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  • Writer's pictureRob

The Hundred-Twenty-Eighth (Dissonance)

I hope you had a wonderful week! Hopefully everything went well in whatever your endeavors were this week. I wonder if you happened to experience the subject of this week's post. It's everywhere in the world today, so I wouldn't be surprised if you did. This is essentially where the world operates.

First, what is dissonance? It can mean a couple different things. One of them has to do with sounds, namely a harsh discord of sounds. The other is the topic for this week, and it is a lack of agreement, consistency or harmony in thoughts or actions. Dissonance is the opposite of consonance, which is harmony and agreement.

What was I talking about when saying dissonance is where the world operates? It's important to understand that to everything natural there is a spiritual aspect behind it. When you see that in some situations the world promotes individual autonomy, however in others it requires compulsion or coercion in personal choices, that's dissonance. But when you look at the spiritual goals of these actions, they align with each other and with the goals of the prince of this world (John 14:30).

One example is promoting the choice to kill an unborn child. Clearly, this spiritual goal is obvious: to murder what YHWH has knit together (Psalm 139:13). A seemingly contradictory example is the requirement to be vaccinated. However, spiritually this is the same goal. Regardless of how safe a vaccine is claimed to be, even the Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS) records a certain number of deaths being caused by each vaccine on the market today. Mandating a vaccine that has less than a fraction of the safety data, and according to VAERS has caused more deaths than all the vaccines for the last 30 years combined, is just another effort towards the prince of this world's goal of the destruction of man.

On the opposite end of the spectrum is our YHWH. When you have situations like I describe above, one of the things it causes (if you don't actually know the motivation) is confusion. Why would they want us to be free to choose something in one situation, but not in another? Our YHWH is not an author of confusion (1 Corinthians 14:33), and He and our Yeshua are the same always (Psalm 102:27, Hebrews 13:8).

In fact, YHWH's word warns against being double-minded, saying that type of man is unstable in everything (James 1:8). Being double-minded is exactly as it sounds, someone that thinks or believes in two contradictory things at the same time. James gives the example of asking YHWH for something in faith, but also having doubt about whether or not you'll get it.

If YHWH is not an author of confusion, He must be consistent in what He says and does at all times. And since He is the same always, that consistency must span across all time, from well before He formed the universe to well after it is destroyed by fire (2 Peter 3:10). Because of this, it is my firm belief that there is a harmonious answer to the whole of scripture, and that we are able to understand what that answer is with the help of the Ruach Ha'Qodesh, the Holy Spirit.

What do I mean by harmonious answer? I mean an explanation, a set of beliefs, that aligns all the events and all the statements of YHWH and Yeshua written in His word. There is no possibility of dissonance or double-mindedness from Them, so if we come across something that seems to be contradictory we have to be misinterpreting or misunderstanding it, or our doctrinal basis that makes us think it's contradictory is wrong.

We can see doctrines that are dissonant with scripture all over Christianity today. In one example, we see a vision being used in a literal sense to justify a belief that YHWH made all animals clean (Acts 10:9-16). However, not only are literal interpretations of visions or dreams dissonant with all of scripture, that wasn't the point of Peter's vision. The point was to get Peter to see that YHWH considers both Jews and Gentiles clean (Acts 10:28).

In another example, priests are required for individuals to be forgiven of sins. However, it's clear in scripture that there is only one mediator between us and YHWH: Yeshua (1 Timothy 2:5). Also, that we are part of a holy priesthood (1 Peter 2:5), which aligns with YHWH's commandments for ancient Israel's priesthood process. This process was required for the covering of sins, the same as today. Except today we are the priesthood, same as the Levites were, and Yeshua is the high priest (Hebrews 6:20).

Remember, the high priest of ancient Israel was the only one that entered the Holy of Holies and only once a year, on the Day of Atonement. This process was for the atonement of the sins of all the people of Israel. As you can see, there was only three categories of people in this case: 1) all those not in the priesthood, 2) all those in the priesthood except the high priest, and 3) the high priest. But as far as the forgiveness of sins on the Day of Atonement, there was only two categories: the high priest and everyone else.

So, if we know who the high priest is (Yeshua), then the everyone else is us. How then can you believe that a third type of person, an earthly priest, is required for this process? If you look at the explanation, it's because of a verse that seems to imply Yeshua delegated the forgiveness of sins to only the apostles (John 20:22-23). But when you join these verses with those in 1 Peter and 1 Timothy, you see that the only explanation must be that with the Holy Spirit sins can be forgiven. And we know that the Holy Spirit is being poured out on all since we have been in the last days since the apostles' day of pentecost (Acts 2:16-17).

As a corollary, since we see that believers are the priesthood, going directly to Yeshua for forgiveness, we also see that atonement is not possible without Him. This is confirmed by His own words (John 14:6).

It's not just doctrines where we can see dissonance. We also see it in the actions of many believers. I saw a video of Penn Jillette, from the magician duo Penn and Teller, talking about how he doesn't respect Christians who don't evangelize. Penn himself is an atheist, but the point he was making is entirely valid and a perfect example of dissonance in believers.

His point was that if eternal life is real, and there's a possibility of going to hell, why wouldn't you make sure you tried to evangelize to everyone to try to save them? His analogy was that if there was a bus bearing down on you and he knew it but you didn't believe it at some point he's going to tackle you. And eternal life is more important than that. So, if a believer truly believes it, but won't try to make sure everyone they meet knows it because it's not "socially appropriate" or it would just "make things awkward," do they really believe it? Or is it the same as the case James wrote of someone who asks in faith but doubts it will happen? A double-minded person?

How about someone who points to verses like Deuteronomy 22:5 to rebuke transgenderism, yet believes they no longer have to follow the commandments of the Old Testament because "Jesus nailed it to the cross?" It's things like this that destroy the credibility of the truth as evidenced by Yeshua's representatives on earth: us. To non-believers, this kind of dissonance is the same as what they see in any other religion in the world.

We don't look like a set-apart people, so why would they choose to look into Christianity any more than any of the other religions? At least those other religions are more in harmony to what non-believers see, hear and understand of the world as they know it, so why not choose one of them? I mean, the whole world is based on having to do something in order to be held in higher regard, to receive more reward, or to be put over more people. So why not choose a religion like Scientology where you have to pay more and pass tests to move up in the hierarchy?

Today is no different than ancient Israel, though. They had dissonance with YHWH's word as well. As we saw, Peter had to be told by Him that he shouldn't call anyone unclean. However, he would have already known this if he had a harmonious picture of scripture. When you have verses saying Abraham will bless all the families of the earth (Genesis 12:3), Namaan believed in YHWH after his healing (2 Kings 5:15) and received forgiveness for what his duties required that were against YHWH (2 Kings 5:18-19), and Rahab, a prostitute, received so much favor for helping the Israelite spies that she ended up being in the royal lineage of Yeshua (Matthew 1:1-16), it clearly shows that those who believed in YHWH, despite being Gentiles, found favor in His eyes. Yet the Israelites focused on verses stating they were the chosen people (Deuteronomy 14:2), leading to their judging the Gentiles, looking down on them, instead of realizing that the reason Israel was chosen was to maintain a holy lineage for the birth of our Savior. Not that they would be the only ones saved, the only ones resurrected in the last day.

We need to get rid of any dissonance we have in our lives, in our beliefs, in our doctrines, in our interpretations of scriptures, in how we act, in everything. The only way to do this is to start with scripture and build everything from the beginning with truth. The truth that you find in scripture, not what someone else says is truth. You can hear what others say, but you have to look at it yourself, find it yourself in His word and make sure that's what it says to you. Then you have to act that truth and it needs to be present in all that you do.

I hope you have a great week! Shabbat shalom and God bless you!

-Rob and Sara Gene

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