If it is true, the crescendo of human history occurred when Yahowsha’ fulfilled Passover, Unleavened Bread, FirstFruits, and Seven Sabbaths. When He did all of these things, suffering the most ghoulish and sadistic torture ever perpetrated upon anyone, and then returned to talk about them, He was God—or at least akin to Him. And when He fulfilled all of these things in accordance with His own predictions, with His last three days lived in perfect harmony with hundreds of other prophecies dutifully recorded in the world’s only rational scriptural testimony, then there is no question about His identity. God lived among us. He not only created us but He also provided the means for us to know Him.
Over the course of this chapter and the next we are going to examine what happened during three days in 33 CE. We are going to compare the evidence to what was predicted to occur during this time. But before we do, we will first need to get our bearings. Why 33 CE?
Five hundred years in advance of Yahowsha’s fulfillment, Daniel predicted that the Ma’aseyah would arrive in Yaruwshalaim (the source from which teaching and guidance regarding reconciliation flow) 173,880 days from Nisan 1, 444 BCE. Correlated to the Georgian calendar, God was to arrive on Branch Monday, March 28, 33 CE. On that day, according to Gabry’el, the Savior would enter Yaruwshalaim for the express purpose of being sacrificed to save mankind. History records that Yahowsha’ fulfilled that requirement on Passover, four days after He arrived.
By way of review, in the “Yahowsha’-Yahowah Saves” chapter we read: “Know and understand that from the going forth of the command to restore and rebuild Yaruwshalaim until Ma’aseyah the Prince, there shall be seven weeks and sixty-two weeks of years. The way shall be built again, and the means of separation, even in troublesome times. And after the sixty-two weeks Ma’aseyah shall be cut off, but not for Himself.” (Dany’el / Daniel 9:25-26)
The timing of the “command to restore and rebuild Yaruwshalaim / Jerusalem,” is detailed by Nachemyah / Nehemiah. “And it came to pass in the month of Nisan, in the twentieth year of King Artaxerxes, when I [Nachemyah] said to the king, ‘If it pleases the king, and if your servant has found favor in your sight, I ask that you send me to Yahudah, to the city of my fathers’ tombs, that I may rebuild it.’ So it pleased the king to send me.” (Nachemyah / Yahowah Comforts / Nehemiah 2:1-6)
Some believe that the “twentieth year of Artaxerxes” is 445 BCE since his father, Xerxes, died in 465. But they fail to take into consideration the drama that transpired following Xerxes murder. The king was killed in his sleep by an ambitious fellow named Artabanus, who also murdered the heir apparent, Darius. The next oldest son in the royal line, Hustapis, was out of the country. That made Artaxerxes, a mere teenager, a temporary stand in while Hustapis was tracked down. Artabanus left Artaxerxes alive, figuring he could rule through the boy as regent. But seven months later he changed his mind and tried to kill Artaxerxes. However, as luck would have it, the lad killed Artabanus instead. Hustapis showed up shortly thereafter and tried to claim the throne, so Artaxerxes, now an accomplished murderer, killed his older brother to resolve the question of politics. All this maneuvering took the better part of a year. Thus Artaxerxes wasn’t able to assume the throne until 464. That would make the starting date of Dany’el’s / Daniel’s prophecy the 1st of Nisan, 444 BCE.
Dany’el’s prophecy said “seven weeks of years and sixty two weeks of years” because it was codifying two separate, yet related events. From the Nisan 1, 444 BCE date, we count “seven weeks of years (49 prophetic years)” until Yaruwshalaim could be rebuilt. Then there would be another “sixty-two weeks of years (434 prophetic years)” for a grand total of 483 years “until the Ma’aseyah” would arrive in “troublesome times to be cut off but not for Himself.”
To calculate this date we must multiply 483 (49 + 434) years by the 360 days in the standard Hebrew calendar. This comes out to 173,880 days, or 476 solar years and 25 days. Next, we add this interval to the 1st of Nisan, 444 BCE. Since there was no year zero in the Georgian calendar, the addition of 173,880 days to Nisan 1, 444 BCE sets the arrival of the Ma’aseyah on Monday, March 28, 33 CE.
The eyewitness and historical accounts detail the events of this day for a reason. Each word either fulfilled a prophecy or issued a new one. The testimony begins with: “And when they drew nigh (eggizo – approached) unto Yaruwshalaim (Ierosoluma – Jerusalem, the place from which restoration flows) and came to (erchomai – appeared at) Bethphage (a transliteration of the Hebrew Beyth-pag; from Beyth, meaning House and pag meaning unripe figs) ” (Mattanyah / Yah’s Gift / Matthew 21:1)
Bethpage is the name of a hamlet between Yarychow / Jericho and Yaruwshalaim / Jerusalem. It’s close to Bethany. It wasn’t listed arbitrarily. Later this same day, in Mattanyah 23, Yahowsha’ told us: “Moreover, learn the parable of the fig tree. When its branches start to become tender and when it starts to grow, producing leaves, know that summer is near. So, too when you see all these things, recognize that I am near and nigh (eggus – close by and imminent), and indeed at the threshold (thura – the opening of the passageway, the doorway through which sheep enter). Indeed, I say, this is sure and true: this generation will not pass away or perish until all of these things take place.” (Mattanyah 24:32-34) In Yirmayah 24 and Howsha’ 9, the fig tree is used as a metaphor for Yisra’el, so this is a prophetic picture of Yahuwdym returning to the Land and making it grow.
Continuing on, Yahowsha’ leaves Bethpage to go to the place He will eventually return: “ to (pros) the Mount of Olives ” (Mattanyah / Matthew 21:1) It is upon the Mount of Olives that Yahowah, in the form of Yahowsha’, will soon return to our planet: “Behold, in the day that is coming the day all Gentile nations gather against Yaruwshalaim for battle Yahowah ( ) will come and go out to (yatsa’) battle against them and in that day His feet will stand (‘amad – be present, standing upright) on the Mount of Olives, which by relationship (‘asher) is in the presence (panym) of Yaruwshalaim (a compound of yarah and shalam, meaning: that which pours forth restoration and redemption) . Yahowah ( ), God, will come in (bow’), and all the cleansed and set apart (qodesh) will come with Him. This shall happen (hayah) one day (‘echad yowm) that is known (yada’) to Yahowah ( ) . He who exists (ehayah) will be Light at sundown. And on that day living (chay) waters will flow (yatsa’) from (min – out of) Yaruwshalaim . And Yahowah ( ) shall exist as (hayah) king (melek – sovereign and counselor) over all the Earth. In that day there shall exist (hayah) one unified (‘echad) Yahowah ( ), and His one unified name.” (Zakaryah / Remember Yah / Zechariah: 14:2-9) There will no longer be confusion over the “Trinity.” The Father, the Son, and the Set-Apart Spirit will all be known as the one unity of Yahowah.
Since we are on a quest to understand the prophetic days, recognize that this passage identifies the “one day” upon which Yahowah will return as the Day of Reconciliations. It is the one personal summons among six celebratory feasts in Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 23. It is the only Miqra’ specifically called “the day of ” It is what Yahuwdym will be observing as they “look upon Him who they have pierced, mourning as for an only son” in Zakaryah 12:10.
Further, speaking of the remnant who did not wage war, Yahowah goes on to say: “The whole (kol) existing (hayah) remnant (yatar – those who remain and who were spared) from (min – out of) all (kol) the Gentile nations (gowym –foreign and unrelated peoples) who came to attack (bow’ ‘al) Yarusalayim in accord with the multitude (day – to inflict punishment) of (min) ‘Allah (‘alah – who fought unjustly, perversely, wickedly, and arrogantly) with (ba) repeated (sanah) and repetitious (sanah) prostrations (sahah – bowing down to and being repressed) in accord with (la – according to) their king (malak – their ruler), will celebrate (hagag – revel in) Yahowah’s ( ) festival feast (chag) of Sukah (sukah – Tabernacles, Tents, or Booths).” (Zakaryah / Remember Yah / Zechariah 14:16)
The Day of Reconciliations is observed five days before the Festival Feast of Tabernacles and ten days after the Miqra’ of Taruw’ah. While we’ll deal with these “three days,” comprising the Fall Miqra’ey, in later chapters, I wanted you to have a taste of their future significance.
Mattanyah’s eyewitness testimony continues with: “ then, at that time, Yahowsha’ sent two disciples, saying to them, ‘Go into the village opposite you, and you will immediately come upon a donkey tied there with a colt under her. Untie them and bring them to Me . Now this came to pass because that which was spoken through the prophet might be fulfilled.” (Matthew 21:1-4)
Yahowsha’ was into the details. Having inspired them, God knew every word of His Scriptures, and He knew that He was responsible for fulfilling them. This is one of several hundred verifications that Yahowsha’s every word and deed was based upon the revelations of Moseh, the Prophets, and the Psalms. To understand One, you must understand the other. To understand the Word you must read the word.
Yahowsha’ recited Yasha’yah / Isaiah 62:11 and Zakaryah / Zechariah 9:9 as a preamble to His triumphal entry into Yaruwshalaim / Jerusalem. Since God is consistent, I’m confident there is a pertinent lesson in the prophet’s revelation. In context, Yasha’yah / Isaiah quoted Yahowah saying:
“O Yaruwshalaim remember Yahowah ( ) do not be silent or rest because you give Yahowah ( ) no rest until He prepares and establishes you (kuwn), making Yaruwshalaim a shining light (tahilah – praiseworthy from halal, that which radiates light) on the Earth. Yahowah ( ) has sworn an oath by His right hand, by His Mighty Sacrificial Lamb (zarowa’). I will never again give your grain (dagan – symbolic of souls) to your adversary (‘ayab) nor foreigners your new wine (tyrowsh – symbolic of redemptive atonement) . Radiate Yahowah’s ( ) light (halal) . Passover (‘abar) the gates. Prepare (panah) the Way (derek) for the family (‘am).
Lift up the raised highway (macillah). Clear it of stumbling stones. Speak among the people and say, ‘Behold, look and see (hineh) Yahowah ( ). Listen to (shama’) Him to the ends of the Earth.’ Say to the daughter of Zion (Tsyown – the signpost), ‘Behold, look and see (hinneh): Salvation (yesha’ – from yasha’, to save) comes in (bow’ – arrives and enters, returns to form an association). Behold, look and see, His payment and reward (sakar – the fare or fee that must be paid for passage) and His work (pa’ullah – recompense, compensation which is given to pay for damage incurred) are before Him.’ And they will call them: ‘the cleansed and set-apart (qodesh) family, the redeemed (ga’al) of Yahowah ( ).’” (Yasha’yah / Isaiah 62:6-12)
We can’t blame God for not telling us what He was going to do or where He was going to do it. We can’t blame Yahowsha’, the Sacrificial Lamb, for not telling us where to look to understand what we need to know. But we can blame men for corrupting His message. As is customary with verses pertaining to the Ma’aseyah, the Masoretes changed one out of every five words in this passage to hide the truth. For example, the Dead Sea Scrolls say: “Speak among the people and say, ‘Behold, look and see Yahowah ( ). Listen to Him (shama’) to the ends of the Earth.’”
Since rabbinical Yisra’elites like the Masoretes claim that God cannot manifest Himself corporeally, they altered the text to read: “Behold the LORD listens and obeys to the ends of the earth.” While later day scholars mistranslated shama’, so as not to demean God, the point of the entire passage is to proclaim Yahowah’s promise to enter Yaruwshalaim so that He can be seen, and so that He can personally pay the price to redeem His family.
Yahowah and Salvation is combined in the name Yahowsha’. He entered Yaruwshalaim to personally “pay the fare that must be rendered for passage” to eternal life. The reason “His work, the compensation which He would give to pay for the damage” we had done to ourselves “was before Him” was because His Passover sacrifice was still four days in His future.
The other passage Yahowsha’ quoted prior to His entry into Yaruwshalaim was Zakaryah / Zechariah 9:9. It reveals: “Rejoice and be exceedingly glad, daughter of Zion (Tsyown – the signpost). Shout for joy (ruwa’) daughter of Yaruwshalaim. Behold, look and see (hineh), your King comes to you (bow’ – arrives and enters) Upright (tsadyq – innocent and guiltless, just and justified; from tsadaq, for vindication and) to save (yasha’), humble and riding upon a donkey and a colt.” (Zakaryah / Zechariah 9:9) This was the Suffering Servant predicted by Yasha’yah 52 and 53.
Mattanyah dutifully recorded Yahowsha’s quotes from these passages. Then his eyewitness testimony continues with: “And a great multitude (polus ochlos – a great many in the large crowd of common people) spread their garments along the way while others cut down branches (klados – tender shoots, a translation of netser in Hebrew; symbolizing the Ma’aseyah) from the trees spreading them along the way. And the large crowds of common people (ochlos) who were leading the procession (proago) and those who were following, cried out, ‘Please Save us Savior (osanna – (ωσαννά - omega sigma alpha nu nu alpha) a transliteration of the Hebrew yasha’, meaning save us Savior, and na’, meaning please we pray and plead), Son of Dowd (Dapane – which mean the Great Price and Love in Greek and Hebrew). Praise and celebrate (eulogeo – think kindly toward) the one who comes (erchomai – arrives and appears before the public to reveal himself, to influence and establish them) in and with (en) the personal and proper name (onoma) of Yahowah. Please save us Savior (osanna) in and with (en) the Most High (hupsistos).” (Mattanyah / Matthew 21:8-9)
While Greek doesn’t possess the alphabetical characters to write Yahowah, I wrote it in because the crowd spoke Hebrew in this procession, and I’ve read Yasha’yah / Isaiah 62 (and so had they).
What the Roman Catholic Church would errantly call “Palm Sunday,” is really “Branch Monday.” Sunday is the day all sun gods were worshiped. And palm frowns were held above the heads of men who pretended to be gods all the way back to Mystery Babylon. You’ll see such images in the drawings on Egyptian temples as well in papal processions. The “branch” was one of the most common metaphors for the Ma’aseyah in the Towrah, which requires the sacrificial lamb to arrive four days in advance of Passover, not five. Scripturally, four is the number of completion, while five is the number of confusion and Satan.
Mattanyah reports: “When He entered (eiserchomai) Yaruwshalaim the whole city was shaken, saying, ‘Who is He?’ The crowds of common people said, ‘He is the prophet Yahowsha’ of Nazareth (Nazareth – a transliteration of the Hebrew name based upon nazyr, meaning the set-apart one, netser, meaning tender shoot or branch, and natsar, meaning the one who protects and preserves relationships) in Galilee (Galilaia – a transliteration of the Hebrew Galyl, meaning that which rolls open the door).” (Mattanyah / Matthew 21:10-11)
There are four reasons we know this was a Monday. First, Daniel told us. All we have to do is: bone up on our history, do the math, and look the result up on a calendar.
Second, Mattanyah, Markus, Lukas, and Yahowchanan tell us that Yahowsha’ returned to Yaruwshalaim to eat Passover dinner with them (which would have been Thursday evening in 33), that He was crucified the next day (which was still Passover, at least until sunset), and that His body was in the tomb that night. We are also told that after His triumphal entry, Yahowsha’ left town and stayed in Bethany for two days (Mark 14:1-3). Working backwards, those two days must have been Tuesday and Wednesday.
Third, Yahowah told the Yisra’elites in Shemowth / Names / Exodus (a passage we’ll review in a moment) that the Passover lamb had to enter their residence four days before Passover. Since Yahowsha’ was the Passover Lamb, He had to arrive on schedule.
And fourth, the reason the crowds lined the streets shouting “Please save us Savior” is because they were expecting Yisra’el’s Passover lamb to arrive at this very time. Since the rabbis could read, each year they picked the most perfect lamb from pastures in Bethlehem and brought that sacrificial lamb into the city four days before Passover in accordance with the Towrah’s instructions. And while this may all sound tedious and pedantic, the reason these days are important will soon become evident.
As another interesting verification of the timing, 33 CE is the only year between 27 and 35 CE that is consistent with the eyewitness testimony. Again, Mattanyah, Markus, Lukas, and Yahowchanan confirm that the disciples ate Passover dinner with Yahowsha’ and that He served as the Passover Lamb on the following day. Then they all claim that His body was placed in the grave late that afternoon, before sundown, and thus before the Sabbath of Matsah began. They also affirm that He rose sometime between sunset and sunrise the next day.
Passover began on Thursday at sunset in 33 CE, but that was not the case in any other year close to it. That means that either these fulfillments took place in 33 or Dany’el, Mattanyah, Markus, Lukas, and Yahowchanan are all wrong. (In case you’re interested, Passover would have begun on Tuesday evening the 6th of April in 26 CE; Sunday at sunset, on March 26th of the year 28; then on Friday the 13th of April in 29; Passover began on Tuesday evening April 2, 30 CE; again on Sunday, this time on March 23rd at sunset in 31; Sunday evening again in 32, this time April 11th, in 33 Passover began on Thursday evening at sundown, it was March 31st on our calendars; in 34 we are back to Sunday, a March 19th; and it was Sunday evening again in 35, this time April 8th).
There is another very important verification of the timing—one that will lead us to profoundly revealing conclusions, ultimately unlocking the door behind which the clues to all future fulfillments are hidden. 33 CE wasn’t an ordinary year on the Hebrew calendar. It was a Yowbel-Lamb’s Redemption year—something that happened only once every 50 years.
We know 33 was a Yowbel Year in part because the last historically recorded Yowbel Year in Yaruwshalaim was 133 CE. It was a very bad year for the Yahuwdym. They were fooled by their leading Rabbi, Akiba, the fellow who founded the religious sect known as the Masoretes. Despite his massive blunder of proclaiming a false Ma’aseyah and of being responsible for getting his people thrown out of their land for one thousand eight hundred years, Rabbi Akiba is still considered to be one of the greatest religious scholars in Jewish history. Somebody isn’t thinking.
The object of the rabbi’s acclaim was Shimeon ben Kosiba, known as Bar Kochba, which means “son of a star” (guess which one). He was a charismatic man, brilliant we are told, but also a brutal warlord. That fit the rabbinical aspirations of the Ma’aseyah—a warrior who would deliver Jews from oppression while at the same time being an ordinary man who would remain beholden to the rabbis who had trumpeted his arrival. One of the justifications Rabbi Akiba positioned to assert that Bar Kochba was the Ma’aseyah, was that he had risen to power in a Yowbel year of redemption, as was expected of him. So following the false Ma’aseyah, the duped Jews revolted against the Romans in 133. They caught the Tenth Legion by surprise and retook Jerusalem. In response to this revolt, Emperor Hadrian, in 135, turned Yisra’el into what Yachezq’el / Ezekiel called a “valley of dry bones.” He murdered two million Yisra’elites and exiled the rest, renaming the Land Palestina. Then he sowed Yahuwdah with salt to render it worthless and barren. Therefore, 133 became the last recorded Yowbel. There weren’t enough Yisra’elites or Yisra’el left to do what was required after that time.
So what is a Yowbel anyway, and why is it significant? We find out in the 8th verse of the 25th chapter of Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus. Yahowah had just finished establishing His seven Miqra’ey, so these things are probably related. The Yisra’elites were told: “to count seven (sheba’ – from shaba, meaning fully satisfied) Sabbaths (shabath – time of rest) of years (shanah – time to change), seven times seven years, existing as forty-nine years.”
Then: “a ram’s horn (showphar) is to be extended and passed around (‘abar) on the tenth day of the seventh month: on the Day of Reconciliations (Yom Kippurym – from kaphar, meaning to atone, cover over, purge, make reconciliation, pacify, propitiate, and forgive).
You shall extend and pass around (‘abar) a ram’s horn all through your land. You shall thus set apart (qodesh) the 50th (chamishshym) year as the announcement of a healing gateway (taruw’ah (תְּרוּעָה) – compound of tara’ (תְּרַע), gateway to healing, and ruwa’ (רוּע), to shout or sound a signal of warning, of praise, of joy, or of triumph, and to call out to gain people’s attention) ” (Qara’ / Called Out / Leviticus 25:8-10)
Yahowah’s instruction is filled with symbolism. His Yowbel is based on “shabath/days of rest,” signifying that we cannot earn our salvation. It is based upon “shaba/fully satisfying,” telling us that Yahowah’s redemptive solution completely satisfies our debt.
The Yowbel is about “shanah/a time to change,” indicating that these years mark transforming transitions in Yahowah’s plan. While I can’t say with absolute authority, examining the geological evidence in conjunction with the Bare’syth / Genesis timeline recorded in the Septuagint and Pentateuch, the flood cleansed the way for a new beginning in the Yowbel of 2967 BCE. Twenty Yowbel later, the Covenant with Abraham was born in the Yowbel of 1967 BCE. The First Temple, one built to commemorate the event, was constructed on Mount Mowryah twenty Yowbel later in 967 BCE. Yahowsha’ fulfilled and enabled many of the Covenant’s promises in 33 CE, exactly forty Yowbel after the very same Covenant was formed with Abraham.
Yowbel, the Hebrew word for a “male lamb,” is used interchangeably in this passage with showphar, the Hebrew word for “ram’s horn.” The first time the “horn of a male lamb” is mentioned in Scripture, it is attributed to the ultimate Sacrificial Lamb, the Lamb of Light, the Passover Lamb Yahowah provided in Isaac’s stead on Mount Mowryah / Moriah at the dawn of the Covenant. This isn’t a coincidence. Passover and Yowbel are directly related concepts.
Further linking Passover to the Yowbel, Yahowah used ‘abar, which means “to pass over,” twice in His introductory comments. Most all English translations render ‘abar “sound,” but there is nothing related to an audible noise in the word. ‘Abar is almost always translated “pass over or cross.” It can mean “sacrifice, forgive, or repeal,” and even “to be given possession of” in addition to “extend and circulate.” Each of these concepts fits nicely within the context of announcing the doorway to heaven which may be why Yahowah used ‘abar in His instructions. Blowing a ram’s horn is simply hot air making a racket if you don’t understand why the Ram’s horn is being “passed around,” or appreciate ‘abar’s connection with “Passover.”
After correlating the Yowbel to Passover, Yahowah connects the Yowbel to the Day of Reconciliations, or Forgiveness. He does this because, forty Yowbel, or 2,000 years, will transpire from His Passover sacrifice in 33 to Yahowsha’s return on Yowm Kippurym in the Yowbel Year of 2033. I say this emphatically because there is only one Yowbel left within the lifetimes of those who witnessed the fulfillment of the all the signs Yahowsha’ said would been seen by the generation who will experience His return. The first of these signs was man’s only world war, an event which led to the last sign, the greening of the fig tree, symbolic of the return of Yahuwdym to the Promised Land.
Forty is an important time designation to Yahowah. In sets of Yowbel, it not only marks the time between Adam’s fall to the birth of the Covenant with Abraham, the time from Abraham’s Passover enactment to Yahowsha’s ultimate fulfillment, forty Yowbel quantify the duration of the “church” age—the time of the Gentiles. Other examples include: the rains lasted 40 days and 40 nights during the flood. Moseh received the Towrah over 40 days, a time which severely tested the Chosen People. Therefore, the Yisra’elites wandered in the wilderness for 40 years. Yahowsha’ was tempted by Satan for 40 days before beginning His ministry. And He remained with us 40 days after His restoration. Scripturally, forty depicts the completion of a time of testing.
With this passage, and others, Yahowah is encouraging us to connect these related things. 33 CE was exactly 40 Yowbel from Abraham’s foreshadowing of Passover on Mount Mowryah. So it is reasonable to assume that there will be 40 Yowbel between that event and His return on the Day of Reconciliations in 2033. (That’s Sunday, October 2rd at sundown, if you’re curious.)
There is one last symbolic word in Yahowah’s text depicting the establishment of the Yowbel. It bears the name of the fifth Festival Feast, that of the Miqra’ of Taruw’ah. Tara’ means “gate or doorway, a gatekeeper or a temple doorkeeper.” Yahowsha’ routinely presents Himself as the doorway to eternal life and as the Temple itself. Further, Taruwah means “healing.” Toren is the upright pole onto which a standard is flown. Coupled with ruwa’/signal, we have God trying to get people to notice His gateway to paradise. The prophetic role the Miqra’ of Taruw’ah plays in Yahowah’s redemptive plan will be covered in the next chapter.
We know which days these events played out because Mattanyah, Markus, Lukas, and Yahowchanan provided us with a chronology—a day by day, sometimes hour by hour, accounting. All show Yahowsha’ eating Passover dinner with His disciples. In 33, the 14th of Nisan began at sunset on Thursday evening, March 31st. I find this remarkable in a way. Not one Christian in a thousand knows that “the Last Supper” was a celebration of Passover. The bread that was broken and the wine that was shared were symbolic of Miqra’ey that comprise the first three days of Yahowah’s annual meeting with His family: Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits. When we break bread and drink wine on these days we are to do so in remembrance of Him because the Feasts serve as a memorial of His mission.
As proof that this was Passover dinner, consider what Matthew recorded Yahowsha’ saying: “Moreover, before Unfermented Bread (azumos – Unleavened Bread, the inclusive name of the eight day festival that includes the Assemblies of Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits), the disciples approached Yahowsha’ and asked, ‘Where do you want us to prepare (hetoimazo – to make the necessary preparations) for you to eat Passover (Pascha – a transliteration of the Hebrew Pesach (pronounced peh sakh), meaning Passover)?’ And He said, ‘Go into the city (polis [Yaruwshalaim]) to somebody and say, “The Teacher (didaskalos) affirms (lego), ‘The fixed and definite day for (kairos – the due measure of time, the opportunistic occasion, the awaited epoch for) Me (mou) is (esti) imminent (eggus – nigh and near). I will produce (poieo – make and fashion, author and prepare, render and constitute, create and construct) Pesach (Pascha – Passover from the Hebrew Pesach) advantageously (pros) with (meta) My disciples (mathetes – learners).’”’ They made the necessary preparations for (hetoimazo) Pesach and yea, when evening (opsios – the beginning of night at sunset) had come (ginomai – came to exist) He reclined at the table to eat (anakeimai) with the twelve disciples.” (Mattanyah / Yah’s Gift / Matthew 26:17-20)
There are three essential truths in this passage. First, Yahowsha’ and His disciples not only thought about, discussed, and observed Passover, they recorded these things so that we could follow their example. It is only within the context of Pesach that the “remembrance of Him” makes sense in regard to “broken bread” and “wine.” If you are observing Catholic Mass under the misguided notion that it should be performed as a ritual, regardless of the day, you have been deceived. Likewise, you have been deceived if you believe that a priest changes an ordinary wafer of round bread into “the body of the Lord” or changes ordinary wine into His blood. The Church does not transform or save, only Yahowsha’ does.
Second, in direct reference to the specific timing of this, Yahowah’s first Miqra’, Yahowsha’ is recorded using the very definite kairos rather than the generic Greek word for time, chronos. Passover in 33 was the appointed epoch predicted in the fourth day of creation. It was exactly forty Yowbel from Abraham’s foreshadowing with his son, and it would be exactly forty Yowbel from Yahowsha’s return. It was also in precise accord with Dany’el’s famous prophecy detailing the specific time “the Ma’aseyah would be cut off but not for Himself.” The “opportune occasion,” the “awaited epoch,” the “due measure of time (40 Yowbel),” and “the definite and fixed day” was “imminent.”
Third, while Yahowsha’ and His disciples “observed” the Passover, that is not what these words say. The Word said that He was the Passover. He “constituted” it, “establishing it, giving it form and substance.” Yahowsha’ “authored” the Passover, dictating the word to Moseh. He “rendered” the Passover, which means He “delivered it by furnishing the necessary consideration (payment) for approval by way of a judicial verdict.” Yahowah, in the form of a man, “prepared and produced Passover”—the means to redeem mankind, just as surely as He created mankind.
Then, later that evening, Thursday night in our way of thinking, Yahowsha’ walked across the Kidron Valley to Gethsemane—aptly named “the wine press”—where He was later arrested. He was tried by Chiapas and the Sanhedrin Council that night, spending the wee hours in the High Priest’s dungeon. Friday morning, still Passover, the 14th of Nisan by Scriptural reckoning, April 1st on our pagan calendars, Yahowsha’ was taken to Pilate, the Roman Prefect over Yahuwdah. Declared innocent, the perfect Passover Lamb was slaughtered that same afternoon at Golgotha—just outside the Damascus Gate. Mattanyah 27 tells us that around the ninth hour, three o’clock in the afternoon in today’s parlance, Yahowsha’ gave up His Spirit after reciting the opening line of the Psalm that predicts and depicts His Passover crucifixion.
We covered Scripture’s most vivid and telling presentations of Yahowsha’s Passover sacrifice leading to His tenure in She’owl during Unleavened Bread in the “Tsadaq – Vindication,” and “Ga’al – Redemption” chapters (based upon the prophetic revelations found in Mizmowr / Psalms 22 and 88, and in Yasha’yah / Isaiah 51 through 53). I’ll not repeat those truths here. We are going to move on to the restoration.
But before we examine what Luke, the Greek historian, had to say regarding history’s ultimate miracle, recognize that his account says that the restoration of soul and Spirit occurred on “the one Sabbath,” not the “first day of the week.” This serves as a bold declaration that Yahowsha’s restoration occurred on the special Sabbath of FirstFruits, the Miqra’ which predicts and describes Yahowah’s adoption of children into His Covenant family.
Mark 15 and Luke 23 confirm that this was the end of the “Preparation Day, that is the day before the Sabbath was about to begin.” In 33 CE, the Sabbath, or seventh day of the week, and the Special Sabbath commemorating the first day of the Feast of Unleavened Bread were coterminous. It wasn’t a coincidence. Before the sun set and these aligned Sabbaths began, Yowceph of Arimathea, a member of the Council, received Pilot’s permission to remove Yahowsha’s lifeless body from the upright pole from which it hung. (Sadly, Catholics still have Him hanging there.) Then after completing the burial preparations, Yahowsha’s corpse was placed in Yowceph’s family’s tomb. And we are told: “And on the Sabbath they rested according to the Commandment.” (Luke 23:56) If you go to church on Sunday, you best read that statement again.
The Sabbath and the Set-Apart Day of the Miqra’ of Matsah ended with the setting of the sun on Saturday evening, April 2nd, 33 CE. It was now the first day of the week and the beginning of the Festival of FirstFruits. This night, sometime after sunset and before sunrise, Yahowsha’s soul was released from She’owl and rose, reunified with Yahowah’s Spirit, according to the eyewitness testimony.
When their words were recorded, it was the morning of April 3, 33. It was also the Miqra’ of Bikuwrym. “Now on the one (heis) Sabbath (sabbaton), very early in the morning (orthros – at daybreak), they [the Galilean women], and certain others with them, came to the tomb carrying the spices (aroma – perfume) which they had prepared. But (de) they found the stone rolled away from the tomb. And they went in and did not find the body (soma – corpse) of the ΚΥ ΙΥ (Sovereign Yahowsha’). In that they were perplexed concerning this, behold two men became present standing by them in garments that lit up like stars (astrapto). Frightened, they inclined their faces to the ground. And they [the spiritual heavenly messengers] said to them, ‘Why do you seek the living among the dead (nekros – departed who are separated and destitute of life)? He is not here (hode – in this place), but He has stood up and has risen (egeiromai – has been caused to exist, has been healed, and has been restored to life)! Remember how He spoke to you when He was still in Galilee, saying, “It is necessary, proper, and beneficial (dei) that the Son (Hyios) of ΑΝΘΥ (placeholder for anthropos, Man) be delivered into (paradidomi – given over to) the hands of (cheir – agency or control of) perpetually sinful men, be placed upon an ΣΡΩΘΗΥΑΙ (upright pole from stauroo, a vertical beam; based on stauros, meaning an upright stake), and on the third day rise (anistemi – appear and arise from the dead).”’ And they remembered His words.” (Luke 24:1-8) (While I understand that the Greek characters used in all of the eyewitness and historical manuscripts written prior to Constantine may be distracting, it’s important that you know that the seven most important Hebrew names and titles, and most especially Yahowah and Yahowsha’, were never written out, but only rendered with divine placeholders.)
These heavenly messengers told us that Yahowsha’ had done what He said He would do a thousand years earlier. He even did it on the very day and year He predicted He’d demonstrate this death defying act.
“Then they [the heavenly messengers] said to her [Mary Magdalene], ‘Woman, why are you weeping?’ She said to them, ‘Because they have taken away the (tov – singular, gender inclusive) ΚΣ (placeholder for Foundation, Sovereign, Owner, or Master) of me, and I do not know (oida – I am unaware of) where they have put Him.’ Now when she had said this, she turned around and saw (theoreo – as a witness, one who visually inspected and considered) ΙΣ (Yahowsha’) standing upright (histemi), and did not know that it was Yahowsha’.” (Yahowchanan / John 20:13-14)
Strong’s definition of histemi describes the goal of the Covenant. Mankind “witnessed Yahowsha’ histemi: ‘come into our presence and stand upright, thereby enabling us to stand by establishing us and rescuing us, upholding us with authority and making us safe.’” There is no better word than this, at least apart from the Hebrew quwm.
The definition of histemi in the Dictionary of Biblical Languages is no less magnificent. We “witnessed Yahowsha’ histemi: ‘put into place that which enables us to stand, that which maintains and upholds us, that which acknowledges our validity, establishing, recommending, and authorizing us, that which pays for us, redeeming us, so that by choice we can select continued existence.’” Yes indeed, this was our preparation day—the day Yahowsha’ spoke about in Yahowchanan 14 when He said that we were being prepared for “heavenly homes.”
In the Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, we discover histemi’s original nuance, a subtly contemporaneous listeners would have appreciated. We learn histemi “conveyed a sense of relationship” and it “referenced the place in which the person took their stand.” The women at the empty tomb who experienced the risen Ma’aseyah probably would have known that histemi was “derived from a root which implies that it was active in nature and that it contributed to the enabling of others to stand upright, conveying the sense of initiating, instituting, appointing, and performing something related to standing, establishing, stirring up, and causing others to rise.”
It’s hard to overestimate the importance of understanding histemi. It is even the root from which stauros, the word we errantly translate “cross” is derived. The themes of standing upright and establishing others thereby, along with the references to the Upright One and to the Upright Pillar, permeate Scripture’s depiction of redemption. Yet I don’t think that there is one pastor, priest, rabbi, or professor of theology in a million who has exposed this profound truth or connected these thoughts.
Remember, when Yahowah established the covenant with Abraham He only mentioned five criteria. He wanted Abe to walk away from Babel, his country, to trust and rely on Him, to walk to Him and become perfect, to observe the Covenant, and as parents to circumcise our sons. To walk to God is to be upright, and to be right with God. It is the opposite of bowing down to God—something our Heavenly Father doesn’t want His family to do. Moreover, we are unique among animals in that we were designed to walk upright. In fact, when people become bedridden, their systems shut down and they die. Standing upright is essential to life and to our relationship with God.
Returning to the eyewitness account, Yahowah was not finished being profound. There is a lesson in every word. “Yahowsha’ said to her, ‘Mary (Mariam) .’” The Greek Maria or Mariam is a direct transliteration of the Hebrew name Miryam. This name is based upon mary, meaning “rebellion.” The womb of a woman named “rebellion” was used to end man’s “rebellion” against God. Also worth contemplating is the fact that Mariam knew Yahowsha’s name and He therefore knew her name. Can the same be said for you? More importantly, do you understand the importance of knowing His name and of Him knowing yours?
What happened next demonstrates what we must do to be redeemed and to be useful. We must strepho opiso. And the best way to do this is to understand Hebraisti. “ She turned around (strepho opiso – changed her thinking, came to rely, and was reestablished her relationship with Him so that she could follow after Him) and said to Him in Hebrew (Hebraisti – from Hebrais, designating the Hebrew language in which Scripture was written), ‘Rhabboni,’ which is to say, Teacher (didaskalos).” (Yahowchanan / John 20:16)
The name “Hebrew” is a transliteration of ‘eber, meaning “the straight passage to the other side.” It is derived from ‘abar, meaning: “to pass over, to take away transgressions, and to pass beyond.” As I said, there is a lesson in every word.
And that brings us to Rhabboni, a transliteration of the Hebrew rab and rabab, meaning “the Mighty One who brings together, increases abundantly, and multiplies.” Rab and rabab designate: “the first and the greatest, the exceedingly abounding in strength and power, and the completely sufficient.” This is why Yahowsha’ is rab, and it is why men covet His title.
These words understood, there is more that can be learned. First, recognizing Yahowsha’ is always predicated upon “turning around.” This message permeates the eyewitness accounts. It reminds me of Yahowsha’s constant use of metanoeo (turn around, change your mind, and think differently) in His Revelation letters to the Seven ‘ekklesia. Before we can accept the truth we must first distance ourselves from the religious and political lies that have warped our judgment and corrupted our thinking. We must unlearn before we learn.
Second, Hebrew, the language of Yahowah’s revelation to mankind, means: “the straight passage to the other side.” The Word is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. The path to eternal life is narrow and straight. Moreover, the fact that Hebrew is derived from ‘abar, meaning, “to pass over, to take away transgressions, and to pass beyond,” is equally illuminating. It serves to confirm that the Way He established was based upon the Miqra’ey, and especially Passover. Yahowah doesn’t miss any opportunity to teach. His every word is a treasure.
Third, those with Yahowsha’ “spoke Hebrew.” This could be one of the reasons we find the seven abbreviated placeholders for all of the divine titles and names in the Greek text: Yahowsha’ / Yah Saves, ‘Elohym / God ‘Edon / Upright One, Ruwach / Spirit ‘Ab / Father, Ben / Son, and Ma’aseyah / Work of Yah. Those with Yahowsha’ knew and used the actual Hebrew names. And so should we.
Further, we must always keep in mind that almost all of the words recorded in the eyewitness and historical accounts were not actually spoken in the language in which they were transcribed. Even the original autographs were translations. This makes Hebrew all the more important. Only the Tanakh records the Word in the language the words were revealed. Also, along these lines there is considerable historical evidence that Mattanyah was originally written in Hebrew and then translated centuries later into Greek. He would have had no problem correctly presenting all the Hebrew names, including Yahowah and Yahowsha’. And the reader of these names would have known their meaning.
Fourth, Rabbi is a more apt title for Yahowsha’ than Kurios. It tells us that He is “the Mighty One who brings us together, the one who increases us abundantly, and multiplies us.” He is “the first and the greatest, the one abounding in strength and power, and the one who is completely sufficient.” His sufficiency lies at the heart of the Sabbath, of the Passover, and of the Day of Reconciliations. The title rabbi is completely inappropriate, arrogant, and insolent when adopted by men. This is why Yahowsha’ condemned the practice, saying that only He was our Rabbi. Mind you, God was equally hostile to men calling themselves, “Father” and “Holy Father,” so the practices of Catholic clerics are no better.
Fifth, while “rabbi” doesn’t mean “teacher,” the explanatory reference isn’t in either copy of Yahowchanan 20:16 dating prior to Constantine. And even if it were, the copyedited version says “which is to say” rather than “which means.” Moreover, the “master” connotation of rabbi has long been associated with the headmasters of schools and this particular “Rabbi” was in fact the world’s greatest teacher.
Returning to one of the two eyewitness accounts of what occurred on Bikuwrym, we find: “Yahowsha’ said to her, ‘Do not (me) cling to (hapto – do not fasten yourself to or adhere to me; do not hold onto) Me, for I have not yet ascended to (anabaino – gone up; a compound of basis, meaning to step and ana, into the midst of) the (tov – singular gender inclusive) ΠΡΑ (placeholder for Father from pater). But (de) go to (poreuomai – lead by pursuing this journey which transfers others, following Me to) My brethren (adelphos – brothers, those within the bond of affection, My associates) and say to them, “I am ascending into the midst of (anabaino) the (tov) ΠΡΑ (Father) of Me (mou – I, me, and myself) and your ΠΡΑ (Father), and to My ΘΝ (‘Elohym from Theos, God) and your ΘΝ (‘Elohym).”’” (Yahowchanan / John 20:17)
This passage detailing what occurred on FirstFruits provides an important clue to Yahowsha’s reconstituted nature as well as to our eventual heritage. Yahowsha’ is in the process of being transformed, or more accurately, of being reformed with Yahowah. The part of the whole who had been set apart from the whole, was being reunified back into the whole. Anabaino says as much. The Son was “stepping back into the midst of the Father.” Moreover, the passage says that the Father was not only Yahowsha’s Father but also our Father, making all true Yahuwdym the sons and daughters of Yahowah.
And lest we forget, those of us who have been adopted into God’s family have been given our marching orders. We are to “poreuomai – lead by pursuing the journey which transfers others” to “our Father’s house, causing the brethren to rise.” We do this by “following” Yahowsha’s words and example. That is why I think Yahowsha’ said: “don’t cling to me.” It wasn’t her time to go to the Father. It was her time to go to work, to show others the Way to Him.
Mary Magdalene did what she was told. She informed the boys what she had seen, what she had personally witnessed. She shared what the risen and restored Yahowsha’ had spoken to her.
“Then, late (opsios – between three to six o’clock in the afternoon) the same day, being the one Sabbath (Sabbaton – the special set-apart day of the Miqra’ of FirstFruits) when the doors were shut where the disciples were gathered together (sunago) by reason of fear (phobos) of the Yahuwdym (Ioudaios – a transliteration of Yahuwdym), Yahowsha’ came (erchomai – journeyed from one place to another, made an appearance and revealed Himself) and stood (histemi – having come into their presence, He stood upright enabling them to stand, establishing and rescuing them, upholding them with authority, and making them safe, acknowledging their validity, recommending and authorizing them, having paid for them so that by choice they could choose continued existence while He was) in their midst (mesos – with them).” (Yahowchanan / John 20:19)
There are two different ways to read this passage because both phobos and Ioudaios have light and dark sides. The disciples could have been huddled and hiding in “phobos/fear, terrified of the Ioudaios/Jews (those who claimed to be Yahuwdym and were not)” because just a few days earlier the Jewish political and religious leaders had motivated the Romans to murder the Ma’aseyah. Or the disciples could have been “gathered together in phobos/reverence, loving one another as Yahuwdym (those in relationship with Yahowah)” during this time of separation. In fact, both renderings may be true.
Yahowchanan continues to document one of history’s greatest miracles. “And He said to them: ‘The assurance of salvation (eirene – the state of peace and tranquility of being joined to Me in a harmonious relationship, the assurance of freedom and safety, of prosperity and great joy) be unto you.’ When He had said this, He showed them (deiknuo – exposed Himself so as to provide evidence and proof, teaching by revealing) His hands and His side. Then the pupils (mathetes – learners or disciples) rejoiced in joyous salutations (chairo).” (Yahowchanan / Yah is Merciful / John 20:20)
In His risen state, Yahowsha’s Spirit and soul could become corporeal, physical, material, touchable, and real. He wasn’t a vision or a disembodied spirit. Yet at the same time He was able to walk through closed doors. This is exactly what I expect our risen nature to be like.
Although we aren’t told specifically, it’s obvious within the context of the whole of Scripture that Yahowsha’s Spirit and soul had already ascended, having become the living embodiment and the prophetic fulfillment of the Miqra’ of FirstFruits just after meeting with the women. The Ma’aseyah presented His “wave offering” of redeemed souls before Yahowah. In accordance with Yahowah’s Qara’ / Leviticus 23 instructions, the harvest of purified grain was mixed with oil and wine, His Spirit and blood, enabling the cleansed and set apart to rise.
His body was the sacrificial lamb called for in the observance. The “first fruits of the harvest” were risen Yahuwdym—those who belonged to Yah. If these specifics are unfamiliar to you, rest assured we will detail the Towrah’s depiction of the Miqra’ of Bikuwrym in a moment.
In the mean time, by way of confirmation, consider Mattanyah’s testimony: “The tombs were opened and many (polus – a large number and a great quantity of) bodies (soma – diseased corpses) of those who had been revered, cleansed, and set apart (hagios), those who had fallen asleep (koimao – those who were dead, had been laid down, and buried) were raised (egeiro – were aroused and then caused to rise; awakened, transformed from death to life, enabling them to rise up and appear). And coming out of (exerchomai – departing from and coming forth to a place on their own accord; coming and going as an assembly arisen and reborn from) their tombs (mnemeion – sepulchers) in association with (meta) His restoration (egersis – rousing and rising up) they entered and appeared in (eiserchomai) the revered, cleansed, and set-apart (hagios) city and they manifest themselves to (emphanizo – became manifest, exhibiting and disclosing themselves, declaring and providing proof to) many.” (Mattanyah / Matthew 27:52-53) Soul and spirit were reunited as the members of Yahowah’s family became like Yahowsha’, collectively fulfilling the prophetic foreshadowing of the third Miqra’.
Dissecting the verse we learn that egeiro, or “raised,” is from agora, which shades its meaning considerably. The hagios (those who had been revered, cleansed, and set apart) were not only egeiro (aroused and then caused to rise; awakened and then transformed, stirred and then enabled to rise up and appear), they were agora, “an assembly of people brought forth for the purpose of public debate, for election and thus to facilitate choice.” They were evidence of “a favorable judgment in the marketplace.” They were “the beneficiaries of a business transaction” known previously as ga’al/redemption.
Yahowsha’ came to stir public discussion on the subject of who Yahowah is, what He is like, what He recommends and desires, and what provision He has provided for us to know Him personally. He did this so that we could judge the evidence and then make an informed and wise choice, one in which we can elect to know Him and trust Him, becoming part of His assembly, His ekklesia—Yahuwdym. This is the business of God.
Emphanizo is an equally revealing term. It defines Yahowsha’s relationship with Yahowah as well as the purpose of His visit. An emphanizo is a “manifestation.” Webster defines “manifestation” as: “the act or process of revealing one of the forms of an individual in a public demonstration for the purpose of presenting their power in a way which is readily perceived by the senses, especially by sight.” A emphanizo/manifestation is “easily understood and recognized by the mind; it makes evident by demonstrably displaying.” As such, emphanizo is designed “to exhibit and disclose someone’s nature and power”—in this case Yahowah’s. To emphanizo is “to make oneself known by providing proof and declaring it publicly.”
Emphanizo is a compound of em, a variation of en meaning “by and with” and phaino, “to shine light, to bring forth into the light, to cause light to shine, and to shed light.” Phaino also means: “to become evident, clear and manifest.” Phaino is from the base of phos which is “light.” This should not be surprising since God is light. Light is Yahowah’s most repeated of seven metaphors—a subject we will develop later along with the seven advents and seven harvests.
By analyzing the root of emphanizo, we discover that part of the process of change that makes our spiritual nature different than our current mortal existence, is directly related to light. We will become more like Yahowah in yet another way. Light is energy and yet it has a particle nature, much like the risen Yahowsha’. And light exists in the eternal now where past, present and future are one. This makes light eternal.
Analyzing this amazing passage further, we discover that the revered, cleansed, and set apart were “awakened from their sleep.” This means that for some, at least those who died before Yahowsha’s sacrifice, the transition from temporal existence, to mortal death, and then to rebirth includes a period of prolonged sleep where their soul is unaware of his or her surroundings and circumstance, even of time.
The second lesson from this statement suggests that the hagios/revered, cleansed and set apart came out of their tombs so as to be seen as light. That serves to confirm that our restoration, like theirs and like Yahowsha’s, will include a visual component akin to light which has both wave and particle properties.
Third, this awakening was said to be “in association with Yahowsha’s restoration,” tying the harvest of these souls and ours to the triune spring festivals being fulfilled by the human manifestation of God: Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits. Had Yahowsha’s soul not risen, we could not rise. After all, we are going to follow Him.
But before we do, the fourth lesson here is that we are to be as He was—living manifestations of Yahowah’s light. We are to be witnesses who make Him known by enlightening others, providing proof of His light.
Fifth, the city where redemption occurred carries the same designation of people who were redeemed, hagios, which not so coincidently, is the term Yahowah selected to describe His Spirit: “revered, cleansing, and set apart.” And as a refresher, Yaruwshalaim, is a compound of yarah, meaning “to pour out, to teach, and to instruct” and shalowm, meaning “favor and salvation, the blessings of completeness, health, peace, tranquility, contentment, friendship, companionship, and relationship.” Shalowm is “a reward that brings prosperity and rest by way of paying recompense.” It is “restoration through redemption, restitution by making amends.” Thus, the name of the “revered, cleansing, and set-apart” city, as well as Yahowsha’s name, is “the One from whom the favor of reconciliation and redemption flows.” Everything ties together and makes sense when we take time to make sense of the words.
Sixth, on the subject of the Word, and specifically hagios, most every English Bible translates the Greek term incorrectly and inconsistently in this passage and in the next. The NASB writes, “the bodies of the saints,” as does the ASV, NRSV, KJV, and NKJV. The New Living Bible translates hagios: “godly men and women” in the spirit of political correctness. The NIV is somewhat consistent with the word, rendering hagios “holy people” in this verse and just “holy” in the next when it’s used before “pneuma/spirit.” But unless what is errantly called the “Holy Spirit” is in actuality the “Saint Spirit,” the “Holy Person Spirit,” or even the “godly men and women Spirit,” they are all inconsistently translating the meaning of hagios.
There is a lot at stake here. When the meaning of hagios is correctly rendered it not only reveals the three most important characteristics of the “revered, cleansing, and set-apart” Spirit, hagios actually explains why those who rose, actually did so. If we don’t want to be left behind this is good stuff to know. Accurately rendered, the hagios were “revered—adored, and respected” by Yahowah. They were “cleansed—purified and bathed” in light, having had their sins washed away by the “cleansing Spirit.” And they were “set apart” from their sin and “separated from” a dying world, becoming the ekklesia / out calling by virtue of Yahowsha’s redemptive sacrifice.
When hagios is translated “saints” the church not only misses these essential truths it creates a class of spirits to whom religious leaders commit necromancy—something Yahowah calls an abomination. Saint Christopher and the newly canonized Saint Teresa come immediately to mind.
Let’s return to the passage we were reviewing in Yahowchanan for a moment because Yahowsha’ continues to speak of the hagios Spirit. After manifesting Himself to His disciples, and revealing His hands and side, “Then (oun – therefore, accordingly and consequently, these things being so) Yahowsha’ said (lego – affirmed and maintained, taught and advised) to them anew (palin – as a repetition of renewal), ‘Be assured of salvation (eirene – of a state of peace and tranquility, of a harmonious relationship, of freedom and safety, of prosperity and great joy) according to and in the same proportion as is present in (kathos) the ΠΗΡ (Father) who sent Me (apostello – ordered and set Me free and away to go to the place appointed to convey a message). I also (kai) send you out to carry a message (pempo).’ And when He had said this, He breathed (emphusao – blew His breath) on them and said: ‘Accept and carry (lambano – receive and acquire, take hold of and use productively, choose to associate with, experience and exploit courageously) the revered, cleansing, and set-apart (hagios) ΠΝΑ (placeholder for Ruwach, Spirit; from Pneuma).” (Yahowchanan / John 20:21-22)
Eirene, translated “be assured of salvation” is from the verb eiro which means “to join.” Our assurance of salvation is a derivative of the “harmonious relationship” that was enabled by Yahowsha’s sacrifice, when He joined us to Yahowah by way of the hagios Spirit. Eirene therefore, provides the ultimate “state of tranquility and peace.” That’s interesting because the Ma’aseyah’s title, “Shiloh,” means “Counselor of Peace and Tranquility.” Further, according to etymological studies, this favorable and agreeable “state was almost always defined by a binding legal document which conveyed the mutual responsibilities of the parties to the relationship.” The Covenant is nothing more or less than a familial relationship with Yahowah. The adoption papers and the certificate of marriage are in the Towrah. It provides our assurance of salvation—our life assurance policy.
Apostello, in first century Greek meant “to send people forth who are conscious of the goal being attained.” It conveyed that “inherent in the sending was that the messenger was linked to the sender for the express purpose of associating the recipient with the source.” When this word is used in the context of Yahowsha’s relationship with Yahowah, apostello, is most revealing. Technically, apo designates “the separation of a part from the whole from which the part originated, whereby the individual is separated from the union or fellowship of the source.” Then stello means “in order to prepare and equip the individual for use.” Thus, apostello explains that Yahowsha’ is a manifestation of Yahowah, a part of Yahowah, set apart from God to prepare us to join with God.
While I’ve shared this analogy with you before it bears repeating. The best way I know to convey the nature of the relationship between Yahowah, Yahowsha’, and the Spirit is this: picture yourself on a ship, an ark if you will, in the middle of the ocean. Dip two large barrels into the sea. Freeze one and carve it into the shape of a man. Place it in the light so that the seawater form can be seen and felt by those in the presence of its brief physical existence. Just make sure there are a sufficient number of souls on board to record what they witness. Then boil the seawater in the other barrel, allowing the steam to envelop those on your ship. Possessing more energy, the steam not only moves up, it can be put to work empowering things just like Yahowah’s Spirit. One radiates light and is easy to see. The other possesses more power and thus enables greater work to be done. And yet they are the same thing—both are pure manifestations of the ocean, just set apart from it.
Both barrels come from the same place and are thus identical in their composition. There was but one ocean from which they came. Both were set apart from the whole for the purpose of demonstration and revelation. One was corporeal, tangible, touchable in the form of a man reflecting light. The other was steam, representing the Spirit’s power to raise people up and empower them to do the work of God. This example helps us understand that Yahowah is one in nature, one in personality, one in power, and one in purpose. He is one entity and consciousness, not three. In this example, consistent with Yahowsha’s words, the Spirit and the Son return to the midst of the Ocean of Life from which they came. That is what this passage is telling us.
It is why we are asked to “pempo—go out carrying this message.” Fortunately, we do not go alone or without resources. The hagios/revered, cleaning, and set-apart Spirit goes with us. The Spirit provides the means for us to “accept and carry” the message. We are to “use the Spirit’s power productively, choosing to closely associate with Her.” Yahowah wants us to “exploit the Spirit’s resources, using them effectively and courageously.”
Also worth noting, in this verse hagios is an adjective defining the character and purpose of the Spirit. Hagios is not being used as a title as in “Holy” Spirit. It is not capitalized. And hagios is never rendered in the form of a divine identifier in the eyewitness or historical accounts. It is not presented as a placeholder by way of a contraction of the first and last letters capitalized with a line over them. Therefore, hagios is not one of the seven terms used to identify God by name or title. It simply describes the nature and purpose of the Spirit.
To appreciate specifically what the adjective hagios meant to those who inscribed it throughout the eyewitness and historical accounts for our benefit, we have to return to Yahowchanan’s day and scrub 2,000 years of holy hiccups from our cerebral files. When we do, we discover in The Theological Dictionary of the New Testament, that “in Greek and Hellenistic writings, hagios conveyed a feeling of awe, both in the sense of reverence and/or aversion.” According to Webster, to “revere” is to “adore and respect.” As such, it defines the basis of the relationship Yahowah intended mankind to form with Him. To “adore” is to “love.” To “respect” is to “pay attention to and esteem someone in the context of a relationship.” But because “adoration and respect” cannot be compelled, everyone must have the option of “aversion.” Aversion is defined as “a feeling of repugnance toward something or someone, of being desirous of avoiding them and turning away from them.”
This in turn explains why there are two spirits to choose from: Yahowah’s and Satan’s. Hagios therefore, frames the seminal issue of our existence. We can choose Yahowah or be adverse to Him.
In this regard, hagios’ dual nature (revere and avoid) is similar to the duplicity of yare’ in Hebrew and phobos in Greek, words which can mean “revere or fear.” If you revere Yahowah, He will love you in return. If you are afraid of God, you will become adverse to Him and He will avoid you. That is a spectacle worth fearing.
The second definition of hagios that can be gleaned from contemporary Greek usage is that it meant “to clean.” Cleansing defines the primary purpose of the hagios Spirit. Her Garment of Light cleanses us of the impurity of sin, past, present, and future. Further, the cleansing nature of hagios is an exact match for its Hebrew basis, qodesh, which is also derived from a verb meaning: “to clean and purify.”
Lastly, Homer and Herodotus used hagios to describe something that was set in close relationship to the sanctuary of God, referring to that which was “set apart” to the divine and “separated” from the general or profane populous. In this way the Greek hagios became synonymous with the Hebrew qodesh, especially in Yisra’el. Qodesh conveyed the thought that Spirit and the Ma’aseyah were separated out of Yahowah and set apart from Him while the Yahuwdym, Yisra’el, and the Temple were separated from the secular unto the Divine.
And lest we forget, for Yahowsha’ to be able to breathe the hagios Spirit into the disciples, the Spirit who had forsaken Him by design, fulfilling the prophecy and the mission of the Upright Pillar, must have reunited with Yahowsha’s soul. This is the exclamation point to the 22nd Psalm. Furthermore, the “receiving” of the hagios Spirit is being directly linked to “an assurance of salvation, a harmonious relationship, and to great prosperity and joy” that is given to us in the “same proportion and degree” as was accorded to Yahowsha’, once again making us like Yahowah in our renewed state.
Moving on, the next statement is easily misunderstood. That’s partly because it’s so poorly translated. Those who crafted the King James Version were evidently attempting to give men the ability to forgive sin, something priests have capitalized upon: “Whose soever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whose soever sins ye retain, they are retained.” Dated and unintelligible English aside, men have not been given this authority. The remission of sin is Yahowah’s prerogative.
The New American Standard Bible renders the verse: “If you forgive the sins of any, (their sins) have been forgiven them; if you retain the (sins) of any, they have been retained.” The italicized words were added without textual basis in both versions to make the sentence read like the translators wanted it to. There is no basis for the added words in the Greek manuscripts.
Before I attempt to render Yahowsha’s declaration in contemporary English, I want you to be aware of the fact that all verse and chapter designations are manmade – as is the text itself. With the Greek text, we are not reading Scripture. This known, the subject of this sentence remains the same as the last sentence, the “hagios Spirit.” The disciples where now functioning as the Spirit’s tabernacle.
Therefore, in context we find: “And when He had said this, He breathed on them and said: ‘Accept, associate with, and use (lambano – take upon yourself in order to be carried away, take hold of and use productively, choose to form a relationship with, accept, receive, experience, and exploit courageously) the revered, cleansing, and set-apart Spirit.
If (an) someone (tis – a certain individual) is dismissed and sent away (aphiemi – divorced, forsaken, or disregard; neglected or omitted) [by the Spirit], missing the way and erring (hamartia – being without a share because they wandered off on the wrong path and were not made upright), he or she (autos) will be dismissed and sent away (aphiemi – divorced, forsaken, and disregard; neglected and omitted).
If (an) someone (tis – a certain individual) is empowered to gain possession (krateo – if they hold on to and retain) [the hagios Spirit] they will be empowered to gain possession and they will be held on to and be retained (krateo) [by the Spirit].” (Yahowchanan / John 20:22-23)
What Yahowsha’ is translated saying is that those who err and miss the way in this life, and those who are as a result dismissed by the Spirit, will be forsaken in heaven. And those who are reborn into Yahowah’s family by way of the Spirit shall always be empowered and shall always be retained. Adoption is forever because our Spiritual Mother is eternal. But to be adopted, we must accept the terms and conditions of the Covenant and walk to Yahowah along the path He provided through His Invitations to be Called Out and Meet with God.
This is the second time Yahowsha’ has been translated using lambano, meaning “accept, associate with, and use” in His description of the transfer of the set-apart Spirit from Himself to His disciples. That’s interesting because lambano delineates some of the benefits of possessing the Spirit. The Spirit through the process of lambano/acceptance and association provides the mechanism by which we are accepted by Yahowah and through whom we form our association and relationship with Him. The Spirit is the power, the wisdom, and the courage of God in us—literally empowering us. We will see this vividly portrayed in Yownah / Jonah and the end of the next chapter.
Further, the Spirit is responsible for carrying us away to be with Yahowah. And that’s why Yahowsha’ added para, meaning “to be with and to exist beside” to lambano in His description of the pre-Tribulation harvest of souls in Mattanyah 24. To be accepted by God, to associate with Yah, one must first accept and associate with the set-apart and cleansing Spirit of God by way of Her Covenant. If you want to be adopted into Yahowah’s family, you’ll need to be born anew by our Spiritual Mother first.