THIS IS NOT the most amazing revelation you will ever read.

My new glasses and my book finally arrived!
I know this has nothing to do with my post but my new glasses and my book finally arrived! My kids tell me they make me look 10 years younger but I think they just want a new computer game….

Every once in a while, someone will send me a teaching they want me to watch because it has confused and upset them and they want my take on it (or they want to trick me into denying Messiah – but we’ll just assume the best in this post and stick with the first group).  I will pull up the video or post or podcast and one of a few things will happen:

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1.  It will be advertised as the most amazing revelation I have ever heard.  Really?  Because Yeshua (Jesus) and Moses and Daniel have given me some pretty amazing revelations and I have yet to see anyone top them.  I just won’t listen to anyone who thinks so highly of himself.  Even Yeshua and Moses didn’t say that sort of thing about their teachings.

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2.  I will see the “teacher” whom it came from, roll my eyes and tell the person to not worry about it.  There are a lot of people out there who have quite literally gone bonkers.  Some got into gematria and kabbalism when they weren’t even firmly rooted in the scriptures and it just drove them insane and now they are recruiting people into their delusions (note: gematria and kabbalism are deep mystical Jewish writings and the Rabbis themselves tell people not to even look at them until they have been deep in Torah study for 40 years BECAUSE it drives people who are not grounded crazy), and I have seen the arrogance and volatility that comes over a person when they do this – or maybe it just exposes what is already there, I don’t know.  Others are so determined to have exciting teachings and to be seen as great revelators, and special, that they stray too far from the actual material and pull things literally out of thin air (like Jerusalem being replaced by a small town in Texas, or Utah or something).

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3. I will hear that they received the revelation in a dream, a revelation that cannot be proven from scripture and has been revealed ONLY to them. Now, people who know me know that I dream all the time and sometimes I share the content of those dreams when they can be of use to the Body – but they are never doctrinal, and they never reveal anything that you can’t get anywhere else.  In fact, when I do share something, I will often have someone say, “Oh my goodness, I have been hearing that same message from so many people lately!”  There is always going to be confirmation out there.

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4. The teaching is needlessly complicated, so much so that one has to suspend disbelief at some point and take the teacher’s word for it.  I am going to state something very clearly here – there is nothing that can be taught from the scripture that cannot be built up to logically, piece by piece, until we arrive at the truth – without making huge jumps.  Now that I am learning the ancient near eastern context of the scriptures, I understand that the Targums (written before the time of Messiah, in Aramaic, and reflected the way that the rabbis of the time saw the scriptures), when they speak of Messiah, are not making blind but very logical leaps based on their first hand knowledge of covenants, suzerain kings, royal messengers, near eastern law, adoption, righteousness and justice, honor and shame.  In other words, if you lived when they lived, you would not have to take it on faith once Yeshua opened up the scriptures and showed you what was there.  You’d facepalm and wonder why you didn’t see it before.

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5. The teaching is divisive, placing one group in Messiah above another when scripture supports that nowhere.  Of course, the person teaching this is always in the “above” group, and I find this akin to white slave owners telling their black slaves that the Bible justifies what they are doing and then refusing to teach them to read and write so they just have to accept it as true, or redefining what certain verses mean once they do read them.

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6. The teacher is pointing to his or herself as “the only one who is telling the truth.” Or the teacher will say that anyone else who looks at the same data and sees it differently is a liar.  That’s just another way of saying, “don’t verify what I am saying by hearing anyone else out, you’d better follow me.”  There is no room for disagreement, no two ways to view a verse, and no reasonable way for an intelligent person to honestly arrive at a different conclusion.

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You want to know what the GREATEST REVELATION YOU WILL EVER HEAR is?  If you are reading this, and you already know that Yeshua (Jesus) is Messiah and that His Word is eternal and that our Heavenly Father is our great King and Father through adoption and Covenant — then you’ve already heard it. The rest is cake. And the cake doesn’t need to be loaded down with decorations and sprinkles and plastic figurines and candles. If you are like me, and you have cake in the house, then you want to eat it until it is all gone and then you want to call up the bakery and get more. If we would treat the Word of God like that, like it is the most amazing revelation we have ever heard, if we would devour every single chapter, scraping away the excess frosting and all the glitz and glam piled on top of it and just eat the cake in context, then we would be wise.

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Why read what someone in the 18th, 19th or 20th century thinks about what Abraham was doing if they don’t know what he knew?  Find out what Abraham knew and then his life will open up to you in amazing ways.  Abraham wasn’t a 21st century Christian or a 21st Century Jew.  He didn’t think the way we think, and things that make sense to us wouldn’t make sense to him and vice versa.  Study in such a way as to render yourself able to discern if someone is teaching the truth, not through feelings (which are often counterfeit) but through knowledge.  Truly, things that I had “a positive witness of” years ago I now realize just appealed to my emotions.  A positive witness to me now, is that when something is preached, I immediately discern connections all over the place.  For example, when I learned about the ancient near eastern honor/shame based culture I immediately thought of examples in scripture that had never been clear before that knowledge.  It was like rockets going off in my head, bursting my ignorance in certain passages that had bothered me.  Now I see it everywhere.

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We don’t need the super deep stuff, folks.  It’s really interesting, but what we need FIRST is to understand what is plainly there as the people to whom it was written in the first place would have seen it.  I hate to break it to you, but the Bible wasn’t written for us.  I mean, it was written for our benefit, but it was written by and to the people of the time it was written in.  It wasn’t written the way I write things, so that hopefully anyone can understand it.  If the Bible was written by me, it would be 100 times as long and with too many commas.  The Bible was written to people who lived in certain places and knew certain things, it was meant to convey concepts, not to be absolutely specific.  It is truthful, which is different than precise.  For example, my turtleneck is red and that is the truth, but precisely, it is maroon.  The fact that it is maroon does not mean I lied when I said it was red, it just means that I did not give all the information.  The Bible doesn’t explain what a Covenant is, but it didn’t need to because everyone knew.  The Bible doesn’t explain why people made sacrifices to God, because everyone knew.  The Bible doesn’t explain how Yeshua (Jesus) could be the literal heir of King David even though genetically He wasn’t from that line, because everyone understood adoption.  The Bible doesn’t explain what the Lake of Fire is because everyone knew, nor does it explain She’ol (the grave or hell).  Our problem is that we don’t know, and we don’t always want to find out so we assume that the people telling us what they think actually know.  We just want to pretend that the Holy Spirit, who could teach the first century believers all things whatsoever out of scripture because they did know the context of it, can overcome our absolute ignorance of historical context and do the same.  If we know the context, then the Spirit will in fact teach us all things – but the Spirit imparts spiritual things, not historical knowledge; so if we do not know what they knew, we will not understand what it is the Spirit is trying to communicate to us.  That is not a failing on the part of the Spirit, but personal limitations based upon our understanding.

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So we need to study to show ourselves approved.  The Bereans only had to study the scriptures, but we also have to study out what the Bereans knew that we don’t.

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