Tag Archives: Judah

Behold a Virgin shall Conceive Part 2

In Part 1, we addressed the use of the Hebrew word, almah (virgin), as it is used in Isaiah 7:14. Today we are going to look at the whole of chapter 7 and onwards to understand the historical aspects of what is written, which will lead to how it pertains to the birth of Christ, and then into His future return.

Many people ask why the historical context is important, and the answer is really twofold. First, it’s important because God gave us a very specific set of instructions to tell whether a prophet came from Him or not.

Deuteronomy 18:20-22  But the prophet, which shall presume to speak a word in my name, which I have not commanded him to speak, or that shall speak in the name of other gods, even that prophet shall die. (21) And if thou say in thine heart, How shall we know the word which the LORD hath not spoken? (22) When a prophet speaketh in the name of the LORD, if the thing follow not, nor come to pass, that is the thing which the LORD hath not spoken, but the prophet hath spoken it presumptuously: thou shalt not be afraid of him.

Many scholars will look at historical prophecies, like those given in Daniel, and say that they have already come to pass, and that they were given to those specific people for that specific period of time, and that those prophecies don’t have any more meaning for us today. The problem with that is there are many parts of Daniel and this book of Isaiah that have not come to pass even to this day. Why? Because God gave us the prophecy and allowed it to be partially fulfilled to show that prophets like Isaiah and Daniel truly came from Him. If we only have prophecy given for the end of the world then we wouldn’t know if they came from Him until after the end of the world and by then it wouldn’t matter. God wants us to know before hand.

Mark 13:23 But take ye heed: behold, I have foretold you all things.

The second reason is that the historical context gives us the example for the future. Thus, if we can see the physical past events that happened, it helps us to understand not only the physical events that will happen, but also the spiritual ones.

1 Corinthians 10:11 Now all these things happened unto them for ensamples: and they are written for our admonition, upon whom the ends of the world are come.

Therefore, we need to know and understand what happened historically during the time of Isaiah.

Isaiah 7:1 And it came to pass in the days of Ahaz the son of Jotham, the son of Uzziah, king of Judah, that Rezin the king of Syria, and Pekah the son of Remaliah, king of Israel, went up toward Jerusalem to war against it, but could not prevail against it.

What did the world look like at this point in history? The kingdoms of Judah and Israel, having been split, are sometimes called the northern and southern kingdoms.  The northern kingdom didn’t want to go down to Jerusalem to worship, and instead they set up two golden calves to worship.

To the north of the northern kingdom, you have Syria, and to its east you have the big daddy superpower of the world Assyria. The Assyrian empire was extremely aggressive and had, in the not too distant past, threatened the northern kingdom during the reign of Menahem. Menahem decided to pay tribute to Assyria instead of fighting, however as anyone knows, if you feed a problem it only makes it hungrier.

Israel was a mess and was well past the four sons that God had promised Jehu would sit on the throne, Jehoadaz, Jehoash, Jeroboam II and Zechariah. Now we have a pile of evil generals and politicos that started with Shallum and there is even some evidence that supports the notion that the northern kingdom was split between Israel and Ephraim. Regardless, God wasn’t happy with any of it.

Did Israel care? No, of course not. So they decided to join up with Syria and attack Judah. Now it’s hard to say for sure why Israel decided to attack Judah. Some speculate that Israel and Syria joined forces to stave off the mounting pressure of Assyria and wanted Ahaz to join them. Ahaz refused so they attacked him. It would seem strange for a pair of kings, worried about an Assyrian assault, to attack a southern neighbor, but it isn’t unheard of. I mean, Hitler did the same thing with Russia while fighting the west. The bottom line is people do strange things when they don’t stop to consult our Father.

Now Ahaz wasn’t a peach. He was just as evil as… well he was a bad dude. He sacrificed, not only to other gods, but he participated in Molechism, which is tossing children into fire. But when you decide to join up with a foreigner (Syria) and attack your brother (Judah), you’re going to be in a heap of hurt. Those of you that have kids can relate. If your sons or daughters have a fight with one another, that’s one thing, but if one of your sons grabs some other kid and uses him to beat up their brother that is crossing the line. Quite frankly, it’s unthinkable for most of us, but that is what Pekah did.

Reading on in Isaiah chapter 7, we will find that God sends Isaiah and specifically tells him to bring his son Shearjashub (this will be important to remember in the next part) to meet with Ahaz and tell him that Syria and Ephraim are not going to prevail, and that within 65 years they are not going to even be a people. Then God says:

Isaiah 7:10-11  Moreover the LORD spake again unto Ahaz, saying, (11) Ask thee a sign of the LORD thy God; ask it either in the depth, or in the height above.

Pause a moment. God tells you to ask for a sign would you ask? I mean He didn’t say I’ll give you one if you would like. He TOLD him to ask, but what does the mighty Ahaz do?

Isaiah 7:12 But Ahaz said, I will not ask, neither will I tempt the LORD.

He can sacrifice children to Molech, but he won’t tempt God by doing what He tells him to do. That calls to mind a verse earlier in this book of Isaiah doesn’t it?

Isaiah 3:4 And I will give children to be their princes, and babes shall rule over them.

Anyway, that brings us to the well-known verse 14

Isaiah 7:14 Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel.

This is the SIGN for the above prophecy. Namely, that God is going to make it so that Syria and Ephraim are no longer a people. Historically, this happened which is why most of Israel is scattered to this day, not knowing who they are.

Fast-forward to chapter 8:

Isaiah 8:1-4  Moreover the LORD said unto me, Take thee a great roll, and write in it with a man’s pen concerning Mahershalalhashbaz. (2) And I took unto me faithful witnesses to record, Uriah the priest, and Zechariah the son of Jeberechiah. (3) And I went unto the prophetess; and she conceived, and bare a son. Then said the LORD to me, Call his name Mahershalalhashbaz. (4) For before the child shall have knowledge to cry, My father, and my mother, the riches of Damascus and the spoil of Samaria shall be taken away before the king of Assyria.

Clearly the prophetess isn’t a virgin (though she could’ve been prior), but obviously this is the child of which God spoke that would come, but only in part. This child is a proof that what Isaiah said was true. How do we know Mahershalalhashbaz isn’t the child Immanuel? Because if you read on through to chapter 9 you come to:

Isaiah 9:6-7  For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. (7) Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.

Did Mahershalalhashbaz accomplish this? No, and because he wasn’t of the house of David, we know that ultimately this isn’t the child God intended. Thus, we know that God intended this for a future messiah.  Also if you read on through to chapter 14, where this whole sequence continues on to, you will see that Mahershalalhashbaz doesn’t come close to fitting the bill in it’s entirety.

But, was Mahershalalhashbaz the one Isaiah (or God rather) was speaking about in 7:14? Well Isaiah seemed to think so:

Isaiah 8:18 Behold, I and the children whom the LORD hath given me are for signs and for wonders in Israel from the LORD of hosts, which dwelleth in mount Zion.

But wait, it says Children not child. Hey I’m glad you noticed that. It does say that, doesn’t it? That’s why I told you to note how God told Isaiah to bring his son, Shearjashub which means, a remnant shall return. And we will cover what that sign means prophecically even onto this day when we return in part 3.

If this was helpful please share and God bless.

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Was Jesus a Jew?

These days, there appears to be a lot of confusion about whether or not Jesus was a Jew. While I believe that most people do not question whether or not He was born of the tribe of Judah, we will cover it anyway before we go further into the meaning of the word, Jew.

Turning to Matthew chapter 1 will bring us to a long genealogy. This genealogy brings us from Abraham to Judas, who is the father of all the members of the tribe of Judas, then continues on all the way to Joseph, the husband of Mary.

Joseph as many of you know, didn’t have anything to do with Jesus’ conception, making his genealogy moot. Mary’s genealogy is a bit more hidden, but can be found in the pages of Luke.

Luke begins his gospel, not with Jesus, but with “a certain priest named Zacharias.”

Luke 1:5 There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth.

We are told here that Elisabeth is of the daughters of Aaron, which means she is from the tribe of Levi. Later in the chapter we learn that Elisabeth is Mary’s cousin:

Luke 1:36 And, behold, thy cousin Elisabeth, she hath also conceived a son in her old age: and this is the sixth month with her, who was called barren.

Thus making Mary at least half Levite. Why only half Levite? Let’s back up to when the angel told Mary she was to conceive as a virgin.

Luke 1:30-33 And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God. (31) And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS. (32) He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: (33) And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

So let’s answer the question, why only half Levite? Because we see that in verse 32 it tells us He will be given the throne of His father David, who we all know was a member of the tribe of Judah.

Why then is there a lot of confusion about whether or not Jesus is a Jew? It is because of the word Jew itself, not only what it means, but who calls themselves Jews.

Jew (n.)

late 12c. (in plural, giwis), from Anglo-French iuw, Old French giu, from Latin Iudaeum (nominative Iudaeus), from Greek Ioudaios, from Aramaic jehudhai (Hebrewy’hudi) “Jew,” from Y’hudah “Judah,” literally “celebrated,” name of Jacob’s fourth son and of the tribe descended from him. Replaced Old English Iudeas “the Jews.” Originally, “Hebrew of the kingdom of Judah.”

Clearly the word doesn’t go back as far as the tribe of Judah itself, but has come to be the word we use in English to describe those who are descended from Judah himself along with those from the southern kingdom called Judah, which mainly included not only members of the tribe of Judah, but Levi and Benjamin as well.

This is why Paul called himself a Jew despite being of the tribe of Benjamin

Acts 21:39 But Paul said, I am a man which am a Jew of Tarsus, a city in Cilicia, a citizen of no mean city: and, I beseech thee, suffer me to speak unto the people.

Romans 11:1 I say then, Hath God cast away his people? God forbid. For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin.

Jesus himself had no problem being called a Jew despite the fact He was a Galilean.

John 4:9 Then saith the woman of Samaria unto him, How is it that thou, being a Jew, askest drink of me, which am a woman of Samaria? for the Jews have no dealings with the Samaritans.

So what on earth is the cause of the problem? The problem lies with the kenite.

Revelation 2:9 I know thy works, and tribulation, and poverty, (but thou art rich) and I know the blasphemy of them which say they are Jews, and are not, but are the synagogue of Satan.

Revelation 3:9 Behold, I will make them of the synagogue of Satan, which say they are Jews, and are not, but do lie; behold, I will make them to come and worship before thy feet, and to know that I have loved thee.

Personally I am not a huge fan of the word Jew. I much prefer to use the word Judah because among other things, it is more precise, however the rest of the world uses the word Jew to describe what they believe to be the tribe of Judah, and all of Israel, and it is our job, as Christians, to go out and preach the Word of God, not to confuse others.

Remember that when the Holy Spirit descended upon Peter and company on Pentecost day they did not try to change the way people understood their language. For the Holy Spirit will use your language to make itself understood.

Acts 2:5-8 And there were dwelling at Jerusalem Jews, devout men, out of every nation under heaven. (6) Now when this was noised abroad, the multitude came together, and were confounded, because that every man heard them speak in his own language. (7) And they were all amazed and marvelled, saying one to another, Behold, are not all these which speak Galilaeans? (8) And how hear we every man in our own tongue, wherein we were born?

If you speak in a language or a vocabulary that no one understands, then it is certainly not from God.

1 Corinthians 14:9-11 So likewise ye, except ye utter by the tongue words easy to be understood, how shall it be known what is spoken? for ye shall speak into the air. (10) There are, it may be, so many kinds of voices in the world, and none of them is without signification. (11) Therefore if I know not the meaning of the voice, I shall be unto him that speaketh a barbarian, and he that speaketh shall be a barbarian unto me.

Many of you out there know who the synagogue of Satan is and that they, the kenites, call themselves Jews, but that doesn’t change the meaning of the word and it certainly wont change what the world believes the word means. So why would we argue and fight about the meaning of the word when the wise already understand who the synagogue of Satan is, but it confuses and turns away the young in Christ? Despite how difficult it can be sometimes we have to remember that Christ told us in Matthew 13 that the reapers are the angels and that we are not to gather up the tares lest we root up some wheat as well.

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