6

 

Denominations as Tribe

 

     Tribes must function in a way that benefits the ‘Edah or they become destructive to the ‘Edah. Tribes that are competitive with each other are ineffective in influencing family, community, or nation. In Hebrew the word for tribe is מטה (matteh)—and it means supporting staff. In response to Korah’s challenge to Aaron’s leadership as High Priest from the Tribe of Levi, Moses was instructed by God to have each tribe take a staff (rod) and write on it the name of the tribe along with a staff (rod) with the name Aaron. “And it came to pass, that on the morrow Moses went into the Tabernacle of Witness; and behold, the rod of Aaron for the house of Levi was budded, and brought forth buds, and bloomed blossoms, and yielded almonds.” The staff (rod) matteh of the tribe (matteh) of Levi budded and confirmed Aaron of the Tribe of Levi as High Priest. The staff (rod) (tribe) is intended by God to help and support those who have a difficult time walking (Riskin, para. 6). Each denomination is a tribe, each association is a tribe, and even nondenominational churches together are a tribe, even though they claim not to be. When tribes (denominations) compete rather than unify with their own distinct attributes, strengths, and characteristics, the nation is deprived of tribal leadership and voice. The influence of the tribes can bring balance to a government that is out of balance and out of control. The influence of the tribes along with Abba’s House can reestablish the proper function of family. The tribes (denominations) are intended to be an extension of the Body of Christ working together to accomplish the goal of God in the earth. That goal is to strengthen families, to be a kingdom of priests, to affect our communities, to develop a holy nation and to demonstrate that the Lord is God and there is no other. That goal is to also be a light unto all nations by the proper manifestation of the four ordinations of God: family, Abba’s House, tribe, and nation. Wilson (1989) says that,

 

“A body of Christian believers is only as strong as the sum of its individual members, for the Church like Israel, functions as a corporate personality. The lives of its members are intertwined and find their truest meaning in a network of relationships within the body. As a Jewish sage once observed, there is no room for God in him who is full of himself” (page 189). 

 

To Affect a Nation

 

     Our nation is in a terrible condition. The function of government and nation is to provide, protect, and defend family, Abba’s House, and tribes. Any nation that becomes destructive to these ordinations should be removed. This nation is out of control because of the breakdown of family, Abba’s House, and tribe. Where is the Church? Why is her voice not being heard? Her voice is not being heard because it is functioning more as a קהל and ἐκκλησία than an עדה. If we are going to change the direction of a nation into the proper function as designed by God it must start with the proper function of family. Rather than teaching a social gospel, Abba’s House must begin to train and equip parents to be the spiritual heads and teachers of the Word of God. Abba’s House and tribe must take their rightful place as places of safety, learning, provision, and protection. The Lord is God and no other, and that includes a government that has become destructive to the family and the values of the עדה. Change must begin at the bottom; change must begin with the family. Abba’s House and tribe must facilitate that change. The local Church, Abba’s House, must become a place of safety intent upon fulfilling the goal of God. Abba’s House must begin afresh and anew to equip mothers and fathers to function as God intended. Abba’s House is to help equip, not assume the role of either mother or father. The home must be reestablished as the center of spiritual growth. This can only be accomplished by the proper understanding and implementation of the ‘Edah, the witnessing community. The Church must move back to its roots. The root is Jewish, the root is Hebraic; and the root of the Church is found at Sinai, not in Rome. Hillary was right in this regard–it takes a village. However, the village must be Hebraic in its approach, not Greek; and it must be influenced by Abba’s House, not by government.

 

 

 

References

 

Barr, James. The Semantics of Biblical Language (1961). Eugene: Wipf and Stock Publishers.

 

Chunkwa, Dontas Oluwa. The Church as the Extended Family of God (2011).  Bloomington: Xlibris Publication.

 

Coke, Karl D. A Proper Education (2007). Charlotte: Andy Books

 

Danker, William Frederick. An English Lexicon of the New Testament (2000). Chicago: University of Chicago Press.

 

Heschel, Abraham Joshua. God in Search of Man (1955). New York: The Noonday Press.

 

Heschel, Abraham Joshua. Man is Not Alone (1951).  New York: The Noonday Press.

 

Lowin, Joseph. Hebrewspeak  (1995). New Jersey: Jason Aronson Inc.

 

Lutske, Harvey. The Jewish Book of Why (1986). New Jersey: Jason Aronson Inc.

 

Luzzatto, Rabbi Moshe Chayim. The Seven Rules of Hillel. Retrieved June 18, 2013 from http://www.yashanet.com/studies/revstudy/hillel.htm

 

Maier, Paul L. Josephus: The Essential Works (1994). Grand Rapids: Kregel Publications.

 

Neusner, Jacob., Trans. The Babylonian Talmud. Qiddushin (2011). Peabody: Hendrickson Publishers.

 

Pereo, Rabbi Yehuda. How Women Pave the Way (2013). Retrieved April 27, 2013 from http://www.torah.org/learning/yomtov/shavuos/5769.html#

 

Rabinowitz, Abraham Hirsch. The Study of Talmud: Understanding the Halachic Mind (1996). New Jersey: Jason Aronson Inc.

 

Rhodes, Ron; Anthony, Richard. The Eight Rules of Interpretation (2013). Retrieved May 1, 2013 from http://www.ecclesia.org/truth/8-rules.

 

Riskin, Rabbi Shlomo. Parshiot Matot Masei (2004). Retrieved May 2, 2013 from http://www.ohrtorahstone.org.il/parsha/5764/matotmasei64.htm

 

Rosiak, Luke. Fathers Disappear From Households Across America. (2012). Retrieved May 6, 2013 from http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/dec/25/fathers-disappear-from-households-across-america/?page=all.

 

Scherman, Rabbi Nossan; Zlotowitz, Rabbi Meir, Editors. Tehillim: The Schottenstin Edition (2001). Brooklyn: ArtScroll.

 

Sinclair, Rabbi Julian. Edah (2008). Retrieved April 29, 2013 from http://thejc.com/judaism/jewish-words/edah

 

Thayer, Joseph Henry. Thayer Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament (1977). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

 

Trumbull, Henry Clay. The Threshold Covenant or The Beginning of Religious Rites (1896). New York: Charles Scribner and Sons.

 

Tregelles, Samuel Prideaux, Ed. Gesenius Hebrew and Chaldee Lexicon to the Old Testament (1979). Grand Rapids: Baker Book House.

 

Wilson, Marvin R. Our Father Abraham (1989). Grand Rapids: Wm B. Eerdmans Publishing Company.

 

 

 

Glossary of Terms

 

Davar Hilmad Me’anino-Hillel’s seventh law of interpretation. Explanation obtained from context.

 

ἐκκλησία-ekklesia-Church-a gathering of citizens called out from their home into some public place; an assembly of the people convened at the public place of council for the purpose of deliberating.

 

קהל-(qahal)-Church or assembly-the called out ones who are called together for a sacred purpose.

 

עדה-‘adah-Church, an appointed meeting, a congregation, a family, something that testifies.

 

עדות-testimony.

 

שְׁמַ֖ע יִשְׂרָאֵ֑ל יְהוָ֥ה אֱלֹהֵ֖ינוּ יְהוָ֥ה׀ אֶחָֽד - The Shema-Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is one Lord.

 

עד-ed-witness.

 

משפכה-mishpachah-family.

 

ברך השם-baruk hashem-to bless the name of God.

 

הלוך חשם-halul hashem-to dishonor the name of God.

 

τροφός-trophos- is a nurse or nursing mother-one who cherishes with tender love and fosters with tender care.

 

מ׳נקת-mayneqet- a nursing mother who cherishes her young.

 

קדש-kodesh-holy, set aside for the work and the use of God.

 

מזוזה-Mezuzah-container containing the parchment of the Shema affixed to the door of a house or the rooms in a house.

 

Tehillim-The Hebrew word for Psalms.

 

מלכות כהנ׳ם-malkut cohanim-kingdom of priests.

 

Minyan-a minimum requirement of ten men for the purpose of communal religious service.

 

מטה-matteh-tribe.

 

 

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