“And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.”
– Matthew 16:18
These are perilous times, indeed. And there is so much confusion. The devil is close to pulling off perhaps his most precious delusion.
It all started with some unfortunate mistranslations in the Bible.
One is “the church.”
The first usage in the one you see above. It comes in Matthew 16:18 and was uttered by none other than Messiah Yeshua. No, He didn’t say it – but the word “church” was chosen at the time of the first “complete” translation to English, in 1611, the King James Version. It was a very good translation as it went. It’s been my personal favorite. But this one mistranslation, among others, has led to virtually all other Bible translations making the same mistake over the centuries.
Think of it! If the God of the Universe were speaking English some 2,000 years ago, He would have been using a word not yet coined much earlier than 1611.
And the word used by the Son of God was kahal. It meant “assembly” or “congregation,” which was the word Moses used. But Yeshua’s words were written in Greek and translated as “ecclesia.” Again, the word “church” was not invented in A.D. 30-90, the approximate time of Matthew’s writing. Neither was the concept.
When modern people read Matthew 16:18, they naturally think Yeshua was telling Peter that “upon this rock I will build my church” – but that’s not what He intended, despite most English translations.
That’s not the only bit of confusion the use of the word “church” has caused in the New Testament.
In John 18:17, Yeshua is quoted as saying: “And if he shall neglect to hear them, tell it unto the church: but if he neglect to hear the church, let him be unto thee as an heathen man and a publican.” Those are tough words to hear about an institution not yet thought of for some time. Better translated as kahal.
We’re also told by many pastors that the Holy Spirit came on Shavout – called Pentecost – when “the church was born.” But there were 3,000 people saved that day – all Hebrews visiting Jerusalem for the feast. They may have been saved, but none of them became Christians. They remained Hebrews, as well as the Apostles remained Hebrews – all their lives!
Again, in the book of Acts, there’s an illusion to Moses and “the church in the wilderness” of Sinai. This was no church! Those translators must have been very confused.
One thing Christians should understand is that there was no church at Jesus’ time – it wasn’t even a concept! Does this mean anything to you? Do you understand now that you might be misunderstanding whom Jesus was taking to? Did it ever occur to you He was not planning to start a NEW RELIGION? That He was not ending His commandments? His plan was for gentiles to be allowed to be as equals with the Hebrews, His chosen people, if they practiced holiness as He defined it. He had no thought of today’s multitude of gentile denominations making their own holidays, their own sabbaths and their own dietary laws.
He also had no thought of Christians making up rules for themselves – like LAWLESSNESS!
It took me many years to figure that out. I’m glad I did because Scripture warns about “delusions” that are near to us now – very near!
I think I have it about figured out.
The Apostle Paul, who ministered to the gentiles, gave this warning in 2 Thessalonians 2:11: “And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie:” Try to discern what the “mystery of iniquity” is.
Paul’s voice is presaged by Isaiah 66:4: “I also will choose their delusions, and will bring their fears upon them; because when I called, none did answer; when I spake, they did not hear: but they did evil before mine eyes, and chose that in which I delighted not.”
Before the delusion set’s in, it might be time for you to get right with God – no matter who your pastor is. All one must do is repent sincerely – and start obeying the commandments. It matters not which church you belong to.
“The Gospel in Every Book of the Old Testament” by Joseph Farah is available in both hardcover and e-book versions.
ALSO: Get Joseph Farah’s book “The Restitution of All Things: Israel, Christians, and the End of the Age,” and learn about the Hebrew roots of the Christian faith and your future in God’s Kingdom.
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