Prophet Pearls #29 – Acharei Mot (Ezekiel 22:1-19)

Prophet Pearls Acharei Mot, Ezekiel 22:1-19, Acharei Mot, Ezekiel, Yehovah, Nehemia Gordon, Keith Johnson, Prophet, Tetragrammaton, yhvh, kalas, prophecy, Tanakh, Nachal, exile, prayer, God, torahThis episode of Prophet Pearls, is on the Prophets portion of Acharei-Mot covering Ezekiel 22:1-19. Nehemia Gordon and Keith Johnson discuss the root of the God's Holy Name, and how the Hebrew word for inheritance provides the finale to the crucible theme of exile, redemption and resettlement.This relatively short portion yields many pearls and not one, but three, words-of-the-week. The first appears in the very first verse as three letters forming the root of the Tetragrammaton (hei-yud-hei) reveal how the Word of Yehovah came to Ezekiel—“and it was.”

For the second word of the week (kalas / kuf-lamed-samach), Gordon provides examples where the woeful prophecy of a defiled name has been fulfilled across continents and centuries. A list of the abominations noted in this portion is provided along with references for comparative lists in the Tanakh.

The game-changing pearl and third word-of-the-week appears in verse 16. Nachal (nun-chet-lamed), “take thine inheritance” provides the finale to the crucible theme of exile, redemption and resettlement. Johnson closes with a prayer of thankfulness to God for choosing the perfect language to reveal his will, for access to tools for understanding, and for giving the desire and focus to interact with the holy tongue.

"You shall take your inherited portion of land in the sight of the nations and you will know that I am Yehovah." Ezekiel 22:16

I look forward to reading your comments!

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Prophet Pearls #29 - Acharei Mot (Ezekiel 22:1-19)

You are listening to Prophet Pearls with Nehemia Gordon and Keith Johnson. Thank you for supporting Nehemia Gordon's Makor Hebrew Foundation. Learn more at

Nehemia: Shalom and welcome to Prophet Pearls face-to-face in the city of the prophets, recorded live from the safe house in Jerusalem with Keith Johnson and Nehemia Gordon. That’s me. That’s it. That’s my intro.

Keith: Okay. All right.

Nehemia: Previously on Prophet Pearls, “I will find you!” No. Come on. Let’s just do it.

Keith: When are you taking the hat off is what I want to know?

Nehemia: No, I love the hat. You’re making fun of my hat. Can I tell the people? [laughing]

Keith: [laughing] No, you can’t. No, folks, we’re going to get started. We’re in Ezekiel. Nehemia, every time we go to do Ezekiel, I always have to be reminded of the opening of the phrase. Now before we get to Ezekiel...

Nehemia: Opening of what phrase?

Keith: Ezekiel chapter 22 verse 1.

Nehemia: Oh, “Benadam,” man? Is that what you’re…

Keith: No, so let me ask a question. What’s the connection here with Torah Pearls?

Nehemia: With the Torah portion.

Keith: Yes, with the portion here?

Nehemia: What do you have?

Keith: I’m asking you the question. You’re supposed to, you know, you just go da-da-da-da-da and then you tell us what you think.

Nehemia: I have a hypothesis. It’s interesting, the last one we did was about lepers, and the section in the Torah was about leprosy. Here the connection isn’t so obvious.

Keith: Okay.

Nehemia: So I have a theory, but it’s not so clear.

Keith: It’s not clear.

Nehemia: Look, this was tradition, the connection, and sometimes it was by something having to do with association, and my feeling is the association here is really at the end, we have this image of the crucible that God’s going to purify us through fire. This Torah portion opens up, it’s the portion of Acharei Mot, Leviticus 16:1 through 18:30, and it talks about… and it says this happened after Nadav and Avihu were killed by the fire. So there’s fire that came down from heaven when they offered a strange fire. Instead of the sacrifice being burned up, the offering being burnt up, they were burned up because they were following the ritual contrary to the commandment. That’s one possibility of the connection.

Keith: So give me this. One of the things that just kind of hit me was, anytime I see this phrase and it says, “Vayehi davar Yehovah,” “and the word was,” or “it came, the word of Yehovah.” It’s funny because in English - and probably in Hebrew it’s also the case - you can kind of move past that; let’s get to what it was. But just the thought that the word came, that God gave His word, He sent His word, His word came. I want to know how you would translate “vayehi.”

Nehemia: “Vayehi” literally means, “and it was.”

Keith: And it was.

Nehemia: The literal translation of Ezekiel 22:1 is, “And the word of Yehovah was to me saying.” In English you translate it as “the word came,” or “came to pass.” Hebrew says it as “was,” and in English and in your European languages it’s “to come.”

Keith: So why do I get excited about that little phrase? What is it about that phrase? Why do you get excited about that little phrase? Do you get excited about that phrase?

Nehemia: I do, because he’s sitting there and the word is to him. That’s cool.

Keith: Yes, and the reason it gets exciting to me is because - and this is one little technical aspect - when he says “Vayehi”, what’s the phrase itself? So it’s taking the verb “I am,” and it’s saying, okay...

Nehemia: Well, the verb “to be.”

Keith: To be. Yes. I’m saying. But then again that reminds me of Him, He was, He is, He shall be.

Nehemia: Right. So the verb is “hayah,” Hei-Yud-Hei. Can that be the Word of the Week?

Keith: That would be great! Do that.

Nehemia: Hei-Yud-Hei is the Word of the Week, and that is “to be.” It’s interesting, one of the things I learned studying languages is that the word “to be” tends to be the most irregular word in many languages. For example, think about in English, “I walked,” “I will walk,” “I am walking.” It’s always “walk.” It doesn’t really change, you know, you add things, whatever. The word “to be,” is I am, he is, they are. What’s going on here? Imagine if you’re not a native English speaker - they were, he was, they will be.

Keith: She was, yes.

Nehemia: It’s so many different forms in English for the word “to be.” So Hebrew isn’t that bad. In Hebrew, “hayah,” Hei-Yud-Hei, in what we call the inverted future, it becomes “vayehi,” “and he was.” Now, I’m not going to go into all the complicated tenses of Hebrew or modes of inverted...

Keith: Can you believe we’re having that conversation of you talking about, “Why isn’t there a dalet and a yud and such and such…?”

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: Remember that conversation where you going to the doctor? And I’m like Nehemia… And actually we’ve had this phrase before, we actually had this exact phrase.

Nehemia: Vayehi?

Keith: Yes, Vayehi.

Nehemia: Well, it’s very common. In fact, many sections begin with “Vayehi.” In fact, today, we’re pre-recording this, we’re about to come onto Purim, and the Scroll of Esther opens up “Vayehi biyemei Achashverosh.”

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: “Vayehi,” “and it was in the days of Achashverosh.” Here’s where it gets complicated. When they would translate this into Greek - I talk about this my book The Hebrew Yeshua Vs. the Greek Jesus - they had a problem because in Greek if you translate literally, “and it was,” it makes no sense, you say “and what was?” But that’s actually how it’s translated in the Septuagint. For example, I’m looking at Ezekiel 22:1 in the Septuagint, it says, “Kay agenito logos kuru prose man Legon.” “Kay agenitos,” “and it was.” A Greek reader reading this would say, “and what was?” That’s why in English you’ll tend to translate it, “And it came to pass.” It’s more of a loose translation, less literal, but it makes more sense in your target language.

So we have in Hebrew “and it was,” “vayehi.” But then he was is “hayah.” He is, “hoveh.” “Ihiyeh,” he will be. Then God says to Moses, “eheyeh,” “I will be.” They translated that as “I am,” which isn’t entirely wrong, but it more literally is “I will be.” And then God says, “This is my name, Yehovah,” which is “He was, He is, He will be, He is to come.” So He says of Himself, “I will be,” and then He gives His name, His actual name, which means He was, He is, He is to come, He will be.

Keith: Yes. You know something, I’ve been hinting around about this, I’m still not ready to fully talk about it. But I just think there are ways that people need to be able to get some of these tools so they can understand it, because when you’re saying that, oftentimes I’ll make fun of you - you’ll say, “Well, it’s obvious, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah...” And I’ll say, “What do you mean it’s obvious!? It’s not obvious to people...” [laughing]

Nehemia: I learned this in the second grade.

Keith: Yes, but I mean for people who don’t interact with the text.

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: But I think the closer and closer – well, I should say this – the further and further we go along, I think there are more and more people that are willing to go through a little bit of the process to understand some of the things. So for example, what you just mentioned with that verb, the “hayah,” verb, a lot of people have no clue, and even though you explained it they don’t know what it is. But I do think there are ways for people to learn that. So we’re in the process now, even as we speak discussing how to help people understand that a little bit better, how they can understand some of those concepts a little bit better so that they can interact with the original language of Scripture. But when I see this phrase...

Nehemia: So stop beating around the bush and give us your Ministry Minute.

Keith: Well, I can’t give the Ministry Minute because I’m in the process. I’m sick, I’ve got to tell you, my back’s against the wall. But soon, hopefully, in the next couple of days, [laughing] I’m going to be able to talk about this. I can’t even get to it. It’s really been hard. But I want to say something about the phrase...

Nehemia: He’s speaking in riddles.

Keith: No. But about this phrase, the reason it’s exciting to me about the phrase is that when I see the phrase now, I think about His name. In other words, “And it came to pass,” okay, well no, I mean, He came, His revelation is coming, the Word of Yehovah coming to Ezekiel. We find this I don’t know how many times, but I think in Ezekiel you see it a lot.

Nehemia: Let’s check it out. The Word of Yehovah?

Keith: Yes. “And the Word of Yehovah came onto me.” “And the Word of Yehovah came onto me.”

Nehemia: Interesting.

Keith: We see it a lot.

Nehemia: I’ll have to check it out.

Keith: Actually, one of my key verses is Ezekiel chapter 1 verse 3.

Nehemia: Really? You’ve got like 50 key verses! I keep hearing more key verses.

Keith: No, this is a key verse.

Nehemia: So 251 times in the Tanakh we have the phrase, “Word of Yehovah,” “Dvar Yehovah.”

Keith: Yes. Wow. Well, how many times in the book of Ezekiel? Come on. You can do it.

Nehemia: In the book of Ezekiel?

Keith: Help us. Tell us the times the “Word of Yehovah,” in the book of Ezekiel.

Nehemia: I’ve got to check in Ezekiel.

Keith: While he’s doing that, imagine this - you're Ezekiel...

Nehemia: 58 in Ezekiel.

Keith: 58.

Nehemia: Which is 20% of them, about one-fifth of them in Ezekiel.

Keith: I thought there would be a lot. Okay. So let’s get into this, Nehemia.

Nehemia: Yes. “And the Word of Yehovah came to me, saying…”

Keith: Yes. “Son of man.” Now, are we going to be able to get past that or…?

Nehemia: We’ve talked about that.

Keith: We have talked about it, “Son of man, will you judge her? Will you judge this city?” And you know, it’s funny because it says, “Will you judge her?” And then, “Will you judge this city of bloodshed, then confront her with all of her,” and it uses the word here in English, “detestable practices?”

Nehemia: In Hebrew, it’s “abominations”.

Keith: It’s the abomination?

Nehemia: Same word as abominations.

Keith: I tell you, the first time I ever looked at that word, it scared the heck out of me.

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: No. I mean I actually... [laughing]

Nehemia: Why?

Keith: Well, because I mean, the things that are an abomination, I guess I was a little surprised. I was a little surprised.

Nehemia: Really? Okay.

Keith: Yes, I was. I mean do you know...

Nehemia: So what are some of the abominations? Can we talk about it?

Keith: I don’t know if… Sure we can. Tell me one that would surprise you.

Nehemia: For example, Deuteronomy 14 talks about abominations. Is it Deuteronomy 14? Yes, I believe it is. So for example, right there at the beginning, verse 3 says… hold on, it says, “You shall not eat any abomination.”

Keith: Exactly. Yes.

Nehemia: Yes. That’s the exact same word, abomination, “toyevah” and then the list of abominations, the pig, and et cetera, and the worms and all that stuff.

Keith: Or holding the rat?

Nehemia: Holding the rat, yes. Eating the rat.

Keith: [laughing] Eating the rat.

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: So anyway. This is what these are, these are abominations…

Nehemia: What is an abomination? It literally means something God hates.

Keith: Literally something He hates. Yes.

Nehemia: “Leta’ev,” is to hate, to despise something. An abomination is that which is despised by Yehovah. What is this city of blood? Is this talking about Babylon the Whore?

Keith: That’s the question. We’re going to find out what the city of blood is.

Nehemia: Well, you read ahead. What is it?

Keith: “The city of blood. Then confront her with all her detestable practice.” It’s going to tell us about the city. Hold on one second. It says, “And say, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: O city that brings on herself doom by shedding blood in her midst and defiles herself by making idols.’” One more verse and then I want to ask a background question. “You have become guilty because of the blood you have shed and have become defiled by the idols you have made. You have brought your days to a close, and the end of your years has come. Therefore I will make you an object of scorn to the nations and a laughingstock to all the countries.”

One last verse. “Those who are near and those who are far away will mock you, O infamous,” it says here, “O infamous city, full of turmoil.” The reason I’m slowing down a little bit is because whenever I’m thinking of prophets, you think about what they call different prophets. Like Jeremiah or Isaiah, they call him the eagle-eye prophet. This is the background.

Nehemia: Who calls him eagle-eye prophet?

Keith: In my heritage, he’s called the eagle-eye prophet.

Nehemia: I never heard that. All right.

Keith: But let me ask a question. When you think of Ezekiel, what do you think of? Like, when you think of him, what do you think of? What would be a description for Ezekiel?

Nehemia: So I think the first association for most Jews is what we call ma’aseh Merkavah, and we did that section - it’s the vision of the chariot, the vision of the divine chariot. You know, the seraphim - or not the seraphim. What was that with the wheels? The wheel inside a wheel, and all that stuff. That’s the first thing most people think.

When I think of Ezekiel, the first thing I think of is something that was really tragic in his life, which is that his family was killed and he wasn’t able to mourn until he heard the announcement that Jerusalem was destroyed, and at that point God finally, after all that time, let him mourn. The mourning, the sadness, the crying was over both Jerusalem and his family. It was a way for him to say, “I can’t fully understand what it means for Jerusalem to be destroyed unless I realize, wow, this is like my wife and my children dying.” So to me, he’s this tragic figure.

Keith: Yes. You know, it’s funny when I think of him, oftentimes people stop on Ezekiel because he says this is going to describe the Third Temple and all of that. That’s certainly one part of it. The part of it that I think about is a little more of the reality of life, the tragedy, and like you said, a tragic figure, the tragedy of life. Here’s this guy who’s prophesying and he has to do all these certain things and he’s got to demonstrate it this way. I mean, it’s just… man. He’s got a tough go. He really has a tough go.

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: Anyway. So again...

Nehemia: So what’s the city of blood?

Keith: The city of blood.

Nehemia: What do you have, Keith?

Keith: Well, I guess the city of blood will have to be representing somewhere in Israel.

Nehemia: I mean, it’s Jerusalem.

Keith: It’s got to be Jerusalem.

Nehemia: It’s got to be Jerusalem, the city of blood.

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: In my intro, I mentioned the city of the prophets, and that’s true too, but it was also the city of blood, that spilled blood. There’s this image in Jeremiah, he talks about how, and in other places, about how Jerusalem was filled with blood.

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: That was really in the time of King Menashe; that was the low point of the history of Israel, where there’s blood flowing through the streets. That’s how many innocent people were murdered. Here in Ezekiel, he’s talking about the city of blood, and you’re guilty because of your abominations in the city of blood. So the abominations aren’t just what we might call ritual abominations, also their actions are abominable, murder and spilling blood.

Keith: That’s why when it gets to this thing when he speaks of the making of idols and doing these things, he says, “Therefore I will make you an object of scorn to the nations and a laughingstock,” my goodness, I don’t know what that means.

Nehemia: Whoa, is that what you have?

Keith: Yes, it says, “laughingstock to all the countries.” What do you have there?

Nehemia: Yes, okay. Let’s read the next verse.

Keith: “Those who are near and those who are far away will mock you, O infamous city, full of turmoil.”

Nehemia: Wow. So I want to see if there are other translations of verse 5, because I have something totally different in verse 5.

Keith: Okay.

Nehemia: So let’s see what we have here. I’m going to pull up my little computer program.

Keith: Doo doo doo.

Nehemia: Ezekiel 22 verse 5, the JPS has, “Both the near and the far shall scorn you, O besmirched of name, O laden with iniquity!” King James, “Those that be near and those that be far from thee shall mock thee,” so that’s pretty much the same thing. What were you reading, from the NASB?

Keith: Yes, the NASB – no, NIV.

Nehemia: Oh, NIV. So I don’t need the NIV again. So the NASB, which I should have here on my computer, says, “Those who are near and those who are far from you will mock you,” That’s the same as the NIV there. NRSV has the same thing, “will mock you.”

Let me tell you what it says in Hebrew, and I’m really surprised that you have all these different… basically the same translation by all these different translations when it’s so clear in Hebrew what it says. It says, “Hakrovot veharechokot mimech itkalsu bach,” “those who are near and those who are far from you,” “itkalsu bach.” Let me read you the literal translation. “Those are near and those who are far from you, they shall insult through you, unclean of name, she who has much panic.” So what does that mean? And I understand, they didn’t get it so they didn’t translate it literally. They said, “Okay, it means they’re going to insult you.” But actually, it says they’re going to insult through… Actually, they’re going to insult each other through you, is what it means.

It’s amazing how prophetic that statement is because in many languages and cultures calling someone a Jew is among the worst insults imaginable. For example, in Russian, where many of my people came from, Jews are never called Yid, which is Yid is just “Yehudi,” from Judah, Yehudah. But they’re never called Yid because Yid is a curse; they’re called “Ivrei,” which means Hebrews. If you call someone a Yid that’s this horrible curse. In America… can I say this? A cheap person is often called a Jew, and their actions are referred to as “Jewing.” In fact, I’ve met people who have said, “Oh, I’ve gotten to the Torah. I’m so deep in the Torah, and it’s become so much a part of me that I don’t say “To jew someone” anymore.” [laughing] I’m like, “Wait, you used to say that?”

Keith: You used to say that? [laughing]

Nehemia: My friend Bruce Brill tells this story of how he grew up on the East Coast.

Keith: What up, Bruce?

Nehemia: Hey, Bruce. He grew up in the East Coast, and he once had the person he was talking to and she said, “You’re such a Jew, and I don’t mean it in the bad way.”

[laughing] So literally, what Ezekiel said is they’re going to insult through you. To call someone a Jew is in many cultures and around the world, and they’re not politically correct, it’s an insult. In Arabic we’re given this image that Jews in Christian countries suffered horribly, but we had this golden age in Arab countries and Muslim countries; everything was hunky dory. That’s a complete lie. In Arabic, the curse wayahud is the worst curse you can say to someone, and what it means in Arabic is “I swear, may you become a Jew.” You’re actually calling upon your deity, your god, in Arabic, to cause someone to become a Jew. You’re making an oath in the name of your god wayahud, may they become a Jew.

And a very interesting little tidbit here, Daniel 3:12, the enemies of Israel, they say, “There are certain Jews whom thou hast set over the affairs of the province of Babylon.” They’re speaking to the king. One of the medieval Jewish commentators, who lived in a Muslim country, he makes this remark, “When the enemies of Israel refer to them as Jews, in that period of history, it just meant that they were from the kingdom of Judah, and it wasn’t meant as a curse.” To his readers hearing, “The enemies of Israel say, ‘Oh, there are certain Jews.’” To them, that’s a curse. And so imagine that. The commentator has to explain, because in the medieval Islamic world - and even today in the Islamic world - calling someone a Jew is the worst curse. I’m talking about you have a fight with your neighbor and you call him a Jew. Not that he’s actually a Jew. So he had to explain, “No, they were called that because they were from Judah.”

It’s hard to for me to fathom, because I grew up with a Jew being like something I was proud of, something that, to me… I was proud of being a Jew. My father, of blessed memory, he told me something really interesting. He said… and I didn’t experience this, I don’t know if this is true, but this is what he told me, and I’ve heard this from other people since, that before the Six Day War being called a Jew was - can I say this?

Keith: I’m not sure. We can always edit it out

Nehemia: Okay. It was like being called the N-word.

Keith: Oh.

Nehemia: If you were Jewish and you could blend in and pass, you didn’t let people know you were Jewish. You kind of kept it to yourself and you pretended that you were not a Jew when you were among non-Jews. I never experienced that. For me, being a Jew is something I was always proud of. There was this shift, I guess, and maybe, I think, in some cultures, it’s shifting back. I know in Europe right now people are embarrassed and terrified, actually, of admitting that they’re Jewish. I can imagine the children growing up now in Europe will grow up and say, “Wow, I don’t want anybody to know I’m a Jew. That’s such a hateful thing.” This is what I think the prophet is saying. He’s saying, “You’ve done such horrible things and this is the curse, ‘Those who are far and those who are near from you they will curse each other through you.’”

Keith: That makes such a major difference versus they will mock you. I mean this is in the NIV.

Nehemia: Right and it doesn’t say “mock”, it says they will curse through you. That’s how I read it in the Hebrew.

Keith: That word is a pearl, Nehemia. I know it’s early in the process, but I think you might need to explain...

Nehemia: Well, then he has this phrase “teme’at Hashem,” “she who has an unclean name.” That’s an amazing thing, because we’ve talked a lot about the name of Yehovah, and here, through her actions, Israel’s name has become, Jew has become a dirty word. So that’s something I think we need to overcome.

Keith: But here’s what I like about maybe giving that word, if you’d be willing.

Nehemia: You want that to be the word? Didn’t we already have a Word of the Week?

Keith: No, no. We just started. What are you talking about?

Nehemia: Oh, sorry.

Keith: We’ve only been on the show for five minutes. [laughing]

Nehemia: No, we recorded… This is the third episode we’re recording.

Keith: [laughing] What are you talking about?

Nehemia: This is the third episode we’re recording today, so I got confused.

Keith: Okay.

Nehemia: All right. You want that to be the word of the week?

Keith: I’m just saying it’s such a significant… maybe what I’m trying to do is for people to know that word in Ezekiel 22 verse 5.

Nehemia: Sure, okay.

Keith: To know that word gives them access to be able to go there and look for it.

Nehemia: So this is a little complicated, which is why I was hesitant.

Keith: It’s more than complicated.

Nehemia: All right. So the word is “yitkalsu.” As we said, in Biblical Hebrew, every word has a three-letter root - except the ones that don’t. Every word has a three-letter root, and the root here is Kuf-Lamed-Samech.

Keith: But boy, oh, boy, there’s one, two, three, four, five, six different letters.

Nehemia: Six words.

Keith: Six letters.

Nehemia: So we have three things going on here. We’ve got a prefix. We’ve got a suffix and we’ve got something in the middle, which is something to do… All right. So the prefix is Yud and the Yud here means “he.” But then when you add the suffix “u,” it’s “yitkalsu,” then the “he” turns into “they.” So it’s a prefix and a suffix that together means “they will.” Then you have the Tav there. The Tav stuck in there is part of the, we said there are seven conjugations in Biblical Hebrew, and the seventh conjugations is called “hitpa’el,” and that is often a passive or a reflexive verb. In this case, arguably, it is reflexive that is “they will,” or...

Keith: This is the key. Go ahead.

Nehemia: Yes. They will curse each other, or they will curse themselves through you.

Keith: Let me stop for a second. I want people to know the significance of this. So here’s where I would say that knowing some of that information really gives you a better understanding of how it’s being translated. Without knowing that information, if you just had the word, but not seeing how the word is constructed, what the grammatical structure is for the word, it would be really hard for you. If you just had a three-letter root, you know, sometimes people go to a concordance and say, “Oh, the word is this and this is the concordance.”

Nehemia: “It’s Strongs number 5 0 2 1.”

Keith: Here's what I want to be sensitive to people about - if that’s all you know, that’s what you have to go with. But if you can understand some of these other things… Now I’ve got to tell you, Nehemia, sometimes you are a difficult one. You’re like, [imitating Nehemia] “They say, ‘Sometimes Paul is hard to understand.’” [both laughing] Sometimes Nehemia’s hard to understand. No, it isn’t because you try to be complicated, it’s that the information is that important, to know the seven conjugations, to know that there’s the suffix and the prefix. But I will say something, and maybe I’m going to be overly optimistic about this - I do think there is a way for people to know, in a little bit more simplistic fashion, what it is and how it applies, and that’s why I’m pushing you on this verse. I think you just gave us a pearl.

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: I think that’s a pearl that you could run with, but you could not get that pearl unless you were interacting with the linguistic information there. Again, what I want to do is try to give people a chance to have at least access to some of it. Now look, how long did you go to Hebrew University? I mean before you ever got to Hebrew University, you learned to read Hebrew as a child.

Nehemia: Right.

Keith: Then you went to Hebrew school and then from there...

Nehemia: I actually didn’t go to Hebrew school. I went to Jewish day school.

Keith: Jewish day school.

Nehemia: Which means I was at the Jewish school learning Hebrew stuff pretty much all day. I mean we also learned like math and science, but we spent all morning, we would start at something like seven-something in the morning and go into one o’clock learning Hebrew and Jewish subjects.

Keith: Isn’t that amazing? That’s amazing. So one of the things that people tend to think is, “Well, I’ll never be able to interact with the information. One of the things, and I want to use this word carefully, but I get excited about, is always trying to find a way for people to get a bite-size ability to interact with it. So that’s what I’m working on right now. This is just an example. And I love to push you on this because you do know what the information is, and then once we find out what the application of the information is, we’re like, “Wow.” Like, you were doing this study, you said, “Now, I’m going to have to tell you about the seven conjugations.” People might think, “Oh, no!” But why are those...

Nehemia: The seven conjugations and the four prefixes.

Keith: And then four prefixes.

Nehemia: This is one of the four prefixes “Yud,” which means “he.” But then when he gets a suffix it means “they.” Really simple stuff.

Keith: Absolutely. So anyway…

Nehemia: Really simple Word of the Week.

Keith: That’s the Word of the Week.

Nehemia: So easy.

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: Yitkalsu.

Keith: Yitkalsu.

Nehemia: Kuf-Lamed-Samech.

Keith: Say that folks, “yit-kal-su.” You can say something that really is complicated but really important.

Nehemia: “They will curse themselves or their will they will curse each other.”

Keith: That is powerful. That really is powerful.

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: We’ve got through 5. Can we go to 6?

Nehemia: Let’s do 6. Let’s do it.

Keith: Okay. “See how each of the princes of Israel who are in you uses his power to shed blood. In you they have treated father and mother with contempt; in you,” He’s speaking again about the city, right? He’s saying that in the city, in you...

Nehemia: How do we know it’s in the city? In the Hebrew, the “you” is feminine.

Keith: Feminine, right.

Nehemia: Cities in Hebrew are always feminine.

Keith: It’s so funny, but it happens to be an irregular. So you think “ir” is going to be masculine because it doesn’t have the feminine ending, but it’s one of the irregulars that’s feminine. [laughing] Now, that’s kind of cute. Anyway…

Nehemia: For those who don’t know, every noun in Hebrew is either masculine or feminine. You can usually tell which one it is based on the ending.

Keith: Based on the ending, yes.

Nehemia: If it has the “A” ending, kamatz Hey, it’s feminine, except words like “cherev,” sword, and “ir,” city, which are feminine even though they don’t have that ending.

Keith: Yes and every once in a while, those - how do you say it? “This is what it is, except in this situation.”

Nehemia: “This is the rule always except where it’s not.” [both laughing]

Keith: “In you,” speaking about that city, and, again, “mistreated the fatherless and the widow. You have despised My holy things and desecrated My Sabbaths.” Man, oh, man. “You have despised My holy things and desecrated my Sabbaths.”

Nehemia: What are the holy things?

Keith: What are the holy things?

Nehemia: So I think the common understanding or the default understanding would be when it talks about, I think it’s in Leviticus 21 or 22, which is the section where it has the holy things. They are sacrifices and offerings and basically things that can only be eaten in a state of ritual purity, and that may be what he’s referring to.

Keith: Okay. “In you are slanderous men bent on shedding blood; in you are those who eat at the mountain shrines and commit lewd acts.” These are things that are taking place. There are mountain shrines, there are people, and we talked about that earlier.

Nehemia: Well, when I hear about the mountain shrines - what it literally says isn’t mountain shrines. It says literally, “and to the mountains, they did eat in you,” or, “through you.” So the first thing that comes to mind for me is Ezekiel 18 and Ezekiel 33. We won’t go through the whole thing. In fact, this is homework for people. Go read Ezekiel 18. It’s a fascinating passage.

It deals with the question of will a person be punished for their own sins or for the sins of their fathers? The basic message there is that if you continue your father’s sin, you’ll be punished; if you depart from your father’s sin, you will not be punished, his sin won’t be remembered. You’re only responsible for your own actions if you repent. You could do evil and you turn to good, your own sins won’t be remembered, and vice versa - if you live your whole life doing righteousness and turn to sin then your righteousness is no longer remembered to you. The people hear this and they say, “The way of the LORD is not fair. It’s not equal. It’s not measured. It’s not weighed.” And God says, “No, My way is measured, yours isn’t it.” But there it mentions eating to the mountains as one of the - or eating at the mountain shrines, as yours translates, as one of the issues that’s mentioned there. It’s a few chapters before.

Keith: I think one of the things that is interesting about the list is that it’s not exhaustive.

Nehemia: It’s not everything. Right.

Keith: No, it’s not everything, but the things that are selected, sometimes, at least for me, anyway, as I’m reading, and I’m like, “Okay, well that’s just like this.” It’s like we’re talking about injustice, how the widow was treated, how usury is - I mean it’s like two different things but they have the same...

Nehemia: But it’s also, this list is the big things. If we see something in this list repeatedly then that’s really important. One of the passages...

Keith: Would you be willing to give us the list… Rather than us saying this is what it says, could you give us the list? It’s in two verses here.

Nehemia: Well, it’s more than two.

Keith: No, no. It’s 9… Oh, well, no, we start at 8.

Nehemia: It goes through verse 12.

Keith: It goes through 12. Yes.

Nehemia: Right. So let’s see what we have here. Let’s try to make a list.

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: So we’ve got… and really, we could start in verse 7 even about dishonoring the father and the mother…

Keith: …the alien…

Nehemia: … persecuting the stranger, the foreigner. We’ve got deceiving, or treating badly, the widow and the orphan. Is that two or is that one? And despising the holy things, desecrating the Shabbat.

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: We’ve got “anshei rachil,” yours translates that as slander, but actually that word in Hebrew I think is better translated as “a gossiper”. For example, in Leviticus we have, “lo tilech rachil be’amecha,” don’t go about as a gossiper among your people, it’s the same word there, in order to spill blood. What does blood have to do with gossip? Well, life and death is in the power of the tongue, and if you gossip about somebody and shame them, it’s as if you’ve killed them.

And we’ve got this, I guess you might call it a ritual commandment, not to worship or eat at the mountain shrines, which is really interesting because what does that mean? When they were eating at those mountain shrines, they probably said, “I’m so holy. I’m bringing my offering to the Lord.” Except it was an illicit, an illegal...

Keith: Do you think they thought they were bringing to the Lord? Or they knew it was a mountain shrine…

Nehemia: They knew it was a mountain shrine, but it was to Yehovah. It just was not according to what He commanded. It actually is reminiscent of the Torah portion where they brought the strange incense; it wasn’t to Baal, it was to Yehovah, but it was contrary to what he commanded.

Verse 10, we’ve got what we might call… am I allowed to say this?

Keith: Just say it.

Nehemia: It’s incest or sexual immorality, in verse 10. There is something very interesting, which is in the western world they don’t think of as sexual morality, but it’s having relations with a menstruating woman. There’s a set of commandments in Leviticus that talk about during that time you can’t have relations with the woman. Actually, for seven days from when her menstruation begins. That’s called a niddah. Here, this is one of the biggies. It’s up there with having sex with your father’s wife. I mean imagine that, with your stepmom. I mean that’s how big a deal it is, and we’re talking about your own wife. So verse 11 is adultery. Let’s see, and then more incest, some more incest, taking bribes in verse 12 - imagine that; taking a bribe is up there with incest.

Keith: And blood.

Nehemia: Again, to shed blood, right? Then here in verse 12, we’ve got taking money on interest, or you could call it usury, and that’s probably a whole discussion. Where does interest end and usury begin? It’s not clear that the Torah has that distinction. But basically, somebody comes to you, they’re in need, and instead of just giving them the money as a loan - which they’ll probably never pay back, that’s the thought in Scripture - then you’re saying, “No, you’ve got to pay it back and you got to pay it back with interest.” Let’s see. So it’s unjust gain, it talks about here, and it says, “And Me you forgot, says Lord Yehovah.” At the end of verse 12.

Keith: And that is “And you have forgotten Me,” wow.

Nehemia: “And you have forgotten me.” I want to look at Psalm 15. I always think of Psalm 15 when I see this list, and the reason I think of Psalm 15 is we’ve got another list there. This would be the homework for people. Go look for yourselves what are the things that appear in both lists.

Keith: Is it going to be real homework, or are you going to do it for them?

Nehemia: No, I’m going to read Psalm 15.

Keith: Okay.

Nehemia: A Psalm of David, “Yehovah, who may sojourn in Your tent, who may dwell on Your holy mountain?” The image here is there are Levites standing at the entrance to the Temple, and they’re saying, “Who’s really allowed to come into this temple?” Then there’s a list of things that they have to do. “He who lives without blame, who does what is right, and in his heart acknowledges the truth; whose tongue is not given to evil,” meaning, he’s not slandering, not gossiping, “who has never done harm to his fellow, or borne reproach for his acts toward his neighbor; for whom a contemptible man is abhorrent, but who honors those who fear Yehovah; who stands by his oath even to his hurt,” keep your word even if it’s not good for you, “who has never lent money at interest,” isn’t it amazing that appears in both lists, “or accepted a bribe against the innocent. The man who acts thus shall never be shaken.”

It’s saying, basically, these are the people who can come in. If this isn’t you, think about whether you should even be coming here. Maybe you need to repent before you come to the Temple and perform the ritual. The ritual is not going to help you if you’re a sinner. So yes, I love that, Psalm 15. The homework will be to go look in two or three different translations and compare this and compare the other passage, compare it with Ezekiel 18.

Keith: We are truly progressing by giving people homework, and we’re going to continue to do this between now and the end of Prophet Pearls, because we do want people to interact with this information and to be able to figure out what it says.

Nehemia: Amen. Yes.

Keith: So now, I do think… and I don’t know what image you get when I read this, and maybe you can tell me where else this shows up. He says, “I will surely strike my hands together.” Do we have another example where we see that? I’m pretty sure we do. I don’t know if it’s in that exact phrase, but what does that… Okay, so that’s what it says. I mean, to be able to smite my palms or my hands… I mean, what message did that send?

Nehemia: What do you have?

Keith: I don’t know. I mean, “I will surely strike my hands together at the unjust…” In other words, it’s just like a physical manifestation of how frustrated or…

Nehemia: So what’s the actual image here? Is He clapping his hands?

Keith: Striking His hands together, making a sound, making a physical action. It’s like doing something, the demonstration of the frustration. I don’t know.

Nehemia: It’s not so clear to me. “I will strike My hands over ill-gotten gain.” Yes, I don’t know.

Keith: Okay. Nowhere else?

Nehemia: Oh, I see. Hold on a second. Let me see what we have here. I can do my little search here. If you want to move on?

Keith: We’ve got it… I’ve got to get this search.

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: “I will surely strike my hands together,” as you’re looking… at what? “At the unjust gain you have made and at the blood, you have shed in your midst.” So whatever this physical…

Nehemia: For example, in Ezekiel 6:11, “Thus says Lord Yehovah, ‘Strike your hands together,’” the same phrase in Hebrew, “and stamp your feet and cry: Aha! over all the vile abominations of the House of Israel.”

Keith: You see, it’s a manifestation. Yes.

Nehemia: So it’s like stamping your foot and clapping your hands: “Oh!”

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: But I think in the context, the one in Ezekiel 21:19 says, “Further, son of man, prophesy, striking hand against hand.” So that’s clapping. So Ezekiel 21:22, “I, too, will strike hand against hand and will satisfy My fury upon you.”

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: Yes, it still is kind of an unusual phrase, I’ll grant you that.

Keith: It is.

Nehemia: Ezekiel seems to really like that phrase. He’s got it a bunch of times.

Keith: It’s like there’s a demonstration. A demonstration, a physical… well, not really a physical demonstration, but I mean, it’s like the clapping of thunder.

Nehemia: Well, here in 2 Kings 11:12, “Jehoiada then brought out the king’s son and placed upon him the crown and the insignia. They anointed him and proclaimed him king; they clapped their hands and shouted, ‘Long live the king!’” Here it’s the same phrase in Hebrew, and here it’s a good thing. Meaning, so it can be done in frustration, but it can also be done in joy.

Keith: In joy.

Nehemia: It’s interesting that most of the times this phrase appears in the Tanakh it’s in Ezekiel. He really likes this phrase.

Keith: Yes. He likes the phrase.

Nehemia: In fact, as far as I can find, the only time it appears out of Ezekiel is that passage I just read things in Kings. Interesting. And in Ezekiel it seems to be a negative thing, whereas in Kings it’s a positive thing.

Keith: So he says, “I’ll strike his hands together,” we read that. Then here comes a little bit of the shift, “Will your courage endure or your hands be strong in the day I deal with you? I Yehovah have spoken, and I, in fact, will do it. I will disperse you among the nations and scatter you through the countries; and I will put an end to your uncleanness.”

One more verse, “When you have been defiled in the eyes of the nations, you will then know that I am Yehovah.” Man, oh, man, we’ve seen that. Have we not seen that, where He’s dispersed them? I mean we have physical examples, historical examples of that. I have to say something about Ezekiel. When I’m reading it, sometimes I have to tell you that these are probably the passages where I mostly want to find what you talk about, saying the good news at the end. [both laughing] Ending on a high note. Tell me. Tell me please, Nehemia, we’re going to end on a high note.

Nehemia: Yes. Now read me verse 16 again.

Keith: I’ll read 16. It says, “When you have been defiled.”

Nehemia: What?

Keith: Here’s what it says in the note...

Nehemia: 22:16?

Keith: Yes. Here’s what it says in the note, “Or when I have allotted you your inheritance.”

Nehemia: Wow. That’s the opposite meaning. Meaning, is this a bad thing that’s going to happen to them in verse 16, or a good thing? Let’s just read some translations. NRSV says, “And I shall be profaned through you in the sight of the nations.”

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: The JPS says, “You shall be dishonored in the sight of the nations.” But then we have, for example, let’s see the NIV – well, you just read the NIV. “When you have been defiled in the eyes of the nations,” that’s a bad thing. King James has, “And you shall take your inheritance in yourself in the sight of the heathen.” That’s the opposite.

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: What’s going on here? So the Hebrew here is a verb that means to inherit. It very well could be to take inheritance. That would have been my default translation, and here’s how I read the passage, and I’m just doing something real quick on the computer. Here, so for example, the same word appears in Numbers 34:29. “These are they whom Yehovah commanded to divide the inheritance unto the children of Israel in the land of Canaan.” The word is “lenachel”, and I have to tell you, this is really controversial, because in Modern Hebrew there’s this concept of the settlers, and when the news around the world speaks about settlers, it’s almost like they say the word “evil settlers”. “Settlers are Jews who steal Palestinian land and live on the West Bank, stolen land.”

The way Jews see is actually we’re fulfilling this verse, Numbers 34:29, we’re dividing up the land that was given to us by God, and we’re going back and retaking what was ours from God going back 3,500 years.

Keith: “The evil settlers.”

Nehemia: This is the word, “nachal,” it’s to divide up the inherited portion. When I read it, it’s clear to me in verse 16 of Ezekiel 22 - and I could be wrong, many translations disagree with me - but it’s the word “ve’nichalt,” “and you will divide up the inheritance through you,” or, “in you, in the eyes of the nations and you will know that I am Yehovah.” What’s happening here? In verse 15 He’s scattering them among the nations. That’s the exile, the diaspora. It says, literally, here, “And I will cause your uncleanness to end from you.” That’s at the end of verse 15, and now that the uncleanness has ended, you’re going to come back and divide up the land that was taken away from you. So, these people who are called “evil settlers” are literally a fulfillment of this verse here in Ezekiel 22:16, and I can understand why that why your translations didn’t want that. You might say, “Wait a minute, the JPS also has it as a negative thing.” That’s because there are a lot of liberal Jews who also refer to settlers as “evil settlers.”

Keith: Oh my goodness. You’re kidding me? Did you just say that?

Nehemia: That’s right. There are many Jews in Israel who believe the reason we don’t have peace with the Palestinians is because... My sister has a place to live… literally, my sister, Ariela, lives out in the so-called West Bank, which I can tell you is a 10-minute, a 15-minute drive from here, and this is Jerusalem the capital of Israel.

Keith: It’s a beautiful place.

Nehemia: It’s a beautiful place. It’s amazing, you stand… her so-called West Bank settlement, you stand on the hill and you look as far as the eye can see, 360 degrees, you won’t see an Arab anywhere, not a single Arab town, not a single Arab anything. That’s land they stole from the Palestinians? There was no one living there before then.

Whatever. These people live in a fantasy world, and these are the same sorts of people who say that ISIS is cutting off the heads of Americans because we’re not giving them jobs. It’s the same kind of mentality. Both of those are a fulfillment, I think, of the previous verse, about the world cursing themselves through the Jews.

Keith: This is a pearl.

Nehemia: Now, we’ve got the exile, the redemption, and we finally have in verse 16 the end of… we have the redistribution of the land.

Keith: So basically, what you’re saying here is that 16 ends up being the good note.

Nehemia: Oh, absolutely.

Keith: In other words, when I’m reading it’s not a good note. But again, to say that - you said that the JPS, it’s possible that there be liberal Jews, you’re saying that in the translation process there’s even an agenda sometimes in the JPS?

Nehemia: Absolutely. No question about it. Every translation is someone’s interpretation. This is clearly the case there. Yes. No question about it.

Keith: Okay. Well, 22:16 is one people need to look at. That’s a game changer, that verse. It really is. It really is, it’s a game changer. It’s giving a completely different...

Nehemia: Perspective?

Keith: Perspective to what’s happening. Like, He literally brings the good news at the end of the phrase.

Nehemia: That’s the end of the prophecy. Meaning, verse 17 is a new prophecy.

Keith: Absolutely.

Nehemia: It starts out, “And the word of Yehovah came to me saying."

Keith: Yes.

Nehemia: I mean, let’s think about this for a minute. If this is this punishment, He ends, “And you will know that I am Yehovah.” So how is it that they know that He is Yehovah? Because they were cast out into the exile? I guess. But here’s how I’m reading this prophecy: “Just as you will be known as a curse among the nations, you will become known as blessed among the nations.” That’s what verse 16 is. It’s an undoing. We’ve got the curse and now we’ve got this blessing. This is so that you and the nations will know that Yehovah is real. That’s what it’s about.

So when I see my sister’s house in the West Bank and it’s surrounded by desert for miles around. It’s such a desert that no Arab ever wanted to even live there, and I see this thriving beautiful community, and I look at that, I don’t see evil settlers. I see a fulfillment of prophecy and I know that Yehovah is the Creator of the universe.

Keith: You know it’s interesting when I hear this sound, “ve’nachal,” I think of the “nachal.” You know what I’m thinking?

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: I think of the “nachal,” I think of what’s actually there, like the water and the streams and the division. It’s like, wow. This verse, honestly, Nehemia, like if I were taking… we did something called Scripture Bytes at BFA International where I took the Ten Commandments, went through the Ten Commandments, the Ten Matters, and each verse gave people an ability to interact with the information. But this is the kind of verse that would be so awesome to do in that sort of program, because it's something that you just wouldn't see in reading average English.

Nehemia: Just so you understand, and maybe this should’ve been the Word the Week, because the way I’m reading it...

Keith: I think maybe we need two Words of the Week.

Nehemia: Okay. So the way I’m reading it and the way the King James read it is that the root is Nun-Chet-Lamed, and it’s a pi’el form, and it means, “you will divide up the land,” just like I read the verse in Numbers. But the way that the other translations that are saying it as a negative thing is, they’re reading it as “chalal,” and it’s a nifal verb then, from “to desecrate.”

Keith: You know what’s not funny about that? It’s that again here we have to go further because I could go and look here at my program and it would come up and say exactly that’s what is, Chet-Lamed-Lamed.

Nehemia: Yes, “to desecrate.”

Keith: It’s a nifal perfect. And to have this other… I mean it really is a pearl.

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: I know you probably think I’m beating this thing.

Nehemia: No.

Keith: This is a pearl. This is a game-changing pearl.

Nehemia: Absolutely.

Keith: Because what you’re saying is today, those people that are “settling” are seen as a negative… It’s definitely negative. You know, you guys are the reason that we’re having…

Nehemia: The evil settlers!

Keith: The evil settlers. Wow.

Nehemia: It’s the reason that there’s no peace, right?

Keith: Yes. Wow.

Nehemia: This is why they’re blowing up buildings, because they don’t have jobs and they’re poor. Well, wait a minute, recently - we’re pre-recording this - we found out about this guy named Jihadi John. It turns out he comes from a really good family in England…

Keith: You mean the guy, the ISIS guy.

Nehemia: The ISIS guy. He had opportunity. He wasn’t poor and jobless. He’s just an evil human being who ascribes to an evil theology, an evil doctrine.

Keith: Well, that’s the end of that prophecy, and then it moves on. We’ve got three more verses. Shall we continue or no?

Nehemia: Let’s do it!

Keith: Okay. So here we go. Verse 17, I’m sorry...

Nehemia: This is a little bit of a problem, because verses 17 through 22 is the next prophecy. But our section ends after verse 19. [laughing] So in the middle of the prophecy.

Keith: I want to say real quick, “Then the word of Yehovah came unto me,” again, here’s this example, “Son of man, the house of Israel have become dross to me,” and this is really, wow, “all of them are the copper, tin, iron,” do they combine all those words? “copper, tin, iron and lead left inside a furnace.” Wow. Is that what dross is? What’s left behind? We talked about this before.

Nehemia: Yes. So we’ve got to talk a little bit about how they would refine in ancient times, and I think it’s probably pretty much the same today.

Keith: Yes. “They are but the dross of silver.”

Nehemia: Yes. So what they would do is they would take this ore, not iron ore, they would take ore and they would heat it up and the impurities that came out, that was called dross, and what was left behind would be silver. Actually, in those impurities, you can extract… so-called impurities. If you’re trying to get silver you can extract other metals, and particularly, lead, but also some of the other metals will be found in that dross, in that impurity, and there’ll be just stuff that’s just garbage that you throw away. It’s called slag.

What’s interesting to me about this is it mentions five metals; in ancient times they knew about seven metals. One of them is never mentioned in the Tanakh, at least as far as we can tell. Six are mentioned: silver, copper, tin, iron, and lead, and the other one that’s not mentioned in this passage, or in this verse at least, is gold. Then the seventh one, which isn’t mentioned in the Tanakh, is mercury. It’s possible mercury was mentioned, but in ancient times, it was known as quicksilver. So maybe sometimes when it mentions silver it means mercury.

Today we have many metals. We have uranium. We’ve got polonium, and I don’t know, a bunch of other metals, tungsten, and whatever. We’ve got 92 elements in the periodic table and a whole bunch of those are metals. But back in ancient times, they identified six or seven metals, and here it mentions five of them. The image here is of God… again, I think I mentioned this at the beginning, of the crucible. The crucible is this vessel that you heat something up really, really hot, or it’s a furnace, you heat it up really, really hot, and that causes a separation of the metal so you can get the silver out, and what’s left behind is the dross, or the slag.

Keith: Well, that’s what happens. But look at what the last verse is, Nehemia. I think this is the part that kind of makes me… I don’t say “good news, bad news”, what everybody says, “But therefore this is what the Sovereign LORD says: ‘Because you have all become dross…’” … then I’m thinking, because you’ve become dross I’m going to throw you away. And it says, “Because you have all become dross, I will gather you into Jerusalem.” So when you hear that phrase, what does it… “I’ll gather you into Jerusalem?” I mean isn’t that what we want?

Nehemia: Well, I’m going to pick up that dross, and I’m going to extract the remaining silver from it. That’s the image here.

Keith: Wow.

Nehemia: That’s the image of this crucible of the refiner’s fire. It’s an image we have in other places, Malachi for example. But it’s very clear here. It’s a beautiful image. I was in Cambodia last year, and I actually went through the marketplace, and you could see them refining metals with a blowtorch. Just like in the old days, they were refining metal, a lot of it was gold and silver, in a crucible. Except for the fact that they were using propane, other than that nothing’s really changed. In the old days, it was fire and you take a bellows and make it really hot. Other than that, this kind of processing still goes on today. It’s pretty cool.

Keith: Well, I didn’t give you… I don’t know if you have something that you’d like to say about what’s going on right now. I know last time we talked about the ministry that we’re doing. I have to tell you, I get really excited when we trip over or when we come across something that really you just can’t get it unless you’re willing to do a little digging. You know, the jumping, diving into the water, and going through it and finding it. Again, 22:16 for me is really a game changer, and I really appreciate that because again, from a casual looking, even if you’ve got some of the tools, there’s the translation. They’re saying this is the three-letter root; all the sudden there’s another possibility that that’s not the three-letter root? I mean oh my goodness.

Nehemia: I think it’s interesting that the King James got it right.

Keith: The King James got it right.

Nehemia: Which I consider to be a bad translation. But in this case, they actually got it right. You know, we tend to think - I don’t know, I tend to think the King James are a bunch of bumbling idiots, but sometimes they get it right.

Keith: I can’t believe you said what you said about the JPS translators. I mean, that one we’re going to have to really maybe edit that out.

Nehemia: They have an agenda sometimes. It’s what it is.

Keith: Okay.

Nehemia: Yes.

Keith: All right. Well, I think it’s my turn to say a prayer.

Nehemia: Go for it.

Keith: Do you have anything you want to say, anything else you want to bring up before we move on?

Nehemia: No.

Keith: Okay. Awesome. Father, thank you so much for this opportunity. Thank You for the ability to interact with Your word in its language, history, and context, and to have the availability of tools to get behind what the translators sometimes in some cases do have an agenda. Thank You that when You chose the language of Hebrew, it’s the perfect language for You to communicate the purpose of Your will and Your word. Help us to have a desire and a focus and a willingness to interact with this holy tongue so that we can understand just exactly what You were saying, what You are saying now, what You are going to be saying, and what it means for us in our lives. In Your holy name, Amen.

Nehemia: Amen.

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  • Kevin says:

    I wanted to mention that when I was young, now I am dangerously old (in scare-tactic Covid terms), I heard people use jew as a verb, meaning to cheat. I do not believe that the people saying it, said it while thinking of Jews. I believe they were unwitting as to the etymology or history of the practice. I was also, because today I learned the history goes back to Ezekiel. Think of saying “French kissing.” Do you think of the French? Likely not. Of course, there is no negative connotation to contend with in French kissing.
    My wife’s father was a Jew (he’s buried in a Munich Jewish Cemetery). He was a Holocaust victim of the Nazis. When my wife “admitted” to me that she was “part Jewish,” she almost assumed a defensive physical position, fearing that I would react negatively, not physically but by rejection. We were in bed together. I already loved her. I told her it did not matter at all. She is not born to a Jewish mother, so in my mind she is not Jewish. It would not bother me if she were. Her parents divorced and she moved to the US when she was 5. At some point, her gentile Aunt told her to hide the fact that she had Jewish ancestry, so she therefore viewed it as something to be afraid of revealing. She had her DNA taken and the closest genetic relatives she has, even including Gentiles, are Jews descended from people stemming from Latvia, Lithuania, Byelorussia. Her father was from Breslau, his recent ancestors from Zulz (now in Poland, then near Bohemia) and, apparently, more distantly in time, from the above regions. You, Nehemia, remind me of my wife’s father. That certain smile and twinkle in the eye in humorous moments (in videos on the internet).

  • Ronn says:

    Prophet pearls # 29 is powerful in application!
    The list of abominations and the high places align with Bret Hadishaw that o have a tendency to minimize referencing!
    Consider the “hands together” matter as a literal consequence to issues being presented! Blessing or Curse!

  • Ronn says:

    Consider the “hands״ matter as the literal execution of consequences!

  • Nunya Biz says:

    Rood’s 7 thunders of Revelation, YHVH clapping. How many times in Ezekiel? And isn’t it literally “I am, I was, She will be”? (for YHVH)

  • Nunya Biz says:

    The Word of YHVH=Yeshuah…Yeshuah came to the prophets n no, they wudnt recognize Him.

  • Marietta says:

    Always glad to hear these pearls! Prayers to you both.


    These are some translations that portray this verse postively- or explain that the profaning is because YHVH has given the inheritance back!

    Ezekiel 22:16
    (ABP+)  AndG2532 I will allotG2624.1 amongG1722 youG1473 beforeG2596 the eyesG3788 of theG3588 nations,G1484 andG2532 you shall knowG1097 thatG1360 I am G1473 the lord .G2962
    (Brenton)  And I will give heritages in thee in the sight of the nations, and ye shall know that I am the Lord.
    (DRB)  And I will possess thee in the sight of the Gentiles, and thou shalt know that I am the Lord.
    (ERRB)  And thou shalt take thine inheritance in profane thyself in the sight eyes of the heathen goyim , and thou shalt know that I am the LORD I – Yah Veh .
    (Geneva)  And thou shalt take thine inheritance in thy selfe in the sight of the heathen, & thou shalt knowe that I am the Lord.
    (GNB)  And so the other nations will dishonor you, but you will know that I am the LORD.”
    (JPS)  And thou shalt be profaned in thyself, in the sight of the nations; and thou shalt know that I am the LORD.’
    (JUB)  And thou shalt take thine inheritance in thyself in the sight of the Gentiles, and thou shalt know that I am the LORD.
    (KJV)  And thou shalt take thine inheritance in thyself in the sight of the heathen, and thou shalt know that I am the LORD.
    (KJV+)  And thou shalt take thine inheritanceH2490 in thyself in the sightH5869 of the heathen,H1471 and thou shalt knowH3045 thatH3588 IH589 am the LORD.H3068
    (KJV-1611)  And thou shalt take thine inheritance in thy selfe in the sight of the heathen, and thou shalt know that I am the Lord.


    clap my hands – many times I’ve clapped my hands in frustration or anger to get my kids attention

  • Paula Katipana says:

    Eze.22:19: YHVH takes the ‘leftovers’ from the crucible, the remnant, of Israel and gathers them to the land of inheritance; it’s like He strips them from their own sense of value – the silver -, and shows that He can make them valuable again, like taking the desert and making it bloom again!

  • Jonathan Lee says:

    Hi there Nehemiah, I’ve been reading the book Ezekiel upto this month upto chapter 20, I’m confused as to what statutes eze 20:24-25 refers to, I’ve read elsewhere Cannaite law.
    If so do you know any other instances in the tanak similiar to this
    Regards Jonathan Lee

  • 0sarah2 says:

    Since the JPS was first translated in 1917 perhaps the translators could not even hope that Israel would in fact be back in the Land so they chose the “been defiled” rather than “divide the land”. So a lack of faith rather than a perverted agenda. And in fact Israel was defiled before the return.

  • 0sarah2 says:

    What was the abomination that caused the shedding of blood in Jerusalem? Was it not child sacrifice? Is not child sacrifice, aka abortion, still practiced? So it isn’t the settlements which are blocking progress toward peace but the continuation of ancient idolatry in Israel. The places of drumming still exist, the victims are just much younger and their cries not heard by their fathers and mothers. But the Mighty One of Israel has ears to hear. We will have no shalom as long as child sacrifice is practiced.

  • Daniel says:

    Oh but if we only had a pic of the hat…