Just last month, folks around the world observed a day of remembrance and gave honour to the members of the military from past to present. So many men and women stood at attention as the Last Post is sounded by a lone bugler followed by a two minute period of silence. Their faces are etched with memories that words just cannot do justice to describe. They remember their buddies who died in the field and didn’t get to come home to loved ones. The men and women who do survive and come home, had also suffered in the battle field and most continue to suffer even at home in times of peace with mental, emotional, financial and physical trauma’s. They find some comfort in living life in remembrance of their fallen comrades – the buddies who passed through the gates of death.
But is performing yearly ceremonies and living life in remembrance of those who have sacrificed, a sufficient means of healing to those who survive fighting in wars? Is thanksgiving and remembrance of our veteran’s on days of pomp and ceremony, sufficient to appease the anxiety and tension the rest of us face daily?
It is a bandaid.
During any war… and even now in our daily lives… death is everywhere. Health issues are on the rise. The elements of terrorism, natural disasters, economic calamities, etc. encompass us more and more. Should we give up? Should we just lay down and die? Just this year alone, many have committed suicide because they don’t see any reason to be alive, all they see is terror and suffering. To them, life is bad. A young man who was married with two small children – you would think that life was truly blessed for him – committed suicide but only after his wife had done so earlier in the year. Now their children are orphans. Another young father killed himself on his daughter’s sixteenth birthday – no warnings, he just gave up.
I am one of seven co-hosts for Messianic Morning Prayers that airs on Messianic LAMB Radio, Monday to Friday at 7:30 am Central Time. We are seeing an increase in the number of prayer requests concerning deaths in families and a good number of them are suicides, many more are due to illness or accident, but only a few are due to old age.
So… how do we approach Yahweh in prayer and talk with Him about those who have died and those who mourn their loved one(s)? How do we approach Him as we see so much suffering? How do we personally keep going while we witness the failing hearts of many all around us? How do we not experience a failing heart? What is our hope?
We begin by recognizing a very important part… Yahweh IS Elohim, and we must approach Him as the Ruler and Owner and Creator of ALL THINGS. To help in the understanding of this, just think about how we would approach the President of the United States, or the Queen of England… there will be great ceremony and a very specific protocol. Yeshua gave us that protocol to follow with the words of the Lord’s Prayer. Begin with acknowledging He IS (exists, lives, etc.) in heaven and that we know (really know) that He is holy (set apart, there is none other). We add that we are eager for His kingdom to come, so that His will is fully upon this Earth. And then we follow the rest of the protocol with our petition(s).
Yeshua was very wise to give us this outline on how to approach our Father in heaven. This outline is full of deep meanings and understandings and once we begin to use this protocol, the awareness of the deep meanings and understandings becomes clearer.
We start to realize that in order for His kingdom to come and His will to be done on Earth as it is in Heaven… something had to happen first; Yeshua (as the Strong Right Arm of Yahweh) had to die. We know the teaching on this aspect well enough, so suffice it to say that Yeshua died for us and He took all the sins of this world upon Himself. Right there He gave us hope, right there He cleared the way for His Kingdom to come. Yeshua’s death enabled us to have the ability to be reconciled to Yahweh, He paid the price for our sins and settled the account. And as a result of this action, we have the opportunity to choose eternal life with Him. ETERNAL LIFE!!! People are always looking for the elixir of immortality, whether it be some fancy potion to drink or something they can do scientifically to elongate their lives. Have you noticed how prevalent this theme is on TV shows and in movies (Star Trek with the character called Q; DC Comics’ Superman or Marvel Comics’ Thor; Pirates of the Caribbean with the undead crew of the Flying Dutchmen; Stargate SG1 with the Goa’ould and the Ascended beings. etc.) ?
Basically, Yahweh has created within us the desire to live. We hear amazing stories of people doing superhuman actions in order to live. We have heard of people who can lift the weight of a car off of someone pinned underneath or the fellow who was hiking and got his arm caught underneath a bolder that dislodged from the rock face. After waiting over 5 days, he cut his arm off so he could be free and alive . Preserving life is VERY powerful – because Yahweh has hard-wired that desire to live within us. And for a good reason. Let’s find that out.
Did you know that we have been promised healing? Isaiah 53:5 and 1 Peter 2:24 point-blank tells us that. These verses are different except for one specific phrase, “…by His stripes we are healed.” We know that this is referring to Yeshua, Who was whipped with such savagery that he was almost unrecognizable. His body was covered with whip marks and we know that this very much looks like stripes.
But how can this one particular action that He took on, bring us healing?
Look again at the stripes… they look like fringes.
Where have we seen fringes before? Hmmmm… oh yes, Matthew 9:20; Matthew 14:36; Mark 6:56 and Luke 8:44. Four different people were healed when they touched the fringe of Yeshua’s cloak. That’s cool, but fringes are just a fashion statement, right?
Number 15:38-41 settles that question in a hurry. The fringes or tassels were commanded by God for a specific purpose. We are to wear them to REMEMBER “all the commandments of the LORD, so as to do them and not follow after your own heart and your own eyes, after which you played the harlot,”
We are to remember the Torah – the five books which encompass all the commandments of the LORD. This is His word to us. As we remember and do the words written in the Torah, this leads us right back to Yeshua… for He IS The Word.
Okay… so we remember and we do the words in the Torah, but WHY must I do this? What’s the purpose? Well, all through the final book of the Torah (the book of Deuteronomy), Moses repeats certain words multiple times. As he wraps up his reiteration of a segment of the commands in his admonishment to the people, he tells them that by doing so ‘it will be well with you’ or ‘it will go well with you’ or ‘so you live well upon the earth’.
This is a promise of physical wellness – to go, to be and to live WELL. AND it’s a promise of emotional, financial, mental and spiritual well being as well. ALL aspects of our lives are impacted as we remember and do the commands written in Torah. THIS is Yeshua stripes and by His stripes we ARE healed.
And with Yeshua’s stripes born for us so that we ARE healed and can be well, go well and live well, His resurrection adds to that with a future as eternally living sons of Elohim in His soon coming Kingdom. THAT’s why, we are to grab hold of the stripes which Yeshua suffered through.
Right now, we can do our part. The nations of the world are blessed through the actions of those who remember and do the words of Torah (Genesis 22:18). No more will this earth hear the sounds of the bugler playing the Last Post. The men and women who go to war for us, the family members who experience death in their families, all the peoples of this earth can have the promise and blessing of going, being and living well.
By His stripes we ARE healed – go well, be well and live well – Thy Kingdom come.