If We Believe the Prophet, We Must Act Justly
Someone would have to be living completely off the grid not to be aware of the growing division in the United States and around the globe. At the same time, anyone who believes in Yeshua and the New Testament should be aware of the violent prophetic events described in the words of Yeshua and the Prophets, especially those found in the book of Revelation. Every one of these events was foretold so that we would heed their warning and be prepared.
Unfortunately, many within the body have projected these words way into the future to a time when believers in Yeshua will no longer be on the earth. The result of this faulty end time understanding is that the Body of Believers is responding to events unfolding in the same way that unbelievers are responding.
But if we read what Yeshua says in the book of Matthew, we will notice that He is telling His disciples about what is coming. Yeshua warned them that their families will betray them, some even unto death. He tells His disciples that they will be hated for His name, but that those who endure to the end will be saved. After speaking these words that had to be heartbreaking to hear, Yeshua tells His followers not to fear what is coming and that they should only fear the One who is able to destroy both body and soul. Yeshua’s warning to His disciples is that they should not fear the events that will unfold in the end times because fear would cause them to act in ways that could cost them their soul.
In the closing words of this powerful sermon in Matthew 10, Yeshua taught His disciples these words, which are vitally important to all of His disciples today:
41 He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward, and he who receives a tzaddik in the name of a tzaddik shall receive a tzaddik’s reward.
As we read these words, the first line seems to be easy to understand in context, after all, Yeshua had just given them a prophetic word, which was both frightening and encouraging. So, it would make perfect sense for Yeshua to remind them of the importance of receiving (believing) a prophet. But, what about the second line of that statement about a tzaddik (righteous man in Hebrew)? Why would Yeshua connect the concepts of receiving a prophet with receiving a righteous man? To understand this, let’s look at the Hebrew word Tzaddik. The word Tzaddik means righteous, but it also means justice. So, in order to truly receive a prophet and his message, one must also believe that the prophet and his message is also just.
Understanding this statement by Yeshua has ramifications that affect every believer. In order to accept Yeshua as the Prophet like Moses or the Messiah, we must also believe that the Prophecies given by Yeshua concerning the end times are not only true, but also just. Therefore, our actions in response to fulfilled prophetic events must also be just, or else we are not behaving like we are His disciples.
So, when we look around our world and see the violent events going on around us, we cannot let those events cause us to act in ways inconsistent with being His disciples. To bring more clarity, let’s look at Deuteronomy 16:20:
20 Justice, justice you must pursue, so that you may live and possess the land that Adonai your God is giving you.
The word translated “justice, justice” is the Hebrew word Tzedek, which is the same root word used above for righteousness. When we look one verse back in Deuteronomy, we see these words:
19 You are not to twist justice—you must not show partiality or take a bribe, for a bribe blinds the eyes of the wise and distorts the words of the righteous.
I’ve watched with dismay as believers watch events take place in cities around the country and choose sides in the conflict based solely on media reports. This jumping to conclusions and rushing to judgement not only adds to the division, it also damages the testimony of our faith.
If we proclaim ourselves to be followers of Yeshua as our Messiah, these words should guide our response to all situations, especially those we may identify as prophecy coming to pass. We cannot react from our feelings, our inclinations, or even our experiences in and from other situations. We cannot react to any situation based upon limited and often skewed information provided by the media drenched in their agendas.
We, as believers, must exhibit patience and compassion while we wait for investigations to be completed. We must wait for all witnesses to be heard and all evidence must be considered. If we come to our own conclusions without allowing all evidence to be examined, we fall short of being just and our unrighteousness will demonstrate our unbelief in Yeshua as our Prophet and Messiah.
If the events we see taking place are in fact end times prophecies coming to pass, then there has never been a time when it was more important for believers to demonstrate our faith by acting justly.