Study Our Hebrew Roots!


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Study OurHebrew Roots!
Learn the Foundation of Your Faith!

Grafted In Fellowship is a gathering of like-minded people who understand the importance of following ALL of our Father's Word.  We understand our Father is the "same yesterday, today and forever" and furthermore, the Word of God is a complete writing without contradiction within what is commonly called the Old and New Testaments. 

YES!  We Shabbat!  Or more properly stated, "We observe Shabbat!"  What does this mean?  Shabbat is Hebrew for Sabbath.  We believe the day our Father has "set apart" is the Sabbath!  The Day of Shabbat has not been moved to Sunday!  Shabbat is the Seventh Day...the day we call Saturday.  
 
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MAJOR ANNOUNCEMENT!


GIFKG has joined/merged with House of David Richmond!


House of David (HODF) meets on the first and third Shabbat (Saturday) of each month.  

On OCT 29, 2016, GIFKG returned to meeting each week at the Smoot Library!  How is this possible with the HODF merger? Easy!


1st & 3rd Shabbat meetings: 
Kevin will be the Lead Teacher 

2nd & 4th (& 5th) Shabbat meetings: 
Rick will be the Lead Teacher

GIFKG Meeting Information:

Meeting Place: Smoot Library

Meeting Time: 1:00 - 3:30 pm 

Why the change back to weekly meetings?  There are those who are not able to travel to the various locations HODF meets -- the distance is too far for them.  In order to make sure Shabbat is still observed, going back to a weekly meeting in King George will allow this opportunity!
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HODF Meeting Information:

Meeting Place: Louisa Library

Meeting Time: 2:00 - 9:00 pm 
Meeting Day: Dec 17, 2016
(1st & 3rd Shabbat of each month)



 
2 Corinthians 11:4 (NKJV): For if he who comes preaches another Jesus whom we have not preached, or if you receive a different spirit which you have not received, or a different gospel which you have not accepted—you may well put up with it!

This is a short introductory writing on this verse.  It can have (and has had) volumes written about it.  But here is the catch: what is your paradigm when reading this verse?  If you are reading this from a Western, Greek-based paradigm, then you will believe that anyone else “preaching” another Jesus is in the wrong.

However, if you place the text back in its original context, with the original audience, you will quickly discover Paul (Sha’ul) was a Jew (Paradigm Alert: Sha’ul never “converted” to Christianity) writing to other Jews.  Their worldview was Hebrew-based — NOT Greek!

So to put it simply, Sha’ul (a Jew) is writing to other Jews who also believed Yeshua was the Jewish Messiah (Paradigm Alert: There is a HUGE difference between the Jewish Messiah and the Christian “Christ”).  Everything about Sha’ul’s writings is Jewish.

Putting this in perspective: If I believe in the Jewish Messiah, I am in agreement with the original intent/context of Sha’ul.   If you are preaching a “Greek” Jesus, and not a Jewish Messiah, are you sure you are on solid footing?

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Continuing with this verse, the above is just a thumbnail look at a "different" Jesus.  The Greek Jesus vs. the Hebrew Yeshua.  But the verse goes on to say, "...or a different gospel which you have not accepted--you may well put up with it."

Interesting.  A different gospel.  

Tell me, what is the Gospel?  Many in the "Church" today will respond with, "the birth, life, crucifixion, and resurrection of Jesus."

Have you ever stopped to consider this as the gospel being preached in the New Testament?  Stop and think about it.  Is that what John the Baptist was preaching in the wilderness?  A lot of theology has been attached to his words.  

What about Yeshua?  In Matthew 4:23, it reads, "And Jesus went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, preaching the gospel of the kingdom..."

Was Yeshua preaching His birth, life, crucifixion and resurrection?  If so, then why were the disciples so confused after His crucifixion?  Especially, if Yeshua preached His resurrection the entire time of His ministry.  

Please don't misunderstand me!  I am NOT saying the concept of "the birth, life, crucifixion and resurrection" isn't important!  I am saying it is NOT the Gospel -- especially the Gospel as it would have been understood by the first century Jewish believer.  

So, you may ask, "What is the Gospel?"  I am glad you asked. 

The gospel (good news), as understood by ALL Jews, not only in the first century, but throughout the writings of the prophets as well, is the establishment of the Kingdom on earth!

>>Here is another proof about the "gospel:"  Heb 4:2 - For indeed the gospel was preached to us as well as to them [referring to the Children of Israel at Mt. Sinai.]<<

So, here is the point.  In this one verse, we have the "Church" preaching a Greek Jesus (versus a Hebrew Yeshua), AND also preaching a different gospel.  

What were the last words of 2 Cor 11:4?  "...you may well put up with it."

Think about it...

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Next: Staying in this same verse, what spirit have you received?



ADDITIONAL POINTS TO PONDER
Updated: 10/30/2016
Note: The 5777 Torah Portions Schedule does not align completely with the "traditional" reading schedule; however, all Torah Portions are included.



INTERESTING QUESTION:

I recently watched the documentary, The Way.  It poses an interesting question: If Jesus was perfect, and He followed the Law -- the Feasts, dietary restrictions, Sabbath -- and we claim to want to live like Him, why don't we do what He did?

The Way

The Truth & The Life
Click the picture above 
 to see the video trailer.


The following is an excellent description of the power of paradigms -- how we approach reading/studying the Bible.

The excerpt  is from, The Jewish Gospel of John by Eli Lizorkin-Eyzenberg:
Interpreting the Bible is a difficult task. We bring our past, our preconceived notions, our already formed theology, our cultural blind spots, our social standing, our gender, our political views, and many other influences to our interpretation of the Bible. In short, all that we are in some way determines how we interpret everything. This does not imply that the meaning of the text is dependent on its reader. The meaning remains constant. But the reading of the text does differ and is dependent on many factors surrounding the interpretive process. In other words, how a reader or listener understands the text can differ greatly from person to person.


One of the biggest handicaps in the enterprise of Bible interpretation has been an inability to recognize and admit that a particular interpretation may have a weak spot. The weak spot is usually determined by personal preferences and heartfelt desires to prove a particular theory, regardless of the cost. I consider that, having an awareness of our own blind spots and being honestly willing to admit problems with our interpretations when they exist, is more important than the intellectual brilliance with which we argue our position. 


Page 78, Chapter 4


NEW FEATURE: TODAY'S WORD BY DR. SKIP MOEN 

After reading the TW, be sure to continue reading the comments section online!

12/05/2016
Subject or Verb?
by Skip Moen, D. Phil.

So Naomi returned, and with her Ruth the Moabitess, her daughter-in-law, who returned from the land of Moab. And they came to Bethlehem at the beginning of barley harvest. Ruth 1:22 NASB


Who returned – What are we to make of the unusual Hebrew construction in this verse? What usually happens in translation is a “smoothing out” of the rough spots. In this case, the Hebrew reads, hashshavah (from the verb shuv—to return), literally translated, the returned, as a Qal, perfect, third person, feminine singular. With this in mind, the verse would read, “and with her Ruth the Moabitess, her daughter-in-law, the returned from the land of Moab.” As you can see, the presence of the definite article (ha) attached to the verb creates a problem; a problem that generates treating ha as if it were a pronoun, “who.” There are some rare grammatical constructions where ha acts as a relative pronoun (as noted in some lexicons) and perhaps we might read it that way here, but it just might be that something more subtle and more important is happening here. In order to see this as more than a rare occurrence of ha as a pronoun, we need to ask ourselves a much bigger question. “What is the story of Ruth really about?”


The answer to this question is startling. First, the story of Ruth is not really about Ruth. It is really about Naomi, as the end of the story makes quite clear. Ruth is just the vehicle God uses to restore Naomi’s faith and hope. Yes, Ruth is a central figure in the story and it is Ruth’s hesed that alters the lives of the other actors, but the purpose of the story of Ruth is the restoration of Naomi.


Secondly, and even more importantly, the story of Ruth is not really about the people in the story. Yes, Naomi is restored, but as a whole, the story of Ruth is not even about her. It is about ...


Read the rest by clicking the Title link above. 



12/04/2016
The Long and Winding Road
by Skip Moen, D. Phil.

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; for His lovingkindness is everlasting.Psalm 118:1 NASB


Everlasting – How long will YHVH show hesed toward us? How long will it be before His patience runs out and He gives up on us? David must have asked these questions, especially after his encounter with Nathan. Guilty! Deserving punishment! How could a God of holiness have anything to do with an adulterer and murderer? Certainly God would have to turn His back and walk away after such offenses.


“Though ʿôlām is used more than three hundred times to indicate indefinite continuance into the very distant future, the meaning of the word is not confined to the future. There are at least twenty instances where it clearly refers to the past. Such usages generally point to something that seems long ago, but rarely if ever refer to a limitless past.”[1]


This commentary on the word ‘olam should stop us in our tracks. We are Western linear thinkers, yet here is a word that means both past and future. How can this be? It isn’t sufficient to simply gloss over this anomaly by pretending the ‘olam just means “long duration” without temporally explicit direction. That’s not what’s happening here. The word forces us to reconsider...


Read the rest by clicking the Title link above. 



12/02/2016
Grammatical Marvels
by Skip Moen, D. Phil.

Many, O Lord my God, are the wonders which You have done, and Your thoughts toward us; there is none to compare with You. If I would declare and speak of them, they would be too numerous to count. Psalm 40:5 NASB


Wonders – “Wonder rather than doubt is the root of knowledge. Doubt comes in the wake of knowledge as a state of vacillation between two contrary or contradictory views; as a state in which a belief we had embraced begins to totter. . . . In other words, the business of doubt is one of auditing the mind’s accounts about reality rather than a concern with reality itself; it deals with the content of perception rather than with perception itself. Doubt is not applied to what we have an immediate awareness of. We do not doubt that we exist or that we see, we merely question whether we know what we see or whether that which we see is a true reflection of what exists in reality. Doubt, then, is an interdepartmental activity of the mind.”[1]


Heschel’s insight confirms the underlying reality of Scripture. God is never in doubt. Just as it is impossible for me to doubt my experience of observing the Milky Way, the men and women of the Bible never doubt the reality of God’s involvement in the world. In fact, God is the given; the base assumption of all that exists. No Hebrew follower ever vacillated between God’s existence or non-existence. Such mental gymnastics were simply unthinkable. What struck the men and women of the Bible is wonder, the sheer awe of all that is. Without God, it was unexplainable.


The paradigm of the West is fundamentally a cognitive way of looking at the world. Since it is concerned with the relationship between thought and reality, it entertains that question, “How do I know that what I perceive is really real?” That question doesn’t make any sense at all in a worldview that begins with the validity of experience. Descartes might have followed his version of rationality to the place where only thinking exists, but no Hebrew would be so deluded. The real world presents itself in every moment. That real world is the context of...


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12/01/2016
When It’s All Over
by Skip Moen, D. Phil.

The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. Ecclesiastes 12:13 NASB


The conclusion – “King Solomon summarizes all his teachings with the words ‘the sum of the matter.’ The word sof is written with an enlarged samech to emphasize the fundamental requirement of reliance on God’s support (Osios R’ Akiva).”[1] English translations of this word include “the end of the matter,” “the conclusion of the whole matter,” “here is the conclusion,” “that’s the whole story.” But clearly none of the glosses communicate the deep respect that Rabbi Akiva found in the text. For Akiva, fearing YHVH and keeping His commandments is not simply the end of the story. It is the fundamental orientation of life. As Heschel reminds us, “A Jew without Torah is obsolete.” We might be inclined to read this verse as if Solomon is advocating a final line of some apologetics argument. “When it’s all over, we must conclude that serving God applies to everyone.” But that’s not how the rabbis understood the meaning of sof. For them, sof is a summary of life’s goal, not the end of a debate. Torah is God’s will for us. Period!


When we realize the central role Torah plays in the thinking and behavior of orthodox Jews, it is simply impossible to contend that the Jewish authors of the apostolic writings moved away from this crucial footing. Torah is the difference between pagans and Jews in the first century. Yeshua clearly lived in accordance with Torah. Paul proclaims over and over that his life is measured by Torah. James’ request of Paul concerning the vow is obviously an effort to put to rest the charge that Paul denied the fundamental place of Torah. “A Jew without Torah is obsolete,” right? That includes all the Jews that wrote what we call the “New Testament.” None of them would have had any problem at all with sof. In the end, fearing God and keeping the commandments is the most important requirement of life.


This raises serious questions for those who...


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11/30/2016
Untranslatable
by Skip Moen, D. Phil.

You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your might. Deuteronomy 6:5 NASB


Heart – One of the wonders of Hebrew is that it communicates on multiple levels. This fact is much more than the rabbinic PaRDeS approach. The structure of Hebrew (the way that the letters are written) also conveys a message. The rabbis note that since Hebrew is a language without vowels, every reading is an act of interpretation. But Hebrew itself offers the reader special insights when it is not written properly. These oddities in the text demand that the reader pay closer attention. Sometimes it requires that the reader unravel a riddle hidden in the structure of the word itself. Here, in this most famous of verses, is an example.


The usual spelling of the Hebrew word for “heart” is lev (bet plus lamed). For example, in Genesis 18:5, the plural is spelled lebkim. But in this verse the word is spelled with two occurrences of the letter bet, i.e., levav plus the possessive singular ending ka), i.e. LBBK rather than LBK. Why?


According to Rashi, angels, as described in Genesis 18:5, are spiritual beings with one purpose, to do the will of the Lord. But Man is created with two possibilities in his heart. He can follow the yetzer ha’ra or he can submit to the yetzer ha’tov. The double bet expressing this conflicting desire in Man, a conflict that pushes him in different directions. For this reason, Man alone is given the commandment to love YHVH with all of his levav, that is, with both inclinations of the heart. Man is unique in all creation in that he is commanded to...


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