Mishpachah Yeshua Newsletter

A Newsletter To The Family Of Jesus From Restoration Ministries

The Hebraic family is not simply an individual or private matter.
Rather, it is an institution in which the whole community has a stake.
Thus, the Hebrew word “mishpachah,” meaning family, not only refers to parents and children,
but to the whole extended family worldwide in the body of “Yeshua”—our Jesus.

[click here for a printable copy]

February 2000 Topic: Obedient Trust

Dear Friends,
The January Mishpachah Yeshua had hardly been sent out when the Lord impressed on me an important process in authenticating our love for Him: consecration. As I began to write this letter, Alaska Airlines Flight 261 crashed off the coast of Pt. Mugu, CA. When CNN showed the crash site I felt my heart stop. Let me explain.
In Restoring the Early Church we recounted the story of Dick Shand, a Navy pilot stationed with me at Pt. Mugu. Dick was the first person I’d ever met who was committed to follow Jesus no matter what the cost. Twenty-six years ago Dick gave up his life to save five others, crashing in the same area where the Alaska Airlines flight went down.
The day I flew the memorial wreath out to Dick’s crash site was the day God reached into my life and began to change me dramatically. Now, through that news report, the Lord seemed to be reminding me of an important fact: Someone I had known had been consecrated to Him. Dick was authentic. My first role model to follow Jesus had died to save others.

"Consecrate yourselves and be holy, because I am the Lord your God. Keep my decrees and follow them. I am the Lord, who makes you holy” (Lev. 20:7,8).
Have you read David Wilkerson’s latest letter, “The Mantle of Elijah?” I know many of you are on his mailing list and are as blessed as Sue and I have been. (If you’d like to be added you can call 903-963-8626 or website: www.tscpulpitseries.org.)
In the 1980’s David wrote about “The Elijah Company.” These were people who were being set apart for our Lord’s purposes. To the “Church system” they were being branded as “troublers.” The Bible tells us that wicked King Ahab gave Elijah that distinction: “When [Ahab] saw Elijah, he said to him, ‘Is that you, you troubler of Israel?’” (1 Kings 18:17).
Just prior to receiving “The Elijah Company” letter, the Holy Spirit had repeatedly impressed on me that the future for Sue and me would be understood in light of this passage: “And so Jesus also suffered outside the city gate to make the people holy [consecrated] through his own blood. Let us, then, go to him outside the camp, bearing the disgrace he bore. For here we do not have an enduring city, but we are looking for the city that is to come.
Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise—the fruit of lips that confess his name. And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased” (Heb. 13:12-16).
As we discussed the above passage and “The Elijah Com-pany” letter with those Sue and I were close to, we each realized that our Lord had been having us make a series of choices—choices that made the Lord all the more dear but also made us objects of false accusation and ridicule by those who ran the religious system.
What I didn’t see clearly then but do now is that with each choice of obedience we were becoming increasingly consecrated for His purposes. Scripturally, to be consecrated is to be set apart for the Lord’s purposes.

Consecration is pressing on to be found called, chosen, and faithful
Consecration is our Lord’s method of calling, choosing, and enabling His people to be faithful in fulfilling His purposes. If you have seen the funnel diagram in Restoring the Early Church, consecration is like moving toward and into the stem of the funnel, where you are fully available for His use.
In a previous letter we wrote about the importance of being called, chosen, and faithful: “They will make war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will overcome them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings—and with him will be his called, chosen and faithful followers” (Rev. 17:14).
In that letter we wrote that not everyone whom our Lord calls is chosen (see Matt. 22:14). And not everyone who is chosen is found to be faithful. The progression of called, chosen, and faithful is a pilgrimage with our Lord of increasing consecration. In essence, it is each person’s path through the narrow gate.

Consecration: A Choice You Make
Although our Lord may have different steps of consecration for each person, you must choose whether or not to obey. A familiar step of consecration  is repentance: Turning away from your sins and what the world offers and turning toward the way of the Lord.
Please review again the seven realities of Experiencing God listed in the January 2000 Mishpachah Yeshua. Are not each of the realities steps of increasing consecration? The ultimate goal: to personally experience God!
The Older Testament contains many examples of God’s people being consecrated, that is, set apart for Him. Today, sadly, ignorance of the OT is why so many “Christians” we meet are satisfied with being “called” but so few press on to be found faithful in what God has “chosen” them to do. 

Spiritual Super Bowl:
Lessons from the Football Field
If a football field could represent the consecration process of being called, chosen, and faithful, then being called would represent the area from the back of your end zone out to your 20-yard line. Chosen represents the yardage from your own 20-yard line to the other team’s 20-yard line.
Being found faithful begins as you enter the last 20 yards called the “red zone” and press into God’s end zone. In football the “red zone” is the hardest place from which to score a touchdown. In fact, statistics are kept to inform fans how well a team does in scoring from within the opponent’s “red zone.” Spiri-tually, to be found faithful requires a relational responsibility with our Lord, the cost of which many are not willing to pay.
The obvious in football is: You can’t win unless you score! As we share the truths of the Hebraic Restoration, we encounter many whose teachers taught them only the importance of being called and chosen. In other words, they’ve been told that the playing field went only from their end zone to the beginning of other team’s “red zone.” 
They’re sadly surprised to find out that there are another 20 yards to the spiritual football field. And there is an end zone too!!!

Another way to view the “chosen” area between both red zones: Once you press on beyond your own “red zone”, each 10-yard line represents one of the seven realities of Experiencing God. (See diagram.)

The Mantle Passed from Elijah to Elisha
Friends, to get through the red zone into the end zone often requires the help of those who have consecrated themselves and been found faithful. It takes a follower of Jesus to help others into the end zone to find the victory our Lord promises. His promises are not just words in the Bible but the reality of experience as His truth is lived.
Paul knew the Hebrew Bible well. He understood how im-portant the role modeling of loving trust is in order for others to make it through the spiritual “red zone”: “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ” (1 Cor. 11:1; see also Phil.3:17, 1 Tim. 4: 12).
Because Elisha saw Elijah trust God for the miraculous, the young disciple could trust God as well. Yet no matter how great Elijah’s miracles were, Elisha needed to experience the miracles that would be borne by his own trust. As Wilkerson writes, “Each new generation must seek the Lord for its own experience of the Holy Spirit and its own enduement of power from Him.” This is the mantle we must pass on to the next generation: Having seen the miracles of our day, they must discover their own from our Lord.
Where are the Elijahs of today? Take a look in a mirror: You are “Elijah” if you want to be! “Elijah was a man just like [you]. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced its crops” (James  5:17,18). If you don’t see “Eli-jah” in the mirror, review the seven realities again.
Elijah’s life shows us that increasing consecration brings with it increased suffering. The field of consecration is not an easy field on which to play. If you make it to the other end zone you will suffer: “To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps (1 Pet. 2:21).

“Elijahs” Unaware
We encounter many whose faithfulness has brought them into God’s end zone. Sadly, quite a few don’t realize that their devotion to God has consecrated them beyond their teachers. Rather than seeking the Lord for needy ones to disciple, they are still depending on teachers to fill them with yet more knowledge!
Because of his devotion to God and His Word, the Psalmist understood this: “I have more insight than all my teachers, for I meditate on your statutes. I have more understanding than the elders, for I obey your precepts. I have kept my feet from every evil path so that I might obey your word” (Psa. 119:99-101).
God may have brought you to such a point of faithfulness to Him and His Word that He is asking you to be the example rather than to look for one. Go find some “Elishas’” and show them how to run the length of the field!

“It’s Dangerous Outside”
Others of you may still be “inside the city gates” and don’t know what it means “to bear the disgrace our Lord bore.” You may be satisfied with being called “Christian” and falsely believe that God is delighted with you for even being on His football field. Ask yourself, “Where am I on the field? My end zone? God’s end zone? Some place in between?”
Those inside the city gates often ask us, “What fruit has the Hebraic Restoration produced?” Large numbers embracing something seems to be the prevalent sign of modern success. Our commission from God, however, was to “Share this message.” What Sue and I know is that we have no control over the soil on which the truth falls. We do know that one seed can bear 30, 60, and 100 fold when it finds the right soil!
Sue and I know that the seed is good because we know that God gave us this message to share. The reliable soil is found in the faithful who are going through the “red zone” into God’s end zone. Paul told Timothy to find reliable men and entrust them with truth: “And the things you have heard me say in the presence of many witnesses entrust to reliable men who will also be qualified to teach others” (2 Tim. 2: 2).
Remember that to teach Hebraicly is to lead by example, not to lecture at. Those who teach inside the gates are already leading by the wrong example, lecturing. By their action—failure to role model what they teach—they are instilling that mere knowledge of God’s Word is the same as obedience to it. These teachers may “trust” or rather, “believe”, but they have not pressed on into “trusting obedience” and “loving trust.” If they had, they would be leading people to take God’s love into the world rather than trying to send them.

Immanuel: Is God with You?
If you have found yourself somewhere short of the seventh  reality—“You come to know God by experience as you obey Him and He accomplishes His work through you”—I trust that you have repented and cried out for help from our Father. The Lord’s name, Immanuel, encompasses so much more than its literal meaning, “God with us.” To those striving for God’s end zone, His Name means, “I don’t want to go on unless God is with us!”
Consider Moses. He knew how futile it would be to go on without God: Moses said to [God], ‘If your Presence does not go with us, do not send us up from here. How will anyone know that you are pleased with me and with your people unless you go with us? What else [but God’s Presence] will distinguish me and your people from all the other people on the face of the earth?’ (Exo. 33:15,16).
God’s Presence results in His guidance and blessing. His Presence alone distinguishes His people from all others. Today the Presence of God is manifested through His indwelling Holy Spirit. The Spirit flows as a stream of living water through those with whom the Father has consummated His covenant. The Holy Spirit prompts and empowers you to do good works, fulfilling His purposes and bringing high praises to the Father from the mouths of grateful people (see Heb. 13:15,16).
I can assure you that living out the Hebraic truths leads to experiencing God. You not only see Him working, you also cooperate with Him. This leads to exuberant praise that flows from increasingly consecrated and grateful hearts.

God’s Consecration Process
The Narrow Path Less Taken
Many passages of Scripture illustrate how God selects and uses people for His purposes. Take a look at the words “consecrate” and “consecration” in your concordance. I’d like to share just a few examples of people whom God consecrated:
After Moses received the Ten Commandments and came down from the mountain, he confronted the Israelites worshiping a golden calf. We are told in Exodus 32:25-29 that Moses proclaimed, “‘Whoever is for the Lord, come to me.’ And all the Levites rallied to him.” The Levites then went throughout the camp killing disobedient brothers, friends and neighbors. When they were done Moses assured them, “You have been set apart to the Lord today, for you were against your own sons and brothers, and he has blessed you this day.” Their act of obedience consecrated them to the Lord. 
When Moab seduced Israel into sexual immorality (see Num. 25), “The Lord said to Moses, ‘Take all the leaders of these people, kill them and expose them in broad daylight before the Lord, so that the Lord's fierce anger may turn away from Israel’” (v.4). What would happen today if the adulterous clergy and homosexual priests were confronted by men consecrated to our Lord? Even Aaron’s grandson, Phine-has, speared an Israelite man and Moabite woman as they lay together carnally.  
Remember, our Lord loves to be glorified as people’s testimonies recount His works. God would not have gotten much glory if Gideon went into battle with 32,000 warriors. Only when the Lord had separated out just 300 consecrated men was He ready to do battle with the Midianites (see Judges 6,7). These three examples offer some of God’s ways to consecrate people. And consecration always leads to a life of praise.

“My mouth is filled with your praise, declaring your splendor all day long” (Psa. 71:8).
When you study the pro-cess of consecration in the Older Testament, you come to understand that our Lord’s greatest glory comes when He has brought you to a point in which there is nothing you can trust but Him. At this point He will act! Often, our Lord recruits through trials a consecrated person or someone He will consecrate before He uses him or her. Afterwards, whenever with joyful exuberance they recount His wonderful faithfulness, their testimony becomes the Hallel, the high praises to God.
Please read Psalm 149. Verse 1 commands, “Praise [Hallel] the Lord. Sing to the Lord a new song, his praise in the assembly of the saints.” The Psalmist goes on to describe a very exuberant expression of praise to our Lord. This type of praise becomes a double-edged sword. Today, in spiritual warfare, our grateful and exuberant praise strikes the very heart of Satan, who will do anything to keep God’s people from praising their King. He does this by de-emphasizing the importance of being found faithful.
Those on the road to hell  don’t hallel. Why? Because they do not experience God in their daily lives. They see little or nothing to be grateful for. They may even attend congregations with lively worship, but if they don’t experience God, they have no gratitude in their hearts.

• Are you a worshiping resenter?
Resenters who worship  have not left their own end zone. They secretly resent God for somehow having failed them. Their hands may be lifted high but their hearts are very low. God doesn’t accept outward praise from disbelieving hearts: “These people honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me” (Matt. 15:8). If you have nothing to praise God for in private then don’t go public in appearing to be worshipful. Repent!
Another way you can recognize people who secretly resent God: When trouble comes, they find they cannot trust God. Their Christianity is built on sand and cannot withstand times of testing. I am still waiting for the public confession of the Y2K fear-mongers who defamed our Father by sending fear-based mail or email. When you defame God’s character without repenting, the Bible gives enough indication that our Lord sends these people a spirit of delusion. If you know of anyone who used fear or gave way to fear, encourage them to repent while there is time.

Jesus’s Call for Consecration
When you accept the shed blood of Jesus as the atonement on your behalf, that is the call. You still need to be found faithful in the purposes for which the Lord has chosen you (see Eph. 2:8-10).

Please read Matthew 10:34-41.
• The Lord Jesus was found to be faithful in all the Father required of Him: “He was faithful to the one who appointed him” (Heb. 3:2a). Yet, His faithfulness put Him at odds with His family and the religious powers. He forewarned us that it would happen to us also. Your consecration often puts you at odds with your family and friends. This is most often the testing found in getting through your own “red zone”.
As the Lord consecrates you through obedience, you may be misperceived as rejecting family and close friends. Like Phinehas and the Levites whom Moses recruited, you too are asked for obedience in the face of tremendous personal cost. (Remember step 5 of Experiencing God: the crisis of belief.)

• Jesus asks each one who seeks to be found faithful to pick up his or her own death instrument and follow Him. Nobody can hand it to you. How you pick it up and embrace it indicates how far down the spiritual football field you have come. That is, are you picking it up because of “trust”, “trusting obedience”, or “loving trust”?
This is the essence of David Wilkerson’s recent letter: “Don’t look back to past revivals or miracles done in the past. Don’t travel to some conference looking for miracles.” Scrutinize your own life and discern where something remains unconsecrated to our Lord. 

• When you think of being consecrated for the Lord’s purposes, consider this paraphase of Paul’s words to Timothy: “Among God’s called-out ones are people who are like gold and silver [people entering God’s end zone], but others like wood and clay [people stopping and not being found faithful]; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble. If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy [consecrated], useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work” (2 Tim. 2:20,21).

A Consecrated Life
1. Refrain from ambitions that are based on wishful thinking. If God isn’t commanding or guiding you, don’t do it!
2. Stop worrying about the future. Worry affronts the character of God. He knows He is faithful! Do you? As my mother repeatedly told us, “Once you give it to God, don’t take it back!” Praying is not only speaking to God, it is entrusting Him with your need.
3. Offer exuberant praise regardless of your circumstances. Exuberant praise is more than singing a lively praise song. It springs from the emotion of a grateful heart.
A grateful heart understands the words of James: “Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance. Persever-ance must finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything” (1:2-4). If you’re unable to be exhuberant, find out why.
4. Your speech reveals your consecration: “For out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks” (Mat. 12:34b). If the speech (and heart) of others are more intense than yours toward the things of God, then they are further down the field than you are. Ask for help!
Fear of what others think is one hindrance: “Fearing human beings is a snare; but he who trusts in the Lord will be raised high” (Pro.29:25).
“Pet sins” is another: “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us” (Heb. 12:1).

The Dart Board

Over the years as I have taught men I’ve tried to create  visualizations for them to understand from where their topics of conversation emanate. Picture a dart board. The “bull’s eye” represents biblical ambitions that glorify God and extend His Kingdom. “One ring out” are types of conversations that emerge from a life whose ambitions are for God.
“Two rings out” conversations are filled with impersonal facts anyone could read or hear for himself. There is no real life experience borne from ambitions for God, and whatever spiritual knowledge they produce has cost them nothing.
Those whose ambitions are toward God will see their workplace or school as a place to represent Christ to the people they encounter. As a result their conversations will reflect this focus and their prayer requests will reflect a desire for life-giving opportunities with specific individuals with whom they interact.
What do your conversations reveal about your consecration?
Mike & Sue Dowgiewicz