Make Sure You Are Grafted In

And if some of the branches be broken off, and thou, being a wild olive tree, wert graffed in among them, and with them partakest of the root and fatness of the olive tree;

Boast not against the branches. But if thou boast, thou bearest not the root, but the root thee.

Thou wilt say then, The branches were broken off, that I might be graffed in.

Well; because of their unbelief they were broken off, and thou standest by faith. Be not highminded, but fear:

For if God spared not the natural branches, take heed lest he also spare not thee.

Behold therefore the goodness and the severity of God: on them which fell, severity; but toward thee, goodness, if thou continue in his goodness: otherwise thou also shalt be cut off.

— Romans 11:17-22

In this passage Paul explains that the Gentiles were made partakers of the salvation that belongs to the Jews. It’s explained that we should not become boastful about this fact to the Jews as we can be cut off – as the unbelieving Jews were cut off.

If God spared not the natural branches, how much more should we fear that we would not be spared if we become proud about our salvation. We may also be cut off if we misuse the grace of God which He has shown to us, as it’s clear from the last quoted verse, where it says that we will be spared if we continue in His goodness.

We have been grafted into the cultivated olive tree. To be grafted into it means to be cut off the from the wild olive tree and to be inserted into the cultivated olive tree so that we become one organism.

We cannot become a part of that tree if we refuse to become like that tree. If we keep our pagan ways, we remain a wild olive branch which cannot produce the acceptable fruit to the kingdom, and therefore it’s of no use for the kingdom. But if we allow this grafting in process to take place, we will be gradually divorced from our pagan ways of life so that we become one with the tree into which we were grafted.

And when this process is successful, we as a branch begin to grow and produce fruit acceptable to YHWH.

If you’ve never seen how branches are grafted in, here are two videos that explain this process. The first shows how the grafting in is done, and the second shows its result:

As you can see, at first the branch and the tree are two separate entities, but if the grafting in process is successful, the branch and the tree becomes one single organism.

This is what’s required for us to be considered grafted in – to become one with the children of Israel. It’s not us that hold the root, but them. We are supposed to become like them. This is very important, since there is no gate to the kingdom of God for Gentiles – there are only twelve gates for the twelve tribes of Israel (Revelation 21:12).

What does that mean?

It means that we have to become like the Israelites, in the sense of following the commandments of God and learning the Torah. That’s what early believers were expected to do, as we read in Acts 15:21, where it’s told that believers were expected to go to synagogues every Sabbath day to listen to the law of Moses so that they learn and observe it.

Yes, early believers gathered together on other days to pray and worship too, but they were supposed to learn from the Jews. The first apostles and believers were all Jews, and they were the ones that spread the Gospel to the Gentiles and taught them, and trained them to be teachers of others. They were the ones that were first victims for the Gospel, so because of their shed blood we have bibles in our hands.

However, Satan very quickly destroyed this unity of believing Jews and Gentiles. This was accomplished as early as the early fourth century AD, when Constantine made sure that those Christians who associated with Jews were considered accursed.

Because of the fear of death or being removed from the Body of Christ, many Christians distanced themselves from anything to do with Jews. Satan devised a crafty excuse of separating the wild branch from the cultivated olive tree – the fact that Jews caused Yeshua to be crucified.

Yes, because of Jews Yeshua was killed, but because of which Jews? It wasn’t because of the believing Jews. There were those who were just calling themselves Jews, they were those influenced by wicked Pharisees and Sadducees, and there were those who believed that Yeshua is the Messiah.

So we cannot lump all of them into the same lump, and divorce them from us, when it’s to the Jews that the oracles of God were entrusted (Romans 3:2), and it’s through them that salvation comes to the world, as Jesus Himself said in John 4:22.

Believing Jews and Gentiles are supposed to become one, so that there is no distinction between them. However, since the Church still cannot get rid of the Roman Catholic influence, this evil division is still largely present. Many Jews who believe in Yeshua want nothing to do with the Church or Christianity, because they see that the Church has many pagan elements; and it’s due to this division that the Church cannot understand the Bible, as it views it through the pagan mindset.

This pagan mindset causes pastors to misinterpret Bible verses and not notice existing pagan elements in the Church. Many Jews clearly see it, but since the Church still believes in the lie of Satan that Christians should have nothing to do with Jews, it cannot ask them for help in understanding what Bible passages actually say.

What’s a mystery to the paganized mind about certain Bible concepts is no mystery to the Jew; the verses which pastors and Bible teachers struggle with are clear to those who grew up in the culture whose people penned the pages of the Bible.

It’s in the interest of Satan to keep this split alive – as it deprives Christians of knowledge and understanding; they remain pagan in their minds, because they are taught by those who were pagan, and they read Bible translations of those who were pagan, and they read Bible interpretations of those who have a pagan mindset.

This division does nothing to the cultivated olive tree (to those who were born Jews and believe in Yeshua), because that tree is already cultivated and therefore can produce good fruit. But it endangers the wild olive branch, as it prevents it from being grafted in.

Thankfully, I was not brought up in any Christian denomination (my Catholic parents weren’t practising the religion), and I spent around ten years in the East. This made me see the Bible through a less-distorted lens, and therefore I realized that we are supposed to follow the law and keep the Sabbath, for example. There are, of course, many other people who, after being saved and not being influenced by any denomination, are quickly led by the Holy Spirit to the same conclusions.

Those, however, who grow up in a particular Christian sect (called “denomination”), do not have this advantage and see the Bible through a distorted lens, and those distortions are the traditions of pagan men. And since I realize how much error there is in Christianity today, I know how much we need to listen to the Jews who believe in Yeshua, because they are the ones who can clarify Bible concepts, and not those individuals whose root is paganism.

The times are coming when the prophecy found in Zechariah 8 will be fulfilled, which says that:

(…) In those days it shall come to pass, that ten men shall take hold out of all languages of the nations, even shall take hold of the skirt of him that is a Jew, saying, We will go with you: for we have heard that God is with you.

This prophecy gives us a glimpse of the urgency that the Gentiles will feel to get grafted in when they will understand that the God of Jews is the Almighty God. It’s not told that they would run to pastors in search of knowledge – but to the Jews. Let’s not wait for such times, but let’s start getting grafted in from this day.

The dangers of the grafting in process

Now there are some dangers in this process. For example, we should not learn from those Jews who reject the Messiah. Those are the ones who believe in what the rabbis say and ignore the Torah. They exalt the oral traditions, the traditions of men found in Talmud, and think them to be holding a greater authority than the Word of God.

We should not be taught by such blind leaders as that won’t lead us anywhere good. It’s against these that Yeshua directed His righteous indignation, and these are the ones that will not escape the wrath of God. Even today there are many such rabbis in Judaism, who, for example, avoid reading certain Torah portions as they are too clearly pointing to the suffering Messiah, like Isaiah 53, so that the people are kept in the dark.

Instead, we should learn from those Jews who are real believers in the Messiah and base their life on Torah. And sometimes even those Jews who believe in Yeshua still follow some man-made laws rather than the laws found in the Torah as they lack spiritual discernment.

I know also that it may be very hard to divorce such traditions of men, because the same is the case with Christians today – though they call themselves protestants, for example, they still have many Catholic abominations in their religion, such as Sunday worship and the celebration of pagan holidays.

So to avoid being misled, it’s very important for us to know the Bible so well that we are able to correctly assess anyone whom we want to learn from. (And talking about knowing the Bible well, we must interpret the New Testament in the light of the Old, so that we don’t make the mistake of thinking that the New Testament is in opposition to the Old. This rule of reading the New Testament in the light of the Old Testament will help you to avoid many theological errors.)

Also, we should keep in mind that if Jews do something that’s not found in the Torah it’s not necessarily wrong. But it does mean that if they do something that’s in opposition to the words of Torah, we should not follow such an example. Also, we should avoid taking the teachings of rabbis as holding the same importance as the Torah, as that’s what Jesus was against.

The oral traditions collected in the Talmud can certainly shed a great light into the Hebrew culture and therefore help us understand the Bible better. But oral traditions are only opinions of Jewish men. Some of them are correct, and some of them are not. So if we consider such oral traditions as mere Torah interpretations, like we consider Bible commentaries not as laws of God but just opinions, then we can gain great benefits from such a study.

One of the most essential things that we gain when we learn from the original followers of YHWH is seeing Torah through their eyes. Our culture is pagan, and therefore our Torah interpretations are likely to be faulty. (Please read my article on the difference between the Hebrew and the pagan mind to understand how great the difference is, if you haven’t already read it.)

So as you see, one can leave the traditions of men that denominations form from, and then fall into the traditions of men that Yeshua was against when He walked among the Israelites. Both of these traps – the wrong teachings of pastors as well as rabbis – must be avoided.

You can certainly avoid both of these traps if you ask Yeshua to help you to read the Bible without any prejudice, and ask to get more spiritual discernment, as well as by striving to live a holy life. When you continue searching for the truth and try to live a pure life, you are likely to feel when something is taught that’s against the laws of YHWH, because the Holy Spirit will alert you to it.

Jews have very rich traditions, but they come from two sources. We must separate the ones that came from Babylon and only learn from what came from the Almighty.

We can consider ourselves successfully grafted in when we become like the original children of God. Real Israelites keep the Sabbath day holy, celebrate the feasts given to them by YHWH, don’t eat unclean meats and keep other commandments.

It can be discouraging for a Christian who came to know that the law was not done away with to be faced with such an obligation. But it’s important to understand that real Christians already follow most of the Torah! They don’t sleep with their mothers, fathers, brothers or sisters; they don’t kill people; they don’t steal. What they mainly need to change is what day they keep holy, what food they should avoid, and to learn about how to keep the feasts, which are only seven in a year.

Although there are many laws in the Torah, it’s important to understand that not all apply to each individual. Some apply only to children, some – to women, some – to priests. And since the temple no longer stands, the laws to do with it don’t apply to us as well.

So what’s required of us is to make just a few changes in the way that we live, to be considered Torah-compliant. Not even the laws of purity apply to us anymore, since they were associated with the worship in the temple where God was present.

If you find a good messianic congregation, or a Jewish believer who can tell between the traditions of men and the Torah, you are very lucky indeed. But again, you must use spiritual discernment to select a good place to learn as traps are everywhere these days.

For example, if there is a difference between a Jew and a Gentile in the messianic congregation, they still don’t understand that in Christ we become one. Like there are false denominations in Christianity, so there are false teachers that are Jews. But if you have the Holy Spirit, it’s likely that you will be able to tell between the sheep and the wolves, especially if you try to lead a holy life.

Recommended teachers

I have two recommendations of teachers that I’ve found online. The best teacher that I’ve found who understands the Jewish culture and is a believer is Michael Rood. I highly encourage you to watch his YouTube videos as you will gain a great insight into many obscure-to-Christians Bible concepts.

Here are two of his videos:

Another good teacher is Abir Hallel, although I think he sometimes mixes the traditions of men with Torah. However, he is a true believer.

I don’t think he makes videos anymore, but the ones that are on YouTube are excellent. The sound quality of those videos could be better, but if you are the seeker of truth, this should not discourage you from watching his videos, such as this one:

Finally…

Let’s heal the schism that Satan created between the Jews and the Gentiles, so that we are successfully grafted into the cultivated olive tree of the original children of God, so that both of us become a new creation, no longer called Jew, nor Gentile, nor male, nor female.

Let’s not be proud that Yeshua saved us first, so that our boasting against the Jews who aren’t saved doesn’t cause the wrath of God. Let’s be humble and willing to learn, rather than keeping the pagan mindset and refusing to see the Bible through the eyes of those people to whom the oracles of God were entrusted.

When we can humble ourselves to the degree that we are willing to see the Bible through the culture to which it was entrusted, this will greatly help us to avoid many common errors taught in churches today, and it will help us to be successfully grafted into Israel, so that we can enter through one of the gates of the kingdom.

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