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                        TZEDIK TZADIK /JUST SAINTS/ MAL'AKIM




 Tzade, Dalet, Kuf/Three . . . years before the destruction of Jerusalem by unscrupulous Jews, an ?unknown author? wrote a letter of warning and encouragement to the Malki Tzedik believers in that city. In a time of impending national crisis, this author reminded these believers that their only safety was in individual orientation to and pursuit of the plan of YHWH.

 In Hebrews 12 he compares the TZADIK life to a race and TZADIK's to athletes who, if they want to experience the ecstasy of victory, will have to endure the agony of training for and running the race.

 YHWH has set before every TZADIK a race to run, a Personal destiny in His plan. No one fulfills his destiny accidentally; it takes discipline, endurance, and focus on the goal to win the race.

 Therefore, since we have so great a cloud of witnesses surrounding us ... (Heb. 12:1)

 In ancient sports arenas, the racetrack was in the shape of a horseshoe. Stands encircled the track, so spectators could see the whole race from start to finish.

"Cloud," from nephos, means "an innumerable throng." The word pictures a cloudy, shapeless mass covering the skies. In coliseums like the Circus Maximus in Rome, which seated 200,000, the crowds must have looked cloudy and shapeless to the athletes on the track But, though they could not see the spectators clearly, the athletes could certainly hear the sound of their cheering.

"Surrounding" is the present middle participle of perikeimai, a word which can mean "to bind or encompass, and in this case means "to surround and support," as the cheering crowds would surround and support the athletes below

From the context, we know that this cloud of witnesses includes the heroes of faith chronicled in Hebrews 11 These great believers crowd the stands in the spiritual realm and watch us run. And they are not alone; they stand with every believer who has ever lived--all the men and women and children who have already finished their races and have had their faith approved by YHWH . This innumerable throng constantly cheers us on to finish our race with honor and integrity.

We, the athletes on the track, cannot see their faces, but we can hear their cheers echoing from the pages of Scripture and from the accounts of their lives. As we study the Word and the history of the Assembly, each of us finds people we especially  identify with, people who faced difficulties, trials, temptations similar to ours, believers who had the same areas of weakness  that we do. We naturally identify with these people, and their lives especially encourage us.

We have every reason to believe that they identify with us and take special interest in us in the same way. They are genuinely concerned about how we run our race because now they have perfect perspective. At the instant of their death, when they saw the face of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach, they knew absolutely what is important and what is not. Now they can see how worthless are all the trinkets that distract, us from our race. They know now that the only thing that matters in time and in eternity is that Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach be glorified

...let us also lay aside every encumbrance, and the sin which so easily entangles us ... (Heb. 12:1)

"Lay aside" is apotithemi. It means "to put off, to set aside," as in taking off a garment. "Encumbrance" is ogkos, "excess weight, bulk." Ogkos could refer to body fat or to something external. Greek athletes would often run, in training, with weights In either case the idea is that if we want to win, we have to run unencumbered.

In Luke 21:34 YHWH illustrated this when He told the disciples to be on their guard so that their hearts would not be "weighted down with dissipation and drunkenness and the worries of life." He was warning them of the very real dangers of being distracted from their mission by the things of time.

The author of Hebrews exhorts each of us to lay aside the sin that entangles us--literally, the sin that so easily ensnares us, the one that we so easily get tangled up in. He recognizes here a very basic principle of the nature of self. Everyone's  different.  No two people are exactly alike physically; no two people have  exactly the same personality traits. In the same way no two natures of self are alike.

Every believer has his own enemies. The thing that is my entangling sin--that area of weakness or strength that keeps me from relying on YHWH --may not be a problem to you at all. We cannot compare ourselves to anyone else.

Notice that the author does not tell us to lay aside what entangles someone else. Each of us is responsible-for running our own race. The instant we become preoccupied with someone else's race, we step out of our lane. We can cheer other people on, we can encourage them, but if we stop to criticize or judge or to give our opinion about someone else's running technique, we are asking for trouble."

YHWH does not hold us accountable for how someone else runs. He does hold us accountable for how we run. Our responsibility is to understand our self, to recognize the things that hinder or entangle us and to set them aside so that they do not keep us from finishing our race (Eph. 4:22-23).The only way we can set aside our entangling spiritual wrong being of self is through confession and spiritual growth.

...and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, fixing our eyes on Malki Tzedik Yahusha, the author and perfecter of faith, who for the joy set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of YHWH . For consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you may not grow weary and lose heart. (Heb. 12:1-3)

"Endurance" is hupomone, literally, "to dwell under." The author is telling us that in spite of our pain, we must press on. We must keep on constantly running with endurance Every one of us faces different obstacles. There will always be times when we are tempted to quit. Especially after we fail, it is so much easier to quit than to get back up on our feet and start running again. But don't quit. Abide under the pressure, do not try to escape it.

The author of this book was not just ordering the Hebrews to keep on running. Using what is known as a hortatory subjunctive, he was encouraging them to join with him. "Let us run. I'm going; you come with me. Let's do it as a team. We have to run in our own lanes, but we can run together. We're all heading for the same place."

"Set before us" is from prokeimai, a word that means "ordained or established beforehand." Every race is tailor-made. We do not get to choose our race, YHWH does. He gives us our niche, our destiny. What He chooses may not be the thing we would have chosen, but the thing that YHWH calls us to is the one--the only--thing that can fulfill us and give us abundant life.

Though the race we are called to run is determined beforehand, we do have choices. We choose whether to run. We choose how to run. We choose whether to endure and to Press on to find the will of YHWH for our lives.

Every race has three parts: the start, the middle, and the finish. In a long race, the beginning and the end are the easiest parts. At the beginning, there is always a great deal of excitement. Everyone's adrenaline is flowing and it is always easy to take off at the sound of the gun. At the finish line, the crowds are cheering, and though the runners are exhausted, they are still invigorated with the knowledge that they have accomplished something, they have reached their goal.

It is often the middle of the race that is the toughest, especially in an endurance race. It is in the middle of the race that the runner's mind may begin to wander. He starts to lose focus, to lose motivation. It is easy to forget how important that particular part of the race is.

An endurance race is very much like the TZADIK way of life. Phase one of the race, the start, is repentance unto salvation. In a second, with a simple act of faith, we are born into the family of YHWH (2 Cor. 5:21). It was our first real gaze into the eyes of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach that sounded the start of the race for us.

Phase two of the race, the distance, is spiritual growth. It is the hardest part. It is a process, a death to self, and every process takes time.

Phase three of the race, the finish, is death. That, too, happens in a split-second. We will break the tape and fall into the arms of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach in his likeness and Image!

When we first step out in the TZADIK life, we have the enthusiasm of the start, the challenge, the desire to tell other people about how they can have eternal life. We are still naive enough to believe everyone wants to hear about Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach. But when we get to the middle of the race, we start feeling the pain, the pressure, the opposition. The race becomes difficult. The enthusiasm, the challenge, the excitement are not always there. We start facing the difficulty of keeping and maintaining focus in our race with the death of self.

In a horseshoe-shaped track, the finish line seems to be farthest away just as the runner approaches the middle of the race, at the turn. In the TZADIK life, Malki Tzedik Yahusha often seems farthest away in the middle of the race. Of course He is no farther away in the middle than He was at the beginning or will be at the end. But He lets our vision be blurred because He wants us to learn to run by faith.

"Fixing our eyes on Malki Tzedik Yahusha" is the only way we will be able to endure. Unless we look to the finish line, we won't make it. Conformity to the WORD/TORAH/INSTRUCTION.... Malki Tzedik Yahusha is the goal of our race.

"Fixing our eyes" is from two words, ape, which means "away from," and horao, "to take in a panoramic view." The compound, aphorao, tells us to look away from everything on the horizon and to concentrate our gaze on one thing.

In Greek sports competitions, there was always more than one thing going on at a time. As the runners raced around the track, the center field was alive with other kinds of competition. A runner trying to critique the javelin throwers would not have much chance of winning his race. A shotput competitor who got distracted by watching the runners could kill someone with an ill-placed throw. Greek athletes, if they wanted to win, had to aphorao. They had to look away from the distractions and train their eyes to focus on one thing: the goal of their competition.

Our goal is to be conformed to the foundation of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach. We have to fix our focus on Him. This means that while we run we remember His race. We remember His courage, His training, His discipline. We remember how, from the virgin birth all the way to the tree, YHWH Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach had the one thing that makes running the race possible: the focus. He had His eyes focused on the goal, and because He did, He was able to overcome the obstacles and to endure the opposition. He was able to finish His race not by what He was running, but by what He was running to; He saw the joy beyond. He had His eyes on the celebration, the victory banquet to come.

He is the celebrity, the hero who has already won the gold and has come back to teach us and to enable us to press on. He is the author and the finisher. He was the first to run the race and now He runs our race with us every step of the way (Heb. 13:56). In the same way His focus on the objective gave Him the strength and the courage to endure, so our focus on the person of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach and our future celebration with Him gives us the ability to run our race with endurance.

The certain danger we face is that if we fix our gaze on anything other than Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach, we will grow weary and lose heart. If we quit, our race remains unfinished and YHWH 's plan for our life goes unfulfilled. How awful it would be to stand before Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach and have Him ask, "What more could I have done?" We will see, and very SOON--with the absolute clarity that we could have today by faith-that we had everything we needed to finish our race in glory.

Everyone feels tired or discouraged at times. That's no biggie. The biggie is quitting. When we reach the point at which we feel that we simply cannot go on, at that moment we need to consider Malki Tzedik Yahusha and then just put one foot in front the other and take one more step.

Run in such a way that you may win. And everyone who competes in the games exercises self-control in all things. They then do it to receive a perishable wreath, but we an imperishable. Therefore I run in such a way, as not without aim; I box in such a way, as not beating the air; but I buffet my body and make it my slave ... (1 Cor. 9:24-27)

"Run!" This is a command. Paul, who wrote this letter to the distracted Corinthian Assembly, is now seated in the stands. But he still screams to us through the pages of Scripture, "RUN ! ! ! Run in such a way that you may win!"

In 1 Corinthians 9:19, Paul says that he has made himself a slave that he might win all men. Winning was on his mind. Paul was a free man, but by choice he became a slave to Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach. He exulted in his bonds because he knew that through his service people were being won to Mashiach and he was winning the race that he had been given.

"Competes" is agonizomai; we get the English word "agony" from it. If we want to win, we will have to agonize. What kind of agony is Paul talking about? An internal agony that comes from the struggle to achieve a life over self. The phrase "exercises self-control" is a translation of one Greek word, egkrateuomai, from kratos, which means "rule or authority" and en, "within." No one ever becomes a great athlete as long as the only discipline he has is the coach's discipline. A great athlete is one who develops discipline within, so that whether the coach is around or not, he never lets up in his training. He demands more of himself because he is focused on the goal. Only that kind of Life over self can drive him to the end of the race.

If athletes in physical competition can press on so single-mindedly toward a perishable reward, how much more driven should we be who run toward an eternal reward? We are called to do one thing: focus on YHWH Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach. As we study and meditate on and apply the Word of YHWH , which is the mind of Mashiach, we are moving toward the goal.

Everything in the cosmos is dead set against our maintaining that focus. Each of us chooses for ourselves whether we will give in to the distractions and the entanglements or whether we will press on to finish the race with honor.

Ephesians 4: 17-19 2 Samuel 15:30-37, 17:23

The TZADIK life is a life of absolutes. At every moment were either spiritual -- controlled by the Ruach/Spirit and running toward the goal set before us--or else we are carnal-controlled by the Soul and running away from the goal.

When we miss it, we can always get back on track by confession and correction. But the longer we refuse to confess, the farther adrift we go, and the harder it becomes to turn away from the distractions and entanglements that are so attractive to the natural/soulish man. If our soulish digression--our carnality--is unchecked by confession, it will lead us into the more dangerous and destructive state known as revisionism.

In his letter to the Ephesian believers, Paul outlines seven steps in the downward spiral of revisionism.

This I say therefore, and affirm together with YHWH, that you walk no longer just as the Gentiles also walk, in the futility of their mind, being darkened in their understanding, excluded from the life of YHWH , because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their heart; and they, having become callous, have given themselves over to sensuality, for the practice of every kind of impurity with greediness. (Eph. 4:17-19)

The first step is negative volition to the Word of YHWH (2 Pet. 3:18; 2 Tim. 2:15, 3:16-17). To walk as the Gentiles walk means to walk in unbelief. It is possible for believers to live as practical atheists. When we are bitter or jealous, when we indulge in self pity or fear, when we do not actively believe that YHWH is in control--in these conditions of mind, we are saying no to the Word of YHWH . When we give in to these kinds of mental attitudes, we are choosing to be energized not by the Ruach HaKodesh, but by the sin nature and selfish lifestyle. We are stepping off the path of growth and turning back--reverting--to the ways of our natural soulish, unregenerate selves.

The second step is creation of a vacuum in the soul.

The third step is the blackout of the soul. "Having their understanding darkened," Paul says. The soul, which was designed by YHWH to function on the Word, actually shuts down. The way we think, our understanding, becomes shady as the things we have learned begin to slip away. We can no longer recall doctrines we once knew and understood. The light of the Word is being extinguished from our conscience, leaving behind, inevitably, only darkness.

The fourth step is alienation from grace. We are "excluded from the life of YHWH ." Having exchanged the truth of the Creator for the lies of the creature, having forsaken the light of the Word for the darkness of the world, we are cut off from the power of Mashiach. We are estranged from His abundant life. The Greek apallotrioomai means " to be alienated, estranged, shut out from fellowship and intimacy." Aside from YHWH , there is no other source of grace. Outside of fellowship with Him, we become everything that is the opposite of gracious.

The fifth step is the build-up of scar tissue of the soul. As we continuously set our hearts against YHWH , we intensify the process of scarring our souls. Apalgeo means "to cease to feel; to become insensitive, apathetic, past feeling." In the perfect tense and active voice, it could be translated here "having cast off all feeling." It is not that we have become calloused because of some outside force, but that we have calloused ourselves. As a result of our own negative choices, our sensitivity to the Ruach/Spirit of YHWH is gone, leaving a hunger in the soul that cannot be satisfied.

The sixth step is a frantic search for happiness. When Paul says the Gentiles have "given themselves over" to sensuality, he uses the same words that are used to describe the betrayal of Judas. Paradidomi means "to give over into one's power or use." When we reach this point we have betrayed ourselves, sold ourselves out, delivered ourselves up, to sensuality. Now we are in a crazed search for something to satisfy our starving souls. We have turned to the world for fulfillment, instead of to Mashiach, and our search for happiness becomes more and more degrading as the hunger of our soul intensifies. Chasing after the instant fix, the rush, the now, we are bartering soul for body. But the body is never satisfied, and so the search can only become more and more frantic.

The seventh step is arrival at the point of implacability. When Paul talks about the practice of impurity with "greediness," he uses the word pleonexia. It means "insatiability." When we reach this point, there is nothing that can make us happy, nothing that can satisfy us. No power, no wealth, no friendship, no physical pleasure is ever enough to satisfy us. The intensified scarring process has destroyed our capacity for appreciation. The prophet Jeremiah compares the implacable person, whose soul is shattered, to a ruined vessel, a broken cistern. "They have rejected the fountain of living water to hew out for themselves broken cisterns that can hold no water" (Jer. 2:13). When our soul becomes a ruined vessel, we have destroyed our ability to enjoy the normal functions of life.

At every step of this downward slide, YAHUWAH administers discipline designed to turn us around. If we refuse to heed His warnings and accept His correction, choosing instead to continue to harden ourselves, He will discipline us with increasing harshness. YAHUWAH takes no joy in giving pain, but as a loving Father He takes less joy in seeing His children waste their lives. He will continue to discipline us until we turn back to Him or until we reach the point at which He knows recovery has become impossible. At this point He will call us home to heaven in what the Bible calls "the sin unto death" (1 John 5:16). Dying the sin unto death is the most miserable and shameful way a TZADIK can end his race'.

In 2 Samuel 15-17, we have the story of a man who died the sin unto death. His name was Ahithophel. He was a cherished friend of King David, a mature believer who was on his way to becoming one of the greatest spiritual heroes of his time. His revisionism was of the most subtle kind. He did not--like David--fall into sensuality and lasciviousness. The temptations Ahithophel gave himself to were arrogance, self-righteousness, and passing judgment on another believer.

Who was this man Ahithophel? A native of Giloh, a town in the hill country of Judah, Ahithophel was counselor to King David. He knew the Word of YHWH and had the understanding and wisdom that can only come from application of the Word. Second Samuel 16:23 tells us that the advice of Ahithophel "was as if one inquired of the word of YAHUWAH." This man was like an encyclopedia of the Word, and his advice was trusted by both by David and his son Absalom.

In 2 Samuel 15:12 Ahithophel joins in Absalom's conspiracy against David. Absalom was a handsome man with great strengths and tremendous charisma. He had stolen the hearts of the men of Israel by magnifying and amplifying the sin of his own father (2 Sam. 15: 1-6).

On the day that Absalom called for him, Ahithophel was in Giloh offering sacrifices, so we know that he was still involved in religious activity. From the outside Ahithophel appeared to be anything but a revisionist, so how could he be so far out of line that he would join in a conspiracy against the greatest believer of his age, whom YAHUWAH Himself called "a man after My heart" (Acts 13:22)?

A comparison of 2 Samuel 23:34 with 2 Samuel 11:3 gives us an idea of how Ahithophel had come to this choice. Ahithophel had a son named Eliam; Eliam had a daughter named Bathsheba. Ahithophel was the grandfather of Bathsheba. Now the plot begins to thicken. We begin to understand what has happened in the heart of Ahithophel. The king seduced his granddaughter; she became pregnant; he murdered her husband. Ahithophel's son-in-law Uriah, a valiant warrior one of David' s own mighty men, is dead; his granddaughter is the talk of the town; and David does not appear to be suffering for his sins.

Ahithophel's revisionism must have started in the most subtle way. He took offense at David's sin; he got personal, self-righteous, judgmental. When he saw David apparently getting off scot-free, did he decide to help YHWH bring about justice?

David was a sinner. He obviously had a lascivious trend in his soul. Ahithophel was a sinner. He obviously had a legalistic trend in his soul. The difference between them was that David understood grace. He had been in revisionism, but he had accepted correction and been restored through confession. He knew how to receive grace from YHWH , and he knew how to extend grace to others.

At least 10 years passed between David's great soulish blunder and Absalom's revolt. All that time Ahithophel must have secretly nursed his bitterness.

When David learns that Absalom has won the hearts of the people, he leaves Jerusalem willingly. He does not want to see the city besieged and innocent people killed. Though his heart is broken over the treachery of his son, he knows that YHWH had made him king and that when YHWH gives and then sees fit to take away, it is only for greater blessing. David walks out of the city with nothing, willing to entrust himself entirely to the grace of YAHUWAH.

And David went up the ASCENTof the Mount of Olives, and wept as he went, and his head was covered and he walked barefoot. Then all the people who were with him each covered his head and went up weeping as they went.

Now someone told David, saying, "Ahithophel is among the conspirators with Absalom. " And David said, "0 YHWH, I pray, make the counsel of Ahithophel foolishness. "

It happened as David was coming to the summit, where YAHUWAH was worshiped, that behold, Hushai the Archite met him with his coat torn, and dust on his head.

And David said to him, "if you pass over with me, then you will be a burden to me. But if you return to the city, and say to Absalom, `I will be your servant, 0 king; as I have been your father's servant in time past, so I will now be your servant,' then you can thwart the counsel of Ahithophel for me ... (2 Sam. 15:30-37)

As he begins to ASCEND the Mount of Olives, David is told that his friend Ahithophel is among the conspirators. A thousand years later at almost the same spot, YHWH Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach would be betrayed by His friend Judas in the Garden of Gethsemane.

David responds to the heartbreaking news with a prayer. YHWH immediately responds to David's prayer by sending to him Hushai, a man of loyalty.

Look at the difference between Ahithophel and Hushai. Ahithophel had taken his eyes off the Word of YHWH and gotten his eyes on David, a man who like all other men had feet and toes of clay. When David fell, Ahithophel forgot the Word and fell into self-righteous arrogance and revisionism.

Hushai, on the other hand, had kept his EYES on the Word. He understood that our part is to make the Word of YHWH the issue in life, give people the right to accept or to reject it, and then let YAHUWAH deal with those people and their decisions. It is not our job to convict or to judge any other believer. Those are rights reserved by YHWH ; He is capable of convicting and correcting His children.

Hushai knew that YAHUWAH could take care of David. He knew, too, that loyalty demanded that he remain faithful to the divinely appointed king. Where did Hushai learn this kind of loyalty to authority? Where did he learn how to serve even a king in revisionism, entrusting him to YHWH , knowing that YHWH would deal with His child? He learned it by Watching David in the wilderness and in the mountains, hounded by a revisionist SOULISH King Saul. He watched David trust YHWH, and he learned from what he saw. Hushai became one of the most noble and honorable people in his generation

In 2 Samuel 17, Ahithophel advises Absalom to give him 12,000 men so that he can kill David that night. "I will come upon him while he is weary and exhausted," Ahithophel said, " and will terrify him so that all the people who are with him will flee. Then I will strike down the king alone" (2 Sam. 17:2).

Absalom likes Ahithophel's idea, but he wants to hear what Hushai has to say. Hushai reminds Absalom how fierce are David and his mighty men and how skilled in strategy. He tells Absalom to wait and not attack until he has gathered more men.

Ahithophel has given the better advice. He has not lost his accuracy, even in revisionism. Had Absalom followed that advice, David would have been defeated. But YHWH answers the prayer of David--David the adulterer, the murderer, but David the corrected believer. Absalom took Hushai' s advice, "for YHWH had ordained to thwart the good counsel of Ahithophel" (2 Sam. 17:14). Ahithophel had become an enemy of YHWH . He was warring now not against David, but against YHWH .

Hushai sends spies to David telling him that he has time to cross the river, head into the wilderness, and gain strength for a counterattack. Because Absalom did not listen to Ahithophel, David and all his household were saved.

Note when Ahithophel saw that his counsel was not followed, he saddled his donkey and arose and went to his home, to his city, and set his house in order, and strangled himself; thus he died and was buried in the grave of his father. (2 Sam. 1 7:23)

The instant his counsel was rejected, Ahithophel knew that David would triumph. He knew that he would have to face the king, and he could not stand the thought. He could not handle the consequences of his own arrogant choices. He died, just like Judas a thousand years later, by his own hand.

Because the king's son Absalom emphasized and magnified the sin of his father, YHWH determined to "bring calamity on Absalom" (2 Sam. 17:14). He judged Absalom with what David deserved. Because Ahithophel joined the conspiracy, he, too, would die the death that he sought for David.

Ahithophel's treachery was not a sudden thing. He had made decision after decision to set his focus on David, to let David's failure become a stumbling block in his life. David's reversion into lasciviousness could have led him to the sin unto death, but he accepted correction and turned back to YHWH . Ahithophel's reversion into legalism did lead to death because he refused to respond to the discipline that YHWH is faithful to set before all of us when we sin.

Jeremiah 17:5-10 John 7:37-39

The only way any TZADIK can run his race and expect to win is by plugging in to the energizing power of YHWH and the Ruach HaKodesh. When we are filled with the Ruach HaKodesh, we are energized. Our soulish nature is rendered inoperable (Rom. 6:6; Gal. 5:16; 1 John 3:6), and we are able to run toward the goal. When we are not filled with the Ruach HaKodesh, our soul is in control instead of our spirit, and we are 100% out of commission as far as YHWH is concerned. Apart from the filling of the Ruach HaKodesh, there is no growth, no service, no blessing, no reward. Satan's cosmic vatican system opposes spirituality--the filling of the Ruach HaKodesh--at every turn. The enemy does not want us to understand the simplicity of YHWH 's promise of power.

Thus says YHWH, "Cursed is the man who trusts in mankind And makes flesh his strength, And whose heart turns away from YHWH. For he will be like a bush in the desert And will not see when prosperity comes, But will live in stony wastes in the wilderness, A land of salt without inhabitant. " (Jer. 17:5-11)

Jeremiah vividly describes the curse that comes with confidence in Egypt, human strength. Trying to solve the problems of life by relying on human good, human intellect, human technology: human strength, is stepping outside the power sphere of YHWH .

If we think we can fight the spiritual battle in human strength, we are dead wrong.

When we discount YHWH and turn our backs on the source of all goodness, all truth, all knowledge, all peace, we guarantee misery for ourselves. Any person or any nation who places faith in human strength will be cursed, and no one can blame YHWH , because the curse is SOUL/self-induced.

The result of reliance on human strength is isolation and spiritual dryness. Life will be unbearably harsh and utterly fruitless. The one who chooses this path will not see prosperity, the blessings of YHWH . When we are where YHWH wants us to be, we receive maximum blessing, because that is the place where YHWH determined from eternity past to drop our supplies. If we are not receiving blessings, it is because the blessings are being dropped for us from the grace of YHWH , but we are somewhere else. We have been distracted, misplaced, and are at the wrong place at the wrong time. YHWH has promised to do everything necessary to make us great in His plan. If we want to do things our way, His prosperity will be there, but we will never see it.

"Blessed is the man who trusts in YHWH And whose trust is YHWH. For he will be like a tree planted by the water That extends its roots by a stream And will not fear when the heat comes; But its leaves will be green, And -it will not be anxious in a year of drought Nor cease to yield fruit. " (Jer. 17:7-8)

On the other hand, if we realize that we are powerless and that only in divine strength can we stand, then YHWH declares us blessed. "Trust" is batach, the Hebrew word for wrestling faith. To trust in YHWH is to fight our battles relying on divine power. We humble ourselves under the mighty hand of YHWH and cast our cares on Him, because He cares for us (1 Pet. 5:7). We take our problems, our pressures, our adversities and body slam them on YHWH, remembering that the battle is His (1 Sam. 17:47).

To illustrate the blessing of trust in YHWH, Jeremiah describes a desert where the river is the only source of life. The river is a picture of YHWH the Ruach HaKodesh. Everything outside the bounds of the river is nonproductive. But by the river a glorious tree is planted; this fruit tree is a picture of the believer living by faith. The roots of the tree reach toward the river, illustrating the supply system that comes through spiritual growth. As the invisible root system grows, so does the tree, but the root system is always greater than the tree--there is more underground than there is above ground. The supply system is invisible; the production is visible. For the TZADIK, inner character and greatness will always be more than that which is visible to other people.

The heat in Jeremiah 17:8 is a picture of testing, crisis, temptation; the year of drought refers to extended times of pressure. The green leaves are proof of the strength and health of the tree. The maturing believer will be spiritually strong, healthy, and vibrant in spite of testing. He will not only not be anxious or worried, but will also not cease to yield fruit.

Anxiety-worry-and divine production cannot coexist. Divine production requires the filling of the Ruach HaKodesh. We are either controlled by the Spirit--spiritual--or controlled by the soul--carnal--at any point of time. Worry is a mental attitude a selfish lifestyle. Selfish lifestyles takes us out of the divine power sphere. Therefore, it is impossible to be worried and at the same time to be the temple of divine production.

 The fruit that the believer will not cease to yield as he draws power from the stream is the fruit of the Ruach/Spirit described in Galatians 5:22-23--love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, soul/self-control. "The fruit of the Ruach/Spirit" in this passage is singular; it is one fruit, produced like grapes on a cluster.

 In the temporal/natural/physical realm fruit bearing takes time. We see signs of fruit on a young tree, but full, ripe fruit is found only on a mature tree. In the spiritual realm, as young believers when we are filled with the Ruach/Spirit we will show signs of fruit. If we continue to choose to walk in the Ruach/Spirit, we will grow, and the maturing fruit will be an evidence of our growth. At no time can we produce the fruit of the Ruach/ Spirit in our own energy. Jeremiah explains why we so desperately need the divine system of Dunamis/power to BECOME.

 "The heart is more deceitful than all else and is desperately sick; Who can understand it? I, YHWH, search the heart, I test the mind even to give to each man according to his ways, According to the results of his deeds. " (Jer. 17:9-10)

The heart--referring here to the inner man, the place where thinking takes place--is aqob, "deceitful," "fraudulent," "supplantive." The mind/soul without faith is under the dictates of the soul, the sinful nature and selfish lifestyle and absolutely cannot be trusted.

Not only is it more deceitful than anything else, it is anash, "incurable," "malignant." Who can understand the heart of man? No one but YHWH . Only YHWH knows our real inner workings, and without YHWH we could never understand ourselves. Without the convicting and teaching and illuminating ministries of YHWH the Ruach HaKodesh in our lives, we could never understand who we are and why we do the things we do.

"Search" means "to look for content." "Test" means "to diligently examine with the intent of finding function." YHWH , of course, always knows what is in our hearts, but He wants us to know. He wants us to understand what is on the inside and who is in control there. We will never know what is going on in our souls until YHWH brings it out. So He tests us by putting us sometimes in adverse situations, sometimes in prosperous situations, giving us the chance to apply what we know (Heb. 4:13).

The ultimate purpose of YHWH 's searching and testing is to give to each of us according to our ways, according to the results of our deeds. "Ways" refers to content. "Deeds" refers to function. YHWH is not concerned only with what we do, but much more with how we do it. The Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach told Nicodemus that there are two kinds of life: temporal/natural/physical and spiritual. "That which is born of the flesh is flesh," He said, "and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit" (John 3:6). Nothing that we do in the power of the flesh is acceptable to YHWH (Isa. 64:6). Only what is produced by the Spirit of YHWH through us is worth anything.

Now on the last day, the great day of the feast, Malki Tzedik Yahusha stood and cried out, saying, "If any man is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, `From his innermost being shall flow rivers of living water.'" But this He spoke of the Spirit, whom those who believed in Him were to receive; for the Spirit was not yet given, because Malki Tzedik Yahusha was not yet glorified. (John 7:37-39)

The thirst Malki Tzedik Yahusha is talking about is spiritual. The Lord phrases His invitation in a conditional sentence. "if any man is thirsty" is a third-class condition that means " maybe you are thirsty and maybe not." The verb liipsao, "thirst," is a present active subjunctive. The subjunctive mood indicates potential. The active voice indicates that this is a matter of personal choice. We decide whether to be spiritually thirsty or not.

If we decide that we will be thirsty, then we decide whether we will quench our thirst or not. The solution to thirst is to take a drink. The phrase, "let him come to Me," reminds us that there is only one place where our thirst will be quenched--in Mashiach. In the imperative mood, it is YHWH's command to us. Pine, "drink" is a present active indicative. Again, the active voice indicates that we make the choice of whether or not to drink. In verse 38 Malki Tzedik Yahusha makes it clear that to drink means to believe. Faith is analogous to the drinking that quenches our thirst.

Every one of these verbs --"thirst," "come," "drink," "believe"--is in the present tense, indicating continuous action. We choose whether we will keep on being thirsty; we choose whether we will keep on coming to Mashiach and drinking; we choose whether we will keep on believing. Only through moment-by-moment faith in Mashiach can we quench the moment-by-moment thirst of the soul. John makes it clear that the Ruach HaKodesh, who would be sent to indwell every believer after Mashiach's crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension, is the source of the rivers of living water. Only faith can open the floodgates in our souls and release the power of the Spirit of YHWH to flow through us.

Psalm 27:1-14 2 Peter 1:2-7

The climb of the TZADIK life is growth from spiritual infancy to spiritual maturity. Spiritual growth, just like physical growth, does not happen overnight; it is a gradual process. But, unlike physical growth, spiritual growth is a matter of choice. We choose whether to be hungry for the Word; we choose whether to be motivated; we choose whether to advance in the TZADIK Kingdom which is true life.

In Psalm 27, David illustrates progression in spiritual growth through the seven circles of faith. YHWH is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear?

 Salvation. The foundation for all spiritual growth is salvation (1 Cor 3:11). "YHWH" in Hebrew is YAHUWAH; "salvation" is from Malki Tzedik Yahushah, the Hebrew word for "Jesus." A thousand years after David wrote this psalm, Joseph was told by the angel, "You shall call his name Malki Tzedik Yahusha for it is He who will save His people from their sins" (Matt. 1:21). The person who has believed in Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach for salvation begins to see that faith, which lays basic assurance in the plan and the person of YHWH , can conquer fear.

One thing I have asked from YHWH, that I shall seek: that I may dwell in the house of YHWH all the days of my life, to behold the beauty of YHWH, and to meditate in His temple. (Ps. 27:4)

 Study. After salvation, growth can only come from study. We have to be positive to the Word. Baqash, " seek," means to diligently study. It is similar to the Greek spoudazo found in 2 Timothy 2:15, implying strong inner motivation. It is impossible to study so that we grow unless we have made a personal decision to be spiritually motivated. "To dwell in the house of YHWH" is analogous to living in the Word of YHWH , learning to let the Word be the priority, more real and absolute than anything else in life. The house of YHWH in David' s time was the tabernacle--the place of teaching. The New Testament equivalent would be the local Assembly, to be there every time the doors are open and the Word of YHWH is taught.

For in the day of trouble He will conceal me in His tabernacle; In the secret place of His tent He will hide US/me; He will lift US/me up on a rock. (Ps. 27:5)

 Faith-rest. David is saying that he knows that if he Commits himself to live in the tabernacle of YHWH , to meditate, to study, to be strong in his motivation for growth, then in the day of trouble, YHWH will spread His tent over him and he will receive divine protection from whatever may threaten him. Every time we hear the Word taught we choose whether to believe it or not. The only safe place in the universe is the place of faith, where we rest in the power of the Word. In this secret place we have an encapsulated environment that we carry with us. When we dedicate ourselves to living in the Word, then the Word of YHWH will surround us wherever we go and we will have stability in life.

And now my head will be lifted up above my enemies around me; and I will offer in His tent sacrifices with shouts of joy; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to YHWH. (Ps. 27:6)

 Spirituality. In Hebrews 13:15 we are exhorted to "continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to YHWH , that is, the fruit of lips that give thanks to His name." The sacrifices of expressing joy which is gratitude to YHWH , and of singing and praise, which declare the faithfulness of YHWH , are expressions of the function of our priesthood in the filling of the Ruach HaKodesh.

Hear, O YHWH, when I cry with my voice, and be gracious to me and answer me. (Ps. 27:7)

 Suffering. The Hebrew qara means "to call out loudly." Here it indicates intensive pressure which wrenches from the soul a cry for deliverance. Suffering is necessary for Spiritual growth. When we meet suffering with effective prayer, the process of growth is accelerated.

When Thou didst say, "Seek My face, " my heart said to Thee, "Thy face, O YHWH, I shall seek. " (Ps. 27:8)  JEBEL EL LAWZ

 Occupation with Mashiach. The most extended part of this psalm deals with faith because it is the most essential to the attaining of spiritual maturity. It is persevering through our sufferings to the point of occupation with Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach. David was able to persevere because when YHWH said, "Seek Me," David said, "I will." He was motivated to know the Word of YHWH and to understand the will of YHWH . It is impossible to reach spiritual maturity unless we become occupied with the person of Mashiach. An TZADIK is not a religion; it is a relationship. The purpose of all our study is to go from the written Word to the living Word, to seek from the page the person of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach.

I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of YHWH in the land of the living. Wait for YHWH; be strong, and let your heart take courage; yes, wait for YHWH. (Ps. 27:13-14)

 Waiting. David knew despair, discouragement, depression. He faced it all, but he came through it all because he knew that YHWH would bring blessing if he persisted in spiritual advance. Qawah is the strongest Hebrew word for faith. To advance from the tree to the crown, each of us must master the degrees of faith: amen, leaning faith; batach, wrestling faith; chasah, refuge faith; yachal, healing faith; and qawah waiting faith. Isaiah tells us that those who wait for YHWH will exchange their human strength for His divine strength. Not until we reach the waiting stage will we have that overwhelming strength of YHWH , and not until we have that, will we have true courage in the spiritual realm.

There is no way in our own strength that we can either Teach or imitate spiritual maturity. It is a gift from YHWH , a gift that is  given in increments and stages of development and can be received only by faith. We have  to follow YHWH 's plan, do it YHWH 's way--a principle, a promise, a doctrine at a time. It takes tremendous spiritual motivation. We have to be motivated to attain spiritual maturity more than anything on earth. If we have any other priority in life, we will not reach it.

YHWH has so designed the system that we either do it His way or we don't do it at all. His way is centered on the "called out" the "crossed over" JOSHUA CHAPTER 5 Central Assembly. Apart from involvement in a local Assembly and apart from the exercise of our spiritual gifts, we can't reach maturity unless, OBEDIENCE kicks IN AND IT HAS ..... as He gave some as apostles, and some as prophets, and some as evangelists, and some as pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Mashiach ... (Eph. 4:11-12)

The Greek word katartizo, "equip," was used three ways in the ancient world: medically, it meant to set a broken bone; militarily, it meant to get supplies to an army on the front line; economically, it meant to provide needed funds. The word means to equip according to the need. In the spiritual sense in this passage, it means for the believer to find his spiritual gift and function in it.

After we have sat in class and received the Word, the next step is to go out into the world and act on what we have heard. If we have no service, no function, no operation in the superspiritual exercise of our spiritual gift, we will have no spiritual maturity.

The purpose of service is for the building up of the body of Mashiach. "Building up" is oikodomeo, from oikos, "house," and domeo, "to build." The word means "edification" The Word teaches the assembly; the members of the assembly, having been equipped by the Elder/Bishop/Shepherd, now all function in their spiritual gifts. Because the spiritual gifts are all functioning, the believers are edifying each other and strengthening each other so they can do what the Assembly is supposed to do: evangelize, tell the world about Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach. This is what makes for a dynamic local Assembly.

... until We all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of YHWH , to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fulness of Mashiach. (Eph. 4:13)

The ultimate objective is expressed in four pictures of what we want to attain:

1. The unity of the faith. "Faith" here is not subjective but objective, referring to that which we believe. "The unity of the faith" means that because the Word of YHWH is taught in its entirety, we have a systematic development of our understanding of the Word of YHWH .

2. The knowledge of the Son of YHWH . This is functional, experiential knowledge. We know Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach not because we have heard or studied about Him, but because we have experienced Him. We see His power in our lives, His confidence, His boldness, His courage, His humility. And we see these things in the live of others in the local Assembly, and we come to a practical, experiential knowledge of the person of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach. He is not someone who is absent; He is someone who is present. He is not someone who is weak; He is someone who is powerful. He is someone who lives and breathes within individuals and within a local Assembly.

How will we ever come to the experiential knowledge of the Son of YHWH ? Only one way, we have to come to systematic unity in our understanding of Biblical FOUNDATIONAL doctrine. If we do not accept the full counsel of YHWH , we will never see the full glory Mashiach.

3. A mature man. Mature, from teleios, can also be translated "complete. This means that we have put all the pieces of the puzzle together. We have a dear understanding of the full scope of doctrine and have applied it to our lives. We have been taught and because we have the unity of the faith and because we have the experiential knowledge of the person of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach, we are MADE/BECOME mature.

4. The fulness of Mashiach. To reach this point means that we are filled with quality, controlled by our occupation with Mashiach and influenced by Him in everything we do. We start out in the TZADIK life just working toward Mashiach and in time begin to be occupied with Him. But then what happens? As we develop a systematic understanding of the written Word, Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach the Living Word becomes alive to us. He becomes real, more real than anything else. He becomes important to us. As He does, we begin to have epignosis, experiential knowledge of the Son of YHWH . We reach spiritual maturity and then He fills our life, controls our thinking, influences our actions. Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach has become the most important thing in life.

As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves, and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to GROW UP in all aspects into Him, who is the head, even Mashiach. (Eph. 4:14-15)

If we persist in the teaching and application of the Word, we will not have to be children all our lives. The Greek meketi, "no longer," says, "It is time to move on." The writer of Hebrews admonishes his readers by telling them that by now they ought to be teaching others, they ought to be functioning in their spiritual gifts, but they are not. Why? Because they have become dull of hearing, reversionistic (Heb. 5:11-14).

The word Paul uses here for "children" is nepios. The word refers to an adult who is childish. In the spiritual realm this is someone who has been a believer for a long time, but who is still trying to make a TZADIK an outward thing instead of an human production, human effort, human good, instead of the inward thing. He still doesn't understand that an TZADIK is superspiritual and invisible; he is still trying to make an issue of invisible divine production.

"Tossed" and "carried about" are both in the present tense, indicating Persistent action. This is the childish believer's  lifestyle--constantly shifting, constantly unstable, constantly affected by external shifts in the wind, living a life built on circumstances. No believer can attain maturity if his life is built  on conditions around him.

But instead of remaining children, we may grow. "Speaking the truth in love" means communicating Bible doctrine in the power of the Ruach HaKodesh. The phrase takes us back to where Paul began in verse 11 with the communication of the Word by gifted teachers in the filling of the Ruach HaKodesh. When doctrine is taught this way, we will grow up in all aspects. Atlxano refers to natural, normal growth. This is the normal TZADIK life-spiritual advance from the tree to the crown.

Romans 12: 1-2 Philippians 2:3-11

Spiritual maturity is the point at which we begin to live the normal TZADIK life. By the time we reach maturity, we are able to maintain the filling of the Spirit for prolonged periods of time. Because of this we are ready to start using to the full the resources that YHWH makes available to us. At maturity we recognize how awesome are the responsibilities and opportunities YHWH has given us, and the question we face is this: "Am I going to be faithful in using what YHWH has provided to accomplish the task He has given me to do?" If we say yes, we will begin to see what sacrifice is really all about.

I urge you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of YHWH , to present your bodies a living and holy sacrifice, acceptable to YHWH , which is your spiritual service of worship. (Rom. 12:1)

With the word "therefore," Paul brings everything he has taught so far in this epistle to the point of practical application. He wants us to put shoes on our theology. He is saying that somewhere along the line our theology has to relate to our lives.

Oiktirmos means more than "mercy." While it does refer to the compassion that arises from a recognition of someone's need, it also always implies a provision to satisfy the need. YHWH has compassion on us because He recognizes our need, and He holds out to us resources, provision, wealth--the riches of His grace.

"Present," is paristemi, from histemi, meaning "to stand or set," and para, "beside." It means to make something available. The word is used in Luke 2:22 for the presentation of the baby Malki Tzedik Yahusha at the temple. Joseph and Mary were, in effect, making Him available to YHWH . In Romans 6:13, we are urged to make the members of our bodies available to YHWH as weapons of righteousness.

The issue in the TZADIK life is never our ability; YHWH has resources to take care of that. The issue is our availability YHWH has chosen to give us free will. AS unbelievers we had the right to believe in Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach or to reject Him. As believers we have the right to utilize the provisions of YHWH 's grace or to squander them

Paul is telling his readers that it is the purpose of YHWH that we Present our physical bodies as a living sacrifice or offering. This would have been shocking to the people to whom this was written in AD 65 - 67  to the Greco-Roman mind, the body was something to be despised; only the mind mattered. But Paul wants them to understand that the body is important because it is the temple of the Ruach HaKodesh and He wants it to be an instrument YHWH can use in accomplishing His plan.

According to Hebrews 10:5-10, at the time of His physical birth, Malki Tzedik Yahusha said essentially this to the Father, "You would not accept animal sacrifice and offerings as a cleansing of sin for the human race, but a body you have prepared for Me.... I have come to do Your will." The second Person of EL-ELOHE-ISRAEL  entered the human race to offer His body as a sacrifice for sin. In the person of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach, undiminished deity and perfect, sinless humanity were, welded together forever. Now YHWH carries on through the spiritual body of Mashiach the work He began in the incarnation We are instruments to accomplish the will of YHWH on earth.

In the 0ld Testament, all sacrifices had to be killed. But Paul says our sacrifice is our SOUL/SELF/PSUCHE, and the death of it therein, as  to BECOME "living" and "holy." The plan of YHWH is that every believer be in full-time, 24-hour-a-day TZADIK service. "Holy" means "set apart" or "sanctified" and refers to the filling of the Ruach HaKodesh. When we have no unconfessed soulish wrong being  in our life and are filled with the Ruach/Spirit, we are acceptable to YHWH . As believers, we are positionally righteous and sanctified always. We are practically righteous and sanctified only when we are walking in the Spirit.

This is our " spiritual service of worship." "Spiritual service" comes from two words, logikos, meaning "logical," "reason) able," "sensible," and latreia, a word used for priestly service, but referring in ancient Greek to the work of a common day laborer. It is logical and reasonable that YHWH would require 24-hour-a-day service from His servants. An TZADIK is a full-time job, and working at it full time is our act of worship.

Think about what this means. When you pull on your grubbies to go to work in the morning, you ought to be going to worship. If you work in an office, you ought to say, "I have to go to the office from nine to five to worship." If you are a carpenter, the logical place for you to worship is out there where you are every day sawing boards and slamming nails, you ought to have an attitude that says, "I carry in my physical body the Spirit of YHWH. I am the sanctuary and because I carry Him with me, every single thing I do is important to Him, and I will make it an act of worship."

The first indication that we are arriving at spiritual maturity is that we worship every day, wherever we are. What does it take to have that attitude? It takes focus. We have to be able to concentrate, to fix our minds on reality, and not be sucked in to the lies of the SIV JESUIT/Vatican or Mormon all around us.

And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of YHWH is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect. (Rom. 12:1-2)

"Be conformed to" is suschemntizo. Schema is outward appearance. Paul uses a present passive imperative here. The imperative is a command; the present tense tells us not to keep on being conformed. The passive voice tells us that we receive this action because we live here in this world. The world is constantly putting pressure on us, and the pressures cause us to conform. Paul says do not allow yourself to be pressed into a new aids/new world order mold. Outward conformity is the problem here.

The word translated "world" is not "world" at all. It is the Greek aion, "age." It refers to the trends of human history. Paul is saying, "Do not allow yourself to be molded by the trends of society. Do not allow yourself outwardly to take on the appearance of the world, the age in which you live."

Instead, we are to be transformed, metamorphw. Meat means "to change;" morphoo means "form." It refers to a transformation or a change that is inner and involves essence. Paul is telling us to be changed on the inside. As we are transformed, the changes that begin on the inside will work their way out and will affect what we look like on the outside. This passage is calling for a little bit of spiritual non-conformity. It is a challenge to us as believers to go against the tide, to stand on our own, based on our own understanding and knowledge of the Word of YHWH .

This is exactly what Paul means when he tells us in Philippians 2:12 to work out our salvation. The principle is this: Every thing of the world--the cosmic system--works from the outside in, trying to change the inner man by making the outer man look or talk or act in certain "acceptable" ways But YHWH 's plan is different. It works from the center to the outside. Everything YHWH does in our lives starts inside with our attitude, our thinking, and works its way outward. The change YHWH wants will take place first in the hidden recesses of our essence, our spirit and our soul, and then will transform what is on the outside, the body, an TZADIK growth will be seen last of all in what we do.

Just how is it that we are to be transformed? "By the renewing of your mind" Renewing" is anakainoo. Ana means " again and again." Kainos means "new in quality." The renewing of the mind means the constant improvement of the quality of our minds through the repetition of the teaching of the Word of YHWH . Isaiah 28:10 tells us that YHWH 's plan is "order on order, order on order, line on line, line on line, a little here, a little there." We put promise upon promise, precept upon precept and we advance step by step by the renewing of our minds.

YHWH 's plan is not to change people by requiring them to wear certain clothes or talk certain ways. The plan is to have the Word taught, and wherever the Word is received, it will change the recipient from the inside out. When someone changes his activity by his own free will, as a response to the Word of YHWH , there is genuine growth. That is the only kind of growth that counts. YHWH 's plan starts at repentance then salvation when we become new creatures by regeneration because of union with Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach (2 Cor. 5:17). Then we move to Romans 12:2, to the renewing of the mind. The result will be that we will eventually fulfill Romans 6:4, walking in newness of life. If we renew the mind through consistent long-term study of the Word of YHWH , we will find experiential newness of life; our life will have quality because our thinking has quality.

The purpose of this growth, Paul says in Romans 12:2, is to "prove" something. Dokimazo is an athletic word that means " to prove through testing." YHWH has tests--trials, pressures, adversity, even prosperity--planned for every life. When are we going to present our body a living sacrifice? Every time we face a test. And what are we going to prove? What is called here the "good and acceptable and perfect" will of YHWH . "Perfect," teleios, is a word that is used in the Bible for maturity. It means to be complete, to be without lack. Every time we are tested we have the chance to prove, by facing pressure and overcoming, that the will of YHWH works in life.

Have this attitude in yourselves which was also in Mashiach Malki Tzedik Yahusha ... (Phil. 2:5)

"Have this attitude" is the present active imperative of the verb phroneo, which means "to think." This is a command to keep on thinking like Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach thought. The active voice tells us that we choose whether to do this or not. First Corinthians 2:16 says that the Torah/Bible/Instruction is the mind of Mashiach. If we ever hope to think like Mashiach, we have to know and understand how He thought. This only comes through consistent study and application of the Word in the filling of the Ruach HaKodesh. Being conformed to Mashiach begins with thinking.

Apart from study of the Word, we cannot know how or what to think, because the mind of Mashiach is totally opposed to all human perception and human logic. Paul illustrates this in the verses just before and just after his command to have the mind of Mashiach.

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind let each of you regard one another as more important than himself; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. (Phil. 2:3-4)

 YHWH Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach treated every member of the human race as more important than Himself, and He was YHWH in the flesh. He made people know that they were valuable by the way He treated them. His whole life was spent looking out for the interests of others. Mark tells us that Malki Tzedik Yahusha "did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life.. [Self/Psuche/Soul life] a ransom for many" (Mark 10:45), and all the gospel accounts bear witness to the fact that He served every day of His life on earth.

What a radical change it would work in society if we thought that way. Think what it would mean in your life and mine if 24 hours a day we were offering our bodies as a living sacrifice to YHWH in this way. What if we offered the encouragement, the consolation, the affection, the compassion of Mashiach to every one we came in contact with today? What if we put other people and their needs before ourselves? What if our attitude was that this other person's concerns are just as important as ours; his problems are just as pressing; his feelings matter as much?

If we had that attitude then every day would be a day of true worship, because we would be living every hour as a sacrifice to YHWH , experiencing the very life of the person of Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach. But it can only happen one way: the mind has to gorge on the Word of YHWH , the soul has to be saturated with the Word of YHWH . As we feast on the Word day after day, the transformation slowly takes place, and it causes us to think and act like Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach thought and acted.

... who, although He existed in the form of YHWH , did not regard equality with YHWH a thing to be grasped, but emptied Himself, taking the form of a bondservant, and being made in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a tree. Therefore also YHWH highly exalted Him, and bestowed on Him the name which is above every name, that at the name of Malki Tzedik Yahusha every knee should bow, of those who are in heaven, and on earth, and under the earth, and that every tongue should confess that Malki Tzedik Yahusha HaMashiach is YHWH, to the glory of YHWH the Father. (Phil. 2:6-11)