Sunday, May 10, 2015

Tit 2:13 looking for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.

Since BHI place no emphasis on Christ's blood and its supremacy, where is it placed? It's placed in following an inconsistent version of the Mosaic law. This is seen in adherence to their understanding of the Sabbath and in their dietary practices. Many of them, like other religious groups critical of Christianity, believe Christians "switched" the Sabbath to Sunday. In accord with this belief, they observe what is called Shabbat beginning Friday at sunset, commencing Saturday at sunset.

Contrary to their theory of why Christians congregate on the Lord's Day, Sunday, the first day of week, it's not because it was altered by the Catholic church. Scripture records the resurrection of Christ reported to Mary Magdalene (and the other Mary) on the first day of the week.
Mat 28:1 Now late on the sabbath day, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.

Compare with Luke's gospel.
Luk 24:1 But on the first day of the week, at early dawn, they came unto the tomb, bringing the spices which they had prepared.
Luk 24:2 And they found the stone rolled away from the tomb.
Luk 24:3 And they entered in, and found not the body of the Lord JesusAct 20:7 And upon the first day of the week, when the disciples came together to break bread, Paul preached unto them, ready to depart on the morrow; and continued his speech until midnight

Also see Paul's instructions to the church at Corinth:
1Co 16:1 Now concerning the collection for the saints, as I gave order to the churches of Galatia, so also do ye.
1Co 16:2 Upon the first day of the week let each one of you lay by him in store, as he may prosper, that no collections be made when I come.

Monday, March 23, 2015

I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever (Rev 1:18)

At the end of my last blog I mentioned the Old Testament's witness of the supremacy of Christ's blood. In the book of Leviticus we find a foreshadowing of Jesus Christ's ultimate sacrifice on the cross:
Lev 17:11 For the life of the flesh is in the blood; and I have given it to you on the altar to make atonement for your souls: for it is the blood that makes atonement by reason of the life.
Animal sacrifice laid at the heart of the Mosaic Covenant. Christ laying down His life is the heart of the New Covenant. OT sacrifices did not cleanse Israel from sin, by evidence they were required until the advent of Christ. The daily and annual sacrifices performed by the high priest on the day of atonement was a perpetual reminder that the nation of Israel remained in their sins.
With the advent of the Messiah, and the glory only He can shed on redemptive history, the OT shadows disappeared. In the NT book of Hebrews we find that Jesus' sacrifice brought an end to the temple sacrifices in that it was required only once.
Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself.
The blood Jesus shed was not merely the blood of a man, it was the blood of God.
Act 20:28 Take heed, therefore, to yourselves, and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the assembly of the Lord and God which he purchased with his own blood.
When you talk to BHI, or even read their web material, the subject of man's sin, and how its atoned for is not a popular subject. Their understanding of the scriptures are deficient in the area where understanding is a must.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

John 8:24 I said therefore to you that you will die in your sins; for unless you believe that I am he, you will die in your sins

If the emphasis of your faith is in your ethnic identity, your faith is in vain. True faith, as taught by Christ and His apostles, rests in the question Jesus asked in Mark 8:27: Who do people say that I am? Black Hebrew Israelites do not respond to Jesus' question correctly. As previously stated, if your views on the person and work of Jesus Christ are incorrect, it is impossible to have any understanding of God's written word.

Before we examine the claims our Lord made regarding His identity, we should take a closer look at our human condition. Simply put, humans are sinful creatures. There is no use in trying to find any merits in our bloodlines or our ethnicity. The sin that resides in every person makes ruin of our outlook on life from the time of our birth. Sin causes us to be self-centered haters of our creator--without hope. Without God's sovereign grace in salvation, man would complete his natural life without any hope in the life-after regardless of how "good" they appear, or if they tried to keep the Law of Moses.

The Israelites of the Old Testament were by and large an unregenerate people. Yes, they were given the Law of Moses at Sinai, but they continually fell into gross sin. The Law's intention was not to save them (Galatians 3:19) The Israelites were a temporary, unbelieving picture of the true saints of God. In the gospels we find Jesus scolding the Pharisee and Sadducee sects because of their sinful pride and belief of justification by following the Law of Moses. Their only hope was in the Man they plotted against and conspired to have murdered. Jesus warned them in John 5:39:

"You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; it is these that testify about Me

The Old Testament scriptures pleads with its readers to see the merits of Christ's blood, and its power to save mankind from the hopelessness of sin.

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

That all men should honour the Son, even as they honour the Father...(John 5:23).

Black Hebrew Israelites place their theological focus on who is truly Hebrew as the basis of their teachings. Their teachings do not fall in line with the inspired scriptures. The Holy Bible's focus, and its direction, from Genesis to the Revelation, is the progressive revelation of the redemption of fallen man completed by the True Israel of God, Jesus Christ, who by His shed blood provided payment for the transgressions of undeserving, perishing sinners. Upon the completed work of the Savior, He ascended into heaven where he reigns as sovereign King of all existence. Jesus is king of all creation regardless of race, creed, color, nation of origin, or religion. Everyone everywhere is commanded to submit and bow to his Kingship (Acts 17:30).

The Holy Bible teaches the eternal existence of one God who has revealed Himself to creation as a triune being. The trinity is not, as some sects falsely claim, a doctrine formed in the fourth century during the Council of Nicaea. They'll be much more on this topic later. I've heard BHI state that Jesus (they normally used Yahushua instead of English rendering) is Israel's savior, high priest, and Messiah. But those accurate titles mean nothing unless one affirms the deity of Jesus Christ, the Son of God (Daniel 7:14,John 3:35. According to some BHI websites, there is no consensus among them as the full nature of Christ. It is impossible to have sound doctrine without a understanding of the central figure of all scripture. A closer look at this issue in on order for next time.

Friday, March 6, 2015

1 Timothy 1:6 From which some having swerved have turned aside unto vain jangling...

In 1998 I was conversating with a co-worker and the subject turned to religion. That was the first time I'd heard someone identity as a Black Hebrew. I'd heard of the Black Hebrews before, but I thought their followings only existed in the big cities on the east coast, yet this man was from Colorado. He told me a little about what he believed with sheer confidence in every word. He seemed to know his world history. And the way he threw around Bible verses and Biblical names I was certain he'd spent some time in a church. But when I questioned him on a few issues, he seemed to pay my questions no mind. Is was as though the conversation flowed one direction; from him to me. Following that day I was sure to never bring up the subject of religion again when I was around him. Thirteen years later the Lord Jesus Christ saved me from my sins and set me on the right path. Without the Lord's saving grace I would be blind, lost, and hopeless, and like many young men today, "swayed by every wind of doctrine" (Eph 4:14).

Within the last few years the Black Hebrew Israelite (BHI) movement has grown substantially. Today there are dozens of websites, YouTube videos, books, and periodicals promoting BHI teachings. The adherents of BHI teachings range from the very young to the very old. Instead of worshipping in churches they typically meet in homes, or in some cases rented meeting halls. They hold to a diversity of teachings, as there is not a single set of BHI beliefs. I've found that members usually gravitate to someone that feel is the most knowledgeable about BHI belief for guidance. A vast majority of them believe in following the Mosaic Law. Generally, most of them hold to the following three beliefs:
1. That African Americans are descendants of Biblical Hebrews (Tribe of Judah) who migrated from Israel to Western Africa during the diaspora.
2. Adherence to ordained Jewish feasts and holidays
3. Belief that Jesus was not God incarnate (in the flesh).

While there are many topics that can be discussed with HBIs, my main focus in the following blogs is on the person of Jesus Christ. If one does not follow Christ and believe that He is the true God that person will die in their sins (John 8:24). I will attempt to prove the teachings of the BHIs as heretical doctrines, and at the same time proclaim to true teachings of the King of Kings.

I will also target the following BHI website to highlight some of their often missquided understanding of scripture.