Exodus 20:3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me. (also Deut 5:7)
Each of us has come a long way on our journey through man-made doctrines until we reach the pure Word of Yahweh. Along the way, we could claim various denominations as our spiritual “home”, albeit a temporary one. One common thread I see is that not long ago, 3-10 years ago, a movement was afoot. Many of the women I speak with regularly left the “comfort of their customs and religion” to forge a new road for themselves, their families, and friends. Along the way, as far as people go, they have lost some and gained some. I am no different in my search for Truth - family and friends have come and gone.
At one point in my life, I was Catholic. Having gone through their classes and ceremonies, I became a full member in “good standing” at the parish closest to my home. I loved the people. They gave me the community, acceptance, and love I had been searching for. There were gatherings, and festivals, prayer meetings, and even the need for a women’s auxiliary. With writings going all the way back to the times of the apostles, church history provided me with the historical background I was seeking in a church.
I learned the prayers to recite and even memorized the Rosary. I had several sets of beads to use and prayed it often in the beginning because I was under a lot of stress at the time. I found that, when I prayed, it brought me comfort and calm that I felt I wasn’t finding any other way. Although for decades I had been praying directly to the Father, I felt some kind of comfort believing that the rosary prayers were “interceding” for me. Almost as though praying for “intercession” gave you that extra power boost you needed to get the desired answer to prayers.
As time went on, I discovered the more I prayed, the more “it” brought me peace, comfort, direction, answers to prayers, even healing. Everything I asked of God he delivered and, oddly, I still continued to believe it was because of my rosary prayers.
Until one day I noticed I would get a few words into the rosary “prayer," suddenly stop saying the repetitive words, then pray directly to The Father. This was just as I had done for so many decades before. I realized how all those blessings and every prayer answered was not from the intercession of some string of beads or a methodical prayer to someone else. I had been giving power to an idol (the Rosary) in the beginning. Over time, though, my spirit recognized that I needed to break free from that idolatry and pray, speak, praise, and ask Yahweh directly. Without my knowing it, I had escaped man-made religion and slipped right into what was right and true - A relationship with Yahweh. I was praying to Abba, and he was blessing me.
Knowing this story about my past, it seems strange that I now get condemned by people who are doing the same thing I once did, using different objects of idolatry. Over the last several years, I have seen both men and women give a similar power to “things” they own, just as I had done with the rosary beads. Like them, I initially believed it was my praying through that string of beads that gave me healing, strength to fight, ability to overcome, personal comfort, just as they believe it is in their particular “item” that they have power. I have witnessed people make the same kinds of claims about healing, comfort, and power that I once made about the rosary prayer. However, their idol is not a set of beads, but instead, their idol is a head-covering, a tallit, a kippah, or even a pile of balanced rocks.
No matter what your item (idol) is, you need to learn that the power is not in that physical thing. In fact, the power given to an item only lies in the mind of the one worshipping the item. The key that we have to learn is that the power of Yahweh lies with Yahweh, and not in some object we turn into some idol.
Now, before you deny you worship idols, ask yourself if you could live days, weeks, or months without that object. If you find an attachment to that object and believe your life will not be the same without your head-covering, kippah, tallit, or another item, you are attributing power to that item. You are caught up in a form of idolatry.
Sometimes it doesn’t appear we take this issue personally enough. We ignore the obvious and we may even think we can’t “have” some of the promises from Yahweh unless we earn them. For whatever reason, inside our heads, we believe we are supposed to suffer, be anxious, wear an object or perform some man-made ritual, to get answers. Yet Yahweh has told us many times that those things are not of him. In the scriptures, we witness Yeshua’s miracles and the power of Yahweh at work throughout every event. We marvel at His amazing acts portrayed right before our eyes. We know that Yeshua promised we would do greater works than what he did. Yet people seem to be unable to fully believe in these things and they are unable to put their full stock in the promises from Yahweh. People find it easier to believe that a Tallit, a kippah or a head covering will bring more comfort and blessing than Yahweh will, while at the same time claiming Yahweh used that fabric or that item to bring them blessings. It’s like people need an earthly object they can touch and see in order to fool themselves into believing they are connecting with Yahweh.
In our book, “The Headcovering Dilemma - SOLVED!” we address this topic of idol worship with some questions you can ask yourself to help clarify and understand if you have placed an item before, in front of, or even in the way of Yahweh, therefore making it an idol in your life. These questions can be used by both men and women to help in understanding their relationship with Abba.
There are scriptures listed to guide and direct you as well. I recommend each person pray so that your relationship with Yahweh will be what it is meant to be, and then read the book. Take the time to do a self-checkup on idol worship. Before writing this message, I took the "check-up." It helped point out a few things to me that I don’t worship, but that I was at risk of elevating to a position they don’t deserve. It was a good personal examination, and I pray you will give that time to yourself as well. Don’t get caught up in idol worship and especially don’t do that idol worship in His name.
May you be blessed.
Isaiah 42:8 KJV “I am the LORD: that is my name: and my glory will I not give to another, neither my praise to graven images.”
Judges 10:14WEB “Go and cry to the gods which you have chosen. Let them save you in the time of your distress!”
2 Timothy 3:6-7 For some of these are people who creep into houses, and take captive gullible women loaded down with sins, led away by various lusts, always learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.
For some reason this feels like it should be simple to write and yet it has been one of the most challenging articles to get from my heart and head to my fingertips. I thought, “I can whip this out in a day!" Yet Yahweh has had different plans for the direction He wants these thoughts to go. As these two whole weeks that I have been struggling with this topic have gone by, I have found out that this problem runs deeper than I initially thought.
Now there are some who are going to say this is silly to bring up, but it is the deeper part that makes this entire topic far from silly and very valid. The scripture above, found in 2 Timothy 3, depending on the various translations, calls us women “vulnerable”, “gullible”, “silly”, “weak”, “captive”, “idle”, “foolish”, and . . . how about we stop there? It’s not very flattering. This is talking about days to come in the future from the time of the apostles. Times that we live in now. This is a time when women typify those words and give in to the people that creep into their homes through the internet, and women are being led away by various “lusts”, passions, desires, and impulses.
Now the key to this whole verse, though, is that the women who are lead astray and deceived appear to already be loaded down with sin. Yet it does not describe with what sin or sins they are weighed down. Often times women do not feel that this latter day warning applies to them because they are not “weighted down” with sin. Sure, each of us are battling with a sinful nature, but women believe they are not “weighted down” by any sin. It seems that the vision of being weighted down includes BIG sin - like total immorality, murder (abortion), lying, cheating, and stealing. Even these last three bring to mind images of BIG lies - like what politicians do daily, BIG cheating - like a major company deceiving the public with a skewed medical study, BIG stealing - like robbing a bank, but Yahweh does not distinguish between BIG and little. Sin is sin and in the end we will have to answer for all our choices. So, take a good look at your heart and mind, then ask yourself, “Am I weighed down with sin?”
Take a spiritual inventory of the things you might struggle with or be hanging on to. Past bitterness from a failed relationship, gossiping, unbelief, hypocrisy, head-strong, high-minded, speaking evil of something without proper evidence. These are just a few of the things we have talked with others about, and when confronted people quickly deny they do it or that their words and actions are sinful. Yet, this is their opinion and not God's.
We are not here to judge whether you are weighted down or not, we are here to only inform you that there is a pattern developing in the women in the Body of Messiah (Yeshua/Jesus) that is concerning, and can lead to dangerous spiritual travels down strange and winding roads. What you want to be seeking, though, is the straight and narrow pathway.
In this modern age, there really aren’t people physically “creeping” into our homes - we have locks on our doors, security systems, lights on out front and out back. We take pretty good precautions to keep our homes safe against physical intrusions. Yet without us realizing what is going on, people are creeping in - right in front of our faces. Through our computers, tablets, cell phones, televisions, and social media of every kind. Not just the daily entourage of unsavory stars and reality TV people, but even those who claim to be men and women of Yahweh are sneaking in. They enter with teachings that sound good and reliable, yet if we took the time to truly study things out and test them against The Word, we would find that there are a lot of flaws in what these people are "teaching".
Now, here is why this is important - and yes, I laughed when I first read the situation below, yet Yahweh has impressed upon me that what is happening is a fulfillment of 2 Tim 3:6. Women are making themselves look vulnerable, gullible, silly, weak, captive, idle and foolish by allowing people to creep into their lives and homes, leading them astray with all types of fables and strange doctrines.
Here is one example:
DiHydrogen Monoxide. Have you ever heard of this dangerous chemical before? I can promise you, beyond a doubt, that you have definitely heard about it. This chemical can irritate skin, increases corrosion of certain metals, is used as an industrial solvent, used in nuclear plants, it can cause explosive reactions when mixed with certain mineral compounds, contributes to erosion, is a major component in acid rain, and when inhaled, can even cause death. You use it daily, have it in your home, use it in your gardens, eat it in foods, and do so many other things with this “dangerous chemical composition”. Right about now you may be seriously getting nervous about having such a horrible product in your home. You might be asking yourself “Is this endangering my family?” Well, don’t worry because Dihydrogen Monoxide is only WATER. YES, I said it is plain old WATER.
Think about it for a moment “di” means 2, Hydrogen is H, MON is 1, Oxide is Oxygen. TWO hydrogen and ONE oxygen make up what? WATER, also known as H2O. BUT, when you put a chemical name to it it sounds very scary, doesn’t it? It sounds toxic, maybe even deadly? But it is not any of those things, it is simply water. YOU are made up of water, or at least a good part of you is. God made you and God made water.
More and more, there are memes floating around claiming that farmers are spraying it on our crops in an attempt to force us, unknowingly, to consume this hazardous chemical. It is used in our prepared foods, added to our drinks that we buy, etc., etc., etc. Someone has even been creative enough to dedicate an entire website to this “chemical compound” and has created a governmental HazMat sheet called an MSDS for this dangerous product. I have watched people fly off the handle and make statements such as “The maker of this needs to be stopped!!! Just like (that major chemical company)!!!” Which has me laughingly calling out, “But it’s just water people!!!”. You may even be surprised to learn that this rumor was "invented" by a 14 year old in 1997 to find out how gullible the public is.
With creative marketing, some pretty pictures, and just the right wording, someone has made a complete campaign out of it now to deceive people into spreading rumors and false teachings. He or she are probably laughing at all the gullible people believing this joke and passing it around from post to post. Why is this important at all? After all, water has nothing to do with our salvation, and it does sound silly that many are falling for this spoof. BUT if you are gullible enough to fall for something such as this, what other delusion will you allow to lead you astray into false doctrines, teachings, or impulses?
Take for example the strange teachings that are running rampant through the Torah followers. There are so many of them cropping up right and left that it is often difficult to keep track and keep up. Lately everything is pagan. Everything from saying the words “blessing” or “amen” to watching the Olympics to the bible being called an idol. Yes! You heard it correct. There are people who believe and teach all this, or they are just passing around another joke to see who falls for it. All these things are randomly being declared forbidden because of their so called attachment to “paganism,” which are claims that cannot even be proven.
Recently I witnessed someone being scolded that they improperly capitalized a letter in a word, therefore giving it “more glory than was appropriate”. And let’s not even discuss the “name game” today. These are just a few, but there are an over-whelming number now, and it seems to grow exponentially every day. It is becoming such a phenomena that people are making memes now to show the silliness of it all. Now, normally these would not be any issue at all because much of this silliness has nothing to do with your salvation, but if a woman in Torah is easily led astray because she falls for these memes, or even this H2O website, what else will she fall for?
WE are responsible for studying. WE are responsible for learning, and testing everything. WE are responsible for knowing the truth. But, sadly, it appears lately many women are more easily deceived than men tend to be. Women have the softer heart, often feel overwhelmed with responsibility, and they act as if they haven’t enough time to study something out fully and test teachings for themselves. Single women in the Torah movement have the need for male leadership to fill that missing gap in their life. However, this desire for male leadership is making these single women susceptible to falling for any man who appears godly, who fills the missing gap. Sadly, no matter what this man teaches, women easily accept what he says as truth because they must follow this new “male leader” in their life.
Ladies, let’s face it, the very first deception was in the Garden, and Eve fell for it. Not Adam. Why? Because it fulfilled her desires. We don’t need to be this way, though. Choose you this day whom you will serve, the deceiver? Or Yahweh!
It is our prayer that you test, challenge and study for yourself all teachings that cross your path. The next time a meme pops up that sounds unnerving or even joyous, please look it up and study it for yourself first before you join in passing false doctrine. Know the truth, know His true teachings and make sure His words are written on your hearts and in your minds. Do this for yourself so that you will know the difference between truth and all the internet lies and strange doctrines being passed around.
Now, go, please, and pour yourself a nice cold glass of dihydrogen monoxide, relax and study to avoid being fooled again!!!
Blessings and Shalom!!!
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Lead Author (Bio)
Jim, (Judi's husband), has Sephardi Jewish ancestry and is a minister and head of Shofar Productions. Jim was a denominational pastor, hospital chaplain, and former director of a non-profit community organization.
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