Remember the Hebrew National commercials from 1979? If you remember them but didn’t watch tv at that time on account of you weren’t old enough, that’s because those commercials were so timeless the same exact ad ran in 2001.
I love that ad for so many reasons, one being, even as an unbeliever when I first saw this I was drawn to the immense respect a company would have for saying they answer to a higher power beyond the government. While the world says it’s ok to add crazy nasty ingredients, they were like “nah, we won’t go against our God by creating something that is fake and damaging".
Imagine such a notion.
It's that answering to a higher authority that has stuck with me for roughly 40+ years. When I became a believer there was a verse the Lord highlighted and continues to highlight for me in Ephesians. “Walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called.” Ephesians 4:1
That verse has ran a lot of milage through my mind over the years. First, one must know what they’ve been called to and second, what does it look like to walk in a manner that is worthy of that calling.
In the basic sense, we are called to be ambassadors of the Kingdom of God. What that actually means has gotten a boatload of airtime over the years, most of which lands in arguing and debating, thanks to the author of fighting and hate. Sadly, as believers we have given him plenty to work with.
In the Hebraic mindset, one knows, understands and perceives that there are actually about 70 different ways to find meaning in scripture. Rabbis of old and those today know that each verse could hold 70 different meanings. Makes sense given that every single Hebrew letter can have anywhere between one to seven meanings. So then you string a couple of those letters, which are living and active, together and wow! There is a recipe for some deep insight and study for decades.
A mature believer should be able to look at scripture, parse it out in the original text and prayerfully discover what Holy Spirit is speaking to them in that moment, at that time, in this season by simply studying the word, the letters, the number of letters and the placement in the text. And here we just tell people to get involved on a Sunday morning at church. No wonder the book of Hebrews and elsewhere Paul says to grow up already! (my paraphrasing)
Personal example- when my son was diagnosed with cancer in utter desperate I played bible roulette one evening when I couldn’t sleep. I was so worried that he might die. I randomly flipped open the Word and stumbled on Isaiah 58:8 that says “Then your light will break out like the dawn, and your healing will come quickly”. Right then I knew my God had given comfort and assurance that he would very much be ok and that it would be quick. I never shared that with anyone at the time, not even my husband because I knew I would be laughed out of the room and be told that’s not what that passage meant, I shouldn’t take such things out of context, etc. That it might even be “dangerous” to do so.
In short- I didn’t have the spiritual chutzpah I have now. So I kept the matter to myself and clung to that. When the doctor’s promised that he’d look like Swiss cheese by the time he was 18 from all the likely biopsies, I said to myself (and the devil), “oh no! My God promised his healing WILL COME QUICKLY.”
I wish I had had the mental strength to stand up more to those crackpots back then, Zion wouldn’t have had to have unnecessary biopsies and scans which consequently causes an untold amount of emotional trauma. Gee, which was more dangerous, to go the way of the docs or cling to the word of the Lord, from Him, to me?
In case you are not familiar with the outcome of the story, my son stopped having needless biopsies within a couple of years because I grew stronger and said no, and he is an incredibly strong and healthy young man.
By this one example of which I have countless others, you can see how one scripture can be argued over so much that someone wouldn't be able to know and discern whether it was a word from God they would be "allowed" to cling to.
But what if it were simpler?
What if it was a matter of taking the Hebrew National stand and saying “nope. I answer to a Higher Power?
What if we actually made it our life’s purpose to check in with Him, hourly, minute by minute, and ask “does this bring me closer to You?”
Or, “does this bring others closer to You?”
What I write many times ruffles feathers. The feathers are those who cannot for the life of them see past their Greco-Roman teaching and bust out of that religiosity long enough to see the Word of God for how it is- supernatural and unlike anything they've ever read or will ever read. This should be our norm, by the way, the supernatural ought to be an everyday occurrence.
When I write I ask, will this bring them closer?
When I speak to an audience I ask, “will this draw them towards You or push them away?”
Even when feathers are ruffled and blood pressure rises in others, I hear/see them saying "but it says this in the word of God". Good, you're studying, do more of that, eventually you'll get there.
In light of the verse our Father highlighted for me all those years ago, I don’t always need to know what my calling is at that moment, but I can certainly walk all day every day in a manner worthy of it because, I answer to a Higher standard.
Before you speak, write, walk, run, or drive, consider the question- “does what I', doing/sying bring them closer to Him?”
Here’s the punchline- if it does, it just may push them away from you, but they will be running to their God for truth an answers. Pray for them. Pray they find the truth of His word, the whole of it.
Something to think about.