Oneness - David Mitts
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In BEST Shabbat, we have been all about empowering you to be your best! Today, I want to press in for one of the essential ingredients, the actual purpose of the cross, oneness. The central part of God’s agenda is to restore oneness.
The main ancient prayer of Deuteronomy 6:4 is the sh’ma which is the call to oneness.
"Hear, O Israel! The LORD is our God, the LORD is one!(Deut. 6:4).
As we spoke of last week, the call is first to open our ears. Listening is the foundation stone of faith.
And He was saying, "He who has ears to hear, let him hear."(Mar 4:9)
So faith comes from hearing, and hearing by the word of Christ. (Rom 10:17)
Without hearing there is no repentance and no salvation.
How then will they call on Him in whom they have not believed? How will they believe in Him whom they have not heard? And how will they hear without a preacher?(Rom 10:14)
Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin resulting in death, or of obedience resulting in righteousness?(Rom 6:16)
Obedience to the Lordship of God through His Son, Yeshua, is what opens up the reality called righteousness. Righteousness at its core means a restoration of rightness to an individual or a people. What this means is that as we learn that Jesus is Lord, His Lordship over us leads to the actions and thinking that are “right” for our unique design as His children.
By contrast, obeying sin is not just doing the “wrong” things. It is obeying a system of values, ideas, etc that is not living. God is alive. Idols are dead. Turn with me to Isaiah 44:6-11
"Thus says the LORD, the King of Israel and his Redeemer, the LORD of hosts: 'I am the first and I am the last, And there is no God besides Me. 'Who is like Me? Let him proclaim and declare it; Yes, let him recount it to Me in order, From the time that I established the ancient nation. And let them declare to them the things that are coming And the events that are going to take place. 'Do not tremble and do not be afraid; Have I not long since announced it to you and declared it? And you are My witnesses. Is there any God besides Me, Or is there any other Rock? I know of none.'" Those who fashion a graven image are all of them futile, and their precious things are of no profit; even their own witnesses fail to see or know, so that they will be put to shame. Who has fashioned a god or cast an idol to no profit? Behold, all his companions will be put to shame, for the craftsmen themselves are mere men. Let them all assemble themselves, let them stand up, let them tremble, let them together be put to shame.(Isa 44:6-11)
Now, it is obvious to us that an image made of stone or metal is of no value. But what about success systems that are also out of man’s mind? Anything that is NOT living, meaning arising out of a living relationship will lead us to be off target which is known as sin and will therefore reproduce after its own kind which is death.
Even the greatest principles, the obvious truth of the ages, apart from a living source will bring us into a cold, heartless obedience which produces death!
This is what religion is, great ideas but no life!
This brings us to the point of today. The Lord is “One”. Yeshua came to reconnect us to the oneness. What does it mean to be one?
The Hebrew Word for oneness is echad. It is a 3 letter root word with the picture of the aleph, the chet, and the dalet. The aleph is derived from the picture of the ox, which is a picture of strength or power. The chet, is the picture of a fence or a protective barrier like the walls of a house. The dalet is the picture of a door or an entrance. So if we bring the composite picture together, oneness or unity is the doorway into the protective place of power. Psalm 133 tells us:
A Song of Ascents, of David. Behold, how good and how pleasant it is For brothers to dwell together in unity! It is like the precious oil upon the head, Coming down upon the beard, Even Aaron's beard, Coming down upon the edge of his robes. It is like the dew of Hermon Coming down upon the mountains of Zion; For there the LORD commanded the blessing—life forever.(Psalm 133:1-3)
The word “unity” is the same root as the word oneness. It is the doorway into the place of power or strength.
Yeshua after being accused of being an agent of satan declared:
The scribes who came down from Jerusalem were saying, "He is possessed by Beelzebul," and, "He casts out the demons by the ruler of the demons." And He called them to Himself and began speaking to them in parables, "How can Satan cast out Satan? "If a kingdom is divided against itself, that kingdom cannot stand. If a house is divided against itself, that house will not be able to stand. If Satan has risen up against himself and is divided, he cannot stand, but he is finished!”
Unity is power but disunity in a house makes it fall. Yeshua continues:
"But no one can enter the strong man's house and plunder his property unless he first binds the strong man, and then he will plunder his house. Truly I say to you, all sins shall be forgiven the sons of men, and whatever blasphemies they utter; but whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit never has forgiveness, but is guilty of an eternal sin"— because they were saying, "He has an unclean spirit."(Mar 3:22-30)
Many have struggled with the “blasphemy” against the Holy Spirit, taking that as the “unforgivable sin.” It is unforgivable, but not in the way that people are thinking. Forgiveness is actually the response to repentance. Repentance is adjusting to the correct way, the way of love. Saying that the One who is unity, who is oneness is working against Himself is the blasphemy! That place of blasphemy is a denial of unity and even satan knows that there is no power in disunity. His strategy is and always has been to sow disunity or discord among the brethren. This is the place of unforgiveness which breaks the power of eternity and thus is an eternal sin. The solution is repentance and forgiveness follows. The main way to “blaspheme” the Holy Spirit is to consciously choose unforgiveness in your life and break the power of oneness.
Oneness is the power of eternal life. John 17 contains the last prayers and thoughts that Yeshua wanted recorded before He died, was resurrected, and left us with the Gospel. He said these words:
"I am no longer in the world; and yet they themselves are in the world, and I come to You. Holy Father, keep them in Your name, the name which You have given Me, that they may be one even as We are.(John 17:11)
The prayer is that God would keep us in His Name. The result of that is oneness. Keeping in a name is a covenant declaration. When a person divorces, they have the option of returning to their unmarried name. Carrying the married name is carrying the impact of the covenant.
In Hebraic Biblical culture, to “keep” is the word “shomer.” It means to watch over with a protective eye. It is where we get the idea of watchmen on the walls. Psalm 121:
A song of ascents. I lift up my eyes to the mountains-- where does my help come from? My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip-- he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The LORD watches over you-- the LORD is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. The LORD will keep you from all harm-- he will watch over your life; the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.(Psalm 121:1-8)
This is the picture of the Lord “keeping” us. It is the picture of oneness. What we want to do is enter into the oneness that already exists for us through the covenant made by God with Yeshua on our behalf. Turn to John 17:20-26
"My prayer is not for them alone. I pray also for those who will believe in me through their message, that all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me. I have given them the glory that you gave me, that they may be one as we are one-- I in them and you in me--so that they may be brought to complete unity. Then the world will know that you sent me and have loved them even as you have loved me. "Father, I want those you have given me to be with me where I am, and to see my glory, the glory you have given me because you loved me before the creation of the world. "Righteous Father, though the world does not know you, I know you, and they know that you have sent me. I have made you known to them, and will continue to make you known in order that the love you have for me may be in them and that I myself may be in them."(John 17:20-26)
The prayer of Yeshua is for our oneness with the Father, with Him and by the Holy Spirit. His prayer is Yes! We need to enter into that yes!
The exercise is simple. It takes a little imagination to open doors. Close your eyes to minimize distractions.