Identity crisis?

4 September 2020

Speaker: Apostle Ernie

In the last chapters, we have learned the importance of the Torah. Our obedience to the Torah is the outward expression of our faith in the cross, our love for Yeshua and His Father Yehovah, and our guarantee for answered prayer. When we obey the Torah, we are speaking Yehovahs and Yeshua’s love language. Even though all of this is in the Bible, it is contrary to what we have been taught from the pulpits.

This discrepancy between what the Bible says and what we have been taught is why, as mainstream Christians, the thought of obeying the Torah (the written law of Moses) has the potential to send us headlong first into an identity crisis. Over the years, we have learned that Christians do not obey the Torah; only Jews observe the Torah. So who do we become if the Bible says we have to follow the Torah?

The first answer would, of course, be a Christian. Because we believe the Bible says, anyone who believes and obeys the Bible is a Christian. The problem is that the word “Christian” is not in the Bible in its original text; it was added into the Bible by the Bible translators.

Do we then become Jews? The problem is that the word “Jew” is not in the Bible. It was added to the Bible by the Bible translators.

We have to keep in mind, the Bible we read is a translation from Hebrew and Greek into English. Even though your Bible might use the word Christian and Jew, the original text did not use those words.

So why then did the Bible translators use the word, Christian? They chose the word Christian because it is the Greek translation of Messianics. Antioch’s first disciples were called Messianics by the heathens because the heathens saw how the disciples imitated Christ’s life (their Messiah) in everything they said and did.

Do we then become Jews?

No, because the letter J is not in the Hebrew language. Why then did the Bible translators use the word, Jew? Jew is an English translation of the Hebrew word Yehudi. The word Jew has in itself no meaning, just as the name Jesus compared to the name Yeshua has no meaning. Jew and Jesus are only two names. But as we are going to see, the Hebrew word Yehudi and the Hebrew name Yeshua has a powerful spiritual significance.

Who do we become if we do what the Bible says? The Bible says, in the original text, you become a Yehudi. (Rom 2:29, Isaiah 56)

What is a Yehudi, and why is this important, and is Yehudi not someone from a tribe of Judah? And why does it have to be Yehudi? Why can’t we say Jew considering Jew or Jewish is a translation of the Hebrew word Yehudi?

In the Bible, names have a spiritual significance and power attached to them. One such example is the Hebrew name of our Savior Jesus. His Hebrew name is Yeshua, which means Yehovah saves. Here in His Hebrew name, we see His divinity, but we also see His focus. His focus is on Yehovah, who saves, not on Jesus, the man, who saves. If we do not use the original names, we lose the spiritual importance and power attached to them, and we can also end up with strange doctrines and understandings of the trinity.

Another example is the power of Yehovah’s name. In Numbers 6:27, the priests in the temple are instructed to speak Yehovah’s name over the people so His name can bless them. In Rom 10:13, it says whoever calls upon Yehovah will be saved. There is power in Yehovah’s name, a power we are supposed to tap into and use, but all of this is lost upon us in translation.

What does the word Yehudi mean in Hebrew, and why is it essential for our identity?

Yehudi has a threefold meaning; it means someone from Judah’s tribe, someone who believes Yehovah is one worships Him and has chosen to serve Him, and someone who has Yehovahs name on them. Did you catch that? Someone who has the name or title Yehudi carries with them the name of their God, and they are blessed. (Number 6:27) What does it mean when I say “carries with them the name of their God”? In a more modern way, we could compare this to the family name. If you are a Yehudi, your family name has in it the name of your God, Yehovah. We are going to see, in a moment, what this means in greater detail. But for now, remember the power of Yehovah’s name from Numbers 6:27. Having Yehudi as your family name is a guaranteed way to live blessed.

Because a Yehudi can be someone from the tribe of Judah, but also someone who worships Yehovah, we now understand how not all Yehudi come from the tribe of Judah, but all who worship Yehovah is a Yehudi.

Are you a worshiper of Yehovah? Is He your God? If the answer is no, you are not saved. It was Yehovah who gave us His Son Yeshua, and Yeshua says He came to bring us to His Father Yehovah. But if the answer is yes, then you are a Yehudi even though you might have no Jewish DNA in your blood.

Wait a minute; I am a Christian, I worship Jesus?

Okay, there is nothing wrong with seeing yourself as a Christian, as long as you understand that a Christian imitates Christ’s life. So if you want to be a Christian (even though that word does not exist in the Bible), I have to ask you a difficult question: Where in the Bible does it say Jesus taught us to worship Him? I am not saying Jesus is not God, because His name Yeshua proves He is 100% God and 100% united with His Father. But what I am saying is this, if you read the Gospels, you will see Yeshua teaching us to worship His Father Yehovah. So Yeshua taught us to become and live like a Yehudi. So if you see yourself as a Christian, you should also see yourself as a Yehudi. And why would you want to see yourself as a Christian when you now know the blessings of being a Yehudi?

The third meaning of the word Yehudi comes from Numbers 6:27. Yehudi starts with the letters YEH: the same three letters we see in our Father’s name, YEHovah, and our Saviors name YEHshua. So we find our father’s name Yehovah in our “family name” Yehudi. Remember, Numbers 6:27? The blessings that come with having the name Yehovah spoken over you? Imagine the blessings that come with having the name Yehovah as a part of your identity?

All of this shows us how Yehudi is the fulfillment of Mark 12:29 and a way for us to make the Torah one with our identity. Because if you see yourself as a Yehudi, you are one who believes Yehovah is your God, believes He is one, and have chosen to love Him by obeying His Torah. If we become one with the Torah in who we are, we will always have the Torah at the forefront of our minds and be blessed in everything we do. (Joshua 1.)

Do you now understand why it is essential to see yourself as a Yehudi instead of a Christian or a Jew? Do you see how Yehudi is a testimony of who your God is, but how Christian and Jew is a testimony of your denomination?

If we see ourselves as a Jew or a Christian, nobody knows who your God is. A Jew can be a reform Jew, Orthodox, kararite, or a student of 100 different Jewish denominations. A Christian can be pentecostal, baptist, catholic, or belong to any of the 40 000 + other denominations in the world today.
A Yehudi can only be a servant of Yehovah, the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, who is salvation. (John 3:16)

Do you see the difference?

When we label ourselves as Jew or Christian, it is all about us and which church or denomination we belong to. When we label ourselves the way Yehovah does, as a Yehudi, it is all about Him, our heavenly Father, and who He is. But it also affects us, and how we live our lives in ways, we can not even understand yet.

How you see yourself will decide how you live your life. If you have a positive self-image, it will show in how you live your life. If you have a negative self-image, it will show in how you live your life. Suppose you label yourself as a Christian+denomination, as Jew+denomination; your primary focus will be your denominational creeds, doctrines, and glory. At all costs, you will defend how your group sees and understands the Bible, even if it disagrees with the Bible itself. If you label yourself as a Christian or as a Jew, you will, at all costs, defend your nondenominational independent doctrines to emphasize why you are “not like the other crowd.”

But if you label yourself as a Yehudi, you will, at all cost, make sure to serve, love, and obey your God Yehovah, who is one. You will be a carrier of Your Father’s name Yehovah (Numbers 6:27, Mark 11:29.) But you will also have a much easier time communicating with your Father Yehovah because He will see someone who carries His name, who serves Him out of love, and believes He is one someone who obeys the Torah. (John 14)

Does this surprise you? Or do you find it difficult to understand?

This is no different from your relationship with your biological father and mother. We have not all been blessed with good fathers and mothers, and sometimes, we have to take radical measures to protect ourselves from their abuse. At the same time, we must acknowledge they are a part of who we are. We are carriers of their genes, their DNA, so they will always be a part of our identity signified by our last name, our family name.

Your family name connects you to who you are and your inheritance, and by rejecting your family name, you will reject a vital part of your identity.

By accepting the “family name” of Yehudi, you are acknowledging your relationship with your heavenly Father, Yehovah. You tell Him you want to serve Him, love Him, believe He is one, and have Him as your God by obeying the Torah.

This is, of course, not something you can do by praying a prayer; it is done by turning from lawlessness and start obeying the Torah. And by doing so, a decision to follow the most important commandment in the Torah, “Yehovah is my God, Yehovah is one, I will love Him with all my heart, all my soul, mind, and strength.” By repenting back to Torah, you become a Yehudi, and by accepting your new identity as a Yehudi, you are acknowledging Yehovah as your God. And we know those who become a Yehudi will serve a God who loves them, protects them, cares for them, heals them, saves them, and meets all their needs. (Deut 28:1-13, Matt 6:25-34.)

So this is the theology, but how do we put theology into practice?

In the last chapter, I mentioned how I was not worried about the huge bill I could not pay. So what happened? One day before the deadline, I suddenly knew what to do. I heard Yehovah telling me to ask for a cash advance on our monthly salary. So I did not question His decisions, and I asked for it. The next day, we were given the cash advance and paid the bill on time.

As a human being, I am tempted to question why He told me to ask for a cash advance. Why could He not just intervene in some miraculous way and give me the money? I also know a cash advance will create other challenges down the line shortly. So how do I know I heard His voice telling me to do this?

In the book of Exodus, the Israelites find themselves in need of water. The first time this happens, Yehovah instructs Moses to strike the rock with his staff, and the water came gushing out. The next time it happens, Moses acts presumptuously and does not ask for direction on how to get water. Instead, he assumes the miracle will happen the way it did the last time. Suddenly we see how the miracles had become more important to Moses than his relationship with Yehovah. Yehovah does not want that; He wants us to have a relationship with Him where we desire Him for who He is not for what He can give us. When the miracles and what Yehovah can provide us with is more important than our relationship to Him, we are sinning against Yehovah.

I know Yehovah wants a relationship with me; He wants to be my God and show the world how much He loves me and cares for me. But I also know He sees my weaknesses and how easy it is for me to get all caught up in the miracles.

If He had intervened with a huge miracle instead of telling me to ask for a cash advance, I would quickly have fallen in love with what He could provide for me instead of who He is. If that had happened, I would no longer be saved because the miracles would have become my idols.

Am I saying Yehovah will never fully heal us, deliver us, provide for us, save us because He fears we will end up as idol worshipers? So He feeds us scraps from the table and refuses to give us everything we need?

No, because we see in the Bible Yehovah raising the dead, cleansing the leapers, parting the Red Sea, raining food from heaven, and giving water from a rock. But we have to ask ourselves, who are the people who get to see all these miracles? They are Yehudi, those who are surrendered to Him, worshiping Him as their one God obeying the Torah.

We see this in Exodus’s book, of all the millions of Israelites saved from Egypt, only two got to enter the promised land. Who are the two? Joshua and Caleb. What was so special about them? They were Yehudi; two men surrendered to Yehovah, worshiping Him as their one God obeying the Torah, trusting Yehovah would provide because of their Torah obedience.

Yehovah wants you to enter into the promised land, the promised land of healing, deliverance, financial freedom, protection, and deliverance. Still, He also wants to live an eternity with you in heaven. If He has to choose between the two, He will select heaven because heaven is eternal, but this life is only for a moment.

If Yehovah sees you established securely in your identity as a Yehudi, there is no limit to what He wants to give you. He will never force you to accept your new identity, as long as you live in obedience to His Torah, He will continue to meet your needs the way He did for us in the desert. But if you want to take the final step into the promised land, you have to accept your new identity as Yehudi.

Asking for a cash advance does not solve the problem for us; it makes me able to pay the bill, but it creates future issues. You can not ask for a cash advance in December at the end of the year until you reach January.

Even so, I do not worry about the other problems the cash advance will create for me in the future because I trust Him. I trust Yehovah to care for me because I am a Yehudi, and He did what He did now for a reason. I do not know why He told me to ask for a cash advance, instead of intervening, but I still trust Him and I know He only wants the best for me. Most importantly, I thank Him for giving me the cash advance and making me able to pay that bill. But this is a choice I have to make every day, just as I have to choose to fight fear with faith reminding myself, “Yehovah is my God, Yehovah is one, I will love Yehovah my God with all my heart, soul, strength and mind because I am a Yehudi. And because I am a Yehudi, Yehovah will care for me and give me what I need, when I need it.” (Matt 6:25-34, Deut 28:1-13.) Because sometimes, it is very easy to doubt and fear when the burning arrows of the enemy come at you.

The fact that you are a Yehudi guarantees Yehovahs help, His love, His care, and protection. It also makes it so much easier to trust Him, especially when He does something you do not understand right away. How do you become a Yehudi? By making the daily choice to believe Yehovah is your God, believe He is one, and choose to love Him by obeying His Torah with all your heart, mind, strength, and soul.

So what will happen in December?

I do not know, but I trust Yehovah will find a way to make the monthly payments in December, even though I can not ask for a cash advance from January. How can I know for sure? Because I am a Yehudi.

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