Was Jeremiah Speaking of You?
A Message To Zionist Christians
by Aviel E. Rodriguez
Are you a lover of Israel? That is to say, are you among the growing number of Bible-believing, Zionist Christians who feel curiously and irresistibly drawn to the Land of Israel… to the Jewish people… and to the Feasts and Customs of Israel?
If you relate to these feelings, then discover the Biblical reason for it! It will amaze you and fill you with joy!
PLEASE READ ON SO THAT YOU MIGHT RECOGNIZE YOUR TRUE IDENTITY! FOR THERE EXISTS A DIVIDED ISRAEL AT THE MOMENT; BUT NEVERTHELESS, READ ON ABOUT ITS SOON RESTORATION AND REUNIFICATION. MOREOVER, READ ON ABOUT THE EXTREMELY IMPORTANT ROLE THAT YOU, THE ZIONIST CHRISTIAN, WILL PLAY IN THESE EVENTS!!!
This is what Jeremiah said about YOU!
“FOR THERE SHALL BE A DAY WHEN THE WATCHMEN ON MOUNT EPHRAIM SHALL CALL OUT, ARISE, AND LET US GO UP TO ZION TO YHWH OUR ELOHIM! FOR THUS SAYS YHWH, SING WITH GLADNESS FOR JACOB, AND SHOUT AMONG THE CHIEF OF THE NATIONS. CRY OUT, GIVE PRAISE AND SAY, O YHWH, SAVE YOUR PEOPLE, THE REMNANT OF ISRAEL.” (Jer. 31:6-7)
How do the underlined words in the above verse of Scripture relate to you? I think you’ll be utterly amazed once you’ve discovered the secret… please read on.
Let us consider for a moment that in chapter 48 of the book of Genesis, the patriarch, Jacob/Israel, is seen blessing his two grandchildren. These grandchildren are the sons of Yoseph ben Yaacov [Joseph the son of Jacob], and these children were called Manasseh and Ephraim.
Joseph was not Jacob’s firstborn. Nevertheless, he was the son who received the bekhor (right of the firstborn) from his father Jacob- just as Isaac had received it in place of Ismael (i.e., by election). This, therefore, meant that upon his father Jacob’s death Joseph would inherit the place of authority- as head of the clan. It also meant that he would receive a ‘double portion’ as regards to the material inheritance regarding the land of promise. Finally, it also included a special blessing called ‘the blessing of the firstborn’ which confirmed his headship and pronounced a special blessing for ‘fruitfulness’ upon him [e.g. Gen. 27: 28-29; 49:22-26].
This ancient blessing was inherited from the patriarch Abraham by virtue of some very important promises which Abraham received from El Shaddai (also known as YHWH/Yahweh). One of Yahweh’s specified promises to Abraham was that his seed would become a great and fruitful multitude in the earth. [Gen. 12:1; 13:14-16; 15: 5-7, 18; 17:4-7]
This “Firstborn blessing” was always imparted to the ‘bekhor’ with the use of the right hand. Therefore, when the time came, Joseph naturally assumed that his father (Jacob/Israel) would place his right hand upon the head of Manasseh- Joseph’s firstborn son- in order to impart the special blessing of the bekhor upon him. However, that was not to be the case.
“AND ISRAEL STRETCHED OUT HIS RIGHT HAND, AND LAID IT UPON EPHRAIM’S HEAD, WHO WAS THE YOUNGER, AND HIS LEFT HAND UPON MANASSEH’S HEAD, GUIDING HIS HANDS WITTINGLY; FOR MANASSEH WAS THE FIRSTBORN. AND HE BLESSED JOSEPH, AND SAID, ELOHIM, BEFORE WHOM MY FATHERS ABRAHAM AND ISAAC DID WALK, THE ELOHIM WHICH FED ME ALL MY LIFE UNTO THIS DAY, THE ANGEL WHICH REDEEMED ME FROM ALL EVIL, BLESS THE LADS; AND LET MY NAME BE CALLED ON THEM, AND THE NAME OF MY FATHERS ABRAHAM AND ISAAC; AND LET THEM GROW [Strong’s #1711 ‘dagah’- to spawn as teeming schools of fish] INTO A MULTITUDE IN THE MIDST OF THE EARTH.
AND WHEN JOSEPH SAW THAT HIS FATHER LAID HIS RIGHT HAND UPON THE HEAD OF EPHRAIM IT DISPLEASED HIM: AND HE HELD UP HIS FATHER’S HAND, TO REMOVE IT FROM EPHRAIM’S HEAD UNTO MANASSEH’S HEAD. AND JOSEPH SAID UNTO HIS FATHER, NOT SO, MY FATHER: FOR THIS IS THE FIRSTBORN; PUT THY RIGHT HAND UPON HIS HEAD. AND HIS FATHER REFUSED, AND SAID, I KNOW IT, MY SON, I KNOW IT: HE ALSO SHALL BECOME A PEOPLE AND HE ALSO SHALL BE GREAT: BUT TRULY HIS YOUNGER BROTHER [EPHRAIM] SHALL BE GREATER THAN HE, AND HIS SEED SHALL BECOME A ‘MULTITUDE’ [A FULNESS] ‘OF NATIONS’ [OF GENTILES]… AND HE SET EPHRAIM BEFORE MANASSEH.” (Genesis 48:14-20)
Ephraim’s name actually meant ‘doubly fruitful’. He was to become Joseph’s ‘fruitful bough’ [Gen.49:22] which is by a well [Isa.12:3] whose branches run over the wall [i.e., beyond its borders]. The Scriptures relate that Ephraim’s descendants went on to become the head of what later became known as the Ten Northern Tribes of Israel [or the Kingdom of Israel] as separate from the Kingdom of Judah to the south.
These ten northern tribes came to be collectively known as ‘Ephraim’ or ‘Israel’. However, because of their idolatries and spiritual adulteries, Yahweh eventually judged them and gave them over to their enemies. Thus, Hosea- a prophet of Yahweh to the Northern Kingdom of Israel/Ephraim- wrote the following:
“Israel is swallowed up: now shall they be among the Gentiles as a vessel wherein [is] no pleasure. For they are gone up to Assyria, a wild ass alone by himself: Ephraim hath hired lovers.” (Hosea 8:8-9)
“…And Elohim said unto him, Call her name Loruhamah: for I will no more have mercy upon the house of Israel; but I will utterly take them away.” (Hosea 1:6)
“Then said Elohim, Call his name Loammi: for ye [are] not my people, and I will not be your Elohim.” (Hosea 1:9)
“And YHWH said unto him, Call his name Jezreel… and they shall hear Jezreel.” (Hosea 1:4; 2:22) [‘Jezreel’ Strong’s #3157 meaning ‘God will sow’; stemming from the root word ‘zara’; i.e, the cultivation process of disseminating, sowing, planting, bearing, conceiving seed; and a yield]
“And I will sow her unto me in the earth; and I will have mercy upon her that had not obtained mercy; and I will say to [them which were] not my people, Thou [art] my people; and they shall say, [Thou art] my Elohim.” (Hosea 2:23)
“Yet the number of the children of Israel shall be as the sand of the sea, which cannot be measured nor numbered; and it shall come to pass, [that] in the place where it was said unto them, Ye [are] not my people, [there] it shall be said unto them, [Ye are] the sons of the living El [B’nei El-Chai]. Then shall the children of Judah and the children of Israel [Ephraim] be gathered together, and appoint themselves one head, and they shall come up out of the land: for great shall be the day of Jezreel.” (Hosea 1:10-11)
Based upon these understandings of Ephraim’s prophetic future, we begin to get the inkling that Jeremiah’s prophecy- concerning ‘THE WATCHMEN ON THE MOUNT EPHRAIM’- is actually talking about YOU, dear ‘Zionist Christian’! You, who were not a people; but now, are a people. You, who were once foreigners and strangers to the covenants; but now, are part of the household of FAITH… and citizens in the commonwealth of ISRAEL! [Romans 9:23-27; Ephesians 2:11-14] You, who have been born of the “incorruptible seed” of the word of YHWH [1Peter 1:23]; and who have a deep yearning to see the salvation of All ISRAEL! [Roman 11:11; 25,26]
Jeremiah is speaking of You… of a people who’ve made ‘shuva’- i.e., a repentant return to YHWH; and thus, a return to the ancient paths/the Hebraic roots- in the latter days! For Jeremiah states the following clearly:
“…in the latter days ye shall consider it. At that same time, saith YHWH, will I be the Elohim of all the families of Israel, and they shall be my people”… And again he proclaims:
I (YHWH) have surely heard Ephraim bemoaning himself thus; Thou hast chastised me, and I was chastised, as a bullock unaccustomed to the yoke: turn thou me, and I shall be turned, for thou art YHWH my Elohim.
Surely after that I was turned, I repented; and after that I was instructed, I smote upon my thigh: I was ashamed, yea, even confounded, because I did bear the reproach of my youth. (Jeremiah 30:24; 31:1; 18-19)
It is clear to me that the Zionist Christian/Hebraic Roots movements are literally the corporate awakening of the House of Ephraim, and the beginnings of their ‘shuva’/return to the ancient paths of their Hebraic, Biblical roots. This was confirmed to me in relation to the Jeremiah 31:6 prophecy when I discovered an old copy of a book entitled ‘The Pentateuch & Haftorahs’; edited by Dr. J.H. Hertz, C.H. This man, Dr. Hertz, was once the Chief Rabbi of the British Empire; moreover, this was the second edition of a work which he had edited and which the Jewish publishing house, Soncino Press of London, England subsequently published in 1960.
While thumbing through the book one day, I came across the above verses from Jeremiah- and more. In fact, on pages 956-957 of this work, I found the whole passage- Jeremiah 31; verses 2 through 20. It was printed in Hebrew with English translation; and it had some very interesting commentary; but it was a few basic points which caught my eye.
Beginning with Jeremiah 31:2-3, it said the following:
“Thus saith the LORD: The people that were left of the sword
Have found grace in the wilderness,
Even Israel, when I go to cause him to rest.”
The ‘Soncino’ commentary, below the verse, states:
“‘that were left of the sword’… The survivors of the carnage which accompanied the overthrow of the Northern Kingdom. The use of this phrase discounts the interpretation that the prophet is alluding to the exodus from Egypt.” [pg.956]
I was very intrigued by this statement, in that I knew that the “Northern Kingdom”- being referred to here- is synonymous with the House of Ephraim. [Hosea 5:14-15]
But, of even more interest to me was the Soncino commentary on the following:
“’the wilderness’…The land of their exile. They will find favour in God’s eyes. The verbs are in the prophetic past, although applying to the future.” [pg.956]
Did you catch that?!….. “They [Ephraim] will find favour in God’s eyes.” This was clearly prophesied; and yet, to the modern Israeli/Jewish people the ‘House of Ephraim’ (the Northern Kingdom of Israel) were dispersed and lost to them- swallowed up among the Gentile nations long long ago [Hosea 8:8].
Yahweh knew it would be so; and so, He declared to Ezekiel:
Son of man, thy brethren, [even] thy brethren, the men of thy kindred, and all the house of Israel wholly, [are] they unto whom the inhabitants of Jerusalem have said, Get you far from YHWH: unto us is this land given in possession.
Therefore say, Thus saith Adonai YHWH; Although I have cast them far off among the heathen, and although I have scattered them among the countries, yet will I be to them as a little sanctuary in the countries where they shall come. (Ezekiel 11:15, 16)
YHWH’s words are absolutely amazing in light of these statements by Yahshua HaMashiach:
“And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of man be lifted up: that whosoever believeth in him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:14-15; cf. Num. 21:8-9)… and
As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep. And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, [and] one shepherd. (John 10:15-16)
Just a bit further along in John’s Gospel- as if to confirm Yahshua’s amazing “other sheep” statement- it would seem that the Ruach HaKodesh is giving us a tremendous clue regarding the identity of these “other sheep” whom he (Yahshua) would shepherd. I believe this is given as a prophetic and symbolic illustration enacted by Yahshua, himself. An illustration which would herald the next major stage in the salvation process for both Houses of Israel:
“Then from that day forth they [the chief council of the Judaens] took counsel together for to put him [Yahshua] to death. Yahshua therefore walked no more openly among the Jews [Judaens]; but went thence unto a country near to the ‘wilderness’, into a city called ‘Ephraim’, and there continued with his disciples.” (John 11:53-54)
Returning to the Soncino commentary on Jeremiah 31 and verse 3, we see that in defining the term “Israel”- it says:
“Israel . The Ten Tribes of the north.”
The Soncino Press- a Jewish commentary- confirms that those who ‘found grace in the wilderness’ were those of the Northern Kingdom of Israel/Ephraim!
Today, the average Jew is a descendant of the Southern Tribe of Judah- hence the moniker, Jew. Our brother, Judah, retains little to no recollection of his banished and “vanished” brethren, Ephraim/Israel. But not so with our Heavenly Father; for He loves both Judah and Ephraim dearly… and thus, He says:
“Is Ephraim my dear son? is he a pleasant child? for since I spake against him, I do earnestly remember him still: therefore my bowels are troubled for him; I will surely have mercy upon him, saith YHWH.” (Jeremiah 31:20)
“I will ransom them (Ephraim) from the power of the grave; I will redeem them from death: O death, I will be thy plagues; O grave, I will be thy destruction…” (Hosea 13:14)
I believe it was for this very reason that the apostle John wrote the following:
“And this spake he [Caiaphas] not of himself: but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Yahshua should die for that nation; And not for that nation only, but that also he should gather together in one the children of Elohim that were scattered abroad. (John 11:51-52)
“The children of Elohim that were scattered abroad”…?!?! Could there be any clearer allusion to Yahweh’s promise to ransom and regather Ephraim, the Ten Lost Tribes of the Northern Kingdom? [Jer. 31:9-11]
In his classic work “The Life And Times Of Jesus The Messiah”, the Messianic Jewish believer, Alfred Edersheim wrote:
“As regards the ten tribes [the Northern kingdom (Israel/Ephraim] there is this truth… that, as their persistent apostacy from the God of Israel and His worship had cut them off from his people, so the fulfilment of the Divine promises to them in the latter days would imply, as it were, a second birth to make them once more Israel.” (Book I, Vol. I, Chapter I; page 15).
“Second birth”?….. That is, as in ‘born again’!
Are you aware, dear Zionist Christian, that even as Joseph’s son, Ephraim, was to become “the fullness of the nations” [see Jay Green Interlinear Bible… Gen. 48:19] that, so too, this same exact expression was used by the Apostle Paul when referring to ‘born again’ believers who would be grafted into the Olive Tree of Israel in the latter days?!
I declare to you that the same FULNESS OF THE NATIONS (GENTILES) that was prophesied concerning Ephraim in Genesis 48:19 is the exact same fulness of the Gentiles alluded to by the Apostle Paul in Romans 11:25! Moreover, the “fulness of the Gentiles” is not some sort of arbitrary heavenly quota that’s been designated as the permissable number for “gentile salvations”. It speaks, rather, of a cohesive Hebraic storyline that links the Old and New Testaments together. It is- in point of fact- referring to YOU, dear Zionist Christians, but in a way that you’ve never likely considered. It’s actually referring to your true identity and to your latter-day role in All Israel’s salvation:
“…..that blindness in part is happened to Israel until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. And so all Israel shall be saved…..” (Rom. 11:25, 26)
This begs the following question: If the Zionist Christians are related to the ‘fulness of the Gentiles’ then what exactly is it that they must come into in order for All Israel to be saved???
Answer: They must come into the knowledge of their true identity as repentant, blood washed, Spirit-filled, regenerated, renewed, transformed, Torah-loving, red hot ISRAELITE, Ephraimites!… capable of provoking Judah to jealousy; and then ALL ISRAEL shall be saved!!!
Therefore, going back to my original text in Jeremiah 31, I’d like you to also know, dear Zionist Christians, who are praying and interceding for Israel as ‘Watchmen’: that in Jeremiah 31:6 the Hebrew word for ‘watchmen’ is the word “Notzrim”– as it is found in the Masoretic text of the Hebrew Scriptures. This is the exact Hebrew word used by modern-day Israelis when referring to CHRISTIANS; or to those of the CHRISTIAN faith!!!
“For there shall be a day, That the watchmen (NOTZRIM/ CHRISTIANS) shall call upon the mount Ephraim [WHICH REPRESENTS THEIR HERITAGE] saying: ‘Arise ye, and let us go up to Zion, Unto YHWH our Elohim.” (Jeremiah 31:6)
Therefore, what is our latter-day commission as Ephraim/Israel; i.e., as the Notzrim [watchmen/guardians]?… It is to sing, proclaim, announce, praise and intercede as follows:
“FOR THUS SAITH YHWH: SING WITH GLADNESS FOR JACOB, AND SHOUT AT THE HEAD OF THE NATIONS [USA?… Certainly, this is where the awakening is visibly the greatest]; ANNOUNCE YE, PRAISE YE, AND SAY: ‘O YHWH, SAVE THY PEOPLE, THE REMNANT OF ISRAEL.” (Jeremiah 31:7)
In closing, let us be ever mindful of this as well:
“THUS SAITH ADONAI YHWH; BEHOLD, I WILL TAKE THE CHILDREN OF ISRAEL FROM AMONG THE HEATHEN, WHITHER THEY BE GONE, AND I WILL GATHER THEM ON EVERY SIDE, AND BRING THEM INTO THEIR OWN LAND:
AND I WILL MAKE THEM ONE NATION IN THE LAND UPON THE MOUNTAINS OF ISRAEL: AND ONE KING SHALL BE KING TO THEM ALL: AND THEY SHALL BE NO MORE TWO NATIONS [JUDAH & EPHRAIM], NEITHER SHALL THEY BE DIVIDED INTO TWO KINGDOMS [JUDAISM & CHRISTIANITY] ANY MORE AT ALL…” “…AND DAVID MY SERVANT SHALL BE KING OVER THEM; AND THEY ALL SHALL HAVE ONE SHEPHERD…” (Ezekiel 37:21-22,24).
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Barchu et shem YHWH!
(Blessed be the name of YHWH!)
A Message To Zionist Christians