Study Note Slides
Lost in Translation Part 4- The Menorah
Introduction: The theme of this entire series should by now become apparent. There are many areas of mistranslation but the over-riding theme we have looked at has been Covenant since from times past ever since Adam & Chavah (Eve) sinned YAHWEH has been working to bring man back into Covenant relationship through a series of progressive Covenants. Ha Satan on the other hand has been working to cause man to break the Covenant and enter into a counter Covenant of rebellion against YAHWEH. Throughout the entire Christian World the Bride’s redemptive price has taken centre stage. Since this price was the blood of Yahshua Ha Machiach (Yahshua the Messiah) its importance must never be forgotten.
Through the words of Sha’ul (Paul) this central theme of redemption through remembrance of the sacrifice of Yahshua has become the only necessary teaching for all of Christendom:
1 Corinthians 11:25 In the same manner He also took the cup after supper, saying, “This cup is the renewed covenant in My blood. This do, as often as you drink it, in remembrance of Me.”
The thought of YAHWEH sending his son to redeem the world as a Bridegroom would redeem his bride has so captivated the World of believers that the Tree/Cross has become the end all for most believers but the truth is that it begins this wonderful journey back into the presence of YAHWEH.
Hebrews 6:1-2 Therefore, leaving the discussion of the elementary principles of Messiah, let us go on to perfection, not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward Elohim (G_d), 2 of the doctrine of baptisms, of laying on of hands, of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment.
Though the redemption from our former life through the forgiveness of sin is paramount this scripture speaks of progressing beyond the basic principles of faith just like the Bride must go beyond opening the door to the prospective Bridegroom & move into more commitment to become the Bride without spot or blemish. To know what that means is the centre of our teaching.
When it was the appointed time Yahshua said to his disciples at the table to eat the bread & drink the wine in remembrance of him at that Pesach (Passover). Though the remembrance of that Passover is very important today we will endeavour to see what long establish central truth has been ignored & overlooked from all of Christendom as a result but is clearly not indicated in scripture.
The Menorah: Throughout all Scripture the image of the Menorah played an important role so today I wish to discuss its role and its importance as a unique physical instrument that brings great spiritual truth.
Elohim & Metaphors: As central as the Betrothal/ Marriage to the message of Elohim is, it is not the only sustained Metaphor throughout Scripture. There is another tied to a sacred object that YAHWEH designed himself which resonates almost as powerful throughout Scripture and that is the Menorah. The Betrothal & Menorah Metaphors complement each other. The Betrothal tells us how YAHWEH thinks about us while the Menorah shows us his plan for restoring his bride to himself.
The Menorah as a sacred symbol: As you read this material concerning the Menorah and discover its Scriptural significance to the believers’ community you will discover that it reveals Yahshua the Messiah (Jesus the Christ) & that is dependent upon understanding the Hebraic roots of our faith.
The significance cannot be overstressed since it occupies a great many verses in scripture in Shemoth (Exodus) 25- 40, Vayiqra (Leviticus) 24:4, Bemidbar (Numbers) 3-8. Its construction is very detailed & served as the only light in the Qadosh (Holy) place representing the light of Elohim (G_d) for his people.
The Menorah (Lampstand) is conceivably the most comprehensive of all Biblical symbols. As such, it is important that believers investigate the origin, use and purpose of this symbol referenced in both the Tanakh (Old Testament) and the Brit Chadashah (New Testament). We will discover that this Menorah symbolizes many things such as the Nation of Israel, the Qahal (body of believers), the Ruach Ha Qodesh (Holy Spirit), the Word of Elohim, the Seven Spirits of Elohim, even the Master Yahshua the Messiah (Jesus the Christ) himself as "the light of the world."
What is extremely significant is the layout that we derive from the Garden of Eden, The Mishkan (the Tabernacle) & the Hekal (The Temple). All had the same divisions representing the “Outer Court”, the “Holy Place” & the Holy of Holies”.
Though the Menorah with its 7 lamps, 70 garnishings on its leaves, 12 foundational divisions represent many deep understandings we will look at a more general theme of the Menorah.
The Menorah candles or lamps were to be arranged so as to "give light in front of it." What does this mean? This meant that all the six candles should face inward, toward the center candle. But this arrangement is contrary to the normal method of diffusing the light in as wide an area as possible. What this arrangement does is to concentrate the light, toward the center, thus making the whole shine more as one single large unified or “Echad” light.
This tells us that the Menorah's unique structure was more designed for a spiritual purpose than for a physical or practical purpose.
The Representation of Elohim:
We find an amazing truth about the symbolism of the Menorah found in the following:
1 Shemuel (Samuel) 3:1-3 And the young Shemu’ĕl was serving YAHWEH before Ĕli. And the Word of YAHWEH was rare in those days – no vision breaking forth. 2 And it came to be in that day, that Ĕli was lying down in his place. And his eyes had begun to grow so dim that he was unable to see, 3 And the lamp of Elohim had not gone out in the Mishkan(Tabernacle) of YAHWEH where the ark of Elohim was.
Here the Menorah becomes identified as "THE LAMP OF Elohim". As such, the Menorah is a timeless symbol. This seven-branched candlestick, for many Christians (if recognized at all) has been regarded as little more than a Jewish relic.
Notice the circumstances surrounding Samuel's prophetic call and the existing condition of Israel. The lamp of Elohim was going out and soon afterward the Philistines captured the Ark of the Covenant. Eli, the judge and High priest of Israel, had died and a child was born to Phinehas his son whose name says it all, Ichabod meaning "The glory of Elohim has departed." In principle this story could very well parallel many of the conditions within the “Church” in history, and serve as a prophetic picture of our own time. The setting was at evening time, the light from the Lamp of Elohim was shining less brightly in the temple and there was "no open vision" (revelation). It is very unusual that the lamp of EL (God) would have been going out at the very time of day when it normally should have been freshly fuelled and burning its brightest. The Qahal (Assembly) can learn valuable lessons from this story. We could very well be approaching the end of the age (evening). The Lamp of YAH, which is the Word of YAH (Tehillim- Psa. 119:105) and our understanding of it, has been seriously eroded due in great part to our forsaking the foundations of our faith rooted in the Hebrew heritage.
The judgment of Elohim is impending as Yahshua predicted.
Then shall the kingdom of heaven be likened unto ten virgins,
which took their lamps, and went forth to meet the bridegroom.
And five of them were wise, and five were foolish. . . .While
the bridegroom tarried, they all slumbered and slept. ... And
the foolish said unto the wise, Give us of your oil; for our lamps
are gone out. (Mt 25:1,2,5,8).
In prophetic expression, Yahshua predicts that just prior to his coming a large percentage of the Kingdom of YAH will be spiritually asleep. He seems to indicate that there would be an unawareness of the gravity of time. A clear vision into the purposes of YAH and the destiny of man would be missing. The virgins were not aware of the eminent coming of the Bridegroom. Because the Qahal (body of believers) seems to be experiencing storms of "every wind of doctrine" (Eph 4:14), there is a lot of end-time events & confusion in our world. This is generating complacency and serious apathy towards truth. Many seemingly do not care which is the down side. The up side is this:
And at midnight there was a cry made, Behold, the bridegroom cometh; go ye out to meet him. Then all those virgins arose, and trimmed their lamps. (Mt 25:7)
A sweet rain of pure truth has been predicted for the "pure in heart. It was at evening time when the lampstand was refuelled for greater burning in the Temple. If we are indeed in some close proximity to the end of the age it is "lamp trimming time." In other words, it is 'Biblical research time' for the body of Messiah.
Is this not why there is a growing movement today to return to our Hebrew roots:
Zecharyah (Zechariah) 8:23 Thus said YAHWEH of hosts, ‘In those days ten men from all languages of the nations shall take hold, yea, they shall take hold of the edge of the garment of a man, a Yehuḏite, saying, “Let us go with you, for we have heard that Elohim is with you.”
Yermeyahu (Jeremiah) 16:19 The Gentiles shall come to You From the ends of the earth and say, “Surely our fathers have inherited lies, Worthlessness and unprofitable things.”
Another prophet of restoration in whose vision the symbol of the Menorah appeared was Zechariyah (Zechariah). He was one who was highly motivated and involved in the restoration of the walls of Yarushalayim (Jerusalem) and the Holy Temple. There is a definite similarity between Samuel's experience and that of Zechariyah. As the vision unfolded before Zechariah, he beheld a huge candlestick (Menorah) with seven lamps upon the top of it. While beholding the scene, he heard a voice:
And said unto me, What seest thou? And I said, I have looked,
and behold a Menorah all of gold, with a bowl upon the top
of it, and its seven lamps thereon, and seven pipes to the seven
lamps, which are upon the top thereof: . . .Then he answered
and spake unto me, saying, This is the word of YAHWEH unto
Zerubbabel,[the restorer] saying, Not by might, nor by power,
but by my Ruach (spirit), saith YAHWEH the LORD of hosts (Zech. 4:2,6).
In this case it symbolized the seven-fold spirit or spirits of Elohim at work in the restoration efforts taking place in Yarushalayim (Jerusalem).
When Yahshua spoke these words from the Sermon on the Mount we see a picture of the Menorah as well:
Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a MENORAH; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven. Think not that I am come to destroy the Torah (Law), or the prophets (Nevim): I am not come to destroy, but to complete (fulfil). ( Mt. 5:14-17)
The Qahal (Assembly) here is represented by the symbol of the menorah. The lesson is that the Qahal (called of YAH assembly) must become the light of the world (a reflection of the Word of YAH). The book of Revelation gives substantial affirmation to this assertion when the angel states:
... the seven CANDLESTICKS(Menoroth) which thou sawest are the seven CHURCHES. (Rev. 1:20)
Further confirmation is given to us in chapter two where Elohim, through his angel (Malak), implores the Assembly of Ephesus to return to its first love:
Nevertheless I have somewhat against thee, because thou hast left thy first love
Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy MENORAH (CANDLESTICK) out of its place, except thou repent. Rev. 2:4-5
A spiritual interpretation could be reasonably rendered from this passage but evidently there is also a very practical side to consider. There is every reason for us to conclude that this Menorah symbol was physically on display in those first century Assemblies, and for good reason. First, as a congregation, they were more "Judeo-Nazarene" in nature and appearance than the subsequent church that became more Greko-Roman in orientation. The indication is that the MENORAH must have served as an official symbol of identity with that body of Netzar (Nazarene) assemblies originating in Jerushalayim (Jerusalem) who had been birthed of Judaism. YAHWEH Elohim did not want the Ephesus congregation, if it remained in its existing loveless condition, to even be considered by the public as representing the Judeo-Nazarene faith.
The spirit of Love is central to the very essence and nature of Elohim as is demonstrated in the symbolism of the Menorah. The centre lamp of the Menorah is, in Hebrew, called the Ner Elohim the "Lamp of Elohim" as well as Shamash the term also for Sun. Since the scriptures teach that "YAHWEH is love" (1 John 4:8), one might even call this centre light the "Love Lamp" amidst the seven. Therefore the threat of the candlestick's removal was very significant. The absence of love was sufficient cause to threaten the disenfranchisement of the Ephesus congregation from the body of Congregations representing Messiah (Machiach) in that area.
We read in Revelation 4:5 And out of the throne proceeded lightnings and thunderings and voices: and there were seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of Elohim (God).
What are the *seven spirits of Elohim and what is their mission? Isaiah the prophet is very specific on this point:
And the spirit of YAHWEH the LORD shall rest upon him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and of the fear of the YAHWEH. (Isa 11:2)
The purpose for mentioning these seven spirits ablaze before the throne of Elohim is to show that the principles of the Menorah are also manifested in the heavenlies.
In our studies we have talked about the overarching theme of Covenant and Betrothal and from what we have seen the Menorah symbolizes the presence of Machiach (Messiah) but I wish to liken it as a gift from our Bridegroom representing him revealing his heart of love being central with the other characteristics of Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel, Might, Knowledge and the fear of YAHWEH reflecting who he is and what his desire is for his beloved the Bride. Since the Menorah is the only light in the Qadosh place (The Holy Place) in the Tabernacle & it symbolizes Yahshua as the light of the World only through him can we approach the presence of YAHWEH within the Most Qadosh place (The Holy of Holies). Further the Menorah is a constant reminder to encourage us that his presence is with us through the Ruach Ha Kodesh (The Holy Spirit) who leads us, that we may have Messiah formed in us.
The Menorah & the Book of Revelation:
To anyone with Hebraic understanding and knowledge of the Menorah as a sacred instrument of structure with many depths of understanding the book of Revelation is a powerful proof of Hebraic roots. Like Ezekiel in Ezekiel 1:15-28, Yahuchanan (John) saw a similar picture in Revelation 1:12-20. Each branch was also an entire seven- branched menorah unto itself like the “wheels within wheels” described by Ezekiel. We therefore get a spinning Menorah and this is also described as the throne of Elohim. To fully grasp this we need to see the events of Revelation through the image of the multi-faceted Menorah since we have the following also revealed through the form of the Menorah:
- Seven letters.
- Seven seals.
- Seven Trumpets.
- Seven thunders.
- Seven Bowls.
- Seven Angelic Proclamations.
- Seven Evil Kingdoms.
Just as the Menorah is lit from the right (YAHWEH’s Covenant side) to the left (Satan’s Counter Covenant side) so events happen from right to left.
Slide 15, Slide 16
The truth so easily overlooked in the Book of Revelation is that it is written in a way that reveals everything through the Menorah metaphor going from right to left just like a Menorah would be lit. By so doing we have a Divinely inspired book giving us a perfect sequential Chronology that can only reveal a Hebrew Origin revealed by the hand of the Master to his servant Yahuchanan (John).
However in Spiritual terms the Menorah is also an image of the people of Elohim. Just as the branches of the original were conduits of the oil we are the pipes for the oil of the Ruach Ha Qodesh (the Holy Spirit) ignited from the Shamash representing Messiah at the Centre so we are conduits of the power, the light and the glory that comes from Yahshua when he dwells at the centre of our lives.
Removing sin allows his truth, mind and spirit to flow through to the wick unimpeded giving forth his light as a witness. Yahshua our Kohen Ha Gadol (High Priest) tends his Menorah (Lampstand) since he will not extinguish a smouldering wick (Matt 12:20) but will breathe on it with the light of his Spirit.
While the preaching of the Tree (the cross) and its message is indeed "the power of Elohim unto salvation" (Rom. 1:16), so horrible was the scene at the execution tree (the cross), that the Heavenly Father could not bring Himself to look upon it became Yahshua became sin for us. Therefore it is doubtful that Yahshua (Jesus), if He was on earth, would encourage the historic emphasis and high profile we have placed on it.
The Tree (Cross) would bring back haunting memories of excruciating torment as is indicated by the writer of Hebrews when he states that our Saviour "endured the execution tree (the cross) despising the shame" (Heb. 12:2).
Perhaps this is why the tree (the cross) is so glaringly missing, indeed totally absent, from the abundance of symbolism to be found in the book of the "Revelation of Yahshua Ha Machiach (Jesus the Christ)." It is simply nowhere there to be found.
Since Yahshua is coming back for his bride he is not coming as the suffering servant but rather as the Bridegroom extraordinaire, the King of Glory (Melek Ha Olam) so we further read how Yahuchanan (John) in Revelation sees him:
Revelation (Chazon) 1:10 I came to be in the Spirit on the Day of YAHWEH, and I heard behind me a loud voice, as of a trumpet, 11 saying, “I am the ‘Aleph’ and the ‘Tav’, the First and the Last,” 17 And when I saw Him, I fell at His feet as dead and He placed His right hand on me, saying, “Do not be afraid, I am the First and the Last,
I pray as we observe the lighted Menorah, that the richness and beauty of everything it represents blesses us and I hope we are exceedingly encouraged by its symbolism, to become the true Bride without spot or blemish as we have the blessed opportunity of being the Menorah of Elohim in the Earth since Yahshua calls us his beloved, the “Light of the World” to the esteem of our beloved Bridegroom & eternal King (the Melek Ha Olam) & to the Praise of Av YAHWEH our Heavenly Father and eternal Elohim. Amein.