STEPPING STONES to the KINGDOM of YHWH ( Repentance)


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"YaHuWaH created the cure even before the illness," and the concept of repentance was prepared in advance of man and built into the very fabric of creation, so that when one transgresses the will of his Creator, a path is left open for him to return.

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STEPPING STONES to the KINGDOM of YHWH ( Repentance)

  1. 1. ‫נחם‬ nôcham no'-kham H5164; ruefulness, that is, desistance: - repentance. REPENTANCE
  2. 2. The MEM, the letter of "water" (mayim) symbolizes the fountain of the Divine Wisdom of Torah. Just as the waters of a physical fountain (spring) ascend from their unknown subterranean source (the secret of the abyss in the account of Creation) to reveal themselves on earth, so does the fountain of wisdom express the power of flow from the superconscious source. In the terminology of Kabbalah, this flow is from keter ("crown") to chochmah ("wisdom"). The stream is symbolized in Proverbs as "the flowing stream, the source of wisdom." The name of the letter HEI appears in the verse, "Take [hei] for yourselves seed." "Take" (hei) expresses revelation of self in the act of giving of oneself to another. Giving to others in the form of self-expression is the ultimate gift of self. In the secret of the letter gimmel, the rich man gives of himself to the poor man in the form of charity. The highest form of charity is when the giver is completely concealed from the receiver, in order not to embarrass him, as is said, "the concealed gift subdues anger." Here, in the secret of the letter hei, the gift itself is the relation and expression of self, drawing the receiver into the essence of the giver. Joseph, the speaker of the verse "take for yourselves seed," corresponds to the sefirah of yesod, whose function is to express self in the form of giving seed, as explained in Kabbalah. When Joseph first gave grain to his brothers, they were unable to recognize him, similar to the dalet in relation to the gimlet. Upon his revelation to his brothers (and thereby to all of Egypt), his giving became that of the hei. Instead of grain he now gave seed. In Aramaic, NUN means "fish." The mem, the waters of the sea, is the natural medium of the nun, fish. The nun "swims" in the mem, covered by the waters of the "hidden world." Creatures of the "hidden world" lack self- consciousness. Unlike fish, land animals, revealed on the face of the earth, possess self-consciousness. ‫נחם‬ MEM,HEY,NUN
  3. 3. ‫נחם‬ nâcham naw-kham' A primitive root; properly to sigh, that is, breathe strongly; by implication to be sorry, that is, (in a favorable sense) to pity, console or (reflexively) rue; or (unfavorably) to avenge (oneself): - comfort (self), ease [one’s self], repent (-er, -ing, self). 2 Qorinthíym 7:10 For the sadness according to YaHuWaH accomplishes repentance of the self unto a salvation not to be regretted. But the sadness of the world accomplishes death. This, in idea, is supposed to be perfectly understood by every one; but in reality very few have a true scriptural apprehension of it. Repentance, like faith, is the sole gift of YaHuWaH. The act itself is so impossible to be assumed or taken up by any, that it is equally easy to alter the colour of the hair, or the features of the countenance, as to change the heart. YâHuWsHúa` , it is said, Acts 5:31. This One did the mighty One make a Prince and a Deliverer, and exalted Him by His right hand, to grant repentance and liberation from sins to Y'Isra'al. H5164; comes from the hebrew number H5162
  4. 4. What therefore YâHuWsHúa 'HaMaschiyach gives cannot be the work or the merit of man. There may be, and there often is, a false repentance, which men of no religion may possess, but which is as distinguishable from true repentance as darkness from light, when the principles of both are analysed. False repentance is that which springs from a sorrow for the consequences, not the causes of sin. True repentance is that which flows from the consciousness of the sin itself. The man of true sorrow, sorrows for having offended YaHuWaH. The man of worldly sorrow sorrows that his sin hath brought punishment. The one is the effect of fear; the other of love. The repentance for the consequence of sin goes no further than as it dreads the punishment: the repentance for the cause of sin becomes the continued gracious sorrow of the heart. These observations may be sufficient to mark the very different features of both, and under grace enable any one to understand the vast distinction. Beware of false repentance
  5. 5. From the very beginning of time, many people have felt that they could set their own standards of morality and ethics. They try to live by their own standards of good and evil, without any connection to Divine revelation or involvement. Of course, this is unsuccessful policy for living one’s life. But it is not new; it is the result of generations of philosophers who have unsuccessfully grappled with the human condition. But if philosophy has proven anything in the past 2500 years, it is this: that unless there is a revelation by some higher power, no objective standard of good and evil could exist. It is impossible for a person to live by his own moral standards. For when he fails to live up to them - and some degree of failure is inevitable - he is left with no recourse. Since he has no authority other than himself, no authority can forgive his guilt. This is one reason why guilt has become such a large part of the contemporary human experience. However, we recognizes YaHuWaH as the supreme authority and author of all morality. He Himself has defined good and evil for all time. Therefore, only YaHuWaH has the power to forgive sin and erase any evil that a person might commit. For since He has defined the nature of evil, He can also forgive evil. YaHuWaH defines sin as a spiritual sickness, and more precisely - as temporary insanity. Indeed, if a person did not loose track momentarily of the priorities of life; if he did not suddenly and inadvertently suffer a momentary disconnection from the Divine purpose of life, and a short “snap” of his bind with the Eternal Creator... then he would never sin! Thus we are taught, “a person does not sin unless he is temporarily seized by an insane impulse.” Pure logic dictates that this is true... for if we considers what happens when a human being sins, we may wonder:
  6. 6. How is it possible for a person to transgress the will of the Al-mighty!? After all, when one sins, it is as if the entire universe is going in one direction, fulfilling the will of the Creator and thus sanctifying Him, but this one person... is going in the opposite direction! And what’s more... he takes the very life energy that YaHuWaH gives him, the very force which enables the blood to stream through his body and the air to flow, the very strength which allows him to use his limbs... and with that YaHuWaH given power, he uses it against YaHuWaH by directing his energy into an area which YaHuWaH does not desire! Can there be a greater brazen audacity than this? It is as if he is handed a cup of wine by a benevolent benefactor, and in sheer ingratitude, he throws in the latter’s face! But if sin can be defined as spiritual sickness, then YaHuWaH has provided repentance as the cure... and if sin is impurity, then YaHuWaH has provided the means for purification. Therefore, one of the fundamental teachings is that when any person repents, his sins are forgiven. Thus the Torah states: Deut. 30:2-3 And shalt return unto YaHuWaH Aloha, and shalt shema (obey) his voice according to all that I command thee this day, thou and thy children, with all thine heart, and with all thy soul; That then YaHuWaH Aloha will turn thy captivity, and have compassion upon thee, and will return and gather thee from all the nations, whither YaHuWaH Aloha hath scattered thee Moshe told the Hebrews that when they were ready to return to YaHuWaH, he would be ready to receive them. YaHuWaH's mercy is unbelievable. It goes far beyond what we can imagine. Even if the Jews deliberately walked away from him and ruined their lives, YaHuWaH would still take them back. YaHuWaH would give them inward spiritual renewal. YaHuWaH wants to forgive us and bring us back to himself, too. Some people will not learn this until their world has crashed in around them. Then the sorrow and pain seem to open their eyes to what YaHuWaH has been saying all along. Are you separated from YaHuWaH by sin? No matter how far you have wandered, YaHuWaH promises a fresh beginning if only you will turn to him.
  7. 7. The doors of repentance are open to every human being, Jew and non-Jew alike. Repentance is effective for every sin - no matter how serious. “Nothing can stand before repentance.” It helps no matter how often a sin was repeated... provided that it is no longer repeated from this time forth, It is equally effective to rectify an entire lifestyle, as it is to rectify individual sins. his means that the power of repentance is so great, that even if a person has lived an absolutely evil life, even having denied YaHuWaH, he can still be forgiven. This is the meaning of the verse, “"And you, O son of man, say to the children of your people, ‘ The righteousness of the righteous man shall not deliver him in the day of his transgression. And as for the wrongness of the wrong, he shall not stumble because of it in the day that he turns from his wrong. And the righteous shall not be able to live because of his righteousness in the day that he sins.‘ Why is repentance so powerful? Because YaHuWaH created the universe for the ultimate good of mankind. The only reason that evil and sin exist in the first place, is to allow man the opportunity to have free will and choice. And since YaHuWaH created man with free will,
  8. 8. Melechim Alef 8:46 If they sin against thee, (for [there is] no man that sinneth not,) and Thou be angry with them, and deliver them to the enemy, so that they carry them away captives unto the eretz the enemy, far or near; When they sin against You - for there is no one who does not sin - and You become enraged with them and give them to the enemy, and they take them captive to the land of the enemy, far or near; ” But evil itself is not a primary part of YaHuWaH's purpose... it is not a permanent thing. YaHuWaH allowed the existence of evil, but only as it serves His plan for allowing man to improve himself by choosing good... evil is like a stain on the fabric of creation, and it is erased by repentance. In this light the sages teach that the concept of repentance was included in YaHuWaH's original plan for creation. Since as we mentioned above, it is inevitable that every man sins to some degree - even someone who is considered righteous, if there were no means of erasing sin, man would be completely overwhelmed with guilt. His guilt would accumulate until he would cry out in anguish as Cain:
  9. 9. beresheet 4:13 And Kayin said unto YaHuWaH My punishment [is] greater than I can bear. For this reason YaHuWaH gave man the greatest of all possible gifts... repentance. The concept of repentance shows us the great power of the Holy One’s love and mercy. For let us consider: after all, man’s purpose in existence is only to obey the will of YaHuWaH. Therefore, when he sins, by right, justice should decree that man be destroyed... like anything else that goes against the very purpose of its being. But YHWH’s love and mercy override His justice... and He is always ready to forgive man. This is what King David meant when he wrote, Tehillim 25:8. Tov and upright [is] YaHuWaH therefore will he teach sinners in the way. YaHuWaH made it clear through His prophet Yechezk’el that this is His purpose: Yechezk’el 33:11 Say unto them, [As] I live, saith Aloaha YaHuWaH, I have no pleasure in the death of the rasha (wicked); but that the rasha (wicked) turn from his way and live: turn ye, turn ye from your evil ways; for why will ye die, O Beit Y‘Isra‘al? For why will ye die, O Beit Y‘Isra‘al?
  10. 10. Even though YaHuWaH is all-powerful and could “retaliate” immediately against those who sin against Him, He prefers to bide His time, giving man a chance to repent before punishing him. Thus we find the verse in Yeshayahu, Yeshayahu 48:9 For My name's sake will I defer mine anger, and for My praise will I refrain for thee, that I cut thee not off. This is the reason why the doors of repentance always remain open... since it forms such a basic part of YaHuWaH's plan. Even in a situation wherein the attribute of strict justice would shut closed the doors of repentance in a sinner’s face, YaHuWaH is ready to admit him. As we have mentioned, even if a person is wicked for all his life, YaHuWaH still gives him the opportunity to repent. However, there is a condition for real and lasting, successful repentance... the one who wants to repent must make the first move. It is not up to YaHuWaH to seek him out; man must make the first move to seek out YaHuWaH. Commenting on this, the we are taught, “When one comes to cleanse himself, then YaHuWaH helps him.” So how does one begin the process of repenting? What does it consist of? Just saying, "Sorry"?
  11. 11. We are taught that repentance consists of four elements: 1). Changing one’s ways 2). Sincere regret 3). Confession to YaHuWaH 4). Resolve not to repeat the sin Each of these four stages can clearly be seen in the prophet’s warning: Take words with you, and return to ‫.יהוה‬ Say to Him, "Take away all crookedness, and accept what is good, and we render the bulls of our lips. "I shall heal their backsliding, I shall love them spontaneously, for My displeasure has turned away from him. When a person commits a sin, spiritual damage is done to his faculties - his thoughts, speech, and actions (the three main avenues of human endeavour). Of the four distinct stages listed above, the last three are necessary to undo this spiritual damage. For regret involves one’s thoughts, confession (‘take along words’ - the words of admitting the sin) is for speech, and resolve is to rectify the action itself. However the first prerequisite for repentance is to change one’s ways and abandon the practice of sin. If one tries to repent while still maintaining an involvement in the sin, he is compared to a person who tries to clean himself while still holding on to something filthy;
  12. 12. what can he accomplish? So the first, and most important step to repentance, is to change one’s life. Thus the prophets state, Yeshayahu 55:7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts: and let him return unto YHWH ( ‫יהוה‬), and he will have mercy upon him; and to Eloheinu, for he will abundantly pardon and Yechezk’el 18:31 Cast away from you all your transgressions, whereby ye have transgressed; and make you a new heart and a new spirit: For why will ye die, O Beit Y‘Isra‘al? In order to truly engage in repentance, the sin must be cast away and discarded forever. And in doing this one’s motivation should be the fear of YaHuWaH, and the shame of having sinned before him. SHABBATH SHALOM