Yeshua: The Living Word
by Rabbi K. A. Schneider
“But I tell you the truth: It is for your good that I am going away. Unless I go away, the Counselor will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you.” ~ John 16:7 NIV
Yeshua did not tell His disciples that “it was good that He was going away,” in order to send them a New King James Bible; rather, He told them “it was good that He was going away,” so He could send them the Counselor, the Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit). Don’t misunderstand me, I’m not telling you to give up Bible reading. We need to read the scriptures to show ourselves to be approved workmen of the LORD.
“Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a workman who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth.” ~ 2 Timothy 2:15 NIV
Knowing God’s Word is a lot like being a carpenter. A carpenter has many tools, and the more tools he has, the more jobs he’s able to perform. The more of God’s Word that you know, the more you will be able to utilize it, just as a carpenter utilizes a specific tool for the project he’s doing.
You’ll never hear me preach a message that’s not right out of the Word of God, but today we’ve made the Bible our main focus instead of God. The scriptures are designed to lead us to God, not replace Him. If you think about it, those first disciples didn’t even have Bibles like we know them today. It was the Spirit of God who led them in all truth. The Spirit was their sufficiency. The written Word was never designed to replace the Living Word (Yeshua).
Don’t misunderstand what I am saying. I love God’s written Word. I memorize it, chew it, and digest it. It is the Word of Yeshua and the Word of Yaweh. It cleanses, transforms, gives direction, and brings us into the truth. There must be, however, a marriage between God’s written Word and His Living Word (Yeshua) by the Holy Spirit in our lives.
Only the Spirit knows the thoughts of God, and He’s been given to us so that we may know the things of God.
“We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us.” ~ 1 Corinthians 2:12 NIV
We are able to perceive the things of God by the natural realm, our eyes, ears, and minds, but God gives us revelation through His Spirit.
God desires for us to understand that the Spirit is real, and that He lives inside us. We need to stop searching for Him outside ourselves. Have you been searching for God in the things you are doing and in the places you are running to? Are you forever reading books in order to find God? Books are helpful, but the reality is that God has placed His Spirit within us, and it’s through His Spirit that we will find Him.
As we learn to abide in Messiah, trusting His Spirit within us, we will enter into a place of deep peace. The psalmist knew the importance of this.
“He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.” ~ Psalm 91:1 NIV
When we attempt to live our lives on our own, failing to trust and abide in the Spirit, we will end up stumbling through life without His help and protection. Somehow, we seem to believe that if we don’t do something ourselves, it won’t get done. Actually, the opposite is true. When we abide in the Spirit and depend on Him, more is accomplished through His power than could ever have been accomplished on our own. This is why in 2 Corinthians 12, Paul (Shaul) boasted in his weaknesses, because when he depended on the LORD in his weakness, the power of God was strong in and through his life. This dependency is a daily process that God is continually circumcising our hearts with.
In 2006, I went to Kansas City International House of Prayer (IHOP) where, at that time, there had been a 24-hour prayer going on night and day, seven days a week, since September 1999. I went there at a crisis time in my life when I was really hurting inside. The LORD was leading me to simply sit at His feet and wait upon Him.
The story of Mary (Miryam) and Martha (Marta) demonstrates the importance of just sitting and waiting upon the LORD. It contrasts two sisters: Martha who was busy doing so many things for Yeshua, and Mary who simply sat at His feet to receive from Him. Martha became upset at Mary, because she wasn’t helping her with all the preparations. Martha asked Yeshua to tell her sister to help her. Instead, Yeshua told Martha that her sister, Mary, had chosen what was better.
What higher act of service could Martha have given than to prepare a meal for Yeshua? Yet, Yeshua said that Mary had chosen to do the most important thing, which is just to simply sit at the LORD’s feet and receive from Him. So I want to encourage you to be more like Mary.
The truth is, God wants to make known to us that we don’t need to be better doers; we need to be better receivers. Our lives should be that of continually receiving from the LORD so that our doing will just be an overflow of our receiving. As we make our priority receiving, rather than doing, we will bear much fruit, fruit that can only be produced when we abide in Him.
“I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.” ~ John 15:5 NASB
Yeshua spoke of the importance of abiding in the Father. He did nothing of His own initiative; it was the Father abiding in Him Who did all the works.
“Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father is in Me? The words that I say to you I do not speak on My own initiative, but the Father abiding in Me does His works.” ~ John 14:10 NASB
It should be the same with us. We should do nothing of our own initiative; instead, allow Yeshua, through the Spirit within us, to do all the works. The goal is to abide in Yeshua, even as Yeshua abides in us.
[During the past thirty years, Rabbi Schneider has committed his life to a passionate pursuit of Jesus and to being used by God for His glory. Through his years of experience in both personal spiritual warfare and ministry, Rabbi Schneider is able to bring to God’s Church deep insight into how to gain victory over Satan and the realm of darkness. Rabbi Schneider leads the congregation Lion of Judah World Outreach Center in Toledo, Ohio. He has authored two previous books, Awakening to Messiah and Do Not Be Afraid. He and his wife, Cynthia, have two children and live near Columbus, Ohio.]