The Apostate Church
2 Thes 2 But in connection with the coming of our Lord Yeshua the Messiah and our gathering together to meet him, we ask you, brothers, 2 not to be easily shaken in your thinking or anxious because of a spirit or a spoken message or a letter supposedly from us claiming that the Day of the Lord has already come. 3 Don’t let anyone deceive you in any way.For the Day will not come until after the Apostasy has come and the man who separates himself from Torah has been revealed, the one destined for doom.
I Tim 4: The Spirit expressly states that in the acharit-hayamim some people will apostatize from the faith by paying attention to deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.
Rev 3: 14 “To the angel of the Messianic Community in Laodicea, write: ‘Here is the message from the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the Ruler of God’s creation: 15 “I know what you are doing: you are neither cold nor hot. How I wish you were either one or the other! 16 So, because you are lukewarm, neither cold nor hot, I will vomit you out of my mouth! 17 For you keep saying, ‘I am rich, I have gotten rich,[b] I don’t need a thing!’ You don’t know that you are the one who is wretched, pitiable, poor, blind and naked!
Israel is a nation again after almost 2000 years. Jerusalem is once again Israel’s capital. The Jewish people are coming home from the nations where they had been scattered. And Jerusalem has become a cup of trembling and a point of contention for the entire world. It is clear that we are living in the last days and are close to the time of tribulation when the Antichrist is to be revealed. Therefore, we are also living during the time when the Christian Church falls into a great Apostasy, a departure from sound doctrine. In this respect I could easily go into a long series of rants, so I will try to restrain myself to just a couple.
I might have called this article, “Why I can not return to the Christian Church”. That might have been a better fit. I will relate to you an experience I had a few years back as an example of what I am talking about. Being a Messianic believer, keeping the word of God in its Hebraic and Historical context, and trying to be faithful to the Lord, can leave a person pretty much without a place of fellowship and worship. In fact, I have been asked to leave a couple of churches over the years because of my Messianic beliefs. If you are like me you have become a Messianic square peg in a Christian world of round holes. We do not fit in do we?
Out of a need to find fellowship my wife and I accepted an invitation to attend a Christian church for the Easter services. Yes, you and I know that Easter is connected to the feast of Ishtar the fertility goddess of Greeco-Roman Paganism. But we hoped these people would be observing the death and resurrection of Yeshua, and not doing the fertility rituals, of bunny’s, chicks, egg decorating and rolling eggs across the fields. In other words we sort of decided to shield our eyes a bit for the sake of fellowship, ignoring those things that we knew were wrong and try to see what was right about it.
When we got to the Church for this evening before Easter service we were warmly greeted by a line of members who shook our hands and asked who we were and such. The Church was in a renovated school where the classrooms were used for bible classes, day care, and offices while the former gymnasium was converted to serve as the sanctuary. It had a large stage that was used as the altar area and where the band was, and two large projection screens provided text and music lyrics projection during the services. In the back of the church was a full refreshment bar serving gourmet coffee and pastries and another table sold books and gifts. These were available all through the services. There was a really good contemporary church band made up of a dozen or so musicians and singers. The church was large and the room full and extra chairs added to the isles to accommodate the expanding membership.
After a period of great high energy worship a group of actors were introduced who performed a drama of about 15 minutes long that delivered a good moral lesson about making good decisions during early adult life. Then the Pastor came forward to present his sermon. This sermon was powerful and centered on the sacrifice of Jesus, but it was misdirected. It was not written to inform to edify or to speak to ones spirit. It was directed primarily at people emotions. This is a mistake I see over and over again in Christian churches. They seem to feel that if a persons emotions are stirred up, if there are tears and wailing, or if there is great jubilation then the people have been reached in their souls. But this is wrong. Emotions are the playground of Satan. He uses our emotions all the time to confuse us, to misdirect our actions, to impart falsehoods by trying to add a false-stamp of validity through how we react in or emotions. Emotions are easily misdirected and can make us unstable at times. They are part of our soulish nature not directly controlled by the spirit.
During this sermon there was a large box brought on stage that had the shape of a man outlined on it and while the points of the sermon were brought out the pastor would punctuate each point by striking the man on the box with a large leather whip with iron piece tied to the ends. Each time there was a horrible slap and small pieces of the box were torn away. Each time the people would wince like mourners at a military funeral each time one of the 21 gun solutes is fired even though you expect it, it startles the senses. The spot lights and whipping the noise moved you to that horrible scene when Messiah was beaten 39 lashes, beaten almost to death for the healing of our spiritual and physical sickness. And after this he got down on his knees and took a large steel hammer and started driing huge fence spike into a wooden cross that has been drug onto the stage. It has a Tallit like garment draped across it symbolizing the body of Messiah. Each strike of the hammer would tear at your heart. The point of his sermon was even more of an insult as he misused scripture to show that “we as Christian are now free, no longer in bondage”….(wait for it)….” To the law of God”. “Yes, brothers and sisters”, he says, “God has set us free from the law that brought only death.” “The Law” , he explained, “was nailed to the cross with Jesus, setting us free from God’s law”.
I listened in amazement as this man lead a couple hundred devoted followers farther and farther down the path of Apostasy and false doctrine, and I wept inside when they cheered with joy over their new lawless liberty. My mind quickly consulted with the Spirit about those verses in the Revelation where it is explained that the true followers of Messiah, the faithful ones, “Keep the commandments of God, and have the faith in Yeshua the Messiah. They do both. They are obedient to the law and have faith. They are two side of the same coin.
( Rev 12:17, Rev 14:12) This pastor missed the details that it seems only Messiancs see, that it was not the law that was nailed to the cross, but the bill, or written record of our breaking the law that was specified in laws and ordinances. ( Col 2:14) When Rome executed a prisoner a written notice of the persons crimes was posted with them. For Yeshua it was the crime of being proclaimed as God of the Jews. For us in that moment it was the penalty of our sins committed, sins of breaking Gods law.
Col 2:14 He wiped away the bill of charges against us. Because of the regulations, it stood as a testimony against us; but he removed it by nailing it to the execution-stake.
After all, Sin is defined as breaking of the law is it not? The pastor pointed out from Galatians, that place were all people who are opposed to the commandments seem to hang out, that the Gentiles in Galatia were reprimanded for returning to the keeping of special days and seasons, however this pastors was defining these as the Jewish feast days.
Galatians 4: 8 In the past, when you did not know God, you served as slaves beings which in reality are non-gods. 9 But now you do know God, and, more than that, you are known by God. So how is it that you turn back again to those weak and miserable elemental spirits? Do you want to enslave yourselves to them once more? 10 You observe special days, months, seasons and years! 11 I fear for you that my work among you has been wasted!
Returning to those beggarly elemental spirits. I wonder about these anti-Torah brothers, are you saying that these Gentiles, former Pagans, are returning to Keeping the Jewish festivals which God gave in Leviticus? Were those really the special days that Pagans were previously keeping and which they were liberated from and now are being reprimanded for returning to? How can this be?
Paul is addressing their former life before coming to know Yeshua when they were worshiping false gods. Do these Christian preachers think that the Pagans were keeping the Torah commands? These former Pagans were previously keeping the Pagan festivals, of Elemental spirits, worshiping false gods of the earth, or fire, of water of the stars and all elemental things.
In fact, if you would like to read this passage in a more accurate way, these Galatians were returning to things like the celebration of the birth of the sun gods, Mithrais and Jupiter that was held on December 25th among the Pagans, what is known as Christmas today. They weren’t celebrating Sukkot, the festival that emphasizes God living with men, God dwells with us. And the final harvest of the earth. They weren’t celebrating the actual biblical day of the birth of Yeshua that took place on the first day of Sukkot.
These Galatians weren’t observing the Passover and feast of unleavened bread as Pagans and noting the fact that Yeshua died at the exact same time that the lamb of Passover was killed on the altar in the temple thereby fulfilling that Messianic feature of the Passover. No, they were returning to observing the spring festival of the fertility goddess Ishtar, (Easter) with all its celebrations and offerings to secure a bountiful harvest with eggs rolling, egg decorating, bunnies, chicks and sexual orgies in the high places.
The Christian church misses, in general, the fact that Yeshua was resurrected on the day of First Fruits , the 1st, day of the week following the Sabbath that falls during the feast of unleavened bread. As Paul the Apostle points out, Yeshua is the “First Fruits” of all those who will be raised from the dead. The one festival the Church still holds in common with the truth is Shavuot, or Pentecost. They see it however only as the beginning of the Church age, but miss the fact that the outpouring of the spirit was the proof that the New Covenant had come to us, poured out on the very same day that in ancient times the Old covenant was given.
They completely ignore the day of Yom Teruah (Trumpets) failing to see that this is the day that Yeshua indicates that he will return, at the last Trumpet, the day of the awakening blast, (The Resurrection blast) when the gates of heaven are opened for the righteous.
They ignore the day of Yom Kippur, the day that the High priest enters the most holy place to pour out blood for atonement on the mercy seat, forgetting all that is written in the book of Hebrews about how Yeshua has become our high priest and entered the true Most Holy Place that is in the temple of God in Heaven and poured His own precious blood on the Altar there once for all ending the temporary ineffective blood offering of animals by temporary priest of Levites.
I wonder if they ever read the words of Yeshua where he said, The law will never pass away, even if the entire world passes away, the law will stand. (Matt 5:17,18) Or where He said that he had NOT come to destroy the law, but to fulfil.
The word there “ fulfil” means ”To bring to fullness, to fill up” in other words to bring the law to its full and correct meaning and application. He follows these words with a series of examples of how the teachers of old had said one thing and how under his teaching it had a deeper meaning. While the Church claims, “ Lord didn’t we do many marvelous things in your name and cast out demons in your name”, Yeshua says back to them, “Depart from me you workers of iniquity for I never knew you.” Iniquity here mean “Lawlessness. To be outside of the law”.
Upon hearing that I was a Messianic a man asked me, “So then you are telling me that you have placed yourself under the bondage of the law and are now required to keep all 613 laws?” “Why would you want to do that?” I answered him and said, no, I am not responsible for keeping all 613 laws. I am only responsible for keeping the laws that pertain to ME. I do not have to keep the laws that pertain to Woman because I am a man. I do not have to keep the laws that pertain to the Levites because I am not a priest. I do not need to worry about laws concerning the land, it’s use and inheritance, because as a Gentile I do not have an inheritance in the lands of Israel. I am not responsible for the many laws that are only binding upon those Jews who are living in the Lands of Israel.
So what is it then that we are to do. Well, the ten commands were given not just to Israel but also to the mixed multitude of Gentiles who attached themselves to Israel and their God. When you look at the teachings of Yeshua he fulfils these laws, he brings them to their correct and full meaning moving them out of the laundry list of things that must be done or must be avoided in order to be right with God in our actions, and places them in the heart when our spirits motivate us to live in a Godly fashion that fulfills the law within us.
And that is just how the New Covenant works isn’t it, God writes his laws upon our hearts and our minds and as a result we know God. (Jeremiah 31:31). And this is not just for Jews, not just for Israel, but is for all those who have faith, the Gentiles too. Wasn’t that point driven home in the book of Acts when the Gentiles also received the spirit as with the family of Cornelius and others?
And despite all these things, the largest and fastest growing churches are those who celebrate their freedom from the law, their having replaced Israel as the people of God, who have, according to their theology, become the bride of Christ who at any moment now will be raptured away to God leaving the Jews to suffer for their sins during the Tribulation the time of Jacobs sorrows.
The church is filled to the top with the doctrines of demons and false teaching of every sort. I think that no one reads their bibles but instead get themselves spoon fed by blind teachers in the church and on TV or Youtube. Because when I read the scriptures in their correct Hebraic context I can not find a hint of the things that the Church now holds as doctrine.
Yes, I am a Messianic, and a Gentile. God is blessing the Gentiles AS GENTILES, not by making them into “super Jews”, not by making them exchange corrupt Christian doctrine for corrupt Talmudic doctrine of the Rabbinate. He is blessing us as Gentiles by grafting us in with Jews who are also become part of the New Covenant and are living new lives by the Spirit of Yeshua in us.
The whole church is being prepared for the return of a Messiah; for some the true Messiah the one shown in the scriptures of the old and New testament and for others for the false Messiah spawned from false teachers, money grubbing preachers selling their books and DVD’s.
Yes I am a square peg Messianic Gentile in a whole world of round hole Apostate Christian Churches. But isn’t that just what we were told to expect in the last days before He returns? Our life is not connected to Church traditions or to the Traditions and authority of Talmudic teachings of Rabbinical Judaism. We live by the life of Gods spirit flowing up through the root of Messiah Yeshua.
"When you awake in the morning, learn something to inspire you and mediate upon it, then plunge forward full of light with which to illuminate the darkness." -Rabbi Tzvi Freeman
Jewish adventures in the diaspora.
Scripture, ethics and spiritual formation