Reclining to eat was the standard practice in first century Israel and was a symbol of their being free, not slaves as in Egypt. At the Last Supper as at every Seder they reclined and they even reclined at the various meals described in the Gospels. Sometimes there is no mention of the meal because when it was written that they reclined, the meal was understood. The couches they reclined on were angled at the table, so each only took up a small space at the table, not the full length of a couch or cushions. The person who reclined in front of someone was spoken of as reclining or leaning on the bosom, or chest, or, more commonly, the lap of that person, as John was at the Last Seder, Jn. 13:23,25. To be in Abraham’s bosom meant to have the place of honor at a banquet. Lk. 16:23 tells of Lazarus in Abraham’s bosom, referring to being a partaker of the same state of bliss as Abraham in Paradise.

Replacement Theology is the greatest misunderstanding of the New Testament. That is the false doctrine saying that the Church has replaced Israel as God’s chosen people, that the Church is now Israel in the Hebrew prophecies concerning the restoration of Israel. One of the prime New Testament verses used for that theory is Heb. 8:13, which is sometimes translated as saying the Old Testament, Old Covenant, has been made obsolete. If, as most scholars believe, the book of Hebrews was written before 70 AD, obsolete could not have been what the author had in mind. The first time the idea that the New Covenant replaced its predecessors was put forth was in the middle of the second century AD, when that was written by Marcion, who was a heretic. Therefore if the author meant to say obsolete, the book of Hebrews could have been written no earlier than the middle of the second century, or it was tampered with after that time.

Another reason for thinking that the author of Hebrews did not believe the old covenant, or Old Testament, was obsolete, is the use of so many Hebrew Scripture references. The author of Hebrews would have restricted verses to those that made the case for saying that the Hebrew Scriptures were now obsolete. The number of Biblical references and the familiarity with priestly duties indicate the author was Jewish and the reference to Timothy (Heb. 13:23) strengthens the evidence that it was written in the first century.

No New Testament author suggested in any way that the Hebrew Scriptures were obsolete, and neither did Y’shua. Y’shua is quoted in Jn. 10:16 as saying, But I also have sheep which are not from this sheepfold: and it is necessary for Me to lead those and they will hear My voice, and they will become one flock, one shepherd. Y’shua was speaking to the Jewish people referring to the heathens as the other flock. In Matt. 5:18 Y’shua said that not one yod or vav would drop from Torah until the sky and the earth would pass away. See Yod and Vav elsewhere in Glossary.

Paul wrote in Rom. 11:17. But if some of the branches were broken off, and you, since you are a wild olive, were yourself grafted into them, then you would be a participant for yourself of the richness of the root of the olive tree. 18. Stop boasting of the branches: but, if you do boast, you do not support the root, but the root supports you. 19. Therefore you will say, “Branches were broken off so that I could be grafted in.” 20. Just so: they were broken off by unbelief, but you have stood by faith. Do not be proud, but you must continually fear for yourself: 21. for if God did not spare the natural branches, neither in any way will He spare you. 22. You must now see the goodness and severity of God: on the one hand severity upon those who fell, but on the other hand goodness of God upon you, if you would remain in the goodness, otherwise you would be cut off.
23. And even these, if they would not remain in unbelief, they will be grafted in: for God is able to graft them in again. 24. For if you were cut off from the naturally wild olive tree and contrary to nature you were grafted into the cultivated olive tree, how much more will these natural branches be grafted into their own cultivated olive tree.
He goes on to say in verse 26 that ..all Israel will be saved. Jn. 11:52, following Caiaphas’ prophecy, says, and not for the people only but so that also the children of God, those who had been scattered, would gather into one. In Eph. 2:14-16 Paul wrote, For He is our peace, the One Who has made both things into one[1] and Who has loosed the dividing wall of the fence, cause of the enmity to His flesh, 15. by His nullifying the tradition of the commandments by decrees, so that He could create the two (Jewish and non-Jewish) into One New Man, establishing peace 16. so He could reconcile both in one body to God through the cross, as God killed their enmity[2] by means of Y’shua. We are supposed to be one with the Jewish people, but the Jewish people have suffered more persecution from Christians than from all other people combined.

If Christians are grafted in, then we are part of the original covenants God made with Abraham and the successive covenants made through the centuries. See Covenants elsewhere in Glossary.

Rest. There are three Greek words translated rest. One, epanapauomai, means to lean upon, to trust in something and is used only twice in the New Testament, in Lk. 10:6 and Rom. 2:17. The other two are used much more often, and there is a major difference between those two.

Katapausis is the permanent rest of the eternal kingdom, used in
Heb. 3:11,18; 4:1,3,5,10,11. It is also used in Acts 7:49, in reference to the eternal kingdom. Katapauo is the verb form and is used in Heb. 4:4,8,10. It is used one other time, in Acts 14:18 regarding restraining a crowd.

Anapausis is a temporary rest, like a coffee break at work. This is the type of rest we are to have in this life to keep us from getting stressed. This rest is what we find in Matt. 11:29; 12:43, Lk. 11:24, and Rev. 4:8; 14:11. The verb anapauo is used in Matthew 11:28 when Y’shua says, I shall give you rest. For all of us are to take breaks, to be sure we do not overextend ourselves to our physical and, especially, spiritual detriment. If you are too busy to spend time with God you need to change your priorities so you do not break communication with God and become stressed. Anapauo is used another eleven times in the New Testament, Matt. 26:45, Mk. 6:31; 14:41, Lk. 12:19, 1 Cor. 16:18, 2 Cor. 7:13, Philemon 7 & 20, and Rev. 6:11; 14:13. In 1&2 Cor. and Philemon it is translated refresh or refreshed. The use of anapauo in Revelation is interesting because it indicates that we will have work to do, that the rest promised in both those verses is temporary. When we enter God’s eternal rest we will still have assignments.

Resurrected Body. Scripture cites a number of people resurrected from the dead, but only one of these, Y’shua, is resurrected to eternal life. Elijah and Elisha raised the dead, as did Y’shua on numerous occasions, then Peter raised Tabitha and Paul raised Euticus. All of those who were raised simply returned to their human, earthly, mortal bodies. Since none is mentioned later in Scripture and apparently none is still alive, it is probably safe to believe that all have perished. Those resurrected bodies did not have any unusual qualities, other than returning to life after being dead.

Our bodies after resurrection to eternal life will be remarkably different from the bodies we now have. We should expect them to be like Y’shua was after His resurrection. What we know of Him and what is in Ezek. 37:4 tell much about bodies resurrected to eternal life. Ezek. 37:4 says: And he said to me, “Prophesy over these bones, and say to them, O you dry bones, hear the word of the LORD*.” What we do not see in the English is that the phrase, “say to them” does not refer to the bones, but to the people. We know it refers to people because of the Hebrew word translated “them.” That word is masculine, while the word for bones is feminine, so that the LORD’s* instruction to Ezekiel means (and is translated in this book) to a Jewish, Hebrew speaking, reader And He said to me, “Prophesy over, or in the direction of, these bones, and say to them, the people, O you dry bones, hear the word of the LORD*.” The word translated over can also be translated on, upon, above, toward.

Now, look at the verses in the New Testament describing Y’shua after His resurrection:

Jn. 20:2. Then she ran and came to Simon Peter and to the other disciple whom Y’shua loved and she said to them, “They took our Lord from the tomb and we do not know where they put Him.” This is also in verse 13. We know His earthly body was missing from the tomb.

Verse 14. After she said these things she turned to those behind and saw Y’shua standing but had not recognized that it was Y’shua. This shows that His resurrected body could look different from His earthly body. 15. Y’shua said to her, “Ma’am, why are you crying? Whom are you seeking?” Because she thought that He was the gardener she said to Him, “Sir, if you removed Him, you must tell me where you carried Him and I shall take Him.” 16. Y’shua said to her, “Mary.” After she turned to that One she said to Him in Hebrew “Rabbi,” which means Teacher. This shows that He could at will make Himself recognizable. 17. Y’shua said to her “Stop touching Me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father: you must go to My brothers and you must say to them, ‘I am ascending to My Father and your Father and My God and your God.’”

Verse 19. ..after the doors were shut where the disciples were because of fear of the Jewish leaders, Y’shua came and stood in their midst and said to them, “Peace be with you.” 20. And after He said this He showed them His hands and His side. Then the disciples rejoiced, because they had seen the LORD*. His resurrected body could go through walls or closed doors, apparently not having bones.

Verse 27. Then He said to Thomas, Put your finger here and see My hands and you must reach out your hand and you must put it into My side, and stop being faithless but have faith. The resurrected body had the appearance and feel of flesh, yet could still go through walls or become invisible.

Luke has: 24:3. but when they entered they did not find the body of the Lord Y’shua. 15. And it was, while they were speaking and discussing these things, that Y’shua Himself, having approached, was going with them, 16. but their eyes were being hindered so they did not recognize Him. Then later in v. 23. And when they did not find His body, they came saying then that in a vision they saw angels, who were saying “He is alive.” 24. Then some of those with us left for the tomb and also found thus just as the women said, but they did not see Him. 25. But He said to them, “O foolish and slow in heart to believe on all that the prophets were saying: 26. and was it not necessary for the Messiah to suffer these things, then to enter His glory?” 27. And beginning with Moses and with all the Prophets He explained to them with all the writings concerning Himself.

Verse 30. And it happened while He reclined with them, when He took the bread He praised God and after He broke it He gave it to them, 31. and their eyes were opened and they recognized Him: then He became invisible for them.

His resurrected body could be visible or invisible. If visible, it could take different appearances so that at His will, He could be recognized or not recognized. He ate with the disciples, as in Lk. 24:41,42. While His body could show the holes in His hands and side, in what appeared to be human flesh, it could also look quite different, being flesh without the holes in His hands. He could walk through walls, indicating that His resurrected body has neither flesh nor bone. Then why did His body disappear from the tomb? Will our resurrected bodies also disappear from their tombs, or wherever those who are alive happen to be at the time of the resurrection?

Paul discussed the resurrected body in 1 Cor. 15. Beginning with verse 35, But some will say, “How are the dead raised?” And “What sort of body is coming?” 36. Foolishness! What you are sowing does not live unless it would die first:
(Jn. 12:24) 37. then what you are sowing, you do not sow what will be the body, but a naked seed. Perhaps it will turn out to be wheat or some of the other grains: 38. but God would give it a body just as He wished, and to each of the seeds its own body. 39. But not all flesh is the same, but there is one kind of flesh for people, and another kind of flesh for domestic animals, and another flesh for birds, and another for fishes: 40. then there are heavenly bodies, and earthly bodies: another of the splendor of the heavenlies, but another of the earthlies. 41. With another kind of splendor for the sun, and another kind of splendor for the moon, and another splendor for the stars: for star differs from star in splendor.

15:42. So also the resurrection of the dead. It is sown in corruption, it is raised incorruptible: 43. it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in magnificence: it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power: 44. a body is sown fleshly, it is raised a spiritual body. If there is a fleshly body, there is also a spiritual. 45. And so it has been written, “The first man was Adam in living life,” (Gen. 2:7) the last Adam has become a life-giving spirit. 46. But the spiritual was not first but the physical, then the spiritual. 47. The first man is from dust of the earth, the second man out of heaven. 48. What sort of earthly man, and such as these earthly ones, and what sort of the heavenly One, then such as these born of the heavenly nature: 49. and just as we bore constantly the image of the earthly, we will bear constantly also the image of the heavenly One.

Resurrection was not a strange idea to the people of Israel in Y’shua’s day. In
Jn. 11:24 Martha says to Y’shua that she knows her brother will be resurrected in the resurrection on the last day, which is Judgment Day. From this we know that it was common knowledge that eventually everyone will be resurrected and that the resurrection will be for Judgment.

The basis for this belief in resurrection comes from numerous Hebrew Bible verses. One of the verses the rabbis use to speak of resurrection is Num. 18:28 which in speaking of the tithe says will give it to Aaron the priest.. This is clearly a reference to paying the tithe after they enter the Promised Land, but Aaron did not even live to see the Promised Land, let alone receive a tithe there. The way he could receive the tithe then would be because he has been resurrected.

Deut. 11:9 refers to ..your days in the land, which the LORD* swore to your fathers to give to them.. Again this could only happen because the fathers had been resurrected.

Deut. 31:16 says, And the LORD* said to Moses, Behold, you will sleep with your fathers; and this people will rise up. There are many Scriptural references to the dead as sleeping. This is why Y’shua said I AM the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob: He is not the God of the dead but the living. (Matt. 22:32)

Isaiah put it straight out there when he said, Your dead people will live. They will rise together with my dead body. Awake and sing, you who dwell in dust, for your dew is like the dew of herbs, and the earth will cast out the dead. (Isa. 26:19)

The most beautiful reference to resurrection is more subtle. Job 1:2,3 say And there were born to him seven sons and three daughters. 3. His substance also was seven thousand sheep, three thousand camels, five hundred yoke of oxen, five hundred she-donkeys and a very great household, so that this man was the greatest of all the men of the east. Job 42:12,13 says, So the LORD* blessed the latter end of Job more than his beginning, for he had fourteen thousand sheep and six thousand camels and a thousand yoke of oxen and a thousand she-donkeys. 13. He had also seven sons and three daughters. If Job was given twice the flocks and herds after his ordeal, why did the Lord give him the same number of children that he had before the ordeal? The answer has to be that in the hereafter Job does have twice the children, fourteen sons and six daughters. That is a great comfort to all those who have lost children in this life. Many have had miscarriages, but we know that we will be with those children some day. As David said, I shall go to him, but he will not come back to me. (2 Sam. 12:23)

Y’shua referred to resurrection in Matt. 22:31. And concerning the resurrection of the dead did you not read what was spoken to you by God saying, 32. “I AM the God of Abraham and the God of Isaac and the God of Jacob?” (Exod. 3:6,15,16) He is not the God of the dead but the living. This is also reported in Mk. 12:27 and Lk. 20:38.

Resurrection is the reason why Y’shua spoke several times about entering life when he was referring to the time after this body dies. He said And if your hand causes you to sin, you must immediately cut it off and cast it from you: it is better for you to enter life maimed than having two hands or two feet to have been cast into the eternal fire, Matt. 18:8,9. Matt. 19:17, and Mk. 9:43,45 also refer to Entering Life.

Right Hand is very significant as a Hebrew idiom, having two different meanings. In one it symbolizes power and strength from Exod. 15:6 Your right hand, LORD*, has become glorious in power. Your right hand, LORD*, has dashed the enemy in pieces. In the other it represents salvation, from Ps. 20:7. Now I know that the LORD* saves His anointed. He will hear him from His holy heaven with the saving strength of His right hand. From this it is said that the left hand represents calamity and judgment. Y’shua is the right hand of God and is still His power here on Earth, now just as much as when He walked the Earth in His flesh, as also His Saving Power has been here from the time of His resurrection and will be forevermore.

Hand has additional meaning, from Zech. 8:9 & 13, Thus says the LORD* of Hosts, Your hands will be strong, you who hear in these days these words by the mouth of the prophets who were in the day that the foundation of the House of the LORD* of Hosts was laid, so the Temple could be built. 13. And it will be that as you were a curse among the nations, O House of Judah and House of Israel; so I shall save you and you will be a blessing. Do not fear! Your hands will be strong! The expression “Your hands will be strong” is also used in both verses. In those verses “hand” is a metaphor for “resolve or determination.”

Righteousness. We are made righteous by faith and grace, but righteousness is action. The word righteousness is the noun form of the Hebrew root Ts-d-k.
Ts-d-k and the Greek verb Dikaio both mean to do right, to be just. They are verbs that require action by the subject of the verb. When we are made righteous by our faith our behavior has to change. If it does not, see what John says: 1 Jn. 2:3. And by this we know that we have known Him, if we keep His commandments. 4. The one who says “I have known Him,” and does not keep His commandments, is a liar and the truth is not in him: 5. but whoever keeps His Word, truly the love of God would have been completed in him, because we know that we are in Him. 6. The one who says he remains in Him is obligated to walk the same walk just as that One walked.

There are many times in the New Testament that we have references like
Acts 16:31 ..You must believe at once in the Lord Y’shua and you and your household will be saved. To Paul, Luke, and all New Testament authors, the word “believe” required action, as in Acts 26:19. For which reason, King Agrippa, I have not been disobedient to the heavenly vision 20. but first to those in Damascus and then in Jerusalem, and in every region of Judea and to the heathens, bringing a call to repent and to turn back to God, doing works worthy of repentance.

This change in behavior comes from above, as evidenced by Paul’s reference to “the gift of righteousness” in Rom. 5:17 and 6:18. There is a lot each one can do to be a better person, but we can do so much more when faith and commitment to God bring us the gift of righteousness.

Paul says in 1 Cor. 6:9. Or do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Stop being deceived: neither fornicators nor idolaters nor adulterers nor effeminate nor homosexuals 10. nor thieves nor covetous people, nor drunkards, nor abusive people, nor swindlers will inherit the Kingdom of God.

We need to know that in the Jewish mind the word Believe requires the change in behavior that John was talking about in the verses quoted above. See Mitsvah elsewhere in Glossary. See Jcb. 2:14.

Ezekiel 18:5. But if a man is righteous and does justice and acts of loving kindness, 6. has not eaten upon the mountains nor has lifted up his eyes to the idols of the House of Israel, nor has defiled his neighbor’s wife, nor has come near to a woman in her uncleanness, 7. and has not oppressed any, but has restored his pledge for a debt, has plundered no one by robbery, has given his bread to the hungry, and has covered the naked with a garment: 8. he who has not given forth upon usury, nor has taken any increase, who has withdrawn his hand from injustice, has executed true justice between man and man, 9. has walked in My statutes and has kept My judgments to deal truly: he is just, he will surely live, says Adonai, the LORD*.

Righteousness and Holiness are the foundation of relationships for all of humanity. Each of us has a relationship with God, with other people, even with animals. We are to do right, to be just in every endeavor, and we are to keep ourselves pure. That is our minimum standard. Our heavenly Father said For I AM the LORD* Who brings you up out of the land of Egypt, to be your God. You will therefore be holy, for I AM holy! (Lev. 11:45) Although none of us will be perfected while in this earthly body, each of us must strive to do right and to keep pure. God knows none of us is perfect, but He also knows our hearts and sees our faith and the blood of the Lamb. So long as we acknowledge Him, do right, and keep ourselves pure, we know that we have eternal life. This righteousness is our minimum standard. To go beyond that minimum is a great blessing that our Heavenly Father rewards. Going beyond righteousness is called Ts’dakah in Hebrew, translated “Acts of Loving Kindness” and listed elsewhere in Glossary as Ts’dakah under Hesed.

[1]        (Eph. 2:14) He grafted the Church, the wild olive tree, into the domestic olive tree, Rom. 11:17, 18


[2]        (Eph. 2:16) Heathens versus Jewish people.


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