Updated: Dec 20, 2021
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Good morning bus riders!
I hope everyone received the email with the link to the lectionary page; and, I hope everyone has read the four assigned readings for this first Sunday after Christmas.
I also hope everyone found the best gift imaginable yesterday – the baby Jesus reborn in each and every one of you.
If you got that gift, then Happy Birthday to the new you!
On the day after Christmas, I recall getting clothes as much as I remember getting toys. As an “adult,” I think I got most of the sweaters I have ever owned as Christmas gifts; but I also remember getting several shirts over the years.
As a married man, especially after having kids of my own, whenever it was time to visit other family at a Christmas dinner or friends at a pre-New Year’s gathering, it was time to show off the new duds.
Of course, those sweaters that can only be worn at Christmas always found a way to the back of the closet, worn once and never again.
I am reminded of that because of the readings today. Unlike the embarrassment of some loud piece of clothing, unlike failed New Year’s resolutions, the songs today sing of praising our gift from Yahweh, while explaining to others, “This is what I always wanted.”
Isaiah sang: “I will greatly rejoice in Yahweh, my whole being shall exult belohay; for he has clothed me with the garments of salvation, he has covered me with the robe of righteousness”.
David sang, “Sing to Yahweh with thanksgiving; make music to elehenu upon the harp. He covers the heavens with clouds and prepares rain for the earth”.
Paul wrote to the Galatian Christians: “Now that faith has come, we are no longer subject to a disciplinarian.”
John wrote, “To all who received him, who believed in his name, he gave power to become children of God, who were born, not of blood or of the will of the flesh or of the will of man, but of God.”
All of that says how we should all feel today, this day after Christmas, which is the first Sunday as well. We should all be proudly wearing our new clothes of righteousness, seeing them as better than any toy we ever received.
As for promises made in past new years, those always broken … we know the Christmas gifts received from Yahweh will never wear out, break, or be hidden.
With that said, I want you to look at the way the Isaiah reading is one of those ‘rollover’ readings, that takes verses from the end of one chapter and then connects them to verses at the beginning of the next chapter.
Divine Scripture is not based on the prophets writing until the parchment ran out, with that lack of space meaning it caused the ending of a chapter. Yahweh is the true author; so, each chapter must be seen as Yahweh making one thought be complete. While chapters are all related as thoughts of Yahweh, different views on similar thoughts are found expressed, one after the other. We need to realize that in this reading from Isaiah today blends two similar thoughts, from two different perspectives. These selections then become relative to the before Christmas and after Christmas recognitions.
In the chapter 61 verses, Isaiah's sings of being “clothed in the garments of salvation” and “the robe of righteousness.” That is then directly compares that spiritual attire to being “like a bridegroom decked with ornaments” and “a bride adorned with jewels.”
These verses must be seen as selected by the elders who were inspired by Yahweh to see that as the festivity of marriage. Yahweh is then the “bridegroom;” and, each of us, individually, is the “bride.”
Can you see that metaphor?
<Look for nodding heads.>
Well, verse eleven in the sixty-first chapter of Isaiah then says marriage is for the purpose of “bringing forth the buds,” the “growths that spring forth in a garden.” The last verse in that chapter completed a thought about divine union being intended for the purpose of having a baby.
That must be compared to the anticipation of a special birth … that is the same as the excitement that comes from awakening on Christmas morning. The gift received is the seed of eternal life that is given by Yahweh, to His wives (each individually). To give birth to baby Jesus demands each person be wrapped in the glory of His presence.
When children are taken to see Santa Claus, so they can tell him what they want for Christmas, we have replaced Yahweh with some imaginary reflection of our adult selves. We are the ones playing god when we give our children what they want and need on Christmas.
Our children wake up happily and wear the clothes of their parents’ ability to buy things; but what about us adults?
It is easy to get lost in the fantasy that financial wealth is God-given; but when many people wear the burden of debt on the day after Christmas, or the garments of shame from not having been able to give one’s children everything they wanted and needed, or the embarrassment of having to go to get some handouts at a church or mission, because one cannot afford to meet the basic needs the world puts on one’s shoulders … the day after Christmas might not be so cheery.
Where does all the happiness of anticipating Christmas coming then go, when the reality is far worse than the dream?
<Look at stunned faces.>
Isaiah’s next chapter says, “For Zion’s sake I will not keep silent, and for Jerusalem’s sake I will not rest.” The theme of this chapter is “vindication,” which is stated in verses one and two.
The word “vindication” should be defined here as meaning “proof that someone or something is right, reasonable, or justified.”
After ending chapter 61 with visions of sugar plums dancing in our heads, happily married and expecting a baby, the tone of Isaiah goes from the promise given to the reality of that which has been promised having been delivered. It is time to "Show me the baby!"
The proof of Christmas is then what you received from Yahweh.
In Isaiah’s chapter 62 we find his writing about Zion and Jerusalem. Raise your hand if you have ever been to Zion or Jerusalem.
<Look for raised hands.>
For many Christians, hearing those names of places is much the same as hearing the name Santa Claus. We all recognize the name; but, as afar as us adults are concerned, we all know the name is fictitious.
This means we hear Isaiah mentioning places that are basically meaningless to Americans in the year 2021, almost 2022.
What our eyes and ears are trained to reject is the meaning behind the name. Just as easily as we hear or read “Zion” and “Jerusalem,” we do not see the Hebrew behind the names that says, “Dry Place” and “Teaching Peace.”
In the same way, we read or hear Santa Claus and Christmas and automatically reject hearing or reading “Yahweh” and the “Anointment Gathering.”
In Isaiah’s verse 62:1, he wrote meaning that says, “For sake of dry place not I will hold my peace , for sake of teaching peace not I will rest”.
As far as expecting a divine baby to come, that new translation says, “Hey everyone, I was born as Jesus yesterday! There is no way I am going to keep this gift a secret. There is no closet or drawer I’m going to hide this gift in. I’m going to let everyone know that this is the best gift I ever received; and, I will keep wearing this for the rest of my life!”
This needs to be how we should read David’s Psalm 147. It begins and ends with the same word: “Hallelujah!” The word is actually two Hebrew words, which say, “Praise Yah.” “Yah” is short for “Yahweh.”
Raise your hand if you have been taught as a Christian to “praise Yahweh” … specifically by that name.
<Look for hands being sat on.>
We teach our children to praise Santa Claus. They do that until they realize parents are liars and there is no Santa Claus. To teach that lie, in effect, means teaching there is no Yahweh. To teach that says that our children can later on deduce, “If there is no Santa Claus, then there is no God.”
David also sang about “Jerusalem” and “Zion,” while adding “Israel.” This, again, must be read as Yahweh speaking the intent of the words, more than the names of places.
The translation for the reading of Psalm 147 today shows one verse singing: “Worship the Lord, O Jerusalem; praise your God, O Zion”. In reality that verse says, “boast of teaching peace of Yahweh ; praise you His extensions on earth into dry places .”
In that, David wrote the Hebrew word “elohayik,” which is a form of “elohim” (meaning “gods” in the plural number). The modification is then in the possessive, as “yours.” We thus read “your God” (in the singular and capitalized), while the specific name “Yahweh” is diminished to “the Lord.” That makes it: A.) Hard to tell why David would use “lord” and “god” to describe the same divine entity; and, B.) It ignores how a plural number of “gods” suddenly becomes one big-G “God.”
In the long wholeness of Psalm 147, David wrote some form of “elohim” three times. Anyone who has heard me orate, here or on my website, for any length of time, knows that “elohim” is spoken by Yahweh through his Hebrew writing prophets, for the purpose of showing a plurality of many souls who directly serve Him.
I define “elohim” as one in the name of Yahweh, where that name is “Israel.” That ‘name’ says this: "Who Retains Yahweh as His elohim.” A simpler translation of one “el” would be “an angel in the flesh.”
To be married to Yahweh means to become a Yahweh elohim; so, that means to become one of the many ‘wives of Yahweh.’
The “vindication” that says, “I am a wife of Yahweh” is bearing His Son, who we all call Jesus (David would have used the equivalent – Israel). The name “Jesus” says, “Yahweh Saves.”
Thus, when Isaiah sang of “her righteousness and her salvation,” the vindication was to be known as wearing Jesus for all to see.
The birth of Jesus becomes how David sang about all the ills of oneself being mended and bound up. Still, in what David praised, the double-edge of his words sang of those who wake up Christmas morning and find no baby Jesus reborn within their souls.
Those are the “exiles,” the “brokenhearted,” and the “wicked.”
Those are the ones who turned away from putting on the garments of divine marriage … for whatever reasons. [A brain leading a soul to ruin always follows the path of reasoning, not the path of righteousness.]
When we read David sing, “He has established peace on your borders; he satisfies you with the finest wheat,” we need to know that “Jerusalem” means “Teaching Peace.” Knowing that, we can read or hear him saying “our borders” are the extent of our bodies and souls (individually). We each become “satisfied with the finest wheat,” which is the spiritual food we each need to “Teach peace.”
Seeing this, when David sang metaphorically about “snow” and “hoarfrost” and “hail,” asking “Who can stand against his cold?” the reality of the question is relative to those whose “faces are cold,” unable “to stand” righteously. David asked that of all those whose reasoning had not led them to marrying their souls to Yahweh.
That is why David then sang, “He sends forth his word and melts them; he blows with his wind, and the waters flow.” The presence of Yahweh brings forth His Son, whose words will maintain the outpouring of Holy Spirit in one’s being.
That is the gift that never breaks, never gets old, and never is an embarrassment to wear publicly.
As for regifting, it is not within our power to give Yahweh’s Spirit. It is only His to give.
In Paul’s letter to the Galatians – those who must be understood as having also awoken on their personal Christmas mornings to find their souls all reborn as Jesus, a gift not something Paul could generate, as each had to equally marry their souls to Yahweh – he began these selected verses by saying, “Now before faith came, we were imprisoned and guarded under the law until faith would be revealed.”
This is like Isaiah saying marriage comes before baby Jesus. The "bridegroom decks himself with a garland … as a bride adorns herself with her jewels," before "her vindication shines out like the dawn, and her salvation like a burning torch."
Just as Isaiah said that in his sixty-first and sixty-second chapters, it is good to now notice that these verses in Galatians come from chapters three and four. The elders who arranged these reading today chose a 'matching rollover' in Scripture.
In Paul’s third chapter, Yahweh is speaking through him, so Paul is pointing out the before and after expectations that are relative to “faith.”'
The Galatians, like Paul, knew the difference.
In Greek, the same basic word ("pistis") means “faith, belief, trust, confidence; fidelity, faithfulness.” The root of that word is derived from the word meaning “persuade,” which is defined as “cause (someone) to believe something, especially after a sustained effort; convince.”
This means the same word, whenever it is used, in whatever form, means hearing or reading it leads to thinking that "faith" and "belief" and "trust" are the same; and, that must be true. However, while that might sounds right, ask yourself, ”Is seeing believing?”
<Look for quizzical faces.>
There is a difference between “belief” and “faith.” When we see something, or when we hear something, we are discerning something externally. Magicians (who are really "Tricksters") know that people will see what you lead them to see. They know their acts are tricks, so they have faith that the people will be tricked and believe in something false. That means the difference between "faith" and "belief" comes from knowing the truth.
By understanding that, Paul was writing to those who knew the truth, saying, “Before you knew Yahweh and before you became Jesus reborn, you were all just like me … imprisoned and guarded under the law.”
This is a statement that says the beliefs all Christians have these days are no different than the beliefs the Jews all maintained then, as belief-worthy, is and was based on Mosaic Law. Today, the Ten Commandments and everything Jesus said is equally believed to be what we should all do. BUT … we are actually imprisoned by words that none of us really understand.
"How do we do all that?" we ask.
Scripture is then the reverse of a magic show, as it is the truth presented in a way that is hidden from view, while plainly in sight. That means "belief" is based on a misunderstanding of the truth, while "faith" is having the truth revealed and knowing the truth was always right before one's eyes.
Let me remind you about our not knowing what "Zion," "Jerusalem," "Israel," or "elohim" meant. Each word in Hebrew says each of those four 'names,' just not capitalized. We read them as capitalized, which becomes a mirror trick that directs our eyes away from the truth of that clearly written.
Let me remind you that unless I state the name Yahweh, few people think of God by that name. We are trained by translations that mask the truth of "Yahweh," with "the Lord."
Therefore, we are imprisoned by what we say we believe, because of our lack of understanding the truth of Scripture.
When Paul then wrote, “the law was our disciplinarian until Christ came,” that seems to be the after; but it is still the “before.”
As Christians in the Twenty-first century, we have been trained by priests and pastors to read or hear the word “Christ” and immediately think that word means the last name of Jesus. We read "Christ" and think "Jesus Christ." We think Christ is synonymous with Jesus. One is the other.
It is not that. "Jesus" and "Christ" are two separate words, each capitalized in Greek, purposely.
The Greek word “Christos” means the same as the Hebrew word (transliterated into English) that is “Messiah.” The word "Christos" means “Anointed one,” but the capitalization tells us the Anointment is by Yahweh. Only Yahweh can make one be “Anointed,” and that is not done physically by water or oil. It is Spiritually an outpouring upon one’s soul; and, that happens when one is divinely married to Yahweh. A soul then comes in union with Yahweh when made "A Christ," completely submerged in His Spirit.
Paul was then reminding the Galatians of their divine marriages to Yahweh, when they became pregnant with His Son Jesus, while being “Anointed ones,” those who knew faith would become their freedom from their erroneous beliefs, based on the law.
It is then in Paul’s fourth chapter, when he wrote: “But when the fullness of time had come, God sent his Son” that it becomes the day after Christmas. The "fullness of time" is a statement about the nine months that women normally carry a fetus in the womb, before giving birth. Because Paul said that time had passed and “God sent his Son,” well … Merry Christmas! Jesus was reborn many times in Galatia.
Jesus was reborn many times on Pentecost Sunday; and, his soul has been resurrected in many other souls since then, including in Paul, in the Galatians, and in every Saint that has ever walked the earth.
When Paul then wrote, “born of a woman,” this is another of those limitations we surround ourselves with, which make us be imprisoned by the laws of syntax. We think normal syntax is surrounding Scripture, so that artificially misdirects the way we understand Scripture. We fail to recognize how Scripture was all written by the wives of Yahweh, each writing what Yahweh's voice led them to write.
The divine syntax of Yahweh – which is the truth of "speaking in tongues" – is how the truth is right before our eyes, but our brains will not allow that truth to be seen.
Relative to "born of a woman," Paul might not have ever met Mary the mother of Jesus; but he was not speaking about her. If Jesus is one’s baby spiritually, then we each must be that “woman” to whom Jesus was “born of.”
This is what I mean when I say all humanity – souls in bodies of flesh – are feminine essence.
Our souls become “brides adorned in jewels” because we are souls animating dead matter, which is the realm of femininity. We each are the truth of Isaiah writing "“her righteousness and her salvation,” because we each are "brides." Yahweh is the Husband, or “bridegroom,” who marries us souls in the flesh, so we are those “women” who become the mothers of Jesus … resurrected in our souls, reborn into our flesh.
When Paul then reminded the Galatian Christians about them each giving rebirth to Jesus in their flesh, he wrote that event of Christmas morning was “so that we might receive adoption as children.” That means not only does our soul see Yahweh as one’s marriage partner … one’s Holy Husband … but also one's being reborn as Jesus means one can now join the family of Yahweh.
Each wife becomes the plurality of all His Sons (even to the souls in female bodies of flesh); so, Yahweh becomes each of those souls’ “Father.”
This means the conclusion to this reading selection, where Paul wrote, “if a child then also an heir, through God” – (the reality is Paul wrote “son,” not “child”) – being an “heir” means being given the promise of eternal life.
That is why one “praises Yahweh!” "Hallelu-YAH!"
That is why Isaiah sang out, “You shall be a crown of beauty in the hand of Yahweh.”
In that, the Greek word translated as “crown” can also mean “wreath.” A “wreath” is a symbol of Christmas, while also being a symbol for the halo one who has been “Anointed” by Yahweh wears. All saints possess halos, as Jesus is reborn in each of them all.
This brings us to the Gospel reading from John.
This past week I was led to see John in an entirely new light. That light allowed me to see how John is the truth of who we become on December 25th. I wrote deeply about that. However, due to the time constraints of the bus schedule, I will not be able to go into all that I saw now; but I invite everyone to read what I posted on my website about John 1:1-18.
In this selection from John’s first chapter, it begins with the well-known verse that says, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”
Verse two then says, “He was in the beginning with God.” The implication of the third-person, capitalized “Houtos” ("He") is Jesus, although unnamed specifically.
In the later section we read, “And the Word became flesh and lived among us,” with the verses in between specifically mentioning “John.”
The name “John” means “Yahweh Is Gracious.” This means one whose name means “Yahweh Is Gracious” was speaking of another whose name means “Yahweh Is Gracious.”
What we need to then realize is Yahweh’s graciousness was by “the Word” coming from Him, into two named "John." Here, we must realize “the Word” is not physical, but a Spiritual possession.
Thus, when we read this Spiritual “Word became flesh and lived among us,” that is not the Gospel writer telling us that Jesus came, was born of a woman, and then walked on two feet in lands known as Galilee, Samaria, Judea and elsewhere of the earth.
When we read “the Word became flesh,” that says one’s soul-flesh had given rebirth to “the Word” that means “Yahweh Saves.” The element of “lived” is actually written as “dwelled,” which means “had a tabernacle or tent” to call home.
This means John said “the Word” is wherever Jesus becomes the high priest, who is sent by Yahweh into a soul-flesh that has submitted to Him as a wife. Then, as a mother, “the Word” is reborn within that soul (Spiritually).
When John wrote that the other John would be a “witness,” who would “testify to the light,” that says “the Word” is the “light of truth.” That says John personally was reborn as “the light of truth,” in order to personally “witness” that truth, for others to believe that “the Word” can be reborn into all who welcome Yahweh into their souls.
Because we read the last couple of Sundays about the birth of John and his being prophesied to come – another miracle baby just like would be Jesus – John was born of divine origin. Baby John was born with “the Word” in his being, just as was baby Jesus.
The difference between John and Jesus is John reflects us. He does so in the sense that everyone of us is a sinner first, before we can become like John and forevermore receive ‘the Word.” That receipt is then what saves souls.
John knew “the Word” of Yahweh before he was born of Elizabeth and named by her and Zechariah as “John.” Thus, John was an eternal soul that had previously been saved by receiving "the Word," who was then sent back into new flesh (just as Yahweh would send Jesus), for the purpose of leading his followers to recognize their sins kept their souls from eternal salvation.
Yahweh sent John as the vindication for "the Word." As such, John can indeed be seen as the return of the soul once called Elijah.
When John wrote of John saying, “He who comes after me ranks ahead of me because he was before me,” that poor translation actually says John was a soul (like us) who possessed a body of flesh (like us), which was destined for eternal reincarnations until another soul (that of "the Word") was reborn within his soul. That second soul was then the one who took control of his soul-body and became the soul that came first to John.
That is not John prophesying the coming of Jesus (although it certainly can be that). It is John personally witnessing, thereby testifying truthfully that “the Word became in the flesh of John’s soul, giving eternal life to that soul." Two souls became one, so “the Word” was what saved John’s soul eternally.
We are led by John's words to be like John, because our souls were not “the Word in the beginning, with God, as God.” We are flawed; thus, we need Yahweh to be gracious to our souls.
This is the gift of Christmas morning. It is finding “the Word” resurrected within our once sinful souls, so our flesh has “the Word dwell among us” – individually.
It is “the Word” that becomes the garments of salvation and the robe of righteousness.
It is “the Word” that leads us to run out on the day after Christmas “praising Yahweh” loudly.
It is “the Word” that becomes known personally, so all beliefs have been turned to true faith, with the chains of restriction caused by poor translations and weak understanding of “the Word” having been released.
When John wrote, “From his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace,” he basically said, “We all become like John” … a name that means “Yahweh Is Gracious.”
To then say, “The law indeed was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ,” that says we must be reborn as “Jesus” – a name meaning “Yahweh Saves” – so we must all also be “Anointed” by Yahweh. With that combination risen within our souls, we understand “the law” as well as did Moses – a name many accept as meaning “Saved Out of Water” … the water of Spiritual baptism.
Understanding “the law” is possible when we stop looking upon Scripture as “Dry Places” of belief (“Zion”) and let an outpouring of divine Spirit bring forth the growths of insight from our gardens, so we make ourselves be fertile ground that fully submits to Yahweh's Will.
Understanding ”the law” comes when we give birth to “the Word” and become in the name of “Jesus Christ.”
I see the bus coming around the corner, so I will end here. Again, I hope everyone was expecting Jesus to be their gift from Yahweh yesterday; and I hope all your wishes came true.
Think about what I said today; and, think about them this coming week. I look forward to seeing you again next Sunday. By then we will have reached a new year!