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Life from the Dead

B y Ben Cohen 

Introductory remarks:

Iím usually home for Shabbat and the weekend, but Iím happy to be here and can see it is paying off pretty strongly.

I was thinking as I was listening to all of you, ĎHow did it come about for me to get close to Christian people such as you? The first real [Christian] person that I met was John - 5 or 6 years ago. As a result of meeting John, I began to get deeper into this study. I said to myself, ďHey, thereís a person like John in this world that cares so much for the Jewish people. Where does this motivation come from?Ē It was very interesting, so I got very, very deep into it and joined with more Christians like Chris and others from New York and all over.

Itís very different from my bringing up. I was born in Jerusalem 53 years ago. Both my parents were born in the old city of Jerusalem. My grandparents came to Israel when they were very young from Iran. They did not come because of business motivation. They just packed up one morning and came Ė like others from Iran, Turkey, Morocco, etc. They just had that message that they had to go.

They had the same message that you have, as you said,  the minute you stepped foot on the land you felt yourself at home. But they went through very difficult experiences. In the beginning, it was good, for they felt like home, but then when the BIG immigration came and the people were more secular, the attitude changed altogether. They began to feel so rejected. I mean you could sense the absence of God.

A couple of weeks ago as I was reading in the Scriptures, I saw that Ezekiel, for example, is talking about the regathering from all over the world. Just after that, heís talking about outpouring of the Spirit. So what we want to discuss here is the regathering of the tribes of Israel. God wants to gather all the people of Israel into the land and thatís when Heís going to pour His Spirit and revive them.

In Ezekielís prophecy of dry bones the first thing that happens is they gather together, the flesh and the skin comes on them, but they are dead! Theyíre standing up as a big army, but theyíre dead. It is only after the wind  comes and blows on them that there is the spiritual development.

Most of the Jews that come into Israel, unfortunately are coming because they donít have much of a choice. They come as confused immigrants. Itís very disturbing that the Jews have to go through much suffering in order to come to the point of putting their body in Israel. They are not coming there out of choice. So you have a situation that the Spirit is missing.

On the other hand, I see Christians like you and the Spirit is there. And the combination of both Ė the body and the Spirit Ė is what brings life into these bones and what makes them a great legion, a great army. Only the combination of both of them makes it right.

Thatís what brought us to the point of digging and searching. I say, how do we put these two together? What do we do? Again, we went into the Bible and we saw that it is basically there. The time to break it open so the people could recognize it, hasnít been until now, but it is there.

Kingdom Split (sub-topic)

Remember about 2700 years ago Israel was split into two kingdoms, the kingdom of Judah and kingdom of Israel. (Itís often called Ephraim because the leadership was from that tribe and it was the largest tribe in the northern kingdom.) Ever since then, theyíve never got back together. They are two separate nations, according to the Prophet Ezekiel, and the end of days in the process of the ingathering, the two nations, Judah and Israel will be one Kingdom. Ezekiel gives the story of the two sticks being put together into one. These two are definitely going to come together, but where are these two now?

Judah has always been the Jews. The word ďJewsĒ came from Judah. Jews is a word that is hardly mentioned in the Bible. In the five Books of Moses, you donít have one mention of the word. Itís always Israel, Israel, Israel. Itís maybe one time in Zechariah and Nehemiah Ė very few times, and that was after they came back from Babylon. So the Kingdom of Judah is the Jewish people that were gathering around Jerusalem. They stayed with the kingdom of Judah, and theyíre the ones that kept their identity.

On the other hand the Kingdom of Ephraim, the Kingdom of Israel, it says God sent them to Assyria and they were exiled. And since then, as it says in the Bible very clearly about 25 times, they lost completely their identity as being of Israel.

What did you experienced when you landed there in the land? You said you found there an identity. You felt that you were home. This is where you started.

Hidden Mystery Comes to Light

Now Iím going to show you that you basically are part of it, and you didnít even know about it. This is one of the biggest mysteries in the world today. God has promised in prophecy that He is going to take - - to - Iím trying to put it in English. Itís like the wheat that when you squeeze it, you see the seed is inside. You donít see it when you look on the outside of it. God is going to squeeze it [this mystery] and itís going to pop out. But just like when you look at the wheat, you donít see the seed that you make the bread out of, so most men cannot see it yet today.

God gives it in another allegory: He says when you look at the Olive tree, you really donít see the olives because the leaves are so overcastting, and in order to get the olives, what do you do? You shake the olive tree. You shake it until the olives are coming down. When you look at the tree you donít see the olives - just green, green, green.  Itís only when you shake the tree, they come down. And thatís whatís going to happen. God is going to shake us in such a way that every little olive thatís on this tree is going to fall down.

And I believe right now that everyone that is sitting in this room is a part of it, and Iím going to discuss it with you this week-end.

 Dry Bones

In Ezekiel 37 when it speaks of the dry bones and the two sticks, you can start to see yourself as a part of that. Itís talking specifically about two separate nations, thereís not going to be two separate nations anymore. There will be ONE NATION IN THE LAND. Itís very important. Itís talking about the land. Heís talking about the regathering; heís talking about the Messiah. He talking about the New Covenant of Peace. This chapter altogether is surely one of the greatest in the Holy Bible because it has so much in just one chapter. It shows the dry bones that come together into a big army, and coming to life when the Spirit blows. And it talks about the two sticks becoming one.  Isnít it fantastic? He tells you, ďThose bones are the WHOLE HOUSE OF ISRAEL.Ē

While weíre talking about the graves here: there is an argument among the rabbis about whether itís talking here about the resurrection of the dead. And indeed, I just want you to know that the year 5760 we are in today which coincides with the year 2,000, is the year that the cabalists designates as the year of the resurrection of the dead.

Really, who ARE the dead people? The dead people are us! Because so long as we donít have the Spirit and we have the body, or we have the spirit without the body, we are dead people.

[Editor: Hang on, dear reader; itís going to get even more interesting.]