In Nazarene Israel we saw that there are two houses in Israel, Ephraim and Judah. In overly-simple terms, the house of Ephraim generally refers to the Christians, while the house of Judah generally refers to the Jews. (For more details, see Nazarene Israel.)
In Nazarene Israel we also saw how Yahweh gave Israel His Torah. This word Torah refers to a set of instructions that we can follow to purify and refine ourselves, to make ourselves more attractive to Elohim spiritually. The only thing is, even though purification and refinement is not pleasant, we must obey Yahweh’s instructions just as He gave them, and not modify them in any way, lest we short-circuit the refinement process. It is so important to follow the refinement process that in Deuteronomy 4:2, Yahweh prohibits us from adding anything to it, or taking anything away from it. The implication is that if we add or take anything away, then it is no longer Yahweh’s Torah that we are practicing, but our own. And since this does not lead to the refinement He wants, it means we are not truly keeping His Torah, but our own.
Devarim (Deuteronomy) 4:2
2 “You shall not add to the word which I command you, nor take from it, that you may keep the commandments of Yahweh your Elohim, which I command you.”
We must realize that Yahweh wants us to obey His rules, and that failing to perform them faithfully is not an option. If we think about the Torah as a computer program that is designed to optimize our computer hardware and software, it should be clear that we should not go editing the code. However, this computer program is resource intensive, and it essentially takes over the functioning of our machine. This takes all of our resources. Some love this feature, but most Ephraimites and Jews dislike how all-consuming it is, and so they hack the code. This makes the program easier to run, and it consumes less resources. However, this means that the desired hardware and software optimization does not take place. This is effectively to take the broad easy road that leads to destruction. In contrast, disciplining oneself to do and obey everything Elohim says to do, leads to life.
Mattityahu (Matthew) 7:13-14
13 “Enter by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and there are many who go in by it.
14 Because narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”
It is said that Satan likes to counterfeit everything that Yahweh does. In fact, the closer the counterfeit is to the original the more Satan likes it because it fools more people. Such counterfeiting of the Torah is an enormous problem for Ephraim and Judah both, albeit in different ways.
In Nazarene Israel we saw how the rabbinic Jews (both Orthodox and Messianic) follow a rabbinic modification of the Torah, which they confusingly call, Torah Law. They believe that they have been given the demigod-like ability not to be conformed to the Torah, but to establish a new Torah in each generation. Moreover, they believe their Torah Law replaces the original Torah of Moshe. Despite all of this, Jeremiah tells us that they believe that the Torah of Yahweh is with them. However, what Yahweh says is that He will consume them in the fires of the tribulation, for their wickedness.
Yirmeyahu (Jeremiah) 8:8-13
8 “How can you say, ‘We are wise, And the Torah of Yahweh is with us’? Look, the false pen of the scribe certainly works falsehood.
9 The wise men are ashamed, They are dismayed and taken. Behold, they have rejected the word of Yahweh; So what wisdom do they have?
10 Therefore I will give their wives to others, And their fields to those who will inherit them; Because from the least even to the greatest Everyone is given to covetousness; From the prophet even to the priest Everyone deals falsely.
11 For they have healed the hurt of the daughter of My people slightly, Saying, ‘Peace, peace!’ When there is no peace.
12 Were they ashamed when they had committed abomination? No! They were not at all ashamed, Nor did they know how to blush. Therefore they shall fall among those who fall; In the time of their punishment They shall be cast down,” says Yahweh.
13 “I will surely consume them,” says Yahweh. “No grapes shall be on the vine, Nor figs on the fig tree, And the leaf shall fade; And the things I have given them shall pass away from them.”
Sadly, brother Judah is not alone in breaking Yahweh’s Torah. As we saw in Revelation and the End Times, most Christians do not realize they are of the house of Ephraim, and most will not realize it until Yeshua returns at Armageddon. Yet even with the small percentage of the house of Ephraim that today identifies as Ephraimites, what they claim is “keeping Torah” truly only little more than resting on the Sabbath and feasts. This is popular because it is easy, and it costs little, but it also does not help to build the kind of global kingdom Yeshua desires. This is like “taking away” from Yahweh’s commands.
Devarim (Deuteronomy) 12:32
32 “Whatever I command you, be careful to observe [do] it; you shall not add to it nor take away from it.”
So even though it is better to rest on the Sabbath and feasts than on Sunday, Christmas, and Easter, if we want to be refined, we have to keep the whole Torah—and we also need to know what it means to keep the Torah in the Dispersion, so that we can give ourselves over to it, in a living sacrifice.
Many are called, but few are chosen. If we want to be among the chosen, we need to keep every part of the Torah we can. However, we also need to know what it means to keep Torah in the Melchizedekian order. What this means in the Dispersion is to keep all of Elohim’s (and in this case, Yeshua’s) instructions.
Mattityahu (Matthew) 28:19-20
19 “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, immersing them in My name*,
20 teaching them to observe [i.e., obey] all things that I have commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Amein.
But what does it mean to guard all things that Yeshua has commanded us? What are the instructions that He gave us?
In Torah Government, we saw that the rabbinical order is a modification or corruption of the Levitical order. That is why Yahweh sent Yeshua to raise up a renewed order of Melchizedek. This renewed order of Melchizedek has a different set of instructions (Torah) because these two orders have different functions. The Levitical order is designed to operate in a temple, in the land of Israel. In contrast, the Melchizedekian order is designed to raise up a global kingdom for Yeshua that will not end until the entire globe belongs to Him. Because the need had changed, the priesthoods technically exchanged places, with the rabbinical order stepping down, and the Melchizedekian order stepping up. This will last until both orders are finally merged together, after the Second Exodus (e.g., Isaiah 66:20-21). (For more details, see Revelation and the End Times.)
There is an interesting interplay between the Torah of Moshe and Yeshua’s Torah. In the Torah of Moshe, we read specific instructions about how the Levitical order was to organize and operate. However, not much is said about what the people should do beyond bringing their tithes. In marked contrast, the Renewed Covenant says much about how the people should purify their spirits. However, it says little about how the Melchizedekian priesthood should organize and operate, to build a global kingdom for Yeshua without end.
Yeshayahu (Isaiah) 9:7
7 Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever. The zeal of Yahweh of hosts will perform this.
The instructions for the priesthood are plain for all to see, if we have eyes to read. Instead of having independent ministries, Yeshua wants all of His servants working together at His ministry, according to Ephesians 4:11-16. Verse 11 specifies that Yeshua Himself commanded this.
Ephesim (Ephesians) 4:11-16
11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers,
12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Messiah,
13 till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of Elohim, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Messiah;
14 that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting,
15 but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head — Messiah —
16 from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.
We will talk about this passage a lot more, but what we need to see here is that these are Yeshua’s instructions. In other words, this is Yeshua’s Torah for how we are to organize ourselves in the dispersion. This is also meant to serve as the discipline that makes community work. And this is how we must live, unless we want to edit things out of Yeshua’s Torah, and thus miss out on the refinement.
Many benefits will accrue to our people once they learn to live this passage as a discipline. It will lead to a true global body, and Yeshua’s name will be glorified. This will please Yahweh very much.
The key to understanding Yeshua’s model is to realize that it is built on dedicated volunteerism and involvement among the people. Each person must give of his time and his money as well as he is able, or Yeshua’s body will not be healthy, just as any human body would be sick if it’s limbs and organs did not do all they could for the overall health of the body.
In the Melchizedekian order, leadership is selected based on respect in the community. Ideally, the more one volunteers and serves, the more influence and respect one earns, both with the congregation, and in the outside community.
Marqaus (Mark) 9:35
35 And He sat down, called the twelve, and said to them, “If anyone desires to be first, he shall be last of all and servant of all.”
Some may never give their hearts and their lives over to Yeshua, even though it is our reasonable service.
Romim (Romans) 12:1-2
1 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of Elohim, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, set apart, acceptable to Elohim, which is your reasonable service.
2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of Elohim.
Many will be called. For a while some of them may need to get nourished and strengthened before they decide to give their hearts and their lives to Yeshua and His service; yet once they do, they become Yeshua’s bride. No matter how they come to want to give back, the more of us who give our hearts and our lives to Him and His service, the more His kingdom will grow. It is our duty and our privilege to begin growing this true body of Yeshua in love, according to what He Himself has established.
We will study Ephesians 4 in more detail later, but before we do that, first we need to see how Yeshua trained the first disciples, who went on to become the first priests of the order of Melchizedek. By watching the selection and training process Yeshua used, and by studying Acts and other passages, we can see what the qualifications for the priesthood are, and why. We can also see why there are both elders in the congregations, and also a separate priesthood. With this knowledge we can begin to set Yeshua’s true global order back up. This will please Yeshua greatly, and it will be as if we have invested our minas well.