important to come to grips with this reality because God provides us another pattern. It is one of preparation. Noah prepared by building a way of escape as given to him by God. Joseph prepared for famine (economic collapse) as shown to him by God in a dream. The Hebrews prepared for Passover and leaving Egypt by listening to a prophet of God.

I repeat: If you do not understand that you will be here THROUGH the Tribulation, you will not be prepared when it comes. This increases your chances of perishing and causing those you love to perish, as well. Understanding the apostasy of the Secret Rapture doctrine will empower you to be among the overcomers spoken of in the book of Revelation.

1 Corinthians 15:52 In a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trump: for the trumpet shall sound, and the dead shall be raised incorruptible, and we shall be changed.

At the last trump, we shall see Him. Before then, we must go through our time of tribulation just like our forefathers who came out of Egypt. We must prepare for God’s pattern is not the removal of His people, but the glorious deliverance of them THROUGH their troubles.

If we are being obedient to ALL of God’s Word, including the Torah, His plan for us in these end times is clear. It has been shown to us in the Exodus story. We only need to recognize the pattern He has shown us. He has a plan of deliverance. God never leaves His people without hope and protection. For the details of this miraculous plan of deliverance THROUGH the tribulation, see The Greater Exodus series of articles written by Monte Judah of Lion and Lamb Ministries compiled by Kimberly Rogers. See you on the other side of the Jordan!

Shalom,
Kimberly Rogers-Brown
admin@themessianicmessage.com

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Forgiving the Unrepentant

Forgiving the Unrepentant

This teaching is designed to bring repentance and forgiveness forward in a Hebraic light, not according to what is usually taught in Christianity. Christian forgiveness is often taught as automatic, even insofar as the offending person does not need to repent for us to forgive him. The Hebraic perspective is different in that it requires repentance before forgiveness can be administered.

What is forgiveness?

Definition of forgiveness

https://www.dictionary.com/browse/forgive

Verb meaning forgive, forgave, forgiven, forgiving.

…to grant pardon for or remission of (an offense, debt, etc.); absolve.

…to give up all claim on account of; remit or cancel, (a debt, obligation, etc.).

What is the most common Greek word for ‘forgive’ that we will find in the New Testament? It is ‘aphiēmi’. It means to send forth, in various applications including to “lay aside”. ‘Aphiemi’ is related to sixteen Hebrew words, one of which is ‘kaphar’ (H3722). 

Kaphar is the root of ‘kippur’, as in Yom Kippur. ‘Kaphar’ means to cover, to wipe away, to expunge transgression and restore the status of holiness to individuals, a group, holy object or holy place or region. Expunging means to make the sin as if it was never committed.

There are two other Greek words used occasionally. ‘Aphesis’ and ‘apoluō’.

‘Aphesis’ means to release from bondage or imprisonment, a pardon of sins (letting them go as if they had never been committed), and remission (cancellation) of the penalty.

‘Apoluō means to set free, to let go, dismiss, (to detain no longer), give liberty to depart and even to send away, as in divorce.

The Greek word definitions are closely alike and there is no ambiguity in the Greek or Hebrew regarding what forgiveness means. Questions arise over what to forgive, when and how. This will be the examination here.

What to forgive?

Crimes (sins) against the Torah and offences one of which is ‘skandalon’, plain old misbehavior, in the Greek of the New Testament.

Leviticus 4 begins YHVH’s instructions on how crimes (sins) are to be forgiven.

Two categories of crimes (sins): Crimes (sins) committed through ignorance; deliberate crimes (sins) (crimes committed with full knowledge AKA rebellion).

A crime (sin) requires repentance and repentance requires sacrifice.

YHVH’s criminal justice system for His Kingdom is extensive. Volumes have been written about it. Ultimately, we must understand that our crimes and uncleanness create a barrier between ourselves and YHVH. The remedy is repentance which requires sacrifice so that we can be forgiven.

This same process of repentance and forgiveness is to be practiced between brethren, as well. But there is one caveat for people in this process that is not like the requirement for YHVH. When we repent to a person, we do not bring an animal sacrifice, although restitution is required. The restitution becomes our sacrifice to the person.

Conversely, when we accept a person’s repentance, we don’t require that they bring an animal sacrifice. We accept their restitution, instead.

When to forgive?

The consideration as to WHEN to forgive others is found in Luke 17. Yeshua said:

Luke 17:1 Then said he unto the disciples, It is impossible but that offences – skandalon – will come: but woe unto him, through whom they come! 

Luke 17:2 It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones. 

Luke 17:3 Take heed to yourselves: If thy brother trespass – hamartanō – against thee, rebuke him; and IF he repent, forgive – aphiēmi – him. 

Luke 17:4 And if he trespass – hamartanō – against thee seven times in a day, and seven times in a day turn again to thee, saying, I repent; thou shalt forgive – aphiēmi – him. 

Here we see Yeshua making our forgiveness of others conditional on their repentance to us. This is in accord with the requirements of the Torah. In the Torah, one must repent before being forgiven. People’s unrepentance is one reason for YHVH’s wrath.

When the person speaks the words ‘I repent’ and pays his restitution (if such is required), no matter how often these words are said to us, we are to forgive him. That means we grant the person pardon for and remission (cancellation) of the offense, debt, etc.); we absolve (declare the person guiltless) and give up all claim of hurt or damage regarding his crime, debt or any other obligation to us.

Notice that our forgiveness comes upon the condition of our having 1) rebuked, or spoken to the offender about the offence, and 2) that person speaking the words “I repent”.

Forgiveness is not automatic without first the one offended attempting to correct the situation by going to the offender (Matthew 5:23-24, Matthew 18:15-17, Luke 17:3). This is how YHVH operates with His people and we are to follow His example. He lays on our hearts, through our conscience, our sins against Him so we know what to repent of. We are to do the same for our brethren who may not understand he has been offensive or sinned against us. Thus, we, like YHVH, extend the mercy of telling him so he has opportunity to repent. The righteous will always repent when it is explained to them.

YHVH ties forgiveness from Him to our forgiving of others.

Mat 6:12  And forgive us our debts – opheilēma, as we forgive our debtors. 

‘Opheilema’ is something owed, something due, a debt.

In Matthew 6:14, Yeshua ties peoples’ debts, their ‘opheilema’ in verse 12, with trespasses – paraptoma – in general. There is nothing we should not forgive someone for when asked. Only YHVH reserves the right to not forgive crimes (sins) against Him.

SIDE NOTE: Yeshua, referencing debts – opheilēma, was likely including the Shmittah and Jubilees for His Jewish audience. They had been cast out of Israel for not obeying. See Jeremiah 34 starting at verse 8.

Yeshua had declared the Jubilee, the “Acceptable Year of the LORD”, when He read from Isaiah 61 in the synagogue. No doubt He always had the Shmittah and Jubilee years of total forgiveness of debts, crimes and sins in mind when He taught the LORD’s Prayer, as well as the annual Yom Kippur which is also the time of national forgiveness.

How to forgive?

First, we should identify with the person who sinned against us. We must remember that we have, ourselves, sinned against YHVH the same way we are now sinned against. So, we put ourselves in that person’s shoes so we approach him the way we would like to be approached and told something unpleasant.

Second, do not talk about a person’s crime (sin) to anyone but the person who committed the crime (sin). Temptation to talk about an offender to someone other than the offender is the sign that the offender needs to be talked to. So, the first step is to simply speak to the person.

What if the offender refuses to repent?

Mat 18:15 Moreover if thy brother shall trespass against thee, go and tell him his fault between thee and him alone: if he shall hear thee, thou hast gained thy brother. 

Mat 18:16 But if he will not hear thee, then take with thee one or two more, that in the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. 

Mat 18:17 And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican. 

If your brother won’t reconcile, won’t hear your complaint about his crime (sin) against you, there is to be distance between you. This distance will happen naturally, but Yeshua instructs us to put distance between ourselves and the unrepentant.

Distance, as in non-fellowship, but not forgotten. But distancing is often not enough for our spirit to be at ease. Something more is required.

Matthew 5:43 Ye have heard that it hath been said, Thou shalt love thy neighbour, and hate thine enemy. 

Matthew 5:44 But I say unto you, Love your enemies, bless them that curse you, do good to them that hate you, and pray for them which despitefully use you, and persecute you; 

Matthew 5:45 That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust. 

As we pray for our enemies, the pain in our heart eases and we guard against the bitter root. Instead, we remain, as YHVH does, in constant readiness to forgive should the offender desire to repent later.

“Blessing them that curses us” has the same effect within us that we would have received if the offender had repented. Our modern terminology is “letting it go”, “moving on”, “releasing it”. We use different terminology today, but blessing those that curse us and letting go of the problem is the same thing.

Sadly, offenders do not realize that unwillingness to repent and be reconciled is a rejection of both the person they offended and of YHVH, also.

Some describe this internal process of “letting go” as ‘giving it to the Father’, but for some people this idea does not describe HOW it is given to the Father. It seems that “blessing the enemy” looks different to each individual. I think this is how it is supposed to be. We deal with ourselves and others before our Father in fear and trembling as we work out our salvation. And each of us does this differently because individually we have different needs.

My personal process is to imagine a room that is situated in the cross-over space between this earthly realm and the heavenly one. It has a shelf where I place a gift-wrapped box with the forgiveness of the person’s offences inside it. This is a “blessing box”.

I am only permitted to put the gift-wrapped box in this room and nowhere else. I can’t ever carry it with me because that destroys the definition of the box for me. It is a “blessing box”, after all, and is full of forgiveness for the offending person. I also can never remove the box from the room once it goes in there. Only the Father can take the box out of the room. Only He can now deal with the offending person. It is out of my hands.

In my personal process, I only know that I have put the box in the room, but I never know if the other party has repented and YHVH has given him my gift-wrapped box of forgiveness because once the box goes on the shelf in that room, it is out of my control. It is as if I can no longer see the box.

Oddly, when I place a “blessing box” on one of the shelves in the room, the room is always empty. However, I never know if YHVH is keeping me from seeing all the other boxes I’ve placed there or if He has taken those boxes of forgiveness and given them to the people who need them once they have repented.

Our readiness, and even eagerness, to forgive also is a balm to the hurting soul.

After we go through our personal process, we should be able to retain the memory without the pain of the incident. We know we have succeeded when this is true.

When we fail to work for two-part reconciliation, our illusions of blithely overlooking the wrongs done to us by others, will only increase the pretense and [problems] of our relationships with others. The so-called “Christian nice” has a cost of being fake. Our bitterness will become unbearable; our wounds will drive many of our relational dynamics. We will see no reconciliation with others and we will fail to experience the power of the gospel in our daily relationships. Time will not heal in the sense of “harmony [being] restored.” While we might think “God gives me the ability to forgive him” when there has been no repentance, our thinking this way is foolish fantasy to do what not even God does.

Good article: https://www.biola.edu/blogs/good-book-blog/2017/can-there-be-forgiveness-without-repentance-part-1 and https://www.biola.edu/blogs/good-book-blog/2017/can-there-be-forgiveness-without-repentance-part-2

http://headhearthand.org/blog/2014/04/07/please-stop-forgiving-those-who-dont-want-forgiveness/