God’s Grace Is Forever

The Grace of God has covered mankind since creation itself. Many think that only believers in Christ are covered by God’s Grace, they are wrong. The mission of all Christians is to turn people back to God through His Grace and the Mercy of Jesus. This is also encouraged by Christians thinking that Jews are covered under the Mosaic Law and the Ten Commandments and those things are not necessary under Grace. Wow are they wrong.

When the Bible is translated sometimes certain words are changed due to the translators ideas or basic theology. The Psalms are sometimes changed so much that certain meanings and truths are lost. In Psalm 136, many English translations say that His Love endures forever. The Hebrew text gives a more encompassing word that gives new meaning and a better understanding of the Covenant Promises. Below is Psalm 136 with the translation from the Complete Jewish Bible.

Give thanks to Adonai, for he is good, for his grace continues forever. Give thanks to the God of gods, for his grace continues forever. Give thanks to the Lord of lords, for his grace continues forever; to him who alone has done great wonders, for his grace continues forever; to him who skillfully made the heavens, for his grace continues forever; to him who spread out the earth on the water, for his grace continues forever; to him who made the great lights, for his grace continues forever; the sun to rule the day, for his grace continues forever; the moon and stars to rule the night, for his grace continues forever; to him who struck down Egypt’s firstborn, for his grace continues forever; and brought Isra’el out from among them, for his grace continues forever; with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm, for his grace continues forever; to him who split apart the Sea of Suf, for his grace continues forever; and made Isra’el cross right through it, for his grace continues forever; but swept Pharaoh and his army into the Sea of Suf, for his grace continues forever; to him who led his people through the desert, for his grace continues forever; to him who struck down great kings, for his grace continues forever; yes, he slaughtered powerful kings, for his grace continues forever; Sichon king of the Emori, for his grace continues forever; and ‘Og king of Bashan, for his grace continues forever; then he gave their land as a heritage, for his grace continues forever; to be possessed by Isra’el his servant, for his grace continues forever; who remembers us whenever we are brought low, for his grace continues forever; and rescues us from our enemies, for his grace continues forever; who provides food for every living creature, for his grace continues forever. Give thanks to the God of heaven, for his grace continues forever.Psalm 136:1-26

Notice how mood and emphasis changes when you read the word grace instead of the word love. God’s Grace is all encompassing and Scripture grants us a look into how all things from the deep past through today are all covered by His Grace. By His Grace he gave them the Commandments to live a right life. By His Grace Moses was given the laws and statutes for basic, healthy, and godly living. Let’s look at the Mosaic and New Covenants for their similarities.

Covenants Are Made Through God’s Grace

God made covenants with mankind. When we talk about Grace vs. Works many point to the Mosaic Covenant and state the different between being under law and being under grace. The problem is that we do not see the similarities between the covenants and understand that the Mosaic Covenant is covered by God’s Grace as well.
Both are based on Substitution of an innocent for the guilty.

God’s Grace is demonstrated clearly in both because the guilty human lives while an innocent, sinless being dies in his or her place. The old system of sacrifice was sufficient for the people if their mind was in the right place and they were truly sorry for their sins. This sorrow leads to the need to repent which when true, works.
Both require repentance of the sinner for the sacrifice to be effectual.

Repentance of sin is the only thing that makes the sacrifice work. One can believe in Jesus and say that he or she is saved but without repenting of all sins, Jesus will not recognize you nor defend you. True repentance is an action because words and feelings are not sufficient for true repentance to take place.
Complete life changes are required for repentance to be real.

For true repentance, a person must be fully honest with themselves and actively remove all the things that cause the sin in their life to occur. All past transgressions must end. It may take a complete life change but when you look at the consequences of sin, true repentance is a better choice.

We all have heard the saying, “His Grace is enough”, and that is true to a point. God’s Grace is enough for us to desire to make positive changes in our lives to affect positive changes in the lives of others. This positive change occurs when sin no longer controls our lives.

Both covenants are under Grace but one had led to the other and is still in effect with minor changes. Jesus did not come to abolish the law but fulfill it. He came to take the need for the Mosaic Covenant sacrifices away. He took the Abrahamic Covenant and modified it. He came to become the final sacrifice and open the veil so that we had a closer communion with God.

What Does That Mean For Us

First that means that we need to treat the Jewish population with more kindness and stop feelings of anti-Semitism. They are lost because they had to adjust to no longer sacrificing innocent animals. They understand the need for repentance and have the heart but they are still waiting for the Earthly Messiah. We need to help them understand that the Messiah is here and they need to read Isaiah 53 (coming up is a discussion on that text) to understand that Jesus is the Messiah they are waiting for.

We are obligated to do our best to follow the Ten Commandments even though we know we will fail. We are obligated to truly repent and change our lives by fighting back the temptations and sins, living for God through the teachings of Scripture. The real question is, do you know the difference between just believing and being in Christ? Jesus and His Disciples followed the commands of Scripture except what was revealed to be man-made and made for man. Our bodies became His swelling place, His temple. Our lives are transformed as we turn back to God.

Brothers and Sisters be in constant prayer and communion with God. Share your faith walk with others. Do not fear man for they can only hurt your flesh.

In God’s Love,

Rob, Servant of God

Translations: The Christian Confusion

TranslationWe are Lost in Translation.
Translations of the Holy Scripture are made for a people group to receive the Bible in a language they should understand. The problem is that so much can get lost in translation if there is a word that has no real exact translation then the whole sentence or even sections meaning could be a risk of changed meaning. The Scriptures we have today are translated from three different previous works. There is the Masoretic Hebrew text which is the Scriptures in the original language, the Greek Septuagint (S) which was written by Hellenized Rabbis for the Greek Jews, and the Latin Vulgate (V) or Roman Text. There are many differences just in these three from the original Hebrew/Aramaic to the other languages that there is truly a lot lost.

Students of Scripture can take many years to learn the original languages and be able to interpret meanings to gain better understanding and to be able to put the Scripture into words that others would understand. I personally use the Tenach (Hebrew Scriptures), the Complete Jewish Bible (translation from Masoretic), the English Standard Version (KJV 1611, S, V), and the NIV (KJV, S, V) to give me a better understanding.

The first thing that is misunderstood for the beginning reader is how is it that God separated light from the darkness making day and night, yet did not create the sun and moon till later? Answer… The first light is the enlightenment that separated order from chaos, good from evil. When God said, “Let there be Light” this was the creation order that caused the “order” of things to settle and begin life.    

The King James Version of 1611 is a very good interpretation but there are some things that just do not work. For example, no one is converted, that is a term that means physically transformed. The original Hebrew is actually translated to turned or returned. As we change our ways and our spirits are turned and tuned in to God. Now I understand that many churches refuse, even today, to use another version but please consider the children. There are many words used that even adults these days have to look up the modern term to understand the meaning so just think of when you tell a child to read it. I observed a children’s study at a church I used to preside over and cringed at the sound of children struggling to read from the KJV. No wonder we have confused youth. And guess what, when words are translated down to modern times from this original, you have to look at over 400 years of language change!

When the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered and the copies of the Book of Isaiah were translated, it was found that all three of the versions in the first paragraph were similar if not almost an exact translation. Others were close but not as good as Isaiah. This definitely tells us the early translators paid close attention.

Today we are so inundated with many English translations that are given to having personal interpretations which change the original meaning. This makes it easy for people to get lost. In fact, there are even versions of Scripture that are changed so much that God’s Word has been perverted to a complete mistranslation so that man can feel good about himself. This is wrong. This is against God. What makes it worse is that the versions still put in the last two verses in Revelation thereby convicting and condemning those who made the translations.

 When one talks Scripture that person should be referring to the Tenach or Christian Old Testament. Those scrolls are what the people who wrote the New Testament had and what Jesus proclaimed as truth. He did not reinvent anything but emphasized and made things easier to understand for the generation that was present in order to bring them back to God and to spread the Word to the world. 

When choosing a translation to read, do some research. What might seem like a comfortable and easy read may have many misinterpretations. If the translation has a name attached to it, research the person. Study Bibles are at most sometimes one sided with small print that shares what other translations may say to open the eyes of the reader to differing points of view or share synonyms. Remember this, words have different meanings and if mistranslated will cause confusion in what God is telling us.   What I ask of you is that you prayerfully consider the version you read. Brothers and Sisters in Christ, be blessed today and every day. Treat your fellow man with the kindness and love of God.