) Messiahs

There is a chasm between Christianity and Judaism created by Christianity’s narrow focus on Jesus Christ as the only Christ / Messiah / anointed / chosen / Redeemer versus scriptural Judaism’s faithfulness to record many messiahs.

“And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion” (Genesis 1:27)

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There are many Messiahs in the Bible.  Since every King and High Priest was anointed with oil, each may be referred to as “an anointed one” (a Mashiach or a Messiah).  For example: “G-d forbid that I [David] should stretch out my hand against the L-rd’s Messiah [Saul]…” I Samuel 26:11. Cf. II Samuel 23:1, Isaiah 45:1, Psalms 20:6

in Jewish thought, the Messianic idea is not the most crucial.  However, in Christian thought, the Messiah is paramount.

Usage: chosen out, elect, choice, select, sometimes as subst: of those chosen out by God for the rendering of special service to Him (particularly…Hebrews, the Messiah, and the Christians).

“Behold my servant, whom I uphold; mine elect, in whom my soul delighteth; I have put my spirit upon him: he shall bring forth judgment to the Gentiles…he shall bring forth judgment unto truth. He shall not fail nor be discouraged, till he have set judgment in the earth: and the isles shall wait for his law…I the LORD have called thee in righteousness, and will hold thine hand, and will keep thee, and give thee for a covenant of the people, for a light of the GentilesSing unto the LORD a new song, and his praise from the end of the earth,” (Isaiah 42:1-10)

This came to pass with Jesus Christ “that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by Esaias the prophet, saying, Behold my servant, whom I have chosen; my beloved, in whom my soul is well pleased: I will put my spirit upon him, and he shall shew judgment to the Gentiles.” (Matthew 12:18)

This also came to pass with Cyrus the Great, the Persian king of kings.

Thus saith the LORD to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden, to subdue nations before himI will…open before him the two leaved gates [of Babylon]that thou mayest know that I, the LORD, which call thee by thy name, am the God of IsraelThat they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else!” (Isaiah 45)

I put it to you that Christianity’s hyper focus on Jesus as the only Christ / Messiah is a cheap escape from personal responsibility. Severing Christianity from Judaism allows – not just Dispensationalists, not just Catholics, but also Protestants with Martin Luther’s doctrine of grace – to toss out the clear scriptural demands to identify with haMashiach by becoming hamashiach – a holy, righteous, chosen servant of God.

The Finished Works of Christ: What They Mean For Us

APR. 18, 2018 | BY CREFLO DOLLAR

our healing, deliverance, prosperity, victory, joy, peace, and everything else we need in life is already finished and ready for us to claim.

When we follow the biblical trail instead of the most appealing preacher we realize that redemption of the helpless victims of powerful social forces is a fundamental aspect of biblical godliness and all sons of God are known by their participation in God’s work of redeeming mankind.

Paul’s letter to the 1st century AD Gentile believers at Ephesus parallels Moses speaking at Mount Sinai in the 2nd millennium BC.

  • he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy 
  • predestinated us unto the adoption of children
  • made known unto us the mystery of his will that in the dispensation of the fulness of times he might gather together in one all things in The Promise Seed / Christ
  • ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, aliens from the commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the covenants of promise are made nigh by the blood of The Promised Seed / Christ
  • For he is our peace, who hath made both one, and hath broken down the middle wall of partition between us
  • Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but fellowcitizens with the saints, and of the household of God
  • To the intent that now unto the principalities and powers in heavenly places might be known by the congregation of believers including those following Moses at mount Sinai / church the manifold wisdom of God
  • According to the eternal purpose which he purposed in Christ Jesus our Lord
  • Of whom the whole family in heaven and earth is named, (Ephesians 3)

“Then Paul and Barnabas waxed bold, and said, It was necessary that the word of God should first have been spoken to you [Israel]: but seeing ye put it from you, and judge yourselves unworthy of everlasting life, lo, we turn to the Gentiles. For so hath the Lord commanded us, saying, I have set thee to be a light of the Gentiles, that thou shouldest be for salvation unto the ends of the earth.” (Acts 13:46-48)

Can’t get around it.

Peter and John bear witness to Paul’s claim that the Gentile Christians from the 1st century onward parallel the Messianic role of Cyrus the Persian and of Moses and the nation of Israel.

“To the strangers [aliens, non-Jews] scattered throughout Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia…

  • ye are a chosen generation
  • a royal priesthood
  • an holy nation
  • a peculiar people

that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvelous light. Which in time past were not a people, but are now the people of Godamong the Gentiles: that…they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation.” (I Peter 1:2, 2:9-12)

“John to the seven [Gentile] churches which are in Asia [founded by Paul]: Grace be unto you, and peace, from him which is, and which was, and which is to come…And hath made us kings and priests unto God and his Father.”(Revelation 1:4-6)

“denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world…our Saviour Jesus Christ; Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.” (Titus 2:12-14)

biblical Redeemer is not Christian, or even Jewish, but as described in Ephesians, a member of a spiritual nation chosen before the foundation of the world, and growing since the first human was created.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God…All things were made by him…In him was life…as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on his name [of Yeshua, YHVH’s Savior, Creator Redeemer]:” (John 1:1-12)

This didn’t just start 4,000 years after Adam and Eve with Christianity. We can logically conclude that the Adams received, and passed on, the belief in God’s word that he would overcome the Serpent and Sin through the Seed of the Woman, otherwise Abel, Seth, Noah couldn’t have any knowledge of Creator God, receive his Word and act on it in faith.

“Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.

  1. For by it / faith the elders obtained a good report.
  2. Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God
  3. By faith Abel offered unto God a more excellent sacrifice than Cain, by which he obtained witness that he was righteous
  4. By faith Enoch was translated that he should not see death; and was not found, because…he had this testimony, that he pleased od.
  5. he that cometh to God must believe that he is [i.e. I AM / YHVH], and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him…
  6. compassed about with so great a cloud of witnessesthe general assembly and church of the firstborn, which are written in heaven, and to God the Judge of all, and to the spirits of just men made perfect.” (Hebrews 11-12)

“walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are calledEndeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling;…But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ…for the work of the ministry, for the edifying [building, the verb form of the noun edifice] of the body of Christ…” (Ephesians 4:1-16)

How much of American Christianity is a wolf in sheep’s clothing?

The spiritual heritage of the United States of America is notorious. Most of the most important American government leaders, institutions, monuments, buildings, and landmarks both openly acknowledge and incorporate religious words, symbols, and imagery into official venues. Such acknowledgments are even more frequent at the state and local level than at the Federal level, where thousands of such acknowledgments exist.

horned37There are statues of Moses as YHVH’s great lawgiver in both the U.S. Capitol and Supreme Court buildings.

“Let the redeemed of the LORD say so, whom he hath redeemed from the hand of the enemy;” (Psalm 107:2)

But mouthing words and putting on a show does not reality make.

“Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves. Ye shall know them by their fruits [produce, production, works]every good tree bringeth forth good fruit; but a corrupt tree bringeth forth evil fruit…Every tree that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire. Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them. Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven.” (Matthew 7:15-21)

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Our industrialized Christian societies continue to extort labor, we just simply don’t call these practices “slavery” while exploiting workers in factories and remote countrysidesof foreign countries. Call it what you will, extraction of more labor than is recompensed is the currency by which self-indulgence, wealth, status and power is always obtained, individually and socially.

In Economics, the word ‘land’…stands for all nature, living and lifeless.It includes all natural resources that we can get free from air, water and land…

everything that we use can be traced ultimately to land. Land may be rightly called the original source of all material wealth. The economic prosperity of a country is closely linked with the richness of her natural resources.

Even today, societies with strong clan membership ties, such as the Batak in Indonesia, practice the levirate – widows marrying brothers or cousins of their deceased spouse to keep the most valued of possessions – land – in the family. Not only in agrarian societies but throughout history in all the world, land is the source of the Wealth of Nations, even, actually especially, in production-oriented modern societies.

The Wealth of Nations is in fact a continuation of the philosophical theme begun in The Theory of Moral Sentiments. The ultimate problem to which Smith addresses himself is how the inner struggle between the passions and the “impartial spectator”—…the single individual—works its effects in the larger arena of history itself, both in the long-run evolution of society and in terms of the immediate characteristics…

The Bible documents how God frees enslaved individuals in every oppressed population in society – slaves to masters, wives to husbands, barbarians to cultured, and pagan to holy – by virtue of equality as spiritual sons of God.

there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but The Promised One / Christ is all, and in all. Put on therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, bowels of mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering…And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body.” (Colossian 3:11-15)

Paul demonstrates redemption of a slave within the body of Christ.

“Paul…unto Philemon our dearly beloved, and fellowlabourer…though I might be much bold in Christ to enjoin thee…for love’s sake I rather beseech thee…for my [spiritual] son Onesimus, whom I have begotten in my bonds: Which in time past was to thee unprofitable, but now profitable to thee and to me: Whom I have sent again: thou therefore receive him, that is, mine own bowels / seed / son…Not now as a servant, but above a servant, a brother beloved, specially to me, but how much more unto thee, both in the flesh, and in the Lord?…If he hath wronged thee, or oweth thee ought, put that on mine account; I Paul have written it with mine own hand, I will repay it…Yea, brother, let me have joy of thee in the Lord:” (Philemon)

All my state shall Tychicus declare unto you…With Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you.” (Colossians 4:1-9)

America’s liberation of the victims of Nazi Germany is lauded, but closer inspection exposes Christian America refusing to engage in the complete work of redemption – paying a high price to free another from bondage therefore making them your equal. 

On April 10, 1945, the 84th Infantry Division liberated Hannover-Ahlem concentration camp. Confronted with walking skeletons and cadavers piled in bins, many service members cried and vomited. After inspecting the squalid camp hospital filled with men he described as “catatonics,” Capt. William J. Hagood Jr., a doctor in the 335th Infantry Regiment of the 84th Division, wrote in a letter to his wife, “You have to see it — and you are so stunned, you only say it was horrible. You can’t think of adjectives…

The liberation of the camps involved more than 30 American military units…These soldiers were responsible for organizing medical care, supplying food and eventually repatriating the freed prisoners, and so served as primordial architects of the survivors’ journeys from camp degradation to the postwar search for their lost humanity…

As the first presence from the outside world, the Allied liberators presented a dual reality for detainees in concentration camps…prisoners attained long-awaited freedom, but the way some liberators treated them reinforced the idea that they had become less than human...prisoners who weren’t selected for the gas chamber learned quickly from Nazi guards that they weren’t viewed as humans but as animals. Orders were barked, compassion was nonexistent. Semprún hadn’t expected that his liberators would view him in the same way…

Credit…George Rodger/The LIFE Picture Collection, via Getty Images

the Soviets at Auschwitz…“did not greet us nor did they smile,” Levi wrote in “The Reawakening.” “They seemed oppressed not only by compassion but by a confused restraint, which sealed their lips and bound their eyes to the funereal scene.” Like Semprún, Levi compared this experience to the sense of shame felt in front of German captors: “It was that shame we knew so well … every time we had to watch, or submit to, some outrage: the shame that the Germans did not know, that the just man experiences at another man’s crime.”

Some liberators treated the surviving prisoners this way not only because they were disgusted by the reality of the heinous crimes committed upon them, but also because they were poorly prepared for what they would find. The historian Robert Abzug, who studied the way American G.I.s reacted to liberation, found that even the most “battle-weary” service members were stunned, unable to reconcile the Nazi terrors with their bloodiest memories of combat. Yet Allied intelligence had known that Jews were being rounded up, deported and massacred for years. In August 1944, major American newspapers covered the Soviet discovery of Maidanek, an extermination camp near the Polish city of Lublin. Similarly, in late January and February 1945, the Soviet liberation of Auschwitz made headlines, but these reports didn’t seem to prepare the soldiers for what they would find…Captain Hagood …wrote: “All the grisly scenes I’d witnessed in four years of combat paled as I viewed the higgedly-piggedly stack of cadavers.”

Ruth Kluger encountered her first American in the town center of Straubing, Germany, after escaping Christianstadt. In her memoir, “Still Alive,” she recalled that when her mother told him they had fled a concentration camp, he put his hands over his ears, having apparently had his fill… “Here was my first American, and he deliberately closed his ears,” she recalled. “One thing, I figured, was certain: this war hadn’t been fought for our sake.”

Some of these reactions…point to anti-Semitism, even within the most senior echelons of the military. After inspecting displaced persons camps in Germany in summer of 1945, Earl G. Harrison, a lawyer and American representative to the Intergovernmental Committee on Refugees, expressed harsh criticism of the ways Jews were treated by the Americans, claiming evidence of conditions similar to the Nazi-run concentration camps from which they had been freed. He summarized his observations by stating, “We appear to be treating the Jews as the Nazis treated them except that we do not exterminate them.” When President Harry Truman read the report, he ordered Gen. Dwight D. Eisenhower to inspect displaced persons camps. During a visit to a camp in Bavaria, Gen. George S. Patton told Eisenhower that he blamed the refugees for the squalor. He complained they were “pissing and crapping all over the place,” and wanted to open his own concentration camp “for some of these goddamn Jews.” Maj. Irving Heymont, who was stationed at the Landsberg displacement camp, said in his letters that some Americans proclaimed that they preferred German civilians, who seemed normal, to the Jewish survivors, whom they characterized as animals undeserving of special treatment.

The promise of redemption given to the first two humans is most evidently carried in the collective consciousness of all humanity. As with all truisms in the Bible, we can understand the spiritualized concept through humanity’s social relationships with each other.

And what is Christian America’s relationship with impoverished, enslaved nations?

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