Blogs about the life of the real Jewish Jesus whose actual name was Yeshua. View his life, teachings and movement in the cultural context of first century Galilee and Judea. Using a Linguistic Model to more accurately understand what his words meant to his original Jewish apostles, followers and audiences.
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The Prayer Yeshua Prayed Twice Every Day
Jesus’s earliest memories was no doubt watching and listening to his family when
they gathered to pray the Shema at sunrise
before the day’s work began and after the working work day was over at sunset.
He also heard and participated in praying the Shema at their synagogue. He was surrounded by neighbors who also
prayed the same prayer in their homes every day.
Hebrew word for prayer is tefilah. It
is derived from the root Pe-Lamed-Lamed and the word l'hitpalel, meaning “to judge oneself.” This surprising word
origin provides insight into the purpose of Jewish prayer. The most important
part of any Jewish prayer, whether it be a prayer of petition, of thanksgiving,
of praise of God, or of confession, is the introspection it provides, the
moment that we spend looking inside ourselves, seeing our role in the universe
and our relationship to God.
of Jewish prayers are expressed in the first person plural, "us"
instead of "me," and are recited on behalf of all of theJewish people. This form of prayer
emphasizes their responsibility for one another and their interlinked fates. Prayer
is largely a group activity rather than an individual activity. Group
prayers are recited from prayer books, not spontaneous individual prayers. One
of the primary purposes of prayer is to learn about God rather than telling God
what we want.
Shema is still an important prayer in
Judaism, but the version found in prayer books today is slightly different from
the one Yeshua recited. After the Temple was destroyed in 70 CE, the rabbis in
Israel removed the first part (the Ten Commandments).
The prayer below is like the one Yeshua and his fellow Jews of that period
Yeshua and his fellow Jews recited the Shema
they would have used euphemisms for the unpronounceable name of God. We will
use “HaShem” (“the Name”) in our
version. We will also use the word ELOHIYM
for “God.” ELOHIYM would remind people
the work of the Creator in the
opening creation account of Genesis.
will be a more literal translation than that of most English Bibles. Please get
a notepad and a pen before you continue. You will see that at the beginning of
each section I placed a number. As you read the prayer, if something stands out
to you, probably because of the differences between this translation and your
Bible, jot down the number. Do not stop and consider why it stood out. Wait
until you finish and then go back and did in deeper.
let’s step into our time machines and travel back to Nazareth 2,000 years ago
and picture ourselves in the room with Yeshua and his family at sunrise. We all
stand and face the direction towards Jerusalem. Joseph begins the prayer and we
join in by reciting the following words.
1 Iam HaShem your ELOHIYM who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the
house of bondage.
shall have no other ELOHIYM in front of Me.
shall not make for yourself a carved image — any likenessof
heaven above, or thatisin
the earth beneath, or thatisin
the water under the earth;you
shall not bow down to them nor serve them.
jealous ELOHIYM, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the
third and fourthgenerationsof
those who hate Me, but showing mercy to thousands, to those who love Me
and keep My commandments.
shall not take the name of HaShemyour
ELOHIYM in vain, for HaShem will not holdhimguiltless
who takes His name in vain.
the Shabbat day, to keep it separate, as HaShem your ELOHIYM commanded you.
days you shall labor and do all your work.
The seventh dayis a
to HaShem your ELOHIYM; you shall not do any work -- you, nor your son, nor
your daughter, nor your male slave, nor your female slave, nor your ox, nor
your donkey, nor any of your cattle, nor your stranger whoiswithin
your gates – so that your male slave and your female slave may rest like you.
Remember that you were a slave in the land of Egypt, and HaShemyour
ELOHIYM brought you out from there by a mighty hand and by an outstretched arm
-- therefore HaShem your ELOHIYM commanded you to do the Shabbat day.
Honor your father and your mother, as HaShem your ELOHIYM has commanded you so that
your days may be prolonged, and so that it may be TOV
for you on the land which HaShem your ELOHIYM is giving to you.
You shall not murder.
You shall not commit adultery.
You shall not steal.
You shall not testify against your neighbor (as) a false witness.
You shall not desire your neighbor’s wife.
You shall not desire your neighbor’s house, his field, his male slave, or his
female slave, his ox, his donkey, or anything thatisyour
Hear, O Israel, HaShem our ELOHIYM, HaShemisone!
You shall love HaShem your ELOHIYM with all your heart, with all your soul, and
with all your strength.
These words which I command you today shall be on your heart.
You shall repeat them to your children, and shall speak of them when you sit in
your house, when you walk on the road, when you lie down, and when you rise up.
You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets
between your eyes.
You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.
His signs and His works which He did in the midst of Egypt, to Pharaoh king of
Egypt, and to all his land; and that
which He did to the army of Egypt, to their horses and to their
chariots, when He made the waters of the Sea of Reeds flow over them as they
pursued them, and HaShem destroyed
them to this day.
And that which He has done for you in the wilderness until you came to this
And that which He has done to Dathan and Abiram sons of Eliab son of Reuben,
when the earth opened her mouth and swallowed them and their houses, and their
tents, and all the living substance which belonged to them in the midst of all
But your eyes see all the work of the great HaShem which He has done.
You shall keep every commandment which I am commanding you today, so that you shall
be strong and shall go in and possess the land which you are crossing over to
so that you may prolongyourdays
in the land which HaShem swore to give to your fathers, to them and their descendants,
a land flowing with milk and honey.
For the land which you are going to, to possess it,
like the land of Egypt from where you came from, where you sowed your seed and
watered with your foot, as a garden of herbs. But the land which you are crossing
over to possessisa
land of hills and valleys, which drinks water from the rain of the skies, a
land which HaShem your ELOHIYM cares for. The eyes of HaShem your ELOHIYMarealways
on it, from the beginning of the year to the end of the year.
And it shall come to pass, if you listen and obey My commandments which I
command you today, to love HaShemyour
ELOHIYM and serve Him with all your heart and with all your soul,that
rain of your land in its season, the early rain and the latter rain, that you
may gather in your grain, and your wine, and your oil.And
I will give grass in your fields for your cattle, and you shall eat and be satisfied.
Be on guard for yourselves, lest your heart be deceived, and you turn aside and
serve other ELOHIYM and bow down to them, and the anger of HaShem glows against
you, and He shuts up the skies, and there be no rain, and the ground does not
give her increase, and you perish quickly from upon the good land which HaShem is
giving to you.
And you shall lay up these words upon your heart, and in your soul, and bind
them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.
And you shall teach them to your children, speaking of
them as you sit in your house, and as you walk on the road, and as you lie
down, and as you rise up.
And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates, so
your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land of which HaShem
swore to your fathers to give them, like the days of the Heavens upon the Earth.
And HaShem spoke to Moses, saying,“Speak
to the children of Israel. You shall tell them that they shall make tassels on
the corners of their garments for their generations, and they shall put on the
tassels of the corners a blue thread.And
shall be to you for a tassel, that you may look upon it and remember all the
commandments of HaShem and do them, and you shall
not follow after your own heart and your own
eyes, which you go astray after. So that you may remember and do all My
commandments, and be separate to your ELOHIYM. Iam HaShem your
ELOHIYM, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, to be your ELOHIYM. Iam HaShem
End of Prayer
Yeshua dressed he put on a garment with four tassels they reminded him of the
words of the Shema. As he worked he
saw the tassels of the men he worked with and that reminded him of the Shema. When he walked through doors he saw and touched the mezuzahs
on the doorposts, that reminded him of the Shema. Every time he entered the gate of a village or town he saw the
mezuzah and that reminded him of the Shema.
When he sat in his home, especially as a child, and Joseph taught him the
commandments of HaShem, that reminded him of the Shema, as did walking down a road with Joseph as he taught him.
When he joined thousands traveling to Jerusalem for the festivals, he was
surrounded by people doing the same and that reminded him of the Shema.
about what seeing the tassels, mezuzahs and the Shema meant to Jewish women, slaves and foreigners. They were
surrounded by people who were aware of HaShem’s commandments and that was no
doubt a comforting thing to do. And of course, when Yeshua began his movement, as
the audience listened to his words and they saw his tassels -- and as he stood and taught them, he saw
their tassels too – and that reminded them all of the words of the Shema.
would like to challenge every Christian, as well as anyone who holds Yeshua’s
words in high esteem, to do what he did twice each day. Take The Real Yeshua Challenge:
For the next
seven days, pray (recite) the Shema at the beginning of your day and again
week from now you will have read the Shema
fourteen times. Every time you recite it, I have no doubt that you will discover
something new. For seven days you will
have stepped into Yeshua’s world and did what he did!A lot of people are always asking WWJD (What Would Jesus Do?). Take The Real Yeshua challenge!
Do What Yeshua Did!
– I would like to challenge you to do these:
(1) If you accept the challenge, go to our
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me know how many people are taking the challenge.
(2) After the seven days, go back to The Real Yeshua Facebook page by CLICKING
and leave a comment about your experience.
(3) Send this to others who value Yeshua
and challenge them to do what you did.
(4) Follow up with them after seven days
and talk about your experiences.
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the last blog, we covered the first part of Yeshua’s lesson on Anger -- An Angry Person Should be Tried in Court like a
– keep in mind that “anger” is the focus of Yeshua’s lesson. “Whoever says to a brother, ‘RAKA,’ shall be answerable to the
Sanhedrin.” [i] Yeshua
reveals that the seriousness of the offense has become greater by elevating the
crime to the next highest court – the
Sanhedrin. It is the highest court in the nation and would be the
equivalent of our Supreme Court. What makes this offense more serious than murder,
to keep things in the context established by Yeshua? It is because of what the
angry person said out of anger – “RAKA!”
is the English transliteration of the Greek word found in the ancient
manuscripts of Matthew. Interestingly, the Greek word is also a transliteration
of a Hebrew word into Greek. Keep in mind that when a translator working on a
translation of a Greek manuscript transliterates a Greek word, he only finds
the closest equivalent En…
have unlocked the original meanings of two of Yeshua’s words in the verse
below. We used them to replace “jot” and “tittle” in the following translation:
For verily I say unto you, Till
heaven and earth pass, one yod
(the smallest Hebrew letter) or one qotz
(the smallest part of the smallest letter) shall in no wise pass from the law,
till all be fulfilled. (Matthew 5:18) Now
let’s turn our attention to the word “verily.”
If we look it up in a dictionary we find the following definitions: in truth; really; indeed. Did
Yeshua mean: ● “For in truth I say unto you . . .” ● “For really I say unto you . . .” ● “For indeed I say unto you . . .” As
pointed out before, Yeshua didn’t teach in English, so our first step to discovering
what he did say is to examine the Greek word that is translated “verily” – amhn. Before we find
out what it means, let’s review the options that translators have when they are
working with ancient Greek and Hebrew manuscripts. Translators have four