Unpopular The Movie – RedGraceMedia Films Final Cut

GAME OVER

This is a new Gospel tract . . .

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~ A Real Tragedy ~

~ With Compliments ~

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Gary Stephen Crous

Cell: +27 (0) 72 221 1233

E-mail: luke9.23evangelism@gmail.com

Website: http://www.luke923evangelism.wordpress.com

  You find yourself daily trusting in planes, trains and automobiles, mechanical equipment and human decisions. Just getting to this place you possibly placed your trust and life in the hands of persons you had never met before and man made things.

  Statistics reveal that as many as 150 000 people die daily in any 24 hour period around the world. You might be wondering why this information is being made available to you. The reason is that daily we are a breath away from dying and the reality is that we will some day meet this inevitable event. When you die, will you be ready to pass on into eternity? Think for a moment of the following football tragedies that took place ‘somewhat unexpectantly’:

The Busby Babes  * 1958 – The Munich Disaster – On 6 February the Manchester United team were on their way back from a European Cup-tie in Belgrade. They had stopped in Munich and were taking off again in bitterly cold, bleak conditions when the plane suddenly dipped and crashed even before it was clear of the airport. Eight players, eight journalists and seven others, including United officials and air crew, lost their lives. Sir Matt Busby, manager of the great team, once said, “My life had been spared, though it still hung on only by a thread. I wanted to die.” That is how close ‘The Busby Babes’ had become and just how tragic the crash in Munich was.

Juventus supporters  * 1985 – The Heysel Stadium disaster occurred on 29 May when escaping fans were pressed against a collapsing wall in the Heysel Stadium in Brussels, Belgium, before the start of the 1985 European Cup Final between Juventus of Italy and Liverpool of England. 39 Juventus supporters lost their lives on that fateful evening.

Hillsborough disaster   * April 15, 1989 at the Hillsborough Stadium, Sheffield England, 96 Liverpool fans were crushed to death when fans arriving after kick-off, at an FA Cup semi-final between Liverpool and Nottingham Forest, packed into an already overcrowded standing terracing area crushing the unsuspecting supporters in the front row up against metal fencing resulting in many deaths from suffocation.

Zambian National Team memorial  * 1993 – The Zambian National Team – The disaster occurred in the late evening of 27 April when a Zambian Air Force de Havilland Canada DHC-5D Buffalo (Reg.: AF-319) ditched into the Atlantic Ocean about 500 metres offshore from Libreville, Gabon. The flight was carrying most of the Zambian National Football team to a FIFA World Cup Qualifier against Senegal in Dakar. All 30 passengers and crew, including 18 players, as well as the national team coach and support staff, died in the accident.

Ellis Park Stadium tragedy  * April 11, 2001 at the Ellis Park stadium in Johannesburg, South Africa, a stampede at an ‘Orlando Derby’ soccer match between arch rivals Kaizer Chiefs and Orlando Pirates led to the death of 43 supporters.

  You might be wondering at this point what the foregoing incidents have to do with “You”. If you were to place yourself at the scene of one of the tragedies minutes before mayhem erupted around you and the chances were 1-in-1 that you would be a victim of early death would you want to be warned in advance of the events that would unfold – to warn you of your soul passing through death prematurely into eternity. The reality is that those souls who lost their lives under such tragic circumstances never knew their time had arrived, but they died on time, not neither a second earlier nor a second too late.

  You could find yourself sitting in a stadium enjoying worldly entertainment and trusting the seat you are in not knowing that death awaits you just minutes away.

  Have you ever considered what happens to you when you die? And what do you think the dead players, officials, fans and media persons were thinking of leading up to their deaths? Had they considered their eternal destination? Do you think they considered where their spirit would spend eternity? And, how about you? Have you thought about heaven and hell and whether these places do exist? Or do you think when you die it is just “Game Over”.

  We are warned in GOD’s Word, “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:” (Hebrews 9:27), in love we come to you with this urgent message. As you have to appear before the Judge of the Universe do you think you are ‘good enough’ to enter GOD’s heaven?

  You have a conscience so please listen to the inner voice that tells you what is right action and what is wrong action. If you answered “Yes” – or something similar to being ‘good’ – it would not be out of the ordinary to see if that is in fact true. The way “YOU” can evaluate your ‘goodness’ is by using GOD’s Moral Law (The Ten Commandments), His perfect and righteous standards. Do you think you have kept them? Let’s see how you will fare . . .

  Have you ever told a lie in violation of the 9th Commandment? As a supporter or athlete have you ever tried to deceive the referee/umpire or an opponent by trying to gain an unfair advantage – that is lying? Or have you broken the 8th Commandment by stealing anything? The value or size of the object is irrelevant. Be honest and listen to your conscience. Remember piracy is also theft. Have you ever committed adultery in violation of the 7th Commandment? You don’t have to be married to break this law. Jesus said, 27Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: 28But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.” – Matthew 5:27,28. Have you looked with lust/sexual desire be it heterosexual or homosexual? This is also an offence to women who look with lust at men. A woman who dresses seductively in immodesty to seduce men’s eyes and cause them to lust after her is called an adulteress (Proverbs 6:24-29). Or have you had sex outside of marriage (fornication)? Or have you ever used GOD’s Holy name or His Son Jesus’ name in vain – as a swear word? This is blasphemy and GOD’s Word says He will hold all who violate this 3rd Commandment to be guilty. Possibly you have hated someone by calling them names – you will be judged as a murderer for you have committed murder in your heart in violation of the 6th Commandment.

  If you have answered “yes” to any of the above questions GOD sees you as a liar, a thief, an adulterer-at-heart and/or fornicator, a blasphemer and a murderer. These are only five of the Ten Commandments that you have answered to, and there are still five more cannons of GOD’s Law pointed at you. Have you always placed GOD as number one in your life or do you bow the knee or worship idols and false gods? Or maybe your soccer worship is your idol. This is idolatry and the Bible says idolaters will be cast into the lake of fire. The Word of GOD says that if you break one commandment at any point, you have broken the whole Law (at every level). Therefore you have broken all the commandments and GOD’s wrath is against you. When GOD judges you by His Moral Standards on the Day of Judgment you will be found to be guilty and you will be sentenced to hell – His prison. Does this concern you? It should concern you, because we are concerned for you too. The Bible says: “9Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God.” – 1 Corinthians 6:9,10.

  And in Revelation 21:8 the Holy Scriptures read: “But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.”

  Scripture says GOD has “no pleasure in the death of the wicked” (Ezekiel 33:11) and He calls for them to turn and live. So, do you know what GOD did for you about 2000 years ago? Do not deceive yourself – you are not good. You are a sinner who is deserving of hell. But GOD is Good and in His mercy and grace towards you and all humanity GOD became a Man to die in your place. It is like this – you broke GOD’s Law and He paid your fine in His Son’s precious life’s blood. Jesus Christ the sent Messiah was conceived by the Holy Spirit, born of a virgin named Mary and who came to dwell upon the earth as Immanuel (GOD with us). In obedience to His Father, the Lord Jesus lay down His life for all sinners and was sacrificed in your and humanity’s place upon the cross at Calvary. He was crucified, bruised and crushed for our lawlessness. Jesus the sent Saviour of the world took the full extent of GOD’s wrath upon Himself to die in your place. He died and was laid in a tomb and on the third day He was raised to life by the power of the Holy Spirit defeating sin, Satan and death. There were on many occasions witnesses that testify that He was raised from the dead, and Jesus ascended into heaven where He now sits at the right hand of GOD the Father interceding on our behalf from where He will one day return to “judge the world in Righteousness.” – Acts 17:31

  The Bible says that the only way to enter into heaven is to be born-again of the Spirit and be baptised in water. You need to humble yourself as a sinner before GOD and ask Him to forgive your lawless sins, repent of (turn away and forsake) your sin and put your trust and faith only in the Lord Jesus as your Saviour and Redeemer. Then you will move from death to life and you will be reconciled to GOD as His child and He will grant you His gift of eternal life. GOD will not forsake you as it is impossible for Him to lie. Then read your Bible daily and believe and live out what it tells you.

  “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” – John 3:16

  “Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.” – John 14:6

  So, why wait for another minute, hour, day, week or month to pass by? Get right with God today – (. . . behold, now is the day of salvation) – II Corinthians 6:2. Remember all the memories, the accolades, medals and trophies, degrees and the like that you have accumulated through-out your life are worthless and cannot save you, “36For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? 37Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Mark 8:36,37). You need a living Saviour to save your soul.clip_image012

Published by Repent and Believe South Africa

Please visit the website for more information.

This tract may be copied for free distribution if it is copied in full

‘My Friends Are Dying And, Though They Be Alive, They Are Dead Men Walking!’ Tract

My Friends Are Dying

And, Though They Be

Alive, They Are

Dead Men Walking!

~ A Message of Hope ~

~ With Compliments ~

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Gary Stephen Crous

Cell: +27 (0) 72 221 1233

E-mail: luke9.23evangelism@gmail.com

Website: www.luke923evangelism.wordpress.com

“My friends are dying and, though they be alive, they are dead men walking!”

Pirates FC 1986 Natal League Cup winners Pirates F.C. ~ Natal League Cup Winners 1986

Dear friend,

This is a clarion call trumpeted to all who have an ear to hear. This cry out is pertinent at this most urgent time we live in. The heading at the top reads, “My friends are dying and, though they be alive, they are dead men walking!” From the day we are born into this world, we are born to die. Some die at a young age, others die at an older more mature age, but death is most assuredly guaranteed – death is but a breath away. Do you know when you will die? Do you know you have an appointment with death? And the day that you die will be the most important day of your existence. In GOD’s Holy Word, The Bible, we read of the warning, “And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment:” (Hebrews 9:27).

Friend, we all have an appointment we have to keep. There is no way that the appointment scheduled by GOD will ever be cancelled. Whether you believe it or not, you have a date with eternity and based on how you lived in this life will ultimately determine where you are headed. You are not guaranteed the next minute, you are not guaranteed the next hour, day, week, month or year. You are but a breath away from meeting your Creator. In this life there is death all around, and your life in your soul could be demanded or taken from you in the blink of an eye. Then what? Where are you headed come Judgment Day? There are only two ways in life as Jesus Christ said, “13Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it.” (Matthew 7:13,14). Are you going to be counted amongst the “few”? Or are you on the super highway, the way which is broad that leads to hell and destruction? Your lifestyle determines the way you are on! So are you headed for hell? Then you need to make a U-Turn and fast. But do carry on reading this warning. And if you are a Christian, you too continue on reading so you can examine yourself, for we are exhorted, “Examine yourselves, whether ye be in the faith; prove your own selves. Know ye not your own selves, how that Jesus Christ is in you, except ye be reprobates?” (2 Corinthians 13:5).

Friend, I am sure you can relate to this. You know of either a family member or a friend or a celebrity or a sportsman who has died recently and passed on into eternity. Some have hopefully died with a living hope, whilst others have sadly and tragically died with no hope at all and are damned for all eternity. It is for this very reason I come to you my friend, in love, with this most urgent message concerning: “My friends are dying and, though they be alive, they are dead men walking!”

Bill Shankly

Bill Shankly, a Liverpool manager on Merseyside from 1959–1974 is quoted as saying: “Some people believe football is a matter of life and death, I am very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure you it is much, much more important than that.” Well, the socialist William “Bill” Shankly came to realise on Tuesday 29th September 1981 at the age of 68 when he passed into eternity that football is not “much, much more important” than life and death, when he died of a heart attack. The front page headline of the Liverpool Echo newspaper simply read: SHANKLY IS DEAD. It recorded the official Broadgreen Hospital statement: “Mr Shankly suffered a cardiac arrest at 00.30 am and was certified dead at 01.20. Shanks had been battling for life since he suffered a heart attack early on Saturday shanksfuneralspt81 morning. He had been making good progress until his condition deteriorated yesterday morning and he was transferred to the Intensive Care Unit. His wife Nessie was by his side when he died.”

Dear friend, how will your epithet read one day when you pass from this life into eternity? Will you be remembered as having lived with a hope through being born-again? Or, will you be remembered as having wasted your life, been a spiritually dead man walking who is damned for all eternity? GOD’s Word tells us in advance that Jesus said, “3Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God. … 5Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. 6That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7Marvel not that I said unto thee, Ye must be born again.” (John 3:3,5-7)

So how does one be born again? At the outset, you are not ‘good enough’ in your own stead to receive GOD’s pardon come Judgment Day, if you are walking after the flesh and not the Spirit of GOD! Here, take a quick test using GOD’s perfect and righteous Law, The Ten Commandments (see Exodus 20:1-17; Deuteronomy 5:6-21) to see your plight when you have to give an account before the great white throne judgment seat of Christ – How many lies have you told in your life time? If you have told but just one lie you are a liar. Have you stolen anything – irrespective of the size or value of the object, including piracy of music CDs and film DVDs? If you have, that would render you as a thief. Have you looked at a person with lust of the heart – either in acts of heterosexual and/or homosexual lust? Jesus calls that adultery of the heart (see Matthew 5:27-30)! Or maybe idolatry is your violation of GOD’s Law. Idolatry is not only in a religion of idol worship, but idolatry can be a love of money, material possessions, sex, drugs, music, etc or maybe it is football players and teams which are your idols. For many years Liverpool Football Club, its players and the game of football in general was a deep-rooted idol in my life until I came to repentance and GOD delivered me from this idolatry. GOD sees all, “The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good.” (Proverb 15:3). “Ye adulterers and adulteresses, know ye not that the friendship of the world is enmity with God? whosoever therefore will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God.” (James 4:4).

GOD being good, perfect, righteous and holy therefore has a good, perfect, righteous and holy standard! Judging by GOD’s standard, any person breaking HIS commands would leave that person guilty of breaking GOD’s Law and therefore GOD must punish their sin! Scripture reads, “12And I saw the dead, small and great, stand before God; and the books were opened: and another book was opened, which is the book of life: and the dead were judged out of those things which were written in the books, according to their works. 13And the sea gave up the dead which were in it; and death and hell delivered up the dead which were in them: and they were judged every man according to their works. 14And death and hell were cast into the lake of fire. This is the second death. 15And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” (Revelation 20:12-15)

Dear friend, if you have violated GOD’s commandments that would leave you guilty before the Judge of the Universe. We all must appear before GOD, as we read, “13Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. 14For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil.” (Ecclesiastes 12:13,14)

You have heard that old cliché: “You do the crime, you do the time.” Well, GOD will punish all sin wherever it is found, and so, if you are found to have transgressed GOD’s Law and is found to be a lying thief, an adulterer at heart, and an idolater (just to mention a few violations of GOD’s Law) then you are guilty as a criminal who should do the time! And GOD’s place of punishment is hell as a holding cell until Judgment Day which results in an eternal sentencing into the lake of fire as mentioned in Revelation 20:12-15 here-above.

Whilst “God is angry with the wicked every day” (Psalm 7:11b), GOD is also merciful and gracious. GOD is love (1 John 4:8,16) and HE shows HIS love by making a way for wretched sinners to be saved from HIS wrath, and reconciled back to HIMSELF, “16For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 17For God sent not his Son into the world to condemn the world; but that the world through him might be saved. 18He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God. 19And this is the condemnation, that light is come into the world, and men loved darkness rather than light, because their deeds were evil. 20For every one that doeth evil hateth the light, neither cometh to the light, lest his deeds should be reproved. 21But he that doeth truth cometh to the light, that his deeds may be made manifest, that they are wrought in God.” (John 3:16-21)

As can be seen that the salvation of GOD is obtained through HIS Son Jesus Christ and not through the thousands upon thousands of man-made religious practices, customs and traditions. Man worships his plethora of idolatrous gods through his man-made cultic religions such as Roman Catholicism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, the ZCC, the TACC, Shembe Nazarenes, Seventh-Day Adventism, Jehovah Witnesses, Mormonism, the 38,000+ “ecumenical Protestantism denominations” (the Papacy’s harlot daughters) that have little unity in their doctrines and teachings, and atheism which is a religion of worshipping and serving the creation and not the Creator, as we read, “20For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: 21Because that, when they knew God, they glorified him not as God, neither were thankful; but became vain in their imaginations, and their foolish heart was darkened. 22Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools, 23And changed the glory of the uncorruptible God into an image made like to corruptible man, and to birds, and fourfooted beasts, and creeping things. 24Wherefore God also gave them up to uncleanness through the lusts of their own hearts, to dishonour their own bodies between themselves: 25Who changed the truth of God into a lie, and worshipped and served the creature more than the Creator, who is blessed for ever. Amen.” (Romans 1:20-25)

Yeshua haMessiach, the Lord Jesus Christ, said He is the ONLY WAY to GOD the Father when, Jesus said, “6I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me. 7If ye had known me, ye should have known my Father also: and from henceforth ye know him, and have seen him.” (John 14:6,7). The prophecies of old that were prophesied by the prophets in the Old Testament concerning the Saviour came to pass as YEHOVAH (YHVH), the One and Only True and Living GOD, ordained it to be. GOD confirmed through the prophet Isaiah, “For the LORD is our judge, the LORD is our lawgiver, the LORD is our king; he will save us” (Isaiah 33:22). In the Historical account when Mary was pregnant with the baby Jesus, she said, “46My soul doth magnify the Lord, 47And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour” (Luke 1:46,47). Jesus confirmed, “56Your father Abraham rejoiced to see my day: and he saw it, and was glad. 57Then said the Jews unto him, Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? 58Jesus said unto them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Before Abraham was, I am.” (John 8:56-58). Jesus Christ being the manifest GOD in flesh is the Saviour of the world.

All the memories, the accolades, medals and trophies, degrees and the like that you have accumulated through-out your life are worthless and cannot save you, “36For what shall it profit a man, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? 37Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?” (Mark 8:36,37). You need a living Saviour to save your soul. For Christ suffered in our place taking the wrath of GOD upon Himself, as we read, “For Christ also hath once suffered for sins, the just for the unjust, that he might bring us to God, being put to death in the flesh, but quickened by the Spirit:” (1 Peter 3:18). Today, while it is still today, find peace with GOD through repentance and faith by calling upon Jesus Christ, for this is your only hope. If you reject the Lord Jesus Christ, you reject GOD at your own peril! “Then Peter said unto them, Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.” (Acts 2:38)

Whilst the “You’ll Never Walk Alone” song [see Footnote], made famous by Gerry and the Pacemakers, is synonymous with Liverpool Football Club fans, the song is an anthem of hope, but for every Christian true Hope is found in the lyrics of Psalm 23: A Psalm of David,

1The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.

2He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters.

3He restoreth my soul: he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake.

4Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

5Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over.

6Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever. (Psalm 23:1-6)

Soli Deo Gloria

________________

Footnote:

When you walk through a storm

Hold your head up high

And don’t be afraid of the dark

At the end of a storm

There’s a golden sky

And the sweet silver song of a lark

Walk on through the wind

Walk on through the rain

Though your dreams be tossed and blown

Walk on, walk on

With hope in your heart

And you’ll never walk alone

You’ll never walk alone

Walk on, walk on

With hope in your heart

And you’ll never walk alone

You’ll never walk alone

Published by Repent and Believe South Africa

Please visit the website for more information.

This tract may be copied for free distribution if it is copied in full

The Woman Caught in Adultery

I shared with a Seventh-day Adventist recently regarding John 8:1-11 and it is clear that SDA’s – but not only SDA’s – approach the Scriptures of the Bible from the stand point of eisegesis (that is to read into the Scriptures one’s own belief systems and dogma) and that is where they interpret and teach scripture from their own view point which brings about error, but we are to receive from the Scriptures by exegesis (that is allowing Scripture to confirm Scripture) and “. . . the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things . . .” (see John 14:26).

This post will deal with two issues that many believers misinterpret – or miss altogether – with regards to this portion of Scripture where often it is said that this story merely shows the Lord Jesus’ mercy and grace to the woman caught in adultery. It however goes a lot deeper from a legal perspective than just “seeing the mercy and grace of Jesus.” The two issues, are,

1. Why? and for what reasons did Jesus write on the ground with His finger the two times? and

2. Would Jesus have had to give the command to stone the woman if all the requirements of the law were fulfilled?

Here is the portion of Scripture under discussion:

1  Jesus went unto the mount of Olives. 
2  And early in the morning he came again into the temple, and all the people came unto him; and he sat down, and taught them. 
3  And the scribes and Pharisees brought unto him a woman taken in adultery; and when they had set her in the midst, 
4  They say unto him, Master, this woman was taken in adultery, in the very act. 
5  Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned: but what sayest thou? 
6  This they said, tempting him, that they might have to accuse him. But Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not. 
7  So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. 
8  And again he stooped down, and wrote on the ground. 
9  And they which heard it, being convicted by their own conscience, went out one by one, beginning at the eldest, even unto the last: and Jesus was left alone, and the woman standing in the midst.
10  When Jesus had lifted up himself, and saw none but the woman, he said unto her, Woman, where are those thine accusers? hath no man condemned thee?
11  She said, No man, Lord. And Jesus said unto her, Neither do I condemn thee: go, and sin no more. ~ John 8:1-11

I will now give an exegesis account on John 8:1-11, starting with the first issue,

1. Why? and for what reasons did Jesus write on the ground with His finger the two times? 

Firstly, the Pharisees knew the law, but they also added to, diminished from and even broke the law of Moses. While many would overlook that Jesus would have to remind the Pharisees what the law required, by writing on the ground, we can learn much from what Jesus said, as it is recorded in the words of Jesus, as we hear His teaching, as He berates the doings and teachings of the scribes and Pharisees, as it is written,

1  Then spake Jesus to the multitude, and to his disciples, 
2  Saying,
The scribes and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat: 
3  All therefore whatsoever they bid you observe, that observe and do; but do not ye after their works: for they say, and do not. 
4  For they bind heavy burdens and grievous to be borne, and lay them on men’s shoulders; but they themselves will not move them with one of their fingers. 
5  But all their works they do for to be seen of men: they make broad their phylacteries, and enlarge the borders of their garments, 
6  And love the uppermost rooms at feasts, and the chief seats in the synagogues, 
7  And greetings in the markets, and to be called of men, Rabbi, Rabbi. 
8  But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.
~ Matthew 23:1-8

Now to exegete the John portion of Scripture under discussion, in John 8:3 we read that the scribes and Pharisees brought unto Jesus a woman taken in adultery, and they confirm in verse 4 that it was “in the very act.” If it was “in the very act” then they had broken the law of Moses by letting the male adulterer go free and by only bringing the female adulteress to Jesus for judgment. They “knew” what the law commanded as they say in verse 5 “Now Moses in the law commanded us, that such should be stoned:”, but their whole modus operandi was to tempt Jesus so that they could accuse Him for at the end of verse 5 they say, “but what sayest thou?” In verse 6 it confirms that they wanted to accuse Jesus and the only way to do that was to see how Jesus would react to the law of Moses that they were referring to. On the Pharisees’ part they were being deceitful and wanting to make a show of Jesus’ reaction before the scribes, who would have most certainly recorded the events, and before the people whom Jesus were teaching. In essence they were trying to “catch-out” Jesus by seeing if He would keep the law. The law of Moses commanded the following:

10  And the man that committeth adultery with another man’s wife, even he that committeth adultery with his neighbour’s wife, the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death. ~ Leviticus 20:10

22  If a man be found lying with a woman married to an husband, then they shall both of them die, both the man that lay with the woman, and the woman: so shalt thou put away evil from Israel. ~ Deuteronomy 22:22

I believe that when “. . . Jesus stooped down, and with his finger wrote on the ground, as though he heard them not” He was bringing to their attention what the law actually said, bringing an indictment against them as to where the adulterer was that was caught “in the very act.” He wrote the applicable law with His finger, and we can go to the Old Testament Scriptures and see Who is referred to as writing the law with His finger, as we read, for it is written,

18  And he gave unto Moses, when he had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God. ~ Exodus 31:18 (My emphasis in bold and throughout)

10  And the LORD delivered unto me two tables of stone written with the finger of God; and on them was written according to all the words, which the LORD spake with you in the mount out of the midst of the fire in the day of the assembly. ~ Deuteronomy 9:10

Since Jesus was being tested by the Pharisees in the law, it would be expected that Jesus was probably writing concerning the law. Why else would He stoop done and write? We are speaking about a Righteous GOD in human flesh! And if the Pharisees knew the Scriptures they would have understood Jesus’ writing with His finger, too. The Pharisees continued with their badgering of the Lord Jesus, and He lifted up Himself from the stooped position, as we read,

7  So when they continued asking him, he lifted up himself, and said unto them, He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her. ~ John 8:7

Jesus’ statement of “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her” is referring to them breaking the law that He has just made known to them for they could not sin unless they had violated the law. You cannot bring an indictment against someone before showing them the error of their ways, or else it could be a false accusation if it were not true! For in 1 John 3:4 it reads: “Whosoever committeth sin transgresseth also the law: for sin is the transgression of the law.” In this instance, Jesus could not make reference to “sin” in the absence of the “law” being mentioned, for He would have no basis to make that statement. Where there is no law there can be no transgression and indictment. Therefore, Jesus had to make known the law before saying, that if there is no transgression of the law (sin) among you then that person can then cast a stone at her. No righteous judgment can be executed without a person being shown the law they have violated. In a court of law you cannot be sued and be found guilty unless you are told which law you have transgressed. For we read, as it is written,

15  Because the law worketh wrath: for where no law is, there is no transgression. ~ Romans 4:15

2. Would Jesus have had to give the command to stone the woman if all the requirements of the law were fulfilled?

It should also be noted that if the Pharisees had also brought the male adulterer to Jesus with the present adulteress, Jesus would have had to teach and show that He was a keeper of the law and have them both stoned according to the law given to Moses by GOD! However, this was not the intentions of the Pharisees to uphold the law, but to discredit and find reasons to accuse Jesus (see John 8:6). They were not law abiding, but deceivers in their actions!

When Jesus stooped down again the second time and wrote on the ground, it is possible that He was writing their indictments as lawbreakers for we read that they were being convicted by their own consciences; for we also read, as it is written,

11  For there is no respect of persons with God.
12  For as many as have sinned without law shall also perish without law: and as many as have sinned in the law shall be judged by the law;
13  (For not the hearers of the law are just before God, but the doers of the law shall be justified.
14  For when the Gentiles, which have not the law, do by nature the things contained in the law, these, having not the law, are a law unto themselves:
15  Which shew the work of the law written in their hearts, their conscience also bearing witness, and their thoughts the mean while accusing or else excusing one another; )
16  In the day when God shall judge the secrets of men by Jesus Christ according to my gospel. ~ Romans 2:11-16

In context Jew and Gentile have the law written in their hearts and all have a conscience, for a ‘Jew’ is one inwardly, as we read,

28  For he is not a Jew, which is one outwardly; neither is that circumcision, which is outward in the flesh:
29  But he is a Jew, which is one inwardly; and circumcision is that of the heart, in the spirit, and not in the letter; whose praise is not of men, but of God. ~ Romans 2:28,29

One’s conscience can only bring about conviction when the righteous requirements of the law is brought to one’s attention. In John 8:9 the Pharisees’ consciences were convicted – their conscience bearing witness and their thoughts accusing one another. Have you heard the saying: “Have you got a guilty conscience?” How can a conscience be guilty if it has never been shown what it is guilty of? We read that the law is a schoolmaster, as it is written,

24  Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster to bring us unto Christ, that we might be justified by faith. ~ Galatians 3:24

Once they were convicted by their consciences they started leaving from the eldest to the last for they were not innocent from transgressing the laws of Moses which the Pharisees bragged about keeping! Therefore, Jesus could also not condemn the woman as the requirements of the law had not fully been fulfilled, in two parts:

(i) The male adulterer was also not present to stand “trial”; and

(ii) The “witnesses” were no longer present having departed due to their own convictions, as we read what the law required from witnesses:

6  At the mouth of two witnesses, or three witnesses, shall he that is worthy of death be put to death; but at the mouth of one witness he shall not be put to death. 
7  The hands of the witnesses shall be first upon him to put him to death, and afterward the hands of all the people. So thou shalt put the evil away from among you. ~ Deuteronomy 17:6,7

The answer to the second issue would then be a resounding YES! If the male adulterer had also been brought to Him, the witnesses who caught the adulterer and the adulteress “in the very act” would have had to be the first to cast stones at the lawbreakers and then afterward the hands of all the people which would probably have included Jesus’ own hand! Therefore, in light of the fact that the transgressing of the law was not fulfilled in all its requirements, Jesus showed the adulterous woman mercy “Neither do I condemn thee:”, but gave her a stern warning to “go, and sin no more.

Jesus Christ is merciful and gracious, but He is also a righteous Judge that passes righteous judgments! Christians must not be as the Pharisees, whom Christ berated:

15 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. ~ Matthew 23:15

Jesus said the just shall live by faith, for the letter of the law kills, as we read:

16  Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: for by the works of the law shall no flesh be justified.
17  But if, while we seek to be justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ the minister of sin? God forbid.
18  For if I build again the things which I destroyed, I make myself a transgressor.
19  For I through the law am dead to the law, that I might live unto God. 
20  I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me. 
21  I do not frustrate the grace of God: for if righteousness come by the law, then Christ is dead in vain. ~ Galatians 2:16-21

We therefore cannot come to the Scriptures as we think fit, wanting it to say what we want it to say to fit one’s own doctrines, dogma and religious denomination, but we must always allow Scripture to confirm Scripture! Our Lord Jesus Christ is the living Word of the written Word Who is “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.” (Hebrews 13:8). And He changes not, neither will He ever contradict Himself!Soli Deo Gloria

Hebrew for Christians

letterchart I have recently found a Hebrew for Christians website that will be found to be very useful in studying and learning to read, write and speak the Hebrew tongue and to also study the etymology, pictographs and history of the language. From a Biblical perspective, from what I have gleaned in a very short period of time whilst studying, you will see how the Hebrew Aleph-Bet (pronounced “ah-lef”-“bate”) has YHVH (GOD) in the very letters and words of His divinely inspired Aleph-Bet. When Yeshua HaMashiach (Jesus Christ) said that He is the “Aleph and Tav” (Alpha and Omega in Revelation 1:8,11; 21:6; 22:13) He was saying the whole of YHVH’s Word from the first letter to the last letter speaks of Him! This is why no-one, especially modern-day bible translators and publishers, are NOT to add to or diminish from the Word of God! Our Lord Yeshua said,

18  For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled. ~ Matthew 5:18

17  And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail. ~ Luke 16:17

A “jot” is the Strong’s Greek word #2503 iota “. . . of Hebrew origin (the tenth letter of the Hebrew alphabet) . . .” which is the Yod (pronounced “Yode” and is an ) and a “tittle” is the Strong’s Greek word #2762 keraia which refers to “. . . something horn-like, i.e. (special) the apex of a Hebrew letter (figurative the least particle).”

What is very helpful is if you have a Hebrew and English Tanakh (Old Testament) and also a Brit Chadashah (New Testament) which you can compare as you study. I have both and the English Scripture portion that runs side-by-side with the Hebrew is the Authorised King James Holy Bible! You can obtain copies for yourself and for distribution among the Jews from:

THE SOCIETY FOR DISTRIBUTING

HEBREW SCRIPTURES

Joseph House, 1 Bury Mead Road,

Hitchin, Hertfordshire SG5 1RT

England

What you will also find very helpful is that there are audio links for pronunciations of various Hebrew letters, words and sentences.

Here is an example of the gems of information that will be very helpful to understand YHVH’s historical language and it will be very helpful to you also when it comes to evangelising Jew and Gentile alike. To get a feel for what you can expect, I have copied the first Hebrew letter hereunder:

aleph-head

Phonetics

The first letter of the Hebrew alphabet is called “Aleph” (pronounced “ah-lef”). Aleph has no sound of its own, but usually has a vowel associated with it.

In modern Hebrew, the letter Aleph can appear in three forms:

aleph-write

Manual Print (block)

Notice that the manual print form of Aleph, resembles the book print version – except that the strokes of the lines are all even. You will learn manual print in order to recognize the printed Hebrew letters as they appear in Hebrew texts. You write the manual print version of the letter Aleph according to the following pattern:

aleph_block

The numbered arrows show the order and direction for drawing the lines (the gray rectangle indicates the letter proportions in a graph paper cell).

Hebrew Script (cursive)

Manual print is important to learn to help you recognize printed Hebrew type; however, handwritten communication is normally written using Hebrew cursive. You write the cursive version of the letter Aleph according to the following pattern:

aleph_script 

Write the letter from right to left, beginning with the stroke labelled 1 and then to the stroke labelled 2.

Practice

Write the letter Aleph (from right to left) in both manual print and script several times. You may want to use graph paper to make sure you are sizing the letter correctly:

grid

Note: Aleph is known as a guttural letter since it is used to be pronounced in the back of the throat. Other guttural letters are Ayin, Hey, and Chet. Note also that Aleph sometimes does not take a vowel in a word, and thus is considered “quiescent.”

Summary

aleph-sum

Advanced Information

scripts-aleph

The letter Aleph is the “father” of the Aleph-Bet, whose original pictograph represents an ox, strength, and leader. It’s numerical value is one (and also 1,000) and it is a silent letter. Aleph therefore is preeminent in its order and alludes to the ineffable mysteries of the oneness of God. Indeed, the word aluph (derived from the very name of this letter) means “Master” or “Lord.”

In the classical Hebrew script (ketav Ashurit) used for writing Torah scrolls, Aleph is constructed with two Yods (one to the upper right and the other to the lower left) that are joined by a diagonal Vav. Ketav Ashurit was the script that Jesus would have read (ketav Ivri was an older script, similar to ancient Phoenician, but was not the script used when Moses received the Torah from the LORD on Sinai. Ketav Ivri is also sometimes called the Temple Script because samples of it are extant dated to the time of Solomon’s Temple).

From the Phoenician/Ketav Ivri, the letter Aleph morphed into the Greek letter Alpha α/A, from which came the Latin A:

alephhist

1. Mysteries of Aleph

In Kabbalistic literature, the upper Yod (meaning an arm) represents the hidden (and infinite) aspect of YHVH called ein sof (אֵין סוֹף, lit. "without end"), whereas the lower Yod represents the revelation of YHVH to mankind. The Vav, whose meaning is “hook,” shows connectedness between the two realms. Vav is also thought to represent humanity, since Adam was created on the sixth day. Vav is diagonal since it is humbled in the face of God’s mystery and His revelation. The two Yods also indicate the paradox of experiencing God as both hidden and close, far and near.

aleph-p

2. The Gematria of the Parts of Aleph

The basic gematria for Aleph is one, indicating the One and only God who is the Master of the universe. Note, however, that the gematria for the parts of the letter Aleph add up to 26 (Yod+Yod+Vav). This is the same number as the sacred Name YHVH, also indicating a link between the Aleph and God Himself. This is also demonstrated in Exodus 3:14-15, where the LORD reveals His Name to Moses as ehyeh asher ehyeh (אֶהְיֶה אֲשֶׁר אֶהְיֶה) “I AM THAT I AM.”

aleph-p2

There is a midrash (fable) that asks why Aleph was not selected to be the first letter of the Torah. In the story, all of the letters come before the LORD giving reasons why they should be the first letter – all, that is, except for the letter Aleph. When the LORD asked why, Aleph explained that since he was silent, he had nothing to say. But the LORD honored Aleph’s humility and declared him to be the first of all the letters – and to be honored as the letter of the first word of the Ten Commandments:

אָנכִי יְהוָה אֱלהֶיך

3. In the Beginning — Aleph-Tav

In Or Torah, Rabbi Dov Ber, the Maggid of Mezritch, explained first words of Torah: Bereshit Bara Elohim Et – "In the beginning God created et" (Gen 1:1). Note that et is an untranslatable word used to indicate that "a definite direct object is next" (thus there needs to be an et before the heavens and the earth). But Dov Ber points out that et is spelled – Aleph-Tav, an abbreviation for the Aleph-Bet.  Aleph is the first letter of the Hebrew alphabet and Tav the last, so, he reasoned, in the beginning God created the Aleph-Bet. Since God did this before creating the heavens and the earth, the letters are considered to be the primordial “building blocks” of all of creation.

Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi stated that if the letters were to depart even for an instant, all of creation would become absolute nothingness (Zalman, Shneur. 1981. “Igeret Hateshuvah.” Likkutie Amarim – Tanya. Brooklyn: Kihot. 289).

4. Aleph and the Divine Names

There are a number of divine Names that begin with the letter Aleph, including the following:

el11 – El

elohim11 – Elohim

eloha1 – Eloha

ehyeh-asher-ehyeh2 – ehyeh asher ehyeh

adonai11 – Adonai

adon-olam1 – Adon Olam

adir1 – Adir

5. Aleph is a picture of the God-Man

As One who is composed of both the upper realm of heaven and the lower realm of the earth, connected by the humility of the body, Aleph is a picture of the God-Man unity that is Yeshua HaMashiach, “Who, being in the form of God . . . took upon him the form of a servant . . . as a man . . .” (Phil 2:6-11).

Moreover, in Revelation 22:13 Jesus refers to Himself as the Aleph and Tav, the First and the Last, and thereby told us directly that the Hebrew Alphabet would provide revelation about Him:

rev22-13

Note that this phrase is a direct reference to Isaiah 41:4, 44:6, and 48:12, where Adonai Himself says that He is the First and the Last – and explicitly declared that there is no other “god” beside Him.

6. Aleph is a picture of Messiah’s Intercession

From a Messianic point of view, Aleph represents Yeshua the Mashiach as our Intercessor and Kohen Gadol. The two Yods represent outstretched arms or hands reaching both to mankind and to God. The diagonal Vav represents the sacrifice of Yeshua on our behalf. And since Yeshua is the Aleph and the Tav, the letter represents His divinity, His humility in silence as He opened not His mouth when He was unjustly accused, and so on.

7. Aleph is a picture of Oneness in Unity

Aleph also is a picture of three-in-one, or hashilush hakadosh. Just as there are three parts to Aleph, but Aleph is One (echad), so there are three Persons to the Godhead, yet God is absolutely One. The gematria of the word Aleph (אָלֶף) is 111 (Aleph=1, Lamed=30, and Pey=80).

aleph-p3

8. Aleph is Eschatological

Yeshua is called the Aleph and the Tav, and the letter Aleph itself has overtones of the acharit hayamim, or “end of days” spoken of in prophecy. The idea that there are 6,000 years of the Olam Hazeh (the present age before the arrival of the Messiah to set up His kingdom) comes from the fact that there are 6 alephs in the first verse of the Tanakh, and each represents 1,000.

6alephs

9. Aleph and Names of God

The first Name of God revealed in the Tanakh is elohim22222(elohim), which starts with the letter Aleph. Elohim is also the third word in the Scriptures. Other Names that begin with Aleph include El, Eloha, Elah, Adonai, Av, Avinu, Avir, Abba, etc.

elohim-stam

10. Aleph and Metaphors of God

In three places in Scripture the LORD is metaphorically identified with something else. In each case, the metaphor begins with an Aleph:

Fire esh – Hebrews 12:29, Deuteronomy 4:24

Light light – 1 John 1:5; Isaiah 10:17;

Love  love2 – 1 John 4:16

11. Textual Oddities

An undersized Aleph appears in Leviticus 1:1 (Vayikra):

vayik

The sages reasoned that Moses’ humility (anavah) was such that he waited for the LORD to call him into the ohel mo’ed (Tent of Meeting), despite the fact that God had previously granted him full access to His Presence. The Book of Leviticus begins with vayikra (“and he called”) – spelled with an undersized Aleph – as a scribal token of Moses’ humility.

According to the sages, Moses wanted the word vayikra to be written without the Aleph, as “vayikar” (“and He happened upon,” the same word used to describe how the LORD “happened upon” Balaam in Numbers 23:4).  In his humility, Moses did not want to use a word that implied that the LORD regularly called to him. However, God overruled him and insisted that the Aleph be included, but allowed Moses to use an undersized version, as a token of his modesty before others.

12. Aleph Pictograph

The pictograph for Aleph is the ox or bull, representing strength:

ancient-aleph

Note that even though the pictograph may represent the basis for ketav Ivri, it may have pagan overtones (e.g., the “bull” god) derived from ancient Canaanite culture.

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Other Biblical historical information that will be very helpful will be the Ten Commandments, Jewish Holy Days,  Blessings, Prayers and much more. An example of a Biblical historical timeline is:

The Sin of the Golden Calf (egel maseikhah)

Before Moses reappeared from the mountain top, however, the people talked Aaron into making a molten calf (egel maseikhah) which they began to worship (Ex. 32:1-6). The LORD told Moses of their idolatry and threatened to destroy the Israelites, but Moses interceded on their behalf. As he rushed down the mountain, with the tablets in hand, he saw the people dancing about the idol. The tablets then became heavy and were smashed to the ground (Ex. 32:19). Moses then destroyed the molten calf and led the Levites (the only tribe that had not contributed gold for the idol creation) in slaying 3,000 of the ringleaders. The next day he returned to God and said: “If You do not forgive them, blot me out from the book that You have written.” despite Moses’ intercession, God sent a plague upon the Israelites.

Some time later, Moses was told to prepare a new set of tablets in order to once again ascend the mountain, where God would graciously reinstate the covenant. This second set of tablets was carved from sapphire by Moses himself (instead of by God) as an atonement for Israel’s sin with the Golden Calf.

According to Rabbinic tradition, Moses carved the new tablets during the month of Elul, during his third 40 days upon Mount Sinai (see Rashi’s comment, below). According to this tradition, Moses ascended on Rosh Chodesh Elul and descended on the 10th of Tishri, at the end of Yom Kippur, when repentance and restoration of the people was complete. The month of Elul therefore represents the time of national sin and the forgiveness obtained by means of teshuvah (repentance) before the LORD.

120days

Rashi wrote concerning these events:

  • On the 6th of Sivan, Moses went up onto the mountain . . . On the 17th of Tammuz the Tablets were broken (1st 40 days). On the 18th he burned the (Golden) Calf and judged the transgressors. On the 19th he went up for forty days and pleaded for mercy (2nd 40 days). On the 1st of Elul he went up to receive the Second Tablets, and was there for forty days (3rd 40 days). On the 10th of Tishri God restored His goodwill with the Jewish people gladly and wholeheartedly, saying to Moses “I have forgiven, as you ask”, and gave him the Second Tablets.

This traditional understanding of the timing of these events explains why:

  • The festival of Shavu’ot (Pentecost) is celebrated as Z’man Mattan Torateinu – the time commemorating the giving of the Torah
  • The 17th of Tammuz is observed as a time of national tragedy
  • The month of Elul is a time of selichot
  • The 10th of Tishri marks the Day of Atonement (Yom Kippur).

According to the Talmud, the script God wrote the Ten Commandments was ketav Ivri (the older script), instead of ketav Ashurit (the divine script that was later restored by Ezra to Israel). The Talmud Yerushalmi explains that it was the Ayin that was miraculously suspended in the tablets, rather than the final Mem and Samekh.

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The website can be found here: Hebrew for Christians – Learn Hebrew for FREE!

Soli Deo Gloria!

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