Friday, December 31, 2010

Employee Handbook for Sheepherders



Glossary of Terms

Chief/Good Shepherd – YHWH the Creator who loves His sheep and only wants good things for them.

Shepherd – One who helps tend or keep YHWH’s sheep.  Every man is the shepherd of his home.

Hireling – Not a shepherd in heart, but a hired worker who watches the sheep for a payment exchange.

Sheep – Those who follow the Shepherd put over them as their Shepherd follows the Chief/Good Shepherd.  Every sheep has a shepherd.

Path – The trail worn by those sheep, who have went before us, that lead the sheep in the right direction.  There for the sheep’s sake as well as the Shepherd’s.

Fence – The barrier placed in love by the Good Shepherd.  The fence serves a two fold purpose and must be maintained.

Goats – Those who stay close to the sheep, but are not sheep. 

Wolves – Those who prey upon the sheep to devour and destroy the weak and young.

Food – The Words of the Good Shepherd are food to the sheep.  The sheep must be led to these Words.

Water – The second most essential ingredient for the sheep.  Without shelter and Water the sheep quickly perish.  Water is the Truth of the Good Shepherd. 


Rules and Guidelines.

1. The Chief / Good Shepherd watches and cares for His Sheep and only wants tov (good) things for His Sheep.

(YHWH) who satisfies your desire with good things,so that your youth is renewed like the eagle's.
(Psalms 103:5  NHEBME )

“If you then, being wicked, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more shall your Father (YHWH) who is in the heavens give what is good to those who ask Him!
(Matthew 7:11 The Scriptures 1998+)

And we know that all matters work together for good to those who love Elohim, to those who are called according to His purpose.
(Romans 8:28 The Scriptures 1998+)


2. The Good Shepherd has a Path / Way that He leads His Sheep on.


Thou (YHWH) wilt show me the Orach Chayyim (the path of life); in Thy presence is fulness of joy, at Thy right hand there are pleasures netzach (for evermore).
(Psalms 16:11 OJB)

Teach me Thy Derech (Path), YHWH, and lead me in a plain path, because of mine enemies.
(Psalms 27:11 OJB)

Teach me, YHWH, the derech (Path) of Thy chukkot; and I shall keep it unto the end. Give me understanding, and I shall keep Thy torah; yes, I shall be shomer (guard) over it with my kol lev (whole heart). Make me to go in the path of Thy mitzvot; for therein do I delight.
(Psalms 119:33-35 OJB)

Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.
(Psalms 119:105 The Scriptures 1998+)

But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn, That shines ever brighter unto the perfect day.
(Proverbs 4:18 The Scriptures 1998+)

He (YHWH) restores my soul.He guides me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake.
(Psalms 23:3  NHEBME )

The Path speaks of a cyclical route that the Sheep follow on a regular basis.  This repetitious route creates memory check points that assures the Sheep that they have not strayed from the Path.


Uphold my goings in Thy paths, that my footsteps stumble not.
(Psalms 17:5 OJB)

Show me Your ways, O YHWH Teach me Your paths. Lead me in Your truth and teach me, For You are the Elohim of my deliverance; On You I wait all the day.
(Psalms 25:4-5 The Scriptures 1998+)

Trust in YHWH with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
(Proverbs 3:5-6 IAV)

And many people shall go and say, Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of YHWH, to the house of the Elohim of Yaakov; and he will teach us of his ways, and we will walk in his paths: for out of Tziyon shall go forth the Torah, and the word of YHWH from Yerushalayim.
(Isaiah 2:3 IAV)

3.  The Sheep know the Voice of their Shepherd and listen when He calls.


"I (Yahshua)am the good shepherd; and I know My own, and My own know Me, "just as the Father knows Me and I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. "And I have other sheep, which are not out of this fold; I must bring them also, and they shall hear My voice; and they shall become one flock with one shepherd.
(John 10:14-16 MRC)

(Yahshua speaking) "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me;
(John 10:27 MRC)

Unto thee it was shewed, that thou mightest know that YHWH he is Elohim; there is none else beside him. Out of heaven he made thee to hear his voice, that he might instruct thee: and upon earth he shewed thee his great fire; and thou heardest his words out of the midst of the fire.
(Deuteronomy 4:35-36 IAV)

For He is our Elohim, And we are the people of His pasture, And the sheep of His hand. Today, if you would hear His voice:
(Psalms 95:7 The Scriptures 1998+)

4. The Torah, YHWH’s Commandments, is the fence.  The fence does two (2) things:  Keeps the bad out and protects the good inside.

And He said, “If you diligently obey the voice of YHWH your Elohim and do what is right in His eyes, and shall listen to His commands and shall guard all His laws, I shall bring on you none of the diseases I brought on the Mitsrites, for I am YHWH who heals you.”
(Exodus 15:26 The Scriptures 1998+)

The Commandments are a line of distinction between the disease and the healed.  By shomer (hear and do) we are protected from the outside diseases.


(YHWH speaking) but showing kindness to thousands, to those who love Me and guard My commands.
(Exodus 20:6 The Scriptures 1998+)


But the kindness of YHWH Is from everlasting to everlasting Upon those who fear Him, And His righteousness to children’s children, To those who guard His covenant, And to those who remember His orders to do them.
(Psalms 103:17-18 The Scriptures 1998+)

The kindness (chesed – beauty or favor) of YHWH is inside the fence.


‘If you walk in My laws and guard My commands, and shall do them, then I shall give you rain in its season, and the land shall yield its crops, and the trees of the field yield their fruit. ‘And your threshing shall last till the time of the grape harvest, and the grape harvest shall last till the time of sowing. And you shall eat your bread until you have enough, and shall dwell in your land safely. ‘And I shall give peace in the land, and you shall lie down and no one make you afraid. And I shall clear the land of evil beasts, and not let the sword go through your land. ‘And you shall pursue your enemies, and they shall fall by the sword before you.
(Leviticus 26:3-7 The Scriptures 1998+)

Inside the fence there is rain, plenty of crops, bountiful harvest, bread (food), safety, shalom, no evil beasts and no enemies.


“And you shall guard His laws and His commands which I command you today, so that it is well with you and with your children after you, and so that you prolong your days on the soil which YHWH your Elohim is giving you for all time.”
(Deuteronomy 4:40 The Scriptures 1998+)


My son, do not forget my Torah, And let your heart watch over my commands; For length of days and long life And peace they add to you.
(Proverbs 3:1-2 The Scriptures 1998+)

Length of life and completeness (shalom) is inside the fence.


(Yahshua speaking) If ye love me, keep my commandments.
(John 14:15 IAV)

(Yahshua speaking) If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father's commandments, and abide in his love.
(John 15:10 IAV)

Love for the Shepherd is inside the fence.


And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments. He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.
(1 John 2:3-4 IAV)

Intimate knowledge of the Shepherd is inside the fence.


and whatever we ask, we receive from him, because we keep his commandments and do the things that are pleasing in his sight.
(1 John 3:22 HNV)

Unlimited provision is inside the fence.


5. The Sheep need a Shepherd.


“Let YHWH the Elohim of the spirits of all flesh, appoint a man over the congregation, who goes out before them and comes in before them, who leads them out and brings them in, so that the congregation of YHWH be not like sheep without a shepherd.”
(Numbers 27:16-17 The Scriptures 1998+)


So he said, “I saw all Yisra’el scattered on the mountains, as sheep that have no shepherd. And YHWH said, ‘These have no master. Let everyone return to his house in peace.’ ”
(1 Kings 22:17 The Scriptures 1998+)

He (YHWH) feeds His flock like a shepherd, He gathers the lambs with His arm, and carries them in His bosom, gently leading those who are with young.
(Isaiah 40:11 The Scriptures 1998+)

“Hear the word of YHWH, O gentiles, and declare it in the isles afar off, and say, ‘He who scattered Yisra’el gathers him, and shall guard him as a shepherd his flock.’
(Jeremiah 31:10 The Scriptures 1998+)

“And they were scattered because there was no shepherd. And they became food for all the beasts of the field when they were scattered. “My sheep wandered through all the mountains, and on every high hill. And My sheep were scattered over all the face of the earth, and no one was seeking or searching for them.”
(Ezekiel 34:5-6 The Scriptures 1998+)

And having seen the crowds, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, as sheep having no shepherd.
(Matthew 9:36 The Scriptures 1998+)

“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.
(John 10:11 The Scriptures 1998+)

For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your lives.
(1 Peter 2:25 The Scriptures 1998+)

We all, like sheep, went astray, each one of us has turned to his own way. And YHWH has laid on Him the crookedness of us all.
(Isaiah 53:6 The Scriptures 1998+)

6.  The goats live among the sheep.  They are not sheep but blend in and cannot be told apart from a distance.  The goats (also known as tares) will be separated from the sheep (also known as wheat).

“And all the nations shall be gathered before Him, and He shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates his sheep from the goats. “And He shall set the sheep on His right hand, but the goats on the left.
(Matthew 25:32-33 The Scriptures 1998+)

‘Let both grow together until the harvest, and at the time of harvest I shall say to the reapers, “First gather the darnel and bind them in bundles to burn them, but gather the wheat into my granary.” ’ ”
(Matthew 13:30 The Scriptures 1998+)

The goats live among the sheep, but do not like the fence.  Goats typically spend a lot of time gazing at the other side of the fence.  They often attempt to escape the confines of the pasture and many times get hung up in the fence.

6.  The shepherd loves the sheep and will die for the life of the sheep.


“I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down His life for the sheep.
(John 10:11 The Scriptures 1998+)

The hireling works for money and doesn’t have the sheep’s life as his main concern.

“But the hireling, and not being a shepherd, one who does not own the sheep, sees the wolf coming and leaves the sheep and flees. And the wolf snatches the sheep and scatters them. “Now the hireling flees because he is a hireling and is not concerned about the sheep.
(John 10:12-13 The Scriptures 1998+)

The hireling doesn’t really care about the sheep, the fence or the shepherd.  What matters most is the paycheck.  If trouble comes, the hireling turns and runs. 

How does the hireling end up in charge of the sheep?  Who hires the hireling?  The shepherds have handed the sheep over to hirelings.  This is NOT the will of the Good Shepherd.


For the shepherds are become brutish, and have not inquired of YHWH: therefore they have not prospered, and all their flocks are scattered.
(Jeremiah 10:21  NHEBME )


Woe be unto the shepherds that destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture! saith YHWH. Therefore thus saith YHWH Elohim of Yisrael against the pastors that feed my people; Ye have scattered my flock, and driven them away, and have not visited them: behold, I will visit upon you the evil of your doings, saith YHWH. And I will gather the remnant of my flock out of all countries whither I have driven them, and will bring them again to their folds; and they shall be fruitful and increase. And I will set up shepherds over them which shall feed them: and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, neither shall they be lacking, saith YHWH.
(Jeremiah 23:1-4 IAV)

As the shepherds of our homes, we as men have turned our families (sheep) over to the hirelings.  The hirelings (who sometimes do a good job, without the threat of adversity and pay in hand) should not leading our homes!  It’s time we rise up and become the shepherds of our homes, following the Good Shepherd and loving the sheep.

 You should sit down with the defined terms in mind and re-read Psalms 23. 

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

What Facebook has Taught Me


I have had a Facebook page now for a few years and there are some things that I have learned.  I initially joined because I had grown tired of the junk on myspace and decided to try a new social network that didn’t have all of the garbage.  After joining I soon discovered that I could reconnect with old friends and distant relatives and I was hooked.  Not everything on Facebook has been pleasant and it has been a learning experience for sure.  Here are some things I have learned:


1.  I am getting old.

I have days that I feel my age, but generally I feel much younger than my actual age.  Facebook has helped me realize I am getting older, and it’s you guys that allowed me to see it.  You see since I don’t feel 45 and usually don’t act my age it wasn’t until I started seeing your pictures that I noticed how old I was looking.  I normally look in the mirror and see a young man, but some of you look…whew OLD!!  If we were friends when we were young and we are about the same age, I must be getting old.

I told my 11 year old son the other day; “When you’re young you live in the future.  Always day dreaming and imagining things, never really thinking about the present and having no real past.  When you are middle aged you live in the present.  Not wanting to think of the past and ignoring the future.  Life becomes about everyday survival and getting the family raised.  Then one day you wake up and realize you are old and all you want to do is dwell in the past.”

Some of ya’ll are living everyday in the past.  Now I didn’t think I was personally doing this until I saw ya’ll doing it, then I realized that maybe I have started doing it myself.

Thank you Facebook for this lesson.


2.  There were a lot of things I stressed over years ago that I should have just let them go.

When I was younger (preteen up to mid-twenties) I did and said some things that I immediately regretted and after losing contact with some of ya’ll spent hours wondering if I had offended or hurt you.

Then I discovered Facebook and I found ya’ll too.  That’s when upon closer observation those things that I thought had damaged you, in fact don’t really seem to have had an effect on ya’ll at all.  Now granted, most of ya’ll don’t seem to be normal, but I don’t see a connection to your issues and my comments or actions.  In fact, I might should have done and said more, this might have prevented ya’ll from doing some of the stupid things that messed your heads up.  The mental scars that ya’ll have accrued are so vast, there is no way I could have done this damage.  I often wonder how many of ya’ll are actually mental institution escapees?  Regardless, I still love ya’ll, I just worry about your lifestyle choices.  So…

Facebook has taught me not to sweat the small stuff.


3.  We all get fat and ugly.

When I started rediscovering ya’ll, I was worried that you would reject me ‘cause I was not the slim and attractive young man I used to be.  Then through the wonderful “Photo” section on ya’lls Facebook pages, I discovered the current you.  And well, let’s just be honest; ya’ll have let yourselves go.  Come on people we are only in our mid to late forties.  We aren’t old enough to start spending the rest of our lives trying to eat ourselves to death.  There are lots of workout programs on DVD for geriatrics available.  We all should agree to try and get back to our high school weight or better, just so we can quit laughing at each others photos thus possibly causing one of you hefties to have a heart attack.

Facebook has taught me that getting older doesn’t mean you have to give up.


4.  How in the world did ya’ll end up there?

I know some of you read my posts on Facebook and think I have gone bananas.  I am fine with that.  Why?  I read your posts too.  I wonder how many of you have come down with Mad Cow’s Disease?  I understand most of you think I am weird and not even close to the same guy you used to know.  But when I read some of your posts, I think aliens have slithered into your ears and now posses your brains. 

If nothing else, no matter how far in left field I go, some of ya’ll will always make me feel normal.

Facebook has taught me that brain erosion is no respecter of persons.


5.  Decisions are very important and think them through before settling on one.

I know we all make snap decisions sometimes and live to regret our choices.  But what were some of you thinking?  Let’s make some things very clear; tattoos are basically permanent,  marrying a lifelong convict seldom works out, if you don’t plan on changing your eating habits reconsider liposuction, sharing your most intimate moments on your “wall” cannot be undone. 

Ya’ll need to think harder before making decisions.  Therapists do need work and it is mighty noble of ya’’ll to continue to pile up sessions topics like Lindsey Lohan piling up drug busts; but at some point ya’ll need to consider my #1 point above.

Now having gotten these things off my chest and having aired out my laundry, let me say that I am thankful that the creator of Facebook was kind enough to create this outlet to teach me these life lessons.

In closing, I love ya’ll and will “like” your Facebook post forever, or until they take away my internet here in my padded room.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Priests of Our Homes

We are told in two different passages from the book of Revelation that we have been made kings and priests.

and has made us sovereigns and priests to His Elohim and Father, to Him be esteem and rule forever and ever. Amĕn.

(Rev 1:6)

and made us sovereigns and priests to our Elohim, and we shall reign upon the earth.”

(Rev 5:10)

This is also alluded to in the book of Daniel.

So if we as men are going to be serving as kings and priests, how is this applicable to the life we are living now and our function within the home? Are there particulars concerning the job of priest that we need to understand and emulate?

I am going to use the references Rico Cortes has in is teaching concerning the role of the priest and see how we can apply these in our lives today.

The first thing that stands out to me concerning the priest is the level of sanctification that is necessary to be able to fulfill his duties. The hands and feet must be washed to make them pure. The hands come in contact on a daily basis with all kinds of impure things. It is almost impossible as someone who deals with the world during the work week, to not be touching unclean things or people. As the priest of my home, it is my responsibility to make sure that before I come home and be in contact with my family; being the intermediate between them and YHWH, that I do my part and clean my hands. We must even before dealing with our family, shake free all of the filthiness and unrighteousness of the world so that we may be able to deliver to them the righteousness of YHWH. We also must sanctify our feet, because we are forced to walk where the unclean things of this world are. So before bringing these things into the home, we make ourselves clean. But not just our hands and feet, we must be immersed into the pure water and come out clean, because the righteousness of YHWH cannot coexist with the filthiness of this world. To be the emissary of the Presence of YHWH for the home, we must be clean.

By what are we washed? I am not talking about taking a bath or shower on our natural bodies. Although I almost always feel this compelling desire to get physically clean also, I am talking about a Spiritual concept. What is the Water that we are washed in?

Ba'alim (husbands), have ahavah for your nashim (wives), as also Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach has ahavah for the Brit Chadasha Kehillah and gave Himself up on behalf of her, That He might bring her to kedushah (Holiness), having given her tohorah (purification) by the tevilah of the mikveh mayim of the Dvar YHWH,

(Ephesians 5:25-26 OJB)

So the Word of YHWH can wash us and make us Set Apart. Men, are you daily washing yourself in His Word? Have you allowed the daily things you are immersed in keep you out of the mikveh (immersion) of YHWH’s Word? We cannot and will never be priests of our homes until we learn that we need the Word of YHWH to make us clean.

The priest would daily light the incense in the Tabernacle and Temple. This would create a pleasing smell to rise up to YHWH. In Revelation chapter 8 we find that the prayers we send up are the incense before YHWH. As the priest of the home, it is our job to daily send up prayers before YHWH on behalf of our family. Three times a day the incense was offered up; morning, midday and early evening. These became the prayer times that we see still observed in the Brit Chadasha (New Testament). In fact, all three times are mentioned in the recounting of Yahshua’s death. We cannot lead our family into YHWH’s Presence until we set the pattern first thing in the morning. We start the day by saying the Shema, and then we address our King with praise and thanksgiving, freely asking for our daily provision because we know He only wants what is best for us. We stop midday and again address our Creator. Then once again before the end of the day, we come into His Presence. Men, we must fall on our faces before YHWH, we must seek His face and we must return to His Way. Most of us come from a christian background were ritualistic type prayers were frowned upon. We have been raised to address YHWH like He is our best buddy. Understand I am not condemning this type of communication; however, we cannot forget that the daily memorized prayers by the Jews kept YHWH were He was supposed to be and the people where they should be. He is King and we are His servants. “Our Father, Who art in Heaven, Set Apart is Your Name…” Let’s not do all of our prayers in the Buddy Mode and forget that YHWH is our King. We need confession and teshuvah, these lead to revival. Revival in our lives, in our homes, in our Nation and around the world.

It was the priest’s job to make sure the menorah stayed lit. There was only one Light in the Tabernacle and it could not be neglected and allowed to burn out. To keep it burning, oil must be in the bowls. Men are you keeping the Light in your homes? There is only One Light source for your homes. If you allow it to go out, your home is in darkness. The only way for the menorah to stay lit is to keep the oil (Ruach) full. If we do not have the Ruach, how can we pour it out in our homes? We MUST stay full of the Spirit so we can keep pouring His Spirit out.

There is much more here and I will write additional information in the days to come.