31 August 2015

"Israel and The Nations" - Pt 3

17 Elul 5775

The equality of all mankind is not a Jewish idea. It is a Greek/Roman/Western-democratic idea that Jews have assimilated over time. Humanity does not all exist on one level. Let's look at how Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto, ztz"l explains it with commentary provided by Torah.org's Rabbi Yaakov Feldman...


Derech Hashem, Part II, Chapter 4 - Israel and the Nations, Paragraphs 4 and 5

[4] God's great love and goodness decreed that the branches of other nations still be given a chance. If they so desired, they still had the free choice to tear themselves loose from their own roots, and through their own actions include themselves among the branches of Avraham's family.

This is what God meant when He told Avraham (Breishis 12:3), "All the families of the earth will be blessed through you." Avraham was thus made the father of all converts.

[This, however, would require effort on the part of the individuals concerned.] Without such effort, they would remain attached to their own roots and retain their natural characteristics.

[5] It is also necessary to realize that each individual tree is also divided, very much as the descendants of Adam were divided into Root, Trees, and Branches. Primary branches can thus be distinguished in each individual tree, and these branches are then differentiated to yield their particular members.

Avraham's tree consisted of 600,000 main branches. These were the individuals who left Egypt, and it was to them that the Torah was given and the land of Israel divided. Every Jew subsequently born is considered to be an element and descendant of one of these primary branches.

It was to these 600,000 original Jews that the Torah was given. When this occurred, the tree was said to have attained maturity.

At this time, God also gave the nations a last chance. In His mercy He had suspended their final judgment until the time that the Torah was given [with the revelation at Sinai]. He then offered the Torah to every nation, giving them the opportunity to accept it.

If any nation would have then accepted the Torah, it would have elevated itself from its lower state. As it was, none of them desired the Torah, and their judgment was therefore sealed completely. The gate was permanently closed, never again to be opened.

It still remained possible, however, for any individual to convert to Judaism. In this manner, he could still include himself in Avraham's tree of his own free will.

Torah.org - Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Though humankind has been clustered into various root groups for many generations now, as we said, we learn here that anyone can still and all change his or her root group. Thus anyone can become an "instant descendant" of Abraham (and a Jew) at will.

We see then that becoming a Jew comes down to leaving one's original people and root group, and attaching onto the Jewish people. Hence it doesn't involve merely vowing to do this and that rather than that and this. It comes down to an utter transformation and transference from one self with one background to a wholly other self with another background. It's more than merely changing one's religion; it's changing one's very family.

Like any family, the family of Jewish-kind has its own ways, perspectives, values, and inclinations. But rather than being a series of phenomena molded by climate and circumstance, Jewish ways, values, and the like are rooted in Abraham's dreams for and directives to his family. And those dreams and perspectives were themselves rooted in one thing alone: drawing close to G-d. That all touches upon the mitzvah system. As a consequence, anyone who'd want to become a member of the "family" would have to find his or her place in the "family system" -- in the mitzvah system.

Now, there was a point in time when other nations were offered the mitzvah system as a lifestyle, but they refused. It was when Abraham's by-then 600,000 descendants became a nation unto itself, left Egypt in the great rush and whirlwind known as The Exodus, experienced the revelation of G-d Himself when He granted us His holy Torah, and attained a high level of spiritual and national maturity that could be likened to an offshoot truly and finally blossoming.

Had those other nations accepted the Torah as Abraham's descendants had, they'd also have ascended spiritually. But they decided not to. So the gate through which they too could have passed to be "chosen" was closed off to them as a whole, though it was left open to those among them who'd join Abraham's descendants.


"Israel and The Nations" - Pt 2

16 Elul 5775

The equality of all mankind is not a Jewish idea. It is a Greek/Roman/Western-democratic idea that Jews have assimilated over time. Humanity does not all exist on one level. Let's look at how Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto, ztz"l explains it with commentary provided by Torah.org's Rabbi Yaakov Feldman...



Derech Hashem, Part II, Chapter 4 - Israel and the Nations, Paragraph 3

[3] The Highest Wisdom deemed it fitting that this effort be divided into a period for the roots, and another for the branches. The original effort would thus be that of the roots, while what would come later would involve the branches.

The human race initially had a chance to permanently regain its original state and rectify the spiritual damage that had been done. The proper procedure would have been for the roots and heads of Adam’s descendants to first elevate themselves to the rectified level. Once this was accomplished, both the roots and their branches would remain in this state forever, since the branches always follow the roots.

The time provided for generations to function as roots, however, was limited. During this period, the gate was open and the opportunity existed for any individual to properly prepare himself and permanently become a good and worthy root. He would then be prepared for a high degree of excellence, appropriate for man in his original state, rather than that of man in his fallen state.

Since this individual would perfect himself as a Root, he would attain this for his deserving descendants as well as for himself. They would all receive what he attained, and would therefore all be able to remain on the level and state attained by him as their root.

The period during which this was possible extended from the time of Adam until the Generation of Separation [when the Tower of Bavel was built]. During this period there never ceased to be some righteous people who preached the truth to the multitudes, warning them to correct themselves. These included such individuals as Chanoch, Mesushelach, Shem and Ever.

Man's measure was filled, however, in the Generation of Separation. God's Attribute of Justice then decreed that the time when men could be considered roots should some to a close. Until this time, things could become a permanent part of these roots, depending on what had transpired previously. With the Generation of Separation, this period came to a close.

God then scrutinized all mankind, perceiving the levels that should be made permanent in that generation's members according to their deeds. These things then became a permanent part of their nature in their aspect as roots. It was thus decreed they each should bear future generations, all possessing the qualities that were deemed appropriate for their root ancestor.

The descendants of each of these individuals were thus divided into permanent groupings, each with its own characteristics and limitations. They were destined to father future generations who would inherit these characteristics of their forebears. According to the Highest Judgment, it turned out that none of them deserved to rise above the degraded level to which Adam and his children had fallen as a result of their sin. [Not a single one had risen above it all.]

There was, however, one exception, and that was Avraham. He had succeeded in elevating himself, and as a result of his deeds was chosen by God. Avraham was therefore permanently made into a superior excellent Tree, conforming to man's highest level. It was further provided that he would be able to produce branches [and father a nation] possessing his characteristics.

The world was then divided into seventy nations, each with its own particular place in the general scheme. All of them, however, remained on the level of man in his fallen state, while only Israel was in the elevated state.

After this, the gate was closed on the era of roots. Things would then be directed and brought about upon individuals as branches, each one according to his nature.

Even though it may seem that man was originally the same as he is now, there is actually a great difference. Before the Generation of Separation, man existed in the age of roots, and was dealt with accordingly. When this period ended, things were judged and made permanent, and a new era began. This is the age of branches, which still exists.

Torah.org - Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

Many of us work on the assumption that "human nature is human nature" and that our inner beings are no different from what our ancestors' were in antiquity, but that's not so. Let's see how.

Recall that originally there were "root souls" and "offshoots". The root souls were to have regained Adam and Eve's original high spiritual stature, their offshoots were to follow in their wake (i.e., to have "inherited" perfection, if you will), and all of humanity was to have remained on that exalted plane forever.

There were two stipulations, though. One was that there was to have been a fixed period in antiquity for this to have happened by, as we said: from the time of Adam and Eve themselves up to the time of the destruction of the Tower of Babel (see Genesis 1:26 to 11:1-8). The second stipulation was that *anyone* within that time period who strove to could have perfected himself and become a root soul, and all his descendants would have reaped the benefits of his efforts.

Now, this is a very important point for our purposes. There were indeed people at that time who strove for personal perfection -- like Enoch, Methuselah, Shem, and Eber. What we're to realize, though, is that they could very well have become roots souls to *their particular descendants*, who'd then have served as bearers of G-d's message for mankind, as we Jews do. But none of those individuals did. Only Abraham, the father of the Jewish Nation, did. Which is why only we, his descendants, came to inherit his spiritual bounty.

Thus when the time-limit was up and there proved to be no one other than Abraham worthy of being a root soul in a spiritual sense, G-d saw to it that other individuals would serve as root souls to their offshoots only on a genetic, cultural level.

G-d is thus said to have *chosen* Abraham to be the sort of ideal root soul depicted above as a consequence of his having succeeded at elevating himself. And we Jews, his offshoots, have thus been "chosen" -- chosen to glory in Abraham's inheritance and to carry out his mission.

There came to be 70 primal nations in all (with many subsequent subdivisions). And each plays its own particular role in the larger scheme -- while yet remaining on the level of man in his fallen state.

Thus while mankind may seem the same as it always has been, there's actually a profound difference. For, again, up to the time of the Tower of Babel all of mankind existed in the age of potential root souls and was dealt with accordingly; while afterwards a new age began -- the age of offshoots, which we're still in the midst of.


30 August 2015

"Israel and The Nations" - Pt 1

16 Elul 5775

The equality of all mankind is not a Jewish idea. It is a Greek/Roman/Western-democratic idea that Jews have assimilated over time. Humanity does not all exist on one level. Let's look at how Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto, ztz"l explains it with commentary provided by Torah.org's Rabbi Yaakov Feldman...

Derech Hashem, Part II, Chapter 4 - Israel and the Nations, Paragraph 1 (Feldheim Publishers)

[1] One of the deepest concepts of God’s Providence involves Israel and the other nations.  With regard to their basic human characteristics, the two appear exactly alike.  From the Torah’s viewpoint, however, the two are completely different, and are treated as if they belonged to completely different species.

We will now delve into this concept, explaining in which way the two are alike, as well as in which way they are different.

Torah.org - Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

What sets us Jews apart from other people? We'll explore that for a while now. For while last chapter dwelt on how G-d Interfaces with us individually, this one will focus in on how G-d interfaces with the Jewish Nation as a whole.

When Shakespeare's most famous Jewish character, Shylock, protested anti-Jewish discrimination by intoning, "Hath not a Jew eyes? Hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions?" ("Merchant of Venus" Act 3, Scene 1) his point was that we Jews are just like other people in many, many ways. And that we're not to be feared or loathed, and forever taken as "the other". But in a certain sense, Shylock was off-the-mark. (After all, he was uttering Shakespeare's words and thus voicing a fine and humanistic Non-Jew's indictment against anti-Semitism, and wasn't speaking about us in the sense we'll be dwelling upon.)

For despite all appearances -- despite the fact that most of us would be hard pressed to pick a Jew out in a crowd with assurity (unless one was wearing the telltale outward signs of one) -- we Jews are different. Somehow, fold after fold, layer after layer of physical, emotional, and social likeness to others gives way to a different breed of person.

For like every other nation, the Jewish Nation has its unique national genius which sets us apart from the others. The point is though that our's touches on a very special realm: the ability to draw close to G-d. We Jews can draw close to G-d as no one else can. The fact that we might be attractive, intelligent, gifted, and the like isn't what sets us apart. It's that all-important potential to draw close to G-d.

Many of us -- Jew and Non-Jew -- will squirm at the idea and grow ill at ease, since it's a decidedly unmodern one that's awash in political incorrectness. But be that as it may, the notion isn't our own; it's stated outright in the Torah.

We'll thus spend time exploring the implications of our distinctiveness, including the ideas that every other nation could have wound up being "the Jewish Nation" had things worked out differently in antiquity; that Abraham alone deserved to be the root of the Jewish Nation, and no one else; that other nations had been given a "second chance" later on, but didn't take advantage of it; that other nations thus function differently on a cosmic level; and more.

At bottom there's no reason to grow arrogant at our standing as a nation. It has nothing to do with us, per se, and everything to do with our G-d-given task in this world.


Derech Hashem, Part II, Chapter 4 - Israel and the Nations, Paragraph 2

[2] Before Adam sinned, he was on a much higher level than contemporary man, as discussed earlier (1:3:6).  In that state, man was on a very lofty level, fit for a high degree of eternal excellence.  If he had not sinned, man would have simply been able to elevate and perfect himself, step by step.

He would have then given birth to future generations while still in that state of excellence. Their number would be accurately determined by God’s wisdom, depending on how those enjoying His good should best be perfected.  All these future generations would have then shared this good with Adam.

God had also determined and decreed that all these generations that would have been born of Adam should exist on various determined levels.  Some generations would thus be primary, while others would be secondary, like roots and branches.  Later generations would stem from the earlier ones [and share their characteristics], like branches stemming from a tree.  The number of trees and branches, however, was determined from the very beginning with the utmost precision.

When Adam sinned, he fell from his original high level, and brought upon himself a great degree of darkness and insensitivity, as discussed earlier.  Mankind in general also fell from its original height  and remained on a degraded  level where it was not at all worthy of the eternal high degree of excellence originally destined for it.

Man could thus anticipate only a very much lower level, and it was in this state that children were born into the world.  They were therefore all born into this degraded state. 

Nevertheless, even in the time of his downfall, the elevated aspect that existed in man as a result of his true root was not completely extinguished.  Adam was therefore not cast aside completely, and could still return to the higher level.  [But now he would be functioning under an important disadvantage, since] he was actually on a lower plane [which merely had] the potential aspect of the higher level.

God gave Adam’s descendants a free choice at that time to strengthen themselves and strive to elevate themselves from this lower state and regain the higher level.

The Highest Wisdom, however, determined the length of time best suited for such an effort, and accordingly set a time limit for these generations.  In a way this is very much like the time limit now given to each individual.  Every individual has a limited lifetime and it is during this period of time that he must attain both perfection and his level in the Community of the Future World, as discussed earlier.  The reason in both these cases is that everything that involved effort must be limited in time.  

Torah.org - Rabbi Yaakov Feldman

We'll spend some time now retracing the history of the human spirit in order to understand G-d's plans for the Jewish Nation.

As we indicated earlier on, before they ate from the Tree of Knowledge Adam and Eve were on an unfathomably higher spiritual level than we are. And had they not sinned, they would have been able to grow greater and greater yet in spirit. We learn now that they were to have borne a specific number of descendants who were then to enjoy that same level of being.

There was also to have been a certain order and layout to the lot of them. A certain number of Adam and Eve's early descendants were to have served as "root souls" and to have been of primary importance, while the others were to have served as the latters' "offshoots" and to have been as deeply influenced and defined by their "roots" as fruit-trees are by theirs.

But all that went by the waysides when Adam and Eve ate from the Tree and diminished their -- and their descendants' -- beings (as we also discussed). For those early descendants no longer deserved the abiding glory that was originally due them, and they could no longer people the world with others on a high spiritual state.

That having been said, it's also important to point out that the original "jot" of glory within them was never blotted out, in fact. It always abided in Adam and Eve's as well as their descendants' beings. And so none of them were utterly rejected. But humanity's lower level was still and all not to be denied.

G-d did give those early descendants the ability to consciously choose to garner their inner resources, and to thus strive to elevate their beings to the highest reaches. But there was to have been a time limit (much like the one given each one of us to reach our own spiritual potential). Simply because it's the way of this world that things that call for effort are to be achieved by a certain point, and no later.


There's No Struggle for Truth Without Controversy

15 Elul 5775

In defense of Jewish outreach to xians, the following idea from the Aleinu prayer which is said at the conclusion of all three daily prayer services was brought...

"...so that all of living flesh will call on Your Name...."

Let's look at the whole thing.
"We must praise the Master of all, and render greatness to the Creator of the universe, Who did not make us like the nations of the lands, and did not place us like the families of the earth, Who did not make our lot like theirs, or our destiny like all of them, For they bow down to nothingness and emptiness, and pray to a god that will not save, But we bow down low in grateful acknowledgement before the King over the kings of kings, The Holy One, blessed be He. For He spreads out the heavens and establishes the earth, and His majestic abode is in the sky above, And His mighty dwelling place in the lofty heights. He is our God; there is none else. He is truly our King; none is like Him. As it is written in His Torah, "Know this day and reflect on it, because the Eternal is our God in the sky above and the earth below. There is none else." (Deut. 4:39)"
"Eternal our God, we therefore hope soon to see Your majestic glory; To remove idols from the earth, so that the false gods will be destroyed; To perfect the world under the Almighty's kingdom, so that all will call on Your name; To turn all the wicked of the earth toward You so that all the inhabitants of the world will realize and know that to You every knee must bow down, every tongue swear allegiance. Eternal our God, before You they will bow down and fall, and honor Your glorious name. And they will all accept the yoke of Your kingdom, that You might rule over them soon and forever, for the kingdom is Yours, and to the ends of eternity You will rule in glory. As it is written in Your Torah, "The Eternal will rule forever." (Exodus 15:18) And it has been said, "The Eternal will become King over the entire earth. On that day, the Eternal shall be One and His Name shall be One." (Zechariah 14:9)"
The Aleinu prayer first presents a realistic view of our current reality and then proceeds to beautifully express the hope for the vision of messianic times when the whole world will abandon false ways and acknowledge G-d's sovereignty over the whole world. 

But it is itself not without controversy. See Aleinu: A popular prayer with a controversial history.

Rabbi Mendel Kessin has explained that we help bring the redemptive vision closer through our performance of mitzvot, our teshuvah and our suffering. I don't see how missionizing the goyim to the Sheva Mitzvot Bnei Noach accomplishes our mission. It's up to them to search out the truth which has been made available for themselves. And those who have been so moved by their desire to know the truth will surely find it, even without our intervention. Their own law says that they are to set up courts of justice. We weren't told to do it on their behalf. They must do it for themselves. Just something more to think about. 

One World Judaism

15 Elul 5775

Those who are regular readers here and who follow the FC messages are aware that there is a plot to create a one-world religion for the New World Order which is being implemented for humanity. It plans to combine the world's religions by focusing on what we all have in common and ignoring or educating against what "divides" us.

To accomplish this, traditional Judaism as it has been handed down to us since Sinai cannot be tolerated since they will not accept the chosenness and the superiority of Bnei Yisrael or the Torah. There are many Jews involved in these universalist activities whether intended for good or for ill. Many are not aware and do not at all understand the web in which they have become ensnared. They think they are doing a chesed and are helping to redeem the world. But, "there is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is ways of death." (Proverbs 14.12)

This is the emblem for a Chabad-Lubavitch website dedicated to spreading the Noahide laws throughout the world. One of their contributing rabbis writes the following...

The Institute of Noahide Code Event Celebrating Diversity was conceived as an opportunity to unite the world by re-echoing the belief in G-d as the Creator of all human beings and the belief that we are all equal. This is the true meaning of harnessing diversity among different cultures. This is a foundation for our organization’s goal which to work alongside the United Nations (UN) and other partner organizations with hopes of promoting human rights and development, and protecting freedom of religion.

We are also seeking to focus on the Seven Universal Laws of Noah to promote ethical standards and provide the opportunity for all mankind to gain parity and value peace.

Noahide Institute is an active organization that mobilizes youth through encouraging dialogue. The organization’s mission is to educate and share values through the One People-One World campaign and to promote the Seven Laws of Noah to ensure a better future for our shared world. (Source)

Just because the "Laws of Noah" appear to be accepted or even lauded and mention is made of the "Creator" doesn't mean it's kosher. In 1991, then President George Bush, Sr. signed the following declaration...

“Whereas Congress recognizes the historical tradition of ethical values and principles which are the basis of civilized society and upon which our great Nation was founded; Whereas these ethical values and principles have been the bedrock of society from the dawn of civilization, when they were known as the Seven Noahide Laws; Whereas without these ethical values and principles the edifice of civilization stands in serious peril of returning to chaos; Whereas society is profoundly concerned with the recent weakening of these principles that has resulted in crises that beleaguer and threaten the fabric of civilized society; Whereas the justified preoccupation with these crises must not let the citizens of this Nation lose sight of their responsibility to transmit these historical ethical values from our distinguished past to the generations of the future; Whereas the Lubavitch movement has fostered and promoted these ethical values and principles throughout the world; Whereas Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, leader of the Lubavitch movement, is universally respected and revered and his eighty-ninth birthday falls on March 26, 1991; Whereas in tribute to this great spiritual leader, `the rebbe’, this, his ninetieth year will be seen as one of `education and giving’, the year in which we turn to education and charity to return the world to the moral and ethical values contained in the Seven Noahide Laws; and Whereas this will be reflected in an international scroll of honor signed by the President of the United States and other heads of state: Now, therefore, be it“  – Public Law 102-14, Library of Congress Website

A few months earlier, he was making his classic New World Order speech: George Bush Sr. New World Order Live Speech Sept 11 1990

There is even an actual organization promoting something called Universal Judaism!

Perhaps well-meant, but wrong nevertheless. I challenge anyone to show me among any list of the 613 mitzvot a commandment to proselytize among the gentiles. 

G-d willing and with His help I hope to publish a series of posts in the near future which will educate us all on the proper relationships which exist between Jews and non-Jews. This isn't it!

29 August 2015

Concerning Jewish 'Outreach' to Xians

15 Elul 5775

In my previous post, I alluded to what I consider to be a very big and very serious problem with the two main chassidic groups engaged in kiruv throughout the world - Breslov and Chabad. I compared them to the Jewish group which morphed over three hundred years into what became Xianity. By that, I'm talking about how it turned from being a ba'al teshuvah movement within Judaism into another religion entirely by expanding its outreach to include the gentiles and turning universal in it's appeal. In my view, this same mistake is being repeated today within the ranks of Breslov and Chabad. In most cases, I'm sure these efforts are based on the most noble of intentions, but that does not remove the danger from Am Yisrael, nor does it satisfy the truth.

Sixteen years ago, I stumbled onto a Xian (so-called "Messianic-'Jewish'") website which featured several pictures of the local Chabad rabbi addressing the congregation in their church. The preacher and the rabbi were arm-in-arm and the article which accompanied the photos bragged at how the 'messianics' were making inroads into the Orthodox Jewish community. 

I immediately looked up the rabbi and emailed him to inform him of what I had found. I was sure he had no idea what he was really dealing with. Of course, the rabbi had been led to believe that this was a group of Bnei Noach who wanted the rabbi to "teach" them and he naturally welcomed the opportunity. It was just as I had suspected. I proceeded to provide him with insight based on my personal experiences as well as the evidence of the group's website that showed how they were intentionally deceiving the rabbi for ulterior motives. However, I was in for a shock when the rabbi refused to hear anything negative about this group of "righteous gentiles" from me, a fellow Jew with his best interests at heart. And this experience has been repeated over and over again, always with the same result.

Since then, I have seen many, many - too many - Jews fall for this ploy, but I still don't understand how and why it happens. In the case of the previous post, some people wondered why I did not contact the rabbis privately instead of making a public expose. My answer to that is this - the information was already very, very public and an immediate, in-kind response was necessary. 

It seems to me that this generation is being guided primarily by their emotions. People appear to be making decisions based not on the Torah and halachah, but on their feelings. That is very, very dangerous to us as a people. It is leading to the dismantling of all the fences and barriers which have served to protect us and bridges are being built over which wicked people are crossing to do us harm. And make no mistake about it. Xians are not Noahides, they are idolaters and therefore enemies of HKB"H who want to 'love' us to death. If rabbis are truly concerned with the spiritual needs of Xians worldwide, why is it that they never, ever begin by first telling them that they must abandon their idolatry???

Everyone seems to believe that they are operating with only the best of intentions, but as the old adage goes, "The road to hell is paved with good intentions."

To be continued, iy"H...

28 August 2015

IMPORTANT: Disturbing Trends

13 Elul 5775

Some disturbing trends are beginning to show up among the Breslov and Chabad chassidim. They appear to be going the same route that the Yeshu followers traveled in their day. (Not that they're the only ones, but they're the most visible.)  It doesn't seem to be enough for them to bring Jews to repentance. They appear to feel compelled to missionize the goyim as well. But, how far are they willing to go? Will they bend the Torah so far as to break it in their eagerness to present Xians as "righteous among the nations", mislabeling them as "Noahides"?

I get no joy from discussing this. I wish I didn't even know about it. But, since it's been put out there,so to speak, there's no way I can let it pass without a response.

Rabbi Lazer Brody wrote a blog post today entitled Pidyon Nefesh for Non-Jews. It quotes a letter from one Robert Ogabu of Johannesburg who wrote:

"I don't know if you remember me, but I am one of members of Reverend Philip Banda's community in South Africa. I'll never forget the blessing you gave me. ...I'm enclosing a clip that someone took when you were here with us - it really strengthened our faith."

Meet "Reverend" Philip Banda, aka "Prophet" Philip Banda. He's the "founder and overseer" of Impact for Christ Ministries (IFCM) and "is renowned for his dynamic soul-winning ministry."

Here is more from his website...

The Prophet, as he is popularly known, preaches a straightforward, confrontational and uncompromising Gospel of truth and God's love that inspires many to repentance and pursuance of God's righteousness.

Through the Holy Spirit performance of miracles, deliverance from demonic powers, healing to the sick, restoration to the broken, salvation of souls, etc. this God's man continues to take the message of God's saving and healing power to the people and help many to establish a personal relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ - that is: "to point people to Jesus", as Prophet Banda would often say.

From the "About" section of his website...

Who Are We?
Impact for Christ Ministries is a revelation of the Church of the Lord Jesus Christ, governed by Him as the Head, according to the enunciation of the Holy Scriptures, the working of the Holy Spirit and the ministrations instituted by Jesus Himself. We are a ministry of the Lord Jesus Christ, where His name is lifted up high and His limitless power demonstrated - 'Doing the works of Jesus Christ and greater works than He did for those who believe in Him'.

Our Mission

To glorify God , to proclaim the Kingdom of God by preaching the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ through the power of the Holy Spirit. To minister to the needs of the total person. To develop, equip and release believers into ministry. To extend the influence of the church beyond its boundaries and abroad.

Well, you get the idea - classic Xianity with the false deity at the head. The following clip was included in the rabbi's blog post. The letter writer, Robert Ogabu, identifies this as Banda's "community" so I suppose we can gather that they share the "Prophet's" beliefs and goals.

This all begs the question - why is Rabbi Brody there and what is he hoping to accomplish? Some of them are wearing kippot and they're writing to ask if they can perform pidyon nefesh and they're being advised that Rav Arush will be happy to do it for them with donations to his 'ministry':

...Rav Shalom Arush will gladly do the pidyon for you; he uses the money for spreading emuna around the world, which brings our emuna books, CDs, and ourselves to such faraway places as China, Hong Kong, Singapore, Australia and South Africa, as well as the West.

From the IFCM's Facebook page...

After 14 years of delivering the oracles of God, 14 years of prophetic teachings, 14 years of Godly direction, wisdom, confrontational and inspirational messages. Prophet Philip Banda has often been asked when he was going to write a book, finally the wait is over.

On the 7TH of November 2014 Prophet Philip Banda launches his first book, “True Christianity is Irresistible”True Christianity is Irresistible” is a compilation of 75 teachings given by the man of God Prophet Philip Banda over the years. Teachings on how you can be the best Christian that God wants you to be.

The following clip is a capture from a promotional video which was made to advertise their 2015 Israel Tour which starts TOMORROW!

Rabbi Shalom Arush himself visited South Africa and addressed a conference which was purported to be Noahides. However, you can see from this Breslov-made video that it included Philip Banda and presented him as the "President" of a "congregation", not as the "Prophet" of a church that he actually claims to be. (See Rabbi Shalom Arush in South Africa and here also.)

Philip Banda shares the dais with Rabbi Arush at the "Noahide" Conference.

I don't think Rabbi Arush has a clue who this man really is.

Banda wearing kippah and tzitzit!
"God established that there must be no unity between Israel and the nations." (And that's talking about the best of them, how much more so with the idolaters!) They must not mix or mingle together. The walls separating them must never come down. Rather, there must be separation, borders, a division. This separation, indeed, serves the purpose of unity, but genuine unity of a world under Divine sovereignty, for a united world of falsehood is not G-d's will." (Source: Or HaRa'ayon, the chapter on Havdalah)

Parshat Ki Teitzei 5775

13 Elul 5775


Jerusalem, Israel
HaRav Yehuda Kroizer SHLIT"A, Rosh Yeshiva

9 Elul, 5766/1-2 September, 2006


"When you will go out to war against your enemies, and Hashem your G-d will deliver him into your hand and you will capture its people as captives..."

Rashi teaches us that this verse from our parsha is talking about an optional war - for in the wars of the Land of Israel, it cannot be said, "and you will capture its people as captives", because it has already been said, "you shall not allow any person to live". From this we learn that there are two types of wars, a "milchemet mitzvah" and a "milchemet reshut", compulsory and noncompulsory war, respectively.

How unfortunate it is that so many of us do not know the difference between the two! As Rabbi Kahane HY"D writes:

"To our sorrow, these concepts have been corrupted and confused by yeshiva students accustomed to the exile. This applies both to those in the Diaspora and those in the Land of Israel, the exile having had a pervasive influence in both places. They are ignoramuses in this regard, so much so that they have no idea what a 'milchemet mitzvah' is, what its parameters are, and whether such a concept exits today at all. And the Torah dons sackcloth."

Let us start with the noncompulsory war - this is a war where the king wants to add greatness or reknown or to capture land, where there is no outside threat against the Jewish people. This type of war can only be done with the authorization of the great Sanhedrin, the 71 judges - obviously no small matter. Interestingly enough, in last week's parsha, we find the priest calling out to all the people who had gathered to go to war, that all those who have built a new house and not begun to live in it, let them go back home lest he die in war. Or any man who has planted a vineyard and has not redeemed its crops, let him go home. Or any man who has betrothed a woman and not married her, let him go home, etc. In all of these cases, we are talking about a noncompulsory war, for in a compulsory war everyone goes out to battle - even a groom from under his canopy.

And what is a "milchemet mitzvah", a compulsory war? The Rambam lists three things that are considered a compulsory war: The wars against Amalek, the wars against the seven nations who lived in the Land prior to the conquest of the Land by Joshua, and troubles that befall the Jewish people. The Rambam clarifies concerning non-Jews who came to wage war against Israel, to collect tax from them, to steal land from them, or to force a decree upon them, even regarding a light mitzvah. In all of these cases we go out to war, as it is a compulsory war, a commandment. Even more than this: We find that no permission is needed to wage a compulsory war, as we have seen with the case of a noncompulsory war; rather, the king\government must go out to war at once, and any delay is considered as part of the bloodshed.

We even find in the Talmud that it states: In a border town, even where the non-Jews are not attacking to kill Jews but just to demand hay and straw, we go forth armed to attack them, even violating the Sabbath to do so.

Should we be so fanatical, that just for hay and straw we go out to fight and kill? Even disregarding the Sabbath for this? The answer is, of course - Yes, for it is a compulsory war, and in a compulsory war every ones goes out to fight, even on Sabbath.

Are there Jews, who even in a compulsory war, do not go out to battle, as we see today? Is this a good thing? Just hold on till next time, as we will try to answer these and other questions about Jewish laws of war.

With love of Israel,
Levi Chazen

27 August 2015

The Scariest Message Yet

12 Elul 5775

Back in Sivan, I reported here on a message relayed by the students of Rav Amram Vaknin of Ashdod who is known to receive messages from Shamayim. (See A Message From the Mekubal HaRav Amram Vaknin, shlit"a)

Now, Rav Vaknin has reportedly been given an additional message which is quite urgent. While I have been able to confirm its authenticity through posts on facebook, the only detailed account I could find - in either Hebrew or English - is only available through a xian news site (run by Jews), so I am hesitant to send anyone there to read it. (The comments are full of avodah zarah to the fake god.) At the same time, if the message is true, it would be very irresponsible of me not to inform the readers.

I cannot vouch for Rav Vaknin's messages, but supposedly he accurately foretold..."the 'Gaza Freedom Flotilla' in May, 2010, the deadly fire in the Carmel forest in December of 2010 as well as Operation Pillar of Defense in 2012 and Operation Protective Edge in 2014."

It seems to concern the fulfillment of a "decree" of which the rabbi was informed by Eliyahu HaNavi back in Sivan...

...Eliyahu HaNavi said to the Rabbi, there is an existing and present danger like the danger of "Haman". ...After that, Rabbi Amram asked him from where goes out the coming future decree (from the south, from the north and from the center) spoken of in organizations (ISIS, from Hamas and Hizb'allah) that they're planning to attack us soon.

The Rabbi asked Eliyahu HaNavi "How many will die?" and after a few seconds, he said "thousands" spoken of as thousands of human beings.

Last motza"sh, Rav Vaknin allegedly was told that this decree cannot be rescinded and that it is to be carried out within two weeks (from then).

Adam Alioa, a student of the Rav Amram who has uploaded videos of him purportedly in conversation with Eliyahu HaNavi while in a prophetic state, said on his facebook page that...

"A very great danger exists for Am Yisrael,...a danger the likes of which no one has ever seen before. The enemy is preparing very, very hard plans for Am Yisrael. People are going to get slaughtered in the streets like chickens. People will be killed on the roads and highways. ...a peril that was never seen in Israel. There's a need to open up a threatening and terrible war...."

And why? According to Adam's report, Eliyahu HaNavi told Rav Amram that there is no choice, because the people will not do teshuvah and will not leave the gashmiut.

It gets worse, Rav Amram's close student Gil Nachman said...

“The Muslims are going to contaminate the water, the fruits and vegetables. They are going to damage the electricity,” he said."

Nachman urged that the Israeli water company, the electric company and food importers should be prepared for these attacks.

According to Nachman, Rabbi Vaknin was told that Arab citizen of Israel and Member of Knesset Hanin Zoabi is the one planning it. Vaknin stated his belief that Zoabi is a spy for ISIS and Hamas and is providing the terror groups all the information they need to plan the attacks.

Again, the time frame given was "within two weeks from last motza"sh which could put the breakout of this terrible war in Parshat Ki Tavo.

According to Rav Fish in his speech entitled Parshat Ki Tavo 5775 is the Time of the End, "Ki Tavo" is the same gematria as "Mashiach ben David" and "Tavo" hints at the "coming" of Mashiach

Additionally, he points out that the Twin Towers fell in Elul at the end of the shmitah cycle while it was still Parshat Ki Tavo and the Shoah also broke out during Elul, Parshat Ki Tavo at the end of the shmitah cycle!

If this horror does in fact occur, this will no doubt be the orchestrated event that will bring down the Erev Rav regime and provide the excuse for the foreign troops to arrive to "save" us. Once Eisav has taken over, Mashiach ben David can take control from Eisav and "the kingdom will be Hashem's"!

Meantime, hopefully, it will send many of the non-Jews running for the exits and help Am Yisrael to do real and complete teshuvah and merit once and for all to greet Mashiach Tzidkeinu motzaei shvi'it!!

"It's a bird, it's a plane, it's..." SUPERMOON!

12 Elul 5775

The next six weeks could bring anything, but the whole world feels like something really big is coming. I'm wondering if the moon is predictive of that...

Forget the 'Supermoon': What's Actually Happening at Lunar Perigee

...The most important result of the moon's elliptical orbit is that sometimes the moon is closer to the Earth, and sometimes farther away. The time when the satellite is nearest is called "perigee" and the time when it is farthest is called "apogee."

What skywatchers are most interested in is perigee, the date and time when the moon is closest to Earth. This month, perigee occurs on Sunday, Aug. 30, at 11 a.m. EDT (1500 GMT), about 18 hours after full moon. At that time, the moon will be 222,631 miles (358,290 kilometers) away from Earth.

...The important thing for astronomers is that the perigee distance is less than 223,690 miles (360,000 km). When the moon gets this close, its most important effect on the Earth — the ocean tides — gets stronger. On the day of perigee and the three days following, Earth will have larger tides than usual.

Looking ahead to next month, full moon will fall on Sunday, Sept. 27, at 10:51 p.m. EDT (0251 GMT on Sept. 28), and perigee just 51 minutes earlier, at 10 p.m. This perigee will be the closest in 2015, at 221,753 miles (356,877 km). The result will be the largest full moon of the year and even larger high tides. Notice that both events happen in the evening, when the moon will be well placed in the sky.

...The September full moon will also pass through the Earth's shadow, causing a total eclipse of the moon, visible on the evening of Sept. 27 in North and South America, and the morning of Sept. 28 in Europe and Africa. 

[This will the fourth of the so-called "tetrad of blood moons" and the first day of Sukkot.]

26 August 2015

Jewish "Prepping"

11 Elul 5775

With all the talk of doomsday rampant in the world today comes the logical question - what should I do to prepare? What and how much? "Prepping" or preparing to survive the "end of the world as we know it" by stockpiling food, water and emergency supplies has become a big business and a popular topic for discussion. The gentiles who are into "prepping" say the more the better. Some have gone so far as to build secure enclaves with like-minded neighbors in anticipation of the troubles to come from a world that is falling apart - economically, socially, and even geophysically. 

So, what about the Jews? Where do we fit in? What does our vast storehouse of knowledge advise us to do at such a time as this? As usual, there are several schools of thought. There are the two extremes of "do nothing and leave it all up to Hashem" and "follow the ways of the gentiles and go all out". But, I believe the middle ground - the balance of the two - is the wisest and most halachicly sound advice.

A few years ago, when it seriously looked like there was going to be an attack on Iran, the rabbis told people to stock up food and water for two weeks. Several times, in the facilitated communication sessions, the autistic children were asked about this subject and they also consistently advised having two weeks of supplies on hand. Recently, Binyamin gave us a clue as to how we should understand this...

Q. So has the time come now to gather food like in Greece citizens are now hoarding quantities of food?

A. I've said the whole time: you can keep some 'two weeks' of food so there will be a basis for a miracle, Hashem will make miracles for us. 

This reminded me of the miracle of the oil performed by the Prophet Elisha...

(II Kings 4.1-7)

Now a woman, of the wives of the disciples of the prophets, cried out to Elisha, saying, "Your servant, my husband, has died, and you know that your servant did fear the Lord; and the creditor has come to take my two children for himself as slaves."

And Elisha said to her, "What shall I do for you? Tell me what you have in the house." And she said, "Your maidservant has nothing at all in the house except a jug of oil."

And he said, "Borrow vessels for yourself from outside, from all your neighbors; do not borrow only a few empty vessels.

And you shall come and close the door about yourself and about your sons, and you shall pour upon all these vessels; and the full one you shall carry away."

And she went away from him and closed the door about herself and about her sons; they were bringing [vessels] to her and she was pouring.

And it was when the vessels were full, that she said to her son, "Bring me another vessel," and he said to her, "There is no other vessel." And the oil stopped.

And she came and told the man of God: and he said, "Go sell the oil and pay your debt; and you and your sons will live with the remainder."

The widow's supply of oil was her "basis" for a miracle. And we could look for other examples, like Nachshon ben Aminadav's jumping into the Reed Sea was the "basis" for the miracle of the splitting of the sea. This world operates as a partnership between us and HKB"H. We do our "hishtadlut" - our own efforts - and Hashem matches and exceeds them. As has been discussed before, the amount of hishtadlut required from us is equal to our emunah in Hashem. The more we trust Him, the less we actually have to do, but we have to make some kind of minimal effort. In the case of "prepping" it appears to be "two weeks" worth.

Now, this applies to the Jews living in Eretz Yisrael, not because the Jews are different, but because Eretz Yisrael is not like all the other lands. I can't guarantee anyone that this will be the case in chu"lBinyamin went further in his message and said regarding putting aside two week's worth of food and water...

"... in Israel it won't be as bad as outside of it. Outside of Israel - that's something else. There, outside of Israel, it will be a mess..., it will be something terrible. In Israel it won't be so bad, but it will be bad enough, not like outside of Israel. Here, they need some one place to remain that in it will be their center..."

So, pray and seek Hashem's guidance and find a rav whom you can trust to advise you in your area of chu"l about what might be required there. But there, especially, some kind of preparation must be undertaken. Do not be fooled by the yetzer hara into thinking you can sit back and do absolutely nothing and Hashem will do it all for you. If you do that, I'm afraid you will be very disappointed in the outcome.

24 August 2015

Are We Witnessing History in the Making?

9 Elul 5775

Dire warnings and predictions about the wobbly state of the world economy have been flooding the internet for months (and in some cases - years). But, the tone has increased by decibels since the close of markets last Friday.

Judging by Shirat Devorah's report this morning on Asian markets, US stocks could be in real jeopardy. But, it's not just stocks that are at risk. The price of oil is plunging, too. (This morning it is has broken through the psychological barrier of $40 pb.) And aside from the good news of lower pump prices for consumers, the rest of the news is all bad.

Economist Harry Dent predicted this would occur in the current timeframe nearly nine months ago: Harry Dent: Oil Price Plunge Trigger For Next Global Crisis.
Dent explains, “Normally, oil prices falling in a good economy like the 80’s and 90’s, where we have falling inflation and booming productivity and good demographic trends, this would be a good thing.”
“It is a good thing for consumers and businesses, but it is a bad thing for financial markets and our whole debt structure. We have the greatest debt bubble in history. It’s the greatest asset bubble in history, including stocks, commodities, real estate and everything.”
“The last time this bubble burst was in 2008 because of the subprime crises. A small tranche of loans went bad, and it triggered a whole debt crisis, that’s what I see.” 

He discusses the subject with Alex Jones back in January in the video below.

23 August 2015

The World Is Shaking

9 Elul 5775

Huge explosions at US military base in Japan

"The military zone is part of a huge US complex that houses three bases and terrorism experts have said it's "plausible" it was a deliberate attack."

Also, fifty North Korean subs have 'disappeared' and may be en route to a 'target'.

Here is a reminder of what Rabbi Nachmani 'prophesied' about Korea...

22 August 2015

Are We Suddenly Transitioning from the World of 'Seven' to the World of 'Eight'?

8 Elul 5775

I opened the computer after Shabbat on 8 Elul to read the following from the Economic Collapse Blog...

"...The Dow Jones Industrial Average plummeted 530 points (Friday), and that followed a 358 point crash on Thursday. When you add those two days together, the total two day stock market crash that we just witnessed comes to a grand total of 888 points, which is larger than any one day stock market crash in U.S. history."

May I remind you that the crash of 2008 began with a record one-day (9/29) loss of  777 points?

The message could not be clearer!!

What is the Spiritual Significance of the Number Eight?

In kabbalistic teachings, the number seven symbolizes perfection – perfection that is achievable via natural means – while eight symbolizes that which is beyond nature and its (inherently limited) perfection.

Some examples:

a) G‑d created the world and its natural order in seven days.

b) Between the holidays of Passover and Shavuot we count seven weeks. During these weeks we work on perfecting our seven emotions (love, fear, compassion, ambition, humility, bonding and receptiveness)—one emotion per week. At the conclusion of these seven weeks we have sufficiently perfected ourselves to be worthy of receiving the Torah on Shavuot. A completed person has control over all seven emotions.

c) The Holy Temple's menorah, which served to illuminate the natural world with the holy glow of spirituality, had seven branches.

e) There are seven colors of the rainbow and seven musical notes. When something has seven parts, it symbolizes that it has reached its state of completion: the seven notes of the diatonic scale make one complete octave, etc.

Eight, on the other hand, is symbolic of an entity that is one step above the natural order, higher than nature and its limitations. That's why Chanukah is eight days long—the greatly outnumbered Maccabees' resolve to battle the Greeks wasn't logical or natural. They drew on reservoirs of faith and courage that are not part of normative human nature. They therefore merited a miracle higher than nature – a miracle that lasted eight days – and to commemorate this, we light on Chanukah an eight-branched menorah. In a similar vein, we circumcise our children when they are eight-day old babies, because the brit milah symbolizes our nation's supernatural and logic-defying covenant with G‑d.

The number 8 is also connected to the revelation of Mashiach!

...In the era of Mashiach we will merit a higher revelation of G-dliness, and therefore Mashiach's harp will consist of eight strings, one more than the seven-stringed harp of the Beit Hamikdash (Arachin 13b). Chanukah is a preparation for the forthcoming Messianic era. These days are called "Chanukah" because they are a Chinuch — education/preparation — accustoming us to the final redemption.

...The correlation of Chanukah and Mashiach is most evident on day eight, because the number eight represents that which is above the chain of creation. Similarly, the Messianic era will usher in a new order which will also transcend the chain of creation. (Source)

Yes, there is going to be a New World Order, but Melech HaMashiach will be at the head of it, not the Pope!!