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From: Rabbi Moshe Joseph
Subject: EPHRAIMITES GRAFTED TO YAHUDA???
EPHRAIMITES GRAFTED TO YAHUDA???
(An Interactive Discussion between JT and Larry)
JT: The original true followers of YHWH (Adam, Noah, Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, etc.) did not call their religion "Judaism" (obviously). We do not know what they called it or if they called it anything. For our own purposes we will just call it YHWHism as oposed to Ba'alism.
JT: The "YHWHism" involved a covenant (or series of covenants) between YHWH and the Am-Yisrael (the people of Israel).
JT: YHWH had initially made a Covenent with all mankind (Gen. 9) the Noachdic Covenant.
JT: Later YHWH made a unique Covenant with Abraham and with his seed Isaac and Jacob. (Gen. 17) This covenant required circumcision) The Abrahamic Covenant.
JT: Still later YHWH made a further covenant with Am-Yisrael (the people of Israel) and gave us the Torah (Ex. 34) The Mosaic Covenant.
JT: A non-Israelite could enter this covenant and become part of the people of Israel if he/she so chose to (Ruth) by joining into this covenant and its people.
JT: Am-Yisrael became YHWH's chosen covenant people. There were still other followers of YHWH who were not part of Am-Yisrael, but Am-Yisrael was chosen to be YHWH's covenant people who would one day rule the world. They were to be a nation of priests to the rest of the world.
Eventually Am-Yisrael split into two houses:
The House of Israel/Ephraim/Joseph (10 Tribes)
The House of Judah (2 tribes)
JT: The House of Israel was divorced by YHWH (Jer. 3:8) but to preserve a remnant the House of Judah was not (see also Hosea 11:12-12:1).
JT: The House of Isreal was scattered, mos tlikely into Europe. They abandoned Torah and the covenants and turned entirely to pagan gods. Eventually they embraced Christianity and continued in paganism.
JT: Judah however always had a remnant maintaining the covenant.
JT: As a result "YHWHism" became known as "Judaism"
LARRY: Mmmm .... ????????
JT: When the Messiah came many thousand embraced him as Messiah. These were the Nazarenes. They took the message to the Gentiles, many of whom were Ephraimites but did not know it. These people almost immediately paganized the message. Eventually the Nazarene movent disappeared, although there have always been Torah observant Jews who believed Yeshua was Messiah.
LARRY: Uh, OK.
JT: Now there were two Torahs to the Mosaic Torah of the Mosaic Covenant. A Written Torah and an Oral Torah. Without the Oral Torah one would not know how to kill an animal, what a "bill of divorcement" is, how the Hebrew calendar functions, etc. In short without the Oral Torah there is no way to observe the written Torah and no Covenant.
LARRY: Mostly accepted. Oral Torah needs to be defined. If it conflicts with written Torah, then it is not acceptable. Rabbinical Judaism, as I'm sure you know much better than I, is in the habit of "reinterpreting Torah". It appears that Oral Torah prior to the destruction of the Temple in 70 C.E. is fairly safe, but afterwards, into the Rabbinical period, well it must be examined very closely in the light of written Torah or we can get into some problems that border on the same problems that "churchianity" has. But it is agreed generally that the Oral Torah explains to us how to "keep" the written Torah.
JT: Eventually many Ephraimites and Gentiles started to wake up from their paganism and seek Torah. Typical of this is the Yahwist movenent and the old WWCG movement.
JT: During the same time period many Jews started to wake up from their messiah-blindness and see Yeshua as Messiah. Typical of this was the Messianic Movent and more recently the Nazarene Movement.
LARRY: Well..yes and no. Even though many Jews (Yahudi) have come to know the Messiah through the Messianic and Nazarene movements, I'm sure you will find the majority of the people making up these congregations are primarily returning Ephraimites who are LEARNING to follow Yahshua and how to be observant. This phenomena has not gone unnoticed by the predominately Jewish leadership of the larger organizations. Instead of being a cause for great joy and celebration for the leadership to see Ephraim returning, it has become the subject of great concern. The solution, lets convert them to be us (and of course along with that goes all of the man made traditions of Rabbinical Yahuda that have absolutely no bearing on an Ephraimites relation to Torah (both the written and applicable oral Torah) and Yahshua! If they don't convert, well, they can stay on (because we need the money) but they can't hold office or any leadership positions (kind of like the way Samarians were treated by the Judeans - as second class citizens).
JT: Now when the Ephraimites attempted to embrace the Mosaic Covenant they found a problem. There were no Ephraimites who had maintained the covenant and preserved the Oral Torah for them to join to. So while they decided to start keeping the feasts, they had no idea how. They had no idea what to do on these days. Even worse they still cannot agree on a calendar.
LARRY: Agreed, with some reservations. One of Yahudas key responsibilities has been to teach Torah to the world. It is through Yahuda that Ephraimites are supposed to learn how to keep the feasts and the balance of Torah. As far as the calendar goes, disagreement on a calendar is not the exclusive domain of Ephraim. Does all of Rabbinical Judaism agree with the Karaites calendar? Do they even agree on the correctness of their own?
As far as the Ephraimites having not maintained the covenant and Oral Torah for them to join to, as already mentioned, this has been one of the responsibilities (mostly unfulfilled) of Yahuda, to teach Torah to the Gentiles. Now, AS A RETURNED EPHRAIMITE, I can say most assuredly that no Yahudi came knocking at my door wanting to know if I would like to learn Torah! No Yahudi has volunteered to teach me how to keep the feasts! So how is it that this Ephraimite has learned (and is continuing to learn) Torah, the Feasts of YHVH, etc., etc.? I have learned and I am learning on my own by seeking Him and the knowledge of Him through the calling and power and blessing of the Ruach HaKodesh! It is by that calling and power that I and others have been brought out of Pagan teachings into this wonderful light. It is how we have been drawn to the teachings out there such as yours, and this is pretty much how most Ephraimites are learning. That my brother is only by the calling and power of the Ruach and is not only a miracle in and of itself, but is a direct fulfillment of prophecy.
JT: There is no way for Ephraimites to enter the Mosaic covenant as Ephraim.
LARRY: STRONGLY DISAGREE! Ephraimites were all once part of the Mosaic covenant at Sinai and need to re-enter the covenant the same way that Yahuda needs to re-enter the covenant, through the blood of the Lamb and the outpouring of the Ruach. Any other way is legalism and works based. I do not see any supporting texts that show Ephraim changing to another entity in order to enter the covenant.
JT: Ephraim was divorced and has not preserved the covenant.
LARRY: True, they have not preserved that covenant, that has been for Yahuda, but.all praise be to His Holy Name and halleluYAH! Ephraim is being brought back as a bride again (Hosea 1:16,23)! Jer. 31: 9,10 calls Ephraim "His son and firstborn" and we are told that He will gather them and watch over them as a shepherd (this seems to have suspiciously strong ties to John 10). We are also shown concerning Ephraim, that they are ".a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to Elohim,." 1 Ptr. 2:9. I can accept that!
JT: However Judah HAS preserved the Mosaic Covenant. Judah HAS preserved both the written and Oral Torah. Moreover a remnant of Judah has woken up to who the Messiah is. Moreover Judah's understanding of these things gives Judah a better understanding of Messiah as well.
LARRY: True except that even though Yahuda may have a better overall understanding of who Messiah is in total, the new believer, Ephraimite or even a secular Yahudi, has the full imparted righteousness of Moshiach the instant he walks under the wings of His Tallit!
JT: The hope of Ephraim is not to reestablish herself as a separate House. The hope of Ephraim is to be runited with Judah and come back from her rebelion in the first place. This is the prophetic picture in the scriptures.
LARRY: STRONGLY DISAGREE! The hope of Ephraim, as with all mankind, is found in our ultimate redemption provided by His unspeakable gift of life through the death of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world. Being reunited with Yahuda as the restored Nation of Israel is part of this awesome plan of redemption. Yahuda is not innocent of rebellion either my brother. It's only by His providence that they have been left to safeguard His Torah. We will ALL come back from our rebellion when we recognize His authority over us through the Moshiach, and accept Him as our living Torah.
JT: The stick of Ephraim is joined to the stick of Judah (Ezek. 37).
LARRY: And reading on in vs. 19 ".so that they will become one in my hand". This does not say that they are made subservient to Yahuda, but that they are joined to them and that they both become as "one" in His hand.
JT: Branches from Ephraim are grafted into Judah to be fed by the root of Judah. (Rom. 11)
LARRY: Brother I do not see the olive tree in RM. 11 as Yahuda. I see the olive tree as Israel and the root as Yahshua. Ephraimite branches remain Ephraimite branches, and Yahudi branches that have been broken off, are grafted back in as Yahudi branches, all together comprising the restored 12 tribe Nation of Israel.
JT: and Ephraim will come to Judah and grab hold of her tzitzit (a sign of the covenant) and say: "We have heard that Elohim is with you (plural) and we will go with you (plural)." (Zech. 8 last verse.)
LARRY: Yes, as reunited brothers again!
JT: In other words Ephraim should rejoice that Judah has preserved the covenant as Judaism and join Judah.
LARRY: WHAT? Rejoice that Yahuda has preserved the covenant yes, but join Yahuda? I guess that all depends on what you mean by "join Yahuda"?
JT: Now the gentiles who are not Ephraimites (and who knows who is and who isn't anyway)
LARRY: Yahshua knows brother!
JT: could theoretically just keep the Noachdic covenant (Gen 9) and never progress into the Chosen people by entering the House of Judah through the Abrahamic and Mosaic Covenants (Ge, 17 & Ex. 34). However they would not be part of Am-Yisrael. They would NOT be part of the bride. They would NOT be a nation of priests (they would be the ones we are priests to). They would NOT rule with Messiah from Jerusalem for 1,000 years. Instead they would make pilgrimages to Jerusalem at Sukkot (an the other feasts?) to pay homage there. They will be ruled over BY Am-Yisrael.
I am reminded of the comercial where the stork is looking at the two hamburgers each with a pickle on it. One with a small pickle and one with a big pickle. He looks back and forth at each of them and then says: "duh!".
Now in theory a person could in my opinion remain outside of Am-Yisrael and still be saved and still be a righteous gentile. But I cannot imagine someone choosing that position in the Kingdom when they could rule with Messiah.
LARRY: Kinda makes me glad I'm an Ephraimite! Praise be to His Name though that the true Gentile can become a member of Am-Yisra'el by taking on Torah! And praise be to Him that His love for creation is so deep that He has made that provision for the Gentile! Holy and blessed is He who rules over ALL Israel!
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