What is a Hebrew, Part Deux
The Bible documents how the nations of the world operate outside the sacred space of Israel’s Torah and Temple. Their goal is to hinder the Kingdom of the Most High, violate His instructions, and promote chaos and disorder on the earth.
Not everyone joins with the nations. Some people navigate a parallel, yet disparate, world to serve the Creator instead. Like Abraham their father, they embrace Elohim’s mission, avoid pagan idolatry, and emulate the lifestyle that He calls good. Scripture calls them Ivri’im or Hebrews, those who courageously stand on the shore which is opposite from the prevailing world view.
Rabbi Paul declares a wondrous mystery regarding Hebrews which was unknown in ancient times (Ephesians 3:5-6). Remarkably, he proclaims that Gentiles are joint heirs and fellow members of the same mystical body of believers. They are united under the Messiah Yeshua and His Besorat HaGeulah or Tidings of Redemption.
“For not all those who are descended from Israel are Israel, nor are they all children because they are Abraham’s seed… it is not the children of the flesh who are children of God,” Rabbi Paul clarified. “Rather, the children of the promise are counted as seed” (Romans 9:6-8).
Being naturally descended from Israel is no guarantee of Hebrew identity. Hebrews, rather, are born of the Spirit. They abandon pagan culture and move across to the Torah as L’Ohr Goyim, a Light to Gentiles. Isaiah 49:6 instructed the Israelites long ago to be the liberating light of Torah to a shadowed, hostile world – no matter their personal burdens and struggles. Hebrews today are challenged with the same sacred task.
Published February 8, 2018