Exploration 97 – The Hebrew Revelation

For those celebrating Shavuot this Sunday rather than last Sunday, Chag Shavuot Sameach!

There is evidence that Revelation was originally written in Hebrew. However, the original is unavailable and the manuscripts one has are rare and suffer from corruption. That means the surviving Greek texts, also not original, are still valuable as sources, but it raises interest in these surviving Hebrew manuscripts.

The following three videos by Justin J. van Rensburg provide some of this evidence and some of the insights one can learn from considering these sources. See Hebrew Gospels for more information.

In the first video he shows how to obtain photos of the manuscript of Revelation, a transcription and a translation. Then he provides an argument that this manuscript is an authentic copy of a chain of copies leading back to the original manuscript that was written in Hebrew. Finally, he uses this manuscript to resolve a puzzle in Revelation 22:2 that mentions that the Tree of Life was on both sides of the river having twelve different fruits.

He continues in the second video to resolve another puzzle: Is Yeshua or Satan the “morning star” referred to in Isaiah 14:12-14 especially considering that translations from the Greek of Revelation 22:16 also refer to Yeshua as the “morning star”. Given evidence from the Hebrew manuscript, Satan is the “morning star”, but Yeshua is the “morning light”.

Justin van Rensburg brings out the significance of this confusion (starting about 12:00) by referring back to Isaiah 14:12-14 where Satan (the “morning star”) claims he will make himself like the Most High. One of the ways Satan did this was by giving Yeshua the same title in the Greek version of Revelation that he himself had from Isaiah.

The third video provides evidence through Hebrew puns and direct quotes from the Old Testament that the original autograph was written in Hebrew.

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Weekly Parashah Readings
Parashah: Behaalotecha, 19 Sivan, 5782 – June 18, 2022
Torah: Numbers 8:1-12:16
Haftarah: Zechariah 2:14-4:7
Brit Chadashah: 1 Corinthians 10:6-13; Revelation 11:1-19
Resources: Chabad, Hebrew4Christians, Weekly Torah Readings, Calendar

Tree In Bloom
Tree In Bloom

Waterfall – Friday Fictioneers

It was a long, double waterfall. Two geologists were arguing. One said it was over a hundred million years old. The other said with all that rushing water the entire formation would erode to sea level in less than ten million years.

Some bet their worldviews one way; some, the other.

I’ll admit I had an opinion, but so what, they might ask. I just hoped the waterfall would stick around until our vacation was over knowing eventually it, and quite a bit of everything else, would all wash away.

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Rochelle Wisoff-Fields offers the photo by David Stewart below as the prompt for this week’s Friday Fictioneers.

PHOTO PROMPT © David Stewart
PHOTO PROMPT © David Stewart

Key – Six Sentence Story

The only thing Gerald wanted was that key dangling from the neck of the sorceress who said as she offered him an apple squishing the worm popping its head from the core: Take another bite.

He tried to recall what he was doing there as she charmed him explaining, But, Gerald, you know you’re addicted and it’s time for your medication. To prove her point she unlocked his chains with the key to show him just how pathetically weak he had become. Besides, she loved watching her victims go through the agony of deciding what they really wanted: freedom or wormy delights?

Thankfully for Gerald the fog cleared in time for him to remember why he entered this godforsaken kingdom of enchantment in the first place. Unchained he rushed off to resume rescuing his wife kidnapped by Snakindegras, a particularly ornery dragon he couldn’t wait to get his hands on, while the witch with the apple screamed in the distance: Run, Snaky, run!

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Denise offers the prompt word “key” to be used in this week’s Six Sentence Stories.

Early Evening
Early Evening

Exploration 96 – Shavuot – Pentecost

And thou shalt keep the feast of weeks unto the Lord thy God with a tribute of a freewill offering of thine hand, which thou shalt give unto the Lord thy God, according as the Lord thy God hath blessed thee:

Deuteronomy 16:10 King James Version

Last year I paid no attention to Shavuot. It didn’t even dawn on me that shavuot is the plural of shavua (week). This year I hope the roots have gone deeper.

After signing up for Michael Rood’s newsletter I began observing the crescent moon after sunset which marked the beginning of a lunar month. It is amazing how different these crescent moons look. The one last Tuesday evening marking the beginning of the third month was very slender and close to the horizon. I almost missed it before it set behind the trees.

Shavuot is 50 days after the First Fruits offering. Pentecost is 50 days after the first appearance of Yeshua (Jesus) to his disciples after His resurrection. After 50 days seven Shabbats would have passed and we would again be on the same day of the week. On Pentecost we remember the baptism of the Holy Spirit in Jerusalem mentioned in Acts 2. Shavuot recalls the giving and receiving of the Torah and making the covenant at Mount Sinai (Exodus 19 – 24:11).

Nehemia Gordon reports that during the first century there were three different calculations for when the First Fruits offering was to be made relative to the seven days of Unleavened Bread. The Pharisees said it was to occur on the second day of Unleavened Bread, or 16 Aviv, every year. The Essenes said it was to occur on the first day of the week after those seven days. The Sadducees said it was to occur on the day after the weekly Shabbat within the seven days of Unleavened Bread. After the fall of Jerusalem, the view of the Pharisees prevailed. Their calendar is what one sees on sites such as Chabad.org.

By next Shavuot, God willing, more of this story will make sense to me.

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Weekly Parashah Readings
Parashah: Naso, 12 Sivan, 5782 – June 11, 2022
Torah: Numbers 4:21-7:89
Haftarah: Judges 13:2-13:25
Brit Chadashah: Acts 21:17-26
Resources: Chabad, Hebrew4Christians, Weekly Torah Readings, Calendar

Flowering Tree
Flowering Tree

Edge – Six Sentence Story

On one side of the path there was a perilous, downward sloping edge. He walked this mountain trail to reach home.

He crawled when winds blew to avoid being thrown into the abyss. When rainstorms poured he rested knowing those dark clouds would soon move on.

When grisly goats, demonic dragons or other ugly forms of monstrous nonsense blocked his way he told them where to go. Only the foolish hesitated to obey.

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Denise offers the word “edge” to be used in this week’s Six Sentence Stories.

Proverbs 16:7 When a man’s ways please the Lord, he maketh even his enemies to be at peace with him.” (KJV)

Rocks, Dirt and Darkness
Rocks, Dirt and Darkness

Country Landscapes

Dale offers “country landscapes” as the theme for this week’s Cosmic Photo Challenge.

I picked three rural scenes. The first was on the way to Cripple Creek, Colorado. The second was along the Blue Ridge Parkway in North Carolina. The third was a harvested corn field seen from a country road in northwestern Indiana.

Near Cripple Creek, Colorado

Blue Ridge Parkway, North Carolina
Harvested Corn Field, Northwestern Indiana

Exploration 95 – Humanistic Righteousness

In those days there was no king in Israel: every man did that which was right in his own eyes.

Judges 21:25 King James Version

In the comments to my post last week on demons, Oneta Hayes reminded me that I missed a whole class of demonic activity. The demons I missed were those that appeared “beautiful and compelling”. I pointed out the obviously ugly ones, but I missed the attractively strong delusions of unbelief that could be described as humanistic righteousness.

That is sometimes called self-righteousness, because one’s righteousness is based on following what is good in one’s own eyes. Self-righteousness justifies the ethics of humanism because humanism acknowledges no other ground than man: our reasonings, our wants, what we experience with our senses or our emotions. It is what grounds the ethics of ideas like effective altruism where one optimizes the amount of “good” one can do on a monetary basis. See Peter Singer’s The Most Good You Can Do: How Effective Altruism Is Changing Ideas About Living Ethically.

No matter how good this appears to be if it is not what Yeshua (Jesus) wants us to do, it is not good. It can’t be, because there is nothing good outside of His will.

O give thanks unto the Lord, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever.

Psalm 107:1 King James Version

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Weekly Parashah Readings
Parashah: Bamidbar, 5 Sivan, 5782 – June 4, 2022
Torah: Numbers 1:1 – 4:20
Haftarah: Hosea 2:1 – 2:23
Brit Chadashah: Romans 9:22-33; 1 Corinthians 12:12-30
Resources: Chabad, Hebrew4Christians, Weekly Torah Readings, Calendar

Rain Clouds
Rain Clouds

Vegetable Stand – Friday Fictioneers

No one tended the vegetable stand hidden in the hills. There was an open box where one could put coins and bills to pay for the vegetables all marked with prices. Customers made their own change from what was in the box.

Some took vegetables without paying. Some took some (and sometimes all) of the money in the box. Others put more money in the box than they were asked to. Others in repentance returned money or something as exchange for what they shouldn’t have taken.

At the end of the season enough remained to make the next year possible.

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Rochelle Wisoff-Fields offers the photo below as the prompt for this week’s Friday Fictioneers.

PHOTO PROMPT © Brenda Cox
PHOTO PROMPT © Brenda Cox
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