“Come to me, all of you who are struggling and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and LEARN from me, because I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”
What exactly is Messiah’s “yoke”?
Yeshua had just said to them: ” Well, the proof of wisdom is in the actions it produces.”
The Kingdom of Heaven is about “produce”, “fruit”, “action”, “change”, and all of these require “work.”
Yokhanan haShaliakh, Yeshua’s beloved friend, writes this:
“If we SAY we have friendship with Him [Yeshua] and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not PERFORM the TRUTH….”
The “action” word there is “po’al”, and means to “do a work.”
“If any man will not work, he must not eat.” [2 Tim 3:10] This is a basic truth most right-thinking people accept; BUT, those same “right thinking” people DENY that this is true in the Kingdom of Elohim! Yes, Yeshua did say that the work of G-d is to “believe in the one whom He has sent.” BUT, Yeshua also taught that this “belief”, which is “trust”, produces action! And that action eventually produces ‘salvation’. Yeshua said, “If you want to obtain eternal life, KEEP THE COMMANDMENTS.”
People work so hard to prove to the world they deserve a respectable place in society, but at the same time look over and over for excuses NOT to do the hard work of the KINGDOM: CHANGE ONESELF, training oneself to WALK AS HE WALKED.
People SAY they want to be like Yeshua, but do not desire to LEARN FROM HIM, to learn what HIS yoke is.
He did come to set us free! But, at the same time, to teach us! Teach us what? TO KNOW HIM. [Jer 31:30-33]
When He said “yoke”, He was not mincing words. There is a certain type of ‘labor’, a certain type of “burden” that those who follow Messiah must have, must “do.” Shaul called it SLAVERY! You’ll see He’s expounding what Yeshua said about the yoke!
“Don’t you know that if you present yourselves to someone as obedient slaves, then, of the one whom you are obeying, you are slaves – WHETHER OF SIN, which leads to death, or of OBEDIENCE, which leads to being made righteous? By G-d’s grace, you, who were once SLAVES TO SIN, obeyed from your heart the pattern of TEACHING to which you were exposed; [MEN’S DOCTRINES] and after you had been set free from sin, you became ENSLAVED TO TZEDAKA!!!!. I am using popular language because your human nature is so weak. For just as you used to offer your various parts as slaves to impurity and opposition to TORAH, which led to more opposition to Torah; so now offer your various parts as SLAVES to righteousness, which leads to being made holy, set apart for G-d. For when you were slaves of sin, you were free in regard to righteousness; but what benefit did you derive from the things of which you are now ashamed? The end result of those things was death. However, now, freed from sin and ENLSAVED [yoked] to G-d, you do get the benefit – it consists in being made holy, set apart for G-d, and ITS END RESULT IS ETERNAL LIFE. For what one earns from sin is death; but eternal life is what one receives as a free gift from G-d, in union with the Messiah Yeshua Adoneinu.”
Entering into the renewed covenant in Messiah Yeshua indeed gives us the gift of life; but, it IS an agreement to be “bound.” To what? TO TRUTH! To be ‘confined’ by the Torah!
A “yoke” is an instrument placed on an animal to GUIDE IT.
This is why Yeshua said….”Take MY YOKE [Torah] upon you….
AND LEARN FROM ME….”
The “yoke” of bondage that Yeshua broke is the bondage of slavery to SIN.
“Anyone who sins breaks the Torah. Sin IS breaking Torah.” I John 3:4
He did NOT set us free so we could “run away” from Him. He set us free from our ENEMY [SIN] so that we could come into His house.
“I will RUN in the path of your COMMANDMENTS, for you have SET MY HEART FREE!” Tehillah 119:165
Yeshua said that His Yoke is easy, and his burden is light.
Look at what He told Yisra’el about the Torah:
“For this commandment which I command you this day, it is NOT TOO HARD for you, neither is it far off. It is not in heaven, that you should say: ‘Who shall go up for us to heaven, and bring it unto us, and make us to hear it, that we may do it?’ Neither is it beyond the sea, that you should say: ‘Who shall go over the sea for us, and bring it unto us, and make us to hear it, that we may do it?’ But THE WORD is very nigh unto you, in YOUR mouth, and in YOUR heart, that YOU MAY do it.” Deu 30
Yisra’el had turned from the Torah, and began to do MAN’S religion, to follow MAN’S rules, by which they measured one another’s righteousness. We are supposed to measure OUR OWN LIVES, and to do so BY THE TORAH.
Ya’akov [James], Yeshua’s brother, tell us this plainly:
“DO NOT DECEIVE YOURSELVES by only hearing what the Word [Torah, Commandment, see above in deu 30] says, but DO IT! For whoever hears the Word but does NOT DO what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror, who looks at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But if a person looks closely into the PERFECT TORAH, WHICH GIVES FREEDOM, and continues to, becoming not a forgetful hearer but a DOER OF THE WORK it requires, THEN he will be blessed in what he does.”
LEARN FROM MESSIAH! He is The TORAH in a Body [John 1:14]. The “rest” Yeshua alluded to is the “Menukhah” of Shabbat. The Shabbat is the cornerstone of the “works.” It was given to mankind in the Garden of Eden. Yeshua called Himself the “Adon of the Shabbat”, the master of the Sabbath.
The very first thing Adam DID was KEEP THE SABBATH! He was created on the SIXTH DAY, and he RESTED with Elohim on the 7th day. Yeshua said, “you will find rest for your souls,” IF we take this ‘yoke’ upon ourselves. Elohim rested His “SOUL” on Shabbat. The fourth commandment tells us to do the same, and Yeshua is echoing these words.
On Shabbat, we take off the burdens of this world, and we take ONLY the ‘burden’ of learning His Word, of learning WHO MESSIAH IS, and how to be like Him. We enter into His rest each week. One day, we will enter it permanently, IF WE ABIDE IN HIM!
“He that says he abides in Him ought himself also so to walk His TORAH WALK [Halakha].” 1 John 2:6
Are you REALLY learning of Yeshua by emulating Constantine and the rest of the pagan world? REALLY?
One thought on “No Yoke!”
What nomimal Xtianity doesn’t get is it’s not either/or. That’s profoundly Western thinking. But Abraham received grace and then he kept the commandments which was accounted to him for righteousness. Noah received grace, and then had to build a boat in the desert. That’s the pattern. It’s not grace OR–it’s grace AND. You have received grace FOR now the ability to live the commandments to refine and perfect yourself.
All I can say is to chalk up their posture on the commandments to their rebellion, the form of godliness–denying what the actual power is that obedience provides us. Their “freedom” is their chains.
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