Restoring Kol Israel: No more male or female?

For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. [27] For all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. [28] There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. [29] And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise.

Galatians 3:26-29 NASB

As I have pointed out before, Paul upheld and taught the Torah. Many folks in this Torah walk want to minimize Paul. They will find many things in his letters that they have trouble finding in the Torah, therefore they say “Paul wasn’t a legit Apostle” or “Paul was writing based on cultural bias and we don’t need to worry about what he said, it’s not Torah.” One of my first thoughts when I hear someone say this is ‘how arrogant can you be?’ My personal belief is that the Apostle Paul likely understood the Torah better than any other human being who ever walked the earth save Moses and Yeshua. There is a reason why Peter labels Paul’s writings as scripture (2 Peter 3:16). I pray that I have demonstrated to you in recent posts, as I will in this one, that the Apostle Paul upheld and taught the Torah and it is at our own peril if we ignore his writings. If something he wrote appears to contradict the Torah then we are misunderstanding him. If we have trouble finding something he wrote in the Torah then we simply haven’t understood the Torah to the depth necessary. This, I venture to say, is a lifelong task. 

So, has anyone ever wondered what Paul was talking about in Galatians 3:28? Where did he get this from? What does it even mean? Is this found in the Torah? 

In this study I was specifically looking at direct commandments being delivered within the context of the Torah which is the standard we are called to live by. The remainder of scripture is practical application of Torah. To the degree that commands are given elsewhere they all have their basis in the Torah and they never conflict with the Torah.

What does bên mean in Hebrew? Strongs H1121

Bên Israel is commonly used in the opening of a passage when Moses is delivering the Torah. Bên is in the masculine form. Some versions commonly translate it as “children” others translate it as “sons”. Lev. 12:2 is a specific example. KJV translates bên as “children” NASB translates bên as “sons”. It seems to me that the men are being addressed specifically throughout the Torah when commands are delivered by Yah via Moses..

I understand that based on the context we apply this to all the people and I think it’s appropriate to do just that. I also understand that it holds to the Hebrew language structure to use the masculine form even when the group being addressed is a mixed audience. However, there is a specific example where Yah uses a different word to address the entire assembly when he is addressing the women, children, slaves, and foreigners as well as the men when giving a command. This is actually quite exciting so please stick with me! I believe that Yah is intentional when he uses this particular masculine word. I do believe there were women and children also present when Moses spoke the Torah to the men and I believe the commands apply to them as well. I however do not believe the women and children were specifically being spoken to. Consider that it was Adam who was held accountable for Eve’s actions. By learning and walking properly the roles Yah has assigned us, men should be avoiding the sin of Adam (not being the head) and women avoiding the sin of Eve (not being in submission to her head).

There are very few instances where Yah speaks directly to women in Torah. Even in Lev 12 and 15 the men are addressed concerning the specifics about women’s menstruation, childbirth and such.  It is then the responsibility of the men to insure those commands are carried out under their headship.

To be clear, Yah is delivering these commands through Moses to the men of the households and it’s the man’s responsibility to teach them and discern correct application for his women. And, it is the man’s responsibility to correct her accordingly. Yah is a “gentleman” and this is another example such as Numbers 30, previously addressed, where Yah maintains the hierarchy and literally does not circumvent His authority given to the woman’s head / man.

What, then, is ‛êdâh ?

[3] Speak to all the congregation of Israel, saying, ‘On the tenth of this month they are each one to take a lamb for themselves, according to their fathers’ households, a lamb for each household.

Exodus 12:3 NASB

That word “congregation” is: ‛êdâh Strongs H5712 and it is appropriately translated as such.

Ok so I did a little digging and I cannot find another Torah command addressed specifically to the whole congregation of Israel… the only other time the word ‛êdâh is used in the opening address of a command is in Lev. 19:2 and it says “the congregation (‛êdâh) of the sons (bên) of Israel” so it’s still a specific address to the men.

Based on what I just pointed out the only context where Yah bypasses the hierarchy and delivers a command directly to all of the assembly including men, women, children, slaves, and foreigners etc… is in the context of the first Passover and the ongoing observance of the passover which is a picture of the ultimate salvation in Yeshua himself. All other matters are directly delivered to the men. Salvation appears to be the only issue that a man does not have direct authority over his women. All other “manner of life” commands are given following the hierarchy through the headship of the man.

We know that elsewhere Paul makes it very clear that women are to be subject to their husbands in everything. 

But as the church is subject to Christ, so also the wives ought to be to their husbands in everything.

Ephesians 5:24 NASB

This is a very good reason why every woman should be under headship. It is a place of protection for her. We as men need to be prepared to step up and provide that love, headship, guidance and correction for whatever woman or women that Yah puts in our lives and to the degree that he leads us to do so. Ladies, I ask you, are you walking this out in submission to your head / man? Those of you who are single, are you seeking to come under the headship of a man? What does Paul say should be happening for widows under the age of 60? 1 Tim. 5 tells us she should be seeking a head. Ladies who are divorced need to be thinking long and hard about what Numbers 30:9 has to say putting them in the same status as widows. Scripture clearly indicates that it is best if all single ladies seek to be under the headship of a man. Will we walk out what scripture teaches? Or, will we continue to be ruled by our cultural biases and fear of man? 

Remember this first Passover was open to all who would choose to follow Yah… and some foreigners did choose to follow. Exodus 12:38, 48 (Paul references them as Greeks) Slaves are referenced as well. Exodus 12:44. For clarity sake what I am pointing out is that Paul grasped the fact that Salvation is open to all and no one has authority over another with reguard to acceptance of salvation. Just as Exodus 12 makes clear that the Passover is open to all, Paul points out that Jew, Greek, male, female, slave and free have equal status in messiah as it pertains to salvation.

[28] There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus. [29] And if you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham’s descendants, heirs according to promise. 

Galatians 3:28-29 NASB

So why did Paul mention Abraham and the promise here in this context? How does this fit in with Passover? And what is the relationship with belonging to Messiah? 

All the congregation of Israel are to celebrate this. [48] But if a stranger sojourns with you, and celebrates the Passover to the LORD, let all his males be circumcised, and then let him come near to celebrate it; and he shall be like a native of the land. But no uncircumcised person may eat of it. [49] The same law shall apply to the native as to the stranger who sojourns among you.

Exodus 12:47-49 NASB

There’s that word congregation (‛êdâh) again. This time in direct connection to the stranger (Greek) who chooses to reverence (sojourns) Yah and partake of the Passover (Salvation). Did you notice the command is for circumcision? What is the eternal sign of the covenant made with Abraham? 

God said further to Abraham, “Now as for you, you shall keep My covenant, you and your descendants after you throughout their generations. [10] This is My covenant, which you shall keep, between Me and you and your descendants after you: every male among you shall be circumcised. [11] And you shall be circumcised in the flesh of your foreskin, and it shall be the sign of the covenant between Me and you. ”

Genesis 17:9-11 NASB

The Apostle Paul upheld and taught the Torah. He did not attempt to add to it or take from it. In Gal. 3:26-29 he is expounding on Exodus 12 and giving us the truth from the Torah with regard to salvation and the Passover. He is further tying it all back to the covenant with Abraham. Paul is remaining consistent with his teaching from (Titus 2:9) that a bondslave is to be subject to their master. He is remaining consistent with himself (1Cor. 12:13) and the Torah, teaching that upon entering into salvation all become part of the assembly (body). He is not contradicting himself (Eph. 5) or the Torah and teaching some sort of false egalitarian crap as it regards the authority structure laid out consistently throughout the scriptures and expounded by himself in 1 Corinthians 11 which is Yah > Messiah > man> woman.

I hope that each of you have been helped with this ongoing study and I look forward to further exploration of this important topic.

This entry was posted in Guest Post, Restoring Kol Israel Series and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

9 Responses to Restoring Kol Israel: No more male or female?

  1. Jacob Guiton says:

    Very neat.

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  2. W.B. says:

    Hello Jeremy, you made a statement that, although, was not your main point, needs to be addressed. you wrote , “There is a reason why Peter labels Paul’s writings as scripture (2 Peter 3:16). ” I think this is not what Peter was doing at all. He was just saying that people twist Paul’s writings just like they do the Scripture. It wasn’t until about 120 years AFTER Yeshua that the Romanized church ‘fathers’ (these being the fathers of the Catholic church, NOT the true church that was forced underground by persecution, by that very body), that it was even hinted that any of the ‘New Testament’ was ‘Scripture’. In fact, it wasn’t until around 200 CE that the terms, ‘New’ and ‘Old’ testaments are starting to be used. It wasn’t until around 400 CE that the ‘New Testament’ is generally accepted as ‘Scripture’. This isn’t to say there is not great value in the early writings, there are, but we must keep them in proper context. Labeling these writings as ‘Scripture’, has only misled people away from the foundation of the Torah and Tanakh, the true Scriptures, as accepted by Messiah and all of the apostles. To prove this point, I ask this question. Can a man’s opinion be considered equal with the words of YA? So how can Paul’s writings be considered Scripture? He even states in his own writing, that some of his commands are from him, Paul, not ‘the Lord’. Just to clarify, I do believe in the salvation work done by Yeshua (the visible image of an invisible El), I just think this misunderstanding of what exactly Scripture is, has caused, and continues to cause great harm to those trying to find the path. I will follow up with the name of a book I’ve been reading over the last year about the formation of the biblical cannon, very eye opening. Shalom

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    • Jeremy says:

      I don’t want to derail the conversation from the topic of headship and it’s role in the restoration of kol Israel but I do want to address a couple things you have said.

      I understand your point and just to be clear I believe Paul’s letters to be inspired by the spirit of Yah. They are “divine commentary” for lack of a better term.

      As to your point about Peter:

      2 Peter 3:15-16 NASB
      and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, [16] as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the REST of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. (emphasis mine)

      That word “rest” has a meaning.
      Strong’s Number G3062
      Thayer’s Definition:
      remaining, the rest
      the rest of any number or class under consideration
      with a certain distinction and contrast, the rest, who are not of a specific class or number
      the rest of the things that remain

      Peter says they distort Paul’s writings just like they do the REST of scripture. If he isn’t equating Paul with the rest of scripture then what does that mean?

      Yes in some points Paul specifies that it is his words and not Yah’s which if anything lends more credibility to him because he is completely upfront about that fact in particular passages. This does not negate his letters from being scripture.

      I am personally not a fan of even using the terms “old testament” or “new testament” and I am completely aware that those terms do not originate from scripture and they are completely misapplied and lead to a completely incorrect view that the two are somehow separate or opposed to one another. This still does not lead to the conclusion that the last 27 books in the Bible are not scripture. It’s one story and its completely consistent throughout.

      It is dangerous and misleading to claim that parts of it are not valid scripture. The great harm is in misunderstanding what exactly is being said in Matthew – Revelation and therefor concluding that they or parts of them are not scripture. Understand the Torah and then read the last 27 books with that lens and seek to have the depth of understanding that Paul and the other Apostles did. That is what will clear the confusion.

      Liked by 1 person

      • WB says:

        I would agree that words have meanings. I think using the one word ‘rest’, to defend the position that the ‘NT’ is Scripture just like the tanakh, is very weak, at best. Using the Greek to make definitive theological decisions is not wise for someone following Torah.
        I think the ‘NT’ is inspired by YA as well, but that doesn’t make it scripture. I’ve read many things in my life that I believe are inspired by the Father, even here on this blog, no matter how good they are, I certainly wouldn’t equate them with the tanakh. All the confusion I’ve seen with people trying to come from Christianity to Hebraic Roots, comes from miss understanding/applying the NT. If a person accepts the OT/tanakh as the absolute authority, there would be zero questions as to eating clean, Sabbath, holy days, circumcision, the headship of the husband/father etc. Only when people twist the first century writings to be equal to or higher than the Torah, do we see the confusion.
        Yeshua said if he testified on his behalf, that his testimony would not be valid, so how can anyone use the NT to ‘prove’ that the NT is Scripture? He also said in John 10:35 ‘… and you know the tanakh cannot be broken…’ .Where the NT lines up with the tanakh, it’s good, where it doesn’t, it’s either being misunderstood, or a translator with a western/Greek mindset wrote the Hebrew thought out of it.

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    • W.B. says:

      this is the book- The Formation of the Christian Biblical Canon: Revised and Expanded Edition
      Lee M McDonald

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    • Zec Austin says:

      You are very deceived or very deceptive. You pick which. The church didn’t get “ To omanized” until the late 300’s. A hundred and twenty years after Jesus the church was still viewed itself as largely Jewish and others viewed it as a sect of Judaism. It wasn’t until a persecution of the Jews after a revolt around 147 that there was a significant distinction between the two. And while Paul pointed out some of his teachings came from himself, Jesus tells us that Moses did something of the sort, telling us that from the beginning a man was not allowed to drive force his wife but Moses made the exception for the hardness of the Israelites hearts. If you lose the New Testament, an admittedly lousy name for it, you lose vast swaths of the Torah. Without the tribes and the temple, and with no sign of them after 2,000 years, the following of Torah is not possible. It was the changes brought by Christ and given to us in the Gospels that keep our faith from being deader than that of the Romans or Vikings, who were able to practice their religions long after the Temple had been destroyed for hundreds of years. Without the New Testament then we are more lost than the Jews in Babylon since they had a prophecy that they would be restored and we have nothing without the New Testament except a little g God who was destroyed by the worshippers of Zeus multiple times over. If you don’t have the Gospels and the Epistles and the Revelation then you don’t have. Christ or His Return at all. If the New Testament has isn’t scripture, if Paul’s writings are not the inspired Word of God, then we don’t a faith. We’re isolators who have blasphemed our God. May He have mercy on us if what you say is true. Because if you’re right, the Jesus is a lie. We are not justified by faith. We are miserable heretics without hope or justification. I implore you to reconsider this very wrongheaded belief. It was not taught to you in good faith.

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      • W B says:

        Hello Zec,
        I wrote – ‘It wasn’t until about 120 years AFTER Yeshua that the Romanized church ‘fathers’ …’
        your response was -‘A hundred and twenty years after Jesus the church was still viewed itself as largely Jewish and others viewed it as a sect of Judaism. It wasn’t until a persecution of the Jews after a revolt around 147 that there was a significant distinction between the two.’
        So, Yeshua resurrected somewhere around 30 CE, agreed?? Then add 120 years AFTER Yeshua life, that would be about 150 CE. You agree that at 147 CE there was at least some differences. Where’s the problem with the dates I gave? Also, it wasn’t like everything between the church in Rome and the eastern churches was perfect, then all of a sudden there was this rift. The issue about when to celebrate Passover was one of the earliest major fights that we have recorded. Polycarp, John’s disciple rebuked the bishop at Rome over this issue and the church at Rome backed down, for a while. But the rift kept growing until the ‘Jewish’ way of doing things became outlawed by Rome.
        When you look at the reasons behind the early church starting to call the first century writings scripture, I think you might find it wasn’t so straight forward. Look up Marcion, if you haven’t. He cut and pasted his own version of ‘scriptures’, which cause the church at Rome to then say what they accepted as scripture. They allowed what Marcion did to force their hands into calling some good writings ‘Scripture’, which was a mistake. They should have just rebuked him without making the first century writings equivalent with the Torah. Funny, so many get so upset about our Jewish brothers equating the Talmud with Scripture, but then we do the same thing with the NT (new testament). Marcion taught, among other things, that the God of the OT(old testament), and the God of the NT, were completely DIFFERENT Gods! And that they were in opposition to eachother. It’s the same garbage that is still being taught in many churches today, the ‘happy Jesus of the NT, and the angry God of the OT’.
        you wrote- ‘If you lose the New Testament, an admittedly lousy name for it, you lose vast swaths of the Torah.’
        This is a completely incorrect statement, The Torah stands on it’s own. Yes, Yeshua, clarified some issues, but did not add to or take away from the Torah. (Matt. 5:17)
        I stand by what I wrote. Shalom

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  3. Vincent A Nelson says:

    This is a bit off topic, but I think it could dovetail into this discussion. During the millennial Kingdom, will people be having or have the ability to have sexual relations with one another? If there are not males or females or wives or husbands, it would seem that sex will be a thing of the past. Father created us to be sexual in nature, but I don’t know if that trait will still hold out then. Any thoughts?

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    • Pete Rambo says:

      There will be procreation in the millennial Kingdom. Indeed, we are created as sexual beings and sex, at its core, is more spiritual than physical. (Deeper topic here, but just confirming how we are created and explaining at least surface reasons why Yah limits a woman to one man…)

      Prophecy tells us there will be children and those who grow old, etc in the kingdom. Sex in the New Heaven and New Earth is a much more challenging subject… Not entirely sure how that works, but Adam and Eve had the mandate to be fruitful and multiply before the Fall… So, somehow, I think that aspect may be carried forward, though Yeshua has a couple things to say about marrying and giving in marriage. Maybe we just misunderstand what/why He said what He said… Looking forward to finding out. Yah never takes away something good without giving something better.

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