The Man is Happy
Still my theme song. But today has been a very strange day.
I take a walk at lunch to stretch my legs, going through the streets of downtown Houston. Today, I was singing Ashrei HaIsh [man I love that song! That Psalm (1)]. I rounded the corner and headed back toward the office, and I see two men standing there, and one is holding the Bible. “Uh Oh,” I think. I’m target number 1 for Bible carriers, because of my tzit-tziyot and kippah. I hoped for a good conversation and the ability to ‘fellowship,’ to no avail.
Sure enough, they tried to engage me. But, their version of the ‘gospel’ is so twisted, within a minute they were calling me “Amalek” and the “synagogue of satan.” Typical anti-Semites. Next time I see them I’m just going to open by speaking Hebrew, and show them what they do not know. Their ‘gospel’ is completely a ‘flesh based’ doctrine, and so they are foolish. Wisdom teaches not to engage a fool. I moved on.
But, that is not the only encounter with bad doctrine I’ve had this week. Manmade junk is teeming in the streets, and in the pews, and in the synagogues. The way is truly narrow, and there really are precious few who find it. The more I live, the more I see Yeshua knew exactly what He was talking about.
So, I’m still happy! And that tune is still going through my head, along with His divine words penned by Melekh David.
“The man is HAPPY who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, nor stand in the way with sinners, nor sit in the seat of the scornful; but, in the Torah of יהוה is his delight, and in His Torah he meditates day and night. And he shall be like a tree planted by streams of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, and whose leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does he shall prosper.” That’s where the Miqedem version ends, and that’s fine. It truly does ‘lift me up,’ and those words are becoming part of me, and more powerful. But, this goes back to the ‘meditation’ I’ve been doing this week, when I think of the rest of the words of that song of Melekh David:
“Not so the wicked; but they are like the chaff which the wind drives away. Therefore the wicked shall not stand in the judgment, nor sinners in the congregation of the Tzadikim. Forיהוה knows the way of the Tzadikim; but the way of the wicked shall perish.” And Tehillah 112, which our wives ‘sing’ to us each Erev Shabbat, shows the same theme, and Miqedem made a melody to that, too… now that’ll be stuck in my head the rest of the day!
This stark contrast and promise of the judgment of the damned is the theme I’m encountering this week in all my meditation.
Here is a fb post that started me on this thought process:
I do not relish the thought of the judgment of the damned. Elohim does not either, but His desire as that all should do Teshuvah [biblical repentance]. It is sad, it is so sad how much the talons of that buzzard, that agent of death, has in the minds of man. The twisted words that lead people AWAY from the simple truth of His B’sorah down the primrose path of religious pride. Like the woman, the anti-Semite who confronted me last week. So many people THINK they are doing G-d a favor by condemning me to hell. So many people think they are ‘just’ in accusing us of being ‘under the law,’ when they do not even understand what that actually means; so many people are content to live in mixture religion, and even though they KNOW that His Sabbath is the seventh day, and that He was NOT born in December, they are happy to oblige that buzzard and do it his way anyway. I do not mourn for the totally wicked, for the ‘cold’ of the spiritually dead. They have chosen not to believe in G-d, in spite of His Glory being seen everywhere and in everything, being utterly obvious, especially in the age in which we live. I mourn for those who say they believe, the ‘lukewarm’, those who find themselves on a path of self-righteousness, or not on a path at all, wandering out in the bushes of bad doctrine. I mourn for those who ‘know’ there is something about scripture they do not understand, but refuse to seek Elohim. Or, they begin to seek, and get caught up in the glitz and glamor of mankind and new, 21st century doctrines of devils. I’ve seen several ‘silver-tongued’ devils ‘preaching,’ and people I know ‘liking’ their garbage. They do not clearly declare His Word; they tell fables, they entertain. They truly scratch itching ears.
But, I REJOICE! I AM happy! Because, while I have encountered so much junk, I have also seen a couple hearts turn, ever so slightly, toward the glory of HIS TORAH as it is proclaimed PLAINLY by Messiah. ONE SOUL is cause enough to REJOICE! And that doubles my happiness indeed.
About thirty years ago, I lead my marine buddy to Messiah. I didn’t do it by insulting him or compelling or cajoling him. I did it by confronting his sin with the truth. And he CHANGED. DRAMATICALLY. The same is true of all those to whom I’ve had the joy of declaring the truth: they had to see their sin, their extreme NEED of Messiah, and the awesome beauty of HIS compassion, to die for them in spite of their sin. BEFORE they ever gave it a thought as what it is: worthy of death. The JOY that I experience every time someone ‘turns’ to G-d and begins to OBEY HIM is truly unspeakable and glorious. The average bear cannot know it. And that buzzard hates it. But, the Messengers above SHOUT and SING ALOUD for every SINGLE one that turns to TRUTH.
There are those who profess faith who would shut me down. Who would stand in the way of my declaring anything about Messiah; again, thinking they do G-d a favor. There’s a heckler on our youtube channel, and one on my blog, that wants so badly to tell the world that we are wrong. They’d send us to hell themselves, if they could. They exert so much energy and spend so much time trying to ‘get to us’, trying to impede us. They are standing in the way of HIS WORK. “Let them preach”, the word says. They preach watered down, twisted doctrine all day long, and yet I do not bother them. Because, in spite of their error and ulterior motives, the B’sorah is POWERFUL. I came to this truth in the midst of bad doctrine [although not near as bad as some of what is out there]. If someone thinks our doctrine is wrong, pray for us. But, I dare them to count the lives that have been transformed by our efforts, and dare to see what G-d above sees that His Son is doing in us. “He shall be like a tree planted by streams of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, and whose leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does he shall prosper.” That, my friend, is a happy man! Ashrei HaISh.