Yahowah realized that He would serve as the Passover Lamb long before Yahowsha’ fulfilled this promise, before Moseh scribed the Towrah, before He established the Covenant with Abraham, before He floated Noah’s boat, before He walked in the Garden with Adam. But you may be surprised to know that He predicted the ordeal 500 years before the Roman’s invented the torment He would endure and 1,000 years before He honored this promise.
Dowd, meaning “love,” whom the world today calls “David,” was inspired to write the 22nd Mizmowr / Song, as well as the 88th Song, to present exactly what would transpire on Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym in the Yowbel Year of 4000 Yah (33 CE). Then a few hundred years later, through Yasha’yah / Isaiah, Yahowah in the 52nd and 53rd chapters expanded upon the most revealing predictions ever written, explaining the who, why, and when behind the three most essential days in human history. Collectively, these prophecies provide profound insights on where we will spend our eternity and how we will get there.
Before we begin, there will be some who will think that I am being presumptuous in stating emphatically that Dowd was speaking of Yahowsha’ and not himself in the 22nd Mizmowr / Psalm. And yet, none of the things this Mizmowr depicts happened to Dowd. He was never whipped to the point of death or nailed hand and foot to a pole. Yahowsha’ was. And Dowd did not redeem the world, nor did he endure the suffering associated with the fulfillment of Pesach, Matsah, or Bikuwrym. But the personification of this Song did those things. Moreover, the last ten verses of the Mizmowr are unequivocal. After the sacrifice, there is a great celebration in which the whole world basks in Yahowsha’s brilliant light.
We know that Dowd, the most brilliant man who ever lived, composed the 22nd Mizmowr / Song because before it begins, he wrote: “To the Enduring and Everlasting (la ha nasah / nesah – to approach the Eternal Leader, the Great Director, who engages to accomplish the mission), concerning the dawn (ha shachar – the daybreak and sunrise) of the Almighty’s (‘al) assistance (‘ayal / ‘eyal / ‘ayalah / ‘eyalah – Lamb, Leader, Protection, Doorway, Upright Pillar, Help, and Strength (masculine and feminine attributes), a song (mizmowr – a psalm with lyrics set to a melody) of (la – concerning) Dowd (Dowd – Love).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:1)
The interesting aspect of this accreditation is that there are so many intriguing possibilities associated with either ‘ayal or ‘eyal and their feminine forms ‘ayalah and ‘eyalah. In the inspired text, ‘ayal and ‘eyal are both written Aleph-Yowd-Lamed, and are thus indistinguishable. An ‘ayal as a “ram,” represents the “Lamb” of God, and most especially the Passover Lamb. This ‘ayal is not only the one who “leads us,” ‘ayal identifies the “Upright Pillar” who became the “Doorway” to life, who came to “protect us” and thus save us. And as ‘eyal, He is the one who “helps us,” and thus “strengthens us.” These same concepts then become feminine with the addition of the Heh ending, conveying the idea that the Set-Apart Spirit serves with the Son at the direction of the Eternal One.
With this introduction, the opening lyrics of the 22nd Song prophetically present the Lamb of God’s last words on the Upright Pillar on Passover, just as the assistance and strength of the maternal Set-Apart Spirit flees from Him. These words not only explain why He was hanging there, they hint at what would occur next. They also explain Yahowsha’s relationship with Yahowah.
“My God (‘ely – Mighty One, singular), my God (‘ely), why (la-mah – by what means, for how long, and to what end) have You completely and literally forsaken Me (‘azab – have You totally abandoned and actually relinquished Me, have You genuinely and absolutely left Me, separated from Me, and departed from Me, damned and deserted Me (qal (literal and actual) perfect (total and complete))?” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:2)
Yahowsha’ knew why. This question was rendered for our benefit. When you come to know the answer you will “yada’ – know” the mind and purpose of Yahowah.
The use of ‘el, the singular of God, is significant because it is relatively uncommon. Even in the Dabarym / Deuteronomy 6:4 verse, where Yahowah declares that He is one, He uses the plural ‘elohym to designate the fullness of His Deity. But in this case, the Yahowsha’s question is being addressed to Yahowah as the Father by the Son regarding the departure of the Set-Apart Spirit. ‘El is therefore more appropriate than ‘elohym.
The Hebrew word mah is as much about how and what as it is about why. And that’s significant because so is this Mizmowr, as it seeks to answer those same questions. Dowd’s words-eye-view of the Passover crucifixion and the Unleavened Bread venture into She’owl will explain the means by which Yahowsha’ was able to give us life and redeem our sins. This explains how He was able to take the consequence and penalty upon Himself, and why He was willing to do it. It explains the nature of the separation as well as the ends it achieved.
‘Azab may be the most damning word in Scripture. It is the path to separation and lifelessness. ‘Azab is properly translated “forsaken.” It is synonymous with “damned,” and it means “to be separated, abandoned, and deserted.” When the context is “from God” the result is desolation—lifelessness.
And while that’s bad, it is far worse when ‘azab is scribed in the qal stem and perfect conjugation. These things make the “separation” literal, actual, and genuine in addition to being total, complete, and absolute. At this moment, Yahowsha’ was no longer a diminished material manifestation of God. Yahowah had separated Himself totally and completely, actually and literally, from Yahowsha’.
This occurred for two reasons. First, God cannot die. So for the Lamb of God to sacrifice His life on Passover for us to live, the eternal and living God could no longer be associated with the body hanging on the pole. Yahowsha’s body would die, but not Yahowah or His Spirit. Not only is God immortal, so are all spirits, and most especially the Set-Apart Spirit. Therefore, God did not die for our sins as Christians ignorantly profess.
Second, Yahowsha’s soul, or consciousness, was on the precipice of fulfilling Matsah. The soul of the only perfect man, the very consciousness of the Towrah-Observant Ma’aseyah, would become “‘azab – separated and damned, forsaken and abandoned,” in She’owl.
‘Azab’s Greek equivalent in Mattanyah / Matthew 27:26 is enkataleipo, meaning “to be totally abandoned, completely deserted, and utterly forsaken.” Enkataleipo is a compound of en and kataleipo. En is a “relational term denoting a position in space or time.” En translates “in, by, or with.” Kataleipo means “to depart and leave remaining and behind, to cease supporting so as to leave someone in a lurch, and to be called away without taking another with them.” Collectively then, ‘azab, en, and kataleipo present the Set-Apart Spirit of Yahowah’s departure from Yahowsha’ just prior to His last breath, leaving a man hanging on the precipice of death and his soul damned.
The next line confirms as much. “Far (rachowq – remote in distance and time, separated in space; alienated and no longer in a state of close association; from rachaq, meaning to be removed and distant, to be sent off and to go far) away from (min – out of and separated from) My salvation (yashuw’ah (יְשׁוּעָה) – My deliverance, safety, and rescue, and especially My freedom; a feminine noun serving as the passive participle of the verb yasha’ – to save, to deliver, and to liberate) are the words (dabar – spoken statements) of my distress (sha’gah – roaring anguish and groaning).
I continually call out to (qara’ – I actually and consistently summon, I want to meet with and be welcomed by) My God (‘elohy) throughout the day (yowmam – during the daytime hours), but (wa) You do not answer (lo’ ‘anah – You do not ever reply or actually respond (qal imperfect)); and (wa) by night (laylah – in the absence of the light in the dark gloom), but (wa) there is no relief for Me (lo’ duwmyah la – there is no sound for Me, no silence concerning Me, and there is no rest or repose for Me).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:2-3)
Because He observed the Towrah perfectly and consistently, prior to accepting our corruptions and perversions of it, our rebellion from it and our aversion to it, Yahowsha’ wasn’t in need of “yashuw’ah – salvation,” but now, having been burdened by our rejection of Yah’s Teaching, the man whose name is based upon the verb “yasha’ – to save,” was “yashuw’ah – seeking deliverance” from the ordeals of Pesach during the day and Matsah the following night. He was “qara’ – calling out to” Yahowah, asking “qara’ – to meet with” Yahowah during the Miqra’ – Invitation to Meet with God of Passover. And the “sha’gah – distress” He was suffering, enduring the most excruciating of human torments as the Passover Lamb, was nothing compared to the “sha’gah – anguish” He would experience during the long “laylah – night of Unleavened Bread when His soul would be would be “laylah – completely removed from the light.” There would be “lo’ ‘anah – no response” from God and “lo’ duwmyah la – no relief for Him” in She’owl – the place of anguish which represents total separation from God.
As for the name, Yahowsha’ ( ), it is a compound of Yahowah and yasha’, the Hebrew verb which was deployed in this passage as a passive participle to affirm something this name implies: Yahowah Saves. Even Yahowsha’ couldn’t save Himself. He was reliant upon Yahowah. There are few things as destructive to the Christian myth that “Jesus Christ is the Savior” than this realization.
Yahowsha’ ben Yahowah was not the first to bear this name. Yahowsha’ ben Nuwn (the eternal and perpetual), the successor to Moseh, brought Yahowah’s children into the Promised Land. His name appears over two-hundred times in Scripture. So when it comes to knowing His name, this name, we are without excuse. If you refer to Him as “Jesus” or “Yehshua,” your corruption is increasing His suffering.
What’s interesting here is that Yahowsha’ was separated, forsaken, and damned so we wouldn’t become destitute and desolate. This separation unto darkness is the essence of His sacrifice. It is the ransom He paid to redeem us. Sure, His physical torture at the hands of the Romans hurt, as did the biting words hurled from the mouth’s of the rabbinical types, but the real anguish was having His relationship with Yahowah severed. This is why the man on the pole roared in agony.
What’s also interesting is that now that the Set-Apart Spirit has returned to Yahowah, God has become plural again: ‘elohy rather than ‘el. Also, deprived of the Spirit, Yahowsha’ no longer considers Himself saved. Fortunately, this horrible beginning has a happy ending. Spirit and soul will be reunited during the celebration of Bikuwrym.
There is another subtlety worth further consideration, and that’s the use of day and night. The verse confirms the pain Yahowsha’s body would endure during the day, which speaks of Passover in 33 CE (Year 4000 Yah), and the torment that His soul would bear in the darkness of the long night that followed as He fulfilled the promise of Unleavened Bread on the Sabbath. The Hebrew word translated night, layil, actually defines She’owl—“the adversity of being away from light.” There would be no rest as Yahowsha’s soul as His consciousness descended into the darkness of Gehenna—the one place God Himself could not go. This Pit, this rubbish heap and dumping ground, is the lightless home of the Adversary. Yahowsha’s soul would suffer there, as His body had suffered on the pole on Passover.
This is actually good news, not bad, at least for us, as the rest of the Mizmowr will go on to so boldly proclaim. Yahowah, the Set-Apart One of Yisra’el, the God of Abraham, Yitschaq, and Ya’aqob, would through this act of ultimate sacrifice save those who had and would come to trust and rely upon Him. By the deed predicted in this Song, all those who had and would cry out to Yahowah would be delivered from “‘azab—damnation and desolation.”
As we approach this next verse, be aware that the Hebrew word palat means to “escape” or to be “carried safely away.” This concept will become synonymous with the coming harvest. We are told that those who trust Him will not be disappointed.
Yahowsha’ is the Qodesh Qodesh (Most Set Apart) when associated with the Ruwach Qodesh (Set-Apart Spirit). But once Yahowsha’s soul was separated from Yahowah’s Spirit, He was damned and forsaken. His body would die, ceasing to exist. And His soul would become mortal – just like the rest of us. So at that moment, only Yahowah along with His Set-Apart Spirit, was eternally alive. Therefore, the man nailed to Golgotha’s pole would realize:
“But You are the Set-Apart One (wa ‘atah qodesh), establishing (yashab – living and dwelling throughout time, intent on restoring and renewing) the renown and reputation (tahilah – the excellent character and credibility) of Yisra’el (Yisra’el – individuals who contend, persist, and persevere with God).
In You (ba), our fathers (‘ab) actually trusted (batach – completely relied upon, were totally confident and genuinely secure in (qal perfect)). They totally trusted (batach – genuinely and completely relied (qal perfect)) and (wa) You consistently rescued them (palat – You always brought them away from danger to a safe place, delivering them, helping them escape and survive (piel imperfect telling us that the forefathers were saved by God’s intervention)).
To You (‘el – to You as God) they cried out for help (za’aq – they called for assistance) and they were delivered (wa malat – they were spared, saved, and rescued (niphal perfect – telling us that they were totally passive and Yah was active)). In You (ba – with You) they totally trusted and genuinely relied (batach – they placed their complete confidence (qal perfect)) and they were not disappointed nor disapproved (wa lo’ bowsh – they did not suffer emotional or physical distress or despair (qal perfect)).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:4-6)
Yahowsha’ is the “qodesh – set-apart one.” This explains His nature. He is part of Yahowah, set apart from Him. And just as energy and matter are the same thing (energy is organized matter), and yet are not equal (E = MC2), Yahowah and Yahowsha’ are the same, but not equal. Yahowsha’ is the diminished material manifestation of Yahowah’s spiritual energy.
Once we come to appreciate the meaning of Yisra’el, and that it represents “individuals (‘iysh) who engage and endure (sarah) with God (‘el),” this initial statement reveals a couple of key thoughts. As Yahowah’s wayward children, our Heavenly Father has a vested interest in restoring our reputation. And as Yahowah’s witnesses, Yisra’el’s credibility is important, so God ultimately seeks to restore it.
Trust, not faith, reliance, not belief, was the essence of their salvation – and ours. Batach is repeated three times so that we would not miss this message. The reason that we are asked to “shamar – observe” Yahowah’s Word is so that we come to know Him and understand what He is offering by way of His Covenant. Trust and reliance are the natural result of knowing and understanding.
So why is it that pastors and priests preach faith and not reliance, belief and not trust? Our faith is as meaningless as are our beliefs. The reliability of the object of our trust is all that matters.
As an interesting nuance to this conversation, consider that three distinct Hebrew terms— yashuw’ah / salvation, palat / rescue, and malat / spare—are all translated “deliver or deliverance” in every English Bible. If one word were sufficient, Yahowah would have chosen one, and not used three. It seems evident to me that God selected these terms to demonstrate that no matter how you define deliverance, He is the source. Those who cry out to Him and rely on Him are delivered into Yahowah’s presence, saved from sin, and spared the agony of death and separation.
As we move on to God’s next statement, it is appropriate to restate the fact that Yahowah allowed His soul to be separated and suffer in our stead. While we do not fully understand the mechanics of this miracle, we do not need to know how it happened to appreciate why it occured—or to benefit from it. But this we can know: Yahowsha’ represents Yahowah manifest in the form of a man. His name describes Him and defines His mission: Yahowah Saves. He is eternal. The immortal cannot die, thus God’s Spirit could not die on Mowryah’s pole—only His body could endure that indignity. So this Psalm is attempting to explain how the miracle of redemption was manifest.
We also know that Yahowah can feel pain. Mizmowr / Psalm 22 will go on to detail the most torturous elements of His suffering. It was at the end of a long day. He had been tried, spit upon, beaten, and whipped by His creation. His Spirit and the temporary body it occupied had suffered, sacrificed, and bled beyond our comprehension. Then we nailed His body to a pole.
But when His flesh neared death, Yahowah’s Spirit departed. That is what the opening question affirms: “My God why have you forsaken me?” Yahowah’s Spirit was separated from Yahowsha’s body and soul, killing one and damning the other—a very sobering thought.
Since the closer one looks, the more inspiring Yahowah’s Scripture becomes, I will continue to amplify the meaning of these words so that you might more fully appreciate the magnitude of this prophecy. The Hebrew words Yahowah inspired Dowd to inscribe present the torment of flagellation and crucifixion in excruciating detail.
Before Yahowsha’ was nailed to the death stake, He was beaten to a bloody pulp. “I Am (‘anky) but a crimson grub (wa towla’ – a bloodied scarlet pulp), and not extant, present as a person (wa lo’ ‘iysh – no longer a man or individual [i.e., I’m now less than human]), rebuked and reproached (cherpah – scorned and taunted, disgraced and dishonored as contemptible, insulted with slurs) by man (‘adam – humankind), and disrespected and despised (bazah – disregarded, held in contempt, and ridiculed; seen as worthless, lightly regarded, and of little value) by the family (‘am – people who are kin and nation of Yisra’el).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:7)
Yahowah used three different words for man in one sentence. After accurately describing the condition and appearance of His flogged body, He said that He was no longer present as a person. ‘Iysh, or more correctly, ‘Ysh, is the term Yahowah used to describe His form when He visited with Abraham and then later with Ya’aqob, renaming him Yisra’el.
Second, Yahowah revealed that He was being accused by ‘adam—symbolic of the first man created in His image. This could also suggest that He was assuming Adam’s sin – thus serving as a metaphor for taking on the sin of all mankind.
Third, a millennium before it actually occurred, Yahowah told us that His offer of redemption would be disrespected by some and rejected by others, seen as worthless even by members of His own family, the Yahuwdym. Proper consideration of these carefully chosen terms opens a revealing window into the nature, character, and intellect of Yahowah as well as into the collective responses of mankind.
In this regard, even today the vast preponderance of people show little regard for Yahowsha’s ordeal. Not one person in a million acknowledges the association between His suffering and Pesach and Matsah. And estranged from these Miqra’ey, His sacrifice was in vain.
Roman crucifixions were executed along popular roadways so that the victim’s humiliation would increase, and the deterrent effect his pain would have on the eyewitnesses would be magnified. That is why Yahowsha’ says that people were gawking at Him, shaking their heads, and saying senseless things—mouths running faster than their brains.
“All of those who see Me (kol ra’ah – all who gaze at Me, who look upon Me) they deride and mock Me (la’ag la – they speak unintelligibly about Me, disparaging, scoffing at and ridiculing Me). They shoot off their mouths (patar ba saphah – they flap their lips) and they shake their heads (nuwa’ ro’sh), saying, ‘Commit your removal to (galal ‘el) Yahowah ( - ). Let Him decide to rescue Him (palat – perhaps He will want to save Him (piel imperfect jussive)). Let Him choose to spare Him (natsal – maybe He will decide to save Him (hiphil imperfect jussive)). Surely (ky) He delights in Him (chaphets ba – He wants Him, He desires and is pleased with Him (qal perfect)).’” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:8-9)
They obviously hadn’t read the 7th chapter of 2nd Shamow’el / Samuel, where Yahowah told Dowd / David that when our sin was associated with the Ma’aseyah, He wouldn’t spare the rod. That is why He was hanging there, after all.
Beyond this, the fact that this was written around 968 BCE is telling, because this passage predicts that Yahowsha’ would speak of Yahowah and seek His help. He would be beaten to a bloody pulp and be rejected by His own people. He would promise to spare men from death, yet He would not rescue Himself. That only happened once in all of human history.
This Song will ultimately conclude by affirming that the victim of this bloody scene is God Almighty. Consistent with Yasha’yah’s “a child is born to us, a Son is given to us” Dowd affirms that the redemptive manifestation of the Ma’aseyah will begin in the womb.
“Indeed (ky), You (‘atah – speaking to Yahowah) caused Me to come forth from (gyach min – Me to be drawn out of) the womb (beten), causing Me to rely (batach) upon (‘al) My mother’s breast (‘em shad).
God, You (‘al – before, beside, and in association with the Almighty), You caused Me to be cast out of (shalak min – cast off, forth, and away) the point of origin (rechem – womb as in matrix, a spatial position indicative of the source; from racham, meaning love, mercy and compassion). From (min) My mother’s (‘em) womb (beten) You have been My God (‘el).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:10-11)
Yahowsha’ is saying that Yahowah sent Him from the matrix—an eternal four-dimensional construct which is the point of origin, the source of love, mercy, and compassion via a woman’s womb. Like the rest of us, and following the Covenant’s model, He would come to know the nurturing love of a mother. Moreover, the only way for Yahowsha’ to be considered perfect, is for Him to live a Towrah-observant life from beginning to end.
With foreboding words, the then future and now past sacrificial soul pleads with Yahowah, asking Him not to abandon Him. He recognizes that He is headed to a rendezvous with Satan, the Adversary, where He will be afflicted. He knows that nothing exists that can protect Him from this tribulation.
“Do not distance Yourself from Me (lo’ rachaq min – never sever Your relationship with Me, actually recede from Me, avoiding Me, with You going so far away from Me (qal (subject is literally influenced by the act) imperfect (the act is ongoing) jussive (denoting a negative request in second person)) because (ky) the Adversary’s anguish (tsarah – the rival’s trouble and oppressor’s tribulation; the unavoidable suffering and emotional distress associated with the competitor) is imminent (qarob – personal, approaching, and near in space-time). For indeed (ky), no one (ayn - nothing) can help (‘azar – can provide support, assistance, or aid).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:12)
And that is the moral of the story. Only Yahowah can spare us from Satan’s sting. He alone can be counted on to help in our hour of greatest need.
When I put myself into the scene, and try to feel what Yahowsha’ was experiencing at this moment, it strikes me that He wasn’t complaining about the horrific pain associated with His flogging or even His crucifixion, but instead was lamenting the aguish of His relationship with Yahowah being severed. It was the imminent and unavoidable distancing from Yahowah in She’owl, the lair of Satan, that was so painful. And yet this is the sacrifice that not one in a million people so much as acknowledge.
Tsarah is particularly revealing. Yahowsha’s “anguish” would come from the “Adversary,” the one who saw himself as “being in competition” with God for men’s souls. This “distress” would be “emotional,” thus speaking expressly of the “anguish” of separation. And it was “qarob – imminent, personal, and unavoidable.” At “a place and moment in space-time of uncertain location and indeterminate duration from the perspective of the participants,” bad things were going to occur. And Yahowsha’ knew it. A unimaginably horrible price would have to be paid to honor Yahowah’s Matsah promise to perfect us.
From the beginning, Dowd’s haunting and foreboding Song has focused on the pain associated with Yahowah separating Himself from Yahowsha’. He is on the cusp of being tormented by the Satan. And adding insult to injury, His creation continues to humiliate Him, while ripping the flesh from His body.
“Numerous and strong (rab) bulls (par) surround Me (cabab – they assemble around and encircle Me), aggressively attacking supernatural (‘abyr – powerful fighting bullish and spiritual warrior) serpents (bashan). They have besieged and crowned Me in hostile fashion (kathar – they gather about to hem Me in, adorning Me with a circular crown).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:13)
The Satanic sun-god, Lord Ba’al, was represented by a “par – bull.” Heylel ben Shachar’s most infamous religious image, this bull, and his primary Scriptural metaphor, the serpent, are tied together here, and are associated directly with the Adversary, because Yahowah wanted us to appreciate the magnitude of His sacrifice. To redeem the entire world He would have to endure the worst tortures Satan and his full cadre of demons could muster. These were spiritual warriors fighting for the Adversary.
There is a secondary prophetic truth here. Yahowsha’ would wear a crown of thorns, a crown comprised of the same intertwined thorn bush that caught the Lamb on Mount Mowryah / Moriah when Abraham and Yitschaq enacted the words of this Song, performing a dress rehearsal for the seminal event of human history.
Even the men who were wielding the Roman flagellums were possessed by demons, doing Satan’s bidding. Still speaking of the bulls (sun-god worshipers) and the aggressively attacking supernatural serpents (demons), Yahowah reveals:
“They opened (patsah) their mouths (peh) against Me (‘al), a raving and roaring lion (‘arayeh – a destroying assassin, a beast who preys on others) plucking and tearing Me to pieces (taraph – mangling Me, ripping apart My soft tissues with sharp objects, violently flailing Me so as to inflict an abhorrent death).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:14)
The lyrics are saying that the demons, and the men they control, are spouting destructive and lifeless lies, words that deceive and lead to death. And also that this anguish is no less torturous than being flailed alive.
It should also be noted that, second only to the bull, winged lions were used to represent pagan gods. These are overtly religious images and should be seen as such.
Long before Rome existed, ultimately developing their metal tipped flagellum scourging whips that pulled hunks of flesh from their victim’s bodies, mangling the soft tissues, the prophet Dowd / David was inspired by Yah to describe the effect Roman-inspired torment would have on Yahowsha’ body. Patsah and its derivatives convey “violent wounding by bruising and splitting the skin wide open, pealing it off the body with great force.” Combined with taraph, the “mangling of the flesh by ripping it from the body with sharp objects” we are provided with a poignant, yet perfect, description of the abuse inflicted by fifty lashings by a Roman metal-barbed whip. And in the context of serpents, taraph can also signify that the demons were trying to possess the Ma’aseyah as He was being reduced to a bloody pulp.
Yet simply removing the skin and the muscle tissue that lay beneath from Yahowsha’s shoulders, back, chest, arms and legs was insufficient. Our Songwriter would go on to describe the most horrid form of execution ever conceived by man. Five centuries before crucifixion with ropes was invented by the Assyrians and 700 years before it was perfected by the Romans to include nails, Dowd previews its piercing violence. We are about to discover that Yahowah’s prophecies can be painfully precise.
So that you will be able to more fully appreciate what follows, be cognizant of the fact that one of crucifixion’s most telling attributes is that it causes the victim’s bodily fluids to drain into their lungs, leaving them parched. While dying of thirst, they drown. Bones are not broken, but both shoulders are almost always dislocated. Oxygen depletion occurs because the victim is unable to stretch their diaphragm while hanging by their arms, causing a carbon dioxide toxin to build up in the bloodstream. This results in strength melting away, starting with the heart muscles. We know this today, but not 3,000 years ago, which is when these words were inscribed by Dowd. That makes his prediction extraordinary.
Yahowsha’s mortal body was ebbing away “Like a river of water (ka mayim – similar to liquid water), I am poured out and emptied (shaphak).
And (wa) all of (kol) My bones (‘etsem – My substance skeleton, and limbs) are stretched, separated, and out of joint (parad).
Like wax (ka downag – similar to wax) My diaphragm inside of Me (me’ah ba tawek – the internal organs in the midst of My body) is unable to move (downag – is dissolving and wasting away).
Like sun-baked dust (ka cheres – similar to a broken sun-hardened vessel of earthenware), My vigor and strength (koach) are withered and failed (yabesh – dried up without moisture and incapacitated).
And (wa) My tongue (lashown) cleaves (dabaq – is made to stick) to My gums (malqowch – to My palate and jaws).
And into (wa la) the dust and debris (‘aphar – the earthen material and rubbish) of death (maweth) they have placed Me (shaphath – they have put Me).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:15-16)
That is precisely how crucifixion kills, right down to its most unique symptoms. The victim’s inability to inhale robs their body of oxygen, and thus energy, causing koach—“a helpless and powerless incapacity to perform any needed function.” Likewise, yabesh in association with me’ah ba tawek describes “a withering paralyzed state in which the body no longer responds to the brain’s motor function commands.”
Cheres suggests that the demonic schemes of satanic worshipers were being brought to bear on the Ma’aseyah. The textual base of cheres/potsherd is identical to charash, meaning “to be silent while others plot evil, devising a plan of action that cuts and separates.” His physical body, comprised of the elements of the earth, was broken, being deprived of living waters.
The sph consonant root of shaphat also means to place in a fire, an ash or refuse heap. As such, sph defines Gehenna, the fiery garbage dump that became synonymous with Satan’s side of She’owl. This was where Yahowsha’s soul was headed as His body was placed inside a dry limestone grave, an earthen tomb carved into the summit of Mount Mowryah. Yahowsha’s soul would spend the Miqra’ of Matsah passing through in Gehenna (picking up our religious corruption along the way) en route to She’owl.
Maweth is “death personified.” It is “the disease that plagues us.” Maweth is “the realm of the dead.” Fully amplified, maweth conveys: the physical trauma of the body dying, the infliction of a plague or disease that causes death, and a judgment in which the penalty is a death sentence.” It is derived from, and at the consonant level spelled identically to, muwth: “those who are executed and dispatched to die.”
Yahowsha’s body was broken and died serving in the role of the Passover Lamb so that we wouldn’t have to die. His soul was laden with our sin and went through Gehenna en route to She’owl, the place of separation, in our stead. Bearing our rebellion against the Towrah, He exonerate and pardoned us on Unleavened Bread.
The character of political and religious people hasn’t changed much over the years. They are still dirty dogs, and I’m not degrading canines.
“For indeed (ky) the contemptible and abased yelpers (keleb – loud and attacking, unfaithful pagan dogs; evil male prostitutes of a lowly status and violent nature; puppets and traitors) have surrounded Me (sabab – they have encircled Me like a swirling wind).
The assemblage (‘edah – the band or swarm, the congregation) of the corrupt (ra’a’ – of the displeasing, evil, and injurious) encircle Me to destroy Me (naqaph – they go around Me, threatening Me, inflicting pain from every direction).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:17)
This assemblage of the corrupt wanted to negate Yahowsha’ mission, which would have precluded our participation in the Covenant and blocked our path to God. And all they had to do to accomplish their evil agenda was to inflict more pain that Yahowsha’ could endure. If He had sought relief, seeking to be relieved of the mission for which He was conceived, there would be no hope for any of us. In this light, you should know that naqaph speaks of “peeling off the skin of an animal.” In this way the Mizmowr was predicting public flagellation followed by crucifixion, Roman style.
“They have pierced (kuwr) my hands (yad) and my feet (wa regel).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:17) They struck blows, pounding nails into Yahowsha’s wrists (which were considered part of the hand in the first century) and into His heels, piercing them with iron rods. His shoulders were ripped from their sockets, but not broken. And we, spoiled and wicked men that we are, taunted God as we tormented Him.
Kuwr is a very specific term. It speaks of “boring into the flesh with a dull piercing instrument of metal that has been forged in a smelting furnace.” A Roman nail fits this description perfectly.
While using such a device in this excruciating fashion is repulsive, even reprehensible, there remains a far greater crime here than mutilating and murdering the Ma’aseyah. If you are a Jew, faithful to the religious traditions of your people, what I’m going to share ought to make you nauseous, angry to the point of rage. To keep you from knowing Yahowsha’ and salvation, rabbis knowingly and purposely altered the passage to read: “Like a lion are my hands and feet.” Lion is ‘aryeh (אַרְיֵה). Pierced is kuwr (כּוּר). The word for “like” does not appear in the text and “lion” and “pierced” aren’t even remotely similar. This was not a mistake. It was done on purpose.
The Lamb of God’s hands and feet were nailed to an Upright Pillar on Mowryah during Passover at the behest of yelping clerics. To cover up their crime, they removed the most obvious reference to His sacrifice and replaced it with drivel.
If what I claim regarding this prophecy is true, that Dowd wrote that His hands and feet would be pierced, then the Scriptural text predicts Yahowsha’s crucifixion five centuries before crucifixion was conceived by the Assyrians and nearly one-thousand years before the piercing style of Roman execution was invented. Moreover, since crucifixion has been banned for a millennia, this form of suffering must have occurred in our past, not in our future. And if what I claim regarding the alteration is true, then the most esteemed rabbis are liars who should not be trusted. The Talmud is trash. The authors of the oral traditions are deceitful men who are willing to alter God’s testimony to suit their own personal agendas.
So here is the proof: the 11th century CE Masoretic Text reads: “Like (ka) a lion (‘aryeh) are my hands (yad) and feet (wa regel).” The 20th century CE Jewish Publication Society Tanach agrees, saying: “Like lions [they maul] my hands and feet.” Yet the 3rd century BCE Septuagint has “The have pierced my hands and feet.” More telling still, the oldest surviving Hebrew manuscript of the 22nd Psalm was recently discovered at Nahal Hever. It dates to the first century BCE. It reads: “They have pierced (kuwr) my hands (yad) and my feet (wa regel).”
There is but one possible explanation for these discrepancies. The Masoretes deliberately changed Yahowah’s testimony for the express purpose of hoodwinking Yahuwdym, hoping they wouldn’t recognize their Ma’aseyah nor understand what He had done for them. And by so doing, they hoped to maintain their positions of power and influence even though it would cost tens of millions of Yisra’elite their souls.
Flee them. Expose them. Rebuke them. Trust Yahowah and rely on Yahowsha’, not men.
The prophet Zakaryah / Zechariah had a great deal to say about Yahowsha’, referring to Him by name. And so at this point, since it is especially relevant to this passage, I would be remiss if I didn’t share Zakaryah 12:10 before we complete the Mizmowr. Yahowah is speaking to Yahuwdym in the last days:
“And (wa) I will pour out (shaphak) upon the house (‘al beyth – on the family and home) of Dowyd (Dowyd – Love), and upon (wa ‘al) those who dwell in (yashab – the inhabitants who establish their abode and remain in) Yaruwshalaim (Yaruwshalaim – the Source of Reconciliation), the Spirit of Mercy (Ruwach Chen – the Spirit of Favor and Acceptance, a Beautiful and Beneficial Spiritual Garment) and (wa) of Requesting Undeserved Favor (tachanuwn – of supplication, one who pleads for kindness issuing a petition requesting compassion; from chanan, meaning one who seeks, implores, and shows favor and makes favorable).
And (wa) they shall look (nabat – they will observe, focus upon, pay attention to, and regard, they will understand and appropriately respond) to Me (‘el – to the Almighty) whom (‘eth ‘asher – by association) they have actually pierced (daqar – wounded by driving implements completely through (qal perfect)), and (wa) they shall choose to genuinely mourn (caphad – they will lament electing to really express their complete sorrow (qal perfect consecutive)) for Him (‘al – for God) as (ka – similar to the way) one mourns (micped – cries aloud) for an only begotten son (‘al ha yachyd).
And (wa) shall bitterly weep (marar – grieving furiously, enraged in anger) over Him (‘al – on account of Him), similar to (ka) the anguish suffered over the loss of (marar ‘al – the anger and rage over losing) their firstborn child (ha bakowr – the first son born into a family).” (Zakaryah / Remember Yah / Zechariah 12:10)
Yahowah is telling us that we nailed Him to Mowryah’s pole, and that He, the Spirit, and the Son are One. This statement also tells us that His sacrifice is directly linked to our salvation which comes by way of His mercy. He is announcing that His people will become His family again as they come to appreciate the basis of His “chen / mercy.”
On the Day of Reconciliations, Monday October 3rd, in the Yowbel / Yah’s Lamb’s Year of 2033 (6000 Yah), God will return to the Mount of Olives as every Yahuwdym who survived the Tribulation looks up with tear-filled eyes, finally recognizing who their fathers pierced. This is even more vividly portrayed in Yasha’yah 52, a prophecy we will examine thoroughly in the next chapter.
Returning to Golgotha on Passover in the Yowbel of 33 CE (Year 4000 Yah), we find that Dowyd predicted what the Apostles confirmed. “I can count (saphar – record, measure, and make an accounting of) all (kol) my bones (‘etsem – My skeleton and limbs [i.e., nothing is broken]). They (hem) stare at Me (nabat – they look at Me) and delight in it (ra’ah ba).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:18)
While the Romans were savages, their bloodlust was partially moderated by breaking the legs of most crucifixion victim’s so that they would be unable to push up, effectively shutting down their ability to breathe. While this sounds cruel, it was actually done to expedite death, shortening the duration of the agony from days to hours. This was especially relevant when the gruesome specter of crucifixion was visible to the religious pilgrims in Jerusalem for Passover. It’s hard to observe the Sabbath and enjoy the Miqra’ of Matsah when your view of the sunset is interrupted by the sight of religious and political leaders torturing God, I suppose. But such was not the case with Yahowsha’. He had been whipped to the precipice of death prior to being crucified. So, His body would succumb in a timely fashion without any of His bones being broken.
In case you are wondering, Yahowsha’ was not hung from a cross on a hill far away as the hymn suggests. Romans crucified their victims along major roadways. It was more humiliating and served as a deterrent. Golgotha, the place of the skull, is just outside the Damascus Gate and sits directly beneath what was the summit of Mount Mowryah during Abraham’s day. Portions of the mountain were carved away to enlarge the Temple Mount and bolster the city’s walls. So the Place of the Skull is at street level and faces the main road leading north out of town. Today the site of the crucifixion is the back parking lot for the Jerusalem bus station.
This is where Yahuwdym observing the final hours of Passover looked up at the Lamb of God. His tomb, which His body only occupied for a matter of hours, was carved in the summit of Mowryah directly above the recess in which the upright pole was placed. And the blood stained Mercy Seat of the Ark of the Covenant lies directly below.
To further explain, this implement of death unto which Yahowsha’ was nailed did not look like the Christian cross. In fact, the Greek word used to describe it is stauros which means “upright pole.” A vertical post was set into a recess carved into the limestone rock. And the horizontal member of the apparatus was set on top of the pole once the victim was affixed to it.
The Apostles tell us that the Romans who crucified Yahowsha’, cast lots for the garments they had stripped from Him. Them doing so shouldn’t have been a surprise since Yahowah said it would happen a millennia beforehand.
“They divide (chalaq – plunder, assign, and distribute) My garments (beged) among themselves (la), and (wa) for (‘al) my clothing (labuwsh) they cast lots (naphal gowral – they get down on their knees, lowering themselves to toss pebbles to claim an allotment).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:19) If there had only been Catholics at the time, they would have scooped them up, called them holy relics, and then built a lavish shrine so that the faithful could worship them while they collected a visitor’s fee.
With Yahowsha’s last words on the upright pole, Yahowah’s Spirit departed, leaving the soul of the Passover Lamb to bear the sins of all mankind. He pleads:
“And You (wa ‘atah), Yahowah ( - ), please do not distance Yourself (lo’ rachaq – I do not want You to ever remove Yourself nor actually send Me away (qal imperfect jussive)).
My ‘Eyaluwth (‘Eyaluwth – feminine form of ‘eyal used in parallel with YHWH, a title meaning Your Strength and Your Helper, She Who Provides Aid), please come quickly (chuwsh – I ask that You act swiftly, I want You to literally swoop down, actually hastening to rush upon and continually prepare Me, ready immediately (qal imperative paragogic) to assist and help Me (la ‘ezrah – in order to provide relief for Me, being the One who aids and comforts Me).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:20)
Both verbs, “rachaq – distance” and “chuwsh – come quickly,” were scribed using volitional forms, the first in the jussive and the second by way of the imperative and paragogic. Yahowsha’ is therefore stating His desire. This is what He wants. He, now as a man, is expressing His volition under the auspices of freewill.
This statement helps explain the unique nature of Yahowsha’, the diminished material manifestation of Yahowah. And it reveals the relationship between the divine elements which comprised Him, explaining their purpose, and their disposition before, during, and after the events surrounding Passover, Unleavened Bread, and FirstFruits in Yaruwshalaim during the Yowbel of 33 CE.
‘Eyaluwth (pronounced eh·yaw·looth) is being used in parallel with Yahowah, and it is being used as a divine title. This proper noun appears only once in Scripture – that of course being here in this passage. The fact ‘Eyaluwth is the feminine form of ‘Eyal, and is focused on the work of the Spirit, means that ‘Eyaluwth is a descriptive title for the Ruwach Qodesh / Set-Apart Spirit. She is our Helper, our Counselor, our Spiritual Mother, the “‘Eyaluwth – One who Provides Aid” in our time of need. She is the “‘Eyaluwth – Power and Strength of God” in our lives. Just as the Son, Yahowsha’, is the corporeal manifestation of Yahowah, the ‘Eyaluwth is the spiritual representation of God. And She made the man God—that is until She abandoned His body and soul.
But gone was not forgotten. She would return to rescue Her Son, assisting and empowering Him, preparing Him for spiritual rebirth in conjunction with FirstFruits.
My favorite lexicon, the Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains: Hebrew, says of ‘Eyaluwth: “אֱיָלוּת (ʾěyā∙lûṯ) noun proper (as a title), Strength and Power, i.e., a title of God with a focus on His potency to help and give aid (Psalm 22:20), note: some translate it as a common noun, but the context better suggests a title.” This is important, because heretofore, Yahowah has consistently called His Spirit the Ruwach Qodesh, which means “Set-Apart Spirit.” Because ruwach is a feminine noun, this reveals that Yah’s Spirit represents God’s maternal nature. And by being qodesh, we know that our Spiritual Mother is “set apart” from Yahowah – our Heavenly Father. That is to say that She came from Yah, that She is part of Yah, and that She was set apart from Yah. And while that means that Yahowah and the Spirit are the same, it does not make them equal. As a part of Yahowah, the ‘Eyaluwth is a diminished spiritual manifestation of God. But now we know that the “Ruwach Qodesh – Set-Apart Spirit” has a name: ‘Eyaluwth. And Her name defines Her role in our lives: to empower and strengthen us, to aid and support us.” She was sent to “help” us.
Further, we are told that not only is ‘Eyaluwth the feminine form of ‘eyal, meaning “strength and help,” ‘eyal is a variation of “‘ayil – the Lamb of God, the upright pillar of Passover and the doorway to heaven.” So with ‘Eyaluwth being feminine, we find both Son and Spirit working in harmony to open the doorway to heaven on our behalf. And should you be willing to discount any of this etymology, take a moment and reread the passage. It is precisely what Yahowah is telling us.
Knowing this, Yahowsha’ pleads with Her: “Please snatch away and save (natsal – I want You to rescue, spare, defend, and deliver (hiphil imperative paragogic)) My soul (nepesh) from waste, desolation, and ruin (min choreb – from being dried up and devastated by the impending horror and rubble), from the hand and power (min yad – from the influence and actions) of the contemptible and abased yelpers (keleb – these whores and prostitutes, these evil scum of lowly status, these loud and attacking, unfaithful pagan dogs, these puppets and traitors).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:21)
Before we examine the relationship between Father and Son, Spirit and soul, there is another crime which must be exposed. The Masoretes vocalized the textual consonants “chrb” as chereb rather than choreb. The former is a knife, dagger, sword, axe, or chisel. Since Yahowsha’s Passover ordeal included whipping and the piercing torment of crucifixion, if the prophetic passage were changed to represent a plea to be spared from cutting instruments, Yahowsha’s specific sacrifice would be disqualified, as it would not fit these predictions pertaining to the Ma’aseyah. So that’s precisely what Satan’s little helpers did. And not knowing any better, the politically motivated religious clerics who prepared the King James Version, perpetuated their grievous error. Then, since the ASV, NIV, NKJV, and NASB are more revisions than they are new translations, they ignorantly replicated the mistake. So as they now report the Word, Yahowsha’ was disqualified as the Ma’aseyah as He neither asked to be spared from the sword nor was He done in by a knife, dagger, axe, or chisel.
By way of confirmation, the corruption known as the King James Version published: “Deliver my soul from the sword; my darling from the power of the dog.” (So that you know, they came up with “my darling” by including “yachyd – only begotten son” which was scribed after “keleb – evil yelpers” in this verse rather than the next one.) The New American Standard Bible, which claims to be literal, reads: “Deliver my soul from the sword, My only life from the power of the dog.” The New Living Translation decided to ignore “nepesh – soul,” the most important word in this statement. “Save me from the sword; my precious life from these dogs.”
And yet, every etymological scholar recognizes that the choreb vocalization is based upon its charab root. But they don’t say that the choice of choreb (חֶרֶב) over charab (חָרֵב) was completely arbitrary, subject entirely to the opinions of the rabbis who supplied the vowel points to the consonant text in the 10th century. And they didn’t say what you now know: these self-serving clerics shouldn’t be trusted.
Correctly rendered, the passage is prophetically and historically accurate, informative, and important. Souls who are not born of the Set-Apart Spirit become desolate—lifeless. Yahowah’s Spirit had departed from Yahowsha’s body and soul. But since the Ma’aseyah would not accept Satan’s yelping spirit, Yahowsha’s soul was destined to dry up in the place of “waste, desolation, and ruin,” the “rubble pile” and “trash heap” known as Gehenna, where He picked up our religious and political trash along the way to She’owl. Yahowsha’s body died on the pole and was buried in the earth while His soul was sent to Satan’s lair, to the ruinous wasteland of impending horror. This experience is prophetically detailed in Mizmowr / Psalm 88, which we will review momentarily.
The reasons Yahowah’s Spirit had to depart are several. Yahowah by definition can’t go to the lightless place of lifelessness and separation. Yahowah’s Spirit is immortal and thus by definition cannot die. Therefore, to fulfill Passover, a mortal body was required. And for God to use Himself as the ransom to redeem us, He had to have a soul like us and then damn it on our behalf. So, Yahowsha’, as a part of Yahowah in human form, had a body, a soul, and a Spirit right up to the precipice of death and separation. Then the Spirit departed, allowing the body of the Passover Lamb to die, releasing Yahowsha’s soul to be punished in She’owl on Unleavened Bread. His soul was then retrieved from She’owl and was reunited with the Spirit on FirstFruits.
Collectively, this is the how behind our redemption. It is the why which underlies the Ma’aseyah Yahowsha’s final words on Mowryah’s upright pole. At His execution as the Passover Lamb, the Ma’aseyah even quoted the Psalm so that we wouldn’t miss the mechanism behind the miracle of our salvation.
While it’s significantly less important, since “yachyd – only begotten son” is set between the end of the last verse and the beginning of the next, I’d like to correct another aspect of the record. The Masoretic, and thus the Jewish Publication Society Tanakh, in dread of the Ma’aseyah being Yahowah’s only begotten son renders yachyd as “my precious life” – something we saw parroted in the New Living Translation and corrupted in the King James Version. The New International Version agrees. And yet, yachyd means: “only child, solitary and unique, begotten son.” No doubt He was a darling baby and certainly precious, but that isn’t what the word means. The root of yachyd is yachad, meaning “to join and unite.” Its closest derivative is Yachyah: Yahowah’s doorkeeper. Yachyah was the gatekeeper of the Ark of the Covenant. Yahowah picked these words. The least we can do is present them correctly.
For the Hebrew scholars who may be reading this and objecting, saying that the Masoretic adds an “h” to the end of yachyd, making it yachydah, you’ll have to deal with the fact that yachydah is a feminine noun and the person speaking is a man. Moreover, it would be completely out of character for any person who has been flailed alive and pierced hand and foot, to use precious or darling at this time or in this context. Further, since this prophetic depiction of the crucifixion scene does not stand alone, and is explained again in Yasha’yah 53, we know that the Ma’aseyah sacrificed His body willingly. He did not ask for His body, which was serving as the Passover Lamb, to be spared. He gave it of His own accord. His anguish was over the separation of the Set-Apart Spirit, ‘Eyaluwth, from His soul to fulfill Unleavened Bread, and His time away from Yahowah in She’owl, never over the death of His otherwise meaningless body.
And while Yahowsha’ was willing to sacrifice His body and soul, He never forgot that Yahowah alone can save us from Satan’s slanderous and deadly deceptions or that His Word is always the best defense.
Also challenging is that while we have had access to a Qumran script of this Psalm right up through portions of the 20th verse, and have been able to correct the avalanche of deliberate rabbinical copyedits, we are now sailing blind. And that is a problem because in the 11th-century CE Masoretic Text, yachyd was not only scribed in the feminine, making it “only daughter,” it was suffixed in the first person singular, making it “my daughter.” But this “yachyd – only begotten Son” is Yahowah’s. So with this entire Mizmowr / Song being presented in Yahowsha’s voice, as He is speaking to Yahowah, the Son must have said to the Father “yachyd – Your only begotten Son.”
Recognizing this, please consider this next line...
“Your only begotten Son (yachyd), please save Me (yasha’ – I want You to deliver Me, rescue and liberate Me (hiphil imperative)) from (min) the destroyer’s (‘arayeh – a powerful assassin who hunts and savages his prey and by extension a powerful carnivore, and thus lion; from ‘arah – to pluck grapes from the vine) mouth (peh – opening).
For You have responded to Me (‘anah – You have answered, testified about, and born witness to Me (qal perfect)) from (min) the horns of light on the summit of the mountain (qeren – sending out brilliant rays of light from the trumpet which conveys a message) and lifted Me up (ra’am – raised Me on high).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:22)
The condemnation of the “lion-destroyer,” who we will soon discover is Satan, damns our souls, not our temporal bodies. Yahowah’s ‘anah/testimony provides the answer, acquitting us of his charges. Qeren was selected to tie the first Passover with the last—Abraham’s prophetic enactment with Yahowsha’s ultimate fulfillment.
With these words we have turned the corner. Yahowsha’s body was broken and His soul had descended into Satan’s lair. But reliant on Yahowah’s testimony, trusting in the witness that was made on this very mountain forty Yowbel ago, acknowledging the answers that were provided in the Miqra’ey, Yahowsha’s soul was ra’am / lifted up and reunited with Yahowah’s Spirit!
Before we complete the glorious conclusion to this Song, I want to linger here a while. Let’s begin with ‘arayeh. It is often translated “lion” but also means “destroyer, a beast which hunts and maims its prey.” As such ‘arayeh also describes “someone involved in an assassination—of wrongly taking an innocent life.” It forms the basis of ‘Arydatha’, a name of Babylonian origin which tells us a great deal about the nature of this beast. The founder of the Babylonian Mystery Religion was Satan himself. The primary symbol for Babylon’s god was a winged lion. The very gates of the city were adorned with these enormous winged lions.
Dowd uses ‘arayeh in the 7th Mizmowr as a pseudonym for Satan. He says: “Yahowah ( - ), my God (‘elohym), in You I trust (hasah – find refuge, safety, comfort, and rest). Save me (yasha’) from all who pursue (radaph – harass, chase after, and persecute) me. Snatch me away (natsal – rescue and deliver me) lest he tear (taraph – pluck apart violently causing the death of) my soul (nepesh) like a lion (‘arayeh – a destroyer, savage beast who hunts its prey and kills them), tearing it [my soul] apart and carrying it (paraq) where no one and nothing (‘ayin) can snatch me away (nasal – deliver, rescue, recover, or save me).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 7:1-2)
In this case, since a “lion” cannot harm a “soul,” the beast refers to the deceitful and damning words Satan, the Adversary and Destroyer, has infused into the religious and political schemes of men, dogmas that rip apart our soul, snatching it away to a place not even Yahowah can rescue it.
Returning to this amazing piece of inspired literature, the last four words of the 21st lyric are the most important and the least understood. The message is comprised of: ‘anah, min, qeren, and ra’am. The JPS Tanach, based upon the Masoretic, conveys: “from the horns of wild oxen rescues me,” changing “answers” to “rescues” because otherwise the verse would turn God into an oxen’s horn. The NASB, commits this very crime, rendering the passage: “From the horns of the wild oxen You answer me.” The ASV adds a “yea,” but otherwise reads like its predecessor. The NIV dropped the reference to answering (‘anah) and doubled up on save (yasha’): “Save me from the horns of the wild oxen.” More creative, the KJV ignoring two of the four words and convoluting the others, translates: “For thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.” Rubbish, the lot of them.
So that we don’t add to the stench, let’s start over. ‘Anah means “to answer, to respond, to testify about, to speak loudly and clearly concerning, to provide a witness, and to testify regarding.” ‘Anah does not mean save or rescue. But what it does mean is important. God answers prayer. He responds to those who seek Him, summon Him, admit that they are helpless without Him, and are willing to rely upon Him.
The meaning of min is derived from its context. Min can convey: “from, out of, away from, more than, after, since, immediately, because of, and so that.” In this context, the connotations “from and because of” could be accurately rendered “derived from.”
The most revealing word in the group is qeren (קֶרֶן), also vocalized qaran (קָרַן). The consonant root and its derivatives mean: “to shine and to be radiant, emitting and sending out brilliant flashing rays of light supernaturally.” Qaran conveys the notion of “being unblemished light with a shining and glowing appearance.” Qeren’s “horn” symbolism denotes “power and strength, a kingdom, a trumpet which signals messages, and the summit of a hill.” Every nuance of the word is appropriate to this passage.
We have run into qeren before. Yahowah uses qeren in the same place, and during the same phase, of Abraham’s dress rehearsal for Yahowsha’s Passover sacrifice. Speaking of the “male sacrificial lamb” that was substituted by Yahowah, I Am said He had: “shining horns of radiant light (qeren – brilliant flashing rays of light similar to lightning from a supernatural source; symbolic of power, status, and might; a trumpet for signaling a message, and was the summit of a mountain).” In the 22nd Psalm, we are on that same Mountain with that same Lamb at the same time in the process—separated as they are by exactly forty Yowbel / Years of Yah’s Lamb (2,000 years).
The scholars who miss the meaning of the passage find their oxen and unicorns in the vowel pointing, not in the text itself. Strong’s Concordance, based upon the King James, says: “Ra’em (רְאֵם) is from ra’am (רָאַם), and translates as ‘unicorn’ nine times and is probably the great aurochs or wild bulls which are now extinct. The exact meaning is not known.” Strong’s goes on to report: ra’am means “lifted up and to rise,” but they don’t bother to explain what rising up has to do with wild bulls. And that’s probably because those who align themselves with the spirit represented by the “wild bull” go the opposite direction.
Here is another illustrative example. The King James renders Bamidbar / Numbers 23:22 as: “God brought them out of Egypt, he hath as it were the strength of a unicorn.” But that’s not what is says. Scripture doesn’t demean its author. Only men do that. Moseh actually wrote: “God (‘el) delivered them (yoset yasha’) out of (min) Egypt (mitsraym – the anguish, pain and distress of the crucible) with the power (toapah – the ability through choice to deliver and provide abundance) to raise them up to a higher place and status (ra’am).” Pointing the consonants the wrong way, renders God as foolish as the mythical unicorn, or in the case of the NASB, puts Him in league with Satan: “God brings them out of Egypt, He is for them like the horns of the wild ox.”
If nothing else, by exposing you to these comparisons, I hope I have caused you to stop trusting men, especially religious men, and the fruit of their fertile minds. A billion pounds of manure have been piled on top of Yahowah’s Word. The truth is still there, as magnificent as ever, but sometimes you have to hold your nose while you dig through man’s garbage.
I was not with Abraham on Mount Mowryah when his example foretold of the Ma’aseyah’s sacrifice. I was not with Moseh on Mt. Horeb when Yahowah recounted the story. I was not with Dowd when Yahowah inspired him to reference it within the composition of this Song. And I was not standing outside the Damascus Gate with Yahowsha’ on Passover as He fulfilled and spoke these words. All I have is the witness of the Spirit and the Words themselves. I believe they say:
“As your only begotten Son (yachyd), please save Me (yasha’ – I want You to deliver Me, rescue and liberate Me (hiphil imperative)) from (min) the destroyer’s (‘arayeh – a powerful assassin who hunts and savages his prey and by extension a powerful carnivore, and thus lion; from ‘arah – to pluck grapes from the vine) mouth (peh – opening). For You have responded to Me (‘anah – You have answered, testified about, and born witness to Me (qal perfect)) from (min) the horns of light on the summit of the mountain (qeren – sending out brilliant rays of light from the trumpet which conveys a message) and lifted Me up (ra’am – raised Me on high).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:22)
The unblemished Lamb of God, the Light of the world, the King of kings, the message and the Messenger, who was foretold by the prophets, on Passover, in a millennial Yowbel year, was pierced beneath the summit of Mount Mowryah for our transgressions. His blood, in accordance with the Miqra’ of Pesach, was smeared on the upright pillars of the doorway to salvation upon which He hung. His body was broken and His soul, now leavened with our sin, served to redeem us, fulfilling the Miqra’ of Matsah on the Shabat, healing as He always did on that day. Then the miracle of miracles, Bikuwrym; it was fulfilled on the next day, the first day of the week. Soul and Spirit were reunited as we shall be, with the Son rising up to be with the Father.
By using ‘anah min qeren ra’am in this way, Yahowah connected Abraham’s foreshadowing rehearsal on Mount Mowryah with Yahowsha’s fulfillment 2,000 years later with a Psalm inspired in the dead center of that time. By using ‘el ‘el mah ‘azab, “My God, my God, why have You forsaken Me?” at the opening of the Mizmowr, Yahowah tied Dowd’s words to the Ma’aseyah’s enactment a thousand years hence. God gave us the when and where of redemption.
By following the opening line with a transliteration of Yahowsha’s name, “yashuw’ah” and by preceding the Abrahamic reference with “yasha’ / salvation,” God provided us with the who and why of our restoration. And by including specific references to spirit, body, and soul, with references to whipping, crucifixion, and adversarial demons, along with describing the suffering required to make these sacrifices between these lines, Yahowah provided us with the how of our salvation.
Be assured, this solitary soul was no ordinary man being flayed alive, pierced, nailed to a pole, soul tormented in She’owl, and then reunited with God. We are told that those who revere Yahowah will praise Him—something that would violate each of the three statements Yahowah scribed in stone on the first of the two tablets if the willing sacrificial victim were not God.
Before we move on to the next verse, which affirms what I’ve just shared with you, let’s pause a moment longer and consider how Christian publishers handled this pivotal prophecy. Making a complete mockery of the passage, and showing a childish disregard for the rich meanings of the words in the Hebrew text, the King James Version claims: “Save me from the lion’s mount: for thou hast heard me from the horns of the unicorns.” (I kid you not. That is what they wrote.) As for the New American Standard Bible, they are promoting something almost as senseless: “Save me from the lion’s mount; From the horns of the wild oxen, You answer me.”
As for who is right, my admonition to you is not to trust any of us, that is except the One who inspired this prophetic Song. I strongly encourage you to look up each of these terms in a variety of lexicons and then think about what you learn. Check out ‘aryeh and see if you find what I’ve shared, that “lion” is a derivative of the primary meaning, which is “powerful destroyer, a fierce carnivorous beast which hunts and savages its prey.” Examine its root, ‘arah, and affirm for yourself that it addresses Satan’s ambition which is to “pluck fruit from the vine” which represents Yisra’el. And if you find that these insights are accurate, then “lion” becomes an anemic representation for the satanic symbolism associated with ‘aryeh.
Next, examine qeren to determine whether “horn” adequately conveys its meaning when deployed for a second time on Mowryah in relationship to the Passover Lamb of God. Or see if you find as I did the references to “brilliant flashing rays of light from the summit of a hill by way of a supernatural force.” Be sure to note that qaran is spelled identically in the inspired text, merely vocalized differently, and arbitrarily so, by the Masoretes. Check out its meaning and then equate “radiating light supernaturally” with Yahowsha’.
And should you wonder whether Yahowah inspired Dowyd to convey re’em or ra’am, which also appear identically in the text of the Song, decide for yourself whether “unicorns” or “wild oxen” are more relevant and suitable to this context than “rising up on high.” And once you have verified these things for yourself, please don’t stop there with them. There is nothing as enlightening and rewarding than “shamar – continually observing, closely examining, and carefully considering” Yahowah’s “towrah – teaching” no matter where you find it in His Word. It’s a whole lot better than putting your faith in unicorns.
Now for the next verse of this powerful Song. Dowd sang: “I will choose to continually relate (saphar – I want to always record, recount, reckon, rehearse, declare, and proclaim (piel (the object (Your name) is put into action by relating it) imperfect (ongoing effect) cohortative (volition))) Your name (shem – your personal and proper designation, reputation, renown, fame, glory, status, and dominion) to my brethren (la ‘ach – brothers, relatives, kin, friends, and associates) in the midst of (ba tawek) the community (qahal – assembly and crowd), electing to radiate Your brilliant source of clear light (halal – choosing to become an ongoing and visible source extolling Your merit (piel imperfect cohortative)).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:23)
Yisra’el’s most famous king “recorded, related, recounted, rehearsed, declared, and proclaimed” Yahowsha’s shem, His personal and proper name. Too bad his brethren didn’t hear it and were blinded by His light.
Saphar, incidentally, could just as easily be sepher. In that case, the declarations regarding “Him” would be Scripture. Sepher means: “written communication, a book or scroll, an official record.” By way of example: “Yahowah ( - ) said to Moseh (Moseh – one who draws us out), ‘Scribe (katab) this on a written scroll (sepher) as a memorial (zikarown – remembrance, record, and reminder) and convey it (sum – appoint, bring, and charge it) to Yahowsha’ (Yahowsha’ – Yah Saves) ” (Shemowth / Names / Exodus 17:14)
Dowd continues to portray the crucifixion victim as the light of the living God. The following verse even provides parity with Yahowah—making Him God.
“You who respect and revere (yare’) Yahowah ( - ), radiate His light (halal – make His brilliant source of illumination clearly visible).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:24)
What a beautiful picture. It says that when we come to respect Yahowah for what He has done for us on Passover and Unleavened Bread, we will radiate His light. Dowd is describing the gift of the Set-Apart Spirit, Her Garment of Light, and Her ability to empower us and enlighten us, teaching us, while rendering us perfect in Yahowah’s eyes.
What’s particularly revealing is that halal means to “radiate light,” not reflect it. To produce light we must have the light source within us. When we are born anew from above in the Set-Apart Spirit, She lives within us, becoming the source of our light.
Halal is almost always translated “praise,” but that misses the point. While the secondary meaning of the word can mean “extol” in addition to “boasting,” these inferences are derived from the word’s dark and corrupted side. Halal provides a window into Satan’s nature, his ambition, and how he operates. The Adversary wants nothing more than to “halal – have his greatness extolled, to be seen as worthy, to boast that he is the most high.” As such, we should not be surprised that the Satan’s name is Halal ben Shachar – an envoy of light who turned to the dark side.
Yahowah did not create us to praise Him. He is not insecure. And having us praise Him would be like having a school of tadpoles croak out a song, telling us that by comparison to them, we’re really swell. Sure, it’s appropriate at times to acknowledge His goodness, greatness, and generosity. Like any parent, He’d appreciate that so long as it is heartfelt and straightforward, and not self-serving. But the bottom line with God is that Yahowah desires a relationship with us which is based upon love, mutual understanding, and respect. It’s Satan who wants to be praised. It is Satan who is insecure.
Halal, like the sun, is a good thing corrupted. On the positive side halal is the basis of halaluyah—extol Yah by reflecting His light. Halal conveys Yahowsha’s luminescent nature as reported by Yachezq’el / Ezekiel and the Apostle Yahowchanan. Halal means: “to shine, to brilliantly radiate light, making the source of the light clear and visible.” Halal describes the Garment of Light worn by all who have been born anew from above. And this is why Satan coveted the term. He wanted to be the Ma’aseyah and to be like the Most High. He craved praise and arrogantly considered himself worthy.
But as I have shared, halal also speaks of “glorifying oneself, boasting, and bragging.” When one claims to be something they are not, it is “halal – arrogant.” And all too often, the way insecure individuals tear those above them down is to “halal – slander them, reporting things about them which are untrue.” And while such behavior is “halal – unjustified, irrational, and insane,” it is a form of “halal – ridicule and mockery,” all designed to “halal – fool the unwary into praising the unworthy.”
One of the reasons that this form of “halal – boasting” is so effective for Halal ben Shachar is that as once one of Yah’s spiritual envoys, he is a form of light. If you were to see him, as Paul did on the road to Damascus, he would appear like flashing rays of light, beautiful, powerful, and captivating – even enlightening. And believing that he was all of these things and more, is the very crime which caused Satan to fall. In fact his name defines him and his tactics: “to be a fool and to make others foolish.” Halal is “a madman who brags, speaking words which convey confidence in an object or notion which is not God nor from God.” The dark side of halal is all about “arrogance and pride.” It speaks of one who lives to “turn others so that they no longer have the capacity to understand.” Halal is an “accuser, slandering and mocking, speaking damning and desolate words that cause us to lose our respect for the truth.” To be halal is to be “irrational, even insane, full of energy and intensity, yet thoughtless, furious, and reckless.”
If you want to know Halal, look into the eyes of an Islamic suicide bomber or walk into a Catholic church. If you want to understand how Halal corrupts, read one of Paul’s letters or even Muhammad’s Qur’an. It’s all about slander, corruption, confusion, and counterfeit.
So if you want to see Halal in action and witness his best work, study religion, especially Judaism, Christianity, Islam, and Socialist Secular Humanism. Over time these impostors have produced generations of people who have been Halal-ed: “no longer having the capacity to understand,” substituting the lie for the light.
In the next chapter, “Ga’al – Redemption,” we will meet Halal again. Next time he will be called: “Halal, the Prideful Serpent.” Yahowah wants us to know who the Adversary is so that we will not be similarly corrupted.
Speaking of deadly deceptions, Yahowah does not want us to fear Him. While I understand that most every English Bible translates yare’ “fear,” the word also means “respect and revere.” You cannot love what you fear. But you can revere and respect whom you know and love. One is rational and right. The other is irrational and insane. Considering who they are serving, it’s little wonder the clerics made the wrong choice.
Returning to the 22nd Mizmowr, we are reacquainted with an old friend. Kabad is the first word of the Second of Seven Instructions, defining the nature of the ideal relationship between children and their Father and Mother.
“All (kol) descendants (zera’ – seed, children, offspring, family, and progeny) of Ya’aqob (Ya’aqob – one who digs in his heels, renamed Yisra’el) consider Him worthy of respect and massively significant (kabad – hold Him in high regard, valuing Him immensely).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:24)
The textual consonants which comprise kabad (כָבֵד) give rise to an important series of derivatives. Collectively they convey: “weightiness, massiveness, significance, worth, value, abundance, glory, and greatness.” Not only do these concepts form the basis of the Second Instruction, they frame the issue of choice. If we see Yahowah as significant He promises to view us the same way. If we respect Yahowah’s massive energy and power, He will share it with us. Value Him and we will inherit His abundance. Acknowledge His greatness and He will bring us into His presence and clothe us in His glory.
But, if you trifle with Him, He will trifle with you. If you see Him as insignificant you will become so insignificant it will be as if you never were. Disrespect His massiveness and you will be reduced to nothingness. Kabad defines the nature of the choice and its consequence.
Disregarding Yahowah’s intent, the JPS Tanach tells us in the next verse that we should “dread Him,” with Him being the Ma’aseyah. The King James, in their usual rut, reverts back to “fear Him.” But the word is guwr, and it means: “to come together and live, with guests living among us, dwelling in harmony forever.” There is nothing dreadful or fearful about any of that.
Now that you know what the word means, here is what Dowd was inspired to say about the Ma’aseyah and His people. “Gather together and choose to live with Him (guwr – become a welcomed guest in His company) all you descendants of Yisra’el (min kol zera’ Yisra’el – including every child who engages and endures with God) .” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:24)
The truth was hard to miss because Yisra’el, “those who contend with, persist with, persevere with, engage and endure with, and are empowered by God”, is virtually synonymous with guwr. And speaking of Yisra’el, it is a pseudonym for the Ma’aseyah. Not only does He “contend with, persist with, persevere with, and is empowered by God,” Scripture tells us that He, as the result of His sacrifice, “will live to conceive an abundance of descendants.”
The secret to our success is contained in these words: “Indeed (ky), He has not devalued (lo’ bazah – He has not failed to show regard for), nor has He rejected (wa lo’ shaqats – He has not shown antipathy toward nor an aversion for) the responsive who is afflicted and oppressed (‘enuwth ‘any – the one who answers the summons, who engages and acts, is humble and unpretentious; both from ‘anah – to answer, respond, and engage).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:25)
Bazah is the opposite of kabad. The basic meaning is “to accord little value to something.” The two most appropriate English synonyms would be “contempt and disdain.” Webster defines contempt as “disdain, the lack of respect or reverence for something.” It is “willful disobedience and open disrespect for a judge.” Of disdain, it says: “to hold in contempt, to refuse or abstain from, to treat as beneath one’s notice or dignity.” This is Yahowah’s policy: bazah for bazah, kabad for kabad. Simply stated, if you don’t respect Him and value His redemptive solution you aren’t going to trust Him or rely on it. And since there is but one God, one source of life, and one savior, by being bazah—being of little worth, being beneath one’s notice, and being alone and abandoned—bazah happens.
It’s interesting; those who are self-reliant, full of themselves, steeped in pride and hubris become insignificant. To be significant, we must first be unpretentious. It’s little wonder that Satan is called “the prideful one.” So the moral of the story is Yahowah helps those who acknowledge that they need assistance, that they are incapable of saving themselves. To be saved we must recognize that we need a Savior, recognize who the Savior is, and then rely upon Him.
The most interesting aspect of this statement might well be the fact that both ‘enuwth and ‘any are based upon ‘anah – a word whose primary meaning is “to respond by answering a summons.” Yahowah’s seven Miqra’ey, three of which Yahowsha’ is seen responding to in this Psalm, are invitations to meet with God. Our response to these summonses determines our fate. Or said another way, Yahowsha’s sacrifices benefit those who respond to Him.
Dowd, speaking of those who view the Creator and the creation appropriately, said of Yahowsha’: “Neither has He concealed His presence (wa lo’ cathar paneh – nor has He hidden His appearance) from Him (min).
And (wa) with (ba) His cry for help (showa’ – His pleading for relief) to Him (‘el – to God), He heard Him (shama’ – He listened to Him).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:25)
This completes the equation. While it is true that to be saved we must: recognize we need a Savior, recognize who the Savior is, and then rely upon Him, we must also ask Him for His help. When we do, we live forever in His presence.
This acknowledged, I think that this statement and the previous one are still in Yahowsha’s voice. He was not only afflicted on Pesach and Matsah, He consistently turned to Yahowah seeking His assistance. And God heard His cries for help and responded, releasing His Son from She’owl, lifting Him back up to heaven. This perspective not only provides another affirmation that Yahowah alone is our Savior, it leads us directly into this next verse.
“Because of being with You (min ‘eth), My testimony regarding Your manifestation of power and Your wonderful deeds (tahillah – My song of adoration regarding Your renown) in the great assembly (ba qahal rab – among the crowds) fulfills My promise (neder shalem – completes My vow) in the sight and presence of those who (neged – conspicuously in a straightforward fashion in full view of those who) respect and revere Him (yare’).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:26)
In Yahowsha’s voice, this statement is profound. As a result of His relationship with Yahowah, Yahowsha’ was able to complete His promise to fulfill the Miqra’ey of Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym. And everyone who has answered His call to observe these Invitations to be Called Out and Meet with God recognizes what He has done. He did these things in a conspicuous straightforward fashion, each on the right day, each in the right way, each in the right order, and did so publicly at the crossroads of the world. Those who revere the Father respect what the Son has accomplished.
Also relevant, shalem is directly related to “shalowm – reconciliation.” So the “manifestation” of Yahowah’s “power” and the implement responsible for His “wonderful deeds” during the “great assembly meetings” “fulfilled His promise” to “reconcile our relationship” with God.
The Song’s lyrics continue with prophetic echoes of Yahowsha’s Teaching on the Mount. “The responsive who engage (‘anaw – the humble who act by answering the call, the unpretentious and oppressed; from ‘anah – to answer, respond, and engage) shall be continually nourished (akal – they shall always be fed (qal imperfect)) and always be completely genuinely satisfied (wa saba’ – and find provision in abundance (qal imperfect)).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:27) It is only right that an excerpt from Yahowsha’s most famous public declaration should follow a prediction of His most important deed.
In the whole of God’s Word, this is one of my favorite verses. “Those who genuinely seek, consult with, actually follow, and rely upon (darash – those who really search for, literally account for, ponder and petition, forming a relationship with (qal participle)) Yahowah ( - ) radiate His brilliant and clear light (halal – are a visible source of light). All of your hearts, minds, souls, and consciences (lebab – your inner nature and person, their thoughts, feelings, and passions) shall live forever (chayah la ‘ad – shall be eternally restored and preserved, shall be revived and nurtured for all time, shall continuously live vigorous and abundant lives as a result of this choice (qal imperfect jussive)).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:27)
If I could have but one promise etched on my heart it might well be this one. It is the synthesis of Scripture. It is the answer, the promise, the purpose, the means, and the reward.
The final four verses of the 3,000-year-old prophetic Psalm reveal that Yahowah knew that evil men would brutalize Him in the manner He has detailed, fully ten centuries before He allowed it to happen. One thousand years after He inspired this promise, Yahowsha’ entered our world in the form of a man to fulfill His mission. His example defines love. It proclaims that ultimately, when the last chapter is written and the last act is played out, we will remember His sacrifice and turn to Him because He has done this.
“They will remember (zakar – they will recall the truth about) and they will return (wa suwb – they will turn around and think differently, reestablishing relations, renewed and restored) to (‘el) Yahowah ( - ) from all of the ends of the earth (kol ‘ephec ‘erets – finally the entire material realm). And (wa) they will make this announcement (chawah – they will verbally explain this, displaying their decision using words) before Your presence (la paneh) – all of the people of the world, from every race and place (kol mishpachah gowym).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:28)
We began this Mizmowr in the deepest depths of despair. Yahowah removed His Spirit from Yahowsha’, forsaking His Soul. The Ma’aseyah had been reduced to a bloody pulp by the blows of men He had created. He was nailed hand and foot to a pole, suffering the excruciating agony of crucifixion while those He was saving were scoffing at Him. Satan, and his full assemblage of demons, surrounded the Ma’aseyah, falsely accusing Him. Yahowsha’s body as the Passover Lamb died, and His soul descended through the lifeless rubbish heap of Gehenna en route to She’owl during Unleavened Bread. Then on the third day, on Bikuwrym, soul and Spirit were reunited in a celebration of life, thereby restoring all who would respond to these invitations. So now, according to this prophetic Song, a day will come when everyone will recognize and appreciate what He has done and will return to Yahowah. They will make a public proclamation that they accept and embrace the benefits of Pesach, Matsah, and Bikuwrym.
“Because indeed (ky) Yahowah ( - ) reigns (maluwkah – is king), providing leadership, proverbs, and parables (mashal – taking charge and communicating by making informative and revealing comparisons) among (ba) people from different races and places (gowym).” (Psalm 22:29)
Although the opening verses of this Song were focused on the Ma’aseyah’s Redemptive Advent, the celebratory close is timeless. While Yahowah has presented Himself, explained His Covenant, and revealed His plan of salvation via “mashal – parables and proverbs,” He will not exercise his dominion, overtly governing the earth’s nations until the celebration of Sukah following His Yowm Kippurym return during the waning days of the Tribulation. Today, men rule nations. That will not always be the case.
With Yahowah reigning on earth, the children of the Covenant will gather around the campfire and be regaled by His stories while those who have opposed Him will be confronted by His judgment. Listen...
“All of (kol) the anointed (dashen – the chosen harvest, the accepted and satisfied, those who are covered, the prosperous and enriched, the vigorous and healthiest bodily, and the most mentally acute) of earth (‘erets) who approach His presence (la paneh) shall be nourished (‘akal) and (wa) they shall settle down living in shelters (chawah – they shall tabernacle [reminiscent of Sukah – Shelters where we campout with God], and they shall make public pronouncements).
All of (kol) those who are descending (yarad – going down) to be pulverized into powdery dust as the rubbish of the earth (‘aphar – as ash and debris, and thereby diminished to virtual nothingness), and (wa) the souls (nepesh – the consciousness of animals) He does not keep alive (lo’ chayah – He does not restore to life, revive from death, nor spare, save, or preserve) shall kneel down prostrate (kara’ – they shall bow down, fallen and subdued, some ceasing to exist and prone for termination while others will suffer miserable emotional anguish).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:30)
Over these last few stanzas of this glorious song, Yahowah has stated that His provision satisfies, that those who rely upon His bread will be nourished, that they will be healthy and prosperous, lacking nothing. He has also said that those who change their thinking, their direction, and their attitude, will be restored.
In Yahowchanan, we read: “Yahowsha’ said to them, ‘I Am the bread of life. He who comes to Me shall not hunger, and he who relies on Me shall never thirst . For this is the will of My Father, that every one who beholds the Son, and who relies on Him, may have eternal life.’” (Yahowchanan / John 6:35, 40)
The first half of the 30th verse affirms these conclusions. All of the “dashen – the anointed, those selected in the harvest, those who have been accepted” are now “dashen – prosperous and enriched, vigorous, healthy, and mentally acute.” Consistent with Yahowah’s Towrah, those who have “la paneh – approached His presence” are “‘akal – nourished.” We are “chawah – living in shelters, camping out” with our Heavenly Father during the millennial celebration of the Sabbath known as the Miqra’ of Sukah – the Invitation to be Called Out and Meet with God of Tabernacles and Shelters. It will be a time of wondrous “chawah – pronouncements” as we learn from God and share with Him.
To a significant degree, these insights are provided by chawah, which most English bible translations render as “bowing down, prostrating oneself in worship.” And while outside of the context of Yahowah’s return, and living in His presence, that might be a permissible rendering, at best it is listed third among four considerably more valid definitions in most Hebrew dictionaries. And some lexicons don’t even include “bowing or worshiping” among chawah’s connotations.
The primary connotation of chawah is “to tell, to explain, to announce something publicly, to verbally convey something important using words, and to inform making a declaration.” This is how it was translated back in the 28th verse: “they will make this announcement (chawah – they will verbally explain this, displaying their decision using words).” Interestingly enough, this rendering might well be influenced by chuwd, the word presented immediately before chawah in most lexicons. Chuwd means “to provide an explanation using an allegory and to solve an enigma or riddle by telling a story.” It is therefore somewhat akin to marshal, the word translated “leadership, parables, and proverbs” in the 29th verse.
The next most preferred definition for chawah is consistent with my rendering of it in the 30th verse: “they shall settle down living in shelters (chawah – they shall tabernacle [reminiscent of Sukah – Shelters where we campout with God], and they shall make public pronouncements).” A chawah is “a settlement, a place people campout, and an encampment where they tabernacle together.” This idea of “living together” is further reinforced by Chawah – the name God gave to Adam’s wife. Chawah (which is spelled identically to chawah) means “Source of Life.” It is a derivative of chayah, the Hebrew word for “life, its restoration and renewal.”
It is also interesting to note that chawah translates as “to show, to make known, and to interpret,” which collectively speak of “shamar – observation” leading to “byn – understanding.” This is what the “anointed” will “consume” which will be so “enriching and fulfilling.” Yahowah’s “towrah – teaching” will be unfettered, unfiltered, up close and personal. Personally, I think that this will be the entertainment of eternity.
Further, bowing down before God is inconsistent with Yahowah’s instructions to Abraham and with the example of Yahowsha’. When we bow down, God always asks us to stand up, to be at ease, walking and talking with Him. Yahowah has gone to great pains to present the Covenant as a marriage, as a home, and as a family. There is no bowing down in any of these relationships.
That is not to say that people won’t bow down before God. Many will. And this realization brings us to the second half of the 30th verse: “All of (kol) those who are descending (yarad – going down) to be pulverized into powdery dust as the rubbish of the earth (‘aphar – as ash and debris), and (wa) the souls (nepesh – the consciousness of animals) He does not keep alive (lo’ chayah – He does not restore to life, revive from death, nor spare, save, or preserve) shall kneel down prostrate (kara’ – they shall bow down, fallen and subdued, some ceasing to exist and prone for termination while others will suffer miserable emotional anguish).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:30)
As I have shared throughout Yada Yah, there are three different fates awaiting human souls. Those who have embraced the terms and conditions of Yahowah’s Covenant campout with God, learning from Him and sharing with Him. But those souls who ignore His Covenant, change His Covenant, even reject His Covenant, will cease to exist. They will not be kept alive nor be restored to life. For them it is dust to dust and ashes to ashes. Worse, those souls who have led others astray, those who have advanced the cause of religion and politics, will descend through Gehenna to She’owl to experience an eternity of emotional anguish separated from God. This verdict is presented during the Millennial Sabbath of Shelters. Every soul estranged from Yahowah will be judged, bowing down before God to receive their disposition.
Therefore, if you are a Muslim or Catholic and lower yourself, bowing down, prostrating yourself now in religious worship, a day will come when you will kneel before God. And on that day of judgment, your soul will be extinguished. As such, this verse is proof that souls are mortal. Immortality requires being born anew in Yahowah’s Spirit or aligning oneself with Satan’s spirit and leading others astray.
There is, however, an oft quoted passage that seems to imply that “every knee will bow down to Him,” with “Him” being Yahowah. So the question becomes does “every” include His children, those who radiate His light? Since this concept of bowing down and worship is important, and misunderstood, we’ll cover that passage in context as it is presented by Yahowah through His prophet Yasha’yahuw. But first, let’s finish the Song.
Dowd, speaking of the Savior, concludes his Song by singing:
“Posterity (zera’ – the seed, the descendants, the children, the offspring) shall consistently respond to Him and genuinely engage with Him (‘abad – they shall act, serve, and work with Him, expending considerable energy and intensity to do things with Him (qal (literally and actually) imperfect (continuously and always))).
They will benefit from, recount, and proclaim the written communication (caphar – they will be informed regarding and speak of the full measure of the scroll and record (the pual stem tells us that God’s children will be influenced by Yahowah and the imperfect conjugation reveals that this will produce ongoing benefits)) of (la – and to approach) the foundation of the Upright One (‘edon) on behalf of (la) the children (ha dowr – those related by birth, the family line, the generations, the household, the dwelling place, and the tabernacle).
They shall choose to come (bow’ – they will genuinely want to arrive, always be included, and continually approach (qal imperfect)) and (wa) conspicuous announce, exposing and declaring (nagad – explaining and manifesting, informing and representing (hiphil stem indicates that our acknowledgements influence our acquittal and imperfect conjugation tells us that there will be ongoing benefits associated with)) His vindication and His saving deeds (tsadaqah – His declaration of our innocence, His righteous justification and truthfulness) to a family (la ‘am – for people) which shall be born (yalad – of children and descendants) that indeed (ky – surely and truly) He has actually, perfectly, and completely accomplished this (‘asah – He has really done this job, He has genuinely performed this work, He has totally instituted and completely bestowed this gift (qal perfect)).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 22:31-32)
While this is an ideal place to speak of Yahowsha’, the corporeal manifestation of Yahowah, as the “‘edon – Upright Pillar of the Tabernacle and as its Foundation,” my sense is that Dowd wrote “ – Yahowah” in the text, just as he had in the 29th stanza of his Mizmowr – Song. But since this portion of the Song is not extant in the Qumran collection, I won’t know for sure until after this promise is fulfilled.
Our single most important job on this earth is to share Yahowah’s “towrah – teaching” with our children. The more they know about His Covenant the more likely it is that they will embrace it. And that is the principle message of this Song’s conclusion.
Yahowsha’s body died so that we might live. His soul suffered separation so that we might be vindicated. And as a result we are born anew spiritually as Yahowah’s children based upon what He accomplished on Pesach and Matsah, leading to Bikuwrym. This is therefore a summation of God’s Towrah.
In that this chapter is named after the conclusion of the 22nd Psalm, and in that tsadaq is most often translated “righteousness,” I owe you a more complete explanation. Personally, I don’t favor the word “righteousness” because most people instinctively attach an errant religious connotation to it. They assume that to be “righteous” is to be “good.” But Dowd, the author of this Song, was called “righteous” even though he was very bad. To be righteous is “to be right,” but not in the sense of being perfect unless that is understood to mean possessing a truthful understanding of the Word, of Yahowah, of Yahowsha’, of the Set-Apart Spirit, of the Covenant, and of God’s plan of redemption that leads to our vindication.
To be “right” in relation to and in the context of God, sinful man must have his debt paid, which is to be “vindicated and declared innocent.” Vindication is the result of redemption. It is what makes us right with God. Yahowsha’s sacrifice as depicted in the 22nd Mizmowr provides the means to our acquittal, saving us from the consequence of death and the penalty of separation.
Yahowah has repeatedly used tsadaq and tsadaqah throughout every prophetic passage focusing on His fulfillment of the first four Miqra’ey. And so that we might more fully appreciate what it means to “be made right with God,” let’s examine the English words “vindication” and “justification” more closely. Webster defines “vindication” as “to set free, delivering the accused from all allegations and blame, to provide a defense which protects by way of justification.” Under the synonyms Webster lists under “vindication” we find “deliver, confirm, substantiate, justify, defend, exculpate, and maintain.” To “deliver” is “to set free.” To “confirm” is “to provide approval, to ratify and strengthen, removing all doubt.” To “substantiate” is “to provide substance by way of embodiment.” To “justify” is “to show sufficient reason to prove that someone is absolved and thus right, just, worthy, and qualified.” To “defend” is “remove from danger, maintaining and supporting someone in the face of hostile criticism, answering questions on their behalf so as to prevent an adversary from prevailing.” To “exculpate” is “to clear from alleged fault or guilt, to absolve, exonerate, acquit, and vindicate, setting someone free from all charges, clearing them from blame, releasing them from any obligation that binds as a consequence of sin.” According to Webster, “this form of exoneration implies a complete clearance from all accusations.” And finally, “maintain” is “to keep in an existing state, repaired and valid, preserved from failure or decline, upheld and defended, preserved, affirmed, and sustained.” Tsadaq represents all of these things because collectively they describe the process and benefit of “being made right with God.”
“Justification” is defined as “vindication, the process of proving that someone is right,” especially in the sense of “being absolved and therefore worthy of salvation.” To be “absolved” is “to be released from an obligation including the consequence of sin.” Unlike “righteousness,” which is a religious term, “vindication” and “justification” are legal concepts which focus on the process of “exculpation.” Yahowah’s plan of salvation is very specific. So it is tsadaq / vindication which leads to our ga’al / redemption.
Before we leave the subject of being “right” with God, I’d like to share something about “rights.” We have only two God given rights: the right to a mortal life and the right to choose. Life, liberty, and happiness are the result of making the right choice. “Human rights,” and “the rights of man,” as pontificated by the poligious proponents of the New Word Order, are designed to be incompatible with Yahowah’s instructions, elevating man to the status of God and Judge.
Now, by way of conclusion, I do not know how anyone can read this passage and not be moved to conviction, to action. Prophecy doesn’t get any more relevant than this. No words sing more beautifully or more clearly. Yahowah predicted his role in the single greatest act in human history—the vindication of mankind. He committed it to writing three thousand years ago so that when it happened we would know that He had bestowed this gift. He did so because He loves us and wants us to live eternally with Him.
The 22nd Mizmowr / Song concludes with powerful and affirming words, but they don’t represent the end of the story. And while the lyrics which follow aren’t prophetic, nor are they germane to the means to our salvation, they speak volumes about the nature of our relationship with God. Yahowah endured the torments depicted in Mizmowr 22 so that we might enjoy the blessings of the 23rd Psalm.
The opening line speaks to the realization that abandoned and forsaken souls are diminished in mass and dimensions to nothingness. That is followed by confirmation that Yahowah restores the souls of his sheep, changing them so that they can return to Him.
“Yahowah ( - ) is my Shepherd, I shall not be without (chaser – go down, be diminished in mass, position, or dimension; decrease or be abated; be deprived, lacking or wanting anything). He lays me down in green pastures. He leads me beside restful waters. He restores (suwb – changes, renews, and returns) my soul (nepesh). He guides (nachah – leads, creating opportunities in a reliable state of trust for) me in the paths (ma’gal – teaching, directions in life, the encampment, and the way) of vindication (tsadaq – justification and salvation, truthfulness, being right with God) for His name’s (shem – position’s, authority’s, character’s) sake (ma’an – purpose and intent, account, answer, and response).”
Our defense against the Adversary, darkness, and death is Yahowah. “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of darkness and death, I fear no evil (ra’ – adversary), for You are with me (‘imad – in my presence and company, striving beside me). Your rod (shebet – staff and scepter) and Your support and substance (mish’enah), they comfort and console me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of the one who binds and distresses (tsarar – the adversary who oppresses, confines, gives birth, and weakens).” Once again, the Adversary has been linked to “binding” and thus to religion.
The following use of dashen helps confirm that my concerns regarding the standard English translations of the 22nd Psalm were well founded. “You have anointed (dashen) my head (ro’sh) with oil (ba shemen – olive oil serving as a metaphor for the Set-Apart Spirit). My cup (koc) overflows with abundance (rawayah – with the help and aid of Yah). Surely (‘ak – indeed exclusively) goodness (towb – good and beneficial things, that which is generous, festive, beautiful, pleasing and healing) and unfailing love and enduring kindness (wa chesed – mercy and favor) will pursue me (radaph – will chase after me) all the days (kol yowmym) of my restored life (chayy – of my continued existence, my restoration and renewal). And I will return, be restored and renewed, forever changed (suwb) in Yahowah’s ( - ) family and home (beyth – household) forever (la ‘orek yowmym – for an unlimited length of days).” (Mizmowr / Song / Psalm 23) The greatest story ever told ends “happily ever after.”
The same Hebrew root of chesed / mercy and favor, vocalized chacyd, designates “the Set-Apart One.” This confirms that the source of “steadfast love, enduring faithfulness, and everlasting favor” is Yahowah manifest as the Set-Apart Spirit. When we are born anew by way of our Spiritual Mother we get to live forever as family in the home of our Heavenly Father.