IsYAHshua building a Jewish,
Matthew 16 (16) And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Messiah, the Son of the Living Elohim. (17) And YAHshua answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but My FATHER which is in Heaven. (18) And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock [foundation (the fact that YAHshua is the Messiah, the Son of the Living Elohim)] I will build My Assembly [G1577-Ekklesia]; and the gates of hell [G86 Hades-the grave] shall not prevail against it.
Let us look at the definitions of the Greek word "Ekklesia" which has been incorrectly translated as "Church" in most English translations of the Bible. As we study these definitions, please keep in mind that the sign ":--" simply means that the words following it are other words that the translators used (whether correctly or incorrectly) to translate the referred to word. Therefore, to correctly translate the actual meaning we must use only the definitions given before the ":--" sign.
By following the very simple rule above, we find that the actual meaning of the Greek word "Ekklesia" is an "assembly," a "congregation," or a "calling out."
NASC G1577. ekklaysia, from G1537 and G2564; an assembly, a (religious) congregation:-- assembly(3), church(74), churches(35), congregation(m)(2).
Strongs 1577. ekklesia, ek-klay-see'-ah; from a comp. of G1537 and a der. of G2564; a calling out, i.e. (concr.) a popular meeting, espec. a religious congregation (Jewish synagogue, or Chr. community of members on earth or saints in heaven or both):-- assembly, church.
The word "Ekklesia" is a very good translation of the Hebrew word "qahal" into the Greek language. So let us look at the Hebrew word "qahal," the word which our Saviour surely used. (He surely did not speak in the Greek language to His Hebrew brethren.)
NASC H6951. qahal, [874c]; from an unused word; assembly, convocation, congregation:-- army*(1), assembly(95), companies(1), company(15), congregation(8), crowd(1), horde(2)
By using the same simple rule of using only the definitions which are given before the ":--" sign, we find that the actual meaning of the Hebrew word "qahal," is an assembly, a convocation, or a congregation.
From the meanings of both the Greek word "Ekklesia" and the Hebrew word "qahal," we can correctly say that YAHshua is building His Assembly, His Congregation, His Convocation, or His Called Out Ones, but not His "church." (Most of the time I will refer to it as "Assembly.")
In the New Covenant Scriptures, we find that this Assembly was referred to as the following:
It was referred to as the "Assemblies of Messiah" one time (Romans 16:16).
It was referred to as the "Assembly of the Firstborn" or "Firstborn Ones" one time (Heb. 12:23).
It was referred to as the "Assembly of the Living Elohim" one time (I Tim. 3:15).
It was referred to as the "Elect of YAHWEH" two times" (Colossians 3:12) & (Titus 1:1).
It was referred to as the "House of YAHWEH" three times (I Timothy 3:15; Hebrews 10:21; I Peter 4:17).
It was referred to as the "Assembly/Assemblies of YAHWEH" a total of eight times. (Acts 20:28) (I Cor. 1:2) (I Cor. 10:32), (I Cor. 11:22) (I Cor. 15:9) (II Cor. 1:1) (Gal. 1:13) (I Tim. 3:5).
It seems so obvious that YAHWEH and YAHshua have the same Assembly of people. Was this a Jewish Assembly, a Gentile Assembly, or and an Israelite Assembly?
In Romans 10:19-21, the apostle Paul wrote the following concerning Israel and the Gentiles.
Romans 10 (19) But I say, Did not Israel know? First Moses saith, I will provoke you to jealousy by them that are no people [of YAHWEH], and by a foolish nation [Gentiles] I will anger you [Israel]. (20) But Isaiah 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. (21) But to Israel HE saith, All day long I have stretched forth MY hands unto a disobedient and gainsaying people.
Paul continues his line of thought with Romans 11:1.
Romans 11 (I) I say then, Hath YAHWEH [permanently] cast away HIS people [Israel]? YAHWEH forbid! For I also am an Israelite, of the seed of Abraham, of the tribe of Benjamin. (2) YAHWEH hath not cast away HIS people [Israel] which HE foreknew. Wot ye not what the scripture saith of Elijah? How he maketh intercession to YAHWEH against Israel, saying, (3) YAHWEH, they have killed THY prophets, and digged down THINE altars; and I am left alone, and they seek my life. (4) But what saith the answer of YAHWEH unto him? I have reserved to MYSELF seven thousand men, who have not bowed the knee to the image of Baal. (5) Even so then at this present time also there is a Remnant [of Israel] according to the Election of grace. (6) And if by grace, then is it no more of works: otherwise grace is no more grace. But if it be of works, then is it no more grace: otherwise work is no more work. (7) What then? Israel hath not obtained that which he seeketh for; but the Election [selected or chosen of Israel] hath obtained it, and the rest [of Israel] were blinded (8) (According as it is written, YAHWEH hath given them [Israel] the spirit of slumber, eyes that they should not see, and ears that they should not hear;) unto this day. (9) And David saith, Let their table be made a snare, and a trap, and a stumblingblock, and a recompense unto them: (10) Let their eyes be darkened that they may not see, and bow down their back alway. (11) I say then, Have they [Israel] stumbled that they should fall? YAHWEH forbid: but rather through their [temporary] fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them [of Israel] to jealousy.
As you can see in the above scripture, YAHWEH kept only the Elect of Israel and the rest of them were temporally cast off and blinded until they are provoked to jealously by the Gentiles. The apostle Paul continues to explain the situation by using the analogy of the Olive Tree.
Romans 11 (12) Now if the fall of them [Israel] be the riches of the world, and the diminishing of them the riches of the Gentiles; how much more their fulness? (13) For I speak to you Gentiles, inasmuch as I am the apostle of the Gentiles, I magnify mine office: (14) If by any means I may provoke to emulation them which are my flesh, and might save some of them [Israelites]. (15) For if the casting away of them be the reconciling of the world, what shall the receiving of them be, but life from the dead? (16) For if the firstfruit [Israel-Jer. 2:3] be holy, the lump is also holy: and if the root be holy, so are the branches [Israelites]. (17) And if some [Not all!] of the branches [Israelites] be broken off, and thou [Gentiles], being a wild olive tree, wert grafted in among them [the Israelites], and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the Olive Tree; (18) Boast not against the Branches [Israelites]. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee. (19) Thou wilt say then, The Branches [Israelites] were broken off, that I might be grafted in. (20) Well; because of unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear: (21) For if YAHWEH spared not the Natural Branches [Israelites], take heed lest HE also spare not thee. (22) Behold therefore the goodness and severity of YAHWEH: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in HIS goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off. (23) And they also, IF they abide not still in unbelief, shall be grafted [back] in: for YAHWEH is able to graft them [back] in again. (24) For if thou [Gentiles] wert cut out of the olive tree which is wild by nature, and wert grafted contrary to nature into a good [tame] Olive Tree [Israel]: how much more shall these, which be the Natural Branches [Israelites], be grafted into their own Olive Tree?
As we continue in the next verse, you can see that the casting away or blindness was only temporary and when their blindness is lifted they will be grafted back into Israel, the Natural Olive Tree
Romans 11 (25) For I would not, brethren, that ye should be ignorant of this mystery, lest ye should be wise in your own conceits; that blindness in part is happened to Israel [the cast off portion], until the fulness of the Gentiles be come in. (26) And so all Israel shall be saved: as it is written, There shall come out of Sion [Zion] the Deliverer, and shall turn away wickedness from Jacob [Israel]: (27) For this is MY Covenant unto them, when I shall take away their sins.
From the above scriptures, it is very clear that the Gentiles are grafted into Israel and does not replace it! This next scripture is a excellent second witness of that fact. (As you read this scripture, please keep in mind that YAHshua, the Apostles, the Prophets, and all the New Testament writers were all Israelites.)
Ephesians 2 (11) Wherefore remember, that ye being in time past Gentiles in the flesh, who are called Uncircumcision by that which is called the Circumcision in the flesh made by hands; (12) That at that time ye were without Messiah, being Aliens from the Commonwealth of Israel, and strangers from the Covenants of Promise, having no hope, and without YAHWEH in the world: (13) But now in Messiah YAHshua ye who sometimes were far off are made nigh by the blood of Messiah. … (19) Now therefore ye are no more strangers and foreigners, but Fellowcitizens with the Saints, and of the Household of YAHWEH; (20) And are built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, YAHshua Messiah Himself being the Chief Corner Stone; (21) In Whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto a holy temple in the Sovereign: (22) In Whom ye also are builded together for a habitation of YAHWEH through the Spirit.
Since the Gentiles are grafted into the Natural Olive Tree which is the Commonwealth of Israel, they are no longer strangers from the Covenants of Promise. Here is one of the promises of the Covenant which they are entitled to receive with Israel.
Exodus 19 (3) And Moses went up unto [YAHWEH] Elohim, and YAHWEH called unto him out of the mountain, saying, Thus shalt thou say to the House of Jacob [Israel], and tell the Children of Israel; (4) Ye have seen what I did unto the Egyptians, and how I bare you on eagles' wings, and brought you unto MYSELF. (5) Now therefore, if ye will obey MY voice indeed, and keep MY Covenant, then ye shall be a Peculiar [unique] Treasure unto ME above all people: for all the earth is MINE: (6) And ye shall be unto ME a Kingdom of Priests, and an Holy Nation. These are the words which thou shalt speak unto the Children of Israel.
In the scriptures below, is a witness of the fulfillment of that promise.
I Peter 2 (4) To Whom coming, as unto a Living Stone, disallowed indeed of men, but chosen of YAHWEH, and precious, (5) Ye [who were once Gentiles] also, as lively stones, are built up a spiritual house, a Holy Priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable to YAHWEH by YAHshua Messiah. (6) Wherefore also it is contained in the scripture, Behold, I lay in Sion [Zion] a Chief Corner Stone, Elect, precious: and he that believeth on Him shall not be confounded. (7) Unto you therefore which believe He is precious: but unto them which be disobedient, the Stone which the builders disallowed, the same is made the Head of the Corner, (8) And a stone of stumbling, and a rock of offence , even to them which stumble at the word, being disobedient: whereunto also they were appointed. (9) But ye are a Chosen Generation, a Royal Priesthood, a Holy Nation, a Peculiar [unique] People; that ye should show forth the praises of HIM WHO hath called you [when you were Gentiles] out of darkness into HIS marvellous light : (10) Which in time past were not a people [of YAHWEH], but are now the People of YAHWEH: which had not obtained mercy, but now have obtained mercy.
Revelation 1 (4) John to the seven Assemblies which are in Asia: Grace be unto you, and peace, from Him which is, and which was, and which is to come; and from the seven Spirits which are before HIS throne; (5) And from YAHshua Messiah, Who is the faithful witness, and the first begotten of the dead, and the Prince of the kings of the earth. Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His Own blood, (6) And hath made us Kings and Priests unto YAHWEH, His FATHER; and to Him be glory and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.
To understand how Israel was called an Olive Tree in the Old Testament Scriptures, we need to have some historical background. Let us start with a scripture that concerning the breakup of Israel into two kingdoms.
I Kings 12 [945/944 BCE] (15) Wherefore the king [Rehoboam] hearkened not unto the people; for the cause was from YAHWEH, that he might perform his saying, which YAHWEH spake by Ahijah the Shilonite unto Jeroboam [to give him 10 tribes] the son of Nebat. (16) So when all Israel [the Ten Northern Tribes] saw that the king hearkened not unto them, the people answered the king [Rehoboam], saying, What portion have we in David? Neither have we inheritance in the son of Jesse: to your tents, O Israel: now see to thine own house, David. So Israel [the Ten Northern Tribes] departed unto their [own] tents [within the land belonging to the Ten Northern Tribes]. (17) But as for the Children of Israel which dwelt in the cities of Judah, Rehoboam reigned over them.
These are the same ones that are mentioned again in this next scripture.
II Chronicles 11 [945/944 BCE] (I) And when Rehoboam was come to Jerusalem, he gathered of the House of Judah and Benjamin an hundred and fourscore thousand chosen men, which were warriors, to fight against Israel [the Northern Ten Tribes], that he might bring the kingdom again to Rehoboam. (2) But The Word of YAHWEH came to Shemaiah the man of [YAHWEH] Elohim, saying, (3) Speak unto Rehoboam the son of Solomon, king of Judah, and to all Israel in Judah [People from the Ten Tribes who lived in Judah and followed Rehoboam] and Benjamin, saying, (4) Thus saith YAHWEH, Ye shall not go up, nor fight against your Brethren [those of the Northern Ten Tribes who followed Jeroboam]: return every man to his house: for this thing is done of ME. And they obeyed the words of YAHWEH, and returned from going against Jeroboam.
At that time there were even more Israelites who came to Judah from the Northern Ten Tribes.
II Chronicles [945/944 BCE]11 (13) And the Priests and the Levites that were in all Israel resorted to him out of all their coasts. (14) For the Levites left their suburbs and their possession, and came to Judah and Jerusalem: (for Jeroboam and his sons had cast them off from executing the priest's office unto YAHWEH: (15) And he [Jeroboam] ordained him priests for the high places, and for the devils, and for the calves which he had made.) (16) And after them [the Priests and the Levites] out of all the tribes of Israel such as set their hearts to seek YAHWEH Elohim of Israel came to Jerusalem, to sacrifice unto YAHWEH Elohim of their fathers. (17) So they [the Priests and the Levites and those out of all the tribes of Israel] strengthened the Kingdom of Judah, and made Rehoboam the son of Solomon strong, three years: for three years they walked in the way of David and Solomon.
About 32 years later while Asa was the king of Judah, we find more came out of Israel to Judah.
II Chronicles [912 BCE] 15 (8) And when Asa heard these words, and the prophecy of Oded the prophet, he took courage, and put away the abominable idols out of all the land of Judah and Benjamin, and out of the cities which he had taken from mount Ephraim, and renewed the altar of YAHWEH, that was before the porch of YAHWEH. (9) And he gathered all Judah and Benjamin, and the strangers [sojourners] with them out of Ephraim and Manasseh, and out of Simeon: for they fell to him out of Israel in abundance, when they saw that YAHWEH his Elohim was with him. (10) So they gathered themselves together at Jerusalem in the third month, in the fifteenth year of the reign of Asa.
Forty-two years later, Jehoshaphat the king of Judah made use of "chief of the fathers of Israel."
II Chronicles 19 [870 BCE] (8) Moreover in Jerusalem did Jehoshaphat set of the Levites, and of the priests, and of the chief of the fathers of Israel, for the judgment of YAHWEH, and for controversies, when they returned to Jerusalem. (9) And he charged them, saying, Thus shall ye do in the fear of YAHWEH, faithfully, and with a perfect heart.
Around ninety years after the Northern Kingdom of Israel was carried away by the Assyrians in 721 BCE, we still see remnants of Manasseh, Ephraim, Simeon, Naphtali, and of all Israel with Judah and Benjamin in the land of Israel. (It is a big mistake to think that the entire land of Israel was devoid of Israelites after 721 BCE. Apparently, YAHWEH choose to preserve many of them to stay in their own land for the sake of the Patriarchs and for the sake of HIS great Name.)
II Chronicles 34 (I) Josiah was eight years old when he began to reign [640 BCE], and he reigned in Jerusalem one and thirty years. (2) And he did that which was right in the sight of YAHWEH, and walked in the ways of David his father, and declined neither to the right hand, nor to the left. (3) For in the eighth year of his reign [632 BCE], while he was yet young, he began to seek after the Elohim of David his father: and in the twelfth year he began to purge Judah and Jerusalem from the high places, and the groves, and the carved images, and the molten images. (4) And they brake down the altars of Baalim in his presence; and the images, that were on high above them, he cut down; and the groves, and the carved images, and the molten images, he brake in pieces, and made dust of them, and strowed it upon the graves of them that had sacrificed unto them. (5) And he burnt the bones of the priests upon their altars, and cleansed Judah and Jerusalem. (6) And so did he in the cities of Manasseh, and Ephraim, and Simeon, even unto Naphtali, with their mattocks round about. (7) And when he had broken down the altars and the groves, and had beaten the graven images into powder, and cut down all the idols throughout all the land of Israel, he returned to Jerusalem. (8) Now in the eighteenth year of his reign [622 BCE], when he had purged the land, and the house, he sent Shaphan the son of Azaliah, and Maaseiah the governor of the city, and Joah the son of Joahaz the recorder, to repair the house of YAHWEH his Elohim. (9) And when they came to Hilkiah the high priest, they delivered the money that was brought into the house of [YAHWEH] Elohim, which the Levites that kept the doors had gathered of the hand of Manasseh and Ephraim, and of all the remnant of Israel, and of all Judah and Benjamin; and they returned to Jerusalem.
All of the above, are the very same remnants from all the Twelve Tribes of Israel that Jeremiah spoke to in approximately 628 B.C.E. He had just started prophesying in the streets of Jerusalem concerning the coming destruction of Jerusalem and all the cities of Judah by the Babylonians. In those prophesies, YAHWEH was addressing Judah, the Men of Judah, House of Judah, Jerusalem, Inhabitants of Jerusalem, House of Jacob, and House of Israel even though the Northern Ten Tribes had already been taken captive by the Assyrians for around ninety years. (As seen in the above scripture, neither the land of Southern Two Tribes of Israel nor the land of the Northern Ten Tribes of Israel was devoid of Israelites.)
Jeremiah 2 (I) Moreover The Word of YAHWEH came to me, saying, (2) Go and cry in the ears of Jerusalem, saying, Thus saith YAHWEH; I remember thee, the kindness of thy youth, the love of thine espousals, when thou wentest after ME in the wilderness, in a land that was not sown. (3) Israel was holiness unto YAHWEH, and the firstfruits [first, in place, time, order or rank] of HIS increase: all that devour him shall offend; evil shall come upon them, saith YAHWEH. (4) Hear ye The Word of YAHWEH, O House of Jacob, and all the families of the House of Israel: (5) Thus saith YAHWEH, What iniquity have your fathers found in ME, that they are gone far from ME, and have walked after vanity, and are become vain?
Jeremiah 11 (I) The word that came to Jeremiah from YAHWEH, saying, (2) Hear ye the words of this covenant, and speak unto the men of Judah, and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem; (3) And say thou unto them, Thus saith YAHWEH Elohim of Israel; Cursed be the man that obeyeth not the words of this covenant, (4) Which I commanded your fathers in the day that I brought them forth out of the land of Egypt, from the iron furnace, saying, Obey MY voice, and do them, according to all which I command you: so shall ye be MY people, and I will be your Elohim: (5) That I may perform the oath which I have sworn unto your fathers, to give them a land flowing with milk and honey, as it is this day. Then answered I, and said, So be it, O YAHWEH. (6) Then YAHWEH said unto me, Proclaim all these words in the cities of Judah, and in the streets of Jerusalem, saying, Hear ye the words of this covenant, and do them. … (9) And YAHWEH said unto me, A conspiracy is found among the men of Judah, and among the inhabitants of Jerusalem. (10) They are turned back to the iniquities of their forefathers, which refused to hear MY words; and they went after other elohim to serve them: the House of Israel and the House of Judah have broken MY Covenant which I made with their fathers. (11) Therefore thus saith YAHWEH, Behold, I will bring [future tense] evil upon them [House of Israel and the House of Judah], which they shall not be able to escape; and though they shall cry unto me, I will not hearken unto them. (12) Then shall the Cities of Judah and Inhabitants of Jerusalem go, and cry unto the elohim unto whom they offer incense: but they shall not save them at all in the time of their trouble. (13) For according to the number of thy cities were thy elohim, O Judah; and according to the number of the streets of Jerusalem have ye set up altars to that shameful thing, even altars to burn incense unto Baal…. (16) YAHWEH called thy name, A Green OLIVE TREE, fair, and of goodly fruit: with the noise of a great tumult he hath kindled fire upon it, and the branches of it are broken. (17) For YAHWEH of hosts, that planted thee, hath pronounced evil against thee, for the evil of the House of Israel and of the House of Judah, which they have done against themselves to provoke ME to anger in offering incense unto Baal.
At that time, the tribe of Judah was indeed blessed with the lineage of Messiah YAHshua, the Sceptre of YAHWEH'S Chosen (Elect) People Israel, YAHWEH'S chosen city of Jerusalem, and the Remnant of all the Twelve Tribes of Israel that YAHWEH preserved for the sake of the Patriarchs and for the sake of HIS own great Name. So, the Olive Tree is the remnant of the ISRAEL OF YAHWEH!
As Jeremiah prophesied, Judah and the inhabitants of all her cities, including the remnants of all the Twelve Tribes of Israel, were captured and taken to Babylon for seventy years. When those who chose to return returned, there was again the Olive Tree, the Remnant of all Israel, the ISRAEL OF YAHWEH, dwelling again in the land of Israel.
Cyrus, whom YAHWEH set over all kingdoms of the Earth, gave all Israel (not just the "Jews") the opportunity to come back to Jerusalem which is in Judah.
Ezra 1 (I) Now in the first year of Cyrus king of Persia, that The Word of YAHWEH by the mouth of Jeremiah might be fulfilled, YAHWEH stirred up the spirit of Cyrus king of Persia, that he made a proclamation throughout all his kingdom, and put it also in writing, saying, (2) Thus saith Cyrus king of Persia, YAHWEH Elohim of heaven hath given me all the kingdoms of the earth; and HE hath charged me to build him an house at Jerusalem, which is in Judah. (3) Who is there among you of all HIS people? His Elohim be with him, and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and build the house of YAHWEH Elohim of Israel, (HE is the Elohim,) which is in Jerusalem. (4) And whosoever remaineth in any place where he sojourneth, let the men of his place help him with silver, and with gold, and with goods, and with beasts, beside the freewill offering for the house of [YAHWEH] Elohim that is in Jerusalem. (5) Then rose up the chief of the fathers of Judah and Benjamin, and the priests, and the Levites, with all them whose spirit [YAHWEH] Elohim had raised, to go up to build the House of YAHWEH which is in Jerusalem.
It would seem logical that YAHWEH put the will to return back to the Holy Land into the minds of all the repentant Remnants of all the Twelve Tribes of Israel that YAHWEH preserved for the sake of the Patriarchs and for the sake of HIS own great Name. (As seen in all the above scriptures, YAHWEH already had preserved a Remnant of all the Twelve Tribes of Israel with Judah and Benjamin.)
When those who came back were numbered, they were actually numbered as the People of Israel, not "Jews," or the House of Judah. (However, I do admit that later on in Ezra that are referred to as Judah and Benjamin.)
Ezra 2 (I) Now these are the children of the province that went up out of the captivity, of those which had been carried away, whom Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon had carried away unto Babylon, and came again unto Jerusalem and Judah, every one unto his city; (2) Which came with Zerubbabel: Jeshua, Nehemiah, Seraiah, Reelaiah, Mordecai, Bilshan, Mizpar, Bigvai, Rehum, Baanah. The number of the men of the People of Israel [not just "Jews"]: (3)-(58) These all total 29,967.
There were 652 of who could not prove that they were of Israel.
Ezra 2 (59) And these were they which went up from Telmelah, Telharsa, Cherub, Addan, and Immer: but they could not show their father's house, and their seed, whether they were of Israel: (60) The children of Delaiah, the children of Tobiah, the children of Nekoda, six hundred fifty and two.
There were also some of the priest (Levites) who had no record at all who were not numbered.
Ezra 2 (61) And of the children of the priests: the children of Habaiah, the children of Koz, the children of Barzillai; which took a wife of the daughters of Barzillai the Gileadite, and was called after their name: (62) These sought their register among those that were reckoned by genealogy, but they were not found: therefore were they, as polluted, put from the priesthood. (63) And the Tirshatha said unto them, that they should not eat of the most holy things, till there stood up a priest with Urim and with Thummim.
The whole congregation was 42,360.
Ezra 2 (64) The whole congregation together was forty and two thousand three hundred and threescore, (65) Beside their servants and their maids, of whom there were seven thousand three hundred thirty and seven: and there were among them two hundred singing men and singing women. (66) Their horses were seven hundred thirty and six; their mules, two hundred forty and five; (67) Their camels, four hundred thirty and five; their asses, six thousand seven hundred and twenty. (68) And some of the chief of the fathers, when they came to the house of YAHWEH which is at Jerusalem, offered freely for the house of [YAHWEH] Elohim to set it up in his place: (69) They gave after their ability unto the treasure of the work threescore and one thousand drams of gold, and five thousand pound of silver, and one hundred priests' garments. (70) So the priests, and the Levites, and some of the people, and the singers, and the porters, and the Nethinims, dwelt in their cities, and all Israel in their cities.
Did you notice that? It said that all Israel dwelt in their own cities.
YAHWEHhas always had compassion on the poor. Therefore, the poor were probably many of the remnant of all Israel that was left in the land while Judah with Benjamin and a Remnant of all the Twelve Tribes of Israel were in exile in Babylon. (It is very likely that the poor are the humble ones that YAHWEH would choose to preserve for the sake of the Patriarchs and for the sake of HIS great Name.)
II Kings 25 (10) And all the army of the Chaldees, that were with the captain of the guard, brake down the walls of Jerusalem round about. (11) Now the rest of the people that were left in the city, and the fugitives that fell away to the king of Babylon, with the remnant of the multitude, did Nebuzaradan the captain of the guard carry away. (12) But the captain of the guard left of the poor of the land to be vinedressers and husbandmen.
Perhaps many more Israelites who had been exiled in Assyria may have been inspired to return when Cyrus made that famous proclamation that all those of YAHWEH'S people in all the kingdoms of the Earth could come back to the land. The scriptures do not record a big exodus of such. However, those who were to come back were to come back in very small groups as stated in the prophesy of Jeremiah 3:11-14. (Some say this prophesy is to be fulfilled in our future, but it probably started near the end of the seventy-year exile.)
Jeremiah 3 (11) And YAHWEH said unto me, The backsliding Israel hath justified herself more than treacherous Judah. (12) Go and proclaim these words toward the north, and say, Return, thou backsliding Israel, saith YAHWEH; and I will not cause MINE anger to fall upon you: for I am merciful, saith YAHWEH, and I will not keep anger for ever. (13) Only acknowledge thine iniquity, that thou hast transgressed against YAHWEH thy Elohim, and hast scattered thy ways to the strangers under every green tree, and ye have not obeyed MY voice, saith YAHWEH. (14) Turn, O backsliding children, saith YAHWEH; for I am married unto you: and I will take you one of a city, and two of a family, and I will bring you to Zion: (15) And I will give you pastors according to MINE heart, which shall feed you with knowledge and understanding. (16) And it shall come to pass, when ye be multiplied and increased in the land, in those days, saith YAHWEH, they shall say no more, The ark of the covenant of YAHWEH: neither shall it come to mind: neither shall they remember it; neither shall they visit it; neither shall that be done any more. (17) At that time they shall call Jerusalem the throne of YAHWEH; and all the nations shall be gathered unto it, to the name of YAHWEH, to Jerusalem: neither shall they walk any more after the imagination of their evil heart. (18) In those days the House of Judah shall walk with the House of Israel, and they shall come together out of the land of the north to the land that I have given for an inheritance unto your fathers. (19) But I said, How shall I put thee among the children, and give thee a pleasant land, a goodly heritage of the hosts of nations? And I said, Thou shalt call me, My father; and shalt not turn away from me. (20) Surely as a wife treacherously departeth from her husband, so have ye dealt treacherously with ME, O House of Israel, saith YAHWEH.
For those who say that verses fifteen through seventeen did not come to pass, just read Jeremiah 18:7-10 and you will understand why it wasn't fulfilled to the whole nation of Israel, but it was fulfilled to the Elect portion of Israel. Hopefully, it will be fulfilled to the rest of Israel soon.)
Jeremiah 18 (7) At what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to pluck up, and to pull down, and to destroy it; (8) If that nation, against whom I have pronounced, turn from their evil, I will repent of the evil that I thought to do unto them. (9) And at what instant I shall speak concerning a nation, and concerning a kingdom, to build and to plant it; (10) If it do evil in MY sight, that it obey not MY voice, then I will repent of the good, wherewith I said I would benefit them.
If I understand all of the above scriptures correctly, then YAHWEH'S Olive Tree was indeed still dwelling in the Land of Israel during the three and one half years of YAHshua's ministry.
Yahshuawas not sent to the "Jews" only. He was sent to seek out HIS lost sheep of the House of Israel from the remnant of all twelve tribes! (When YAHshua used the word "lost," He was referring to them being lost in their relationship with YAHWEH.)
Matthew 15 (24) But He [YAHshua] answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the House of Israel.
YAHshuasent His Apostles to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.
Matthew 10 (5) These twelve YAHshua sent forth, and commanded them, saying, Go not into the way of the Gentiles, and into any city of the Samaritans enter ye not: (6) But go rather to the lost sheep of the House of Israel. (7) And as ye go, preach, saying, The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand.
YAHshuasent the Seventy to every city and place, whither He Himself would come.
Luke 10 (1) After these things the Sovereign appointed other seventy also, and sent them two and two before His face into every city and place, whither He Himself would come.
Just where did YAHshua go? Did He just go around in the land of Judah to the Jews? The following scriptures will shed some light on the territory that He covered in addition to all the land of Judah.
Mat 4:13 And leaving Nazareth, He [YAHshua] came and dwelt in Capernaum, which is upon the sea coast, in the borders of Zabulon and Nephthalim:
Mat 4 (18) And YAHshua, walking by the Sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. (19) And He saith unto them, Follow Me, and I will make you fishers of men.
Mat 4:23 And YAHshua went about all Galilee, teaching in their synagogues, and preaching the gospel of the kingdom, and healing all manner of sickness and all manner of disease among the people.
Mat 4:24 And His fame went throughout all Syria: and they brought unto Him all sick people that were taken with divers diseases and torments, and those which were possessed with devils, and those which were lunatic, and those that had the palsy; and He healed them.
Mat 4:25 And there followed Him great multitudes of people from Galilee, and from Decapolis, and from Jerusalem, and from Judaea, and from beyond Jordan.
Mat 15:21 Then YAHshua went thence, and departed into the coasts of Tyre and Sidon.
Mat 16:13 When YAHshua came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of Man am?
Mat 20 (29) And as they departed from Jericho, a great multitude followed Him. (30) And, behold, two blind men sitting by the way side, when they heard that YAHshua passed by, cried out, saying, Have mercy on us, O Sovereign, Thou Son of David.
Mark 8:22 And He cometh to Bethsaida; and they bring a blind man unto Him, and besought Him to touch him.
Luke 8:26 And they [YAHshua and His Apostles] arrived at the country of the Gadarenes, which is over against Galilee.
John 4:46 So YAHshua came again into Cana of Galilee, where He made the water wine. And there was a certain nobleman, whose son was sick at Capernaum.
The above verses verify that YAHshua told the truth when He said, "I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the House of Israel." Therefore, He visited the OLIVE TREE, the Remnant of all the Twelve Tribes of Israel that was dwelling throughout the whole land of Israel, including the land of Judah.
On the Day of Pentecost and afterwards, Peter preached to these same lost sheep of the House of Israel.
Acts 2 (36) Therefore let all the House of Israel know assuredly, that YAHWEH hath made that same YAHshua, Whom ye have crucified, both Sovereign and Messiah.
Acts 3 (12) And when Peter saw it, he answered unto the people, Ye men of Israel, why marvel ye at this?
Acts 4 (8) Then Peter, filled with the Holy Spirit, said unto them, Ye rulers of the people, and elders of Israel, (9) If we this day be examined of the good deed done to the impotent man, by what means he is made whole; (10) Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of YAHshua Messiah of Nazareth, Whom ye crucified, Whom YAHWEH raised from the dead, even by Him doth this man stand here before you whole.
Acts 4 (27) For of a truth against THY holy Child YAHshua, Whom THOU hast anointed, both Herod, and Pontius Pilate, with the Gentiles, and the people of Israel, were gathered together, (28) For to do whatsoever THY hand and THY counsel determined before to be done.
Acts 5 (31) Him hath YAHWEH exalted with HIS right hand [Psa 110:1] to be a Prince and a Saviour, for to give repentance to Israel, and forgiveness of sins.
Acts 10 (34) Then Peter opened his mouth, and said, Of a truth I perceive that YAHWEH is no respecter of persons: (35) But in every nation he that feareth HIM, and worketh righteousness, is accepted with HIM. (36) The Word which YAHWEH sent unto the Children of Israel, preaching peace by YAHshua Messiah: (He is Sovereign of all:) (37) That word, I say, ye know, which was published throughout all Judaea, and began from Galilee, after the baptism which John preached.
Does Israel just vanish away when the Kingdom from Heaven is set up on this Earth? The description in the last two chapters of the Bible of the Holy City New Jerusalem which comes down out of Heaven to this Earth shows otherwise.
Revelation 21 (I) And I saw a new Heaven and a new Earth [Isa. 65:17; 66:22]: for the first Heaven and the first Earth were passed away; and there was no more sea. (2) And I John saw the Holy City, New Jerusalem, coming down from YAHWEH out of Heaven, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. (3) And I heard a great voice out of Heaven saying, Behold, the tabernacle of YAHWEH is with men, and HE will dwell with them, and they shall be HIS people, and YAHWEH HIMSELF shall be with them, and be their Elohim [Jer. 31:33; Hebrews 8:10-12 & 10:16-17]. (4) And YAHWEH shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away. (5) And HE that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new. And HE said unto me, Write: for these words are true and faithful. (6) And HE said unto me, It is done. I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end. I will give unto him that is athirst of the fountain of the water of life freely. (7) he that overcometh shall inherit all things; and I will be his Elohim, and he shall be MY son. (8) But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death.
Revelation 21 (9) And there came unto me one of the seven angels which had the seven vials full of the seven last plagues, and talked with me, saying, Come hither, I will show thee the bride, the Lamb's wife. (10) And he carried me away in the spirit to a great and high mountain, and showed me that great city, the Holy Jerusalem, descending out of Heaven from YAHWEH, (11) Having the glory of YAHWEH: and her light was like unto a stone most precious, even like a jasper stone, clear as crystal; (12) And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the Twelve Tribes of the Children of Israel: (13) On the east three gates; on the north three gates; on the south three gates; and on the west three gates. (14) And the wall of the city had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the twelve apostles of the Lamb.
Revelation 21 (15) And he that talked with me had a golden reed to measure the city, and the gates thereof, and the wall thereof. (16) And the city lieth foursquare, and the length is as large as the breadth: and he measured the city with the reed, twelve thousand furlongs. The length and the breadth and the height of it are equal. (17) And he measured the wall thereof, a hundred and forty and four cubits, according to the measure of a man, that is, of the angel. (18) And the building of the wall of it was of jasper: and the city was pure gold, like unto clear glass. (19) And the foundations of the wall of the city were garnished with all manner of precious stones. The first foundation was jasper; the second, sapphire; the third, a chalcedony; the fourth, an emerald; (20) The fifth, sardonyx; the sixth, sardius; the seventh, chrysolyte; the eighth, beryl; the ninth, a topaz; the tenth, a chrysoprasus; the eleventh, a jacinth; the twelfth, an amethyst. (21) And the twelve gates were twelve pearls: every several gate was of one pearl: and the street of the city was pure gold, as it were transparent glass. (22) And I saw no temple therein: for the YAHWEH Elohim Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it. (23) And the City had no need of the sun, neither of the moon, to shine in it: for the glory of YAHWEH did lighten it, and the Lamb is the light thereof. (24) And the nations of them which are saved shall walk in the light of it: and the kings of the earth do bring their glory and honour into it. (25) And the gates of it shall not be shut at all by day: for there shall be no night there. (26) And they shall bring the glory and honour of the nations into it. (27) And there shall in no wise enter into it any thing that defileth, neither whatsoever worketh abomination, or maketh a lie: but they which are written in the Lamb's book of life.
Revelation 22 (I) And he showed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of YAHWEH and of the Lamb. (2) In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the Tree of Life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. (3) And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of YAHWEH and of the Lamb shall be in it; and HIS servants shall serve HIM: (4) And they shall see His face; and His name shall be in their foreheads. (5) And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for YAHWEH Elohim giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever.
Revelation 22 (6) And he said unto me, These sayings are faithful and true: and YAHWEH Elohim of the holy prophets sent HIS angel to show unto HIS servants the things which must shortly be done. (7) Behold, I come quickly: blessed is he that keepeth the sayings of the prophecy of this book. (8) And I John saw these things, and heard them. And when I had heard and seen, I fell down to worship before the feet of the angel which showed me these things. (9) Then saith he unto me, See thou do it not: for I am thy fellowservant, and of thy brethren the prophets, and of them which keep the sayings of this book: worship YAHWEH. (10) And he saith unto me, Seal not the sayings of the prophecy of this book: for the time is at hand. (11) He that is unjust, let him be unjust still: and he which is filthy, let him be filthy still: and he that is righteous, let him be righteous still: and he that is holy, let him be holy still. (12) And, behold, I come quickly; and My reward is with Me, to give every man according as his work shall be. (13) I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last. (14) Blessed are they that do HIS Commandments, that they may have right to the Tree of Life, and may enter in through the gates into the [Holy] City [New Jerusalem]. (15) For without are dogs, and sorcerers, and whoremongers, and murderers, and idolaters, and whosoever loveth and maketh a lie.
Revelation 22 (16) I YAHshua have sent Mine angel to testify unto you these things in the Assemblies. I am the root and the offspring of David, and the bright and morning star.
Revelation 22 (17) And the Spirit and the bride say, Come. And let him that heareth say, Come. And let him that is athirst come. And whosoever will, let him take the water of life freely.
Revelation 22 (18) For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, YAHWEH shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: (19) And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, YAHWEH shall take away his part out of the Book of Life, and out of the Holy City, and from the things which are written in this book.
Revelation 22 (20) He which testifieth these things saith, Surely I come quickly. Amen. Even so, come, Sovereign YAHshua]. (21) The grace of our Sovereign YAHshua Messiah be with you all. Amen.
CONCLUSION: From all the scriptures shown in this article, the following facts have been revealed.
#1 YAHWEH'S and YAHshua's "qahal," or "Ekklesia" is an Assembly, a Congregation, a Convocation, or the Called Out Ones. (It is the most often referred to in the scriptures as the "Assembly.")
#2 That Assembly was built upon the foundation of the Apostles and Prophets, YAHshua Messiah Himself being the Chief Corner Stone.
#3 YAHshua, the Prophets, the Apostles, and all the writers of the Old and New Testaments were Israelites.
#4 YAHshua came only to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.
#5 YAHshua sent His Apostles and the Seventy to the lost sheep of the House of Israel.
#6 As shown in the analogy of the Olive Tree, the Gentiles did not replace Israel, but were grafted into the Elect of Israel while the rest of Israel were temporally cast off and blinded to be provoked to jealously by the Gentiles.
#7 In the last two chapters in the Holy Scriptures, there are important names connected with the New Jerusalem, the Holy City, coming down from Heaven. In their order of importance, they are: YAHWEH, YAHshua, the Twelve Apostles and the Twelve Tribes of Israel!
Let us end this article with the two following blessings
Revelation 22 (14) BLESSED are they that do HIS Commandments, that they may have right to the Tree of Life, and may enter in through the gates into the [Holy] CITY [New Jerusalem].
Galatians 6 (16) And as many as walk
according to this rule, PEACE be
on them, and MERCY, and UPON