- Day 13 -
Grace Abounds but Not at the Expense of Mixing the Holy and the Common
The Most High has always purposed to have a holy priesthood who could stand in His presence and bring His glory to a lost world. Initially, He performed mighty acts of deliverance on behalf of Israel to create a kingdom of priests and a holy nation. Israel fell short by neglecting YAHveh’s holy requirements. In order to fulfill the desires of His heart, YAHveh sent His Son to redeem both Jews and Gentiles to become His eternal, holy priesthood. YAHveh is very specific about the righteous requirements of this priesthood. He is raising up a remnant, a “Zadok priesthood,” that is distinctly unique from the ranks of professing believers. Zadok means “righteous” (1Kings 2:26-27).
The holy priesthood must not mix what YAHveh has purposely separated. He is a holy God who calls His people to a separated life, free from all mixtures and compromises. The Hebrew word for “holy” is kadosh, which means “separate.” Messiah reminds His redeemed that He has given “… The service of the priesthood as a gift” (Numbers 18:7 NIV). The holy remnant has no inheritance in this world; YAHveh alone is their double portion and exceedingly great reward.
The Almighty proclaims through His messenger Malachi, “This message is to you O priests “True instruction was in his mouth, and unrighteousness was not found on his lips; he walked with Me in peace and uprightness, and he turned many back from iniquity. For the lips of a priest should preserve knowledge [the uncompromised, full counsel of truth], and men should seek instruction from his mouth; for he is the messenger of YAHveh of hosts” (Malachi 2:6-7).
“Moreover, they shall teach My people the difference between the holy and the profane…” (Ezekiel 44:23) but grievously most rebel and defy this commission and do violence to His Torah (teachings) and profane His holy things. They do not distinguish between the holy and common. They teach there is no difference and then they say this is what the sovereign YAHveh (LORD) has said when YAHveh has not spoken. Making doctrines and traditions of men was part of Israel’s downfall that YAHshua (Jesus) came to address, when He says, “Thus you nullify the word of [My Father] by your tradition” and man-made self-justified distortions of the truth (Mark 7:13 NIV).
YAHveh continues saying to His servants—the biblical priesthood, “But as for you, you have turned aside from the way; you have caused many to stumble by the instruction; you have corrupted the covenant of Levi [the priesthood],” says YAHveh of hosts. “So I also have made you despised and abased before all the people, just as you are not keeping My ways, but are showing partiality in the instruction [picking and choosing, adding to and deleting from YAHveh’s instruction according to man’s teachings and traditions to suit your own understanding often times based on a lack of knowledge of the Scripture and the very heart of the Author of its eternal words]” (Malachi 2:8-9).
Rebellion against YAHveh’s (the LORD’s) word has lead to the lip serving hypocrisy of many professing believers in the Most High God. Hypocrisy and unholiness in Christianity and Judaism have caused them to be “despised and abased” by much of the world. For untold numbers, these corporate religious systems have become a mockery and a laughingstock, rather than a holy priesthood that is turning many from sin to righteousness.
Ezekiel writes of the Almighty’s presence and glory departing from His sanctuary (and the hearts of His priests that had become rebellious, self serving, idolatrous, and adulterers toward the God they professed to love and serve). In response to these overall grievous conditions of the hypocritical priests and their half hearted service, YAHveh sent an angelic messenger to “put a mark on the foreheads of the men who sigh and groan over all the abominations which are being committed in its midst” (Ezekiel 9:4). This small obedient righteous remnant of true believers and worshippers were separated unto YAHveh (the LORD) with a mark placed upon them to spare them from the judgment that was coming. But the majority of priests and professing believers who had rebelled against YAHveh were slated as recipients of His righteous indignation and destruction. This judgment started at His sanctuary with the leaders but was to continue judging everyone else who was disobedient, rebellious, and idolatrous regarding His righteous Commandments and holy living.
Peter warned of similar judgments at the close of this age: “For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of YAHveh?” (1Peter 4:17)
At the conclusion of the Scriptures in the book of Revelation we are forewarned of the coming judgments upon the earth and its inhabitants and how few will even survive such a massive outpouring of the wrath of our Holy God and Lamb. BUT there are many encouraging words for a remnant that love and obey His commandments and have unfaltering faith in their Lamb YAHshua (Jesus). Again we read about the distinction of that remnant to be spared as in Ezekiel’s day, "And I saw another angel ascending from the rising of the sun, having the seal of the living God; and he cried out with a loud voice to the four angels to whom it was granted to harm the earth and the sea, saying, “Do not harm the earth or the sea or the trees until we have sealed the bond-servants of our God on their foreheads" (Revelation 7:2-3).
At the end of the age YAHveh is making a clear distinction between the wheat and the tares, the holy and the common, those who obey and serve Him and those who don’t. He is separating the doctrines and religions of men from His holy Scriptural requirements. He is creating a chasm between the compromised priesthood (lukewarm, hypocritical, lip serving believers) and His separated obedient redeemed remnant —those who walk in uprightness and serve as a priest to glorify and bring honor to their God in word and deed. The righteous Judge will ultimately distinguish between those who are pure, spotless, and blameless, and those who have been defiled by that which is compromised, man tainted, and detestable in His sight.
The Mighty One is coming to judge every transgression of His righteous Commandments. His holy priesthood will serve Him in purity according to His plumb line of truth. But the good news (gospel message) is: the blood is on the altar for the forgiveness of sins and cleansing of all unrighteousness — to those who humble themselves, repent of their sins, and are washed clean through the redeeming blood of the Lamb. Let this glorious reality of Messiah’s power lift you up to everlasting victory over sin.