On the drive home a few nights ago I spotted a billboard which quoted Romans 10:9.  As a former Baptist youth minister and music minister, I have great familiarity with the foundations of the sinners prayer.  Best espoused by Billy Graham: 

Dear Lord Jesus, I know that I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe You died for my sins and rose from the dead. I turn from my sins and invite You to come into my heart and life. I want to trust and follow You as my Lord and Savior. In Your Name. Amen.”

Unfortunately for Billy, Paul's meaning is steeped in generations of prophecy and the confirmation of the power of YHWH the living God, not the suggestion that people have the power to command God to write his law upon their hearts.

This passage takes the reader through the confusion of the translation of one greek word: homologeō g3670. This word is sometimes translated as "confess" or , as in the graphic above, "declare".  Like so many Greek words, this is a compound of two other words: homo and lege.  Homo means "the same" and lege means "speech".  Simply put, if you will make your speech identical to the Messiah's, and acknowledge that YHWH can raise people from the dead, then you will know what safety in God's way of giving it is.  But remember what the Messiah said about speech, "But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. (Matt 15:18).  The only man who can make his words the same as those spoken and taught by the Messiah is a man who has the law of YHWH written upon fleshy tables of his heart (Jer 17:7).  That is to say, by proclaiming the truth espoused by the Messiah a person makes evident that they were chosen among the children of Israel.  These people, who like sheep hearing the good shepard's voice, were drawn to him (John 10:27).

To further explain, I have attempted to re-translate all of Romans 10 through the eyes of a nazarite convert, formerly Pharisee of the Pharisees, who loves Israel and recognizes the fulfillment of prophecy in Messiah Yeshua as redeemer of Israel.  In bold I have offered up other translations of some of the Greek words in these scriptures.  Of course, all are linked to the Strong's Concordance to confirm I did not add to the word of God.

Romans 10

10:1 Brethren, my heart's desire and prayer to God for Israel is, that they might be saved  (sōtēria g4991).

Here Paul makes reference to Israel being saved from its enemies. They failed to properly keep Yom Kippur (the yearly day of judgment) for generations since the time of the captivity in Babylon. If the Israelis do not keep the statutes of God precisely he will kill them with the “beasts of the earth. (Jer 34:20)” and “the sword (Ezek 5:17)”. We see from Daniel 7:17 that beasts are kings of the earth (prophetically kingdoms since pharaoh is the essence of Egypt as Caesar is the essence of Rome).  Israel was at the mercy of Rome during the time this was written.

Without an Aaronic High Priest (the Aaronic priests moved to Egypt to start the temple of Leontopolis) Israel had no one to rectify them before God. Now Yeshua walks in the office of High Priest forever completing those ceremonies in the heavenly temple.

2 For I bear them record that they have a zeal of God, but not according to knowledge(epignōsis g1922).

He affirms that they are excited by their fierceness to say they are the children of God, but they are not his children according to the perfect knowledge of the Torah.

3 For they being ignorant of God's righteousness, and going about to establish(histēmig2476) their own righteousness, have not submitted(hypotassō g5293 ) themselves unto the righteousness of God.

They do base their understanding of righteousness in the Torah and by working before the Sanhedrin have attempted to create their own code of righteousness, but they will not organize themselves under the authority and leadership of YHWH who taught them righteousness through Moses.

4 For Christ is the end(telos g5293) of the law for righteousness to every one that believeth.

The example of Christ, as the living Torah, marks the end to which all things relate, the aim, purpose to which the law of righteousness has been given to those who believe on YHWH. He, as a sinless sacrifice walked in accordance with the Torah all his days and taught his disciples the same walk.

 

5 For Moses describeth(grapho) the righteousness which is of the law, That the man which doeth(poieō g4160) those things shall live(zaō g2198) by them.

Moses wrote down the law of righteousness which is the Torah, the man who lives among those laws will have true life and be worthy of the name by performing those laws.

 

6 But the righteousness which is of faith speaketh on this wise (houtō g3779) , Say not in thine heart(kardia g2588) , Who shall ascend into heaven? (that is, to bring Christ down from above:)

 

But the upright walk before YHWH by faith speaks in the proceeding manner: say not in the place of your understanding, “who shall ascend to heaven? (again bring the living Torah down from above.) He quotes Deuteronomy 30:12 : “It (the Torah) is not in heaven, that you should say, Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it?

7 Or, Who shall descend (katabainō g2597) into the deep (abyssos g12)? (that is, to bring up Christ again from the dead.)

Who among you will be cast down to the lowest state of shame into a place of no depth of understanding, and try to bring Christ back from the dead.

He quotes Deutoronomy 30:13: “Neither is it (the Torah) beyond the sea (the people around the Mediterranean), that you should say, Who shall go over the sea for us, and bring it unto us, that we may hear it, and do it?”

8 But what saith it? The word (rhēmag4487) is nigh thee, even in thy mouth (stoma g4750) , and in thy heart (kardia): that is, the word of faith, which we preach (kēryssō g2784) ;

 

What this righteous faith speaks is the breath breathed into Moses mouth by YHWH. Now it is even in our mouths, as it was in Moses's; and in the place of our understanding, this is the word from YHWH that we proclaim openly!

He quotes Deuteronomy 30:14: “But the word is very nigh unto thee, in thy mouth, and in thy heart, that thou mayest do it.”

9 That if thou shalt confess (homologeō g3670) with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved (sōzō g4982).

We proclaim that if you will have your words be the same words which are taught and spoken by the Messiah, and you will have trust in your place of understanding that YHWH brought him back from death; then, you will be covered concerning Yom Kippur and spared from your enemies, and the temple built in you will not be destroyed; unlike, the Temple of Jerusalem as prophesied by the Messiah which will not be spared from its enemies.

10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation (sōtēria g4991).

For from the place of understanding a man trusts in his acceptableness before YHWH; and with his mouth he makes his words the same as the words of righteousness (as explained by the Messiah in accordance with Moses) and he receives protection from his enemies.

11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.

As Isaiah's prophecy was written, “But Israel shall be saved in the YHWH with an everlasting salvation: ye shall not be ashamed nor confounded world without end. (Isa 45:17)”

12 For there is no difference between the Jew and the Greek: for the same Lord over all is rich unto all that call(epikaleō g1941) upon him.

 

For all of us who have made our last name the shem of the living God, by marriage contract, are equal as we walk righteousness before him.

 

13 For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.

 

as Isaiah said of Him: “Look unto me, and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth: for I am God, and there is none else. I have sworn by myself, the word is gone out of my mouth in righteousness, and shall not return, That unto me every knee shall bow, every tongue shall swear. (Isa 45:22-23)”

14 How then shall they call on him in whom they have not believed? and how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard? and how shall they hear without a preacher?

 

 Again as Isaiah said, “Assemble yourselves and come; draw near together, ye that are escaped of the nations: they have no knowledge that set up the wood of their graven image, and pray unto a god that cannot save. Tell ye, and bring them near; yea, let them take counsel together: who hath declared this from ancient time? who hath told it from that time? have not I the LORD? and there is no God else beside me; a just God and a Saviour; there is none beside me. (Isa 45:20-21).”

To paraphrase: I will call you together Isreal, my nation of priests who I spread through the nations, and you will teach my ways to those who, in ignorance, bowed themselves to false gods.

15 And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things!

 

Now therefore, what have I here, saith the LORD, that my people is taken away for nought? they that rule over them make them to howl, saith the LORD; and my name continually every day is blasphemed. Therefore my people shall know my name: therefore they shall know in that day that I am he that doth speak: behold, it is I. How beautiful upon the mountains are the feet of him that bringeth good tidings, that publisheth peace; that bringeth good tidings of good, that publisheth salvation; that saith unto Zion, Thy God reigneth! (Isa 52:5-7).”

 

To Paraphrase: I did not allow my people to be spread through the world and oppressed by evil men for no reason. I did this so that all would come to know who I am and that Israel would commit herself to walk again in our contract. While she is spread she will proclaim my Torah and call out from the people's of the earth all those who desire to walk in my righteous ways.

 

16 But they have not all obeyed(hypakouō g5219) the gospel (euaggelion g2098) . For Esaias saith, Lord, who hath believed our report?

 

Remember how Isaiah prophesied concerning the Messiah, who has now come, how he explained our part in furthering his glory, “

11 Depart ye, depart ye, go ye out from thence, touch no unclean thing; go ye out of the midst of her; be ye clean, that bear the vessels of the Lord.

12 For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the Lord will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your reward.(Isa 52:11-12) “Who hath believed our report? (Isa 53:1)”

We encounter resistance from our brethren who walk the Halaka of the Elders, but we walk the righteousness of YHWH as the Torah instructs so he organizes our steps and goes before us. We waited patiently at the door for the Messiah to announce his arrival and we now herald that with great joy that redemption has come to Israel and the world. We won't be distracted by the oral laws, which are unclean, though rabbis profess that law as righteousness.

17 So then faith cometh by hearing, and hearing by the word of God.

We read the words of Moses aloud in the synagogue so that everyone can come to know the will of the living God.

18 But I say, Have they not heard? Yes verily, their sound went into all the earth, and their words unto the ends of the world.

Have our brothers, who walk the Halaka of the Pharisee's, not heard the words of Moses? Certainly they have; every synagogue all over the diaspora contains the Torah so it may be read aloud. The Messiah said,

“Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye compass sea and land to make one proselyte, and when he is made, ye make him twofold more the child of hell than yourselves. (Matthew 23:15)”

He proves that they travel all over the known world to make proselytes to their Halaka.

19 But I say, Did not Israel know? First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people, and by a foolish nation I will anger you.

But isn't this exactly what the Torah told us would happen to Israel one day if we refused to walk in the manner he taught and instead chose our own way?

They have moved me to jealousy with that which is not God; they have provoked me to anger with their vanities: and I will move them to jealousy with those which are not a people; I will provoke them to anger with a foolish nation. (Deu 32:21)”

20 But Esaias is very bold, and saith, I was found of them that sought me not; I was made manifest unto them that asked not after me.

As Isaiah said,

I am sought of them that asked not for me; I am found of them that sought me not: I said, Behold me, behold me, unto a nation that was not called by my name. (Isa 65:1) and “So shall he sprinkle many nations; the kings shall shut their mouths at him: for that which had not been told them shall they see; and that which they had not heard shall they consider. (Isa 52:15)

To Paraphrase: With the coming of Messiah, all nations of the Earth will recognize his power, glory, and righteousness even if they had no desire to know of Israel and the ways of YHWH.

21 But to Israel he saith, All day long I have stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people.

And still YHWH's words resound against Israel saying,

I have spread out my hands all the day unto a rebellious people, which walketh in a way that was not good, after their own thoughts; (Isa 65:2)”

The thoughts of Israel, in Paul's eyes, were either the Halaka or the ways of the Greeks and Romans.

 


 

 

The Problem with Prayer : Hezekiah Desires More Time

 

Among the kings of Israel, three are reckoned as righteous men: David, Josiah, and Hezekiah. Each of these men worked hard to move Israel toward a life of religious observance; however, none of these men were perfect. David knew another man's wife and was called “a man of blood” by his own creator. Josiah, when given the chance to let Egypt and Assyria fight and destroy one another, confronted the pharaoh of Egypt and caught an arrow in his chest for interfering in other nation's affairs. Hezekiah made the same mistake all of us have: he wanted more than what God gave.

 

The Bible tells us in Isaiah chapter 38:1 that the 39-year-old king Hezekiah received word from God that death would soon take him. God told the king to get his affairs in order. For, at that time, Hezekiah had no male heir so he needed to find a righteous man to continue in his footsteps leading Israel. God gave Hezekiah a gift of knowledge that everyone might envy: knowing the amount of time God his given for a person to live. Unfortunately for Hezekiah, and the rest of Israel, that gift was insufficient.

 

Though Hezekiah knew the will of YHWH, instead of accepting the decree he, “turned his face toward the wall, and prayed to the Lord, and said, Remember now, O LORD, I beseech thee, how I have walked before thee in truth and with a perfect heart, and have done that which is good in thy sight. And Hezekiah wept sore.(Isaiah 38:3) It seems from his statements that the king expected life as payment for good works.

 

Instead of letting his prayer show his acceptance and obidience to God's will in his life, Hezekiah made prayer a chance to express desires for himself (please read the other articles on the Hebrew and Greek definitions of prayer). Perhaps Hezekiah desired to keep living to fight off the Assyrians, perhaps he wanted his own flesh and blood sitting on the throne after him, or he may have simply feared death. I believe God's choice of answer tells us, “I have heard your prayer, I have seen your tears; surely I will add to your days fifteen years. And I will deliver thee and this city out of the hand of the king of Assyria: and I will defend this city. (Isaiah 38:5-6).”

 

Read how God answers Hezekiah. Number one, YHWH defends Israel not human kings, in the previous chapter YHWH made this clear saying, “For I will defend this city to save it for mine own sake, and for my servant David's sake. (Isa 37:35).” Two, he recognizes that Hezekiah, though a king among men, cries as a child before God and, as would any child, Hezekiah tries to bargain with God and puts his desires before the wishes of his heavenly father.

 

God gives Hezekiah 15 years: enough time to administrate two shmitas and a jubilee as prophesied by Isaiah saying, “And this shall be a sign unto thee, Ye shall eat this year such as groweth of itself; and the second year that which springeth of the same: and in the third year sow ye, and reap, and plant vineyards, and eat the fruit thereof. (Isa 37:30).”

 

From the text of the bible we see clearly only two accomplishments of Hezekiah during his added 15 years of life. One, he sired Manasseh, the most evil king to have ever ruled Judah. Two, he opened the treasure houses of Israel to the Babylonians and showed them what a ripe prize Israel would make (Isa. 39:2). Immediately after receiving more time we find Isaiah prophesying destruction caused by Hezekiah:

 

Behold, the days come, that all that is in thine house, and that which thy fathers have laid up in store until this day, shall be carried to Babylon: nothing shall be left, saith the LORD. And of thy sons that shall issue from thee, which thou shalt beget, shall they take away; and they shall be eunuchs in the palace of the king of Babylon. (Isa. 39:6-7)

 

And perhaps as a final slap in God's face, Hezekiah did not administrate those shmitas and a jubilee as he had time for:

 

To fulfil the word of the LORD by the mouth of Jeremiah, until the land had enjoyed her sabbaths: for as long as she lay desolate she kept sabbath, to fulfil threescore and ten years. (2Ch 36:21)

 

According to the word of Jeremiah, the land was owed 70 sabbaths and that would account for a 500 year debt if the shmitas counted as a sabbath but not the jubilee.  Since this prophecy centered on Judah, and Hezekiah had been king only 2 generations before, it seems he did not fulfill his mission as leader in keeping the shmitas.

 

In every way, his prayer for more than what God had ordained lead to heavy troubles for Israel. But this one statement sums up Hezekiah's opinion, “Good is the word of the LORD which thou hast spoken. He said moreover, For there shall be peace and truth in my days (Isa. 39:8).” So I guess he knew it wouldn't be his problem.