Satan’s Greatest Lie to the Church
by Christine Egbert
During the first century (and still today), Satan’s greatest lie to Israel’s Jewish “leadership” was and is that Jesus (Yeshua) is not their promised Messiah. As Acts 21:20 informs us there were “… many myriads among the Jewish people (not their leaders) who believed…” and they were all zealous for the Torah. But according to Paul in Romans 11:25 their blindness is “partial” and will come to an end once the fullness of the Gentiles has come to faith in Israel’s Messiah.
In this article, I want to focus on Satan’s Greatest Lie to believers in the Christian Church which claims that God’s Torah is a curse. Only before I begin, I must make it clear that I am not challenging anyone’s salvation.
Salvation is not by works or having all our “doctrinal ducks” in a row. Salvation is (and always has been) based on God’s grace, accessed through faith. And thirty-six years ago, I placed my “faith” in the precious blood atonement made by the Messiah, whom at that time I knew only as Jesus Christ. That is when my life began to change … and it is still changing.
Scientifically speaking, change is one of the eight characteristics of life. It brings growth and development. Scripture informs us that we are to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. For what purpose? To prove what is the good, pleasing, and perfect will of God.” (Romans 12:2)
Contrary to John Calvin’s doctrine, salvation isn’t a single event. It’s an ongoing process like pregnancy. The natural depicts the spiritual. Just as our physical “life” begins at the moment of conception, our Spiritual Conception begins the moment a believing heart receives God’s Holy Spirit. Conception is the beginning of a process known as gestation, a word the dictionary defines as “the development of something over a period of time.”
The Greek verb rendered “are saved” in 1 Corinthians 15:1-2 (…the gospel which I preached … by which also you are saved) is in the present tense, passive voice. This tense is used when something is in the “process” of being done. Translated literally, it would state “by which you are being saved.”
God’s work is ongoing. All of us who have put our faith in Israel’s Messiah, regardless of whether we call Him Yeshua or Jesus, are in spiritual gestation. We are in the process of being saved and will continue growing spiritually until that glorious day when we are “changed in the twinkling of an eye,” and clothed in our new incorruptible spiritual bodies.
In Philippians 1:6, Paul wrote, “I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will continue to bring it to perfection until the day of Christ Jesus.” That’s why Peter wrote, “We must add to our faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, to knowledge self-control, to self-control patience, to patience godliness, to godliness brotherly love. For if these abound in us, we will be fruitful. We will make our calling, our election, sure of entrance into the eternal kingdom of our Lord and Savior.” (2 Peter 1:5-11)
I have laid all this out before I begin as a caution to those of us who have returned to the Hebraic roots of our faith to not fall prey, as I have in the past, to a spirit of religious pride. We know where that will lead and don’t want to go there. Instead, let us emulate Paul, who in ceasless pain wished himself accursed for the sake of his (partially blinded) kinsmen according to the flesh. (Romans 9:1-4) God alone knows those who have His Spirit in them and what stage of spiritual gestation they are in. As believers in Israel’s Messiah, we are to be known by our love, not by our spiritual pride for all the glorious truths God has revealed to us. Instead of condemning those still trapped by manmade doctrines, we must pray for their eyes to be opened.
Now let us begin… Satan’s greatest lie to the Church.
Brown Driver Briggs Bible Dictionary defines the Hebrew word for Torah as: law, instruction, direction, a body of prophetic teaching. The Torah is our Creator’s instruction manual. When we obey the LORD’s (Yahweh’s) instructions, we are walking in God’s ways and will be blessed.
Deuteronomy 11:26-28 – Behold! I set before you today a blessing and a curse: a blessing if you hear the commandments of the LORD (Yahweh) your God which I command you today; and a curse if you will not hear the commandments of the LORD (Yahweh) your God, but will turn aside out of the way which I command you today…
As Psalms 19:7-10 says: The Law of the LORD (Yahweh) is perfect, converting the soul. The Testimony of the LORD (Yahweh) is sure, making the simple wise. The precepts of the LORD (Yahweh) are right, rejoicing the heart. The commands of the LORD (Yahweh) are pure, giving light to the eyes. The fear of the LORD (Yahweh) is clean, enduring forever. The judgments of the LORD (Yahweh) are true, they are altogether righteous. They are more precious than gold, much fine gold, and sweeter than honey from the honeycomb.
The Torah Will Go Forth From Jerusalem
The LORD (Yahweh) declared through the prophet Isaiah that in the last days the Torah is going to be preached, not only to those living in the Promised Land but to all nations. The LORD (Yahweh) will teach all nations His ways so that they will (finally) walk in His paths. Let’s read it.
Isaiah 2:2-3 – And it shall be in the last days, the mountain of the house of the LORD (Yahweh) shall be established in the top of the mountains and shall be exalted above the hills; and all nations shall flow into it. And many people shall go and say, ‘Come and let us go up to the mount of the LORD (Yahweh), to the house of the God of Jacob.’ And He will teach from His ways, and we will walk in His paths. For out of Zion the Law (Torah) will go forth, and the Word of the LORD (Yahweh) from Jerusalem.
Most Christians who claim that the law has been done away with would never dream of claiming God’s Word has been done away with. They know God’s Word is eternal, but somehow miss the fact that God’s instructions (laws) are also God’s Word. Jesus (Yeshua) is the Word made flesh and the Torah made flesh. Psalms 119:44 “I shall keep Your Law continually, forever and ever.”
Much of the confusion about the Law being nailed to the cross comes from the wording in the KJV, which reads: “Blotting out the handwriting of ordinances that was against us, which was contrary to us, and took it out of the way, nailing it to his cross.”
Here it is again, this time from the NASB: “Having canceled out the certificate of debt consisting of decrees against us, which were hostile to us; and He has taken it out of the way, having nailed it to the cross.” Clearly, all the charges against us for breaking God’s laws got taken out of the way and nailed to Jesus’ (Yeshua’s) cross. Why? Because the wage of sin is death (Romans 6:23), but the gift of God is everlasting life in Christ Jesus (Messiah Yeshua).
How can anyone read that verse and seriously think Paul claimed that God’s instructions, His Torah, which Psalms 19:7 tells us is perfect, was taken away and nailed to the cross? How can preachers say, “Repent for your sins!” if God’s Torah has been done away with? 1 John 3:4 tells us what sin is. Sin is violation of the Torah! If the Torah has been done away with, as many wrongly teach, you cannot violate it and sin. And if there is no sin, there is no need for a Savior.
Psalms 119, the longest chapter in Psalms, is devoted entirely to praising the Law. In verse 18, David, a man after God’s own heart, asks God to open his eyes that he might see the wondrous things from God’s law. Psalms 119:142 says, “Your righteousness is an everlasting righteousness, and Your law is truth.” James 4:12 says, “One is the Lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy.”
Jesus (Yeshua) had much to say about the law.
“Do not think that I came to annul the Law or the Prophets; I did not come to annul, but to fulfill. Truly I say to you, Until the heaven and the earth pass away, in no way shall one iota or one point pass away from the Law until all comes to pass. Therefore, whoever relaxes one of these commandments, the least, and shall teach men so, he shall be called least in the kingdom of Heaven. But whoever does and teaches them, this one shall be called great in the kingdom of Heaven.”
This passage alone, because heaven and earth are still here and all prophecy has not yet been fulfilled, is the proof text that not one iota or point has passed from the Torah.
Jesus (Yeshua) also said, “And then I will declare to them, I never knew you; depart from Me, those working lawlessness!” (Matthew 7:23)
Matthew 13:41 – The Son of Man will send forth His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all that offends, and those who practice lawlessness.
John 14:15 – If you love Me, keep My commandments.
If you keep My commandments you will continue in My love, as I have kept My Father’s commandments and continue in His love. (John 15:10)
And just to be clear, in case someone might try to claim that Jesus’ (Yeshua’s) commandments are not the same ones given to Moses, remember that Jesus (Yeshua) also said in John 7:16 that His doctrine wasn’t His, but the One who sent Him (His Father’s).
Paul & Torah
Paul equated righteousness with light and darkness with lawlessness which he then connected with unbelief.
2 Corinthians 6:14 – Do not be unequally yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership does righteousness have with lawlessness? And what fellowship does light have with darkness?
Scripture says that Jesus (Yeshua) died to redeem us (not from the law) but from lawlessness. Titus 2:14 “who gave Himself on our behalf that He might redeem us from all lawlessness and purify a special people for Himself, zealous of good works.”
Hebrews 1:9 – You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness; because of this God, Your God, has anointed You with the oil of gladness beside Your fellows.”
In Romans 7:12, Paul calls the law and commandments holy, just, and good.
And when Paul was accused in court of teaching against the Law (Acts 25:7-8), he said, “Neither against the law of the Jews, nor against the temple, nor against Caesar have I offended in anything…”
Romans 2:13 – For not the hearers of the Law are just with God, but the doers of the Law shall be justified.
Paul’s statement in Romans 8:4 that, “the righteous demand of the Law (Torah) might be fulfilled in us, those not walking according to flesh, but according to Spirit,” should prove —like Matthew 5:17-19—that God’s Torah is still in effect.
Whoever turns his ear away from hearing (“shema” in Hebrew which means both to hear and to obey) the Torah, even his prayer is an abomination.
Satan is called the lawless one. The antichrist is the Lawless one. “And then the lawless one will be revealed whom the Lord will consume with the breath of His mouth and destroy with the brightness of His coming.” (2 Thessalonians 2:8)
Revelations 14:12 – Here is the patience of the saints; here are the ones keeping the commands of God, and the faith of Jesus (Yeshua).
I will close with this warning from the apostle Peter. “Then beloved, knowing beforehand, watch lest you be led away by the error of the lawless and you fall from your own steadfastness. (2 Peter 3:17)