Now without faith it is impossible to please [YeHoVaH]. For the one who comes to [YeHoVaH] must believe that He exists and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.~ Hebrews 11:6 (The bracketed words are my emphasis.)
My debut novel is a faith-based book. It contains spiritual visions, rebellion, demonic attacks, a spiritual wilderness journey, reconciliation, and restoration.
Although my literary fiction deals with marriage and divorce, in this novel, I focus on how divorces are like amputations – how they both always leave people missing a piece of themselves. This focus is why the narrative highlights the demonic attacks that cause marital and familial struggles and losses prior to Triston’s and Zemora’s amputation of divorce – severed souls and spirits – and highlights their heartbreaks, losses, griefs, and afflictions that happen after their divorce.
Triston’s and Zemora’s presumed faith walk is tested. They find out why their lack of faith made it impossible for them to please YeHoVaH.
This novel is a good read for believing moms. It also is a great gift for Mother’s Day, as well as a fabulous gift for any holiday or special day.
Is anything too difficult for [YeHoVaH]? ~ Genesis 18:14a
“Ah, my Lord [YeHoVaH]! Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and by Your outstretched arm—nothing is too hard for You! ~ Jeremiah 32:17
And looking, Yeshua said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with [YeHoVaH] all things are possible. ~ Matthew 19:26
I belong to several authors’ groups on Facebook and Twitter, and I am a member of these groups primarily because I want to increase the number of readers who would be interested in buying my new book. Many of the authors in the groups I’m a member of published their latest books either a few weeks before or after I published Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored on January 29, 2022. Sadly, most of these authors are more concerned with promoting their own books than they are concerned about helping to support my novel, which I understand.
The same is true on Instagram, where I also follow some of the authors who are in the said Facebook and Twitter authors’ groups. Additionally, I am a member of various authors’ groups on Goodreads. Again, my reason for joining was to create a target audience.
Honestly, there is nothing I would love to do more than to support as many authors as I can who are in the groups that I joined. I wish that I could buy every author’s book(s) – especially if the genre is one I love to read. However, I am a 71-year-old author with a limited income, so I can’t afford to put money in other writers’ pockets without being sure they will return the favor.
As I mentioned in a few of my Facebook postings, I would love to sell more copies of my debut novel that I self-published on a wing and a prayer. The reason this book is unlikely to attract the attention of book buyers and, thus, unlikely to become a bestseller is that I couldn’t afford to hire a reputable book marketer, advertiser, publicist, or any other skilled professional who could have helped me successfully launch my book, helped me to increase sales, and/or helped me to eventually become a bestselling or award-winning self-published author.
Yes, I still write for the thrill of it. However, I also write to create valuable books and blog articles, as well as write to be the best author I can be – not necessarily a best-selling author. Yet, I doubt that there is a published author who would say he or she truly couldn’t care less if a book he or she published didn’t make a bestseller’s list. I know I would care, but I wouldn’t obsess about it.
Be that as it may! Since I am a self-published author, the sad truth for me is that I don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of making either The New York Times’ or the Wall Street Journal’s bestseller lists if I can’t afford to hire skillful professionals who can help me attract some much-needed attention for my book, as that attention could mean my sales might increase. Likewise, I don’t have a snowball’s chance in hell of becoming a bestseller on Amazon, if I can’t increase the number of potential readers who might buy my book.
If my novel does better than I alone was able to achieve, it will be because it is YeHoVaH’s Will. Therefore, I am hoping for a miracle and trusting that YeHoVaH will perform it today.
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You have anointed my head with oil, my cup overflows. ~ Psalm 23:5
On January 29, 2022, I published Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored. At that time, I was 70 years old and had been divorced for 23 years.
I wrote the original manuscript in the fall of 2003. Years later, about three months after I had lost my oldest son to diabetes complications in 2017, I looked at the original manuscript. However, instead of working on it, I wrote a short memoir – Untimely Farewells – and published it in 2018.
It took COVID-19 and being quarantined to motivate me to revisit the 2003 manuscript that became Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored – my debut novel (literary fiction). Thirty-six days later, I turned 71. Shortly after that, YeHoVaH blessed my debut novel with a five-star rating. Then, on Saturday (April 2, 2002), my novel received its second 5-star rating AND its first book review – a glowing review.
Now, it is possible that Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored might never be an Amazon bestseller because most people, Christians included, don’t want to read preachy books about divorce. Sadly, many of the people who steer clear of books that preach against getting a divorce won’t take the time to discover that Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored neither preaches marriage nor divorce.
Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored shows how divorce is like an amputation – how they both always leave people missing a piece of themselves. That is why my debut novel’s narrative focuses on the demonic attacks that cause marital and familial struggles and losses prior to Triston’s and Zemora’s amputation of divorce – severed souls and spirits – as well as focuses on their heartbreaks, losses, griefs, and afflictions that happen after their divorce.
Nevertheless, even if Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored never becomes an Amazon bestseller, YeHoVaH has abundantly blessed me this late in my life with two readers’ 5-star ratings and one reader’s glowing book review. Hallelujah!
Thus says YeHoVaH God of Israel, ‘Write in a book all the words which I have spoken to you. ~ Jeremiah 30:2
Did you know that most of Amazon’s self-published authors will never get rich from their book sales?
Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) allows authors to publish their hardcover books, paperback books, and eBooks for free. Additionally, Amazon KDP allows self-published authors to own all rights to their books, which traditional publishing houses don’t usually allow.
However, although Amazon KDP doesn’t charge authors to self-publish their books, Amazon KDP does have a fixed royalty rate for authors. That rate is 60% of the authors’ list price. In addition to the 60% royalty rate, Amazon KDP charges self-published authors the printing costs for each sold paperback and hardcover copy. In other words, (royalty rate x list price) – printing costs = royalty.
I only sell paperback copies that use black ink, so the printing price for every paperback copy is based on the online Amazon marketplace my book was ordered from, the ink type (black or color), and the page count. In my case, that means Amazon KDP will keep 60% of the $17.99 list price for each book that I sell and, on top of that, will subtract an additional $6.18 from my royalty percentage every time a copy of that book is printed. So, Amazon KDP will receive about 75% of my $17.99 book price each time a paperback copy of Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored (published January 29, 2022) is sold and printed.
Now, you might be asking: Why are you thrilled about that? Well, first, I am thrilled to publish something I created and thrilled because I published it without receiving any rejection letters. I am sure I would have gotten some had I taken the traditional route. Then too, I am thrilled to own all rights to my self-published books.
Secondly, because I have a few loyal friends and family members who actually believe in me as a writer, I am thrilled because several of them purchased my book almost the same day it went live on Amazon. So, even if my number of sold copies isn’t large, I am thrilled because my faithful friends and family members didn’t disappoint me.
Thirdly, I didn’t write my book because I had “making a killing” in mind. Did I hope that it would do well, financially speaking? Yes! Did I pray that YeHoVaH’s Will was for me to become a bestselling author? Yes! However, in my heart, I am prepared to remain humble no matter if I do or don’t achieve financial success with this book.
The bottom line is that I have always understood that any success I achieve with this book isn’t of my own doing. Any success would be because of YeHoVaH’s Help and His Will. That is why I am grateful for true friends who have supported me by purchasing and reading my book. Lastly, I am grateful for the following unexpected support:
While I know that to some people these examples of the unexpected support I have received since Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored went live on 29 January 2022 aren’t worth much, to me they are priceless. They are precious to me because I didn’t buy or beg for this support.
All the above examples of the support I have received are the reasons why I write for the thrill of it. Furthermore, because some friends and a few family members support my writing ventures in more than one way – like they have done for my newly released book – this is the reason why I also give YeHoVaH all the Glory. Shalom!
1Loved ones, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see if they are from [YeHoVaH]. For many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 You know the Ruach Elohim by this—every spirit that acknowledges that Messiah Yeshua has come in human flesh is from [YeHoVaH], 3 but every spirit that does not acknowledge Yeshua is not from [YeHoVaH]. This is the spirit of the anti-messiah, which you have heard is coming and now is already in the world. 4 You are from [YeHoVaH], children, and you have overcome them, because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. 5 They are from the world, so they speak from the world and the world listens to them. 6 We are from [YeHoVaH]; whoever knows [YeHoVaH] listens to us, but whoever is not from [YeHoVaH] does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error. ~ 1 John 4:1-6
Overcomers are believers who truly are more than conquerors; they clearly are the faithful and obedient victorious members of the Body of Yeshua — the faithful and obedient spiritual conquerors. Notice that, in Revelation chapters 2 and 3, Yeshua never addresses the entire Body of Believers — His whole Ekklesia — as overcomers. Nor does He address one entire ekklesia (one assembly or one “church”) as overcomers.
While speaking individually to the seven “churches” (more correct translations of ekklesiae are assembly and community), Yeshua only promises benefits and rewards to the saints who OVERCOME, even though He uses only the singular pronoun. Yeshua repeatedly says, “He who overcomes.” Therefore, Yeshua is making it clear that not all saints — not all members in His Ekklesia — are or will be OVERCOMERS. These overcomers in Revelation chapters 2 and 3 are saints who shine like the stars that are far and above the spiritual corruptions or spiritual problems Yeshua mentions to Revelation‘s seven “churches.”
I know what I said above is an uncomfortable truth, but the Divine Truth is that there are Bible verses that prove the overcomers — the ones to whom specific benefits and rewards are promised/offered and to whom these promised benefits and rewards will be given — are separate and distinct types of saints. If we read closely, we see that in every one of the seven “churches” Yeshua mentions in Revelation chapters 2 and 3 there were — and, indeed, there always will be — the kind of saints who were faithful believers in Yeshua and the kindof saints who were unfaithful believers in Yeshua. There were — and there always have been — the kind of saints who were obedient children of YeHoVaH and those saints who were disobedient children of YeHoVaH. In other words, there were then — and always have been — spiritual and carnal members in the Body of Yeshua. Therefore, there also always were (and always will be, including right now) holy overcomers AND the kind of saints who were or are overwhelmed, worn down, and defeated. To put it differently, from the beginning of Yeshua’s Ekklesia, there always have been those believers who have become spiritual conquerors and those believers who have been spiritually conquered!
Again, the Scriptures prove that Yeshua only promises EACH spiritual conqueror in each of Revelation’s seven “churches” that if he or she is a faithful and obedient overcomer; that is, if the spiritually mature man or spiritually mature woman in each “church” continues to fight against Satan’s fiery darts, his destructive deceptions, and his toxic lies, AND WINS even if his or her resistance leads to his or her death, then that OVERCOMER is the believer in Yeshua who will receive the following specific benefits and rewards:
1. The Tree of Life
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Ruach is saying to Messiah’s communities. To the one who overcomes, I will grant the right to eat from the Tree of Life, which is in the Paradise of [YeHoVaH]. ” ~ Revelation 2:7 (Ephesus)
2. The Crown of Life
Do not fear what you are about to suffer. Behold, the devil is about to throw some of you into prison, so that you may be tested, and you will have tribulation for ten days. Be faithful until death, and I will give you the crown of life. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Ruach is saying to Messiah’s communities. The one who overcomes shall never be harmed by the second death.” ~ Revelation 2:10-11 (Smyrna)
3. The White Stone
He who has an ear, let him hear what the Ruach is saying to Messiah’s communities. To the one who overcomes I will give some of the hidden manna, and I will give him a white stone—and written on the stone a new name that no one knows except the one who receives it.” ~ Revelation 2:17 (Pergamum)
4. The National Authority
To the one who overcomes and guards My deeds until the end, ‘I will give him authority over the nations and he shall rule them with an iron rod, as when clay pots are broken into pieces.’ Even as I have received from My Father, so I will give him the morning star. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Ruach is saying to Messiah’s communities.” ~ Revelation 2:26-29 (Thyatira)
5. The White Robes
“But still, you have a few people in Sardis who have not stained their clothes. They will walk with Me in white, because they are worthy. The one who overcomes thus will be dressed in white clothes; I will never blot his name out of the Book of Life, and will confess his name before My Father and His angels. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Ruach is saying to Messiah’s communities. ~ Revelation 3:5-6 (Sardis)
6. The Permanent Pillar
The one who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the Temple of My God, and he will never leave it. And on him I will write the name of My God and the name of the city of My God—the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God—and My own new Name. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Ruach is saying to Messiah’s communities.” ~ Revelation 3:12-13 (Philadelphia)
7. The Throne
To the one who overcomes I will grant the right to sit with Me on My throne, just as I myself overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne. He who has an ear, let him hear what the Ruach is saying to Messiah’s communities.” ~ Revelation 3:21-22 (Laodicea)
He or she who has an ear needs to hear that Yeshua’s overcomer is not just the run-of-the-mill kind of saint, who gets into Heaven with the smell of smoke on him or her (see 1 Corinthians 3:15). To get these mentioned benefits and rewards, a saint must be a spiritual conqueror kind of overcomer — a faithful and obedient even unto death kind of saint.
and said, ‘For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no man separate.” ~ Matthew 19:5-7, TLV
But Yeshua said to them, “Because of your hardness of heart he wrote you this commandment! But from the beginning of creation, God ‘made them male and female. For this reason a man shall leave his father and mother and be joined to his wife, and the two shall become one flesh.’ So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no man separate!” ~ Mark 10:5-9, TLV
Well, praise YeHoVaH!
On January 29, the day my dad was born, I am happy to announce that my literary fiction novel went live on Amazon. This achievement – my first published novel and sixth published book – is so exhilarating.
Torn Asunder: What Happens When YeHoVaH’s Will Is Ignored is an inspirational, emotional, and spiritual literary fiction debut novel that follows Triston and Zemora Lansing’s inner stories. This character-driven story begins from a dark interval of paralyzing depression. Set mostly in Georgia, the story is preoccupied with the convolutions of its major characters’ personalities and their stormy journey through a prolonged spiritual wilderness season that is plagued by frequent demonic warfares, crumbling spiritual houses, and inconceivable human sufferings.
Literary Fiction Facts:
Literary fiction is character-driven instead of plot-driven. Moreover, literary fiction follows the main characters’ inner stories. These two facts are why every bit of action in a character-driven story impacts the main characters. Furthermore, understanding how the action affects the characters is the whole point of telling the story.
Since the characters have to react to what is happening in the story, literary fiction is always a study of the human condition. Additionally, literary fiction often includes political criticism, social commentary, and reflections on humanity. Because literary fiction either explores the difficult political or difficult social issues that control people’s lives, literary fiction is generally considered more serious than genre fiction.
Unlike genre fiction – romances, thrillers, science fiction, etc. – literary fiction doesn’t follow a formula. In fact, Iiterary fiction displays an irreverence for storytelling norms. As a result, a story’s arc may or may not be present, a satisfying ending is no guarantee, and the line between the hero and the villain is often blurry, as is what they are trying to accomplish. Because there is no tidy plot to spell out every character’s motives, literary fiction’s intangible details – metaphor, symbolism, imagery, etc. – play a larger role in telling the story.
10 Using the grace YeHoVaH gave me, I laid a foundation, like a skilled master-builder; and another man is building on it. But let each one be careful how he builds. 11 For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Yeshua the Messiah. 12 Some will use gold, silver or precious stones in building on this foundation; while others will use wood, grass or straw. 13 But each one’s work will be shown for what it is; the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire — the fire will test the quality of each one’s work. 14 If the work someone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward; 15 if it is burned up, he will have to bear the loss: he will still escape with his life, but it will be like escaping through a fire. ~ 1 Corinthians 3:10-15
In the above verses, apostle Paul compares himself to a skilled master builder who laid Yeshua the Messiah’s Ekklesia (Community of Faith) Foundation. Then Paul warns that the preachers and teachers who build on the foundation he laid are responsible for their own work – they will be held accountable for their top-quality work (metaphorically speaking, whatever they built with materials made of gold, silver, and precious stones); likewise, they will be held accountable for their poor-quality work (metaphorically speaking, whatever they built with materials made of wood, hay, and straw). What Paul is saying is that some building materials are better than others. This truth is why he also warns each present and future Gospel preacher or teacher who builds on top of the Foundation he laid to use materials that won’t be consumed by Fire.
Apparently, the Ruach HaKodesh had revealed to Paul the real reason why choosing the best building materials was the wisest decision a Yeshua follower could make – especially if he or she functioned as an apostle, prophet, evangelist, shepherd, or teacher in the Kingdom of YeHoVaH. The Ruach HaKodesh, no doubt, wanted Paul’s contemporaries and successors who preached and taught the Gospel of Yeshua to know that they would be departing from the Foundation, which Paul laid, whenever they built on that Foundation with fables, idle stories, and corrupt doctrines of men that were mingled with the unadulterated doctrine of Yeshua’s Gospel. This kind of building – using fables, idle stories, and corrupt doctrines of men as their building materials – weakened Yeshua’s Gospel. This truth is also why the Ruach HaKodesh, no doubt, wanted Paul’s contemporaries and successors who preached and taught the Gospel of Yeshua to know that their other gospel – their departure from the Gospel apostle Paul taught – would cause those who preached and taught it to suffer loss. Without exception, their building work would fail the Fire test.
The other bad news is that, in addition to the preachers and teachers’ inferior building materials failing the Fire test, these preachers and teachers also would be held accountable for the ways their substandard building work affected the Yeshua believers they preached to and taught – especially if their preaching and teaching made or kept Yeshua’s believers spiritually immature and unfaithful. Lastly, their poor-quality building work also would cause them to lose the heavenly rewards that overcomers earn. However, the one good news is that the apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds, and teachers who preached and taught a wood, grass, and hay gospel were still saved, despite the fact that their substandard building work was (or would be) consumed by Fire.
The inconvenient truth is that everyone today who is born again and saved has been called to be an evangelist. Even so, it is irrefutable that each believer in Yeshua is either a preacher or teacher (or both). As such, Paul is speaking to every evangelist about the top-quality or poor-quality building materials that today’s evangelists use to build on Yeshua the Messiah’s Ekklesia (Community of Faith) Foundation that Paul laid. For this reason, every preacher and teacher should always build with top-quality materials – should always preach and teach the kind of Gospel that helps to make believers in Yeshua’s Community of Faith spiritually mature and faithfully obedient. If they don’t, these preachers and teachers will suffer loss.
Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him, and he with Me. ~ Revelation 3:20
No one is reborn or saved by Grace through faith if he or she only agrees that the Bible is true but never acts on the preached Word – is never moved to repent and become totally committed to the Word’s Author (YeHoVaH) and to His Son nor moved to surrender and become totally obedient to YeHoVaH’s Commandments – all of them. The less than one hundred percent committed person, as well as the less than one hundred percent obedient person, is merely operating in the Mental Assent realm.
Sadly, every mental assenter who claims that because he or she believes the Bible is true means that he or she also believes in YeHoVaH and Yeshua, is lying to him or herself – especially when it is obvious that each mental assenter’s actions deny what he or she claims. The uncomfortable truth is that every mental assenter’s actions will deny what he or she claims because he or she has never been regenerated (reborn) or saved.
Now, while the Bible does say that salvation is a free gift, this biblical truth has come to mean to some people that salvation is “easy.” On the contrary, the Bible makes it clear that everyone who accepts Yeshua as his or her Lord and Savior is then reborn and saved, and the main result of his or her rebirth and salvation is a noticeably changed life.
The incorrect interpretation of what the Bible says about regeneration and salvation is found in modern evangelicalism. Today’s evangelists teach that all a lost soul needs to do to get into Heaven is to repeat their sinner’s prayer and he or she will have what this person prayed for – instant regeneration and salvation. This unbiblical teaching – the sinner’s prayer – has produced far too many people who have fallen prey to an “easy believism” belief. The foremost reason why the “easy believism” in modern evangelicalism’s sinner’s prayer never produces reborn and saved believers is that the invitation to repeat a sinner’s prayer never requires unbelievers to repent.
The bottom line is that there is no regeneration and no salvation without repentance. There is no repentance if someone never has a heartfelt conviction about his or her sins. Only a person who is genuinely convicted about sin will realize how offensive his or her sinful actions, emotions, beliefs, and lifestyle are to YeHoVaH. In other words, this person will feel contrite. His or her deep sorrow will cause this person to grieve over how offensive and rebellious his or her sinful actions, emotions, beliefs, and lifestyle are to YeHoVaH.
Moreover, it is only after a person has become truly sorrowful unto repentance that he or she is then reborn and saved. That’s right! it is authentic repentance that leads to the forgiveness of sin, the human spirit’s regeneration (new birth), the living soul’s salvation (the reconciliation and restoration of a believer’s spiritual fellowship with YeHoVaH), justification, and sanctification. This biblical and spiritual process is why no one can turn away from sin towards YeHoVaH and His holiness if he or she has not first repented his or her sins. Furthermore, this repentance truth is why genuine repentance is not simply a “rethinking” of someone’s relationship to sin and YeHoVaH after that person repeats a sinner’s prayer.
Once again, there is no regeneration and no salvation without repentance. Put differently, there can be no obvious change for the better in anyone’s former nature and lifestyle without that person’s real repentance experience. For this reason, an unrepentant believer in Yeshua and YeHoVaH – anyone who is not profoundly sorry about sinning; a person who does not really regret sinning – is still unregenerate and unsaved. As such, there is no way that this person can turn away from sin and turn toward YeHoVaH and His Holiness.
Sadly, all mental assenters are still unregenerate and unsaved. Once again, mental assenters only agree that the Bible is true but never act on the preached Word. They are never moved to repent and become totally committed to the Word’s Author (YeHoVaH) and to His Son, nor are they moved to surrender and become totally obedient to all of YeHoVaH’s Commandments.
In most cases, mental assenters are unregenerate and unsaved because they didn’t hear sermons on the true meaning of repentance, which would include instructions on what it means to receive Yeshua, what it means to confess Him as Lord and Savior, or how to be faithful to Him and obedient to YeHoVaH’s Commandments. These mental assenters were only asked to repeat a sinner’s prayer. However, there are also some mental assenters who did hear sermons on the true meaning of repentance but decided to pick and choose what they want to believe in the Word.
Lastly, those Christian evangelists who teach that a lost soul can be instantly saved when he or she repeats a sinner’s prayer have misused Revelation 3:20. First, in this verse, Yeshua is speaking to the confused, carnal, and lukewarm Laodicean who were reborn and saved believers who desperately needed to repent their current lifestyle. This truth is why YeHoVaH never intended for Revelation 3:20 to be used as an evangelistic sinner’s prayer Gospel tract that only encourages an unsaved person to invite Yeshua into their hearts. The best evangelistic Gospel tracts contain a succinct presentation of YeHoVaH’s Law, the Gospel of Yeshua, and a call for the readers to REPENT so that they can accept and receive Yeshua HaMashiach as their Lord and Savior.
Secondly, but most importantly, the word “heart” is not mentioned in Revelation 3:20. Moreover, the confused, carnal, lukewarm believers in the Laodicean ekklesia never asked Yeshua to do anything for them – especially not to come into their hearts because He was already there. He, however, was excluded from their fellowship assemblies. So the Laodicean ekklesia needed to be restored – needed to repair their relationship with Yeshua by improving and expanding on their previous relationship with Him, beginning with including Him in their fellowship assemblies. This biblical truth is why it is Yeshua who, in Revelation 3:20, does the asking. He asks the Laodiceans to hear His Voice. He promises to restore their fellowship with Him if they would hear His Voice AND open the door that allows Him to communicate with all of them at the same time.
When compared to Revelation’s Laodicean ekklesia, it is obvious that the problem with mental assenters is that they are not carnal believers, as many Christians call them. Mental assenters are unsaved individuals who are victims of an “easy believism” belief, as it relates tothe complete process of salvation. In other words, an “easy believism” belief is an unbiblical interpretation of Yeshua’s Gospel, repentance, regeneration, salvation, faith, and obedience. Therefore, today’s mental assenters are not confused, carnal, or lukewarm Laodicean believers who spiritually closed the fellowship door in Yeshua’s Face. Mental assenters are still unrepentant unbelievers – sinners who never had their old natures (spirits) reborn and who never had their living souls saved.
Loved ones, though very eager to write to you about our common salvation, I felt it necessary to write to you urging you to continue to contend for the faith that was once for all handed down to the kedoshim [holy ones]. For certain people have secretly slipped in—those who from long ago have been marked out for this judgment. They are ungodly people, who pervert the grace of our God into indecency and deny our only Master and Lord, Yeshua the Messiah.
Now I wish to remind you—though you have come to know all things—that the Lord, once having saved a people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed those who did not believe. ~ Jude verses 3-5
‘Christians who celebrate Halloween, Christmas, Easter, and all the other major pagan holidays that have crept into Catholic and Protestant Churches should study all the Bible verses that prove the ‘once saved, always saved’doctrine is heresy. Nowhere in the Bible does anyone teach the ‘once saved, always saved’ doctrine. This heretical doctrine is the lie Christians use to assure themselves that their eternal security is guaranteedregardless of the sins they continue to commit – like celebrating secular holidays that are rooted in pagan traditions.
The Scripture that is most commonly quoted to support the false doctrine of ‘once saved, always saved’ is John 10:28, which is as follows: “I give them eternal life! They will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of My hand.” On the surface, this verse might seem like Yeshua is saying that once we are saved we will always be saved – especially since there is no one who can snatch any believers in Yeshua out of His Hand. However, the uncomfortable truth is that we can let go of His Hand and, as a result, live outside of Him – no longer abide in Him. It is written:
If anyone does not abide in Me, he is thrown away like a branch and is dried up. Such branches are picked up and thrown into the fire and burned. ~ John 15:6
If we can never lose our salvation, then why did Yeshua emphasize how important it is to maintain an abiding faith – an enduring, steadfast, unchanging faith – in Him so that we could avoid becoming branches that have dried up and, thus, must be cut off the Vine? Likewise, if we can never lose our salvation, then why did Paul warn the Roman non-Jewish believers in Yeshua (see Romans 11:17-22) that they, like the chosen but unfaithful Jewish people whom YeHoVaH once saved when He brought them out of Egypt, can be chopped off the Olive tree if they, too, become unfaithful?
The New Testament’s lost souls who are saved by Grace through faith must understand that their salvation is NOT unconditional. Believers in Yeshua must fulfill all the conditions of salvation in order to completely receive the promise of salvation. This truth is why Paul not only tells the Colossian believers in Yeshua that they must continue in the faith (Colossians 1:23) but also reminds the Philippian believers in Yeshua that they need to work out their salvation (Philippians 2:12). Additionally, Jude expresses the same truth. He emphasizes that maintaining the faith YeHoVaH gave lost souls so that they could be saved by His Grace (Yeshua) is HARD WORK, and that is why Jude urges saved believers to continue to CONTEND for the faith (Jude 3, 5).
If we need to continually fight for or struggle to keep our faith AFTER we are saved, then it is possible that, if we lose our faith, we can also lose our salvation. No doubt, the possibility of losing our salvation after our faith is gone is why Paul tells Timothy to “… fight the good fight, holding onto faith and a good conscience. By rejecting these, some have suffered shipwreck regarding their faith” (1 Timothy 1:18-19). Without a doubt, Paul is not teaching the ‘once saved, always saved’ doctrine.
Why would Paul, Jude, and Yeshua stress in the Bible the importance of faithful endurance if the believers who did not endure to the end – did not continually fight to keep their faith – would be saved anyway? The bottom line is that no one who is saved by Grace through faith will receive the promise of salvation if he or she hasn’t held on to the faith he or she was first given.
While this blog article doesn’t deal with every Bible verse that proves ‘once saved, always saved’ is a heretical doctrine, enough Bible verses have been mentioned to let the discerning believer know said doctrine isn’t biblical. From Yeshua’s day until today, there have been many saved souls that have fallen away from the faith, and it is prophesied that many saved souls in the end times will also fall away from the faith – will become apostates. That Divine Truth is why Yeshua commands His Followers, then and now, to stay alert – to stay awake, spiritually speaking. That Divine Truth is also why Paul urges Yeshua’s Followers to continually work out their salvation so that they might avoid being lulled into a false sense of security – the belief that they will always be saved – and end up putting their salvation in jeopardy.
And He said to them, “Rightly did Isaiah prophesy about you hypocrites, as it is written,
‘This people honors Me with their lips but their heart is far from Me. And in vain they worship Me, teaching as doctrines the commandments of men.’
Having left behind the commandment of [YeHoVaH], you hold on to the tradition of men.”
He was also telling them, “You set aside the commands of [YeHoVaH], in order that you may validate your own tradition. ~ Mark 7:6-9 (also read Isaiah 29:13 and Matthew 15:8-9)
but Jacob journeyed to Sukkot and built a house for himself, and for his livestock he made booths. That is the reason that place is called Sukkot. ~ Genesis 33:17
For a week now, I have seen several Facebook postings in which the poster(s) has said the same thing, or similarly worded, as I have done in the above image. On a few of those postings, I made several variations of the following:
Evidently, the poster doesn’t know, or the poster refuses to believe or accept, that Christmas is a man-made holiday and season. It is common knowledge that Yeshua (a.k.a., Christ, Jesus, and Jesus Christ) wasn’t born on December 25, yet countless Christians not only continue to celebrate Christmas and its season but also continue to lie about their Savior’s birth just so that they can feel justified in keeping a pagan holiday.
Christians’ Bible makes it clear that it was too cold and rainy during the ninth month (Kislev) of Israel (November – December on the Gregorian calendar). Ezra 10:9 and Jeremiah 36:22 both mention that in the month of Kislev the weather was rainy and cold, so shepherds would not have had their sheep outside on December 25 because, by December 25, Israel would have been into its tenth month, Tevet (or Tebeth), which is December – January on the Gregorian calendar. If it was too cold and rainy in Kislev, then it was even colder in the month of Tevet – especially where December 25 is concerned, which is when Christendom and the secular world claim Yeshua was born.
The uncomfortable truth is that Yeshua was born on a feast day that the Jewish people have always celebrate – the Feast of Tabernacles (when He physically came to Earth and tabernacled with the Hebrews). The Feast of Tabernacles is one of the seven annual Feast Days (Moedim or Appointed Times) YeHoVaH (God) established, and the Jewish Yeshua kept every one of these feast days, in more than one way.
It is more likely that YeHoVaH is using people’s current gift-buying frenzy to reach the lukewarm, disobedient secular believers who keep Christmas – an unholy tradition of men. This year’s gift-buying frenzy started because some retailers predict that there would not be enough items to choose from the closer folks get to December 25. There can be no doubt that YeHoVaH wants these people to stop celebrating Christmas, as well as all the other secular holidays, because His Son wasn’t born on the pagan Gentile holiday known as Christmas, He didn’t die on the pagan Good Friday or rise from the grave on the pagan Easter Sunday.
Now, there are plenty of believers who keep telling other believers that YeHoVaH (God) did not tell anyone (neither Jew nor Gentile) to celebrate Christmas, Good Friday, Easter, etc. because these holidays are pagan. Unfortunately, more Christians continue to keep these pagan holidays than the saints who keep the biblical Feast Days YeHoVaH commanded His people to keep.
If Christians really believe they are supposed to live holy and righteously as Yeshua did, then why are so many of them still celebrating Christmas, Good Friday, Easter, Halloween, etc.? Yeshua never celebrated these, or other, traditions of men and neither did His Disciples and Apostles. Furthermore, there are plenty of Bible verses that prove to everyone who believes in YeHoVaH and Yeshua that Yeshua kept all of YeHoVaH’s Feast Days, as well as kept the Mosaic Law.
For example, the Torah (Old Testament) contains the stories about the Israelites’ captivity and exodus. Historically speaking, the Israelites began celebrating the Feast of Tabernacleslong before Yeshua was born on the Feast of Tabernacles, as well as many centuries before Christians made Christmas a holiday. The Hebrews celebrated the holy Feast of Tabernacles because YeHoVaH established this feast day as a special holy time of the year for them to remember He had the sons of Israel live in booths when He brought them out from the land of Egypt (see Leviticus 23:42-43). Therefore, there was no need for the Hebrews to create a day and a season to celebrate the birth of Yeshua – the day He physically began to tabernacle among them – because the day Yeshua was born was one of the already established seven annual feasts days they were commanded to keep.
The uncomfortable truth is that everyone is lying who says Christmas is when Yeshua was born and that His birth is why they celebrate Christmas and the Christmas season. Those who know Yeshua wasn’t born on December 25 yet say it doesn’t matter if they or the masses believe Christmas is as good as any day to celebrate Yeshua’s birthday have deceived themselves. The undeniable truth is that Christmas and its season were created from the pagan traditions of men – lies.
For those who don’t believe putting up a decorated Christmas tree is a pagan Christmas tradition, there are many other traditions associated with cutting down a Christmas tree, putting it in homes, and decorating it. There are the Christmas traditions of kissing under a mistletoe, cutting down holly trees and hanging holly plants in homes for good luck, hanging wreaths, caroling from house to house (a.k.a., wassailing), hanging ivy plants in pots inside homes, burning yule logs, believing in Odin – a pagan god who often was depicted as a chubby old man with a white beard who wore a long flowing cloak (i.e., Santa Claus), and gift-giving. Every one of these pagan traditions of men is an aspect of pagan holidays that were adapted into Christmas celebrations in the early years.
Now, Christians should already know that the only one who can establish HOLY DAYS and HOLY SEASONS is YeHoVaH, and the only HOLY DAYS and HOLY SEASONS He established for humanity are His regular and high Sabbaths and His seven annual Feast Days (Moedim or Appointed Times). Every one of His seven Moedim is about His Son, Yeshua. These biblical and Divine Truths are why YeHoVaH has never given any men or women the authority to create or designated what they call Holy Days. That is why their Christmas, Good Friday, Easter, and other special “festive” days are just holidays.
In this century, as previously stated, it is common knowledge that Yeshua’s birth was not on December 25 because this day is when the pagan gods are remembered. That is why it should be evident to Christians that a Holy, Omniscient YeHoVaH, who knew beforehand everything that would happen on Earth, would not allow His Holy Son to be born on a day that pagan gods are remembered.
Plenty of Messianic Jews celebrate Yeshua’s birthday during the Feast of Tabernacles, and the following six reasons are why:
1. Many Messianic Jews believe that the manger that is mentioned in the New Testament was more likely a sukkah or tabernacle – the kind the Israelites built during the biblical feast of Sukkot or Feast of Tabernacles (see Leviticus 23:33–43). The biblical connection between a manger and a sukkah is found in Genesis 33:17. The writer of Genesis says that Jacob built booths for his livestock. The Hebrew writer is letting Gentiles know that sukkah (plural, sukkot) can also mean a barn for livestock, a manger, and a temporary shelter similar to the one the Israelites dwelt in during the biblically commanded Feast of Sukkot (Tabernacles).
2. Sukkot of the Feast of Tabernacles provides a deeper understanding of the Bible verse, “ …the Word became flesh and tabernacled among us…” (John 1:14a). Additionally, for the Hebrews, Sukkot is the season of their joy. That is why Sukkot or the Feast of Tabernacles was the more appropriate time to for the angels to declare ““Glory to God in the highest, and on earth shalom to men of good will.” (Luke 2:14). Indeed, it also is written:
Shout joyfully to [YeHoVaH], all the earth. Break forth, sing for joy, and sing praises. Sing praises to [YeHoVaH] with the harp, with the harp and a voice of melody. With trumpets and sound of the shofar blast a sound before the King, [YeHoVaH] ~ Psalm 98:4-6
Since Sukkot not only is a festival of joy but also the “Festival of the Nations,” when the angel told the Jewish shepherds to not “…be afraid! For behold, I proclaim Good News to you, which will be great joy to all the people” (Luke 2:10), that angel was actually speaking a Feast of Tabernacles (Sukkot) greeting to them.
3. This joy to the world truth is why, as previously stated, shepherds would not have been out in any field with their sheep in the dead of winter in Israel (i.e., December 25).
4. Also, since the Romans would want to have as many Hebrews participate in their census, they would not have had people traveling during Israel’s rainy or cold months. That is why it would be more likely that King Herod used the time of the Festival of Sukkot to have a census – the time when Jewish families in Jerusalem and those that traveled to Jerusalem celebrated this feast instead of on Chanukah (Hanukkah), which is the festival that falls around December 25 on the Gregorian calendar. One of the reasons why King Herod would not have chosen on Chanukah as the time for the Roman census is, according to biblical historians and scholars, because King Herod loathed and feared the Hasmoneans – the descendants of the Maccabee family.
5. Sukkot or Feast of Tabernacles is the only Feast in which YeHoVaH commands the Jewish people to be joyful (see Deuteronomy 16:13-15). Looks like YeHoVaH not only established Sukkot or Feast of Tabernacles to be a remembrance of the time when He brought the Israelites out of Egypt but also established Sukkot or the Feast of Tabernacles as to be a future seven-day birthday celebration for His Son, Yeshua.
6. The day that follows the seven days of the Feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot is called “The Eighth Day” (see Leviticus 23:39). Since Yeshua more than likely was born on the first day of the Feast of Tabernacles or Sukkot, He would have had to be circumcised on the “Eighth Day,” which literally would fulfill the Scripture that says, “In the eighth day the flesh of his foreskin is to be circumcised” (Leviticus 12:3).
Once again, if Christians really believe they are supposed to live holy and righteously as Yeshua did, then knowing that He kept YeHoVaH’s seven annual Feast Days, Sabbaths, and the rest of the Mosaic Law should be more than enough information that would make them want to stop celebrating Christmas, Good Friday, Easter, Halloween, etc. The reasons why they don’t stop are because they haven’t heard anyone teach or preach the common knowledge pertaining to Yeshua’s birth not being on December 25, haven’t studied the Bible verses about the kind of weather Israel had in their months that correspond to the western world’s month of December, haven’t studied the Bible verses about YeHoVaH’s seven annual Feast Days, haven’t studied how Yeshua already fulfilled most of these seven Feast Days and will fulfill the others in the end times, or, as lukewarm, disobedient secular believes, don’t care what YeHoVaH established or commanded – they reject His established and commanded Feast Days and Sabbaths so that they not only can validate their own traditions which are rooted in unholy pagan traditions but also so that they can use their traditions to teach lies about what day Yeshua was born and the season in which He was born. Selah!