Sunday, December 11, 2011

Definition of Marriage and Adultery

There is a huge argument going on about what is considered adultery or not, within the community of believers. The reason for this argument is that some, ‘so-called’ believers cannot control their fleshly lustful desires and need to justify their adultery by twisting Scripture to seem as though it is acceptable what they are doing. The Scriptures are very clear in defining what marriage and adultery are and cannot be debated.

Let us define what marriage is according to Scripture

For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother, and cleave to his wife, and they shall become one flesh” (Gen 2:24). Notice here that the Scripture talks about flesh. Marriage is a physical action that binds one person to another and makes them one flesh. Even though marriage is also a spiritual bond, sex is the mechanism of marriage. “Do not deprive one another except with agreement for a time, to give yourselves to fasting and prayer. And come together again so that Satan does not try you because of your lack of self-control” (1 Cor 7:5). One is not considered to be married, according to the Scripture, without sealing, or consummating, the contract by having sex for the first time, where there was proof of a woman’s maidenhood through her blood revealed on the sheet.

Marriage is then clearly defined as a physical and spiritual binding of a man and a woman to become one flesh, and to be faithful to one another, until the event of death.

And I say to the unmarried (not divorced) and to the widows: It is good for them if they remain even as I am (unmarried), but if they do not have self-control, let them marry, for it is better to marry than to burn” (1 Cor 7:8-9). So it is better to stay unmarried, but if you cannot control your physical need for sex, then it is better to get married before you commit adultery and burn. Once again we see that marriage is a sexual bond created between a man and a woman.

Let us now define what adultery is according to Scripture

Adultery is when a third person (whether it be a man or a woman) comes in between the bond created between a man and his wife, by laying with them (sexually). This is Hebrew thought and is so recognized in the Torah. “And a man who commits adultery with the wife of another man, who commits adultery with the wife of his neighbor: the adulterer and the adulteress shall certainly be put to death” (Lev 20:10). Adultery is clearly shown to be a death sentence. It is not a forgivable sin, this is because it is an evil act and all evil must be banished from the midst of the true believers. Most churches do not teach this and even allow it to continue in their congregations.

Let us have a look at what the Messiah defines as adultery:
And it has been said, ‘Whoever puts away his wife, let him give her a certificate of divorce.’
But I say to you that whoever puts away his wife, except for the matter of whoring, makes her commit adultery. And whoever marries a woman who has been put away commits adultery
” (Mat 5:31-32)

And I say to you, whoever puts away his wife, except on the ground of whoring, and marries another, commits adultery. And whoever marries her who has been put away commits adultery.” (Mat 19:9)

So what He is saying is that any woman, and not only those who have already whored, who is divorced, MAY NOT re-marry. In fact, the Messiah teaches us that if ANY divorced woman remarries, then she is committing adultery, and so is the man who marries her. “He who commits adultery with a woman lacks heart; He who does it destroys his own life” (Proverbs 6:32).

You see, once a man and a woman are joined in marriage, they are bound for life. Not even a paper or letter of divorce can break the bond that was created in the physical and spiritual act of marriage. All that happens when a woman is issued with a letter of divorce, is that her husband is putting her away because they are not able to live together anymore. This does not give her the right to re-marry again, except if she re-marries her husband again.

The divorce letter was allowed because of the hardness of the hearts of the people. It is not a letter of a ‘reversal of marriage’, but rather that they cease from living together in order to prevent strife and even sin within the household. A wife is joined to her husband until the day of her husband’s death, even though a letter of divorce has been given to her in her hand and they are no longer living together.
And Pharisees came and asked Him, “Is it right for a man to put away his wife?” – trying Him. And He answering, said to them, “What did Mosheh command you?” And they said, “Mosheh allowed a man to write a certificate of divorce, and to put her away.” And יהושע (Yehoshua) said to them, “Because of the hardness of your heart he wrote you this command.  “However, from the beginning of the creation, Elohim ‘made them male and female.’  ‘For this cause a man shall leave his father and mother and cleave to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh,’ so that they are no longer two, but one flesh  “Therefore what Elohim has joined together, let man not separate.” (Mar 10:2-9).

Or do you not know, brothers – for I speak to those knowing the Torah – that the Torah rules over a man as long as he lives? For the married woman has been bound by Torah to the living husband, but if the husband dies, she is released from the Torah concerning her husband. So then, while her husband lives, she shall be called an adulteress if she becomes another man’s. But if her husband dies, she is free from that part of the Torah, so that she is not an adulteress, having become another man’s” (Rom 7:1-3). In this marriage covenant, the woman is bound to her husband as long as he lives (1 Cor. 7:39). The marriage "bond" is a lifetime covenant commitment, and Elohim holds people to the commitment they made, even if later they try to break it.

A woman may be "bound" to one man, but "married" to another man! The "bond" refers to the marriage covenant that Elohim holds you to. "Marriage" refers to the relationship you are living in as recognized by civil law and society. The two may be the same, but not necessarily. In the case of adultery, the woman is "bound" to one man but "married" to a completely different man!
That is why a woman is guilty of adultery if she is married to another man. Adultery, by definition, refers to sexual intercourse between two people, one of whom is bound by a marriage covenant to somebody else.
This woman is an "adulteress" because she has been joined in a marriage covenant with one man, and Elohim holds her to that covenant for life. But she is having sexual relations with another man, and that, by definition, is adultery.

Note that anytime she has sexual relations with a man other than her scriptural mate it is adultery - as long as her first companion is living, the passage says. Whether she has just a single act of intercourse, or has an "affair" involving a number of adulterous acts over a period of time, or whether it is a second marriage to another man - in any case every time she has sexual union with another man the passage says she is guilty of adultery.

This is "adultery" because the woman is Scripturally committed to have the sexual union only with one man as long as he lives, but instead she is having it with another man. This is why it is proper to refer to the second marriage as "adulterous" or "living in adultery," just as it would be if she were living with him but not married to him (Col. 3:5-7). “And to the married I command, not I, but the Master: A wife should not separate from a husband. But if she is indeed separated, let her remain unmarried or be restored to favour with her husband, and let a husband not send away a wife” (1 Cor 7:10-11)

Now what happens when a married couple, who are in their second marriage, comes into the faith? Well, the Torah teaches that we are only guilty of sin once we know that we have sinned. Also, we cannot be held liable for things that were done before entering into the faith, but once in the faith, then it is absolutely forbidden and considered to be an unforgivable sin. Anyone who does come into the faith, repents of all previous sins, by turning away from doing them again.

But didn’t the Messiah forgive a woman caught in adultery and said to the people, “he who is without sin, cast the first stone”? Well in fact, NO, the Messiah did not forgive a woman caught in adultery. In fact, the story being referred to here is John in John 8:1-11. The fact of the matter is that John did not write it as that story never happened. It was added into John’s writings by an anti-Torah scribe who wanted to justify adultery and to coin the evil phrase “he who is without sin, cast the first stone.” It is used by millions of Christians to justify their sins and not be judged. It is pure evil. You can read more about it here:

May we all strive to stay pure and clean in the eyes of the Almighty so that we may have the hope of everlasting life. 

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Romans 4 - Belief and Works

What, then, shall we say Avraham our father, to have found, according to the flesh? For if Avraham was declared right by works, he has ground for boasting, but not before Elohim. For what does the Scripture say? “Avraham believed Elohim, and it was reckoned to him for righteousness.”  (Rom 4:1-3)

Now these three verses seem to contradict what Ya’akov (James) taught when he said “You see, then, that a man is declared right by works, and not by belief alone” (James 2:24). But the fact of the matter is that they do not in any way contradict each other. Ya’akov wrote much clearer and to the point than Shaul’s writings. You see, Shaul is teaching against the religious system that demands that you keep to all their laws and traditions that are followed by the flesh and not by belief. Avraham first believed and therefore his actions or works revealed his belief. This is exactly what Ya’akov also teaches, “So also belief, if it does not have works, is in itself dead. But someone might say, “You have belief, and I have works.” Show me your belief without your works, and I shall show you my belief by my works” (James 2:17-18). You cannot have belief without works, nor can you have works without belief.

For us to be declared righteous is a gift, but we need to follow the instruction of YHWH (His Torah) in order to receive this wonderful gift. It is ludicrous to think that we are declared righteous and still live our lives continuing in the abominations of this world. Throughout the entire Scriptures, there is a common theme, if you transgress the Torah of YHWH, it is an abomination and YHWH turns away from you, but if you guard to keep His Torah, then He is with you always. Nothing has changed, even until now, and that is exactly what the Messiah and His followers teach.

And to him who is working, the reward is not reckoned as a favour but as a debt. And to him who is not working but believes on Him who is declaring right the wicked, his belief is reckoned for righteousness, even as Dawiḏ also says of the blessedness of the man to whom Elohim reckons righteousness without works: “Blessed are those whose lawlessnesses are forgiven, and whose sins are covered, blessed is the man to whom יהוה (YHWH) shall by no means reckon sin.”” (Rom 4:4-8). Once again, Shaul is explaining the difference between being ‘under the Law’ and being ‘subject to the law,’ he is also teaching repentance and the engrafting of the Goyim (Gentile, wild olive) into the good olive tree here.

To those who are trying to earn the reward by doing ultra religious works and traditions believe that the reward is owed to them as they do these works without faith. This is not, in any way, having a relationship with the Almighty. Does this mean that Shaul is teaching that we do not have to keep the Torah of YHWH? Not at all, as we can see that when the wicked repent, they will be declared righteous and their past sins are covered. This does not mean that they can continue to transgress the Torah of YHWH as that would deem that person wicked again and not righteous.

Is this blessing then upon the circumcised only, or also upon the uncircumcised? For we affirm: Belief was reckoned unto Avraham for righteousness. How then was it reckoned? Being in circumcision, or in uncircumcision? Not in circumcision, but in uncircumcision.” (Rom 4:9-10) Avraham confirmed his understanding righteousness-credit by obeying YHWH and getting physically circumcised! Shaul never teaches that it is not necessary to be circumcised in the flesh, but rather that you first build your belief and faith (circumcision of the heart), then by learning the Torah of Mosheh and having the desire to do the will of YHWH, then a person will, out of his own, choose to become circumcised in the flesh out of obedience to the will of the Almighty.

Shaul is also teaching to the Jews and the Gentiles here when he refers to the circumcised (Jews) and the uncircumcised (Gentiles, even though some of the Gentiles could be circumcised in the flesh too). The thought that Gentiles do not have to subject themselves to the Torah of YHWH is not ever taught throughout the Torah, in fact, the person who is accused of doing so (Shaul), is teaching the total opposite here by saying that everyone, Gentiles included, who convert to the Faith OF Yehoshua the Messiah, has to subject themselves to the Torah of YHWH just as the Messiah Himself did.

And he received the sign of circumcision, a seal of the righteousness of the belief while in uncircumcision, for him to be a father of all those believing through uncircumcision, for righteousness to be reckoned to them also,” (Rom 4:11). Avraham is the Father of many nations. For example, he is the Father of the Arabs, who are mostly Islamic, through Yishmael his son from Sarah’s servant Hagar. Does that mean that Avraham would endorse Islam today? I don’t think so as he stood only for the One true Elohim . Avraham was uncircumcised when Yishmael was conceived, but was circumcised at the conception of Yitschak, through whom the covenant would be. Once again, notice that Avraham circumcised himself and all his household through obedience to the Almighty, should we not do the same?

"and the father of circumcision to those who not only are of the circumcision, but who also walk in the steps of the belief which our father Avraham had in uncircumcision." (Rom 4:12) Shaul is teaching that Avraham’s physical circumcision came after he believed, after he had faith, after his heart was circumcised, in opposition to a contemporary false teaching that circumcision should come first before belief or faith. At no time does Shaul ever discount physical circumcision; he simply rejects false religious traditions that turned circumcision into device to control new converts. This principle also applies to those who would hurriedly baptize new converts in an effort to show strong numbers, or practicing “forced conversions.”

For the promise that he should be the heir of the world, was not to Aḇraham or to his seed through the Torah, but through a righteousness of belief. For if those who are of the Torah are heirs, belief has been made useless, and the promise has been nullified,” (Rom 4:13-14). Once again, Shaul is rejecting the ultra religious traditions that teach their followers to do all they say in order to be saved. This idea nullifies the promise of the Almighty. Like Shaul has taught before, you cannot have belief without the Torah. Once you come into the faith, then your knowledge will gradually increase as you study the Almighty’s Word, and then you will conform your life to His Instruction. This is all because of belief.

Avraham is heir of the world, just like he is the father of the Hebrews and the Arabs, as we saw above. He is also the father of Rome (Christianity) through Esau, who is Yitschak’s (Isaac) son. Whenever we read of Esau in the Scriptures and in prophecy, we know that he represents the Church (Rome), just as Yishmael represents Islam in prophecy. Once we know this truth, passages in Scripture start revealing things we did not realize. Consider the following verse, “As it is written, Jacob have I loved, but Esau have I hated” (Rom 9:13). Jacob’s name changed to Israel whom the Almighty loves. Esau is Rome, whom the Almighty hates.

"for the Torah works out wrath, for where there is no Torah there is no transgression." (Rom 4:15). Like the Hebrew word “Torah”, the Aramaic namusa can refer to the entire corpus of work or to an individual instruction for a person or group (“torah” with a small “t”). This verse literally reads, “where there is no Torah provision against an action, there is no transgression.” The KJV reads, “Because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression.” Mainstream Christianity translates this to mean that Torah is done away with, but Shaul is teaching the very opposite. Wherever Torah is NOT being taught, people will do what is right in their own eyes, thus bringing the wrath of YHWH upon themselves. You can think for yourself, if the Torah was done away with, then how can we know what sin is? Then we are able to do whatever we want without any consequence. It is just a preposterous idea.

"On account of this it is of belief, that it be according to favour, for the promise to be made certain to all the seed, not only to those who are of the Torah, but also to those who are of the belief of Aḇraham, who is father of us all – " (Rom 4:16)
Having Avraham as a father brings the responsibility of being honorable children, worthy of legacy! Contrary to Christian theology; faith, while credited to Avraham as righteousness, was not the only component of his total righteousness. It is what Avraham did with his faith that brings him near to YHWH. As YHWH Himself declares: “I swore to your father Avraham. I will make your descendants as numerous as the stars in the sky and will give them all these lands, and through your offspring all nations on earth will be blessed, because Avraham obeyed Me and kept My requirements, My commands, My decrees and My laws” (Genesis 26:4-5).

as it has been written, “I have made you a father of many nations” – in the presence of Him whom he believed, even Elohim, who gives life to the dead and calls that which does not exist as existing, who against all expectation did believe, in expectation, so that he should become father of many nations, according to what was said, “So shall your seed be.” And not having grown weak in belief, he did not consider his own body, already dead, being about a hundred years old, and the deadness of Sarah’s womb, he did not hesitate about the promise of Elohim through unbelief, but was strengthened in belief, giving esteem to Elohim, and being completely persuaded that what He had promised He was also able to do.” (Rom 4:17-21). Do you think that Avraham would have had a son if he did not believe? It was unnatural for Sarah to have a child as she was far past the point of being able to conceive. It was only through belief and obedience to the Almighty that this wonderful miracle could take place. Israel is the Almighty’s beloved nation, and they all came into being through miracle after miracle showing us that it is a miraculous nation. We as goy (Gentiles) are now also able to partake in the promise of the beloved nation of Israel, but only if we join ourselves to the ‘good olive tree’ and fulfilling the requirements to do so.

Therefore also “it was reckoned to him for righteousness.” (Rom 4:22). Avraham believed and obeyed, therefore he was declared righteous. Has that concept changed since Avraham? Do we need to only believe without obedience to the Torah (Instruction of YHWH in righteousness) to be declared righteous? Certainly not, as that is never taught in the Scriptures. In fact, you can see a common theme in the Scriptures that when ever someone or a nation turned from doing the Torah of YHWH, then YHWH departed from them and gave them over to their enemies. Does the Almighty, who is the same yesterday, today and forever, change?

And not because of him alone was it written that it was reckoned to him, but also because of us, to whom it shall be reckoned, to us who believe in Him who raised up  יהושע (Yehoshua) our Master from the dead, who was delivered up because of our trespasses, and was raised for us to be declared right.” (Rom 4:23-25). The Messiah came to show us how to live. He was an example for us to follow. He also came as the sacrifice for us when He hung on the torture stake. The sacrificial laws of the Torah have not changed and have not been done away with. Only the blood of the Messiah (Lamb) is sufficient to replace all other blood. Every single sacrifice done before the Messiah, was only a symbol of the Messiah. It was not the blood of the goats and lambs etc. that could make a covering for sin, but only the blood of the Messiah. Those who made sacrifices in the past, did so because they believed in the Messiah and that His blood would make a covering (kippur) for their transgressions.

No one can ever know the Messiah or His role if we do not study the Torah of His Father as it describes His Character and duties and everything else about Him. In order to believe in Him, you need to know Him first.

Do you desire to know the Messiah?