What Did Jesus Really Nail to the Cross?


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One of the things I have heard often is the statement that when Jesus was nailed to the cross, the law was nailed to it with him.

This is similar to the statement that because Jesus fulfilled the law, it has been done away with.

These statements are both based on what Shaul (Paul) said in Colossians and what Yeshua said in Matthew, respectively. Both of these statements are also uniformly and completely incorrect.

Today I am only dealing with the statement Shaul made, so let’s actually see what Shaul said was nailed to the cross in Colossians 2:13-14 (from The Complete Jewish Bible):

You were dead because of your sins, that is, because of your “foreskin,’ your old nature. But God made you alive along with the Messiah by forgiving you all your sins. He wiped away the bill of charges against us. Because of the regulations, it stood as a testimony against us; but he removed it by nailing it to the execution-stake. 

Before we discuss what was nailed, we need to first understand the context in which this letter was written. It was written to reinforce the message of the Good News that was first brought to the Colossians by Epaphras. This letter is written by Shaul to Gentile Believers in order to remind them how their faith in Yeshua has saved them from their previous sinful lifestyle, which condemned them to death. Throughout the letter he reminds them of the Good News message that salvation comes through continued faith in Yeshua and continued worship of God. Shaul was, essentially, giving them a pep talk to help them stay the course of faithfully following Torah, believing in God and Yeshua. I believe that all his letters have, in one way or another, a reminder that a legalistic observance of Torah as the means of earning salvation will never work, but faith in Yeshua (while still obeying Torah) is how we are able to overcome our sinful nature and be saved.

Now that we know what the context of this letter is about, we can see that when Shaul was talking about the “bill of charges against us” he meant the sins they had committed. When he says “Because of the regulations” he meant to identify the Torah and God’s commandments; this is also seen in the letter Shaul wrote to the Roman Believers where he stated that the Torah created sin, he meant that because the Torah tells us right from wrong it identifies what is sinful. And in this letter when Shaul refers to the “regulations” that create the bill of charges (or sometimes called “trespasses” in other bibles) against us he is talking about the Torah.

Now for the really important part- what was (and is) being nailed to the execution-stake? It is only the bill of charges; it is our trespasses; it is those specific sins we each have against us. It was (and is) NOT the Torah; it was (and is) not the Law; it was (and is) not anything other than the list of existing sins that stand between those people and God. When we confess our sins, repent and ask forgiveness in Yeshua’s name, those sins- and ONLY those specific, already committed sins- are what get “nailed to the tree.”

In other words, the sins we have already committed are the only things “nailed to the cross.” Nothing else is nailed, especially not sins we commit after those sins were wiped clean.

When we first confirmed our belief in Yeshua, confessed and repented of our sins asking forgiveness in his name, we received that forgiveness. Those existing sins that were listed against us, and only those sins, were nailed to a tree.  Everything that happens after that is still valid and against us until we again confess, repent and ask forgiveness in Yeshua’s name. Then that list is “nailed to a tree.”

There are a lot of trees out there with a lot of paper nailed to them.

Yeshua was nailed to an execution-stake once, and that was all that was needed. His death doesn’t save us- it is because of his resurrection that we can find forgiveness through his sacrifice. His resurrection proved that his sacrifice was accepted. As such, each time we sin we need to ask forgiveness because the sins we commit from one forgiveness to another are going to be held against us unless and until we repent.

The only thing that was “nailed to the cross” was the existing list of sins. There has never been a person who didn’t sin after being forgiven; we all are sinners who always will sin. As I often say, we can never be sinless but we can always sin less.  And when we sin, we must repent of that sin and ask forgiveness through Yeshua’s sacrifice.

The Torah is still valid and the regulations, mitzvot (laws) and instructions regarding the festivals are all still required for any and all people who confess that they worship the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.

What we really need to nail to the cross are the wrongful teachings.

Your Past Isn’t Your Future

I would not disagree with the statement that we are all shaped by our past. The specific experiences each one of us have lived through definitely affect us, forming our viewpoints and our beliefs. However, I disagree with the old expression that experience is the best teacher: that isn’t really accurate. Experience is the best database, and it only serves to offer us the opportunity to learn. We must force ourselves to learn from our experience in order for it to be useful.

I was blessed to meet a young man the other day who has recently converted to Judaism and is a Believer. He is covered with tattoos, many of which imply that he has lived a rough life. His girlfriend is a Christian, and it was she who introduced us. This occurred at a New Jersey hotel where Donna and I were staying over the weekend while attending a family wedding in Philadelphia.

He is a neophyte regarding the Bible and salvation and I sense he is also a fine young man. I was impressed and happy to see that he is open to hearing about Judaism, God and Messiah. His past has shaped him and left it’s scars (visually, as well as emotionally) yet he has learned from his experience and is now on the right path. Hopefully, he will see this post and know that I am talking about him, and how I am proud of him for his courage and devotion to not allowing his past to shape his future.

This is just one of the multitude of wondrous things about God: He is willing to forget the past. In fact, God is very Existential. To be existential means to be living in the moment, in the “existence” of things. No past, no future, just now. When he grants forgiveness he forgets the past and only sees the heart as it is at this moment. Of course, God is beyond time so he knows all that has happened and all that will happen, but he chooses to forget the sins in an individual’s past when that person repentantly asks to be forgiven of them.

This holds true also for the good we have done- no “sitting on one’s laurels” with God! If you did wrong, your wrong will be forgiven when you do right. And if you have always done right, but now do wrong, you are guilty! Your past good deeds are forgotten when you sin just as thoroughly as one’s past bad deeds are forgotten when they repent.

He tells us this! In Ezekiel 18:21-24 God says:

But if a wicked person turns away from all the sins they have committed and keeps all my decrees and does what is just and right, that person will surely live; they will not die.  None of the offenses they have committed will be remembered against them. Because of the righteous things they have done, they will live.  Do I take any pleasure in the death of the wicked? declares the Sovereign Lord. Rather, am I not pleased when they turn from their ways and live?  “But if a righteous person turns from their righteousness and commits sin and does the same detestable things the wicked person does, will they live? None of the righteous things that person has done will be remembered. Because of the unfaithfulness they are guilty of and because of the sins they have committed, they will die.

The past will not be remembered, whether that past was a righteous one or a sinful one. God sees our heart at the moment we are committing our sins just as much as when we are asking for forgiveness. Each moment is a new one, each event is individual and unique, and each time we ask for forgiveness we are given a clean past.

So do not dwell on your past sins, and do not count on your good deeds to help you. If you have accepted Yeshua as your Messiah and asked forgiveness with a repentant heart in his name, as far as God is concerned you have no past. Likewise, if you have been doing good but have sinned, you still need to ask forgiveness because what you did that was right is no longer of any value to you.

Each and every time you look to God for forgiveness, your past is gone and you are given a future that you can shape any way you want to.

And if I may suggest?….asking God to show you how he wants it shaped is the best way to start your new life.



Is Yeshua God?

I am proving myself either crazy, suicidal or brave by even thinking about approaching this topic.

But, then again, if I believe I am given insight (the same should be the rule with everyone) and can show in the bible why I believe this way, then I should share it with you. If you disagree with me, I will not say you are wrong- I am simply telling you what I believe. I wish more people could have discussions without attacking each other’s beliefs, because in the long run, God will be the judge if I am right or wrong, and it is up to Him to set me straight. If we disagree, we should be able to do so with mutual respect, compassion, and leave it at we agree to disagree. Too often I see and hear people attacking each other, insulting each other, calling each other stupid or uneducated simply because they don’t agree. That is not how we should act.

So, here it comes.

Let’s start with the basics: Yeshua is the Messiah, and He existed before He came to earth. I really don’t know if He was God then, and became a separate entity in order to exist in our physical plane, or if He was always a separate entity but equal in divinity to God. I can’t find anything in the bible except that He appears to have been an eternal being with divine powers.

When He came to earth, He had to be able to suffer the temptations and illnesses of all humans (Isaiah 53) and to be able to die. For that to happen, and here is what is really amazing- which most people never understand the impact of- He voluntarily stripped off His divinity and took on a mantle of flesh! Yeshua was divine, He was eternal, He was all-powerful, yet He gave all that up just so that He could be a human being and die in order to give us a chance, just a chance, to be with God forever. Have you ever really thought about that? Could you have done that?

When Yeshua was born, He came out of Miryam’s womb as a human being: not eternal, not divine, just plain, old human. I say again, He had to be totally human so that He could take on our sins (a divine being cannot be associated with sin) and so that He could die. A sacrifice that cannot die (in other words, a divine being that is immortal) would not have been a “real’ sacrifice, and without a sacrificial death there is no remittance of sin, and our salvation is unfounded. But…our salvation is founded in that death, for Yeshua surely did die. The spear in His side proved it. So, whatever Yeshua was before He came to earth, He was 100% human while He lived on the earth and all the miracles He performed were done with the power that came from (a separate and unique) God through the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit), which was the same exact way miracles had been performed by the Prophets before Him, and by the Apostles after Him.

The one, and most important, difference between Yeshua and all other humans was that Yeshua was not born into the sin of Adam and Eve. Because of His supernatural birth, and through His resurrection, His sacrifice was able to free us of our sins and continues to do so, for now He is a Priest and Cohen forever (Hebrews 7:17.) His blood is still viable, He is still able to cleanse us with His blood because it still exists, and will forever.

I think that every time someone asks for forgiveness in Yeshua’s name, He spills a little more of His blood.

Finally, Yeshua was resurrected and became eternal, again, but he is not divine because he has to serve as Cohen HaGadol for all humanity until the plan of salvation is complete, which won’t be until the Millennial Rule is over, the Adversary and all his demons are thrown into the Lake of Fire and the new heaven, new earth and new Jerusalem appear. In other words, He is still a separate and unique living entity from God. Once all is done, I do not know what will happen. Maybe He will remain the way He is, maybe He will be divine again and still the Son, maybe He will be “absorbed” back into God (which would imply the Holy Spirit would be,also) and there will be just the one and only God…who knows? I sure don’t! But, then again, who cares? I won’t, because I will be in God’s presence for all eternity, and it won’t really matter.

So, now for the biblical “proof” that I have for my position. First off, every letter that Shaul wrote to the Messianic Communities started off with a greeting from Shaul, then from God AND Yeshua. Not God, who is Yeshua, not Yeshua, who is God, but from “God the Father and Yeshua the Messiah.” Every letter from every Apostle, who lived with Yeshua for years, identifies God and Yeshua as separate entities. In Revelation 20:6– now remember that this book is the vision given to John directly from Yeshua- it says this:

Blessed and holy are those who share in the first resurrection. The second death has no power over them, but they will be priests of God and of Yeshua and will reign with him for a thousand years.

Notice it says priests (cohanim) of God AND of Yeshua: not priest of God, who is Yeshua, or of God who is Messiah, but “of God and of Yeshua.” The vision of John sees two separate, unique entities ruling in heaven.

There are some places where we hear Yeshua refer to Himself as being the “A” and the “Z”, and how before Abraham was, He is, which means He had no beginning and no end, and that is true in my understanding. As I started off saying, He was eternal and divine, then He gave that up to die, but when He was resurrected, although not divine, He is again eternal, so being ‘the beginning and the end’ while remaining a separate being from God is a valid statement about Himself.  He also constantly talked using parables and riddles, hyperbole and speaking spiritually in the same breath He would speak regarding the physical world. He was of spiritual birth but in a physical form, so He was in both a spiritual and physical place at the same time. Sort of like the Prophets that were taken up in the spirit (Ezekiel, for example) but still physically present on earth. But Yeshua was able to be in both places at the same time and stay in control of Himself.

When He told His Talmudim (students, or Disciples) that when we see Him we see the Father so He and the Father are One, it was a metaphorical statement. He said that He did nothing other than what the Father told Him to do, and said nothing other than what the Father told Him to say, which means (literally) Yeshua was a puppet, so to speak, whose actions and words were not of His own but directly from the Father. That being the case, in His statement that when we see Him we see the Father, for they are One, He was telling us that He is a perfect representation of what the Father does and says. A separate, unique and different entity but still only doing and saying what the Father wants Him to do and say, therefore, seeing Him is seeing the Father, in a matter of speaking, and as such, there is no difference between them from the viewpoint of what Yeshua did and said.

This is very hard to understand, and you don’t have to agree with my belief. If you would like to discuss this, I would ask that you post your comments below, but please don’t be abusive or impolite. I review all comments before they are made public and one’s that do not serve to edify or educate, but are simply attacks without merit, will not be honored with a reply.

Hopefully, those of you who believe differently may have an open mind, and think what I believe may be possible, and maybe there are those who believe as I believe. Let me add one more thing, if I may- we don’t need to know if Yeshua is God or not, really. All we need is to do T’Shuvah (repentance), be faithfully obedient to God, accept Yeshua as our Messiah, observe Torah (as best we can) and constantly ask forgiveness of our sins by reason of Yeshua’s sacrifice.



Parashah Pinchas Numbers 25:10 – 30:1

We left the last Parashah with Pinchus killing a prince of Simeon and the daughter of a Midianite Chieftain. God tells Moses that because of Pinchus’ zeal for God that he stopped the plague He sent as punishment for the sin at Ba’al-Peor, and as reward Pinchus and his descendants were to be given the Priesthood, forever. God’s promise also was a means to protect Pinchus from avenging by anyone in the family of the slain man.

God commands a census to be taken, which is to establish the size of the army (God commands Moses to attack Midian as retaliation for their sin against Israel, which is where Balaam gets his), and also to see how many are left alive after the plague. It is interesting to note that the tribe of Simeon, from whom the man Pinchus killed came from, had the greatest loss of numbers: when they first did a census at the beginning of Numbers Simeon had 59,300 men, but now they have only 22,200.

The question of what happens if a man has no sons to inherit the land is presented by the the daughters of Zelophehad; it is determined that the daughters inherit the land, although they must marry within their tribe so the tribal inheritance is not diminished. God then gives Moses the full Order of Inheritance to be used.

Moses is told that his time to die has come, and instead of whining or asking for more time, his first thought is of the people and he asks God to appoint a successor. That person is, of course, Joshua. But Moses doesn’t die yet. The rest of this parashah is a restatement of the daily and special sacrifices that are to be performed. Each daily and festival sacrifice is described in detail; God is restating these requirements to the people as a refresher, so to speak, since they will soon be in the land.

This is the first time we hear God telling Moses he will die, even though the event, itself, doesn’t happen until the end of the Torah. The rest of the book of Numbers and all of Deuteronomy is a refresher course in all that happened and all that God requires of the Children of Israel. Moses gets to see the land, but he is not allowed to enter it. Why? Isn’t God forgiving? Why, after all the times Moses asks to be allowed in, won’t God relent, forgive and allow Moses to enter the Land?

I don’t know. But, if I were to guess, I would say it’s to show us that forgiveness is spiritual, but the consequence of sin is physical. There is no doubt in my mind that Moses is in God’s presence and was saved by his faithfulness and actions during his lifetime. Yet, the sin he committed at the waters of Meribah had consequences that his forgiveness in the spiritual world could not remove from his existence in the physical world.

How many times have we, the Jewish people, looked to the Promised Land but not entered because of our sin?  What I am talking about here is the sin of rejecting salvation through Messiah Yeshua. The Messiah is like the land God promised- long awaited and longed for.  But, the sins we commit in life prevent us from entering; sin such as rejecting Torah, rejecting Yeshua (this is what Judaism has done) , being unrepentant and (worse) being unforgiving. We can see the Promised land ahead of us, but our sins keep us from entering.

Unlike Moses, though, we have a chance to get in: we can enter by doing T’shuvah, by receiving the Grace of God through Yeshua the Messiah, and by forgiving those who have sinned against us. Moses did not enter the land of Israel, yet he is with God, forever. What he lost during his lifetime (which is only a mist, anyway) he received for eternity. We must keep our eyes on the eternal, and for those Christians that have been taught Torah was done away with when Yeshua rose from the dead, well, that’s a fence preventing your entering the land.  And for those Jews who have been told Yeshua is not the Messiah, that is a fence preventing you from entering the land. And for anyone who has been taught “once saved, always saved”- that is a really big fence preventing you from entering the land.

We need to open the gates to these fences, and the way we do that is with the three-sided key of truth: Yeshua is the Messiah, Torah is still valid, and forgiveness is required to be forgiven. These three truths will open any fence, break down any wall and allow anyone to enter into the Promised Land.