I pray the Holy Spirit, Ruach HaKodesh can enable be to express what I believe was being lit up this weekend…I pray it excites, inspires, and blesses you!:
Look at some of these connections…
Joseph, uprooted from his family and home is taken forcibly into a pagan palace where he given the chance to loose track of his heritage, home, land, family, destiny, values…to assimilate to cave into the pressures from a noblewoman to sin sexually, to despair and denounce his faith in prison, to become power hungry and haughty when given high rank, authority, all the materialistic gain he could ever dream of…Joseph doesn’t bend, bow, renounce or assimilate. He does not compromise in the slightest although he may look the part and is not recognized by his brothers when they come and bow before him.
Genesis 41; 39 “Since God has made all this known to you, there is no one as intelligent and wise as you are. 40 You will be over my house, and all my people will obey your commands. Only with regard to the throne will I be greater than you.” 41 Pharaoh also said to Joseph, “See, I am placing you over all the land of Egypt.” 42 Pharaoh removed his signet ring from his hand and put it on Joseph’s hand, clothed him with fine linen garments, and placed a gold chain around his neck. 43 He had Joseph ride in his second chariot, and servants called out before him, “Abrek!” (bow the knee) So he placed him over all the land of Egypt.
(Joseph- a type of Yeshua is now the one OVER the House of Pharaoh- a type of God/Father, it is his command that is to be obeyed. He is adorned with gold, dressed in royal garments, made to ride in the royal chariot and the people call out before him “bow the knee!” Joseph becomes provider and savior to the entire known world.Remember what he later tells his brothers: Genesis 45; 5 And now don’t be worried or angry with yourselves for selling me here, because God sent me ahead of you to preserve life. God sent me ahead of you to establish you as a remnant within the land and to keep you alive by a great deliverance. 8 Therefore it was not you who sent me here, but God. )
Mordechai, in the right place at the right time…to overhear the plot to kill the king and allows for his salvation; the one through whose faith and counsel Esther is strengthened and encouraged enough to herself rise to the occasion and enable the salvation of her people. She too, being forcibly taken from her family and placed in a pagan palace, does not bend or assimilate…though she doesn’t reveal her ethnicity, family name or homeland…she looks the part and is not recognized as a Jew meanwhile not bending to the wicked decrees all around her.
Esther 6; 6 Haman entered, and the king asked him, “What should be done for the man the king wants to honor?” Haman thought to himself, “Who is it the king would want to honor more than me?” 7 Haman told the king, “For the man the king wants to honor: 8 Have them bring a royal garment that the king himself has worn and a horse the king himself has ridden, which has a royal diadem on its head. 9 Put the garment and the horse under the charge of one of the king’s most noble officials. Have them clothe the man the king wants to honor, parade him on the horse through the city square, and proclaim before him, ‘This is what is done for the man the king wants to honor.’” 10 The king told Haman, “Hurry, and do just as you proposed. Take a garment and a horse for Mordecai the Jew, who is sitting at the King’s Gate. Do not leave out anything you have suggested.” 11 So Haman took the garment and the horse. He clothed Mordecai and paraded him through the city square, crying out before him, “This is what is done for the man the king wants to honor.”
(Mordechai is honored in the way suggested by the lips of the foe -Haman- when he sought his own elevation. Mordechai is adorned with the crown, dressed in royal garments and is made to ride on the king’s horse and there is a proclaimation made before him. Although it is Esther in the key place, it is Mordechai who is the man behind her, savior for the Jewish people who were threatened by extermination. Remember what he told her: Esther 4;13-14 Mordecai told the messenger to reply to Esther, “Don’t think that you will escape the fate of all the Jews because you are in the king’s palace. If you keep silent at this time, liberation and deliverance will come to the Jewish people from another place, but you and your father’s house will be destroyed. Who knows, perhaps you have come to your royal position for such a time as this.”)
Israel and all of God’s people are meant to be light to the world, to enable His Name, His Word, His Values, His Design to be seen in THIS life. In the world which is awash in sin and pagan practice we are supposed to be the ones not assimilating, not bowing or caving into temptation…while IN it (the world) we are meant to resist and not become like it but to maintain our inner identity which God has already claimed and defines for us by His presence within us and work through us. God says that in a time to come the righteousness of Jerusalem and her salvation (her Yeshua) will come forth blazing like a torch of fire that the nations will watch! She will be given a new name (much like Yoseph when Pharaoh changed his name to Zapenath-panea, and Esther whose name was really Hadassah) and God will announce it (a proclamation being made before her!) and will become an ornament and crown in God’s hand, a headdress of royalty in His palm!
Isaiah 62; 1 I will not keep silent because of Zion, and I will not keep still because of Jerusalem, until her righteousness shines like a bright light and her salvation, like a flaming torch. 2 Nations will see your righteousness and all kings, your glory. You will be called by a new name that the Lord’s mouth will announce. 3 You will be a glorious crown in the Lord’s hand, and a royal diadem in the palm of your God.
Tying this all into Chankuah- the Feast of Dedication I came across this text last night and it is what inspired all this to become documented here. The Scroll of Antiochas was translated in the 9th century, and its earliest written copy can be traced back to around 30 b.c.e. I read it during the Feast of Dedication, in its telling we read of Yohanan the High Priest who went to Antiochas’s commanders, Niqanor. Listen to what is promised to Yohanan if he will offer up a pig in the Temple of God:
Scroll of Antiochas: Niqanor spoke up and said to Yoḥanan: ‘Lo, you seek my favor? Take a pig and sacrifice it to this statue! (Do so) and I will clothe you with a royal garment, I will mount you on (one of) the king’s horses, and you will become like one of the friends of the king!’
I find is amazing that these are the very things we are discussing, promised to Yohanan if he will denounce God, assimilate, and change his identity. Being the high priest he would be key in what the people could be swayed into following. Yohanan had no intention of doing any of these things and reading the scroll we read that he had done some preparing before facing this enemy…what did he do?
Scroll of Antiochas: Then Yohanan ben Matisyahu made himself a sword with a double blade. It was two zeres long and one zeres wide and he concealed it under his clothing.
Something else interesting is that once he had an audience with Niqanor, he convinces Niquanor into sending all the people out of the room… (one can’t help but think of Yosef sending out his servants when he wishes to reveal his true identity to his brothers, so too Esther reveals herself as Hadassah in a private feast with the two guests the King and the enemy. ) and he does end up slaying him, setting off a series of events which leads to the eventual recapture of the Temple and Chanukah victory, deliverance and salvation for the Jews.
Scroll of Antiochas: When Yohonan heard he answered skillfully, “My master, I am afraid that the Israelites will hear what I have done [offering the pig]. They will stone me with rocks! Please remove all the people from before you lest they make it known.” So Niqanor sent out every man from that place. Then Yohanan ben Matisyahu cast his eyes to the Lord of Heaven and prayed before his G-d.
All of this would be for naught if it didn’t lead us to the eventual return, salvation, deliverance and glory of the Messiah Yeshua. So in reading carefully the following scriptures see if you can see what I do:
Revelation 1; 12 I turned to see whose voice it was that spoke to me. When I turned I saw seven gold lampstands, 13 and among the lampstands was One like the Son of Man, dressed in a long robe and with a gold sash wrapped around His chest. 14 His head and hair were white like wool—white as snow—and His eyes like a fiery flame. 15 His feet were like fine bronze as it is fired in a furnace, and His voice like the sound of cascading waters. 16 He had seven stars in His right hand; a sharp double-edged sword came from His mouth, and His face was shining like the sun at midday. 17 When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man.
I can’t help but think about Chankuah and the Temple and Menorahs, the Royal attire even Priestly dress…the light shining and the sharp sword with a double edge, someone falling like a dead man at his feet.
Daniel 10; 5 I looked up, and there was a man dressed in linen, with a belt of gold from Uphaz around his waist. 6 His body was like topaz, his face like the brilliance of lightning, his eyes like flaming torches, his arms and feet like the gleam of polished bronze, and the sound of his words like the sound of a multitude.
Again, priestly dress, adorned with gold, flaming torches from his eyes (the ‘eyes’ of the menorah are like the cups holding the oil where the flame comes from as opposed to its arms/branches), the sound of a multitude from his mouth.
Revelation 19; 11 Then I saw heaven opened, and there was a white horse. Its rider is called Faithful and True, and He judges and makes war in righteousness. 12 His eyes were like a fiery flame, and many crowns were on His head. He had a name written that no one knows except Himself. 13 He wore a robe stained with blood, and His name is the Word of God. 14 The armies that were in heaven followed Him on white horses, wearing pure white linen. 15 A sharp sword came from His mouth, so that He might strike the nations with it. He will shepherd them with an iron scepter. He will also trample the winepress of the fierce anger of God, the Almighty. 16 And He has a name written on His robe and on His thigh: KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.
Coming from heaven, riding a white horse, eyes of fire, crowned with many crowns, a NAME hidden and then revealed, a sharp sword with which to strike the nations.
May our King come, adorned in splendor, the attire of the King of Kings, crowned with Glory and riding the white Horse of Majesty, may He come forth and may it be heard before him Bow the Knee!! May He be recognized by His brothers and may we all be enabled to fight beside and behind him wearing clean garments, servants of the Lord of Lords! A picture and reality of Royal promises kept! Halleluyah!
Psalm 145; 9 The Lord is good to all, and His mercies are over all His works. 10 All Your works shall give thanks to You, O Lord, and Your godly ones shall bless You. 11 They shall speak of the glory of Your kingdom and talk of Your power; 12 To make known to the sons of men Your mighty acts and the glory of the majesty of Your kingdom. 13 Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and Your dominion endures throughout all generations. 14 The Lord sustains all who fall and raises up all who are bowed down.
I find it amazing that in all this we see examples of people who were placed by God to be precisely where he needed them to be, these places weren’t necessarily the most conducive for holiness, there were severe pressures to conform to idolatry and to stray from the Word, the Torah and God’s standards of sanctity…these key figures did not submit and neither should we, and amazingly in the end we know that it is these men, kings, heads of nations who will realize where the true power is…as a poignant example we visit the words of one of the most wicked, pagan of men :
Daniel 4; 2 It has seemed good to me to declare the signs and wonders which the Most High God has done for me. 3 “How great are His signs and how mighty are His wonders! His kingdom is an everlasting kingdom and His dominion is from generation to generation.
Don’t assimilate, don’t compromise, remain true to God at all costs. Whatever reward is offered, even if your life be spared and you deny him…realize what that will ultimately cost you. In honor of Chanukah and in keeping with this theme, I close with these words from the Book of Maccabees, the very same promises made for forsaking the Lord, honor, silver gold, gifts. Wield in your heart the answer of Mattathais, in a loud proclamation :
1 Maccabees 1;15 Then the king’s officials, who were forcing the people to turn from God, came to the town of Modein to force the people there to offer pagan sacrifices. 16 Many of the Israelites came to meet them, including Mattathias and his sons. 17 The king’s officials said to Mattathias, you are a respected leader in this town, and you have the support of your sons and relatives. 18 Why not be the first one here to do what the king has commanded? All the Gentiles, the people of Judea, and all the people left in Jerusalem have already done so. If you do, you and your sons will be honored with the title of friends of the King, and you will be rewarded with silver and gold and many gifts. 19 Mattathias answered in a loud voice, I don’t care if every Gentile in this empire has obeyed the king and yielded to the command to abandon the religion of his ancestors. 20 My children, my relatives, and I will continue to keep the covenant that God made with our ancestors. 21 With God’s help we will never abandon his Law or disobey his commands. 22 We will not obey the king’s decree, and we will not change our way of worship in the least.