Sukkot 2006: Port Austin
Seminar Paper #1
First in the Series Titled
Concealed In the Tzimtzum:
“J” is to “P” as Stone is to Spirit
The modern hornsmith Lee Larkin, whose powder horns are seen in the movies The Patriot and Alamo, lacks completing his dissertation [ABD] for his doctorate in Historical Theology. Among other reasons for not completing his degree was the lack of faith, lack of belief of his professors. The men [and women] under whom he studied no longer believed that the Bible was the inspired word of God. Their studies of the original languages and of early texts had taken them beyond the quagmire of doubt and had planted them in the firm soil of unbelief. Lee was not willing to follow them to his death, but many other disciples have, with these many others now holding graduate degrees and pastorates, large and small, where from pulpits every Sunday they look down on their congregations of believers, each identifying him or herself as a Christian. Yes, they look down on the simple faith of those disciples who still believe, who would contend for the faith once delivered if those disciples knew what that faith was. They look down on the ignorance of disciples who may have heard of “J” and “P” but who don’t understand the significance of these creation accounts or of even why the Old Testament occupies most of the Bible. They look down on those disciples who sit in rear pews. They look with concealed distain at those disciples whose suits look like “church clothes,” whose Bibles are dog-eared. They smile as they look down on the entirety of the congregation, for the smile comes with the degree, perhaps the reason why Lee doesn’t smile when he talks about his graduate school professors.
The denominations and sects employing both professors and pastors who have been educated unto unbelief represent so-called mainstream Christianity, but the problem of unbelief isn’t confined to the Church. The British educator and poet Matthew Arnold wrote in “Stanzas from the Grande Chartreuse” (1855),
For rigorous teachers seized my youth,
And purged its faith, and trimm’d its fire,
Show’d me the high, white star of Truth,
There bade me gaze and there aspire.
Even now their whispers pierce the gloom:
What dost thou in this living tomb? [stanza break]
Forgive me, masters of the mind!
At whose behest I long ago
So much unlearnt, so much resign’d— (lines 67-75)
What Arnold had unlearned was simple belief in God, what the monks at the abbey displayed as they tended their gardens. Arnold’s unbelief came from his “rigorous teachers” who had him gaze at Truth other than that to which Christ Jesus bore witness (John 18:37). And three, four, five generations of rigorous teachers later, what modern professors and pastors initially learned was what comes from empirical sciences based on observations and experimentations that cannot nor do not attempt to answer the question of why things happen at the foundational level, such as why a Big Bang or any bang occurred.
Theory, theories, and observations confirming theories end where it becomes impossible to measure a position to a precision of less than the Planck length, or to measure duration to a precision greater than the time required for a photon traveling at the speed of light to travel a Planck length. Therefore, by the self-imposed limit of observation empirical sciences reject revelation and become distant cousins to Buddhism, which avoids conjecture about the origins of the universe or the origins of life, focusing instead on more physical application of how to become a better person, thereby saving the person from suffering by obtaining Nirvana.
But the problem of unbelief is really not a problem for most of those who do not believe. They strive to better understand what can be observed. Their thoughts remain focused on what can be known, not on what cannot. Therefore, they never make a journey to any abbey at Grande Chartreuse, where they might see the futility of this world … they have not been born of Spirit so their thoughts are only those of this world. Any enlightenment they may have is from this world, where all things are physical. Only rarely will they ever encounter on a personal level a disciple who has truly been born of Spirit, and then, they will most likely conclude that the disciple simply suffers from a lack of enlightenment. Hence, they can and usually will—and perhaps should—dismiss disciples as uneducated hicks, the hayseeds of a failed educational system, the refuge from an overtly superstitious age.
Millenniums before the empirical sciences discovered the Planck length, the curiosity of human beings sought answers to how they came to be; rightly or wrongly, the minds of men sought creation accounts. Thus, myth-makers obliged, with some accounts closely agreeing with natural observation. For instance, in Hindu philosophy, the sequence of Avatars generally corresponds with Darwinian evolution, with the first Avatar coming from water; so Hindus do not seem to find a conflict between creation, the Wheel of Time, and tiered evolution, nor do they find a paradox in God simultaneously being within and without the universe.
The Buddha did not fret over the question of creation, but the dominant creation myth has matter coming from preexisting matter, with this world coming from the debris of preexisting worlds destroyed by fire or for other reasons. This belief in life from preexisting life lies at the heart of most aboriginal peoples’ creation stories, leaving only a few peoples to subscribe to an ex nihilo [out of nothing] creation.
Numerous places in the Qur’am Islam identifies Allah, for Muslims the one and only deity [the Theos of Abraham — Matt 22:32], as the first cause of creation. Allah is the singular equivalent to Eloah. As such Allah is the same Theos of whom the Apostle John wrote, “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made” (John 1:3). Since Arian Christians contend that the first two verses of John’s Gospel are mistranslated or misunderstood, most Arian Christians and Muslims are only a handshake away from each other in their understanding of creation.
But today’s largest and most visible Arian Christian denomination (The Latter Day Saints) does not theologically support an ex nihilo creation, believing instead that physical matter and energy are without an absolute origin, that the Creator formed the present universe from existing matter, that all spirit is matter of an extremely fine or pure composition that can only be discerned by purer eyes than present human beings have. The majority of Trinitarian, Unitarian, and Binitarian Christian denominations, however, hold to an ex nihilo creation, using the Genesis chapter one creation account (the so-called “P” account) as the controlling creation story.
Jewish mysticism (Kabbala theosophy), a late development in monotheism, introduces the concept of Tzimtzum (צמצום), which has Elohim YHWH contracting the godhead’s infinite essence to create conceptual space in which a physical world could come into existence, with the function of Tzimtzum being to conceal from created beings the activating force within them, thereby producing room for freewill. The importance of the concept of Tzimtzum is not the Kabbalistic understanding of deity, but in the concept’s more supportable premise that the physical universe conceals the spiritual nature of the creation. Reversing this concealment becomes the duty of those who would be kings—and it is the development of this concept of concealment and revelation that much of this paper addresses, for the essence of typological exegesis is that the visible physical creation forms the lively but lifeless shadow of an invisible spiritual creation that is actually concealed by its shadow. Thus, the physical creation reveals what has been concealed by the same physical creation, but with the revealing coming at the end of the age when the Elijah to come (Mal 4:5) restores all things, thereby turning the hearts of sons to the Father and the heart of the Father to His sons lest He smites the earth with utter destruction.
Typological exegesis is the reading strategy that best explains—and the only strategy to reveal—what has been concealed by the physical creation, even to the nature of the godhead [Christology]. As such, what has been concealed appears openly, in plain sight, observable to everyone, available for intimate examination. What has been concealed is as observable as was the man Jesus of Nazareth, the Theos of Abraham, the Kurios of living sons of God confined in tents of flesh.
While Judaism understands that the concept of Tzimtzum contains an inherent paradox that requires the Most High to be simultaneously transcendent and immanent, binitarian Christians understand the paradox differently, and usually understand the paradox to be better described by the Greek concept of hypostasis, where all that can be known by observation is that which is beneath the unobservable spiritual reality. Hence, the Apostle Paul used words and expressions that translate into 21st-Century English as /type/, /examples/, /shadow/, /copy and shadow/, while referring to 1st-Century disciples to whom he had written an epistle as “our letter of recommendation, written on our [your] hearts, to be known and read by all…a letter from Christ delivered by us, written not with ink but with the Spirit of the living God, not on tablets of stone but on tablets of human hearts” (2 Co 3:2-3). For the Apostle Paul, the actions and lives of disciples form epistles in the unobservable Book of Life in a similar manner to how the actions and lives of the kings of Israel form the text for the Writings, which along with the Law and the Prophets forms Scripture, all of which has been breathed out by God according to the Apostle Paul (2 Tim 3:16).
The integrity of the Bible rests on that claim of being divinely inspired. Higher criticism attacks the claim of divine inspiration, with the frontlines of this attack occurring with the first lines of the text. Yes, the attack higher criticism makes begins with questioning whether Moses could have written Genesis, or whether Genesis was written by any single author. By analyzing different sections of Genesis, Biblical scholars, in the 19th-Century, began to think that at least three textual traditions appear in this one book, with the passages from Genesis 2:4 through 3:3 believed to be the oldest, dating from the northern kingdom of Samaria in the 8th-Century BCE. Thus, today, biblical scholars working from a second century of higher criticism refer to these passages as the “E” Text, or Elohist Text, because this linguistic tradition uses Elohim as the name for the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.
The importance of higher criticism is that a professor or pastor doesn’t need to wrestle with the inherent paradox contained within a concept of God creating space where free will can exist apart from His will if this professor or pastor using linguistic studies, the anthropomorphism of deity, and the folkloric qualities of the text can produce in first him or herself, then in his or her students the disbelief necessary to assign human authorship to Scripture. If humanly authored sometime after having contact with other peoples possessing similar creation myths, then disbelief triumphs—this professor or pastor will find no conflict between the empirical sciences and Scripture, for these empirical sciences have explained how and why Scripture came into existence, leaving only one question to still be answered: why do so many continue to believe? Why is there increasing political pressure to accord Creation studies the same intellectual standing as Darwinian evolution has been accorded? Why spend precious classroom time in conjecture about positions smaller than a Planck length? What good can possibly come from elevating ancient myth to the status of scientific discovery?
Actually, the problem that the concept of Tzimtzum sought to explain had already been explained, with its explanation rejected because of Israel’s transformation of monotheism into an idol very much like Molech or Marduk. On the 12th of Abib, two days after He entered Jerusalem as Passover Lamb and High Priest of a new generation of Israel and two days before He would be killed, Jesus answered first the Herodians concerning paying taxes (Matt 22:15-22) by clearly separating the reign of Caesar from the reign of God—the Christ does not, nor will not reign from Caesar’s throne (John 18:36-37). Thus, human governance, represented by the coin bearing Caesar’s image, conceals spiritual governance by an invisible God, with both forms of governance simultaneously present.
After silencing the Herodians, the Sadducees, transforming a woman into an object, asked whose wife the woman married to seven brothers would be in the resurrection (Matt 22:23-28). In keeping with the duality of a visible human kingdom and an invisible spiritual kingdom, Jesus tells the Sadducees that the Theos of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was the God [Theos] of the living, not of the dead. If Jesus would have used the Tetragrammaton to represent the God of Abraham, Matthew would have transcribed Adonai [how Jesus would have voiced or prayed the Tetragrammaton] as Kurion or Kurios, not as Theos. If Jesus would have translated the Tetragrammaton in Greek [Jesus apparently addressed the Sadducees in Greek] in the same way the Septuagint had, He would have said that Theon [neuter singular in nominative case] was the God of Abraham. Thus, for Jesus to say that Theos [masculine singular] was the God of Abraham, Jesus uses linguistic case endings to introduce a second deity to the Sadducees, a deity of the living which Abraham was not then counted among. And since the Sadducees denied the resurrection, concealed by English translations was the implication that the Theos of Abraham was also not among the living, for the Sadducees would have been praying, when prayers were made in Greek, to Theon (qeon).
When first encountering the above implication, the tendency is to dismiss the significance of the physical creation, with Theos being the God of Abraham, concealing an invisible spiritual creation over which Theon presides as the Most High. But this invisible spiritual creation with the Father as the Most High is what Jesus came to reveal, and did reveal to His disciples. This is also what He suddenly revealed to the Sadducees, and what they had not expected to hear and apparently did not want to hear, for they were astonished by what He said.
Jesus’ disciple John confirms the existence, the relationship, and the nature of these two deities [Theos and Theon] that, as if married, formed one entity, the God of physically circumcised Israel, the Tetragrammaton YHWH. But Theos divested Himself of the glory He had and came to earth as His Son, His only (John 3:16), leaving Theon in heaven as the One who would raise Him from the dead—Theos ceased to be when He left heaven to be born of Mary. Yes, Theos was no longer part of the Tetragrammaton when He entered the Tzimtzum. This concept of created space that conceals from humankind spiritual things, including concealing from Israel the profundity of marriage, hid the divine nature of YHWH until Theos surrendered divinity [i.e., His glory] when He entered the Tzimtzum not as Himself, but as His Son … if Theos would have entered the Tzimtzum as Himself, He would have remained fully God. He would not have been a man tempted in all things as other human beings are. He could not be the sacrificial Lamb of God. But by entering the Tzimtzum as His Son, Theos ceased to be—He died—when He entered His creation. Thus, Theos was the God of the living, for He, Himself, existed only as His Son, the man Jesus of Nazareth. He was not the God of the dead, all of whom, including Himself, would have to be made alive by the Father, Theon (qeon).
Again, the Tzimtzum concealed from human beings, and continues to conceal knowledge that they are dead sons of God who must be made alive by the Father, Theon (qeon) — and once they are made alive [i.e., born of Spirit], the glorified Son who was Theos but who now has a new name that no one knows, will give life to whom He will (John 5:21). This second giving of life is glorification, for the Father has given all judgment of human beings to the Son (v. 22). Thus, human beings born with mortal bodies and born of Spirit will put on immortality when the Son gives them life.
Mortal bodies come from the handwork of Theos, who as potter made the first Adam from red clay, giving life to the sculpted clay by breathing into Adam’s nostrils, thereby transforming the dead clay into a nephesh [i.e., a breathing creature]. Therefore, Theos was from the beginning the God of all living things in the Tzimtzum, even though these living creatures, from the smallest microbes to humankind, had no knowledge of their spiritualness. Then, still concealing the Father (qeon) from humankind, Theos walked in the garden with Adam, the man He made, then with Adam and Eve, the woman He made from the flesh and bone of the man. These two, as Adam declared, were one (Gen 2:24) in a manner analogous to how Theos and Theon were one in the Tetragrammaton YHWH, where the radical /YH/ was Yah, the name by which David knew Theos. Therefore, Yah, as Theos, the Logos, ceased to be when Theos entered the Tzimtzum as His Son, His only (Theos could enter His creation only one time; He could not enter it again for when He entered as His Son, He was no longer Theos).
Centuries of Christological debates have produced an unexplainable triune deity that reveals just how effectively the Tzimtzum has concealed spiritual knowledge from created beings—has concealed from humankind the activating force[s] within them, thereby producing a void in which there is not direct awareness of the Father (qeon) even now. If there were awareness of the Father, why would any Christian pray to His Breath [Pneuma ’Agion] or to the Son; they would not. Too many Trinitarian Christians pray to the Son because they do not know the still concealed Father, and worse, Arian disciples pray to Yah (qeos), naming Yah as the Father, not understanding that Yah is no more.
Because Israel’s idol of monotheism replaced the Greek pantheon for Hellenistic converts to Christianity, the humbleness of plaster statuary of the dead Son and His mother forcefully suppressed and concealed knowledge that the Psalmist David, a man after God’s own heart, knew—and it is what David knew that Jesus used against the Pharisees that still causes problems for Christians and Jews.
Again, Jesus entered Jerusalem on the 10th of Abib (cf. John 19:31, 42; 12:1, 12), a Sabbath day—Jesus would be crucified on the 14th. He would enter the heart of the earth at the beginning of the 15th, the High Sabbath; would lay in the grave three days and three nights, with the 17th again being the weekly Sabbath; and He would be raised from the dead at the beginning of the 18th, the first day of the week, being gone from the grave before dawn. He would then ascend to the Father on the morrow after the weekly Sabbath as the reality of the Wave Sheaf Offering, the first handful of harvested barley of the new crop. Thus, Jesus’ crucifixion was on Wednesday. The fig tree was cursed on the preceding 1st day of the week, Sunday, with the significance of cursing this tree concealed by the Tzimtzum, and Jesus’ confrontations with the Herodians, Sadducees, and Pharisees occurred on the 12th of Abib, Monday, of the Roman year 31 CE.
When Jesus entered Jerusalem on the 10th, crowds went before Him, shouting, ‘“Hosanna to the Son of David!”’ (Matt 21:9). He went to the temple where He drove out the money-changers (who were doing business on the Sabbath, besides changing coinage at scandalous rates), then proceeded to heal the blind and the lame while children were crying out, ‘“Hosanna to the Son of David!”’ (v. 15). The chief priests and scribes were indignant and went to rebuke Jesus for allowing the crowds to hail Him as the one who comes in the name of the Lord (kuriou). Matthew records the ensuing passage:
qhlazontwn kaqrtisw ainon (Matt 21:16)
And they said to him, “Do you hear what these are saying?” And Jesus said to them, “Yes; have you never read,
‘Out of the mouth of infants and nursing babies
you have prepared praise’?” (21:16 ESV)
The citation Jesus quotes is from Psalm 8 in the Septuagint:
ek stomatos nhpiwn kai qhlazontwn kathrtisw ainon (Ps 8:3)
Jesus speaks Greek to chief priests and scribes, or at least He cites the Psalm in its Greek version which differs from the Hebrew—in Hebrew, the passage refers back to YHWH establishing strength rather than to preparing praise. And Jesus speaking Greek when in the temple, or citing the Septuagint becomes important two days later, for the interplay of the two languages functions to conceal and reveal meaning, with Jesus’ use of Theos instead of Theon revealing a second deity, the God of the living, not of the dead (Matt 22:32).
Jesus’ use of Greek instead of Hebrew when addressing the chief priests on the 10th day, and His use again of Greek when addressing the Sadducees two days later doesn’t result from scribal imprecision or laziness or from Jesus being a Greek storyteller as some modern rabbis teach, but seems to be a conscious choice on Jesus’ behalf that is occasion determined; for after silencing the Sadducees, the Pharisees gathered around Jesus to test Him (Matt 22:34-35), and He uses Greek to answer their question about which is the greatest commandment by closely paraphrasing the Septuagint translation of Moses:
o de ihsous eipen autw agafseis kurion ton qeon sou en olh q
kardia sou kai en olh q yuc sou kai en olh q dianoia sou
The Septuagint renders the phrase YHWH your Elohim as both /kurios o qeos/ [Kurios/Theos] and as /kurion ton qeon/ [Kurion/Theon] depending on context—and in during so, the use of Greek both further conceals as well as reveals aspects of the Tetragrammaton YHWH, and of Elohim, with both Hebrew icons’ plural characteristics becoming evident through the two case endings. Therefore, Jesus’ use of Greek is, itself, a revealing statement about what the natural creation should not have, but had historically concealed through the long use of Hebrew: the structure of how words are formed in Hebrew not only permitted, but virtually demanded an inside/outside, spiritual/physical reading of text. However, the historic assignments of meaning to these icons by priests and scribes (the same situation presently exists with Christian grammatico-historical exegesis) had removed the plural quality from icons that are only singular in the Tzimtzum. These icons cannot be anything but singular in the Tzimtzum, which conceals the spiritual “half” of the Tetragrammaton. Only when a person has consciousness outside of the Tzimtzum can those things that are of Spirit be discerned and understood.
Moses wrote that Elohim created humankind in His image, male and female He created them, thereby requiring both the male and the female to be present to complete the image of Elohim, an awareness Moses may or may not have consciously possessed but certainly an awareness that if ever present prior to David was subsequently lost by kings and priests. Israel only knew that things that pertained to the void when the Logos as Theos came as His Son, His only, to reveal the existence of the Father (qeon) outside of the Tzimtzum to those disciples who would be born of Spirit, thereby given life outside the Tzimtzum while still dwelling within the void … the previous clause is the substance of Christianity. This cannot be overemphasized. Israel only knew Theos, or Yah, even though the Father (qeon) was invisibly present whenever YHWH interacted with humankind. The Father (qeon) remained outside the void; He was concealed from humankind’s awareness until Theos revealed His spiritual existence to His, Theos’, disciples during a three and a half year ministry, which will be followed by another three and a half years immediately after Satan has been cast into the void. During this second three and a half year period, the 144,000 will be selected by the same criteria as Abraham was selected (Rom 4:11-12), with their journey beyond Observance being professing belief that Jesus is Lord (Rom 10:9).
Human languages have the usual trait of narrowing or restricting meaning assignment to linguistic icons over time—the longer a word is in usage, the more precise is the word’s usage. Thus, Hebrew, no exception to traits common to all human languages, especially since Babel, had assigned absolute singleness to the Tetragrammaton, thereby making the icon the basis of Israel’s monotheism while all of Israel had only physical life in the Tzimtzum that allowed for the physical creation. Theos and Theon functioned as content specific icons that represented the Tetragrammaton, but Israel, without conscious awareness of what the void concealed, used these two Greek icons somewhat interchangeably—they are not interchangeable. The neuter singular case ending of Theon causes this icon to represent a different deity than the masculine singular case ending of Theos. However, until a disciple matures sufficiently to actually grasp concepts of timelessness, or all life functioning as one entity, of the physical creation that had concealed the spiritual realm now revealing what had been concealed, the disciple [i.e., Israelite] will be as a beast is in conscious relationship to a human being. Yes, born of Spirit disciples come to Christ as sheep come to their Shepherd, and they come to the altar to be sacrificed either in this realm inside the void, or in the heavenly realm outside the void. They will be sacrificed in one dimension or the other, the reality of being of Israel.
The physically circumcised nation does not, today, have life outside the void, but remains consciously inside the Tsimtsum where this nation worships the deity that no longer exists: the Tetragrammaton consisting of Theos (qeos) and Theon (qeon). Under the Moab covenant, the second covenant mediated by Moses (Deu 29:1), spiritual circumcision, a euphemistic expression of being born of Spirit, was offered to natural Israel if the nation pursued this covenant by faith (Rom 9:31-32). When the fullness of the Gentiles have come to Christ, a time rapidly approaching, the seven endtime years of tribulation will begin. Then, and not until then, all of the natural nation that returns to Observance and professes that Jesus is Lord [two things] will be saved; will be grafted to the root of righteousness; will be given life outside the void with its accompanying spiritual awareness. Until then, natural Israel will cling to its idol of monotheism, for the Tzimtzum precludes comprehending those things of God that the man Jesus came to reveal, including the necessity of Israel killing the nation’s Husband so that He would be free to marry another, the last Eve.
But Jesus did nothing in secret, including revealing the nature of the godhead.
The probability of 1st-Century CE Pharisees grasping what Jesus revealed after He silenced the Sadducees was zero, or near zero. Even His disciples did not grasp what He had revealed prior to when they were born of Spirit through receiving the Holy Spirit or Pneuma ’Agion (John 20:22) … breath, and the breath of life in this world, with this world represented by the Hebrew icon olam, derived from the root /עלם/and meaning concealment, conceals and reveals the the creative or activating force of God, Pneuma ’Agion. This Breath of God functions as human breath does, but since it is not of the Tzimtzum, the icon /breath/ is at best a metaphor for this supra-dimensional force. But as no one would assign personhood to his or her breath, any assignment of personhood to the Breath of God is infantile silliness.
After Jesus had astonished the Sadducees and after He had answered a lawyer’s test question, saying all of the Law and the Prophets hung on loving God and loving neighbor (Matt 22:34-40), while the Pharisees were still gathered around Him, Jesus asked them a question that they could not answer, a question that caused no one to dare ask any more questions of Jesus:
Now while the Pharisees were gathered together, Jesus asked them a question, saying, “What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?” They said to him, “The son of David.” He said to them, “How is it then that David, in the Spirit, calls him Lord [Kurion], saying,
‘The Lord [Kurios] said to my Lord [Kuriw],
Sit at my right hand,
until I put your enemies under your feet’?
If then David calls him Lord [Kurion], how is he his son?” (Matt 22:41-45)
The Pharisees couldn’t answer because of what had been concealed by Jesus’ use of Greek—or, and here is where understanding emerges, they could have easily answered the question if the crowd had not, two days earlier, been shouting,
Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!
Once the Pharisees answered Jesus’ first question, ‘“What do you think about the Christ? Whose son is he?”’ by saying to Jesus, ‘“The son of David’” (Matt 22:42), the Pharisees were trapped. They could squirm all they wanted, but the crowd already thought that Jesus was the blessed son of David. So all Jesus had to do to spring the trap was to quote Psalm 110:1, which in the Septuagint seems somewhat innocuous:
allhlouia exomologhsomai soi kurie en olh kardia mou en boulh euqeiwn kai sunagwgh
In Hebrew —
לְדָוִד מִזְמֹור נְאֻם יְהוָה ׀ לַֽאדֹנִי שֵׁב לִֽימִינִי עַד־אָשִׁית אֹיְבֶיךָ הֲדֹם לְרַגְלֶֽיךָ׃
But what Matthew records in his gospel seems to be neither the Septuagint translation of the Psalm, nor a faithful rendering of the Hebrew translated into Greek by either Matthew or Jesus; for Matthew records,
eipen kurios tw kuriw mou kaqou ek dexiwn mou ews an qw tous
ecqrous sou upokatw twn podwn sou (Matt 22:44)
Although rabbinical Judaism, Muslim apologists, and Arian disciples pounce upon what Matthew records as if they were a litter of tabby cats with a church mouse, each using the two /kurios/s to show a mistranslation of Psalm 110:1, the recorded translation did take place, and did silence the Pharisees. Today, rabbinical Judaism contends that this conversation never took place, could not have taken place, and has to be a fiction. Judaism’s contention is that the Pharisees were excellent readers of text, that they knew the Scripture, that they would have immediately disputed any assignment of the same linguistic icons for both the Tetragrammaton and for Adoni; for as a reader will note that in the Hebrew text, the first mention of deity in the Psalm is that of YHWH, which the person quoting the Psalm from the Hebrew text would have voiced as Adonai.
If Jesus would have quoted the Psalm from the Septuagint as He had quoted from Psalm 8 two days earlier when addressing the chief priests and scribes, He would have used a differing icon for the second /Lord/ than to repeat, varying only the case ending, the Greek icon Kurios [Kurios]. Therefore, the logical [and only] assumption to be made is that Jesus quoted from the Psalm in Hebrew.
Adonai, using the long vowel, is/was an oral icon reserved exclusively for uttering the Teragrammaton, otherwise unpronounced because of its sacredness. Adoni is/was used for a human Lord. Thus, the first verse of Psalm 110 would read, YHWH says to my human Lord, Sit—
But Matthew, transcribing the event either from memory or from notes, when hearing Jesus say, “Adonai says to Adoni, Sit,” would have written, Kurios says to Kuriw, Sit. So what Matthew transcribed would be a faithful rendering of an oral exchange occurring in Hebrew, but recorded in Greek. Thus, to all those who contend that this exchange has to be fiction, it is only fiction in the void where the darkness blinds not only eyes but precludes understanding.
The proper question is, then, why did Jesus change from using Greek to the Sadducees to using Hebrew with the Pharisees—and the answer lies in:
The remainder of Psalm 110 addresses an endtime situation when YHWH will, from Zion, rule enemies and make clean His people; when YHWH will make Adoni [again, a human Lord] a priest forever after the order of Melchizedek, with this elevated human Lord sitting at the right hand of YHWH and with this elevated human being shattering kings on the day of his wrath … and Jesus, having two days earlier accepted the crowd calling Him this son of David, now uses the one certain place where in Hebrew the Messiah is shown to be an Adoni, a human Lord.
What are the Pharisees to say? When they answered Jesus’ question about whose son is the Christ by saying that He is the son of David, the Pharisees, knowing Scripture [and this is the key], had to admit that the Christ would come as a man, as a human Lord, as Adoni.
Jesus was not, when confronting these Pharisees, then God in the flesh, fully man and fully God, as too many ignorant Christians contend: He was a man, twice born (once of water and once of Spirit), who was without sin and who had never been subject to sin, for His father wasn’t the first Adam but Theos. And His physicalness concealed from the Pharisees that He was the same entity into which the nation of Israel had entered a marriage covenant at Sinai. Thus, the Tzimtzum again concealed from spiritually lifeless human beings those things that are without the void.
But the Pharisees well understood that Jesus had just said that He was the Messiah when He quoted Psalm 110:1 to them in Hebrew.
It is unfortunate that Trinitarian Christianity has chosen to use Psalm 110:1 as a proof text to show that Jesus was God in the flesh; for what the text really shows is that the Christ would come as a man, not as God, and would become, when sitting at YHWH’s right hand, the Christ. Therefore, Arian Christians love to use Jesus’ exchange with the Pharisees to prove that Jesus was only a man until glorified—but Arians stay far away from Jesus’ confrontation with the Sadducees, the spiritually lifeless shadow of themselves; for the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob is not the God of the dead. The Father (qeon) is the God of the dead; He, and He alone, gives life to the dead. And it is only after the dead have been made alive through being born of Spirit that the Son will give life to whom He will, with this second giving of life equating to glorification, or to the mortal putting on immortality.
Both the Father and the Son, to whom all judgment is committed, must give life to the Israelite before this person made from the elements created within the Tzimtzum can escape from the void, a bottomless pit that from the inside appears exceedingly glorious as it decays into nothingness.
Jesus came to His own as the Son of Theos (qeos), not as the son of the Father (qeon). He became the Son of the Father when the Breath of the Father descended as a dove, landed and remained on Him. And this is what cannot be known or understood by either spiritual or natural Israelites unless the Father chooses to reveal this to the person, whom He has made alive.
Knowledge is concealed from disciples or revealed to disciples at the Father’s discretion. Jesus asked His disciples who did the crowds say that He was (Matt 16:15), and Simon Peter answered, ‘“You are the Christ, the Son of the living God’” (v. 16). Jesus told Peter that ‘“flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven’” (v. 17). Then Jesus strictly charged His disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ. And to this day, they haven’t told anyone yet. Only the Father has revealed who Jesus was—and Matthew’s transcription of Jesus’ confrontation with the Pharisees is an excellent example of Jesus’ disciples telling no one that He was the Christ.
The use of Greek case endings to expound upon what was naturally apparent through the inspired plural icons for the deity of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob does not eliminate the idol of monotheism, but begins construction of an intangible ladder upon which humankind can climb from the bottomless void and into the presence of the Most High, a ladder like the one Jacob saw in vision, a ladder of the same substance as all visions are. Matter, because of its apparent solidity, will never leave the void, but will disappear in fire when the void seems to close. Everything that is composed of matter is, thus, subject to decay and is presently nothingness of a kind that is not comprehendible by those human beings who have not been born of Spirit. And it is here, where a gap or lacunae occurs in the fabric of narrative that a separation exists between those many human beings who have not yet been born of Spirit and those few human beings who truly have been born a second time, thereby receiving life outside the void. The many cannot understand the things which the few disclose. The many outwardly appear like the few, with conscious thoughts like the few, but the many remain mentally consigned to disobedience whereas the few have been liberated through that second birth. Therefore, the mass of humanity—with whom the government of Caesar resides—are to the few as cattle are to children. And as a child can be easily trampled in a stampede, so too can born of Spirit disciples be trampled by secular governments when they venture beyond the safety of obscurity.
Even when transcribed and reduced to icons of recognizable shapes, human language is ephemeral: words are breath received from Theos that lasts but a short while before dissipating into the surrounding air. Likewise, the Breath of the Father [Pneuma Agion] in a clay vessel does not long remain in the void before it returns to from where it came—and when it returns, it must bring with it memory of the mouth professing that Jesus is Lord and of the heart believing that the Father raised Jesus from the dead. Without both of which, the Breath of the Father dissipates into the supra-dimensional heavenly realm as words do into thin air. Thus, the Father does not give spiritual birth to all of humankind at this time: that day of common birth awaits the dead, which today hurries about its task of burying the dead.
Those disciples who have been born of Spirit will not be trampled by the livestock for honoring fathers and mothers, for not murdering, for not stealing, for not having sexual liaisons outside of marriage, for not lying, for not coveting. They will not be trampled for loving their neighbors as themselves, but they can easily be trampled for not worshiping Caesar as Kurios, for not worshiping idols, for not taking in vain the name of the Most High, for outwardly observing the Sabbath. So it is here, where human breath and spiritual breath come together to activate or motivate disciples that conflict within the void mirrors the conflict that occurred without the void which resulted in the Tzimtzum.
By inverting the relationships, the Tzimtzum conceals what the shadow reveals through typological exegesis, the only way a living entity within the void can read the Book of Life that resides outside this bottomless void in which all of humankind presently dwells. But because Theos loved those whom He created, He revealed through Moses the construction of the ladder by which dust can climb from nothingness into the presence of the Most High, Theon (qeon). However, the physical creation of humankind concealed the ladder both through the linguistic icons used to describe the ladder and through the positioning of the ladder … this ladder is described in the “P” creation account, an easily remembered correspondence when /P/ represents Pneuma rather than Priestly.
The production of the Tzimtzum caused the Breath of God [again, a metaphor] to spontaneously transform its “pure” energy into the four physically known forces that seem to be bound into matter—this Tzimtzum functions as a rupture in the timeless supra-dimensional heavenly realm; functions as a bottomless pit into which rebelling angels were thrown and confined. In the Tzimtzum matter and energy merely change forms, neither diminishing nor increasing but with a few speckles along its edges [the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle; the Lamb shift]. At the hard edge or lip of the Tzimtzum, everything that is physical, including human reality abruptly terminates. The universe, then, becomes that place of concealment where disobedience resulting from discovered lawlessness in an anointed cherub is contained for a harvest season. Literally, the void is a prison in which all living things await on death row for the time of their execution, with mercy once granted to all of humankind consigned to lawlessness by their common father, the first Adam. But mercy once granted only qualifies the person for judgment outside of the void.
The dirty little secret that the Adversary has used the Tzimtzum to conceal is that there is nothing a person can do inside the void that will “qualify” the person to escape death. Escape comes from outside: from either the promise of inheriting everlasting life based upon faith that is counted as righteousness, or from being given life that must by faith take upon itself righteousness. There is nothing “good” inside the void, including the Son of Theos (Luke 18:19). Therefore, only faith of the quality that Abraham displayed before being circumcised (Rom 4:11-12) is counted as righteousness, the righteousness necessary to escape death—and this faith will cause every Israelite to keep the precepts of the law (Rom 2:26).
Disobedience is not a tangible thing; therefore, that which contains or confines disobedience is also not a tangible thing. Disobedience only has tangible attributes or visible manifestations when sin reveals its complete sinfulness through decay, or through the actions of the flesh that result in death; thus, one purpose for the Tzimtzum is to make visible what cannot be otherwise observed, including death itself for in timeless all that have life have everlasting life. This is not so, however, inside the bottomless void. Therefore angels that have been imprisoned in the void will perish unless they escape through long term demonstrated obedience—and then, their escape will require the extension of mercy by a glorified son of God for all of the rebelling angels are under sentence of death.
No living entity that practices lawlessness [i.e., the breaking of the codified commandments] will be permitted outside the void. A person believes the Adversary, not the Most High, when the person believes that he or she can live however the person desires and still enter heaven. This person and the one who teaches such nonsense to this person is without knowledge or understanding, but is as livestock; for the righteousness of all who will enter the kingdom of heaven must exceed that of the Sadducees and Pharisees (Matt 5:20).
The “P” creation account [Gen 1:1-2:3] is written in tightly structured Hebraic poetry, and perhaps the finest poetry that has been written in Hebrew … a generally unrecognized (at least by non-poets) attribute of all poetry is that the focus of poetry is the word, not that which is represented by words. Therefore, the mimetic meanings of the words are, at best, of secondary importance. And if the focus of a creation account isn’t the creation, but the account—this is the case with the “P” account—then the same sort of questions can be asked by endtime disciples as Jesus asked of the Pharisees: if the focus of the “P” account is the ephemeral nature of words rather than the thinginess of water, land, seed-bearing trees, fish, birds, beasts, men, then the account is not about that which is represented on the page or in the scroll, but what is represented in the mind. And if it is (and it is), then is this an account of an ex nihilo creation?
Christian Creationists will argue that it is, and they, like wild cattle scenting water, will stampede the apologist who stands between them and teaching this creation account in the public school system. Is this a young universe? Yes, it is. Was Jesus a man, the Adoni of Psalm 110:1? Yes, He was. But does the passage from the Psalm prove that Jesus was fully God in the flesh? No, it does not. Likewise, the “P” creation account does not establish that the earth was created in six days; for the “P” creation account is not about and has never been about the physical creation of the world.
Genesis 1:1 in English reads, “In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth” … what part of the heavens is not created in this first verse? What part of the earth is not created? Any of either not created, not finished?
The “J” creation account [Gen 2:4-25] begins, in verse,
These are the generations
Of the heavens and the earth when they were created
In the day that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens (2:4)
In the day—one day? Six days? How long did it take for YHWH Elohim to create the Tzimtzum and then to create the cosmos inside this void? Looking from inside backwards what is seen is a sudden creation, a Big Bang, a rupture or fissure in heaven that starts at one point and develops as if a living thing.
Question, is in the day an open time period that does not close until darkness returns? If so, is this day regulated by the setting of the sun? Evening doesn’t occur until after Adam and his wife eat of the Tree of Knowledge. So what is to be made of in the day?
Following the giving of the Decalogue, the Lord, addressing the importance of Israel keeping the weekly Sabbath, told Moses, ‘“It [the Sabbath] is a sign forever between me and the people of Israel that in six days the Lord made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested and was refreshed’” (Exod 31:17). This statement seems unambiguous: Genesis’ opening lines, “In the beginning,” occupy six days. And what’s seen is the physical creation concealing that which is spiritual.
The six apparent days of the “P” creation account—from the first day through the sixth day—are assumed to be the six days referenced by the Lord after Israel received the Law. But in the Tzimtzum, the physical universe conceals that which is spiritual, or of heaven. Thus, the existence of the world concealed a spiritual creation that departs from the physical creation. A lacunae appears between verses one and two, a gap that has swallowed the billions of words shoveled into it without belching or even seeming full. It is as if these many words were hollow, lacking substance and uttered without understanding. These words come from shallow attempts to justify unbelief; they belong to those pastors who smile when preaching repentance. They are used by all who propose a gap-theory into which they can slip Darwinian Evolution without seeming to be unbiblical.
That which is spiritual has been openly set before Israel in the form of poetry. This is true with all of Hebraic poetry, which uses thought couplets consisting of natural/spiritual referents in organizational patterns that move inward from darkness to light, from public to private, from hand to heart, but this is especially true of the “P” creation account. However, the holy nation’s focus has been on the first creation account’s mimetic representations. Thus, even spiritually circumcised Israel has not understood the words of the Apostle Paul:
And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled only to those who are perishing. In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God…For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ. (2 Co 4:3-6 emphasis added)
Paul’s gospel has been concealed by the things that are hidden from those who are perishing because of their lawlessness; for where does God say, Let light shine from darkness, with this light being Christ Jesus? Does He not say this in Genesis 1:3? Indeed, He does. Therefore, the light that comes from darkness—the light that establishes the first day—is not the afterglow of a Big Bang, but the coming of Christ Jesus as the Son of Theos.
Yes, Paul’s gospel, rejected by Pharisees, rejected by rabbinical Judaism, has also been concealed from the spiritual nation that rebelled against God as Israel rebelled against the Lord under Samuel, demanding a king like other nations had. The spiritual nation became a vassal of Caesar. And as God sent natural Israel into Babylonian captivity, God sent the spiritual nation into captivity in spiritual Babylon, where most of this second nation of Israel remains to this day, the bondservant of the Adversary.
The man Jesus of Nazareth came as the last Adam, a life-giving spirit (1 Co 15:45). The first Adam was a type of the last Adam (Rom 5:14), just as the glorified Jesus is a priest forever after the order of Melchizidek (cf. Ps 110:4; Heb 5:6; 6:20; 7:1-22), the type of whom the glorified Jesus now is. This Melchizidek came as His Son, His only; so it is right that this Melchizidek’s presence in Scripture conceals from those who are blinded by unbelief the perfection attained by the Cross, perfection that the Levitical priesthood could not obtain through the blood of bulls and goats. And in obtaining this perfection, the type vanishes as Scripture will when the void passes away, but the reality resides at the right hand of the Most High forever.
All that is written on the hides of lambs, on copper scrolls, on paper, in binary codes will pass away. Only epistles written on the hearts of men, not with ink but with the soft Breath of God will endure, will escape this bottomless void; only what is written in the Book of Life will be read when fire closes the Tzimtzum opened by rebellion. These words will not survive except as they cause human beings to repent of their lawlessness, turn to God, and by faith mentally journey to spiritual Judea where the person will keep the precepts of the Law, believing that Jesus is Lord and that the Father raised Him from the dead. This journey, this profession of belief, this faith will be counted as righteousness. This faith will cleanse the heart, permitting the heart to be spiritually circumcised. This spiritual circumcision causes the person to be of Israel, for no one is a Jew outwardly but inwardly (Rom 2:28-29). Circumcision is not a matter of mutilating the flesh, a practice that conceals through the physicalness of the flesh the activating power that comes from being born of Spirit. Rather, circumcision is the paring away of all disobedience.
All this has been written will be continued in the second paper in this series, which will more closely examine the two creation accounts in Genesis.
"Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version, copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a division of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved."
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