Tag Archives: TORAH

THE JOURNEY BACK TO A TORAH MINDSET BEGINS…. Part 1.2

Q&A Continued…
Below are a few questions that were submitted to me via email that did not come through the posts. I am going to answer a few of them here for the benefit of all participants.

Q#3: Will your articles typically take 10-15 minutes in length to read?

Yes indeed! I am really very impressed with myself that they are that short! It is my teaching style to be at length. Generally speaking, I struggle in class to contain my lectures to 50 or 110 minutes. I try to squeeze every drop, out of every minute with my students and I am not ashamed to hold them captive. Learning is a scientific process. You have to be meticulous in every detail. I demand a lot out of my students, and I have no sympathy for the amount of time it takes to study to show yourself approved.

The Hebrew letters are called the raw materials of creation. I agree. I think every student is like the raw materials of creation. In my class, every student carries a Hebrew Letter over their head, like a crown of torah. They are going to create something powerful with it. Every time they absorb new information, they have the power to create, edify, encourage. They have the power to build. Some in 7 minutes, some in 6 minutes, some in one hour, some in a year. In reading, studying, learning….they are the masters of time.

Imagine my surprise and delight to have written something in a blog that only takes a few minutes to read. I might mess around and find this enjoyable!

So, why am I writing this, if it is such a foreign concept to me?
Earlier I told you that I am going for my graduate level degree in humility. Humility 101 is a marathon. It is all day, every day, and last a lifetime. This is my primary reason.

Secondary to that… I am doing this because my students are making me do it! They have suggested, implored, cajoled, questioned, fussed and looked at me strangely. They have asked me to do this for years, and I have just smiled and said, “one day, maybe”.

This is me, surrendering and being obedient to their request. They obviously have something else to teach me. So I am taking the course.

The most excellent truth of the matter is, teachers can only excel in their particular skill set, as long as they are willing to be students at the same time that they are teaching. My students have probably taught me more than I have ever taught them. I don’t know how many teachers actually share that thought out loud, or even if we share it with each other. However, ask a teacher and find out if they agree.

Students are not learning in a vacuum. Your teacher has just as much to learn from you, as you do from them. It is a symbiotic relationship. I have come to know it as, iron sharpening iron!

Technically speaking, we are just about 20-25 minutes into our first class!

I think this is a good place to introduce you to a few of your classmates. There is Ruth. Her code name is Ruth. I call her that because she is tah-meem. That is Hebrew for blameless. She has such a pure, innocent spirit and is so genuine in prayer.

You will hear me speak of David. That is his code name. I call him David because he is so sold out to God. David is one of the tzaddikim (righteous ones). His children are aware of his spiritual identity, and they see God in him. He is a rare one. He is a man, who has honour in his own country, and his own house.

You will hear me speak of one person, as the Beloved of John. She is a master torah scholar in Christ Jesus. She is the librarian, historian, record keeper par excellance. Although she would never agree with me commending her with praise. In the area of humility, kindness and joy, she is a savant. They are truly her areas of expertise. She operates in a highly specialised skill set in the body of Christ.

Then there is Shamar. shamar in Hebrew means to guard, to protect. She is hungry for the Word. She is a soldier, fearless in spiritual battle. She detests stagnation, apathy, and confusion, and she knows how to stand her watch in the service.

David, Shamar, Ruth and the Beloved of John are like the sons of Thunder in prayer. They each have an-already-been-done kind-of-spirit in prayer, and nothing is impossible with God. They know their names and each of them will recognise their description when they have read it. One day, when their identities are revealed, their families will see that I have made no exaggeration about their spiritual character.

They will attend every class and every lecture with you. They will read what you read, and hear what you hear. They are ministers of the gospel, students, teachers and intercessors. It’s what they do.

Now we’re learning torah!

Quick Links to Previous Post:  

The Journey Back To A Torah Mindset, Part 1

The Journey Back To A Torah Mindset, Part 1.1

[When I find typo’s that I did not see before I published and/or I re-read and know that I could have stated something better for clarity, I will make corrections and place brackets around the changes, like so.  I want your final product to be as pristine as possible.  Also, you have noticed that I do not include the scripture reference when I am quoting or paraphrasing something from the New Testament.  I do that intentionally.  We know this material and I believe it is already a part of our regular dialogue.  We may have the impulse to look them up and that’s good.  I want to provoke us to do that.  It’s good for the soul 🙂  Your a good student!  God Bless You].

Copyright 2019, Rev. S. Madison, torahisteaching.blog

THE JOURNEY BACK TO A TORAH MINDSET BEGINS…. Part 1.1

Q&A:

Below are a few questions that were submitted to me via email, that did not arrive through the posts. I am going to answer a few of them here for the benefit of all participants.

Q#1: Why did your original two posts not include any scripture or torah teachings? I think you only quoted scripture once.

The first two posts referred to are: The Journey Back to a Torah Mindset Begins… April 11, 2019, and How to Reset Your Torah Mindset to Acquire Torah Concepts… April 13, 2019.

Good question. “Because I am a teacher at heart.” There are several reasons I can offer to explain why I handled the introduction in this way. The fact is, both articles were loaded with torah principles, insights and teachings. I purposefully did not identify them in the articles, for the specific benefit of allowing everyone to hear the information and gain some insight into our foundational objectives. Teachers never start teaching, until everyone in the class knows specifically, what we are there to accomplish. Students hail from vastly divergent backgrounds, knowledge in and experience with scripture. It is imperative that we are given the same road map for our journey.

That being said, The Journey Back… began with a rabbinic quote. Did you recognise the quote, or have you heard it before? Chances are if you have had no prior experience with torah, you did not. That’s OK. How did you answer the question when you read it?
Were you so curious about the right answer, that you googled the question to see if you could find it and discover the meaning?
In your opinion, What is the good path to which a human being should cling? You have been out among the world. What have you discerned? What is the proper path?

If you still remember the question in your heart and are still pondering your response, you are a Christian torah scholar in the making. If not, you may have some struggles with the upcoming material. Regardless, dependant upon how much effort you are willing to place in your study, you will be an excellent student in your own right! How much are you willing to put into it? Do you have a thirst and a hunger to understand scripture at a higher level? Are you willing to be taught? Are you teachable? What are the characteristics of a teachable spirit? Even the questions are torah centric questions. Together we shall explore the answers, as long as you feel that this blog is right for you!

As we continue on this journey together, we will identify every torah principle that was addressed in the body of these two articles mentioned above. We will proceed line by line, precept by precept.

—Torah Lesson Number 1: The Five Students of Torah

How did the five students of the Rabbi answer the above question? “Rabban Yochanan ben Zakkai said to them [the five disciples]: Go out and discern which is the proper path to which man should cling. Rabbi Eliezer says: A good eye. Rabbi Yehoshua says: A good friend. Rabbi Yose says: A good neighbor. Rabbi Shimon says: One who considers the outcome [of a deed]. Rabbi Elazar says: A good heart. He said to them: I prefer the words of Elazar ben Arach to your words, for your words are included in his words.” Pirkei Avos 2:13 (i.e., Sayings of the Fathers 2:13)

Do you agree with Rabban Zakkai? Did you have a completely different answer than the five students? Explain.

Q#2: It seems like you rarely ever capitalise the word, torah, even when you should. Why is that?

That’s deliberate. In Hebrew, there is no capitalisation of letters. Capitalisation is a western concept in our writing system. Not so, in Hebrew. Even though English is my first language, I work very hard at not capitalising Hebrew words. It’s adorable when I think about it. Every letter is conceptually written in lower case… this is an aspect of humility embedded into the presentation of the Hebrew Language itself.

The torah was given in humility, given with love. The torah was received with humility, and received in reverence (awe). Reverence, is how we say, “I Love You” back to God. This is the disciples short hand for, “I will do and I will hear” (Ex. 24:7). torah should be written with a lower case t, to remind us of the necessity to handle the word of God with humility and love.

Case in point, my computer is operating on the world system, with a western mindset. I have to be mindful to do the opposite of what it is programmed to do. The computer is on autopilot. I, on the other hand, am forcing myself to be mindful of a new thing, another way, a more excellent way. I am retraining my mind to think a new way. Little things like this, I find helpful. I place this simple requirement on myself. My students are not required to do them. Contrary to some beliefs, the study of torah is not about being legalistic, or ritualistic. It’s more about building a fence around the torah. (A concept that we will delve into at much length, later in this journey!)

Torah is about the little things, considerate things, that we can do to let God know that we are continually walking consciously, aware of His Presence. I am daily training my own spirit, in the art and science of graduate level humility. Every little bit helps!

Excellent question!

Quick Links to Previous Post:  The Journey Back to A Torah Mindset, Part 1

Quick Links to Next Post: The Journey Back to A Torah Mindset, Part 1.2

[When I find typo’s that I did not see before I published and/or I re-read and know that I could have stated something better for clarity, I will make corrections and place brackets around the changes, like so.  I want your final product to be as pristine as possible.  Also, you have noticed that I do not include the scripture reference when I am quoting or paraphrasing something from the New Testament.  I do that intentionally.  We know this material and I believe it is already a part of our regular dialogue.  We may have the impulse to look them up and that’s good.  I want to provoke us to do that.  It’s good for the soul 🙂  Your a good student!  God Bless You].

Copyright 2019, Rev. S. Madison, torahisteaching.blog

The Journey Back to a Torah Mindset Begins… Part 1

– A Rabbi once asked his five students, “What is the good path to which a human being should cling?”  Naturally, he received five different answers.  The question is now posed to you.  What is the good path to which a human being should cling?

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YOU ARE THE ANSWER GOD SENT INTO THE EARTH…

Torah teaches you, that you are important to God. The trouble with that significant piece of information is, that before you can ever fully come into the knowledge of this truth, you must first be important enough to yourself to discover why it is true. So, we now have a dilemma. Judging by what we may see in the world around us, it may be difficult to imagine yourself as, “an answer” to anything. Where is the evidence of my importance to God? How am I, an answer?

BIG QUESTIONS REQUIRE BIG ANSWERS!

I actually consider these fair questions. When it comes to the Word of God, we all ask very worthy and intriguing questions that deserve a response. But as my students come to learn, big questions require big answers. In order to have our questions about God answered, (and our questions about ourselves) we have to decide how much time, if any, are we willing to invest in hearing the torah out? Are you willing to search the scriptures for yourselves, to see if these things be true? Let me ask that another way. Are you willing to do the work it takes to locate yourself on the pages of scripture?

What a student learns in their own study, can be far more powerful than what the teacher can ever teach them. God said, “Learn of me.” (Matt. 11:29 KJV). This requires a personal commitment, a teachable spirit and a consecrated heart.

Our minds are powerful and dynamic. In my experience, the student never has just one question. Any question you ask, is just one small component of what you really wanted to know. There are years of thoughts (the ungodly and Godly kind), ideas, disappointments, suppositions, information, and misinformation which are compounded by our life experiences from jubilation, to accusations, to church frustrations that are wound up in everyone’s simple questions about God.

We are complex and our questions are complex. God is complex, and we are created in the image and likeness of His complex being. In short, no simple answers will ever satisfy us at our core, and that’s a good thing. That being said, where do we begin?

SEARCHING THE SCRIPTURES…to see if these things be true…

We begin with a heart of study, a heart of purpose and intention. Everyone eventually arrives at a place in life where the pew is not enough and the world is not enough. You know there is something more to all of it, especially the Word of God. You arrive at a place where all of your mindful recognition of God, your awareness and open acknowledgment that He exists, is compromised knowingly and simultaneously, by your present daily awareness that you don’t really operate like God is before you at all times. This is true for a great many peoples. In the larger scheme of things, the Book of Revelation may just be right. Of the 7.6+ billion people in the world today, there may only be, 144 thousand qualified to walk with Christ in the thousand year reign. What if this 144k is comprised of all the people that ever lived? …not just people living in this present day and time? If God is speaking in literal terms, we do get a sense that the enormous gap between 7 billion and 144 thousand, correlates with how far removed the majority of people in this world are from God.

PLACING A DEMAND ON HEAVEN…

How does this news help matters? If you decide to place a demand on Heaven to increase our ranks and become, one hundered-forty four thousand and ONE, you have chosen to become a light in the midst of darkness. At anytime we can say, ” We are better than this!”. When we decide, as believers to place a demand on Heaven saying, “I make 144k and One! That’s when we have conclusively decided to study to show ourselves approved. We have the ability to stand before God like Moses and ask for a different outcome. But we have not challenged God on the matter. More often than not, we look for ways to explain the hundred-forty-four thousand. Perhaps, we should present God with an argument to increase it!

This can only happen when we decide to come out of the pew, serve others and do the actual work of God. When we decide that, we are not good enough the way we are, anad the situation is not good enough the way it is. We decide our voice matters. We decide our life matters. We decide that it’s preferable not to be of the 1% of the world, and to pursue instead, the one-hundred-thousandth percentile with God. We decide that humility, kindness, generosity, and compassion is better than, not less than. We decide that character refinement is our mandate. We decide that consecration, education and dedication are not less than, but greater than. We decide that we know the difference between right and wrong, and we no longer stay silent about wrong. Especially when its happening right in front of us. If it is in your power to do good, will you do it? This is the substance and quality of our faith.

SO, WHAT ARE YOU PREPARED TO DO?

When we decide to educate, validate and emancipate ourselves from lower level thinking, that’s when we are ready to question what we know, and how we know it. When we are so hungry for God’s wisdom that we submit our wisdom to His. When we can see the signs of God along the way and are not ashamed to follow Him and let everybody see it. In our carnality, the things that we treasure are…what we know, what we think we know, what we have, what we want to have, what we hold dear, what we think should be held dear…When we are ready to put someone else’s needs ahead of our own, we abandon our worldly treasures. This is when we are ready to hear God’s word. When we begin to notice that our conversation has changed and elevated. When we are ready to love our neighbor, who is, by the way, our enemy...that’s when we are truly ready to do a work for the Lord God Almighty. That’s when we transfer ourselves and our possessions from our kingdom and what we cherish, and into the Kingdom of Heaven, which God treasures.

THESE ARE NOT OUR WEAPONS…

It is around this time and space, when we begin to hear the answer to our questions and we become an answer ourselves. When we are ready to lay down all of our worldly carnal weapons and say teach me LORD, how to wield the weapons of Your Warfare. When we decide a prayer life is not so hard to accomplish. When we decide worship is not embarrassing or a foreign concept, but a lifestyle. When we decide that gossip, loshon hara (an evil tongue or wicked speech) or a mean spirit are putting blockades between ourselves and God, shutting up the Heavens like iron. When we would rather control our tongues than put up walls between ourselves and God. When dying to self is preferable to staying stuck in our own wicked ways. This is how we release the anointing over our own lives. That’s just how it works.

Torah elevates thought. Torah elevates your work ethic. Torah creates moves ahead of your opponents. Torah opens up the Heavens. Torah increases wisdom, knowledge and understanding. Torah increases compassion. Torah changes us.   If we are not ready to do all of the above, there is no reason to study torah… because that’s all God talks about.

MORE DEMONSTRATION, LESS CONVERSATION…

There are no short answers to weighty questions. There’s only study and walking out the answers. Besides, once you know the answer for yourself and become the answer, no one can ever take that knowledge of who you are, away from you. Then and only then, are you ready to give an answer to everyone, about who God is.

CONNECTING THE DOTS…

This blog will be about connecting the dots in scripture and showing you where all the connection points are, line upon line. I’ve been very straight forward, very matter of fact, because your time, your life, your role in God’s plan is not just valuable, it’s a matter of urgency.

If you’re ready to challenge what you’ve already been taught, ready to build upon good soil, ready to be good soil, this blog may be a good match for you.

Let’s study the Plan of God…

Note: In every place where I spoke of “You, Us or Your”, I am referring to the collective “Us”, as the Body of Christ. This blog is not being written as an apologetics tool. It is written for those who believe already. If you do not, you may find this blog helpful in clarifying points of scripture. However, it is not written to challenge anyone but the Christian Believer and My Current Students, who are seeking Greater Knowledge and Understanding in the Word of God.

This Blog is dedicated to my son in honor of the memory of a precious soul he knew, whose life was cut short by baseless hatred and senseless violence.

…I am so sorry for your loss. I know that place you find yourself in and how hard it is to celebrate a homegoing. So I will call it instead, his Change of Address. You lost his presence here on earth, the presence of someone you truly cared about, one of your peers. Someone whose life, ideas, thoughts, and messages penetrated your soul, like the Word of God itself. Be comforted. His blood cries out from the ground and his voice can still be heard in the earth. People of his caliber are rare jewels and their legacy must be continued. I pray that the passion and compassion you feel in your heart today, never perishes from this earth. I pray that the international community never forgets and that thousands of young men place a demand on Heaven and pick up his mantle. I pray that the love they feel in this moment fell on the good soil in their hearts. Let the ache in their hearts become a perpetual fire of purpose. His message and his deeds will not be snatched away, the beast of the field shall not trample over them. His seed shall remain and multiply, and his Legacy Continues.

To God be the Glory, Amen.

[When I find typo’s that I did not see before I published and/or I re-read and know that I could have stated something better for clarity, I will make corrections and place brackets around the changes, like so.  I want your final product to be as pristine as possible.  Also, you have noticed that I do not include the scripture reference when I am quoting or paraphrasing something from the New Testament.  I do that intentionally.  We know this material and I believe it is already a part of our regular dialogue.  We may have the impulse to look them up and that’s good.  I want to provoke us to do that.  It’s good for the soul 🙂  Your a good student!  God Bless You].

© 2019, Rev. S. Madison, torahisteaching.blog