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Passover and the Work of the Messiah
There are many mistranslations in the Bible that have caused a great deal of confusion and consternation. The most significant one of these is the removal of Yahweh’s Name from the scriptures. It appears almost 7,000 times in the Old Testament alone, and it is used throughout the New Testament as well most notably in direct quotes from the Old Testament.
I’ve written a book about that problem titled His Name is Yahweh, so I won’t dwell on it here. Instead, I want to draw attention to two utterances by the Messiah while He was on the cross: “It is finished” and “My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?” Both of them hide important truths that believers need to understand.
John 19: 30 quotes the Messiah as saying, “Therefore when Jesus had received the sour wine, He said, ‘It is finished!’ And He bowed His head and gave up His spirit.” That is not a good translation. He actually said, “Paid in full!” The price for our sins had been paid; we were redeemed; and our sins were forgiven.
According to Dr. Charles Ryrie, the phrase that He used is the exact same phrase that was commonly written on documents to show that a debt had been paid in full. Stated another way, there was no balance remaining because His atoning sacrifice satisfied the requirement of the Law.
His sacrifice will never be repeated, but the job of the church, literally “the ekklesia” or “the called-out ones”, was and is to tell the world about salvation in Yahweh’s Name. That’s what Yahweh said in Isaiah 43: 11: that’s what Joel said in Joel 2: 32; that’s what Peter said in Acts 2: 21; and that’s what Paul said in Romans 10: 13. As a body of believers, we have failed to do our job because most people who comprise “the church” don’t even know that God has a Name much less that it is Yahweh. He paid our debt—a debt that we could never repay no matter how hard we tried—and we have not done as He asked. That’s a tragedy.
Matthew 27: 46 quotes the Messiah as saying, “About the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, ‘ELI, ELI, LAMA SABACHTHANI?’ that is, ‘MY GOD, MY GOD, WHY HAVE YOU FORSAKEN ME?” It should be self-evident that Yahweh the Father could not and did not “forsake” Yahweh the Son, so what did He actually say.
This may surprise some believers, but He was quoting scripture. In this instance, it was Psalm 22:
My God, my God, why have you forsaken me? Why are you so far from saving me, so far from my cries of anguish? My God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer, by night, but I find no rest. Yet you are enthroned as the Holy One; you are the one Israel praises. In you our ancestors put their trust; they trusted and you delivered them. To you they cried out and were saved; in you they trusted and were not put to shame.
But I am a worm and not a man, scorned by everyone, despised by the people. All who see me mock me; they hurl insults, shaking their heads. “He trusts in Yahweh,” they say, “let Yahweh rescue him. Let him deliver him, since he delights in him.”
Yet you brought me out of the womb; you made me trust in you, even at my mother’s breast. From birth I was cast on you; from my mother’s womb you have been my God.
Do not be far from me, for trouble is near and there is no one to help. Many bulls surround me; strong bulls of Bashan encircle me. Roaring lions that tear their prey open their mouths wide against me. I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint. My heart has turned to wax; it has melted within me. My mouth is dried up like a potsherd, and my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth; you lay me in the dust of death. Dogs surround me, a pack of villains encircles me; they pierce my hands and my feet. All my bones are on display; people stare and gloat over me. They divide my clothes among them and cast lots for my garment.
But you, O Yahweh, do not be far from me. You are my strength; come quickly to help me. Deliver me from the sword, my precious life from the power of the dogs. Rescue me from the mouth of the lions; save me from the horns of the wild oxen.
I will declare your name to my people; in the assembly I will praise you. You who fear Yahweh, praise him! All you descendants of Jacob, honor him! Revere him, all you descendants of Israel! For he has not despised or scorned the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him but has listened to his cry for help.
From you comes the theme of my praise in the great assembly; before those who fear you I will fulfill my vows. The poor will eat and be satisfied; those who seek Yahweh will praise him—may your hearts live forever! All the ends of the earth will remember and turn to Yahweh, and all the families of the nations will bow down before him, for dominion belongs to Yahweh and he rules over the nations. All the rich of the earth will feast and worship; all who go down to the dust will kneel before him—those who cannot keep themselves alive. Posterity will serve him; future generations will be told about Adonai. They will proclaim his righteousness, declaring to a people yet unborn: He has done it!
The Messiah was on the cross in the process of dying for 3 hours, and He quoted lots of scriptures. It is certain that Matthew didn’t record every word that He said. The significance of Matthew 27: 46 is not the first verse in Psalm 22 but the entire Psalm which the Messiah most likely quoted verbatim since his death on the cross that day fulfilled David’s prophecy that’s recorded in Psalm 22.
The people who were standing around listening to Him speak those words were watching their literal fulfillment. They could see, for example, His anguish; they were witnesses to the mocking, the insults, and the shaking of heads; they watched as the Roman soldiers cast lots for His garment. Were they discouraged? Of course, some of them were that day, but things would change quickly after His resurrection.
Psalm 22 is an uplifting Psalm despite the fact that it probably gives the best depiction in the Bible about what actually happened that day. Sure, it was torturous to watch, but the conclusion of the Psalm is what it is all about:
All the rich of the earth will feast and worship; all who go down to the dust will kneel before him—those who cannot keep themselves alive. Posterity will serve him; future generations will be told about Adonai. They will proclaim his righteousness, declaring to a people yet unborn: He has done it!
I think the Messiah wanted to focus people’s attention on the end. He was looking past the present to the ultimate fulfillment of scripture when the whole world will know who Yahweh is because He will leave no room for doubt in anyone’s mind. Jeremiah probably describes that moment better than anyone else in chapter 16 verses 19-21:
O Yahweh, my strength and my stronghold, and my refuge in the day of distress, to You the nations will come from the ends of the earth and say, “Our fathers have inherited nothing but falsehood, futility and things of no profit.” Can man make gods for himself? Yet they are not gods! “Therefore behold, I am going to make them know—this time I will make them know My power and My might; and they shall know that My name is Yahweh.”
That’s not a discouraging message. It’s exhilarating. It makes me want to jump up and shout at the top of my voice, “HalleluYah! Maranatha!” or “Praise Yahweh, come now and finish it.” I suspect that that’s the message the Messiah wanted people to get while He was dying on the cross.
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Daniel 3: 24-27
Then Nebuchadnezzar the king was astounded and stood up in haste; he said to his high officials, “Was it not three men we cast bound into the midst of the fire?” They replied to the king, “Certainly, O king.” He said, “Look! I see four men loosed and walking about in the midst of the fire without harm, and the appearance of the fourth is like a son of the gods!” Then Nebuchadnezzar came near to the door of the furnace of blazing fire; he responded and said, “Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego, come out, you servants of the Most High God, and come here!” Then Shadrach, Meshach and Abed-nego came out of the midst of the fire. The satraps, the prefects, the governors and the king’s high officials gathered around and saw in regard to these men that the fire had no effect on the bodies of these men nor was the hair of their head singed, nor were their trousers damaged, nor had the smell of fire even come upon them.
- God also said to Moses, “Say to the Israelites, ‘Yahweh, the God of your fathers—the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob—has sent me to you.’ This [Yahweh] is my name forever, the name by which I am to be remembered from generation to generation.” (Exodus 3: 15)
- “Therefore behold, I am going to make them know—this time I will make them know My power and My might; and they shall know that My name is Yahweh.” (Jeremiah 16: 21)
- “Behold, the days are coming,” declares Yahweh, “when I will raise up for David a righteous Branch; and He will reign as king and act wisely and do justice and righteousness in the land. In His days Judah will be saved, and Israel will dwell securely; and this is His name by which He will be called, ‘Yahweh our righteousness.’” (Jeremiah 23: 5-6)
- Yeshua said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am.” (John 8: 58)
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Hosea 4: 6
My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.
Victor Sharpe: Passover’s gift: The Promised and Undivided Land—Such a seminal event in humanity’s history became the foundation for freedom and liberty– created many centuries before democracy was first enunciated by Greeks.
Dr. Aviad Hacohen: Passover: learning inclusion and glorification— May we be able to sit together even through our disputes and the difficulties they bring, throughout the year to come.
Boaz Bismuth: Turkish delight—Israel has taken a lot of abuse from Turkey in recent years. This apology is not easy to digest.
Dan Margalit: Reconciling with Turkey — worth the price— Israel, Turkey and the U.S. can now coordinate positions on Syria, and Israel’s commandos will not be held legally liable.
Eyal Zisser: Can Israel and Turkey really bury the hatchet?— Reconciliation between Jerusalem and Ankara proves political interest trump all, but Israel must remember that Turkey is ruled by a firebrand.
Dror Eydar: Obama, show some humility— The Palestinian mindset — their media, education, religion, academia, youth movements and politics — is not geared toward compromise.
Dr. Gabi Avital: When rhetoric meets reality— The elation over U.S. President Barack Obama’s speech is a telling lesson about the addictive nature of elementary school-level ideas and falsevisions.
Andrew E. Harrod: Blurred Image: How Even Free Speech’s Defenders Must Defer to Islam—An otherwise well-documented and stirring defense of intellectual freedom recently shocked its audience with one cinematic bow to Islamic sensitivities.
Derek Hunter: Sequester, Bigfoot, Unicorns and Other Horror Stories Politicians Tell—The best thing President Obama ever did for his financial security was run for public office. A man of relatively moderate means who was able to afford his home in a wealthy Chicago neighborhood only because he got “help” from his good friend and convicted felon Tony Rezko, is now a multi-multi-millionaire.
Daniel Halper: Senate Budget ‘Has Zero Real Deficit Reduction … Never Balances’—In a statement released at 5 a.m. today, Senator Jeff Sessions, the top Republican on the Senate Budget Committee, blasts the budget the Senate passed very early this morning. Sessions’s main concern is that the budget “has zero real deficit reduction” and “never balances.”
Morgan Brittany: Obama’s Excesses and Shared Sacrifice—The Obama Presidency has officially become imperial. There is no denying that Barak Obama and Joe Biden have become the monarchs of America. Both of them repeat the mantra of how “we are coming out of the greatest financial calamity since the great depression” and when it comes to raising taxes Obama always talks about “shared sacrifice”. Shared sacrifice?! I see the American people getting hammered by higher taxes and skyrocketing costs in everything from gas, food, health care and education while he and Biden gallivant all over the world on the taxpayers dime.
Jeffrey H. Anderson: Three Years Later, Obamacare Is Even Less Popular—In 2010, the Democrats rammed Obamacare through Congress in open defiance of public opinion, and an incensed citizenry responded by giving Republicans their biggest gains in the House of Representatives since before World War II. Now, coinciding with tomorrow’s 3-year anniversary of President Obama’s signing Obamacare into law, new polling suggests that his namesake is now even less popular than it was at the time of its passage.
Austin Hill: Three Years On, Obamacare Has Become Irresistable—It has been federal for three years. It has brought chaos to the labor markets. It has cost people their livelihoods and it is more unpopular than ever.
Michael Curtis: Twitter and Antisemitism—A new collective phenomenon, the ability to express hate without fear of retribution.
Kyle Becker: The Power Motive and the Profit Motive—The most common misconception in America’s warped political culture is that modern liberals tend to be altruistic and compassionate, while conservatives are self-centered, greedy old misers.
Daniel Halper: Protests Against America, Obama in Jordan—Protesters gathered at the American embassy in Amman, Jordan to signal opposition to the U.S. and President Barack Obama, according to the Jordan Times. “Scores of Jordanians demonstrated on Thursday in front of the US embassy in Amman against US President Barack Obama’s visit to the Kingdom, according to news websites,” the report reads.
Clarice Feldman: The Wine, Women and Song Foundation—I have watched over the years how publicly unaccountable foundations have amassed billions of dollars, tax free, and spend it on dangerous, leftwing, often anti-American and anti-Israeli outfits, conferences and promoters.
Geoffrey Norman: Germany Annoyed—The little island of Cyprus is not behaving as other European countries desire and this, according to Bloomberg, is irritating German Chancellor Angela Merkel who “told a closed-door meeting of legislators in Berlin today that she’s annoyed the Cypriot government hasn’t been in touch with the so-called troika of international creditors for days, according to a party official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the briefing was private. Cyprus’s decision to test Europe is unacceptable, she told them.”
Marita Noon: Obama Overreach Includes Energy—Following the Conservative Political Action Conference—known as CPAC—it has been reported that the faithful feel discouraged, dispirited, and defeated. Dr. Ben Carson, who emerged from the Conference as the new conservative darling, has stated that America is heading for failure. Generally, I agree. However, I see a chink in the armor.
Kim Zigfeld: When It Comes to Russia, We Told You So—Thanks to the world’s ignorance and indifference, Vladimir Putin has had years of precious time to consolidate a new Soviet Union.
Lee Smith: Why Obama Won’t Move Against Assad—It’s still unclear whether chemical weapons were used earlier this week in attacks in Syria’s Aleppo province, and if so who’s responsible—Syrian president Bashar al-Assad’s troops or rebel forces.
Michael Youssef: More Pastors Jumping Off the Rock into the Raging Waters—When evangelical preachers lose their way and turn their backs on biblical Christianity, why is it they end up in the Episcopal Church?
Geoffrey P. Hunt: The Brain Eaters Invade Massachusetts Middle School—Utter capitulation to the self esteem movement.
Michael Warren: On Gun Control, Democrats Misfire—“When you go to registration, it raises all the black helicopter crowd notion that what this is all about is identifying who has a gun so that one day the government can get up and go to the house and arrest everyone who has a gun, and they’ll cite Nazi Germany and all that,” Biden told NPR Wednesday.
Lloyd Marcus: Real Bullies: The Homosexuality Is Normal Movement—The Homosexuality Is Normal Movement is not made up of passive, well-meaning victims simply seeking tolerance and their place in the sun.
Blessings in the Book of Revelation is a book that you need to read, especially now. There are blessings throughout the Scriptures but Revelation is the only book in the Bible actually containing a specific blessing for reading it. It’s repeated twice, once at the beginning and again at the end. This is the reason that I believe Revelation should be the first step toward studying biblical prophecy. Though not easy to do, Revelation can be broken down and understood by anyone, not just the academic elite. So, Revelation’s blessings are for everyone. Click here to order the eBook. Click here to order the paperback.
Other Books by Neil Snyder
- Stand! is a suspense novel that exposes the lies, corruption, and greed underlying the theory that man-made CO2 emissions are responsible for global warming. Professor Wes Carlyle and Karen Sterling, his research collaborator, carefully scan the audience for their would-be attacker—a member of the enviro-gestapo who has been following them for days. Wes spots his man in the back of the room leaning against the wall. Suddenly, another man in the audience steps forward and moves toward Karen at a menacing pace. With a vicious stroke, he swings a billy club at her head. Click here to order the eBook. Click here to order the paperback.
- What Will You Do with the Rest of Your Life? deals with a question that every Christian has to consider: what should I do with my life? Click here to order the eBook. Click here to order the paperback.
- Falsely Accused is a true story about a young woman who was accused of committing a double homicide. It’s about a travesty of justice, and it reveals Yahweh intervening in the life of a believer to rescue her from danger in the face of seemingly insurmountable odds. Everyone will enjoy the book, but young people in particular need to read it because the mistakes made that led to the problem could have been avoided. They were the kinds of mistakes that young people are prone to make. As they say, forewarned is forearmed. Click here to order the eBook. Click here to order the paperback.