Friday, March 31, 2006


We are deeply grieved over the departure, yesterday, of a very dear brother from the German community of Bet El. Gerhard was one of the elders and very respected in the town of Zichron Yaacov (which is where the Bet El kibbutz is located), as well as by thousands of other Israelis who have come to visit this Christian community and hear a testimony of the Father’s faithfulness. Those of you who visited Bet El most likely have met Gerhard, as he did the conducting of tour groups through the factory, sharing the testimony of how the Father brought a group of German Christians to Israel some 40 years ago. Gerhard was also the one whom YHVH used to open the door for others, who were not directly affiliated with this community, to come and serve Judah in a very practical way. We grieve with those who knew and loved him, and we will miss him greatly. I think if he were here to speak he would quote the following scripture:

“This is the day that the Lord has made let us rejoice and be glad in it”.

This is one scripture, among many others, of course, that we need to take in daily as we walk through trials and individual tribulations. Just like the weather in its extremes, it seems our lives are also subject to great and unbelievable blessings, but then sudden changes bring difficulties that we had not had to face in the past. Sometimes I feel as if I have just gotten into a boat, going with the Master on a journey that will see the lame walk, the blind see, and the dead raised. Excitement fills my soul as I wait to get to the other side, where the multitudes will be waiting to clutch on to Yeshua’s garments or perchance to have Him touch them with a healing touch. There is such a wonderful feeling of pride to be His disciple, to stand near Him while He ministers to the people, or to take the bread that He has blessed and to be able to give it to a hungry crowd.

For me to be with Yeshua in the boat, as we journey to the next experience, is the ultimate of my excitement and expectation. However, right in the midst of this heavenly voyage a storm rises with such magnitude that my heart fails within me, and I feel as if I’m about to go down with the ship. I cry out to my Heavenly Father to rescue me, but no answer comes. I grab the handle of the rudder and attempt to steer, but to no avail. Perhaps I can steady things with the oars, I reason, but I get thrown down with a large wave that collapses upon the boat. Anger arises within me to the point that I shout a rebuke against the devil, binding the strongman and casting him out. But the storm continues. Finally, at my weakest point, I look and see Yeshua resting peaceably in the very same vessel. But, do I awaken my beloved before it is time?

These past couple of weeks we have been on such a journey, greatly blessed by our visitors who came to stay with us, and by traveling with them around the country. We had experiences where we were able to see YHVH fulfilling restoration scriptures and bringing us into new relationships that truly were divine appointments, with hopes for future involvements. But in the midst of all this were the unexpected experiences that brought us before our Redeemer with a plea for deliverance. Most of us (including me) tend to ask: “Why”? “Why must Gerhard die at such an important time as this?”

I just got off the phone with our orthodox friend Nir, from the settlement of Har Bracha, whom I called to inform about the time of the funeral, as he too was very close to Gerhard. Afterwards he asked me if I had heard the news on the radio, to which I replied that I hadn’t. His report was one of those “stings” that I had made reference to in the previous week’s letter. Last night a couple picked up a hitchhiker here in Samaria (just east of us), who turned out to be a terrorist dressed up like an orthodox Jew. He blew himself up in their car killing four people (and by the way, today the Israeli news media seems to be totally silent about this affair… after all the deceased were “only” settlers). A little later I called Boaz (Chris Dreyer) with whom we stayed on Tuesday night at his and Rina’s house in kibbutz Kerem Shalom, to also let him know about the funeral. When he answered he asked me the same question that Nir did: “did you hear the news?” When I said which news, he elaborated: “The bird flu hit our kibbutz last night; 22,000 birds will have to be destroyed.”

I know by now that it is our Creator who orchestrates our circumstances before we even know what they will be. However, it is how we interpret those experiences, which will either bring on victory, or will allow the enemy to step in and interject thoughts that are not from our Elohim. Concerning such situations James the Apostle wrote: “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing” (James 1:2-4). This is much more easily read than applied. But why does our loving Heavenly Father create these storms?

Perhaps part of the answer lies in the fact that we are His children. “For whom YHVH loves He chastens, and scourges every son whom He receives. If you endure chastening, Elohim deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom a father does not chasten? But if you are without chastening, of which all have become partakers, then you are illegitimate and not sons. Furthermore, we have had human fathers who corrected us, and we paid them respect. Shall we not much more readily be in subjection to the Father of spirits and live? For they indeed for a few days chastened us as seemed best to them, but He for our profit, that we may be partakers of His holiness. Now no chastening seems to be joyful for the present, but painful; nevertheless, afterward it yields the peaceable fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it. Therefore strengthen the hands which hang down, and the feeble knees, and make straight paths for your feet, so that what is lame may not be dislocated, but rather be healed. Pursue peace with all people, and holiness, without which no one will see YHVH” (Heb 12: 6-14).

“Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward. For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of Elohim, you may receive the promise: For yet a little while, and He who is coming will come and will not tarry” (Heb. 10:35-37).


Friday, March 17, 2006


This past week we celebrated Purim and read the story of Esther. But this year was different from others in that it seemed that the Spirit of Holiness was not messing around anymore, but wanted us to “get our act together”; that is “to hang” our Haman on Yeshua’s gallows and finish with these spirits once and for all. In light of this, I was asking what my Haman was and the Ruach came back rather quickly and suddenly with one word: “disobedience”. That led to a number of other insights that I would like to share with you.

Since Haman had ten sons, they too were to be incorporated into the “deal”. And if disobedience is the father, who are the sons? Since YHVH’s Spirit is working sanctification and purification in my spirit and soul, I knew it was no problem for Him to reveal areas that I needed to repent of. But beyond repentance, I needed to learn to be obedient and practice the repentant heart, so that His righteousness may be established in my innermost being. No sooner did the Spirit whisper that answer to my question, than the Father began to create my daily circumstances in order to bring to light my programmed patterns of behavior that would reveal Haman and sons. A scriptural directive that He brought to my remembrance was: “be faithful/obedient in the little things”. In other words, YHVH wants to guide us even in what would appear to be insignificant matters. Sometimes we pray and pray to seek His will in major decisions, while not listening to His directives in the small daily matters, especially those that “tap” into some of our heart’s conditions.

One of the many situations I had to face this past week was a money matter. I was concerned, or fearful, that our expenditures might put us into debt and therefore decided to run to the bank. One of Haman’s sons, called “fear”, was governing this state of affairs, even though at that point it was at the level of “mere” concern. In addition to taking care of the finances, I also needed to attend to other matters. In order to make the best use of my time I devised a strategy that would, so I thought, help me accomplish my tasks efficiently.

Driving through town, confident of my ideas and well-organized plans, I was suddenly “interrupted” by a still small thought: “pull in here and park”. There it was, near my bank, a free parking area but one that is usually full. So, taking a quick glance at it I assumed that there would be no room, and continued on my way to another appointment. That small act of assumption leading to disobedience, in that split moment, opened the door to another of Haman’s sons, “confusion”. From then on all my decisions were going to cost me time and energy, and additionally, "concern", that was there at the outset, mushroomed into "fear" that I wouldn’t make it in time back to the bank. I eventually parked in a paid parking lot and even though I had a parking pass, "confusion" blocked my mind and I failed to display it. I then proceeded to go to the office where I had to take care of some business. After about half an hour I remembered that I hadn’t put the ticket in the window. However “fear” and “doubt” spoke to me that if I were to leave my spot someone else would take my turn. Eventually I took a chance and run out, only to find a ticket with a fine attached to my window. Fortunately when I returned from the parking lot, the person ahead of me had not come out yet. Finally it was my turn, but to my dismay I did not have one of the forms that were required for finishing the process, even though I had enquired several weeks beforehand as to the needed paperwork. “Frustration” and “anger” were now holding hands and doing their dance, to be followed by “bitterness” and “criticism” which joined in the celebration. But if that were not enough, “self condemnation” and “unforgiveness” had to have their expression as well. I was not doing well in “casting down all thoughts and imaginations that were exalting themselves above the knowledge” of His Holy presence in me. Haman’s sons were partying inside my mind tossing junk all over the place, although on the outside I appeared to be “holding my cool”.

In last week’s article mention was made of separating the holy from the profane. Haman and his sons are profane entities that can work in our hearts and minds if we succumb to their desires to manifest their nature in and through us. Like Haman, these spiritual culprits are out to steal, kill and destroy our peace, joy and righteousness. The Ruach Hakodesh, on the other hand, has already restored us to the garden of YHVH’s delight ("Eden") and is enabling us to reach up and partake of the Tree of Life (Yeshua) who is always full of the fruit of the Spirit. Once we partake of that fruit we also become “trees of righteousness the planting of YHVH, so that He may be glorified” in us (ref. Isa 61:3).

Yeshua showed us what the profane/disobedient heart looks like. It is the heart that has the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil: "What comes out of a man, that defiles a man. For from within, out of the heart of men, proceed evil thoughts, adulteries, fornications, murders, thefts, covetousness, wickedness, deceit, lewdness, an evil eye, blasphemy, pride, foolishness. All these evil things come from within and defile a man" (Mark 7:20-23). But the fruit of the Tree of Life is “love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law,” (Gal 5: 22-23).

YHVH is gathering the “trees of righteousness” to build a temple in the land, but it will take obedience of faith to become a part of this latter day restoration.

"Even those from afar shall come and build in the temple of YHVH. Then you shall know that YHVH of hosts has sent Me to you. And this shall come to pass if you diligently obey the voice of YHVH your Elohim” (Zech 6:15). “Do you not know that you are the temple of Elohim and that the Spirit of Elohim dwells in you? If anyone defiles the temple of Elohim, Elohim will destroy him. For the temple of Elohim is holy, which temple you are” (Cor. 3:16-17). “Or do you not know that your body is the temple of the Spirit of Holiness who is in you, whom you have from Elohim, and you are not your own?” (1 Cor 6:19).


Friday, March 10, 2006


Genuine love goes a long way in restoring relationships. And this of course is also true about the relationship of Ephraim and Judah. A few weeks ago I received a letter with just such an account, to which was also added a touch of “divine irony”. I have omitted the names of the Messianic couple (mentioned below) that has been living in Israel for many years, and the name of the Ephraimite fellowship and its leaders who extended love and blessings to the said couple. In addition, the following also incorporates a very sound teaching, much of which was actually demonstrated and put into action, as you will see, in the Ephraimite-Judahite encounter.

"They [the Messianic couple] found us [the Ephraimite Messianic fellowship] on the Internet after praying where the Father wanted them to go. Out of many other messianic groups the Father directed them to us. We had not posted our information on the Internet. The funny thing is, the MJAA (Messianic Jewish Alliance of America) posted us and did not know that we were affiliated with the MIA (Messianic Israel Alliance)! The couple loved this and was totally thrilled, as they knew God had directed their path to us.

We could see that this couple was exhausted and we knew they had turned their renewing visa time into a ministering time for the church…but it was obvious that they just had not had a break. He shared on the trip to our house some of the persecution stories like having his tires slashed 11 times in 3 months…etc. They chose our place for a Shabbat messianic fellowship and a place of rest before continuing to minister to the churches during the week. Knowing this background we welcomed them warmly and made them feel like this was their home.

We really wanted to minister to them, but allowed them the freedom to express what God had placed on their hearts for us first. He taught on the Tabernacle and we all loved his insights and gleanings. After we had a midrash and that was where the ministering for them took place…. God had His hand on these people!!! We prayed for them and shared some insights to bless them, to strengthen them and give them hope.

Some of the points covered were: One of them brought up the fact that he did not know who the two trees represented in his teaching. When we shared scriptures from Zech 4 and Rev re: two trees / two witness of Messiah/ Two houses of Israel, his wife agreed and he was interested in looking into the House of Israel and the House of Judah as the two olive trees and the two witnesses of the Messiah. This led us through other scriptures and illuminations about the two houses.

They mentioned all the ministry and prayer they do with the congregation and other projects they have in Israel. Very impressive, but [yet] we saw two very depleted people. They have passion for God and His people but lacked "fire". We wanted to share and impart some key scriptures that keep us from draining our oil and keep oil restored in the lives of others as well.

We quoted from the scriptures, the difference between a false and true prophet and priest:
Ezekiel 22:26 "Her priests have violated My law and profaned My holy things; they have not distinguished between the holy and unholy, nor have they made known the difference between the unclean and the clean; and they have hidden their eyes from My Sabbaths, so that I am profaned among them." Ezekiel 44: 23-24 "And they shall teach My people the difference between the holy and the unholy, and cause them to discern between the unclean and the clean… They shall keep My laws and My statutes in all My appointed meetings, and they shall hallow My Sabbaths."

We also shared on the Mikvah, generational curses and the washing process.

We found that if we taught people this [type of material] that there were less prayer needs, and as they came to understand and learn God’s ways, they had fewer problems in their lives and experienced blessings, not curses. As the people were learning the difference between clean and unclean, holy and unholy they could choose life …not death. When they chose life they got blessings not curses. This alleviated so much stress in our lives and set the people free. No longer were they dependent on the Pastor, but sought eagerly after the Father’s heart for their lives. People started to change here in the fellowship and a peace came over the people like we have never seen before. We no longer had to teach the people, as they all know and are learning the ways of God as they are now understanding the difference between clean and unclean, holy and unholy.

The people here also know who they are. They are part of Israel. We are no longer Gentiles (pagan, confused and without God). We know we are a royal priesthood and a holy Nation before YHVH and we are learning through progressive revelation how to walk in a redeemed lifestyle and walk in our inheritance, with the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob…in Yeshua’s footsteps as taught by Moses (John 5:46-47).

We know the Jews are trying to hold the land. We also know there are too few in number. We told this Jewish couple that they need Joseph to come home. As the people are selling God’s land, Joseph’s rightful property, Joseph is preparing to come home. Joseph is being formed in the wilderness and all TWELVE tribes will come into the Land as a mighty army.

We need to teach the people who they are and teach them how to walk in God’s ways choosing to walk in clean/holy ways, and then we can keep the land…. If not taught properly, the land will spew us out as no unclean people can "keep" the land. They will just be visitors in the land…coming in and going out…never staying. The enemy will always be at your doorstep and harassing you…you have that now. The enemy is only in your camp to let us know we need to fix something in us. Once we come into Godly order in our own lives, the enemy moves on to infect another camp. The secret is we need to teach our people "God’s truth". That is the job of the true priest and prophet of the Messiah.

The second message was 2 Chronicles 30:9 "If you return to YHVH, then your brothers and your children will be shown compassion by their captors and will come back to this land, for the LORD your God is gracious and compassionate. He will not turn his face from you if you return to him."

Understanding this passage we started to really see that what we were doing here in our home and by teaching others (the difference between clean and unclean/holy and unholy) was going to have an effect in the land of Israel today. Not only would we be set free but our brothers and families who were held by their captors would also be set free and come back to YHVH and the land.

This was so huge to us. We told this lovely couple that what we are doing here today in…., is helping them. By our actions it was bringing freedom in their land.

There were many more things discussed but by the time we finished they were very touched. I think they were very humbled by our hospitality and gifts of midrash and love. We ministered to a needy people and hopefully the fruit will produce a wealth in the land a hundred fold.

At the end of the day, our Ephraimite friend took this couple back to their lodging. The Ephraimite gave the Judahite a hug good-bye. In return, the Judahite hugged the Ephraimite back very long and hard. The Ephraimite said, "We love you," and the Judahite acknowledged that but could not look at the Ephraimite as he had tears in his eyes.

It is sooooo good for brothers to come together (Psalm 133), and we look forward to blessing more from Judah. It was a very special Sabbath - one we will always remember. It's amazing how much the Parsha studies match where we are...the study last week was Y'thro teaching Moses this very thing...

End quote.

We want to extend our gratitude to the brothers and sisters for what they have demonstrated, as well as for allowing us to share their experience and teaching.


Friday, March 03, 2006


I’m sure that most of you have heard about the controversy that arose over the Danish cartoon of Mohammed, and the riots that are still in progress in Moslem communities throughout the world. Taking his cues from this conflagration, someone decided to scribble degrading words against Islam’s prophet on the outside walls of a mosque, most likely with the hope that it would start an Arab uprising in Israel and against Jews all over the world.

The little town where this took place happens to lie just below us, and is about a half mile north east of our town. The village of Nabi Elias (“Prophet Elijah”) is known for its friendliness, with the road connecting us to other Israeli towns (settlements), to the northeast, passing right through it. But two days ago a shot rang out and a resident of one of the Israeli communities was seriously wounded in the neck. Another was killed in a drive by shooting further into Samaria. Was there a connection between the graffiti and the cost of a life?

Due to the circumstances that Islam has launched the world into, much is being written about Islam, the Arab world, and the Koran. There is one factor that controls this religion and unites its devotees, and that is Pride which demands honor, respect, and compliance – Karameh is the Arabic term. This concept is at the center of its worldview and the prime cause and motivator of actions, both individual and corporate. A word or deed that is construed as an offense to Karameh, will be met by retaliation and revenge. There was no question in anyone’s mind that after those words were scribbled, it would be only a matter of time before something would happen. Pride never forgives nor forgets and is never satisfied. In yesterday’s paper, an Israeli military officer said that we should expect the Palestinians to return to the days of the stone throwing. “Stone throwing,” means war not strictly with adults, but also with a child of any age who can pick up a stone and hurl it. In the Gaza Strip, for example, our soldiers were psychologically challenged because they had to deal day after day with young children throwing stones while their older brothers were standing behind them with weapons. Almost everyone knew that this method would win the war for the Palestinians. Thus we have given in time after time to these little Palestinian “Davids”. Hamas has used its little ones, trained by their mothers to hate, to step out with sticks and stones and stand in front of Israeli tanks and soldiers. Some, who year after year have cultivated this brave attitude, are now strapping explosives belts and sacrificing themselves to Islam’s god of Karameh.

The spirit of pride will not be satisfied until all of its objectives are completed, and that is the elimination of anything that stands in its way. Pride has no value on life, it will “steal, kill and destroy”, it also has no political or religious bounds, nor does it take age into account, it has one objective and that is to satisfy ITS SELF. This is the picture of the Anti-Messiah’s rule on earth, not only in our generation, but ever since Man ate of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil. Satan was in that tree, and it was the fruit of his nature of pride that Man received into the soil of his heart. We are all victims of this sinister plan. However, Elohim, the Creator, has a full proof plan to destroy the works of Satan. He began this work when He made a covenant with a very old man called Abraham and intervened in the dead and barren womb of his elderly wife Sarah. Elohim did it again in two other wombs of barren women. And so, when the time came for the conception of His only begotten Son, in the womb of a virgin, the Creator, who had already demonstrated His ability to bring life out of death, had no problem accomplishing it.

Thus the words that Elohim spoke to Satan in the beginning (Genesis 3:15): “and I will put enmity between you and the woman and between your seed and her seed; He [the seed of woman] shall crush your head, and you will bruise his heel” (the name “Jacob” comes from the word heel), are fulfilled. For out of a virgin woman from the seed Jacob came YHVH’s only begotten Son to redeem the House of Jacob and to set up His heavenly Father’s Kingdom in that house. His rule and dominion here on earth will crush the head of pride in the hearts of men and thus end Satan’s rule on earth.

Satan is being allowed to express himself fully at this time, but only to be destroyed once and for all. Therefore "Elohim resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble” (James 4:6). “Humble yourselves under the mighty hand of Elohim, that He may honor you in due time” (1 Peter 5:5-6). “But the humble shall inherit the earth, and shall delight themselves in the abundance of peace” (Psalm 37:11).