I hope you had a chance to see that having images like the cross have been brought in from pagan practices, and that it's not something for us to utilize as part of our worship. Or for that matter any graven image as Yahweh puts it! Last posting I had given you a homework assignment, which was to find out about using the term "stake" rather than "cross". I had found out that the Greek word used in these instances is "stauros" which means an upright stake or pale. Those who wanted to worship the "cross" inserted this rendering, which is known as syncretism. If you're not convinced that this is a pagan symbol, then keep on researching it out, and pray about it. Yahweh/Yahoshua will direct your path if you earnestly desire it.
We know that He has given us everything He wants and allows us to do in His Written Torah, regarding our worship to Him. Now one story comes to mind in Scripture, that really tells it all regarding whether I want to do something that is or isn't acceptable to worship Yahweh with. The story is about two of Aharon's (Aaron) sons who were one of two sets of twins. They were made priests to serve along with their brothers and father in the Mishkan, or Tabernacle. Yahweh had instructed Mosheh (Moses) to write everything down that He told him, and he did, and to instruct everyone what to do regarding how to worship Yahweh...and so they did until:
Wayyiqra (Leviticus) 10:1-3 ... Naḏaḇ and Aḇihu, the sons of Aharon, each took his fire holder and put fire in it, and put incense on it, and brought strange fire before Yahweh, which He had not commanded them. (2) And fire came out from Yahweh and consumed them, and they died before Yahweh. (3) Then Mosheh said to Aharon, "This is what Yahweh spoke, saying, 'By those who come near Me let Me be set-apart! And before all the people let Me be esteemed!' " And Aharon was silent.
What we have to learn, which has been the same problem since Adam and Havvah, (Who's Havvah you say? That's the real name of the first woman, as the name Eve actually comes from a female pagan idol!) is that Yahweh wants us to do it His way, not our way by creating images of all kinds and saying "I'm doing it unto Him", or "He knows my heart". Yes He does know our heart when we do such things, and that's what He's having to work out of us.
The fact is that what we're trying to worship is ourselves and in what we create, rather than worshipping The Creator of all things, Yahweh! More of the same is calling Him by pagan names, and expecting Him to say "oh it's okay I know what you mean", NOT! That's what cooked Nadab and Abihu's goose, doing it their way! We have to learn to worship Yahweh/Yahoshua in spirit and in truth as it says here:
Yahochanan (John) 4:23 "But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and truth, for the Father also does seek such to worship Him.
So if I'm to worship Him in spirit and in truth, what exactly is truth? I'm glad you asked, because Scripture has the answer for us:
Psalms 119:142 Your righteousness is righteousness forever, And Your Torah is truth.
His Written Torah is Truth! So if we're to worship Him, we check and see what He says for us to do, and not for us to start conjuring up ways for us to worship ourselves. I like the way Michael Rood puts it regarding what Yahweh might say: "Either you're going to do it My way, or you're going to do it... My way! Take your pick!"
If you'd like to read an in depth study regarding Nadab and Abihu's false worship, then click here-----> Parsha Shemini (Eighth) go on...you know you want to!
What is Written
Now I stated last time that I would share with you something I learned regarding the signs that Pilate put over our Savior on the stake. This information comes from a book entitled: "The Rod of an Almond Tree in God's Master Plan" by Peter A. Michas and it gives some good information for you to think about, though I don't necessarily agree with everything he states in the book. I also wish that the book's title didn't have "God" in it as well.
There's a few things we need to understand here:
- Pilate had the sign written in Hebrew, Greek, and Roman (Latin)
- What ever it was he wrote, it made the chief priests really upset
- Pilate refused to change it
Yahochanan (John) 19:19-22 And Pilate wrote a title too, and put it on the stake, and it was written: YAHOSHUA OF NATSARETH, THE SOVEREIGN OF THE YAHUḎIM. (20) Many of the Yahuḏim therefore read this title, for the place whereYahoshua was impaled was near the city, and it was written in Hebrew, in Greek, in Roman. (21) So the chief priests of the Yahuḏim said to Pilate, "Do not write, 'The Sovereign of the Yahuḏim,' but, 'He said, "I am the Sovereign of the Yahuḏim." ' " (22) Pilate answered, "What I have written, I have written."
Now according to Peter Michas' research along with his co-authors, they came to the conclusion that perhaps a more accurate rendering of what is underlined above, is what I have below at line 1) in English 2) The Hebrew phonetically spelled in English 3) Hebrew. Notice the four letters that are enlarged in lines 2 & 3? This is how they believe it would have been written, in order to show an acronym. Acronyms are a big item with the Hebrew people, and the chief priests were most likely upset with all this is because it showed Yahweh's Name! This they just couldn't allow, as they haven't let anyone speak His Name ever since they came out of Babylon. Then to have it over Yahoshua?!!! And out there for everyone to see!!!
The reason for the lined arrows is to show you the words as they are transformed from English which is read from left to right, to Hebrew, which is just the opposite. You also gain an understanding of the grouping of the underlined words. Line 4) of course is Yod-Hey-Vav-Hey which spells Yahweh! Isn't that awesome!
I hope you have an awesome Shabbat, to honor Yahweh's appointed time for us to come into His rest, and to worship Him in spirit and in truth. This coming week is Pesach (Passover) which starts between the evenings. Then the Feast of Unleavened Bread at sun up the following day and continues for seven days. I'll have to share with you next time some very important words that Yahoshua our Redeemer, Savior, Elohim, and King spoke. It's called the Sh'ma, which means "Hear and Obey" in Hebrew, until then!