“But in vain do they worship me, teaching for doctrines the commandments of men”.
“Now the Ruakh distinctly says that in the last days some will remove from the faith, and will go after deceiving spirits, and after doctrines of demons”.
Bat-Tzion welcomes all people, but we do not welcome all doctrines, or teachings. Doctrines produce certain religious behaviors, so those accompanying behaviors are by default, therefore, not welcomed either. This, sadly, means that some people will depart from us. It is a difficult thing to separate people from doctrines that do not belong to Elohim.
We certainly do not despise the person who might bring in error, but, many times the case is that the person refuses to separate from the doctrine, and, because we do not support the doctrine, the person is offended. This is sad, but a necessary displeasure, in order to preserve the sanctity of the Congregation according to the Torah.
Bat-Tzion was established by Yah under the teachings of Messianic Judaism, under certain authority, and the congregation submits to that authority, because it is submitted only to the Word of Elohim. How we divide the Word according to our understanding is a consensus among the members, including the under-shepherd [“rabbi” or “teacher”], the Beit-Din, and the congregation at large. It would be great if everyone who came through the doors of Bat-Tzion agreed with us, but, the sad truth is, many will not. This webpage is an effort to save heartache and preserve the peace in the Body of Messiah at large by warding off any future conflict. There are certain doctrines that make a person not truly of the faith, and we have no sorrow exposing those. But, there are some doctrines that we believe real believers follow which are simply in error, and, sadly, we cannot fellowship. In that case, we would prefer that no one try to bring in and impose upon us those doctrines, and create the uncomfortable situation of our having to separate after opening our hearts to them, and them to us.
The world is FULL of errant doctrines, and having an exhaustive list of those doctrines would be next to impossible. However, there are a few key doctrines which are more common among those seeking the Judaic nature of faith in Messiah which have already surfaced at Bat-Tzion several times. These are the ones we will present here in summary.
Two Houses of Israel
Two Houses of Israel – that western-European Christians and their descendents are genetically the ten northern tribes and therefore G-d saved them because they are the physical seed of Avraham, and are "The House of Israel," and will inherit the land of Israel with Judah.
"Command certain men not to teach false doctrines any longer, nor to devote themselves to myths, and endless genealogies. Such things promote controversial speculations, rather than advancing the work of Elohim, which is by trust." I Tim 1:3-4
Bat-Tzion does not take issue with the fact that the kingdom of Yisra'el was divided in two some 3,000 years ago. Clearly, the Jews are Judah, Benjamin, and part of Levi, and there were ten other tribes who made up the KINGDOM of Israel in the north, the scattered, FORGOTTEN part of the Northern Kingdom. However, Israel TODAY is the NATION so called by that name, and NOT the ten "lost tribes". Israel in the time of Messiah was the Kingdom of Judah, AND those of the northern kingdom who rejoined Israel proper under Judah's king of Israel. Today's Jews are Judah AND the returned portion of the other ten who came back in the time of Hezekiah. [2 Chron 30]. It is our contention that those who now believe in Messiah Yeshua who are NOT Jewish, yet see the covenants in their entirety and desire to follow Elohim and His Messiah, are in fact GRAFTED INTO JUDAH, the known 'natural' seed of Israel in the Holy Land in the time of Messiah. They are, therefore, under JUDAH’S tutelage [Eph 2:19-22, Rom 10:12, 11:17-21], since Messiah and all the apostles were from the Kingdom of Judah. The scriptures are clear on this. Calling the northern "Kingdom" by the name "Yisra'el" was a temporary moniker for a KINGDOM which NO LONGER EXISTS. It is our contention that today "Israel" represents both 'natural' Israel in regard to the Jewish people and the land, and spiritual "Israel" in regard to the kahal, since there are Jews in the Kahal [Assembly] who believe in Messiah. There are not "Two Israels", which is what "Two-House" theology implies. Spiritual Israel never supplanted natural Israel [Romans 11]. A Remnant of Natural Yisra'el BECAME Spiritual Yisra'el when the first 500 Jews believed in Messiah's Resurrection. The first 3,500 believers were Jewish, and they were the Yisra'el of Elohim, the True Israel. NO ONE is the Israel of G-d until they believe in Messiah! But, today, the only people who are genetically recognized as "Israel" are the Jews who are today called "Israel", living in the land, and the Jews who live in Jewish communities around the world. That is 'earthly' Israel. The Shlikhim preached first to Yisra'el, the Jews. [Read the book of Acts] The Yisra'el of Elohim [Gal 6:16] is made up of JEWS AND gentiles who TRUST in Messiah.
Ephraim and Dan, the two 'leaders' in the Kingdom of Yisrael that was destroyed, have been FORGOTTEN. Why? Because in their cities, "Two Houses" of Israel were built, Temples that hvhy did NOT command, and they both mixed the worship of Yah with that of idols; they set GOLDEN CALFS in these two temples, one in the territory of Dan, and one in the territory of Ephraim, and they each called this calf hvhy ! They will never be brought back in! The tribes listed in Revelation 7, ALREADY in the Land during the tribulation, DO NOT include Ephraim and Dan! Why would ANYONE want to claim to be part of these tribes, and hinge their station in Yah's kingdom on it? Interestingly, these are the two tribes "two-housers" claim genetic attachment to the most!
Several leaders in this congregation are genetically from the tribe of Yehuda/Jewish, as are many congregants. Nothing Anti-Semitic will be accepted, and Ephraimite/Two House theory, at its root and by many of its progenitors, can tend toward anti-Semitism and 'replacement theology'. Any notion that presumes arbitrary, modern "Ephraimites" should wrest the promises and/or the land from Israel is strongly opposed by the congregation. Any divisive spirit that derides the place of Judah in the land or as the leader in the Kingdom will be opposed. The sin of Ephraim was his opposition to Judah as the royal line and owner of the land of the House of Elohim.
One scripture that is used to support the "Two House/Two Stick, Ephraimite Israel" idea is this: "But He [Yeshua] answered and said, "I am not sent but to the lost sheep of the House of Yisra'el"." [Matt 15:24] The assertion is that these lost sheep are the scattered Northern Tribes, the "Ten Lost Tribes", that since they were the "House of Israel", that is who Yeshua came to save. The idea is extended to mean that those who have become believers, who are predominantly European, western Europeans like the British, the Danes, the Scots, the Irish, et cetera, are the lost sheep of Yisra'el, the scattered northern tribes now "found", and it is proven by their salvation, earning their salvation partly because of their supposed but ficiticious genetic inheritance. This is simply not true. Proponents of this interpretation forget that just a few chapters before, Yeshua told His Talmidim this: "Do not go into the way of the Gentiles, nor into any city of the Samaritans do not enter, but rather go to the LOST SHEEP OF THE HOUSE OF YISRA'EL". [Matt 10:6] Analysis of the gospels and the book of Acts shows us that they ministered only in Judea [JEW-DEA], to the Jews of His time, and NOT to the Samaritans, who were KNOWN descendants of the northern scattered tribes. Further, they were forbidden to go to the "Gentiles", or the "goyim" at this point. Yeshua brought Salvation to the JEW first! And He called THEM the Lost Sheep of the House of Yisra'el.
Once again, Bat-Tzion does not take issue with the fact that the northern tribes were scattered. What we take issue with is the assertion that one is a genetic descendant of Yisra'el, and that hvhy saved them because they are sons of Avraham. No. "Know therefore that they who are of the faith, they are the Children of Avraham." [Gal 3:7] THAT is the Yisra'el of Elohim [Gal 6:16] We are all sons of Avraham BECAUSE HE SAVED US. Regardless of genetic makeup! "For the real Jew is not a Jew outwardly [by genetics or behavior] ...on the contrary, the REAL JEW is one inwardly." [Rom 2:29]
Those who promote this doctrine insist that Ephraim is to be "the fullness of the gentiles." First, this was fulfilled in the time of Joshua, when Ephraim outgrew the land of their tribal inheritance. [Read the book of Joshua] Second, "goyim" does not mean "gentiles", it simply means "nations". To imply that this means they would be the numerous sons of Great Britain or other European nations is called "eisegesis", writing into the text something that is not there. This simply means that they would be "fruitful", which is what Ephraim means. They were very fruitful. But, then, all of Israel was told that if they disobeyed and were cast out of the land, they would be FEW IN NUMBER when they return! hvhy says this twice in the Torah. [see document linked below for details].
It is further asserted that the parable of the prodigal son is the "Two House" story. This cannot be. First, in the parable, the son who leaves his Father's house does so in good standing, with his Father's blessing. Proponents of Two House theology insist that this son represents Ephraim/Israel, the northern kingdom. This was not so of the northern tribes. They were driven out by their Father at the hand of the Assyrians for their extreme disobedience. They did not ask to leave with His blessing, and they did not take their wealth with them! They left as slaves, in abject poverty, subservient instantly to their overlords. The Father told them He would forget them! Second, the prabable shows that the son who stayed never left home, but perpetually enjoyed his Father's blessings up to the day the prodigal returned! Two-House proponents insist this is "Judah". This is not true of Judah/Jews: they, too, were driven out of the Land by their Father, and have been in great distress throughout the ages, until now. And they still have not returned to their Father en masse. So, this is a serious infraction against the meaning of this story, a twist on it, in fact, and a deceitful one.
Another example of poor academic analysis offered by promoters of this doctrine is the assertion that the origin of the word "Saxon" derives from a conjoining of "Isaac's Sons". For those who do not understand linguistics and etymology, this is an easy seguay into error. They do this with many words that have coincidental similarity, because they are not linguistic experts, and it is convenient to support their assertions this way. Those who do not study linguistics fall prey to this trickery. Below is the actual etymology [origin] of the word "Saxon":
Saxon c.1300, from L.L. Saxonem (nom. Saxo), usually found in pl. Saxones, from P.Gmc. *sakhsan (cf. O.E. Seaxe, O.H.G. Sahsun, Ger. Sachse "Saxon"), with a possible literal sense of "swordsmen" (cf. O.E. seax, O.Fris., O.N. sax "knife, short sword, dagger," perhaps ult. from PIE root of saw (1)). The word figures in the well-known story, related by Geoffrey of Monmouth, who got it from Nennius, of the treacherous slaughter by the Anglo-Saxons of their British hosts: "Accordingly they all met at the time and place appointed, and began to treat of peace; and when a fit opportunity offered for executing his villany, Hengist cried out, "Nemet oure Saxas," and the same instant seized Vortigern, and held him by his cloak. The Saxons, upon the signal given, drew their daggers, and falling upon the princes, who little suspected any such design, assassinated them to the number of four hundred and sixty barons and consuls ...." OED helpfully points out that the correct O.E. (with an uninflected plural) would be nimað eowre seax. For other national names that may have derived from characteristic tribal weapons, cf. Frank, Lombard. Still in 20c. used by Celtic speakers to mean "an Englishman." In ref. to the modern Ger. state of Saxony (Ger. Sachsen, Fr. Saxe) it is attested from 1634. Saxon is the source of the -sex in Essex, Sussex, etc. (cf. Middlesex, from O.E. Middel-Seaxe "Middle Saxons"). Bede distinguished the Anglo-Saxons, who conquered much of southern Britain, from the Eealdesaxe "Old Saxons," who stayed in Germany.
The original words, which were first used to represent this people group, then, were Seaxe, Sahsun, and Sachse, and they all are rooted in hand tools/weapons, and not genealogy or patrilineal sequence, and have absolutely NO linguistic tie to Hebrew's "B'ney Yitzkhak", the Hebrew for "Isaac's Sons". The modern word "saxon" has changed from its origin, drastically, and bears little similarity in phonetics to the original forms of the word, nor to any Hebrew word or English words for "Isaac's Sons". The same kind of trickery is used on the term "Britain", since it bears coincidental similarity to "brit", or "covenant". Yet the etymology of "Britain" shows no relationship to Hebrew, and no similarity to "Covenant". Similarly, assertions are made that the Danes are the missing "Danites" from scripture. Since the northern kingdom of Israel was not scattered until 700BC, this is impossible, given that Denmark was settled in 3900 BC! [Nielsen, Poul Otto (May 2003). "Denmark: History, Prehistory". Royal Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs]. The original syllable in "Danmark" likely comes from tenne, meaning "flatland", or other geographic references, and not "judge", as the Hebrew syllable connotes. These and many other such irresponsible, unacademic, even deceptive assertions leave many of the promoters of this doctrine suspect, at best.
The scriptures clearly indicate that the northern tribes went East into territories known to be in Iran, and further east, and were forgotten. The "Lost Sheep" of the House of Yisra'el were those in Israel in His day who had been misled by their "shepherds"/"pastors", as YirmiYahu said of JUDAH. [Jer 50:6, a prophet to the SOUTHERN KINGDOM]. It had nothing to do with geography, nor the ten northern tribes, but everything to do with deception and error.
Bat-Tzion welcomes anyone who trusts one day that Yeshua will return all Israel to the land and save all Israel, but does not hold to the current physical manifestation or "revelation" of Ephraim in our day by those who are being 'saved' because of their mysterious, hidden genetic inheritance, which cannot be proven at all. Again, we are NOT saved because we are Yisra'el, we are Yisra'el because we are saved, and our genes have NO PLACE in that determination.
For detailed analysis of SCRIPTURE on this issue, please read: The Two Houses Theory and the Scriptures
Sacred Name/Yeshua’s Name
Sacred Name/Yeshua’s Name pronunciation privilege – that there is a 'revealed' pronunciation of either the Name hvhy , or of Yeshua, that precludes anyone else’s pronunciation.
Bat-Tzion does declare the Name hvhy , as instructed in scripture. And, Bat-Tzion does believe that Yeshua’s name is important, and therefore important to His identity. But, there is no one on earth whose argument over how hvhy is pronounced is any more compelling than the next to the degree that it should divide believers. Neither is there any pronunciation of either of those names that means that if one does not confess the NAME in THAT particular, special pronunciation, then that one is not saved/righteous.
The name hvhy has been shown to be pronounced "Yahu'ah" since times of antiquity. The Name Yeshua is rampant throughout the Aramaic text, the primary text of New Testament study for Bat-Tzion. There is almost zero room for any variation when tracing from the Aramaic, the sister language of Hebrew. At times, the Aramaic form of Yeshua was used in Hebrew portions of the Tanak in order to express the Hebrew equivalent name, Yehoshua. The Masoretes recorded the pronunciation of Hebrew in a voweling system LONG USED in Hebrew synagogues all the way back in the 6th century A.D. There is no reason to believe the language had changed that much at all. Modern Hebrew agrees with these pronunciations, and too many scholars have agreed. See the file: "You Shall Call His Name Yeshua".
Bat-Tzion cherishes both of these Names, but will not be put under condemnation for not pronouncing them with any special group of people who claim to have the divinely revealed pronunciation. Several groups who have espoused any variant of this doctrine have turned into cults, with a single 'prophet' at the top who claims to have a seat next to Yah’s throne, and special communicative power with the Father no one else has. Not all who follow these pronunciation doctrines have gone that way, but the potential is certainly there.
Bat-Tzion calls the Father hvhy , and the Son “Yeshua”. In speaking The Name in conversation, we say only Yah, as in Psalm 94:12, but in sacred context of prayer and worship, and ministry, we declare the name hvhy . For more on our understanding of the Name, please read: "The Name"
The Yom Kippur Fast
The Yom Kippur Fast is not commanded – that the command to "afflict your souls" does not mean to fast as the "Jews" do, but simply to be 'serious' on Yom Kippur.
There is a trend in some of the 'two-house' leaning circles in Messianic “Judaism” that says we should not 'fast' on Yom Kippur, because that is what Jews do, and the word in Leviticus 23 does not say 'fast', but 'afflict', which only means to humble oneself. On the surface, this doctrine sounds lofty, sounds 'holy', and sounds like an honest attempt to get to truth. Unfortunately, this is rooted in lack of scholarship, and in anti-Semitism, and the hatred/mistrust of all doctrines of Jews, just because they are “Jewish.” They forget that Yeshua showed up and worked within the framework of 1st Century "Jew"daism during His ministry, and would not violate its 'customs' unless those customs violated the Torah.
Yeshua kept the Jewish customs, the ones that did not contravene Torah. The custom of fasting is less a custom and more a command, though to us who are so far removed from the word 'afflict', we do not see that “anah”, conjugated as “anitem et nafshoteikhem”, actually does mean to fast, and scripture proves it. We assume sometimes that “Strong’s Concordance”, a lexicon published in AD 1890 by a Methodist protestant, is the 'authoritative source' on Hebrew. That is a DANGEROUS assumption, and discredits mountains of other Hebrew scholarship, and does NOT take into account what ancient JEWS used words for and how THEY understood them, including Yeshua.
Further, Stephen, Shaul, and the rest of the Shlikhim, were FALSELY accused of wanting to do away not only with Moshe [Torah], but with the CUSTOMS established in Yisrael. Pay attention: these were FALSE ACCUSATIONS!
“There they set up false witnesses who said, "This man never stops speaking against this holy place and against the Torah; for we have heard him say that Yeshua from Natzeret will destroy this place and will change the customs Moshe handed down to us." Acts 6:13-14
“On hearing it, they praised Elohim; but they also said to him, 'You see, brother, how many tens of thousands of believers there are among the JEWS, and they are all zealots for the Torah. Now what they have been told about you is that you are teaching all the Jews living among the Goyim to apostatize from Moshe, telling them not to have a b'rit-milah [commandment] for their sons and not to follow the CUSTOMS. What, then, is to be done? They will certainly hear that you have come. So do what we tell you. We have four men who are under a vow. Take them with you, be purified with them, and pay the expenses connected with having their heads shaved. Then everyone will know that there is nothing to these rumors which they have heard about you; but that, on the contrary, you yourself stay in line with and keep the Torah.' ” Acts 21:21-24
We see here, then, that keeping the customs/traditions was part of keeping Torah, in the minds of TENS OF THOUSANDS of JEWS who believed in Yeshua! And Shaul did NOT repudiate them, but agreed with them. He also declared that he kept both the Torah and the CUSTOMS, years later when he was defending himself against the same accusations:
“In reply, Sha'ul said, "I have committed no offense - not against the Torah to which the Jews hold, not against the Temple, and not against the Emperor.” Acts 25:4
“Sha'ul called a meeting of the local Jewish leaders. When they had gathered, he said to them: 'Brothers, although I have done nothing against either our people or the TRADITIONS of our fathers, I was made a prisoner in Yerushalayim and handed over to the Romans. They examined me and were ready to release me, because I had done nothing to justify a death sentence. But when the Jews objected, I was forced to appeal to the Emperor - not that I had any charge to make against my own people.' " Acts 28:17-19
There is a lot to see in these two passages. First, that he did nothing against the “Temple”; the temples embodied many 'customs' that were not explicit in Torah, but that went hand in hand with Torah commands. You will see, one of these was fasting on Yom Kippur. Next, we see that, again, Shaul declares that he himself did nothing against the 'traditions'/customs of 'our fathers', the JEWS. He is defending his obedience to JEWISH CUSTOM, even AFTER he became a believer in Messiah Yeshua. Check the book of Acts from about chapter 13 through the end, and you will see Shaul keeping customs. One of them was Synagogue attendance on Shabbat. There is no direct command to go to a Synagogue. Why, then, do we see Yeshua, Kefa and the 11, Shaul, and many tens of thousands of Messianic Jews doing so? We can also see that in the Jewish mind, the death penalty was justified for breaking CUSTOMS. Not just commands; why? Because in their minds, the customs were 'how' to keep the commands. They were not separate. Again, the ones Yeshua opposed were the ones that replaced or prevented actually keeping the commands. The ones that supported the commands, those handed down from Moshe, He upheld, as did Shaul and all the Talmidim of Yeshua.
Now, to fasting on Yom Kippur itself, the command reads this way:
“Howbeit on the tenth day of this seventh month is the Day of Atonement [Yom HaKippurim]; there shall be a holy convocation unto you, and you shall afflict your souls [anitem et nafshoteikhem]; and you shall bring an offering made by fire unto hvhy .”
Those teaching that this does not mean fast assert that since a Methodist preacher decided it only means “afflict”, they can discard the rest of scripture concerning the Hebrew use of this word and ignore the “custom” of fasting on Yom Kippur. That is a DANGEROUS day to tinker with!
Ezra shows us how this word means to fast.
“Then I proclaimed a fast there, at the river of Ahava, that we might afflict ourselves before Eloheinu, to seek of Him a right way for us, and for our little ones, and for all our substance.” Ezra 8:21
The word for 'fast' here is “tzom”, which is the root word for 'abstaining from food', lest there be any doubt about what Ezra is recording. It is followed by the phrase, “L’hitanot lifnei Eloheinu”, or “afflict ourselves before Eloheinu”. So, the fasting was done for the purpose of 'afflicting'. Indeed, Biblical 'affliction' is 'hunger', and this is seen in many hundreds of uses of the word in the Tanak.
Let’s make sure this holds up with more than one witness, however:
“But as for me, when they were sick, my clothing was sackcloth: I humbled my soul with fasting; and my prayer returned into my own bosom.” Psalm 35:13
“And if you draw out your soul to the hungry, and satisfy the afflicted soul; then shall your light rise in obscurity, and your darkness be as the noonday..” YeshaYahu (Isaiah) 58:10
“In those days I Daniel was mourning three whole weeks. I ate no pleasant bread, neither came flesh nor wine in my mouth, neither did I anoint myself at all, till three whole weeks were fulfilled…. Then said he unto me: 'Fear not, Daniel; for from the first day that you did set your heart to understand and to afflict yourself before Eloheikha, your words were heard…’” Daniel 10:2-3, 12
“Blow the shofar in Tzion, sanctify the fast, call a solemn assembly…” Yoel 2:15
So, we now have four scriptural witnesses that clearly show us that in many cases the word 'anah' is used to indicate that FASTING is the “how” we do the 'afflicting/humbling'. In Yoel, this is the second shofar of the fall season, and the 'fast' is accompanied with the assembly of weeping and supplication, and this has long been seen by Jews as Yom Kippur, the Great Shofar. This was NOT a later “Jewish” concept, but a deeply rooted Torah concept. Moshe taught the Jews this, that 'afflict' in the context of Yom Kippur meant 'fast', and the prophets echoed it. It is not a “Jewish”, Talmudic custom, as many in so-called “Messianic” circles are now teaching.
This is further born out in the Mishnah, a document that was compiled in the late 2nd/early 3rd century. The Mishnah is the writing down of the orally taught 'customs' that were used in the Temple during the Second Temple period. Messiah Yeshua went to that Temple to observe the customs, and to show how those customs pointed to Himself. The customs of our Jewish people are very, very important. The Mishnah is NOT the Talmud. These were the students of people like Gamliel in the Brit Khadasha, who wrote down their teachings about Temple service one generation after they passed. It is the closest we can get to understanding ‘how’ they did things.
In the Mishnah, in Tractate Yoma, which explains how Yom Kippur was conducted in the Temple by the priesthood, we see very clearly that the 1st century JEWS observed a FAST in order to AFFLICT their souls before Elohim as commanded. [Yisrael was made up primarily of the tribes of Jewdah, Benjamin, and Levi, but small remnants of all the other tribes as well, and they were all called JEWS/YISRAELIS interchangeably. Two-housers can’t wrap their head around that, and it thwarts their doctrine]
In “Perek 4” of the Yoma Tractate, we read:
“But this day he scooped them out with a gold one [and was not required to empty one to the other] and with it he would bring it in [and offer it, thus conserving energy for the High Priest on this fast day]. On all other days he would….”
Here, we learn that on Yom Kippur, the High Priest is fasting, and his duty with the ashes is modified to accommodate his fast. This is the first mention in this tractate of the fast. In other words, there must have been a common understanding in Yisra’el that they fasted, that the Mishnah did not need to explain what “anitem nafshoteikhem”/afflict your souls meant! It was simply stated as a matter of fact that the High Priest was fasting that day!
We see this same defacto understanding in Perek 6, where we read:
“At each booth they would say to him, here is food and water, not that it ever happened that one needed to break his fast, rather, it was a comfort for the person to know that it was there, if needed.”
This is describing the journey of the escort for Azazel, the 'goat for Azazel' [known incorrectly as the “scapegoat”]. This escort was offered food, but no escort EVER took it! This is on Yom Kippur, when he is escorting Azazel to the cliff. This also shows us that there was a 'defacto' understanding that everyone fasted on Yom Kippur, not just the High Priest.
Then, in Perek 8 we read:
“since the Torah states regarding Yom Kippur, “You must afflict yourselves”, one consuming less than the bulk of a large date including its pit does not alleviate the affliction of fasting…”
Here, we are reading how fasting applies to ALL YISRAEL, and how it is EQUATED with ‘anah’, or “affliction”/”humbling” oneself. Again, the command for one to fast is never mentioned, but it is treated as if everyone in Yisrael understood it this way, and it is showing some mercy on the part of Elohim and Moshe, saying that food the size of a date’s bulk is permitted in emergencies!
Again, Yeshua adhered to these customs, all the Shlikhim [Apostles] did, suffering and dying in never 'admitting' to the lies that they violated Torah AND Customs, and the biblical proof that 'anitem et nafshoteikhem' actually means 'fast' is more than sufficient. There are many, many other scriptures where 'anah/afflict' is used in the context of HUNGER. Those teaching that Yom Kippur is NOT a fast are in serious error. It is NO SURPRISE to us that this doctrine is coming from TWO HOUSERS.
Our congregational Halakha on Yom Kippur is that WE FAST IN HUMILITY on that day. “How can two [or more] walk [share halakha, halakha meaning 'your walk' ] TOGETHER, unless they are in agreement?” If you’re 'walking' with those who teach this and other doctrines, please prayerfully consider the wisdom of the Prophets instead.
Trinity – that there is a “godhead” made up of three separate 'persons', who share a “body”.
Trinity: Definition and Etymology of the word:
"a group of three"
"the state of being threefold or triple"
from Latin 'trinitatem' for triad, three.
The first, "official" religious definition of "God" the creator as a "Trinity": Nicea, described "Christ" as "God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God, begotten, not made, being of one substance with the Father", 325AD
The bishops were forced by Constantine to use this terminology, which is not found in Scripture. They were compelled by an emperor who was not a believer, in fear of the loss of their lives, to "sign on" to this new doctrine.
It is the word 'substance' with which we take umbrage.
The Latin for 'one substance' is homoousios. "Consubstantial," meaning they share the same 'makeup,' 'essence', body, etc.
We differ on this, because Yeshua is a resurrected HUMAN BEING who had been born of flesh, but, having the divine "NATURE" of Elohim, and not the sinful 'nature' of Adam. That is what makes Him different from every other human being.
The Catholic church LATER changed the 'status' of the 'Holy Spirit' [Ruakh HaKodesh] from being the Power and Presence of Elohim, to being a separate male person, even though the Ruakh in Hebrew is treated as feminine in Hebrew grammar. This is not a 'gender,' but an expression of the nature of the Ruakh: life-giving and nurturing. The official trinity defines the "Holy Spirit" as a male PERSON the same as the Father and The Son, "separate but equal to" them, having 'his' own thoughts. No. The Ruakh expresses the thoughts of the Father, and of Yeshua, who always agree. Though English translations say 'He will lead you and guide you," concerning the Ruakh, the Aramaic [Hebrew] reads IT will lead you and guide you, which could easily be seen as 'SHE will lead you and guide you', as the articles that describe the Ruakh are feminine too... nonetheless, it is definitely not a "He", as in a separate male person,which is what the catholic 'trinity' demands we believe. Trinitarian doctrine teaches that the Spirit is to be worshiped; NOWHERE does scripture instruct us to worship the Ruakh. We are to worship the Father, with the Son, through the Ruakh, but we are NOT to worship the Ruakh.
The Ruakh emanates from the Father, and is not separate from Him at all. It is His Ruakh. The Hebrew word means "Breath." Breath comes out of and goes back into living beings continuously, and we are created in fashion after Him. His 'breath' carries His Word, just as our breath carries our words. His Word is LIFE and LIGHT, which emanates out of the Father through the power of the Ruakh.
The Father is spirit, but is also corporeal, having a form, a spiritual 'body.' We see that we are created in His 'tzelem', or 'image/outline/shadow', and also in his 'd'mut', or 'character'/to be like Him. We see His 'form' in the garden, walking with Adam in the cool of the day. We see His form at the mountain, where the elders saw His feet. We see Him again from the cleft, where He showed Moshe His Glory, not willing to show him His face. He has a head and face, therefore; WALKING by [having legs and feet], picking Moshe up [having arms and hands], and showing him His back. We see His form in the Hitgalut/Revelation, where He is seen sitting on the throne, having a scroll in His right hand.
Yeshua is the D'var, the WORD, which emanates from the Father in the power of the Ruakh. He is eternal. He is the Father's Son. He belongs to the Father. Before He became "A Body," [flesh] however, He was only in His Father. When He was here, He said "My Father is with me." "I proceeded forth and came OUT OF my Father." Before He became a man, He manifested in many 'forms' and 'ways' [Heb 1:1]: To Avraham at Mamre as a Malakh; to Ya'akov at Beit El as a malakh; to Moshe in the bush, as the Malakh hvhy ; to Manoah as the Malakh hvhy , to Shmu'el as the Malakh hvhy in the DAVAR, To Shadrakh Meshakh, Abednego and Nebukhadnezzar as The Son of God, and many, many times to the Prophets as THE WORD of hvhy .
These were temporary manifestations of the SON of Elohim, before He became the Son [Psalm 2: "I will proclaim the decree: hvhy has said, 'You are my Son, today I have begotten you.'" This is a prophecy concerning the birth of Yeshua.] He has now PERMANENTLY manifested in a HUMAN BODY as the Son: "The WORD became a BODY and lived among us..." Yokh 1:14
Yeshua is, therefore, the Son, begotten of Elohim, therefore Elohim 'reproduced' or 'spiritually procreated' His Nature in His Son, Yeshua, A MAN. He is STILL a MAN, though having been raised from the dead. Yeshua is both DIVINE AND human. He died. God cannot die, but Yeshua's HUMAN body died. His HUMAN soul went into Sheol. [Psalm 16, Acts 2] His Father, the Almighty RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD.
Yeshua has now been GIVEN all power and authority. If He had always been 'Very God of Very God," then "God" would not have had to give Him anything. Yet this is what we read. And, He does not know all that His Father knows, since He Himself does not know the time of His return. "Only my Father knows." He will return all things to His Father in the End, He is subject to His Father, in obedience. He NOW stands at the Right Hand of His Father, and the Father gives the Ruakh to those who trust, through His Son. Yeshua is the commonality between God and Man. He is not "God" BY HIMSELF, but stands equal with God, because His Father is pleased with Him, and hence has exalted Him, and given Him His Name.
This is what the plain meaning of the texts teach.
Trinitarian 'logic' goes far beyond scripture, defines NEW terms that are not in scripture, and completely ignores the greatest commandment, according to Yeshua the Son:
"Shema, Yisra'el, hvhy is our Elohim, hvhy is ONE."
The Father is hvhy ; His son is Yeshua, who has also been given the Name hvhy ; the Ruakh is His LIFE/BREATH, emanating out of the Father, through Yeshua the Son, to us. ONE ELOHIM, manifesting in the Son and the Ruakh. That the Ruakh is not a 'person' is obvious, since it 'burns' before the throne in SEVEN Lights of a Menorah. [Rev 4:5]
There are NOT "three gods" in "one substance," which is what the catholic trinity demands, but ONE GOD manifesting permanently in His Son, who manifests to us by His Ruakh, as this is what HE has chosen to do. He could be WHATEVER HE WANTS: "Eyeh Asher Eyeh", "I will be whatever I will be." [Exodus 3]. But HE said "I am hvhy ." He first sent His Son, a manifestation of His Nature, and then sent His own Breath/Ruakh through that Son. But, He has never been more than ONE.
Most Christians teach a “trinity”, which is a holdover from the worship of Mithras, a trinity, whom Constantine continued to worship and incorporated into Christianity at the council of Nicea.
We have shown that the council of Nicea declared the Father and the Son to be “of the same 'substance' ”, or corporeally the same, which denies the Son of His resurrected flesh and bone, or, makes the Father 'substantially' flesh and bone and not spirit. The Son of G-d, Yeshua, declared “I came out of Elohim, and now I have arrived here. I did NOT come on my own: HE SENT ME”. [John 8:42] He was “IN Elohim” in the beginning. [John 1:1-2, 8:42] And the Father was IN HIM while He was here, “The ONE who SENT me is still with me”. [John 8:29]
Because the catholic trinity is so misunderstood and has so many variant understandings among protestants, many of whom confess they do not 'understand it,' we DO welcome 'trinitarians' into the congregation, unless they make issue of this. We DO NOT accept Trinitarians who accuse us of being “un-saved” for not agreeing with this doctrine of man, and we DO NOT accept those who attempt to “convert” us to this doctrine, outside of honest scriptural based questions and interpretations. But, our confession must come from scripture ALONE, and not Socratic logic and extra-biblical terms and definitions that are necessary in order to 'understand and accept' this subtle form of paganism. ['trinity' is a pagan concept that goes back to ancient Bavel and the scattering of the nations. The 'dates'/'seasons' of the worship of this trinity were imposed by Constantine at the same time as this doctrine, changing the feasts and the Torah.] Come let us search the scriptures daily to see whether these things are so. Usually, when a courageous, serious look is taken into the doctrine, the magic “I believe” button most had to push in order to accept the doctrine is easily released, realizing there is no support for the Trinity doctrine in scripture.
Bat-Tzion agrees with the great command as declared by Yeshua the Messiah, the Son of Elohim:
“HEAR, O Israel! hvhy is our Elohim, hvhy is ONE!” [Mark 12:29, De 6:4]
Public use of “tongues” – that “tongues” is the only sign/ or the one 'necessary' sign of the presence of the Ruakh HaKodesh, that it can be given to another by man, and/or that it must manifest in every congregational setting.
Bat-Tzion believes in the several powers of the Ruakh HaKodesh, and that they are for the Kahal [congregation] today. However, this one manifestation is misused and abused, and completely misunderstood in some cases, and in many cases, simply forged.
It is the Father’s decision to empower the believer, converted “sons of the Most High”, with His Power [1 Cor 12:11]. He has given us the ability to discern when and when not to move in that power. [I Cor 14:32] This particular ability, “tongues” is a private enablement of the power of the Ruakh Hakodesh, which is NOT to be used in public settings, UNLESS there is a KNOWN INTERPRETER, or someone KNOWN to have the power of interpretation of languages, which, oddly, is a power that is not widely recognized or employed.
He does NOT give the SAME abilities to everyone in the SAME WAY. He gives SOME to prophesy, some to teach, and SOME to speak in other languages [I Cor 12:8-10]. Notice that the 3,000 who were immersed on Shavuot did not all speak in other languages! [Acts 2] Only the original five hundred or so did, and it was TO SAVE THE 3,000! Tongues, in a public setting, is for the UNBELIEVER! [1 Cor 14:22]
Much of what is considered “tongues” in the various congregations is nothing more than syllabic nonsense, not inspired/given by the Ruakh HaKodesh [I Cor 14:9-11]. Biblical “tongues” are LANGUAGES that are coherent, and spoken on earth for MEN to understand. If Elohim gives a person the use of a language unknown to himself, whether in the presence of men or messengers of heaven, it is for PRIVATE use [1 Cor 14:2,4], and only Yah understands it.
Bat-Tzion welcomes the power of the Ruakh, but not indiscriminately, where things are out of order, but that what is done is done for the edification of the Body, and not the spiritual 'glorification' of would-be prophets. We are praying that IF anyone indeed has a message for our Kahal in another language, that there will be an interpreter of that message, and that it will be the POWER of Elohim, and not the fanciful wishes of men conjuring an incoherent, horoscope-style promise of spiritual cake and ice-cream. When Elohim speaks, it is FEARFUL.
Miracle services/healing ministry – that the Kahal can at any time decide to have a 'miracle service', invite Jesus, and He will come and heal anyone who is sick.
Bat-Tzion believes in the power of the Messiah to heal. Many in our congregation have been healed miraculously by Messiah. Bat-Tzion prays DAILY for the health of its Body, and on Shabbat prays for an hour, much of it beseeching Yah through the scriptures [Psalm 6, 33, 40, 88, 103] for Him to heal His people. And, our Kahal has reaped the benefit of those prayers. But, Messiah healed only those whom HIS FATHER TOLD HIM TO.
If the Father did not compel Yeshua the Son to heal EVERYONE in Israel when He was bodily present on earth, He will neither do so today. Not everyone is healed who is a believer and gets sick. Not everyone who is a believer is guaranteed not ever to get sick. The sad truth is, some of us will suffer.
Bat-Tzion’s elders pray corporately for members of the Body when those members ASK. “Is any among you sick? Let HIM CALL for the elders of the Kahal; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of hvhy .” [James 5:14] Notice that it is the sick person who should call for the elders. Therein is faith.
Bat-Tzion does not hold a prayer service every time the doors are open, begging Yah to manifest in some miraculous way. But we are in continual prayer for the sick in our Body, even after congregational meetings. The communion is a healing process, and healing may occur at times simply during Shabbat worship, because He is there. But it is His decision. If two of us gather as He would have us gather, He IS there. What He does, however, is up to Him.
Yeshua did not often “pray” for healing. In fact, He never did, according to the gospels. Many times, He only stated that “YOUR FAITH has made you whole”. A plea from someone who WANTED healing was made because the sick “saw” Him, and believed He WOULD heal them. Interestingly, those who called Him Rabbi [teacher] were healed by His touch. Those who called Him Adon [Master] He would speak to and heal. But those who called Him hvhy Son of Elohim, or Messiah, THEIR FAITH HEALED THEM even from great distances. The onus is on the sick, and on the Father. We are only vessels who can pray when asked. He is the healer. Bat-Tzion, again, is praying for the various powers of the Ruakh, of which healing is one.
Calvinism of any variation – that there is a special subgroup of hand-picked people who merit salvation for some mysterious, unknown reason, while others are predestined to die a death in hell, and could not possibly be saved from that destruction.
Bat-Tzion believes in predestination, but that the predestination spoken of in scripture is a direct result of the foreknowledge of hvhy , who is NOT confined by time, but “Who WAS, and who IS, and who WILL BE”. “Because He FOREKNEW US, He therefore predestined us”. [Rom 8:29]
hvhy set HIS PATH in our place because He knows His Children, so He gave them who accept His Will the ability to become all to which they aspire. But, He has given EVERY MAN the opportunity to become His child. The Messiah died “not only for our sins, but for the sins of the WHOLE WORLD”.
Elohim has given the human mind the power of choice; and He did this to confound the enemy, HaSatan, who CHOSE to defy TRUTH. When we hear the “Good News” about the Kingdom of Elohim and RECEIVE it by FAITH, the Spirit enables us to move in that predestined path, the Torah of righteousness, the 'image' of His Son.
Yeshua came to save the WORLD. He has ALL POWER, but the will of man will condemn man, not Elohim [ John 3:19-21]. He “desires” all to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4). If he desires all men to be saved AND He has all power, how is it that all men are not saved if Calvinism is true? Calvinism requires accepting statements that are clear contradictions, such as “we have not means to go to God ourselves, either by choosing or by good works” AND “we do choose to accept His amazing gift of grace.” In an attempt to obscure such obvious contradictions, additional terms are defined such as irresistible grace, special grace, enabling grace, sufficient grace, efficacious grace, etc., that are not defined in scripture.
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